CEBU CITY, Philippines – Cebu City and Mandaue City were raised to Alert Level 3 from January 14 to 31, 2022, in a new statement from the Interagency Task Force (IATF).
Acting Presidential Spokesman Secretary Karlo Nograles announced on January 12, 2022 that 28 provinces and cities are under Alert Level 3, including Cebu City and Mandaue City, due to the increase in cases COVID-19 in these regions.
Other areas of the Visayas that are under Alert Level 3 include Bacolod City, Aklan, Capiz, Antique, and Tacloban City.
Cebu City saw a rapid increase in active cases in the first few days of the year, with cases reaching 778 as of January 11, 2022. By comparison, Mandaue City lags far behind with just 143 active cases as of the same date. .
The city of Lapu-Lapu, which was previously placed under Alert Level 3, is no longer on the list after Mayor Junard Ahong Chan appealed their case.
Yet Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama will not appeal the city’s high alert status given the increase in cases.
“We will have to review what activities are below alert level 3. No appeal. We shouldn’t be appealing now. We see the numbers increase. We don’t want any problems at the moment, we want to focus on recovery, ”said the mayor.
Rama understands that implementing Alert Level 3 in a typhoon-stricken town with many homes damaged and residents still reeling from the typhoon’s aftermath will be a challenge.
To address the concerns of residents who still suffer from the lack of basic utilities in their homes, Rama met with Visayan Electric and the telecommunications companies on Wednesday.
Rama told CDN Digital that Globe and Smart promised to repair connectivity within three days, just in time for the Alert Level 3 implementation.
“If VECO provides electricity, then our telecom operators can restore connectivity,” the mayor said.
Cebu City Councilor Joel Garganera, Deputy EOC Implementation Officer, hopes IATF will give Cebu City some leeway in implementing the Level 3 alert status account given the damage caused by the typhoon.
“I don’t know their base apart from the growing number of cases, we have other areas they need to consider, our hospital occupancy rate, mortalities (none), our level of response and intervention despite the fact that we have just survived the most powerful typhoon that has hit our city in decades.
“Finally, you should know that the parameters are set at level 3,” said the advisor.
Mandaue city officials have yet to make a statement on the new status of the alert level.
Alert level 3
Under Alert Level 3, intra-zonal and inter-zonal movement is subject to “reasonable restrictions” which may be imposed by local government units, the IATF said.
People under the age of 18 and those belonging to the vulnerable population are also allowed to access and travel to procure and procure essential goods and services and to work.
The following establishments and activities are prohibited under the strictest alert level:
- Face-to-face courses in basic education
- Contact sports
- Fair festivities
- Karaoke bars, clubs, concert halls, theaters
- Horse racing, cockfighting, cockpit operation, lottery and betting shops and other gaming establishments outside of those authorized by the IATF or the President’s office
- Social gatherings where individuals do not belong to the same household
The following activities, on the other hand, will be authorized with a reception capacity of 30% for fully vaccinated persons and an external capacity of 50%:
- Meetings, conferences, exhibitions
- Social events such as weddings, engagements, debuts, birthdays
- Tourist attractions, including libraries
- Theme parks
- Leisure places
- In-person religious gatherings
- License exams
- Catering services
- Personal care services
- Fitness rooms, non-contact sports
- Film, music, television production
Currently, Alert Level 3 is high in 19 areas, including Metro Manila and its adjacent provinces Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal and Laguna.
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