Iloilo starts strict border control

The province of Iloilo has begun implementing strict border restrictions on Wednesday, as mandated in the executive order signed by Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr.

The going in and out of people will be restricted at the border checkpoints while the movement of goods will be unhampered, provided drivers and personnel of delivery trucks undergo proper quarantine procedures.

In a media interview, Defensor said the border restrictions, which aim to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), exempt government, medical, health, and humanitarian workers.

“We will allow our folks from Guimaras because it was once a part of Iloilo. Exemptions will be Guimaras and of course, Iloilo City,” Defensor said.

As of March 17, the province recorded 20 patients under investigation and 2,638 persons under monitoring.

Border restrictions in the province are located at Tiolas village, San Joaquin town, which separates Iloilo and Antique provinces, and in the boundaries of Iloilo and Capiz provinces -- in Matilbog Centro village, Calinog; Aglalana village, Passi City; Poblacion, San Rafael; and Kinalkalan village, Banate.

Col. Paul Kenneth Lucas, Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) director, said 150 police personnel would be deployed to the border control points.

“Our police (officers) are already in place in our five checkpoints in our national roads,” Lucas said in an interview.

The checkpoint in San Joaquin is also a strategic place not only to prevent the spread of Covid-19 but also to guard against the Communist Party of the Philippines - New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).

“We have enough forces to do that,” he said.

Police personnel will render an eight-hour shift daily to man the checkpoints 24/7 and will be accompanied by health service personnel and nurses from the municipal health office.

Meanwhile, Defensor said he has requested the Iloilo board members to hold a special session on Thursday to pass “measures and adopt quarantine regulations to prevent the introduction and spread of Covid-19 in the province.

Source: Philippines News Agency