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Gov’t grants request of LGUs for sweeper flights for stranded constituents

The national government has allowed local government units to arrange and fund sweeper flights for their stranded constituents amid the community quarantines due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The request was granted by National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr., according to presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday.

“Ibig sabihin po, papayagan na lumipad pauwi sa kaniya-kaniyang mga probinsiya iyong mga na-stranded sa iba’t ibang mga lugar,” Roque said in a televised briefing.

“Ito po ay provided na mayroong minimum health standards at provided din na ang gastusin po dito ay sasagutin ng mga LGUs na nag-request.”

The Davao City government, for instance, commissioned a sweeper flight on Monday that transported overseas Filipino workers and city residents who were stranded in Clark, Pampanga.

Upon arrival, the passengers were subjected to COVID-19 screening before they were sent home to undergo 14-day quarantine. Another batch will be flying to Davao from Manila on Wednesday.

Public transportation was suspended across Luzon due to the enhanced community quarantine from March 16 to April 30.

Looser restrictions have since been implemented in some parts of Luzon except Metro Manila, CALABARZON, Central Luzon (except Aurora), Pangasinan and Benguet.

The road, rail, maritime, and aviation sectors of public transportation will operate at a reduced capacity as mandated by the Department of Transportation.  — RSJ, GMA News