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Health experts’ recommendations on children entering malls should be followed, according to local governments.

In the midst of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, Malacanang recommended local government units (LGUs) to listen to medical specialists when it comes to children’s safety.

This comes after President Rodrigo Duterte pushed local governments to pass an ordinance prohibiting unvaccinated minors from entering malls in order to protect them from Covid-19.

Acting Presidential Spokesperson and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles expressed faith in a virtual press conference that local chief executives will make the “best” option for children, particularly those who have not yet been immunized against the deadly sickness.

“As a result, ang panawagan ni Pangulong Duterte (President Duterte’s request) is for LGUs to consider passing ordinances,” he explained. “Tignan nila kung ano ‘yung pinakamabuti para sa kanilang mga local jurisdiction.”

Nograles, on the other hand, admitted that LGUs’ decisions will be influenced by the Covid-19 situation in their territories.

He hoped that local politicians would make decisions based on “science” and the advice of health professionals.

“Mas ini-empower natin ang mga LGU natin sa pagpili ng kanilang kailangang gawin para labanan ang Covid-19 sa kani-kanilang mga jurisdiction,” said the statement. Under this phase, kailangan po nating balansehin ang ekonomiya at’yung health protocols (LGUs are more empowered to adopt anti-Covid-19 actions within their respective jurisdictions). We realize we need to balance the economy and health protocols throughout this phase),” Nograles remarked.

After the country’s capital was placed under the more lenient Alert Level 2, parents and guardians have brought their children to malls in Metro Manila.

However, since the government relaxed limits on public travel in Metro Manila, a two-year-old toddler has tested positive for Covid-19 after visiting a mall.

This spurred Duterte to push LGUs to approve an ordinance restricting minors’ access to malls in his taped Talk to the People delivered Monday night.

Duterte also warned parents and guardians to be “aware” of the risk of unvaccinated children being exposed to Covid-19 in public places.

He also warned them that the coronavirus is still present and poses a threat to the people and the country.

The Duterte administration has begun immunizing juveniles aged 12 to 17.

It also plans to vaccinate youngsters from 5 to 11 years old in order to boost the country’s population.

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