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Palarong Pambansa opening: Raymond surprised by VP Sara’s no show

Acting Cebu City Mayor Garcia hopes VP Sara can join Palaro closing

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | July 10,2024 - 09:16 AM

Palarong Pambansa opening: Raymond surprised by VP Sara’s absence .

President Ferdinand “Bong-Bong” Marcos Jr. during his arrival at the opening ceremony of the Palarong Pambansa 2024. | Christian Dave Cuizon

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Acting Cebu City Mayor Raymond Alvin Garcia hoped that Vice President Sara Duterte would join them in the closing ceremony of the Palarong Pambansa 2024.

Duterte, the outgoing Education Secretary, was a no-show during the opening of this year’s Palaro at the Cebu City Sports Center (CCSC) last Tuesday, July 9.

Her absence surprised Garcia, who expected the Vice President to join them on Tuesday’s event.

“Yes, I was surprised because there was already a confirmation that she was coming,” the acting mayor told reporters in the sidelines of the event.

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When asked if they had any idea why she did not attend, Garcia replied that they decided not to ask. But he clarified that Duterte had been present in other significant Palaro-related events prior to the ceremonial opening.

“Dili na lang ko mangutana ngano ug unsa (ang) rason. What’s important (is) that she was there in the beginning of the Palaro. Hopefully, makaanhi siya sa closing,” he added.

(I won’t ask why and what is her reason. What’s important is that she was there in the beginning of the Palaro. Hopefully, she can attend the closing ceremony.)

Rama absent too

It can be recalled that last week, Duterte announced that she would join the opening ceremony of this year’s Palaro. The President’s attendance was only announced last Friday, July 5.

Aside from Duterte, also absent during the opening was suspended Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, who was largely credited for pushing to have Cebu City host again, after 30 years, the Palaro, the country’s largest inter-regional athletics meet.



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But the suspended mayor penned a statement, published on his social media, congratulating the organizers, athletes, coaches, and others who made the opening ceremony a success.

“Though I may not have been there physically, my heart was with you all as you celebrated this momentous event,” wrote Rama.

However, reports showed that Rama and Duterte were engaged in other events within the city.

The suspended mayor also met Davao City Mayor Sebastian ‘Baste’ Duterte at Don Carlos Gothong Memorial National High School that served as the billeting quarters for athletes from Davao Region.

Rama had also been invited to attend the opening ceremony of the Palaro.

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TAGS: Cebu, Cebu City, Cebu Daily News, Palaro

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