Police on alert as BacoLaodiat kicks off

BACOLOD City – Mayor Evelio Leonardia said that the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) is on red alert as the five-day BacoLaodiat festival kicked off on Feb 1, 2019.

Leonardia called on the public to report to authorities anything suspicious.

“Let us cooperate, to ensure peace during the festivities,” he said adding that precautionary measures are undertaken by police authorities as an offshoot to the Jolo blast.

He further said that “It is SOP (standard operation procedure) that we are always on red alert during festivals like the MassKara Festival and other big festivals we had.”

As far as the BacoLaodiat festival is concerned, Leonardia said it is not every year that BacoLaodiat has an honorary mayor.

Leonardia recalled that Henry Sy, founder and patriarch of the SM Group of Companies, was an honorary mayor and adopted son of Bacolod during one of the BacoLaodiat Festival celebrations in the past.

He said Sy has changed the lifestyle of the Filipino people.

The five-day BacoLaodiat Festival celebration started with a motorcade participated in by Tsinoys, city officials, and students of Chinese schools at 4 p.m. and ended at the Bacolod Government Center.

This was followed by the ceremonial lighting of the Bacolod Government Center to officially open the festival.

The annual cultural show will be held Saturday at 6 p.m., followed by a performance of the Manila-based Hokkien-style Chinese opera, Kao Ka, at 8 p.m. and the Lantern Dance Competition.

The BacoLaodiat Street Dance competition will start at 3 p.m., while the Parade of Mascots is at 4 p.m. on Sunday.

The Lantern Dance Competition will start at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday at the Goldenfields Commercial Complex.

On Monday, the Yuan Thong Temple, another festival site, will open at 6 p.m. with cultural shows, light opening prayer at 10:30 p.m. and the Hitting of the Bell at midnight.

The festival will be capped by fireworks display at the government center and repeat performances of the top 3 winners of the Lantern Dance Competition at SM City Bacolod.