JUST as the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) of the National Capital Region (NCR) plus bubble was extended for another week from April 4, Governor Amado Espino III decided to also extend the travel restrictions for all those coming from NCR+ to also another week.
This was gleaned in Governor Espino’s Executive Order No. 0030-2021 that extended the effectivity of the travel restrictions provided under his earlier E.O. No. 0027-A-2021, that was supposed to end on April 4.
It was also on April 4 that Pangasinan logged 107 new COVID-19 cases, the second highest number of new cases recorded in one day in the province, next to 115 new cases recorded sometime in October 3, 2020.
According to Espino, this resulted in 627 new active cases, also the second to the all-time high 753 active cases recorded in Pangasinan on January 19, 2021.
By time Espino issued his latest EO, the number of new COVID-19 cases was still counting.
In a talk to newsmen during a commemorative mass in front of the provincial capitol on April 5, in connection with the 441st founding anniversary of Pangasinan, Gov. Espino justified his issuance of E.O. 0030-2021.
He stressed that there is a need to maintain the travel restrictions to complement the extended ECQ in the NCR plus, in support of the efforts of the national government in curbing the increasing cases in NCR and its surrounding areas.
As in E.O. 00027-A-2021, only essential travels will be allowed such as those by frontline workers, government personnel, those traveling on emergency and humanitarian cases, and movement of cargo shall remain unhampered.
He pointed out that during the effectivity of the order, the province-wide curfew is from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m., no longer 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. curfew set in a provincial ordinance passed by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.
Since the effectivity of E.O. 0027-A-2021, the police and their force multipliers have tightened security in all border areas of Pangasinan in a bid to stop all travelers from the NCR plus bubble from coming into Pangasinan.
However, there were unverified reports that during the Holy Week, Metro Manilans were getting through Pangasinan through the Tarlac Pangasinan La Union Expressway exit in Urdaneta City.
There were also reports that some COVID-19 positives were turned away by hospitals in NCR were able to be accommodated by hospitals in Pangasinan, specifically Dagupan, without any consent from local and provincial Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID). (Leonardo Micua)
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