Peaceful, orderly

January 16,2017 - 09:11 PM


Long after the smoke had cleared and the last shred of garbage had been picked up from the city streets, there are at least two challenges faced by the city government that it needs to continually resolve and improve on if it wants to keep the annual Sinulog celebration as peaceful and orderly as it possibly can.

The first is the viability of street parties not only in the Sinulog Grand Parade route but in areas around the Fuente Osmeña Circle where monster traffic congestion had not only made it impassable on Sinulog eve and the Sinulog celebration itself but had also given occasion for drunken revelry to go overboard.

Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña’s Facebook post in which he showed police shutting down a Sinulog dance party in Barangay Mabolo and the resulting favorable response to it only showed that there are limits to public tolerance and acceptance of drunken behavior.

Street parties have become a sort of tradition that had been open to abuse for years, and it didn’t help any that commercial establishments and party hosts failed to exercise responsibility in keeping control over their guests.

It’s worth repeating that last year’s Sinulog street parties have been the most rowdy and raucous, and we don’t need another one like it at any time in the future.

This year may be an improvement owing to the city government’s strict crackdown on errant revelers, and if the threat of detaining them doesn’t work, at least they would be kept quiet until they sober up.

It also bears reminding that a national curfew is in effect prohibiting minors, a lot of whom had previously been allowed to wander and end up lying drunk on the streets, from staying up beyond 10 p.m. along with a ban on the serving of liquor beyond 1 a.m.

If there are to be parties, it should be confined in areas where it cannot disrupt traffic flow nor cause disturbance to the immediate community. Too often than not, things get out of hand and the organizers and the party hosts have not taken pains to keep things under control.

Speaking of traffic, there is little the city government can do to stop the heavy traffic congestion caused in no small part by the huge turnout of faithful during the procession and the throng of spectators that number in the thousands on the Sinulog Grand Parade and dance presentation.

Habal-habal or motorcycle-for-hire drivers have helped a little in fetching commuters to and from their destinations, though reports of some of them overcharging their passengers should be investigated and acted on by the city’s traffic officials.

We hope that next year’s Sinulog celebration would be better with each passing year, and by that we mean toning down or doing away with the street parties completely and finding ways to make traffic more bearable for visitors and residents alike.

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TAGS: Cebu, Fuente Osmeña circle, revelers, Sinulog Celebration

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