South Cotabato now under "calibrated total lockdown"

South Cotabato now under lockdown
South Cotabato on calibrated total lockdown.
Photo from The Provincial Government of South Cotabato Facebook Page

The entire Province of South Cotabato is now on lockdown to combat the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

South Cotabato Governor Reynaldo Tamayo Jr. announced the move on Thursday, March 19 during the Inter-Agency Task Force meeting in City of Koronadal and issued an executive order on Friday, March 20 . The governor said the lockdown is aimed at containing the coronavirus outbreak, even though the province had no cases of infection so far.

The lockdown took effect on Saturday, March 21 and "shall remain in full force and effect unless earlier terminated or lifted", as stated in EO No.18, an order declaring and placing the entire province of South Cotabato under enhanced community quarantine and calibrated total lockdown.

The following are the things being implemented in the province-wide lockdown:

- Persons who are non-residents of South Cotabato are no longer allowed to enter the province. Only those who are involved in the medical, peace and order, rescue and COVID-19 prevention interventions, civil servants, media, public utilities and those who are seeking immediate medical attention are allowed to enter and go out of the province.

- Residents of South Cotabato who went on nonessential travels shall only be allowed to return to the province after undergoing a mandatory 14-day quarantine period.

- The entry of food items, basic goods, commodities and essential stuff for human and animal consumption shall not be hampered. However, only driver and one (1) helper are allowed within the said delivery truck/vehicle carrying these goods and food items. No other passengers are allowed inside.

- There shall be established in our National highways and main roads food lane without need of the usual checking by the PNP and AFP personnel manning our respective checkpoints so that delivery of food and basic commodities shall be not hampered. Only those suspicious cargoes and deliveries may be examined or checked for security purposes.

- All malls and department stores in the province are allowed only to continue their supermarket and pharmacy sections. Those stores selling non essential goods and products are enjoined to suspend their operations.

- The operation of all public transport services including the public utility buses, public utility vans, public utility jeepneys and tricycles and other form of public transport is hereby ordered suspended for fourteen (14) days starting from March 21, 2020 (12:01 A.M.) until April 6, 2020 (12:01 P.M).

- The operation of bank and remittances shall be allowed, however, the same shall be on limited time basis only as may be arranged and agreed upon by their respective management.

- Government services (both local and national) and the operations of public utilities shall remain unhampered.

- Sabong/cockfighting, STL and Lotto Operations and all forms of recreational activities and gambling are likewise ordered suspended.

- All Local Government Units are enjoined and directed to adopt sterner mechanism and guidelines for the effective implementation of this E.O and the issuances of the National Government declaring the State of Public Health Emergency and State of Calamity w/in their respective areas of jurisdiction.

- All City/Municipal Mayors are enjoined and directed to instruct and compel their respective barangays and Barangay Health Emergency Response Team (BHERTs) to faithfully and strictly perform their mandated functions to record and monitor the entry and restrict the movements of people to undergo 14-day self quarantine. All barangays are likewise directed to establish their respective Barangay Isolation Units (BIU) utilizing all available venues in the barangays which may include schools and other premises and facilities in the barangay.

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