Road clearing affects Sto. Niño vendors
Alicia Ivy L. Chua (The Freeman) - October 16, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu City’s Prevention Restoration Order Beautification Enhancement (PROBE) team is set to clear Jakosalem Street of illegal structures and constructions.

This means that the days are numbered for those selling religious items beside the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño.

This is still in relation to DILG Memorandum Circular 2019-121 which orders to clear roads from illegal structures and constructions that may be blocking the sidewalks.

One of the locations for clearing is the sidewalk of Jakosalem Street where stalls are selling images of Sto. Niño and other religious items.

Ernie Albaran, president of Basilica United Vendors Association, said that they were only given by PROBE three days to vacate the area.

In PROBE’s letter, the vendors were given three days to voluntarily remove their illegally constructed structures.

The vendors are asking for clarification for the notice and are willing to negotiate with the government. Also, they are asking for a permanent relocation.

“Willing mi mo-negotiate, willing sab mi mutangtang sa mga canopy. Kung ila jud mi ipahawa, ang una namo nga pangayoon kay kabuhian sa mga vendors, relocation site, ug panindahan jud nila. Og duna silay panginabuhi nga dili sila hilabtan,” said Albaran.

PROBE head Raquel Arce said they have already prepared a relocation site for the vendors on F. Gonzales Street, just one block away from their current site in Jakosalem.

PROBE is also studying the idea of closing the road on Fridays and Sundays, and have the vendors sell just without the permanent structures.

Even when some vendors don’t sell during the weekdays, the sidewalk still can’t be used because of the permanent structures, unlike just putting up removable stalls, said Arce. (FREEMAN)

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