Christian Ivan Salud wins gold, silver in Palarong Pambansa 2012
Visayas pride Christian Ivan Salud, Gold Medalist 50m breast
stroke & Silver Medalist 100m breast stroke during Palarong
Pambansa 2012 with his proud Trainor and Coach, Brian Morales
and Jilma Maraon. (photo courtesy of LGU-Maasin City)
By RONALD O. REYES
MAASIN CITY – Maasin swimmer Christian Ivan Salud is the sole player
from Eastern visayas delegation who brought home 1 gold and 1 silver
during the recently held Palarong Pambansa 2012 in Linggayen,
Salud, a student from the College of Maasin, bagged Gold medal in 50m
breast stroke and another Silver medal in 100m breast stroke.
His proud trainor and coach are Brian Morales and Jilma Maraon. Also
behind Salud’s winning were local leaders headed by Mayor Maloney
Samaco and school officials who did everything so Salud can get all
the trainings for the event.
Salud has been a consistent winner in Batang Pinoy, PRISAA, EVRAA, and
other local swimming competitions.
In the final tally, National Capitol Region (NCR) dominated the event,
followed by Western Visayas and Southern Tagalog region.
Eastern Visayas with only 1 gold thru Salud, 4 silver, and 4 bronze
medals was ranked 17th.
Pambansa is the biggest annual sports events for both elementary and
high school students from private and public schools in the country
conducted by the Department of Education (DepEd).
ANAD laud Capinpin 5’s stand vs. torture claims
By ANAD Partylist
QUEZON CITY – The pro-democracy Alliance for Nationalism and
Democracy (ANAD) Partylist describe the torture charges filed by
remnants of the infamous Morong 43 as one the many Maoist terrorists’
anti-government slicks even as it lauded the decision of the Capinpin
5, e.g. Eleanor Carandang, Jennylyn Pizarro, Cherylyn Tawagon,
Valentino Paulino, and John Mark Barrientos to come out into the open
to testify and belie charges of torture filed by about 6 erstwhile
Morong 43 detainees against former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
and several military and police officers.
At the same time, ANAD expressed deep and serious concern on the harm
and violence that the Maoist terrorist CPP-NPA-NDF shall unleash
against the families, relatives and friends of the Capinpin 5.
It can be recalled that last Feb. 6, 2010, the military and police
arrested the infamous Morong 43 in a house owned by Dr. Melecia
Velmonte at E. De la Paz St., Sitio Mahangin, Brgy. Maybangkal, Morong,
Rizal while undergoing bomb making and first-aid/medical training.
“They (Morong 43) were released from detention after Justice Secretary
Leila de Lima, upon PNoy’s instruction of Dec. 10, 2010, ordered DOJ
prosecutor Claro Arellano to withdraw all the informations on the 4
counts of illegal possession of firearms and explosives and 2 counts
of violation of the election gun ban filed against them; prompting
Morong RTC Branch 78 Judge Gina Cenit-Escoto to issue the order in
Dec. 17, 2010,” said Rep. Alcover adding that the executive action was
made even as the Court of Appeals affirmed the validity of the search
warrant issued by the Cavite RTC against them.
“Reports from ANAD field chapters revealed that most of the released
Morong 43 has since rejoined their NPA comrades in the mountains of
Southern Tagalog, Bicol, and Central Luzon,” said Rep. Alcover.
The Capinpin 5, in separate sworn statements and interviews with
media, courageously revealed that contrary to claims that they were
mere ‘health workers’ (SIC!!!!), they were undergoing training as NPA
medics and in explosives inside the house of Dr. Velmonte when
arrested by government security personnel. The torture charges were
filed by Drs. Merry Mia Clamor and Alexis Montes, Gary Liberal, Ma.
Teresa Quinawayan, Mercy Castro, Reynaldo Macabenta, Jane Balleta, and
Samson Castillo. However, the Capinpin 5 described Drs. Clamor and
Montes; Liberal and Quinawayan as trainors and the rest as NPA active
members in Southern Tagalog and Bicol.
“Knowing Maoist terrorism by heart and the people running the
organization, I am sure Jose Ma. Sison will do everything to force
Carandang, Pizarro, Tawagon, Paulino, and Barrientos to cower and
forego with their testimony,” said ANAD Rep. Jun Alcover as he pointed
to the notoriety and violence of Maoist terrorism against humanity in
his 10-years with the Maoist terrorist underground organization.
“What worries us so much is the fact that the Maoist terrorist NPAs,
upon orders of Joma Sison and Satur Ocampo, will leave no stone
unturned to get back at the Capinpin 5, their families and/or friends.
This is how the Godless ideology works! The indisputable fact is that
- - the actions and statements of the Morong 43 (except the 5) were
scripted and stage-managed by Maoist terrorist front organizations
like Karapatan, Bagong Alyansa Makabayan (BAYAN), Alliance of Health
Workers, Bayan Muna, Gabriela, Kabataan, Anakpawis, particularly
Attys. Romeo Capulong, Edre Olalia, Juius Matibag, and Rachel Pastores
solely intended to pit the security forces of the government,
particularly the AFP and the PNP, against the Filipino people and
other sectors of the community,” said Rep. Alcover.
“PNoy must act decisively and with dispatch to protect the Capinpin 5,
their respective families, relatives, and friends who are committed to
tell the truth and the facts surrounding their arrests. In fact,
government should be grateful to them (Capinpin 5) for doing a great
service to our country’s peace, freedom and democracy by divulging the
fallacies and lies spawned by the Godless Maoist terrorist’s
CPP-NPA-NDF and their minions,” said Rep. Alcover.
8ID enhances its medical capability
By DPAO, 8ID PA
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan, Samar – The 8th Infantry Division,
Philippine Army formally activated the 8th Forward Support Medical
Company (FSMC) on May 16, 2012 here at Headquarters Camp Lukban,
According to BGen Gerardo T. Layug AFP, 8ID Commander, the activation
of 8th FSMC will enhance the skills of 8ID medical personnel to become
more effective, efficient and responsive health providers.
The said Medical Company will be attached to the Service Support
Battalion of the Division. The unit’s primary mission is to provide
medical support to maneuver brigades and battalions, capable of
treating patients with minor diseases and emergency medical treatment.
They can also provide medical teams during disaster response
operations and for other peace and development efforts in the area.
As part of the activity, Captain Arturo A Llaso CHS (PA), the 8ID
Command Chaplain officiated the blessing of two (2) newly acquired
ambulance vehicles. The 8th FSMC will primarily utilize said vehicles
for medical evacuations and disaster response operations.
The enhancement of 8ID’s medical capability is in line with the Army
Transformation Roadmap, which envisions a World-Class Army that our
Nation can be proud of by 2028.
18 months and still no
justice for slain botanist
Family of Leonard Co appeals to public: Write the DOJ
May 15, 2012
QUEZON CITY – On the 18th month of the killing of ethno-botanist
Leonard Co, his family appealed to friends and supporters to write the
Department of Justice (DOJ) to come up with the resolution on the case
“I am thus appealing to all of you, to all those who have loved, known
and honored Leonard for his contributions in the field of science,
botany and taxonomy, and to all those who believe that justice must be
served: Please help us urge the DOJ to release the resolution at the
soonest time possible,” the letter, signed by Co’s widow, Glenda,
The panel of prosecutors formed by the DOJ led by Prosecutor George
Yarte had already finished the preliminary hearings in the killing of
Co in July 2011.
“It is now May 2012 and the government prosecutors have yet to come up
with a resolution,” Glenda said.
According to Glenda, more than a year after Leonard was killed,
various activities were held one after another to celebrate Co’s life
as a scientist and botanist.
“I and my daughter, Linnaea Marie, are very grateful for all the
outpourings of love and respect you have given Leonard. Please give us
the same strength as we call on the DOJ not to allow impunity to reign
in the killing of Leonard and his companions,” said Glenda.
The family’s public appeal urged everybody to write to the DOJ
Secretary Leila de Lima, Undersecretary Francisco Baraan who is also
chair of the DOJ special task force on extrajudicial killings and
Prosecutor General Claro Arellano.
“Let us flood them with snail mails, e-mails, phone calls and even SMS
to remind them that we await the release of the resolution, and that
we keep vigil on Leonard’s case,” the letter said.
Co, along with forest guard Sofronio Cortez and farmer guide Julius
Borromeo, were allegedly shot by soldiers of the 19th Infantry
Batallion of the Philippine Army when they were conducting research on
tree biodiversity for the Energy Development Corporation (EDC) in the
Manawan-Kananga Watershed near the EDC geothermal plant in Kananga,
Leyte. On that day, Co and four of his companions were surveying and
collecting specimen seedlings of endangered trees for replanting.
Despite witnesses’ and expert’s accounts that the gunshots came from
only one direction, that of the military, the latter maintained it was
an encounter with members of the New People’s Army and that Co and his
companions were killed in a “crossfire.”
The criminal complaint, filed in January 2011, requested for a formal
investigation on the killing, after a DOJ fact-finding panel cleared
the military for responsibility on the incident.
Meanwhile, human rights group Hustisya supported the call for the
immediate release of the resolution.
“This is the hardest part for victims of killings and human rights
violations, the endless wait for the wheels of justice to roll. We
urge the DOJ to come up with the resolution soon,” said Cristina
Guevarra, Hustisya secretary general.
John Lapuz, Ladlad beauties topbill annual gay Flores de Mayo vs
By ProGay Philippines
QUEZON CITY – The Metropolitan Community Church of Quezon City (MCCQC)
unleashes another sizzling summer of floral fashions in its third LGBT
Flores De Mayo that is timed with the global observance of the
International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) at the
Barangay Pinyahan in this city that is considered the capitol of show
This year, iconic gay actor and TV host John Lapuz lends his rising
advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) to the
annual Marian parade, a decision reached after what he felt was rising
bullying from even the showbiz industry against the queer community.
Lapuz comes in as the resplendent Reyna Elena, or Queen Helena, hoping
to become a symbol of human rights crusaders against bullying of LGBT
Bemz Benedito, lead nominee of the Ladlad Partylist and who comes in
as the Reyna Emperatriz (Queen Empress), explained that the Flores
feast is raising awareness of the country around the issue of
homophobic and transphobic bullying by celebrities, corporate media
and the internet most especially young and adolescent LGBT.
Other Reynas lined up to join are two reality TV transgender stars,
former Pinoy Big Brother sister Rica Paras, and Survivor Philippines'
"Flores de Mayo is not just a fashion and beauty statement, it is a
parade of our heartfelt issues. We want the people, most especially
celebrities, to know they have the responsibility to stop bullying.
That hurtful words, even if wrapped in religious prayer, still kill
the blossoms of our emotions, our human rights as LGBT citizens,"
Rev. Ceejay Agbayani, head pastor of the MCCQC, also said the Flores
festivity is also raising trying to raise money for the benefit of the
children with learning disabilities at the Payatas Elementary School.
Agbayani is calling on generous sponsors to help the church get school
and art supplies for some 50 children with Down sydrome and other
disabilities before school opens in June.
The LGBT Flores De Mayo is one of the many IDAHO events that sprung up
this year to coincide with both serious and raucous LGBT festivals
worldwide in a renewed campaign to end violence and discrimination
against LGBTs. Despite its traditional style, the festival attracts
even butch lesbians and closetted gay men who join as the consorts to
the queens parading in gowns, a practice that is drawing the anger of
the Roman Catholic bishops who want gays to desist from joining the
The first LGBT Flores De Mayo was launched in 2010 by MCC and ProGay
with the call to push the Anti-discrimination Bill in Congress.
Overloaded trucks blamed on bridge collapse
By BRYAN M. AZURA
QUINAPONDAN, Eastern Samar – The on-going investigation of the
Department of Public Works and Highways (DPHW) Eastern Samar
Engineering Office is looking on the possibility that overloaded
trucks as the culprit on the collapse of Quinapondan bridge Tuesday
dawn, May 9, this year.
The damaged bridge caused inconvenience to the travelling public as
the south coastal road of the province was closed down for around 15
hours. Traffic resumed at around 7:15pm, the same day, after DPWH
personnel made immediate repairs on the bridge using steel plates as
overpass. “Light vehicles were already allowed to pass through the
bridge since evening of May 10,” said District Engineer Ricardo Odita.
But huge trucks are still advised to use the Taft-Buray as alternate
Quinapondan Bridge is undergoing repair and retrofitting on a contract
with Ormoc-based Mac Builders. The project has been reported 40
percent finished as of last month.
Citing accounts of local residents of Quinapondan town, around four
10-wheeler trucks passed by the town at around 3:30 in the morning
seemingly on convoy going towards Leyte direction. Minutes after the
trucks passed by, a huge sound was heard from the bridge according to
eyewitnesses. “The trucks were filled with fine ground materials which
looked to us as mines,” said a bystander who asked not to be named.
Mining activities are going on in the municipalities of Salcedo,
Guiuan and Gen. Macarthur. Reports had it that tons of mineral ores
are being transported to either to Guiuan or Leyte for ship loading.
According to construction workers who were sleeping on the bankhouse
located right at the floor of the bridge said that they heard loud
crack sounds while huge vehicles were passing the bridge. This
prompted them to run out of the bridge and right after the last truck
passed by, a portion of the bridge caved in.
“We are not setting aside the possibility that huge trucks carrying
heavy minerals as the ultimate cause of the collapse of the bridge,”
Odita said. “We really are helpless in controlling the flow of traffic
especially so that heavy vehicles usually pass by the bridge late
night or early morning,” he continued.
Aside from Quinapondan Bridge, DPWH is also monitoring the on-going
repairs, retrofitting and strengthening of other bridges which include
Taft Bridge, Can-avid Bridge and Dolores Bridge.