Duterte approves six-month closure of Boracay starting April 26

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By Arjay L. Balinbin

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has approved the recommendation of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and Department of Tourism (DoT) to close Boracay for six months starting April 26.

The President announced his decision during the Cabinet meeting at Malacañang on Wednesday evening, April 4.

“Boracay closed for six months effective 26 April,” Presidential Spokesperson Herminio Harry L. Roque, Jr. said in a social media post.

In a text message to reporters, Deputy Executive Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra said the President approved the proposal of the three agencies “after an exhaustive discussion.”

“Calamity funds will be activated to tide affected workers over,” the Palace official added.

The closure of the island from entry of local and foreign tourists is to give way to its rehabilitation.

Mr. Duterte himself has labeled the country’s world-famous Boracay island as a “cesspool.”