BY ADRIAN P. NEMES III
Curfew in Bacolod City is now between 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. while public consumption of liquor is banned.
Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia, in Executive Order 31 he issued June 6, said exempted from the curfew are workers on night shift, media practitioners, public emergencies, and those requiring medical assistance on board public utility or private vehicles.
Leonardia said the purchase of liquors is only from 12 noon to 6 p.m. but drinking in public places, like restaurants, as previously allowed between 6-9 p.m., is suspended.
He said that those who are under 18 years old, along with senior citizens, persons with co-morbidities, and pregnant women should remain at home unless they need to work in industries allowed under the Modified General Community Quarantine status, or when buying essential goods.
Under the EO, all government and private offices are strongly advised to implement a skeletal workforce system and alternative work arrangements to reduce the number of employees working onsite.
The new curfew hours and the suspension of the consumption of liquor in public places are among the measures of the city government to arrest the increasing number of Covid-19 infections in Bacolod, Leonardia said.
HEALTH AND ECONOMY
“This is about striking a balance between our health and economy,” he added.
On Wednesday, local members of the Philippine Society for Microbiology and Infectious Diseases underscored the fact that there are no more available beds for Covid patients in various hospitals.
On Friday, the city called for a meeting with both the PSMID and the business community where they thoroughly discussed and evaluated the city’s Covid situation.
Leonardia said that they listened to both sides as they gave their positions, justifications, and arguments on the subject matter and clearly, there was no meeting of the minds of the two sides on all issues as the doctors’ recommendations were taken up one by one.
Another meeting was held on Saturday with officials of the Emergency Operations Center, Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, and councilors where they discussed, assessed, and evaluated the pros and cons thoroughly as argued by the parties concerned.
Leonardia noted that the EO he issued was a unanimous decision of the EOC that has considered striking a healthy balance between health and the economy.
He said their inputs, even if they are conflicting, became the basis in resolving the matter and that the new EO is the result of their collective evaluation.
“All considered, we are standing firmly on our decisions as we believe that this is what is right and just under our existing circumstances,” Leonardia said. The mayor emphasized that this is a time to unite, consider, and understand the concerns of all sectors, as “We are a community with different views, needs and demands.”*