Due to three COVID-19 positive cases: Sitio Zapatera on lockdown
CEBU, Philippines — Sitio Zapatera in Barangay Luz, Cebu City is on lockdown after the area has recorded three positive coronavirus cases as of April 11, 2020.
The first resident who tested positive is now in the hospital but the two additional residents were confirmed to have been infected by the virus only on Black Saturday. They were tested last week after contact tracing on the first patient.
“Confirmed by the DOH and City Health. Gahapon (the other day) napun-an og duha kadto after contact tracing from the first case. Immediate family ang bag-o: live-in partner and best friend,” Barangay Luz Captain Ronilio Sab-a told The Freeman yesterday.
(As confirmed by DOH and city health, we have two new cases after contact tracing on the first case. The two new patients are the first patient’s live-in partner and best friend)
Authorities are now tracing the people the two new patients have come in contact with, Sab-a said.
The two have not shown COVID-19 symptoms as of yesterday but they will be made to undergo a 14-day quarantine. The two will be transferred to the hospital if they manifest symptoms.
The lockdown means no one can leave the area and policemen have been deployed to guard the area’s access points. As it happens, Sitio Zapatera is separated from the rest of Barangay Luz.
“Kana nga sitio mura siya na-isolate kay separated siya sa amoang community kay nabuwag siya so mao na ang sitio karon na among gi-lockdown tungod sa nahitabo nga crisis,” Sab-a said.
(That sitio is isolated, separated from the rest of the community so we locked it down because of the crisis)
He said they decided to lock the area down after an emergency meeting with the City Health Office, especially that Zapatera is densely populated and risk of transmission is high.
The lockdown has no end date but Sab-a said the barangay and the city will help provide for the needs of the residents affected.
“Maximum tolerance… hangyo lang, please stay at home. We will try to provide the basic needs sama sa makaya sa atong barangay. Besides, nag-promise man ang mayor nga dili ta pasagdaan,” he said.
(Maximum tolerance… we ask the residents, please stay at home. We will provide for your basic needs as far as the barangay can manage. The city has also promised to help us)
Mayor Edgardo Labella, for his part, asked the residents to be patient and to stay home. He said the reason that the city decided to deploy policemen in the area is because residents still go out of their houses even if the city is now under enhanced community quarantine.
“That is the problem there, the residents are still leaving there homes, that is why we deployed policemen there,” said Labella.
“Ako lang gyud sila gihangyo to just stay home and maintain sanitation. Ato lang ni gihangyo para dili na ni mudaghan ang cases,” he added.
(My request is for the residents to stay home and maintain sanitation. We’re asking this so that we will not have more cases)
Residents in Zapatera could not help but be worried of the situation, especially with the houses of residents located very close to each other.
“Kuyaw man gud ning among area, sikit kaayo mga balay. Ang mga tawo wala puy kalibutan unsa ka delikado ning sakita. Lisud kaayo, wa mi kabalo kung kinsa nay natakdan namo diri,” a resident told The Freeman.
(Our area is dangerous because the houses are very close to each other. The residents themselves are not very well acquainted with the disease. It’s difficult because we’ll never know who have been infected)
Another resident said they would prefer that tanods and the police would stand guard at the house of the COVID-19 positive patients to ensure they stay indoors.
“Nag-request na mi nga unta naay mga police ug tanod sa area sa ilang house para magbantay kung manggawas ba sila o wala… pati para magbadlong aning mga silingan namong sige rag panglakaw. Ang police naa ra’s eskina. Ingnan man nuon mig pa-rovingan ug gabie nga adlawan man ni maglakaw-lakaw gihapon ang mga tawo ug mga bata nga mga magduwa-duwa,” the resident said.
(We requested that policemen and tanods stay outside the house of those who tested positive to make sure they won’t leave… they can also help call the attention of our neighbors who still continue to go out. The cops are just at the corner. We were told that they will go on patrol at night but that doesn’t help because the residents go out of their houses and the children play outside during the day)
Barangay officials will reportedly meet with Labella and DOH today to raise the residents’ concerns.
“Ang amoa ba nga every second counts, tapos unya-unyaon lang ni nila… kuyaw kaayo ni’s amoa,” another resident said.
(Our point is, every second counts. They can’t dillydally because it’s dangerous here)
The two new cases in Zapatera brought to 25 the number of positive cases in Cebu City as of April 11.
Based on the DOH-7 statement Saturday, Bohol still has one positive case, Cebu Province has three, Negros Oriental has four, Lapu-Lapu City has three, Mandaue City has two, and Siquijor has none.
Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has described Cebu City as the epicenter of COVID-19 in Central Visayas. JMO (FREEMAN)