Manila bans street events, parades ahead of Sto. Niño de Tondo, Pandacan feasts
During his Capital Report on Friday night, Moreno said the council, convened by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, would meet today on the church officials’ requests to ease quarantine restrictions ahead of the Christmas masses.
Walter Bollozos

Manila bans street events, parades ahead of Sto. Niño de Tondo, Pandacan feasts

(Philstar.com) - January 12, 2021 - 4:40pm

MANILA, Philippines — Ahead of the Sto Niño de Tondo and Pandacan feasts, the Manila City local government has put in place prohibitions on street events to be observed during the annual feast days amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

In a statement, the city information office disclosed that Manila City Mayor Francisco Domagoso signed an executive order prohibiting street games, parades, stage shows, and other similar parties to avoid the spread of COVID-19 among the public from January 16 to 17. 

"The activities during the fiesta celebration, if not regulated, can be surely an easy medium of COVID-19 spread and transmission thereby endangering the health, well-being, and safety not only of residents in the said areas but also to their guests and visitors," Domagoso said. 

"There is, therefore, a compelling need for the city to provide stringent guidelines and regulations not only to avoid the fear envisioned above but also in order not to put in vain all initiatives the city had undertaken the entire duration of this pandemic," he added. 

The Feast Day of Sto. Niño de Tondo, celebrated on the third Sunday of January, typically attracts thousands of visitors. 

Per city Executive Order No. 02-2021, street parties and other activities are defined as follows:

  • Street party - shall refer to a party in which many members of a single community, congregate, either to observe an event of some importance or simply for mutual solidarity and enjoyment such as but not limited to Salu-Salo, dancing and/or singing in groups along public streets
  • Stage show - shall refer to stage activities such as but not limited to beauty pageants, dance, and singing contests, stage plays and other similar activities
  • Parade - shall refer to a public procession celebrating a special day or event such as but limited to Lakbayaw and other similiar activities
  • Palarong Kalye - shall refer to all kinds of ball games such as but not limited to Basketball and Volleyball and other parlor games such as but not limited to Pabitin, Agawan Buko, Tumbang Preso, Sack Race and other similar games.

This comes after thousands of devotees swarmed the streets of Quiapo to join in the celebration of the Feast of the Black Nazarene. Both the Quiapo Church and the Department of Health have since called on those who participated to undergo self-quarantine and observe other health protocols to minimize the risk of coronavirus transmission.

According to the Manila City PIO, the city has tallied 331 active cases of COVID-19, or patients who have neither recovered nor passed away and are still recuperating in hospitals or quarantine facilities. As of this post, a total of 25,354 cases have been recorded in the city, while 761 have succumbed to the virus. 

RELATED: Quiapo vicar urges devotees: Self-quarantine

As of the health department's latest case bulletin issued Tuesday afternoon, a total of 491,258 coronavirus infections have been recorded in the country since the disease first emerged in December 2019. 

The Department of Health also reported 139 more deaths linked to the pathogen, the highest addition to the death toll in 96 days. — Franco Luna 

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