"MY HEAD is aching. Me and my wards don't have a good sleep last night because of mosquitoes."
With this worrisome lines, gymnast coach Arnold Waga and the rest of the 400-strong Cagayan de Oro delegation have similar predicament to deal with in the advent of the 2010 Palarong Pampook in Cagayan de Oro City.
Team CDO is billeted since Friday (February 12) at the City Central School in the company of Iligan and Camiguin teams.
They will stay there for six more days as the Northern Mindanao Regional Athletic Association (NMRAA) Meet will be held here from February 15-19 at the Don Gregorio Pelaez Sports Center.
With the life-threatening dengue cases now pestering Cagayan de Oro and the neighboring places in Misamis Oriental, to be afflicted with it seemed more of a big worry now than to hurdle the challenge in the playing fields.
Aggravating the situation was Team CDO officials' revelation that there was no "fumigation" or "defogging" made prior to the athletes' occupation of the City Central quarters.
"Aduna man goy pesticide o chemical substance kining mao nga proseso. Unta, nagpa-aso kita niadtong wala pa naka-billet ang mga atleta," one team official said, after at least two public teachers at City Central School revealed in Saturday’s meeting with the coaches that some of their pupils were not spared from becoming as dengue victims.
"Some two weeks ago, upat sa Grade 6 pupils ang na-ospital gumikan sa dengue. Wala pa namo na-monitor ang sa lower grades," one of the teachers told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.
One coach added: "Kuyaw gyod kon dili ma-atiman kay unsa na lang ang mga eskwelahan nga mas daghan ang mga kakahoyan o tanom sa palibot nga midawat sa mga bisita."
With this, Cagayan de Oro Athletic Association (COAA) team manager Delia Agbon advised that the "classroom dwellers" must be armed with mosquito net and electric fan if they wish to have a safe sleep at night.
And since dengue-causing mosquitoes are more dangerous during daytime, Agbon agreed that any means to combat the threat of mosquito bites related malady is preferable.
"Okay sab kanang suggestion nga bunot sa lubi sagolan og katol nga pa aso bugaw sa lamok basta dili lang kita mangasunog," Agbon said in half jest.
Other schools serving as billeting quarters of the competing teams for the week-long meet are Bonbongon Elem School (Tangub delegates), South City Central (Lanao del Norte), East City Central (Misamis Occidental), West City Central (Bukidnon), Gusa Elem. School (Ozamis City), CDO-NHS (Oroquieta City), Macasandig Elem. School (Malaybalay, Bukidnon) and Kauswagan Elem. School for Valencia City contingent.
The host province of Misamis Oriental takes shelter at MOGCHS (Misamis Oriental General Comprehensive High School) along with its neighboring team from the component city of Gingoog.