The top official of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Saturday reiterated the Metro Manila Council’s (MMC) unanimous opposition to reopening cinemas in the region, noting that there is still no approved seating capacity yet for these establishments.
In a statement, MMDA chairman Benjamin “Benhur” Abalos Jr. said if the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) and President Rodrigo Duterte decide to reopen cinemas, the MMC will follow and will be involved in formulating its implementing rules and regulations.
“The Metro Manila mayors are united that now is not the right time to reopen the cinemas. However, we will support and respect the final decision of President Duterte on the matter,” Abalos said.
Following a report that the MMDA eyes 20 to 30-percent seating capacity, he said it is the Metro Manila mayors, and not the MMDA, who would determine the seating capacity of cinemas within their jurisdiction.
“They have full discretion as to the guidelines. The 20- to 30-percent seating capacity mentioned in the article was just the suggestion of the economic team and not in any way the proposal of MMDA,” Abalos said.
Earlier, the IATF-EID announced the possible reopening of several establishments and events such as cinemas, arcades and conferences as the country moves to ease restrictions brought by the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic and help revive the economy. SOVEREIGNPH