Manila, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday announced that Metro Manila, along with neighboring provinces of Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, and Bulacan, will revert back to general community quarantine (GCQ) starting tomorrow, August 19, until August 31.
“Ang (the ones under) general community quarantine: NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal,” President Duterte said, before mentioning other areas that are already in GCQ.
The capital, which accounted for the highest number of new COVID-19 cases in the country, reimposed a 13-day enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) two weeks ago to heed the call of the healthcare community for the government to refine its pandemic control strategies.
The Philippines now has 164,474 total confirmed cases, including 2,681 deaths and 112,759 recoveries as of this writing.
On August 16, a day before the Malacanang announcement, the Metro Manila Council (MMC), composed of 17 mayors in the metropolis, held a meeting and discussed the situations in their respective areas in order to discern what quarantine status the Council will recommend to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
Jose Arturo Garcia, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) general manager, said that most mayors voted in favor of stricter GCQ in terms of economic activity and will take necessary precautions, including localized lockdowns, should the need arise.
Sectors allowed under GCQ
In GCQ areas, Category I to Category III industries can operate at half to full capacity while sectors that fall under Category IV cannot operate as they are considered non-essentials.
Trains and bus augmentation, taxis, TNVS, shuttle services, Point-to-Point buses, and bicycles will also be allowed to operate with limited passenger capacity.
See the full GCQ Guidelines here: https://boi.gov.ph/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/GCQ-Guidelines.pdf