Push Play reopens
A popular gaming zone in Apia has reopened its doors but with new restrictions in line with the Ministry of Health (M.O.H.) safety procedures and state of emergency (S.O.E.) orders.
Owner and manager of local company Push Play Samoa, Francis Ah Wong, reopened his business premises on Tuesday but with strict rules for gamers to comply with.
An employee of the company, Eric Ete, told the Samoa Observer that they are following the safety procedures put in place by the M.O.H. as well as the amended S.O.E. orders.
"Due to the new S.O.E. orders, we have reduced the number of kids to four and we are very strict with this as we wish to follow restrictions by the Government,” he said.
“It is the same thing we did during [the] measles (epidemic) but the kids have to show their vaccination cards and we provided a face mask but it was up to the kids if they wanted to grab one.”
Mr. Ete said the first four players can only enter the room to play after they have sanitised their hands, put on their gloves as well as face mask.
“It is a first-come-first-serve basis and we provide masks, gloves and sanitisers for our gamers and workers too,” he said.
Apart from the sanitation protocols, all controllers and furniture on the company premises are also sanitised before their opening and closing, and only four gaming machines will be used from a total of 14.
Mr Ete added: "Apart from the gears and hygiene, we are only using four machines and we have arranged the seat in a way that complies with social distancing.”
Profit is not the motive behind the firm's decision to reopen, added Mr Ete, who sees gaming as an opportunity to “distract” children from COVID-19 global pandemic.
"We want kids to use gaming as an escape from all that is happening at the moment, though we do not have a time limit, kids are just showing up to relax and chill for a short time and it is good for the others who want to play," he said.
Mr Ah Wong is known for founding Samoa's first e-sport platform where local gamers compete and develop their skills and promote a positive environment with lots of fun.