ECQ extension further cripples livelihoods; gov’t P1,000 cash aid not enough—Bayan Muna

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 6, 2021   •   212

 

MANILA, Philippines — Rommel Lambino, a taxi driver, queued at one of the taxi bays in Quezon City before sunrise despite facing another day of possibly having only a handful of passengers due to the extended enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

The coronavirus  pandemic has taken a toll on his family and income. Before the outbreak, he used to earn P1,000 a day, but due to the quarantine restrictions, his daily income nowadays is not even enough to pay for gas.

Rommel said he only had four passengers, after operating from 4:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

“Laki po ng epekto sa amin ng ECQ, unang una po sa curfew. Pagdating po ng alas-singko sarado na po ang mga mall, wala na po kaming makuhang pasahero (ECQ has affected us greatly.  Firstly, the curfew.  Malls are already closed at 5:00 p.m. — we no longer have passengers),” he said.

Jeepney drivers are also facing the same challenges. Rey Escanilla, one of the jeepney drivers plying the Tandang Sora-Quezon City Hall route, said they are only operating three trips a day from the previous five trips. Due to this, he only takes home P100 to his family per day.

“Nung bago ipatupad ang ECQ, nakaka-apat hanggang limang byahe pa kami, so medyo sapat pa iyon panggastos namin. Kumikita kami ng P300 to P500. Ngayon nung nag-ECQ, isa hanggang dalawang byahe nalang ang nagagawa namin. Minsan nga nagagamit ko pa ang boundary ng operator ko, mabait naman, pinapautang naman sakin (Before ECQ, we had four to five trips and it was enough for my family. I used to earn P300 to P500. Now, due to the ECQ, we can only make one or two trips. Sometimes, I use the boundary money for my operator. He is kind enough to let us take a loan),” he said.

Along Mindanao Avenue, a man wears a sign around his neck asking for alms from motorists under the scorching sun. Reynaldo Villamor worked in town fairs, but due to the quarantine restrictions, he lost his job. He is from Caloocan but opted to go to Quezon City to ask for money.

“Syempre kapag doon ka namalimos nakakahiya marami makakakilala sayo roon kaya dumadayo nalang ako. Nahihiya doon sa amin sa Caloocan marami kakilala. Kung dito sa malayo hindi naman nakakahiya kasi para makaraos para makabayad sa mga bayarin (Of course it’s embarrassing to beg for alms in Caloocan where I’m from because people I know might see me. If it’s far enough, it’s less embarrassing and I could earn a little to tide us over and pay the bills),” he said.   

The national government has prepared cash aid for those heavily affected by the pandemic and ECQ.  However, Bayan Muna Partylist said it will not be enough.

“The government’s P1,000 cash aid is not enough to buy food and other essential items during the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ),” the group said in a statement. AAC (with reports from JP Nuñez)

 

 

 

Hiling na isailalim sa ECQ ang 3 lugar sa Bicol, pinag-aaralan na – DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   June 16, 2021

Pumalo sa 2,349 ang bilang ng bagong kaso ng COVID-19 sa Bicol Region sa huling dalawang linggo batay sa ulat ng Department of Health (DOH).

Batay sa tala ng DOH mula Hunyo 15, nangunguna sa may pinakamaraming kaso sa rehiyon ang mga lalawigan ng Albay (696), Camarines Sur (584), Sorsogon (341), Naga City (297), at Masbate (223).

Sa kasalukuyan, tanging ang Naga City ang nasa ilalim ng modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) hanggang June 30, 2021.

Samantalang ang malaking bahagi ng Bicol Region ay nasa ilalim ng modified general community quarantine (MGCQ), ang pinakamaluwag na quarantine restriction.

Bunsod nito, hiniling ng Bicol Region medical groups sa Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) na mapasailalim sa pinakamahigpit na community quarantine ang mga lalawigan ng Albay, Camarines Sur, at Sorsogon pati na ang mga lungsod ng Legazpi, Naga, at Sorsogon.

Anila, nakababahala ang pagtaas ng kaso na iniuugnay sa local transmission bunsod ng maluwag na pagpapatupad ng minimum health standards, hindi pagsunod ng local officials sa Inter-Agency Task Force regulations, mabagal, inaccessible at di sapat na testing at poor contact tracing efforts at iba.

Ayon naman kay DILG Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya, pinag-aaralan na ng DILG ang apela ng mga medical frontliner.

“For Bicol, its under study. We are meeting with DOH this afternoon to hear their recommendations,” ani Malaya. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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16 barangays in Sta. Maria, Ilocos Sur placed under ECQ beginning June 9

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 8, 2021

The local government of Sta. Maria, Ilocos Sur will place 16 barangays under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) beginning June 9.

Sta. Maria Mayor Brigido Camarillo Jr. issued Executive Order No. 15, placing several areas under ECQ from June 9-22 due to the increasing cases of COVID-19. All other barangays are placed under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).

“Due to sudden significant increase in the number of positive COVID-19 cases lately in 16 barangays of the municipality, there is a need to impose heightened quarantine classification and more stringent protocols, thus the said 16 barangays shall be reclassified and placed under ECQ,” he said.

The following areas are placed under ECQ: Zone 2 in Brgy. Baliw Daya; Sitio Manugak in Brgy. Butir; Zone 2 in Brgy. Cabaroan; Zones 2, 3, 6 and 7 in Brgy. Danuman West; Zone 2 in Brgy. Dunglayan; Sitio Las-ud South in Brgy. Laslasong Norte; Castro Compound in Brgy. Laslasong Sur; Sitios Daya 2 and Guimod in Brgy. Lubong; Zone 5 in Brgy. Maynganay Sur; Zone 2 in Brgy. Nagtupacan; Zones 1, 2 and 4 in Brgy. Poblacion Norte; Zones 1, 2 and 7 (Sitio Bagong Barrio) in Brgy. Poblacion Sur; Zones 1, 3 and 5 in Brgy. Silag; Sitio Karot in Brgy. Suso; Zone 4 in Brgy. Tangaoan; and Zones 2 and 4 in Brgy. Tinaan.

Camarillo said farmers, fishermen, and farm workers in ECQ areas may be allowed to go out of their residence only for farm-related activities. All other individuals, except authorized persons outside residence (APOR) and those needing medical and dental assistance and services, are barred from going out of residence. AAC

 

Duterte to announce new quarantine status for May on April 28 — Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   April 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to announce this week the community quarantine classifications for the month of May, Malacañang said Monday.

“Baka po si presidente na ang mag-anunsyo dahil ang talk to the people po ay sa Wednesday,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a Palace briefing.

Roque said the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) is set to meet on Tuesday to discuss its recommendations that will be submitted to the president for approval.

The National Capital Region (NCR), Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna – collectively tagged as NCR Plus – are under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until April 30. Other areas in the country have also been placed under MECQ and general community quarantine.

Roque assured that the IATF and health experts will study the data on the COVID-19 situation in the country and carefully consider the daily attack rate, two-week attack rate, and health care utilization.

“Mayroon tayong mga assessment na dapat gawin, at itong mga assessment na ito ay kinakailangang magbigay ng kasagutan ang mga lokal na pamahalaan para maseguro namang hindi rin masayang yung ating halos isang buwang lockdown,” he said.

The task force will also revisit strategies, including the implementation of minimum health protocols, and if these are strictly enforced by local government units to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III earlier said he is in favor of extending the MECQ in the NCR Plus for another week or two as the country’s health systems capacity has yet to significantly improve amid the continuing threat of COVID-19. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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