By Mary Catherine Ynez U. Lavega

A total of 12,743 Antiqueños consisting of Returning Overseas Filipino Workers (ROFW), locally stranded individuals (LSI) and sacadas were assisted by the provincial government in returning to their homes starting from April of this year.Governor Rhodora Cadiao always reiterates that Antique will always be open and she welcomes her kasimanwas to come home. Gov. Cadiao is even open in letting COVID-19 positive Antiqueño patients situated outside the province to continue their recovery at home as she believes it is better to get sick at home and surrounded by family, with the observance of proper protocal.According to the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, 1,787 ROFWs were transported to their respective municipal isolation facilities, as of September 3. LSIs comprised the bulk of returning Antiqueños with a total of 9,003, as of September 3. Sacadas that were repatriated back to Antique totaled to 1, 953 as of June 11, 2020. The fetching of returning Antiqueños is executed by PDRRMO in close coordination with the LGUs through their Municipal Health Offices (MHU), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Provincial Planning and Development Office (PPDO), and Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices (MDRRMO) to plan the travel arrangement. PDRRMO is then tasked to closely monitor the status of each quarantine facility. A personnel is also tasked to report daily at the Caticlan Holding Area in Caticlan, Aklan to manage the arrival and acceptance of returning Antiqueños as well as provide transportation if necessary.PDRRMO still continues the task of transporting Antiqueños as many are still entering the province especially now that ports are open and Philippine Airline (PAL) flights from Manila to Antique and vice versa were resumed. Last Tuesday, September 2, PDRRMO headed the management of arrival of LSIs from Manila.