Tarpaulins have been spotted in areas across the metro days before the incoming 17th president of the country takes his oath at the National Museum of Fine Arts in Manila.
President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will have his inauguration on Thursday at noon at the national historical landmark, which has seen the oath-taking of past presidents Manuel Quezon, Jose Laurel and Manuel Roxas.
The day has been declared a non-working holiday by the mayor of the city, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, to “ensure the safety, security and protection of participants.”
Inauguration guests are asked to carry their valuables in transparent bags for supposed security purposes.
More than 15,000 policemen, soldiers, Coast Guard personnel, and other force multipliers are also reported to be deployed at the inauguration site.
The tarps bore the Great Seal of the Philippines, Marcos’ full name, and the inauguration date and venue.
On social media, Filipinos questioned the need to install the materials and found the move a form of “unnecessary spending.”
“Oh My Gulay. Unnecessary spending. Maraming mga Pilipinong nagugutom,” part of a comment of a Facebook user reads.
“Hindi pa umuupo ‘yan, gastos na sa walang kwenta…” another Filipino partly commented on Twitter.
“Dagdag basura na naman,” wrote a different Filipino, referring to the aftermath of the one-day event.
Another Twitter user claimed that there was no perceived fanfare during past presidential inaugurations.
“Parang sa inauguration niya lang yata may ganyang pa-tarp, dati wala naman,” he wrote.
There were no such displays when incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte took his oath in 2016, who sought a simpler event.
An inauguration is a ceremonial event marking the start of the six-year term of the president and vice-president at the noon of June 30.
It is defined as “an act of officially putting someone into an important position or the ceremony at which this is done.”