‘Tantamount to discrimination’: Belmonte denounces Arayat LGU move to ban entry of QC residents

Robie de Guzman   •   January 18, 2021   •   1560

MANILA, Philippines – Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte on Monday denounced the decision of the local government of Arayat, Pampanga to restrict the entry of the city’s residents into the municipality following reports that a resident from QC tested positive for the UK COVID-19 variant after traveling overseas.

In a statement, Belmonte called the local government’s decision ‘totally without basis’ and is ‘tantamount to discrimination’.

“We strongly denounce the Arayat local government’s decision to restrict the entry of Quezon City residents to their municipality, because this decision is totally without basis, can cause undue panic, and is tantamount to discrimination,” she said.

Belmonte pointed out that the patient did not set foot in Quezon City after arriving from Dubai on January 7 when he was tested and that he stayed in a facility as part of the 14-day mandatory quarantine period.

“The day after, it was confirmed he was COVID-19 positive. His sample was sent to the Philippine Genome Center. On the night of January 13, the city government and the city health department were informed by the DOH that he has the so-called United Kingdom variant. Since January 8, he has been staying at a facility where he remains up to this day for treatment,” she said.

The Department of Health (DOH) earlier reported that the patient traveled to Dubai on December 27 and returned to the country on January 7. His female companion tested negative for the virus but is also under quarantine and strict monitoring.

The DOH added that both had no exposure to a confirmed case before leaving the country.

Belmonte likewise emphasized that a total of 143 individuals, who are considered contacts of the patient have been identified, quarantined, and are closely being monitored.

“Among them are more than 30 healthcare workers and barangay workers who assisted and cared for the patient when he was transferred from the quarantine hotel in Manila to the isolation facility in Quezon City after he was tested positive for the virus,” she said.

Belmonte then appealed to the Arayat LGU to “reconsider its earlier order and allow QC residents to enter its jurisdiction.”

The Arayat LGU has yet to respond to Belmonte’s statement.

PH to re-deploy OFWs after South Korea lifts restrictions – DOLE

Robie de Guzman   •   November 8, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Overseas Filipino workers will soon be re-deployed to South Korea after entry restrictions into the country have been lifted, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said.

In a statement on Sunday, DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said he has directed the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) to commence the processing of deployment of workers as he welcomed the South Korean government’s decision.

“This is a very good news not only to our EPS (entry permit system) workers and their families, but also to the Korean employers who have been waiting for our workers to return,” he said.

Last Friday, Korea’s Ministry of Employment and Labor (MOEL) announced it will allow the entry of workers under EPS from all sending countries, including the Philippines starting this November.

According to MOEL, the entry of EPS workers will be subject to pre-entry measures such as full vaccination and negative PCR test results, and post-entry measures such as mandatory quarantine and PCR testing.

The Korean Embassy in the Philippines said it is awaiting guidelines from the South Korean government on the issuance of E9 visas to Filipino EPS workers.

Bello said he has directed the POEA to immediately meet with the Korean government officials to discuss the requirements and procedures for the re-entry of EPS workers to Korea, in coordination with the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in the Philippine Embassy in Seoul.

Since 2004, the Philippines has been sending Filipino workers to Korea under a government-to-government cooperation agreement on EPS.

The deployment of workers was temporarily halted in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic.

Eleazar orders probe on Pampanga policeman over rape allegation

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—Philippine National Police Chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar on Tuesday (October 12) vowed that the national police will look into the rape allegation against a Pampanga policeman.

Eleazar said he has already instructed the Internal Affairs Service to expedite the investigation based on the victim’s complaint. The policeman involved has been disarmed and placed under restrictive custody pending the result of the investigation.

Based on a report, Police Staff Sergeant Robin Mangaga flagged down the victim’s motorcycle at a checkpoint in Mabalacat, Pampanga on October 8.

The victim admitted that she forgot to bring her driver’s license, but instead of imposing sanctions, Mangaga allegedly sexually abused her.

Eleazar said he is angered over the fact that despite his warnings there are still police officers abusing their authority.

“But this will not discourage us in pursuing our reform program, in fact, this serves as a motivation to continue our internal cleansing,” he said.

He also assured that if proven guilty, Mangaga will be dismissed from service and appropriate charges will be filed against him.

Meanwhile, the PNP chief urged victims of abuse to come forward and seek the help of authorities.

“Huwag kayong matakot na sampahan ng kaukulang reklamo ang sinumang lumabag sa batas, kabilang ang mga pulis. Nakahanda ang PNP na tumulong sa inyo upang makamit ang hustisya at panagutin sinuman ang maysala,” he said. AAC

 

 

QC business permits will now be delivered to applicants – Belmonte

Robie de Guzman   •   August 19, 2021

The Quezon City government has launched a system that allows the delivery of business permits to the applicant’s address.

The city government said that through the Automatic Document Delivery System (ADDS) under the city’s Business Permits and Licensing Department (BPLD), all evaluated and completed permits — new businesses, amended, and renewed permits – will be delivered right at the owner’s doorsteps.

“Before, applicants have to set an appointment or book a courier service at their expense just to pick up their business permits. Now, we have already partnered with Airspeed that will do the delivery for them for free and for their convenience,” Mayor Joy Belmonte said in a statement.

After the applicants have submitted a filled-out unified application form and all necessary requirements at the QC E-services, the documents will be evaluated and verified by the BPLD, Zoning Administration Unit, City Assessor’s Department and other ancillary departments, the city government said.

Approved and completed permits will be released at the Business One-Stop-Shop (BOSS) and will be forwarded to ADDS, it added.

ADDS will separate documents for filing and delivery, print the KyusiPass, encode the documents ready for release, and print a unique QR code that includes the recipient’s address. After these, the released documents will be turned over to a designated driver to deliver.

“Bago namin i-release ‘yung permit, mayroon kaming checklist at sinisiguro namin na kumpleto ang ipapadala nating documents sa mga business owner. Halimabawa, kapag ipipapadala natin ang permit para sa new business, dapat included sa envelope ‘yung mismong permit, plate, Kyusipass, original official receipt, at tax bill,” BPLD chief Ma. Margarita Santos said in the same statement.

Aside from the physical copy of the permit, the BPLD is also releasing an electronic copy of the document as soon as the business owner’s application is approved.

The city releases 200 to 250 business permits per day.

“To ensure that the documents are not damaged or tampered, stickers and seals are affixed to the envelope,” the local government assured.

The city government said the system is part of the ease of doing business and automation initiatives.

Applicants who wish to apply for, renew, or amend business permits are advised to go to qceservices.quezoncity.gov.ph.

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