BORACAY ISLAND, Malay, Aklan–“Walang katotohanan [No truth (to it)]. Fake news.”
This, succinctly, is how Malay acting town mayor Frolibar Bautista shot down ‘malicious’ posts circulating in social media that alleged a lockdown of Boracay Island was imminent after a cluster of new COVID-19 cases were found at a high-end resort there.
In denying the lockdown, Bautista also urged the public to double down against such rumors.
“Be mindful and perceptive; refrain from sharing information that can do more harm to the tourism industry,” he advised, adding, “Always make sure the facts are accurate before you post or share anything.”
What is true, Bautista said, is that the wearing of masks remains compulsory indoors and out and that social distancing rules are to be observed at all times on the island.
Up north, the posh Shangri-La Boracay Resort & Spa in Brgy. Yapak underwent massive disinfection and thorough cleaning in a bid to stop the spread of the highly infectious virus.
This, after 16 COVID-positive cases were identified from the said luxury resort alone following the mass testing of around 1,400 hotel employees, boatmen, and island-hopping workers from January 19 to 22.
In a media statement, the resort stressed that health authorities had conducted comprehensive contact tracing and high-risk contacts were advised to self-isolate until further notice.
“The resort is in full compliance with the guidelines, and after being notified of the test results, the hotel workers were all placed in self-isolation. They are asymptomatic and did not exhibit any symptoms on the days they were on duty,” it added.
As of January 26, the province of Aklan has 594 COVID-19 cases and 20 deaths linked to the virus./(Boy Ryan Zabal/INews-Aklan/Boracay Bureau)