World-renowned Filipino singer and artist Lea Salonga showed her support for the Manila Restaurant Week by allowing the use of her new song “Dream Again” for the event.
During the weekly Capital Report on Friday, Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso thanked Salonga for the support, saying it would help boost the initiative.
“She will help us promote our approach in helping businesses in the City of Manila, particularly for our Restaurant Week. Thank you for allowing us to use ‘Dream Again’. Pati New York company na may karapatan din sa kantang ito ay pinayagan na gamitin ito ng lungsod ng Maynila (Even the New York company that has the right to this song allowed the City of Manila to use it),” Domagoso said.
He said the city government, through Bureau of Permits and Licensing Office (BPLO) Director Levi Facundo, asked for the help of Salonga to promote Restaurant Week, to which she agreed.
Domagoso said with the vision of slowly opening up the economy, the city government is trying to support businesses in the city to protect employment.
“If there’s business, there are taxes. If there’s business, there’s employment. We all know that many have lost their jobs because of the Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic. That is why I also thank the BPLO when they launched the ‘Buy Local, Eat Local’ to help businesses in Manila,” he said in a mix of English and Filipino.
Through Restaurant Week, the city government encourages restaurants in Manila, aside from the small eateries and stores, to start opening up, with the reminder to follow the imposed rules, such as limited seating capacity, and the health protocols by the Department of Health and the Manila Health Department.
Salonga, boasting of being born in Manila, said she believes that many businesses had been hit hard by the health crisis, taking a toll on the economy.
She noticed that many restaurants are closed in her area while those that are open hardly have customers.
“I felt that it was important, I think that it is important to support whatever efforts there is to help businessmen. But, of course, it goes without saying that everything must be done in a safe manner to make sure that nobody gets infected (with) Covid-19 because this virus is really unpredictable,” Salonga said.
She added that so long as everything is happening in a safe way and in a way that people would enjoy without foregoing the precautionary measures that everyone needs to practice, then its worth encouraging businesses to be open.
Domagoso said everybody must learn how to live with Covid-19 and how to be responsible as individuals.
Salonga said she understands that there are people who need to take care of their families and themselves.
“I’m hoping that this campaign is successful and that people are still exercising physical distancing but we’ll find a way to bring back the joy in socializing and getting together with friends again. But we always need to be smart and as long as every restaurant (is) handling things in a way that the spread of Covid-19 is prevented, I think it will be ok,” she said.
Domagoso said Salonga’s song “Dream Again” communicates the message that people need to anchor to hope and move on, knowing that while there is danger, they cannot live in fear all the time.
The Manila Restaurant Week, an event under the Manila Support Local campaign, is a weeklong and citywide celebration from September 20 to 27 to promote restaurants, from the most prominent ones to the hidden gems, around the city.
Each participating restaurant will offer “prix-fixe” (fixed price) breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner at affordable rates to promote their restaurant by showcasing their specialties and new inventions. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency