Inter-Agency Task Force-Visayas chief implementer Melquiades “Mel” Feliciano and his wife, Mia Fe, have been named the “First Adopted Couple” of Bacolod City in its 82 years of cityhood.
Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia, in Executive Order No. 69, recognized the “committed effort” and “tireless service” of the Feliciano couple in containing the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the city.
“The people of Bacolod would like to express their eternal gratitude to the Feliciano couple. As the crisis begets heroes, we have found ours in retired Maj. Gen. Mel and Mia Feliciano,” Leonardia said in his EO.
Feliciano was among the members of the team deployed by President Rodrigo Duterte to Bacolod in August during the sudden spike of COVID-19 cases in the city.
During his two-month stint overseeing the Bacolod Emergency Operations Center-Task Force (EOC-TF), the general brought his wife, who is a nurse, with him to help in the COVID-19 fight.
The couple “willingly took the responsibility to replicate in Bacolod City the successful strategy that their team has employed in Cebu City during the COVID-19 outbreak there, by establishing the Bacolod Emergency Operations Center-Task Force,” EO No. 69 read.
The Feliciano spouses were originally scheduled to supervise the Bacolod EOC-TF for a month, set from September 1 to 30, but they decided to stay until the task force could “competently and confidently” stand on its own, the EO said.
The “leadership, energy, and dedication” by the couple eventually led to the success of the EOC-TF operations, reflected in the gradual decrease in the number of cases reported in Bacolod, the mayor said.
Leonardia said the general was also instrumental in facilitating access to logistical support for test kits and convalescent plasma for Bacolod City patients from the Department of Health Region 7 through the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas.
The mayor presented the Feliciano couple a copy of EO No. 69 during the Testimonial Dinner and Appreciation Night at the Bacolod City Government Center, on Saturday (October 31).
“We now see the results. They’ve been away from home since June – if that is not commitment, if that is not dedication, I don’t know what is,” Leonardia said.
“That will be an inspiration for us to make sure that we will cross this hurdle. This means that we have already seen the light at the end of the tunnel”, the mayor added.
City Administrator Em Ang also thanked the couple and local volunteers for their help in the COVID-19 battle.
The general, in turn, thanked the city officials for making him and his wife adopted citizens of Bacolod.*