OSLOB, Cebu - The sandbar and dive spots of Sumilon Island in this town will be closed starting Tuesday until next Monday to give way to a cleanup.
Mounds of trash were left in the area after tourists flocked there during the Holy Week, said Oslob Mayor Jose Tumulak.
Local officials, Navy personnel and reservists, and volunteers collected about 1,000 kilos of plastic, driftwood and other debris in the first
day of cleanup.
During the week-long closure, tourists may still visit the lone resort there, the Sumilon Bluewater, but they would be barred from swimming in the sea.
"We're satisfied with the cleanup but we are recommending 10 days if the mayor agrees. But in general, we are happy with this move," said
Polonyo Baclayon, pollution and security chief of the provincial environment office.
Pump boat operators bemoaned that they will not earn during the closure, but said they would cooperate with the rehabilitation in hopes that it will lure more tourists.
Report from Annie Perez, ABS-CBN News