Gov’t warns closure against tiangge operators violating minimum health protocols

Marje Pelayo   •   November 24, 2020   •   651

MANILA, Philippines – Shoppers are starting to flock to Manila City’s shopping district Divisoria now that the holiday season is approaching.

Amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Malacañang warned tiangge operators that they may be ordered closed if proven to have been violating the minimum health standards set by the government.

“Kapag hindi po kayo nag-control ng crowd, baka po mapasara kayo, lalo kayong mawalan ng negosyo [If you will not control the crowd you could be closed. You would lose (the) opportunity for your business],” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.

The Department of Health (DOH), meanwhile, has started to draft a contingency plan in anticipation of the post-holiday surge of COVID-19 infections.

But still, in order not to contract the virus, Malacañang calls on the public to be conscious of their health.

Though the local government units are the ones responsible for the health and safety of their constituents when going to commercial centers in their areas, it is still the cooperation of each individual person that is needed to curb the transmission. 

“Responsibilidad na rin po natin iyan because kinakailangan nga abutan natin iyong libreng bakuna [That’s our responsibility. We have to reach that day when the free vaccine is already available],” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

“Ingatan naman natin ang ating mga sarili, hindi lang para sa hanapbuhay [Let’s us protect ourselves not just for work],” he added. MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

PNP says 17 incidents of illegal firearm discharge recorded during the holidays

Robie de Guzman   •   January 3, 2022

At least 17 cases of illegal firearm discharge were recorded during the holidays, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.

In a statement, Police General Dionardo Carlos said the PNP is building-up cases against arrested gun holders who were involved in the said incidents.

Carlos also said the PNP is also investigating four alleged stray bullet incidents in Ilocos Region, CALABARZON, Northern Mindanao, and the Cordillera Administrative Region on December 31.

He said local PNP units of forensic and technical support from National Support Units are assisting in the investigation.

Despite this, Carlos noted a significant drop in the current number of stray bullet incidents during the holidays compared with the previous years.

“No stray-bullet deaths were reported during the entire holiday season until 6:00 a.m. today,” the PNP chief said.

Carlos noted that the celebration of the holidays was “generally peaceful.”

“Overall, the situation remains generally peaceful throughout the country with no major untoward incidents that marred the traditional festive Christmas and New Year revelry,” he said.

Carlos also commended local PNP units backed by LGU force multipliers for the strict enforcement of local Executive Orders on firecracker prohibition that significantly resulted to lower firecracker-related injuries this year.

DTI, open to shorten physical distancing in establishments to accommodate more clients

Maris Federez   •   December 17, 2021


MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said it is open to the recommendation to shorten the physical distancing in business establishments to accommodate a larger number of customers.

In the Laging Handa briefing, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said he is open to the idea as long as there is still distance maintained among the customers as part of minimum health protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“Pabor tayo diyan, basta may physical distancing pa rin na maitutupad,” he said.

Business establishments suggest shortening the physical distance between customers from the current 1 meter to .75 meters.

The proposed distance will ensure that establishments that are allowed to operate in areas under Alert Level 2 restrictions will be able to accommodate more customers.

These establishments are restaurants, fast food chains, and shopping malls.

Secretary Lopez said they will study and review the proposal and will consult with the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).

Lopez, however, underscored the importance of following health protocols in business establishments.

It is imperative, Lopez stressed, that customers observe these protocols amid the threat of the COVID-19 Omicron variant which is considered a more virulent virus compared to the Delta variant.

“Mahigpit pa rin ang ating pinapairal na enforcement ng minimum public health protocol. Dahil syempre nangangamba pa tayo at ayaw natin kumalat ang virus. Nandiyan ang virus pa rin. Iyan ang parati natin paaala,” Lopez said.

“Ang ginawa po natin lahat ng establisyamento pina-assign natin ng kani-kanilang health and safety protocol officer para on the ground ay may nag-e-enforce, may nagsiseguro na nagco-comply at sumusunod sa patakaran,” he added.

Meanwhile, the DTI reiterated that despite the decreasing number of COVID-19 cases, the agency is still opposed to lowering the country’s quarantine restrictions to Alert Level 1.

The DTI said the Philippines must maintain Alert Level 2 status until there are no more threats of COVID-19.

“Sa observation po natin, kahit Alert Level 2 tayo, ang sigla ng ekonomiya ay bumabalik na. Mobility ng tao, lumalabas na. As long as pinayagan natin, iyong mga minors with the parents, lahat po iyan helped bring back the market that we have,” Lopez said.

“Tinanggal na rin ang curfew. So parang nasa Alert Level 1 na rin tayo, kung ako ang tatanungin doon. So, kailangan lang talagang i-keep itong Alert Level 2 para nandiyan pa rin, somehow, iyong mindset na kailangang todo ingat pa rin tayo,” he insisted. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Aileen Cerrudo)

Parties ngayong holiday season, gawin online o sa open areas – DOH

Robie de Guzman   •   December 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Hinimok ng Department of Health (DOH) ang publiko na gawing ligtas ang pagdiriwang ng holiday season sa pamamagitan ng pagsasagawa ng party o pagtitipon online o kaya ay sa labas ng bahay.

Ayon sa DOH, mas mataas ang tiyansa ng hawaan ng virus kung magtitipon ang mga tao sa lugar na kulob at walang maayos na bentilasyon.

Kung may bisitang kamag-anak o mga kaibigan, mas makakabuting outdoor activities ang gawin.

Kung hindi naman kaya ang outdoor celebration ay maaari pa rin namang sa loob ng bahay basta’t nakabukas ang bintana, pintuan at bentilador upang maging maayos ang air flow o daloy ng hangin.

Payo rin ni Dr. Dominic Maddumba, ang OIC-Division chief ng DOH Campaign Strategy Management Division Health Promotion Bureau, dapat ring maglagay ng hand sanitizing station sa lugar kung saan gagawiun ang salu-salo.

“Ngayon pong kapaskuhan ay sulitin an po natin iyong malamig na simoy ng hangin at papasukin natin upang maproteksyonan din tayo at maiwasan ang pagkahawa sa COVID-19,” ani Maddumba.

“Kung naka-aircon, mas mainam na may hepa filters para sa dagdag na proteksyon para sa inyong kasama, kaibigan at kapamilya,” dagdag pa niya.

Paalalahan rin ang lahat ng dadalo na isuot ng maayos ang kanilang face mask at panatilihin ang pagkakaroon ng physical distancing.

Upang makaiwas naman sa posibilidad na mahawa ng COVID-19, sinabi ng DOH na mas mainam pa ring online na lang gawin ang selebrasyon habang may pandemya para na rin sa kaligtasan ng pamilya. (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aileen Cerrudo)


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