MANILA – President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has signed a proclamation extending the period of state calamity throughout the Philippines due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) until Dec. 31, 2022.
"Now, therefore, I Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., President of the Philippines, by the virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and existing laws, do hereby further extend the declared State of Calamity throughout the Philippines effective 13 September 2022 to 31 December 2022, unless earlier lifted or extended as circumstances may warrant," Marcos said in Proclamation No. 57.
Marcos enjoined all government agencies and local government units (LGUs) to continue rendering full assistance to and cooperation with each other and mobilize the necessary resources to undertake critical, urgent, and appropriate disaster response aid and measures in a timely manner to curtail and eliminate the threat of Covid-19.
He also directed all law enforcement agencies, with the support from the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to continue undertaking all necessary measures to ensure peace and order in affected areas, as may be necessary.
Marcos signed Proclamation No. 57 on Tuesday following the recommendation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council to further extend the declared state of calamity "in order for the national government and LGUs to continuously deliver Covid-19 related interventions, such as, but not limited to Covid-19 vaccination program; utilize appropriate funds, including the Quick Response Fund, in their disaster preparedness and response efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19; monitor and control prices of basic necessities and prime commodities; and provide basic services to the affected populations."
On March 16, 2020, former President Rodrigo Duterte signed Proclamation No. 929 declaring a state of calamity throughout the country for a period of six months due to Covid-19.
Duterte later extended the period of state calamity for one year from Sept. 13, 2020, to Sept. 12, 2021, through Proclamation No. 1021.
He extended the state of calamity declaration for a third time--from Sept. 13, 2021 to Sept. 12, 2022, through Proclamation No. 1218.
On Monday, Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said the state of calamity may be extended for “possibly three months but only for the purpose of preserving the benefits under it such as but not limited to the indemnification, emergency procurement, special risk allowance for healthcare workers.”
Citing government data, Cruz-Angeles said the country is already “6 percent away from the wall of immunity.”
Marcos earlier approved Executive Order No. 3 allowing the voluntary wearing of face masks in outdoor settings, particularly in open spaces and non-crowded outdoor areas with good ventilation.
Those who have yet to complete their primary Covid-19 vaccination series, senior citizens, and immunocompromised persons are still “highly encouraged” to use face masks.
Data from the National Covid-19 Vaccination Dashboard as of Sept. 12 showed that over 72.7 million Filipinos have completed their first and second dose of Covid-19 vaccines.