By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Negros Occidental Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz yesterday said relaxing border control at the provincial level will have “a very dangerous effect,” which the provincial government wants to avoid.
Diaz said the Provincial Development Council will have a meeting on Friday, February 19, and among the topics to be discussed is the easing of border controls by some local government units.
“As far as our stand, in agreement with the mayors, travel in and out of Negros Occidental is still restricted, with borders remain closed, unless it is superseded by another executive order,” Diaz reiterated.
He added that medical society experts still warned that it is not wise to be complacent, noting resurgence of coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19, cases in other areas, citing the case of Cebu which opened their tourism areas that caused alarm to other sectors.
Meanwhile, Vallehermoso and Mabinay towns in Negros Oriental have opened their respective borders with the cities of San Carlos and Kabankalan in Negros Occidental, noting a drop in number of active COVID-19 cases in their areas.
Kabankalan City, however, only allows Mabinay town residents to enter and stay in the city within 24 hours, according to Mayor Isidro Zayco.
“They can’t go beyond Kabankalan City,” Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said on Monday, February 15, noting also that Mabinay residents are highly dependent on Kabankalan in dealing with banks and even pharmacies.
As of Monday, the Provincial Incident Management Team recorded 70 active COVID-19 cases in Negros Occidental. Negros Oriental, on the same day, had 167 active cases./DGB, WDJ