BONTOC, Mountain Province – The municipal government announced it is continuously accepting the entry of locally stranded individuals (LSIs) coming from inside and outside the Cordillera but on staggered basis because of the limitations of its quarantine facilities and isolation areas.
Mayor Franklin Odsey said the municipality will be accepting limited number of LSIs every two weeks to allow those who were earlier accepted to complete their prescribed quarantine in the town’s isolation facilities.
Initially, the municipal government accepts some 80 LSIs from the different parts of the region while the second batch of LSIs that returned to the locality came in five buses and numbering to about 140 persons.
The mayor advised LSIs should first signify their intention to return by filling up online application forms then the personnel of the municipal government will inspect their residences to ascertain whether or not their homes will qualify as site for their home isolation.
According to him, if the residences of the LSIs will not qualify for home isolation, the said individuals will be required to undergo the prescribed quarantine in the town’s established isolation areas.
Mayor Odsey admitted the town’s existing isolation facilities could accommodate a maximum of 68 individuals at one time for quarantine thus the at one municipal government the LSIs can only come in batches based on the assessment of their condition by the local health authorities.
He appealed to LSIs for their understanding that due to limited quarantine facilities. the municipal officials decided to accept LSIs only by batches so as not to overload these facilities.
Mountain Province, including the capital town of Bontoc, remains COVID-free even if its previous enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was downgraded to general community quarantine (GCQ).
Odsey admitted that LSIs from the municipality are eager to come home after being stranded in different places inside and outside the region but the municipal government is firm in complying with the implementation of the prescribed guidelines governing the community quarantine which must be strictly observed when people want to go home to their places.
Earlier, the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) Mountain province chapter headed by Mayor Odsey crafted the unified guidelines governing the implementation of the GCQ in the whole province to ensure uniformity in the implementation of the rules and regulations for the said purpose.
He claimed that despite the repeated appeals from the LSIs for the municipal government to relax the strict regulations governing the GCQ, returning individuals should understand that what is being protected is the health and safety of the people.