SP grants emergency authority to close borders, issue HQPs

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BY CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO

An ordinance granting emergency authority to Mayor Evelio Leonardia in the face of COVID-19 pandemic was approved by the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod on final reading during its regular session yesterday.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Renecito Novero grants the mayor emergency authority to issue executive orders, directives and advisories for strategies and programs that will halt or mitigate the transmission of COVID-19 in the city.

The executive issuance from the mayor may include the lockdown of and restriction of movements in specified places in the city, closing of borders, establishment of check points, imposition of home quarantine, the issuance of home quarantine passes (HQP) and imposition of regular curfew hours, among others.

With the emergency authority, the mayor, can order the closure of buildings or offices of business establishments with workers infected with COVID-19, regulate public and private transportation within the city, conduct massive RT-PCR tests, and other measures needed under the emergency situation, Novero said.

The emergency authority may be exercised not beyond 14 days and, when circumstances so warrant, may be extended to another period of 14 days upon consultation with the Emergency Committee, the ordinance stated.

It also provides for the creation of the Emergency Committee to assist the mayor in formulating policies and executing measures.*

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