MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Archie Gamboa tested negative for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac, PNP spokesperson on Wednesday said Gamboa underwent a test and the result was negative.
“Yes, nag-undergo siya ng (he underwent a) test pero (but it had) negative result. I think two weeks ago na yung result (The results were out two weeks ago). I have no exact date though,” he said in a message to the Philippine News Agency.
Banac added that Gamboa had no recent meetings with the Department of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año, who confirmed that he was positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday.
“He is on duty, up and running the entire affairs of the PNP amid the ECQ (enhance community quarantine). He follows strict social distancing and disinfection of personnel and vehicles entering camp,” Banac stressed.
Prior to the release of his Covid-19 test results, Año started his self-quarantine on March 26 after learning four persons he had associated with tested positive for Covid-19.
He said the result of his test will not dampen his spirit and energy to perform his job as one of the officials of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases tasked to combat the deadly virus.
Año urged the people he had contact with to follow the Department of Health (DOH) guidelines on self-quarantine.
Meanwhile, DILG Undersecretary and spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said the senior officials of the agency who were in close contact with Año, including him, are now on self-quarantine in accordance with DOH protocols.
“The entire Department of the Interior and Local Government, including all uniformed personnel and local government units nationwide, joins the nation in praying for the speedy recovery of Secretary Año who tested positive,” Malaya said in a statement on Wednesday.
Malaya assures the public that the operations of the DILG will not in any way be affected by this development.
“The Secretary has constant access to the President, the senior officials of the Department and is in constant communication with the IATF-EID, NTF-COVID-19, DILG Emergency Operations Center, JTF COVID Shield, and the PNP Command Center. The Secretary will harness the newest technology to communicate, give instructions, and will get the job done,” he stressed.
As the enhanced community quarantine is now on its third week, he said Año urged the entire agency to double its efforts in fighting Covid-19.
“As front-liners in this war, the public depends on us to be relentless in this battle to ensure their safety and well-being. As we gear towards providing the largest direct financial assistance to poor families in the history of our country, the DILG will be there to support our partner agencies and monitor local government units,” Malaya added. (PNA)