Eduardo Año

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has directed all local government units (LGUs) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to ensure that all private and public cemeteries, memorial parks and columbaria are closed from Oct. 29 to Nov. 4.

The closure of cemeteries on Undas was approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases on Sept. 18.

From Sept. 17 to Oct. 28 and from Nov. 5 to Nov. 15, cemeteries will be allowed to accommodate only up to 30 percent capacity.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said LGUs and local police commanders were expected to be “fully accountable” in managing all cemeteries within their jurisdictions.

“September pa lang po nagbigay na ng kautusan ang Pangulo. We expect all LGUs to cooperate by ensuring that cemeteries within their localities are closed. Ito’y para walang mass gathering ngayong panahon ng pandemya,” he said.

Año ordered the PNP to enforce minimum health standards such as the wearing of face masks and face shields and physical distancing on those inside cemeteries during the visitation window.

“Maaari naman pong makadalaw sa mga sementeryo ang ating mga kababayan kahit anong edad bago o matapos ang itinakda at ipinagbabawal na mga araw. Ito naman po ay para rin sa kabutihan ng nakararami,” he added. John Ezekiel J. Hirro