This Week News

This Week in Bacolod (April 5 to 11, 2020)

New week, new updates. Read on for another set of COVID-19 news in Bacolod.

By: Shanice Reyes | April 05, 2020
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Bacolod, hot zones, Quarantine News, COVID-19, Shopping News, community quarantine

The Provincial Government of Negros Occidental and the City Government of Bacolod reminded residents to stay at home and prevent the “hot zones”. Moreover, Bacolodnons are now also prohibited to consume alcohol and visit internet shops; banking hours in the province are also shortened, as well as the business hours of pharmacies, clinics, and drug stores. Meanwhile, Baciwa and Ceneco lengthened the deadline for consumers’ monthly bills in consideration of the enhanced community quarantine rules. Back in the province, Bacolod City Health Office offers tips on maintaining physical and mental health during the quarantine. Amid the ongoing crisis, nothing will stop the celebration of this year’s holy week as Rev. Fr. Henry Donasco shared guidelines for Holy Week 2020. Lastly in Europe, countries are also suffering from the impact of the pandemic, forcing homeless people in the open.

Quarantine News: Hot zones established in Negros Occidental

The provincial government reminded the citizens to stay at home during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) until April 14 or else violators would be apprehended. Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson said that the ECQ will be the weapon of everyone’s survival against COVID-19 [1]. He also launched “Bantay Negrense”, a campaign to protect the province from the pandemic. “Hot zones” would be declared in barangays when there is a COVID-19 positive patient, one person under investigation (PUI), or at least five persons under monitoring (PUMs). This strategy aims to promote public awareness to make people stay at home and avoid hot zones.

Travel News: Bacolod holds the largest number of curfew violators in Western Visayas

In Western Visayas, around 1,844 curfew violators were arrested amid the efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the region. According to the data released by the Police Regional Office-6, Bacolod City has a total of 744 arrests. Bacolod City Police Office Spokesperson Police Lt. Colonel Ariel Pico said that most of the arrested individuals were minors. Since minors cannot be charged, the department called their parents to the police station and lectured them about the violation. Meanwhile, those of legal age will be fined PhP500 or community service for the first offense; PhP1,000 or community service for the second offense; and PhP3,000 or jail time for the third offense [2].

Shopping News: Liquor banned and bars and internet cafés closed in Bacolod

Executive Order (EO) No. 25 was issued and signed by Mayor Evelio Leonardia ordering the ban on selling, serving, and consumption of liquor in the city [3]. The EO also orders the closure of karaoke bars, internet cafés, and gaming stations. The order was made to discourage people, especially minors and the youth, from entering and gathering in these establishments. The mayor also stressed that the city government is taking these stringent rules seriously to protect the citizens from the spread of the deadly virus.

Banking and Remittance News

Shorter banking hours in Negros

To mitigate exposure to COVID-19, shortened hours will be observed in all banks in Negros Occidental. A “no mask, no entry” policy will also be implemented among their employees and clients [4]. This decision was agreed upon by the 11 members of the Board of the Bankers’ Club of Negros Occidental Inc. after one confirmed case of COVID-19 was reported in Bacolod City. The shortened banking hours will be from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM only until further notice. Upon entry of employees and clients, they shall also have to temporarily take off their face masks as part of the security protocol in banks.

Suspension of bill payments from Baciwa and Ceneco

The collection of bill payments will be temporarily suspended according to the Central Negros Electric Cooperative Inc. (Ceneco) and the Bacolod City Water District (Baciwa). This is to follow the enhanced community quarantine directive in the city.

In Ceneco’s advisory, they will give their customers an extra 15 days to settle their monthly bills starting from March 30. Ceneco’s Bacolod main office and area offices in Bago, Silay, Talisay, and Murcia will be temporarily closed as well. Meanwhile, Baciwa General Manager Juliana Carbon said the main office in Galo-San Juan Street will not be accepting payments and the distribution and reading of water bills will also be suspended until the ECQ is lifted. She noted that the bill for March and April will be based on the customer’s consumption in the past three months. Both of the companies also noted that they will still accept online payments and bank transfers [5].

Health News

All medical facilities in Negros are exempted from closure

Medical facilities like hospitals, pharmacies, clinics, and drug stores will continue to operate and serve the public during the enhanced community quarantine in the province. Under EO. No. 20-22 series of 2020, the mentioned establishments are allowed to open and conduct limited business operations for the public [6].

Bacolod City Health Office release health reminders

The Bacolod City Health Office (CHO) released tips on how to maintain good health during the quarantine [7]. They posted an infographic on their Facebook page, Bacolod CHO - Health Promotion, to inform the community. Here are some important notes from the infographic:

• Have a balanced diet.
• Avoid eating too much.
• Exercise at least three times a week.
• Maintain proper hygiene and wash your hands after and before eating.
• Make sure to wash and cook your food well.
• Follow the “First in, first out” rule in consuming food at home.
• Prioritize healthy food over junk food when buying at supermarkets.
• Practice social distancing in your neighborhood

Holiday News: Rev. Fr. Henry Donasco shares the supplementary guidelines for Holy Week 2020

The Head of the Commission on Liturgy, Rev. Fr. Henry Donasco talked about the supplementary liturgical guidelines for this year’s holy week, specifying that the head of the family should lead the household prayer. He also highlighted the 3P’s for families to follow: Preparation, Participation, and Prayer [9]. The guidelines also instructed the families to wear appropriate attire and set up an altar at home. Lastly, all are encouraged to perform the act of spiritual communion and combat COVID-19 with prayers. The celebration conducted by the Bishop would be aired live on ADSUM Diocese of Bacolod’s Facebook page and on DYAF 1143 AM.

Global News: Increasing number of homeless people in Europe due to COVID-19 threat

Homeless individuals in Europe’s major cities are faced with hunger and suffering during the COVID-19 pandemic. The enforcement of the lockdown forced the homeless people to pay fines to the police for being outside. Meanwhile, the shortage of protective gear for social workers in soup kitchens forced the closure of these establishments [8]. An estimated 700,000 people in the streets and in shelters were recorded in Europe. The former minister in Luxembourg, Nicolas Schmit, appealed to governments to use the European Union funds to avoid more deaths among the homeless.

Go to Yoorekka for more COVID-19 updates in Bacolod.

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About Shanice Reyes
Shanice Reyes writes to buy herself good coffee and bike parts. When she's not writing, you can find her playing Ultimate Frisbee, traveling to new places, or hanging out with her dogs and tarantulas. Though she has an irrational fear of heights, she'd love to try sky-diving one day.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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