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PHL’s virus response hits over P1 trillion so far

By Beatrice M. Laforga, Reporter THE Philippine government has set aside $23 billion (P1.165 trillion) so far for its battle against the coronavirus disease...

Less than half of Metro Manila residents doing ‘good’ under lockdown

LESS than half, or 47.5%, of Metro Manila residents are doing “good” or “very good” under the enhanced community quarantine currently being implemented to...

Nationwide Round-up

Duterte staying in Manila during Holy Week holiday PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte is staying in Malacañang and attending to duties during the coming long weekend...

Duterte told to extend cash aid to middle class

A CONGRESSMAN wants all Filipinos except for the richest — 10% of the population — to get at least P1,000 each in cash aid...

Sotto pushes for ID system rollout for COVID-19 aid distribution

THE GOVERNMENT should fast-track the roll out of the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) to address problems in granting aid under the Emergency Subsidy Program...

Gov’t set to announce decision on Luzon lockdown

THE government was expected to announce its decision by late Monday on whether it would extend a Luzon-wide lockdown to contain the coronavirus disease...

LGUs allowed to buy own COVID-19 test kits

LOCAL government units (LGUs) have the authority to buy their own test kits for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), according to Health Secretary Francisco...

DoST increases face shield output from 3D printers

THE Department of Science and Technology (DoST) has increased its production of face shields for frontliners who face the highest risk from the coronavirus...

Speaker says gov’t can look for other fund sources for COVID-19...

HOUSE Speaker Alan Peter S. Cayetano said the executive branch can find other sources of funds if the budget for the cash aid program...

Task force recommendation on Luzon lockdown extension may be presented Monday

THE GOVERNMENT’S team handling response measures on the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak could possibly decide by Monday on whether or not to recommend...

COVID-19 deaths in PHL now at 136

THE Department of Health (DoH) reported that an additional 385 persons tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) positive cases on Friday, bringing the total to 3,018. Twenty-nine patients died, raising the total number of deaths due to the disease to 136.

House may hold virtual sessions when it resumes

THE House of Representatives may hold virtual sessions once Congress resumes on May 4 if the risk of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) still persists, House Speaker Alan Peter S. Cayetano said.

DICT offers DoJ use of its PNPKI digital certificates

THE Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) offered its Philippine National Public Key Infrastructure (PNPKI) digital certificates to the prosecutors and officers of the Department of Justice — National Prosecution Service (DoJ-NPS).

Bureau of Immigration allows foreigners to leave without visa stamps

THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) said it is now allowing foreigners with approved visa applications to leave the country even if those visas have not been implemented and stamped in their passports.

#COVID-19 Regional Updates (04/02/20)

LAWMAKERS on Thursday hit the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for summoning Pasig City Mayor Victor Ma. Regis N. Sotto for alleged violation of lockdown rules against tricycle operations.

Nationwide round-up

PRESIDENTIAL Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) Commissioner Greco B. Belgica said they will not investigate Vice President Maria Leonor G. Robredo over initiatives in helping respond to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, contrary to a statement by another PACC commissioner.

QC extends property tax deadline by one month

QUEZON CITY has extended the deadline for the payment of annual and first quarter real property taxes to April 30 from March 31 after an enhanced community quarantine was imposed on Luzon.

Nationwide round-up

THE VALIDATION result of the test kit developed by the University of the Philippines National Institutes for Health (UP NHI) will be submitted by Wednesday, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Director General Rolando Enrique D. Domingo said.

DoLE urged to suspend overseas nurse deployments

A LEGISLATOR asked the Department of Labor and Employment to suspend the overseas deployment of nurses for the duration of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) containment effort.

Nationwide round-up

THE ENTIRE fleet of charter airline Lionair, Inc. has been grounded following Sunday night’s crash of one of its medical evacuation (medevac) planes at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, killing all eight people onboard.

343 cases added; budget for volunteers vowed

THE DEPARTMENT of Health (DoH) reported 343 coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) infections on Sunday -- a record daily increase -- bringing the total to 1,418.

Local governments told to allow foreigners to leave

THE Bureau of Immigration will allow foreigners to leave the country even without their alien certificate of registration ID, the agency said in a statement on Friday.

Fee waiver sought for containers stuck in port during quarantine

LEGISLATORS have called on the government to waive storage, demurrage and detention fees for all containers that landed in the country while the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) is in effect.

Three more lawmakers infected with novel coronavirus disease

THREE more lawmakers — one senator and two congressmen — tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019, adding to the rising number of infections that the Health department said had reached 707 as of Thursday.

Nationwide round-up

THE BUREAU of Customs (BoC) may now release medical equipment vital in addressing the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) without clearance, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said.

MSMEs running out of working capital during lockdown

A SECOND lockdown would devastate the micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) sector because their working capital has been depleted with the shutdown of most businesses as banks grow more reluctant to lend because of the heightened bad-loan risk, Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Maria A. Concepcion III said.

Nationwide round-up

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte signed into law on Tuesday Republic Act No. 11469, or the “Bayanihan to Heal as One Act,” which gives him emergency powers in managing the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the country.

Congress empowers Duterte vs virus outbreak

LAWMAKERS approved a bill giving President Rodrigo R. Duterte special powers to deal with a novel coronavirus pandemic that has sickened hundreds in the Philippines and threatens to bring the economy to a standstill.

Nationwide round-up

THE WORLD Health Organization’s (WHO) Philippine representative has called on the private sector to help in the procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) for health care workers, citing a global shortage problem as the new coronavirus disease, known as COVID-19, continues to spread around the world.

Congress tackles bill to give Duterte special powers

CONGRESS on Monday sought to approve a measure that will give President Rodrigo R. Duterte special powers to address the national crisis triggered by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak.

Nationwide round-up

THE LEADERS of Kapa-Community Ministry International (KAPA) are facing a new arrest warrant, this time from the regional trial court (RTC) of Cagayan de Oro City on charges that are non-bailable.

Lawmaker calls for toll fee exemptions for COVID-19 response operations

A LAWMAKER has called for the suspension of toll fee collection on operations related to the government’s response on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Biz groups call for ‘maximum’ fiscal response vs coronavirus

MORE THAN 30 business groups urged Congress, in coordination with the Duterte administration, to approve the “maximum fiscal response” to shelter the Philippine economy from the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

13 more infected with COVID-19, bringing total to 230

THE Department of Health (DoH) reported that 13 more people have tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on Friday, bringing the total to 230.

DoH designates PGH and Caloocan hospital as exclusively for COVID-19 patients

THE Department of Health (DoH) has ordered the designation of the University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital (UP-PGH) in Manila and the Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital in Caloocan as exclusive coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) hospitals, following the appeal of private hospitals for a unified approach to the pandemic.

Senate eyes pro-poor measures

THE Senate is considering legislation on food subsidies to aid daily wage earners who have temporarily lost their jobs after President Rodrigo R. Duterte stopped work as part of a Luzon-wide lockdown to contain a novel coronavirus outbreak.

Legislator seeks resumption of DSWD safety-net programs

THE LEGISLATOR chairing the House committee on poverty alleviation said he will appeal to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to resume the delivery of basic social services which were suspended due to COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019).

Nationwide round-up

OPERATIONS IN the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) is “business-as-usual” amid the Luzon-wide lockdown due to the new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) threat, the Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines (IEMOP) said on Tuesday.

Human Settlements dep’t orders 3-month freeze on gov’t mortgage payments

THE Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) ordered a three-month moratorium on loan payments to government agencies providing housing finance during the Luzon enhanced community quarantine.

DoH says 45 more got infected; one more patient has recovered

THE Department of Health on Tuesday reported 45 new infections from the novel coronavirus, bringing the total to 187.

Nationwide round-up

THE DEPARTMENT of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will temporarily suspend operations in its consular offices in Luzon beginning Tuesday and will operate with a skeletal workforce in its Visayas and Mindanao offices amid national and local government measures to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus.

Legislator backs waiver of penalties for late tax filing after April...

A KEY legislator has asked the authorities to waive penalties for taxpayers who miss the April 15 deadline for filing tax returns as a form of “administrative relief” for the public during the COVID-19 quarantine.

Nationwide round-up

A BILL seeking to provide compensation and benefits package as well as security of tenure and free education for barangay health workers (BHWs) has been filed by the Makabayan bloc in Congress.

House appropriations panel to keep working on COVID-19 bills

THE House committee on appropriations plans to hold hearings during the Congressional break to tackle appropriations bills and stimulus packages seeking to address the COVID-19 outbreak.

#COVID-19 Regional Updates

GOVERNMENT CONTRACTUAL workers will be compensated during the community quarantine period in Metro Manila, Senator Emmanuel Joel J. Villanueva said on Saturday evening.