MANILA, Philippines — The hotels used as COVID-19 quarantine facilities in Batangas and Tagaytay City, although not “five-star, are decent and clean, testing czar and National Task Force Against COVID-19 deputy implementer Vince Dizon said, contrary to claims of some returning Filipinos who said it was untidy and had a stench.
“Makikita naman po natin dito sa mga pictures na aktwal, although hindi siya five-star hotel, hindi naman po madumi at maayos naman po, Dizon said Thursday in a televised briefing.
(We can see in the actual pictures that although it is not a five-star hotel, it’s not dirty and it’s orderly.)
Some returning Filipinos have complained that the hotel where they were about to undergo quarantine was “unlivable.”
READ: Passengers of flight from South Korea complain of ‘unlivable’ quarantine facility
They said they were also caught by surprise that they have to strictly stay in these facilities for 14 days.
Dizon, however, denied that the returning Filipinos and foreigners were being held “hostage” in these hotels, noting that the strict 14-day quarantine was only being implemented over threats of the new COVID-19 variant.
“Meron po kasing mga napabalita na hinohostage daw po ang ating mga kababayan at mga dayuhan. Hindi naman po ito totoo. Ito po ay kasama sa mga napaka striktong mga kailangan nating gawin para mapigilan ang pagpasok ng bagong strain ng COVID-19,” he explained.
(There are reports that our fellow Filipinos and foreigners were being held hostage. This is not true. This is just among our strict guidelines to prevent the entry of the new COVID-19 variant.)
Dizon said the returning Filipinos and foreigners were given an option to transfer hotels, provided they shoulder the costs. As of Wednesday night, some of them already transferred and were provided transportation by the government.
“Humihingi po tayo ng pag-intindi at pag-unawa pero hopefully po naayos na po ito,” he said.
(We ask for understanding and hopefully this will be settled.)
The Philippines has imposed a travel restriction on foreigners / passengers from 20 countries where cases of the new COVID-19 variant have been detected.
Filipino citizens, however, are exempted from the travel ban.
For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.
The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.