MANILA – Malacañang announced on Friday that the quarantine classification in Metro Manila and four other regions has been raised to stricter general community quarantine (GCQ) “with heightened restrictions”.
This follows President Rodrigo Duterte’s approval of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases’ (IATF-EID) recommendation to impose a more stringent GCQ in Metro Manila, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Davao de Oro, and Davao del Norte from July 23 to 31.
According to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, also acting as the IATF-EID spokesperson, Metro Manila must adhere to the health and quarantine regulations for GCQ areas “with heightened restrictions”.
“The same IATF rules would be observed when NCR was previously under GCQ with heightened restrictions,” Roque remarked in a press release.
Metro Manila, which had been subjected to GCQ “with some restrictions” from July 1 to 15, was initially placed under regular GCQ from July 16 to 31.
Meanwhile, Davao de Oro and Davao del Norte were initially subjected to stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), while Ilocos Norte and Ilocos Sur were intended to be under modified GCQ (MGCQ) until the end of July.
Duterte agreed to lower Davao del Sur’s quarantine status from GCQ to MECQ, according to Roque.
“Davao del Sur, which is previously MECQ, is placed under GCQ starting July 23, 2021 until July 31, 2021,” he said.
No outdoor activities for children
Children aged five and above are no longer permitted to be outside now that Metro Manila, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Davao de Oro, and Davao del Norte are subject to GCQ “with heightened restrictions,” according to Roque.
“As these areas will be placed under GCQ with heightened restrictions, children five years old and above will not be allowed to go to outdoor areas, as provided for under IATF Resolution No. 125,” he said.
Children as young as five years old can go outside despite the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, according to IATF-EID Resolution 125 released on July 8, as long as they reside in GCQ and MGCQ zones.
Under the resolution, children are only allowed to go outdoor places such as parks, playgrounds, beaches, biking and hiking trails, outdoor tourist sites and attractions as defined by the Department of Tourism, including outdoor non-contact sports courts and venues, and al-fresco dining establishments.
The resolution said that mixed-use indoor or outdoor buildings and amenities, such as malls and similar establishments, are not included in the permissible outdoor places for children.