Garbage still main cause of flooding in NCR — MMDA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 23, 2021   •   428

MANILA, Philippines — Garbage is still the main cause of flooding in the National Capital Region (NCR), according to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos Jr. reported there are low areas in the NCR that are prone to flooding but other areas have clogged drainages due to wastes.

He also said that the MMDA is repairing and declogging the pumping stations for the flood water to go to Pasig River.

Sa ngayon ay ginagawa natin ang mga pumping station para i-pump out ang mga tubig na bumabaha. Pero paano mo ipa-pump out kung talagang heavy ang siltation, barado dahil sa basura” he said.

(Presently, we are repairing the pumping stations to pump out the floodwater. But how will you pump it out if there is heavy siltation and it’s clogged due to the garbage.)

In San Andres Pumping Station, around 8 to 10 cubic meters of garbage are collected per day during the rainy season.

The MMDA reminds the public to avoid throwing garbage on the streets. -AAC (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.) 

Police checkpoints sa NCR, aalisin na sa ilalim ng quarantine alert level 4 – PNP

Robie de Guzman   •   September 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Wala nang ilalagay na checkpoints sa National Capital Region (NCR) kapag sinimulan na ang pilot testing ng bagong quarantine alert levels system sa Huwebes, ayon sa Philippine National Police (PNP).

Ito ay dahil ipapakalat na ang mga pulis para magbantay sa mga barangay na isasailalim sa granular lockdown.

Ayon kay PNP chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar, inatasan na niya ang mga pulis na makipag-ugnayan sa mga lokal na pamahalaan upang malaman kung aling barangay sa kanilang nasasakupan ang ilalagay sa lockdown bunsod ng COVID-19.

Ngunit paglilinaw ng PNP, hindi pa rin naman mawawala ang mga pulis sa mga matataong lugar sa NCR para magbantay laban sa kriminalidad at terorismo.

Simula sa Huwebes ay isasailalim na sa alert level 4 ang NCR kung saan bawal lumabas ang mga taong may edad 18 pababa at 65 pataas. Hindi rin papayagang lumabas ang mga may co-morbidities at mga buntis.

Maaari namang lumabas ang mga residente kung bibili ng essential goods o kaya ay para sa essential services.

Limitado lang din ang papayagang capacity para sa indoor at al-fresco dining services pati na sa personal care services, at religious gatherings.

Sa ilalim ng alert levels system, maaaring ipatupad ang granular lockdown sa mga partikular na lugar na may mataas na COVID-19 cases gaya ng barangay o kaya ay isang gusali.

Ang maaari lamang lumabas sa ilalim ng polisiyang ito ay mga healthcare workers, mga may medical emergencies at mga paalis o pauwi na overseas Filipino workers.

Ayon kay Eleazar, hindi na bago ang pagpapatupad ng granular lockdown dahil ginagawa na ito sa ilang barangay sa NCR na may kumpul-kumpol na hawaan ng coronavirus disease.

NCR police to assist LGUs in pilot implementation of new quarantine alert levels system — Eleazar

Robie de Guzman   •   September 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Police commanders in the National Capital Region (NCR) will assist in the pilot implementation of the quarantine alert levels system that is set to start on Sept. 16, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar said Tuesday.

In a statement, Eleazar said the NCR police will particularly help in the information dissemination on the new guidelines on quarantine alert levels system and in coming up with strategic enforcement and deployment in coordination with the local government units.

The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Monday night released the guidelines for the system, which aims to prevent the further spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) amid the continuous rise in cases.

“Sa paglabas ng mga alituntunin ng quarantine alert level system, inatasan ko na ang ating mga police commanders sa Metro Manila na pag-aralang mabuti at patuloy na makipag-ugnayan sa mga LGUs para sa strategic deployment at enforcement para sa maayos na pagpapatupad ng mga ito,” Eleazar said.

The PNP chief said police commanders should prevent confusion in the implementation of the rules, which sometimes lead to unnecessary arguments and confrontations with the public.

Under the guidelines, the alert levels system will cover cities or municipalities, which will be classified under Alert Level 1 to Level 5. The alert levels per area will be determined by the Department of Health depending on the COVID-19 incidence rate.

The granular lockdowns, on the other hand, are the critical zones that will be declared by the local government unit.

“Aktibong makikibahagi ang inyong PNP sa enforcement at information dissemination sa guidelines na ito, na ang ibig sabihin din ay kailangang sumunod din ang kapulisan sa mga alituntuning ito,” Eleazar said.

He reminded police officers to observe maximum tolerance, impose only what is only stated in the guidelines, and never punish violators.

Eleazar also reiterated his appeal to the public to cooperate with authorities and to follow the guidelines.

“Hinihikayat natin ang ating mga kababayan sa Metro Manila na alamin ang mga patakarang ito dahil ang pagsasa-puso sa pagsunod ng mga alituntuning ito ay isang mabisang sandata hindi lamang para proteksyunan ang inyong sarili kundi pati na rin sa patuloy na pagkalat ng COVID-19,” Eleazar said.

IATF releases guidelines for pilot run of COVID-19 alert levels system in NCR

Maris Federez   •   September 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) on Monday issued the guidelines on the pilot implementation of alert levels system for COVID-19 response in the National Capital Region.

This, after the IATF issued Resolution No. 136-A (s.2021) on September 3 that provided for, among others, the shift in the policy of classifying provinces, highly urbanized cities (HUCs), and independent component cities (ICCs) for purposes of community quarantine.

The resolution says that in the new classification framework, which focuses on the imposition of granular lockdown measures, community quarantine shall be reduced to either enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) or general community quarantine (GCQ) with the latter having an alert-level system with each alert level limiting restrictions only to identified high-risk activities.

For this, the IATF has issued the guidelines to enjoin and proactively advocate the principles of 3C’s (Closed, Crowded, and Close Contact) strategy against COVID-19 to curb the further spread of infection which shall be applied in the NCR beginning September 16.

The IATF said the alert level system to be applied in the new policy is as follows:

  • Alert Level 1 – refers to areas wherein case transmission is low and decreasing, total bed utilization rate, and intensive care unit utilization rate is low.
  • Alert Level 2 – refers to areas wherein case transmission is low and decreasing, healthcare utilization is low, or case counts are low but increasing, or case counts are low and decreasing but total bed utilization rate and intensive care unit utilization rate is increasing.
  • Alert Level 3 – refers to areas wherein case counts are high and/or increasing, with total bed utilization rate and intensive care unit utilization rate at increasing utilization.
  • Alert Level 4 – refers to areas wherein case counts are high and/or increasing, with total bed utilization rate and intensive care unit utilization rate at high utilization.
  • Alert Level 5 – refers to areas wherein case counts are alarming, with total bed utilization rate and intensive care unit utilization rate at critical utilization.

For specific set of guidelines for each level, click here.

As for granular lockdowns, the guidelines said that the authority to impose granular lockdown shall be given to the city and municipal mayors with respect to their component barangays subject to the concurrence of the Regional Inter-Agency Task Force (RIATF).

The guidelines also said that epidemiological parameters in the declaration of a granular lockdown “shall comply with the National Task Force COVID-19 Memorandum Circular No. 2 dated 15 June 2020 or the Operational Guidelines on the Application of the Zoning Containment Strategy in the Localization of the National Action Plan Against COVID-19 Response.”

Granular lockdowns shall be for a period of not less than fourteen (14) days, the guidelines read.

The following shall be allowed to enter and/or exit granular lockdown areas for specific purposes:

  • Overseas Filipino Workers bound for international travel, and those returning to their respective residences after having completed facility-based quarantine upon arrival;
  • Individuals whose home or residence are located within an area under granular lockdown may enter the said area for the sole purpose of returning to their respective homes or residences but must thereafter remain therein for the duration of the granular lockdown;
  • Individuals under exceptional circumstances such as, but not limited to, those seeking urgent medical attention as validated by the municipal/city health officer; and
  • Food and essential items that are intended for delivery within an area under granular lockdown provided that they can only be unloaded at border collection points designated by the LGU.

In a press statement, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said this policy shift aims to maintain balance in the government’s efforts to address the COVID-19 crisis and the stability of the country’s economy.

“We should strive for total health and this can only be realized by carefully balancing our COVID-19 response by considering both the health of our people and the economic health of the nation, which this policy shift is all about,” Roque said.

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