MANILA – For Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, the government’s decision to place the National Capital Region (NCR) and the four other provinces under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) happened at just the right time.
Lorenzana, who is also chair of the National Task Force Against Covid-19, said the timing was just right as the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) was monitoring very closely the spike of new coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases.
“Ang timing natin ay tama lang (Our timing was just right), we have to observe for a couple of days ‘yung spike ng new cases, so we were watching closely, the IATF was watching closely sa pagtaas (rise). When it breached 8,000, that’s the time that we acted,” he said in an interview with CNN Philippines Monday.
ECQ for Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal started March 29 and will end on April 4.
“So today, we are on EQC and hopefully (with) this, we will stem the tide of the rising cases and let’s see, we’ll watch what happens next,” Lorenzana said.
The defense chief also said there was a debate among the IATF on whether it was necessary to place Metro Manila and the four other provinces under ECQ due to its impact on the economy.
“The economic team doesn’t want to impose ECQ because of economic health of the country (is in) jeopardy, but eventually they relented dahil nga pataas ng pataas na yung cases na bago (due to growing number of Covid-19 cases),” Lorenzana said.
He added that the one-week ECQ will help the government observe the trend on Covid-19 cases and allow it to act accordingly, including extending the ECQ if needed. (PNA)