The Capitol-run Cebu north and south bus terminals are now ready to receive the expected influx of passengers who will be going home to the province for the Holy Week observances that also coincided with a long weekend.
Carmen Quijano, general manager of the Capitol-run bus terminals, said they are expecting 40,000 to 50,000 passengers who will be passing through the Cebu South Bus Terminal (CSBT) alone, with over 500 buses deployed in the south-bound route.
Another 300 buses are also deployed at the Cebu North Bus Terminal, Quijano added; although LTFRB 7 director Eduardo Montealto Jr. said they have already granted special permits to 108 buses as augmentation force to ensure that there would be enough buses serving both the south- and north-bound routes.
On Wednesday, April 5, Gov. Gwen Garcia inspected the situation at the CSBT and listened to reports not only from Quijano, Director Montealto, LTO 7 Director Victor Caindec, PRO 7 Director Brigadier General Anthony Aberin; but also to the bus drivers and passengers who are the primary clients of the terminal.
“Whether ma-Semana Santa ni o kaha kasaulogan sa atong mahal nga patron, Señor Sto. Niño, ako man gyod na i-offer kanunay nga ang Probinsya sa Sugbo matagaan og proteksyon, ug ang katawhan usab kanunay matagaan og igong kahigayonan nga mapalambo ang ilang kinabuhi,” Gov. Garcia told reporters during an ambush interview on what her prayers will be for the Holy Week.
The governor also requested Director Montealto to issue additional special permits to more buses as she feared that post-pandemic passenger influx could be greater than the recorded pre-pandemic figures.
Montealto said that based on the governor’s request, they have immediately issued special permits to 15 more tourist buses; though he said they could issue more special permits as long as the buses pass their road-worthiness requirements.
Gen. Aberin, for his part, said they have not received any security threats for the Holy Week observances; although the police force in the entire region have been placed at heightened alert status.
In Cebu Province alone, he said the Police Regional Office 7 has activated over 3,000 police personnel to help secure both Cebuanos and tourists who are travelling to the province for their much-needed breaks.
“Pinag-iingat po natin ang ating mga mananakay na maging alerto kasi di natin maiiwasan, may mananamantala, may mga mandurukot, may mga salisi,” Gen. Aberin told Sugbo News. | Ioannes P. Arong