By Roi Lomotan
Several sporting events slated in Dumaguete City have been postponed indefinitely in view of the COVID-19 threat.
Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo announced this in a press briefing yesterday morning with the members of the City Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19 at the City Session Hall.
Some the events he mentioned include the Central Visayas Regional Athletic Association (CVRAA), Little League Visayas Regional and National Competitions, and beach volleyball events.
Remollo also said he is planning to meet representatives from other counties participating in the ASEAN School Games which will be held here in November, with the permission of the Department of Education (DepEd), to discuss the possible re-scheduling of the sporting event as a precautionary measure.
The local chief executive proposes to move the ASEAN School Games in July.
“Even if we are to pursue the ASEAN School Games in November, I’m sure several ASEAN member-countries will back out because of the declaration now of the pandemic nature of the virus and with the declaration of a public emergency by the President,” Remollo explained.
“Our sports tourism will be affected but only temporarily,” he added.
Remollo also acknowledged that the threat of COVID-19 will have an effect on the economic movement in the city, but he remains positive that the city will bounce back after the COVID-19 threat has subsided.
The mayor also disclosed that several graduation school rites and conferences in Dumaguete City have been postponed indefinitely or cancelled.
On March 11, 2020, Silliman University (SU) issued an advisory cancelling the conduct of its Honor’s Day, Commencement Exercises, and other mass gatherings starting March 12, 2020.
SU advised graduating students to obtain their diploma and transcript of records at the university registrar and admissions office but they may participate in next year’s graduation rites.
For honor students at SU, they may get their certificates and medals from the said office.
Foundation University (FU) also issued an advisory today directing the postponement of the commencement exercises in all levels of FU.
Moreover, other activities in FU are also cancelled while instructional delivery shall be done online and distance learning starting today until the end of the academic year.
The Negros Oriental State University (NORSU) also declared suspension of classes and work starting today until March 17, 2020 and will resume on March 18, 2020.
NORSU will also disinfect all rooms in its main and satellite campuses during these days.
Despite the series of event cancellations and postponements, Remollo called on the residents to remain calm and avoid panic.
“The authorities from the medical and city government are doing their best to contain and not to prevent the spread of this dreaded virus,” Remollo stressed.
He also urged the public to follow the advisories of the Department of Health to protect themselves from contracting the virus.