Metro Manila shortens curfew hours, residents aged 18-65 allowed outside homes

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 19 2020 08:02 AM | Updated as of Oct 19 2020 04:00 PM

People wearing face masks pass in front of a mall in Manila on September 08, 2020. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA (UPDATE) - Metro Manila residents aged 18 to 65 will be allowed outside their homes between 4 a.m. to 12 midnight beginning this week as mayors shortened curfew hours, an official said Monday.

The previous curfew in the capital region was 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.

The decision was made in a meeting between Metro Manila mayors, members of the inter-agency task force against COVID-19, and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), said general manager Jojo Garcia.

Curfew in Navotas City will remain 8 p.m. to 5 a.m., according to Metro Manila Council (MMC) head and Parañaque Mayor Edwin Olivarez.

"Ito po ay mangyayari ngayong linggo na ito dahil aayusin na po iyong mga ordinansa, EO ng ating mga mayors," Garcia said in a virtual Palace briefing.

(This will happen this week as mayors draft ordinances and executive orders.)

"Pababa na po ang ating cases sa Metro Manila pero di po tayo pwede magrelax kaya pinaiigting po natin ang ating minimum health protocol pati po ang ating critical care para sating mga pasyente ay ine-expand ng mga ospital all over Metro Manila," Olivarez told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

(COVID-19 cases in Metro Manila are decreasing but we cannot relax so we're intensifying our minimum health protocols and our critical care in hospitals all over the region.)

Navotas City mayor Toby Tiangco said his jurisdiction, which currently has 110 active COVID-19 cases, needs more time before it eases curfew restrictions.

"We're just keeping it safe. Lahat naman ng ating paghihigpit, ang end-goal nito is to loosen up later on. But we will loosen up little by little. Ibig sabihin, ayaw natin ng biglaan and I think for Navotas, it is not yet the time," he told ANC.

(Our restrictions' end-goal is to loosen it later on. But we will loosen up little by little. We don't want it abruptly and think for Navotas, it is not yet the time.)

Garcia added that the MMC, the governing board and policy-making body, recommended to increase the capacity of churches to 30 percent.

Olivarez said Simbang Gabi or dawn masses will also be allowed and curfew may be shortened to 12 midnight to 3 a.m. beginning Dec. 1.

The Metro Manila mayors will meet again to discuss Simbang Gabi policy and recommendations on the region's quarantine restriction, Olivarez added.

"Mas dadami po ang simba sa madaling araw para po maiwasan natin 'yun pong ating gatherings na dikit-dikit at magkakaroon ng physical distancing," he said.

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The Metro Manila mayors also recommended the extension of general community quarantine in the region until the end of the year, Garcia said. Currently NCR is under GCQ until October 31. 

Meanwhile, more jeepney routes will be opened in the coming days as demand for public transportation in Metro Manila increased, said Garcia.

--With Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News