Netizens and even celebrities reacted to photos of people crowding the newly opened Manila Bay artificial white sand “beach.”
People were not following the physical distance required by COVID-19 prevention protocols.
Broadcast Journalist Karen Davila retweeted images of people flocking to see the White Sand of Manila Bay.
“Oh wow. And to think pinag-debatehan ng matagal ang .75 or 1 meter social distancing sa public transport. Ingat po kayo please!”
She also stressed the possibility of how the artificial white sand will negatively impact the environment, “The white sand looks nice from this left pic but I hope it lasts, withstands the storms and does not damage the environment in the long run.”
Oh wow. And to think pinag-debatehan ng matagal ang .75 or 1 meter social distancing sa public transport. Ingat po kayo please!
The white sand looks nice from this left pic but I hope it lasts, withstands the storms and does not damage the environment in the long run. https://t.co/CNOvxOLcJS
— Karen Davila (@iamkarendavila) September 20, 2020
Actor Jason Abalos also tweeted a photo of people flocking and sarcastically commented that COVID-19 is gone. “Wala ng covid guys! Mabuhay!! 🙂 #ManilaBay”
— jason abalos (@thejasonabalos) September 20, 2020
Influencer Macoy Dubs also shared a video of fish swimming erratically which Macoy Dubs think is caused by the artificial white sand, “Erratic yung swim ng mga isda, sis. Halatang naninibago sila sa environment not eme.”
Erratic yung swim ng mga isda, sis. Halatang naninibago sila sa environment not eme. https://t.co/tN9tPP81Cy
— Macoy Dubs (@macoydubs1) September 20, 2020
We prohibit social gathering but opened this aritifical white sand bay to the public. LOLS https://t.co/atb8LrYXTb
— DAWN CHANG (@thedawnchang) September 20, 2020
Tapos yung mga nagrarally na may adhikain at layunin para sa bansa, may social distancing dinidisperse niyo???
Pero etong mga bobo, walang utak, walang social distancing, fun fun lang sa beach? Ugh #hypocrites
— カロい (@daeroncarlo) September 19, 2020
You can put "white sand" on Manila Bay. You can beautify the streets of Manila. You can build well-planned business centers like the BGC. But at the end of the day, we still have a faulty public health system, no social safety nets, and tens of millions are jobless and hungry.
— Jecon Dreisbach (@jecondraysbak) September 19, 2020
Reminder: Gobyerno ang nagbukas nito sa public. Gobyerno ang nag-invite sa mga tao. Gobyerno ang magsasabi kung bawal o hindi. Gobyerno ang may magbibigay ng sistema.
Kung rally ito, may militar at mga pulis.
Hindi mamamayan ang problema. https://t.co/bqScWYP1fX
— エマニュエル (@imanyuwel) September 20, 2020
According to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, in spite of the criticism that the white sand funds could’ve been used for the pandemic response, the white sand can be used to ensure people’s mental health.
“I don’t buy that argument. Kasi alam mo, sa gitna ng pandemya, kinakailangan din na pangalagaan ang mental health. I think, yung pagpapasyal sa mga lugar kagaya ng Manila Bay, hindi mo maka-quantify ang epekto niyan pagdating po sa mental health ng ating mga kababayan–yung kapayapaan ng pag-iisip ”
For now, people who went to the new Manila Bay are proudly posting pictures of the artificial beach as if no pandemic is happening,