Sagada in Mountain Province is extending its “cultural lockdown” to avoid a spike in coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases.
Mayor James Pooten said the observance of the “sedey” or the cultural lockdown is extended in the entire municipality until February 11, 2021.
“In view of the rise in cases in Sagada and its nearby municipalities, the wide coverage of the ongoing contact tracing efforts, and of the province-wide response to implement strict border controls, the current cultural lockdown in the Municipality of Sagada earlier advised to end on February 04, 2021 is hereby extended until February 11, 2021,” Municipal Advisory No. 45 issued by Pooten stated. .
Following the surge of Covid-19 cases in Mountain Province in January reaching the critical epidemic risk level, the Sagada local government initially implemented “sedey” in the entire municipality from January 29 to February 4.
On the last week of January, the National Inter Agency Task Force against Covid-19 through the Bases Conversion Development Authority and the Bureau of Fire Protection, in coordination with the Cordillera Regional Task Force against Covid-19 and the local government units in Mountain Province, conducted an aggressive community testing at the different towns in the province including Sagada.
Pooten said results of the mass testing conducted are seen to bring another surge in Covid-19 cases.
As of February 2, Sagada already recorded 40 Covid-19 cases with 25 active cases and 15 recoveries. Thirty-four cases were recorded just this year.
Under a cultural lockdown, entry to the municipality will be prohibited unless for purpose of extreme emergency.
Movement of persons in the community will be limited to emergency and essential purposes such as purchasing of essential goods and accessing or reporting to offices and businesses that are allowed to operate.
Establishments allowed to operate will be open from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. only.
Those allowed to operate include the municipal and barangay offices, financial institutions, hospitals and medical facilities. Local farms and fishery operations, and utilities and utility services but is not limited to water, gas, and electric services and the public safety services are also allowed to operate.
Social and mass gatherings are temporarily prohibited including religious gatherings and cultural rites unless obligatory such as in case of death.
Vehicles only intending to pass through Sagada going to other municipalities will be allowed passage but are strongly advised to take the Sagada-Dantay road and pass through Pegeo Control Point for record purposes.
Regular workers from Sagada employed in other municipalities are advised to make suitable work arrangements for the duration of the cultural lockdown.