BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Tourists can now enter Negros Occidental, but only after complying with the certain requirements, Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz yesterday said.
Diaz said tourists traveling to Negros Occidental should present a negative RT-PCR result of tests, at least 72 hours prior to their arrival, with S-PaSS approval and registration with the StaySafe.ph system.
The Safe, Swift and Smart Passage (S-PaSS) is a one-stop-application and communication for travelers, approved by the Inter Agency Task Force, for uniform travel protocols of all local government units, while StaySafe.ph System is the primary contact tracing system of the government. But within Region 6, negative RT-PCR test results are not requirements for travelling, Diaz said.
Allowing tourists from other areas of the country to visit Negros Occidental, requiring travelers to have negative RT-PCR test results and availment of swab testing and quarantine areas, free of charge, which is voluntary, are among the salient points to be included in the executive order to be issued by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson.
Lacson’s executive order is in connection with the implementation of Resolution Number 101 of the National Inter Agency Task Force, which provides uniform travel protocols among local government units.
The EO to be issued by Lacson will take effect March 15. Those who opt to have a swab and be quarantined upon arrival at the Silay-Bacolod airport may do so, voluntarily, Diaz said.
The quarantine facility and molecular laboratory are available for free, for those who want to be extra careful, before they join their respective families, he added.
He advised travelers and tourists to secure first the negative RT-PCR test results, before buying their tickets, either by plane or by sea vessels.
If there are no negative results, they will not be allowed to go home, Diaz said.
He added that Negros Occidental mayors supported the move of Lacson to require travelers to produce negative RT-PCR results during their zoom meeting yesterday.
Even those from Negros Oriental will be required to produce negative RT-PCR test results.
As of March 9, Negros Occidental, excluding Bacolod City, had 134 Covid-19 active cases, compared to 97 active cases of Negros Oriental, as of March 8.
Another salient point of the EO to be issued by Gov. Lacson is the opening of Bacolod-Silay airport for public and private transports, and passengers may now be fetched or delivered to the airport. But he stressed that there should be no overcrowding at the airport terminals.*