The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) held a virtual Press Conference today, April 20, 2020 to discuss coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 updates, issues and relevant concerns in Region III.

 In his opening message, DILG Undersecretary for Plans, Public Affairs and Communication Jonathan Malaya reiterated the Department's call to all barangay officials to uphold transparency and accountability by posting the list of Social Amelioration Program (SAP) beneficiaries in conspicuous places.

Likewise, in support to Department of Health Circular No. 2020-0172 dated April 9, 2020 regarding Guide on Misting or Spraying for COVID-19, USEC Malaya discouraged Local Government Units (LGUs) to use misting in people as a means of disinfection against the disease. Misting can be used to disinfect objects.

As frontliners in the combat against COVID-19, Barangay Tanods and Barangay Health Worker (BHWs) nationwide are now qualified under SAP, USEC Malaya said.

The Undersecretary also called on all Filipinos to comply with the government rules on the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ). "It is in everybody's interest na matapos na itong quarantine. Sana huwag pasaway", this was his statement as he narrated the incident which transpired in Nozagaray, Bulacan involving some volunteers of leftist group Anakpawis. According to USEC Malaya, the group displayed an unauthorized food pass and claimed that they were in the area to distribute food packs. "When these were opened, nakita propaganda materials nila. By doing this propaganda work, the group has placed the lives of the people of Norzagaray at risk", the USEC added.

On the issue of jail congestion due to peo ple's non-compliance to the ECQ Guidelines and Measures, the Undersecretary mentioned that BJMP has COVID-19 Task Force who works on this. He also called on all LGUs to prioritize mass testing in jails in case there are reported People Under Investigation or PUI. "BJMP needs DOH and LGUs' help for mass testing", he said.

On the other hand, Pampanga Governor Dennis Pineda mentioned that Jose B. Lingad Regional Memorial Hospital in the province, which is currently being prepared as the region's testing center for COVID-19 is now near completion. JBL is now at stage 3 which is the training for personnel. DOH requires testing centers to undergo five stages prior to the full scale implementation of COVID-19 testing.

DILG Region III Monitoring and Evaluation Division Chief Lerrie Hernandez stated that most of the LGUs in the region came up with initiatives to deploy mobile palengke. This is to lessen the number of people going to the markets and further abide by the social distancing measure.

USEC Malaya reminded everyone to get information from reliable sources and not from social media. "Get it from the news or go this website www.covid19.gov.ph", he said. All resolutions issued by the government in relation to COVID-19 are available in the site.

Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Regional Director William Beltran and Roberto Capco of DILG Center for Federalism and Constitutional Reforms – Project Management Office were the moderators during the Press Conference. Different media personalities in the region participated in the conference.

In his opening message, DILG Undersecretary for Plans, Public Affairs and Communication Jonathan Malaya reiterated the Department's call to all barangay officials to uphold transparency and accountability by posting the list of Social Amelioration Program (SAP) beneficiaries in conspicuous places.

 

  
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