Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella has been admitted to the hospital and his family as well as colleagues at City Hall are asking for prayers.

“Papa is in the Hospital and my family pleads (for) your compassion and prayers at this difficult time,” Jaypee Labella, the mayor’s son, posted on Facebook.

Vice Mayor Michael Rama, who has been serving as acting mayor, said the mayor is being treated in the intensive care unit of a hospital (ICU). Rama said he will leave it to the Labella family to disclose the mayor’s medical condition. The family is scheduled to talk in a press conference today.

MAYOR LABELLA. This photo of Mayor Edgardo Labella was shared on social media after speculations intensified on his extended absence in August.
MAYOR LABELLA. This photo of Mayor Edgardo Labella was shared on social media after speculations intensified on his extended absence in August.

Cebu City Administrator Floro Casas, Jr. had earlier reported that Labella was brought to the hospital on October 30 due to pneumonia.

Jaypee had earlier confirmed that his father suffered a stroke that affected his speech and lower extremities.

Labella went on an indefinite leave, his seventh leave in 2021, last October 8.

Rama said that under the Local Government Code, the acting mayor can appoint, suspend, and dismiss officials when a local chief executive goes on leave for more than 30 working days.

Sun.Star Cebu reported that Rama’s priority is to name replacements for 4 City Hall heads running in the May 2022 elections. Their positions are deemed vacant after they filed their certificates of candidacy in October.

Rama needs to appoint replacements for the following offices:

  • City Legal Office – Rey Gealon is running for councilor in the south district.
  • Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor – Simeon Romarate is running for councilor in the south district.
  • City Assessor’s Office – Noel Wenceslao is running for councilor in the north district.
  • Cebu City Medical Center – former administrator Yvonne Cania is a party-list nominee.

Rama told The Freeman that even as he will assume more responsibilities, he is mindful that this is Mayor Labella’s term. He said he will not “rock the boat” and will rally everyone to focus on providing public service.

The Freeman: Labella in ICU; Son, Rama ask for prayers
Sun.Star Cebu: Rama to be ‘full mayor’ if leave of EdLab exceeds 30 working days
Sun.Star Superbalita: Mayor Labella naospital og balik; Rama moasumir isip full mayor

Cebu City official alarmed by influx of children not wearing masks in malls

Cebu City officials are reminding parents to be mindful of health protocols when they bring their children with them to malls. Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak said many children in Cebu City malls are just walking around without masks or are improperly wearing them.

With Cebu now under Alert Level 2, the second lowest COVID risk classification in the country, children are now allowed to enter malls as long as they are accompanied by a vaccinated adult.

Tumulak said parents just reason out with guards that their children are uncomfortable wearing masks. He said that they called out the attention of mall management.

Nabalaka ta nga mao na hinuon kini hinungdan nga musaka na sad ang atong mga kaso sa COVID-19,” Tumulak was quoted as saying in The Freeman.

Councilor Joel Garganera, who heads Cebu City’s Emergency Operations Center, also reminded people that the safety of children should be a priority.

I know the private businesses are also doing their best. The public also has a role to play in this pandemic— it’s a two-way street. If we cannot even be careful and self-regulate within our own families, that says more about the parents than the government,” Garganera told The Freeman.

The Philippine National Police has also deployed more officers to malls to monitor the crowd.

The Freeman
: Children at malls alarm city officials
The Freeman: Cops monitoring crowds at malls

COVID-19 vaccination updates

THE Department of Health (DOH) reminded parents and guardians of minors aged 12 to 17 years old that they cannot force them to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Health Undersecretary Myrna Cabotaje said they need to be told about the vaccine and they need to give their consent before it is administered to them.

Pediatric vaccination started in Cebu City last Friday with 100 minors with co-morbidities. Cebu City Health Department Head Jeffrey Ibones told Sun.Star Cebu that apart from signing up at, Cebu City’s web portal for Covid-19 vaccination, the minors and their parents or guardians must comply with requirements listed in the DOH guidelines.

Dr. Ibones said 9,000 minors have registered for Covid-19 vaccination in Cebu City.

Read: Sun.Star Cebu: DOH to parents: Minors can’t be forced to get Covid-19 jabs


Hallelujah! Rama says after decision by Zafra, Hontiveros to stay with Barug PDP-Laban

Acting Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, who is running for the top Cebu City post in May 2022, is elated by the decision of Councilors Phillip Zafra and Donaldo “Dondon” Hontiveros to stay with their party, Barug PDP-Laban.

Zafra and Hontiveros had earlier announced their “independence” as they filed their respective certificates of candidacy. They have now been prevailed upon to stay with Barug PDP-Laban.

The two said Barug PDP-Laban leaders, especially Rama, former councilor Jocelyn Pesquera, and Councilor Eduardo Rama, Jr., were instrumental in their decision to stay.

The Freeman
: Rama on 2 allies’ decision to stay – ‘Hallejujah’
Sun.Star Cebu: EXPLAINER: Councilors Hontiveros, Zafra cancel ‘independence,’ stay with Barug. To Comelec though, they’re still party-less. Nov. 15 deadline is ‘only for substitution.’

BPO party-list endorses Ace Durano for Cebu governor

A call center party-list has endorsed former Tourism Secretary Ace Durano’s candidacy for Cebu governor.

“We believe that if Ace Durano becomes governor, he will support policies and programs that will help the needs of call center employees,” said Rommel Raz Cosmiano, the group’s first nominee.

Read: Sun.Star Cebu: Ace gets endorsement from ‘call center’ partylist

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