This Week News

This Week in Metro Manila (January 2 to 8, 2021)

Metro Manila is still under GCQ for the first month of 2021.

By: Denisse Shawntel Tan | January 02, 2021
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Metro Manila, new year, COVID-19, quarantine, Lockdown News, Traffic News, Travel Updates, Shopping News, Health News

Metro Manila welcomes the New Year in the same status as its general community quarantine level was retained. Along with health concerns, transportation adjustments are also prioritized. Pasig City and Valenzuela City adjusted transportation rules for residents who use bicycles and exempted them from using face shields. Meanwhile, motorists who will be using the Skyway 3 will get to enjoy a month-long toll-free service. Apart from transportation concerns, electricity supply is also secured for residents as MERALCO extends their “no disconnection” policy until January 31, 2021.

Lockdown News: Duterte announced quarantine status for January

President Rodrigo Duterte announced the quarantine level of Metro Manila and other areas last December 28. According to Duterte, Metro Manila will remain under general community quarantine (GCQ) until January 31. Other areas under GCQ are Davao del Norte, Isabela, Batangas, Iloilo, Iligan, Santiago, Lanao del Sur, Tacloban, and Davao [1]. The rest of the country will be in modified general community quarantine.

Traffic News

Valenzuela and Pasig City allows cyclists from using face shields

The Valenzuela City and Pasig City local government agreed to exempt cyclists from using face shields. In Valenzuela City, Mayor Rex Gatchalian approved Executive Order No. 2020-347, which exempts cyclists from wearing face shields, a requirement by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF). According to Gatchalian, the EO aims to increase the safety, productivity, and mobility of cyclists in the city. The EO also highlights other safety protocols such as physical distancing and wearing of face shields when entering public establishments [1].

On the other hand, the Pasig City Transport Development and Management Office said that face shields make breathing and seeing difficult for cyclists. Since cyclists are far from other commuters, wearing face shields is not necessary when biking. However, just like in Valenzuela, the Pasig City government also asks cyclists to follow other safety protocols when in public places.

Pasig City ferry system resumes operations

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced the adjusted operating schedule of the Pasig River Ferry Service (PRFS) during the holiday season last December 25. According to the PRFS, normal operations will resume on January 2, 2021. The PRFS operates from Pasig River to Intramuros, Manila. Free rides are also offered to customers during the general community quarantine [2].

Skyway 3 toll-free for a month

The Metro Manila Skyway stage 3 is toll-free for the entire month of January, as announced by San Miguel Corporation Chief Operating Officer Ramon Ang last December 28. San Miguel Corporation partially opened the 18-kilometer Skyway last December 29, and it is set to be fully open on January 1 [3]. The Metro Manila Skyway 3 connects the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) and the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) and shortens the travel time between Buendia and Balintawak from 2 hours to only 15 to 20 minutes.

Shopping News

Meralco’s “no disconnection” policy extended until January 31

Manila Electric Company (MERALCO) President and CEO Atty. Ray Espinosa announced that the company has extended their “no disconnection” policy until January 31, 2021 to provide relief and convenience to their customers during the holiday season amid the COVID-19 pandemic [4]. The extension is expected to benefit over 3 million customers.

Previously, MERALCO disconnected the power supply of households with unsettled electric bills, but the Energy Regulatory Commission prohibited power distributors from cutting electric supply for the entire 2020 due to the pandemic.

Health News

Valenzuela business owners can now apply for sanitary and health permits online

The Valenzuela City government now offers online processing of health and sanitary permits for business owners and entrepreneurs [5]. Permit applications can be accessed through Valenzuela’s 3S Plus Online Services at Upon registering, businesses will be undergoing the city’s routine sanitation inspection to make sure that the establishment follows the Sanitation Code of the Philippines.

Business owners can start their businesses after submitting the requirements for online application; they can download permits after the approval. Business owners can also submit their applications for health certificates through an employee who’s using the system. The health permit is applicable to businesses like barbershops, beauty salons, food industry, and other establishments under similar services.

Go to Yoorekka for more COVID-19 updates in Metro Manila.

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About Denisse Shawntel Tan
Denisse Tan is currently a work in progress: she’s an aspiring writer, artist, and fashion designer! She’s trying to figure out how to manage her time in achieving all of her goals while also taking in life as humanly possible. Aside from art, she’s a big fan of the color pink, disco music, Bratz dolls, and Genshin Impact. By age 35, she plans to travel to New York City 🗽.
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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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