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Ormoc borders close anew

TACLOBAN CITY – Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez has issued an executive order closing the city’s borders due to the sudden spike of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases.

As of Thursday, December 17, the mayor shared that Ormoc has 98 COVID-19 active cases, the highest so far since they were ordered by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to ease and relax their containment areas for authorized persons outside of residence (APORS).

“I’m left with no choice but to protect our people here in Ormoc City and to protect the people coming into the city for them not to be infected because I don’t want that when you visit Ormoc, your families will also be infected,” the mayor said.

Only APORs, health and emergency service personnel, government officials, authorized humanitarian assistance, people going to the airport and seaport for travel two hours before their departure, patients with doctor’s appointment, persons crossing zones for work, and returning residents will be allowed to enter the city.

According to the mayor, the APORs are one of their biggest problems in their border control. “Most of them (APORs) are feeling entitled. They write to the DILG. They write to the IATF. See what happened because you are feeling entitled, especially the APORs from the government. The APORs from the business sector follow our laws here in Ormoc,” the mayor added.

Gomez also informed the mayors of the 4th District of Leyte that the border pass they issued would be temporarily canceled until such time that they will be allowed to reenter the city.

Mass gatherings are discouraged, while establishments such as restaurants will only be allowed 50 percent of their seating capacity. Christmas parties in public and private offices wherever held are not allowed.

However, family gatherings in residences may be allowed limited to the same persons living in the same household indoors, and if outdoors or open-air, in no case shall they exceed 30 persons.

Gomez ordered barangay officials to monitor the conduct of said activities in their areas. Said executive order takes effect until January 1, 2021. By Marie Tonette Marticio

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