By Marc Eric A. Cosep
PIO Staff Member

CEBU CITY (Dec. 1, 2022) — Organizers of events associated with the celebration of Sinulog 2023 will have to pass through the eye of the proverbial needle of the Sinulog Executive Committee (SEC).

The SEC that met this morning assures that it will be on top of all the events related to the celebration held every January of the year.

City Councilor Phillip Zafra (left) confers with Vice Mayor Raymond Alvin N. Garcia at the sidelines of the Sinulog Executive Committee meeting today. (PIO/Allan Defensor)

City Councilor Phillip Zafra, chairman of the Council committee on peace and order, said the City will make sure that all conditions the City Government will set are strictly complied with before a permit is issued to an organizer.

“We are on top of this and we are still scrutinizing those who are applying for permits to hold events during the Sinulog kay dako ang venue and we don’t want major accidents to happen,” said Zafra, who is also head of the SEC peace and order committee.

Zafra said there are already a handful of organizers that have relayed their interest to hold events during the Sinulog 2023 celebration.

Unlike in previous years, the grand parade will be held at the South Road Properties instead of Cebu City Sports Center.

We are on top of this and we are still scrutinizing those who are applying for permits to hold events during the Sinulog kay dako ang venue and we don’t want major accidents to happen.

City Councilor Phillip Zafra

He said SEC will still coordinate with the organizers to make sure that they will comply with City Hall’s conditions.

“There’s one big event (whose organizer) reached out to us. Makig-meeting pa mi nila together with the police because we don’t want another incident similar to Aurora,” Zafra said.

He was referring to the Cebu Aurora Music Festival at SRP last Nov. 19 where organizers only provided two portalets during the event.

Starting in 2023, the South Road Properties will be the venue for the Sinulog grand parade. (PIO/File)

Mga 23,000 ka buok ang mga ni-attend ‘nya duha ra ka portalet during the concert. What’s even worse was that the organizer promised to provide after care but gibiyaan ra nila ang basura pagkahuman,” the councilor said.

Maayo nalang naa tay mga tao. We dont want that to happen again,” he added.

Online news portal reported four music festivals and concerts are being prepared for Sinulog. These include:

A scene at the 1969 Woodstock.
  • Verve Sinulog Festival on Jan. 7, 3pm to 3am, at SM Seaside Complex;
  • Sinulog Music Festival patterned after Woodstock on Jan. 13 to 15, 1 40-hour marathon ar SRP Grounds;
  • Careless Music Festival on Jan. 13 and 14 but at Mandaue reclamation; and
  • +63 Music & Arts Festival, still on Feb. 18, at SM Seaside Complex.

As of presstime, it is not clear if their organizers have passed SEC scrutiny and acquired the needed permits. Two of them have started selling tickets.

Meanwhile, the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) requested SEC for a meeting so it can start planning for police augmentation for the Sinulog events.

Cebu City’s pride Tribu Lumad Basakanon would be among the contingents in the first Sinulog grand parade at the South Road Properties. (PIO/File)

“So far we only met with the religious sector para sa kaning events as we still have not arranged for our augmentation (force),” said Police Lt. Col. Janette Rafter, CCPO deputy director for operations.

“That is why need na namin makig-meet with everyone so that we can start planning our police force,” she added.

Zafra agreed and told her that the City will set a meeting with the police tomorrow. #