Sunday, June 15, 2008

Philippines’ Potentials of a Great Nation

As of this week, the Philippines will celebrate her 110th year of independence. The Philippines was occupied by Spain for almost four centuries.
The Americans colonized it in 1898 to 1941 and the Japanese invaded and occupied in 1942 – 1944. The Americans returned the Philippines’ Independence on July 4, 1946. From that time Philippines Independence was celebrated every July 4 until President Diosdado Macapagal transferred the celebration from July 4 to June 12. Hence, Philippines Independence day is being commemorated every June 12.
Don Emilio Aguinaldo, raised the Filipino flag in the veranda of his house in Kawit, Cavite in the morning of June 12, 1898. He proclaimed independence. But that independence was shortlive for the Americans occupied Manila and later the Philippines. For the next 46 years, the Philippines was the colony of the United States except for about four (4) years when the Japanese ruled the Philippines.
Our forefathers struggled and died in order for the Philippines and her people to be free from the tyranny of Spain, the exploitation of the Americans and the cruelty of the Japanese soldiers.
But is the Philippines really free today? President Manuel L. Quezon said, "I prefer a country run like hell by Filipinos to a country run like heaven by Americans. Because, however bad a Filipino government might be, we can always change it." In 15 years, (1986–2001), the Filipinos changed their government via extra constitutional means. Are we really free today? Are we run like Hell? Heaven?
It was only last week when the senators led by Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile chided some foreign businessmen who wished to interfere with the government affairs of the Philippines. They wrote the President of the Philippines requesting her to stop amending the EPIRA law. The formulation of economic policies are always influenced by the foreigners through the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other international bodies dominated by the first world countries.
Are the Filipinos the master in their own country? Sad to say but foreigners are in the Philippines with Filipino servants. Our government is recognizing the overseas Filipino workers because of their annual remittances amounting to US$ 13 billion. Never mind if they are abused, prostituted and maltreated.
Is there peace? Today, the Philippines is second from Iraq as the most dangerous country for journalist to work. This week, a broadcast journalist, Ces Oreña Drilon with two TV cameramen were kidnapped in Sulu allegedly by the Abbu Sayaf. Two broadcast journalists in Lezo and Kalibo, Aklan were gun down and killed by unidentified assailants. Until today, their cases are with the court.
Where Is Peace?
During the annual Kalibo Sto. Niño Ati-Atihan celebration, three years ago, the PNP provincial director was shoot and killed by his own security officer. Many others suffered gun shot wounds and died. Some 31 victims survived the rampage.
In the 1940’s, there were only about 25 million Filipinos. Today, there are about 90 million of them. Is there enough food? This year, according to the Department of Agriculture, rice production is short by 2.2 million metric tons to supply national food requirement. DA is importing from countries which can supply the rice requirement. How many percent of the Filipino people particularly the school children are malnourished?
The Filipinos would have no reason to experience rice shortage if the government just provided the necessary requirements for effective and productive agriculture program. Rice is hydrophonic crop, but the government has left irrigation to mind its own. NIA personnel are not included in the budget of the government. NIA personnel pay themselves out of their collections of payment from irrigation fees the farmers pay. Therefore, no collection, no salary.
Money intended for fertilizer was spent during the election of 2004. Until today, former undersecretary of Agriculture Jocelyn Bolante refuses to return to the Philippines to explain how did he spend the P730 million fertilizer fund. Supervised credit program for farmers was stopped. Are the top government officials still capable to be honest?
In education, the Philippines lags behind among 27 countries in Asia in Science, English and Mathematics. Given all the proper supports, Filipinos will excel in these subjects. But the teachers are poorly paid, most lack education and trainings to handle the subjects, there is not only shortage of books but some contents of books are wrong. School rooms are not enough and the teaching devices are inadequate. But the educational quality will highly improve if the money intended for it are spent for the purpose it is being appropriated. In region VI for instance, DepEd bought and distributed computers which cost P249,970 per unit which if purchased in Kalibo that kind of computer will cost no more than P25,000 per set.
The Philippines is not hopeless. She has all the potentials of a great nation. The people are industrious with tremendous natural resources available to sustain progress and development. It has fertile lands, mountains, rivers, lakes and the vast sea. It has forest. The soil is rich and with favorable climate.
The Philippines only lacks leaders, leaders whose "courage is the enforcing virtue, the one that makes possible all other virtues common to exceptional leaders: honesty, integrity, confidence, compassion and humility." /MP

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente

The Arrogance of Dr. Lebaquin

For simply texting his child, Dr. Rey Lebaquin, Sr. went to the office of the PNRC Aklan Chapter, confronted Mr. Morefe Q. Flores and scolded him.
What is the message of Flores to the Lebaquin child? Flores simply texted him to return Red Cross information materials and uniform lent to Rey Lebaquin, Jr. while they were in camp Capinpin, Tanay, Rizal attending the Survival Camping of Red Cross volunteers. But as per information, Rey Jr. has not returned them yet. So Morefe just reminded the young Lebaquin, Jr. to return it.
But Dr. Lebaquin, Sr. the "best surgeon in town" didn’t feel good. He confronted Flores using defamatory terms with threat if he continued texting his beloved son.
Gov. Carlito S. Marquez has referred the case to his legal officer and investigate the incident if necessary.
Oral Defamation Grave Threat VS Dr. Lebaquin
In Aklan Provincial Capitol, Governor Carlito S. Marquez has created an investigating committee to investigate Dr. Rey Lebaquin, Sr. to find out if he has or has not violated the Civil Service Law on the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standard for government officials and employees.
In a special meeting called by Atty. Ronquillo C. Tolentino, chairman, PNRC Aklan Chapter Board of Directors on Monday, June 09, 2008, it was unanimously approved that a criminal case will be filed against Dr. Rey Lebaquin, Sr., This decision was rendered after Mr. Morefe Q. Flores thoroughly explained the incident that happened between him and Dr. Lebaquin in the PNRC office, Kalibo in the afternoon of Tuesday, May 27.
Ms. Mary Joe B. Galeon who was present during the said incident was requested to relate what she heard and saw. Mr. Arcely Pelayo, chapter administrator, PNRC Aklan chapter told the PNRC Board the selection process followed in the selection of the Aklan delegates to the 2008 Super Camp of the PNRC held at Camp Capinpin, Tanay, Rizal on May 8-13, 2008 where one of the Aklan delegates was Rey Lebaquin, Jr., son of Dr. Lebaquin. Dr. Dolly C. Caballe whose son was also with the Aklan delegates was asked to say something about the May 27 incident, her son being one of the delegates. Her son, RR Caballe is also a friend and classmate of Rey Lebaquin, Jr. After hearing them, the PNRC Board Aklan unanimously approved to file criminal case versus Dr. Rey Lebaquin, Sr. with Mr. Morefe Q. Flores as the main complainant. A case of oral defamation, grave threat and behavior unbecoming of a physician maybe filed against Dr. Lebaquin.
Winston Garcia
Meralco is a private firm engaged in the supply and distribution of electricity. Mr. Winston Garcia wanted it investigated because of the high cost of electricity Meralco sells to its consumers. He also wants it investigated because Meralco does not disclose to the public information Mr. Garcia wanted to know.
If Mr. Garcia wished Meralco to disclosed some vital information, why don’t he start it with the GSIS he manages as chairman of the Board and president?
Mr. Garcia must explain the following to the people especially to the GSIS members:
1. Why did he deposit the GSIS pension fund with the Union Bank with very limited branches to serve the members? 2. Why are records in the GSIS so topsy-turvy making it very difficult to do business with that office? 3. Why does GSIS pay meager sum to members as dividends? He boost the GSIS has P400 billion to buy Meralco. 4. Why does Mr. Garcia engage in too much unnecessary advertising in the tri-media? The substance of advertisement is the promotion of favorable attitude towards the GSIS. No amount of ads will convince people but good service. 5. Why are so many GSIS members and pensioners discontented with the GSIS services? /MP


Shown above are Atty. Allen Salas Quimpo, President - NVC and Dr. Adolfo Jesus R. Gopez signing the MOA. Others in the picture are Engr. Percy Malonesio, Mr. & Mrs. Wilson, Dr. Reinalda Magdaluyo, Atty. Plaridel Morania, Hon. Lilian Q. Tirol and Dr. Cesar Domingo.

FEATI University and Northwestern Visayan Colleges, Kalibo, Aklan signed a Memo-randum of Agreement that will enable them to offer courses of BS Aeronautic Engineering and BS Aircraft Maintenance.
The signing ceremony was held in Audio Visual Room, RSQ Bldg., NVC, Estancia, Kalibo, Aklan on June 6, 2008. The agreement stipulates that classes and laboratory courses will be held at NVC Campuses, Kalibo while course contents, modules and faculty members will be of FEATI University. /MP

Kapehan Discusses Aklan Legislative Agenda

Kapehan resource persons (l to r) Hon. Jose Yap, Vice Gov. Gabrielle V. Calizo, Hon. Plaridel Morania and Hon. Rodson Mayor.

Aklan tri-media led by Aklan Press Club president Dr. Ambrosio R. Villorente during the Kapehan

In the first year of their term (2007-2010), the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) Aklan has conducted 150 committee and public hearings in order to formulate and approve landmark provincial legislations. This is strongly stressed by its presiding officer, vice governor Gabrielle V. Calizo. Beside the provincial ordinances and resolutions, SP Aklan is also conducting the review and approval of ordinances and resolutions from Aklan’s 17 towns.
Vice Gov. Calizo was joined by Hon. Jose Yap, Hon. Plaridel M. Morania and Hon. Rodson Mayor in last Saturday, June 7 Kapehan sa Aklan held at Kusina Restaurant. Hon. Teody Masangya, Sr. begged off from joining the Kapehan due to prior commitment. The nine (9) other members of the Aklan SP did not respond to the invitation.
To conserve soil fertility and protect the environment, SP Aklan has approved into law banning the burning of rice straw and other farm waste. It has also approved the ordinance which condones the payment of interest and penalties on real property taxes from the years 1985 to 2007.
According to Vice Gov. Calizo, SP Aklan is about to approve the Environmental Code after a long, painstaking studies designed to protect, conserve, develop and improve a balance ecology. SP Aklan is also about to approve the "Tourism Code" that will enhance sustainable, progressive, profitable and pro Aklanon tourism in Aklan. The codification of provincial ordinances is nearing completion, the installation of state of the art facilities on the SP offcies is also in progress designed to enhance quality legislative output.
Agriculture as the twin program with tourism of Aklan Governor Carlito S. Marquez, provincial government is admittedly weak. Vice Governor Calizo and Hon. Morania, chair of Agriculture Committee assured the Kapehan to pay attention to it so as to promote provincial food sufficiency and push up Aklanon farmers to benefit more from tourism program. It was admitted the foods sold in Boracay such as vegetables and fruits, eggs, beef and chicken meat and other food stuffs come from other provinces. /MP

BES Successfully Launches Brigada Eskwela

by Dobie P. Parohinog

Brigada Eskwela was launched in Bulwang Elementary School (BES), District of Numancia, Division of Aklan on June 2, 2008. It started with a Brigada Walk at 6:30 in the morning led by the school principal, teachers, barangay officials, parents, alumni and pupils. They brought with them streamers, balloons and working tools necessary to prepare the school classrooms and surroundings ready for the opening of classes on June 10, 2008.
Brigada Eskwela is in pursuant to DepEd Order No. 24, series of 2008. According to the plan, BES targeted 100 participants. The actual number reached 250 led by the general PTCA president, Mrs. Esperanza T. Templonuevo, barangay captain Plaridel C. Tembrevilla, and Hon. Neisel May Gonzales, SK chairman.
Dr. Dobie P. Parohinog, principal, likewise led the launching program with teachers and pupils which started at 7:30 in the morning at the Bulwangan ng Karunungan ng Paaralan, Bulwang, Numancia.
Dr. Ambrosio R. Villorente was the keynote speaker during the Brigada Launching Program on the theme: Building a Performing School. "Mapaearon ro inyong eskwelahan ay may mga aktibo nga lideres nga nagasuporta kara pares ko atong mahugod nga Punong Barangay ag ana nga mga Kagawad, PTCA president ag mga ginikanan, eabi gid sa atong Prinsipal it eskwelahan sa anang maabo nga ginadaea nga mga proyekto para mapatin-ad ro kaaeaman it mga inunga sa Barangay Bulwang," Villorente said. "Mapaearon man ro inyong eskwelahan ay may aktibong grupo it mga inunga pares it Supreme Pupil Government nga naga kooperar sa mga programa it eskwelahan," he stressed further. After his message, Villorente contributed P1,000 for Brigada Eskwela.
Brigada Eskwela activities are implemented yearly. It is contributing significantly to school improvement like repair of chairs, tables, roofings and cleaning of school surroundings before the opening of classes. This year, school alumni and other civic-minded individuals and groups contributed school supplies for the incoming Grade I pupils like notebooks, pencil, pad papers, crayons and school bags. Even the barangay officials have voluntarily offered their financial assistance to procure other instructional materials of the identified indigent in-school children.
Through this ambient school environment, the children will be encouraged to Balik Eskwela after year of leaving formal classes due to poverty. Also this year, the Rotary Club of Kalibo, pledged to sponsor the school feeding program for the identified malnourished children in the community.
The program ended with a pot-breaking ceremony and the closing message of barangay captain Plaridel C. Tembrevilla. June 3 to 7 was scheduled for the Brigada activities by grades level led by the Class Advisers and PTA Officials. /MP

PAPI Slates Executive Session Mid-Year Conference

The Publishers Association of the Philippines, Inc. (PAPI) will hold its 12th executive session of publishers and editors and mid-year media conference on June 23-24 at the Makati Sports Club in Makati city.
PAPI president Juan P. Dayang said the annual event will tackle issues related to food security and how the community press and other stakeholders can close ranks in addressing them with a sense of urgency.
"A Crucial Challenge: Media’s Strategic Role in Food Security" will be the centerpiece theme of the two-day meeting which will also be attended by other interest groups involved in food security.
They include those representing the farmers, traders, dealers, suppliers, irrigation administrators, agriculturists, farm implements manufacturers and suppliers, food processors, cooperatives, rural and development banks, agriculture technology, the academe such as agricultural colleges and students and other sectors.
Experts from government and non-government organizations will be tapped as resource speakers on food security in the face of alarming signs of shortages, steep price increases, hoarding and panic buying.
"This PAPI meeting aims to bring about an enlightenment on the imperatives of a collective action in addressing food security concerns related to threats of social anarchy, chaos and economic stagnation which have a bearing on national stability and survival," Dayang said.
In inviting a broad participation from various stakeholders, Dayang said the conference also seeks to "cement consensus and single-mindedness in purpose in the pursuit of our collective needs and aspirations as regards food production." This is in line with PAPI’s avowed goals of fostering service, leadership and advocacy.
"Needless to state, this 12th PAPI Executive Session and Mid-Year Conference is our own shared and common contribution to ensure food security and national stability," Dayang said.
Those interested to attend the meeting may contact the PAPI Secretariat (CP 0920 9094379) or e-mail, Unit 206, Cityland Condo 8 at 98 Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue, Makati City, telephone nos. (632) 892 9278 and telefax no. 894 4687./MP

Reason and Concern

By Ronquillo C. Tolentino
A Boracay Proposed Casino, Again?
When small town lottery surfaced in Kalibo during the incumbency as Kalibo Mayor of former Aklan Congressman Allen Salas Quimpo, I had occasion to write a column. . .about the evils of gambling.
Then Bishop of Kalibo, now Antipolo, Bishop Gabriel V. Reyes had occasion to tell me in 2003 that opposition should be made on the attempt to establish a casino in Boracay. A few months after Bishop Reyes told me that we should oppose the propose Boracay casino, I went to Manila with former Governor Joeben Miraflores, Congresswoman Billie Calizo, former Vice Governor Jean Rodriguez, some members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Aklan Municipal Mayors to have an audience with President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. The night before we had the appointment with the President, I had occasion to have coffee at Hyatt Regency Hotel with Congressman Iggy Arroyo, Guimaras governor, Rahmon Nava and Aklan governor Miraflores.
I told Rep. Iggy Arroyo of Bishop Reyes’ opposition to the proposed Boracay Casino. On the morning when we were about to leave for Malacañang, I chanced to hurriedly read the Philippine Daily Inquirer, issue for the day and found the headline of Bishop Reyes’ opposition to the proposed casino.
A year and a half back, a comely Pagcor employed lady whose name had escaped my memory showed me Pagcor’s expanded benefits to local government units and at the same time hinting at a Pagcor’s plan to put up a casino in Boracay. After looking at the Pagcor expanded benefits, she asked me of my views. I politely told her to refer her views to Bishop Romeo O. Lazo of Kalibo. She never came back. But I knew for a fact that Bishop Lazo would turn down any proposal to have a casino in Boracay.
The Boracay casino issue re-surfaced when the Sangguniang Bayan of Malay approved a resolution indorsing Pagcor’s proposal for the casino establishment in Boracay. No sooner had it seen print and broadcast coverages, when the bishop of Kalibo manifested his opposition to it.
Dr. Dailin H. Oaks, then president of Brigham Young University, writes about the evils of gambling citing that gambling is an old evil, long recognized as such. He traces some Oriental gambling games back to 2100 b.c. Gambling is denounced in the Hindu code; the Koran and the Talmudic law. Oak says that in ancient Egypt, persons convicted of gambling were sent to the quarries. Even Aristotle denounced gamblers.
Oaks observes that gambling, in its simplest form, is an act of risking something of value on the outcome of a game that may be determined in part or entirely by chance. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in a statement made by its president, Heber J. Grant and his counselors in the First Presidency on September 21, 1925 said: "The Church has been and now unalterably opposed to gambling in any form whatever. It is opposed to any game of chance, occupation or so-called business, which takes money from the person who may possessed of it without giving value received in return. It is opposed to all practices the tendency of which is to encourage the spirit of reckless speculation, and particularly to that which tends to degrade or weaken the high moral standard which members of the Church and our community at large, have always maintained."
Oaks added why church leaders urged people to avoid gambling and to fight the evils of gambling on communities. Stating five reasons, Oaks emphasized, thus:
"First, gambling weakens the ethics of work, industry, thrift and service- the foundation of national prosperity – by holding out the seductive lure of something for nothing. By the same token, gambling encourages idleness, with all of its resulting bad effects for society."
"The second evil of gambling is, it promotes greed and covetousness and inevitably involves and encourages the base practice of overreaching and taking from one’s neighbor."
"The good Christian’s love of neighbor will stand against every practice which hinders the growth of human spirit toward the likeness of Christ or which breaks down the structures of justice in society. The Christian will himself refrain from gambling and from publicly endorsing it in any form, realizing that gambling is detrimental to the purpose of life as revealed in Jesus Christ".
"The third evil of gambling is its tendency to corrupt the participant. We are familiar with cases in which trusted employees have ruined their lives and brought disgrace and tragedy upon themselves and their families by stealing their employer’s money. All too often the sordid story is traceable to a desperate attempt to pay gambling debts or to finance further gambling activities."
"The temptations of the gambler are such that persons in responsible positions in government and private industry will not hire or retain as employee those who are known to gamble. In recounting the undesirable side of gambling, mention must also be made of the fact that gambling is often accompanied by indulgence in alcohol and other vices."
"A fourth disadvantage, one cited by persons not concerned with the moral effects of gambling, is the extraordinary waste of time involve in it. Those who while away their hours gambling frequently do so to the neglect of family and work."
"Time wasted in gambling becomes more significant when we reflect that many persons who indulge in gambling become addicted to it."
"The spirit of gambling is a progressive thing. Usually it begins modestly; and then like many other hazardous habits, it often grows beyond control. At best it wastes time and produces nothing. At worst it becomes a ruinous obsession and fosters false living by encouraging the futile belief that we can continually get something for nothing."
"The fifth and final condemnation of gambling follows from other disadvantages already discussed. Whenever we engage in any kind of conduct that is inconsistent with the companionship of the Spirit of the Lord, we pay an enormous price. Left without the sustaining influence of that Spirit, we are vulnerable to temptation, prone to criticize, and subject to being tossed to and fro and buffeted by the forces of the world and the works of the evil one."
"They who gamble, who walk by chance, suffer degeneration of character, they become spiritually flabby; they end as enemies of a wholesome society. A gambling den, however beautifully house, is the ugliest place on earth. The tense participants live in a silence broken only, over the tables, by the swish of the wings of darkness. There is an ever-present brooding spirit of horror of an unknown evil. It is the devil’s own home."
"What I have said about gambling should be understood to include playing cards for money, betting on horses and athletic contests (including office pools on the world series), casino gambling in all its forms, lotteries, raffles, bingo for money and dice."
As I write this, Bishop Romeo O. Lazo, bishop of Kalibo, shall definitely issue a pastoral letter against the proposed casino in Boracay. /MP

Sugilanon Ni Tita Linda

Ni Tita Linda Belayro
Sumpa It Suba
Ro suba it Catmon, sulo nga naga angot sa daywang ka baryo it Lagunoy ag Sapnit. Iya kara naga bo-oe it pang eaha, pangbunyag sa tanum ag guinapaligos ko mga tawo. Kada agahon, abo nga mga onga ro nagapaligos parabil mag adto sa eskwelahan.
Kon adlaw nga Sabado, makita ro mga tawo sa kilid it pangpang it daywang ka suba nga naga eaba samtang ro mga onga hay naga pinaligos.
Ko sangka Sabado, nag su-ud si Satur agod maligos man kunta sa suba. Isaea imaw ka binatilyo nga may deperensya ro anang oyahon, buktot pa ag naga ikang-ikang kon magtikang. Pagkakita kana ko mga onga, guinhinaboy imaw it bato, samtang ro mga kaeaeakihan hay guinpulihan nanda ag pilit nga guintum-oy sa tubi agod bunyagan kuno.
Ano pa’t hapung-an si Satur bangud sa mabuhay sa idaeum it tubi. Nag-hinibayag ro mga onga imaw man ro ibang guinikanan nga nakakita. Nag-uli nga masubo si Satur. Naeo-oy imaw sa anang kaugalingon. Owa pa imaw it guinikanan ag owa pa kana it may nag-apin.
Umpisa kato, owa eon makita si Satur una sa andang lugar. Makalipas ro napueong dag-on, bag-o eon ro kapitan ko andang barangay ag nagbag-o man ro Mayor. Padayon nga may nagakaeomos runa sa suba. Pareho it unga ag magueang, owa it guinapili ro suba. Nagkangay sanda it medico agod maghaead it tuos o haead nga karne it manok sa tubi. Pag-oli it mga tawo, may maputi nga alima ro nagbo-oe ko ratong karne ag guin hunos paidaeum.
Pagkaaga, nagbisita ro bag-ong Mayor runa sa suba. Abo eon abi nga reklamo ro mga tawo busa guintan-aw nana ro lugar. Indi imaw magpati ko sumpa. Indi eang kuno antiguhan mag eangoy ro mga tawo ag pinulikat ro andang siki. Ngani naeomos. Nag eosob guid imaw sa tubi agod ipakita nga owa it sumpa.
Kat idto eon imaw sa tunga it suba, may naghunos kana paidaom. Suminggit imaw, hangawa ro mga naga tan-aw. May halimaw kuno sa idaeum. Dali-dali man nga nag responde ro mga tanod ag kapulisan. Naga pang eopsi si Mayor pagtakas. Umabot man dayon ro pari una sa andang lugar. Guin binditahan nana ro tubi ag maghambae, "Kon sin-o ka man nga may kaakig sa mga tawo, guina pangayo namon nga patawaron mo kami. Kon may atraso kami kimo, batuna ro among pagpangayo it patawad."
Owa it suko-suko, may tumunga sa mga tanum nga water lily nga isaeang ka mahaba it buhok, gutay-gutay nga eambong, buktot ag masyadong maputi ro tumakas sa pangpang.
"Si Satur, Si Satur", gali ro saeot. Patyon imaw!" singgit it mga tawo.
"Indi anay kamo magpahinali, bukon it saeot o halimaw si Satur. Nagbaeos eamang imaw sa guin obra kana, mga napueong dag-on eon ro nakataliwan. Isaea ako sa amigo nana nga nakasayod ko tanan. Magpangayo kita tanan it patawad kana. Tanan ro nakasaksi, nag-dungok ro andang oeo ag dueongan nga nagpangayo it patawad kay Satur. Guindaea si Satur idto sa simbahan agod tatapon ko pari hasta magbaskog ro anang eawas. Ka’t mabakod eon imaw, guin obra imaw nga sacristan it simbahan. Owa eon imaw guin kahadluki it mga onga.
Owa eon it sumpa. Owa eon it halimaw sa suba it Catmon. /MP

Daboy to Friend Manny Pacquiao: “I will miss your fight’


Manny Pacquiao couldn’t believe when ailing actor Rudy Fernandez called him up days before the cancer-stricken idol of Philippine movie went home to the Philippines after undergoing alternative treatment in the United States. (Daboy passed away in the morning of Saturday, June 7, 2008.)
"Manny, baka indi na ako makapanood sa laban mo sa June 28 (I may not be able to watch your fight on June 28 anymore, Manny)," sources from the camp of the boxing champion in his apartment in La Brea, Los Angeles, California quoted the 56-year-old actor popularly known as "Daboy" as saying.
The conversation lasted for about 10 to 15 minutes where both boxer and actor offered prayers and wished each other good luck, sources added.
Fernandez has been battling periampulary cancer and was reportedly released from a Manila hospital after his body rejected a third cycle of chemotherapy.
Fernandez has been under the Rexin-G program (a "targeted gene therapy) since February. The cancer affects the area where the ducts from the liver and the pancreas enter the small intestines.
Sources said Pacquiao "was saddened" by Fernandez’s message and wished the actor would be able to recover even if the cancer has reportedly entered his liver.
"Manny was sad because he considers Daboy a friend who never missed his fights," said the source who accompanied the 29-year-old Gen. Santos City phenom in his recent promotional tour in Berkeley, California where Pacquiao had a "cordial" meeting with the 32-year-old Diaz.
Fernandez and wife Lorna Tolentino left for Los Angeles March 5 for therapy en route to Las Vegas, Nevada where they watched Pacquiao’s fight against Juan Manuel Marquez.
Meanwhile, World Boxing Council (WBC) lightweight champion David Diaz did not predict a knockout win in his title defense versus Pacquiao dubbed "Lethal Combination" but vowed to keep his crown and remain as world champion after June 28.
WBC’s ‘Instant Replay’ May
Benefit RP Pugs in OPBF Fights
The influential Japan Boxing Commission (JBC) has agreed to use instant replay in World Boxing Council (WBC) fights, WBC president Jose Sulaiman announced on Wednesday (June 4) in Mexico City. Filipino boxers will now be protected from hometown decisions which remained to be their major stumbling block in pocketing OPBF titles.
Sulaiman, 77, had earlier announced that "the WBC is very happy with this development regarding the instant replay rule, which was adopted during the 45th Annual WBC World Convention in Manila, Philippines, in November 2007."
Sulaiman, quoted by WBC news, said: "At first, the JBC did not accept the use of the rule and a major injustice came very close to happening in Japan when champion Hozumi Hasegawa fought Simone Maludrottu in January, 2008."
"Hasagawa sustained a large cut on his eyelid. The referee did not see the headbutt that produced it, and ruled that the cut was caused by a legal punch. During the rest period between rounds, the replay – which clearly showed that the cut was caused by a headbutt - was shown to millions of fans who were watching on television as well as thousands of fans in the arena who could see the giant video screens.
"Fortunately, the fight went to a decision and Hasegawa won, but had the fight been stopped on the cut, Hasegawa would have lost his title.
"The Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation has announced the use of the four–and eight-round open scoring in all OPBF title fights.
"This innovative rule has been proven to bring excitement and competitiveness to fights around the world.
"More than 45 countries are using open scoring in title bouts, and there has been no negative incident."
The country has two reigning OPBF champions — Rolly Matsushita Lunas (bantamweight) and Randy Suico (lightweight).
Superbantamweight Jun Talape of Jay De Pedro’s Tiger City gym will gun for OPBF title worn by Wethya Sakmuangklaeng of Thailand next month and could be the first Filipino to avail of instant replay in a WBC-sanctioned fight. /MP

Roxas Files Omnibus Education Reform Act

Senator Mar Roxas recently filed the Omnibus Education Reform Act of 2008 to strengthen the Philippine education system through timely interventions on the quality of teachers, the medium of instruction used and the evaluation of students’ aptitude, among other aspects.
"We need to fix our educational system to promote social justice and better opportunities for the Filipino youth. This is the best way for us to catch up with our neighbors that have long made wise and huge investments in their own educational systems," Roxas pointed out, in filing Senate Bill No. 2294.
Roxas noted that at present, only 65 out of 100 Grade 1 students are able to complete Grade 6, and of these, only 43 graduate High School. With the small survival rate, most of these students do not even achieve up-to-standard mastery of English, Science and Math.
This, he said, is the result of many factors, particularly low government spending on education, which is at present only 3 percent of the Gross National Product, which drastically falls below the 6 percent global standard.
"Education is a building blocks system. Employability cannot be assured if college education is flawed. College outcomes cannot be fixed if high school education is flawed. High school outcomes cannot be improved if elementary school fundamentals are lacking. Authentic reforms must begin at the lowest level and work upwards. We cannot afford to take shortcuts," he said, noting that as low as 2 percent of college graduates who apply in the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector are accepted.
The proposed reforms in the bill are to:
1. Institutionalize long-term planning; 2. Mandate the use of the mother tongue as medium of instruction for Grades 1 to 3;
3. A School-Feeding Program for Grade 1 and 2 students; 4. Imposition of performance standards in Grades 3 and 6;
5. Mandate the increase in the number of years in basic education, from 10 years to 12;
6. Electives for High School students;
7. Intensive training and upgrading programs for teachers; and
8. A compulsory pre-school education year.
An initial appropriation of P19 billion is allocated to the Department of Education, on top of its regular budget, to fund these reforms. /MP

Improper Use of Equipment

Picture just taken shows a forklift loaded with bags of cement at corner Roxas Ave., A. Mabini Street, Poblacion, Kalibo, Aklan. Who owns this equipment? Who authorized this forklift to be loaded with cement and haul it using the highway? This is a misuse of very expensive equipment. Take note of the cement spilled on the road and the workers reloading cement on the crossroad. This practice is not only improper, dangerous, risky to pedestrians, motorists and to the operator. It is wasteful.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Editorial - June 7, 2008 Issue

Garcia Doesn’t Deserve
Meralco Chair
During the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) stockholders’ meeting held last week, almost all eyes were focused at Mr. Manolo Lopez – chief executive officer of Meralco and Mr. Winston Garcia – chairman and chief executive officer of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS). The meeting was held at the Meralco Head Office, Ortigas Avenue, Pasig City.
Lopez and Garcia are the main protagonists in that boardroom war, the winner of which will control Meralco. During that Board War, the members of the media were barred. Even the Lopez owned ABS-CBN cooperated. Lopez won that war.
From the stockholders home court, the Securities and Exchange Commission joined the fray. It issued Temporary Restraining Order which Meralco Board of Directors dishonored. Now Garcia has brought the case to court. Why is Garcia so interested to take control of the Meralco? According to him, he will bring down the per kilowatt hour cost by way of good management. What good management Mr. Winston Garcia is talking about?
Let us look at Mr. Winston Garcia’s performance in the GSIS. Today, it is extremely difficult for a GSIS member to transact business with the GSIS. Loan remittances are not properly recorded. Remittances of premium payments are not properly recorded. Hence, GSIS records are only 30 percent accurate, 70 percent inaccurate. Those whose records belong to the 70 percent inaccurate either cannot renew their loans unless they pay for what they have already paid for. Those whose records belong to 70 percent inaccurate cannot receive their retirement benefits on their retirement dates. Or they will pay the GSIS for the premiums already paid as GSIS refuses to acknowledge because of faulty record keeping. Is this good management?
Mr. Winston Garcia questions the payments of systems loss from the electric consumers by the Meralco.
In the GSIS, Mr. Garcia has relieved the GSIS from paying the cost of pension delivery to and shifted it to the GSIS pensioners. According to the GSIS, paying the pensioners via the use of e-Card Plus will prevent fraud. Is this efficient management? GSIS pensioners are not in any position to commit fraud in the GSIS offices. It is only its officers and employees who are in a position to commit fraud. The use of Union Bank as depository bank of GSIS money is enabling Mr. Winston Garcia to make business out of pensioners’ fund which has greatly enlarged the business operations of Aboitiz owned Union Bank.
For every withdrawal of pensioner’s money at ATM booth, a P12 fee is automatically paid without question, without receipt. For every inquiry in the ATM booth, a pensioner pays three pesos. Mr. Garcia has shifted operational costs of GSIS to its GSIS members. Before Garcia, GSIS paid its pensioners by checks expenses of which were shouldered by the GSIS itself.
In the management of GSIS under Garcia, GSIS is keeping money of the members portion of which are the unacknowledged loan repayments, unrecorded membership fee remittances, members’ money that are not withdrawn from the Union Bank among others. This explains why Garcia boosts GSIS has enough money to buy out the Lopezes in Meralco.
Mr. Winston Garcia does not deserve board chairmanship of the Meralco, not until he improved the GSIS services to its members. /MP

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente

It is God given. It is God given to the Aklanon Youth who wish to pursue a career in Aeronautical Engineering and Aircraft Maintenance.
The Northwestern Visayan Colleges (NVC) has signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the FEATI University based in Manila to jointly open courses leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Science in Aironautical Engineering and Bachelor of Science in Aircraft Maintenance. NVC will be the host college with the full support of FEATI University.
The MOA was signed by Atty. Allen S. Quimpo as president of NVC Kalibo, Aklan and Dr. Adolfo Jesus R. Gopez as president of FEATI University, Manila. Ms. Erlinda Quimpo–Wilson, executive dean, NVC and Dr. Cesar Domingo, vice president for Academic Affairs, FEATI also signed the MOA as witnesses. The signing ceremonies is the highlight of a simple program held in the Audio Visual Room, RSQ Bldg., NVC, Estancia, Kalibo, Aklan.
Some members of the Board of Trustees, college deans, faculty members and members of the Aklan tri-media witnessed the signing ceremonies.
A brief press conference followed the signing ceremonies where the value, importance and significance of the MOA to Aklanons were presented.
Engr. Percy Malonesio, manager of Kalibo International Airport explained the demands for the graduates of aeronautics and aircraft maintenance to the aviation industry. Malonesio pointed out the need of the Air Transportation industry for the graduates of the said courses.
Dr. Gopez assured that the course module, its contents will be that FEATI uses. Laboratories such as airplane engines and other equipment will be installed in NVC. Faculty members of FEATI will be detailed in the NVC to handle engineering classes. The courses start this semester.
Gopez pointed out these two engineering courses are the first of its kind in Panay and probably in Region VI. “There are only 800 Filipinos who graduated from this course and the demand is increasing everyday,” Gopez pointed out.
Atty. Allen S. Quimpo when asked what benefits it offers to Aklan students and parents, gave the answers as follows: 1. Students will be given this new opportunity to study right in Kalibo at less expense this highly demanded college degree; 2. Aklan is rapidly becoming the center of tourism where air travel is most utilized. These courses will prepare our youth to respond to the demands of the aviation industry; and 3. Studying in Aklan is most economically affordable, less risky, free from hustle and bustle in Metro Manila. /MP

Mandarin Airlines Launches Taipei- Kalibo Direct Flight Takes 2 Hours To Visit Beach Paradise

Boracay, Malay, Aklan, Philippines is selected as one of the most beautiful islands all over the world by and traveling books. Boracay also won the No. 1 selection for island tour in Asia by
Before the 1st direct flight Taipei – Kalibo was launched on 31 May, this beautiful island seems too far away from Taiwan. Now people in Taiwan may visit this beach paradise for a full relaxation holidays in an easier way. The direct flight between Aklan–Taiwan islands is served on every Wednesday and Sunday taking around 2 hours 20 minutes flying hours. It is getting so easy to reach this paradise and leave all troubles there in Taiwan.
The inaugural flight from Taipei to Kalibo was launched on 31 May. The first flight AE7265 departed from Taipei at 15:40 and arrived at Kalibo International Airport, Kalibo, Aklan at 18:20 on 31 May. On return sector, AE7266 departed Kalibo at 20:00 and arrived at Taipei at 22:20. Taking the direct flight, passengers don’t need to transit in Manila anymore. In addition to this, they may have more time before aboard the flight, and enjoy more time for SPA, massage before returning back home.
Mandarin Airlines arranges B737-800 aircraft model with configuration 168Y seats for Boracay flight. Five (5) travel agencies are launching 5D/4N and 4D/3N paterns both for group travel and FIT-package. Besides, the 5 travel agencies allocate hotel rooms in Club Panoly Beach Resort and Regency Boracay Resort. Both of these 2 hotels own private beach for secured boating and beach activities.
Tourists never know how beautiful Boracay is unless they accept our sincere invitation to visit Boracay – the beach paradise.
Governor Carlito S. Marquez, Congressman Joeben Miraflores, Kalibo Mayor Raymar A. Rebaldo and Aklan tri media were at the Kalibo International Airport to welcome the 166 passengers and 8 members of the crew in the maiden flight.
The guests first tested the Aklanon hospitality as they were welcomed by our Ati Atihan tribe where they enjoyed having photo sessions.
Mr. Richard Y. Ma – Supervisor, Ground Service Department, Taipei and Mr. Eric Tung – General Manager, Philippines Branch, Cebu City, both of Mandarin Airlines held a press conference at Miggy’s Place, Kalibo International Airport before the Mandarin Airlines planes touches down. /MP

GMA Inaugurates Ibajay Bridge

Upper photo shows the newly constructed Polo, Ibajay bridge which costs P200 million plus.

The P207 million bridge in Ibajay was inaugurated by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Photo above shows Bishop Romeo O. Lazo of the Diocese of Kalibo blessing the new bridge.

President Gloria M. Arroyo with Megs Lunn

June 2, 2008 is historical for the province of Aklan. The P207 million bridge in Ibajay was inaugurated by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. The president and party arrived at Kalibo International Airport at past 9 AM. In her entourage included United Kingdom (UK) Ambassador Peter Bekingham, DPWH Secretary Hermogenes Ebdane, and DTI Sec. Peter Favila.
GMA and party were joined by Aklan Cong. Florencio T. Miraflores, Aklan Governor Carlito S. Marquez and Ibajay Municipal Mayor Ma. Lourdes Miraflores. They motored from Kalibo to Ibajay via the 45 kilometer portion of the Strong Republic Nautical Highway. They unveiled the project marker, after which they proceeded to the inaugural drive thru of the new Ibajay Bridge.
The new Ibajay Bridge and Approaches project was constructed by the DPWH under the Bridge Replacement Project Phase II which cost P13,616,287.72 for civil works and P68,751,141.30 for steel bridging materials provided by the UK. The project is a 246 linear meters, double lane bridge that replaced the existing reinforced concrete deck girder bridge. This bridge connects Panay Island with the islands of Luzon and Mindanao. The project was started in June 2006 and completed on 25 May 2008.
The project is one of the 242 UK steel bridges located nationwide with a total length of 8,226. 50 linear meters. Under this program, the UK provided the steel bridging components through soft loan amounting to P1.04 B or 65 percent of the total project cost and grant of P560 M or 35 percent of the total project cost according to Dir. Ramon Cacatian, Director of DPWH, Project Management Office for Special Bridge Project. The Government of the Philippines provided the cost for the civil works.
According to Cacatian, the civil works included the construction of bridge proper, bank protection and approaches. All the materials are of UK manufactured bridge feature. The materials supplier is the Balfou Beatty Cleveland Bridge Joint Venture and the implementing office is the DPWH, PMO for Special Bridge Project. It has a 4 multi-span (3 x 50 + 1 x 96) that makes it 236 linear meters in length.
The new Ibajay Bridge was constructed about 63 meters downstream of the existing bridge at Brgy. Polo, Ibajay, Aklan. It serves as vital link to the famous tourist destination, Boracay Island. Earlier in the day, the bridge was blessed by Bishop Romeo O. Lazo, assisted by Rev. Fr. Gualberto “Joebert” Villasis of the diocese of Kalibo, Kalibo, Aklan.
GMA had a closed door meeting with Ibajay Brgy. Captains. She visited the burned down Ibajay Public Market before she motored back to Kalibo International Airport and took her presidential plane back to Manila at 12:30 P.M. /MP

Kapehan Discusses Road Safety

Road safety is the subject of discussion just last Saturday, May 31 during the weekly program Kapehan Sa Aklan sponsored by the tri-media of Aklan. Kapehan is a two hour discussion from 7–9 AM held in Kusina Sa Kalibo Restaurant every Saturday.
May was dubbed “Road Safety Month”. The celebration was led by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH). The Engineering District in Aklan under District Engr. Roberto Cabigas spearheaded Road Safety Month celebration of Aklan.
With Engr. Cabigas, other resource persons in the Kapehan were Mr. Valtimore Conanan–head, Land Transportation Office, Aklan; SPO1 Armenio–head Traffic Section of the Kalibo PNP, and president More Morier–Rotary Club of Kalibo.
The elements of road safety are the pedestrians, the passengers in the vehicle, the drivers of the vehicles, the road condition and the worthiness of the vehicles.
Mr. Boy Conanan of LTO discussed the process of securing driver’s license and its renewal, like the written and actual driving tests, drug test, and health examination. He also explained the process of vehicle registration and its renewal, the training program LTO provides for would be and erring drivers.
SPO1 Armenio informed the Kapehan of how the Kalibo PNP, through the Traffic Section, implements the traffic laws, rules and regulations. He discussed the proper uses of sidewalks, pedestrian lanes, speed limits and proper parking.
DPWH District Engr. Cabigas claimed Aklan has the best highway in Western Visayas. This claim was seconded by Atty. Allen S. Quimpo. He cited the highway from Altavas extending up to Caticlan, Malay. Mrs. Stella Lao of the DPWH Aklan compared the Aklan national road to an airport runway.
However, well paved, the Aklan national highway lacks proper signages. Engr. Cabigas assured, signages will be installed where necessary soonest.
Mr. More Morier, president, Rotary Club of Kalibo cited the modest contribution his club provides to road safety such as conducting seminars to vehicle drivers and road clean-up.
On the question of wearing of helmet of motorcycle riders, Conanan explained that “all riders must wear helmet both driver and back riders. And they must wear the prescribed helmet. /MP

Reason & Concern

By Ronquillo C. Tolentino

On Food Wars

Reading a regional newspaper June 3, 2008 editorial titled “Food problem and national security “ made my mind raced back to “food wars”. There is verity to the political observation that poverty-related limitations in their access to food and acute food shortages inclusive of disruptions to food systems and economies can result into civil disorders, nay, armed conflicts. Important would be the consideration that conflicts can arise in view of the hunger vulnerability of particular communities, households and individuals. Indeed, I totally agree to that editorial observation that “ the government should resume the peace talks in Mindanao , to work for peace in areas where the planting of rice has been impeded by conflict. The vicious cycle of hunger and conflict must be stopped.”
Tracing food shortage related to conflict, Messer, in an article titled “Conflict As A Cause Of Hunger” said: “The most obvious way in which armed conflict causes hunger is deliberate use of food as a weapon. Adversaries starve opponents into submission by seizing or destroying food stocks, livestock, or other assets in rural areas and by cutting off sources of food or livelihood, including destruction of markets in urban and rural areas. Land and water resources are mined or contaminated, to force people to leave and to discourage their return.”
“The deliberate use of hunger as a weapon is most evident in siege warfare and “scorched earth” tactics, but it is also evident where combatants commandeer and divert relief food from intended beneficiaries and keep emergency rations from affected civilian and displaced populations. Military interests appropriate both local and externally donated provisions for their own tactical advantage. A prolonged case in point is Sudan, where the government in 1990 had sold grain reserves to fuel their military, but refused to declare a food emergency or allow relief into starving opposition areas. Both government and opposition forces created famine as a tool to control territories and populations, and restricted access to food aid (often by attacking relief convoys) as an instrument of ethnic and religious oppression (Keen 1994).”
“Food shortage ripples into the larger economy and extends over multiple years when farmers, herders, and others flee attacks, terror, and destruction or suffer reductions in their capacities to produce food because of forced labour recruitment (including conscription) and war-related depletion of assets. Ancillary attacks of disease, linked to destruction of health facilities, and hardship and hunger also reduce the human capacity for food production.”
“These factors set the stage for multiple years of food shortage, especially where conflicts interact with natural disasters such as multi-year droughts. Combined political-environmental disasters over several years produce the “complex emergencies” that now confront the international relief community. The World Food Programme, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, other bilateral and multilateral relief agencies, and NGOs increasingly are called to respond to these emergency relief situations at the expense of peaceful development assistance aimed at increasing food production and livelihood in these same or other war zones (Maxwell and Buchanan Smith 1994).” /MP

Sugilanon Ni Tita Linda

Ni Tita Linda Belayro

Ham-an Nagtuman Si Tado?
Si Tado hay isaeang ka maisot nga ongang Hapones. Idto naga estar imaw kaibahan ko anang Lolo sa kilid it bukid sa maisot nga banwa sa Japan. Naga-libot ro mga tanum nga paeay sa lugar ko guina estahan ni Tado. Tanan ro mga tawo hay may mga uma nga paeay kaibahan man nanday Tado. Adlaw-adlaw naga adto ro mga tawo sa andang paeayan. Kon hapon, mauli sanda. Ro mabilin hay si Tado ag anang Lolo tongod una sanda naga estar.
Maskin limang dag-on paeang ro edad ni Tado, sayod eon imaw kon ano kahayga ro paeay sa mga Hapones. Pilang beses gin hambaean ko anang Lolo nga ro paeay ro andang pagkaon. Kon ano ro matabo sa andang tanum, tanan sanda hay magutuman. Owa naila magutum si Tado, busa kat amat-amat nga naga eoto eon ro paeay, duro guid ro kalipay ni Lolo tongod sa indi magbuhay hay paga anihon eon ro mga paeay.
Ogaling isaeang adlaw, may natabo nga indi malipatan sa kahadluk ni Tado. Sanda eamang ko anang Lolo ro habilin una sa andang lugar. Samtang, nagapahilay-hilay ro anang Lolo, may hakita imaw idto sa may baybayon. Nang eopsi imaw ag owa maka hambae it madali. Dayon nanang singgit kay Tado. “Dali, daehi ako it suga.” Owa man it boe balikid nga sumunod si Tado. Dumaeagan imaw sa andang dapog ag guin sug-an ratong mga dagaming gatong ag ita-o kay Lolo nana. Bukon eamang it sang balik sa kada sugo ni Lolo nana. Ko ulihi, nageapad ro sunog nga mga paeay. Napatangis si Lolo. Indi nana masayran kon ham-an it guin sug-an ko anang Lolo ro mga aeanihon eon nga paeay. Pagkakita ko mga tawo ko madamoe nga aso, dali-dali sanda nga daeagan pasaka sa bukid. Akig nga akig sanda. “Sin-o ro owa it kaeag nga nag-obra kara?” akig nga pangutana it mga tawo. “Ako ro nag-obra karon, ag dungan turo sa banda it baybayon.”
Hakita ko mga tawo ro mat simbahan nga humbak nga naga paadto sa takas. Guin eapawan ro andang kabaeayan ag mga kasapatan. Pag-abot sa bukid, napusa ro humbak. Tama guid nga nakasaka ro mga tawo. Abo guid ro pasaeamat ko mga tawo sa Lolo ni Tado.
Makaron, sayod eon sanda kon ham-an it guin sug-an ko anang Lolo ro paeayan. Bu-ot nana nga tanan ro tawo hay magsaka idto sa bukid agod mailikaw sa dayuyon nga naga paadto sa andang baryo. Maskin nasunog ro andang kapaeayan, libre man ro andang kabuhi.
“Indi kamo mag-pasaeamat kakon, kay Tado kamo mag-pasa-eamat, bangud kon owa imaw magtuman kakon, owa nakon masalbar ro inyong kabuhi.” Bugaeon si Tado ko mga oras ngaron bangud naka-tuman imaw nga owa it pangutana. Imaw man ro akong pagtuman kay Jesus Christ, bangud sa atong pagto-o kana, nagatuman kita nga owa it pagpangutana. /MP

PPhA Aklan Joins Zamboanga Pharmacists Convention

Ms. Mabel P. Ureta-Concepcion of the Philippine Pharmacists Association (PPhA) Aklan Chapter led the Aklanon delegation to the 58th National Pharmacists Convention. The event was held at the Astoria Regency in Zamboanga City just very recently.
Mabel P. Ureta-Concepcion is the chapter president and vice president for the Visayas of DOH League of Pharmacists. The national convention provided opportunity for the practitioners, experts and movers in the pharmaceutical field from all over the country to celebrate the role of pharmacists in the Philippines’ development.
Organized by PPhA, the three-day event served as a learning venue. It discussed issues relevant to the pharmacy profession.
“That event was very significant for all of us, Aklanons, because Aklan Chapter will be hosting the 59th National Pharmacists Convention in Aklan on April 28-May 1, 2009,” said Concepcion.
PPhA Aklan, better known as the Aklan Pharmaceutical Association, had been sending delegates to the convention in various areas in the country as proof of the chapter’s continued involvement in PPhA work to raise the level of concerns about the status of pharmacists. “Our attendance speaks of our deep and life commitment to creating a better environment within which the pharmacy profession will flourish,” said Annie R. Barbasa, Vice President of PPhA Aklan Chapter. /MP

47 Children Graduate Vacation Church School Course

The Aklan Police Provincial Office (APPO) successfully accommodated a total of 47 children enrolees in the Vacation Church School (VCS) for children in Camp Pastor Martelino, New Buswang, Kalibo, Aklan. This is in coordination with the St Ignatius De Loyola Catholic Association. The VCS was conducted simultaneously by Aklan PPO and municipal police stations to children ages 5 to 13 years old.
In the afternoon at 1 p.m. Friday, May 30, some 47 children enrolled in VCS graduated. It was held at Aklan PPO Multi-Purpose Building. The awarding ceremony was graced by Police Superintendent Larry L. Decena, Officer In-Charge of Aklan PPO while Police Senior Superintendent Durana is attending a seminar in the United States.
According to Aklan Provincial Director Police Senior Superintendent Benigno B Durana Jr., the Vacation Church School is established to let the children know that police officers are their friends, someone they could trust and ask for assistance. Most importantly, VCS aims to help build the lives of the future generation of Aklanons by teaching them basic Christian values which is the key to a Victorians and fruitful life, Durana stressed. (Nida L Gregas-DPIO) /MP

APPO Hold Its 2nd Summer Olympics 2008

The Aklan Police Provincial Office (APPO) enjoyed the 10 days 2nd Summer Olympics 2008. Held on 23 May to June 2, 2008. All personnel of Aklan PPO, Regional Mobile Group, members of the tri-media and volunteer church workers of Aklan participated.
Events included basketball and volleyball tournaments which culminated with a Fun run at the end of the competition. That is one way to encourage the active participation in sports of every personnel and to promote a healthy lifestyle in the police force.
Senior Supt Benigno B Durana Jr, Aklan Provincial Director, said the tournament aims to strengthen the camaraderie and unity of the policemen of Aklan. “ The competition would again surely add more pomp and color this summer,” he added .The events got its full media coverage said Larry L. Decena-Police Superintendent. (POI Nida L Gregas) /MP

Roxas: Slower Growth, High Prices Call For Zero Vat On Oil

Senator Mar Roxas said the government should now support moves for zero value-added tax (VAT) on oil. The government has admitted it would not anymore meet its balanced budget target this year due to slower growth.
“When oil was at $90 per barrel at the beginning of the year, that target of a balanced budget this year has become impossible. The economic growth for 2008 would necessarily be affected,” Roxas said.
“But more than the fiscal targets, the government should look more closely at how our consumers are facing a perfect storm of food and oil price hikes.
He said oil prices now are four times more expensive than when the expanded VAT was still being deliberated. This is one of the reasons cited as to why growth, especially consumer spending, slowed down in the first quarter.
Roxas, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade and Commerce pointed out that when the proposal to impose a 12 percent VAT on oil was still being deliberated, Dubai crude was still around $34 per barrel. Now, the price of Dubai crude has reached $120 per barrel. This means if the government earlier expected to collect around $4 of VAT per barrel of crude, it now collects around $14 per barrel, or excess revenue of around $10 per barrel.
“Ang laki-laki na ng makokolekta ng gobyerno mula sa VAT sa langis, higit doon sa inaasahan nila noon mula rito. Bakit pa nila ipinagdadamot ito (Government’s expected to collect so much more than what it originally expected. So why are they refusing to return it to our consumers)?” he said.
“Even at the best of times, even when the administration was crowing about 7.3 percent growth, the revenue agencies were not attaining their targets. So to begin with, strong economy or weak economy, the revenue agencies were not attaining their projections,” he explained.
Sen. Roxas stressed, if the government really wants to help consumers and protect the “real economy” at this time of crisis, it must immediately support moves to suspend or remove VAT on oil.
“Maaari na ayaw nila ito sa simula. Noong nasa $90 per barrel ang langis, tinanggihan nila ito. Ngayon na nasa $130 per barrel na ang langis, mukhang nagkakaroon ito ng buhay sa Kamara,” he said.
“Hindi nila dapat ipagdamot itong pera kasi hindi nila pera ito. Pera ng sambayanan ito,” he said. /MP