MANILA – Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri on Wednesday said visitors will not be allowed entry to the Senate premises for three weeks beginning August 15 after three senators tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in just a week.

“We beg for the indulgence of the public, we just want to be safe, we have members and staff with comorbidities,” Zubiri said.

Senator Alan Peter Cayetano tested positive on Aug. 3 followed by Senators Marcos on Aug. 8 and Cynthia Villar on Aug. 9, prompting the Senate leadership to conduct a caucus with the medical team on Wednesday.

Zubiri said all senators during caucus agreed to tighten health and safety protocols and ban visitors for three weeks.

He said not all visitors would be allowed entry unless they are resource persons in the committee hearings and regular sessions.

Those who will be permitted to enter must present negative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test results taken in the last 24 hours.

The senators, during the caucus, also agreed to limit elevator capacity to only five passengers.

The Senate also imposed stricter protocols after the Department of Health (DOH) and OCTA Research projected that Covid-19 cases will peak in the coming weeks. (PNA)