NCR needs another month before shifting to MGCQ: Lorenzana

NCR needs another month before shifting to MGCQ: Lorenzana

MEGA QUARANTINE CENTER. Government officials (from left to right) led by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, DPWH Undersecretary Emil Sadain and Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque lead the inauguration of the Solaire-Pagcor Mega Quarantine Center at the Bagong Nayong Pilipino in Parañaque City Tuesday (Sept. 29, 2020). Lorenzana said Metro Manila could transition into the least stringent modified general community quarantine within a month if response efforts of local government units to Covid-19 would yield good results. (Photo courtesy of DND)

MANILA – Department of National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said he believes Metro Manila could be downgraded into modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) within a month.

“Actually, many LGUs in Metro Manila want to downgrade to MGCQ. However, there are still those, I think about half, who would like to continue with GCQ so they could arrange their coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) prevention efforts so these could be sustained. I think one month more (won’t hurt us), it will help us a lot,” Lorenzana said in Filipino on the sidelines of the inauguration and ceremonial turnover of Solaire-Pagcor Mega Quarantine Center at the Bagong Nayong Pilipino in Parañaque City on Tuesday.

Lorenzana, also chair of the National Task Force Against Covid-19, said some Metro Manila LGUs are afraid to “loosen” restrictions fearing that the region might return to modified enhanced community quarantine due to a possible spike in Covid-19 cases.

Metro Manila was placed under GCQ by President Rodrigo R. Duterte from October 1 to 31 along with the province of Batangas, and the cities of Tacloban, Bacolod, Iligan, and Iloilo.

Meanwhile, Department of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año cited the need to strengthen efforts to put Covid-19 patients in isolation facilities as Metro Manila is still under GCQ.

He added that this measure was discussed during his meeting with the Metro Manila mayors.

“Dapat talaga ay agresibo nating ilagay sa mga isolation facilities ‘yung ating mga positive (We should be aggressive in putting Covid-19 patients in our isolation facilities),” Año said in a radio interview.

Año said the people who had close contacts with the Covid-19 patients must be tested for the disease before being allowed to go out of their homes.

Through this, he said the chain of Covid-19 transmission would be broken. (with reports from Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)

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