Governor Juanito Victor "Jonvic" Remulla Jr ordered Wednesday, September 23, the indefinite closure of Sherwood Golf and Country Club located at Barangay Cabezas, Trece Martires City here, for holding an unauthorized tournament.
Remulla said in his Facebook page that the tournament, which Sherwood dubbed as a "Members Day" event, violated the rules imposed by the national coronavirus task force (IATF) on mass gathering in sports events.
The governor said that 91 members of the Sherwood Hills Golf Club participated last September 12 in the illegal tournament.
The members tried to circumvent the rules by claiming that there were no trophies, awards, score cards nor prizes. They made it appear that only token gifts were provided to the participants, said Remulla.
He cited IATF rules which banned mass gatherings in sporting events beyond the 50% rule, that is "spectators in all non-contact sports and exercises shall be prohibited," thus organized play is not allowed under quarantine.
"The claim of the club that no tournament was conducted was clearly disingenuous and dishonest because of the organizational efforts made to conduct the same." Remulla said.
Remulla disclosed in his social media post that he and his family are members of the club and have substantial real estate holdings in the development of the golf course.
Their family was part of the joint venture which developed the golf course. In fact, his father, Juanito Remulla Sr, through their land holdings were part of the development.
Sherwood Golf and Country Club said it accepted the decision and would abide by the closure order.
Sherwood Hills general manager Shin Paul Chan said that they received the order from the provincial office at 3 pm, Wednesday and ceased operations immediately. They have also informed their members of the Governor’s order.
The governor's Executive Order No. 33 cited a report by the Philippine National Police that Sherwood Hills held a sporting event participated in by 91 club members.
The police report also said that designating the activity as an ordinary “Members Day" event "showed an intent to circumvent the prohibition against the conduct of non-professional sporting events.”
Sherwood Hills employs a total of 104 regular and maintenance staff and 183 caddies.
Earlier, Remulla also shut SM Mall Trece Martires temporarily for failing to secure quarantine passes. The mall was allowed to re-open only after adopting changes to the enforcement of safety protocols. – Rappler.com