Rama open but skeptical on free entry of fully vaccinated individuals into Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City Acting Mayor Michael Rama is open to the possibility of allowing fully vaccinated individuals from other provinces to enter Cebu City without the need for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) testing.
However, he is still skeptical on the implementation of such, especially if the policy will only apply to Cebu City and not to the entire Cebu Island.
Although the city has jurisdiction over five seaports, many travelers to Cebu City will be passing through the airport in Lapu-Lapu City, a port not under the jurisdiction of Cebu City.
If Cebu City implements a policy that may be very different in the province, it will only cause problems in the long run.
“In my capacity as acting mayor, my priority is upholding the health protocols,” said Rama in a virtual press conference on June 17, 2021.
The acting mayor will meet the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and Councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor of the EOC, to discuss their request to provide incentives to fully vaccinated individuals.
He wants to be appraised on how the EOC plans to implement such policy if the city government chooses to do so.
In a previous interview, Garganera said there is a need to provide an incentive for vaccinated individuals in the city to encourage more people to get the vaccine.
“We need to incentivize vaccinated individuals aron ma-engganyo ang mga tawo nga magpabakuna. Kay let’s say karon lang, unsa may difference sa vaccinated individual sa dili? We need to give them a certain form of incentive,” said Garganera.
(We need to incentivize vaccinated individuals so they will be encouraged to get the vaccine. Because let’s say now, what’s the difference between a vaccinated individual and an unvaccinated one? We need to give them a certain form of incentive.)
He clarified that entry for fully vaccinated individuals will only work for areas under Modified General Community Quarantine.
Since the neighboring provinces in the region like Bohol and Negros Oriental are having a surge in cases, they may not be included in the incentive yet.
He said that he will present the request to the acting mayor in their meetings to discuss how the policy should be implemented.
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