Prelate reminds public to be vigilant vs. India Covid-19 variant

Prelate reminds public to be vigilant vs. India Covid-19 variant

MANILA – The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines-Episcopal Commission on Health (CBCP-ECH) on Wednesday reminded the public to always observe safety protocols amid the detection of the ‘double mutant’ coronavirus variant which was first discovered in India.

“What we need to do is keep the protocols in mind and as much as possible have oneself inoculated,” said Bishop Jaime Oscar Florencio, vice chairperson of the commission, in an interview.

He also asked the people to pray and ask for protection from God.

“On top of these, don’t forget (to call to) our Almighty for protection,” Florencio said.

He added that it is not a good thing to blame people or groups over the detection of the B.1.617 variant in the country.

“Times like this to be pointing fingers is not appropriate or is bad taste. We can’t blame one group here because our enemy is not seen and besides we don’t have any control over its passage to our country,” he added.

On Tuesday, the Department of Health (DOH) reported that the B.1.617 variant was detected from two male overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

The Filipinos came from the Middle East, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Both of them had no travel history to India.

The Philippines has imposed travel restrictions on travelers from India until May 14, to prevent the entry of the new variant that is responsible for the South Asian nation’s worst coronavirus outbreak.

The travel ban has been expanded by also prohibiting travelers from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, and Sri Lanka to enter the country until May 14. Ferdinand Patinio / PNA –