Leyte hosts 51st
BSP Annual National Meet
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– The Boy Scouts of the Philippines Leyte Chapter’s hosting of the
51st Boy Scouts of the Philippines Annual National Meeting is seen as
a good move to booster the development of the tourism industry in the
province of Leyte.
Petilla who is the Chairperson of the organizing committee for the
affair said that the BSP National Annual Meeting will be held on May
22-25, 2007 at the Leyte Academic Center in Palo, Leyte.
The Annual National
Meeting which is expected to be participated in by the 109 BSP
Councils in the country numbering to about 500 to 800 delegates, is
anchored on the theme “One World, One Promise.”
called for the cooperation and support of all the people of Leyte in
order to ensure the success of the National Meeting. She said that the
coming of visitors is favorable to the economy of the locality and
will help boost the development of the local tourism industry.
enormous task ahead and with the objective of providing the best to
the forthcoming visitors, Representative Petilla this early, has
called for the first general organizational meeting with all the
proposed committee chairpersons on March 3, 2007 at the
Leyte SMED Center at
the Provincial Capitol Grounds.
have been mobilized in order to ensure the smooth organization of all
the activities. The Physical Arrangement, General and Technical
Services Committee is composed of Mr. Antonio Chan, Engr. Nelson D.
Bernardo, and Engr. Robert Lugnasin while the Committee on
Transportation is composed of LTO Director Raul Aguilos and the Leyte
Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The Committee on
Invitation on hosted activities is composed of by DepEd Director Sol
Matugas and Dr. Aurora Villarente; the Entertainment and Souvenir
Items Committee is headed by Vice Governor Mimietta Bagulaya with
Provincial Agriculturist Loreto Yu and Mr. Edgardo Panares and the
Committee on Logistics is manned by Board Members Lesmes Lumen and
include the Promotion, Publicity and Documentation Committee headed by
PIA Director Olive Tiu, Ms. Francisca Custodio, Mr. Dalmacio Grafil,
and Atty. Leo Giron.; the Security, Emergency and Traffic Committee
composed of the PNP Regional and Provincial Directors; the Committee
on Food Preparations with Mrs. Clotilde Malatbalat and Mr. Louie
Fernandez; the Sales and Trade Fair headed by DTI Director Cynthia
Nierras and the Ways and Means Committee composed Hon. Wilson Uy,
Mayor Roque Tiu and PRC Director Gerry Palabyab.
Also among the
committees formed are the Souvenir Program Committee headed by Mrs.
Aurora Villarente, the Reception Committee headed by Dr. Evelyn
Cruzada, the Committee on Tours and Accommodation headed by DOT
Director Karina Tiopes, the Special Activities and Events Committee
led by Mr. Victorino Castillote and the Secretariat which will be
composed of the BSP Leyte Staff and the staff of the Leyte Tourism and
Investments Promotion Center.
arrest of Samar governor, 7 others
By Office of the Ombudsman
March 5, 2007
– The Office of the Ombudsman today lauded the Sandiganbayan’s swift
action on the graft case it filed against Western Samar Gov. Milagrosa
Tan and seven others.
The Sandiganbayan 4th
Division has ordered the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI);
Bureau of Immigration (BID); the Phil. National Police (PNP); and the
Sheriff of the Sandiganbayan “there being probable cause”, to arrest
Gov. Milagrosa Tee Tan; Treasurer Damiano Zerda Conde Jr.; Budget
Officer Maximo Darunday Sison; Administrative Officer Rolando Bolastig
Montejo; Gen. Services Officer (GSO) Aurelio Bardaje Jr.; GSO Record
Officer and Inspector Numeriano Legaspi; Accountant Romeo Chan Reales
and Reynaldo Angeles-Yabut, a private supplier.
Merceditas N. Gutierrez earlier ordered the filing of graft charges
against them for the alleged anomalous purchases of medicines and
other goods worth P16.1M without public bidding for the period Dec.
2001 – Dec. 2002.
The said officials
were charged by the Isog Han Samar Movement of Catbalogan, Samar
represented by Fr. Noel Labendia of the Diocese of Calbayog,
Catbalogan, Samar, based on investigation conducted by the Commission on Audit
(COA) on selected transactions of the
Province of Western
Samar from Jan. 1, 2001 – April, 2003.
Among the transactions
audited were for the purchase of medicines worth P3.9M; assorted goods
and rice – P10.6M; and electric fans – P1.6M for a total of P16.1M.
reveal that no competitive public bidding took place for the purchase
of electric fans as the delivery of the same were made even before the
conduct of public bidding.
Based on records, the
respondents also used the occurrence of typhoon “KIdang” on Dec. 4-5,
2001 to justify their action to dispense with the public bidding and
instead resort to an emergency purchase of various medicines and
However, it was found
out that while the emergency purchases for various medicines and goods
were intended for victims of typhoon “KIdang”, “the Sangguniang
Panlalawigan Resolution No. 88-2001 attached to the Disbursement
Vouchers refers to typhoon “Nanang” which hit the
on Nov. 6, 2001.”
At the same time, one
emergency purchase of assorted medicines was anchored on a request
made by the Local Health Board of Gandara dated Oct. 22, 2001, two
months prior to the occurrence of typhoon “Kidang”.
The other purchase was
based on a letter-request of the Tarangnan Municipal Mayor dated Dec.
3, 2001, a day before the locality was hit by the typhoon.
On the other hand, it
describes as “absurd” the emergency purchase of rice and goods from
Wilmart’s Mini Mart seven days after the typhoon. Also, the canvass,
issuance of Purchase Order, the delivery of the merchandise and the
inspection took place in just one day. The Office of the Ombudsman
said the transaction is highly suspect as Wilmart’s Mini Mart only has
a capitalization of P100,000 and is not even registered as a rice
supplier. It is also 107 kms. away from Samar which makes it
improbable to deliver several hundreds of sacks of rice in just one
court ordered each of the respondents to post a P240,000 bail bond for
their temporary liberty.
League of Cities to
question constitutionality passage of 12 cityhood bills
By ELI C. DALUMPINES (PIA
March 1, 2007
CATBALOGAN, Samar –
It may not be a smooth sail at all for the 12 towns that are now in
the process of being granted city status with the approval of their
respective House Bills by the senate recently.
This after the
Secretary-General of the League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP)
confirmed that the League has initially concurred to send a petition
to the Supreme Court questioning the constitutionality of the said
Calbayog City Mayor
Mel Sarmiento, in an interview Tuesday, said the majority of the
members of the League aired their opposition to the bills as this will
mean a reduction of their Internal Revenue Allotments (IRAs) which may
drastically affect their operations.
Sarmiento informed it
is the prevailing sentiment among the members of the League that the
Senate’s approval of the 12 cityhood bills of municipalities is
unconstitutional as Republic Act 9009, which set a basic income
requirement of P100 million for those who apply for cityhood status,
was not amended or repealed but is still in effect.
believed that the exemption of these towns from R.A. 9009 will serve
as a bad precedent and may send a wrong signal to others, he said.
He informed that three
other towns, that were not included in the 12, are now seeking the
To recall, the Senate
approved the 12 cityhood bills (HB 5998 for Catbalogan) in third
reading last February 5 granting the towns of Bogo and Carcar, Cebu;
Baybay, Leyte; Catbalogan, Samar; Lamitan, Basilan; Tandag, Surigao
del Sur; Batac, Ilocos Norte; Bayugan, Agusan del Sur; Cabadbaran,
Agusan del Norte; Borongan, Eastern Samar; Tayabas, Quezon and Tabok,
Kalinga exemption from the income requirement set by R.A. 9009.
The bill likewise
granted the conversion of these towns into cities after residents of
each town approve it in a plebiscite.
however, said he deliberately decided not to attend the recent
meetings of the League to avoid being misunderstood by other Samareño
leaders that he is against the cityhood bid of Samar’s capital.
LEYECO II GM must
return illegal fund payout, consumer advocate urges
Philippines – Consumer watchdog National Association of Electricity
Consumers for Reforms Inc. (NASECORE) is urging the National
Electrification Administration (NEA) to direct Leyeco II Electric
Cooperative, Inc., General Manager Atty. Jerry Gwen L. Conde to return
the total amount of PhP2,797,190.50 that was fraudulently disbursed as
productivity incentive bonus for 2005 for the coop’s officers and
regular employees after NEA has denied the coop’s request for the
approval of its Board Resolution “Approving the appropriation of the
amount of P2,797,190.50 to cover the cost of the 14th month pay
(productivity incentive bonus) for the year 2005 of its officers and
“We commend NEA for
favorably acting on our letter request to deny LEYECO II’s incentive
bonus for the year 2005 as the coop failed to meet items (3) and (5)
of the five (5) criteria under the Revised Guidelines on Benefits,
Allowances and Other Incentives to EC Officers and Employees which are
as follows: (3) has sufficient funds in excess of due and necessary
expenditures to cover the amount required by this bonus; and (5) has
posted a 5% cumulative net margin for a ten-month period ending 31
October of the current-year,” NASECORE President Pete Ilagan said.
LEYECO II’s Financial
and Statistical Report shows that it suffered net loss of
PhP5.678-million in 2005, PhP9.47-million in 2004, PhP3.07-million in
2003, PhP24.06-million in 2002, and PhP4.9-million in 2001.
“If Leyeco II had been
incurring losses since 2001, how could the general manager ever think
of giving out a 14th month pay? This is simply anomalous that shows
outright gross disregard of member-consumers’ interests”, Ilagan said.
On September 20, 2006
NASECORE also wrote the Leyeco II Board calling its attention about
this questionable 14th month pay. As a result of this letter, the
Leyeco II Board of Directors created a special committee to
investigate the matter and found out that Atty. Gerry Gwen Conde, the
coop’s general manager, among others, acted in “grave abuse of
discretion amounting to lack or excess of authority resulting to
illegal disbursement of the cooperative funds in the amount of
P2,797,190.50.” In his affidavit, LEYECO II secretary and treasurer
Alan C. Surpia said that he signed the check for disbursements of the
said benefits after being assured by Atty. Conde that the proposed
PhP2.7 million worth of incentive bonus was already approved by NEA.
Based on this and the
Committee report, the Leyeco II Board passed a Resolution “Terminating
the General Manager, Atty. Jerry Gwen L. Conde, of Leyte II Electric
Cooperative, Inc.” for his “deliberate defiance, disrespect, grave
abuse of authority, and arrogance...which are detrimental and inimical
in the operations of Electric Cooperatives.”
In support of this
Leyeco II Board resolution, NASECORE, likewise, asked NEA to forfeit
all benefits and entitlements due to Atty. Conde as a warning to all
general managers of electric cooperatives under its supervision to
exercise due prudence in managing the funds of the coops which come
from the rate payments of its member-consumers.
“We hope NEA will
see justice and act swiftly on our demands”, Ilagan added.
Concrete actions over
extrajudicial killings must be made, not just mere propaganda – SAGUPA-SB
February 28, 2007
Concrete actions must be made by this government over the spate of
political and extrajudicial killings noted not only by the victims’
families, survivors, but also by different probe bodies and
international human rights groups. This is the reaction of the farmers
group Samahan han Gudti nga Parag-uma ha Sinirangan Bisayas (SAGUPA-SB)
after reports of the Melo Commission, of UN Special Raporteur Philip
Alston, and of different human rights groups here and abroad have
repeatedly stressed the culpability of the government and of the Armed
Forces of the Philippines and of retired Butcher of the People, Maj.
Gen. Jovito Palparan.
Diana Ragub noted that
while the government said it is ‘serious in addressing the occurrence
of these extrajudicial killings’, it likewise lost no time in
defending the AFP.
statement like such is not what the people meant by justice. It is
tantamount to saying that the killings were perpetrated only by a
handful rotten eggs and it has not been a part of government policy,”
“Lest the government
forget, it paved the way for the escalation of the killings following
its statements tagging militant groups as fronts of the communist
movement and as enemies of the state. For all the accusations against
Palparan, it hailed and gave pompous recognition of his supposed valor
in the anti-insurgency campaign; it even went its way to promote him
despite allegations of his criminal activities,” said Ragub.
Among the proposed
actions of the group include the abrogation of Oplan Bantay Laya, the
operation plan behind the red-labelling and neutralization or killing
campaign among militant groups. Ragub said that it is only through the
abrogation of the plan that the President could clearly express that
she has the political will to put an end to the extrajudicial
Ragub likewise urge
members of the Congress including those who are running for said seats
this May 14, 2007 elections that a legislation for the recognition of
chain-of-command responsibility must be enacted in order to punish
those who, like Palparan, bolstered the ignorance of the armed forces
in human rights laws.
extrajudicial killings have been a reality in the Philippines, our
penal laws must conform with the times and to the fact that these are
committed treacherously, either through bonnet-clad men or during
nighttime. Military men in the countrysides have likewise been noted
not to wear nameplates when they conduct military operations. There is
no way for the victims or for witnesses to clearly identify their
perpetrators except for circumstantial evidences. A case for murder or
attempted murder cannot therefore be had unless you have convincing
proof that the accused is the perpetrator. With this, it is easy for
the likes of Palparan to absolve themselves from the culpability,”
“There is a need to
enact a law penalizing superior government official, military or
otherwise, who encourages or tolerates by omission, any extrajudicial
killing committed by their subordinates. Failure of such responsible
officer to prevent and investigate, when he had a reasonable
opportunity to do so, must be penalized. The same goes for those who
instigate, support, and like what Palparan claims, ‘inspire’,
“These rules of
culpability of government officials particularly of top military men
are provided for by the Hague Convention IV and X and of the
Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions of 1949. These are
laws that our Constitution has adopted as generally accepted
principles of international law which are supposedly part of the laws
of the land,” said Ragub.
action that SAGUPA-SB hopes to see from the government is an intensive
human rights orientation among members of the AFP including those in
the fields to ‘abate their unawareness of laws and legal processes’
amounting to human rights violations and abuses.
Cong. Mercado donates
computer sets through PDAF
By REBECCA CADAVOS (PIA Southern
MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte – A total of (110) computer sets were distributed by the Lone
District Congressman Roger G. Mercado under his Priority Development
Assistance Project (PDAF) Monday, February 26 at the Sangguniang
The assistance in line
with the Congressman’s computerization system development for the
province and one of the priority programs of Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
for “Education for All” amounted for at least P4 million, Cong.
Mercado revealed during his short message in a turn-over ceremony
conducted with the recipients identified throughout the province.
The Lone District
Office identified (110) beneficiaries from the province like the
private sectors such as the Associated Media of Southern Leyte (AMSL),
Veterans Association of Southern Leyte, Parents Teachers and Community
Association (PCTA) among others. Some government offices who received
were the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Philippine National Police
(PNP) Provincial Office, Philippine information Agency (PIA), while
their office identified also schools, barangays and municipalities all
over the province as the recipients of the computer sets.
Each recipient during
the turn-over ceremony were just required to sign the acknowledgement
receipt prepared by their office for the (11) boxes that composed (1)
Pentium 4 computer set, which include the monitor, printer, automatic
voltage regulator (AVR), uninterrupted power supply (UPS), multi-media
speaker, computer table, chair among others.
Cong. Mercado who
was grateful with the continued support extended for the good of the
province also disclosed during his message some of his on-going and
still to be implemented projects like the construction of a training
center for vocational courses, the Philhealth IDs and SSS memberships
distribution for indigents, construction of schools, agricultural
developments including farm-to-market roads.
Another top Leyte NPA
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– Army Troopers, while conducting checkpoint along Jaro-Alangalang
Maharlika Highway on February 25, 2007, successfully apprehended at
about 7:15 in the morning, Antonio Ramos aka Pingkoy / Mando the newly
designated Secretary of the North Leyte Front, Eastern Visayas
Regional Party Committee of the CPP-NPA.
Ramos replaced the
late Bibiano Rentellosa aka Tomas / Tommy / Tatay who was killed
during an encounter with the Commando Troopers on 11 Sept 2006 at
vicinity Sitio Taghoy, Bgy. Libertad ,
Dennis C. Almorato, Public Information Officer and Spokesman of the
Commando Troopers informed PIA that Antonio Ramos was apprehended at
the vicinity of Barangay Olutan, Jaro, Leyte while on board a Public
Utility Vehicle on his way to
He was apprehended by
the troopers of the 19th Infantry Commando Battalion together with the
8th Intelligence Security Unit, Intelligence Security Group led by Lt.
Colonel Lope C. Dagoy, the commanding officer of the 19th IB and 2nd
Lt. Ruel Adrian Benedicto, commanding officer of the Alpha Company of
the 19th IB.
Ramos peacefully went
with the apprehending troopers. However, at about 9:10 o’clock on the
same day, while the troops together with him, were on their way to the
Battalion Headquarters at Barangay Aguiting, Kananga, Leyte on board
on M35 truck, Ramos suddenly grabbed the rifle of one of the troops on
board the M35 Truck and managed to fire a shot hitting the left
railings of the truck.
During the ensuing
scuffle, a trooper identified as Corporal Jose Elizalde III, shot
Antonio Ramos twice in order to incapacitate him. Sustaining two
gunshot wounds at the abdominal portion of the body, Ramos was
immediately rushed to the Ormoc Sugar Planters Association (OSPA)
Hospital for immediate treatment, but he was declared dead on arrival
by the attending physician. His corpse now lies at V-RAMA Funeral
Homes for proper disposition.
Amorato said that this another wave of tactical victory by the
Commando Troopers against the Communist Terrorists of the North Leyte
Front, demonstrates its sustained and strong-willed combat power over
the dissipating Communist Terrorists in the area who are now suffering
from a severe and enduring demoralization among its ranks due to the
sustained combat operations of the unit.
Lt. Colonel Lope C.
Dagoy, commanding officers of the 19th Infantry Battalion, stressed
that the tactical gains of his unit is consistent with his personal
timeline to dismantle the North Leyte Front within six (6) months to
one year as he has earlier promised to do.
He added that by
these, the military troopers have ably demonstrated that they have
denied the North Leyte Front any reason to pursue with their futile
cause and instead convinced them to join the mainstream of society for
a better future of their lives, as others have started to do.
Lt. Colonel Dagoy
appealed to the civilian populace to continue to support the Army in
its mission to make peace and development a reality in Leyte.
report from 1st Lt. Dennis Almorato)
DepEd completes SEDIP
projects Eastern Visayas
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– The Department of Education revealed that it has completed 31,531
Secondary Education Development and Improvement Projects (SEDIP) in
Eastern Visayas since the inception of the Project until December
In Southern Leyte,
where the SEDIP program is still ongoing, 54 new school buildings were
contracted during the quarter with a total disbursement of P35
million. The total number of classrooms for the secondary schools in
Southern Leyte is 423 while 64 additional classrooms are needed for school
For DepEd Leyte
Division, all the targets for the quarter have been completed. These
include the construction of 50 new classrooms, construction of 18 new
toilet facilities, construction of 2 Science Laboratories,
construction of 1 industrial arts building, procurement of 1,140 arm
chairs, procurement of 19 teachers tables and 19 teachers chairs,
procurement of 8 teachers table and procurement of 60 Science
The total number of
classrooms existing in the Leyte Division is 1,543 while 359
additional classrooms are needed for school year 2006-2007.
For the Division of
Biliran 16 new school buildings have already been constructed out of
the 18 targeted. The 2 additional school buildings are expected to be
completed in the first quarter of 2007.
Of the 8 school
buildings which need to be improved, three have been completed while
the remaining five are scheduled to be completed in the first quarter
of 2007. The training of 2 school heads has been conducted while the
training of 19 teachers has already been conducted 100 percent. Only
44 percent of the 71,050 textbooks and information materials which are
centrally procured, have been delivered.
Education Development and Improvement Program is in consonance with
the thrust of the Administration to reduce the disparity in net
enrolment and completion rates by improving the quality and relevance
of secondary education in target provinces.
The project also
aims to improve enrolment and completion of secondary education and to
facilitate the process of decentralization to improve the efficiency
and responsiveness of planning, management and policies of the