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Usap muna sana! Amid Capas officials’ fears, VP Robredo says nat’l gov’t should’ve talked to LGU in assigning quarantine site

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Vice President Leni Robredo urged higher authorities to consult first with local government officials before assigning quarantine sites where Filipinos repatriated from Wuhan City will be brought amid the 2019-novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) threat.

Speaking about the issue on her radio show on Sunday (February 9), Robredo underscored the importance of threshing out issues and concerns that may be raised by local officials, who are looking out for their constituents’ welfare.

“Iyon din iyong tingin ko na parati tayong nagkukulang. Kahit sa Marawi, ganoon din, eh. Na sana kahit anong gagawin sa lugar mo, kailangan ikaw iyong unang kokonsultahin kasi ikaw iyong may responsibility na mag-explain sa mga tao, ikaw iyong may responsibility na siguruhin na safe iyong lugar,” Robredo said.

Local officials of Capas, Tarlac initially rejected the “last-minute” decision of the Department of Health to use the New Clark City as a quarantine facility as they were not “involved in any way” in the planning.

But Capas Mayor Reynaldo Catacutan later clarified that he was only bothered by the DOH’s lack of coordination regarding the matter, saying Capaseños were willing to offer their hometown to the repatriated Filipinos.

While the LGU’s concerns have already been ironed out with the DOH, Robredo said national government agencies should always include the LGUs when deciding on measures involving their areas and communities.

“Talagang iyon iyong pakiusap natin sa national government agencies na bago magdedesisyon na mai-involve iyong LGU, parating kokonsultahin muna iyong LGU officials,” she said.

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