THE Department of the Interior and Local Government has placed the entire DILG-Napolcom Center building under lockdown after one of its senior officials was tested positive for COVID-19.
However, DILG Spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said public service will continue despite the lockdown that will end seven days from yesterday.
He said the lockdown is not going to affect the delivery of services as officials and employees of the Central Office would shift to Work from Home (WFH).
“We understand that DILG is a frontline agency in this pandemic so we cannot stop operations. Our officials will still continue to work at our extension or other offices outside of the DILG-Napolcom Center or from their homes while all our attached agencies are fully operational, especially the PNP, BJMP, and BFP,” Malaya said.
In a statement released to the media, the DILG did not mention the name of official who was infected with the coronavirus but a memorandum dated July 5 issued by Head Executive Assistant Jerry Loresco identified him as Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III.
Densing earlier admitted in public that he got the positive (COVID) result.
Malaya said the seven-day lockdown will also pave the way for the contact-tracing activities on persons who encountered the official.
The DILG will also undertake disinfection on the whole building while all the offices are closed.
In the memo, all personnel who reported at the DILG-Central Office are advised to undergo home quarantine for one week while resumption of work for skeleton workforce shall resume on July 13.
Malaya said that the Department remains steadfast in its commitment of capacitating and nurturing local government units, and supervising public order and safety institutions even amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
He likewise said that the “No Visitor Policy” will be imposed while DILG personnel are strictly prohibited from entering or exiting the building and in extreme cases where key officials and executives really need to enter the office premises, they too shall not interact with other officers and employees.
With DILG CO personnel reporting on WFH arrangement during this period, he advised the public to transact official businesses during office hours via calls, emails, or through social media.
Meanwhile, the Animal Bite Center in Navotas was temporary closed starting yesterday after its employees underwent COVID-19 rapid testing.
Mayor Toby Tiangco said all employees of the center who underwent rapid testing are required to undergo home quarantine from three to four days or until such time that the result will be provided to them.
The center will only its operations once the employees were tested negative for COVID-19.
The mayor advised residents who were bitten or sustained deep scratch by dog or cat should seek treatment at the San Lazaro Hospital in Manila to avoid being infected by rabies.
Tiangco also said City Health Department reported an additional 38 new cases of COVID-19 in the city, the highest since the outbreak of the dreaded disease.
Among the 38 individuals found positive for COVID-19, one died bringing the total number of deaths to 54.
With Edd Reyes