LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- This year’s staging of the Strawberry Festival was cancelled by officials in a bid to ensure public safety and security amid threat on the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) threat.
La Trinidad Strawberry Executive Committee headed by Mayor Romeo Salda, Vice Mayor Roderick Awingan with the municipal council and municipal tourism officer Valred Olsim convened Tuesday, February 11, whether to cancel or move the annual crowd drawing event.
The execom based their decision on the Department of Health (DOH) advisory.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque on February 7 in an advisory discouraged crowd drawing events amid the threat on the 2019–nCoV and strongly urges the public to avoid attending, participating in, and organizing events that draw a huge number of attendees.
“To further minimize the risk of contracting 2019-nCoV ARD, the public is advised to avoid crowded places and continue to practice self-protection measures,” the advisory added.
Eight councilors voted for the cancellation while four legislators voted to reschedule the event.
Salda asked for the understanding of affected stakeholders and guest.
The 2020 Strawberry Festival with the theme “The Strawberry story, adapting, growing, thriving,” was scheduled March 9 to March 31.
Olsim said they will inform all stakeholders and bidders of the Strawberry Trade Fair of the decision of the execom.