NCR to extend ECQ for 15 more days? Mayors considering possibility

May 8, 2020
PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño

METRO Manila mayors are looking at recommending to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases a possible extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the National Capital Region (NCR).

Paranaque mayor Edwin Olivarez said that the council is seeking to extend the ECQ for 15 more days as the country continues to battle the global COVID-19 pandemic.

"Most likely yun ang tinitignan natin, yung magkaroon ng another 15 days extension," said Olivarez, the chairman of the Metro Manila Council in an interview with Unang Balita on Friday.

The group, composed of Metro Manila mayors, will have a virtual meeting, together with MMDA chair Danilo Lim, on Saturday to formalize the recommendation. The capital is bracing for a potential second wave if the ECQ will be lifted or downgraded to general community quarantine (GCQ) after May 15.

Olivarez expressed that an extension of ECQ would be more beneficial given how cities in the Metro are "very interconnected."

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"Tulad sa amin sa Paranaque, meron kaming mga residente na nagtatrabaho sa Makati. Kung ang Makati ay GCQ, kami ay ECQ, paano sila makakalagpas papunta dun sa boundary namin?" he said.

The Metro Manila Council, however, is just a recommendatory body and it's up to the IATF to decide on the matter.

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In the same program, Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said that the IATF will look into the proposal.

"Titingnan po natin yan kasi sabi ko nga po, nakabase yan sa siyensya. Nakabase yan sa pagbilis ng pagkalat ng sakit at yung kapasidad na magbigay ng critical care," he said.

The IATF has previously expressed its intent to downgrade Valenzuela and San Juan to GCQ areas given how those cities were able to flatten the curve in the confirmed COVID-19 cases in their area. Metro Manila has been placed under ECQ on March 17 but has been extended twice, with the latest set to elapse on May 15.

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PHOTO: Jerome Ascaño
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