Saturday, October 11, 2014

Regional Leadership Congress slated in Cam Sur

The Department of Education (DepEd) Division of Camarines Sur, in partnership with Ezer Foundation, Inc., will hold the Regional Leadership Congress 2014 at the Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA) Atrium in Pili, Camarines Sur on October 21, 2014.

This was announced by Department of Education Region V Acting Director IV Ramon Fiel G. Abcede in a letter to schools division superintendents, education program supervisors, district ALS coordinators, school heads, and mobile teachers.

The Leadership Congress, according to Abcede, aims to develop the participants' leadership and management techniques, make them fiscally and financially knowledgeable, and provide opportunities for learning.

Student leaders of different organizations, officers and members of in and out of school youth organiztions, teachers and advisers of different school clubs and organizations and all interested persons 12 years and above are invited to participate in the activity.

A registration fee of P350 will be collected from every participant to cover expenses on food, training materials, certificates, and honoraria of speakers.--BICOLSTANDARD.PH

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Gov't beefs up aid for Mayon evacuees

DSWD, DOH, and the military have joined forces today to bring aid to the Mayon evacuees in Albay.

Military escorts listen to DSWD staff during the orientation on the Ligtas Mayon Caravan. (Photo via DSWD)

Military truck loaded with food packs for Ligtas Mayon Caravan (Photo via DSWD)

DSWD and DOH staff prepare trucks to carry jerry cans, hygiene kits,medicines for Ligtas Mayon Caravan. (Photo via DSWD)

Trucks carrying food packs and non-food items for Mayon evacuees in Guinobatan, Albay (Photo via DSWD)
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Legazpi collects P413-M in taxes from January to June

The Legazpi City Treasurer’s Office posted a record high of total tax collection of Php413.4 million from January to June this year, higher than the Php381.5 million revenue take it had during comparative period last year, City Treasurer Carlita P. de Guzman said Wednesday.

According to De Guzman, the Php413.4-million revenue collection included the internal revenue allotment (IRA) of Php202.4 million, which the city government received in June as its share from the national government, and income from local taxes like tax revenue, Php177.6 million, and the non-tax revenue of Php33.3 million.

The tax revenue of this city came from the collected business taxes, other taxes and real property tax while the non-tax revenue is composed of regulatory fees, service income, other income and business income.

The CTO also received in June the amount of about Php 710,800 as its share from the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).

Mayor Noel E. Rosal expressed elation over the high tax collection of the CTO. He said that it is a clear symbol of the effectiveness and transparency of the city administration.

Rosal encouraged all taxpayers, particularly the big establishments, to pay their taxes promptly because it will help finance all various development programs and projects of the city for the benefit of the community and the constituents.

He also urged De Guzman to continue improving the tax collection to meet the 1:1 objective of the city administration, which means, that the local taxes should equal to the amount of the IRA that the city receives from the national government.

The city chief executive explained that part of the budget spent by the city government came from the IRA released by the Department of Budget and Management.

The IRA is an automatic appropriation distributed to all local government units without any further deliberations and action in both houses of Congress.

It is released by the DBM to its recipients on a monthly or quarterly basis.

Its main objective is to maintain a liquid condition for LGUs for the implementation of their development projects and programs that could led to a better business environment and open windows to economic and more employment opportunities, particularly in rural communities.--by Emmanuel P. Solis (PNA)
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Friday, October 10, 2014

Sorsogon City celebrates National Children's Month

SORSOGON CITY– In celebration of National Children’s Month this year, the Provincial Council for the Protection of Children (PCPC) and Area-Based Standard Network (ABSNET) will be hosting a children’s forum on October 18, 2014 at the Provincial Gymnasium, this city.

Some 150 children between the ages of 13 to 17 from the 14 municipalities of Sorsogon and PCPC’s partner organizations signified to join the forum.

With the theme “Bata Kasali Ka, Ikaw ay Mahalaga,” the forum aims to bring to the children’s consciousness their significant role in all government undertakings.

Asst. Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer Myra Relativo said the forum is a whole-day activity which will include talks on Child’s Participation Guidelines and Child Protection Policies.

Representatives the Council on Children’s Welfare (CWC) the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office will lead said discussions.

"The forum would likewise encourage stakeholders to promote and advocate children's participation in decision-making processes, in the family, school and community," she further said.

An open forum will follow after every discussion to provide an opportunity for the children to raise their concerns and share their ideas on the topics. 

Interactive games, fellowship, and bonding activities are also scheduled in the afternoon. These will be facilitated by Intervida, Good Neighbors, FACE Inc., and Casa Miani. 

The country's celebration of the National Children’s Month (NCM) every October of each year is pursuant to Presidential Proclamation 267, series of 1993. It calls for a nationwide celebration of children’s month to promote and protect the physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual and social well-being of the child as well as to emphasize the importance of the role of the child within the Filipino family and in nation building.

October 2014 marks the 22nd National Children’s Month Celebration. The annual celebration is spearheaded by the Council for the Welfare of Children since 1993 by virtue of Presidential Decree 603 or the Child and Youth Welfare Code.

Meanwhile, PCPC urged the local government units here to implement policies and programs that would protect the rights and welfare of children.—by Bennie A. Recebido, PIA

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Office of Civil Defense hosts disaster preparedness training

The Office of Civil Defense Regional Office 5 sent a training team last Wednesday to Barangay Sagrada, one of the remotest barangays in the town of Bato, Camarines Sur to prepare its residents against disasters.

Those who attended the training are 129 barangay residents consisting of BDRRMC members, barangay officials, Department of Education officials and faculty members of the Sagrada Elementary School headed by Dr. Sulpicio M. Tanay Jr., barangay tanod members, and members and officers of the Sagrada Elementary School Organization.

OCD-5 Regional Director Raffy Alejandro IV said the training was a response to the invitation of Mayor Norma B. Flores, chairperson of the Barangay Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (BDRRMC) of Barangay Sagrada, Bato, Camarines Sur. (PNA)

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6M senior citizens to get lifetime health insurance

More than six million elderly in the country will soon become lifetime members of Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).

This was announced by PhilHealth President and CEO Alexander A. Padilla during forum held recently on social protection programs for the elderly, an Elderly Filipino Week activity organized by PhilHealth and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

The elderly beneficiaries of Philhealth’s Lifetime Member Program (LMP) will be provided coverage for life without paying the premium anymore.

“Our LMP is open to those who have made 120 monthly contributions to the National Health Insurance Program (NHIP), and have reached the age of retirement,” Padilla said, clarifying however, that those who are still gainfully employed even at age of retirement are not yet eligible under the LMP.

DSWD is supporting Senate Bill No. 712, a measure that would authorize the PhilHealth to cover all senior citizens in the country.

The Bill was approved on third and final reading in the Senate.

During the forum, DSWD, PhilHealth, Social Security System (SSS), and Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) signed a manifest for the promotion of adequate social services and protection for elderly Filipinos.

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P300K worth of shabu confiscated in Cam Norte

DAET, Camarines Norte—More or less 50 grams of a substance suspected to be methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu was seized by joint elements of Mercedes Municipal Police Station (MPS), the Camarines Norte Provincial Police Office and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Camarines Norte from a 39-year-old suspect in Mercedes town.

The authorities estimate the market value of the illegal drug to be around P300,000.00, according to a report from PSInsp Rogelyn Peratero Calandria, Officer-in-Charge of Mercedes MPS.

The suspect, Dino Malonzo y Glipo, a resident of Purok 3, Barangay 1, Mercedes, Camarines Norte, was arrested after police found in his custody 11 heat-sealed sachets of the illegal drug, along with a plastic sachet containing dried leaves believed to be from a marijuana plant.

Also recovered from the suspect were a caliber .45 pistol and 40 pieces of live ammunition for said firearm.

The warrant of arrest was issued by Judge Arniel A. Dating of RTC Branch 41 here.

The confiscated pieces of evidence have been brought to the Camarines Norte Provincial Crime Laboratory, according to the police.


Meanwhile, the appropriate criminal complaints against the suspect are now being prepared for referral to the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office.—BICOLSTANDARD
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Drugs, ammo seized in Goa raid

GOA, Camarines Sur— Two drug suspects were arrested by joint operatives of the Goa and Lagonoy Police Stations at around 12:45 AM yesterday.

Drugs, ammo seized in Goa raid
Photo courtesy of PNP
Led by Police Chief Inspector Chito Mullasgo Oyardo of Goa Municipal Police Station and Police Senior Inspector Rolito Ulvida Orosco of Lagonoy Municipal Police Station, the team collared the suspects by virtue of a search warrant.

They were identified as Salvador O. Arel, 31, and Sarah Valle y Yim, 28.

The search warrant was issued by Judge Ma. Angel Acompanado-Arroyo of Regional Trial Court Branch 58, San Jose, Camarines Sur, for the alleged violation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

The police recovered two plastic sachets of a substance believed to be shabu, drug paraphernalia, and live ammunition. The items were brought to Goa Municipal Police Station for proper disposition.

The Goa police is now preparing the documents for filing the appropriate charges through inquest proceedings.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Paper nautilus shell on display at Bicol Shell Museum

Paper nautilus shell found in Bicol
This paper nautilus shell was found at Salingogon, Minalabac, Camarines by a local fisherman. It is currently on display at Bicol Shell Museum, Bagolatao, Minalabac. More shells are on display at the first and only shell museum in the Bicol region (Photo by Oscar Esmenda from the collection of Prof. L.O. Basmayor).

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3 volcanic earthquakes at Mayon in past 24 hours

LEGAZPI CITY—Three volcanic earthquakes and one rockfall event has been recorded in Mayon Volcano's seismic network during the past 24 hours.

According to PHIVOLCS, moderate emission of white steam plumes drifting east-southeast and southeast was observed.

The data indicate that the volcano is still in a state of unrest due to the movement of potentially eruptible magma.

PHIVOLCS also clarified that Mayon Volcano’s alert status remains at Alert Level 3. This means that magma is at the crater and that hazardous eruption is possible within weeks.

It is recommended that the 6-km radius Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ) around the volcano and the 7-km Extended Danger Zone (EDZ) on the southeastern flank be enforced due to the danger of rock falls, landslides and sudden explosions or dome collapse that may generate hazardous volcanic flows.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Disney characters visit Daet

Disney characters Elsa of Frozen, Tinkerbell and Peter Pan, Aladdin, Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and Maleficent brought cheer to the residents of Daet during a recent celebration of La Consolacion College. (Photos via Come to Cam Norte)

Disney characters visit Daet, Camarines Norte

Disney characters visit Daet, Camarines Norte

Disney characters visit Daet, Camarines Norte

Disney characters visit Daet, Camarines Norte

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Students Today, Road Users Tomorrow (STRUT) sa Bicol

Si LTO Regional Director Noreen San Luis-Lutey nagpahayag kan importansya kan programang Students Today, Road Users Tomorrow (STRUT) sa paglansan kan programang ini sa region. (Kua ni Oscar Esmenda/BICOLSTANDARD.COM)

Students Today, Road Users Tomorrow (STRUT) sa Bicol

Students Today, Road Users Tomorrow (STRUT) sa Bicol


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Sec. Alcala sa Cam Sur

Si Agriculture Sec. Proceso Alcala an huesped de honor sa ginibong Farmers Congress sa Camarines Sur. Gusto kan agencia de gobierno na tawan nin atensyon an agricultura para sa dakulang ani asin partisipasyon kan mga saradit na paratanom. (Kua ni Oscar Esmenda/BICOLSTANDARD.COM)





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World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City

Some 6,000 teachers from the province of Camarines Sur convened at JMR Coliseum in Naga City last October 6 to celebrate the National Teachers' Month and World Teachers' Day. Photos by Oscar Esmenda/BICOLSTANDARD.COM

World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City

World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City

World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City

World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City
World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City

World Teachers' Day 2014 in Naga City, Bicol
World Teachers' Day in Naga City
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Taxicle sa Legazpi, registrado—LTO

LEGAZPI CITY—Bakong totoo an sahot kan mga nagkokontra sa operasyon kan taxicle na dae nagkaigwa nin consultasyon antes tugotan an saindang operasyon.

Taxicle in Legazpi City
Si Legazpi City Mayor Noel Rosal kataid an saro sa mga taxicle sa Legazpi City
Retrato hale sa Facebook account ni Mayor Rosal
Ini an sabi ni City Councilor Rolly Rosal, na iyo an Chairman kan Committee on Transportation sa Sangguniang Panlungsod.

Bako sanang an mga tricycle operators asin drivers an inimbitaran, kundi, magin si Land Transportation Office (LTO) Regional Director Noreen San Luis-Lutey imbitado pa.

Sa ginibong pakikiolay kan BICOL STANDARD ki Dir. Lutey, pigconfirmar niya an public hearing asin an imbitasyon saiya kan Sanggunigng Panlungsod.

Mientrastanto, nagpahayag si Rosal na mayong dapat ipaghadit an ibang mga nagkakayod nin tricycle ta pareho man an singil ninda sa lambang pasahero na malunad.

An mga pahayag sa media ginibo ni Rosal kan makarecibe nin surat si Vice Alkalde Victorio Roces na nagkukwestyon kan operasyon kan taxicle sa ciudad.

Sa ibong na lado, sinabi ni LTO Regional Director Lutey na bakong totoo na dae registrado sa saindang opisina an mga taxicle.

May mga tawo kayang nag hahapot sa saindang opisina kun nata na “for registration” asin mayong plate number an mga taxicle poon pa kan saindang pagkayod sa tinampo.

Sabi ni Lutey na registrado an mga taxicle, alagad sa presente dae pa sinda natatawan nin plaka ta piggigibo pa sana an mga ini kan saindang opisina duman sa Manila.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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Kuryente sa pamitisan kan Mayon, dae na pinutol

LEGAZPI CITY—“Mahalat pa kami kan surat hale ki Gob. Joey Salceda na nagsasabi na putolan na nin kuryente an mga nag-eestar sa laog kan prohibidong 6- sagkod 8 kilometros, sa pamitisan kan Bulkan Mayon.”

APEC
Ini an sabi ni Jane Rogando, an pamayo kan Consumers Services kan Albay Power and Energy Corporation (APEC).

An pahayag ni Rogando simbag sa kahapotan kan mga taga media na nag-oosyoso kan mga pangyayari, sa declaradong "danger zone” sa nag aalburotong Mayon.

Kan sarong aldaw, nagpaluwas liwat nin patanid sa publico si Salceda sa mga nagpipirit na magtinir sa mga peligrosong lugar sa ibaba kan bulkan.

An kaisipan kan gobierno provincial, sa pamamayo ni Salceda iyo na putolon na lugod an supply kan kuryente sa gabos na mga residencia asin an linya nin tubig.

An obheto kan siring na desisyon tanganing mapiritan an mga tawo na abandonaron na an saindang mga harong huli kan grabeng peligro na pwedeng mangyari, en caso madagos nang magtuga an Mayon.

An mga parataram kan Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), ngonian na aldaw, sa paagui mismo ni Ed Laguerta, an resident volcanologist, nagsabi na may dakulang peligro sa gabos na mga residentes sa laog kan “danger zone.”

Mientrastanto, sa parte kan APEC, pinaliwanag kaini na handa an saindang officina na tubodon an kahagadan kan gobernador. Alagad, naghahalat man guiraray sinda nin surat hale saiya, para may basehan an APEC sa saindang pagsunod sa desisyon.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Illegal mining still widespread in Cam Norte

CAMARINES NORTE—Both legitimate and illegal miners are drawn to the gold that glitters in the towns of Paracale, Panganiban, and Labo in this province.

Paracale, Camarines Norte
Paracale, Camarines Norte Photo via Paracale Kay Ganda

Of the illegal miners, 78 individuals have already been apprehended, and 21 cases filed in the different courts since January this year, according to the consolidated reports of the police.

The report reaching BICOL STANDARD indicates that law enforcement agencies are now zeroing in on the town of Paracale, where new mining sites are currently being developed at Sitio Maning in Barangay Casalugan.

As this developed, a series of anti-illegal mining operations have been conducted by the Paracale PNP, that resulted to the arrest of 26 persons and the discovery of 10 illegal mining sites.

Seven cases, all involving the revitalized illegal mining activities, have already been filed, according to the local police.

Action


Relative to these problems, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan has approved SP Resolution No. 430-2014, urging the Acting PNP Provincial Director to stop the small-scale mining operation at Barangay Casalugan, Paracale.

To further strengthen the campaign against the illegal mining activity, a coordinating conference to discuss the illegal mining operations was held last September 29. In attendance were members of the Philippine National Police.

The Camarines Norte Provincial Police Office (CNPPO) is also formulating a Localized Anti-Criminality Action Plan (LACAP) that will address the illegal mining activities at Sitio Maning.

The action plan seeks to specify the tasks of the concerned government agencies in the implementation of the resolution.

Heading the group will be the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), supported by the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board, and the local government units.

Meanwhile, another coordinating conference is being scheduled to clarify several points in the action plan.

Joint effort


Under the leadership of PSSupt Moises Cudal Pagaduan, the CNPPO has been assisting the MGB in its campaign against illegal mining in Camarines Norte.

Apart from extensive operations, Paracale Municipal Police Station is also conducting an information drive regarding the stoppage order, as well as the dangers of uncontrolled and unsafe mining practices.

Signs urging the public to report illegal activities to the police have likewise been posted near the mining sites and several strategic areas in Paracale.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

'Bishop Baylon, why have you forsaken us?' Albay consumers group asks

LEGAZPI CITY—A consumers group here is calling on the Vatican and the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) to launch a probe on Bishop Joel Z. Baylon’s alleged involvement in the Albay Power Energy Corporation (APEC)-and San Miguel Corporation Global Power Holdings (SMC) concession contract controversy.

Bishop Joel Baylon
Bishop Joel Baylon
Demetrio C. Reynoso, President of the Consumers Rights Watch Bicol (CRoW) has already sent letters containing the details of their complaints to CBCP, as well as to the members of the media.

The letter is an administrative complaint against the bishop, who, in his capacity as chairman of the Interim Board of Directors (IBOD), signed the concession contract, according to Reynoso.

“The concession agreement is illegitimate as it violates six (6) conditions of the Terms of Reference for the bidding,” the letter to CBCP President Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas reads.

“There was only one bidder, San Miguel Corporation, yet the Interim Board of Directors (headed by Bishop Baylon) and NEA insist that the process was valid,” it further states.

"Bishop Baylon, why have you forsaken us?" the letter asks.

The complaint ends by saying “Bishop Joel Z. Baylon committed a grave offense to his flock. For doing so, he has lost our respect and trust. We entreat the Pope to consider reassigning him somewhere else. May God forgive him for betraying us!”

Along with Baylon, the group says that the National Electrification Administration (NEA), the Department of Energy (DOE) and local officials may be involved in the issue.

Their next concern, the group explained in a statement, is to figure out how to make APEC answerable to the damages that the cooperative and the member-consumers suffered.

The group reiterates its “No payment to APEC” appeal as well as its recommendation to boycott products made by San Miguel Corporation, which owns SMC Global Corporation Power Holdings.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Army detachment sinurongan kan NPA

LABO, Camarines Norte—Yaon sa poder ngonian kan Camarines Norte Provincial Police Office (CNPPO) an sarong pidaso nin Unexploded Explosive Ordinance (UXO) na itinanom kan mga pigtutubodan na rebelde na nagsurong sa detachment kan Delta Company kan Army sa Barangay Malangcao, Basud, sa banwaan na ini.

An Fragmentation Rifle Grenade  na ibinala kan mga rebelde pasiring sa campo kan mga soldados kan gobierno, dae nagputok huli sa kalawang na nakatangil sa fuse kan bomba.

Susug sa ginibong imbestigasyon kan mga pulis, an detachment kan Army iyo si puntariya na pabuagon kan bomba, na swerte sanang dae nagputok.

An mga pulis na ipinadara sa lugar nakua an UXO na nakalubong sa gilid kan kudal kan Army detachment.
Ipinahayag kan mga soldados na nagpapadagos sindang preparado sa pag-atake kan mga kalaban kan gobierno na nagiging aktibo ngonian na mga panahon.

Pagkatapos na marecover an UXO, sinabi kan EOD personnel na Fragmentation Rifle Greanade an saindang nakua sa lugar na hinogpaan kaini. —BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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Teacher Fortes rape slay suspect charged

BULUSAN, SORSOGON –The principal suspect in the rape slay of Roda Devera Fortes was formally charged this morning at the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office of Sorsogon.

Roda Devera Fortes
Roda Devera Fortes
Fortes was a 22-year old elementary school teacher and a resident of Sitio Capiricohan, San Isidro, this town, who was found dead near her home last week.

Based on the medico-legal findings and the investigation of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Fortes was raped first before she was killed.


The victim’s cause of death, according to the medico-legal findings, is due to “blunt traumatic injuries to the head.”

A deep laceration and bruises were also noted on the victim’s body, Medico Legal Officer Dr. Michelle S. Estolatan according to a report by Busina Bicol News Express.

Police Inspector Nenita P. Asuncion, Officer-in-Charge of the Municipal Police Station here said that the case was docketed under I.S. V. 131NV-14J-3478, for Rape with Homicide.

Meanwhile, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Philippines has condemned the killing and expressed sympathy for the family of the slain teacher.

"Kami ay patuloy na nakikiisa sa mamamayan ng Sorsogon sa panawagan para sa katarungan at kaligtasan ng bawat Sorsogueño,” the group said in its official statement.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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2 gadan sa karambola nin mga vehiculo sa Guinobatan

GUINOBATAN, ALBAYDuwa an confirmadong gadan sa nangyaring karambola nin mga vehiculo sa Sitio Kangao, Barangay Quitago, sa banwaan na ini.

Aksidente sa Guinobatan, Albay
Photo: Baraks
An incidente nangyari poco mas o menos alas 5:30 nin hapon, fecha 7 kan Octubre.

Sinabi kan mga imbestigador na an mga imbuelto sa aksidenteng ini iyo an sarong 10-wheeler truck, van, tricycle asin 3ng motorsiklo.

An mga binawian nin buhay iyo sinda Michael Pante, taga Barangay Illiang, Jovellar asin Alieza Gaza y Morello, 10 anyos, taga Barangay IIuluan, Camalig, Albay.

An driver kan 10-wheeler truck nagpahayag na nawaran siya nin control kan saiyang pigmamanehong vehiculo, kan magkupsit an preno, na nagresulta sa aksidente.

Pigmamaneho an truck ni Joel Bondino y Salvador, 38 anyos, na taga San Jose, Pili, Camarines Sur.
Susug sa report sa BICOL STANDARD, mayo na nin buhay an duwang victima, mantang an iba pang nadamay sa aksidente pigbubulong pa ngonian sa hospital.

An truck na pasiring sa direksyon kan sentro kan Camalig, Albay iyo si guinikanan kan karambola kan mga vehiculo.

Sabi sa report, an aksidente haros kapareho kan nangyari kan Domingo sa Daraga, Albay, na kun saen na 4 na tawo an nagkagaradan, kabale an sarong bados na maestra. Dakul man si nangkarulogadan sa aksidente sa vehiculo, na an pigponan an nagkupsit na preno kan awto.BICOL STANDARD.COM

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EDITORIAL: The plight of teachers

In the Philippines, Teachers’ Month and World Teachers’ Day have become occasions in which we remind ourselves of the plight of educators: their insufficient salary, their heavy workloads, the lack of support from the government in their material or intellectual needs. Despite these struggles, we laud them as the ones with the noblest profession, the shapers of the future, unsung heroes.

Typically, we use the occasions to express our gratitude to our teachers. This year, however, two recent events in Bicol have forced us to reconsider our usual ideation and reassess our ways of celebrating the occasions in light of reality.

One is the slay of 22-year-old Rodora “Roda” Devera Fortes, a public elementary school teacher from Bulusan, Sorsogon. Fortes was found stripped, bruised, her face covered with stones, according to the police. A medico-legal report indicates that she was raped before being killed.

Meanwhile, a teacher named Duran Tirzo y Atienza of Nabua, Camarines Sur, was recently arrested by the PDEA and PNP after being allegedly involved in drug trade. Three sachets of shabu, along with marked money, were found in his possession.

These two cases reveal that the struggle of teachers may be more complex than we probably imagine.
On one hand, the Fortes case brings attention to the lack of respect that they receive despite their noble profession.

On the other, the Tirzo case reminds us of how morals in our society have so tragically degenerated, that even teachers, the so-called second parents of the youth, have succumbed to illegal acts.

It is chillingly ironic that these two events coincide with Teachers’ Month. But if anything may be gleaned from these cases, it is perhaps this: we have a long way to go before we get to the bottom of the plight of our educators. It is perhaps time to stop picturing teachers as stereotypes, and see them as real human beings, with strengths and vulnerabilities that need to be understood, so that their struggles may be truly addressed.

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Naga City shabu dealer slapped with life term

NAGA CITY 11/22/17 (Bicol Standard) -- A man caught selling Php200,000.00 worth of shabu inside a room of Villa Caceres Hotel in 2015 w...