Gwen to IATF: Junk ‘color-coding’ schemes on countries for fully vaxxed ROFs
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia reiterated her appeal to the national government’s anti-COVID task force to incentivize returning overseas Filipinos who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
This time, Garcia is urging the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF) to drop its color-coding scheme on countries, and shorten the quarantine period for Filipino travelers from abroad.
Garcia, during her regular press conference on Tuesday, October 19, questioned the IATF’s color-coding guide as the basis in determining the length of quarantine stays for returning overseas Filipinos.
In particular, she pointed out why the United States was not part of the country’s so-called ‘green countries’.
”How they arrive at coloring these countries as green escapes my sense of logic. And strangely enough, the US, which has the most number of vaccinated individuals, when because there is the drive to produce vaccines and you have the most number of vaccines being produced in the US, they did not list the US under the green country category,” Garcia said.
Fully vaccinated Filipino passengers traveling from places classified as ‘green countries’ no longer need to undergo a week-long quarantine in an isolation facility.
All they have to present is proof of vaccination, and swab test results indicating that they are not infected with COVID-19.
Garcia had been in dispute with the IATF since the implementation of the swab-upon-arrival rule at the Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA).
The governor also called on the IATF to only impose a five-day quarantine period for fully vaccinated travelers, and that they should be released immediately after testing negative of the infection.
On the other hand, Garcia told the task force to ‘look into their humanity to help returning overseas Filipinos.’
“Please find your humanity somewhere in there. Beyond the power tripping. Remember that our ROFs and OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) are Filipinos too. They have families, too. And many of them are not coming home for a grand vacation. They are coming home for urgent reasons,” Garcia added. /rcg
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