MANILA - Operations of the Baguio City night market may resume next week depending on talks and assessments to resolve the issue of lapses in crowd control, Mayor Benjamin Magalong said Thursday.
In an interview on ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo, Magalong said local authorities deployed in the night market performed their duties. He, however, lamented that vendors forgot their role in helping control the crowd.
“Nakalimutan nilang dapat pala silang tumulong. Yun ang gusto kong makuhang commitment sa kanila bago ko bubuksan ulit,” he said.
(They forget that they should also help, and that's the commitment that I want to get from them before I allow it to reopen.)
Magalong said planning sessions are still being conducted, and these, along with the assessments, will be presented to him once he returns to Baguio.
"Pagbalik ko doon, magkakaroon ng meeting. Siguro, next week baka i-resume ko next week," he said.
(There will be a meeting when I return. Maybe, I will allow it to resume next week.)
Magalong is currently with other government officials in Boracay.
“Dahil doon sa insidente, minarapat ko munang i-suspend ulit at pag-usapan ulit namin, pag-aralan namin assessment, tingnan namin vulnerabilities at weaknesses,” he said.
(Because of the incident, I decided to suspend it again. We will study and assess the vulnerabilities and weaknesses.)
The night market was suspended on Wednesday, a day after it reopened.
The night market along Harrison Road was reopened on Tuesday from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Only 481 stalls opened in consideration of the health protocol on physical distancing.
“Pagkatapos ng Christmas lighting, nagdagsaan yung mga tao doon sa night market. 8.30 p.m., ok pa siya, kasi every hour kinunan namin ng video, part of our control doon sa lugar. Bini-video naman every hour, titingan namin anong developement,” Magalong said.
(After the Christmas lighting, people started flocking the night market. It was still ok at 8:30 p.m. because we took a video of the area every hour to check on the development.)
He said the crowd had swelled at 9:30 p.m. and there was not enough personnel to control it. He added that the only good thing about it was all were wearing face masks and shields.
He said that once the night market reopens, they will enforce a limited number of shoppers only.
“Magkakaroon talaga ng magqu-queuing sa labas. Kung ano ang pinapatupad namin sa palengke, bale ganun na din ang mangyayari sa night market. At the same time, dadamihan namin yung bullhorn. Tapos, babawasan natin ingress at egress para talagang controlled yung mga tao,” he said.
(There would be queuing outside. We will implement in the night market the same thing we did for the wet market. At the same time, we will add more bullhorn and reduce the ingress and egress to really control the crowd.)