‘Negative COVID test not a ticket to socialize,’ Lani Cayetano reminds amid closure of Taguig establishment

January 25, 2021 - 8:56 PM
This December 2020 file photo shows Rep. Lani Cayetano (Taguig). (Cong. Lani Cayetano/Facebook)

Rep. Lani Cayetano (Taguig) over the weekend reminded the public of the standing health and safety protocols following the closure of a popular establishment due to violations of these rules.

In a Facebook post on Saturday, the lawmaker supported the city’s decision to close down an establishment violating the protocols of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

Cayetano did not name the erring establishment nor specified the rules violated.

She then addressed “influencers” and told them to become “right example” and follow the right thing for everyone’s safety.

“To influencers, the present situation calls for you to set the right example and do the right thing for everyone’s safety. People look up to you and admire you. This responsibility should not be taken lightly. Now is the time to use your platform, do good, and perform your civic duty to society,” she said.


She shared the official statement of Taguig Mayor Lino Cayetano, her brother-in-law. The latter also issued warning to businesses who will fail to follow the health and safety protocols.

“Establishments in Taguig that endanger the health and safety of their customers and employees will be engaged immediately. Repeated violators will be closed down,” read the statement.

The mayor’s statement was later shared by the Barangay Fort Bonifacio where the commercial hub Bonifacio Global City is located.

The barangay also echoed the mayor’s reminder to business owners in its Facebook post:

“Again, the officials of Barangay Fort Bonifacio would like to enjoin everyone to be responsible business owners and citizens by following health protocols. This is to ensure that we can let the economy thrive while ensuring a safe, healthy and virus-free City of Taguig.”

Testing negative not a free pass

Meanwhile, aside from addressing the influencers, Lani also reminded her constituents that testing negative for COVID-19 does not warrant them to disregard the mandated minimum health protocols.

“A ‘negative’ test result is NOT a ticket to socialize without precautions and disregard minimum health protocols,” the solon said.

“A test result detects the virus at one point in time. It only means that COVID-19 IS UNDETECTED AT THE TIME AND PLACE YOU WERE SWABBED. You may be infected hours or days after taking the test – in effect becoming carriers of the virus without you even knowing,” she added.

The lawmaker also shared the possibility of acquiring the deadly pathogen despite having a negative COVID-19 test result.

“You may already be infected but the virus is still in its incubation period (or that time between one’s exposure to the virus and the onset of symptoms), which according to the World Health Organization, is from 5-6 days on the average but can be as long as 14 days,” she said.

Lani asked the public to wear face masks and face shields at all times and maintain physical distancing.

Hearsays about the closure

While no details of the establishment was mentioned by both Taguig officials, a popular Spanish restaurant in BGC called La Picara Manila was ordered closed on January 22.

A photo of the restaurant with the closure notice circulated on social media over the weekend.

The management of the restaurant has yet to issue a statement on the closure.

Some online users claimed that celebrity host Raymond Gutierrez allegedly threw a birthday bash at the restaurant that led to the shutdown of the establishment.

The Gutierrez twins Raymond and Richard celebrated their 37th birthday last January 21.

Facebook page De La Salle University-Manila Secret Files shared photos of the alleged birthday party showing Raymond being surrounded by several guests with no physical distancing observed.

In the photos, guests can be seen not wearing the mandatory face masks.

One of the photos shared also included a text: “Note: Everyone was PCR tested!”

The Facebook page claimed Raymond and his friends “defied” the COVID-19 restrictions.

Neither Raymond nor Richard has issued a statement regarding the allegations.

In December, Interior Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III said that “mass gatherings” are not allowed in areas under the general community. 
Under the IATF’s rules, only ten people are allowed to converge in an area under GCQ. Metro Manila has been placed under GCQ until January 31.