DUMAGUETE CITY –– Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo of Dumaguete City has appealed to the public for their cooperation and give the government at least two weeks starting April 3 to make the Enhanced Traffic & Mobility Control Management work, as a major solution to help contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“If we are successful [in containing the spread], we can hug and kiss each other after two weeks,” he said.
He warned that one mistake, the virus could escalate and could no longer be controlled.
There were now 6,499 asymptomatic persons or persons under monitoring/quarantine in Negros Oriental, said Assistant Provincial Health Officer Dr. Liland Zoila Bustamante-Estacion.
Two more COVID-19 cases were reported: one with a history of exposure to another COVID-19 patient, and another who had traveled to Dubai. Both are now admitted to local hospitals.
The ordinance on the mobility control plan, based on the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) ordered by Gov. Roel Degamo, also appropriated P5 million to support the implementation of Executive Order No. 19.
Remollo said the EO was an innovation of the ECQ that is now commonly practiced all over the country, providing one pass to each household that allows one family representative to leave the house to buy food or medicines, or go to the bank.
In Dumaguete, the color-coded passes, which specify the days when one can do the essentials, are meant to minimize contact with more people and implement better social distancing.
“The best way to fight COVID is to stay at home – that is the wisdom of E.O 19 and the Ordinance,” Mayor Remollo said.
The city government also set new business hours at the Dumaguete Public Market: 7 a.m to noon Mondays to Wednesdays; and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. from Thursdays to Saturdays.
The Dumaguete Public Market will be closed during times when non-Dumaguete residents are allowed to enter the City.
Remollo urged merchandisers to supply the sari-sari stores with stocks like rice so that the people would not have to go all the way to the groceries in the central business district.
He also appealed to the people to get their medicines from pharmacies nearest them.
“Even with a pass, try to avoid using it because the goal is to prevent contact [with other people].”
The entry of non-Dumaguete residents, who are holders of the provincial ECQ pass, has been scheduled on three days when all Dumaguete residents are expected to be home: Tuesdays from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Thursdays and Sundays from 7 p.m. to midnight.
Eleven checkpoints have been set up in strategic areas that have access to CCTV cameras to monitor the entry of people from the towns.
Dumaguete Vice Mayor Alan Gel Cordova said people from the towns who wish to come to Dumaguete would go through checkpoints.
He said the tanods and police have been trained to do the mandatory thermal scan, and ask questions “to confirm the legitimacy of the travel.”
Then the non-Dumaguete residents are supposed to exchange their Provincial ECQ Pass for a Dumaguete Temporary Safe Pass and surrender their driver’s license or the official receipt-certificate of registration issued by the Land Transportation Office in exchange for a claim stub.
While the governor has stopped public utility transportation in the province from plying their routes, Mayor Remollo said he was allowing pedicabs to continue their trade in Dumaguete.
“But with most people staying home, I doubt if the pedicab drivers will still want to drive around looking for passengers.”
The City has committed to providing financial assistance to more than 2,000 pedicab drivers, who are registered with their respective associations.
Edited by LZB
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