By Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon, August 14 2019; Philippine Star

Image Credit to Sun Star

CEBU, Philippines — The Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas announced that more and more people have expressed their support to convert the former Malacañang sa Sugbo into a national museum.

The cause gained another supporter in Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia, who personally wrote a letter addressed to President Rodrigo Duterte expressing her support to the plan.

“I am very supportive of the idea of our very own nationally supported museum located right here in Cebu,” Garcia said in the letter dated July 19.

If the plan is realized, Garcia said, the converted Malacanang sa Sugbo will serve as a beacon for tourists from all over the world, considering the rich history and culture that the structure represents. She said it will be a source of pride not only for Cebuanos but for the entire Filipino people as well.

Meanwhile, also last month and during the first session of the 15th Sangguniang Panlungsod of Cebu City, the council passed a resolution supporting the stance of OPAV Secretary Michael Lloyd Dino to convert the century-old building into a regional branch of the National Museum.

“The National Museum is an educational scientific and cultural institution that acquires, documents, preserves, exhibits, and fosters scholarly study and public appreciation of works of art, specimen and cultural and historical artifacts representative of the unique cultural heritage of the Filipino people and the natural history of the Philippines,” the resolution reads.

The resolution was sponsored by Councilor Renato Osmeña Jr. and was approved on July 16, a copy of which furnished to the Office of the President, Office of the Executive Secretary, OPAV, the National Museum of the Philippines, Department of Finance, and the Bureau of Customs Port of Cebu.

The acting deputy general manager of the Cebu Port Authority also expressed his support.

“The Cebu Port Authority welcomes this development as we support whatever your directive is on how the building will be used,” said Glenn Castillo in his letter to President Duterte.

The DIBUHU ART GROUP (Diwa sa Buhing Hulagway), through its head artist Wilfredo Cañete Jr., also expressed its support to the idea of Chairperson Evangelina Arroyo-Bernas, which was to convert the former Malacañang sa Sugbo into a national museum.

“This would also inspire our artists and young Cebuanos to contribute and leave a legacy to our great nation,” said Cañete in his letter addressed to Bernas, which was coursed through OPAV.

A certain Randy Salazar also wrote to OPAV expressing his interest in helping put up traditional blades in the future National Museum in Malacañang sa Sugbo.

“I am one of the admins of Filipino Traditional Blades and would be happy to share our blade collection with National Museum, in order to help preserve the knowledge of our trad blades of the country,” he said.

Dino expressed his support to convert the Malacañang sa Sugbo into a national museum after Bernas wrote a letter to him stating the interest of the National Museum in re-establishing its presence in Cebu City through the restoration and conversion of the building. (FREEMAN)