Metro Manila under ECQ from August 6 to 20

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the proposal of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases and mayors to place Metro Manila under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from August 6 to 20, 2021, Malacañang said Friday.

“Simula naman a sais ng Agusto, ang NCR ay ma-eescalate sa enhanced communtiy quarantine or ECQ hanggang a bente ng Agusto 2021,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an announcement aired over state-run People’s Television Network.

(Starting August 6, NCR will escalate to enhanced community quarantine or ECQ until August 20, 2021.)

Roque said Metro Manila will stay under general community quarantine with heightened and additional restrictions this Friday until August 5, 2021 where indoor and al fresco dining will be prohibited.

Asked if the government will extend aid to residents and workers affected by the tightened restrictions, Roque replied: “Most likely, but will seek confirmation.”

The conduct of COVID-19 vaccinations will also remain unhampered, Roque added.

Earlier, Roque admitted he was not sure if the government has funds for aid if Metro Manila will be placed under ECQ.

Amid the threat of the Delta variant, Metro Manila mayors had expressed willingness to place the region under ECQ for two weeks to prevent further spread of the disease.

“Pero matapos ng matinding debate, kinakailangan magkaroon ng desisyon, masakit na desisyon po natin ‘to dahil alam natin na mahirap ang ECQ pero kinakailangang gawin ito para maiwasan yung kakulangan ng ating mga ICU beds at iba pang hospital requirements kung lolobo po talaga ang kaso dahil nga po sa Delta variant,” Roque said.

(After a long debate, we needed to make a decision, it’s a painful decision because we know that it’s tough to be placed under ECQ. But we need to do this to prevent shortage in ICU beds and other hospital requirements should our cases balloon due to the Delta variant.)

The Department of Health (DOH), citing projections, said the Delta variant could increase Metro Manila’s daily new COVID-19 cases to up to 11,000 by the end of September if health protocols would not be properly followed.

The Philippines has so far detected 216 Delta variant cases.

The DOH had confirmed local transmission in the country.

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