Religious gatherings allowed up to 30% capacity in GCQ

Religious gatherings allowed up to 30% capacity in GCQ

MANILA – The Department of Justice (DOJ) will promptly correct an oversight in the official rules regarding the seating capacity for religious gatherings in general community quarantine (GCQ) areas.

Secretary Menardo Guevarra told newsmen on Tuesday that under the previous modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) rules, religious gatherings were allowed a maximum 10-percent seating capacity in the National Capital Region, Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, and Bulacan (NCR Plus), and up to 30 percent if the local government unit will allow it.

Guevarra said now that the NCR Plus has been de-escalated to GCQ with heightened restrictions until May 31, 2021, the allowable seating capacity should be “at least up to 30 percent while it is 50 percent in modified GCQ, the least restrictive.”

The latest rules pegged GCQ seating capacity still at 10 percent.

“It was just a case of plain oversight, I believe,” Guevarra said.

“Certain church groups and even the NCR mayors have noted this, so the TWG (technical working group) of the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) will review the resolution and submit its recommendation. I believe that this oversight will promptly be rectified,” he added.

Also under GCQ are Apayao, Baguio City, Benguet, Kalinga, Mountain Province, and Abra in the Cordillera region; Cagayan province, Isabela, and Nueva Vizcaya in the Cagayan Valley region; Batangas and Quezon in Calabarzon; Puerto Princesa City, Palawan; Iligan City, Isabela; Davao City; and Lanao del Sur province. (PNA)

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