Saturday, March 18, 2017

Bantayog Festival 2017 schedule

97th Camarines Norte Founding Anniversary
13th Bantayog Festival
April 15-29, 2017

Theme: Bawat CamNorteno, kaakibat sa pagsulong ng turismo


PHOTO | Sofia Millares and PCSupt. Omar Buenafe show support to anti-drug campaign

BICOL REGION AGAINST DRUGS. Child actress Sofia Millares of Naga City, a talent of ABS-CBN, poses with PNP Regional Director Police Chief Supt. Melvin Ramon Buenafe to show support to the anti-drug campaign in the Bicol region.

DOH highlights efforts to promote use of generic medicine

The Department of Health (DOH) on Thursday highlighted the major changes in the country's pharmaceutical market since the implementation of Republic Act 9502 or the Cheaper Medicines Act of 2008.

“Generics now account for 65 percent of the total pharmaceutical market in terms of volume sales, whereas originator products account for only 35 percent of the total pharmaceutical market industry,” Health Secretary Dr. Paulyn Ubial said in an interview during the 3rd Patient Forum on Access to Medicines, held at the DOH Convention Hall in Manila.

“When the Generics Law (Republic Act 6675) was enacted in 1988, we were at zero percent in terms of generic drugs sale,” Ubial recalled.

The law ensures an adequate supply of drugs with generic names at the lowest possible cost through the institutionalization of the National Drug Policy.

With the Cheaper Medicine Act of 2008, Ubial said the use of generic medicine rose from less than 40 percent to 65 percent at present.

She attributed the steady rise in the number of Filipinos turning to generic drugs to the entry of more generic players and the mushrooming of generic pharmacy chains.

However, she said the Philippines is still one of the countries in Asia where medicines are costly.

"Reducing out-of-pocket spending, particularly for medicines, is one of the legacies targeted under the Philippine Health Agenda. The current administration is determined to maximize the instruments provided in the law and undertake reforms to ensure that we bring prices down for consumers,” Ubial said, adding that they have formulated a seven-man council to review drug prices in the market.

The administration, she said, is also planning to revive the Botika ng Bayan to serve the drug needs of outpatients and augment PhilHealth benefits; centralize the purchase and procurement of essential drugs for all government health facilities; and develop economic zones in a bid to encourage foreign and local generics companies to put up manufacturing plants in the country for better competition and to assure the supply of affordable and quality generic medicine. (PNA)

Friday, March 17, 2017

GENTLE BREEZE by Nelly Favis-Villafuerte | Biblical significance of number seventy

Seventy has a stunning meaning in the Bible. The word “seventy” is used 56 times in the Holy Bible. The number seventy (70) is made up of two numbers — seven, representing perfection and ten representing completeness and God’s law. One may wonder, why the Holy Bible is saturated with the number seven and with multiples of seven like the number seventy. This is indeed a Biblical mathematical phenomenon that remains a mystery to this day. What is true, however, is that seven is God’s favorite number. The proof? The Holy Bible. Throughout the Bible (Genesis to Revelation) the number seven appears many times. Seven is used 735 times in the Holy Bible. In the Book of Revelation, seven is used 54 times. The word “seventh” is used 98 times while the word “sevenfold” appears seven times.


Let me share some instances in the Holy Bible where the number seventy is mentioned:

After the flood, the world was repopulated through seventy descendants of Noah.

In the Book of Jeremiah 25:11-12, the Israelites were exiled in Babylon for seventy years.

In Matthew 18:21-22, Jesus said to forgive seventy times seven.

In Numbers 11:16, Moses appointed seventy elders of Israel and brought them to the tabernacle of the congregation.

In Exodus 24:9-11, Moses took seventy of the elders of Israel together with Aaron, and his sons went up Mount Sinai and ate and drank with God himself. This tribunal of seventy elders was eventually called the Sanhedrin. The Sanhedrin was the ancient Jewish court system.

In Luke 10, seventy disciples were sent out by Christ on a “training mission” to preach the Gospel to the surrounding area.

In Exodus 1:5, a total of seventy Israelites, the offspring of Jacob, went down to Egypt and started the Jewish population in Egypt which later swelled to over two million by the time of Exodus;

In the Book of Matthew and in the other books of the Bible (Luke, John, Mark), there are at least seventy parables during the ministry of Jesus Christ;

In the Book of Daniel 9:24, “seventy weeks are determined upon Jerusalem and its people to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins and to make reconciliation for integrity and to bring an everlasting righteousness and to seal up the vision and prophecy.”


A discussion of the Biblical significance of the number seventy is timely and relevant in the light of what’s happening these days. For one, the Paris Peace Summit held last January 15th in France was attended by seventy nations. Strangely, the conference was intended to advance peace for parties (Israel and Palestine) that do not involve the attendees. The participants in the Paris Peace Summit proposed the “two-state solution” to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Paris Peace Summit was held just a few days before President-elect Trump took over as US president. By the way, Donald Trump will be 70 years, 7 months, and 7 days old on his first full day in the White House. Adding to the stunning significance of the number seventy to events connected with Israel.


This column continues to give out copies of the Holy Bible for free to those who cannot afford to buy their own copies. If interested, please send your letter-request to Ms. Nelly Favis Villafuerte, 5233 Fahrenheit St., Palanan, Makati City. Kindly mention if it is the Tagalog, English, Cebuano, or Ilocano Bible that is preferred.

Be joyful and forgiving! (Comments may be sent to Ms. Villafuerte’s email:


THE SUNNY PHILOSOPHER by Salvador D. Flor, Ph. D. | Deprived of their birthright |

THERE is the touching story of a ditch digger, a caminero in the Bicol dialect, who is so poor that he does not have the time to look at the beautiful sunset because he worries about the oil to light the lamp when darkness falls.

Asked by a passersby why he keeps on digging the ditch, he said, “I dig the ditch to earn money to buy food to give me strength to ditch the ditch.”

The answer reveals a man, a desperately poor man, who is so occupied with earning a living that he has little time to see the lovely sunset. His is a ceaseless struggle that knows no end.

There are millions of ditch diggers whose plight is desperate. They have beseeched heaven for a lighter burden but received no comforting answer.

And so, they have made a wager: anybody, yes anybody, who can take away their burden, will have their eternal gratitude. Many have tried. Many have failed.

Now we know, it is never a walk in the park to remove this yoke. One has to dismantle the oppressive system that keeps the bondage intact. There is a formidable corporation from those who will be adversely affected. They do not want the government to succeed.

The ditch digger is still digging the ditch.

Simple folk, he has a simple dream: to have three meals a day, to have a roof over his head, to have clothes to ward off the cold at night, to have a decent job and savings for the children’s education.

He does not have the grandiose dream of owning a house and lot in a subdivision, or owning a car, or vacationing in far off places to consume the exotic wonders.

But if he could have a little more of his dream, he would welcome the blessings. He is entitled to a share in the wealth of the land and he knows it. It is his birthright.

For a long time, he has been deprived of his birthright because it has been taken away by people entrusted to hold it for him. It is high time he should have his part.

We should be thankful that Filipinos hate violence as a means to take back what are theirs. In other countries, every insult, every instance of oppression, every instance of violence, every drop of blood spilled, people match it with the same hell fire.

Look at Syria today and Iraq. They are burning.

One quality of our people that deserves to be stressed is the rejection of violence. The peaceful Edsa 1 revolt is an example. The bloodless revolt has earned for the country the admiration of the world.

There is one ingredient in the Filipino character that rejects bloodshed. The Catholic faith teaches peace. And the belief that whosoever suffers injustice will be rewarded in the afterlife.

The rejection of violence is said to be the reason why extremism does not take roots here. What we in abundance are bloodthirsty felons who do not believe in any cause.

As long as their pockets are full, the community is safe. But make their lives miserable and hell will break loose.

The crimes of these men, however, are mostly the crimes of the poor. Like murder, like drug trafficking, like robbery, like kidnapping, they are mostly committed by those with only the shirts on their back as their worldly wealth.

However, numerous are these common crimes are, the damage to public coffers in minimal. But plunder has impoverished the country. They are committed by those with so much in life.

Our honorable solons want to penalize plunder with a slap on the wrist. This is madness.

2ng taga Rinconada, nadakop sa Polangui sa drug buy-bust

POLANGUI, Albay 3/17/17 (BICOL STANDARD) – Pakalihis nin halawig na patago na pagpabakal nin illegal na droga, nadakop man guiraray sa guinibong buy-bust operation an duwang taga Rinconada Area sa Provincia nin Camarines Sur digdi.

Segun sa report kan pulis, nadakop na kasubagong ala 1:35 nin hapon sinda Sheryl Intia y Cerilo, daraga, taga Brgy. Tres Reyes, Bato, Camarines Sur asin si Joseph Lomeda y Lloren, 25, soltero na taga Brgy. Topaz, Nabua, Camarines Sur.

An duwa tinuklo sa laog kan No. 729 Residence Inn, Diversion Road, Ubaliw, Polangui, Albay, por medyo kan operasyon sa droga kan mga awtoridad.

Katuwang kan mga pulis an mga tawohan kan PDEA sa Bicol sa ginibong buy-bust operation nanagkaigwa nin positibong resulta.

CAMPUS LIFE | 34 Bicolano students get 'Youth Excellence' award

Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Director Tomas B. Briñas presented on Tuesday the “Youth Excellence in Science (YES)” awards to 34 Bicolano grade school pupils and high school students who won in international science and mathematics competitions for school year 2016-2017.

“The YES awards that consisted of gold medals accorded by DOST Secretary Fortunato T. De La Peña was given to the 34 Bicolano students in ceremonies held at 2 p.m. at Kanzo Hall and Restaurant, Peñaranda Drive in this city,” said Dr. Pilita Lucena, DOST-Bicol public information officer.

Lucena said the gifted students in Bicol had earned 4 platinum, 6 gold, 6 silver, and 18 bronze medals in the science and math competitions.

She said four of the awards were earned in the grade school levels of the following contests: 12th International Mathematics Competition–Singapore; 2016 China Primary Math Olympiad or CPMO; 2016 International Mathematics Wizard Challenge or IMWiC; and 2016 Wizards at Mathematics International Competitions or WIZMIC.

Lucena said the 30 other awards were garnered in the secondary level of the 12th International Mathematics Competition–Singapore; 2016 CPMO; Young Inventors’ Challenge; and 2016 IMWiC.

She said DOST through the Science Education Institute has institutionalized the YES Awards, a recognition system for young achievers in international science and mathematics competitions.

Lucena said it is implemented yearly to further motivate and inspire the Filipino youth to strive for excellence in the fields of Science and Mathematics.

The 34 student-medalists came from the following schools in the Bicol region -- Sunshine International School, Ateneo De Naga University (ADNU)- Grade School, Albay Central School, Philippine Science High School-Bicol region campus, Ligao National High School, Legazpi Hope Christian School, St. Agnes’ Academy, St. Joseph School– Naga City, Aquinas University of Legazpi Science High School, Marcial O. Rañola Memorial School, Josephine F. Khonghun Special Education Center, ADNU – High School, and Blessed Lights Int’l Christian Academy. (PNA)

DOST regional directors throughout the country represented DOST Secretary De La Peña in awarding ceremonies scheduled for YES awardees in their respective regions. (PNA)

More jobs available for Bicolanos—DOLE

Jobseekers, graduating students, the unemployed, and even returning overseas Filipino workers are invited to attend the job fair in Bicol to be held on March 24 at Sorsogon State College, Bulan Campus, Bulan, Sorsogon.

The DOLE, through the Bureau of Local Employment (BLE), facilitates the conduct of nationwide job fairs in coordination with various local government units, Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs), and higher education institutions (HEIs).

Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III reminded applicants to be armed and ready with the following application requirements: resume or curriculum vitae (bring extra copies for multiple job applications); 2 x 2 ID pictures; certificate of employment for those formerly employed; diploma and/or transcript of records; and authenticated birth certificate.

Driver nin motorsiklo gadan kan makabudal nin pedestrian sa San Andres, Catanduanes

SAN ANDRES, Catanduanes 3/17/17 (BICOLSTANDARD) Gadan na kan makaabot sa Eastern Bicol Medical Center (EBMC) an lawas ni Dustin Victor Camacho, na naaksidente kasubagong alas 6:30 nin aga sa Brgy. Rizal digdi.

Sabi sa pulis report, si Camacho nakalunad sa motorsiklo kasuno an saiyang magurang na si Maria Victoria Camacho y Aguilar kan makabunggo nin tawong nagbagtas sa tinampo.

An direksyon kan victima pasiring sa centro kan banwaan, sabi kan nagrespondeng pulis na si SPO3 Clemente Arcilla.

Nin huli sa aksidente, pareyong idinalagan sa hospital an mag-ina tanganing ipabulong.

Alagad, si Dustine Victor Camacho, mayo nang hinangos sabi ni Dr. Abigael A. Valeza.

An nabangga na tawo kan motorsiklo nagsapo nin dikit na mga bakros asin rungan sa saiyang lawas.

Ipinaabot sa pulis an aksidente ni Punong Barangay Dorando Evangelista.

Naga City ex-mayor upset over VP Leni’s UN video

NAGA CITY 3/17/17 (Bicol Standard)—Former Naga City Mayor and former Camarines Sur 2nd District Representative Sulpicio “Cho” Roco, Jr. has broken his silence on the controversies surrounding Vice President Leni Robredo.

“I have carefully avoided commenting on the vice president's exploits but this once I will: Leni, nakakasopog an guinibo mo!!! (your actions are shameful),” he posted on Facebook.

In an interview with the Bicol Standard, Roco said “Supog na ako ta taga-Naga kaya ako," (I am ashamed because I am from Naga City).

Roco was referring to the video of the Vice President to the United Nations Narcotics body criticizing President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

Roco said the move was uncalled-for.

"Mondo ako na an oportunidad na niregalo sa Naga na magkaigwa nin bise presidente nasayang," (I am sad that the opportunity that was given to Naga City as a gift to have a vice president went to waste),” he said.

Roco is the brother of the late Senator Raul S. Roco and a former ally of the late DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo.

DON'T MISS: VP Leni rallies Nagueños’ support, lashes at detractors


Thursday, March 16, 2017

VP Leni rallies Nagueños’ support, lashes at detractors

NAGA CITY 3/16/17 (Bicol Standard)— Close to 2,000 supporters of Vice President Leni Robredo trooped to Plaza Rizal earlier this evening to attend a prayer rally versus cyberbullying.

In attendance were Camarines Sur 3rd District Rep. Rep. Gabriel Bordado Jr., Naga City Vice Mayor Nelson Legacion, Councilors Nene de Asis, Elmer Baldemoro, Miles Arroyo, Jun Lavadia, Lito del Rosario, Vidal Castillo, Ray-an Rentoy, and Buddy del Castillo.

Also present were members of civil society groups, several represetatives of private and public schools, and other organizations within Naga City and the third congressional district of Camarines Sur.

A majority of the attendees were members of Lakas ng Kababaihan, a group founded by the vice president and her late husband, and several members of the Persons with Disability (PWD) sector.

Mayor John Bongat, however, was absent from the occasion.

It will be recalled that Bongat earlier announced that he will not attend the event until after his family gets justice following cyberbullying from netizens.

Apart from Mayor Bongat, City Councilors Jose Rañola (a relative of the mayor’s wife) and Greg Abonal did not attend the prayer rally.

Robredo said the issues hurled against her are old, recycled issues used against their family, and should not be believed.

“Tubod kamo na imbuelto si Jesse sa jueteng? Sa drugs? Na may pinagadan si Jesse?” (Do you believe that [former Mayor] Jesse was involved in jueteng? In drugs? That he had somebody killed?”) she asked the crowd, to which her supporters shouted “Dai” (No).

The issues in #NagaLeaks, she said, do not only concern her family, but also the City of Naga itself.

What hurt her the most, she said, was that the city’s good name and reputation are being tarnished by the affronts on social media.

Worse, she said, was that the people behind #NagaLeaks are hiding behind fake identities, and thus cannot easily be made accountable for their actions.

It would be good if those issues are discussed here in Naga, because you are all aware of the situation, but since they are discussed nationwide, it is my responsibility to confront the issues and react, she said.

Robredo pledged to make those involved in #NagaLeaks to make them answerable for their irresponsible actuations.

Parahabon sa atubangan kan simbahan kan Daet, nagtira na naman

DAET, Camarines Norte 3/16/17 (Bicol Standard) -- Makulog an boot ni Arjhay Lina y Barayoga, 25 anyos na Criminology Student digdi na nagsumbong sa mga awtoridad ta hinabon an laog kan saiyang bag na nawalat na nakabitay sa atubangan kan St. John Parish Church, sa Brgy. I digdi kuodmang alas 10:20 nin odto.

Sa sumbong ni Lina sa pulis, naglaog siya sa simbahan tanganing magpasalamat asin mag-arang, sa mga balaog na saiyang nakamtan sa mga nakalihis na mga aldaw.

Nin huli ta madali man sana siya sa nasambit na lugar, iwinalat niya an dara-darang sling bag na nakasabit sa motrsiklo na saiyang piglunadan.

An motorsiklo ipinarada niya sa tunod sana kan St. John Parish Church.

Mientrastanto, grabe si kaba kan saiyang daghan ta pagbwelta niya, nagburarat an saiyang mata, nin huli ta bukas na an iwinalat na bag.

Naheling ni Lina na mayo na an saiyang iPhone na an kantidad P40,000.00.

Ipinarecord ini kan victima sa blotter kan pulis, dangan naghagad nin tabang ta baad mag-ribay nin isip an para habon, ibalik sa saiya.

An sabi kan pulis, nag-iimbestigar man sinda ngonian para masusog an parahabon.

67th Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards issues call for entries

The Carlos Palanca Foundation, Inc. has announced its call for entries to the 67th Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature. This year’s competition is also accepting submissions to the Novel and Nobela categories, which are offered only every two years.

Established in 1950 in honor of Don Carlos Palanca Sr., the Palanca Awards aims to continue developing Philippine literature by providing incentives to writers and serve as a repository of our literary treasures for generations to come.

The regular categories for this year are as follows:

Novel and Nobela categories
English Division – Short Story, Short Story for Children, Essay, Poetry, Poetry Written for Children, One-act Play, and Full-length Play;​]
​Filipino Division – Maikling Kuwento, Maikling Kuwentong Pambata, Sanaysay, Tula, Tulang Para sa mga Bata, Dulang May Isang Yugto, Dulang Ganap ang Haba, and Dulang Pampelikula; 
Regional Languages Division – Short Story-Cebuano, Short Story-Hiligaynon, and Short Story-Ilokano.

Young writers below 18 years old may also begin crafting their entries to the Kabataan Division with the theme “How can the youth contribute to building interest in Philippine culture and literature?” (Kabataan Essay) and “Paano makaaambag ang mga kabataan sa pagsulong ng interes sa kultura at panitikang Pilipino?” (Kabataan Sanaysay).

The contest is open to all Filipino or former Filipino citizens of all ages, except current directors, officers, and employees of the Palanca Foundation. Published/produced works, which were first published or first produced between 01 May 2016 to 30 April 2017, and/or unpublished/unproduced works may be entered in the contest. Contestants may submit only one entry per category. The deadline of submission is on April 30, 2017.

For official contest rules and forms, visit the Palanca Foundation offices at Unit 603, 6th Floor Park Trade Centre Bldg., 1716 Investment Drive, Madrigal Business Park, Ayala Alabang, Muntinlupa City or at Unit 3G, OPL Bldg., 100 C. Palanca St., Legaspi Village, Makati City, or download from the CPMA website <>.

Winners will be awarded at a special ceremony to be held on September 1, 2017. For inquiries and other concerns, participants may contact the CPMA Administrator Ms. Leslie Layoso through email at or at (632) 511-0003 / +639108878552. 

#NagaLoves to counter #NagaLeaks in prayer rally

NAGA CITY 3/16/17 (Bicol Standard)–A prayer rally "to uphold truth in the Maogmang Lugar" is set today at 4 p.m. at Plaza Quezon.

Expected to attend is Vice President Leni Robredo, who has been the target of a series of vicious attacks, which she labelled as baseless.

Dubbed #NagaLoves, the prayer rally aims to "call on everyone to fight this deception, this evil trickery, that makes [the] people suffer."

Marisa David-Belmonte, an ally of the Vice President, is reportedly leading the group of supporters.

"We stand against the lies and abuse initiated by cowards who continue to use fake names and take advantage of the weak and powerless," the group's statement reads.

Mayor John Bongat and his wife Farah have earlier announced that they are not attending the prayer rally.

Meanwhile, Robredo's detractors have sustained their call on social media for the Vice President to directly answer the allegations.

6 trawl operators nabbed for illegal fishing in Mandaon

MANDAON, Masbate 3/16/17 (BICOLSTANDARD) Six small fishing boats were apprehended yesterday by joint operatives of the local police and employees of the local government unit while they were allegedly involved in illegal fishing activities.

The names of the persons apprehended were: John Gonzales y Gaylon, (boat captain and owner); Silver Bebas (boat owner and captain); Melven Relox y Rapis (boat captain and owner); Romeo Salvador y Rubia; Leo Deasis y Relox and Vencing Deasis y Relox.

They were caught in the sea waters at Brgy. Maolingon here at around 4 a.m.

The arrested persons were allegedly using fine mesh net which is prohibited under Sec. 93 of Republic Act 10654.

Extortionist na taga Labo, dakop sa entrapment

DAET, Camarines Norte (BICOLSTANDARD) – Biyong tinarakigan si Edmar Clacio y Rocas, 24 anyos na taga Purok 1, Brgy. Iberica, Labo, Camarines Norte kan siya tokloon kan mga awtoridad, asin posasan mantang nagkukubra kan cuarta sa Smart Padala outlet digdi na hale sa saiyang victima.

Base sa report kan pulis hinagadan ni Clacio nin cuarta si Julie Ann Caramoan y Sotero, 27, pakatapos na patakoton sa paagi nin text message na suboot may may pugol siya nin sex video kan victima.

Si Caramoan, may agom asin registradong nurse, enot nang nabiktima kan suspechado kan fecha 12 ngonian na bulan sa paagui kan pareyong modus operandi.

An patanid ni Clacio iwawarak niya an suboot video sa paagui kan internet, kun dai siya tatawan nin cuarta.

Mientrastanto, kan Marso 14, alas 4:30 nin hapon, napiritan na an victima na magsumbong sa pulis kan Labo, Camarines Norte, kaya pig plano an entrapment operation.

Por medyo nin maigot na pag-tiktik kan mga awtoridad, nasusug an suspechaco sa Smart Padala outlet sa Daet, Camarines Norte na sadire ni Bong Alvarez.

Mantang nagkukubra si Clacio kan cuarta, yaon na man an mga pulis na nagdakop saiya.

Yaon na ngonian sa laog kan carcel an suspechado mantang pighahanda an mga kaso na isasampaling sa saiya.

2ng turo na kanding hinabas, ipiglunad sa motorsiklo

TABACO CITY (BICOL STANDARD) – Hinahanap ngonian kan mga awtoridad an motorsiklo na may plate number EA 59778 na iyo an nabistong piglunadan kan duwang turo na kanding na hinabas sa Albay Research and Development Center kan Department of Agriculture digdi.

Sabi kan pulis, si Jefrey Capili y Buena, 31 anyos na para ataman kan kanding sa Albay Research and Development Center, dai siya nin informasyon kun sisay an pusuanon na parahabas.

Alagad, naheling ni Gerald Balanga asin Pedro Buenconsejo, pareyo residente kan nasambit na lugar an parahabas na nakalunad sa motorsiklo.

An dalagan kan vehiculo pasiring sa Ligao City.

Mientrastanto, kan verificaron sa opisina kan Land Transportation Office (LTO) kun sisay an kagsadire kan motorsilo na ginamit kan parahabas, nagluwas na ini nakarehistro sa pangaran ni Jenalyn Recaido na taga Brgy. San Rafael, Guinobatan, Albay.

Pinadarahan nang surat si Recaido kan pulis kan Tabaco City para hapoton kun sisay an naggamit kan vehiculo kan aldaw na ginamit ini sa paghabas.

En caso maaraman an pangaran kan suspechado, kakasohan siya nin pagbalga kan PD 533, o an inaapod na Anti-Cattle Rustling Law.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Gurang na padi, nakuang gadan

SORSOGON CITY—Malipot nang bangkay kan nakua an lawas ni Padre Leonardo Jesalva Monje sa laog kan cuarto sa Home for the Clergy, na namumugtak sa Brgy. Bibincahan sa ciudad na ini.

Si Monje, 79 anyos na an edad.

An nagpaisi sa pulis kan bagay na ini iyo si Henry Marino Diesta, an House Minister Priest digdi.

Base sa informasyon, preparado na kasuodma an pamahawan kan padi kan kan narisa ni Antonio Latosa na dai pa siya nagluluwas sa cuarto.

Kan suboot siripon niya sa cuarto, saka naheling na nakahigda an gurang na padi, asin mayo na nin buhay.

Mientrastanto, kan fuersahon na bukasan an cuarto na pig tuturogan kan padi, nadiskure na mayo na talaga siya nin hinangos.

Sa ibong na lado, pig confirmar ni Dr. Norberto P. Monje, an tugang kan padi, na an saiyang tugang may helang na hypertension asin diabetes, asin posible na inatake siya sa puso.

An sabi pa ni Dr. Monje, habo talaga si Fr. Monje na magtumar nin bulong.

VP Leni to join prayer rally vs #NagaLeaks

Photo via

NAGA CITY 3/15/17 (Bicol Standard)—Nagueños are eagerly watching the unfolding political developments after the #NagaLeaks issue.

Interviewed over radio station DWNX this morning, Vice President Leni Robredo said she will attend the prayer rally tomorrow, March 16, here to ferret out the truth regarding the allegations hurled against former Mayor Jesse Robredo and his family.

Vice President Leni admitted that she is deeply hurt because of the relentless attacks against her husband, who has been dead for five years and can no longer defend himself.

“I have already consulted with my lawyers and we have decided to file legal action against those persons behind #NagaLeaks,” she said.

Antecedent to these developments, Farah Ranola Bongat, the wife of Naga City Mayor John Bongat took center stage last Monday to defend herself against the insinuations that she is behind #NagaLeaks.

The controversy, which has reached fever pitch, started during the campaign period, when Farah Bongat showed her aggressive support for the candidacy of Duterte, while her husband is the chairman of the Liberal Party in Naga City.

The mayor explained, however, that while it is true that Farah is a Duterte supporter, she is not behind #NagaLeaks.

In the same press conference the mayor emphatically said that he received information that some of those who were attacking Farah are allegedly members of the Liberal Party, which he lamented.

Farah Bongat earlier threatened to initiate legal action against those who dragged her name into the controversy.

However, during her press conference held at the City Hall, she said she will put on hold her plan to commence said legal action.

Robredo, however, urged the other persons maligned in the #NagaLeaks issue to pursue their cases.

Asked by the anchorman regarding Farah Bongat’s statement that she and Robredo “are not enemies, but are also not close,” Robredo replied that this is correct.

“Dai man kami naging close ever since. Bako kaming mag-amiga. Nabisto ko lang siya ta agom niya si Mayor Bongat,” the Vice President stated.

“Kan election ngani, nasasakitan akong depensahan si Mayor Bongat, ta si saiyang agom iba man an kandidatong dinadara para sa presidente. Sa national headquarters kan LP, pig-call an sakuyang attention manungod kani, orog nang si Mayor Bongat iyo an chairman kan Liberal Party sa Naga,” Robredo said.

While Robredo said she is joining tomorrow’s rally, the Bongats announced that they will not participate in the same event.

Observers said that these developments are a prelude to the political breakup of the once-formidable “Ubos kun Ubos” team of Jesse Robredo.

Since 1988, all candidates of said group get elected in Naga City.

CASE IN POINT by Dean Ed Vincent Albano | Second motion for reconsideration; effect; judgment becomes final and executory

Once again the SC in Heirs of Gamaliel Albano v. Sps. Ravanes, G.R. No. 183645, July 20, 2016, Jardeleza, J, had the occasion to say that this motion for reconsideration partakes of the nature of a second motion for reconsideration. In Tagaytay City v. Sps. De Los Reyes, G.R. No. 166679, January 27, 2010, it was ruled that a motion for reconsideration, even if it was not designated as a second motion for reconsideration, is a disguised second motion for reconsideration if it is merely a reiteration of the movant’s earlier arguments. Here, petitioners’ Motion for Reconsideration is just that-a mere rehash of the arguments raised in their earlier Manifestation and Motion to Stay Execution of Judgment, which we found previously to be their (first) motion for reconsideration.

The filing of a second motion for reconsideration is prohibited under Rule 52, Section 2 of the 1997 Rules of Civil Procedure, as amended (Rule 52, Section 2) and the prevailing 1999 Internal Rules of the Procedure of the CA (IRCA). Being a prohibited pleading, a second motion for reconsideration does not have any legal effect and does not toll the running of the period to appeal. (Securities and Exchange Commission v. PICOP Resources, Inc., G.R. No. 164314, September 26, 2008, 566 SCRA 451, 468, citing Land Bank o/ the Philippines v. Ascot Holdings and Equities, Inc., G.R. No. 175163, October 19, 2007, 537 SCRA 396, 405)

In Securities and Exchange Commission v. PJCOP Resources, Inc., G.R. No. 164314, September 26, 2008, 566 SCRA 451, the Court explained why the period to appeal should not be reckoned from the denial of a second motion for reconsideration:

To rule that finality of judgment shall be reckoned from the receipt of the resolution or order denying the second motion for reconsideration would result to an absurd situation whereby courts will be obliged to issue orders or resolutions denying what is a prohibited motion in the first place, in order that the period for the finality of judgments shall run, thereby, prolonging the disposition of cases. Moreover, such a ruling would allow a party to forestall the running of the period of finality or judgments by virtue or filing a prohibited pleading; such a situation is not only illogical but also unjust to the winning party.

The same principle is likewise applicable by analogy in the determination of the correct period to appeal. Reckoning the period from the denial of the second motion for reconsideration will result in the same absurd situation where the courts will be obliged to issue orders or resolutions denying a prohibited pleading in the first place. (Dinglasan, Jr. v. Court of Appeals, G.R. No. 145420, September 19, 2006, 502 SCRA 253, 265)

Gurang na padi, nakuang gadan

SORSOGON CITY—Malipot nang bangkay kan nakua an lawas ni Padre Leonardo Jesalva Monje sa laog kan cuarto sa Home for the Clergy, na namumugtak sa Brgy. Bibincahan sa ciudad na ini.

Si Monje, 79 anyos na an edad.

An nagpaisi sa pulis kan bagay na ini iyo si Henry Marino Diesta, an House Minister Priest digdi.

Base sa informasyon, preparado na kasuodma an pamahawan kan padi kan kan narisa ni Antonio Latosa na dai pa siya nagluluwas sa cuarto.

Kan suboot siripon niya sa cuarto, saka naheling na nakahigda an gurang na padi, asin mayo na nin buhay.

Mientrastanto, kan fuersahon na bukasan an cuarto na pig tuturogan kan padi, nadiskure na mayo na talaga siya nin hinangos.

Sa ibong na lado, pig confirmar ni Dr. Norberto P. Monje, an tugang kan padi, na an saiyang tugang may helang na hypertension asin diabetes, asin posible na inatake siya sa puso.

An sabi pa ni Dr. Monje, habo talaga si Fr. Monje na magtumar nin bulong.

Harong kan NBI agent, sinalakat

DARAGA, Albay— Sinalakat an residencia ni Ely Lobete y Arjona, empleyado bilang Administrative Aid sa Regional Office kan National Bureau of Investigation, sa Alamares Subdivision, Brgy. Sagpon sa banwaan na ini.

Sabi kan ni Lobete sa pulis, nakalaog an para salakat sa saiyang harong sa pag-oltanan kan alas 12:30 asin alas 5:00 nin aga kan Marso 14.

Nagpahayag an victima na naguimatansiya, alas 5:00 na nin aga kan asin nareparo na nawawara an nagkapirang mga importanteng personal na gamit.

Ipinalista ni Lobete sa blotter kan pulis an minasunod na gamit na nawara: 1 unit nin badil na glock generation 3, calibre .45 na pistol na may SN CPG 971 na may karga nin sarong magazine na nagkakantidad P40,000.00.

Kaiba pa sa mga nawara iyo an NBI badge, 1 itom na wallet na may laog nin kantidad P1,940.00, Landbank ATM card; mga ID bilang protection agent kan NBI, driver’s license, asin Lambat Sibat ID.

An mga nawara na mga gamit ibinugtak niya sa ika duwang eskalon kan cuarto, sa saiyang pigtuturogan na katre.

Mayo pang nasasahotan na posibleng iyo an nagsalakat. 

EDITORIAL | An drug adik dai takot sa kagadanan

Kun linupigan si aki o agom mo, minasaker an pamilya mo kan nin drug addict, pwedeng maski pa maybaliog kang rosario o may sulot na krus sa daghan, masabi kang gadanon na tulos siya.

Baranga an opinion kan mga tawo mantang nag-aatid-atin kan desisyon kan Camara baja na kastigohon nin kagadanan an mga imbuelto sa ilegal na droga.

Sa sarong lado, haros mapatod na an ugat sa liog kan ibang mga padi asin mga nagkokontra kan bill sa pagkurahaw na sala, asin mayo sa tawo an poder na magsilot nin kagadanan. Ini nakareserba sana sa Kagurangnan.

Igwa man nin maray na punto an simbahan.

Alagad, an mga pabor sa death penalty igwa man.

Oraging, may sector an naghahapot kun tano ta an mga imbuelto sana sa ilegal drugs an kakastigohon kan siring na padusa?

Hinahanap kan mga pabor sa death penalty na ibale sa mga dapat sentenciahan nin kagadanan an mga nagkasala nin paghabas kan cuarta kan gobierno. Lalo na kun convicted sa casong Plunder.

Mamundo para sa saindang grupong na tuyong pinalasaw an sakop kan death penalty.

Kun an mga convicted sana sa illegal drugs an masapo kan siring na padusa, mayo man lang ining saysay.

Sa oro-aldaw na pagsubaybay asin paghinirib kan mga bareta an mga drug dependents haros mayo na man nin takot sa kagadanan.

Mala, ta maoobserbaran na tumang na ngani sa kagadanan.

Dai takot sa bala. Dai supog na lugosan an sainda tugang, ina, pinsan, mga kaamistad asin iba.

Maski sa paghabon mayo nang pag-alangan ta napara na sa vocabularyo ninda an tataramon na kasusupgan.

Iyan an nagdadanay na katotohanan.

Ano palan an serve kan death penalty kun an mga sugapa sa droga dai ngani hadit o in tumang na sa kagadanan?

Pwedeng adalan na maray an anggulong ini.

Dai takot na magadan an mga drug addicts.

Kaipohan patamaon kan gobierno an programa sa paglaban sa problemang ini.

Importante na igwa nin toltol na programa sa rehabilitasyon kan mga lolong sa droga.

Mas pakusogon an pagdakop kan mga paragibo nin illegal na droga. Total, kun mayong supply, mayo nin mababakalan.

Kun aprobaran kaya kan Senado an bill para sa death penalty, na seguradong pipirmahan tanganing maging ley ni Pres. Duterte, madagdag sana an ilulubong na mga condinado sa illegal na droga.

An problema dai man mareresolveran.

An mga drug addicts dai man takot sa kagadanan.

Rep. Gonzalez, nagsayumang simbagon an pagboto pabor sa death penalty

LIGAO CITY—Nagsayumang magsimbag sa mga kahapotan kan mga miembros kan lokal na media si Albay 3rd District Representative Fernando Gonzalez kun nata ta nagboto siyang pabor sa pag imponir liwat kan sentenciang kagadanan.

Si Gonzales na bistadong relihiyoso, piglalaoman kan mga taga Albay na maboto nin kontra sa nasambit na propuesto, nin huli ta pwede siyang condinaron kan mga tawo.

Maroromdoman na an mga simbahan katolika nangingiriil na nagkokontra kan nasambit na bill huli sa argumento na solamente an Kagurangnan sana an igwa nin poder na magtapos kan buhay.

Apisar kan siring na sitwasyon, mayong girong si Gonzalez na nagbandilyo kan saiyang boto na nagpapabor sa nasambit na lehislasyon.

May pagtubod an mga nagmamasid na gusto sanang protehiran kan deputado an saiyang sadire asin para dai maapektaran an mga nakukuang biyaya hale sa presenteng administrasyon ni Presidente Rodrigo Duterte.

Sa ibong na lado, pwedeng singilon man guiraray si Gonzalez kan mga tawo ngapit sa panahon, kun siya liwat mag atubang na naman sa mga elector.

SP Cam Sur junks Mayor Bongalonta's motion to dismiss

PILI, Camarines Sur—The Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Camarines Sur has denied the second motion for an extension of time to file answer to the Administrative Complaint filed against him.

This was confirmed by Board Member Amador Simando in an interview by the BICOL STANDARD.

It will be recalled that two complaints were filed against the town mayor, a criminal one with the Ombudsman and an administrative one with the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.

In the administrative complaint, the records show that the summons was received by respondent Bongalonta last January 31. Since he was given 15 days to file his answer, Simando said he was therefore expected to file the same not later that February 15, 2017.

Before the expiration of the said period, Bongalonta filed an ex parte motion to extend the time to answer, which was granted

He was, however, expected to submit his answer to the administrative complaint last March 2.

But last February 28, 2017, instead of filing his answer, he again filed a second ex parte motion to be given another extension of 15 days, which the Sangguniang Panlalawigan did not approve for the reason that they believed it to be a dilatory tactic.

Meanwhile, Simando added that even before the resolution of the second ex parte motion for extension to file answer, respondent Bongalonta also filed a motion to dismiss the complaint.

He said that the Sangguniang Panlalawigan cannot pass upon the issue since up to the present, the internal rules on resolving administrative case have not been published yet.

The Sangguniang Panlalawigan retorted by saying that there is no doubt that the issue can be deliberated upon by the entire members, since they have earlier approved to adopt the Local Government Code, which allows it.

On the basis of the said explaination, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan has junked the motion to dismiss.

Meanwhile, the administrative complaint will be tackled by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan as a whole.

Judge Lelu Contreras says she’s ready to face the media today

VIRAC, Catanduanes 3/15/17(BICOLSTANDARD) -- Presiding Judge Lelu Contreras of Branch 42 of the Regional Trial Court here has called for a press conference at 4 p.m. to shed light on the allegations hurled against her in the unanimously approved resolution by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Catanduanes.

It will be recalled that the SP requested the Supreme Court (SC) to immediately relieve the judge from her position, both as Executive Judge of the RTC and as RTC Judge of Branch 42.

The said resolution anchored their claim on the alleged actuations by Contreras relative to the delay in the issuance of the Search Warrant involving the mega shabu laboratory located at Brgy. Palta Small here.

Earlier, Contreras said she had already clarified those issues that are again cast against her in a letter published in a local newspaper here.

But due to the recent developments, she is ready to face the media to make further clarifications, she added.

The principal author of the the said resolution was Provincial Board Member Giovanni A. Balmadrid. The other co-sponsors were Arnel B. Turado, Jose Romeo R. Francisco, Lorenzo T. Templonuevo Jr., Gregorio E. Angeles and Joseph Al Randie B. Wong.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Calabanga kidnap victim rescued

NAGA CITY (Bicol Standard) – Five suspects involved in the kidnap-for-ransom of Francisco Leo Maulion were presented the media the other day at Camp Crame by PNP Director General Roland “Bato” Dela Rosa.

Maulion, owner of a gasoline station, a poultry farm and a bakery said he was abducted by the suspects while he was on his farm.

“I was surprised when I saw the suspects pointing their gun to me. I was forced to come with them at gunpoint,” Maulion said.

The incident occurred on November 23, 2016 at Brgy. Mangiring, Calabanga, Camarines Sur.

He also narrated to the police that he was heavily guarded all the time by the suspects as they transferred from one place to another.

“There was a time when I was kept in a house just beside the residence of the barangay chairman of Camalig, Albay,” he said.

Meanwhile, during the press conference at Camp Crame, it was revealed that the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group was responsible for the rescue of Maulion, with the help of his parents, the local government units, and other barangay officials.

PNP Director General Roland “Bato” Dela Rosa further said that up to now the police are still validating some information regarding the other kidnap for ransom cases in Southern Luzon.

Initial reports reveal that the victim’s family had initially paid 1.4 million pesos to the kidnappers.

However, an additional amount of 1.2 million pesos was demanded by the kidnappers. It was at this point when the entrapment operation was set up that led to their arrest.

A brief firefight was reported before the suspects were overpowered by the police officers.

Gen. Bato Dela Rosa identified the gang leader as Gerry Mancera, Punong barangay of Maninila, Camalig, Albay. The other gang members who are now in the custody of the police are Joven Ortiz, Jefferson, Prudencio Ruiz and Cesar Garcia.

Bicol PNP Regional Director Melvin Ramon Buenafe said that the arrest of the kidnap-for-ransom suspects is one of their biggest accomplishments in the region.

Naggadan kan maestro, dinakop

TABACO CITY (Bicol Standard)— Sarong security guard sa dakulang shopping mall an dinakop kan pulis huli sa pagtubod na igwa siyang pagkaaram sa pagkagadan kan maestrong si Jordan Averilla kan sarong aldaw.

Maroromduman na an victima, pirang beses na pinasakan nin matarom na kutsilyo sa saiyang lawas na naguing causa kan saiyang kagadanan.

Sabi sa report, an dinakop na suspechado iyo si Patrick Binias, nagtatrabaho bilang security guard sa LCC mall.

Inarestar siya poco mas o menos alas 10:00 nin nin banggui kasubanggui.

Mientrastanto, nagpahimutik tulos an inarestar na lalaki na nagsabi sa mga awtoridad na mayo siyang pagkaaram sa isinasahot saiyang krimen.

Inangat ni Binas an mga awtoridad asin an sisay pang iba na nagtutukdo saiya, na mag presentar nin evidencia na pwedeng makapagsabi na may aram siya sa nangyaring pag gadan.

Pig kwestyon man kan suspechado an pag dakop saiya kan awtoridad na mayong darang mandamiento de arresto na ipinaheling saiya.

Nagtutubod an suspechado na ibabasura sana an reklamo kontra saiya ta mayo nin pigbabasehan na ley an pagdakop sa saiya.

Pulis nagsagin-sagin na NPA, tiklo sa entrapment

NAGA CITY (Bicol Standard)— Pighahanda na an mga kaso na isasangat kontra ki PO2 Gilbert San Juan Embestro, an pulis na nakadistino sa banwaan kan Pamplona, Camarines Sur na nadakop sa ciudad na ini sa entrapment operation huli paghagad nin cuarta sa saiyang mga biktima.

Nagluluwas sa mga reports na si Embestro nagpapabisto na miembro kan NPA tanganing magkadugas nin cuarta sa saiyang mga naging biktima.

Base sa intrevista ki P/Insp. Greg Bascuna, hefe kan pulis sa Pamplona, si Embestro miembro kan intelligence group kan pulis.

“Dai ko lamang pighuna na igwa siya nin mga illegal na gibo, mala ngani ta pigtitiwalaan pa siya bilang miembro kan intel,” sabi ni Bascuna.

Nagpahayag na si Bascuna na dai niya tutogotan na dai panimbagon si Embestro sa mga asunto na saiyang dapat atubangon, orog nang maigot sinda ngonian sa paglinig kan raot na miembros kan saindang organisasyon.

Maroromdoman na nahulog an suspechado sa kamot kan mga awtoridad digdi, pagkatapos na masusog an saiyang mga gira dapit sa pangongotong, asin pagpabisto na siya NPA.

Susog sa record kan pulis, afuera kan nabiktima digdi, igwa man nin report na may arog na man siya kaining kaso sa mga banwaan kan Buhi asin Pamplona, Camarines Sur.

Iwal mag-agom ta mayong bagas, babayi nagadan

LEGASPI CITY— Makulit na iwal nin mag-agom huli sa kawaran nin bagas na pansapna an guinikanan tanganing maituklang kan lalaki an agom na babae na nagresulta para an huri bawian nin buhay.

Ini an maludok na nangyari sa mag-agom na Solomon Tripulca asin Pebbles Tripulca, na taga Brgy. Victory Village digdi.

Segun sa report, naging violente an iwal kan mag-agom mantang nagkukurahawan ta mayo na nin masunod na pansapna.

Nagpoon an iwal kan mag-agom kan mag-swestyon an babae na ipabakal na sana an gamit na cellphone kan lalaki.

Nangingiriil na entero an lalaki ta kaipohan man suboot niya ini.

Dai naghaloy, ginapo sa babae si cellphone, na nagkawarasak.

Ini an pigguikanan kan grabeng iwal ninda.

Nagluluwas sa imbestigasyon na nadiscuidong naituklang ni Solomon si Pebbles kaya nagsurukamang ini.

Huli ta makusog an pagkatuklang sa agom na babae, nakapakol pa lugod an saiyang payo sa kariton, nadismayo asin duman siya natumba.

Idinalagan pa man tulos sa Bicol Regional Training and Teaching Hospital (BRTTH) an victima para malapatan nin bulong, alagad pakilihis nin pirang aldaw, binawian siya nin buhay.

An familia kan victima nagdulok na si Punong Barangay Tony Leverisa kan barangay na ini para maghapot kun ano an dapat na gibohon.

Pig-iisip kan mga nabayaan na mga partidaryos kan nagadan na magsangat nin kaso nin huli kan nangyari.

Nahuhutad an bangkay kan victima sa barangay chapel kan Victory Village.

An iwal kan mag-agom nangyari kan fecha 12, ngonian na bulan. (Report ni Susan Balane)

P200K offered for lead on Masbate jouno slay

Joaquin "Jun" Briones

NAGA CITY—The family and friends of slain mediaman Joaquin "Jun" Briones, through the National Press Club of the Phils. and in coordination with the Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) have raised P200,000 reward money for whoever may give information that will lead to the arrest of the suspect/s.

Informants may contact local police officials in Masbate who are members of the special investigation task group (SITG) or the leaderships of the NPC and PTFoMS.

It will be recalled that former hard-hitting local commentator Briones was assassinated at 8:45 a.m. Monday by two unidentified persons on board a motorcycle.

Chief Inspector Malu Calubaquib, regional information officer of the Philippine National Police, said that the incident occurred at Bombon bridge, at Sitio Feeder Road, Barangay Bacolod, this town.

The victim suffered four gun shot wounds on his back.

Briones, also known as “Dos por Dos”, is a a columnist of Remate, a national tabloid.

He is the brother of Rey Briones, editor-in-chief and publisher of Pilipino Mirror newspaper.

Catanduanes SP seeks to relieve Judge Lelu from post

Judge Lelu Contreras
Photo courtesy of Ramil Soliveres
VIRAC, Catanduanes (Bicol Standard)— In an unprecented move, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Catanduanes approved on March 13 a resolution requesting the Supreme Court (SC) for the immediate relief of RTC Judge Lelu Contreras from her position as Executive Judge and Presiding Judge of Branch 42 of the Regional Trial Court here.

Provincial Board member Giovanni A. Balmadrid was the principal sponsor of the said resolution.

The resolution was unanimously approved.

Balmadrid said the basis for this urgent request is primarily the loss of trust and confidence upon the judge in the performance of her job as magistrate.

In the early part of the deliberation of the resolution, Board Member Raffy Zuniega attempted to refer the matter first to the justice committee of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.

However, he was not able to get the support of his colleagues outright as the majority member of the said board rejected his proposal.

Aside from Balmadrid, the other co-sponsors of the resolution were Arnel B. Turado, Jose Romeo R. Francisco, Lorenzo T. Templonuevo Jr., Gregorio E. Angeles and Joseph Al Randie B. Wong.

It will be recalled that name of Judge Contreras was repeatedly mentioned during the congressional inquiry held here two weeks ago.

The judge was blamed for the alleged intentional delay in the issuance of the search warrant against the owner of the shabu laboratory that was discovered at Brgy. Palta Small here.

Earlier, Contreras aired her side on the matter, saying that the application for the issuance of the search warrant was filed with her sala late in the afternoon.

This, she said, is the reason why it took a little while before she could issue the said order.

In a related development, Judge Contreras informed the members of the media that she is calling for a press conference on March 15, 2017, at 4 p.m. so she can explain her side on the issue.

Initially, she said that she had already published a letter in a local newspaper in Virac, regarding the issue about the issuance of the search warrant for the drug laboratory.

Labo Bridge 2 probed

Labo Bridge 2
Photo by Romil del Moro/BICOLSTANDARD.COM
DAET, Camarines Norte (Bicol Standard)—Advocacy group Citizen’s Crime Watch (CCW) has intervened to scrutinize the records of the long overdue completion of the Labo Bridge 2 project which was started in February 2012.

As of yesterday (March 14) phases 1 and 2 of the project appear to have been already abandoned by the contractors.

Meanwhile, phase 3 of the same project has begun mobilizing equipment, but the construction activity remains to be very slow, according to CCW volunteers.

This is despite the lapse of the term as provided for in the contract.

Diego Magpantay Jr., National Executive Vice President, Head of the Bantay Public Works Project of CCW, and concurrent head of the Anti-Graft and Corruption Task Force told the BICOL STANDARD that he will not leave any stone unturned after receiving very disturbing information of possible violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act 3019).

Glaring delay

Magpatay said the local chapter of CCW in Camarines Norte has already gathered documentary reports which point to the glaring delay in the project implementation.

Based on records from the DPWH District Engineer’s Office here, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) released a total of P228,272,989.00, for the three phases of the said bridge.

Phase 1 was allocated P43,560,000.00; Phase 2, P46,543,295.45.00; and Phase 3, P138,260,693.25.

The first phase was awarded to RC Tagala Construction. The notice to proceed was given to them on February 17, 2012. The project was expected to be finished on February 10, 2013.

As of this date, the scope of work covered under the contract for phase 1 has not yet been completed, and worse, the project has already been abandoned, Magpantay pointed out.

It was also learned by the BICOL STANDARD that RC Tagala construction is already delayed by four years, reckoned from the original completion target of February 10, 2013.

RC Tagala has already collected P28,250,250.881 on November 5, 2012.

This is out of the total budgetary allocation of P43,560,000.00, with an accomplishment of only 67%, according to Assistant District Engr. Victorio Corporal.

For phase 2, the contract was awarded to the joint venture of RC Tagala and Bemkar Construction.

It was able to collect P32,717,669.45 on November 25, 2013 with work accomplishment of only 70.5%. It is already delayed by three years, based on the original target date of completion.

Meanwhile, the third phase of the project is 72.22% complete and Saint Gerrard Construction has already collected P70,412,971.07.

CCW volunteers, however, believe that the physical accomplishment is much less than 72.22%, as practically they have just started to mobilize their equipment.

Field investigation by said volunteers says that as of now, they have not even laid down the piles, which are crucial for the bridge construction.

The volunteers will request for an actual accomplishment report from the DPWH on the matter.

Said phase is delayed by two years already since the notice to proceed was given on January 2015 and the original date of completion was December 30, 2015.

DPWH said that phase 3 of the bridge project will be completed this coming June, which appears to be highly improbable on account of the present status of the accomplishment, the volunteers said.

Use of name for a fee?

Moreover, an insider in the DPWH District Engineer’s Office admitted that although the contract was awarded to Saint Gerrard Construction Company, a local contractor allegedly called Varin Construction is the one implementing the project.

The informant who requested anonymity said the local contractor is just using the name of Saint Gerrard Construction since the project involves a multi-million contract. This, he said, is hightly anomalous especially since the abovementioned construction firm has been identified in several complaints already for its involvement in similar transaction for the use of its name only for a fee.


Magpantay Jr., said he is contemplating filing a complaint against the allegedly erring public officials, including the contractors.

He said he wants to seek the immediate imposition upon the contractors of the necessary liquidated damages pursuant to Republic Act 9184.

This is due to the failure to finish the projects within the time provided for in the contract.

Aside from damages, he is also poised to initiate a legal action for the blacklisting of the contractors who are involved in said project.

Magpantay further recalled that he had once filed a complaint against Saint Gerrard Construction involving the sea wall project undertaken by the said company in the town of Calabanga, Camarines Sur.

There were alleged irregularities in the project implementation, hence he decided to investigate on the project.

“I had a chance meeting with the owner of Saint Gerrard Construction in Manila,” Magpantay said.

“He admitted that they are not directly engaged in the implementation of the project. They are just interested in allowing other contractors to use their license in exchange for an amount that they could agree upon.”

Jubert Estrella, a volunteer of Citizens Crime Watch in Camarines Norte, initiated the investigation of the project by sending a letter to Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Sec. Mark Villar asking to probe the Labo Bridge II.

As a result of said letter, the Office of the Secretary instructed his staff to validate the complaint.

Meanwhile, Magpantay said, “If these issues are not properly addressed, we will bring this to attention to the Office of the Ombudsman as part of our campaign against graft and corruption.”

“I am confident that with the assumption to office of our new DPWH V Regional Director Danilo Versola, he will not take this problem sitting down,” he further added.

Monday, March 13, 2017

FLASH: Mediaman shot dead in Masbate

MILAGROS, Masbate 3/13/17) Former hard-hitting local commentator Joaquin Briones was assassinated at 8:45 a.m. by two unidentified persons on board a motorcycle.

Chief Inspector Malu Calubaquib, regional information officer of the Philippine National Police, said that the incident occurred at Bombon bridge, at Sitio Feeder Road, Barangay Bacolod, this town.

The victim suffered four gun shot wounds on his back.

Briones, also known as “Dos por Dos”, is a a columnist of Remate, a national tabloid.

He is the brother of Rey Briones, editor-in-chief and publisher of Pilipino Mirror newspaper.

In an interview with the Bicol Standard, Rey Briones said he does not think the murder has anything to do with his (Joaquin's) profession as a journalist as he has been discussing national issues.

"We are looking at another angle, which is probably related to politics. My brother previously ran as vice mayor of our town," he said.

At press time, the investigation is still underway. (With a report from Jet Ramos)

#NagaLeaks | Naga City mayor decries cyberbullying of wife Farah

NAGA CITY 3/13/17 (Bicol Standard)—Mayor John Bongat lashed at those who dragged of the name of his wife Farah Rañola Bongat into the #NagaLeaks controversy.

In a public statement during the flag ceremony at the City Hall, the local chief executive defended his wife, saying that while it is true that Farah is a Duterte supporter, she is not behind the allegations against Vice President Leni Robredo that went viral last week.

Meanwhile, Farah Bongat also issued a statement saying that they will "put on hold the legal pursuit against the persons allegedly behind this crime that has tarnished and continues to tarnish [her] good name and that of her family's."

She furthermore thanked those who "continue to believe in [their] integrity, especially those who sent words of comfort."

She also asked that Nagueños pray for the truth and for the city.

Farah Bongat is rumored to be eyeing the mayoralty post in the next election.

Featured Post

9th Infantry Division appeals to candidates not to support rebels

Pramis NAGA CITY (Bicol Standard) – The 9th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army called upon aspirants in the forthcoming local e...