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Robredo questions lifting of COVID-19 travel ban on 10 countries

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After the national government ordered the travel ban on 10 countries lifted on September 6, Vice President Leni Robredo on Sunday questioned whether the move was data-driven.

Palace spokesman Harry Roque explained that despite the lifting of the travel restrictions, incoming travelers from the 10 countries should comply with the strict quarantine rules.

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Nevertheless, the policy worried Robredo because new COVID-19 cases in the country continued to spike.

“Sana lahat ng policy data driven. Hindi ko alam kung bakit nagtatanggal tayo restriction, ngayong pataas nang taas ng kaso natin. In fact, ‘yung ibang bansa nga napaka-strikto,” she said in her weekly radio program.

(I hope all of our policies are data-driven. I don’t know why we removed this restriction when our cases are increasing. Other countries are very strict.)

She also questioned if the government was strictly implementing COVID-19 measures when other countries, such as the Hong Kong government, decided to ban Philippine Airlines flights from Manila after three passengers tested positive for the virus.

“Ang tanong ko lang, ginagawa ba natin iyon? Ganoon ba tayo ka-istrikto?” Robredo added.

(What I am asking is, are we doing this? Are we being strict?)

Granular lockdowns

Asked about the planned granular lockdowns that would give businesses the breathing room to recover, Robredo said there should be enough testing, financial aid, and contact tracing for these selected areas that will be under a COVID-19 lockdown.

“Kung mag-granular lockdown okay naman pero hindi pwedeng ‘yun lang. Kung mag-granular tayo, buhusan ng test, buhusan na antin ng trace. ‘Yung mga naka lockdown, buhasan na natin ng  ayuda,” she said.

(We can’t just impose a granular lockdown. If we have a granular lockdown, we should test, trace, and give financial aid.)

Meanwhile, the Office of the Vice President (OVP) Bayanihan E-Konsulta or telemedicine program had put a cap on the number of calls it could take due to the rise in COVID-19 cases.

“Nag-a-average almost a 1,000 a day na messages pero hihingi kami ng paumanhin kasi naglagay na kami ng cap in a day para maasikaso lahat dahil ‘di na namin kinakaya,” she said.

(We are averaging almost 1,000 messages a day. But we have to ask for people’s understanding. We had to put a cap on requests because we are overwhelmed.)

For now, the OVP will be accommodating 400 requests daily while it will start accepting calls as early as 8 a.m. — DVM, GMA News

Read more, click here: GMA News

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