photo opportunity with former rebels, member of the 19th
Infantry Battalion and Ms. Gwyndalynn Malate, the Focal Person
on Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP).
evaluates 30 ex-rebels
By JEROME P. CATORCE, 19IB
April 8, 2016
PALO, Leyte – Thirty
former rebels were gathered for an evaluation conference at this
town’s Tierra de Milagros Resort in Brgy. Arado on Wednesday, April 6.
Dubbed as “Training Workshop
and Evaluation Conference for Former Rebels”, the two-day event was
designed to monitor and evaluate the status of former rebels from the
province of Leyte who were registered under the Social Integration
Program (SIP) and Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP).
The conference underscores
the need for additional livelihood assistance and other issues and
concerns of the clienteles who surfaced from the underground movement
of the New People’s Army (NPA) from year 2008 onwards.
During the event, the
Philippine Army’s 19th Infantry Battalion based in Brgy. Aguiting,
Kananga, Leyte sent two (2) Civil Military Operations (CMO)
specialists to assist the former rebels in coming up with their own
livelihood project proposals.
The CMO Specialists also
conducted consultative sessions to former rebels regarding personal
security and other issues.
On the other hand, Ms.
Gwyndalynn Malate, Focal Person on Leyte Comprehensive Local
Integration Program (CLIP) said the conference was part of the
provincial government’s ongoing effort to totally reintegrate the
former rebels in the community.
Malate disclosed that future
surrenderers will already be covered with the “Revised Guidelines for
the Implementation of Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP)”
or the Joint Memorandum Circular 2016-02 dated March 2, 2016 which
includes both the combatants and members of the NPA’s Militia ng Bayan
(MB) as beneficiaries.
With the same Joint
Memorandum Circular, the provincial government will be giving away
P10,000 basic assistance and another P25,000 for the firearms
remuneration to the surrender. On the other hand, the national
government allocates P15,000 immediate assistance, P50,000 livelihood
financial assistance and another P50,000 if an NPA rebel surrenders
with high powered firearm.
22 farmers who completed the five months training on High Value
Vegetable Production Using Technology on Natural Farming pose
with officials from the Department of Agrarian Reform and the
East-West Seed Company. (Jose Alsmith L. Soria)
22 farmers now
certified organic vegetable producers
By JOSE ALSMITH L. SORIA
April 7, 2016
INOPACAN, Leyte –
Twenty-two farmers from two highland barangays of this town are now
certified organic vegetable producers after completing the five months
training on High Value Vegetable Production Using Technology on
Natural Farming System last month.
Regional Director Sheila
Enciso of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) disclosed that her
office tapped the East-West Seed Company for the conduct of the said
training under the Agricultural Enterprise Development component of
the second phase of the Agrarian Reform Community Project (ARCP-II).
Participants of the said
training were members of the Hinabay Upland Farmers Association (HUFA)
and the Cabulisan Multi-Purpose Upland Farmers Association (CAMUFA),
who all expressed happiness for having been trained on organic
According to Edelito Merano
Sr., 51, though organic farming is more tedious than the traditional
way of growing vegetables which uses hazardous chemicals, the former
is environment-friendly and the products are good for our health.
In organic farming, Merano
added, they also can save more for they no longer use pesticides and
The farmers instead used the
vermicast produced by the CAMAFU sold at P350 per sack of 50 kilos
Merchant Cristeta Abenoja
disclosed that there are more buyers of organic vegetables than those
grown the traditional way.
Her vegetables from
barangays Hinabay and Cabulisan are easily sold out for consumers
already know that products from these villages are grown organically,
Various organic vegetables
abounded during the farmers’ graduation for it coincided with the
Meanwhile, 47 other farmers,
27 from the town of Tolosa, Leyte and 20 from Pinabacdao, Samar
likewise completed the same training last month though on separate
occasions and venue, Enciso added.
PH to join global movement to end the fossil fuel era
10,000 to mobilize against
Batangas coal plant on May 4
April 7, 2016
MANILA – Church
groups, concerned citizens, social movements, and civil society
organizations are about to launch Piglas Batangas! Piglas Pilipinas!,
a national campaign initiative against coal and other dirty and
The highlight of this
initiative will be a 10,000-strong mobilization on May 4 in the
Batangas Provincial Sports Complex to stop the building of a
600-megawatt coal plant in Batangas City and to call for a moratorium
on all new coal-fired power plants in the entire country.
“It is immoral to burden
future generations with pollution and the cost of mistaken energy
choices made today. It is time to end the age of coal,” said Lipa’s
Roman Catholic archbishop Ramon Arguelles.
Lipa’s Archdiocesan Ministry
on Environment (AMEn) is leading the strong and broad local opposition
to coal, which has led to a delay in the construction of a third coal
plant in the province. The proposed 600-megawatt plant in Brgy.
Pinamucan Ibaba, Batangas City is a project of the Gokongwei-owned JG
Piglas Batangas! Piglas
Pilipinas! will kick off “Break Free from Fossil Fuels 2016”, a
globally coordinated effort to escalate the fight against fossil fuels
and to accelerate the just transition to 100% renewable energy. Mass
actions are scheduled until May 15 in other countries such as
Indonesia, Nigeria, Brazil, the United States, Germany, and Australia.
“Almost 200 countries agreed
last December in Paris to limit global warming, but the Philippines
and many others are still putting up new coal, gas, oil and other
fossil fuel projects. Through Break Free, the global climate movement
will be demanding our world leaders to practice what they preach,”
said Lidy Nacpil, coordinator of the Asian Peoples Movement on Debt
and Development, board member of 350.org, and global steering
committee member of Break Free.
communities and anti-coal campaigners mostly from Southern Luzon and
Metro Manila will join the May 4 mobilization at the Batangas
Provincial Sports Complex.
nationwide opposition to coal mining and coal energy, as well as other
forms of dirty energy. It is appalling that there are 17 existing coal
plants in the country and 29 more still in the pipeline, particularly
in Quezon and Davao,” explained Ian Rivera, national coordinator of
the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice.
“The mobilization in
Batangas also comes just a few days before the May 2016 elections. The
future President of the Philippines should heed the call of the times
and usher in a new era of the free from coal and other dirty forms of
energy,” added Reuben Muni, climate and energy campaigner for
Greenpeace Southeast Asia.
“We challenge the government
to hasten the shift to renewable energy to prove its commitment to
address climate change on its own. Why is it that more than 60% of
energy projects in the pipeline are coal plants when we have abundant
solar and wind resources?” asked Ruel Cabile, national coordinator of
Aksyon Klima Pilipinas, referring to recent figures released by the
Department of Energy.
The leaders of the Piglas
campaign spoke of six demands of the national campaign, namely: (1)
Cancel all plans, permits and construction stage for coal-fired power
plants in Batangas and the rest of the country; (2) implement a
program for a swift phase out of the 19 existing coal-fired power
plants nationwide; (3) close down all coal mines beginning with
Semirara and cancel all plans and permits for new coal mines; (4)
mobilize domestic and international climate finance and implement a
comprehensive program for a quick transition to clean and renewable
energy; (5) ensure a just transition to clean and renewable energy;
and (6) implement a community-managed rehabilitation program for all
local communities and ecosystems affected by coal plants and coal
Papers’ should prompt lifting of PH bank secrecy law
By Office of Senator Chiz
April 7, 2016
PASAY CITY – Sen.
Francis “Chiz” Escudero said the report on the “Panama Papers’
tackling leaked documents on the vast amount of wealth stashed by
politicians and famous personalities, including officials from the
Philippines, using offshore companies underpins the lifting of the
country’s bank secrecy law on bank deposits of public officials.
“The scandal surrounding the
illegally amassed deposits of public officials from around the world,
including some of our own public officials, kept in secret foreign
accounts is a renewed reminder that we should pass a law compelling
all our state workers – from the president down to the lowest clerk –
to sign a waiver on their bank deposits in favor of the Ombudsman,”
“We’ve been repeatedly told
and warned: a public office is a public trust. Every single peso of
the people’s taxes should be handled with care, sincerity and honesty.
Every peso paid by a taxpayer should be used to advance public good,
not one’s private good,” explained the leading vice-presidential
candidate based on all pre-election surveys.
The so-called Panama Papers
details transactions by a Panamanian legal company showing an
insider’s view of the massive offshore wealth of prominent politicians
and public figures in different parts of the world.
Iceland’s Prime Minister
Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson resigned on April 5, becoming the first
casualty of the Panama Papers, so named because the documents came
from a Panamanian law firm. The documents detailed paper trail and
transactions of extremely rich individuals taking advantage of
offshore companies to hide their wealth.
The Panama Papers gave
proofs that premier’s wife owned an offshore company with big claims
on Iceland’s banks, an undeclared conflict of interest for
Gunnlaugsson. This revelation forced many citizens to call for his
Since 2010, Escudero has
been submitting a written waiver on secrecy of his bank deposits
attached to the Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN)
he files annually with the Office of the Ombudsman.
vice-presidential bet filed in 2013 his proposal to compel people in
government, except those who serve in honorary capacity, to submit a
written permission or waiver in favor of the Ombudsman to look into
all deposits of whatever nature in banks within and outside the
country. He first filed the measure in 2007 when he was first elected
Recently, he called on all
candidates to sign a waiver to assure the electorate that they won’t
enrich themselves once elected into office.
Republic Act No. 1405, or
the Bank Secrecy Act of 1955, strictly prohibits disclosure of or
inquiry into deposits with any banking institution. It also provides
penalties of imprisonment or fine for offenders.
“If a Filipino politician is
named in the Panama Papers, he or she should be held accountable if he
or she committed any wrongdoing. Filipinos named in the Panama Papers
must explain why they opted to hide behind the veneer of questionable
offshore companies,” Escudero said.
The Panama Papers is a
collection of more than 11.5 million documents, whose leak from the
Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca fueled outrage globally after it
was revealed how a group of rich and powerful people are able to keep
away from the public their wealth to avoid taxes amid the sufferings
in their own countries.
The Mossack Fonseca, a
company known for setting up offshore companies, flatly denied any
wrongdoing in connection with the Panama Papers, labeled as “the
unprecedented leak of 11.5m files from the database of the world’s
fourth biggest offshore law firm, Mossack Fonseca.”
The documents were
reportedly obtained from an anonymous source by the German newspaper
Süddeutsche Zeitung, which eventually shared them with the CIJ. The
ICIJ then shared them with a large network of international partners,
including the Guardian and the BBC.
Manila's first integrated gaming resort on Aconex
Collaboration platform helps
deliver Solaire Resort and Casino in Entertainment City
April 5, 2016
MANILA – Aconex
Limited (ASX: ACX), provider of a leading cloud and mobile
collaboration platform for the global construction industry, today
announced that Bloomberry Resorts Corporation is using Aconex
solutions to support the design and construction of the Solaire Resort
and Casino in Manila. Opened in 2013, with a second phase completed in
2014, the owner-managed design-build project continues to run on the
Aconex platform for Solaire's ongoing alterations and additions.
8.3-hectare complex was the first integrated destination resort in
Manila's Entertainment City. It includes a five-star, 800-guest room
hotel, an 18,500-square meter casino, 15 restaurants, a luxury
shopping center, and a state-of-the-art theater.
"Projects are getting faster
and faster, and time is money," said Paul Soanes, a project director
for Solaire. "Aconex has allowed us, as a whole, to move the project
much more quickly. For example, there is no need to print and ship
drawings and other information, which can easily add weeks or months
to a project. On such a large-scale and complex development, with team
members located in different geographies, Aconex has been essential in
helping us speed up processes and information flow across the entire
Connecting a Geographically Dispersed Project Team
With a project team
consisting of more than 540 users from over 160 different
organizations – dispersed throughout the U.S., Hong Kong, Singapore,
Australia, and China – the Solaire project requires strong and
reliable document control and structured communications between all
participants. The Aconex platform provides immediate access to project
data and correspondence on a secure, neutral platform, regardless of
where team members are located. The platform uses a document register
with version control to manage current and prior revisions of all
documents, ensuring that participants are working with up-to-date
project information at all times.
"Aconex makes it easy to
share information and find information in minutes, regardless of file
size," said Mr. Soanes. "Fast access, visibility and control are
critical in keeping global project teams across multiple organizations
on the same page throughout the project. Successful delivery depends
on effective collaboration."
Streamlined Tendering and Inspection Processes
According to Mr. Soanes,
Aconex has improved efficiencies for different phases of the project
lifecycle, including tendering and field inspections.
The Solaire project team
employs the platform's tendering module for procurement of
prefabricated furniture, fixtures and equipment such as panels,
cupboards and wardrobes from manufacturers in China and Australia.
Online access to and distribution of tendering data, including RFI
management, have accelerated the procurement process while ensuring
accuracy and fairness.
On-site inspections and
associated quality and safety issues are managed using Aconex Field on
tablets. With automated checklists, inspectors are able to capture,
distribute and track defects and other issues in real time. The issues
are assigned to the appropriate subcontractors for resolution, with
hard deadlines. All communications and actions are recorded for
attachment to the completion certificate and close-out prior to
"Solaire has already become
a prime destination in the rapidly expanding Manila gaming market,
which offers the best of both Las Vegas and Macau," said Andy Lake,
general manager of Asia at Aconex. "We appreciate the opportunity to
support Bloomberry's success in Entertainment City as they operate and
continue to develop Solaire. With our growing portfolio of
hotel-casino projects, we look forward to serving additional gaming
and entertainment developments in the Philippines and throughout
martial law victims is beyond lip service
By Office of Senator Chiz
April 5, 2016
PASAY CITY –
Defending human rights victims of martial law is beyond lip service
said Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero, principal author and sponsor of the
law compensating victims of martial law under the late dictator
In an interview in ABS-CBN’s Bandila news program last April 4,
Escudero said his track record speaks for itself when it comes to
giving justice to victims of the dark days of oppression during the
“Ako ang pangunahing author at sponsor ng batas na nagsasabing dapat
magbayad ng kompensasyon sa human rights victims. Hindi naman lahat
nadadaaan lang sa salita,” explained Escudero, son of the late
Salvador Escudero III who served as minister of agriculture during the
Marcos administration and under the Ramos presidency.
“Kapag may nagawa ka na, siguro dapat yung nagawa mo should speak for
itself,” he stressed.
The compensation bill was passed by the Senate Committee on Justice
under Escudero’s chairmanship in 2013.
“Bakit ipinasa ko yung batas na nagpapabayad ng kompensasyon sa human
rights victims? Twenty-five years pending sa Kongreso ‘yun. Noong
naging chairman ako ng Committee on Justice, doon lamang naipasa yun,
miyembro na ng Senado si Senator Marcos,” Escudero said when asked
about his supposed silence on the issue of human rights violations
committed during the Marcos dictatorship.
President Aquino signed the Human Rights Victims Reparation and
Recognition Act of 2013 during the 27th anniversary of the uprising
that toppled the Marcos dictatorship in 1986.
Under the law, the amount of compensation to be awarded to the victims
is proportionate to the gravity of the offense inflicted on them
through a point system that is a basic component of the law.
Victims who died or who disappeared are given 10 points, while those
tortured and, or sexually abused gets from six to nine points, for
On the other hand, political detainees get from three to five points
while those who can prove that their rights were violated under the
Act are awarded from one to two points.
During the Bandila interview, Escudero also said that Sen. Ferdinand
Marcos Jr. should apologize for the human rights abuses during his
Escudero also supported calls for the Marcoses to return their alleged
ill-gotten wealth to the state.
8ID commander pins
award to deserving personnel
By DPAO, 8ID PA
April 4, 2016
CAMP VICENTE LUKBAN,
Catbalogan City – Major General Jet B. Velarmino AFP, Commander
8th Infantry (Stormtroopers) Division recognizes the achievement of
eligible personnel in pinning the Personnel Readiness Badge during the
Flag Raising Ceremony, Monday.
MGen. Velarmino assisted by
Col. Cesar M. Idio GSC (INF) PA, Assistant Division Commander and Lt
Col. Leonardo C Dacumos, Assistant Chief of Staff for Personnel, G1
administered the pinning of Personnel Readiness Badge to all deserving
personnel of the Command: Gold Category - 1st Lieutenant Christine Z
Aguedan (NC) PA; Silver Category - Major Cherry M Llave (NC) PA, Capt.
Ian Andres R Fabellon (INF) PA, 2nd Lieutenant Edibeth Veena Jane C
Legario (AGS) PA, Master Sergeant Andres P Velasco (SC) PA, Private
First Class Jay M Venezuela (Inf) PA; Bronze Category - Master
Sergeant Rodolfo L Alingasa (Inf) PA, Sergeant John Michael L Onepig (Inf)
PA, Sgt Joey B Yap (Inf) PA, Sergeant Rosalito P Yopo (MI) PA,
Corporal Alex M Lutao (Inf) PA, Corporal Marlo R Revez (Inf) PA and
Private First Class Roy N Herbolingo (Inf) PA.
According to MGen. Jet B.
Velarmino, the Command gives premium to its deserving personnel by
recognizing their sacrifices while performing their mandated task as a
protector of the people and the state, the numerous accomplishments is
the reflection of our core values and professionalism as a Filipino