Jail time for Sinulog troublemakers

TO KEEP keep the Sinulog celebration next month peaceful and orderly, the Cebu City Government will put up jails at the South Road Properties (SRP) for troublemakers and scalawags.

In an interview yesterday, Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (CCDRRMO) Chief Nagiel Bañacia told reporters that they will field about 100 police officers and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology personnel to watch Escario St., where public drunkenness and nuisance have been observed in the past.

No repeat

“There were reports of an alleged stampede and trouble after the grand parade due to outdoor parties. We don’t want the Sinulog to be remembered as it is chaotic now. Let’s observe the previously really festive festival, not the drunkenness,” he said.

Those caught will be imprisoned for a day.

Aside from the SRP, police command posts in various areas will also serve as jails for scalawags.

Bañacia observed that troublemakers have doubled in number, especially those who engage in public drunkenness and indecency, which have “ruined” the solemnity of the Sinulog.

The CCDRRMO chief maintained that following Mayor Tomas Osmeña’s pronouncement banning street parties, the City will not issue any permit to establishments to do so.

He singled out Escario St., where most street parties were conducted.

“Serious trouble”

Resto bars and restaurants caught converting their parking spaces into party venues will also be “in serious trouble.”

“We will be running after the organizers. We don’t want a headline on the following day that there was a stampede or that somebody was injured. We don’t want a negative report on the Sinulog. We’re advising the public to rethink their plans because we’re serious on that,” Bañacia said.

Aside from street parties and public drunkenness, smudging paint on the faces of spectators is also prohibited. This, after the City received several complaints.

The Sinulog grand parade is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. and finish at 5:30 p.m. at the latest.
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