MANILA – The National Capital Region (NCR) Plus travel bubble began on Sunday in accordance with Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) Resolution No. 130-A, which imposed additional and heightened restrictions prior to the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
Quarantine control points (QCP) manned by combined elements of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine Coast Guard, and Bureau of Fire Protection will be placed at the borders of Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, and Cavite, according to DILG Secretary Eduardo Año on Sunday.
Only authorized persons outside of residence (APORs) shall be permitted to enter and leave the NCR Plus area as per the IATF resolution.
“At the moment, the QCPs are at the borders of Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna and Cavite with adjoining provinces but once we move to ECQ starting August 6, checkpoints will now be located inside Metro Manila,” he said in a news release.
QCPs can be found in the borders of Bulacan, Pampanga, and Nueva Ecija, Rizal, and Quezon, Laguna, and Batangas and Quezon, and Cavite with Batangas.
The PNP may continue to set up regular checkpoints within the NCR Plus bubble to enforce curfew hours, minimum health standards, and for general law enforcement.
According to DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, those considered APORs must present any of the following to police authorities manning the QCPs: IATF identification (ID) cards issued by regulatory agencies, valid IDs or pertinent documentation issued by establishments permitted to operate under the current quarantine classification, and other proof or evidence that the purpose of travel is permissible.
Who are allowed out?
Considered APOR under the omnibus guidelines are health and emergency frontline services and uniformed personnel; government officials and employees on official travel; duly-authorized relief and humanitarian assistance actors; persons travelling for medical or humanitarian reasons; persons going to and from the airport; anyone crossing zones for work in permitted industries; and public utility vehicle operators.
If an unauthorized person is detected, he or she will not be allowed to pass and will be ordered to return home.
Due to the importance of cargo/delivery vehicles to the economy, the PNP will allow movement of these vehicles across all QCPs.
“Secretary Año has instructed all QCPs to allow the unimpeded movement of cargo trucks and delivery vehicles especially those carrying food items across all our checkpoints,” Malaya said.
According to Año, enforcing strict border controls for those entering and exiting the NCR Plus bubble is crucial to stop the spread of Delta variant.