Cebu City apprehensive about reopening cinemas for now
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City is apprehensive about reopening the cinemas even if the Interagency Task Force (IATF) has already allowed so for areas under the Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ).
Councilor Philip Zafra, who has been tasked to coordinate with the cinemas to study their reopening, said that the city’s moviehouses have already proposed some plans on how to safely show movies to the public at a limited capacity.
However, the councilor said the rising cases of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) have discouraged the city government from reopening the cinemas because of the risks these may incur.
The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) has made an ocular inspection on the cinemas in the past week and was briefed on the proposed movement for human traffic inside and outside the cinema.
“Fifty percent sa theatre ang ioperate gamay ra ang capacity ilang icater per show upat ka show per day. But for now, especially sa EOC, naa pa tay apprehensions, so much so nagkagrabe ang pagsaka sa kaso,” said Zafra.
Should the cinemas be allowed to reopen in the future, Zafra said they can only serve limited customers per show, have an air-filtration system, and thorough disinfection after every show.
Cinemas have also proposed that no one can eat inside the theater during a show to avoid removing the face masks and risking the spread of the virus.
Yet these plans may have to wait a little longer, as Zafra said the rising cases is not a good sign to reopen the theaters in the city.
“Moabot ra gyod na nga magabli sa mga cinemas. There may be no definite dates as to when kay atong huwaton nga monaog ang kaso matag adlaw. Rest assured, we are into this,” said the councilor.
EOC deputy chief implementor, Councilor Joel Garganera, also advised against the plan just yet.
“We’re closely coordinating with theater operators in the city. In fact, we had a walkthrough of one of the movie malls to witness their protocols. As a moviegoer its really very inspiring, but as of now, wala sa gyud ta,” said Garganera. /rcg
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