As Covid-19 cases continue to increase in Zamboanga City, nearly hitting the 200 mark as of yesterday, Mayor Beng Climaco has instructed concerned offices to prepare at least 700-bed isolation facilities in case the situation worsens as it was during the first wave of the pandemic last year.
In an emergency meeting yesterday, Climaco instructed the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (CDRRMO) and the City Engineer’s Office (CEO) to have the isolation facilities used last year be ready the soonest time possible.
Most of the isolation facilities in sight for repair and renovation are the former Lantaka Hotel, Euntes Harmony Village, Ecozone and the Grandstand.
At present, the city has only about 300 beds available for isolation of mild and moderate Covid-19 patients, thus the need to prepare for more isolation facilities as covid cases continue to spike.
Meanwhile, Mayor Climaco has instructed the security forces to track down, manhunt or locate the 17 people from Surigao who arrived in the city the other day but went missing to evade quarantine after one of them was tested positive for Covid-19.
City Health Officer Dr. Dulce Miravite said when one of the 17 travelers was tested positive for covid, they immediately tried to contact and trace them for quarantine as they travelled together, but they could no longer be contacted, their whereabouts in the city cannot be located anymore, thus posing a health risk among them and people here that they might have in contact with.
Accordingly, these people were bound for Tawi-Tawi to work in a mining site. It was not immediately confirmed if they had already left for Tawi-Tawi.
Climaco has instructed CDRRMO head Dr. Elmeir Apolinario to coordinate with Tawi-Tawi LGU on the whereabouts of these travelers, whether or not they had already arrived there. As this developed, the chief executive stood firm to continue the strict implementation of the “No Swab, No Entry” policy even as she has directed the security forces at the border control points in the east and west coasts to be vigilant of people trying to gain entry into the city with spurious documents and without negative RT-PCR test result.-(Vic Larato)