LEGAZPI CITY, Feb. 26 (PNA) -- Despite calls and suggestions to declare Xian Lim as persona non grata in Albay, Governor Joey Sarte Salceda did not yield, saying doing so contradicts their campaign to promote Albay.
"I don't think so. It will take away the wind beneath the wings of our moral outrage which is pushing the 'I am here to promote Albay' expression of the Albayano civic spirit," he said.
Since Friday, Salceda has been posting photos taken in several tourist destinations in Albay with the caption hashtag #iamheretopromoteAlbay.
Most of the pictures were from netizens who joined the new online campaign to support the promotion of the province.
The tagline emanated from Lim's reaction after refusing to receive the t-shirt and coffee table book handed by Carol Sabio, the chief of staff of Salceda, while in Oriental Hotel in Legazpi City on Thursday last week, being the featured guest for the celebration of the Chinese New Year of the Filipino-Chinese community in Albay dubbed as Fiesta Tsinoy.
Lim's "I am not here to promote Albay" line that received flak in Albay was changed to "I am here to promote Albay," and became viral in social media.
Salceda said this tagline will not be the new tourism slogan of Albay, instead, it is just their way of showing that Albayanos are still optimistic in negative situations.
"It is still ‘Warm Albay, Warm People’... we are just trying to make the best out of an unfortunate and undeserved situation," he added.
The provincial chief executive said that in year 2013, the province adopted its slogan "Warm Albay, Warm People," which means Albayanos are great and hospitable people -- the reason visitors keep on coming back, especially for the different tourist attractions.
“I have accepted the apology of Xian Lim, however, I gave a condition as part of his penance,” Salceda said.
He said Lim had degraded the tourism of the province, therefore, he has to help in its promotion.
Sabio said the province will shoulder the expenses of the actor while doing the “amazing race” they have lined up for him by visiting the province's tourist spots such as: 1. Lake Danao in Polangui where the smallest fish, the sinarapan, is found; 2. Oas Church; 3. General Simeon Ola Museum in Guinobatan; 4. Sunflower plantation and Kawakawa hills in Ligao City; 5. Cagsawa ruins; 6. all-terrain vehicle ride at Mayon Volcano lava walls; 7. Nuestro Porteria Church in Daraga 8. To eat "sili" ice cream; 9. Lignon Hills that affords a view of the whole Albay, Legazpi City; 10. Mayon Rest House in Tabaco City; 11. Vera Falls in Malinao; 12. DJC halo-halo restaurant; and 13. Nuestra Senora de Salvacion in Tiwi town where he must pray. (PNA) LAP/FGS/NIM/CBD/