12 groups to join Sinulog sa Dakbayan

12 groups to join Sinulog sa Dakbayan
File photo

ELEVEN barangays from Cebu City and one contingent from outside the city will compete in the Sinulog sa Dakbayan which, along with the Sinulog sa Lalawigan, will no longer have the word “Kabataan” as part of the name of the competitions, raising questions on whether these will continue to be youth events.

The Sinulog sa Dakbayan (city) will take place this Saturday, Jan. 13, 2024, followed by the Sinulog sa Lalawigan (province) on Jan. 14, Cebu City Councilor Jocelyn Pesquera told SunStar Cebu on Tuesday, Jan. 9.

Pesquera, who is part of the executive committee of the Sinulog Foundation Inc. (SFI), said the street dancing for the Sinulog sa Dakbayan will start at 1 p.m. on Imus Ave. and will follow a route that will pass through P. Del Rosario St. and Osmeña Blvd. until the contingents reach the Cebu City Sports Center (CCSC).

After the street dancing, the program for the Sinulog sa Dakbayan will start at 2 p.m.

The street dancing will have three judging sites, the first on Imus Ave., the second at the intersection between Imus and Sikatuna St., and the last in front of the University of San Carlos.

Name change

Pesquera said that this year, the Sinulog sa Dakbayan (City) will have contingents from various local government units (LGUs) instead of from schools.

Up until last year, the Sinulog sa Dakbayan was called the Sinulog sa Kabataan sa Dakbayan, which was participated in by schools. “Kabataan” means youth.

But Pesquera said this is now difficult due to the changes of the periodical exam dates in January with the national directive to have the periodicals held from Jan. 22 to 23, which is right after the Jan. 21 Sinulog grand parade.

She said this is why the term “kabataan” (youth) is no longer present in advertising or marketing materials.

“Maglisod na atong mga (It will now be difficult for our) schools to really participate. Instead na school based, nahimo nang LGU based,” said Pesquera, who is part of the contest cluster in SFI.

According to Department of Education Order 34, s. of 2022 containing the school calendar for 2022-2023, last year’s second quarter examination was held on Jan. 26-27, also the week after the Sinulog grand parade.

This year, a total of 12 contingents will compete, with 11 representing various barangays in Cebu City and one from Talisay City.

The contingents that will perform on Saturday are Barangay Banilad, Barangay Binaliw, Barangay Inayawan, Barangay Guadalupe, Barangay Mabolo, Barangay Suba, Barangay Labangon, Barangay San Roque, Barangay Sapangdaku, Barangay San Nicolas Proper, Barangay T. Padilla, all from Cebu City; and Tribu Divinohanon from Talisay City.

In an interview with SunStar Cebu on Wednesday, Jan. 10, Elmer “Jojo” Labella, executive director of SFI, said the participating contingents will be given a subsidy of P700,000 each. He said three winners will emerge from the Sinulog sa Dakbayan.

The winners will compete in the grand parade and showdown on Jan. 21. Pesquera said the deadline for the final list of contingents for the Sinulog grand parade and showdown is Jan. 15.

With the dropping of “Kabataan” from the names of the two competitions, it is unclear if the Sinulog sa Dakbayan and Sinulog sa Lalawigan continue to be youth events. Neither Pesquera nor Labella has given word on this.

With the competitions now LGU based, instead of school based, it is also unclear how these competitions will now be different in terms of participation from the finale competition that is the grand parade and showdown.

Organized by SFI

When asked to clarify who is the organizer of the Sinulog sa Lalawigan, Pesquera said the Sinulog sa Lalawigan has always been organized by the SFI and that the Cebu City Government has always collaborated with the SFI.

“It’s always been Sinulog Foundation. Everything about Sinulog is Sinulog Foundation,” said Pesquera.

Her comment was sought on this after it was reported last week that the Cebu Provincial Government was providing P8.25 million for the cash prizes for the Sinulog sa Lalawigan and spending on the repairs of the CCSC.

This is on top of the P36 million that the Capitol, under Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, is shelling out in subsidies to participating contingents, at P2 million for each participating mainland local government unit and P2.5 million for each island LGU.

Capitol also made requests on the guidelines for the competition, street dancing and routes of the event, which Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama approved.

Pesquera is asking for consideration from the general public that could be inconvenienced by the road closures due to the street dancing. She expects the activity to be fun.

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