The government allowed on Friday more sports and betting activities to resume while the country is still under the general community quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Harry Roque Jan 4 18 - Volleyball bubble, off-track horse race, licensed cockpits now allowed to resume
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque
(JOEY DALUMPINES / PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

In an announcement made over state-run PTV-4, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases has approved the following activities subject to conditions:

  • Beach volleyball tournament
  • Off-track horse racing
  • Licensed cockfighting activities

According to Roque, the IATF allowed the holding of a beach volleyball tournament by the Philippine Super Liga under a “sports bubble concept.”

He added that the operation of off-track horse race betting stations will be allowed in areas under the general community quarantine (GCQ) or lower.

Cockpits

Meanwhile, cockfighting enthusiasts may now rejoice after the IATF allowed the operation of licensed cockpits and the conduct of cockfighting activities in areas under the modified GCQ.

However, the IATF has not allowed the broadcast and online forms of cockfighting activities. Licensed cockpits should likewise secure the approval of the local government unit (LGU). Live audience is also prohibited.

“Bawal yung broadcast at online na sabong at kinakailangan po merong pagpayag ng lokal na pamahalaan na siya rin pong nag su-supervise nitong mga sabong na ito (Broadcast and online forms of cockfights are prohibited and they should have the approval of the LGU which will supervise these activities),” Roque said.

“Hindi pupuwedeng may audience kinakailangan yung mga manok at yung kanilang mga naghahawak lamang ang naroon (They are not allowed to have an audience. It should only be the roosters and the players who should be there),” he added.

On Monday, Roque said that an IATF technical working group has been discussing whether to allow cockfights or not.

In July, Malacañang urged stakeholders of online cockfighting to ask the IATF for permission first before continuing with their innovation of the classic betting game.

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