Joy Belmonte, the Mayor of Quezon City, has tested positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19), her office's social media page confirmed on Wednesday.
Metro Manila, with about 12 million people, is the largest urban cluster in the country, composed of with 17 cities and municipalities, of which Quezon City is the biggest.
"I would like to announce to my dear constituents that I have tested positive in my last COVOD-19 test," she posted in Filipino language on the city government's Facebook page. ("Nais ko pong ipahayag sa lahat ng aking minamahal na QCitizens na ako po ay nag-positibo sa aking huling COVID-19 test").
Quezon City, with an estimated 3 million inhabitants spread over 165 square kilometres (one-fourth of Singapore's land area), is also Metro Manila's most populous city.
Belmonte said she is asymptomatic. The mayor stated she has been following the quarantine protocols set by the Philippine's Department of Health.
"This happened even if I have been very careful, despite wearing face mask and frequent handwashing, and social distancing. May this serve as a reminder that this disease is really something else. ("Nangyari po ito sa kabila ng aking ibayong pag-iingat, pagsusuot ng face mask, madalas na paghugas ng kamay, at social distancing. Kaya sana ay magsilbi itong paalala na ang COVID-19 ay tunay na isang kakaibang sakit na dapat pag-ingatan pa nang lubusan.")
The Quezon City Hall and the Mayor's office had been closed for disinfection, the post stated. Belmonte had been visiting health centres and hospitals, and other lockdown areas.
"I knew the possibility. But I don't regret it. I have prepared myself and I wholeheartedly accept this challenge," she stated. ("Batid na naming posibleng mangyari ito. Pero hindi ko po ito pinagsisisihan. Inihanda ko na po ang aking sarili at buong puso ko po itong tinatanggap).
"I knew the possibility. But I don't regret it. I have prepared myself and I wholeheartedly accept this challenge.