Cebu marks In­de­pen­dence Day

Os­meña slams no show of Barug Team Rama dads at Plaza Sugbu event

Cebu Daily News - - FRONT PAGE - by Laksmi Canedo CNU IN­TERN /WITH RE­PORTER MOREX­ETTE MARIE B. ER­RAM

No one from the op­po­si­tion group Barug Team Rama-PDP La­ban showed up dur­ing the Cebu City gov­ern­ment’s cel­e­bra­tion of the coun­try’s 120th In­de­pen­dence Day on Tues­day morn­ing.

Mayor To­mas Os­meña said he could not help but no­tice the ab­sence of the op­po­si­tion bloc in an im­por­tant gath­er­ing that was ded­i­cated to those who died for the coun­try’s free­dom.

“The essence of In­de­pen­dence Day lies on the mul­ti­tudes who died and made it hap­pen ,” he said in his mes­sage.

“It is very im­por­tant for us to cite In­de­pen­dence Day for only one rea­son, be­cause so many peo­ple died for it. So many ... And th­ese peo­ple are long for­got­ten. So, we can only think of who to re­mem­ber, all of th­ese face­less peo­ple who have given up their lives so that we will re­main as a coun­try that we can be proud of,” Os­meña added.

City Hall of­fi­cials, de­part­ment heads, em­ploy­ees and po­lice­men from the Cebu City Po­lice Of­fice led by Supt. Joel Do­ria gath­ered at the Plaza Sugbu for the an­nual cel­e­bra­tion which started with a Mass at 7:30 a.m. and fol­lowed by a flag rais­ing cer­e­mony.

Mem­bers of the Cebu City Cul­tural Dance Troupe per­formed two in­ter­mis­sion num­bers. The first per­for­mance was a trib­ute to the Philip­pine flag. Be­fore the pro­gram ended, they also per­formed tra­di­tional Filipino dances.

Be­fore he de­liv­ered his mes­sage, Mayor Os­meña rec­og­nized Sang­gu­ni­ang Ka­bataan (SK) chair­per­sons led by newly elected SK Fed­er­a­tion Pres­i­dent Jes­sica Resch who at­tended the cel­e­bra­tion.

He made them stand up to be rec­og­nized for the “demon­stra­tion of their com­mit­ment” to serv­ing the Ce­buanos.

Os­meña said that while none of the city’s 80 barangay cap­tains showed up, ma­jor­ity of the SK chair­per­sons at­tended the gath­er­ing.

At one point dur­ing his 10-minute speech, Os­meña also called coun­cilors to join him on stage.

He started call­ing the op­po­si­tion coun­cilors but they were not around.

Os­meña later called BOPK al­lies Sisinio An­dales, Dave Tu­mu­lak, Alvin Arvilla and Mar­got Os­meña to come up on stage for their tra­di­tional photo.

“We are not cel­e­brat­ing BOPK, we are cel­e­brat­ing the In­de­pen­dence Day of the city,” he said.

When sought for com­ment, Barug Team Rama Coun­cilor Joel Gar­gan­era crit­i­cized Os­meña for giv­ing po­lit­i­cal color to their ab­sence in yes­ter­day’s In­de­pen­dence Day cel­e­bra­tion.

“Ac­tu­ally I cel­e­brate my In­de­pen­dence Day jog­ging in the moun­tains of Busay, breath­ing fresh air away from the usual suf­fo­cat­ing, toxic and ven­omous words from his almighty, the mayor,” Gar­gan­era said in a sep­a­rate in­ter­view.

“To­day is sup­posed to be a day of peace and tran­quil­ity but he (Os­meña) can’t let a day passes with­out be­ing him­self, be­rat­ing his fel­low pub­lic of­fi­cials as if he tries to im­press that he has the mo­nop­oly of love for our coun­try,” he said.

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTOS

SM City Cebu cel­e­brates the 120th In­de­pen­dence Day with a flag rais­ing cer­e­mony at the North Wing Atrium of the mall with of­fi­cers of the mall’s se­cu­rity de­part­ment rais­ing the flag (above photo) amid a back­ground of a Philip­pine flag cen­ter­piece called Pilip­inas Kong Ma­hal by Anthill Fab­ric Gallery. The cen­ter­piece sculp­ture threads 31,500 me­ters of cro­chet fi­bre across 300 ver­ti­cal hooks painted with ex­u­ber­ant hues of 15 vary­ing colours. The event was at­tended by hun­dreds of guests (right photo), who were from the po­lice, mil­i­tary, boys and girl scouts and stu­dents from Cebu schools and uni­ver­si­ties.

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