Last December 23, 2011, just two days before Christmas, tragedy struck. At around 12:42 in the morning, Gaisano Capital South Mall (more popularly known among locals as Gaisano South) in downtown Cebu was gutted by fire. The origin of the blaze is still unknown. However, it is believed that it started in the back part of the building. This was the reason, according to fire officials, that mall guards refused to let firemen use the front door of the mall. The front door was only eventually opened four hours later when Mayor Rama arrived. However, firemen from various stations in Cebu could not stop the blaze. The blaze eventually lasted for four days. Nearby buildings and establishments were also affected by the fire and they were forced to shut down temporarily. Adjacent and surrounding streets were also closed to traffic.
Due to the fire, 1800 workers are now jobless. According to mall representatives, some positions (office) will be retained. However, employees serving the ‘selling area’ will be on ‘work suspension’ following the ‘no-work-no-pay’ scheme.
A couple of days ago, I was finally able to see the building and take a couple of pictures.