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Marikina to close cemeteries from Oct. 30 to Nov 2

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Marikina City ordered the closure of cemeteries in the city on All Saints’ and All Souls’ day, according to Mayor Marcelino Teodoro.

But families will still be given a chance to visit their departed loved ones on other days.

“We will close our cemeteries on October 30, November 1 and November 2. We will provide a window of opportunity for those who want to visit from October 15 to November 30,” Teodoro told reporters.

The mayor said the temporary closure covers all public and private cemeteries in the city, including the Loyola Memorial Park, Barangka Municipal Cemetery, Aglipay Cemetery, and Our Lady of the Abandoned Cemetery.

“We know that the threat of COVID-19 will not go away and the viral transmission can be heightened or that there will be more cases if there is mass gathering especially when our countrymen visit the graves of their bereaved loved ones,” he said.

“We cannot just stop them because it is a religious practice and a cultural practice, and it will be very difficult if something that has been practiced for a long time will suddenly be stopped,” he added.

To limit the number of visitors inside the cemetery, Teodoro said the administration of the cemeteries will issue “cemetery passes” where visitors can secure a schedule for their visit.

“For you to visit, you need to get a one-time cemetery pass from the cemetery administration and we will set a maximum capacity on the number of people allowed to enter the cemetery at a given time,” he said.

“What we have thought was that we would only allow 30 percent capacity so that there would be no overcrowding and no congestion inside the cemeteries here in Marikina,” he added.

The mayor said people may start processing their cemetery passes on October 1.

“After processing their cemetery pass, they will also get a schedule when they will use the cemetery pass. The cemetery pass will be one time use only,” he said.

The mayor reiterated the guidelines of the national government that children below 21 years old and adults above 60 years old are not yet allowed to go outside. Food and tents will also be prohibited inside the cemetery.

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