MANILA— The Department of the Interior and Local Government is ready to enforce new regulations if government lowers quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila to Alert Level 2, an official said Thursday.
The easing is possible as COVID-19 cases continue to decline, DILG Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III earlier said.
The decision rests upon the Department of Health and the technical working group on data analytics of the Inter-Agency Task Force against COVID-19, said DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya.
"We at the DILG and PNP (Philippine National Police), we're prepared to implement new regulations once the decision is made to go to a lower alert level," he told ANC's Headstart.
"It's not really for us in the DILG to say... I would expect maybe in the next month. Next week is already November. I can see the consistency in our data, the decrease in our cases has been dramatic— 48 percent decline in our cases in the past 2 weeks. If this trend continues, we can look at a lowering of alert level soon."
Under Alert Level 2, establishments' indoor capacity will be increased to 50 percent and another 10 percent will be added if it is granted a safety seal, according to Malaya. Outdoor dining will be increased to 70 percent capacity, he said.
The IATF will also meet to discuss whether to allow minors outside their homes, he added.
Under Alert Level 3, minors can go outdoors to procure essential goods or services.
"It's going to be a consideration. This has been discussed intensely in the IATF, in the technical working group level. I can expect an announcement very soon by the IATF on how we're going to treat the minors," he said.
The Philippines is now classified as "low-risk" for COVID-19 following a decline in fresh cases over the past 2 weeks, the Department of Health earlier said.
It tallied 3,218 new infections on Wednesday, the lowest in more than 5 months, pushing its total cases to 2,768,849.