MANILA - The government's inter-agency task force against COVID-19 will decide later Monday whether to ease Metro Manila's lockdown as its general community quarantine status (GCQ) is set to end Sep. 30, Malacañang said.
IATF data shows some cities may transition to a looser modified GCQ (MGCQ) but mayors have decided that the capital region's lockdown should be classified as a whole, according to Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.
"Ang alam ko po isasapinal ang rekomendasyon ngayong araw sa IATF, baka mamayang gabi po magkaroon ng desisyon ang ating Presidente," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.
(I know that the IATF will finalize its recommendation today and maybe later the President will have his decision.)
Duterte is expected to address the nation from Malacañang later Monday after he spent a week in his hometown Davao City, Roque said.
"Baka mas maraming beses po natin makita ang Presidente dahil mas marami siyang appointment ngayon sa Malago Clubhouse. Isang linggo po siya sa Davao, umuwi po siya kagabi at dito po siya magmemensahe sa taumbayan," he said.
(Maybe we'll see him more as he has more upcoming appointments in Malago Clubhouse. He spent 1 week in Davao, he returned last night and he will give his message to the people here.)
It is better to only reopen half of the economy, Roque added. The capital region, home to roughly a tenth of the Philippines' 100 million population, accounts for a third of the country's gross domestic product.
"Kung titingnan natin ang health indicators, dapat siguro manatiling sarado ang 50 porsyento ng ating ekonomiya. Kasi pag GCQ halos 50 porsyento lang ang bukas," he said.
(If we will look at health indicators, maybe we should keep 50 percent of our economy closed. Because under GCQ, only 50 percent are open.)
The Philippines as of Sunday reported 304,226 cases of COVID-19, with 5,344 deaths and 252,510 recoveries.