No Boracay visit for ‘busy’ Duterte for now — Palace
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte will not be visiting the recently-reopened Boracay Island for now because of his busy schedule, Malacañang said Friday.
“Well, it’s abnormal times but I’m sure he would like to visit Boracay as well. But right now, he’s actually very busy in Malago (Malacañang clubhouse) nowadays. So I don’t think a visit to Boracay in the near future could happen,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an interview over CNN Philippines’ The Source.
“But let’s not discount it because it’s important to encourage people to assist our tourism industry,” he added.
Boracay is off to a pale reopening on Thursday, having only welcomed 35 tourists after months of closure due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
READ: Slow day in Boracay
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said the reopening of Boracay, the Philippines’ top beach destination, to an expanded market signaled the safe and gradual revival of the country’s tourism industry amid the pandemic.
Tourists who want to visit Boracay are required to have a negative RT-PCR test result not earlier than 48 hours before they travel. This rule, however, exempts Aklan residents.
‘Palace briefing in Bora’
Meanwhile, Roque said he will hold his regular Palace press briefing from Boracay on Monday to help attract more tourists.
“We will be conducting our press briefing on Monday from Boracay and of course this is our little contribution to reopening the tourism industry particularly in Boracay,’ he said.
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