DILG warns raps vs barangay execs failing to follow protocols vs COVID-19

by raymond lacsa | March 19, 2020 (Thursday) | 682

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has reminded all barangay officials to strictly implement the protocols set by the national government to combat the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said barangay executives should ensure that residents stay in their homes to stem the virus’ community-based transmissions.

“Ito pa ay total lockdown. Hindi po ito biro. Tiyakin ninyong hindi pagala-gala ang mga residente sa inyong lugar at walang mga pagtitipon-tipon for we are trying to lessen the movement of people to the barest minimum,” Año said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Ngunit, kung lalabas para bumili ng pagkain o gamot o pupunta sa ospital, kailangan po payagan natin,” he added.

The entire island of Luzon is under enhanced community quarantine.

President Rodrigo Duterte said that under this measure, local chief executives should be at the forefront of the implementation of the quarantine guidelines.

He also directed barangay executives to think of ways to effectively impose the quarantine and serve the needs of the most vulnerable in their communities.

“Ngayon natin masusubukan kung gaano katapat ang mga barangay officials sa kanilang tungkulin. Kailangan kayo ng pamahalaan, kailangan kayo ng inyong mga kababayan,” the president said during a recent public address.

Under the 30-day enhanced community quarantine, strict home quarantine in households will be implemented, transportation is suspended, provision for food and essential health services shall be regulated and the heightened presence of uniformed personnel to enforce quarantine procedures will be implemented.

The DILG said that under the quarantine guidelines, only one member of the household will be allowed to leave their home to buy basic necessities and provisions for food.

Barangay executives are also reminded that all areas where people may gather for recreational activities should be closed at this period.

These include common religious congregations, gaming parlors, computer gaming shops, wellness centers, cockpits arenas, public playgrounds, basketball courts, beaches, and public parks.

The conduct of fiestas, karaokes, parades and other related public assemblies, tiangges, open dry good markets, and sidewalk vending are also prohibited.

The public is also reminded to observe social distancing by maintaining a one-meter distance from one another.

“Konting sakripisyo lang po ang aming hinihiling sa ating mga pinuno ng barangay, maging sa ating mga kababayan. Bawal po ang pagala-gala,” Año said.

The DILG chief also said that barangays should mobilize their Barangay Health Emergency Response Teams (BHERT), and establish isolation units where asymptomatic virus-infected patients may stay to give enough space for critically-ill patients in the hospitals.

BHERTs must visit the home of their residents that exhibit COVID-19 symptoms, and of visitors who came from coronavirus-infected areas.

“Ang BHERT ang inaasahang siyang unang kikilos sa oras na may mga suspected COVID-19 cases sa barangay. Sa kanila magsisimula ang protocol sa pagdadala sa mga may sakit sa ospital kaya napakahalaga ng kanilang trabaho,” he said.

Año warned that barangay officials may face charges of gross neglect of duty, gross negligence and insubordination for failing to perform their responsibilities under the state of public health emergency. — ROBIE DE GUZMAN

Note: Sourced from DILG statement

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