Manila ushers Lunar New Year with a bang

The local government of Manila — led by Mayor Honey Lacuna — kicked off the celebrations of the Chinese New Year in the city with the traditional New Year Countdown at the Jones Bridge leading to Chinatown at 12 midnight on Sunday.

The event was highlighted by a colorful Pyro-Musical Fireworks Display held at the Filipino-Chinese Friendship Bridge in Intramuros as throngs of spectators gathered at the bridge which served as the viewing deck.

In her speech, the mayor acknowledged the presence of Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the Philippines Huang Xilian; Ambassador of the Philippines to Beijing, Peoples Republic of China Jaime Florocruz and representatives from the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.

“The entire Filipino Chinese community observes this very important event to let go of all the negatives from the outgoing year and embrace all positives and fresh and attract prosperity and peace among families for the incoming year,” said Lacuna.

“This is also an opportunity for all our kababayans to enjoy the festivities for the Lunar New Year celebration, being one of the many Chinese influences that we Filipinos have adopted through the years,” she added.

The Manila mayor also cited the huge role that Chinoys in Manila play in helping her administration succeed and expressed hope that the city government’s relationship with them will grow to be even more harmonious in the years to come.

She also thanked the members of the Chinese-Filipino community whom she said have been very supportive of her programs thus ensuring their fruition, and for putting their trust in her administration by setting up their businesses or residence in the city.

“To Ambassador Xilian and Ambassador Florocruz, kindly extend our warm greetings to the people of Beijing and the entire Peoples Republic of China. As we welcome the Year of the Water Rabbit, we hope that all of us can pursue opportunity and success. We wish you and your loved ones happiness, prosperity, and good health and fortune,” Lacuna said.

On Sunday afternoon, the lady mayor spearheaded the Grand Parade or ‘Solidarity Parade’ in Chinatown with the Post Office as the starting point.

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