MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles, Manila Bureau) – The Philippines’ Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) has tried everything to mitigate the continued spread of the coronavirus — from mandating face masks and face shields, to limiting transport and indoor capacities, to banning Christmas caroling and karaoke singing. Not to mention the motorcycle barriers. What else is left to regulate?
Leave it to the retired generals, technocrats and politicians in the IATF to think of the next move.
Today, IATF has issued a new order that imposes a minimum of six feet (2 meters) distance between motor vehicles plying the country’s roads and highways, with violators caught on CCTV facing fines, jail time or both.
Spokesperson Harry Roque told The Adobo Chronicles that the IATF believes keeping the said distance between vehicles will significantly reduce the chances of the virus being spread from person to person.
The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) praised the IATF move, saying that it will also solve the traffic problem that it has never solved for many decades. “We will never see EDSA and other roadways bumper to bumper again,” said MMDA Spokesperson Celine Pialago.
MANILA, Philippines (The Adobo Chronicles, Manila Bureau) – Online news source Rappler seems to be confused about the difference between a court “ruling” and “opinion.”
While almost all news media outlets have reported that the Court of Tax Appeals ruled to deny Maria Ressa’s plea to travel to the U.S., Rappler reported that the Court “ruled” that conviction is not a reason to bar travel,” giving the impression that their CEO can now travel to the Land of the Free and the Brave.
But the bottom line is that the Court ruled to deny Ressa’ plea, regardless of its “opinion” that conviction is no reason to ban travel by the convicted.
Ressa was convicted of cyber libel. She is appealing her conviction.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (The Adobo Chronicles, Washington Bureau) – Filipinos looking to visit the United States after the coronavirus pandemic period will no longer need an entry visa, thanks to a proposal reportedly being considered by the incoming Biden administration.
A spokesperson for the President-elect said that the proposal is in recognition of the great service rendered by Filipino nurses and other healthcare workers to Americans amid the Covid-19 crisis. “They are our heroes and it is but proper to reward them for their life-saving work,” he said.
For the longest time, Filipino citizens needed a visa to enter the U.S., despite the fact that U.S. citizens enjoy a visa-free entry into the Philippines as long as they stay for no more than 30 days.
A draft of the proposal obtained by The Adobo Chronicles states that Filipino citizens will no longer be required to have a visa to visit the U.S. as long as they have a Mastercard. American Express will not be honored so Filipino tourists can leave home without it.