Suroy Suroy to be enacted into ordinance
CAMOTES ISLAND – An ordinance making the Suroy Suroy Sugbo a permanent tourism program of the Cebu provincial government may be in place before July.
“This one will be passed quickly because it is a priority of the province,” said Provincial Board (PB) Member Arleigh Sitoy who joined the tour to Camtoes Island.
Sitoy joined 300 local and foreign guests in the “Enchanting Camotes” weekend tour.
The delegation headed by Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia and Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale was accompanied by Chinese consuls Zhang Wiegou and Cai Wong.
A chartered Ocean Jet ferry made the two-hour sea trip to the coast of Camotes, where tourists were greeted at the port by festival dancers.
Aboard buses, they visited the Bukilat Cave in Tudela, the Buho Rock Resort in Poro, Lake Danao, Santiago Bay and Mangodlong Resort. At each stop, they were served native delicacies and seafood.
The Suroy Suroy ordinance, which already passed first reading, will be scheduled for a public hearing.
Sitoy said the program, which promotes countryside tourism, should be institutionalized. He said he was thinking of ways to improve it by inviting travel agencies and resorts to support it so this lessens the burden on local governments to keep the program going.
“When they are involved, I am sure they will exert much effort to make it a success. Market forces should dictate when the Suroy Suroy happens. When there’s high demand especially during peak seasons, we must anticipate that,” Sitoy said.
Vice Governor Magpale said the 300 tourists who joined was an increase by 100 from last year’s countryside tours because more resort rooms were available.
Mayor Aly Arquillano of San Francisco town said the Suroy Suroy program helped increase tourist arrivals in their area.
“In fact, we had brownouts and water shortages during Holy Week because visitors flooded the resorts. We were not able to anticipate that. Those are things we could really work on,” Arquillano said.
The tour group will head for the town of Pilar to explore heritage houses and a bee farm today to cap off the two-day tour.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.