Cebu City gets ready for start of Simbang Gabi season
700 personnel to be deployed in churches around the city
CEBU CITY, Philippines—The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) and Cebu City government is deploying over 700 personnel to watch over churches where Simbang Gabi and Misa De Gallo will be celebrated starting on Tuesday evening, December 15, 2020.
According to Police Colonel Josefino Ligan, the director of the CCPO, 219 policemen will be deployed to 35 churches here that will be hosting the traditional nine-day evening or dawn masses.
Additional forces of 100 from the Prevention Restoration Order Beatification and Enforcement (PROBE) team, 200 from the City Environment and Sanitation Enforcement Team (Ceset) and barangay personel, and at least 150 Task Force Kasaligan personnel will help the police man the churches as well.
Ligan said that in every church, personnel will be deployed at entrances to control the number of people going in. They are tasked to make sure that only 50 percent of the church’s capacity inside and outside will be filled.
Personnel will also be deployed along the roads surrounding the churches to make sure people are not hearing mass from the roads, save for pedestrianised areas like the Osmeña Boulevard portion at the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño.
For those who aren’t able to attend the novena masses, Ligan suggested going back to their houses and watch the livestream version of the mass.
“Ato gyod badlungon kon anha sila sa dalan, bawal magattend sa misa nganha. Mas maayo pa i-on nalang nila ila cellphone adto nalang sila motanaw sa stream,” said Ligan.
(We will really discourage hearing mass from the streets. It would be better if they go home and watch the livestream of the mass from their cellphones.)
Beware of criminals
Mayor Edgardo Labella also reminded the public to remain vigilant during the Misa De Gallo and to maintain the health protocols.
He warned that even though the quarantine passes will be suspended, violators for other health protocols especially wearing masks, face shields, and social distancing will be still be apprehended.
Meanwhile, the CCPO urges the public to make sure someone stays at home should they decide to attend the dawn masses.
This is to avoid getting robbed by robbers and Akyat Bahay men.
Ligan said the public should be wary of leaving their homes unoccupied. If they need to leave their homes unoccupied, they must securely lock all entrances.
“Other forms of criminalities will also be rampant during the Misa de Gallo,” warned Ligan.
As gratitude to the policemen who will be serving in the Misa de Gallo, the city government will be recommending them for promotion if they maintain a good performance throughout the Christmas season.
“After all work you have done this pandemic, you deserve to be promoted,” said the mayor.
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