In the early days of the enhanced community quarantine, we would stay up late till the wee hours of the morning to watch a live announcement of a COVID-positive case in a remote barangay of the city.

At the height of the lockdowns, most everyone would be glued to the announcement of every new case, along with reminders to stay home, keep masks on while outside, and wash hands regularly.

For a country that has earned a reputation as having the longest lockdown in the world without having defeated the virus, weariness has apparently set in. Nowadays, officials would just selectively make live announcements and would generally simply issue news advisories.

Even local netizens who used to lap up each new development on the pandemic with much passion seemed have slowed down and are no longer as engaged as they used to.

The sense of urgency that had characterized Palawan’s handling of the coronavirus seems no longer there, even as our total active cases continue to rise, currently at close to sixty active cases. The cases remain to involve mostly stranded residents coming from Metro Manila, with a pocket of community transmission cases in Puerto Princesa City.

Badly as it will seem, the world’s experience with this virus is that it is very much capable of mounting a deadly surge when it is least expected. Even places in the country least affected by the virus, e.g. Iloilo that was once even tagged as the country’s Wakanda, have not been spared.

It is to the credit of the city government this week for stepping up on its campaign among establishments to maintain compliance with local regulations on minimum safety protocols. Efforts such as this need to be continued and scaled up, as provinces and local governments are pretty much on their own with regards to combating the coronavirus.


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