Gov. Remulla orders malls closed; Malacañang berates mall owners

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CAVITE – The people of Cavite might have been singing a line of a popular Christmas song, “all is calm; all is bright” when the national Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease declared the province under the general community quarantine (GCQ) starting May 16.

Under the GCQ, some businesses and industries are allowed to operate, especially those establishments offering essential products and services, and certain public transportation facilities are allowed to ensure the mobility of workers.  

But all of these small “liberties” are limited and are subject to the same guidelines of the IATF because technically the province is still under community quarantine.  These include ensuring only 50 percent workforce during operations, 50 percent of bus and jeepney passengers, use of Food and Medical Card and quarantine pass, allowing only one household member to go out to buy foods and medicines, wearing of face mask, washing hands with soap or alcohol, and observing physical distancing at all times.

But what transpired after the lifting of ECQ was not well for Governor Jonvic Remulla.  On May 18, he ordered the closure of all malls in the province citing violations of the IATF guidelines, particularly on the failure of ensuring physical distancing and violations of those small “liberties” granted by the government.  

Governor Remulla said he signed the executive order closing these establishments in the evening of May 17, which was also endorsed by the mayors in the province.  “All malls in Cavite are temporarily closed because they failed to enforce social distancing – outside the mall before opening and inside the malls when their operations resumed,” the governor said.

Meanwhile, Secretary Harry Roque, spokesperson of the IATF during his noontime virtual press briefing, Monday, was fuming mad while showing the footages of crowded malls during the weekend. “Kayong mga mall owners, may patakaran ng two square meters ang bawat tao, dapat may security guard, magpatupad po tayo ng social distancing at magsuot ng facemask. Kung tayo ang magmatigas, marami talaga sa atin ang mahawa sa Covid-19.  Sa mga malls na hindi sumusunod sa social distancing at crowd control, well madali lang po yan, ipapasara po kayo muli,” warned Sec. Roque.

House committees to hold hearings during break

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Spread the loveMANILA – The House of Representatives has authorized for its committees to conduct hearings during the five-week congressional break, extending until late April.