NCR mayors vote to close down gyms, spas, internet cafés during 2-week GCQ bubble

Published March 23, 2021, 6:08 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

Metro Manila mayors have agreed to shut down gyms, spas, and internet cafés during the two-week general community quarantine (GCQ) period, Malacañang announced Tuesday in a latest move to curb the surge in coronavirus cases in the country.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque bared the latest decision of the Metro Manila mayors even though the government earlier allowed the operations of these establishments at limited capacity during the GCQ bubble until April 4.

Local government units, he recognized, have the authority to decide on whether or not to suspend operations of certain businesses in their areas of jurisdiction in light of the health emergency.

“Sarado po sa susunod na dalawang linggo ang mga gyms, spas at internet cafes (Gyms, spas and internet cafes will be closed for the next two weeks),” Roque said during a televised press briefing Tuesday, March 23.

“Alinsunod sa guidelines inisyu ng DTI (Department of Trade and Industry) na mayroon kapangyarihan ang mga LGUs na isara ang gyms, spas and internet cafés. Nagbotohan na po ang mga Metro Manila mayors at sarado po sa susunod na dalawang linggo ang gyms, spas at internet cafés (According to the guidelines of the DTI, LGUs have the power to close gyms, spas, and internet cafes and Metro Manila mayors have voted to close them for two weeks),” he added.

Prior to the Metro Manila mayors’ decision, the Palace announced that gyms and fitness centers could operate up to 75 percent capacity while spas were allowed operate up to 50 percent capacity unless LGUs decide to suspend their operations.

The government has placed Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal under GCQ with additional movement restrictions from March 22 to April 4,2012 to prevent the further rise in coronavirus vases.

Only essential travel is allowed in and out of the NCR+ bubble under the latest decision of the government task force in charge of addressing the pandemic. Mass gatherings, including religious gatherings, have been prohibited while indoor dining in restaurants are also restricted.

Among the establishments which are suspended in the GCQ bubble are driving schools, cinemas, game arcades, libraries, archives, museums, and cultural centers, limited social events at accredited tourism establishments and limited tourism attractions except open-air tourism attractions.