Thousands of festival-goers crammed into a water park over the weekend in Wuhan — the central Chinese city where the Wuhan coronavirus first emerged last year — as local Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials say they are once again easing coronavirus restrictions in the city.
The Wuhan Maya Beach Water Park reopened in June as part of Wuhan’s gradual reopening following its latest 76-day coronavirus lockdown meant to control the spread of coronavirus, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reports. Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, is notorious for having endured one of the world’s most extensive and draconian lockdowns at the hands of the CCP during the height of its coronavirus outbreak months ago.
Now, CCP authorities claim that Wuhan’s most recent coronavirus lockdown is reportedly easing and that the city’s water park hosted thousands of attendees over the weekend for an electronic music festival. Local media said that the park “capped attendance at 50 percent of normal capacity” to comply with remaining coronavirus prevention protocols, presumably to encourage physical distancing. However, AFP describes the thousands-strong festival crowd as “packed close.”
“Some of the crowd had donned life jackets, but none of the tightly-packed partygoers were seen to be wearing face masks as a DJ in bright yellow headphones played on stage,” AFP notes.
The park offered half-price discounts for women to encourage attendance, part of Hubei’s recent efforts to boost its struggling economy amid the pandemic. “[T]he Hubei government has been offering free entry to 400 tourist sites across the province,” as part of the initiative, according to the report.
For months, CCP authorities have repeatedly declared Wuhan completely free of “domestic” coronavirus cases, claiming that only a few “imported” cases from foreigners and Chinese returning from abroad were recorded in the city and throughout Hubei province. In May, CCP authorities admitted that they had detected new cases of the Wuhan coronavirus in Wuhan and other Hubei cities, without claiming that they were “imported.”