Cebu Province ‘willing to help’ Cebu City but needs to close borders first

By: Rosalie O. Abatayo - CDN Digital | June 24,2020 - 09:05 PM

Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella. (CDN Digital File)

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has assured that the province is willing to help Cebu City “in any way” amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis but reiterates that it needs to close its borders for the city in the meantime to stop the spread of the infection.

In a press conference this Wednesday evening, June 24, 2020, which was attended by Secretary Roy Cimatu, the appointed overseer of Cebu City’s COVID-19 response implementation, and Mayor Edgardo Labella, Garcia assured that the province will extend any help as needed, despite that it will close its borders to Cebu City.

“I really, sincerely, am offering our support in any which way that we can in so far as the province of Cebu is concerned. Mayor Labella, you can count on us. Just call out, holler, and we will come running. But in the meantime, we will need to close our borders,” Garcia said.

The governor said closing the borders is necessary for now in order to prevent the virus from further spreading throughout the towns because if this happens, it would mean a bigger problem.

“In the meantime, we will need to enforce very strict border controls in all entries into the province of Cebu, not to make your life harder but in order to contain the problem here in Cebu City because if this spreads further throughout the entire province, then the problem will triple,” Garcia said.

Garcia said that since the province eased its border control with Cebu City last June 3, when both local government units were under a general community quarantine, the cases in the province have gone to about thrice than it was before the easing of the restrictions.

In an executive order that Garcia signed on Tuesday evening, June 23, persons who are not included in the exempted persons listed in Section 8 of her Executive Order 17 and do not have passes issued by the Capitol, will no longer be allowed to enter the province from Cebu City beginning midnight on Friday, June 26.

READ: Gwen orders strict border control with Cebu City anew

“The population of the province at 3.2 million is 3x that of the city of Cebu and we have seen that in the past  23 days, when we opened up our borders and eased restrictions of ingress into the province, the number of cases in the province tripled and so we need to stop this. As we do this, with much confidence I know that this will be, the increase of cases in Cebu City, will be arrested,” Garcia said. /bmjo

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TAGS: Cebu City COVID, COVID-19 crisis, Edgardo Labella, Gwen Garcia

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