CEBU CITY, Philippines – At least more than Fifty-five thousand people paid their last respects to the late Archbishop Emeritus of Cebu, His Eminence Ricardo Cardinal Vidal.
The scorching heat of the sun has failed to stop the thousands of Cebuanos and visitors alike in attending the Funeral Mass, Procession and Interment of the Prelate this Thursday morning, October 26.
Some people already lined up outside the gate of Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral since Wednesday evening. More people flocked early dawn time today before the gate opened at exactly 7AM. A strict security was implemented before they were allowed to enter the Cathedral Compound.
Before the Funeral Mass started at 9AM the crowd was estimated at 6,500 inside and within the vicinity of the Cathedral. At 10:30AM shortly before the Mass ended the crowd becomes bigger at 10,000.
During the procession and the interment, the crowd went bigger reaching to more than 55 thousand occupying the whole stretch of the procession offering prayers, sacrifices and farewell to the Cardinal.
At least the country's 3 living cardinals such as Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, Manila Archbishop Emeritus Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, and Cotabato Archbishop Orlando Cardinal Quevedo graced the event together with more than 20 Bishops and 500 Priests from the different parts of the country.
Msgr. Gabriel Viola, the secretary of Papal Nuncio Gabriele Giordano also delivered the message of His Holiness Pope Francis to Cardinal Vidal.
Also in attendance were the bereaved Family and relatives of Cardinal Vidal from Mogpog, Marinduque where the Prelate originated and from other parts of the country.
In the meantime, the City Government of Cebu together with the Archdiocese of Cebu has set up an Incident Command Post (ICP) to ensure a safe and solemn burial of Cardinal Vidal. At least 1,232 volunteers checked-in in the ICP coming from the Cities of Talisay, Mandaue, and Lapu-Lapu and various organizations Cebu-wide.
At dawn time today, the Incident Management Team has implemented the Plan B for the activity which expanded the route of the procession reaching up the Colon Street anticipating the influx of people to attend the event.
The new route of the procession was from Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral turn right side to Burgos Street, right turn to Osmeña Boulevard, right turn to Jakosalem Street, right turn to Colon Street, right turn to Mabini Street, then right turn to the P. Gomez Street where the Cardinal was buried at the Burial Chamber of a Mausoleum located inside the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral Compound shortly before noontime.
Cardinal Vidal's remains was placed in a century-old carroza bedecked with flowers and candles for the funeral procession. A red velvet cloth was placed around the carroza symbolizing the rank of Cardinal Vidal in the church hierarchy.
The Prelate died due to septic shock on October 18, a week after he was rushed to the hospital due to fever and shortness of breath. He was 86.
Cardinal Vidal was appointed by Pope John Paul II as Coadjutor Archbishop of Cebu in 1981 before he became Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cebu on August 24, 1982, succeeding Cardinal Julio Rosales. He was buried beside the tomb of Cardinal Rosales.
Senior Supt. Joel Doria, director of the Cebu City Police Office, said the activity went smooth and peaceful with no bad incident reported all throughout the activity.
Doria said at least 524 policemen together with Barangay Tanods and Non-Uniformed Personnel and Intelligence Networks as force multipliers were deployed during the activity which were on prowl on bad elements.
Nagiel Bañacia, head of the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office shared that no untoward incident occurred for the duration of the burial of Cardinal Vidal except for the reported 26 minor cases which were all medical-related concerns.
The City Government of Cebu, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) 7 and Valiacar Corporation (Ceres Bus) offered free rides to everyone from different points in Cebu City to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.
Moreover, Malacañan Palace thru president Rodrigo Duterte who personally attended the Prelate’s wake declares October 26 as a special non-working holiday in the entire Cebu Province including the Chartered Cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu. The president mourns with the Cebuanos and announced for the holiday during his visit to allow Cebuanos to attend the burial of Cardinal Vidal. (By: Greggy P. Senados/ City of Cebu, Public Information Office)
CEBU CITY, Philippines - Several advocates from various organizations for Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) all over the Philippines pushed for the inclusion of their sector in the planning and implementation of the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management.
In the 2nd National Conference on Disability-inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction (#DiDRRNatCon) held on October 11-13, 2017 at the Golden Prince Hotel and Suites in Cebu City, the advocates created a National Declaration.
The National Declaration was aimed to come up with a common understanding on disability-inclusion in relation to disaster risk reduction and management and further include in the programs and services of various government offices intended for Differently Abled Persons and come up with ways on how to make it more accessible for them.
Carmen Zubiaga, executive director of the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA), is hopeful that the National Declaration can be an instrument and reference for policy makers in revising some sections for PWDs embedded in the Republic Act 10121 or an Act strengthening the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management System.
During the summit, the group invited Senator Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara, chairperson for Senate Committee on Local Government and Ways and Means and the Co-author of the Act expanding the benefits and privileges of PWD (RA10754) and Senator Loren Legarda, chairperson for Senate Committee on Climate Change, Finance and Foreign Relations and also Co-author of RA10754 to champion their cause. However both Senators weren't able to attend due the Senate Budget Hearing.
"This declaration will serve as the framework for action to institutionalize a disability-inclusive disaster risk reduction and management plans," Zubiaga underscored citing that they plan to hold the Disability-inclusive DRR National Conference and various activities annually and further lobby their National Declaration in various Local Government Units and in the House of Representatives and Senate.
Zubaiga further stressed that the 1st Disability-inclusive DRR National Conference was held sometime in the year 2014 held in Blueleaf Hotel Manila which was initiated after the Super Typhoon Yolanda affected several people in the country particularly in Tacloban, Leyte.
The advocates also pushed to have PWD representation in the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Councils and Local Development Councils as they are among the most vulnerable sector during disaster along with the children, elderly, pregnant women and those who are sick. (By: Greggy P. Senados/ City of Cebu, Public Information Office)
CEBU CITY, Philippines - To develop sportsmanship and camaraderie among its more than Five thousand employees, the Cebu City Government headed by Mayor Tomas Osmeña will formally open this year's Inter-Department Sports Festival on October 13 Friday.
Anchored on the theme, "Total Fitness: A Key to a Better Public Service," the annual event will start with a Grand Parade for both athletes and non-athletes from the 22 Departments comprising the Cebu City Government inside the Cebu City Sports Complex at 4 o'clock in the afternoon.
Right after the Grand Parade, the formal opening will immediately follow inside the Cebu City Sports Complex which will be highlighted by various competitions. This included the Pasikatay Dance Showdown or Pahugyaw sa Sayaw, Raising of Team Banners, and the Search for the Mr. and Ms. Sports Fest 2017, among others.
Several sporting events will also be competed by the participating teams that will be held after the office hours, weekends and even during holidays until the Championship Games. (By: Greggy P. Senados/ City of Cebu, Public Information Office)
CEBU CITY, Philippines – The City Government of Cebu through its Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CCDRRMC) is getting ready for the observance of the All Saints and All Souls Day on November 1-2, 2017.
In its regular meeting Monday this week, the CCDRRMC activated the “Oplan Kalag-Kalag” to ensure safety of everyone during the annual celebrations.
CCDRRMC head for operations Mr. Harold Alcontin, said that the city’s preparations included putting up of Command Posts in all Cemeteries and Bus Terminals and Ports, establish traffic management, conduct risk assessment and inspection, installation of signage and layout, set up emergency plans, take care of crowd control and ensure before and after care, among others.
Alcontin further pointed out that more than 2,000 personnel from the Cebu City Police Office, Bureau of Fire Protection, Auxiliaries and Volunteers from the different offices in the Cebu City Government and civic organizations will be deployed for the Oplan Kalag-Kalag operations.
The CCDRRMC also created a Task Force to conduct risk and hazard assessment and inspection in the different Cemeteries in Cebu City starting October 18 Wednesday as part of their preparations.
Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) and K9s will also be deployed to ensure no bladed weapons, alcoholic beverages and explosives can get through during the Oplan Kalag-Kalag operations.
For the uninformed, Malacañang Palace has declared October 31, 2017 Tuesday as Special Holiday and November 1, 2017 Wednesday in observance of the All Saints Day celebration. Regular work will resume on November 2 Thursday.
Moreover, the public are advised to be vigilant and report suspicious persons and activities and be part of ensuring a safe and successful All Saints and All Souls Day celebrations. (By: Greggy P. Senados/ City of Cebu, Public Information Office)
CEBU CITY, Philippines - The Cebu City Government thru the Management Information and Computer Services (MICS) Department recently launched a new web application which will guide public commuters.
Dubbed as “Cebu City Travel Lines” the web application, which was formally launched on October 9, 2017, after the weekly Flag Ceremony, will be using Google Maps and Geographic Information System (GIS) to guide public commuters, especially local and foreign tourists, who are new to the city.
To access the application, one has to visit the Cebu City Government website (www.cebucity.gov.ph). Click the Travel Lines Logo found in the upper left corner of the site wherein a digital map of the City of Cebu will pop up including jeepney routes within the city.
With this development, foreign and local tourists as well as the constituents will now have easy access to information with regards to location and transportation in their day to day activities.
This new innovation is in partnership with the Land Transportation and Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Region 7 which is in charge of giving franchise to jeepney operators. (By: Kissy Dante and Alvina Fernandez/UV MassComm Interns)