Sarangani’s ‘Boracay of the South’ reopens to tourists

GENERAL SANTOS CITY – Beach resorts and other tourism establishments in Glan town, Sarangani province will reopen to tourists this weekend after more than two weeks of closure due to the spike in coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) infections.

Glan Mayor Vivien Yap said Friday they allowed resorts and hotels in the area to resume their operations, subject to strict compliance with the general community quarantine (GCQ) guidelines and health protocols.

The move was provided for in Executive Order 31 she issued on July 1, which extended the town’s GCQ status until the end of the month based on the classification set by the national Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Yap said all tourism sites in the area, which is dubbed as the “Boracay of the South” due to its famed white-sand beaches, would only accommodate visitors from Region 12 (Soccsksargen).

Under the GCQ guidelines, she said the concerned establishments are allowed to operate at 30-percent capacity of their rooms, function halls, restaurants, and cottages.

She said walk-in guests are not allowed and all visitors should have confirmed bookings with the resorts and other establishments, and registered with the town’s contact-tracing application DVY Cares.

“They are required to present negative antigen test results taken three days before coming to Glan,” she said in a statement.

These requirements will be checked by local government and police personnel at the town’s border checkpoint in Barangay Kapatan.

Yap said all visitors and the tourism establishments are mandated to comply with the health protocols, such as the wearing of face masks and face shields, observance of social distancing, and regular hand washing or sanitation.

Tourism establishments caught violating the GCQ measures will face hefty sanctions, among them the suspension of their operations for at least a month, she added.

The local government temporarily closed down all 35 resorts in the area on June 16 due to the increasing Covid-19 infections.

The Municipal Health Office recorded 14 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday, bringing its active infections to 68, with 42 staying in various facilities and 26 under home isolation.

The confirmed cases in the area since last year already reached 215, with six related deaths and 141 recoveries. (PNA)  


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