CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Mayor Oscar Moreno said Wednesday (May 13) that the city will continue with the implementation of its procedures to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) even under the new general community quarantine (GCQ) status.

On Tuesday (May 12), the Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) announced it has put GCQ areas as low-risk zones, only to revise it to modified GCQ a few hours later.

Moreno said they will sustain the safety protocols that have been put in place by the local inter-agency task force (IATF) even if the national government has reclassified the city and the rest of Northern Mindanao from low-risk to modified general community quarantine (GCQ).

“We will not abandon the measures that we have painstakingly applied to be able to bring the city where we are now,” Moreno said during the press briefing.

Cagayan de Oro has reported eight confirmed COVID-19 cases as of May 13.

Moreno clarified that their protocols are not “defying the classification under [modified GCQ]. We are asking permission from the national government that we continue with out enforcement of health safety measures.”

Among those measures are the imposition of curfew, barangay exit pass, wearing of face masks, and physical distancing.

These, he said, are in compliance with minimum health safety standards “while we gradually and steadily calibrating our opening of more businesses in the city. These measures will complement our active contact tracing, household surveillance, and soon, our testing.”

Moreno said the city was declared as low-risk because of the way it handled its COVID-19 cases, such as a comprehensive contact-tracing by a group of barangay volunteers and health professionals, the establishment of isolation units for persons suspected of having the virus and those from outside the region.

Last May 12, Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque has said that “mayors are the primary implementers in their localized areas of the community quarantine.” (

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