Before casting their vote for the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections, several Filipinos made use of their weekend to visit their loved ones at the Manila North Cemetery ahead of All Souls’ Day.
There are also those who went straight to cemeteries like the Manila South Cemetery after voting to avoid the Undas crowd, according to a “24 Oras” report by Mav Gonzales and Chino Gaston.
Metro Manila cemeteries are implementing restrictions for the security of visitors and for better crowd control.
“Bawal po ang sigarilyo, bawal po ang lighter. Any kind na matutulis po bawal po. Baril bawal parin po, at lahat po ng animals bawal po papasukin sa loob,” said Manila North Cemetery force multiplier head Christopher Sempio.
(Lighter, cigarettes, pointed and sharp objects are prohibited. Pets are also not allowed inside the cemetery.)
The cemetery has also implemented a registration system for children entering the premises for easier contact should they get lost.
“Pinapayagan na natin lahat dumalaw. Wala nang restrictions, pero kung may nararamdaman kayo wag na pilitin dumalaw. Kung kaya mag-face mask, magface mask pa rin tayo, at yung mga bawal dalhin [ay] huwag na dalin dahil mahigpit security natin,” said Manila mayor Honey Lacuña-Pangan.
(Everyone can visit the cemetery. If you are not feeling well, then don’t force it. Wear face mask, and don’t bring prohibited items.)
Some families went straight to cemeteries on Monday after voting to avoid the crowd.
“Ang sikip-sikip nga pag November 1 (Cemeteries are too crowded on November 1),” said Marietta Escober.
Over 8,000 individuals visited the Manila South Cemetery on Sunday and less visited on Monday due to the elections, but the management is expecting at least 600,000 people similar to pre-pandemic levels until November 2.
The Manila South Cemetery will remain open from 5:00 am to 5:00 pm on November 2. —Jiselle Anne Casucian/LDF, GMA Integrated News