TACLOBAN CITY – Catarman town in Northern Samar was placed under general community quarantine on Saturday to restrict the movement of people this holiday season amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.
The local inter-agency task force (IATF) on Covid-19 approved Resolution No. 19 imposing stricter quarantine measures until January 3 despite the steady decrease of the town’s cases for the past two weeks, Mayor Francisco Rosales said in a statement.
“In anticipation of the Christmas season, there remains a need to restrict the movement of residents and provide appropriate protocols for all the activities conducted within the municipality,” he added.
The city IATF has prohibited face-to-face caroling, Christmas parties in all private and public offices, and other similar activities such as family and batch reunions to avoid large gatherings that would risk the spread of the virus.
However, it allowed the Catholic Church to hold the nine-day “Simbang Gabi” provided that physical distancing and other minimum health standards are strictly observed in the venue.
Meanwhile, strict home quarantine must be observed in all households, except when accessing essential goods and services, and for work in permitted offices and establishments.
The city government has established three border control points in the villages of Macagtas, Rizal, and UEP Zone 1 to monitor the entry of individuals.
As directed, the entry of emergency response vehicles carrying patients should not be delayed, including the movement of frontline and essential workers, farmers and fisherfolks, and delivery vehicles for food supplies and other necessities.
Non-residents would be allowed entry depending on the purpose of travel, such as buying medicines and transacting with banking institutions.
Vehicles not compliant with physical distancing protocols would be denied entry, based on the resolution.
Catarman, the capital town of Northern Samar, has confirmed a total of 400 coronavirus cases, including 372 recoveries and seven deaths as of Dec. 10. (PNA)