Mercurio informed PIA
that the panel of critics who granted the said award were: Antonio
Enriquez (Ateneo de Zamboanga), Leoncio P. Deriada (UP Iloilo), Merlie
M. Alunan (UP Tacloban), Victor N. Sugbo (UP Tacloban), German V.
Gervacio (MSU-IIT), Steven P.C. Fernandez (MSU-IIT), this year’s
keynote lecturer, Lawrence Ypil (Ateneo de Manila University), and
workshop director, Christine Godinez-Ortega (MSU-IIT).
Baldesco was the only
fellow from Eastern Visayas. Along with him were: Bernardo Miguel from
Calabanga, Camarines Sur; Paul A. Castillo from the University of
Santo Tomas, Manila; Roberto Klemente R. Timonera from MSU-IIT, Iligan
City; Gratian Paul R. Tidor, MSU-IIT, Dipolog City; Herminigildo M.
Dico, MSU-IIT, Dumingog, Zamboanga del Sur; Jona B. Bering from the
University of San Carlos, Cebu City; Jayson E. Parba, Capitol
University, Cagayan de Oro City; Kyra Camille C. Ballesteros, Ateneo
de Manila University, Taytay, Rizal; Romulo P. Pena, UP Diliman,
Quezon City; Reynaldo A. Villaruz, Colegio de la Purisima Concepcion,
Roxas City; and Anili F. Butcon, Xavier University, Cagayan de Oro
informed also that the said writer has already received numerous
awards from various award-giving bodies. In Eastern Visayas for
example, the Ibabao Arts Council of Calbayog bestowed unto him the
Poet Laureate Award of Calbayog in 2008 during the Siday sa Kahanginan
Poetry and the Provincial Government of Samar proclaimed him Champion
in the Oral Siday Competition held in 2004 during the Samar Day
Celebration. While at the national scene, Baldesco received a
Gantimpalang Ani Award for Poetry in 1994 from the
of the Philippines (CCP) and in 2007 the Gawad Komisyon Karangalang
Banggit for Poetry by the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino (KWF).
As a traditional
writer in Waray, Baldesco updated himself in contemporary writing
through his active involvement in the annual Lamiraw Regional Creative
Writing Workshop held in Northwest Samar State University (NwSSU). His
attendance in the Iligan workshop this year is a big leap in
broadening his knowledge in poetry and literary criticism, especially
in honing his craftsmanship, Mercurio said.
Baldesco, 55, lives in
Brgy. Matobato in
together with his writer-wife Ana and his children who are also
artists in their respective fields. (PIA-8/Lamiraw)
condemn illegal detention, trumped-up charges to 10 Hacienda Yulo
May 23, 2010
– In what militants
perceive to be the most brutal land dispute incident after the May
elections, 10 farmers from Hacienda Yulo have been illegally arrested,
handcuffed and are still detained while hundreds were injured after
tensions broke yesterday at Sitio Buntog, Brgy. Canlubang,
Fabricated charges were also filed to the peasants. The incident has
now solicited condemnation from militant groups throughout the
This after Dan Calvo,
land surveyor and architect of Yulo owned Laguna Estate Development
Corp. and San Cristobal Realty Corp., refused to honor the peasants'
document on a pending petition for revocation of
DAR Exemption Order. With him were 50 combined members of the SWAT, the
local and regional
PNP, and private security guards all with high-caliber rifles
who violently pushed the residents blocking their path and illegally
arrested the peasants at their protest camp.
Of the 10 peasants who
remain behind bars at a local police station, 4 of them are women
(including an old-aged) while 3 minors namely: Maria Garcia (39 yrs
old); Dorotea Mangubat (46 yrs old); Annabel Natanauan (28 yrs old);
Francisca Mangubat (71 yrs old); Mario Mangubat (36 yrs old); Gilbert
Caraan (25 yrs old); Lamberto Caraan (40 yrs old); Roger Nedia, (16
yrs old); Jhefe De Leon, (15 yrs old); and Melvin Natanauan , (16 yrs
old). Twelve-year old Jorge Mangubat was also illegaly detained but
was released last night at around 8 pm. The peasants were also charged
with direct assault, alarm and sacandal, serious resistance and
disobedience and grave coercion.
Eric Laurel, secretary
general of Samahan ng mga Mamamayang Nagkakaisa sa Buntog (SAMANA-Buntog),
demanded to the police to at least spare the 3 minors from the
dispute. A prosecutor suggested to bring the 3 minors to
"rehabilitation" but Laurel countered it could only lead to
"brainwashing" these minors away from their legal struggle.
He recounted the
incident yesterday that the peasants were only peacefully manning
their camp until these armed men came and told them that they had "no
rights". "The surveyor even tore up the papers we showed him and
started cursing when we tried to peacefully negotiate with him,"
Right after news of
the peasants have been brought to the police station, around a 100
protesters staged an overnight vigil infront of the Municipal Hall and
others stationed in protest camp at Crossing, Calamba City gathering
support from local residents. Laurel said that more protesters are
expected to arrive today.
The Hacienda Yulo,
7,100 hectares of land owned by the Jose Miguel Yulo clan, is to be
converted into a subdivision and golf course instead of granting
ownership to the farmers. Laurel said that the land ownership to the
farmers should have been granted as early as the 1960's. The project
was even more pursued when the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program
and its 5 year extension CARPer was enacted into law. He criticized
the CARPer law saying the land dispute in Yulo is a proof that the law
only favors landlords into keeping their lands.
In a press conference,
Guillermo Bautista, chairperson of Katipunan ng mga Samahang
Magbubukid sa Timog Katagalugan (KASAMA-TK) condemned the apparent
violence and fascism from the state forces on the peasants who were
only upholding their legitimate right for genuine land reform. "The
May 2010 elections are just drawing to a conclusion yet here we see
the bleak reality in our society that farmers who lived all their
lives tilling the land are still continuously persecuted." Bautista
"As if causing injury
and illegally detaining them were not enough, the police even filed
fabricated cases. We have a hundred witnesses to prove otherwise," he
He feared that if the
presumed president-elect Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III will not take
seriously the demand of the peasants for genuine agrarian reform in
addressing these land disputes; more cases of violence may occur. He
noted peasant communities in Southern Tagalog where Hacienda Yulo,
Hacienda Looc in Batangas and lands in Quezon province can be found.
"We pose a
Noynoy Aquino, who is an apparent landlord of Hacienda Luisita, to set
an example as leader of this nation to uplift the lives of the poor
farmers. More farmers will surely express dismay and dissent to the
new regime if no concrete changes happen," Bautista added.
Today marks a year
after the farmers' campout outside of the gates of the House of
Representative were violently demolished and protesters dispersed by
the PNP. The camp-out was to call the junking of the Comprehensive
Agrarian Reform Program Extension with ‘Reforms’ or CARPer and for the
passage of House Bill 3059 or Genuine Agrarian Reform Bill filed by
Anakpawis Partylist, Bayan Muna and Gabriela Women’s Party.
Guillermo Bautista, Chairperson KASAMA-TK
TFC to take Catbalogan
on global pursuits
By JOHN HECTHOR SAY, Samar News.com
CATBALOGAN CITY – To
fill-in Catbalogan’s lack of global media hype, ABS-CBN’s The Filipino
Channel (TFC) team took approach to the provincial capital on Tuesday,
May 18, 2010
with documentations of the city’s tourist and socio-cultural
attributes to be released on-air via TFC broadcast.
At around 10 o’clock
in the morning of Tuesday, TFC’s team, primarily composed of
interstitial specialist/producer Norguia Abdula, TFC Konek
researcher/coordinator May Aquino and together with their technical
colleagues, arrived at the Catbalogan City Hall right behind a
previous trip in Calbayog City. Catbalogan City Planning Department
officer Raul Reyes and executive assistant Ador Hurtado were there to
grace the visitors’ arrival.
into two groups, the visitors partook separate assignments; one was
tasked to do interstitial segments purchasing Catbalogan’s livelihood
and tourist amenities led by Norguia Abdula, and the other was tasked
on documenting community affairs for the TV reality show TFC Konek
organized by May Aquino.
The interstitial team
joined other LGU personnel to seek oyster culture footages at the
Samar State University. The other team, the TFC Konek, took efforts on
exclusive documentation of a family’s gala at the D’Leopards Calapog
beach resort. The latter was lifted from a Catbaloganon’s request
based in the US who approached TFC Konek to do a video stream of his
family here in
By noontime, both
teams convened at Flaming Hut restaurant for a lunch and for a brief
break. Motions resumed at around
2 o’clock in the afternoon.
Despite the scorching
summer heat, the interstitial team managed to do a city tour which
featured some of Catbalogan’s most important landmarks. Feat backing
was even more complemented with Miss Charo Nabong’s assistance, one of
the principal founders of the book “O, Catbalogan.” The book was
published under the Katbalaoganon Foundation., Inc. and traces the
city’s history, culture, food and delicacies, landmarks and
developmental milestones across time.
segment would catch Catbalogan’s two faces: the past and the present.
Photos of the city’s earlier façade, provided by the book, will be
collided with its newer look which was pulled off through the team’s
intra-city photography sessions. This in turn will create a
significant appeal on Catbalogan’s physical change which weathered
through the test of history and economic developments. Additionally,
Filipinos abroad, as well as foreigners, may be able to see our city’s
potential as a tourism and cultural hub that can possibly draw
investors and other interested parties.
Landmarks and places
visited by the team include the old and new Antiao bridges, St.
Barthlomew Parish Church, the Pieta Shrine, St. Mary’s College of
Catbalogan (formerly Sacred Heart College), the Samar Provincial
Capitol Building and Capitol Park, the century-old Samar National High
School and the marketplace. A panoramic view of the entire city was
also shot from the Brgy. Socorro perspective.
By late afternoon,
both interstitial and TFC Konek teams gathered at Charito’s Delights
Restaurant and Pasalubong Center to feature another segment that will
showcase Catbalogan’s foods and pastries. The interstitial team was
directly put into the restaurant’s main production house while the TFC
Konek team arranged a TV special that cites a group’s snack while at
TFC’s sojourn to
feature Catbalogan in the global scene was an important way to give a
publicity conduit of the city for foreign consumers and developers.
Furthermore, not only the city could do an appeal abroad but
circumstances might as well include the entire Samar Island. With
this, the team also featured an exclusive interview with Joni
Bonifacio, a well-known Samarnon explorer of the island.
Bonificio has been
exploring Samar Island for more than a decade now, concentrating much
of his time on cave spelunking, island trekking and on water
adventures. And to keep a firm respect of his natal place, he
organized a tourist institution which he calls Trexplore. It primarily
drives Samarnons (and tourists more importantly) to discover the
entire island, invest an effort to mold its fullest potential and
endorse it not only to the local goers but to foreigners as well. With
this, Samar could be known as a promising hot spot for die-hard
travelers and appreciators of virgin nature worldwide.
In the followings
days, The TFC team will already be heading to Paranas, Basey and
Guiuan. The same goals are in their way as they have had here in
retard 2010 polls
By JOHN HECTHOR SAY,
May 11, 2010
CATBALOGAN CITY –
Against the sweltering heat of the sun, chunks of Catbaloganon voters
for the 2010 Elections went into their respective precincts yesterday,
May 10, 2010 to cast their votes and observe the effectiveness of
automated polls. However, glitches struck their way, causing delays of
In the initial hours
of the automated voting, numerous problems were encountered by the
voters. Most common to these is the glitch on very long lines of
individuals heading their precincts.
Emeliana Balila, 19, a
first-time voter from Brgy. Maulong, complained with this situation,
saying “kanina pa ako
9am pumila, ngada
yana (6:30pm) waray pa ako makavote.”
She further confirms
that the long lines in their precincts, put up in Catbalogan IV
Elementary School, were due to the very slow pace of ballot processing
by their Board of Election Inspectors (BEI).
In Catbalogan III
Elementary School precincts, which hold one of Catbalogan’s largest
barangays, Brgy. Canlapwas, same queries were fed by the voters.
Ariel Hilvano, 34, a
resident of the said barangay has been in the precincts since
noontime, but was only able to vote by
Five to 7 precincts
were clustered into just one precinct, while voting hours were
extended to 12 hours from the previous 8 hours.
for the 2010 elections were based on the assumption that the poll
automation system will speed up the voting process since voting will
be via precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machines. Each clustered
precinct was expected to process around 1,000 voters. In previous
manual polls, each precinct could only process 100 to 250 voters.
A voter, who asked
samarnews.com to keep his anonymity, speculated that the long lines in
the precincts were brought up with the waiting of voters to receive
“payments” from various political candidates in the morning. This made
afternoon sessions too loaded with heavy voters influx and very slow
shrinkage of lines.
On the other hand,
some individuals met no hitches in their respective precincts,
flaunting orderly and smooth run of voting in their places. Carina de
Guia, 28, a voter from Poblacion 2 who casted her vote in Salug
Elementary School says “…okay man an dalagan, less than 15 minutes la
ngani ak naghinulat para makabutos”
Carina went in the
precinct in the morning, at around
8 o’clock and finished her job by
voting sessions in Salug Elementary School were not generally met with
problems, afternoon sessions turned the wheel below. Lines began to
lengthen and voters started to complain against the BEI. This has
followed after some PCOS machines failed to function properly and when
the voting population started to swell.
precincts in the city also experienced PCOS machines failures. In
Catbalogan I Elementary School, a correspondent reported about a
shutdown of the machines. In Guinsorongan Integrated School, machines
stopped functioning. Voters from
Salug Elementary School
precincts complained about paper jams.
But not long since
machine malfunctions began, technicalities were immediately fixed.
Though the failures resulted in the lengthening of lines, at least
voters felt a little relieved when machines properly worked again.
However, problems were
not only addressed on machine failures. Ballot rejections were also
reported, including the case of Teresa Tan, 57, wherein the machine,
although functioning well, refused to accept her ballot. The BEI
speculated that she might have had an error in her shading or her
ballot could have been folded or tainted.
“Maupay man ada hadto
nak ka-shade han mga lidong. Dire man liwat mahugaw nak balota. Malain
la nak pamati kay waray man karawta han makina nak balota…”, Teresa
Another problem that
concern the 2010 Elections was related on vote-buying. A particular
case in Guinsorongan, a respondent who chose not to tell his/her name
reported about an “open-ballot” activity in their precinct. According
to him, he/she would be paid an amount summing up to P1,500 if only
he/she will vote his candidates (one gubernatorial, one vice
gubernatorial, and one congressional) and show his ballot to the
partisan individual who was just near the windows of the precinct he
was in. Not until he finishes voting, then was only the time he/she
will receive the agreed amount.
“P1,500 it iya karuyag
iduhol ha ak kun bubutusan ko daw hira…..
ihahatag la kuno niya an kwarta kun matapos na ak bumotos.
Open-voting an labas hadto, mapwesto daw la ak hirani bintana para makita
niya nak pag-shade…”, the respondent explains.
The voting period
for the 2010 elections was originally set for 7am to 6 pm but was then
moved up to 7pm. In the past, voting period was only up to 3 p.m.
sexuality others in the mind of Boy Abunda
By ALICE NICART
BORONGAN CITY – He
was an ordinary boy who sold vegetables around Borongan neighborhood
and would be hurt discreetly as tongues waggled against his
grandfather being a son out of wedlock, but that was 40 years passed
and Boy Abunda has rose to become one of the respected personalities
in showbiz and politics.
Yesterday, it was the
“king of talks” turn to answer and not ask questions as he freely
offered the Sinirangan Press any topic under the sun for discussion.
How he made it to the
top, he said maybe because of hard work, his being a bookworm, his
perseverance, self-trust and strong faith in God.
Seated beside his
gray-haired Nanay (who served a full three term as the town’s vice
mayor) and sister Fe who is seeking a mayoralty seat after finishing a
vice mayoralty term, Boy who was clad in black casual get up, found
comfort in standing instead most of the time in the entire press
Very early before the
election trail, rumors spread in town that Boy Abunda was joining the
political race in the provincial level.
Some of the questions
(Q) and (A) answers:
Q - Why didn’t you
A - Not a few
politicians convinced me to run but I did not feel the urge to run for
a public office; I don’t know however what’s gonna happen in the
future, maybe, I can even run for the Senate, however, at the moment,
maybe I will just have to make hay while the sun shines. But please
do not compare my sister with me. I learned of some unpleasant words
which have come out against Mana: that she is tanga, bulok,walang
kakayahan; although that is partially true because I graduated
valedictorian, and I am into my Masters, but while I am ambitious and
hurdled every bit of challenge in the big city, Mana chose to stay
here with you and serve you. Frankly, I am embarrassed a bit but I
have told Mana, let us swallow these mudslinging, tinuyoan man la nim.
But I believe it does take anyone to be a genius, to be a graduate of
a law school in order to become an effective leader. There are a lot
of leaders who had met just the minimum requirements, still several
others are just ordinary citizens, yet, they were just as effective as
the most learned ones, maybe even better.
Q - Why Noynoy?
A - You have seen my
TV ads with Sen. Manny Villar, they are my good friends with his wife;
Let me tell you however that contrary to the tsismis that I was paid
in millions for that ad, it’s a lie. I believe in Sen. Villar, but
things changed after the death of Madam Cory. Nagpaalam ako ng maayos
kay Manny Villar but my friendship with Kris has become deeply rooted
long ago until I became an adopted second son of the Aquino’s; I was
at the death bed of Mrs. Cory; I wrote that script of Noynoy which
partly said… “Sa ngalan ng Diyos at ng aking mga magulang, hindi ako
magnanakaw.” Nonoy is a humble and a very simple man… my family
relationship will definitely comes first to a friendly connection.
Q - Who is your
A - Ben Evardone.
Because I believe in his platforms, I know him. My governor is Docena.
Q - How true that you
have not been helping local talents from Borongan, hasn’t anybody
excelled in the standards of one Boy Abunda?
A - I do help, but not
enough because I am busy. Nobody has excelled. Yes…We have a lot of
talents…remember you need not be a mestizo or mestiza but you must
possess the X-factor.
Q - Was being a gay
an element to your successes?
A - Don’t look at me
as a gay but as a person. Being a gay will not hamper one’s ambitions
and in pushing to be the best he can. You know, culture is not always
right…our culture has not been kind to gays…but I will not apologize
for being a gay. I support Ladlad the same way I support An Waray.
Did I commit a sin in my 27 years of relationship? Let us talk about
sexuality in the context of responsibility…But I can say, I’ve become
a mother that Nanay wanted me to be. Don’t you wonder why I endorsed
Sunsilk when I got no hair? Argentina and Bear Brand? Again, don’t
look at me as a gay but as a person because I believe in the equality
Boy Abunda admitted,
after helping her, he was offered a position by President Gloria
Macapagal-Arroyo but he opted to be just a consultant in the area of
communications. And asked if he could accept a cabinet post should
Noynoy wins, he answered in the negative.