MANILA, Philippines – A total of 360 members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) has been deployed in the city to help in the implementation of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) measures.
Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu said 160 of them are Special Action Force (SAF) troopers who will augment the local security force in enforcing health protocols as part of the city’s effort to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“Na-observe ko, kaunti lang ang mga PNP dito [I observed that we have only a few PNP personnel here],” Cimatu said.
Cebu City is home to 1.8 million individuals in 80 barangays.
The city also has over 12,000 locally stranded individuals (LSI) which also adds to the city’s concerns.
Cimatu is ordering all heads of 11 barangays to explain why the cases of the COVID-19 infection in their respective areas are high.
“All the barangays of Cebu City are on total lockdown, total ECQ,” the IATF overseer in Cebu City said.
“Iyong 11 (barangay) na lang na ito na hotspot talaga, kung meron pang category na mas malakas pa sa lockdown iyon ang ipa-implement para mahinto na natin ito [These 11 barangays that are hot spots must be placed under an extreme lockdown or if there is a category higher than that so we could completely eradicate this (virus)],” he added.
Cimatu said only one quarantine pass will be issued per family and only the holders of the quarantine pass will be allowed to go out during a given schedule.
The official also noticed a difference in the number of COVID-19 cases in Regional Health Offices with the number of recorded cases in barangays.
He wants the data collection centralized to which the authorities may base the overall response against the spread of COVID-19.
“We have to have only one figure for Cebu City,” Cimatu stressed.
The Cebu City government has allotted a P500-M budget for relief distribution to affected residents. —MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
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