23 cities, towns in Nueva Ecija in lockdown after PUI dies
CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija —Two confirmed cases of the new coronavirus disease (Covid-19) and the death of a patient under investigation (PUI) in this province have prompted at least 23 towns and cities to impose a lockdown Saturday.
Among these local government units (LGUs) were Cuyapo, Zaragoza, Lupao, Guimba, Nampicuan, Sto. Domingo, San Jose City, Bongabon, Gapan City, Gen. Natividad, Carranglan, San Leonardo, Talugtug, Licab, Rizal, Talavera, Aliaga, Cabanatuan City, Peñaranda, Jaen, Cabiao, Laur, and Sta. Rosa.
In Executive Order (EO) 2020-007, Mayor Myca Elizabeth Vergara of this city ordered “placing Cabanatuan City on lockdown due to public health emergency.”
Under the EO, the city government shall issue a quarantine pass that can be used only for three specific purposes, namely to buy food and essential supplies, to buy medicines and to go to the hospital for treatment.
Barangays were tasked to implement checkpoints.
The mayor, in a message, appealed for the cooperation of residents as she vowed to deliver goods to each of the 90,000 households in the city.
She and her father, Vice Mayor Julius Cesar Vergara, shared their respective salaries to augment fund for the food assistance, Vergara said.
Gapan City Mayor Emerson Pascual said non-residents of the locality will no longer be allowed entry in all points in the city.
“Lockdown po ang buong lungsod ng Gapan. Wala na makakapasok sa Gapan. Sana po maunawaan nyo ako sa desisyon ko na ito (The entire city of Gapan is now on lockdown. No one can enter in Gapan. I hope that you understand my decision,” Pascual said.
Exempted from the ban are government officials doing essential functions in responding to emergencies, as well as persons authorized by the local government, frontline service providers, and suppliers of goods, medicines, and basic commodities for the city. Gov. Aurelio Umali said both confirmed cases in the province were asymptomatic and are expected to recover soon.
Patient 285 was a 43-year-old medical representative from Cabanatuan City while Patient 286 was a 45-year-old resident of San Isidro town.
Umali said authorities are now conducting back tracing on people who had contact with a 65-year-old “balikbayan” from Canada who went home for a vacation but died while waiting for the result of Covid-19 test.
“Please stay at home because when you stay at home, ay malaki na po naitutulong ninyo sa hindi paglaganap ng virus po sa ating lalawigan,” Umali said.
The provincial government is also readying its own food assistance to affected residents, he said. (PNA)
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