Saturday, January 24, 2015

PHOTOS| Princess Joy Camu: Albay's bet to Binibining Pilipinas 2015

Princess Joy Camu Tiwi, Albay
Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout
TIWI, Albay-- Princess Joy Camu paid a courtesy call on mayor Leo Templado of this town last week as she took a breather from her hectic schedule.

Camu is representing this town in the Binibining Pilipinas 2015 pageant.

The 5'7.5 stunner is no pageant newbie. She  has already joined local pageants such as Mutya ng Daragang Magayon 2013 and  Miss Bicolandia 2014. She won first runner-up in Camarines Sur's Miss Kaogma 2014.

Camu is now aiming for the crown and a chance to represent the Philippines in the international beauty pageant scene.

Last year, fellow Albayana Yvethe Marie Avisado Santiago and Mary Anne Bianca Garcia Guidotti won Bb. Pilipinas-Supranational and Bb. Pilipinas-International, respectively.--BICOLSTANDARD.COM


Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout

Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout


Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout

Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout



Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout


Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout

Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout

Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout

Princess Joy Camu
Photo via LGU Tiwi Facebook Accout


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CASE IN POINT: Is a judgment of acquittal appealable?



Is a judgment of acquittal appealable?

This week, we discuss a fundamental concept in criminal procedure.

Before us is the question: is a judgment of acquittal appealable?

The answer is in the negative. A judgment of acquittal may be assailed only in a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court.
               
Appeal is not an appropriate remedy if an accused is acquitted because that would put the accused in double jeopardy. It does not mean, however, that the State has no more remedy at all. It is a well-settled rule that if the remedy of appeal is not available, a special civil action for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court may be availed of. The petitioner, however, must prove that the lower court committed grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction in acquitting the accused and that there is no plain, speedy and adequate remedy.

A petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules should be filed instead of petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45. The People may assail a judgment of acquittal only via petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules. If the petition, regardless of its nomenclature, merely calls for an ordinary review of the findings of the court a quo, the constitutional right of the accused against double jeopardy would be violated (People v. Sandiganbayan (First Div.), 524 Phil. 496, 522 [2006]; Villareal v. Aliga, G.R. No. 166995, January 12, 2014, Peralta, J).

In People v. Sandiganbayan (First Div.), it was said:

x x x A petition for review on certiorari under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court and a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court are two and separate remedies. A petition under Rule 45 brings up for review errors of judgment, while a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 covers errors of jurisdiction or grave abuse of discretion amounting to excess or lack of jurisdiction. Grave abuse of discretion is not an allowable ground under Rule 45. A petition for review under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court is a mode of appeal. Under Section 1 of the said Rule, a party aggrieved by the decision or final order of the Sandiganbayan may file a petition for review on certiorari with the SC.

However, the provision must be read in relation to Section 1, Rule 122 of the Revised Rules of Court, which provides that any party may appeal from a judgment or final order "unless the accused will thereby be placed in double jeopardy." The judgment that may be appealed by the aggrieved party envisaged in the Rule is a judgment convicting the accused, and not a judgment of acquittal. The State is barred from appealing such judgment of acquittal by a petition for review.

Section 21, Article III of the Constitution provides that "no person shall be twice put in jeopardy of punishment for the same offense." The rule is that a judgment acquitting the accused is final and immediately executory upon its promulgation, and that accordingly, the State may not seek its review without placing the accused in double jeopardy. Such acquittal is final and unappealable on the ground of double jeopardy whether it happens at the trial court or on appeal at the CA. Thus, the State is proscribed from appealing the judgment of acquittal of the accused to this Court under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court.

A judgment of acquittal may be assailed by the People in a petition for certiorari under Rule 65 of the Rules of Court without placing the accused in double jeopardy. However, in such case, the People is burdened to establish that the court a quo, in this case, the Sandiganbayan, acted without jurisdiction or grave abuse of discretion amounting to excess or lack of jurisdiction. Grave abuse of discretion generally refers to capricious or whimsical exercise of judgment as is equivalent to lack of jurisdiction. The abuse of discretion must be so patent and gross as to amount to an evasion of a positive duty or virtual refusal to perform a duty imposed by law, or to act in contemplation of law or where the power is exercised in an arbitrary and despotic manner by reason of passion and hostility. No grave abuse of discretion may be attributed to a court simply because of its alleged misapplication of facts and evidence, and erroneous conclusions based on said evidence. Certiorari will issue only to correct errors of jurisdiction, and not errors or mistakes in the findings and conclusions of the trial court. (People v. Sandiganbayan (First Div.).


A judgment of acquittal, whether ordered by the trial or the appellate court, is final, unappealable, and immediately executory upon its promulgation. (People v. Court of Appeals (Fifteenth Div.); People v. Sandiganbayan (First Div.); People v. Hon. Tria-Tirona, 502 Phil. 31, 37 [2005]; and People v. Hon. Velasco, 394 Phil. 517, 554 [2000]). The rationale for the rule is elucidated in the oft-cited case of People v. Hon. Velasco, where it was said that the fundamental philosophy highlighting the finality of an acquittal by the trial court cuts deep into "the humanity of the laws and in a jealous watchfulness over the rights of the citizen, when brought in unequal contest with the State. x x x." The underlying idea, is that the State with all its resources and power should not be allowed to make repeated attempts to convict an individual for an alleged offense, thereby subjecting him to embarrassment, expense and ordeal and compelling him to live in a continuing state of anxiety and insecurity, as well as enhancing the possibility that even though innocent, he may be found guilty.

It is axiomatic that on the basis of humanity, fairness and justice, an acquitted defendant is entitled to the right of repose as a direct consequence of the finality of his acquittal. The philosophy underlying this rule establishing the absolute nature of acquittals is "part of the paramount importance criminal justice system attaches to the protection of the innocent against wrongful conviction." The interest in the finality-of-acquittal rule, confined exclusively to verdicts of not guilty, is easy to understand: it is a need for "repose," a desire to know the exact extent of one's liability. With this right of repose, the criminal justice system has built in a protection to insure that the innocent, even those whose innocence rests upon a jury’s leniency, will not be found guilty in a subsequent proceeding.


Read more: Can a father of a recognized illegitimate child compel the latter to use his surname?

Dean Ed Vincent S. Albano is the Bar Review Director of Albano Bar Review Center. He authored books/reviewers in Civil Law, Political,  Law, Remedial Law and Legal Ethics.

www.albanobarreviewcenter.com


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Palace received info on terrorist plot to kill Pope Francis

Pope Francis urged members of his security team
not to give in to fear amid terrorist threats to his life.
Photo via www.opap.gov.ph

MANILA -- The Palace confirmed receiving unverified information about the assassination attempt on Pope Francis when he was on a five-day visit to the Philippines.

"We were able to speak to those in the security establishments on that and I was told that they were aware of that particular piece of unverified information that was passed on," Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a radio interview Saturday.

"Aware po sila, although they did make it a point to establish that the information had no details and was unverified, but because of the situation, it was passed on anyway," Valte told dzRB Radyo Ng Bayan.

The report was raw information that was passed on and that was received, without much detail, she added.

The country's security establishment exercise prudence and authorities look into those things and they take it into account, the Palace official said.

Asked whether the measure to turn off cellphones signals related to the threat, Valte said it was not the reason. The decision to turn off the signals was made even prior to the reception of the raw and unverified information.

A former military intelligence officer claimed there were two attempts to assassinate the pope during his visit in the Philippines – one in Manila and another in Tacloban, Leyte.

Few months ago, the Iraqi government warned that the Islamic State, which has been sowing terrorism in the Middle East wanted the pope killed, and that the threats against Pope Francis were credible. (PNA)

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Police seize dolphin meat in Cam Sur

LIBMANAN, Camarines Sur -- Sixteen and 3/4 kilograms of suspected dolphin meat were confiscated from two fish vendors in Brgy. Mambulo Nuevo, this town, yesterday (January 23).

The suspects were  identified as Jose Franco Dado y Parro, 39 years old, married,  a resident of Brgy. Quitang, Pasacao and Belinda Abril y Capulong, 44 years old, married, a resident of Brgy. San Cerilo, Pasacao.

Dado and Abril were apprehended at about 7:40 a.m. after they were seen peddling meat suspected to be from a dolphin, locally known as "lumod."

Police requested the suspects to produce a legal permit to prove their authority to sell the threatened species. However, they failed to present any.

As a result, the suspects were taken into custody by the Libmanan Police Station.

The arresting team, led by SPO2 Jacinto Parado, also seized said goods.

Police are now preparing to file a case against Dado and Abril for violation of RA 8550 or "The Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998."--BICOLSTANDARD.COM


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Friday, January 23, 2015

Baby survives after dad blasts dynamite

PANDAN, CatanduanesTwo-month old Baby Angelito (not his real name) is still recovering from the blast injuries he sustained after his father ignited an improvised explosive device (IED).

Baby Angelito survived after his dad blasted an improvised explosive device.
Baby Angelito survived after his dad blasted an improvised explosive device.
Photo courtesy of Tres Pandananon Muskiteros
The explosion caused him to lose some of his fingers. He also suffered from burns and injuries on his limbs.

His mother, who was earlier reported to be also fighting off severe wounds, has died.

She was just 17.

Initial investigation

Police report said that the explosion occurred on  January 16 at about 11:40 in the morning in the house of Lito Barro in Zapanta St., Barangay San Andres, this town.

According to Baby Angelito’s great grandmother Marcelo Castro y Eusebio (Eusebio), she was hanging clothes when Baby Angelito’s father, entered the house.

He was identified as Jayson lcaranom y Delos Reyes, 40 years old.

Suspect Icaranom, who was carrying a folded jacket and a matchbox, then sat on the floor of the living room.

Afterwards, Eusebio was the suspect lit the IED with the cigarette he had been smoking.

Explosion ensued.

Baby Angelito, his mother and his father, the suspect, were all severely injured.

The victims were immediately brought to the Pandan District Hospital by Ruel Domingo, Benito Barro, and Romeo Barro, all residents of Barangay San Andres.

lnvestigator-on-case POl Jessica B. Cuya, revealed that the suspect died in Pandan District Hospital on January 16.

Angelito’s mother subsequently died.

Offers of help

Pledges for support have been offered to the baby after locals learned of his plight through Facebook.

A group that calls themselves “Tres Musketeros Pandanon” first brought public attention to Baby Angelito’s situation.

Since then, help has been trickling.

Howl of protest against illegal fishing

Meanwhile, the same group also voiced its indignation against illegal fishing.

It says that the use of the suspect of the IED, which is usually used by illegal fishermen, is an indication of how commonplace the practice of dynamite fishing is in the area.

Tres Muskiteros is therefore calling all officials to strictly enforce all  laws which would protect the marine treasures of Catanduanes.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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CASURECO II special district polls slated Feb. 21

A simultaneous special district elections for members of the Board of Directors have been set by the Camarines Sur Electric Cooperative II (CASURECO II) on February 21.

The districts of Minalabac, Naga North, Naga South, Canaman, Tinambac-Siruma, Pili, Bombon, Milaor and Calabanga will each elect their district Board Members.

The deadline for filing of certificate of candidacy is set on February 11 at 5 PM.

To date, CASURECO II has only one sitting Board Member in the coop. The terms of the other Board Members had accordingly expired and remained vacant.
Without the majority of the Board Members, the coop cannot conclude a loan with a bank.

Presently, the coop is applying for P200 million loan from the Development Bank of the Philippines. (PIA)
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3.4-magnitude quake hits Masbate

A moderate earthquake with a magnitude of 3.4 shook Masbate at 11:57 AM today, January 23.

3.4-magnitude quake hits Masbate
In the official report of Phivolcs, the epicenter is located at 12.16°N, 123.94°E - 002 km N 65° E of Palanas, Masbate. It had a depth of 22 kilometers.

No damage or aftershocks were expected, Phivolcs reported.--BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Cam Norte solon's ma no-show at arraignment for vote-buying charge

LABO, Camarines Norte--Vilma Jalgalado-Barcelona did not appear before Branch 64 of the Regional Trial Court of Labo this morning to enter her plea in Criminal Case No. 13-2418.

Barcelona, who is the mother of Cong. Cathy Barcelona Reyes and the aunt of Cong. Renato "Jojo" Unico, Jr., is facing charges of vote-buying or violation Sec. 261 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 88.

Accused's counsel explained to the court that her client is presently attending to her husband's health concerns in Manila.

Barcelona's arraignment was ordered reset to March 5.

As averred in the Information,  Barcelona is being accused of giving Php1,000.00 each to Diosdado Ebano, Glenn Galicia, and Emmanel Gallardo as consideration for their votes in favor of Catherine Barcelona Reyes and Renato "Jojo" Unico Jr.--With report from Mahatma Gan/BICOLSTANDARD.COM


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The Voice Kid's Darren Espanto all set for the Bicol concert

Darren Espanto pays a courtesy call on Malinao town mayor Alice Morales (right).
Photo via Adele Albano of The Aqueous Events Management


MALINAO, Albay--Darren Espanto is set rock Albay Astrodome tomorrow (Jan. 23) during his "Total Performance Concert."

The VoiceKidsPH runner up arrived earlier at the Legazpi City Airport where he was warmly welcomed by throngs of screaming fans.

In the afternoon, Espanto paid a courtesy call on Malinao town mayor Alice Morales, one of the concert's sponsors.

The heartthrob's fans have been anticipating Espanto's solo concert, which caps his string of "Total Performance Concerts".

Such was the  excitement of the "Darrenatics", as his followers would call themselves, that "1DayToGo DARREN'S SoloConcert In Bicol"  trended on Twitter Philippines today.

The Aqueous Events Management  and BICOLSTANDARD.COM, one of the Darren Espanto's media partners, invite everybody to catch Darren at the Albay Astrodome tomorrow.

Please click the link for the ticket outlets.Darren Espanto in Bicol Ticket Outlets

--BICOLSTANDARD.COM




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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Mga pusikit na parahabas nin pambulang na manok, pinangaranan

OCAMPO, Camarines Sur“Pusikit na parahabas nin manok,” ini an pagkabisto suboot ki Melvin Librando (Melvin), taga-Barangay, La Purisima Nuevo, sa banwaan na ini.

Nagkapira sa mga manok na pambulang na hinabas sa Sea Urchin Game Farm
Kua ni Oscar Esmenda/BICOLSTANDARD.COM
An inaakusaran na kasapakat niya si Ruel alyas “Chong-Chong” Ibarra (“Chong-Chong”), taga-barangay Salingogon, Minalabac, Camarines Sur.

Sindang duwa iyo an itinuga ni Domingo Librando (Domingo), an ama ni Melvin, na nagdara sa saindang harong sa La Purisima Nuevo kan mga pambulang na manok na hinabon sa Sea Urchin Game Farm sa Salingogon, Minalabac, kan mag-omagahon na Lunes, Enero 20.

An kagsadire kan mga manok iyo si Gil Basmayor.

Segun ki Ace Penolio asin Lunmark Misolas, mga paraataman kan manok, nagimata sinda kan Lunes na mayo nang nagtuturaok sa natad kan saindang harong.

Nadiskubre ninda na mayo na sa gakodan an 11ng mga pambulang.

Pagsusug kan guira kan mga parahabon


Sarong informante an nagpaabot ki Pedro Benamira, vice alcalde kan banwaan kan Minalabac, na may narisa siyang motorsiklo na may nakalunad na duwang tawo na may kargang sako.

Sabi kan informante, marikas an dalagan kan vehiculo na garong may tinatakotan an nagmamaneho.

Huli ta an saro sa mga suspechado na si Melvin, taga-banwaan nin Ocampo, nagpadara nin tawo an may sadire kan manok tanganing mag-usisa sa harong ninda sa nasambit na banwaan.

Saro sa mga residentes kan barangay an nag-osip na naheling ninda an duwang tawo na may bitbit kan mga pambulang na nasa laog nin sako.

Tulos ipinaisi an incidente sa pulis kan banwaan kan Minalabac kun sain nangyari an panhabas.

Sa ibong na lado, an Ocampo PNP nagpadara tulos nin imbestigador sa residencia ni Melvin tanganing confirmaron an tip na may mga dinara duman na  manok nasa laog nin sako.

Kinaagahan kan Enero 21, an pulis Ocampo nagpadara nin mensahe sa pulis Minalabac na naghapot kun igwa nin blotter sainda dapit sa nawawarang pambulang.

Huli kan siring na informasyon, pinaisi tulos si Basmayor na personal na nagsungko sa hepatura kan police digdi.

Sa Barangay La Purisima Nuevo


Sa tabang kan mga residentes kan barangay, dinumanan ni Basmayor an harong ni Melvin. Pero, mayo suboot siya, sabi kan saiyang ina.

Kan makaolay an ama niya na si Domingo, pinakiolayan kan kagsadire kan manok na ibalik saiya an mga hinabon.

Sa enot na rangkada kan orolay, litid si mga ugat ni Domingo Librando na nagnenegar.

Alagad kan sabihan siya ni Basmayor na pugol na niya an dakul na evidencia, itinuga na kaini si mga pangyayari.

Sabi ni Domingo, an saiyang aki, kaibahan si “Chong-Chong” sa pagdara kan mga hinabonan na manok sa saindang harong.


Pig-entrega ni PCI Gilbert Remo ki Ace Penolio an nagkapira sa mga narecover na hinabas na manok
(Kua ni Oscar Esmenda/BICOLSTANDARD.COM) 
Follow-up operation

Kasubago (Enero 22), inibahan an pulis Ocampo ni Domingo sa saro pang kasapakat kan mga parahabas, na taga-La Purisima Nuevo.

Dangan, dinara na si 7ng mga pambulang manok sa hepatura kan pulis.

Mientrastanto, sa 11ng nawawarang pambulang na hale ki Basmayor, 7 sana an nakabalik saiya. Si ikawalo, gadan na ta ibinulang na sa tupada ni Melvin kan Martes sa La Purisima Nuevo.

Casong paghabas pighahanda na


Pighahanda na ngonian an pag sangat nin casong pag habas contra ki Melvin, “Chong-Chong”, asin iba pang mga tawo na may pagkaaram sa krimen.

Sa entrevista kan DWLV asin kan BICOLSTANDARD.COM, naisihan na sa Salingogon pirming nagpapabakal nin mga pambulang manok si Melvin. An sabi niya, hale sa Ocampo an mga manok. Kaiba niya sa negosyo sa Salingogon si “Chong-Chong”.

Mientrastanto, an mga oficiales kan barangay Salingogon nag-iimbentaryo ngonian kan mga manok na hale ki Melvin, tanganing ipaisi sa mga taga-Ocampo kun sinda an kagsadire. Pigtutubudan na pwedeng hinabasan an mga manok na saindang pinapabakal.

Poon na magkaibahan sinda Melvin asin “Chong-Chong”, naging bantog na suboot sindang duwa na nagbabariwas nin mga inikitan na manok sa mga barangay kan Minalabac.

Afuera sa paghabas nin manok, may mga informasyon na an duwa, pwedeng iyo an responsable sa pagsalakat kan Villamayor High School asin Salingogon Elementary School.

An sinambit na mga eskwelahan nawaran nin mga gamit, arog kan amplifier, mga electronic gadgets, asin iba pa.

Si Librando nagdulag na sa saindang harong kan maaraman an baretang ini, mantang si “Chong-Chong” nagnenegar sa sahot saiya. BICOLSTANDARD.COM


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DECLASSIFIED | UFO sighting in Ligao City, Albay among released U.S. Air Force files

LEGAZPI CITY--A record of UFO activity in Ligao City in Albay has been released online as part of the nearly 130,000 pages of declassified United States Air Force files on UFOs.
Photo of UFO in Ligao, Albay in the United States Air Force’s Blue Book Project
Photo via Project Blue Book Collection
Recorded on June 29, 1966, the file labelled 10,700 consists of six negatives and a photo.

Said record is the last UFO sighting in the Philippines in the collection of case files of the United States Air Force’s Blue Book Project, which was closed in 1969.

No information on sightings after that date is available, according to the National Archives.

UFO sighting in Ligao, Albay spotted in declassified U.S. Air Force files

At least 11 UFO sightings in the Philippines are in the database, including the ones in Sangley Point, Clark Air Base, and the Philippine Sea.

UFO sighting in Ligao, Albay spotted in declassified U.S. Air Force files

UFO sighting in Ligao, Albay spotted in declassified U.S. Air Force files

UFO sightings in the Philippines in the Project Blue Book Collection:
Clark Air Base – 5 September 1949
Philippines – 6 November 1957
Clark Air Base – 12 November 1957
Philippines – 4 October 1959
Philippine Sea – 8 February 1961
Luzon, Philippines – 23 February 1962
Pacific 1,000 Mi E of Philippines – 30 July 1963
Sangley Point, Philippines – 28 August 1963
Philippines – 19 February 1964
Philippines – 5-7 May 1965
Ligao, Philippines – 29 June 1966

A number of the records contain descriptions, such as the following:

“Round object, approximate size of a grape fruit, white light flickered on and off. At first sighting object appeared stationary then disappeared at a high rate of speed in an easterly direction climbing. Object appeared dull red when lights flickered off.”

“25 groups of from 2-6 objects observed over a period of one hour rising from horizon drifting on course of 00 deg to 040 deg. Tan orange in color, without defined formation.”

“Huge bright object like shooting star. Seemed to break into 2 pieces before burning up in atmosphere.”

The searchable database was compiled by UFO enthusiast John Greenwald.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM
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Comelec suspends SK gun ban

CAMARINES SUR-- The Commission on Elections (Comelec) today clarified confusion with regard to the start of the implementation of the gun ban and other provisions related to the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) election 2015.

This is after the two Houses of Congress agreed yesterday to once again move the SK polls.

Thus today, the COMELEC en banc  promulgated Resolution No. 9928 which reset the start of the election period from today (January 22) to February 6. It shall last until March 2.

Accordingly, the gun ban and other SK poll regulations will be implemented staring on 6 February.

This, in effect, cuts short the campaign period from 30 days to 15 days, if the youth elections pushes through on 21 February.

As a result, the SK election period will now be from February 6 to March 2.

Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said that the poll body issued the resolution as it awaits the further action of the legislative branch, which is keen on reforming the law governing the SK.

Originally, the the SK polls were set on October 2013. It was later reset to 21 February, this year.

Yesterday, Alexander Marpuri, election officer of the town of Calabanga, posted his reaction on the matter on the Facebook Account of BICOL STANDARD. He said: "[s]eems the COMELEC, to-date, is hopeful to see the imprimatur or signature of Pres. Aquino on the consolidated version of the bill passed by both Houses of Congress, thereby amending R.A. 10632. Henceforth, the postponement of election to 2016, amendments on age limit, qualifications to run for SK Chair or Kagawad shall take effect with finality --BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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Community + Youth + Government = Effective Force in Disaster Risk Prevention

Pen photo via Wikimedia Commons, typhoon graphic via PAGASA
Pen photo via Wikimedia Commons, typhoon graphic via PAGASA
This essay won first place winner in the 12th Sural Essay Writing Contest of the 19th University of the Philippines Harong Academic Festival.

by Pauline Joy D. Perdon
Goa National High School


“We should act in a way humanity is to survive”
-Albert Einstein

In this era of service robots and superscientific gadgetry, we, human beings, tend to believe that we have completely controlled our environment. We think of ourselves as little gods who have achieved the impossible – we have processed test tube babies, altered weather conditions, developed space stations, and even explored other planets. Yet, despite these new sets of technological forces, the world is undeniably suffering from a cancer, which cannot be cured by even the most advanced technology. This cancer which has taken too many lives, ruined too many properties, and created too many chaos – the so-called climate change – is a horrifying reality that seems to be incurable and unstoppable.

No person and no place on earth is exempted from its madness. Look around us – from the islands of Caribbean to the islands of Indian Ocean, its impact is clearly seen in the growing sea level. See how the mountainous regions of Himalayas and Andes change to flat surfaces. In the Arctic, communities grapple in the melting polar ice caps. In the vast savannah of Africa, people have suffered from hunger and dryness. In the rivers of Ganges, Amazon, and Nile, communities have drowned. Nor can we forget Mexico and West America, the places that confront hurricanes. And, not to go too far, we can look around the Philippines right now.

The Philippines is located in the Pacific Ring of Fire and sits by the world’s most effective typhoon generator – the warm ocean of the Northwest Pacific. Having this kind of geography, our country has become a hotbed of disasters and calamities, such as earthquakes and supertyphoons.

Perhaps, the perfect example for this is the historical category – supertyphoon Haiyan. For once it was not a metaphor, but today it is a reality. It was a perfect typhoon when it comes to its size, symmetry, and eye. It is said to be the strongest typhoon ever to hit land. With a wind speed of 300 kilometers per hour, Haiyan has created a 16-foot storm surge, enough to swipe the whole Tacloban City. The sad reality, however, is that as the long road to recovery begins, another typhoon is brewing in the warm waters of West Pacific, to be followed by another, and another, and another.

Now, will this ever come to an end?

No. Disasters are natural, but, we have the power to mitigate and prevent its risks. We, the community, the youth and the government, are the vital forces which will drive away these unstoppable scientific problems. We were all taught by typhoon Haiyan, we are all shook by the magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Bohol, and we are all called to stop this madness from happening again.

The community – no, let me rephrase, the resilient community is an important tool in disaster risk prevention. A community that is most well-prepared has least risks to face. Carrying out simple activities such as clean-up drives, tree planting, reforestation, and disaster risk prevention seminars in a community can become helpful weapons if disasters come. Instead of preparing for floods and making a boat, a community must start something that can actually prevent it from happening.

The youth, as the next inhibitors of the planet Earth, has the greatest responsibility in taking care of it. As future leaders of this nation, they must now be acting to change the course of tomorrow. We are in serious danger, so we must act bigger now. Instead of creating and inventing more machines, we must plant an effective carbon neutralizer. It is indicated in Article 10121, that the youth must be a part of disaster risk prevention. Whether we like it or not, we are part of the force that can fight the growing effects of climate change. We have brilliant minds that can create a better place to live in, for our children and grandchildren’s children.

The government, being the one who provide the funds for disaster risk prevention, is also a driving force for making it effective. They have the responsibility to warn and secure people. They must create projects that will secure the safety of the community. They must provide fund and distribute properly to the ones who are affected by the disasters. They should lead – after all, it is their job.

A resilient community, youth with brilliant minds and a good government is equal to a force way better than Justice League or the Avengers. So what if we are battered by strong typhoons? So what if we are located in the Pacific Ring of Fire? If we all come as one, there will be no Haiyan part two, or another 7.2 magnitude earthquake. We can be safe in the arms of one another.

We are the reason for this havoc, and we are also the solution of it. Community plus youth plus government is equal to an effective force in disaster risk prevention.

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Gov. Wong to deliver SOPA

VIRAC, Catanduanes—Governor Araceli B. Wong will deliver the State of the Province Address (SOPA) on January 26, 2015 at 9 AM at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan Session Hall, Legislative Building.
Catanduanes Gov. Araceli Wong and Vice Governor Jose Teves, Jr.
Catanduanes Gov. Araceli Wong and Vice Governor Jose Teves, Jr.
Wong is expected to highlight the accomplishments of her administration in the previous year and laying out the programs for the current year, based on the administration's development framework.

Vice Governor Jose J. Teves, Jr., for his part, will give his response or statement of support.

The annual address mandated by the Local Government Code and is presented to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, officials, employees and to the general public.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

LOOK: Mayon Volcano and the Pope Francis effect?

Bicol's iconic Mayon Volcano looked extra ethereal on January 19, the day that Pope Francis left the Philippines, and also a day after Typhoon Amang lashed Bicol.

These photos, captured by Armel Adefuin Alcantara, show a breathtaking cloud formation over the perfect cone as viewed from Gapo, Daraga, Albay at 6:50 a.m.

"Some say it's [the] Pope Francis effect," Alcantara posted, pointing out that the cloud resembles the Pontiff's skull cap or papal cape which seemed to have made its way to Albay.

Scientists call such type of phenomenon a lenticular cloud, due to its lens-like shape. They commonly form in the troposphere over natural or man-made structures. Said structures disrupt the ambient wind flow, resulting in the spectacular formation that is also described as cap-shaped or UFO-shaped.

To date, some 3,000 Facebook users have shared the Mayon images on the social network since it was posted on January 19.

Many Bicolanos joined in the celebration of the Pope's visit, despite the region not being among the list of places he visited.BICOLSTANDARD.COM


Mayon Volcano and the Pope Francis effect?
Photo by Armel 
Adefuin Alcantara
Mayon Volcano and the Pope Francis effect?
Photo by Armel 
Adefuin Alcantara
Mayon Volcano and the Pope Francis effect?
Photo by Armel 
Adefuin Alcantara

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