SULTAN KUDARAT – The Bangsamoro Inter-Agency Task Force (BIATF) is awaiting instructions from the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Chief Minister for the next steps on the proper handling of locally stranded individuals (LSIs).
BIATF spokesperson Mohd Asnin Pendatun said that the process for the return of the BARMM residents “is not that easy.”
“If we see that there will be too many requests, we will refer it to the (Bangsamoro) IATF and upon the directive of Chief Minister (Ahod Ebrahim), we will know what will be our (next) course of action,” Pendatun said.
The process for them to come home is very challenging, such as the “logistics involved and even the finances involved.”
It can be noted that on June 5, the Bangsamoro government facilitated the return of around 158 LSIs from Metro Manila and
Baguio City who boarded the sweeper flight bound to Cotabato airport in Cotabato City.
Pendatun said that the LSIs came from other provinces outside the Bangsamoro region, adding that some of them were also students who are residents of Zamboanga, Davao, and Lanao del Norte. The Bangsamoro government also made arrangements so that they can return to their respective hometowns while maintaining the necessary protocols set by the task force.
“After they arrive, as much as possible is that they won’t have to stay here in Cotabato City. We made sure that necessary guidelines and protocols are followed,” Pendatun added.
He said that this approach is for them to immediately be transported to the respective hometowns of their local government units where they are quarantined for 14 days before being sent to their homes.
Pendatun also said the Bangsamoro government had to make sure that their public health protocols are in compliance with the national government’s requirements for public health standards for the returning LSIs.
“We are really particular in following the MGCQ (modified general community quarantine) and GCQ (general community quarantine) guidelines and for us to be able to follow the inter-zonal guidelines,” he said.
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