By Jose Santino Bunachita
CEBU CITY (August 1, 2022) — Mayor Mike Rama wants concrete actions to address the presence of vagrants and mendicants in the city’s streets.
To do so, he met with the upcoming members of the Cebu City Anti-Mendicancy Board (CCAMB) to give his instructions.
“My standard is for 24 hours, way mga tawo nga matulog sa dalan,” he said.
“We did it before. It’s not difficult to do it again,” the mayor added.
It came just two days after he also ordered the removal of obstructions from the city’s sidewalks last Saturday.
Today’s meeting was attended by representatives from the Cebu City Anti-Mendicancy Office (CCAMO); Department of Social Welfare and Services (DSWS); Prevention, Restoration, Enhancement, Beautification (PROBE) Team; Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO); City Health Department (CHD); Association of Barangay Councils (ABC); as well as Dr. Lucelle Mercado and Rene Mercado.
The mayor reiterated his administration’s vision for a Singapore-like Cebu City, and this means having to address the presence of vagrants and mendicants.
Although Mayor Rama is yet to sign the appointment of the members of the CCAMB, the group has already started initial discussions to come up with plans of action regarding the matter.
We did it before. It’s not difficult to do it again.Mayor Mike Rama
Among others, the group has agreed on establishing a holding area to bring the vagrants and mendicants when they conduct rounding up operations.
South Road Properties (SRP) Manager Bu Varquez said they have an existing facility at the SRP which can possibly be designated as the holding area.
The group is scheduled to meet again on Monday to discuss more plans to address vagrants and mendicants.
City Ordinance No. 1631 prohibits the giving to and soliciting by mendicants of cash or any material goods in public places, buildings, and establishments within the city.
Last Saturday, accompanied by a few department heads, Mayor Rama did an early morning walkthrough to see the condition of a few of the city’s streets and ordered concerned City Hall departments to clear sidewalks of obstructions.
He also visited the situation at the Carbon Public Market following the recent clearing of the Freedom Park area and the transfer of the vendors to the Carbon Market Interim Building. #
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