Envoy urges Filipinos in Myanmar to return home as COVID nears ‘catastrophic’ level
MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos in Myanmar have been urged to return to the Philippines amid the “nearing catastrophic” COVID-19 situation there due to the Delta variant, an envoy said Tuesday.
Philippine Ambassador to Myanmar Eduardo Kapunan Jr. said some 43 Filipinos have so far volunteered to be repatriated and are scheduled to return to the Philippines on August 5.
“Ang aming analysis pati ang analysis ng doctor, ang COVID stuation sa Myanmar is nearing catastrophic proportions. Ibig sabihin niyan, lumalala,” Kapunan said in an interview with Teleradyo.
(Our analysis and the analysis of doctors, the COVID situation in Myanmar is nearing catastrophic proportions. It means it’s worsening.)
With the hospitals almost fully occupied, Kapunan said patients are being sent home to undergo quarantine which “contributes to the worsening situation.”
“Kaya ako nag-announce ng Level 4 because we want the Filipinos to go home before Myanmar is listed sa red list na mas magiging stringent ang quarantine procedures kung galing ka sa isang bansa katulad ng India, matataas ang level ng COVID. And the prevalent variant in Myanmar is the Delta variant,” Kapunan said.
(The reason why I announced we’re on Level 4 is because we want the Filipinos to go home before Myanmar is listed in the red list, which will make the quarantine procedures more stringent, if you come from countries like India where there is a high level of COVID cases. And the prevalent variant in Myanmar is Delta variant.)
Earlier, the Department of Foreign Affairs hoisted Alert Level 4 in Myanmar, which means the deployment of Filipinos to Myanmar for work is temporarily suspended. It also mandates the Philippine government to repatriate Filipinos willing to return home.
Kapunan said there are still “600 or less” Filipinos in Myanmar.
“Kung meron pa po [gusto umuwi], we will do the arrangements, we will accept them. We will try to arrange for whatever flights we can get our hands on,” he added.
(If there are still more Filipinos who want to go home, we will do the arrangements, we will accept them. We will try to arrange whatever flights we can get our hands on.)
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