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'Same location' rule for new quarantine 'another idiotic policy': Taipei mayor

Ko says CECC and hotels 'staying blind to reality' with 'same location' rule

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je speaking at session of Taipei City Council on June 6. 

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je speaking at session of Taipei City Council on June 6.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) on Monday (June 13) criticized a new rule requiring arriving passengers undergoing the new "3+4" quarantine scheme to stay in the "same location" as "another idiotic policy."

On Saturday (June 11), the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced that starting on June 15, the mandatory quarantine for arriving passengers will be shortened from the current "7+7" formula of seven days of quarantine and seven days of self-health monitoring, to a "3+4" scheme. However, some people are accusing the CECC of playing word games because one of the stipulations is that those arriving must stay at the "same location" for their quarantine and self-health management, essentially meaning eight days in an epidemic prevention hotel or residence, since the day of arrival does not count as the first day of quarantine.

During a meeting of the Taipei City Council on Monday afternoon, Taipei City Councilor Wang Hung-wei (王鴻薇) of the Kuomintang said the CECC changed the quarantine scheme from "7+7" to "3+4" and people are eager to go abroad, but some found that they still have to spend the duration of "3+4" in an epidemic prevention hotel prompting them to complain "This policy is too stupid." Wang said that what is even more ridiculous is that for the four days of self-health monitoring, they can go to work and classes and many places, but they cannot return to their homes if they stay in an epidemic prevention hotel.

In response, Ko said, "Don't ask me again! I said last time that it was an idiotic policy, and now there is another one." Ko predicted that the policy will be very difficult to implement because in the same hotel there are those who cannot go out for the first three days and can for the next four days, while others cannot go out at all. "Oh my God! It will be very difficult to manage. This system will be very difficult to enforce," said Ko.

Ko emphasized that this is often the case and the person who hands down the edict also knows that the implementation will not be complete.

They know that it will be difficult to implement, but after receiving their orders, hotels will not want to make trouble with the media, and "everything is fine as long as no one is caught," Ko claimed. The mayor concluded that this is a case of policymakers (CECC) and hotels "staying blind to reality."