Sara Duterte under home quarantine after meeting with Gatchalian

Robie de Guzman   •   March 12, 2020   •   489

MANILA, Philippines – Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte will undergo a voluntary home quarantine as a precaution against the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) even if she has not manifested any symptom, her office said on Thursday, March 12.

In a statement, the Office of the Mayor said Duterte has signed up as a person under monitoring (PUM) under the Davao City Health Office after one of her employees at their residence became unwell. The said employee is also listed as a PUM.

Her office also said that the presidential daughter also had a lunch meeting with Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Wednesday. She also visited the Senate on the same day for the confirmation hearing on her promotion as a reservist military colonel.

Gatchalian himself announced on Wednesday night he is under a self-quarantine after contact with a virus-infected guest at the Senate.

“While Mayor Sara has not suffered from flu-like symptoms, she chose to undergo self-quarantine to protect others if she may be found to be sick in the next few days,” the statement read.

“She is now confined in an isolated bedroom at her residence and will continue to work through emails, messaging, and videotelecon,” it added.

Her office also said that the mayor may also be reached by those who need her attention through her mobile number.

Kim Jong Un says North Korea prevented coronavirus from making inroads

UNTV News   •   July 3, 2020

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un told a meeting of the politburo of the ruling Workers Party the North had stopped the novel coronavirus from making inroads in the country, state news agency KCNA said on Friday (July 3).

“We have thoroughly prevented the inroad of the malignant virus and maintained a stable anti-epidemic situation despite the worldwide health crisis, which is a shining success achieved,” Kim Jong Un said in a statement carried by KCNA.

He warned against self-complacency or relaxation in the anti-epidemic effort and urged North Koreans to maintain “maximum alert,” KCNA said in a statement.

While the reclusive country has not confirmed any infections, its public health ministry has reported all 922 people checked so far have tested negative. Hundreds of people, mostly cargo handlers at seaports and land borders, are regularly quarantined for monitoring.

A politburo meeting on Thursday (July 2) also touched on the construction of the Pyongyang General Hospital, underway in the capital. Kim expressed satisfaction with the project and thanked the builders for making headway under unfavorable conditions. (Reuters)

(Production: Hyunyoung Yi)

Air travelers to Davao City may get free COVID-19 testing starting June 29 – Sara Duterte

Robie de Guzman   •   June 26, 2020

Passengers arriving at the Francisco Bangoy International Airport may avail of free and voluntary testing novel for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) starting June 29, the Davao City government said.

In a statement, the city government said that all air passengers who arrived in Davao City on June 8, 2020, whether experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or asymptomatic, can also avail of the testing.

Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said the free reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing for air passengers is one of the city government’s efforts to find carriers of coronavirus and curb the spread of the viral disease in Davao  City.

“Isa pa ni sa atoang mga pamaagi nga mangita og mga pasyente. Lahi pa ni sa mga ginabuhat nato sa atoang contact-tracing, sa atoang case-finding dinha sa mga communities,” Duterte-Carpio said.

(This is one of our ways in finding patients, apart from the contact-tracing and case-finding in our communities.)

“So, duna tay budget sa atoang Bayanihan Grant nga napasa atong April and atoang gamiton ni para sa katong voluntary ang free testing for passengers who arrived by airplane beginning June 8 until the present,” she added.

(We have a budget from our Bayanihan Grant that was passed last April, and we will use it for the voluntary and free testing for passengers who arrived by airplane beginning June 8 until the present.)

Around 1,000 RT-PCR testing kits are ready for the free and voluntary testing for passengers who arrived in Davao City from June 8, 2020, to the present.

“Duna tay listahan, but sa pagka karon nangita lang ta og volunteers. Asymptomatic or symptomatic – meaning naa moy ubo, naa moy sip-on o wala, gikaluntura mo or wala, pwede mo magpa libreng testing sugod sa Monday,” she said.

(We have a list but for now we are looking for volunteers. Asymptomatic or symptomatic – meaning if you have cough, colds, or fever, or even if you don’t have these, you may avail of the free testing starting on Monday.)

Before the start date, the city government said it will release the full details on how to avail of the free testing.

Meantime, air travel passengers may reach out to the COVID-19 Task Force Operation Center for the details on how they can avail of the free testing.

Those interested in the initiative may contact Davao City’s COVID-19 OpCen through 0917 508 6548 for Globe users; 0919 071 1111 for Smart users; or, dial (082) 244-0181 for information.

Davao motorcycle riders urged to wait for IATF guidelines on back-riding

Robie de Guzman   •   June 25, 2020

Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio has called on motorcycle riders to wait for the official guidelines on motorcycle back-riding to be released by the national Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID).

In a statement, Duterte-Carpio stressed that back-riding on motorcycle remains prohibited under current IATF rules as this practice do not promote physical distancing against the spread of novel coronavirus disease.

Malacañang earlier said that the national task force will soon release a set of guidelines in response to growing calls for the return of motorcycle back-riding due to difficulty in securing public transportation amid community quarantine restrictions.

“Maghulat ta aning guidelines nga gina-ingon nila [National Task Force – NTF] sa back-riding. Dunay guidelines na mogawas, so kining guidelines atong hulaton because as I’ve said kaniadto pag sugod sa IATF, ang mga guidelines, mao na ang sundon sa tanang LGUs,” Duterte-Carpio said.

(Let us wait for the guidelines on back-riding. There will be guidelines that will come out. As I have said before when the IATF was established, the guidelines are to be followed by all LGUs.)

Meanwhile, the 18th City Council on Tuesday passed a resolution supporting the national government in allowing back riding in motorcycle but such national policy should not only limit for family members as back riders but also for the public.

Second District Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, the proponent of the resolution, said that this is to address the difficulty of finding public transportation under the general community quarantine (GCQ) and modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

“The return of motorcycle as one of the modalities of public transportation considered as sustainable and predictable in terms of route availability opens the general public a choice to avail of and at the same time, propel economic activity for these drivers who long to recover from this pandemic,” the resolution reads. 

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