But there are an estimated 1,500sidewalk vendors across the city. The mayor said he forwarded to theSangguniang Panlungsod (SP) a letter-request from the Iloilo Sidewalk VendorsAssociation but the legislative body merely noted it down. The city government’s road-clearingoperation since July has resulted to the relocation of 245 downtown sidewalkvendors to the vacant lot owned by the Cacho family along the downtown streetof JM Basa, said Niel Dichupa, president of the city’s sidewalk vendor. The vendors would have wanted toreturn to the sidewalks from Dec. 15 to 31. “This will help us in our expenses,most especially vendors who are financially unstable,” read part of theirletter to the DILG. “We only have one stand: public roadsmust be cleared of obstructions,” said Director Ariel Iglesia. Regarding sidewalk vending during theDinagyang Festival, Treñas acknowledged that the festivities in previous yearswere lucrative for vendors but, “You know, waaygid ‘ta may maobra…those are difficult decisions we have to make as mayor.” According to Treñas, there is nothinghe can do, pointing to an existing ordinance prohibiting sidewalk vending asidefrom an order from President Rodrigo Duterte for local governments to reclaimpublic roads being used for private ends. “Para at least may dal-on man angamon mga miembro sa ila mga panimalay sa Christmas,” he said. “As far as the DILG is concerned,public road clearing operations are continuing,” said Iglesia. “Konmay authority ako from the Sanggunian, pwedeako kahatag pagligwa sa ordinance for this holiday season. But wala na sang city council session, so waay ako authority from them,” saidTreñas. “I’m a lawyer. I cannot go beyond what is provided for in the law.” Last week, the Department of Interiorand Local Government (DILG) Region 6 rejected the appeal of city vendors toallow their return to the sidewalks this holiday season. ILOILO City – Will vendors be allowedto return to the sidewalks during the Dinagyang Festival next month? MayorJerry Treñas is unsure. “Those are difficult decisions we have to make,” hesaid. The city government has not acted on a similar request from the vendorsfor this holiday season. “Kondiri lang asahan mo, ang sa front lang gid guro ang ayo-ayo benta. Pero sangsa likod pigado,” said Dichupa./PN Business is sluggish at the2,700-square meter wide Cacho property, he lamented. According to Dichupa, their return tothe sidewalks even for a limited number of days would be a big help already toboost their income this holiday season.