Bacolod folks discouraged from handshaking, hugging

Amid the continuing threat of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), residents here are strongly discouraged from greeting people involving physical contact.

Mayor Evelio Leonardia’s latest directive regarding social distancing is based on Executive Order No. 23, Series of 2020 dated March 17 released to reporters on Wednesday.

“I do hereby order that handshaking, ‘pagmamano (kissing of the elder's hand),’ hugging, ‘beso-beso’ or kissing on the cheeks, and other forms of greeting involving physical contact shall be strongly discouraged to further promote social distancing,” he said.

The mayor instead urged Bacolodnons “to live up to that cultural distinction of being citizens of the ‘City of Smiles’ and to behave accordingly on that basis without need of physical contact to greet one another”.

“Every Bacolodnon should do his part in preventing the spread of the virus even in the most basic means, by practicing social distancing,” he added.

Leonardia said the order takes effect immediately and remains in effect until the city has been declared by the Department of Health as free of the threat of Covid-19 contagion.

As of 6 p.m. of March 17, Bacolod has 11 patients under investigation (PUIs) and 410 persons under monitoring (PUMs), based on the latest available data of the City Health Office.

Earlier, Leonardia issued EO No. 21 placing Bacolod under a general community quarantine from March 14 to April 14.

“All land, sea and air travel to and from Bacolod shall be restricted,” the order said.

In EO No. 22, Leonardia outlined the implementing rules and regulations of EO No. 21.

Among these are malls, recreational centers, community centers and other commercial areas limiting their daily operational hours until 8 p.m. and curfew hours from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m.

“Any person failing or refusing to observe this curfew measure will be dealt with properly by the Philippine National Police as regards the inimical act committed in violation of public order,” the order added.

Checkpoints have also been put up in strategic areas of the city to enforce necessary quarantine measures.

Source: Philippines News Agency