GenSan LGU recalls cockpit permits after 2 coronavirus infections traced there
GENERAL SANTOS CITY—The city government has ordered the recall of all business permits issued to cockpits after two persons in a cockfight tested positive for coronavirus.
The two new COVID-19 cases involved two persons who were at a cockfight in Calumpang Gallera, a cockpit, last Jan. 2.
At least three major cockpits operate in the city at the villages of Apopong, Katangawan and Calumpang.
The Business Permit and Licensing Division (BPLD) of the city government has suspended processing of the business permit of Calumpang Gallera.
Geraldine Zamora, BPLD head, said the office had also asked the city council to recall a resolution supporting the operations of cockpits.
The city council had issued the resolution based on a guideline of the National Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging and Infectious Diseases that allows the operation of cockpits in places on modified general community quarantine, the second lightest form of lockdown.
City Councilor Franklin Gacal, the resolution’s main proponent, cited economic reasons for his push to reopen the city’s cockpits.
“Many residents rely on the game fowl industry that used to be worth millions of pesos,” he said.
Mayor Ronnel Rivera had told media that he already asked the city’s Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19 to issue an order stopping all cockpit operations.
He said that there was “blatant violation of basic health protocols” during cockfights in the three major cockpits in the city.
In their recent session, city councilors discussed the failure to observe physical distancing and wearing of face masks at the cockpit at Katangawan village.
Rivera said the fate of the cockpit operations depends on a viable plan by operators to ensure that health protocols are followed by cockfighting aficionados while inside the arena.
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