Dumaguete tightens watch over minors amid Delta variant threat

By Mary Judaline Partlow  

DUMAGUETE CITY – Authorities in this provincial capital of Negros Oriental have advised parents to make sure their children stay home to prevent them from contracting the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), especially amid the threat of the highly transmissible Delta variant.

City health marshals, headed by the executive assistant for security concerns, retired police general Rey Lyndon Lawas, are doing the rounds of the city to ensure that children aged 17 and below, and senior citizens 66 years old and above will remain in their homes.

Lawas, in an interview on Sunday, expressed frustration that many people still continue to violate local and national laws on this particular prohibition.

“We have been implementing this since the imposition of the MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine) starting June and we are continuing it until today as part of the heightened restrictions under the GCQ (general community quarantine),” he said in mixed English and Cebuano dialect.

The province and the city are under general community quarantine with heightened restrictions from Aug. 1 to 15, the first extension of this classification which was imposed from July 16 to 31.

There are two teams of health marshals going around the city every day to ensure that these people belonging to the said age brackets will not insist on getting out of the house, especially because the Delta variant is now said to be targeting the younger people.

“That is why we are strengthening the implementation of the health protocols, particularly when we talk about the age,” Lawas said.

The health marshals are composed of personnel from the City Health Office, Philippine National Police, Traffic Management Office, Special Enforcement Unit, Department Trade and Industry, City Social Welfare and Development Office, City Administrator’s Office and Bureau of Fire Protection. (PNA)