Thursday, May 19, 2016

Masbateños long for potable water

MASBATE CITY -- The lack of potable water has created a brisk business for water peddlers who daily roam the streets not only of this city but also of other areas in the island-province of Masbate to deliver the precious commodity in waterless communities.

Water has become a luxury here that residents of the province envy the cattle owned by ranchers since they enjoy more the availability of the earth’s most precious liquid.

Edgar Ramos, 58, single, who lives with his 95-year-old mother Caridad, said water is the most expensive basic need in this province that is experiencing water shortage.

Ramos said they long for politicians who could address water scarcity that had been affecting their province since time immemorial.

“We are buying four containers of water every day at Php5 each or Php20 from water peddlers, or a total of Php600 monthly, for washing and bathing alone. For our drinking water, we are spending Php1,200 for filtered water from refilling stations,” he said.

The bachelor said availability of water in their faucets is one of the critical issues that they are raising to politicians -- to prioritize the need to provide clean drinking water to waterless communities here to prevent water-borne diseases.

Ramos said water deficiency in this province is even aggravated by the extreme climate condition, or the El Niño phenomenon, that is now prevailing all over the country.

The Masbate Mobo Water District, the local water supplier, cannot meet the water requirement of the communities here.

Thus, the proliferation of water peddlers.

Lani Alba -- 68, widow, homeless and mother of 22-year-old Mylene – has a down syndrome but has been peddling water for 18 years now to the waterless village of Bagumbayan, a community here with sanitation problem as defecation is done through the sea.

Alba took over the peddling of water after the demise of her husband, Wilfredo, 18 years ago as their source of living.

She is earning Php100 to Php200 a day from vending water, enough to feed their hungry stomachs and survive a daily existence.

Every day, she pushes a cart made of steel bars packed with water containers from national highway down to the slum areas of Bagumbayan, even with her frail body.

But before she can sell water, Alba commissions her younger brother, Arturo, to buy water from a private owner of deep well or pumping station at Php3 per container or Php300 for 100 water containers.

But water commodity taken from these private deep wells or pumping station facilities are not checked by health authorities if their water is fit for human consumption

Daily, Alba hits the street with her cart passing through a crisscrossing passageway heading to the slum areas of Barangay Bagumbayan.

Of course, she is not alone in the local water peddling trade as the scarcity of fresh water supply confronting Masbate since for a long time has created a permanent source of income for about a thousand of her peers pushing container-laden improvised carts.

Placer town Mayor Jay Lanete, vice gubernatorial candidate and running mate of her mother-governor, Rizalina, admitted that horses of the ranchers had the luxury of water supply than the people of Masbate in the past.

By the way, the mayor lost to Kay Revil in the race while his mother lost to come-backing governor Antonio Kho.

He said that upon her mother’s assumption as governor of Masbate, she was able to bring down poverty, provide water supply and address the sanitation problem.

“It used to be 90 percent of the people in Placer without access to clean and potable water. But with my mom on the helm, she provided water and bring down by 35 percent those families without access to potable supply of water,” he said.

Incumbent Gov. Homer Revil also said that upon his assumption into office as acting governor last year, after governor Lanete was put behind bars due to plunder case, he provided more water systems from the 20-percent development fund of the province to provide clean and potable water and address sanitation problem affecting their province.

“One of the indicators of poverty is lack of clean water and poor sanitation. As soon as water and sanitation problems are given special preference we will be out of poverty because the worst scenario of democracy is poverty,” Revil said.

Revil ran for the congressional post in the 2rd District under the Liberal Party but lost to reelectionist Olga Kho of PDP Laban.

The towns of Cataingan, Cawayan, Mandaon, Milagros, Placer and Uson are among the 115 local government units nationwide identified by the National Anti-poverty Commission (NAPC), based on the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction, to receive Php10-million worth of water system project each, according to the Department of Social Welfare and Development regional office here.

The project is the flagship program of the Aquino administration anchored on Millennium Development Goal No. 7 to halve the population without access to safe and potable water and is included in the Philippine Water Sector Roadmap.

The project is targeting LGUs identified and ranked based on thematic concerns as poorest LGU, with high incidence of water lack and poverty incidence.

The Department of Health-Bicol is also implementing the Salintubig project worth Php68 million in Masbate province.

Under the project, water supply facilities will be constructed for the waterless towns of Placer, Cawayan, Mandaon, Cataingan, Uson, Milagros, Claveria, and San Jacinto.

Water and sanitation problem in Masbate is among the poverty indicators being considered by the National Statistical Coordination Board.

It has remained a challenging situation, according to health officials in Bicol.

Potable water shortage in Masbate City and neighboring towns compel hundreds of thousands residents to source water from artesian wells in the uplands or deep wells that are just near the sewerage system of Masbate City.

Though the province is surrounded by water unfortunately, the island-province has limited access to safe drinking water sources and sanitation facilities.

The island-province of Masbate is one of the poorest provinces in the country wherein 60 to 65 percent of the population is considered poor.

Noemi Bron, DOH-Bicol public information officer, said 91 percent of Bicolanos have access to safe drinking water but Masbate province has the lowest access to potable water on the average, regionwide.

Bron said the National Target for Access to Improve water supply is 87 percent for households with access to improved safe water supply for category level I, level II and level III. (By Rhaydz B. Barcia PNA)

PH now in transition period from dry to wet season -- PAGASA

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) on Thursday said that the country is now in a transition period from the dry to rainy season.

PAGASA weather forecaster Jun Galang said increased cloudiness and rains later in the day as well as the frequent presence of an Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) a near Mindanao are minor indications of the coming rainy season.

“Sa ngayon, nasa transition period na tayo from summer to wet season,” he told the Philippines News Agency (PNA).

Galang said they expect the onset of the rainy season happens around the end of the month of May to second week of June.

He noted the state weather bureau have yet to declare the onset of rainy season as there are “conditions” that have to be met.

Galang said the southwest monsoon or “habagat” must also be the dominant wind system in the country to declare the onset of the rainy season.

”So far hindi pa nag shift at wala pa masyadong hanging habagat ang namomonitor natin,”he explained.

Aside from the presence of the southwest monsoon or “hanging habagat,” he said another criteria before PAGASA can declare the beginning of the wet season includes the amount of rainfall, which must register a total of 25 millimeters or more, for five consecutive days in five major weather stations.

The southwest monsoon is the prevailing weather system in the country during rainy season or from June to early October, while the northeast monsoon or the “winter winds” normally starts during mid-October and ends in mid-February.

He said PAGASA does not see any weather disturbance near the Philippine territory that may intensify into a cyclone for the next two to three days or until the weekend.

The state weather bureau expects zero to one storm to affect the country for the month of May and June.

He noted that the first tropical cyclone to affect the country this year will be locally named “Ämbo”.

He said that fair weather will continues in most parts of the country including Metro Manila will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms.

Despite a fair weather, the occurrence of isolated rains will still prevail due to localized thunderstorms mostly in the afternoon or evening.

The state weather bureau explained that the convective activity brought about by intense heat triggers the formation of more cumulonimbus clouds or dark clouds associated with thunderstorms that brings rains. (PNA)

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

DOT: PH welcomed 1.6-M foreign tourists in Q1 2016

MANILA -- The Philippines welcomed a total of 1.6-million foreign tourists in the first quarter of 2016, backed by aggressive marketing activities and international events under its ‘Visit the Philippines Again’ campaign, the Department of Tourism (DOT) said Wednesday.

DOT Asst. Sec. Rolando Canizal said that this number is an increase of around 15 percent compared to the 1.39 million acquired in the same quarter last year.

“The growth is attributed to the good perception of the Philippines as a destination as shown by various awards and citations given by international travel organizations and the successful hosting of APEC and other events,” Canizal said in a text message.

In January 18 to 22, the Philippines hosted the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF), which is a cooperative regional meeting meant to promote the ASEAN region as a single tourist destination.

The country also hosted other big-ticket events such as the Routes Asia last March 6 to 8 and the second edition of Madrid Fusion Manila last April 7 to 9 to name a few.

For March 2016 alone, foreign tourist arrivals reached 510,270 which is an 11.86 percent increase versus the 456,163 arrivals in the same period last year.

The country’s tourist arrivals grew by double digit this year at 13.17 percent in January, 20.42 percent in February, and 11.86 percent in March.

Top three markets include Korea with a total of 383,544 visitors for the first quarter of 2016, supplying the biggest arrivals to the country. Korea is followed by the USA with 231,233 visitors and China with 184,512 visitors.

Rounding up the top ten visitor markets are Japan (143,624 visitors), Australia (67,265 visitors), Canada (53,301 visitors), Taiwan (52,102 visitors), UK (49,097 visitors), Singapore (44,441 visitors) and Malaysia (36,601 visitors).

As for receipts, tourists generated approximately PHP67.74 billion from January to March 2016.

For March alone, tourists generated approximately PHP18.31 billion worth of earnings which is a 6.85 percent growth from the PHP17.13 billion earnings in the same period last year.

The Average Daily Expenditure (ADE) recorded for March 2016 is PHP4,933 while the Average Length of Stay (ALoS) of visitors for the same month is nine to 10 nights.

Top spending market is still Korea with receipts accumulating to PHP4.09 billion, followed by the US with PHP3.119 billion and Australia with PHP1.46 billion.

Completing the top spending markets are Japan with PHP1.10-billion and Canada, with a total of PHP1.06 billion. (By Azer N. Parrocha, PNA)

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Southern Luzon Command's Lt. Gen. Visaya eyed as next AFP chief

Lt. Gen. Ricardo R. Visaya
LEGAZPI CITY -- “To be considered to the post of AFP Chief of Staff is already a big honor. But for now, I am focused on my job as commander of the AFP Southern Luzon Command (Solcom),” Lt. Gen. Ricardo R. Visaya said in a statement released by Lt. Col. Angelo Guzman, Solcom spokesperson.

Indeed, Visaya might soon leave the leadership of the Solcom as he is being eyed by presumptive President Rodrigo Duterte to be the next head of Armed Forces of the Philippines.

A member of the Philippine Military Academy “Matikas” Class of 1983, he is the 28th chief of the Solcom where he commands all Army, Navy and Air Force units in Region 4-A (Calabarzon), Region 4-B (except Palawan) and Bicol Region, Guzman said.

Born on Dec. 8, 1960 in Bacarra, Ilocos Norte, Visaya is a decorated military officer, being a recipient of four Distinguished Service Stars -- the third highest award in the AFP given for imminently meritorious performance of duty in a position of major responsibility; three Gawad sa Kaunlaran awards; 11 Bronze Cross medals; 49 Military Merit medals; 14 Military Commendation medals; Sagisag ng Ulirang Kawal; two Silver Wing medals; 20 Plaques of Recognition and countless letters of appreciation and commendation from different military commanders and various socio-civic organizations, he added.

He was awarded the Cavalier Award for Army operations in 2008, the most-coveted award that a PMA alumnus can obtain.

During his younger days in the military service, Visaya earned his mark as a leader and firmly established the foundations of his military career by ably performing key positions in the junior level of command in the Philippine Army, the Solcom spokesman said.

Among these, he said, are: platoon leader and company commander of the Bravo Company, 28th Infantry Battalion, 4th Infantry Division and then commanding officer of the 3rd Intelligence and Security Unit, Intelligence and Security Group.

Visaya's capability to hold a position of major responsibility was proven when he assumed as battalion commander of the 69th Infantry Battalion, 7th Infantry Division, in Central Luzon and soon after, as battalion commander of the CMO Battalion, Civil–Military Operations Group in Metro Manila.

He was also the commander of the following units: Task Group WHITE Area, 202nd Infantry Brigade in Southern Tagalog, Task Force NILAD and Joint Task Force LAND–NCR, National Capital Region Command.

Visaya also held the position of brigade commander of two prestigious brigades, the 104th Infantry Brigade, 1st Infantry Division that operated in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, Lanao Provinces and Basilan, and the 901st Infantry Brigade, 9th Infantry Division in the Bicol Region.

The Solcom chief was also designated as assistant division commander of the 6th Infantry Division, Philippine Army, in Cotabato and as commander of the 4th Infantry Division, Philippine Army in Cagayan de Oro City covering the areas of Northern Mindanao (Regions X and XIII).

These abilities could not have been realized without the various schooling that he undertook, both local and abroad, Guzman said.

For his educational attainment, Visaya went through the Scout Ranger Regular Course, Intelligence Officer Basic Course, Infantry Basic Course, Infantry Officer Advance Course, Tradecraft for Trainor’s Course, Electronic Warfare Officer Course, Contract Management Course, Executive Course on Security Studies in Hawaii, USA, Command General Staff Course at the Training and Doctrine Command, Philippine Army and Pacific Army Management Seminar in Tokyo, Japan.

He also finished the Professional Managers Program at the Ateneo University, Financial Statement Analysis at the University of Asia and the Pacific and Masters in Project Management at the Australian Defense Force, Canberra, Australia.

“His wholehearted commitment, innovativeness, progressive thinking and meritorious achievements as a military professional earned him the admiration of his men and fellow officers in the organization,” Guzman said.

“Similarly, his undoubted high standard of performance and outstanding leadership yielded many successes in his tour of duty in both garrison and the field,” the Solcom spokesman added.

Prior to the synchronized presidential and local polls, Visaya said, every soldier, airman, sailor and marine were ready to salute the next President as their leader and commander-in-chief.

“Solcom will, at all times, follow the chain of command and will recognize, respect and follow whoever emerges as the choice of the majority. Every soldier, airman, sailor and marine will salute the next President as our leader and commander-in-chief,” Visaya said.

Duterte has called Visaya as the "vibrant general."

Visaya was also one of the top contenders for the top AFP post last year.

Meanwhile, Visaya said the newly concluded elections were generally peaceful in his area of jurisdiction.

He said 58 of the 59 cities and municipalities in the election watchlist of areas (EWAs) in regions lV-A, lV-B (except Palawan) and Bicol Region were peaceful and orderly.

"The concluded synchronized national and local polls in Southern Luzon were generally peaceful, except for that very unfortunate election-related incident early morning in Barangay Wawa 3, Rosario, Cavite which left seven civilians dead," Visaya said.

He said that since January 2016, the Solcom focused on security operations in cities and municipalities identified in the EWAs of the commission on elections.

Though, in many instances, he said, his men had engaged the communist insurgents.

“Our soldiers engaged the NPAs in EWAs and made tactical gains. Some 5,500 soldiers and CAFGU active auxiliaries were deployed in the area for election duties to augment the PNP. The AFP, PNP and Comelec share this joint objective for a secured, fair, honest and credible conduct of the National and Local Elections 2016,” he said. (by Rhadyz Barcia, PNA)

2, dakop sa pagraot nin street lights

LABO, Camarines Norte--Arestado an duwang persona kan sarong aldaw matapos ninda gapoon an 20ng street lights sa Purok 2, Barangay Mabilo II sa banwaan na ini bandang alas 2 sundo alas 4 nin maomagahon.

An nasambit na street lights may kantidad na poco mas o menos P100,000.

An mga suspechado nabistong sinda Mariano Calago y Ortiz asin Johnwel Abe y Avila kan banwaan na ini.

Sinda Calago asin Abe dinakop kan mga oficiales kan barangay asin ipig-turn over ki Punong Barangay Jonathan Fruto antes mahulog sa kamot kan mga pulis.

Maatubang sinda nin reklamong Malicious Mischief, segun sa Labo PNP.--BICOLSTANDARD.COM

DepEd celebrates 3rd anniversary of K to 12 signing

The Department of Education (DepEd) enjoins the public in the observance of the 3rd year anniversary of President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III's signing of the Republic Act No. 10533, An Act Enhancing the Philippine Education System by Strengthening Its Curriculum and Increasing the Number of Years for Basic Education otherwise known as the K to 12 Law.

In time for this observance, DepEd Bicol is holding a ten-day Regional Orientation-Workshop on Senior High School (SHS) staffing in preparation for the implementation of SHS, Grade 11 this school year.

“The Curriculum and Learning Management Division and Policy, Planning and Research Division (PPRD) shall conduct the Regional-Orientation-Workshop on SHS staffing on May 12-21 to come up with the final SHS grades 11 and 12 class programs/schedules and determine the number of SHS teachers needed per school,” DepEd Bicol Director Ramon Fiel Abcede said.

Abcede said the orientation-workshop likewise aims to “discuss some issues on DepEd Order No. 3, series 2016 or Hiring Guidelines for SHS teachers, train participants on the use of the electronic tool for SHS staffing, utilize the system as a management tool in determining SHS teachers who are underloaded and may still teach SHS subjects.”

As part of the pre-work activities needed in the actual workshop, Abcede directed concerned school heads to draft school personnel assignment list and basic profile for this coming school year and class programs for grades 11 and 12.

The K to 12 Program covers 13 years of basic education with the following stages: Kindergarten to Grade 3, Grades 4 to 6, Grade 7 to 10 (Junior High School) and Grades 11 to 12 (Senior High School). This is found to be the best period for learning under basic education. It is also the recognized standard for students and professionals globally.

The Program holds distinct significance this coming School Year 2016-2017 as the Department begins the implementation of the Grade 11 of the Senior High School (SHS) Program, the first of the 2 cohorts (Grades 11 and 12) which were added to the country's 10-year basic education system.

Recently, the Supreme Court on March 15 dismissed several petitions filed against the implementation of the K to 12 Program, thus paving the way for its continued operation particularly the said SHS Program.

As the country girds for the opening of classes this coming School Year 2016-2017 on June 13, 2016, the Department through Education Secretary Br .Armin A. Luistro FSC invites and enjoins everyone to give their full support to the successful implementation of K to 12 Program specially the SHS Program.(MAL/SAA/DepEd5/PIA5/Albay)

Cops find missing Sorsogon principal's body

Christian "Qriz" Delos Angeles
SORSOGON CITY--The Sorsogon police have found the body of missing Sorsogon public school principal Christian "Qriz" Delos Angeles.

In a report to BICOL STANDARD, the Sorsogon Provincial Police Public Office said the search ended when they apprehended a minor and a back rider on a motorcycle. Said motorcycle matched the Honda Dash 110 which belonged to the victim.

The minor confessed that he knew the location of the body of the victim.

Following the apprehension, the cops along with the motorcycle driver proceeded to a creek at Sitio Gabao, Barangay San Roque, Bacon District where a man with multiple stab wounds was found.

The body was already in an advanced state of decomposition, the police said.

Found in the crime scene was an empty sling bag that belonged to the principal.

The follow-up operation resulted in the arrest of four other suspects, all minors, the cops added.

Thirty-nine-year-old Delos Angeles, it would be recalled, went missing earlier this month.

On May 4, his father Benjamin Delos Angeles reported that his son left their house on May 2 on board his motorcycle to talk to a certain Flores.

The principal, however, failed to return home.

As of press time, the police said they are already preparing a complaint against the aforementioned suspects.

Earlier, the police formed Provincial Task Group Delos Angeles to focus on the disappearance of the principal.--BICOLSTANDARD.COM


Duterte can bring peace, order in 6 months -- CIDG chief

LEGAZPI CITY -- Presumptive president Rodrigo Duterte can bring about peace and order in six months, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Director Victor P. Deona said during a press conference on Monday morning at the office of the 5th Regional Investigation and Detection Unit inside Camp Gen. Simeon A. Ola here.

Deona said it even does not need a Duterte to make the entire country peaceful and have change.

The problem, he said, was that many would like to have change but no one wanted to change.

Duterte cannot bring change alone and cannot do it if the people will not cooperate, he said.

"If we will only rely on the coming president for the change that we want, we will only have frustration so that there is a need for all citizens to unite and cooperate with the incoming president," the CIDG head stressed.

On the part of the Philippine National Police, he said, it could be done if its members would only enforce all laws.

"All we lack is enforcement," Deona said, adding that there were many laws but the problem was lack of discipline to implement them and the people themselves did not follow these laws.

The CIDG chief, a strict disciplinarian especially during his stay as regional director of the PNP Bicol regional office, said that with the kind of leadership that Duterte brings with him, he can see that the people would follow and contribute toward the attainment of peace and progress within six months of his rule as president of the country.

"It is not only the PNP and the AFP but also the entire government machinery and the people that should move together and make their contribution towards this end while we in the PNP will follow and do everything to enforce the laws and order without violating the rights of the people," Deona said. (By Jorge Hallare, PNA)

Exercise may lower risk of 13 types of cancers - study

WASHINGTON, May 17 -- Exercise during leisure time may reduce the risk of 13 types of cancers, including liver cancer and breast cancer, a major study said Monday.

Hundreds of previous studies have examined associations between physical activity and cancer risk and shown reduced risks for colon, breast, and endometrial cancers. However, these results have been inconclusive for most cancer types due to small numbers of participants in the studies.

In the new study, Steven Moore of the US National Cancer Institute and colleagues examined data from 1.44 million people, aged 19 to 98, from the United States and Europe, who were followed for a median of 11 years.

Participants were asked whether they did moderate or vigorous intensity activities in their free time, like walking, running or swimming, and how much physical activity they got.

During the study peroid, about 187,000 new cases of cancer occurred in the study participants.

The study confirmed that leisure-time physical activity, as assessed by self-reported surveys, was associated with a lower risk of colon (16 percent), breast (10 percent), and endometrial (21 percent) cancers.

The researchers also determined that leisure-time physical activity was associated with a lower risk of 10 additional cancers, with the greatest risk reductions for esophageal adenocarcinoma (42 percent), liver (27 percent), gastric cardia (22 percent), kidney (23 percent), and myeloid leukemia (20 percent).

Myeloma and cancers of the head and neck, rectum, and bladder also showed reduced risks that were significant, but not as strong.

Risk was reduced for lung cancer, but only for current and former smokers, and the reasons for this are still being studied.

Overall, a higher level of exercise was associated with a 7 percent lower risk of total cancer.

Most of the associations remained regardless of body size, suggesting that exercise acts through mechanisms other than lowering body weight to reduce cancer risk.

"Our results support that these associations are broadly generalizable to different populations, including people who are overweight or obese, or those with a history of smoking," said Moore.

"Health care professionals counseling inactive adults should promote physical activity as a component of a healthy lifestyle and cancer prevention."

The findings were published in the US journal JAMA Internal Medicine. (PNA/Xinhua)

For One Time Big Time operation, CIDG lauds CamSur cops

LEGAZPI CITY—Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Director Victor P. Deona awarded Medal of Merit and Medal of Commendation to 12 officials and members of the 5th Regional Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit (5RCIDU) and the Camarines Sur Police Provincial Office (CSPPO) on Monday morning during the flag-raising ceremony at Camp Gen. Simeon A. Ola.

The awards were in recognition of the two units’ successful implementation of One Time Big Time Operation (OTBT) against Barangay Chair Ariel Luceña, leader of the Luceña Private Armed Group, on May 7 at Zone 2, Crisolita St., Barangay San Nicolas, Iriga City where the law enforcers seized from the residence of the suspect 28 assorted high-powered firearms.

Given Medal of Merit each were Police Senior Supt. Marlon C. Tejada, 5RCIDU head; Police Chief Insp. Ronnie M. Favia, Chief Insp. Saguisag L. Miras, SPO3 Reynante T. Nacario, SPO3 Romeo E. Correa, SPO3 Edwin S. Pagao, SPO2 Rene G.Enteria, SPO2 Clifford A. De Jesus, SPO2 Edlan V. Revadeo, SPO1 Joven L. Osurman, SPO1 Rodel D. Esta, SPO1 Racquel M. Portada, SPO1 Carlos R. Raymundo, PO3 Jayson C. Cepeda and PO3 Reynald P. Cam.

Members of the CSPPO who got Medal of Commendation each as part of the operation of the 5RCIDU operation were Police Senior Supt Walfredo G. Pornillos, CSPPO director; Police Supt. Arnulfo M. Selencio, deputy provincial director, and Police Senior Insp. Louie Manuel D. Dela Peña.

Police Supt. Samuel A. Erandio, PRO5 regional chaplain, also got a Medal of Efficiency.

Deona said the successful operation of the group against the Luceña PAG, among other OTBT operations, has made the 5RCIDU topnotcher in accomplishments among the 18 RCIDUs in the entire country.

Based on the records of the CIDG in Camp Crame, the unit has confiscated more than 3,500 firearms in the entire country before and during the elections and more than 50 percent of these were made in the Bicol Region.

Deona also announced that anytime, PNP Chief Director General Ricardo Marquez will personally come to Camp Gen. Simeon A. Ola to award the Police Regional Office 5 as the most outstanding among the 18 PROs in terms of accomplishments.(PNA)

Monday, May 16, 2016

FEATURE | Former PH presidents given 8 security personnel

As a rule, former presidents of the Philippines are given eight security personnel who are tasked to guard and secure them for the rest of their lives.

These men are from the Presidential Security Group (PSG), a joint AFP-PNP-PCG-BFP service unit, tasked to protect the President, Vice President, their families and former presidents and ex-vice presidents and their families.

"They are entitled to eight personnel, who are officer-led, but this depends on the ex-president, and the threat levels," AFP public affairs office chief Col. Noel Detoyato said.

"It could be more, it could also be less," he added.

While the PSG was established in March 6, 1987, the protection of the President and the Presidential Family has been always one of the tasks of the AFP since 1897.

A guard unit was activated to protect the first official President, Emilio Aguinaldo, from attempts on his life, while another was formed for the defense of Andres Bonifacio, the Supremo of the Katipunan revolutionary movement, as a result of the decisions of the Naic Conference.

In 1898, a presidential cavalry squadron was raised for the protection of Aguinaldo and his family, reinforced with a guards infantry company.

Like the present PSG, they all wore rayadillo uniforms, but with straw hats. Major Geronimo Gatmaitan was the unit commander.

In 1936, the 1st Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Infantry Division, Philippine Army, raised the same year, was tasked with defending President Manuel Quezon, his family, and the palace complex.

They were joined by a guards company in 1938 to reinforce the President's security.

During the Second World War, units of the occupying Imperial Japanese Army initially took over guard duties at the palace, only to be replaced by an all-Filipino guard battalion at the insistence of President José P. Laurel. At war's end, it was in turn replaced by the AFP Presidential Guards Battalion under the orders of President Sergio Osmeña. (By Priam F. Nepomuceno, PNA)

DILG to local bets: Submit SOCE by June 9

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is reminding newly-elected local officials to submit their Statement of Contributions and Expenditures (SOCE) to the Commission on Elections (Comelec), before assuming office.

In a memorandum addressed to all newly-elected governors, mayors, vice-mayors, members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan/Panglungsod/Bayan, and Governor of the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), DILG Secretary Mel Senen Sarmiento urged them to file their SOCE by June 9, and submit to the DILG a certification on SOCE compliance by June 17.

“Alinsunod sa batas, ang mga bagong halal na mga opisyal sa mga lokal na pamahalaan ay kinakailangang mag-file ng kani-kanilang mga SOCE bago pa man sila manumpa sa kanilang tungkulin, ” said Sarmiento.

Citing Republic Act (RA) No. 7166 otherwise known as “Synchronized National and Local Elections and for Electoral Reforms Act”, he said “No person elected to any public office shall enter or assume the duties of his office until he has filed the SOCE.”

Section 14 of the said law further states that: “Every candidate and treasurer of the political party shall, within thirty (30) days after the day of the election, file in duplicate with the offices of the Comelec the full, true and itemized statement of all contributions and expenditures in connection with the election.”

The DILG Secretary also said the Department and the Comelec had also forged memorandum of agreement in 2012 which states that the DILG or any of its attached agencies shall require any winning candidate to present a Certification from the COMELEC that he or she has satisfactorily complied with his or her obligation under Section 14 of Republic Act No. 7166 by filing his or her SOCE with the Comelec.

“In the absence of this certification, the winning candidate cannot enter into the execution of his or her office pursuant to Paragraph 2 of the same provision of the law,” he said.

Winning Governors, Vice Governors and Sangguniang Panlalawigan members are to submit their Comelec certifications to their DILG provincial directors; City Mayors, City Vice Mayors and Sangguniang Panlungsod members to their DILG City Directors; and Municipal Mayors, Municipal Vice Mayors and Sangguniang Bayan members to their DILG Municipal Local Government Operations Officers.

For the newly-elected local government officials who will be filing their SOCE for the first time and for those who have further questions about this mandate, they can get in touch with the DILG at Telephone Numbers (02) 925 0351 or (02) 928 9181 or email at (PNA)

Catanduanes girds for Abaca Showcase

As part of the maiden celebration of Abaca Festival in the province, the Philippine Fiber Development Authority (PhilFIDA) will be unveiling the Abaca Showcase on May 23, 2016 at the provincial capitol lobby depicting the abaca production processing, from planting to the different ways of harvesting, through an exhibit and video presentation.

According to PhilFIDA, the province is known mostly for raw fibers, with only a few venturing into abaca processing due to the lack of available market locally.

The Abaca showcase is being held in cooperation with the various working committees chaired by the different national offices and non-government organizations and co-spearheaded by the provincial government, thru the provincial tourism office as the overall secretariat and coordinating office.

Meanwhile, the Department of Trade and Industry headed by Provincial Director Hegino Baldano said that this year’s  trade fair will be exciting saying that solid support from different government officials regardless of the result of the May 9 elections will surely make the event successful.

The Trade fair is set on May 23-29 at Plaza Rizal in Virac w/ the participation of local tour operators in selling various tour packages in the island and promoting local sites and attractions.

The tour operators who have confirmed their participation are Katandungan Travel and Tours, Island escape Travel and Tours, Island Travel, Airlite Transport and Asian Guiding Stars.

Despite the limited time, Rene Valeza, DTI Trade Industry Development Specialist, expressed hope that through the trade fair, they would be able to showcase the local products, especially abaca products, and they also hope to find new buyer or markets.

On the other hand, the agency is also prepared to face possible drawbacks to be experienced during the Trade Fair such as the lack of participation from the other municipalities, given that the Trade fair is scheduled after the election which is according to them has greatly affected the support of the local and other government officials.

As of press time, five of the eleven municipalities have confirmed their participation and most of the exhibitors are small scale entrepreneurs.(MAL/EAB-PIA5/Catanduanes)

Lalaki, dakop sa pagpaputok badil

PILI, Camarines Sur--Arestado an sarong lalaki na nagpaputok nin badil mantang nakainom kasoodmang alas 10:30 nin aga sa Zone 6, Barangay San Jose, banwaan na ini.

An suspechado iyo si Allan Perez y Embaya, mayor de edad asin residente kan nasambit na barangay.

Si Perez binisto kan may sadiri mismo kan residencia kun sain siya nagpaputok nin badil.

Narecover kan mga pulis sa nasambit na estaran an duwang baseyo nin calibre 357 na badil.

Nasa custodia na kan pulis an suspechado sa oras na sinusurat an baretang ini. --BICOLSTANDARD.COM


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