EIGHTY-ONE governor-members of the League of Provinces of the Philippines (LPP) would rather want the national government to place the entire country under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ), the least stringent measurem starting next month.
LPP president and Marinduque Governor Presbitero Velasco, Jr. assured that they are ready for the MGCQ, under which governors may balance the economy and health.
“Alam niyo po ‘yan, meron talagang mga lugar na mataas ang infection rate o ‘yung attack rate o transmission. Okay naman ‘yan na lahat gawing MGCQ at nakikita naman natin ang policy ng gobyerno na pagalawin ang ekonomiya.”
Interestingly, their concurrence to place the entire country under MGCQ comes with a request — to be given authority to impose lockdowns or change their quarantine status if the need arises.
“Pero ito lang pong sa amin po, bigyan awtoridad ang LGU [local government units] na bigla pong mag-lockdown o ibalik sa GCQ [general community quarantine] o ECQ [enhanced community quarantine] kasi nga po iba-iba po ang sitwasyon sa kani-kaniyang teritoryo, probinsiya o city,” Velasco said.
President Rodrigo Duterte approved the recommendation of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) to place Metro Manila and the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) under GCQ for the whole month of February.
Aside from the two regions, Batangas, Tacloban City, Davao City, Davao del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Iligan City were also placed under GCQ, while the rest of the country was placed under MGCQ.
“So okay po ‘yung ibalik [sa MGCQ]. Actually, buksan at buksan na po ang mga businesses,” Velasco said.
He added that public transport, particularly provincial buses, should also be allowed to resume servicing their usual routes.