MANILA (UPDATE) - Classes in all levels were suspended in Batangas on Friday after the province recorded its first 2 cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Classes from kindergarten to college in both public and private schools and universities in Batangas will be suspended until the end of March 2020, Batangas Gov. Hermilando Mandanas said in a statement.
"Kailangan din naman na tayo sa Batangas ay mas mag-ingat sa mga panahong ito. Ang kapakanan ng ating mga kalalawigan ay lalo pa nating itaguyod, lalo na ang ating mga kabataan," he said.
(We, in Batangas, must be cautious in these times. We should further push the welfare of our fellow constituents, especially the youth.)
The 2 coronavirus patients reside in Batangas City and are now confined in a medical facility in Metro Manila, said city health officer Dr. Rosanna Barrion.
It was not immediately clear if they are part of the country's current tally of positive cases which is at 52.
Batangas City Mayor Beverly Dimacuha already created a task force to respond to the outbreak, Barrion said in a statement.
The Batangas governor also did not give further details about the COVID-19 patients, but said that Batangas "will overcome this tragedy."
"Batangas pa rin ang most powerful province... Hindi lang sapat sa pagkain [pero] tayo pa rin ang inaasahang mag-supply ng
tilapia, manok, baboy at baka sa pang-araw-araw hindi lamang sa Metro Manila pero maging sa ibang bahagi ng Pilipinas," Mandanas said.
(Batangas remains to be the most powerful province... Not only do we have enough food supply, but we are also expected to supply fish, poultry, pork and beef for the daily needs not only of those in Metro Manila but in other parts of the country.)
"Tayo sa Batangas ay handa at kakayaning harapin ang sakunang ito, kapares na rin ng ating ginagawang pangangalaga dahil naman sa pagputok ng Taal Volcano at pagsisimula ng African Swine Fever sa bayan ng Laurel," he said.
(We in Batangas are prepared and will overcome this tragedy, just like how we have been coping with the eruption of Taal Volcano and the start of the African Swine Fever in the town of Laurel.)
The suspension of classes in Batangas came a day after President Rodrigo Duterte said Metro Manila will be placed on lockdown starting March 15 to curb the spread of the COVID-19, which has killed 5 people in the Philippines and nearly 5,000 others worldwide.