SOME leaders of market vendor associations in Bacolod City expressed their full support to the City Government's program that aims to conduct mass testing for the three major public markets in the city.

The surveillance testing will be held on October 10 at the three major public markets -- Burgos North Market, Central Market and Libertad South Market.

In a statement, signed by Bacolod Central Market Fish Vendor Association (Bacemfiva) president Marlita Ongada; Efren Managalus, president of Libertad Market Vendors Association (Limva); Ruben Casipe, president of Fish Vendors Association-Burgos Market; Joe Martin Coniendo, president of Burgos Market Brotherhood Vendors Association (BMBVA) Burgos Market; David Montoya, president of Bacolod City Manokan Country Vendors Association; Benhur Anlap, president of Katilingban sang mga Bacolodnon sa merkado (KBM) Burgos Market; Rethelyn Vinas, president of Bacolod Central Market Vendors Association; Ramil Real president of Amelia, Mercedez Vendors Association (AMVA) Libertad Market; Glen Amar, president of Bacolod City Flower Vendor Association (Bacflova); and Elena Nardo, president of Burgos-Ramos Vendor Association (Burva), the group said they are united to support the program of the City Covernment on the conduct of surveillance testing against coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

The vendor leaders said they believe that the program is for the benefit of the vendors and the people of Bacolod to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

"We want to secure our health and the health of our families, as well as our customers in the market," they said.

The vendor leaders also asked the city officials to provide them assistance once the result of the swab test will be released.

Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, who earlier held a meeting with the vendors in three major public markets, said he is hopeful that all vendors will join the swab testing.

He said all of their concerns will be submitted to the mayor, including their request to allow them to operate on Sundays.

Executive Assistant Ernie Pineda, head of Bacolod Quick Response Team, earlier said about 2,000 market vendors in the city are expected to join the swab testing.

He said the testing will be a simultaneous surveillance swab testing conducted by the City Health Office (CHO).

"The swab test will be conducted by batch inside the public markets to observe the social distancing. After swabbing, the vendor can go back to their stall to continue their business," Pineda said.

After the swab test, the vendor will be given a gate pass so they can continue their business operation inside the markets. For those who fail to cooperate with the swab test, they will not be given a gate pass. The City will put a sign on their stalls whether they are compliant or not.