The Philippine National Police’s checkpoints will remain in Metro Manila despite the loosening of lockdown rules, Directorate for Operations Chief Major General Emmanuel Licup announced today in a virtual presser.
Checkpoints were set up in various areas in the National Capital Region in March when the area was placed under the enhanced community quarantine, the strictest form of lockdown. Licup said they will remain to ensure that the public is following the rules of the general community quarantine (GCQ), which will start in Metro Manila on June 1.
“The checkpoints located in the borders of Metro Manila will not be removed. Those fixed checkpoints which are not located in the borders can be removed, depending on the assessment of the commanders on the ground. We’re still going to implement GCQ and we need to see and inspect all vehicles if they are complying with social distancing. So checkpoints [in the borders] will not be removed,” Licup said.
While Licup’s zeal in performing his responsibility is admirable, his statement appears to contradict what Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, the leader of the police’s anti-coronavirus task force, said in a separate interview yesterday. Eleazar said they will no longer check all vehicles passing through the borders because it was “impractical” to do so. Only random inspections will be done, he said.
But Licup seems to have a different strategy, judging by what he said today. So maybe set up a Viber chat group and talk to each other, gentlemen?
President Rodrigo Duterte announced last night that Metro Manila and other areas will be placed under the GCQ starting from June 1, despite the continued spike of COVID-19 cases. Experts have advised the government that easing quarantines at this stage is premature, but Malacañang justified its decision by saying Filipinos need to work for a living because giving out handouts to the unemployed was no longer feasible.
This article, Police checkpoints to remain in Metro Manila during general community quarantine, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!