Task force seeks full Boracay closure from tourists for 6 months starting April 26
An interagency task force led by three Cabinet officials have recommended to President Rodrigo Duterte the total closure of Boracay in Malay, Aklan for six months starting April 26.
In a statement on Friday, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources said Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo and Interior and Local Government Officer-in-charge Eduardo Ano, members of the task force, made the joint recommendation to Malacanang in a meeting held on Thursday.
"(T)he DENR, DOT and DILG made a joint recommendation to Malaca?ang regarding the total closure of Boracay for six months effective April 26, 2018," DENR said.
The six-month period was a reduction from an earlier proposal that the inter-agency came out with, which was a total closure of Boracay for tourists for one year after Duterte's declaration of state of calamity in the island.
The change in the timeline to close Boracay apparently came after Duterte, in a speech this week, said he would approve the recommendation of the task force to shut down the island from tourists for six months.
Cimatu assured the government is doing everything to rehabilitate Boracay Island from the environmental damages it has incurred over the years.
Duterte has called Boracay as a "cesspool." Celerina Monte/DMS