Vendors disappointed over ''Isko'' for not allowing sell goods inside cemetery
Vendors inside the Manila North Cemetery expressed disappointment with Manila City Mayor Francis "Isko Moreno" Domagoso after he conducted a clearing operation.
Few days before November 1, the local government of Manila conducted clearing operations, removing illegal settlers and vendors inside the cemetery.
In an interview by the Daily Manila Shimbun with some vendors inside and outside the cemetery, most admitted they did not vote for Domagoso.
"I voted for his rival," said Aling Vicky, one of the vendors who also looks after tombs.
She said police officers poised as cigarette buyers, purchasing from the small stores selling inside the cemetery.
"They pretended and I suspected them so I said we don't have (cigarettes)... He (the police officer) told me not to sell or they will arrest me," she added.
During his inspection Thursday, Domagoso said they did not do anything wrong by removing illegal settlers inside the cemetery.
"We are just returning it to the public... this is a place for dead and not for those who are living," he said.
Though Domagoso said he allocated a place for vendors to sell flowers and candles outside the cemetery, a vendor said it's hard to earn this year because they are at only one place.
While the mayor saw this as an advantage, the vendors think otherwise.
"It's hard to sell because we are all here," a flower vendor who refused to be named, said.
Since morning, she said she has not recovered her investment.
"I did not vote for him (Isko Moreno)," she disclosed.
There are still vendors who are thankful to the mayor that they were allowed to sell this year. "This is the only time we can earn," a vendor said.
The head of the Manila Police District, in a radio interview, warned those who will sell inside the cemetery.
"We will confiscate their items," said Police Brigadier General Bernabe Balba.
Because of this, vendors are more careful in selling items, especially cigarettes and liquor.
Around 700,000 went to the Manila North Cemetery for All Saints Day. Ella Dionisio/DMS