CITY OF MALOLOS– Five Bulacan courts were placed under a 14-day lockdown after their staff members contracted the coronavirus disease.
Judge Albert Fonacier, who serves as First Vice Executive Judge of the Bulacan Regional Trial Court, closed down RTC Branch 20 from March 19 to April 1 after an employee tested positive for the disease on Friday (March 19).
The infected Branch 20 personnel last reported for work on March 9, had undergone tests on Thursday, and discovered he had COVID-19 the following day.
RTC Branch 6 was also locked down from March 17-30 after a staff member confirmed he had the virus. This employee last reported for work on March 11.
Fonacier took charge after the office of Bulacan RTC Executive Judge Olivia Escubio Samar was closed for two weeks from March 16-29 after its employee was stricken with COVID-19.
Before his office closed, Samar shutdown RTC Branch 22 from March 1-12 after its employee’s test results on Feb. 26 indicated he had the disease. The court staffer last reported on work on Feb.15.
RTC Branch 4, a family court, was quarantined earlier and is about to complete its mandatory 14-day lockdown.
Fonacier said the affected courts can proceed with trials and other judicial activities that could not be rescheduled during the imposed quarantines. Judges may work through email or video conferencing, he said, with the blessing of the Office of the Court Administrator. CARMELA REYES ESTROPE INQ
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