Last month, Cagayan de Oro was shaken when a bomb exploded outside one of the city’s biggest malls. I do not want to recount the horrors anymore, so I won’t go into the details. The explosion killed eight people, injured many, and left families grieving. Kagay-anons were shocked. Many feared what might happen next. More than anything else, though, Kagay-anons were angered.

Although suspects have been identified, CCTV footage have been released, and a ransom has been announced, the authorities are far from solving the case. Meanwhile, security has tightened and Kagay-anons have become wary about anything and anyone looking suspicious. Every move we make needs extra caution. It’s like living in the dark age where danger is always at your side. It’s a totally new world for the fun-loving Kagay-anon.

But all these has to stop. All these has to end. We need to get back what we lost in that explosion. We need to claim our lives. Our future. Our city. It won’t be an easy trek. It will be an uphill battle, but it’s time for us to be strong. It’s time for us to do something.

(Design and execution by Mark Diovannie Cavan)

This is why the artists of Cagayan de Oro decided to join forces and come up with a show denouncing violence. Pagbantog Kagayan is a one-hour showcase of songs, dances, music, and chants that raise our longing for peace. It is a collective shout, a rant and a rave; a declaration that Kagay-anons are not stepping back and hiding in the shadows. Kagay-anons are ready to fight back. Kagay-anons are strong. Kagay-anons are united under one goal: peace.

Our colors: white over red. Peace over violence and terror.
(Photo courtesy of Tonirose Almonte)

Join us at the Limketkai Rotunda today, August 20, at 6pm. Show us that you are one with us; that you fight our fight; that our cause is your cause…That, like us, you believe in Cagayan de Oro. Admission is free.

Let’s get together and raise the roof. Our voices, our heartbeats, our strength, our faith…are stronger than one blast!!!

We are Pagbantog Kagayan!
(Some photos by Atty. Sam Tan and Tonirose Almonte)

Buntugon ta ang kahadlok, Kagayan!

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