Filtered By: Topstories

Palace: Last-minute lowering of NCR alert level less disruptive as it eases restrictions

Malacañang said Friday that the last-minute announcement of eased COVID-19 restrictions in Metro Manila was not as troublesome as the last-minute raising of as alert level as it allowed more people to go back to work.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque made the response when asked if it was fair to businesses to only be informed of the eased restrictions in Metro Manila, from Alert Level 3 to Alert Level 2, less than three hours before the new policy took effect.

Under Alert Level 2, the operational capacity of businesses were increased to 50% for indoors, provided that adults are fully vaccinated, and 70% for outdoors.

"Mahirap [na magasabi ng biglaan] kung magtataas ng Alert Level kasi malilimitahan ang pagbukas [ng mga negosyo]. Pero kung reverse, kagaya nito, wala pong mawawala kahit mabilisan ang ginawa ng IATF kasi matagal na itong hinihintay para magkaroon ng hanapbuhay," Roque pointed out.

(It would have been troublesome if the announcement was that we were  imposing additional restrictions. But if it is the opposite. It was less vexing, even if the announcement was made at the last minute, because people have long been looking forward to these eased restrictions and going back to work.)

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, for her part, said the alert level was eased in NCR after authorities took into account the fewer number of COVID-19 cases in the region for the last two weeks.

"The previous Alert Level 3 [supposed to be in effect until November 14] did not respond to what happened from October 15th to 30th. NCR has been under Alert Level 3 for the last two weeks, and so we decided to deescalate it," Vergeire explained. — DVM, GMA News