Cebu City debate: No campaign materials, balloons please
CEBU CITY, Philippines –Campaign materials and even balloons will not be allowed at the venue of the Cebu City mayoral debate that is scheduled on Monday afternoon.
Lawyer Regal Oliva, president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Cebu City Chapter, said that anyone who will be found rowdy will also be asked to vacate the debate venue.
Oliva said that they wanted to discourage any disruptions to keep the debate peaceful and orderly.
IBP is organizing a mayoral debate on Monday to provide a venue for Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña of the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) and his challenger, Vice Mayor Edgar Labella of the Barug PDP-Laban, to meet and exchange views on pressing issues concerning the city.
Oliva is hopeful that both Osmeña and Labella will show up during the debate scheduled at 1 p.m. on Monday.
Councilor Mary Ann delos Santos, Osmeña’s vice mayoral candidate, has also expressed her commitment to attend Monday’s debate.
“We wouldn’t really know if manunga sila. Maynta manunga sila kay dili lalim mag organize ani.” said Oliva
(We wouldn’t really know if they will come. But I continue to hope that they will because it’s not easy to be organizing this debate.)
During the final briefing held Friday afternoon, Osmeña and a representative whom Labella sent made a commitment to abide by debate rules and regulations. Both also promised to sign a peace covenant that the IBP Cebu City Chapter will prepare at the end of the debate.
Oliva said they hope to accommodate a crowd of at least 600 people at the debate venue at the Cebu City Sports Club.
Security personnel and bouncers will be deployed on the venue to make sure that the crowd does not end up to be unruly.
Supporters will also be discouraged from converging outside of the event venue that will also be secured by uniformed policemen, said Oliva.
Oliva said that the Cebu City debate will last for three hours from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Candidates will be given five minutes to answer each of the questions that will be given by organizers.
During the second part of the debate, the opposing candidates will take turns to ask each others a total of five questions. Each candidate will be given five minutes to answer each of the questions.
Oliva said that the questions that will be asked during the debate will involve governance and other issues that will help voters get to know the candidates better.
“I am hoping that everyone will be able to prepare and learn. We hope that we will be able to bring awareness to guide them (voters) on who to vote,” said Oliva./dcb
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