PROBE: Children found inside or around cemeteries will be rescued
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Prevention Restoration Beautification and Enhancement (PROBE) team said children who will be found within or around the premises of cemeteries will be rescued.
PROBE Head Racquel Arce said that during the extended Kalag-Kalag season, the Oplan Puyo mandate will still take effect, which means minors under the age of 15 should stay at home.
Arce understands that it has become tradition that children conduct palina, or cleansing, at cemeteries during the Kalag-Kalag days, but because of the pandemic, they cannot enter the cemeteries at all.
These kinds of services will have to be done by adults and outside the cemeteries. Any children seen inside or outside the cemeteries will be rescued
Children found roaming will be rescued, taken to the Department of Social Welfare and Services (DSWS), where parents may be able to collect them. Charges may be filed against parents for bringing their children to the cemeteries.
“Hingosgan gihapon nato ang Oplan Puyo. Dili nalang gyod nato pagawson atong mga bata,” said Arce.
Meanwhile, PROBE is also reminding vendors that the designated selling areas outside the cemeteries come on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Arce said that all vendors must remain outside the cemeteries until November 5, 2021, and they are only allowed to sell within a 30-meter radius from the entrance.
The PROBE team has been conducting sweeping operations in the 11 major cemeteries in the city to usher out the vendors and help them set up outside the gates.
However, there seems to be some hesitation among some vendors because they are afraid to put up stalls outside the cemetery lest they be asked to leave by the original vendors who have been on the spot before and may want to come back during the Kalag-Kalag season.
Arce clarified that during the Kalag-Kalag seasons, spots within the authorized selling areas are under a first-come-first-served basis and vendors who can put up a stall first will remain in the spot.
“Kung kinsay nakauna og butang sa paninda, sila na dinha. First-come-first-serve gyod ta,” said the PROBE head.
As for other tradesmen such as tomb cleaners, tombstone makers, and others, they can no longer enter the cemetery from October 26, 2021, until November 3, 2021.
This is why they are urged to conduct their businesses now before the said dates.
For the mananabtan, or prayer women, they are not exactly deprived of entering the cemetery during the extended Kalag-kalag season, but they will have to stay inside a maximum of one hour and leave afterward.
If they wish to enter again with a customer, they must line up again to enter the cemetery, a situation the PROBE understands may be inconvenient. However, the policy of 1-hour visit per individual will apply to them in all cemeteries in the city.
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