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BAGUIO CITY – The local government and organizers of the 25th edition of the Panagbenga agreed to cancel the remaining activities of this year’s flower festival while the upcoming Cordillera Administrative Region Athletic Association (CARAA) regional sports competition and other major crowd drawing events in the city were suspended in the light of confirmed Coronavirus Disease (COVID) 2019 cases in the country recently.
The decision to cancel the remaining events of the Panagbenga was upon the recommendation of the Baguio Flower Festival Foundation, Inc. (BFFFI), the private organizer of the premier festival in the country, while the education department came out with pronouncements for the suspension of its remaining regional and national events for this school year.
Further, Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong also announced the suspension of the city’s night market operation along Harrison road starting March 10, 2020 for a maximum of 14 days to allow the local government to assess the present situation in the city with regards the COVID.
The local chief executive also disclosed that the ongoing pedestrianization of the ascending portion of Session Road every Sunday and the activities that had been prepared for the same shall also be suspended until otherwise reversed by succeeding announcements after the situation of the COVID in the city shall have been assessed.
However, he claimed that the local government has no plans of suspending classes in the different levels considering that there are no confirmed COVID cases in the city that will warrant the same, thus pupils and students can still freely attend their classes although close coordination is still being done with the concerned health officials for updates on the status of COVID in the city.
Magalong added the latest announcement after a meeting with members of the local task force on emerging infectious diseases where representatives from concerned government agencies like the health and education departments and the BFFFI are duly represented.
He claimed that the local government will also be meeting with the tourism department and concerned stakeholders to plan a recovery plan for the city after the COVID scare to allow the local tourism industry to recover from the slump that it was able to suffer due to the COVID scare that continues to prevail in the country over the past several months.
By DEXTER A. SEE