Authorities break up illegal bike race

A BICYCLE race, which was supposed to be held on Zuellig Ave. Saturday morning, Feb. 6, 2021, was canceled due to the lack of permit.

John Eddu Ibañez, Mayor Jonas Cortes’ executive secretary, told SunStar Cebu he found out about the activity on Facebook.

According to the post, the race would take place behind the Cebu Doctor’s University at 4:30 a.m.

Ibañez showed up at the event and asked participants if they had a permit to use a one-kilometer stretch of Zuellig Ave. for the race.

They had none.

Ibañez said conducting a race without coordinating with the local government unit could endanger the lives of participants and the public, considering the road is a public road.

He pointed out that Zuellig Ave. is a truck corridor, which means it is an access road for trailer trucks, cargo trucks, wing vans and others.

“We have nothing against biking in Mandaue City. The city is bike-friendly. But bikers should use the designated bike lanes and they should not participate in races without proper coordination with authorities,” he said in Cebuano.

During his interview with the bikers last Saturday morning, Ibañez learned that bikers from different parts of Cebu hold races in the area every Saturday.

Participants give P20 or P50 and winners divide the pooled money among themselves as well as take home a medal, he said.

Operatives from the Mandaue City Police Office led by Maj. Zosimo Jabas and members of the Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue led by Edwin Jumao-as made sure all the participants went home.

Ibañez said some of the bikers were violating health protocols by not wearing masks or observing social distancing.

He said he wants to discuss the matter with race organizers, who did not show up at the event. (KFD)