Visitors told: Face shields mandatory in Baguio City

>> Wednesday, January 13, 2021

By Julie G. Fianza

BAGUIO CITY – Face shields are mandatory in this summer resort, city officials said, noting some visitors not wearing not the anti-Covid-19 devise.  
    Mayor Benjamin Magalong earlier issued executive order 185 mandating the wearing of face shields in the city.
    Full coverage face shields should now be used whenever leaving the home, and specially in congested places, the EO stated.
    This is to give everyone an additional layer of protection against the Covid-19 virus when worn with the face mask.
     Accordingly, the face shield may be temporarily lifted, set aside or removed when it hampers, or cause hazard to the conduct or work or physical fitness activities. Strict social distancing and no personal face-to-face between individuals should be done when it is absolutely necessary for wearer to lift or remove the face shield, the EO further states.
    Any person/s caught or found acting in defiance of the provisions are meted sanctions provided in the revised penal code of the Philippines, and other laws and ordinances. The implementation of this order should be carried out with utmost consideration for the safety and security of all involved, through the Permits and Licensing Division, Public Order and Safety Division, barangay officials and the Baguio City Police Office who are empowered to do so.
    The EO was based on executive order 93, (series of 2020) which mandates employees, workers, and vendors in the public market, satellite markets, supermarkets and drivers of public utility vehicles to wear face shield, face masks and hand gloves.
Executive orders 118 and 126 (series of 2020) mandate employees, workers and other personnel in business establishments, banks and government offices to wear face shields while on duty; and also in public markets, shopping centers and government offices within Baguio.
    The wearing of face shield also adheres to health protocols of avoiding the Cs, or Zero Cs. The Cs are closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places, and close contact sites. Said steps prevent the occurrence of clustered Covid-19 cases
    All issuances from the Dept. of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Health (DOH), Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and local Covid-19 inter-agency task force and Ordinance 45, 2020 are also applied, all in measures to avoid or control the spread of the disease.


3 NPA guerillas surrender in San Jose, Nueva Ecija

By Ariel Avendano  

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija — The Provincial Task Force on Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC) has announced the surrender of three Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) guerillas to local authorities here Wednesday.
    Col.Marvin Joe Saro, Nueva Ecija police director, identified the three CPP/NPA/NDF members as “Ka Eugene,” 56, a barangay tanod, “Ka Butch,” 48, caretaker, and “Ka Warren/Waldo,” 51, carpenter, all residents of Barangay Balbalungao in Lupao.
    The surrenderees were former members of the Pulang Mandirigma under the Josefino Corpuz Command operating in northern Nueva Ecija.
    They are now under the custody of the 2nd Provincial Mobile Force Company so they can avail of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) program of the government for former rebels who will choose to return to the folds of the law and live normal lives with their families.
    Saro said the surrender of CTG members to the police and military was due to whole-of-nation approach to end insurgency as stipulated in Executive Order 70, institutionalizing NTF-ELCAC which is being implemented in Central Luzon under Brig. Gen. Valeriano  de Leon, chief of Police Regional Office 3.


Man shot by junk shop owner in Pangasinan

By Liezle Basa Inigo

CALASIAO, Pangasinan  – A construction worker was rushed to the hospital after he was accidentally shot by his colleague in the right leg here in Barangay Doyong on Jan. 2.
    Pangasinan Provincial Hospital San Carlos City staff told Calasiao police that a patient named Jerwin Casipit, 21 of Barangay Lumbang, Calasiao was brought there due to a gunshot wound in the right leg.
    Police investigators found around 10 p.m. on Jan. 2, the victim went to a junk shop in Barangay Doyong to fetch his brother-in-law.
    But instead of going home immediately, he joined a drinking session with junk shop owner Arnold Go.
    Go later brought out a gun and removed its magazine, but it suddenly went off, hitting Casipit in the right leg.
    The victim was rushed to the hospital where the slug was recovered from his leg during surgery.
    Go was apprehended by the police in a follow up operation.
    He admitted he had no license to possess the firearm.


Baguio mayor urges action to lessen Covid-19 deaths

BAGUIO CITY --Mayor Benjamin Magalong asked public and private medical practitioners and health experts in the city to address the spate of Coronavirus disease-related deaths.
    In the Management Committee (MANCOM) meeting Jan. 4, the mayor tasked City Health Services Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo to confer with private and public medical officers along with the Dept. of Health Cordillera (DOH-CAR) and find ways to prevent more fatalities directly or indirectly caused by the virus.
    He said that the more than 40 percent increase in the number of COVID-related deaths in less than one month is alarming that health authorities need to hold a focus group discussion to find solutions to stem the tide.
    Galpo reported that from the 48 reported deaths in the city as of December 14, 2020, the number of COVID-related deaths increased to 71 as of January 5, 2021 or an average of one death a day in the past three weeks raising the city's COVID-19 mortality rate to 1.77 percent.
    She said most of the recent fatalities were either declared dead on arrival or brought in too late to hospitals. They were mostly senior citizens with pre-existing illnesses, the most common of which are hypertension and diabetes.
    "We cannot just leave it at that. We have to do something. Let’s set a roadmap on how to address the death incidence and let's arrest it," the mayor said.
    The city’s community quarantine guidelines prohibit the elderly aged 65 and above and those with co-morbidities from staying out of their homes to prevent them from being exposed to the elements and eventually contracting and transmitting the virus except for essential purposes.
    “Our utmost concern now is to protect the vulnerable and they are our elderly and persons with underlying conditions so everyone must adhere to the health standards and see to it that they do not bring the virus to their homes and to their loved ones who are vulnerable,” Galpo said.
    She also advised those living with the elderly and the ailing persons to have their relatives seek immediate consult early or upon the first sign or symptom noting that most families avoid medical consultations due to fear of contracting the virus at the health facilities or of hospital confinement which meant not being able to take care of their loved ones.
    She said this apprehension is unfounded as hospitals and clinics have established adequate health and safety protocols and protected facilities against the virus and hospitals have staff and facilities that can attend to the patients’ needs.
    “Early consultation and early detection mean early medical intervention and better chances of getting healed. We have to seek consultation early if we want our loved ones especially the elderly to have a better chance of surviving the virus or any other disease,” Galpo said.
    She also reiterated the need for strict implementation of the basic health and safety protocols is for the safety of everyone particularly the mandatory wearing of face masks and shields, the observance of physical distancing, practice of personal hygiene and avoidance of the 3 Cs (crowding, close contact conversations and confined spaces). – Dexter See and Aileen Refuerzo


Gov: all Cagayan folks will get vaccine

By Oliver T. Baccay

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Cagayan – Gov. Manuel N. Mamba here announced Cagayanos will receive vaccination against the deadly Covis-19 once it is available in the country. 
    The governor said the provincial government should not only be dependent on the national government's share but must find ways and means to ensure its access on the vaccines to bring back the usual economic activities in the province.
    "Other countries have already started with their vaccination programs. We will try to access one of these as early as possible and we will all receive vaccination, no prioritization," Mamba said.
    He added he was willing to be the first to receive vaccination as long as it is being approved by the Food and Drug Administration. 
    Mamba said he is willing to allot P500 million budget for the purchase of vaccines which are from the cash donations of different government agencies as well as the savings from the 2020 budget.
    "We have a lot of fund sources but we will see if these can be utilized for the purchase of the vaccines," Mamba said. 
    He urged local government units to also allot budget to purchase their vaccines to augment and supply from provincial and national governments.
    "We cannot do this alone. The national government has already allotted budget for the purchase of the vaccines, we also have ours but the LGUs should also have their counterparts so that we can achieve our goal that all Cagayanos will be vaccinated to eventually free us from this pandemic," the governor stated. 
    He also said the provincial government is willing to seek for loan grants if the budget of the province will not be sufficient to purchase the vaccine for all. -- PIA-Cagayan 


PMA cadets catch Covid- 19; restricted as tests on

BAGUIO CITY -- The Philippine Military Academy confirmed Wednesday some of its cadets and military and civilian personnel tested posi­tive for Covid-19.
    The infected personnel and cadets are asymptomatic and some have recovered, Maj. Cher­ryl Tindog, PMA public affairs office chief, said without men­tioning how many were infected although other sources said those afflicted by the virus could have reached more than 50 persons.
    “We assure the parents and families of the cadets that their health and needs are be­ing attended to,” Tindog said.
    For the first time since the pandemic started, the PMA subjected the cadets and per­sonnel to swab tests in com­pliance with the guidelines of the city government of Baguio and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.
    Since the pandemic broke out in March, the PMA only conducted rapid tests for its cadets, military and civilian personnel.
    “Although the cadets have been isolated from the outside world by cancelling contact activities and employing online mode of instructions, still there is no fool-proof system to avoid the virus,” Tindog said.
    She said the cases were reported and coor­dinated with city health officials and the patients were receiving treatment.
Contract tracing is ongoing, she said.
    The PMA on Monday confirmed the clustering of Covid-19 cases among assigned soldiers and cadets in the country's premier military institution.
    Tindog announced this in an official statement released to the media on Monday afternoon.
“It is with deep concern that the Academy confirms the positive Covid-19 cases among the cadets and its military and civilian personnel,” she said.
    The cases were known following the conduct of mass testing which was initiated to assure the safety of the cadets.
    “After the Command's initiative for mass RT-PCR (reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction) testing with the help of the Philippine Coast Guard, a number of cadets, civilian human resource (manongs) and organic military personnel were identified to have contracted the virus. These cases were properly reported and coordinated with the health officials of the City of Baguio,” Tindog said.
    The academy ordered a lockdown of its facilities, prohibiting the public from entering the premises and containing cadet activities in a bubble. All major activities like the annual alumni homecoming, the graduation of cadets, reception of plebes, as well as recognition ceremonies were confined to “online events” to prevent contact with the public.
    Tindog also said that since March 2020, the academy has been doing rapid test on cadets and personnel but opted to do a PCR test just to assure, considering that it had been months since the pandemic started.
    She said the academy administration is implementing a strict policy, preventing the cadets’ contact to avoid the possibility of getting the infection, but were not spared.
    “Though the Cadet Corps of the AFP has been isolated as one bubble from the outside world by canceling contact activities and employing online mode of instructions, still there is no foolproof system,” she said.
    One way or another, a leak to the bubble can occur from day-to-day activities of the whole community, thus the need for mass testing, she added.
    Tindog assured the public as well as the parents of the cadets that the academy is taking care of those infected.
For several days during the holiday season, the city government has been releasing a daily record of cases with confirmed patients’ addresses being “Fort Del Pilar”, the location of PMA but no details have been obtained.
    On Monday morning, Mayor Benjamin Magalong urged the media to get authorized statements from the PMA.
Tindog said the patients are being treated, the contacts were traced and isolated, and the further spread is contained, in coordination with concerned government agencies.
    She said the patients are asymptomatic and “poses no greater danger to cadet's health”.
    “There are a number of them who have also recovered,” Tindog added.
    Aside from the tests, the Academy has conducted immediate isolation of positive cases, lockdown, contact tracing, quarantine of general contacts, and disinfection of affected areas, based on safety and health protocol for Covid-19 of PMA and the DOH.
    “The mass testing is part of the PMA's effort to eradicate Covid-19 within the Cadet Corps and the whole of the Academy, and we shall continue to do so,” Tindog said. – With a report from Liza Agoot/ PNA 


Isabela cop dies of Covid; PNP death toll 28

CAUAYAN, Isabela — Another police officer died of Covid-19, bringing the death toll due to the virus in the Philippine National Police to 28.
    The 41-year-old policeman, who was assigned here, died while being treated in a hospital on Monday, the PNP reported Wednesday.
    The police officer was among the 20 new cases in the PNP, which  recorded 9,111 since last year.
    Ten of the new cases, including the fatality, were from Cagayan Valley, three from the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and one each from Calabarzon and the Cordillera.
    The other five were from operational support units of the PNP.
    Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, PNP deputy chief for administration, said 8,738 or 95.9 percent of the patients have recovered.
    Of the 344 active cases, 16 remain confined in hospitals and 328 in quarantine facilities.
    Eleazar said 79,046 PNP personnel underwent reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction testing for Covid-19.


Mt Prov mayors press face-to-face classes

By Alpine Killa

BONTOC, Mountain Province – The municipal mayors of the ten municipalities of Mountain Province pressed for limited face-to-face classes, subject to compliance with health protocols and Municipal-Inter Agency Task Force (MIATF) guidelines.
    This was the consensus of the mayors during a meeting with officials of the Dept. of Education Mountain Province last Jan. 6. 
    DepEd- Mountain Province initiated the meeting to address challenges brought about by distance learning.
    The mayors unanimously voiced out their support for limited face-to-face classes, provided concerned local government units will have the option to revise policies and guidelines presented by DepEd- Mountain Province.
    Mountain Province Schools Division Superintendent Sally Ullalim said  while President Rodrigo Duterte directed the DepEd to cancel the planned dry run of face-to-face classes in areas classified under low-risk of Covid-19, stakeholders at the municipal level must prepare for  ready plans should Duterte again approve the plan.          
    The municipal mayors pressed limited face-to-face classes following feedback gathered by the DepEd from parents, guardians and learners.
    Khad Layag, the chief of Curriculum Implementation Division presented feedback from 10 municipalities of Mountain Province on modular distance learning.
    The parents, guardians, and learners in elementary and secondary level unanimously clamored for face-to-face classes.
Feedback gathered by DepEd bared most parents and guardians cannot assist their children in their modules because of their educational attainment, background and work.
    Aside from this, not all learners can comprehend modules, thus they either copy answers or let parents or guardians answer modules or submit these unanswered.
    Also, there were subjects at the secondary level that required use of gadgets, devices, internet connectivity, instruments and equipment of which not all learners have these at home.
    In a separate interview, Bontoc Mayor Franklin Odsey said he supportive of limited face-to-face classes, provided minimum health protocols will be implemented.
    The mayor added a clear policy and specific guidelines must be formulated to ensure health and safety of students, parents, teachers, and other stakeholders during implementation.
    Public Schools District Supervisor Bontoc District Amelia Wacangan said initially, Bontoc recommended four schools to be included in pilot testing.
    These included Can-eo Elementary School, Chapyusen Multi-Grade, Dalican Elementary School, and Maligcong Elementary School. However, with the sudden surge of Covid-19 positive cases in the municipality, it was decided that said schools will not be recommended for pilot testing.
    As of press time, Bontoc District was preparing district-wide limited face-to-face based on district plan approved by Mayor Odsey.
    The Municipal Inter-Agency Task Force (MIATF) will meet Jan.12 to discuss the Bontoc District plan for limited face-to-face classes. 
    According to Wacangan, it shall be the MIATF to identify the schools where face-to-face classes will be implemented based on their compliance with MIATF guidelines.


P’sinan cops in mauling of town tanod surrender

By Liezle Basa Inigo

MALASIQUI, Pangasinan — A policeman involved in the mauling of a barangay tanod here in Sitio Gueteb, Barangay  Umando surrendered.
    A report from Police Regional Office 1 showed Cpl. Alfredo De Vera Boquiren of the Sto. Tomas Police Station,        Pangasinan Provincial Police Office surrendered.
    Four of the suspects, identified as Arturo De Vera Boquiren, Justine De Guzman aka Ote, John Patrick De Guzman, and Arjie Perez, remain at large, while Joker Pitchay Garcia, 19, and a certain Benjie, were arrested.
    The victim, Orlando Boquiren De Vera, 35, a barangay tanod, sustained injury on the head and bleeding ear due to the mauling incident.
    He was brought to Pangasinan Provincial Hospital, San Carlos City, Pangasinan for medical treatment.
    Investigators said De Vera and his brother Leonardo, went out of their house and confronted their cousin Arturo Boquiren due to an old grudge.
    And while both were chasing Boquiren, Cpl. Alfredo De Vera Boquiren, brother of Arturo, cornered De Vera.
    “Nakorner na nila si Orlando sa madilim na lugar kasama ang pulis at anim pang iba saka inutos ng pulis na bugbugin ang biktima,” the report said. (When they cornered Orlanda, the policeman ordered the suspects to maul him.)
    The suspects reportedly left the wounded victim at the crime scene. 


Biz sector to help Baguio buy coronavirus vaccines

By Liza Agoot  

BAGUIO CITY – Big companies operating in the city are willing to help in the procurement of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines for the residents.
    Mayor Benjamin Magalong, during the first flag-raising ceremony on Monday, announced that these companies are willing to shoulder or donate 50 percent of the vaccine requirement of the city.
    “It means that if they have 100 employees, they will buy 200 and donate 100 to the city,” he said.
    On the sidelines of the Monday flag-raising, Magalong said he met with business people last week where he personally asked if they can help by giving vaccines.
    “Last week I was in talk with some businessmen of Baguio and they promised that they will meet para pag-usapan kung ano ang pwede nilang ibigay sa syudad ng Baguio and I stipulated to them na kung pwede sana, kung ano ang requirement nila ay doblehin nila ang total requirement ng kanilang workforce meaning kung 100 ang tao nila, they have to order another 100 or 200 na oorderin nila para yung 100 maibigay nila sa local government (to discuss what they can give to the city government so I asked them that if they may double the requirement for their employees, meaning if they have 100 workers, they will order another 100 to make it 200 and give the 100 to the city),” Magalong said.
    He said the same strategy is being done by the vaccination committee at the national level, talking with the private sector.
    The mayor said several companies have committed to donate vaccine doses to the national government as assistance in the country’s effort to combat the disease, which he is duplicating in the city.
    He said that during the day, he will talk with the (Jaime) Ongpin Foundation to be the conduit in procuring vaccines that a global company will donate to the city.
    Magalong asked to give an update as soon as everything is finalized as talks are still in progress.
    He asked other companies who want to help by donating vaccines to discuss with them the plans so that there will be a synchronized action.
    The city government is currently preparing for the Covid-19 vaccination program after Baguio was identified by the Department of Health as among the pilot area.
    He said they “are working on the priority list.”
    Magalong said health workers who are hospital workers are on top of the list followed by the elderly especially those with comorbidities, then the social workers, those engaged in providing services to the public, and those working at the city market.
Magalong also said they have already ordered three freezers capable of storing the vaccines which will require from negative (-)2 to (-)8; -20 to -40 and -40 to -80 degrees Celsius.
    Meanwhile, the mayor said the city is preparing its isolation and quarantine facilities in case the projected increase in cases after the holidays actually happens.
    “We now have 650 isolation beds. By the end of this month, we have 1,000 beds and we will be ready in case there is a surge in cases including the effect of the new strain which they say is more contagious,” Magalong said. -- PNA 


‘DepEd starts online proj to aid teachers, principals

By Joanna P. Diaz-Sabado

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union –  The Dept. of Education  recently launched ‘DepEd Teaches’ -- an online platform for teachers and school managers to be informed of best practices and interventions on challenges related to teaching and learning in new normal.
    After its launch, the series of episodes will be available on DepEd’s official Facebook page.
    DepEd Teaches also aims to address confusion and doubts on curriculum, instruction, and assessment initiatives.
    Bureau chiefs, regional directors, and schools division superintendents are expected to share their best practices and innovations as they face the challenges in education service delivery,” Alma Ruby Torio, assistant secretary for curriculum and instruction said.
    “This will address information gaps. As we live in digital age, we need to rely on valid information every hour of every day, thus the need to invest to upgrade on our skills."
    Prior to her position as assistant secretary, she was former regional director of the DepEd in Region 1. 
    Meanwhile, Jorge Reinante, Schools Division Superintendent of Ilocos Sur said, “When we empower our teachers, they will be more inspired to work hard for the sake of our learners, for the future."
    Among the first topics in the DepEd Teaches Program include “Overcoming Challenges” series, namely curriculum, learning delivery modalities, classroom assessment, and learning resources.
    The next episodes of the DepED series will be available by January 2021. -- PIA La Union


Kalinga top pols thank sectors for efforts vs Covid

By Peter Balocnit

CITY OF TABUK, Kalinga – Top provincial recognized efforts of government and private sector in combatting the Covid-19 virus and managing calamities.
    Gov. Ferdinand Tubban and Rep. Allen Jesse Mangaoang thanked frontliners, health workers, disaster responders, local government officials, police and military, civic spirited groups and individuals for their hard work on Covid-19 prevention and management and disaster response.
    “As we welcome the year 2021, let us adapt an outlook of hope and assurance to grow and become stronger, more resilient in dealing with the pandemic and deeply committed in delivering public service to our people through shared governance,” Tubban said in his message during the inter-agency flag ceremony on Monday.
    Tubban urged public servants to remain united and adapt to effective and efficient working standards that bring government closer to the people as he enjoined them to stay connected with each other to reach out to clients.
    Mangaoang also thanked those whose contributions have  made  2020 a test of survival yet finishing  the year  with triumphs and cherished values. 
    Mangaoang urged stakeholders in public service to use experience gained from trials particularly which strengthened people’s resolve to be better citizens. -- PIA Kalinga


Warring Kalinga, MP tribes engage in firefights anew

>> Monday, January 11, 2021

Even with dialogues set to settle boundary dispute 

TINGLAYAN, Kalinga – Two warring tribes from Mountain Province and Kalinga engaged in firefights anew last week at a disputed mountain bordering the town of Sadanga in Mountain Province and Tinglayan.
    A former top government official from Kalinga said contending factions exchanged gunshots at the area although police have yet to provide details.
    Peace talks were reportedly set last Friday between contending tribes but details were also not divulged.
    Elders from both tribes reportedly cautioned their tribemates to take precautions as hostilities could escalate.     
    The Northern Philippine Times called the phone number of Sadanga mayor Gabino Ganggangan to shed light on the matter but his phone could not be reached at press time.
    Same case with Mountain Province police information officer Lt. Col Roy Awisan and police regional information deputy chief information officer Capt. Marnie D. Abellanida.
    The Cordillera Regional Police Office earlier said they will hold dialogues with elders and officials of  Betwagan of Sadanga and Bugnay of Tinglayan to  resolve amicably their long-running  boundary dispute this January. 
    A dialogue was earlier brokered by PROCor at the disputed mountain on Dec. 16 wherein both parties insisted on their claimed boundary and did not accept solutions offered by mediators. 
    But they said they were open to negotiations.
    PROCor regional director Brig. Gen  R’win Pagkalinawan earlier led a group  with personnel of  the Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources,  National Commission on Indigenous Peoples  and  Philippine Information Agency that climbed the disputed mountain late December, inspected the area and met with  representatives from both tribes. 
    Though the dialogue resulted to a stalemate, Pagkalinawan committed to gather concerned tribes for another meeting this January. 
    He said facilitation of government was the best strategy to resolve the issue. 
    He pushed cultural or traditional way of resolving conflicts with government as mediator.
    He urged both parties to talk and cease hostilities but last week, hostilities flared again. 


Truck falls off La Union bridge; 2 Benguet Hedcor workers dead, four hurt

By Erwin Beleo

CABA, La Union – Two employees of a power energy service company based in Benguet were killed, while three of their colleagues were injured, after the pick-up truck they were riding in fell off a bridge along the national highway here in Barangay Gana here on Jan. 5.
    Police identified the fatalities as Lemuel Sebio, 32, of Green Valley, Baguio City and Mark Lardizabal, 49, of Tuba, Benguet.     They were employees of Hedcor Company based in Benguet.
    Their fellow Hedcor employees, who were injured in the mishap, were Jay Nabus, 27, driver of the vehicle, and resident of La     Trinidad; Alexander Padilla, 26, of Baguio City and Norian Dagyapan, 37, of Tuba, Benguet. 
    According to Caba Police Station investigator Sr. Master Sgt. Marco Dulnuan, Nabus tied to avoid an oncoming motorcycle, which jumped to their lane, and lost control, sending the pick-up truck falling off the bridge.
    The rescue team reportedly had a hard time rescuing the victims, who were trapped in the vehicle.
    Sebio and Lardizabal died on the spot due to the severe injuries.


Baguio, Benguet mayors set border control anew

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- Mayors of Baguio City, La Trinidad, Itogon, Sablan, Tuba and Tublay in Benguet agreed to impose border restrictions again from Jan. 10 to 24 to mitigate spread of Covid-19
    In a joint advisory, the six local chief executives said Thursday the move would give them time to manage their health resources.
    The border restrictions were first imposed Dec. 16 to 22 and Dec. 27 to 31.
    Entry to the six areas will be allowed only for work, official business and access to essential goods and services.
    The mayors advised constituents to bring valid government IDs as proof of residence aside from health declaration forms when going out.
    Health workers, uniformed personnel, members of the city, provincial and municipal contact tracing teams, local government employees and Covid-19 task force members are exempted from the travel ban.
    Also exempted are cargo and logistics services and service providers for water, electricity, telecommunications and waste management utilities.
    Non-residents must present their travel authority and permit.
    In Kalinga, the Department of Education division office in Tabuk City was placed on lockdown after an employee was exposed to an infected teacher.
    The province logged 12 cases on Wednesday. 
    As this developed, in Cagayan, eight personnel of the Bureau of Fire Protection tested positive for Covid-19 Thursday
    The provincial health office said the firefighters were exposed to their colleague who was found infected on Jan. 3.


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