Amid rising of cases
CATARMAN, Northern Samar – In order to slow down the spread COVID-19 in Northern Samar, which is soon to exceed 1,000 cases in our province, Task Force Disiplina was organized to strictly enforce the mandatory wearing of face mask and face shield in public places.
Governor Edwin Ongchuan has asked the Northern Samar Police Provincial Office to strengthen implementation of Sangguniang Panlalawigan Ordinance No. 10, or the mandatory wearing of face mask or other protective equipment in public places. He also asked the police not to spare even the big fishes, particularly government employees, during the conduct of Task Force Disiplina, which started on November 12, 2020 in this town.
“Pag Empleyado sa Gobyerno madakop san Taskforce Disiplina, Police Blotter and multa dayon,” Governor Ongchuan posted in his Facebook account.
Though SP Ordinance No. 10 was passed in May 2020, many Nortehanons have been lax and negligent in observing said law, a behavior credited as one of the factors in the current surge of COVID cases in the province, prompting the governor to organize said task force. Task Force Disiplina is led by PLtCol Crisanto Lleva of the NSPPO.
On November 12 and 13, the task force has apprehended 214 violators from 18 operations conducted in the towns of Catarman, Bobon, Rosario, San Jose, Lavezares, Biri, Gamay, Palapag, Lapinig and Las Navas; 109 of them were from Catarman.
They were brought to their respective police stations and underwent counseling from the Local Health Office on the importance of wearing face protections in order to stop the spread of the virus. They were subsequently subjected to appropriate police processing and disposition. Those who cannot afford to buy their own face mask and face shield were given said items for free by the task force.
Per data from the PDRRMO, in Catarman alone, the task force has already given around 700 face shields and 500 face masks to the public.
Violators of this ordinance will be penalized accordingly: P1,000 or community service for 24 hours for first offense; P2,000 or community service for 48 hours for the second offense; and P5,000 or 1-month imprisonment or both for the third offense.
In relation to pandemic concerns, public places are areas or places where a large number of people go to or congregate, such as public conveyances and public facilities.
In particular, these places include transport terminals and loading areas for pdcabs/tricycles/motorcabs; restaurants, cafeterias and takeout establishments; government buildings; hospitals and pharmacies; churches; public markets, supermarkets and grocery stores; and other similar places/establishments. As a general guideline, wearing face mask and face shield should be practiced upon leaving the house.(NORTHERN SAMAR PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)