GCQ in Laoag due to 149 COVID cases

LAOAG CITY, May 13 (PIA) – Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc has placed this northern city under general community quarantine (GCQ) for two weeks effective today, May 13 to help contain the further spread of COVID-19.

Governor Manotoc issued on Wednesday Executive Order No. 125-21 containing the multiple-page GCQ guidelines.

As of May 11, the active COVID cases in Laoag City soared to 149, the highest among towns and cities in Ilocos Norte.

“There was a clamor for ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) but we feel that would affect business and we’re all aware that everyone is struggling hard to make ends meet now so we decided not to implement ECQ,” City Mayor Michael Marcos Keon said.

He directed a citywide police deployment to control and prevent any unnecessary mass gathering of people.

Keon cited some reports that huge crowds were spotted lately along the bypass road in the city outskirt.

However, interzonal movement to and from Laoag City is allowed with the following guidelines, among others:
-Persons who are 15 years old and below, 65 years old and above, and those with immunodeficiency, comorbidities, and other health risks are required to stay home at all times;
-Movement for leisure purposes shall be disallowed. The movement of persons shall be limited to accessing essential goods and services and for work in the offices or industries;
-People should not congregate in groups. A group is considered as more than two persons;
-Police shall closely monitor all potentially crowded areas by deploying police officers to implement strict health protocols;
-Border and barangay checkpoints may be established. (Ma. Joreina Therese A. Blanco/PIA Ilocos Norte)