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Cebu City on heightened alert for Sinulog Festival

Cebu City police were placed on heightened alert over the weekend, in time for the yearly Sinulog festivities that will culminate in the Sinulog Festival on Jan. 20. Police were instructed to boost visibility and ensure the yearly activity, which attracts tourists from here and abroad, will be peaceful, radio dzBB reported Sunday. Visitors are expected to flock to Cebu to take part in this year's Sinulog, whose theme is "Journeying Together in Faith with Santo Niño." A report on the Manila Bulletin said the Cebu City police also formed a special reaction unit to respond to distress calls. It quoted Cebu City acting chief Senior Superintendent Mariano Natuel as saying policemen in the city are not allowed to file leave of absence during the Sinulog Festival. The Manila Bulletin report also said Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama inspected some areas where the Sinulog Grand Parade would pass. He ordered the removal of election-related posters and materials, it added. The Sinulog is a week-long, annual celebration in honor of the Santo Niño. This year's festivities will culminate on January 20 (Sunday) with the Sinulog Grand Parade. — LBG, GMA News