20 individuals, 12 institutions honored for help in Cebu City's fight vs COVID-19

Mary Ruth R. Malinao (The Freeman) - February 25, 2021 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  For their “invaluable contributions” in the fight against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic,the Cebu City government has honored 20 individuals and 12 institutions during a virtual celebration of the city’s 84th Charter Anniversary last night.

 The individual awardees include four city councilors—Joel Garganera, Donaldo Hontiveros, David Tumulak and Phillip Zafra. The other awardees are

IATF Visayas implementer retired general Melquiades Feliciano; Central Command (CentCom) commander Lt. Gen. Roberto Ancan; former Police Regional Office-7 director Brigadier General Albert Ignatius Ferro; PROBE chief Raquel Arce; Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center medical director Dr. Gerardo Aquino Jr.; DOH-7 director Dr. Jaime Bernadas; Engr. Lowell Corminal; Cebu City Police Office director Col. Josefino Ligan; Dr. Bryan Albert Lim; Dr. Michelle Linsalata; Mr. Edmund Liu; Dr. Mary Jean Loreche; Grace Luardo; Atty. Mary Rose Lubino; Engr. Editha Peros; and Atty. Jocelyn Pesquera.

The 12 institutions given recognition last night include the Christina Lee Dino Foundation; Philippine Spring Water Resources, Inc. (PSWRI); Bigfoot Studios; Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway Corporation (CCLEC); SM Foundation, Inc.; Cebu Holdings, Inc.; Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation; Marino Partylist; Gokongwei Brothers Foundation; Jaime Ongpin Foundation; Aboitiz Group of Companies; and Cebu Beautiful Movement Foundation.

The Office of the City Accountant and the Cebu City Medical Center were recognized as outstanding departments for small and big categories, respectively. The heads of the two outstanding departments also received the outstanding department head awards.

Yesterday’s Charter Day celebration was described by Vice Mayor Michael Rama as a “strange time” as some people cannot anymore attend significant historical events due to the pandemic.

In fact, it was only Rama and Councilors Eduardo Rama Jr., Garganera and Hontiveros who attended the flag-raising and wreath-laying ceremony at the City Hall grounds yesterday morning. Mayor Edgardo Labella, who has been working from home since January 25, did not attend the program but sent City Legal Officer Rey Gealon on his behalf.

Rama, in his message during the short program, recalled how the city used to celebrate the momentous occasion before COVID-19 pandemic.

“Understandably, we are few because of this challenge before all of us,” said Rama.

The vice mayor reiterated what he says, the greatest lesson he learned from his grandfather Don Vicente Rama, father of the Cebu City Charter: “Magdaghan ang panerbisyo, minusan ang politika.”

Rama has called on everyone to cooperate as the city government starts to take steps for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

“We need everybody’s help. We need to survive, and the only way to survive is really to make a chance and try to have this vaccine,” he said.

“Fighting is facing fear... Let us not be in captivity out of fear otherwise we will not go anywhere in this country if we’re run by fear,” he added.

Rama hopes that the Cebuanos would keep the spirit of Don Vicente, whose memory the Rama clan always brings in their heart and mind for his bravery, alive in their hearts. —FPL (FREEMAN)

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