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Cebu calm but alert

CEBU CITY – The Cebu City government and the local police are on alert in light of what is happening in Marawi City in Mindanao, according to Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña.

“There is no cause to panic; we are just being cautious,” Osmeña said, as at least three government troops have already been killed in scores wounded in the attack staged by terrorist group Maute in Marawi City.

Osmeña urged Cebuanos to avoid spreading any false information on social media and instead report activities of suspicious persons. “Terrorists do not show up overnight, they have to come in batches and find a place to stay. So if you know of a house in your neighborhood that is for rent and has been newly occupied by a group of adult men, report them to the police,” Osmeña said.

While there is no sign that the incident in Marawi would spillover to Cebu City, the mayor said Cebuanos should be cautious and should pray for their brothers and sisters in Marawi City.

Cebu’s City 40,000-strong Muslim community reiterated has assured Osmeña, who is considered as Sultan of the community, that it will continue to monitor the presence of people from Mindanao to ensure that the city will continue to be peaceful and terrorist free.

Many Muslim communities in Cebu look up to Osmeña as their Sultan and thus assured the mayor that they will be on the lookout for the possible entry of terrorists, according to Malu Manonggiring, director of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos. (Mars W. Mosqueda, Jr.)