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Romulo-Puyat warns of tourism job losses if hotels flout quarantine rules

Philstar

THE Department of Tourism (DoT) said tourism jobs are placed at risk when travelers and hotels disregard quarantine regulations.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said in a radio interview Friday that “No one should be exempted since if one does not follow, it will… result in the loss of their jobs.”

Ms. Romulo-Puyat had issued a show-cause order to Berjaya Makati Hotel after it allegedly allowed a quarantining guest to leave the premises.

“Kapag kausap ko yung ating mga stakeholders na in close to two years wala silang trabaho, umiiyak na sila. Wala na silang income. Tapos hindi pa nakatulong na natamaan most of our tourist destinations ng Typhoon Odette. (“I speak regularly to stakeholders who have had no work for close to two years… They have no income. It does not help either that many of our tourist destinations were hit by Typhoon Odette.)” Ms. Romulo-Puyat said.

“Please, five-day quarantine lang yan. Tiisin niyo na. (Please, it’s only a five-day quarantine. Endure it.) This is for the economy and the livelihood of every Filipino,” she added.

Ms. Romulo-Puyat said her department is working with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Philippine National Police (PNP), and Criminal Investigation and Detection Group to detect quarantine violations by hotels, noting that she has a list of suspects that she hopes to “catch in the act so they can be closed.”

Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año said in a radio interview Thursday that the guest who allegedly skipped quarantine after returning from the US may have infected around 15 people with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The guest also tested positive for COVID-19.

Mr. Año said the investigation is ongoing, but closed-circuit television recordings indicate that the guest left the hotel.  – Revin Mikhael D. Ochave 

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