Connect with us

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Manila goes on lockdown

Published

 on 

PHOTO: Workers disinfect a school following new cases of coronavirus in Metro Manila - Reuters

“It’s a lockdown It’s just a matter of protecting and defending you from Covid-19. That’s about it.”

Some 12 million people in the Philippine capital of Manila are now in near total lockdown after a Thursday order from the nation’s president Rodrigo Duterte banning domestic travel and an announcement earlier today of a nighttime curfew in the capital. The president says people in the densely populated region should leave their homes during the daytime only for work or urgent errands, under restrictions imposed to fight the COVID-19 coronavirus.

While the nation has seen only a fraction of the cases of hotspots such as China and Italy, officials say they hope to arrest the spread before it takes root in Manila’s densely packed neighbourhoods.

In a nationally televised address, Duterte announced a month of school closures, a ban on mass gatherings and a prohibition on the entry of “foreigners from places where the contagion is spreading.”

Manila goes on lockdown | News by Thaiger

It was not immediately clear when all the measures would take effect but Duterte says the prohibition on domestic sea, air and land traffic in and out of Manila will start tomorrow.

Since Monday the Philippines’ tally of cases has risen from 24 to 52,  and four of its five virus-related deaths were reported this week. Cases globally now stand at more than 145,374 and deaths at 5,429, most of which have been in China.

Duterte’s draconian move comes after the World Health Organization urged countries to take action, saying the outbreak is a “controllable pandemic”.

Duterte himself underwent screening for the virus Thursday, after coming into contact with government officials who may have exposed to the virus at recent public events. The 74 year old president is in a vulnerable age group for the virus, which poses a greater risk to older people.

Labour group Migrante International expressed concern about how the lockdown would impact the millions of workers who commute into Manila daily.

“This will only bring death and misery to millions of poor and struggling Filipinos who will be prevented from pursuing their livelihood.”

In his address Duterte also touched on one of the most delicate and divisive features of his presidency: his policy pivot towards long-time enemy China.

The president has set aside the two nations’ perennial standoff over Beijing’s extensive claims to the disputed South China Sea and the contentious Spratly Islands  to court trade and investment from the rising power.

“Maybe there will be a time, if things deteriorate, that I have to call on China to help. I hope it would not reach that point, but maybe we will need your help.”

SOURCE: Channel News Asia | Johns Hopkins University | Al Jazeera

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Road deaths2 hours ago

‘Drowsy’ driver crashes van, killing 3 Laotian workers

Thailand2 hours ago

Is the dream over? China walks back Belt & Road ambitions

Politics3 hours ago

Prasert levels 6-billion corruption accusations at Prayut

Sponsored5 hours ago

Segafredo Zanetti Coffee teamed up with Bangkok Airways and hosted “Bangkok Airways Surf Festival 2022”

Thailand3 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Baht plunges to 38 against USD for the first time in 16 years

Phuket3 hours ago

Phuket dwellers honour 10th Lunar Month

Thailand4 hours ago

Thai govt owes 100 million baht to hospitality industry

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand4 hours ago

BMA reveals Bangkok druggies buy yaba online 

Phuket4 hours ago

Delivery driver & customer brawl over payment in Phuket

Transport4 hours ago

Thai Airways flying high at Skytrax Awards

Thailand5 hours ago

Soi Dog Foundation steps up fight against rabies and dog meat trade in Vietnam

Visa5 hours ago

Thailand to extend Smart Visa scheme to draw talent

Cannabis6 hours ago

Can I take cannabis on domestic flights in Thailand?

Thailand6 hours ago

Thailand pays 3.8 billion baht for first train hub in hospital

Transport7 hours ago

Bomb scare on flight from San Francisco to Singapore

South7 hours ago

English teacher’s body found in South Thailand

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending