IATF: Non-essential travel suspended in and out of Metro Manila, Calabarzon areas

A cop in fatigue uniform is seen manning a checkpoint

AdChoiceTV News — The Palace on Sunday announced new COVID-19 restrictions amid a continued surge in cases, banning mass gatherings and non-essential travel within Metro Manila and four provinces in Calabarzon for two weeks.

In a March 20 resolution, the coronavirus task force recommended the curbs to President Rodrigo Duterte, which will take effect beginning March 21 to April 4.

The move reverts Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal to General Community Quarantine status, and includes it together with Metro Manila as one “Subject Area.”

What’s new

Only essential travel into and out of these areas will be allowed. Public transportation will continue to operate but at capacities set by the transportation department.

Mass gatherings, including religious services will once again be disallowed, while in-person meetings are highly discouraged. Further, weddings, baptisms and funeral services will be limited to only 10 persons.

Operational capacities of essential and non-essential services will also stay, but the IATF is urging the private sector to roll out alternative work arrangements anew.

Food establishments will also be limited only to delivery, take-out or outdoor dining, provided that additional measures are in place such as dividers to limit the number of persons per table to two.

The same prohibitions ordered on March 18 that suspended the operations of driving schools, cinemas, cultural centers and limited social events by the tourism department also remains.

Officials extended the unified curfew of 10 p.m. to 5 p.m. first set in Metro Manila to the four Calabarzon provinces.

It said, however, that workers, cargo vehicles and mass transportation will not be restricted by the curfews. The task force also discouraged people from visiting persons outside their immediate families, and “strongly advised” the wearing of face masks at home.

This is a developing story reported by Albert Rovic Tan

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