Skip to main content

Coronavirus: Philippines quarantines island of 57 million people



President Rodrigo Duterte placed the whole Philippine island of Luzon under an "enhanced community quarantine" until April 12 to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

In a televised public address on Monday, Duterte said public movement would be restricted to only buying food, medicine and other essential items necessary for survival.

"Only establishments that provide services like food and medicine shall be open," said Duterte.


The president also instructed the labour and financial aid departments to implement measures that will alleviate the burden of the lockdown on small business and wage workers. He also urged businesses to release the mandatory 13th-month pay to their employees.

According to the health department's latest figures, there are 142 confirmed COVID-19 cases within the Philippines and 12 fatalities.

Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo earlier explained that under an enhanced community quarantine, "strict home quarantine shall be implemented all told households, transportation shall be suspended, provision of food and essential services shall be regulated and heightened presence of uniformed personnel to enforce quarantine procedures are implemented".

It is effectively a lockdown of the country's largest and most populous island, affecting about 57 million people.

"We have already got an enhanced community quarantine which we started two days ago [over Manila], we are just expanding it to the whole Luzon," said Panelo.

The move is that the most aggressive among Asian countries struggling to address the COVID-19 disease, which has already infected over 164,000 people, killed a minimum of 6,500, and crippled public health systems worldwide.

Checkpoints became chokepoints
The announcement of the lockdown came after an enormous failure to implement social distancing measures to debar the spread of coronavirus.

Duterte earlier announced a "community quarantine" starting midnight of March 15, alienating domestic air, land and sea access to the capital megacity of Manila in an endeavor to debar the spread. Classes and work for non-essential services were suspended, and an estimated 12 million residents were asked to remain reception.

The measure made Arnold Vega's morning commute appear as if a mass exodus.


Mayon volcano threat sparks mass evacuation in Philippines (2:37)
Vega pushed and jostled his way through a throng of passengers to induce on a service vehicle and cross town border that separates his suburb of Bulacan from the mega-metropolis of Manila where he's employed as a nurse during a health clinic.

Police and military personnel stationed at checkpoints took each person's temperature, pointing thermal scanners at foreheads, able to separate those that showed any signs of fever. Many of the uniformed personnel weren't wearing adequate protective gear. Passengers also had to point out proof that they worked in Manila by showing either a corporation ID or a certificate of employment.

Public utility vehicles operated at half capacity as strict social distancing required passengers to take a seat one seat apart. Some drivers asked passengers to pay twice their fare to form up for the lost seat.

It took Vega four hours to induce to figure. "It was total chaos."

Earlier Monday, several malls across the assorted districts of Manila announced their closure for one month. Mayors met with mall owners to debate ways to alleviate the impact of closures on employees who are mostly contractual daily wage earners.

Other cities declared a state of calamity or went on their own version of lockdown.

Who will be sure of health workers?
Robert Mendoza, president of the Alliance of doctors, lambasted the government's attempt at quarantine. "What we'd like is mass testing, more trained healthcare workers, and an increased health budget."

The Duterte administration slashed the 2020 health budget by $197m but committed a further $44.5m to shop for protective gear for healthcare workers.

"Where is that promised budget? whilst COVID-19 cases keep climbing, our healthcare workers still work without proper protective gear. Who will be sure of everyone else if doctors get sick?"

According to Mendoza, there are about 46 healthcare workers who have coronavirus symptoms and are currently being monitored.

Safety nets
Renato Reyes, secretary-general of the leftist group Bagong Alyangsang Makabayan (New Patriotic Alliance), said the govt must consider ways to shield low-income daily wage earners who are hardest hit by the lockdown.

"Social distancing and work from house is impossible for daily wage earners. For them, it's no work, no pay so no choice. they'll risk getting COVID-19 to stay their jobs," he added.


Opposition Senator Risa Hontiveros estimated a minimum of 650,000 Filipino households would become the "new poor" in Metro Manila alone due to the economic implications of the lockdown and moved for a $250 cash aid for those stricken by the financial whiplash.

"The president's directive for an 'enhanced community quarantine' in Luzon ... should be implemented as a public health measure that takes into consideration the welfare of the foremost vulnerable," said Hontiveros during a statement.

Some of the provisions of the quarantine measures made some citizens nervous and therefore the threat of arrest for those that violated the lockdown or were disobedient mirrored the remnants of jurisprudence. The Philippines had a history of jurisprudence within the 1970s under the Marcos dictatorship and alleged extrajudicial killings under the Duterte administration.

But security analyst Jose Antonio Custodio failed to think so. "It's off from jurisprudence. It's more sort of a massive humanitarian crisis response that leaves much to be desired thanks to poor planning and knee-jerk reactions."

Comments

Popular Posts

Kiddwaya reveals why he picked Erica over other girls in BBNaija house(Watch Video)

Kiddwaya and Erica are in Sierra Leone for a three days tour as they visited housemates in a Sierra Leone reality TV Show. During a conversation with Salone housemates in Sierra Leone, Kiddwaya was asked why he choose with Erica more than other housemates in Big Brother’s house. READ ALSO:  Nigerian Man vows not to eat until he sees Nigeria gets better For Good In his response, He said that he loves her because of her confidence, especially when she wears her clothes, It also stated that Erica dresses with so much confidence, no matter what she wears. Erica interrupting his speech however, said it is not about the dress but the person wearing the dress. WATCH VIDEO BELOW Kiddwaya reveals why he picked Erica over other girls in BBNaija house #BBN #BBNaija #KiddricaXHousematesSalone #BBNaijia #Trending #Erica pic.twitter.com/mSrnwvVPTV — elizabeth blog (@elizabethblogng) November 30, 2020 SHARE:

Kiddwaya Spotted Kissing Erica , days after she called him rude (Watch Video)

Erica and Kiddwaya are back with the PDA and romance on social media as they were seen Kissing. READ ALSO:  Rihanna Officially dating A$AP Rocky after months of romance rumors This came days, after Erica told Kiddwaya he was rude on National Tv, after he interrupted a question she was asked by a housemate in Sierra Leone. READ ALSO:  Gunmen Abduct A Lady On Her Way To Church in Port Harcourt, Nigeria In the new viral video that was shared on Social Media, Kiddwaya was seen kissing Erica as they go on a jet skit in Sierra Leone. WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW View this post on Instagram A post shared by Kidd💘Erica show (@kiddericashow) SHARE:

A real Ghost Caught on Camera in an Abandoned Hospital

A Ghost was seen to have appeared in an Abandoned mental hospital as Urban Explorers sight this on Camera. According to the two explorers, Jamie Osborne and Michael Cosgrove stated that they both went to Rosslynlee Hospital which was abandoned in Scotland near Roslin in Midlothian as they went to explore. READ ALSO:  A Man arrested and Jailed for 21 months after throwing eggs at police station Rooms inside the eerie derelict mental health facility had remained untouched for over a decade when it closed its doors. They had been taking it in turns to pose in a wheelchair that had been left in one of the hospital's rooms when they checked one image which appeared to capture a woman wearing a white gown "reaching over" Michael. READ ALSO:  Teacher In Trouble after Flogging a Student to death Over a Mathematics Question Jamie, from Edinburgh, described how the "air turned cold" when they entered the spooky facility and that they could see their breat

Nigerian barbie doll, Bobrisky Shows Off the N15 million Cash His Lover Gave Him After They Spent A Night Together (Watch Video)

Nigerian Barbie doll, Bobrisky shows off the 15million naira cash he got from his lover, says he doesn’t go out but that when he does, he makes millions. According to Bobrisky, he said “I told you I don’t date broke boys naaaa, Niyi is fucking loaded.” “My bank am bringing dis money to you guys, una go count money today tire, 15 million cash”. Bobrisky on a different post, revealed that his lover credited him N3 million Naira to share to his grandma, motherless baby homes and for his hair, says he wants to faint. On his Snapchat, he also wrote; “I got another 3million credit alert dis morning from Niyi, he said I should give my grandma ! miilion, I should give 1million to motherless baby homes, lastly 1 million for my hair, I want to faint can someone hold me pls”. WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW Bobrisky is winning 🕺🏾 😅 pic.twitter.com/EfDd3u8UEC — E-zrael Ani (@EzraelAni) December 2, 2020

Wizard returning from coven mistakenly lands on roof top in Delta state (Watch video)

According to the reports, A young man has been allegedly accused of being a wizard as he Crashed on a Roof top Building at the Okpokpor street in Okpara-Inland in Ethiope-East local government area of Delta State in the afternoon on Saturday November 28. READ MORE:  Child rapist Fainted after being lashed 146 times with cane in Indonesia The man who was holding a hundred naira note in his hand, was identified as Omamuyovwi. He is said to be a commercial motor cycle operator who is well known in the community and married with two kids. It was also gathered that he was beaten with plantain Leaves and also almost set ablazed by was saved by the community Vigilante. READ ALSO:  "Call me evil names, idolator, juju worshipper, God is the final judge of all our actions" - Nigerian man says publicly as he denounced Christianity Eyewitnesses disclosed that Omamuyovwi was taken to his family compound at Igberhe street by the vigilante, where he reportedly confessed t

Nigerians reacts as a White man Joins the Nigeria Police Force

A Picture that went viral shows a White man who recently Joined the Nigerian Police Force. The man was seen with his kids as he poses with another female cop. READ ALSO:  145 new cases of Coronavirus Recorded in Nigeria today SEE TWITTER REACTIONS BELOW SHARE:

Bobrisky shows off himself as he Twerks in New video (Watch video)

Nigerian Barbie doll, Bobrisky shares a new video as he flaunts himslef on instagram showing off his twerking skills. READ ALSO:  Nigerian Man vows not to eat until he sees Nigeria gets better For Good WATCH VIDEO BELOW View this post on Instagram A post shared by okuneye idris Olanrewaju (@bobrisky222) SHARE: