MANILA, Oct 19 (Mabuhay) — Metro Manila mayors have agreed to impose shorter curfew hours starting this week as part of the government’s move to ease restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic , Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) general manager Jojo Garcia said Monday.
In a Palace briefing, Garcia said that the new curfew hours will be from 12 midnight to 4 a.m.
“In-adjust na natin ‘yung curfew ng 12 a.m. to 4 a.m. At ito po ay mangyayari itong linggong ito dahil aayusin pa po ‘yung mga ordinansa ng ating mga mayors,” Garcia said.
Navotas, however, will still implement the 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, according to Garcia, adding Mayor Toby Tiangco has decided to keep the schedule because Navotas has bigger residential areas than industrial sites.
Garcia said the adjustment was discussed by the Metro Manila mayors and some officials of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
In the same briefing, Garcia said curfew hours may be adjusted come December to give way for the traditional Simbang Gabi. He said they are mulling that the curfew will only be until 3 a.m. starting December 1.
The decision of Metro Manila mayors came a week after President Rodrigo Duterte’s Cabinet urged local government units to shorten curfew hours to help revive the pandemic-hit economy.
It was the Cabinet officials’ suggestion that curfew hours should be from 12 midnight to 4 a.m.
LGUs are empowered by the IATF to set their own curfew hours. Davao City, for example, observes a 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew.
The Philippines has started gradually easing restriction caused by the pandemic in order to spur economic activities.
As of October 18, the Philippines’ COVID-19 tally was at 356,618 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 2,379 new infections.
Meanwhile, the total number of recoveries soared to 310,158 after 14,941 more patients recovered from the respiratory disease. (MNS)