The Cebu City Public Library’s 100th year
CEBUPEDIA - Clarence Paul Oaminal (The Freeman) - April 15, 2019 - 12:00am

The country’s first and only 24/7 public library, courtesy of Mayor Tomas dela Rama Osmeña was established on April 13, 1919. It is located on the ground floor of the Rizal Memorial Library and Museum Building along President Sergio Osmeña Sr. Boulevard, a few blocks away from the magnificent Cebu Provincial Capitol building.

It was organized by Guillermo Restun, the chief librarian of the Iloilo Branch of the National Library of the Philippines. The historical event on April 13, 2019, the centennial celebration, had the theme: “Cebu City Public Library: Innovating Learning Spaces; Building World-Ready Communities.”

The individual posthumous awardees were: Mrs. Flavia S. Muana, Mrs. Hannah Velez Carmen, Don Sergio Osmeña Sr. (the highest Filipino official at that time, an American governor general who served as chief executive from 1898 to 1935, Don Sergio became the speaker of the National Assembly in 1907), Governor Sotero Barte Cabahug (his brother Fructuoso, also a lawyer, also became governor of Cebu), and Jose P. Nolasco (a member of the Municipal Board of Cebu who initiated the construction of the building).

The individual awardees were: Congressman Raul Chiong Veloso del Mar (the first congressman of the Cebu City North District created in 1987 by virtue of the 1987 Constitution, and son of the multi-awarded writer, the last Cebuano Spanish language writer, Jose Ma. del Mar), Jesusa A. Pacaña (who served as librarian), Cirila A. delos Reyes, Lorna Eguia, and Ms. Mitch Roldan (the one who suggested to Mayor Osmeña for the 24/7 operation of the library, her wish was granted on March 9, 2018).

These are the centennial staff of the Cebu City Public Library: Rosario C. Chua (city librarian), Rey Chua, Beth Dayday, Monalisa Manubag, Balbino “Ka Bino” A. Guerrero (night shift supervisor and Cebu’s premier tour guide and historian), Marlon Onrejas, Frian Lumen, Paul Lamita, Gela Tabar, Loie Cataluna, Tonie Opigal, Christopher Canedo, Elvira Espinosa, Limbo Cabarrubias, Paulo Gabiana, Jhunilou Milicabril, Shirley Lauron, Dyan Eslabon, and Beverly Mabano.

The institutions/organizations awardees: Rotary Club of Cebu, Zonta Club of Cebu II, Friends of the Cebu City Library, University of San Carlos American Spaces, Basadours, Beyond Books, Childlink Learning Center and Childlink High School, Inc., Chinese Consulate General in Cebu City, KGS Cebu and Philippines, Mandaue Foam, Uratex, and N-Vision.

TOMAS DELA RAMA OSMEñA
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