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Vendors told to pitch in to make sure Agdao market remains open

The Agdao Public Market was reopened on Tuesday but on a strict condition for vendors and laborers to observe the stringent measures in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Maribeth Lumactod, the City Economic Enterprise Office head, said that everybody would be accountable to make sure that the wet market won’t be closed down again. For example, they were asked to clean and sanitize their immediate environment in the morning and afternoon.

All stalls should also install plastic dividers to prevent direct contact between vendors and customers. Hand sanitizers and alcohol will be provided by vendors and eating inside each stall is strictly prohibited.

Lumactod said a no face mask, no entry policy must be observed. Additionally, only one helper is allowed for every stall at all times.

They are also required to wear shirts at all times, similar to the requirement for laborers and butchers.

“The reopening of Agdao Public Market is a good sign both for our vendors because they resumed their livelihood but also our buying public because they have somewhere to go that is near their residences,” she said.

Lumactod said the market should be emptied of people by 6 p.m. and that no one is allowed inside before 6 a.m.

“The precautionary measures will strengthen the policies already implemented by the city government. These measures are for the good of the buying public, as well as that of the vendors themselves,” she added.

Previously, the city government closed down the Agdao Public Market after surveillance revealed that six confirmed COVID-19 patients visited the area. More than 300 vendors and workers were immediately subjected to rapid diagnostic testing. Initially, four failed the health screening and endorsed to the Southern Philippines Medical Center for swabbing.

Mayor Sara Duterte then revealed that the entire health screening found nine people who failed the initial test.

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