MANILA- Quarantine passes will no longer be required in areas under general community quarantine starting next month, the Department of the Interior and Local Government said Thursday as the government prepared to further ease COVID-19 restrictions across the country.
Should President Rodrigo Duterte allow the further easing of restrictions, authorities, and business establishments should no longer require quarantine passes from the public in GCQ areas by June 1, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said.
"If an LGU (local government unit) is now under GCQ, no need for barangay quarantine passes because hindi na lockdown," he said in a text message to ABS-CBN News.
The inter-agency task force (IATF) on COVID-19 has recommended the transition of Metro Manila to GCQ and the further easing of quarantine protocols in the rest of the country.
But even if quarantine protocols are relaxed, Malaya said LGUs may still impose localized lockdowns within their jurisdiction.
Interior Secretary Eduardo Año had said that villages may be placed under strict lockdowns if these are found to be at "high-risk" of a COVID-19 outbreak.
Under the GCQ, "high-risk" barangays that will log more than 2 new cases of COVID-19 within a 7-day monitoring will be deemed "critical zones," Año said.
TRAVEL PASSES STILL NEEDED
The DILG, however, clarified that crossing borders would still require a travel pass from the Philippine National Police.
"Moving from one province to another, and one region to another, kailangan pa din ng travel authority from PNP," Malaya said.
"LGUs may still impose stricter control on provincial borders so long as consistent with IATF guidelines," he added.
The government had recommended that those 20 years old and below, and those 60 years old and above should stay home due to their vulnerability to COVID-19 even as quarantine protocols are eased.
President Duterte is set to decide on Thursday night community quarantine protocols to take effect starting June 1.