CEBU, Philippines —  Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia yesterday announced that for the second day in a row, no new positive COVID-19 cases had been reported in the province.

In her daily update, Garcia said that based on the data from the Department of Health, 31 swabs that were tested in the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) all yielded negative of the virus.

Of the 31 swabs, 16 were from the cities and municipalities of Cebu province, eight were from Cebu City, five were from Mandaue City, and two were from Lapu-Lapu City.

Meanwhile, Garcia clarified to the media that strict social distancing is being observed in Bagsakan Centers established in 20 municipalities in the province.

This is why the Bagsakan Centers, she said, were specifically assigned to be held at covered courts so as to make sure there is sufficient space to practice social distancing.

“Mao na gipili nato ang covered courts sa atong kalungsuran kay dako man gud na nga area kay there is much room to implement social distancing,” she said.

She also reminded Colonel Roderick Mariano, Cebu Provincial Police Office director, who was around at the time to order members of the Philippine National Police to see to it that social distancing be followed in these markets.

The governor clarified, however, that her power is limited to the cities and municipalities under the jurisdiction of the provincial government.

“May I repeat… I hope that when you report to me, find out first whether that is within the jurisdiction of the province of Cebu,” she said.

She cited the incident in Carbon market where netizens sought for her action when Cebu City is an independent charter city not under the Capitol.

“Respetoay man mi and I’m sure Mayor (Edgardo) Labella is doing the best that he can. Di ko gusto nga manamak ko sa teritoryo sa uban nga di na lakip sa akong mandato,” she said.

To recall, Bagsakan Centers were established to give indigents and displaced workers in the province’s towns access to basic goods. The provincial government has also committed to paying for up to 10 percent of the cost of each item, making products cheaper for residents.

Mandaue Market Schedule

In a separate development, Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes issued yesterday Executive Order No. 71 imposing the rules and regulations in the operation of the Mandaue City Public Market during the enhanced community quarantine.

The order took effect immediately.

The mayor said that the EO is crafted with the objective of creating a scheduled operating time of the public market and scheduled buying period of all the barangays.

“The aim is to limit the number of people going in and out of the public market and the target area, ensuring social distancing, without hampering access of the community to basic goods, which are essential to human sustenance,” the EO reads.

The Mandaue Public Market shall be open only on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“It is imperative that the public market will be totally closed at least once a week (Wednesdays) for thorough cleaning and disinfecting by the City Sanitation personnel,” the EO further reads.

A shifting/rotational schedule for buyers according to their barangays of residence shall be strictly implemented.

The 27 barangays of the city will be assigned a specific dates of the week to purchase essentials from the public market.

   No one shall be allowed to enter the market, including all essential establishments surrounding the same, specifically those found along P. Gomez St., Zamora St., and Ceniza St., outside of their scheduled day:

• Every Monday and Friday residents from Centro, Labogon, Paknaan, Tipolo, Casuntingan, Ibabao-Estancia, Tawason, Cubacub and Guizo;

• Every Tuesday and Saturday residents from Tabok, Jagobiao, Mantuyong, Tingub, Opao, Pagsabungan, Canduman, Cambaro and Umapad;

• Every Thursday and Sunday residents from Basak, Alang-alang, Bakilid, Cabancalan, Maguikay, Banilad, Casili, Subangdaku and Looc.

“Any person found to have violated the scheduled market day shall be denied entry and/or shall be allowed to purchase. They shall immediately be escorted out of the public market or establishment concerned,” the EO states.

The EO further states that persons who are not residents  of the city shall only be allowed entry to the public market if they are employees, cargadores, cargo drivers or helpers of marker suppliers/producers or sellers. A certification and identification must be presented as proof to this effect and worn at all times. JMD (FREEMAN)



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