Quakes force league to move convention to Cebu
Gregg M. Rubio (The Freeman) - November 13, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines (VMLP) has moved its 26th National Convention from Davao City to Cebu City due to the series of earthquakes experienced in Mindanao region.

Around 600 city and municipal vice mayors have arrived in Cebu City yesterday to attend the event that was formally opened last night at Marco Polo Plaza, said Borbon Vice Mayor Roy Melgo, the press relations officer of VMLP-Cebu Chapter.

 There are 146 city and 1,488 municipal mayors nationwide.

“The date of the convention is the same as originally scheduled at SMX Convention Center in Davao City except the venue,” said Melgo.

Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella welcomed the delegates during the opening program with Vice Mayor Michael Rama, the former national president of VMLP, and Talisay City Vice Mayor Allan Bucao, VMLP-Cebu Chapter president and the convention director.

Today’s main event is the election of the VMLP National Executive Officers as mandated by the league’s constitution and by-laws and its election policy.

Davao Region was devastated by a series of earthquakes starting with a magnitude 6.5 on October 16; magnitude 6.6 on October 29; and magnitude 6.4 on October 31. Those do not include the hundreds of aftershocks that came after.

In their wake, the quakes destroyed many buildings and infrastructures with many locals subjected to psycho-mental-physical intervention.

The VMLP National Executive Board approved a resolution on November 4 changing the venue of the convention from Davao City to Cebu City saying that the series of earthquakes has compromised the safety of the public and put into high risk all the buildings and structures within the area.

“Be it resolved that, for the safety of all the participants, staff and guests of the said VMLP National Convention the venue shall be changed from Davao City to Cebu City,” read the board resolution.

The resolution was signed by VMLP Executive Director and Board Secretary Christopher Abcede and National President, Vice Mayor Donnabel Joy Mejia of Magsaysay, Davao del Sur.

The VMLP also has requested the Department of Interior and Local Government to grant pertinent issuance authorizing payment of applicable travel expenses and those incurred due to the change of venue.

Atty. Odilon Pasaraba, DILG director for the Bureau of Local Government Supervision, issued on November 5 an advisory to all city and municipal mayors regarding the VMLP request.  JMD (FREEMAN)

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