Mayors rule to keep ban on minors in Metro Manila malls
Shoppers take a selfie with a man in Santa Claus costume on November 8.
The STAR/Miguel de Guzman

Mayors rule to keep ban on minors in Metro Manila malls

(Philstar.com) - December 3, 2020 - 9:56am

MANILA, Philippines — All 17 Metro Manila mayors decided on Wednesday to keep minors from entering malls, even if they are accompanied by their parents.

Metro Manila Development Authority General Manager Jojo Garcia told One News’ “The Chiefs” that this was the decision of the local chief executives after the Philippine Pediatric Society recommended against allowing minors in malls.

“You will be surprised at how responsible our mayors are,” Garcia remarked.

Dr. Tony Leachon, former adviser to the country’s COVID-19 task force, said it was a good decision to listen to medical experts.

“It’s counterintuitive that proponents are loosening guidelines by allowing minors … to go out in the malls , when DOH raised red flag over surges in holiday season,” Leachon said in a tweet.

The Department of Health balked at the proposal to let minors in malls, which was first floated by Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, saying that children are not exempted from getting infected.

“Our position has not changed. As much as possible, we discourage that because the risk is still there,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Wednesday in Filipino.

The health chief also noted that even though children may not exhibit severe symptoms, they can be spreaders of the virus. 

Currently, individuals aged 15 to 65 can go out in areas under GCQ and modified GCQ, the loosest form of quarantine classification in the country.

The Philippines has so far reported 432,925 COVID-19 cases, with 8,418 deaths. — Xave Gregorio with a report from Gaea Katreena Cabico

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