President Rodrigo R. Duterte will be the guest of honor during the 40th MassKara Festival slated from October 7 to 27.
This was announced by Mayor Evelio Leonardia in a press conference, saying the President is expected to arrive anytime during the festivity.
Leonardia met with the Chief Executive in Davao City on Friday, during the 69th National Executive Board Meeting of the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP) held at Dusit Hotel.
Leonardia, national president of LCP, said that when he asked Duterte if he can attend the festival once again, the President did not hesitate to say yes.
“Without batting an eyelash, he said “Yes, I’m going to show my support for you,” the mayor said, adding he is grateful that the President has expressed his desire to visit Bacolod during the MassKara Festival anew.
“This only means that Bacolod is very special to him. We should be happy with that. He is a president having popular ratings, unprecedented. I’m sure outside of Davao, we are the only city with a festival he has attended three times straight. If it happens once again, it will be the fourth time,” Leonardia said.
In 2016, Duterte was the first-ever president to have graced the opening of the MassKara Festival during its 37th edition on October 2. The following year, Duterte attended the festival highlights on October 22.
Last year, the President, who arrived on October 27, said he came to Bacolod because he finds the MassKara beautiful and enjoyable.
In his letter addressed to the President dated Sept. 26, Leonardia invited Duterte to be “the guest of honor at any day or time convenient to you during these 21 days of our celebration”.
“As our top tourism icon, this now internationally-acclaimed festival is a showcase of our people’s unity and a symbol of the dynamism of the city. Your presence will again be a wellspring of inspiration for our people,” the mayor added.
The Ruby MassKara celebration, themed “Bacolod, City of Smiles”, will formally open on the night of Oct. 7 at the public plaza.
The highlights will start on Oct. 24 and 25, featuring the Electric MassKara parades.
The much anticipated MassKara Street and Arena Dance competitions will be held on Oct. 26 and 27, the final weekend of the festival. (PNA)
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