Is a POGO unit operating in Pangasinan?
By Leonardo Micua
THE statement of Pangasinan health officials that there is no person under investigation for 2019 Novel Coronavirus Acute Respiratory Disease or nCov for short, in the province is truly reassuring if not comforting.
Although there are PUIs put in quarantine in adjacent La Union and more in Tarlac and will remain as suspected carriers until results of tests of their specimens are determined, we can heave a sigh of relief that Pangasinan remains nCov-free.
But what’s this I heard from a close friend and which I did initially ignored until I read a post on Facebook by a concerned citizen possibly from Dagupan that the contractor of a telecom project rising soon in the city is from Wuhan as the name of the company suggests.
If it is true, then there is a reason for all Dagupenos and Pangasinenses to be alarmed and become edgy because everybody knows that Wuhan is the epicenter of the nCov outbreak in China.
Netizens want to know if the officials, particularly the engineers of that firm were screened, tested and quarantined like all the OFWs who just planed in from Wuhan.
We are not being sinophobic here but the presence of people from Wuhan who are now perhaps freely interacting with their Filipino co-workers and the local population could scare many out of their wits. They may pose danger to all of us if they managed to skip screening based on DOH protocol when they entered the country.
Remember that nCov, which originated from Wuhan, already killed 563 people and infected 28,018 as of Thursday and in various parts of the world.
Some netizens posited the view that the city hall might be aware of the presence of Wuhan people in that contracting company doing some works in the city but is not calling the attention of the health authorities.
There is also a rumor circulating in the grapevine that a hotel in the city (or is it in Pangasinan) is now packed with Chinese visitors who had not left the hotel since they arrived around the third week of December, suspected to be undocumented, and in the business of illegal online gambling.
Has POGO reached Dagupan and Pangasinan? This is for concerned government agencies to look into.
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The postponement of the Region I Athletic Association meet set on February 19-26 by the Department of Education to a later date because of the nCov was expected. DepEd does not want to risk the health of its learners and officials from all over the region converging at one time this month in Lingayen for this meet.
Remember, Baguio earlier reset its Pangabenga Flower Festival and the Philippine Military Academy at Fort Del Pilar was placed on lockdown, concerned that visitors may bring in the infectious virus that may infect the cadets and the military officials running it.
If I am not mistaken, the R1AA Meet has been reset to March 31-April 4, which is believed to be the hottest period in our tropical Philippines. Methinks this is a good move because of the belief that nCov cannot survive under high temperature.
But in the case of the 2010 Bangus Festival set during the third to fourth weeks of April according to Councilor Joey Tamayo, it will proceed on schedule as nCov might have already been burned out by the hot weather by that time.
We Filipinos, are lucky that we live in a tropical country where there is a blazing sun almost all-year-round, especially during summer when the sun is at its hottest. This is something we should all be grateful for.
Methinks that by summer, which is only few weeks from now, we may be bidding goodbye to the nCov in this country. Agree?
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There is another infectious disease that we should be wary of. It is the Bird Flu that also broke out in China while that country is still looking for the vaccine to stop nCov.
According to Provincial Health Officer Dr. Anna de Guzman the Bird Flu in China could be transported to the Philippines by migratory birds escaping from the cold in Northern China as well in Siberia, Russia.
She warned not to get near these migratory birds, many of them now feasting on fishes in Binmaley and Dagupan as well as of the dangers of catching the birds be cooked into mouth-watering and spicy adobo.
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