Minors now allowed inside malls in CDO

Like other malls in Cagayan de Oro, SM Uptown is empty after it was ordered closed to the public at the height of the pandemic last year. MindaNews file photo by FROILAN GALLARDO

CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 11 November) – Starting Thursday (Nov. 11), minors below 18 years old may go inside malls and shopping centers in the city.

The city COVID-19 Operations Center issued the guidelines allowing minors inside these establishments provided they are accompanied by their parents or adults.

“Infants can also go inside the malls and shopping centers as long as they are accompanied by their parents or adults ,” COVID-19 governance cluster head Oliver Egypto said.

But lawyer Jose Edgardo Uy, chair of the city Regulatory Compliance Board said the city government stood pat on its decision not to allow residents who are not fully vaccinated in malls and other public areas.

Uy said establishment security guards were instructed to check the vaccination cards of their customers who want to go inside.

“I suggest that you should carry your vaccination card always because these will be checked by the security guards,” Uy said in the press briefing today.

Egypto said the carrying of vaccination cards will become mandatory replacing the barangay exit pass issued last year by the city government.

“Guards will no longer check the barangay exit passes. You do not have to carry them anymore,” he said.

He said the barangay exit passes is no longer a requirement in traveling around the city.

The “No Vax, No Entry” policy of the city government rebuffed the stance taken by local anti-vaccination advocates, who sent “cease and desist” letters to Mayor Oscar Moreno and Misamis Oriental Governor Yevgeny Emano to stop the inoculation drive.

Mary Clair Tan, Jeria Miras, Bob Lagumen, and journalist Joey Nacalaban, the group leaders said the government vaccination campaign is “worse than extra-judicial killings and it is a genocide.”

The National Inter-Agency Task Force chose Cagayan de Oro as one of the pilot areas where COVID-19 restrictions were eased.

The national IATF placed the city under Alert Level 2 after its COVID-19 cases dropped starting last month.

The City Health Office reported only six new infections on Thursday with zero death and only 502 active cases in the city isolation units. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)