Duterte reiterates call for people to stay home, wear face mask in public

Rose Carmelle Lacuata, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 07 2020 01:00 AM

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday reiterated the need for people to stay at home as the country battles the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

In a televised speech, Duterte said people should stay at home to avoid exposing themselves to the virus.

"Anong solusyon? Huwag kang mahawa. Papaano po? Huwag kang lumabas ng bahay. Paano ang kain namin? Maghanap ka ng paraan," he said.

He also added that wearing face masks is important when going out of the house.

"Mag-ano ka lang, basta may mask ka lang," Duterte added.

On April 2, the Philippine government required all residents of Luzon to wear a face mask or facial protective gear when they go out of their houses.

"Kung kailangan po nating lumabas ng bahay, kailangan po mag mask. Kahit improvised ito o panyo, basta po may pangtakip tayo ng bibig at ilong," said Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles during a televised briefing.

(If you need to leave your home, you need to wear a mask even if it's improvised or just a handkerchief. What's important is you cover your nose and mouth.)

The enhanced community quarantine, which took effect on March 17, entailed the unprecedented suspension of school, public transport, and work -- except for frontliners -- in Luzon for a month. 

Government has yet to decide whether to lift the quarantine as scheduled on April 12 or extend the lockdown, as some officials have suggested. 

On Monday night, Duterte said he was "inclined to extend" the lockdown until April 30.

As of Monday, the Philippines had 3,660 cases of COVID-19, with 73 recoveries and 163 deaths.