A lasting tribute: Statue for mayor Labella mulled at the Freedom Park
CEBU CITY, Philippines — New Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama is mulling to build a statue for his predecessor, the late Mayor Edgardo Labella, at the Freedom Park at the Carbon Market Complex.
He said that Labella, whom he referred to as the ‘crisis mayor’ who led the city during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, should be remembered.
“Si Mayor Edgardo Labella, usa ka tiunay nga higala. Mapanalipdan nato puhon sa Freedom Park,” Rama said in a message which he delivered after the flag raising ceremony that was held at the City Hall grounds early on Monday morning, November 22.
Rama addressed City Hall employees for the first time as the new mayor on Monday morning. He took his oath on Saturday as the replacement for Labella who died on Friday, Nov. 19.
In his speech, Rama honored Labella for all the sacrifices that he made for the city while he also reminisced his friendship with the late mayor, who is his ally under Partido Barug.
And as a “lasting tribute,” Rama said he wanted a statue of Labella placed at the heart of the new Freedom Park. Said statue will be built by Megawide Construction that is now working on the Carbon Modenization program.
“Wa gyod nay problema because I see Edgar as a warrior. The statue is befitting, way problema.”
However, Rama said, this plan will take time because of the need to comply with the process and requirements set by the City Historical Affairs Commission (CHAC). This includes the need to pass an ordinance that will authorize the establishment of Labella’s statue at the Freedom Park.
Also, Rama said it will take at least two years for improvements to be introduced at the Freedom Park as part of the Carbon Modernization Project.
Labella’s wake is currently at the Crystal Palace in Nivel Hill in Barangay Lahug.
On Wednesday, November 24, the late mayor’s remains will transferred to the Cebu City Hall for public viewing and the holding of a necrological service.
He will be laid to rest at the Golden Haven Memorial Park on Friday, November 26.
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