Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia will no longer file an appeal to upgrade Cebu Province’s quarantine status to the Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ), as she plans instead to focus on finalizing programs for when the restriction eases.
This, as the governor said moves to rebrand Cebu as a “health and wellness destination” will be put on hold “while planning will continue.”
“Di na lang ko mo appeal. We will just use this time to plan further and to set our programs in place should the classification hopefully be downgraded to MGCQ,” the governor said.
Last Monday, June 15, President Rodrigo Duterte announced that Cebu Province, as well as the cities of Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu, remain under General Community Quarantine (GCQ) until June 30, 2020.
Talisay City, a component city of the Province, was reverted to Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ).
Garcia said she already filed an appeal twice with the Inter-Agency Task Force Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) but was turned down.
To recall, on May 29, the president announced on live television that the Province was placed under MGCQ. However, on the 30th, the IATF announced that the province was placed on GCQ status.
Garcia said her legal team sent an appeal to the regional IATF after the announcement but was told that it was filed late so she had to file another appeal, with an updated data.
In both instances, her requests were turned down.
Garcia said there were those in the IATF who pushed for the province to go to MGCQ “since our active cases in relation to the population is really very, very low” but there was the concern on the number of cases in Cebu City.
“They had to push back Cebu City to ECQ. And so they said it is so difficult to imagine nga pareho raman gud nga we are one island. So how can we have the two extremes in one island, ECQ ug MGCQ (ang province) so mao na GCQ lang ta gihapon,” the governor said.
Garcia will be meeting all mayors in the Province, including Mandaue City, to discuss border controls now that Cebu City is back on enhanced community quarantine. (Vanessa L. Almeda)