Ferro: Thorough assessment needed before shifting to MGCQ
CEBU CITY, Philippines – The top police official in Central Visayas is still cautious about Cebu City’s eventual downgrade to the most relaxed form of community quarantine.
This is the reason why he is recommending to decision-making bodies and local officials that thorough discussion must take place before the actual implementation of a modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).
“We need to come up with a good assessment first, so we can get viable recommendations and for the other members to talk the pros and cons in lowering (to MGCQ),” said Police Brigadier General Albert Ignatius Ferro, director of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO – 7).
Ferro’s statement came after Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella expressed hopes that the city will ease its quarantine restrictions, and be placed under MGCQ. It is currently under a stricter GCQ which is expected to last until August 31.
The city was the first area in the country that was reverted back to Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), the strictest mode of community quarantine, last June due to spike of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases and critical care utilization rates in hospital reaching danger levels.
Ferro said the city’s previous experience should be a lesson and reminder to everyone that changing the quarantine statuses needed careful review.
These included among others, Ferro said, the decision whether the at least 100 police officers fielded as augmentation forces here could return to the Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas regions.
“We really have to come up with a (thorough) assessment. It should not be an instant move. We don’t want to go back to ECQ, and we don’t want to follow other areas who (recently) were reverted back to MECQ (modified ECQ),” he added.
After Cebu City, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-MEID) also placed Metro Manila, and several more areas in Luzon, back to MECQ due to hospitals being overwhelmed by a surge of COVID-19 patients. /bmjo
READ MORE: Metro Manila, 4 provinces back to less restrictive GCQ starting Aug. 19
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