23 bicycles ‘up for grabs’ in Mandaue City

PEOPLE in Mandaue City who have difficulty accessing public transportation will have a chance to receive a free bicycle under the “Bike for Free” campaign initiated by John Eddu Ibañez, the executive secretary of Mayor Jonas Cortes.

Ibañez initially posted on his Facebook page that he would give three BMX bicycles to deserving individuals. His move inspired friends and acquaintances to help.

The number of bicycles to be given away has now reached 23.

Ibañez said he noticed many people walking home during his nightly patrols because of limited public transportation. He wanted to help them, he said.

He said he saw a viral Facebook post about a shop owner who gave a bicycle to an 82-year-old man who kept coming to the shop and asking the owner if he could buy a P4,800 bike for P2,000.

The old man was walking from his residence in Taguig to Makati to sell candies.

“I was moved when I saw the expression on the old man’s face. He looked genuinely happy and grateful,” Ibañez said in Cebuano.

“Despite what is happening all around us, we continue to receive blessings. So we have to pay it forward,” he said in a mix of Cebuano and English.

He said anyone who knows someone or who thinks they deserve a bicycle can send him a message on Facebook. The deadline for submission is 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, June 7, 2020.

He will look for individuals who can’t afford to buy a bicycle, who want to ride a bicycle to work and who will use the bicycle for their livelihood.

Ibañez received 70 messages on Saturday, June 6.

Once he will identify the deserving individuals, he will call, send a message, or personally visit the beneficiaries.

Ibañez said they will distribute the bicycles on Monday, June 8.

“Thank you so much to our generous donors for making this campaign a reality. This means a lot to those who will receive them,” said Ibañez on his Facebook post. (KFD)