DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 01 Januar) — Davao City unofficially set a new record for the Guinness Book of Records for the largest gathering of party blowers during the 1st Torotot Festival on December 31.
The event at Roxas Avenue, sponsored by Smart Communications and city government, gathered 7,568 torotot blowers against record-holder Japan’s 6,900.
But Assistant Secretary Arturo Boncato Jr. of the Department of Tourism, said the results are still unofficial, as officials from the Guinness Book of Records have yet to validate the attendance for the event.
The event, however, fell short of its expected 10,000 turnout, even as some barangays near the downtown area were enjoined to participate.
The Liga ng mga Barangay had initially required 54 of the city’s 182 barangays to join the event. Smart Communication gave out prizes of up to P60,000 for the largest contingent.
The city has celebrated 13 Christmases and New Years with no fireworks and pyrotechnics.
The firecracker ban was first implemented Christmas of 2001 but City Ordinance 060-02 banning the manufacture, sale, distribution, possession, or use of firecrackers or pyrotechnic devices, was enacted by the City Council only on October 15, 2002 and approved by Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on November 6.
The ordinance penalizes first offenders with a fine of P1,000 or imprisonment of 20 to 30 days, or both; second offenders with a fine of P3,000 or imprisonment of from one to three months or both; and third offenders, a fine of P5,000 or imprisonment of from three to six months, or both.
Managers or owners of business establishments caught violating the ordinance will also be held liable and their business permits cancelled on the third offense.
Mayor Rodrigo Duterte joined thousands of residents in blowing the “torotot” in countdown to 2014. (MindaNews)