Rama wants interim “Don Sergio Osmeña, Sr. Park” in downtown Cebu City

By: Wenilyn B. Sabalo - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | September 09,2022 - 03:26 PM

The birth marker of the late president Don Sergio Osmeña, Sr., along Osmeña Boulevard in Cebu City. | Photo by Wenilyn B. Sabalo

CEBU CITY, Philippines —  Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama intends to transform the location of the house where the late president Sergio Osmeña Sr. was born, along Osmeña Boulevard, in downtown Cebu City, into a temporary park in honor of the late president.

The mayor made known his plan during a speech before city government officials, several descendants of Don Osmeña’s clan, and the city’s residents, on Friday, Sept. 9, 2022, during the city’s commemoration of the 144th birth anniversary of the late president Osmeña Sr.

READ: Remembering the “Grand Old Man of Cebu”

In his message, Rama publicly asked Vice Mayor and Cebu City Cultural and Historical Affairs Commission (CHAC) chairman Raymond Alvin Garcia to talk with the private owner of the said property and introduce the plan of using the property temporarily for the creation of an “interim park.”

Moreover, Rama, during a follow-up interview, said that should the owners of the said property have their plans for it, then the city can proceed with making the public park somewhere at South Road Properties, and name it “Don Sergio Osmeña, Sr. Park.”

“Abstractly, constructively, because buildings being demolished and nothing is up, it will end up as an eyesore… Of course, I want to see the owners, and I know the owners, and if they do not have a plan (for the property) in a month or two, then we will convert this into an interim park,” Rama told reporters during a separate interview on Friday.

He said that in Taiwan, all vacant lots are converted into urbanized greening. So, here in Cebu City, the city government, he said, can do a combination of urbanized greening, the creation of mini-parks, huge parks, and even temporary evacuation sites, to utilize available vacant lots.

The Cebu City government, through CHAC, marked Osmeña, Sr.’s, 144th birth anniversary on Friday, through a wreath-laying ceremony held at the birth marker of the late Osmeña, Sr., along Osmeña Boulevard, in downtown Cebu City.

The vacant property that the mayor was referring to is just behind the location of Osmeña’s birth marker (at the right-side corner of Lapu Lapu Street and Osmeña Boulevard). Don Sergio Osmeña, Sr. was born on Sept. 9, 1878 to Don Pedro Lee Gotiaoco and to Juana Osmeña y Suico.

Meanwhile, Rama also stated during his speech that he and former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña, do not have any “bad blood” between them.

Tomas Osmeña is a grandson of former Don Sergio Osmeña, Sr., and is also considered the founder of Bando Osmeña – Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK), a local political group run by the Osmeña family of Cebu, and whose political candidates ran against the candidates of Partido Barug (founded by Rama) in the past elections.

Calling former mayor Tomas as his mentor, Rama said he told Francisco “Bimbo” Fernandez, during the latter’s visit to his office that he wants to visit the former mayor.

Fernandez and Osmeña worked together when Osmeña was city mayor; Fernandez had served as city administrator under Osmeña’s administration in the past.

“I’d like to make this declaration. Tommy Osmeña has never been my political enemy, only my political opponent..I told Bimbo, Bimbo, please schedule, I want to see my mentor. I want to visit Tommy Osmeña. From the bottom of my heart, I want to visit him,” the mayor said.   /rcg

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TAGS: Barug, BOPK, Cebu‬, Cebu City, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, interim park, Sergio Osmena Sr, Tomas Osmeña

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