16K LSIs waiting for approval of travel authority applications

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - CDN Digital | July 15,2020 - 06:19 PM
Cebu City

At least 54 locally stranded individuals (LSIs) from various parts of Cebu are transported back to their hometowns in Mindanao in this May 24, 2020 photo.

CEBU CITY, Philippines — There are 16,000 locally stranded individuals (LSI) who are either waiting to come home to Cebu City or waiting to leave Cebu City.

This was revealed by Councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor for Emergency Operation Centers (EOC) of the Interagency Task Force (IATF) in Cebu City.

He said that the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) has 16,000 LSI pending applications for travel authority from or to the city. They will process the application once the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) is lifted.

Pending the lifting of ECQ, Garganera said LSIs stuck in Cebu City or those who want to return to Cebu City will not be allowed to move.

With this, the goal of the city government is to account for these LSIs, especially the LSIs outside Cebu City who are not within  easy reach of the city government.

The councilor said they are currently in talks with shipping companies to provide free fare for LSIs going home to Cebu City once they are allowed.

“We have met all shipping lines, that if the LSIs can show their travel authority, automatically they will be given free tickets. Half of the shipping lines will extend P1,000 financial aid for the LSI, but the other half said they do not have the capacity,” said Garganera.

The councilor said they are hoping to find a good arrangement for the shipping lines who would like to provide financial assistance to the LSIs.

As for LSIs leaving Cebu City, they will also be offered free tickets to go to their respective homes as long as they have complete travel authority documents.

The LSIs trapped in the city are being assisted by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the city’s own Department of Social Welfare and Services (DSWS).

The financial assistance will be coursed through the DSWD, the city government, and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

Garganera is hoping that the ECQ will be lifted so the LSIs could go home to their provinces or come home to Cebu City. /bmjo


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