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President Rodrigo Duterte may decide this week whether the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) should be extended for a second time, Senator Bong Go said Sunday (April 19).

In an interview over dzBB radio, Go said Duterte will be meeting with experts Monday (April 20) to assess the current situation and determine the next course of action.

“Ang Pangulo marahil magde-decide ngayong linggong ito kung i-extend pa po o luluwagan (ang enhanced community quarantine). So bukas po kakausapin nya ang mga health experts, marami po syang inimbita pati rin po mga dating secretaries of health ng iba’t ibang administration, baka makapagbigay ng payo sila,” he said.

Go, who chairs the Senate health committee, said the next 11 days will be crucial for Duterte to decide whether the ECQ should be extended again. He acknowledged the challenge that faces the President over the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis.

“Sa totoo lang po, mahirap ang ating sitwasyon sa ngayon. Ipit na ipit ang mga Pilipino. Sa pagkaalam ko, mas dapat higpitan sa mga susunod na 11 araw hanggang April 30,” he added, referring to the need to strictly implement the ECQ guidelines.

Go said Duterte will consider statistics on COVID-19 cases in deciding about another lockdown extension.

“’Pag tumaas pa ang infected, maaaring ma-extend pa ito, maaaring higpitan. Kung bumaba naman po, maaaring maging modified ito. Maraming consideration, binabalanse namin ang lahat,” he said.

As of Saturday (April 18), there are a total of 6,087 COVID-19 cases in the Philippines, with 397 deaths.

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