Metro Mayors want GCQ status extended until end of 2020

In file photo: A vendor waits inside Farmview market in Bulacan for the local curfew to end before proceeding to his business.

THE Metro Manila Council (MMC), composed of 17 mayors in the National Capital Region (NCR), have recommended extending the general community quarantine (GCQ) status until December 31 this year, an official of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said on Monday.

MMDA General Manager Jose Arturo Garcia said the mayors are pushing for the extension of GCQ even as cases in the NCR have decreased.

“We would stick to GCQ until December 31, the whole NCR,” Garcia told reporters in a virtual press briefing on Monday.

Metro Manila is currently under GCQ until October 31.

“As the number of Covid-19 cases goes down, we open the businesses gradually,” said Garcia.

Garcia said the mayors have recommended the following measures to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious (IATF) in the NCR while under GCQ:

1. Shorten the curfew hours to 12 midnight to 4 am except in Navotas City, where curfew hours will remain from 8 pm to 5 am;

2. Allow NCR residents aged 18 to 65 years old to go outside their residences in Metro Manila;

3. Increase the capacity of churches to 30 percent.

“These three major recommendations are dependent on the approval of the IATF,” said Garcia.

Garcia said MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim presided at the MMC meeting of mayors on Sunday night. The MMC is the governing and policy-making body of the MMDA.

He said that adjustment on the age allowed to leave residences in Metro Manila is aimed to help boost the economy as more businesses open.

However, Garcia appealed to the public to avoid leisure travel and follow health and safety protocols against Covid-19 as the government has been able to control the transmission of the virus in the NCR.

Meanwhile, more jeepney routes will be opened in the coming days amid the increasing demand for public transportation in Metro Manila, based on the suggestions of the Metro Manila mayors in another meeting with Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board Chairman Martin Delgra.

Image credits: Nonie Reyes


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