Eastern Samar tourist site opens for Estehanon tourists only
BORONGAN CITY, July 8 (PIA) –The Minasangay Island Ecological Park of Balangkayan, Eastern Samar is now open for the people of Eastern Samar, Mayor Allan Contado said in an interview with the Borongan City Press club on July 4, 2020.
The said tourist destination has been opened since May 16, 2020 after the National IATF guidelines (Section 7, paragraph 5) was issued.
The IATF stated that the LGU is given the power to regulate the tourism industry. The Department of Tourism (DOT) also respects IATF rules.
“We believe na ang beach kailangan yan ng tao, para lumakas ang immune system,” Mayor Contado said.
“Our biggest income comes from Minasangay Island, we cannot afford to close this one,” Contado added.
There are 30 employees that maintain the eco-park.
Based on the 2019 record, there were 100 thousand tourist arrival with P4-M income.
“We are so happy about it, this resort is family-friendly, kahit low tide or high tide puede maligo, ‘yung mga bata safe dito. May mga natural rock-formations dito na hindi ka mapupunta sa malayong lugar,” Contado stated.
Contado said that even if the country is facing this COVID-19 health issue, the socio-economic issue should also be considered.
The local IATF also agreed to open the Minasangay for the people of Eastern Samar only, provided health protocols are being followed once inside the park.
“Pagsumulod ka, kinahanglan naka-facemask, ngan mag observe social distancing. Then capacity lang ng resort dapat ang papapasukin, hindi yung puno talaga,” (Once inside, one must wear facemask and observe social distancing. Then we only allow just enough tourists, not more than its capacity.) Contado said.
Medical certificate is not required.
“Para sa amin sa local IATF, kahit mag-present ng medical certificate, hindi namin magagamit ‘yan , unless the person is swabbed, na hindi siya positive,” Contado added.
Mayor Contado believes that the province is free from this virus, but should not be the reason to be complacent. The mayor believes that, Eastern Samar is a low-risk area, based on available data.
“We can beat this virus through self-discipline,” said Mayor Contado. (RDT/with Borongan City Press Club)