MANILA – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Friday clarified that only Cebu City, and not the whole Central Visayas region, has reverted to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

“No, that is not true. Hindi ang entire Central Visayas, ang Cebu City lang ang ECQ (Not the entire Central Visayas but only Cebu City is under ECQ),” Año said in a radio interview.

Central Visayas consists of the provinces of Cebu, Bohol, Negros Oriental, and Siquijor.

He said the province of Bohol could already be placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) but the local government opted to stay under GCQ as a precautionary measure.

“As for other areas in Central Visayas, they are doing well in terms of managing the situation. They just opted to stay under GCQ because they want to limit (the) movement of people,” Año added.

On Wednesday, Año said the move to revert Cebu City to ECQ is not a form of punishment but a chance to intensify response efforts to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) contagion.

The national government decided to place Cebu City back to ECQ due to the consistent case doubling time of fewer than seven days and a significant rise in critical care utilization against critical care capacity.

Talisay City, a component city under the province of Cebu, has been placed under modified ECQ until June 30 for the same reason.

The DILG, however, assured that the government is ready to assist residents who might be displaced from work due to ECQ.

Under ECQ rules, public transportation is suspended, non-essential establishments and businesses are closed, and non-essential travels are prohibited. (ia/PNA)