On the Covid 19 Pandemic: THINK POSITIVE
“Positive” is not a dirty word in relation to the pandemic. Nope, it’s even a key to survival when we all see the brighter side. Stop the corrosive paralysis by analysis. See the efforts, not the struggles; the hope than the fear --- the faith, not the over-thinking.
Marino World gathers for you some events; pick from these the rays of hope, not see the leakage of the ozone layer.
Home soil, at last.
MARINA Administrator Robert Empedrad says Pres. Duterte has ordered the massive repatriation of our overseas workers (OFWs), the disclosure given to a viber group of the Association of Licenced Manning Agencies (ALMA).
Empedrad quotes the President: “Let’s send them home soon” But, the admiral advises “we must put our acts together as one” since this will be “massive.”
Manning agencies are re-energized, given the earlier confusions they experienced as they monitor events 24/7. Unique tasks and new powers mandated to agencies are implemented—expectedly—with rough edges.
Protocols are issued in haste or late; yet amended or superseded or in conflict with those of other regulatory agencies. But we are learning fast, commending the orchestration of the Inter Agency Task Force (IATF) where views, expertise, and interests are juiced to the pulp.
The core law is aptly titled: Bayanihan to Heal as One. Let’s believe in our nationhood; let’s act with common survival based on our unity.
Walking the talk.
We could be assured by the Christian Bible (Mathew 6:34) “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
However, Operations U/Sec Epimaco V. Densing III, Dept. of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), fleshes out the action: May 25 to 27th, the more than 24,000 OFWs in Metro Manila will be moved at an estimate of 8,000 per day via land, sea and air, as practical. Local government must accept them, assist as needed, or quarantine those without clearance or results of PCR tests.
Laid out in an Urgent Memorandum:
- OFWs will be picked where they are quarantined by elements of the Coast Guard and OWWA staff for the PITX and NAIA Terminal II for transit home.
- OFW must present Quarantine Certificate from the Bureau or Quarantine or be on the list of the PCG one is negative of the Covid 19 virus.
- An on-site One-Stop-Shop manned by OTS will help OFWs in their needs.
- Operational details:
- Inform OFWs with RT-PCR Certificates to be on standby
- Movement starts 2 in the morning of May 25th.
- 30 to50 buses will be provided by the Dept. of Transport (DOTr)
- For Visayas & Mindanao, take buses to the airport
- For Luzon, take buses to PITX
- When buses are at pick-up points, coordinate with drivers of buses for which bus to board for the proper destination
- Negative Certificates can be printed at the airport
- Seek clarification only from the OIC of your sector.
IATF clears movement.
Resolution 38, May 22 (F. Section 7) allows persons to move to and from any area on any form of community quarantine:
- Going to the airport for travel abroad
- Repatriated OFWs who have
- DOH or LGU certificate of completion of fourteen (14)-day facility-based quarantine
- Required to undergo a mandatory fourteen (14)-day home quarantine
- Issued with travel authority upon testing negative for COVID-19 whichever is earlier granted
- LGUs shall allow ships or aircraft transporting these OFWs and non-OFWs to dock or land at their ports of destination. No other requirement shall be imposed by LGUs in this regard.
Lower House hears OFWs.
The Association of Licensed Manning Agencies (LMA) expounded sentiments in a legislative hearing May 22 of the Committee on Overseas Workers.
More than 27,000 OFWs are in Manila already; 40,000 more expected in the coming weeks and months. Delays have marked swab-testing procedure, the release of the results and the repatriation of OFWs.
They seek “immediate action” as international shipping has continued and is expected to continue despite the pandemic. It will be most unfortunate if the Philippines, being a major crewing nation, is unable to take advantage of this unique opportunity.
- MARINA will soon issue a Protocol on Crew Change and Repatriation of Seafarers endorsed by relevant departments and aligned with World Health Organization (WHO ). It is a major document and detailed to global situation.
- OWWA seeks to use the PhP19.5-billion Fund for worker integration and training rather than the customary dole-out.
- Our Foreign Affairs have posted that as of May 24, there are now 33 government-certified laboratories/facilities for Covid 19, a tone clearly different from its usual worry government shortfalls.
- VAdmiral Leopoldo V. Laroya of the Coast Guard has confirmed the hiring of 116 probationary ensigns and 24 draftees May 24th to expand the PCG Medical Services.