MANILA – President Rodrigo R. Duterte's order for village chiefs to restrict the movements of unvaccinated individuals shall be enforced nationwide as the country grapples with a sudden spike in coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) infections, Malacañang said Friday.
In a Palace briefing, acting Presidential Spokesperson, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, said Duterte's order to "restrain" unvaccinated people who refuse to "stay put" is applicable to all areas of the country regardless of the alert level status.
“Sa declaration, pronouncement, at direktiba ni Pangulo, it appears na regardless (of alert level) eh nationwide po yan (Based on the declaration, pronouncement, and directive of the President, it appears that regardless of the alert level, it will be implemented nationwide),” Nograles said.
He said the mobility restriction directive for the unvaccinated is meant to ensure the public’s safety, health, and well-being,
"Mayroon pong direktiba si Pangulo na makiusap sa ating mga residente sa barangay na kapag unvaccinated, hindi pa kumpleto ang vaccination ay huwag muna lumabas para mapigilan ang pagkalat ng virus na ito, maprotektahan natin sila (The President has a directive to the village chiefs to ask unvaccinated residents or those who have yet to complete their vaccination, not to leave their homes for now to curb the spread of the virus and for them to be protected),” Nograles said.
The "only way out of this pandemic" is vaccination, he said.
Duterte reiterated that the government is just keeping the public safe amid the prevailing pandemic.
"I said the ministrant function of the government is to come up with measures that protect the public interest, public health, and public safety," he said.
During his prerecorded Talk to the People, Duterte said he came up with the decision to restrain those unvaccinated for their safety.
"So, in the absence of the law. The president is called upon to act and because it is a national emergency, it is my position that we can restrain and that I have ordered the barangay captains because, under the law, barangay captains can enforce all the laws of the land within their community. That's the long and short of being the person in authority," he said.
Duterte urged the barangay chiefs to mobilize civilians to monitor unvaccinated people.
The Metro Manila Council, composed of the 17 local chief executives in the National Capital Region (NCR), has agreed to enact resolutions that will enhance restrictions, regulating the movement of unvaccinated individuals during the imposition of high-risk classification status of the region.
The restrictions will only be “temporary” and will be lifted once the Covid-19 alert level in the NCR is lowered from Level 3 to Alert Level 2 or below. (PNA)