Lockdown curfew violators can be arrested, PNP reiterates

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 24 2020 01:11 PM

Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) secure the border of Mandaluyong and Manila on March 17, 2020. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA- Violators of curfews imposed by local government units during the month-long Luzon lockdown can be arrested, the Philippine National Police (PNP) reminded the public on Tuesday.

Even without local curfews, the public should stay indoors for the duration of the lockdown until April 12 to help in government efforts to contain the spread of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19), said Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, deputy chief for operations of the PNP.

“Itong curfew na ito pinapatupad ng mga LGUs para mag-stay tayo sa bahay. Sa oras ng curfew, puwede naming kayo i-accost o arestuhin,” Eleazar said in a televised press briefing.

(This curfew is being implemented by the LGUs (local government units) so people would stay at home. During the curfew, we (police) can accost or arrest you.)

Some local governments have set window hours for grocery shopping while some have opted for 24-hour curfews to force the public to stay in their homes.

Luzon was placed on lockdown until April 12 to prevent the spread of the virus. The enhanced community quarantine means strict home confinement in all households, suspension of public transport, regulation of provision for food and essential health services, and heightened presence of uniformed personnel to enforce isolation procedures.

Eleazar also asked barangay watchmen (barangay tanod) to help in reminding the public to stay indoors as most police officers were sent to man borders and quarantine checkpoints.

“Ang tama pong gawin ng ating mga barangay, mga barangay tanod ay tumulong po kayo para sa inyong lugar na nasasakupan na mapaalalahanan itong mga kababayan natin na mag-stay sa loob ng bahay,” he said.

(What our village watchmen can do is to help remind residents in their areas to stay indoors.)