Banned vessel unloads cargo

BACOLOD City Mayor Evelio Leonardia (right) confirms the lifting of the ban on vessels from China in a press conference Monday. With him are (from left) Bacolod Coast Guard Chief Jansen Benjamin, Dr. Grace Tan of the City Health Office, and Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran. (Dolly Yasa)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – Lt. Commander Jansen Benjamin, Philippine Coast Guard -Negros Occidental chief, said Tuesday that MV Unicorn Bravo has started to unload its cargo after Mayor Evelio Leonardia modified his executive order on the ban on ships from China, Hong Kong, and Macau SAR.

MV Unicorn Bravo arrived at the coast of Bacolod last month but was not allowed to dock due to the ban

Benjamin said the ship did not proceed to Iloilo as earlier reported after Mayor Jerry Treñas also issued a ban order.

MV Unicorn Bravo is a 3,300-metric ton cargo vessel from Xiamen, China with 15 Chinese crewmembers and four others from Myanmar.

Benjamin said the ship will finish unloading its fertilizer cargo in three days time.

Benjamin said that while the ban was lifted via Executive Order No. 12, Leonardia set strict measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

The ship’s crewmembers have completed the 14-day quarantine period.

Benjamin said Leonardia also prohibited embarkation and disembarkation.

He added that PCG personnel augmented by the PNP are supervising the activity to ensure that the provisions of EO No. 12 are strictly followed.

Leonardia issued EO No. 12 after DILG Secretary Eduardo Ano said that EO No. 11, which imposed the ban, contradicted DOH guidelines.