SOME senatorial candidates are expected to participate in the Parada Dabawenyo, one of the event highlights during the 82nd Araw ng Davao on March 16.
Parada Dabawenyo in-charge Erwin Alparaque, also acting head of the City Treasurer's Office (CTO), said on Monday, March 11, that six candidates of the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) party will be participating in the annual socio-civic military parade.
Among those expected to join the parade are former senator Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr., Maguindanao Rep. Zajud Mangudadatu and Senator Sonny Angara. He has yet to verify the names of the other candidates.
Although they are welcome to participate, he said that candidates from the opposition party Otso Diretso have not expressed any intention to join. The schedule of signifying intent to participate in the parade ended last Friday, March 8.
He said candidates will be allowed to celebrate with the Dabawenyos, given that they will not distribute any election paraphernalia during the parade.
"We discouraged them from throwing campaign materials, especially during the float (parade). The tendency is that the crowd would rush near the float, that might hurt them, and would cause delays on the flow," Alparaque said on the sidelines of the flag raising ceremony at the City Hall of Davao.
He also said the appeal goes to the private sector who were advised to distribute their paraphernalia along sidewalks and not from the float.
"We cannot prevent these politicians to join, especially the senatorial candidates, since today is election period," Alparaque said.
City Tourism Operations Office (CTOO) head Generose Tecson earlier warned all candidates to respect the festivity.
This year, Alparaque said that 380 contingents from both public and private sectors will join the parade on Friday. He said that the number increased from last year's 338.