A Metro Manila congressman has called for a 30-day extension of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine, according to a report from GMA News. The lawmaker supported this by saying that “science” and “common sense” would prove that the Philippines is still grappling with the COVID-19 crisis.
“Science, the experience of other countries and common sense would dictate that the Philippine government should extend the enhanced community quarantine for another 30 days as we continue to grapple with hard facts on the real statistics of COVID-19 spread in our communities,” said Caloocan City Rep. Edgar Erice.
Erice emphasized that the “gains” of the ongoing 30-day Luzon-wide quarantine will only be put to waste if there will be no extension.
“The ECQ would most likely result [in] the resurgence of the dreaded virus and more likely would affect the blighted areas of urban centers,” the congressman said.
Moreover, he pointed out that the government should use all resources so that the food supply goes to low-income households affected by the lockdown.
Inter-Agency Task Force spokesperson and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles on Thursday described the situation as “far from over.”
“Totoo po iyon. Hanggang wala pang vaccine, then ito nga ang sinasabi nating ‘new normal’ (That is true. As long as there’s no vaccine, then this is what we call the ‘new normal’),” Nograles said.
Still, he said that the task force has not yet made a decision whether the Luzon-wide lockdown will be lifted, extended, or expanded to other areas.
It has been 16 days since President Rodrigo Duterte has placed the entire Luzon under the enhanced community quarantine. It has also been a week since he signed into law the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act which gives him additional powers to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
Both chambers of Congress have yet to convene for a joint congressional oversight committee to review the first weekly report submitted by Duterte last Monday.
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