The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Monday said police will conduct random visits in hotels serving as quarantine facilities to avoid supposed absentee quarantine modus.
At the Laging Handa public briefing, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said Interior Secretary Eduardo Año has directed the Philippine National Police to check quarantine hotels.
“Siya rin po ay nagbigay ng direktiba na bisitahin or magkaroon ng random visit sa iba’t ibang quarantine hotels sa buong bansa ang PNP,” he said.
(Secretary Año also directed PNP to visit or conduct random visit in different quarantine hotels across the country)
Malaya said the police will monitor if people on the list for quarantine are still staying in the designated hotels.
This development came after a returning overseas Filipino from the United States skipped hotel quarantine to attend a party and visit restaurants in Poblacion, Makati on December 23, 2021.
On December 27, she tested positive for COVID-19.
Her fellow party-goers and some patrons and staff of a restaurant later tested positive for the disease.
According to Malaya, eight of the 34 close and secondary contacts of the traveler later tested positive for COVID-19.
On the variant of the COVID-19 that the quarantine skipper caught, Malaya said they are expecting the result from the genome center this Monday.
Citing initial reports from the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Malaya said the hotel in the Makati incident was involved in the skipping of quarantine by the traveler.
“It is quite impossible na wala pong kinalaman ang hotel sa insidenteng ito (that the hotel has nothing to do with the incident,” he said.
Año earlier said that some people are paying hotels so they can skip quarantine.
Warning vs. LGUs
Meanwhile, Malaya said the DILG has warned local government units that are still failing to update information of their COVID-19 vaccination output on the VaxCert Philippines portal.
Show cause orders will be issued against them this January if they do not show improvement.
“Mapipilitan na po ang DILG na maglabas ng show cause order sa mga LGus na ito ngayong buwan (We will be forced to issue show cause order in these LGUs this month),” Malaya said. — RSJ, GMA News