CHRISTMAS officially started in Cebu City with the switch-on of the tallest Christmas tree in the city inside the Fuente Osmeña circle, and with a reminder from the mayor to stay safe.
The switch-on kicked off the Pasko sa Sugbo, launched last night.
In his speech, Mayor Tomas Osmeña reminded that public that during the holidays, safety should not be compromised.
“Sa umaabot nga celebration, akong gihimo nga gamay lang labi na duna tay threat. (I want the celebration to be simple, especially that there is a threat). We have to be careful,” he said.
Even if the terrorism incidents happened outside of Cebu, the public should stay alert, he said.
“There are nights when I can’t sleep. I don’t like that anything will happen in the city. So, if there are strangers and suspicious looking people, please report immediately. Our police will take care of that,” Osmeña told the crowd at Fuente Osmeña.
As traffic during the holiday season worsens, he asked everyone to plan their trips ahead.
Osmeña said he expects more visitors arriving in the city until January for the Sinulog celebration.
He assured, though, that the city will have enough responders and volunteers who can respond to any incident and even to reports of traffic congestion.
“I want everyone to enjoy this Christmas. Our city deserves it,” Osmeña said.
Also during his speech last night, Osmeña thanked M. Lhuillier for setting up the tallest Christmas tree in the city.
Osmeña said the 125-feet iconic tree adds color to the celebration of Christmas in the city.
The mayor joined Michel and Amparito Lhuillier, Councilors Margarita Osmeña and Eugenio Gabuya Jr., and some department heads in lighting the tree, which has become a symbol of hope, unity, peace and charity.
The Christmas tree has been a fixture in the city every Christmas season since 2000.
In an interview, Michel said the Christmas tree is called the MLhuillier Tree of Hope.
Being the centerpiece of the annual Pasko sa Sugbo celebration, he said the structure also symbolizes a lasting partnership between their company and the City, and establishes that the M. Lhuillier Group of Companies is truly Cebuano.
As part of the Pasko sa Sugbo celebration, there will also be entertainment every night inside the Fuente Osmeña circle until the Sinulog celebration on Jan. 15.