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Navotas, Valenzuela LGUs cancel Christmas parties amid COVID-19 pandemic


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The local governments of Valenzuela and Navotas cities are cancelling their Christmas parties this year amid the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and also as a health precaution.

Valenzuela Mayor Rex Gatchalian said he issued a memorandum on Thursday cancelling all Christmas parties of the city hall and its affiliate offices.

“We are cancelling all Christmas parties. So wala. The reason being, number 1, alam naman natin these are hard economic times. Alam natin maraming naapektuhan ng pandemya so hindi naman maganda na ang ating mga kababayan sa Valenzuela kumbaga ay nahihirapan economically tapos nakikita nila yung mga public servant nila, tuloy pa rin sa mga parties,” Gatchalian told GMA News.

“Pangalawa, gusto natin na lahat ng matitipid natin doon, magamit natin sa COVID response natin," he added.

Gatchalian estimated that the local government will be able to save up to P5 million from the cancellation of their Christmas parties.

The cancellation, he said, also serves as a preventive health measure.

“Napakalaki ng tsansa ng community transmission sa mga social gatherings,” Gatchalian said.

As of last count, there were more than 500 active COVID-19 cases in Valenzuela. But Gatchalian said the rate of infection is going down, from 60 to 80 cases per day at the height of the pandemic to 20 to 30 cases these days.

Gatchalian said the observance of the holidays may be done in private.

Navotas Mayor Toby Tiangco also announced that the local government’s Christmas parties have been cancelled.

“Definitely sa LGU, walang Christmas party. Kasi yung Christmas party, hindi mo ma-exercise yung social distancing diyan e,” Tiangco told GMA News.

The budget allocated for the Christmas parties had already been realigned to the local government’s anti-COVID response.

Tiangco also said even his family’s Christmas party has been put on hold.

“Noong ako ay natanong ng aking mga kapatid dahil ako ang panganay, sinagot ko nang diretsahan. So sabi ko, I think mas mabuti na huwag muna tayong magkita-kita this Christmas eve and this Christmas," he said.

“Because everything starts in the family. Kasi ang numero unong hawaan is within the family. Di ba kasi pag-uwi natin ng bahay, doon tayo nagtatangal ng face mask. Hindi naman sigurado tayo na lahat ay walang COVID. So ang disiplina, dapat magsimula sa pamilya,” he added. —KBK, GMA News

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