THE two highest government officials in the country won’t be attending the Sinulog Festival at the South Road Properties on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023.

In a press conference on Friday, Jan. 13, Mayor Michael Rama said he sent invitations to President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Vice President Sara Duterte last month but did not receive a confirmation from them.

Sen. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go is also not coming to Cebu to witness the event due to the bad weather condition.

However, some members of the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP) will be coming over after Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. allowed them to charge their travel expenses against their public funds.

Mayor Rama, who is the LCP president, said the mayors, accompanied by their vice mayors and councilors, from local government units (LGUs) all over the country will observe how the Sinulog festival is run by the Cebu City Government and how to implement this in their own localities.

The LGU officials come from Ligao City and Tabaco City in Albay, Iriga City in Camarines Sur, Victorias City in Negros Occidental, Cabadbaran City in Agusan del Norte, El Salvador City and Gingoog City in Misamis Oriental, Lucena City in Quezon Province, Marawi City in Lanao del Sur, Bayugan City in Agusan del Sur, Baguio City in Benguet, Tagbilaran City in Bohol, Quezon City and Taguig City in Metro Manila, and Tandag City in Surigao del Sur.

These officials represent the biggest number of LGU delegates to the Sinulog so far since in the previous years when only those officials with participating contingents would attend.

Rama led Cebu City officials in hosting a welcome dinner for the delegates on Thursday, Jan. 12. / PAC, TPT