Pateros cemeteries closed on ‘Undas’

Published October 12, 2021, 1:00 PM

by Jonathan Hicap

For the second consecutive year, the Pateros municipal government will close public and private cemeteries to the public during “Undas” due to the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. 

Mayor Miguel “Ike” Ponce III announced on Oct. 11 that the municipal government will pass an ordinance banning visitors to cemeteries for five days from Oct. 29 to Nov. 2. 

“The number of cases for COVID-19 positive may be decreasing slightly but this is not really decreasing and sometimes it increases so we continue to take caution,” said Ponce in a live broadcast on Facebook. 

He urged the public to visit cemeteries starting Oct. 12 before the period of “Undas” to avoid crowding, which may cause the spread of COVID-19. 

“We appeal for understanding from the administrators of cemeteries and Pateros residents who are planning to visit cemeteries,” he said. 

In September last year, Ponce issued Executive Order No. 26, closing public and private memorial parks, cemeteries and columbaries from Oct. 29 to Nov. 4, 2020 to prevent crowding due to the pandemic. 

In addition, Ponce announced that curfew hours in Pateros will be shortened to midnight to 4 a.m. starting Oct. 13. 

Ponce signed the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Resolution No. 21-23 dated Oct. 10, imposing a unified curfew hours from midnight to 4 a.m. in Metro Manila. 

All mayors belonging to the Metro Manila Council (MMC) signed the resolution, which noted that “the Department of Health (DOH) has reported that there is a general decrease in COVID-19 active cases in the National Capital Region on account of rapid and efficient detect and isolate strategies and enhanced vaccination efforts, among others. 

“The Metro Manila Council recognizes the imperative to gradually but cautiously open the economy in order to increase business activity, reduce unemployment and underemployment, and promote economic growth while at the same time equally being mindful of the paramount interests of public health and public safety,” according to the resolution. 

The mayors said the curfew should be shortened and “be adjusted in light of the recent developments particularly the steady decrease of active cases in the Region.”