Philippines extends Manila lockdown to mid-May

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has extended a lockdown in the capital Manila and high-risk localities in Luzon island for two more weeks until May 15 to contain the COVID-19.

27, Apr. 2020

Manila
Manila

HANOI, VNA - Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has extended a lockdown in the capital Manila and high-risk localities in Luzon island for two more weeks until May 15 to contain the COVID-19.

Meanwhile, restrictions will be eased in lower-risk regions of the country.

Duterte has decided to start community quarantines in low-risk regions from May 1, per suggestion of the country’s Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases.

He also warned to declare martial law if militants disrupted the flow of relief goods for Filipinos impacted by the lockdown.

There were a total 6,981 COVID-19 infections and 462 deaths in the Philippines, with Manila accounting for a lion’s share.

Philippine Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said the country had disbursed 352.7 billion PHP (6.94 billion USD) for the fight against COVID-19.

He added the sum was sourced from the 2020 government budget, which is capped at 4.1 trillion PHP and crafted before the pandemic viewed as a threat.

The nation has had sufficient cash so far but is getting squeezed by budget allowance, said Dominguez III.

Earlier, the official said that the Philippines plans to borrow about 5.6 billion USD from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to battle the global pandemic. President Duterte is eyeing the sale of government assets as a last resort to keep the country afloat. - VNA