'It's really to promote tourism': Tim Yap defends Baguio party over alleged quarantine violations
Scenes from Tim Yap's 44th birthday celebration in Baguio.
Tim Yap via Instagram, screenshots

'It's really to promote tourism': Tim Yap defends Baguio party over alleged quarantine violations

Jan Milo Severo (Philstar.com) - January 27, 2021 - 2:07pm

MANILA, Philippines — Events and TV host Tim Yap defended his birthday party that he organized in Baguio City amid heavy criticism from social media users.

Tim said in an interview with ABS-CBN’s Jeff Canoy that the party in Manor inside Camp John Hay followed protocols set by the local government and in fact only sought to promote its reopened tourism.

He also said that he “wanted to assure the public that we really followed all the LGU protocols” before they traveled to Baguio.

“Alam po natin na ang Baguio is napaka-strict sa kanilang protocols and they will not allow anyone na umakyat ng Baguio na positive,” Tim said.

The event host also explained why some of the photos that circulated online showed him and his guests not wearing face masks.

“Dahil nga dinner, buffet, kakain na sila so tinanggal nila maskara nila. Pagkatapos noon, pumasok ‘yung mga dancers na mag-community dancing, so hindi nila nasuot mask nila. Sumayaw sila doon kaya ‘yun ang nakikita natin na kumakalat sa social media,” he said.

Tim said that he held the party in Baguio to promote its native crafts and culture and to help the city’s tourism recover.

“Ang pakay po noon is to promote Baguio as a destination. Sa akin, 'yun ang hangarin ko talaga. Para mag-push ng local tourism. Kung makikita mo social media ko, lahat talaga, ‘yun ang ginagawa ko for the past few months. I’m discovering and rediscovering iba’t ibang parte ng Pilipinas na sana ma-discover ng ating mga kababayan,” he said.

“It was really a gathering to promote local tourism, crafts of Baguio, [its] arts and culture… Ang talagang goal namin, ang aim namin is to help restart the economy, reopen the economy at ma-promote ang local tourism."

Tim was trending on Twitter earlier today for his controversial 44th birthday celebration last January 17.

Meanwhile, Baguio City Mayor and contact tracing czar Benjamin Magalong told Tim “not to worry” about the probe.

“Nag-usap na po kami kahapon at binanggit ko po sa kanya, I understand what happened. Everybody was just so engrossed, so engaged kaya kung minsan nakakalimutan,” Magalong said in an interview for Teleradyo.

“Sabi ko sa kanya, but don’t you worry about it. 'Yung tulong niyo na ginagawa sa siyudad ng Baguio for promoting, for saying good words about Baguio, doon sa aming mga artists, we’re considering all of this. Don’t you worry, we’ll have this thing investigated. Nahihiya sila e,” he added.

KC Concepcion and JM Rodriguez were among the celebrities that attended Tim's party in Baguio.

RELATED: Magalong to consider Tim Yap’s ‘contributions’ to Baguio in COVID-19 protocol breach probe

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