MANILA- Masses and other essential gatherings will be allowed in areas that will shift to a "new normal" by Friday as long as they meet government requirements, the country's pandemic task force said Thursday.
Essential work-related and religious gatherings may be conducted in areas that will shift to a general community quarantine as long as participants practice a strict 2-meter physical distancing, wearing of face masks or face shields, thermal scanning, and hand sanitation.
"Ang mass gatherings ay prohibited pa rin except 'yung tinatawag natin na (Mass gatherings are still prohibited except what we call) relevant activities like in line of work and religious activities like Mass," Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said.
Año said the task force did not agree on the number of participants allowed to attend essential gatherings but noted that the standards set by the government should be met.
"Nasa atin pong mga religious leaders na kung paano ito ipapatupad," he said.
(It's up to our religious leaders how they will implement this.)
Several parts of the Philippines will shift to a new normal on Friday except for Metro Manila and other areas at high risk of a coronavirus outbreak.