The Quezon City government on Friday announced the implementation of restrictions on traditional mass gatherings, in anticipation of various festivals that will be celebrated by various barangays in the coming months.
In a statement, Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte said the move seeks to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
“Dahil inaasahan na natin ang mga pagtitipon sa mga piyesta, Chinese New Year at iba pang pagdiriwang sa mga susunod na buwan, minabuti na nating kumilos agad upang maiwasan na ang mass gatherings na posibleng pag-ugatan ng pagkalat ng COVID-19,” she said.
Belmonte issued Memorandum No. 02-22, prohibiting activities such as processions, parades, Santacruzan and the like during barangay fiestas, religious festivals and services, the Chinese New Year or other community celebrations.
Other public celebrations involving mass gatherings, including fairs, perya, variety shows, fireworks displays, ati-atihan or other public performances are also banned.
“Public games and contests, such as pageants, singing or band contests, bingo, pabitin, paluan ng palayok, agawan, or tug of war are also prohibited,” Belmonte said, adding that tournaments, group contact sports such as basketball, public buffets and boodle fights are also not allowed.
The mayor also banned public drinking sessions, including drinking outdoors or on sidewalks, group videoke or other celebratory gatherings that violate social distancing, noise pollution or other noise nuisances due to excessive merrymaking and co-mingling of multiple households through large parties or traditional “open door” fiesta celebrations.
The city government only allowed the following activities for full vaccinated individuals, subject to social distancing and other applicable health protocols:
- modest celebrations conducted within the home and among the immediate household
- masses and other religious solemnities
- religious or traditional rituals for purposes of blessing buildings or establishments
- celebrations conducted primarily for an online audience, with very limited physical attendance.
Belmonte also allowed the conduct of dragon dance or lion dance activities of the Chinese Community, provided they will be held in one designated area only and cordoned off from the general public. Participants must likewise be fully vaccinated.
The City’s Law and Order Cluster, regulatory departments, barangays, and the Quezon City Police District are mandated to enforce the latest guidelines.