Malacanang has reportedly ordered the one-week closure of the huge Cebu airport to all international flights, citing continued violation of government-mandated Covid19 health protocols.
The order coursed through the Inter-Agency Task Force on Covid19 (IATF) states that from the period May 29 to June 5, all international flights being handled by the Mactan-Cebu International Airport will be diverted to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA)
The temporary diversion, which is expected to impact harshly on thousands of inbound and outbound airline passengers, was reportedly prompted by Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia’s decision to defy the government’s quarantine requirements, including Covid19 testing for all travellers seven days after their arrival which she described as “repressive.”
The IATF order, sources said, is meant to prevent the further spread of the deadly virus in the country.
The IATF prescribes that all incoming international travellers must pass through a 10-day quarantine process in an authorized facility, wherein the last four days may be completed at home. Additionally, they are supposed to undergo a swab test on the seventh day after their arrival.
Garcia invoked Sec. 105 of Republic Act 7160 in defying the IATF rules which permit local government units (LGUs) to assume control and supervision over health operations within their respective jurisdictions as they are in the best position to determine what is best for their residents.
Palace sources meanwhile added that the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are now preparing the appropriate charges to be filed against Garcia for refusing to follow the dictates of the national government.
Photo: CNN Philippines