MANILA - The inter-agency task force leading the country's COVID-19 pandemic response has allowed cockfighting in areas under the loosest lockdown, Malacañang said Friday.
The IATF, which met Thursday, approved the operation of licensed cockpits in areas under modified general community quarantine, said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.
"Pero ang sabi po ng IATF bawal 'yung broadcast at online na sabong at kinakailangan po mayroong pagpayag ng lokal na pamahalaan na siya rin pong nagsu-supervise nitong mga sabong na ito," he said in a Laging Handa press briefing.
(But the IATF said broadcast and online cockfighting is banned and needs the permission of the local government, which will supervise this.)
"Kinakailangan 'yung mga manok at 'yung kanilang mga naghahawak lamang ang naroon. Bawal rin ang audience," he added.
(Only the handlers are allowed there. Audiences are banned.)
The IATF also allowed off-track horse race betting stations to reopen in areas under GCQ or looser quarantine levels, and permitted the Philippine Super Liga to hold a beach volleyball tournament under a "sports bubble concept," said Roque.
The health department on Thursday recorded 2,261 novel coronavirus infections and 50 additional deaths.
In a bulletin, the agency said total confirmed cases have increased to 348,698 while deaths reached 6,497, next only to Indonesia for the most COVID-19 casualties in the Southeast Asian region.
The unrelenting first wave of infections since March has limited the Philippines' ability to fully reopen businesses, and restart domestic and international tourism. - With a report from Reuters