Duterte OKs nationwide Covid-19 alert levels

By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos

November 11, 2021, 4:28 pm

<p>President Rodrigo Roa Duterte <em>(File photo)</em></p>

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (File photo)

MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte has issued an executive order (EO) authorizing the nationwide the Alert Levels System (ALS) to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in the country.

Under EO 151 inked Thursday, Duterte allowed the adoption of the ALS for nationwide rollout that will be undertaken in four phases.

The first phase of the nationwide implementation covers the pilot areas where ALS is currently being implemented, according to the order.

Other regions, EO 151 said, will follow in the succeeding phases.

Listed in the Phase 1 are Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Northern Mindanao, and Davao Region.

Ilocos Region, Eastern Visayas, and Soccsksargen fall under Phase 2, while Cagayan Valley, Bicol Region, and Zamboanga Peninsula are under Phase 3.

Included in the Phase 4 are Cordillera Administration Region, Mimaropa, Caraga, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

"The shift to Phase 2 may begin at any time after the effectivity of this Order, as may be determined by the IATF, but not later than the end of November 2021. The succeeding phases shall them commence every week thereafter until full nationwide implementation," EO 151 read.

The existing guidelines on the ALS approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) will remain in effect and be enforced in all areas where Covid-19 alert levels will be implemented.

"The said Guidelines shall be renamed accordingly to reflect its new status," the order said. "The IATF is hereby authorized to amend or modify such Guidelines as may be necessary to achieve the objectives of the ALS, without the need of further approval of the President."

Pending the full nationwide implementation of the ALS, the current guidelines for the community quarantine in the country, which were approved through EO 112 inked in 2020, will remain in effect in all areas not yet placed under the ALS.

EO 151 directs all government departments, agencies, and instrumentalities, including state colleges and universities, government-owned or -controlled corporations, government financial institutions, and local government units, to render full assistance to and cooperation with the IATF-EID.

All state departments and offices are also mandated to mobilize the necessary resources for the nationwide ALS.

EO 151 states that EO 112 will be deemed repealed, once all areas of the country are placed under the ALS.

The new EO takes effect immediately upon publication in the Official Gazette or a newspaper of general circulation. (PNA)