75-day road clearing ops, local execs foreign travel suspended amid fight vs COVID-19 — DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   March 17, 2020   •   981

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Monday announced that the 75-day clearing operations of local government units (LGU) are suspended until further notice.

In a statement, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said suspending the road clearing operations would ensure that “local chief executives will be able to focus all their efforts in fighting novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).”

Año said this is in compliance with the guidelines of the Department of Health (DOH) and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases approved by President Rodrigo Duterte.

The second round of road clearing operations of all local government units began on February 17, 2020.

The DILG also announced that the foreign travel of local chief executives will be temporarily suspended in the next 30 days to make sure that they are hands-on in fighting the spread of the virus in their respective jurisdictions.

The entire Luzon has been placed under enhanced community quarantine by the president on Monday afternoon, according to Malacañang.

Under the guidelines earlier released by the Palace, an enhanced community quarantine means that strict home quarantine will be implemented in all households; transportation shall be suspended; provision for food and essential health services shall be regulated and the heightened presence of uniformed personnel enforce quarantine procedures will be implemented.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said more details will be released later after Duterte’s meeting with the government’s inter-agency task force.

Under the current guidelines on community quarantine, all provincial governors and mayors of highly urbanized cities, as well as Senators and Congressmen, are free to travel to and out of Metro Manila in the performance of their official functions. Mayors of component cities and municipalities may be allowed to enter Metro Manila subject to the approval of this Department on a case-to-case basis.

The DILG also said that a total of 40,000 police officers are now deployed to man checkpoints in Metro Manila.

“We assure the public of the sufficiency of uniformed police and military officers who will man checkpoints around Metro Manila. They shall follow all lawful protocols in manning checkpoints and are advised to be courteous but firm in performing their duties,” it said.

“Panahon po ito ng pagsubok sa ating tapang at malasakit sa bawat isa at lalo na ang disiplina nating mga Pilipino. Bagaman may abalang naidudulot ang ating preventive measures laban sa COVID-19, unawain po natin na para ito sa kabutihan ng nakakarami. This too shall pass so let us remain calm and resilient,” it added.

PNP should not interfere with community pantry, DILG’s Año says

Robie de Guzman   •   April 20, 2021

 

Community pantry

MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Tuesday said that police and local government executives should not interfere with community pantries and other similar initiatives organized by private groups.

Año issued the statement following reports that some of the community pantry organizers were being red-tagged and profiled by alleged government authorities.

The DILG chief said police and local government interference should only be limited to ensuring that health protocols are being implemented.

“Since this is a purely voluntary and private initiative, we should not interfere except to ensure that minimum health standards are complied with,” Año said.

“Hence, organizers must adhere to existing laws and local ordinances especially those issued to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” he added.

Año also clarified that he did not order the Philippine National Police (PNP) to look into the community pantries around the country.

“The community pantry has been a traditional practice in our country as part of Bayanihan culture and spirit specially in the times of calamities and disasters,” he said.

“In the spirit of Bayanihan, many Filipinos have been doing selfless acts of kindness since last year.

As long as the intention is good and without political color, it should be encouraged and supported,” he added.

As to the issue of whether organizers are required to secure barangay permits, the DILG chief said that organizers should “consult with the concerned barangays if such is required.”

“The PNP and/or local officials may just come in if there is any violation of law, if there are complaints from the community, or if the organizers seek their help,” he said.

“The LGUs, barangays and the PNP are ready to provide utmost assistance to ensure orderly distribution to the public,” he added.

DILG Sec. Año returns to work after more than 3 months in hospital

Marje Pelayo   •   April 16, 2021

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año

 

MANILA, Philippines – Secretary Eduardo Año of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is returning to work on Friday (April 16) after more than three months of hospital care.

In a statement, Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said the DILG chief already received clearance from his doctors, though it will be on a work-from-home setup until he is fully recovered.

“After more than three months of grueling struggle, including a heart operation, the Secretary is well, in high spirits, and ready to reassume his duties in the Department as well as in the National Task Force COVID-19 and in the IATF-EID,” Malaya said.

“He will start by first working from home and eventually to full normal routine,” he noted.

Malaya expressed gratitude to the public for respecting the DILG Chief’s privacy in the past few months and “for giving him the time to rest, recuperate, and fully recover.’

Supply ng COVID-19 vaccine sa Metro Manila LGUs, paubos na

Robie de Guzman   •   April 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Paubos na ang supply ng bakuna kontra COVID-19 sa ilang lokal na pamahalaan sa Metro Manila.

Ayon sa mga alkalde, kinukulang na ang supply ng kanilang bakuna sa dami ng mga nagpaparehistro para makatanggap ng COVID-19 vaccine.

Sa Quezon City, hanggang sabado na lang ang schedule ng pagbabakuna sa mga indibidwal na maaaring tumanggap ng unang dose.

Sa mahigit 300,000 nagparehistro, mahigit sa 100,000 pa lang ang nababakunahan.

Ayon kay Joseph Juico, ang pinuno ng Quezon City Task Force on COVID-19, kakaunti na lang ang natitira nilang COVID-19 vaccine at hihintayin pa nila kung kailan ulit sila mabibigyan ng national government.

“As to the exact delivery of the vaccines, just like the national government, we are still waiting for the exact time and date,” ang wika ni Juico.

Sa lungsod naman ng Maynila, nasa 2,500 Sinovac vaccines na lang ang kanilang ginagamit ngayon. Sa 300,000 nagparehistro para sa vaccination, nasa 72,000 pa lang ang natuturukan.

Ang Malabon City naman ay mayroon pang nasa 6,000 vaccine doses ngunit kulang na ito para sa mahigit 13,000 pang kailangang mabigyan ng bakuna.

Ang lokal na pamahalaan naman ng Marikina, sa Lunes na inaasahang mauubos ang hawak nilang mga bakuna. Nasa 30 porsiyento pa lang din sa mga nagparehistro online ang natuturukan.

“Paunti-unti ang dating ng bakuna. Tulad ngayon, may dumating na bakuna. Pwede nating magamit hanggang Lunes para sa isang libong indibiduwal lamang. Kulang na. Kulang na. Kulang na talaga,” ang wika ni Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro.

Una nang sinabi ng national government na ngayong buwan inaasahang darating sa bansa ang karagdagang supply ng bakuna.

Nagkakaroon umano ng delay sa delivery ng mga bakuna dahil sa isyu sa produksyon nito at pagkakaroon ng supply shortage sa ibang bansa. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

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