COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City lifts liquor ban with some restrictions amid MECQ, other less stringent quarantine status

The liquor ban in Muntinlupa City is has officially been lifted but with restrictions for the duration of Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) and other less stringent community quarantines as may be declared by the national government.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi approved City Ordinance No. 2021-232 lifting the liquor ban in the city with provisions on regulation and limitations for the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages.

Under the local ordinance, city residents can only consume alcoholic beverages within their private residence. Social drinking involving individuals not living in the same residence shall still be strictly prohibited.

The sale of liquor and other intoxicating beverages shall only be during 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM and will only be limited to Muntinlupa residents.

Consumption or drinking liquor in public places such as restaurants and other commercial establishments permitted to operate by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) shall be regulated: beer – maximum of 2 bottles, hard drinks – maximum of 2 glasses, and for wine and whiskey – maximum of two glasses.

Business establishments who will violate the ordinance shall be meted with the following penalties: closure of one week for first offense and revocation of business permit for second offense.

Further, violating persons who are sellers shall receive P2,000 penalty for first offense and P5,000 for second offense, while those who are buyers will be penalized with P2,500 for their first offense and P5,000 for second offense.

Members of the Muntinlupa City Police Station, Public Order and Safety Office, City Security Office, Muntinlupa Traffic and Management Bureau, Business Permit and Licensing Office, Barangay Chairpersons and their personnel, and other deputized individuals will conduct inspections in commercial establishments to ensure that the local ordinance is followed.

The City Government warns beneficiaries of the emergency assistance from the DSWD that they are prohibited to use their cash aid to purchase liquor or any alcoholic beverage. The public is encouraged to report violators for proper action.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi reminds city residents that the lifting of liquor ban is for economic reasons and that the health and safety of the public should not be compromised.

“COVID-19 is still an imminent threat so I urge everyone to be responsible and to continue observing health protocols even as quarantine measures and the liquor ban are relaxed in the implementation of MECQ,” Fresnedi said.

As of May 5, Muntinlupa City has 11,585 confirmed cases with 10,127 recoveries, 1,154 active cases, 304 reported deaths, 168 suspect cases, and 988 probable cases.

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COVID-19 Crisis: MECQ for NCR Plus extended until May 14, 2021

After weeks of anticipation by the public, President Rodrigo Duterte announced the other night the extension of modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until May 14, 2021 for the National Capital Region (NCR) plus the bordering provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal. In connection to this, Duterte apologized.

To put things about the extended MECQ in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Philippine News Agency (PNA) article. Some parts in bold…

“Modified enhanced community quarantine. Modified ito so medyo strict. NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal (Modified enhanced community quarantine – modified, meaning somehow strict – will be imposed in NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal),” Duterte said in his talk to the people.

MECQ will be implemented in NCR Plus, composed of Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, MECQ until May 14, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a separate press statement.

Quirino and Abra provinces, as well as the City of Santiago in Isabela, will also stay under MECQ for the whole month of May, Duterte said.

On the other hand, the more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) will be imposed in Apayao, Baguio City, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga, Mountain Province, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Batangas, Quezon, Tacloban City, Iligan City, Davao City, and Lanao del Sur from May 1 to 31.

The rest of the country will remain under the least restrictive modified GCQ (MGCQ).

Roque said the latest quarantine status is still “subject to the appeals of local government units.”

The government is targeting to lower health care and intensive care unit (ICU) utilization rates to ease the quarantine protocols in the country amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

In recent times, the daily count of new COVID-19 cases in the Philippines fell below 10,000. It was reported the other day that the new COVID-19 cases was at 6,895 nationwide. Still the nation has over 1,000,000 COVID-19 cases grand total (including recoveries) and the secured vaccines cannot arrive fast enough from overseas. Also, it will take a lot of time before the local production of vaccines will become a reality in the nation.

Apart from public health, more attention should be paid on the economy which has been set back a lot since the latest ECQ (enhanced community quarantine). The current MECQ meanwhile resulted 13% of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to stay closed specifically in the NCR Plus zone.

More on the economy, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez is pushing to help the economy by recommending a flexible MECQ in NCR Plus with gradual reopening of labor-intensive sectors in mind.

For perspective, posted below is an excerpt for the Philippine News Agency article. Some parts in bold…

In a radio interview Thursday, Lopez said the agency is eyeing to reopen personal care services with a limited capacity of 20 to 30 percent as well as dine-in services in food establishments by 10 to 20 percent.

“Ni-recommend ho kasi naming ‘yong MECQ with flexibility. We are just after sa pagbabalik ng trabaho, pero yung higpit naman ng mobility ay nandoon pa rin. Ang importante lang ay itong trabaho. We’re talking about opening the sectors na sarado pa rin (We recommended the MECQ with flexibility. We are just after bringing back jobs, but the strict mobility will still be there. What’s important is the jobs. We’re talking about opening the sectors that are still closed),” he said.

He added that the gradual reopening of the personal care and dine-in services was “partially discussed” with the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).

“Iko-confirm na lang mamaya sa IATF kung ilang porsyento [The IATF will confirm later the percentage (of capacity)],” Lopez said.

An estimated 200,000 workers in personal care services and 1 million fast-food and restaurant crews were affected during the stricter community quarantine measures in National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal and about PHP60 billion worth of wages were lost during the two-week MECQ, Lopez said.

The current MECQ also shed PHP120 billion in gross domestic product, on top of the PHP180-billion economic losses during the two-week ECQ.

While it is essential for people and organizations to follow health protocols and avoid COVID-19 infections, the same goes with the economy. So many have been suffering from the lack of jobs, the loss of income and, in the case of businesses, the loss of customers and clients. Being in the private sector myself, I definitely want more businesses of any size to reopen, make money, hire the unemployed and contribute to the development of local society. I want to see the personal care services to resume operations, as well as the return of indoor dining for restaurants and cafes. I also want to see more of my fellow Filipinos to stay above poverty and rise higher. That being said, I say that capitalism is the way to go and the real way to restore prosperity for the Philippines even as we face varied challenges daily during this COVID-19 (China Virus) crisis.

From this point on, I encourage you to keep observing the moves of not only the national authorities but also those in your local government, your barangay and other organizations serving you. Pray that the public servants and community leaders will look up to the Lord and acknowledge His authority over them. Pray for the leaders to look up to God. Finally, no matter how good or bad your situation is, keep having strong faith in our Lord. If you are hurting and you need healing, come to Lord Jesus (read Mark 5:25-34 in the Holy Bible).

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Las Piñas City Police Force at Work – April 19, 2021

The Las Piñas City Police Department continues to serve the local constituents by means of securing places, implementing rules and helping those who need assistance. Check out these recent media releases and pay close attention to the details written.

On April 17, 2021 at Samata Village, Barangay Talon Singko, PBGEN ELISEO DC CRUZ DD, SPD together with PCOL MANUEL JAVIER ABRUGENA DDDO, SPD, PMAJ RANDY MORATALLA C, DCADD, assisted by PCOL RODEL A PASTOR, COP, LPCPS and SCADS personnel led by PCPT ERNIE B ORTEGA C, SCADS distributed food packs to more or less two hundred (200) members of the Muslim Community. The Philippine National Police extended their helping hands by sharing some food packs and support to our Muslim Brothers and Sisters. This humble act of kindness will constantly gain the trust and confidence of the people. The NCRPO will remain trustworthy and reliable for the benefit of the Filipino citizens. (source – Las Piñas City Police Department)
On April 17, 2021, Alabang Zapote Rd. Cor Tramo St., Brgy. Zapote, elements of Zapote Sub Station led by PLT FRANCISCO T GUEVARRA JR, Deputy Commander under the direct supervision of PMAJ JERIC M TILAON, Sub-Station Commander thru the strong leadership of PCOL RODEL A PASTOR, COP Las Piñas City Police conducted Law Enforcement Checkpoint which resulted to two (2) issued OVR including apprehension of four (4) violator for loitering during the imposition of MECQ. Apprehended persons were given stern warning and latter released in good physical and mental condition. (source – Las Piñas City Police Department)
On April 17, 2021 at at BQCP along Naga Road corner Aurora Drive Brgy Pulang Lupa Dos, elements of CAA Sub Station led by PEMS Noel Supan with Five (5) others under the suppervision of PMAJ ALBERT DT AREVALO, CAA SS Commander and under the strong leadership of PCOL RODEL A PASTOR, COP of Las Pinas City Police Station conducted Checkpoint. (source – Las Piñas City Police Department)

If you are in Las Piñas City and you need the help of the local police, call 85516401 or visit https://www.facebook.com/pcrstation4/

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The above information and images were provided by the Las Piñas City Police Station for the purpose of public information and transparency. Some parts were edited for this website. 

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COVID-19 Crisis: The high cost of ECQ on the Philippine economy

You must be wondering how much of a price did the nation pay as a result of the 2-week ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) ordered on NCR Plus (National Capital Region plus the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal).

The answer? P180 billion in terms of economic losses according to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) accounting for 1% of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP). To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Philippine News Agency (PNA) article of April 15, 2021. Some parts in bold…

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has estimated that the country lost 1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) during the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in National Capital Region (NCR) and four nearby provinces.

During the Laging Handa public briefing Thursday, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said the economic loss due to the half-a-month ECQ in NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal (NCR Plus) is equivalent to PHP180 billion.

Earlier, Lopez said around 1.5 million Filipinos had no jobs during the ECQ in NCR Plus, and only 500,000 jobs were brought back when the quarantine classification for areas was downgraded to a less strict modified ECQ (MECQ).

“We want to see lower Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) cases and lower utilization rate of (Covid-19 beds) before we ease the status to GCQ (general community quarantine),” he said in Filipino.

The DTI chief also downplayed speculation that the reopening of economic activities and business establishments became the ‘super spreader’ of Covid-19.

To manage the rate of infection of the coronavirus, Lopez said the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) will not allow high-risk and non-essential activities and gatherings.

He added the government must slow down the daily Covid-19 cases while increasing the health care capacity to relax community quarantine status in the NCR Plus.

Clearly, the 2-week ECQ period on NCR Plus was damaging not only to the businesses and people of the affected region but on the Philippine economy as well. What we cannot see yet is exactly how many more people – specifically those who lost jobs in NCR Plus because of ECQ – fell into poverty. Take note that the more people fall into poverty, the more costly it becomes for the local government units (LGUs) and the nation government to provide support to them using taxpayers’ money.

As it has been a week since NCR Plus shifted to MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine), we will find out soon how much the region and the national economy recovered from the high cost of ECQ.

If you do the math, a single week of ECQ on NCR Plus costs P90 billion. Can you just imagine the dramatic cost to the nation had ECQ went on for a full year of 52 weeks? Do not forget that all the unemployed bad need jobs and income.

Right now, the national government and varied forms of governing units are still struggling to balance themselves between economics and public health during this COVID-19 (China virus) pandemic that has lasted over a year now. No matter how you do your business, how you make your important transactions, follow the health protocols to avoid getting infected with the China virus.

By the way, whenever possible, support the business joints in your local community whenever you need to buy or consume something. By the way, never let the Political Left fool you with their propaganda related to economy and the pandemic.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Important update for SSS members in MECQ areas

Do you have important transactions to do with regards to social security? Are you struggling to do that because of the restrictions that come with the current MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine) status? Very clearly the China virus (AKA COVID-19) remains a major problem to us all.

Well, pay attention closely here because the Social Security System (SSS) announced via social media yesterday that members like you located in areas under MECQ – National Capital Region, Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, Bulacan, the City of Santiago in Isabela, Quirino, and Abra – can continue to use online services or drop boxes as all SSS offices and branches located in the mention areas will operate with minimum personnel (skeletal workforce) until April 30, 2021 (the supposed end of MECQ).

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from their Facebook post. Some parts in bold…

In line with the declaration of the Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) in the National Capital Region, Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, Bulacan, the City of Santiago in Isabela, Quirino, and Abra from April 12 to 30, 2021, all offices and branches of the Social Security System (SSS) located in the covered areas will operate with only skeleton workforce to ensure the continuous delivery of services.

For this reason, SSS is advising its members, pensioners, covered employers, and the public to continue using its online services and drop box system when transacting with its offices and branches as the national government extends quarantine limits to curb the spread of COVID-19. Only 50 percent of branch employees during this period are assigned to physically report for work, while the rest will use alternative work arrangements.

With the 8:00 PM to 5:00 AM curfew enforced during the MECQ period, the said SSS branches will be open on weekdays only from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Branch transactions are limited to the following:

Appointments set with the branch, Submission of documents through the drop box (for transactions that are not available online), Pick-up of Unified Multi-purpose Identification (UMID) Cards and subsequent educational loan checks, Compliance with the Annual Confirmation of Pensioners’ Program (only for those with suspended pensions), and Use of tellering services.

The said measures will also apply to other areas placed under MECQ by virtue of an Executive Order issued by their respective Local Government Units.

Selected SSS branches will continuously implement the number coding system. The prescribed transaction days of members, claimants, and employers are based on the 10th digit of their social security (SS) or employer (ER) ID—1 and 2 every Monday, 3 and 4 every Tuesday, 5 and 6 every Wednesday, 7 and 8 every Thursday, and 9 and 0 every Friday.

For Funeral or Death Benefit Claims, the basis for the prescribed transaction day will be the 10th digit of the deceased SSS member’s SS ID.

However, if the prescribed transaction day falls on a holiday, the member, claimant, or employer may transact with the SSS on the next working day. In case of system downtime, the SSS will set an appointment with those in line or opt to wait until the system is operational.

The SSS also encourages the transacting public to use the pension fund’s online service channels such as the My.SSS Portal of the SSS website at www.sss.gov.ph, SSS Mobile App, and Text-SSS at 2600.

Information about the mandatory online transactions and other online services are posted on the SSS’ Facebook page at https://bit.ly/31wTXch and https://bit.ly/3tnW12c. Likewise, members can access the list of various payment channels at https://bit.ly/3lpPYaR.

With those details laid down, you have more options to choose on how to do your transactions with SSS. Please share this article to others so they can be helped. Thanks.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Stricter quarantine outside of NCR Plus ruled out

Are you feeling tired of the restrictions that come with the quarantine for the past month? Moving from GCQ (general community quarantine) to ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) and recently MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine) made life in the so-called NCR Plus region (the National Capital Region plus the nearby provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal) a bit more complicated. Not only were people told to stay at home, there were several businesses that negatively got affected too.

As for those living outside the NCR Plus region, there has been fear brewing that they will find themselves living under a stricter quarantine soon. Those fears can be put to rest as Malacañang officially ruled out the possibility of a restrictive quarantine in communities and places outside of NCR Plus.

The brewing fear was the result of recent reports of the Department of Health (DOH) showing an increase of COVID-19 cases in five regions other than the National Capital Region and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal. To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the article published through Philippine News Agency (PNA).

In an online press briefing, Health Secretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said there was an upward trend of Covid-19 infections in Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, and Cordillera Administrative Region.

While the government is monitoring the situation in areas outside NCR Plus, it does not see the need to impose stricter quarantine rules in the entire Luzon, Roque said.

“Sa ngayon po, binabantayan naman po natin ang datos at wala pa naman pong ganoong conclusion ang nakikita natin. Ang talagang paglobo po ng mga kaso ay nandito sa NCR Plus. At kaya nga po ang response natin dito muna sa NCR Plus (As of now, we are monitoring the data and we have not arrived at a conclusion [to implement stricter quarantine measures in Luzon]. Rise in Covid-19 cases is seen in NCR Plus. So our response is focused on NCR Plus),” Roque said.

Roque added that the Covid-19 surge in other areas is not that “bad” unlike in NCR Plus.

“As I said, binabantayan din natin ang kaso sa iba’t ibang lugar ng Pilipinas pero so far po (we are monitoring the cases in different parts of the Philippines but so far), nothing as bad as what we are seeing in the NCR Plus,” he said.

Two weeks after being under the most restrictive enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal are now under the less stringent modified ECQ (MECQ) until April 30.

Apart from NCR Plus, the City of Santiago in Isabela, Quirino province, and Abra are also under MECQ.

A more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) is imposed in Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Batangas, Tacloban City, Iligan City, Davao City, Lanao del Sur, and Quezon.

The rest of the country remains under modified GCQ.

So there you have it. The above news and details should remind you that it is essential to follow health protocols by means of sanitizing yourself frequently, wearing face masks and face shields, and practicing social distancing.

Please share this article to others so that they will know that no stricter quarantine is planned outside of NCR Plus.

Now if only more vaccines could be made available locally so that this China virus pandemic will stop…

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: DTI says restaurants in MECQ areas are allowed to have outdoor dining

In what is clearly a move with economic recovery in mind, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez declared that restaurants (located in places under MECQ or modified enhanced community quarantine status) with outdoor dining services and set-ups are allowed to resume but with certain limitations.

To make things clear, below is an excerpt from the Philippine News Agency (PNA) article which was published just yesterday. For greater emphasis, some parts are in bold.

In a text message to reporters Sunday night, Lopez said food establishments with alfresco dining services are only allowed up to 50 percent capacity, with diagonal seating arrangement and acrylic dividers on tables.

He added that indoor dine-in services are still not allowed in areas under MECQ, but food establishments can continue to operate with their take-out and delivery services.

From April 12 to 30, the National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal or the NCR Plus as well as Santiago City in Isabela, and the provinces of Quirino and Abra were also placed under MECQ.

Earlier, the DTI chief said that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) might be sensitive in allowing indoor dine-in due to the highly contagious new variants of Covid-19.

“The IATF recommended to the President to shift to MECQ after two weeks of ECQ to restore more jobs and livelihood for the people,” Lopez said.

Clearly the local authorities are trying hard to balance themselves between economics and public health as new cases of COVID-19 (China Virus) continue to be counted in very high numbers on a daily basis in recent times. On April 2, the count of infections reached over 15,000.

Going back to the issue of allowing restaurants with outdoor dining (AKA alfresco) within the MECQ areas, it is good news that they are allowed to resume operations. It will still be a challenge for food establishments to attract enough paying customers and make their business’ financial ends meet.

On a personal experience, I love eating ramen and Tsukemen at Sigekiya Ramen in Alabang. I prefer that such meals would be cooked by the restaurant and be served to me at a table at their place. The alternative of taking the cooked ramen out and consume it at home is just not a convincing option for me because ramen is meant to be consumed quickly while it is hot. The alternative of taking home ingredients and noodles, and have them cooked at home does not appeal to me as I prefer Sigekiya’s cooks make the meal I paid for.

A delicious meal like this one is best to be eaten at the restaurant, even outdoors.

Also located in Alabang is the local branch of Akrotiri, a really fine restaurant that serves authentic Greek meals that my family and friends enjoyed. They also have meals that, in my opinion, are best consumed at their place and their Alabang branch (Commercenter to be precise) has space for outdoor dining. It was at Akrotiri Alabang where I treated 2019 SEA Games gold medalist Kim Mangrobang to a meal and organized an exclusive interview with her. They really have a fine-looking place. Visit their website at https://akrotiri.ph/

It is important to keep in mind that restaurants around the nation have struggled a lot since the pandemic started last year. These business establishments are also struggling with retaining their respective employees, notably their cooks, the baristas, waiters and waitresses. Remember that the meals and drinks you enjoy would not be the same when the people who prepared them get laid off.

With the DTI’s declaration of allowing food establishments with outdoor dining setups and services to resume, I encourage you my readers to consider supporting these businesses for your food and beverage needs. If you can’t have a meal with the family outdoors, perhaps you can push through with a business meeting with a corporate associate or reunite with your friend or relative with the outdoor setting of a restaurant while adhering to health protocols (wearing face masks, face shields, sanitizing yourselves, etc.). 

Now, let’s observe how the mayors, the barangay captains and other local authorities in MECQ areas will react to DTI’s declaration. You also might want to check with the local restaurants and coffee shops if they allow outdoor dining. Consider taking time out to call them or verify on their respective social media channels/accounts to see if outdoor dining is allowed.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: National Capital Region (NCR) and 4 nearby provinces plus a few other places now under MECQ until April 30, 2021

After two whole weeks of being placed under the restrictive ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the National Capital Region (NCR) and the provinces Cavite, Bulacan, Rizal and Laguna (note: these form NCR Plus as called by the local authorities) are now under MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine) until April 30, 2021. Far away from NCR Plus are the City of Santiago, the Province of Quezon and Abra in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) which also have been placed under MECQ status.

The shift to MECQ was approved by President Rodrigo Duterte in relation to the commitments made by more public and private hospitals to provide rooms and beds for patients suffering from COVID-19 (China Virus). The President urged PhilHealth (Philippine Health Insurance Corporation) to expedite the payment of claims of hospitals. For more details on this, read the Philippine News Agency’s (PNA) article.

MECQ is supposed to be the less restrictive form of quarantine. For one thing, the hours of curfew in Metro Manila has been adjusted to 8PM to 5AM (versus 6PM to 5AM under ECQ). To put things in perspective, here is an excerpt from the PNA’s article…

According to amended omnibus guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) as of April 3, 2021, strict home quarantine shall be observed in all households under MECQ. Movement of persons shall be limited to accessing essential goods and services, and for work in permitted offices or establishments or such activities allowed.

Persons below 18 years old, those who are over 65 years old, those with immunodeficiency, comorbidity, or other health risks, and pregnant women shall be required to remain at home at all times except for obtaining essential goods and services or for work.

Under the IATF-EID guidelines, the following establishments, persons, or activities shall not be permitted to operate, work, or be undertaken during MECQ:

— Entertainment venues with live performers such as karaoke bars, bars, clubs, concert halls, theaters, and cinemas;

— Recreational venues such as internet cafes, billiard halls, amusement arcades, bowling alleys, and similar venues;

— Amusement parks or theme parks, fairs/peryas, kid amusement industries such as playgrounds, playroom and kiddie rides;

— Outdoor sports courts or venues for contact sports, scrimmages, games, or activities;

— Indoor sports courts or venues, fitness studios, gyms, spas or other indoor leisure centers or facilities, and swimming pools;


— Casinos, horse racing, cockfighting and operation of cockpits, lottery and betting shops, and other gaming establishments except for the draws conducted by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office;

— Indoor visitor or tourist attractions, libraries, archives, museums, galleries, and cultural shows and exhibits;

— Outdoor tourist attractions;

— Venues for meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions;

— Personal care services which include beauty salons, beauty parlors, medical esthetic clinics, cosmetic or derma clinics, make-up salons, nail spas, reflexology, aesthetics, wellness and holistic centers, and other similar establishments; acupuncture and electrocautery establishments, and massage therapy including sports therapy establishments. It also includes establishments providing tanning services, body piercings, tattooing and similar services. Home service for these activities is likewise not permitted; and

— Indoor dine-in services of food preparation establishments such as commissaries, restaurants, and eateries.

Now that the MECQ is in effect, we will find out soon enough how the many struggling businesses will perform, how many affected employees will be able to return to work, how vehicular traffic on the highways and major roads will turn out and how these changes will affect the daily count of new COVID-19 cases which has been averaging over 10,000 a day recently.

It has been over a year since the China Virus spread worldwide and negatively impacted the way people lived, brought down their earnings, made attending on-site worship harder (note: the authorities in California did Satan’s bidding and the United States Supreme Court struck down their abuse of power legally), and pushed varied authorities to adjust the way they manage their places and constituents. No matter how grim the situation is, I urge you my readers to never lose hope and always look up to Lord Jesus who is the true Savior for us all. I encourage you to grab a copy of the Holy Bible and read the full Chapter 91 of the Book of Psalms, believe in it and come to Lord Jesus.

God will make a way for those who are faithful to Him. You do not need religion. You do not need unbelief. You do not need to believe in this screwed-up world we live in. You do not need idols for they are unholy and idolatry itself is foolish. You need unwavering faith in Him for He is holy and only He deserves our worship, trust and honor.

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COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City extends deadline of biz tax payment to Sept 18,2020 amid extension of CQ

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City extends deadline of biz tax payment to Sept 18,2020 amid extension of CQ

In a bid to extend assistance to the private sector experiencing disruption of economic activities brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic and community quarantine, the City Government of Muntinlupa extends the payment of business tax payments.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi approved City Ordinance No. 2020-115 extending the deadline of payment of the 3rd Quarter Business Tax payments from August 19, 2020 to September 18, 2020 without penalties, surcharge and interest.

However, all business taxes due for the said period shall be subject to the penalties and interest prescribed by Muntinlupa Revenue Code if not paid on or before September 18, 2020.

Fresnedi assured the members of the private sector that the City Government will continue to support local businesses in Muntinlupa during these trying times.

Recently, the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry – Muntinlupa has recognized the City Government’s efforts in curbing COVID-19 in the city and its assistance to local businesses amid the pandemic.

During the local business chamber’s virtual general assembly last July, PCCI-Muntinlupa president Elvie Sanchez-Quiazon conferred the Sterling Growth Catalyst Award to Mayor Jaime Fresnedi in recognition of his leadership in addressing the health crisis while still boosting the sustainability of local economy.

Quiazon said the local chamber lauds Mayor Fresnedi’s “transformational and adaptable leadership, commitment and eminent public service to boost the development and sustainability of the Muntinlupa City in challenging times.”

The mayor extended his thanks to PCCI-Muntinlupa for their recognition of the City Government’s COVID-19 response efforts to minimize its health, economic, and social impacts in the city.

Fresnedi said the award also recognizes the hard work of Muntinlupa’s front-liners who are driven by a shared goal to eliminate COVID-19 in the city.

As of August 10, Muntinlupa City has 2,038 confirmed cases with 1,222 recoveries, 726 active cases, 90 reported deaths, 968 suspect cases, and 675 probable cases.


Latest City Government of Muntinlupa details sourced from their official media release.

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COVID-19 Crisis: 305 quarantine violators apprehended in Muntinlupa Oplan Galugad, 6 charged

COVID-19 Crisis: 305 quarantine violators apprehended in Muntinlupa Oplan Galugad, 6 charged

The City Government of Muntinlupa warns the public of the strict enforcement of community quarantine measures in the city and violators will be meted with fines and penalties.

Muntinlupa City Police Station has launched Oplan Galugad to apprehend residents violating city ordinances for the duration of community quarantine including curfew hours, mandatory wearing of face masks, quarantine pass system and liquor ban, among others.

As of August 10, MCPS recorded 305 apprehensions in which six (6) individuals were charged with cases for regular filling. Among recent violators were 60 minors who were given a stern warning for their offense. Minor violators or those below 18 in Muntinlupa will lose their city scholarship on their second offense.

Muntinlupa Public Information Officer Tez Navarro said members of Muntinlupa PNP, city security officers, and barangay police will continue to augment round-the-clock inspections to ensure that health protocols and quarantine guidelines in public places and business establishments are strictly followed.

Navarro added that the stringent measure aims to limit movements and interactions in public places which are hotspots for the transmission of COVID-19. She noted that the public can report cases of violation to PNP or barangays.

Recently, the City Government reverted curfew hours to 8:00 PM – 5:00 AM for the duration of the Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) and approved a liquor ban that will be in effect for all types of community quarantine.

Curfew violators may face penalties of up to P1,000.00, while liquor ban violators will pay up to P2,000.00 penalty. Establishments who will be caught selling alcoholic beverages in the city will incur a P5,000.00 fine, suspension or revocation of business permits, and one-year imprisonment.

Further, the City Council has also passed an ordinance imposing tougher implementation of home quarantine pass system during ECQ and MECQ.

Qpass holders in the city are required to bring a government-issued ID for verification and can only purchase essential goods from 6:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Establishments and Homeowners Associations are mandated to inspect quarantine passes from persons entering or exiting their premises. Violators of the Qpass system may face penalties of up to P1,000.00.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi asks for the cooperation of the public and says that the strict quarantine measure aims to slow down the transmission of COVID-19 in the city. He also urged residents to observe health protocols such as wearing face masks, physical distancing, and frequent hand washing.

As of August 9, Muntinlupa City has 1,984 confirmed cases with 1,169 recoveries, 726 active cases, 89 reported deaths, 1,061 suspect cases, and 763 probable cases.


Latest City Government of Muntinlupa details sourced from their official media release.

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, no distorted views and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments.