Wednesday Aug, 05 2020 12:54:42 AM

Basilan temporarily closed to returning residents as COVID-19 cases rise

HEALTH • 16:15 PM Tue Jul 7, 2020
John M. Unson
 Biohazard technicians from the Basilan governor's office escort a boat bound for the island province. (John Unson)

COTABATO CITY --- The National Task Force Against Covid-19 has approved a 15-day moratorium on return to Basilan of residents stranded in Metro Manila due to the nationwide anti-coronavirus quarantine.

The number of COVID-19 cases in Basilan swelled alarmingly in the past two weeks after a large number of stranded individuals already infected with coronavirus while still outside started arriving in the province.

Basilan Gov. Jim Salliman said Tuesday the provincial government has intensified its coronavirus containment efforts in the province after a spike in the number of local COVID-19 cases from only three last June to 75 by July 6. 

He said his request for the temporary suspension of the return from Metro Manila to the island province of locally stranded individuals was approved by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, chairman of the National Task Force Against COVID-19, via a formal letter dated July 1.

Lorenzana’s letter to the provincial government allowing a 15-day reprieve from the return of Basilan residents was received by Salliman’s office only last Monday.

"This will boost our efforts to address the needs of the residents who have just returned from different regions who tested positive to COVID-19," Salliman said. 

Basilan supposedly only had five COVID-19 cases since President Rodrigo Duterte declared a national state of emergency last March until early June.

The office of Salliman, who is chairperson of the provincial disaster risk reduction and management council, have facilitated since May 28 the return of 1,983 constituents  to the island province from different regions where they got stranded due to the anti-COVID-19 quarantine.

“We are thankful to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana for approving our request to temporarily suspend the return of Basilan residents from Metro Manila,” Salliman said. 


IPHO Maguindanao registers 101% completion in anti-polio drive

COTABATO CITY – The Integrated Provincial Health Office in Maguindanao has reported a 101-percent completion of its “Sabayang Patak Kontra Polio...

COVID WATCH: COVID-19 cases in Region 12 breach 300 mark with 7 new cases

COTABATO CITY - Seven new cases of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have been added to the rising number of COVID-19 patients in the Soccsksargen...

Cotabato Light announces on-line power bill payment scheme

ACCREDITED PAYMENT CENTERS: Here are the easiest and fastest ways to settle your bills in the comfort of your own home thru online app via PayMaya...

“Serbisyong DAR TO DOOR” kicks off in North Cotabato

KIDAPAWAN CITY - The Department of Agrarian Reform in North Cotabato recently kicked-off the “Serbisyong DAR TO DOOR,” a door to door delivery of the...

Mom says slain soldier-son a hero, not coward

KIDAPAWAN CITY - ‘MAUNA NA KAYO, COVER KO KAYO’- Ito ang mga huling salita na narinig ng kanyang mga kasamahan mula kay Corporal Raymund Canlog ng...