Christmas trade fair in GenSan opens Friday

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/05 Dec.) — The city government will open on Friday a month-long trade fair to set off the area’s famed annual Christmas festival dubbed “Paskuhan sa GenSan.”

City Councilor Dominador Lagare III said Thursday the trade fair, which was among the highlights of the festivities, will mainly feature the city’s popular product as well as those coming from the neighboring parts of the region.

“There are a lot of new products that will be featured and we have collaborated with various groups to make the activity unique and attractive, not only for local residents but our visitors as well,” he said in a press conference.

Dubbed “Pamilihan sa Paskuhan,” the official said a number of traders based outside the city will be joining the fair, which will occupy the entire oval plaza here, to introduce some new products.

He said they have already leased out all the stalls for the flea market at a rental fee of P7,500 to P10,000, depending on their location.

The awarding of the stalls was made via raffle and they made sure that no trader or exhibitor will not get multiple units and then offer them to others for a fee, he said.

Lagare, who is coordinating the activity, said they have set aside some stalls for food outlets an area for nightly shows or entertainment.

A carnival will also open on Friday night to complement the trade fair’s festive atmosphere, he said.

As to the security of the venue, Lagare said the city police and the Army-led Joint Task Force GenSan have adopted various security measures to make sure that the festivities will be secure and peaceful.

He said the oval plaza’s entry points will be regularly manned by police personnel and all persons entering the venue will have to undergo stringent security check.

They have also enlisted the help of barangay tanods, radio groups and other civilian volunteers to serve as force multipliers or support groups, he said.

Lagare said they have set up closed-circuit television cameras in strategic points within the oval plaza to augment the security monitoring.

Meantime, Jane Rivera, city tourism council chairperson, said they have already finalized the preparations for the “Paskuhan sa GenSan,” which will formally open on December 17.

She said the festivity will feature various activities slated until December 31, wherein a public New Year countdown will be held at the oval plaza.

Rivera, the wife of city mayor Ronnel, said the local government has set aside some P2.5 million as budget for the annual Christmas festival, which is co-organized by the Department of Education’s city division. (MindaNews)