POLITICIANS in Polop near Benidorm have demanded mass PCR testing for the 5,000-strong population to curb the rise in COVID-19 cases.

Polop was one of three Alicante Province towns to close its perimeter border last week and has the highest infection rate in the Marina Baixa region.

In spite of the closure, people are permitted to travel in and out of the municipality to go to work or for education.

Compromis spokesperson, Angela Fuster, said: “ We are totally convinced that the only way to stem the tide of infections in Polop is mass testing as most of the residents work and study outside the municipality.”

83 COVID-19 cases and two deaths have been reported in Polop over 14 days up to January 12

The socialist PSOE Polop mayor, Gabriel Fernandez said: “The important thing is for the infection figures to stabilise so that we can go out of confinement when the restrictions are scheduled to end next week after 15 days.”

The opposition Partido Popular(PP) and Compromis parties want an urgent plenary meeting of the council to discuss a new action plan.

PP spokesman, Jose Luis Susmozas said: “We have reached out to the government team to work together and get out of this situation as soon as possible, but we’ve not even had a reply to our proposals.”

The Polop infection figures are believed to be especially high because of an outbreak at a nursing home.

No official statistics have been announced over the home but reports suggest that the facility could account for at least 40 active coronavirus cases.

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