MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. is hoping that Iloilo City’s celebration of the Dinagyang Festival will help sustain “progressive gains” and rekindle the commitment of Ilonggos to contribute to nation-building.
Marcos described the festival as a showcase of llonggos’ creativity, vibrancy, resiliency and faith amid challenges.
“Through your city’s foremost cultural and religious celebration, it is my hope that you will sustain the progressive gains of your locality, reaffirm your identity, strengthen your resolve and work towards growth for your community,” Marcos said in his message on Sunday.
Marcos also reminded Ilonggos to always say grace for the blessings from the Santo Niño, the Child Jesus.
“May the Divine Providence bless our country and its people as well as keep us away from all the ills and perils that keep us divided. With the Almighty’s guidance, we will have the strength to overcome all difficulties and move forward,” he added.
He also assured that his administration is committed to bringing forth a “better, safer, and more peaceful life for all Filipinos.”
Junel Ann Divinagracia, Iloilo’s City Tourism and Development Office head, said the Dinagyang Festival will spur economic activities in the province as performances and minor events returned after two years of pandemic restrictions.
“The festival has a huge impact in terms of economic recovery because it helps not just one aspect, but a lot, including transportation. It will be favorable to small vendors, the pasalubong (sourvenir) industry and those into producing locally made products,” Divinagracia said in a previous interview.
The Dinagyang Festival is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City held annually every fourth Sunday of January, or right after the Sinulog in Cebu and the Ati-Atihan Festival in Kalibo, Aklan.
Dinagyang is a Hiligaynon word extrapolated from dagyang, which means merrymaking. (PNA)