BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – The reported disclosure by one of Olivia Yanson’s daughters that the billionaire matriarch was infected with CoViD19 has drawn attention to the seemingly worsening spread of the disease in this densely-populated urban center of more than half a million people.
From the narrow eskinitas and clustered houses in the puroks or sub-villages, COVID has now found its way into the gated, high-walled plush addresses, which authorities said indicates how exponential the spread of the virus has become more than four months after this provincial capital went under lockdown.
DNX talked to several businessmen who all confirmed that a “substantial” number of the elite in the province have caught the disease.
The two sources spoke to DNX on condition of anonymity.
Both confirmed there have been talks swirling among their small circle that some have died, some have recovered.
One, a young businessman, was said to have died from COVID but the family said it was brought by a depressive state that stemmed from financial losses.
“It is usually being talked about in whispers,” one of the sources who is engaged in trading, said.
Some of the original prime addresses in the city include one in Mandalagan village and another in Villamonte but it has recently expanded to choice addresses in the neighboring city of Talisay.
The second source, who has connections with business groups here, said at least seven individuals are “confirmed” to have been infected in one of the posh subdivisions.
He did not disclose the name of the subdivision.
Aside from Yanson whose medical condition was declared by her daughter, Ginette, some of those who reportedly got infected include two prominent businessmen in the construction industry, one in the distribution sector and another in the sugar trading business.
Most of these individuals have chosen to stay at home and rarely travel to check on their businesses.
“It is puzzling to think how they got it,” the other source commented.
Local inter-agency task force chair and Vice-Mayor El Cid Familiaran did not comment on the information obtained by DNX but pointed out that this indicates the extent of the virus’ spread.
Familiaran told DNX based on observations of members of the task force, the doubling time or the days that pass before cases increase two-fold, is getting shorter.