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RAFI, Dalaguete LGU address lack of classrooms

No water contamination at Kananga River, EMB says

Tacloban City hosts America in 3D 2013

RSOG arrest thieves, recovers P1.2M worth of jewelries, seized guns

Fruit vendor arrested in buy-bust

Samar peace and development caravan draws more than five hundred rural folks

Silago barangay is once again among best lupons in the country

LTO to enforce law on early warning devices starting March 1

Land Use experts blast Senate favor of CREBA lobby contra land use bill

PRO8 collars 5 drug pushers, 9 users


RD Soria recognizes policewomen’s role in governance and peacekeeping

PRO-8 Women’s Month Forum

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
March 25, 2013

CAMP SEC. KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – Police Chief Superintendent Elmer Ragadio Soria, PRO8 Regional Director, Police Regional Office 8 assured the female members of the Philippine National Police in the region that Police Regional Office 8 under his leadership is at the forefront of eliminating discrimination in the workplace through recognition, protection, fulfillment and promotion of women’s rights within its ranks.

“We deeply acknowledge the importance of strengthening the policewomen’s role and participation in the performance of our duties as law enforcers. We assure you that we will be partners in building upon the gains achieved under existing mechanisms and institutions that support policewomen and female Non-Uniformed Personnel in gender-responsive governance, promoting your rights and in addressing gender-sensitive issues,” Soria told the 120 policewomen-participants of the Women’s Month Forum and GAD Planning and Budgeting Workshop held at the PRO8 Matapat Hall on Monday (March 25, 2013).

The Regional Director added that the forum and discussion on Gender and Development (GAD) issues and concerns is just one of the steps his office is taking to ensure that policewomen, especially those assigned in police stations, are given preferential attention.

“This serves as a venue for synergizing efforts to address gender issues and develop strategies and programs to accelerate women’s participation in governance and your (policewomen) participation in whatever plans and programs this PRO8 will venture into in the succeeding days,” Soria said.

The PRO8 fully-supported the celebration of the National Women’s Month pursuant to Presidential Proclamation Numbers 224 and 227 series of 1988 and Republic Act 6949 series of 1990 with this year’s theme, “Kababaihan: Gabay sa Pagtahak sa Tuwid na Daan” in consonance with President Benigno Aquino’s pursuit and vision of straight path or “tuwid na daan” and underscores women’s leadership role and participation to enhance gender perspective in upholding good governance, says PSSupt Roel Balintong Acidre, Chief, Regional Police Community Relations Division.

The theme also highlighted the importance of strengthening the mechanisms and institutions that support women and to widen the arena for their participation and is aligned with Section 11 (Participation and Representation) and Section 29 (Peace and Development) of the Magna Carta of Women or Republic Act 9710.

The forum gathered policewomen assigned in different line units of PRO8 and invited women leaders from different government agencies who imparted their knowledge on women and GAD issues. The resource speakers include Leyte Assistant Provincial Prosecutor Ma. Arlene Cordoves; Ms. Yvonne Abonales from the DSWD; NEDA Assistant Regional Director Emma Sanopo; PSupt. Rea Villavicencio of the PNP Regional Crime Laboratory Office and PInsp. Yasmin Vilches of the Regional Women and Children Protection Desk.

“As former British Prime Minister Benjamin Desraile said ‘You can tell the strength of a nation by the women behind its men’, this sums up the policewomen’s importance in governance, nation building and in our journey together through the “daang matuwid”, he added.

There are 696 policewomen and 96 female Non-uniformed personnel assigned at the regional headquarters and in different police line units throughout the region.





RD Soria orders manhunt for retired cop’s killers

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
March 25, 2013

CAMP SEC. KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – Police Chief Superintendent Elmer Ragadio Soria, Regional Director of Police Regional Office 8 (PRO8) ordered his men to mobilize police investigating units in Samar province to help track down the suspects in the killing of a retired police officer, revered as a folk hero in Catbalogan City, last week.

"This is a very unfortunate incident. Whatever the motive of the perpetrators is, the attack is very uncivil and cold-blooded, and deserves appropriate police action to give justice to the victim and his family,” Soria told his men during Monday’s PRO8 Command Conference.

Soria said he has alerted investigating units of the PRO8 and its Police Provincial Offices to join the hunt for the two gunmen who shot and killed Severino “Benny” Solis, a retired Police Senior Inspector, in Catbalogan City on Tuesday morning.

“We have directed our investigators to conduct a thorough investigation to identify the suspects, establish the motive and file murder charges in court against the assailants,” he added.

Solis had just finished playing tennis at around 7:15 A.M. at the Capitol Tennis Court located behind the Samar provincial capitol when the two unidentified men treacherously shot him from behind.

Responding policemen conducted dragnet operations and alerted nearby units to possibly intercept the suspects while elements of the Samar Provincial Public Safety Company were also deployed to join the pursuit.

Investigators are now conducting forensic examination on the three slugs recovered from the victim’s body and four spent cartridges from a caliber .45 pistol that were recovered from the scene while police have already came up with a composite facial sketch of the suspects for possible identification by witnesses.

"We are looking at his previous work as a police officer and business rivalry as a possible motive,” Soria added. The victim entered into the contracting business and small-time lending after his retirement.

Solis was a highly decorated and well-respected police officer and regarded as a folk hero in Catbalogan City where he spent most of his law enforcement career.

He gained prominence and hero status when he shot and killed a mentally-deranged man who runs amuck in downtown Catbalogan in the late 80’s.

As seasoned investigator, he handled and solved several high profile cases in Catbalogan City in a colorful law enforcement career spanning three decades.

He was the Intelligence Officer of Samar Police Provincial Office when the PNP launched the first serious police operations against Private Armed Groups (PAGs) in Samar’s first district on January 25, 2005 when he led a composite team from the PNP, Navy Seals and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) leading to an armed encounter with members of the Montealto PAG at the seawaters of Brgy. Tonga-tonga, Almagro, Samar.

The operation resulted in the arrest of PAG member Riolindo Reyes and the confiscation of several high-powered firearms and ammunitions.

The PAG’s political benefactor, however, initiated the filing criminal and administrative to harass Solis and members of the law enforcement team before the Office of the Ombudsman that were all dismissed three years after for lack of merit.

Aside from capturing several high-profile criminals, drug suspects and communist-terrorist leaders, Solis also served as Chief of Police in Daram, Pinabacdao and Hinabangan towns in Samar prior to his retirement from the service in 2009.





Naga studes explore robotics

robotics training

By Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc.
March 23, 2013

CEBU CITY – The Dr. Caridad C. Labe (CCL) Education CentrEx Robotics Team, which the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) sponsored during the World Robotics Olympiad in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, conducted a three-day robotics training to 46 public elementary and high school students from Naga City, Cebu last March 7-9 at the Naga National High School.

The training, a part of the sponsorship agreement between the team and RAFI, aims to introduce robotics as a 21st century approach to learning Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) through experiential activities.

“We wanted to promote robotics in as many schools as possible not only for students to have a fun way of applying what they learned in the said subjects, but for them to also develop their critical thinking and problem solving skills,” Rachel Labe, president of CCL Education CentrEx School, said.

The training design is based on the robotics curriculum implemented in the said school, which sees robotics as a motivational tool to excite learners to study science and technology.

The school's Robotics Team placed first and fourth in the 2012 Philippine Robotics Olympiad and represented the Philippines in the World Robotics Olympiad in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia last November.

For their final output, the participants were made to design their own robots. The robots are equipped with sensors – touch, light, color, sound, and ultrasonic, among others – to respond to their environment.

Using LEGO Mindstorm, the students created a program to make their mechanical design function and respond to outside stimuli. The program was then downloaded to the NXT, a small computer that acts as the brain of the robot.

Dr. Senen Paulin, division superintendent of Department of Education (DepEd)-Naga City, said he was impressed with the students' demonstrations during the training. He disclosed, to the delight of the students and their teacher-coaches, that robotics has been included in the budget for the next school year.

While robotics is a relatively new area in the public school system, the support of various stakeholders in Naga City has played a major role for its integration. Currently, it is the only city in Cebu Province whose public schools are equipped with robotics kits, which cost P70,000 each.

Its local government unit provided the Lego Mindstorm NXT kits for the schools and is currently in talks with DepEd-Naga City for future directions in the area of robotics.

CCL CentrEx provides the training as their way of giving back to the community and in gratitude of the support they received from RAFI and other organizations.

“You have a very supportive leadership from the local government unit and DepEd, who see this as a worthwhile investment, and RAFI, who has supported various initiatives to improve the quality of education. It is now up to the teachers and school heads to grab these opportunities to have access to relevant resources,” Labe said to the trainees and teachers.

RAFI's sponsorship for the CCL Education CentrEx Robotics Team in the World Robotics Olympiad was made possible through the Foundation's Grants, one of the capabilities in RAFI’s comprehensive approach to elevating lives and communities.

RAFI continues to deliver on its promise through its five focus areas – Integrated Development, Micro-finance & Entrepreneurship, Culture & Heritage, Leadership & Citizenship, and Education.





5 wanted persons in EV, arrested

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
March 22, 2013

CAMP RUPERTO K KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – PCSupt Elmer Ragadio Soria, Police Regional Office 8 Director, commends the successful operation launched by PRO8 operatives leading the arrests of five (5) wanted persons in Eastern Visayas. All of them are now facing appropriate penalties.

The success of the operation was the result of continued information networking with the public in reporting outlaws aligned to the nationwide implementation of LOI Manhunt Charlie, the PNP’s campaign against wanted persons. This also forms part of the Ten (10) Point Action Plan of Chief PNP in accounting wanted persons and sustained of warrants. This notable accomplishment bespeaks not only of the dedication of the involved personnel to their sworn duties, but also of the firm resolve of the PNP organization to ensure that fugitives of the law must be arrested so that justice will be served, he said. So, to wit:

At about 10:00 AM of March 20, 2013 at Brgy 91, Abucay, Tacloban City, elements of Police 2, Tacloban City Police Office led by PSInsp Amancio T Longjas, arrested Aldren L Campo, 23 yrs old, married and resident of Brgy 104, Salvacion, Tacloban City, by virtue of WOA for violation of city ordinance 20001-01 docketed under CC number 2012-08-OD-93, issued by Hon. Nicolasora, Presiding Judge of MTCC, Branch 2, Tacloban City, with recommended bail bond of P1,000.00. Arrested person is now detained at Tacloban CPO lock-up cell prior turn-over to court of origin.

At about 1:30 AM of March 20, 2013, at Brgy Cangaraja, Pastrana, Leyte, elements of Pastrana PS led by PInsp Charito L Lago, COP, arrested Mario Espina, single and resident of the aforesaid place by virtue of WOA for the crime of Falsification by private individual of a official document under article 172 of RPC, docketed under CC number 755-3-2-2013, issued by Hon Jeanette Ngo Loreto, Presiding Judge of MTC, Palo, Leyte, with recommended bail bond of P12,000.00. Arrested person is now detained at Pastrana PS lock-up cell prior turn-over to court of origin.

At about 6:00 PM of March 19, 2013, at Marasbaras National Road, Tacloban City, elements of Police Station 1, Tacloban City Police Office led by PInsp Eliseo Del Rosario, arrested Lord Morano, 26 yrs old and resident of Brgy Libertad, Palo, Leyte, by virtue of Warrant of Arrest for violation city ordinance 2000-01, docketed under CC number 2012-09-OD-30, issued by Hon Sylvia Pocpoc Lamoste, Presiding Judge of MTCC, Branch 1, Tacloban City. Arrested person is now detained at Tacloban City Police Office lockup cell prior turn-over to court of origin.

At about 12:30 PM of March 19, 2013 at Brgy Ipil-Ipil, Catarman, Northern Samar, elements of Catarman PS led by PSupt Bernardo E Raquiza, COP, arrested Ruel Lamberte, 19 yrs old, single, jobless and resident of the place by virtue of WOA for the crime of Serious Physical Injuries, docketed under CC number C-5346, issued by Hon. Alma Consuelo BD Esidera, Presiding Judge of RTC, Branch 20, Catarman, Northern Samar, with recommended bail bond of P6,000.00. Arrested person is now detained at Catarman PS lock-up cell prior turn-over to court of origin.

At about 10:00 AM of March 19, 2013, at Brgy Ipil-Ipil, Catarman, Northern Samar, elements of Catarman PS led by PSupt Bernardo E Raquiza, COP, arrested Christian Vibar, 19 yrs old, single and resident of the aforesaid place, by virtue of WOA for the crime of serious physical injuries, docketed under CC number C-5346, issued by Hon. Alma Consuelo BD Esidera, Presiding Judge of RTC, Branch 20, Catarman, Northern Samar, with recommended bail bond of P6,000.00. Arrested person is now detained at Catarman PS lock-up cell prior turnover to court of origin.





PRO8 condemns all forms of criminal acts

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
March 22, 2013

CAMP RUPERTO K KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – The Police in Eastern Visayas will always be persistent in its campaign against criminality and lawlessness. In fact we are always relentless in enforcing the law without fear or favor, maintaining peace and order, and ensuring public safety with the active support of the community. All of these the PNP will do so that every Filipino citizen and others who sojourn in Region 8 may live in peace and prosperity.

In three days time our operatives were able to apprehend the following illegal activities, to wit:

At about 7:30 PM of March 20, 2013, elements of Maripipi Police Station led by PInsp Edgardo De Asis together with the Bantay Dagat Personnel, conducted seaborne patrol operation at the territorial seawater of Maripipi, Biliran, which resulted to the apprehension of one (1) fishing boat “log line kitang” with an estimated market value of P50,000.00, owned and skippered by Danny Magubat, married and a resident of Brgy Binungtu-an, Culaba of same Municipality, while engaging in illegal fishing, which is in violation of the municipal ordinance number 2001-01-030, section 76. Said fishing boat were released after paying the corresponding penalty worth P2,000.00 under official receipt number 1191553 dated March 20, 2013.

Meanwhile, at about 1:00 PM of March 20, 2013, elements of Calbayog City Police Station led by PInsp Edgardo P Advincula, Chief PCP IV together with the Deputized Fish Wardens of Brgy Bantian, Tinambacan District, Calbayog City, Samar, conducted seaborne patrol operation at the territorial seawater of Calbayog City, Samar, which to the apprehension of one (1) fishing boat “hulbutan” with an estimated market value of P500,000.00 owned and skippered by one Junior Lepasana, of legal age, with ten (10) crew members while engaging in illegal fishing which is alfa violation of the city ordinance number 2003-16-030, section 39 and section 40. Said fishing boat and crew members were turned-over to the custody of Department of Agriculture for documentation and proper disposition.

Moreover, at about 9:15 AM of March 20, 2013 at Sitio Beto, Brgy Lungssod Daan, Hinundayan, Southern Leyte, elements of Police Station led by PInsp Jay Anthony A Florencio, arrested Rafael Tobio Saligan, 28 yrs old, married and resident of the aforesaid place, who was caught in the act engaging on illegal gambling locally known as “swertres”. Confiscated from his possession were one (1) booklet of stub with different number combination and bet money amounting to P60.00. Suspect together with the confiscated items were brought to Hinundayan Police Station for proper disposition.

Additionally, at about 10:30 AM of March 18, 2013, at Brgy Irawahan, Catubig, Northern Samar, elements of Catubig Police Station led by PCInsp Juanito C Bajar, COP, while conducting operation against illegal logging, was able to recover forty (40) pcs of illegally sawn lawaan lumbers, with 250 bd-ft and with an estimated market value of P4,100.00. Recovered lumbers were brought to Catubig Police Station for safe keeping and proper disposition.

Lastly, at about 7:00 AM of March 18, 2013, inflatable liferaft color black with orange cover bearing serial number 6427, date manufactured 05/2012 and Marked Shanghai Youlong Rubber Products Company Limited, with capacity of fifteen (15) persons, was found slant recovered by Jaime Pansoy, 43 yrs old, fisherman and resident Sitio Marasbaras, San Luis, Capul, Northern Samar, floating along San Bernardino, Pacific Ocean, without any equipment’s and belongings except for an operational manual and signal light. Subject liferaft is now under the custody of the above mentioned person.





RSOG nabs “fake” RSOG team leader for extortion

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
March 19, 2013

CAMP SEC. KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – The Police Regional Office 8 (PRO8) warned the public of unscrupulous individuals posing as policemen as the Regional Special Operations Group (RSOG) nabbed a former town councilor for introducing himself as RSOG team leader and extorting money from businessmen in Samar province recently.

PRO8 Director Police Chief Superintendent Elmer Ragadio Soria made the public pronouncement following the recent arrest of a 51-year old former Sangguniang Bayan member for using the name of RSOG in committing criminal acts.

“The RSOG was activated to conduct police operations against all forms of criminal activities and not to extort money from the people,” Soria said.

Demetrio Bariquit y Simbahon, married, of Brgy. Mancol, San Jorge, Samar faces charges of extortion and usurpation of authority after he was caught extorting money from three businessmen in Catbalogan City.

Bariquit is a former town councilor in San Jorge, Samar and is running for the same position in the May 2013 elections.

The victims claimed that the suspect introduced himself as Inspector Nick and a team leader of the elite RSOG, asked money from them and threatened to arrest them for unknown charges.

The 3 victims reported the extortion activities of the suspect to the real RSOG which conducted an entrapment operation against Bariquit.

On Wednesday afternoon, the victims agreed to meet Bariquit at Petron Gasoline station in Brgy. 3, Catbalogan City and handed money to the suspect, wherein RSOG under Police Inspector Constantino Jabonete, Jr., immediately arrested him.

Recovered from the possession of suspect were three expired Mission Orders (MO) from the Military Intelligence Group 8 (MIG8), identification cards of CIDG and Police Hotline Movement, Inc., CIDG coordination form, an arrest warrant for Rape, a Suzuki motorcycle and the P1000.00 cash which he took from the victims.

Subject, with the marked money, was immediately brought to Samar Provincial Crime Laboratory Office in Camp Lukban, Catbalogan City for ultraviolet examination and is currently detained at Catbalogan police station lock-up cell.

Soria disclosed that this tactic of impersonating people with authority for evil purposes is not new as he called on the public to be watchful and report suspicious people introducing themselves as RSOG members or policemen to the nearest police station.





Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy wins Silver for World Interfaith Harmony

PCID NCR /Luzon Group

By Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy (PCID)
March 19, 2013

QUEZON CITY – The Judges for the World Interfaith Harmony Week (WIHW) Prize announced on March 17 the Winners for the 2013 Prize, awarded by the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Foundation of Jordan.

The World Interfaith Harmony Week is a celebration adopted by the United Nation, which was proposed by H.M. King Abdullah II of Jordan in 2010. This is based on the pioneering work of The Common Word Initiative, which started in 2007. It calls for Muslim and Christian leaders to engage in a dialogue, based on two common fundamental religious Commandments: Love of God and Love of Neighbor; without having to compromise their basic religious tenets. The WIHW provides a platform for all interfaith groups and groups of goodwill to become aware of each other to build and improve their relationships, and strengthen their movement and positions by building ties and avoiding duplicating each other’s efforts.

The prime mover of A Common Word Initiative, a ground-breaking interfaith dialogue vehicle from the Muslim World, is Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad of Jordan.

The distinguished panel of judges included H.R.H. Princess Areej Ghazi; H.B. Patriarch Theophilus III - Patriarch of the Holy City, Palestine and Jordan; H.E. Bishop Munib Yunan - Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land and President of the World Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Churches; Father Nabil Haddad - Founder and Executive Director of the Jordanian Interfaith Coexistence Research Centre; Dr. Minwer Al-Mheid - Director of the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought; Mr. Nabil Al-Sahib - First Deputy of the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought; Mr. Aftab Ahmed - Office Director of the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre.

First Prize Winner: $25,000 Grand Prize and a gold medal will be awarded to the Interfaith Mediation Centre, Kaduna for their event ‘Imam and Pastor from Vengeance to Forgiveness’ in Nigeria;

Second Prize Winner: $15,000 Prize and a silver medal will be awarded to the Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy for their event ‘A Common Word Towards A Common Peace’ in the Philippines;

Third Prize Winner: $5,000 prize and a bronze medal will be awarded to the Department of National Unity and Integration for their event ‘World Interfaith Harmony Week Malaysia 2013’ in Malaysia.

According to the announcement, “In judging, the judges were mindful particularly of those who had the courage to hold events in areas marked by recent interfaith tension or conflicts. They took into consideration efforts made despite scantiness of resources, but also took into consideration the excellence of efforts. They further took into consideration whether events were consistent with the text of the U.N. Resolution establishing the Prize”

PCID organized simultaneous interfaith dialogues focusing on the message of A Common Word, conducted in 4 Philippine cities.

In the National Capital Region, the event was held at the PCID Conference Room, NCPAG Annex Building Conference Room, University of the Philippines, Quezon City. In Zamboanga City, it was held at the Women Support Center, RT Lim Boulevard, Zamboanga City. In Cebu City, at National Commission on Muslim Filipino (NCMF) Office, Cebu City. In Iligan City, at Mahad Al-Nur Al-Islamiya, Ceanuri Village, Camague, Iligan City.

Surprised and joyful, PCID President Amina Rasul said she was contacted by the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought on March 17 while she was spending a family day in Tagaytay. “The announcement was a truly pleasant surprise amidst these weeks of sorrow and tensions”, she said.

She said that PCID worked very closely with the Noorus Salam to implement the event. PCID has been providing capacity building for the Noorus Salam, an organization of Muslim women religious teachers and civil society leaders. One of their shared advocacies is to propagate the meaning of A Common Word and the true relevance of interfaith harmony to attaining peace. PCID was supported by the Magbassa Kita Foundation Inc (MKFI), a Foundation that promotes literacy as the vehicle for peace and development in Muslim Mindanao.

Judges received 64 applications for the prize from the 363 events held worldwide.



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