Temporary transfer of Sto. Niño vendors near Compania Maritima to start before Misa de Gallo

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - CDN Digital Multi-Media Reporter | December 10,2020 - 08:21 PM

January is the peak season for Sto. Nino vendors along D. Jakosalem St. who earn at least P5,000 daily for the repair and dressing up of Sto. Nino images. (CDN PHOTO/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The temporary transfer of Sto. Niño vendors to a lot beside the Compania Maritima will start in the next few days in preparation for the Misa de Gallo.

This was confirmed by Racquel Arce, the head of the Cebu City Prevention Restoration Order Beautification and Enhancement (PROBE) team in a phone interview with CDN Digital on December 10, 2020.

Arce said that the transition to the pedestrianization of the surrounding roads of the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño will begin at the start of the Misa de Gallo, which means that a portion of D. Jaskosalem Street, P. Zamora Street, and Osmeña Boulevard will no longer be accessible to motor vehicles.

The Sto. Niño vendors will have to be temporarily transferred to the lot near Compania Maritima so that they will not cause crowding outside the Basilica.

The open area would also allow physical distancing better for the vendors without the need for an alternate schedule.

“Akong iclarify ang pwede ra mopwesta didto sa daplin a Compania Maritima, kanang lot for the Devotee City sauna, kato ra pung madisplaced nga vendors sa tuyok sa Basilica. Walay labot katong mga taga ubang areas,” said Arce.

The PROBE is already expecting resistance from the vendors, who recently protested the recent changes in their vending policies especially the alternative schedule for selling.

Arce said the decision to transfer the vendors is not from them but is the joint decision of the police and the city government because there was a need to clear the surroundings of the Basilica in anticipation of the Misa de Gallo, Sinulog, and the 500th year of Christianity.

This means that the vendors will have to stay at the relocation site for at least three months before they can return to their spots around the Basilica.

“Of course nag-andman ta nga moresist gyod sila, pero wala man tay mahimo ana because mao man nay gusto sa atong awtoridad. Maayo nalang nang naa silay kabalhinan kaysa papahawaon gyod sila. Didto sa dakong lote, mas safe sila kay mas dako ang space nya naay social distancing nga tarong,” said Arce.

The PROBE has not given a precise date as to when the transfer will begin, but the target would be before the first Misa de Gallo on the evening of December 15, 2020.

Arce assured that the relocation will be in proper coordination with the vendors once the transfer will begin. /rcg

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TAGS: Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño, Cebu City, Compania Maritima, COVID-19, Misa de Gallo, PROBE, Racquel Arce, relocation site, Sinulog 2021, vendors

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