By Charmaine Delos Santos

PHOTO: Eagle News

The Palace announced on Friday that the National Capital Region (NCR) will be placed again under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) from August 6 to August 20 due to hike in COVID-19 cases.

In a press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte approved the proposal of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) to put Metro Manila under ECQ. 

“Hindi po naging madali ang desisyon na ito. Maraming oras ang ginugol para pagdebatihan ang bagay na ito dahil binabalanse nga po natin 'yong pagpapabagal ng pagkalat ng COVID-19 dahil sa Delta variant at 'yong karapatan po nating mabuhay, maiwasan— at mabawasan ang hanay ng mga nagugutom,” Roque said.

Roque also stressed that their decision was also driven to avoid further shortage of ICU beds and other hospital facilities

Roque earlier announced families residing in ECQ areas such as Iloilo, Cagayan de Oro, and Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental will be receiving ₱1,000 to ₱4,000 financial assistance while the guidelines and specific amount for NCR residents will be announced.

“We expect to grant the same amount of cash aid earlier given to Iloilo province, Iloilo City and Gingoog City, and I have talked to Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado and he told me, hahanapan at hahanapan ng paraan,” Roque stated in an interview.

Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Benhur Abalos also confirmed that the government already approved the local government's request for financial aid for the upcoming stricter quarantine this August.

Report sources: PTV, One News