|A firework display at Thống Nhất Park last Lunar New Year’s Eve. — VNA/VNS Photo Thành Đạt|
HÀ NỘI — Hà Nội authorities have decided to cancel the firework display for the upcoming Lunar New Year's Eve due to COVID-19 concerns.
Chairman of Hà Nội People's Committee Chu Ngọc Anh made the announcement at a meeting on Wednesday.
Earlier in January, the city planned a 15-minute firework display for the Lunar New Year’s Eve at Thống Nhất Park, but for online viewing only.
The city currently has the highest number of new daily infections in the country despite high vaccination rates.
Hà Nội decided to cancel fireworks and countdown events on January 1, 2022, in an attempt to control the outbreak in the city. Instead, virtual events and pre-recorded cultural performance programmes were held.
Prior to COVID-19, firework displays were held across all 30 districts and towns on Lunar New Year’s Eve.
In the directive on New Year celebrations, the city’s secretariat told its localities to assess their situation and take precautions in organising firework displays.
The city People’s Committee also assigned departments, units and Hai Bà Trưng District to coordinate and be well-prepared for the fireworks.
The committee requires that the shows follow predetermined plans and all safety measures are ensured. They should also economise, and not take funding from the State budget.
The Ministry of Health has recently worked with the Government Office regarding firework displays and pandemic prevention and control measures during the Lunar New Year holiday.
According to the health ministry, numerous localities are still recording a significant number of daily cases, while the highly-infectious Omicron variant is spreading across countries in the region and the world.
Therefore, the health ministry does not recommend localities to host firework displays. But if they do, they need to ensure strict compliance with the 5K regulations (Masks, Disinfection, Distance, No gathering, Health declaration), and no large crowds can gather at firework venues. — VNS