City expects 3 thousand at Devotee City
CEBU, Philippines — At least 900 individuals have availed of the free accommodation at the Devotee City in order to celebrate the feast of the Señor Sto. Niño this weekend.
Cebu City Councilor Eugenio Gabuya Jr., City Council’s chairman on the committee of public services, said most of the devotees are from Pinamungajan, Cebu and Bogo City.
He said they are projecting at least 3,000 individuals who will avail of the free temporary shelter provided by the city government and the Province of Cebu.
“Pero if we based it last year, we are expecting mga 3,000 individuals. So, by tomorrow (today), managhan nani,” Gabuya said.
Yesterday, during the official opening of the devotee city, these individuals occupied the container vans provided for them.
Every container van can accommodate 50 individuals.
This year, the Devotee City has 58 container vans, which is 10 vans lower than that of last year.
The city government, however, has put up additional tents in order to cater other transients who will be staying at the Devotee City until January 21.
“We have provided few tents kay og mosalwak or manobra ang mga tawo, ma-accommodate nato. Og moabot gyud ang tanan, kuwangon ra gyud, pero dili man sila magdungan og katulog, okay ra,” Gabuya said.
About 70 to 80 percent of the occupants are vendors, who wish to sell their local products during the Sinulog festival celebration.
In maintaining the area clean, there are a number of Barangay Environmental Officers (BEOs) deployed at the area, while trash bins were also put up.
For their security, the Province of Cebu has assigned cops to monitor the area with the help of the Barangay Intelligence Network (BIN).
“Kutob gyud sa moabot, atong dawaton. They are included in the devotee numbers. Naay mga police and dunay mga BIN and magdugang pami og other personnel,” Gabuya said.
Aside from the free accommodation, both local government units have offered various services such as medical check-up, free meals, among others.
Genara Patambag, from Toledo City and among the transients of the Devotee City, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to the city government and the province for providing free shelter for them.
Since 1996, she has availed of the free accommodation and the services offered at the Devotee City.
She said her purpose of gracing the Fiesta Señor is to sell candles at the Basilica Minore Del Santo Niño.
“Pila nako ka tuig diri, maninda man gyud ko and managkot sad. Akong pangamuyo karon is tagaan ta og maayo nga lawas, makaabot pata sa tanang pista,” Patambag said. — GAN (FREEMAN)