Three government offices: the Department of Tourism (DOT), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), have recommended the total closure of Boracay for up to one year to facilitate its rehabilitation.
The news about the decision was posted via the official Twitter account of DOT, right after a series of meetings participated by the three agencies. DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu, DILG officer-in-charge Eduardo Año, and DOT Secretary Wanda Teo were all present.
“For public health, public interest, and general welfare, I recommend to the President the closure of Boracay island as tourist destination for a maximum of one year effective one month after the declaration,” Cimatu said in the statement.
The departments recommend the following measures to restore and eventually save Boracay:
- Upgrading the sewerage system, including sewer lines, to meet the requirement of the entire island as a major tourist destination;
- Installation of all the required solid waste management facilities and mechanisms in addition to full compliance with provisions of the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act;
- Removal of illegal structures in forestlands and wetlands, easement areas and even geologically hazardous areas such as those with sink holes;
- Road widening and construction, pipe laying and excavations; and
- Rationalization of a transportation system.
Here’s a copy of the joint resolution as posted by ABS-CBN News:
If approved, the island will be closed for one year, effective one month after date of President Rodrigo Duterte's approval. Meanwhile, netizens expressed their thoughts upon the said issue:
Some even shared their fondest memories of the island (and are all in for its rehabilitation)
While others are concerned about the thousands of workers making a living there
On the other hand, some netizens think that there’s a deeper reason behind the sudden closure
For reference, here are current pictures of Boracay after the recent clean-up