Children play inside plastic pipelines at the Baseco compound in Manila yesterday jan 22,2021. The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases eased the age restrictions in areas under modified general community quarantine, allowing children aged 10 to 14 years old to go out beginning February 1. (photo by ali vicoy)
BY ELLSON A. QUISMORIO
Sorry kids, no more malling and biking once again.
Starting Wednesday, minors will be prohibited anew from going outside their residences amid the alarming rise of active coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in Metro Manila.
A Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) advisory Tuesday, bared that the Metro Manila Council (MMC) is drafting a resolution prohibiting minors, particularly aged 15-17, to go outdoors for a period of two weeks. This will be implemented in all the 17 cities and lone municipality comprising the National Capital Region (NCR).
This means that only individuals aged 18-65 years old are allowed to go outside their homes.
According to MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos, the move has been agreed upon by the NCR (Metro Manila) mayors in a bid to contain the transmission of the virus in the metropolis.
“We are implementing age restrictions because of the increase in our COVID-19 cases. We encourage everyone to strictly observe and practice the minimum health protocols, and be extra careful and follow stringent measures particularly when around vulnerable family members, as there have been reports of transmission among family members,” he said.
“As I’ve said before, the metro mayors and MMDA are regularly monitoring the COVID-19 numbers and we will implement calibration and changes on our directives depending on the figures that we have,” Abalos added.
Last month, Abalos said NCR mayors agreed to ease age restrictions as the government sought to encourage economic activities.
But the sudden jump in active cases this month has made the MMC – the policy-making body of the MMDA – more cautious. It even led to the implementation of a uniform, metro-wide curfew of 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., which began Monday.