Coron mayor Mario Reyes, Jr. vowed to look into alleged uncoordinated tourist entries in the town via the Coron airport to stay at a private island resort in Culion town.
Some Coron residents on social media have been calling out a certain resort for accepting tourists despite the fact that there are strict inbound travel protocols in Coron and Culion. They pointed out that the tourists are arriving from NCR on private planes through the Coron airport and are not following strict travel protocols.
Reyes said he will be speaking with the other mayors of the Calamian island group to look into the matter.
“I will look into the matter, especially dito sa airport. And sina Mayor [Virginia] de Vera and si mayor ng Busuanga [Elizabeth Cervantes] are very cooperative naman, so I guess I will be meeting with them as well,” Reyes told Palawan News in a phone interview on Thursday.
The resort in question, Sunlight Eco Tourism Island Resort, which is located on an island under Culion’s jurisdiction, is being called out by some Calamian residents as operating illegally and violating travel and health protocols. Some netizens pointed out that they are receiving guests from a private aircraft that lands at the Coron airport, and are being picked up by tourist vans hired by the resort.
The posts read that they are putting staff, who are Calamian locals, in danger, and that accepting tourists illegally could cause another COVID-19 surge in the town.
According to one netizen who declined to be named, the guests are coming from NCR plus and are mostly Filipino. According to guidelines set by Coron’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC), only authorized persons outside residence (APORs) and returning locals can travel to the town, but only with the approval of the local government unit. They also need to secure negative RT-PCR test results valid for 72 hours.
Palawan News reached out to Sunlight through an official phone number, but they have yet to give a response.