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ID system imposed in Boracay to keep tourists out starting April 26

With only two weeks left before the world-famous island Boracay will be closed to tourists, the Department of the Interior and Local Government has released its initial guidelines for the six-month closure period.

According to Joseph Morong's report on "24 Oras", only residents will be allowed to be on the island starting April 26.

Residents have to present government-issued identification cards which show their home address in Boracay.

"The rule is, you get government ID where your address in the island is mentioned. Or kung wala kang government ID, an ordinary ID with the address including a barangay certifcation," DILG Assistant Secretary Epimaco Densing III said.

Tourists who have booked their hotels which will fall a little over the April 26 closure will be allowed to stay in the island.

"Let's say nakapagbook ka ng 24, 25, syempre naka-book ka for four days, abot ka [ng] 28, 29. I think they will still allow them to finish the booking. However, as per [the Department of Tourism], I think nobody should be in the island totally by May 1," Densing said.

Aside from tourists, visitors of Boracay residents will also be prohibited to enter the island except under emergency situations.

Incoming Philippine National Police chief Director Oscar Albayalde said that around 400 police personnel will be deployed at Caticlan Jetty Port, where boats are leaving to Boracay Island. This is to ensure that no tourists will be allowed to go beyond the passenger terminal.

"Hindi naman talaga huhulihin na ikukulong, aalisin lang don sa island na 'yun," Albayalde said.

Floating structures, meanwhile, will not be allowed up to 15 kilometers from the shoreline.

Swimming will only be allowed for Boracay residents but only at Angol Beach from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Foreign residents, on the other hand, will have their papers revalidated by the Bureau of Immigration.

For workers in the island who will be affected by the closure, the DILG said that they do not have to worry as the government has prepared P2 billion in calamity fund.

Resort employees will receive a minimum wage of P325 while informal workers including masseuses and vendors would be able to get 70 percent of the minimum wage for as long as they work for the government through helping in cleaning up the island.

"They have to work. For instance, we need people to help us in the dismantling of the illegal structures in the forest and wetlands," Densing said.

The DILG said that more than 100 tons of waste have been dumped in Boracay everyday but the  hauling capacity is only 30 tons per day. —Marlly Rome Bondoc/NB, GMA News