70 establishments in Cebu City underwent ‘voluntary suspension of operations’ since COVID began

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - CDN Digital | September 14,2020 - 06:29 PM

70 establishments in Cebu City underwent ‘voluntary suspension of operations’ since COVID began

A glimpse of the skyscrapers of Metro CEBU. CDN Digital photo | Brian Ochoa

CEBU CITY, Philippines – A total of 70 privately owned establishments here have undergone ‘voluntary suspension of operations’ since the coronavirus outbreak began.

The Cebu City Government on Monday, September 14, 2020, reported that these firms either failed to implement health protocols or had workers who tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

“Sukad pag-igo sa COVID-19 dinhe sa dakbayan sa Sugbo, 70 ka establisyemento ang gisara. Atong ipasabot nga kining mga establisyemento boluntaryo nag pa-suspend paghuman sa inspection sa atong BPLO (business permit and licensing office) ug nakita ug kakuwangan sa minimum health standards,”  said lawyer and Cebu City Government Spokesperson Rey Gealon in a virtual press briefer.

(Since COVID-19 hit Cebu City, 70 establishments were closed. But these establishments only underwent voluntary suspension of operations after inspection from our BPLO found out that they lacked enforcement of the minimum health standards.)

However, Gealon said only seven of the 70 firms remained closed as of September 14, 2020 as the majority have already reopened since then.

“Sa 70 nga gipansirad-an nga establishment, sagad niini nangabri na… pito niini taas kaayo ug suspension nga mukabat ug 14 dias. Ang uban nagbukas dayun human sa tulo o upat ka adlaw,” he explained.

The city spokesperson was referring to the seven establishments whose operations remain suspended since the city was placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

In an earlier interview with Lawyer Jared Limquiaco, the city’s business permit and licensing officer, he said two of these seven private establishments recently reopened.

According to Gealon, business owners and managers decided to voluntarily halt their operations to improve the health protocols being imposed as well as ensure that the virus will not spread rapidly within their respective workplaces.

“Nalipay lang ta kay ang uban niboluntaryo gyud ug pagpasira sa ilahang mga establisyemento. Ang uban gipahimagnoan nga magcomply sa mga minimum health standards, labi na katong naay mga nagpositive sa ilahang mga trabahante,” he added.

(But we’re glad that some voluntarily suspended operations of their establishments. Some were already told to comply with the minimum health standards, especially those who have workers that tested positive.)

It can be recalled that last week, the city’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) announced that a bank suspended its operations after 12 of its employees were confirmed to have COVID-19.

READ: 12 employees of Cebu City bank positive for COVID-19

Since Cebu City downgraded to MGCQ, the most relaxed form of community quarantine, local officials have warned the public that work-to-home transmission has emerged as the most prevalent source of new infections.

This development also prompted the city’s BPLO to anticipate more firms to voluntarily suspend their operations in a bid to curb the spread of the virus.

READCebu City Gov’t expects more ‘voluntary suspensions of operations’ from establishments

Mayor Edgardo Labella’s latest executive order (EO) mandates all business establishments to halt their operations if at least one of their workers tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent of COVID-19.

Businesses with COVID-19 positive employees will have to secure a clearance from the City Health Office before they will be allowed to resume operations. /bmjo

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TAGS: BPLO, Business Permit and Licensing Office, Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella, COVID-19 in Cebu City, Rey Gealon

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