Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Help Philippine Typhoon Ondoy Victims

September 26, 2009, around 10am, tropical storm "Ondoy" landed in Luzon and hit 25 provinces. Heavy rains continued to pour causing the rivers to overflow at about noon, severely flooding the urban poor communities surrounding it.

One of the areas affected was Sitio Olandes, Bgy. Industrial Valley Complex in Marikina City which is located near the banks of the Marikina River. Sitio Olandes is home to about 3000 families and the Olandes Batibot Early Learning Center (OBELC), a network organization of the Children's Rehabilitation Center.

As floodwaters rose up to their roofs in a matter of 3 hours, women and children were crying for help on their roofs, waiting desperately to be rescued. OBELC was submerged in flood waters causing damage to the center, including books, school supplies and other things used for their daily operations.

Our network organizations, from other urban poor communities of Quezon City and City of Manila, are also affected. In Sitio Talanay, Barangay Batasan Hills in Quezon City, the houses were washed away by the raging waters. The day care center, an extension of the Busilak Learning Center (BLC) program in Sitio Veterans, Quezon City, experienced severe damage similar to the OBELC.

The same effects of "Ondoy" were also experienced in Bgy. Tatalon, an urban poor community in Quezon City perennially flooded during storms. The houses were also washed away by the fierce flood currents. The residents, who still have their houses also stayed on the 2nd or 3rd floor or on the roofs to avoid the rising flood waters.

In Vitas, Tondo,in the City of Manila, one of the areas organized by the Samahan ng Maralitang Kababaihang Nagkakaisa (SAMAKANA) or the Association of United Urban Poor Women, the residents, especially women and children were also severely affected by "Ondoy's" wrath.

Tropical storm "Ondoy" left serious damage on properties and even deaths in some parts of Luzon. The areas that were hit the hardest are the cities of Marikina, Quezon, Manila, Pasig and some areas of Rizal like San Mateo, Cainta, Taytay and Antipolo.

With these numbers of families affected by the storm and the floods, Children's Rehabilitation Center (CRC) is trying to extend its help by providing immediate assistance like relief goods and financial support. This is necessary as efforts of the local and National government are inadequate and slow, especially with the large number of victims needing immediate assistance.

Through the help of our fellow child rights advocates and other child focused organizations, a rescue operation in Sitio Olandes, Bgy.Industrial Valley Complex, Marikina City was conducted last September 27. CRC is currently part of a Task Force overseeing immediate relief for the families of OBELC. About 4 families are temporarily housed in the office where they were immediately evacuated.

The victims call for:
Immediate assistance for basic needs like food, drinking water, clothes and shelter.
Donations of books, school supplies and equipment to the OBELC and BLC for their operations.

Relief goods and materials may be dropped off in our office, #90 J. Bugallon, Barangay Bagumbuhay, Project 4, Quezon City. You can contact us at (+632) 913-9244 or 439-1053 and look for Malou or Sarah.

For financial donations, you can deposit at:
Account name: Children's Rehabilitation Center
Bank name: Bank of the Philippine Island – Kamias-Anonas Branch
Account number: SA 3323-2050-85

Please notify us of your deposit for your official receipt.

September 28, 2009

Children's Rehabilitation Center
#90 J.Bugallon St. Project 4
Brgy Bagumbuhay, Quezon City

Monday, September 28, 2009

Pinoy Kids Born in 50s, 60s, 70s and Early 80s

TO ALL PINOY KIDS WHO WERE BORN IN THE 50's, 60's, 70's and early 80's! (a forwarded email)
First, some of us survived being born to mothers who did not have an OB-Gyne, smoked and/or drank San Miguel Beer or Syoktong, while they carried us. The manghihilot was the cheapest way to deliver babies. Dinala ka ba ng nanay mo sa pediatrician for DPT? While pregnant, they took cold or cough medicine, cortal or medicol, ate isaw, and didn't worry about diabetes or cervical cancer. 
Then after all that trauma, our baby cribs were made of hard wood covered with lead-based paints , pati na yung walker (andador)natin, matigas na kahoy or rattan at wala pang gulong. 
We had no soft cushy cribs that play music, no disposable diapers (lampin lang), (noon cloth or rattan duyan lang tied to the posts or ceiling, babies fell asleep sa sobrang hilo) and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, no kneepads, sometimes wala pang preno yung bisikleta. 
Take-out food was limited to Ongpin's pansit or Aling Toyangs pre-cooked ulam in kalderos. No pizza shops,  McDonalds, KFC, Subway, Jollibee; and, coffee was just kape hinde ga-mahal as in Starbucks
As children, we would ride in jeepneys libre pag kandong,hot un-airconditioned buses with wooden seats (yung JD bus na pula), or cars with no airconditioning & no seat belts (ngayon lahat may aircon na) 
Riding on the back of a carabao on a breezy summer day was considered a treat. (ngayon hindi na nakakakita ng kalabaw ang mga bata)  Did you make your own saranggola and pasted bubog on the strings?
We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle purchased from 711(minsan straight from the faucet or poso) walang 711 noon, sari-sari store ni Mang Akong to buy sarsi, suntan, RC cola or choco-vim.   

We shared one soft drink bottle with four of our friends, and NO ONE actually died from this or contracted hepatitis.   

We ate rice with star margarine, pampatangkad daw, took raw eggs straight from the shell, and drank softdrinks with real sugar in it (hindi diet coke), but we weren't sick or overweight kasi nga......

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, and get back when the streetlights came on. Sarap mag patintero, tumbang preso, habulan at taguan.Tandaan mo ba PIKO, step-no-step- yes, trumpo, garter & mala-ahas sa haba na goma? Kung naulan, jackstones, pick-up sticks or sungka, bahay-bahayan, tinda-tindahan, titser-teacher- an or swimming sa baha or kangkungan. 
No one was able to reach us all day (di uso ang cellphone, walang beepers). And yes, we were O.K.  Sipol lang ni tatay ang meron noon! 
We would spend hours building our wooden trolleys (yung bearing ang gulong) or plywood slides out of scraps and then ride down the street, only to find out we forgot the brakes! After hitting the sidewalk or falling into a canal (sewage channel) a few times, we learned to solve the problem ourselves with our bare & dirty hands . 
We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's, X-boxes, no video games at all, no 100 channels on cable, no DVD movies, no surround stereo, no IPOD's, no cellphones, no computers, no Internet, no chat rooms, and no Friendsters, Facebook. MSN etc. ...... ...WE HAD REAL FRIENDS and we went outside to actually talk and play with them! TV viewing was a treat, kilala mo ba si Popeye, Gumby, Betty Boop & followed the bouncing ball in Melody Tunes? That was karaoke then, LOL! 
  We climbed walls and trees (to get aratiles and catch salagubang & tutubi - tied them on the neck with a string), fell out of trees, got cut or "bukol", broke bones and teeth and there were no stupid lawsuits from these accidents. The only rubbing we get is from our friends with the words..masakit ba ? pero pag galit yung kalaro mo,,,,ang sasabihin sa iyo..beh buti nga !
We played marbles (jolens) in the dirt , washed our hands just a little and ate dirty ice cream, fish balls & inihaw na baga. We were not afraid of getting sick or germs in our stomachs. 
We had to live with homemade guns, gawa sa kahoy, tinali ng rubberband , sumpit , tirador at kung ano ano pa na puedeng makasakitan, pero masaya pa rin ang lahat. We made up games with sticks (syatong), and cans (tumbang preso)  and although we were told they were dangerous, wala naman tayong binulag o napatay... paminsan minsan may nabubukulan lang. 
We walked a lot, rode bikes, or took tricycles to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them to jump out the window! 
Mini basketball teams had tryouts and not everyone made to the team. Those who didn't pass had to learn to deal with the disappointment. Wala iyang mga childhood depression at damaged self esteem ek-ek na yan. Ang pikon, talo. 

Ang magulang ay nandoon lang para tingnan kung ayos lang ang mga bata, hindi para makialam at makipag-away sa ibang parents.
That generation of ours has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers, creative thinkers and successful professionals ever! They are the CEO's, Engineers, Doctors and Military Generals of today. 

The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.. 

We had failure, success, and responsibility. We learned from our mistakes the hard way. 

Floods in the Philippines Caused by Typhoon Ondoy

Rescue workers are being overwhelmed by the scale of floods in the Philippines that are estimated to have killed at least 86 people, officials say.

The head of the National Disaster Co-ordinating Council, Anthony Golez, said available resources were being spread too thinly.

Torrential rains from Tropical Storm Ketsana flooded the capital Manila and nearby provinces on Saturday.

Some 80% of Manila is said to be under water, with 435,000 people displaced.

"We are concentrating on massive relief operations. The system is overwhelmed, local government units are overwhelmed," Mr Golez told reporters.

"We were used to helping one city, one or two provinces but now, they are following one after another. Our assets and people are spread too thinly." - bbc

Friday, September 25, 2009

Culture of Gratitude in Silliman University, Dumaguete City, Philippines

The culture of gratitude prevailed this Founders Day by honoring some of the faithful servants and former mentors who helped establish Silliman's mark of excellence. Home Economics Professor Emeritus Evangelina Nobleza Bokingo was honored by naming the little center of hospitality at the main building of the Nutrition and Dietetics complex, Prof. Eve Bokingo Lounge. There was groundbreaking of the future Rev. Dr. Edmundo Pantejo Memorial Chapel at the Silliman University Medical Center Foundation grounds, led by his wife, Mrs. Ophelia Recla Pantejo. The circular road in front of the SUMC was named The Palmore Circle in honor of James and Mimi Palmore; the Law Library cyber corner as the College of Law Decenteceo E-Library in honor of former librarian Felicisimo S. Decenteceo; the road from Langheim Road to the amphitheater passing the new Nursing Education Building was named the Roman T. Yap Lane in honor of the Chairman Emeritus of the Board of Trustees; also in honor of Col. Roman T. Yap is the ROTC Office now called the Col. Roman T. Yap ROTC Center; SC 110 was named the Rabor Science Lecture Room in honor of the Bird Man of the Philippines Dr. Dioscoro S. Rabor; SC 111 was named Imperial Science Lecture Room in honor of the First Filipino Chairman of the Chemistry Department Prof. Gerardo A. Imperial; the Biology Museum as the Rodolfo Gonzales Museum of Natural History in honor of Professor Emeritus Rodolfo Gonzales; the former soccer field beside the gymnasium as The Ravello Physical Education Field in honor of Professors Emeritus Jose and Sofia Ravello; the Archery Range as the Dionisio Flores Archery Field in honor of Outstanding Sillimanian in the field of Sports Development  and former Archery International Coach Dionisio R. Flores; and the Marine Laboratory facilities as the Dr. Angel C. Alcala Environment and Marine Science Laboratories in honor of world renowned scientist in Coastal Resources Management  Professor Emeritus Angel C. Alcala.

The third batch of Silliman mentors who were honored as Heritage Builders include the founders of the Mission Hospital Henry W. and Eleonor A. Langheim, the first S.U. Filipino Science teacher Guillermo T. Magdamo, Music Education pillar Mercedes V. Magdamo, first S.U. Filipino Bible teacher Lorenzo B. Bernardez, Basic Education pillar Genoveva E. Bernardez, first S.U. Filipino Spanish teacher Mariano Muñoz, College of Education pillar Dr. Herman C. Gregorio, Law Library pioneer Felicisimo S. Decenteceo, the former President's Social Secretary and Alumni Affairs Director Ludy S. Perez, Chemistry Laboratory pioneer Victorio Alaban, University Library pillar Gorgonio D. Siega and Leoncio Duran of  Buildings and Grounds.  Their names were added on The Heritage Builders Wall at the Silliman Hall grounds on August 25.

Installed into the Order of Horace B. Silliman in ceremonies held at Silliman Hall grounds on August 25 were Dr. Romeo B. Ariniego who gave much towards the completion of the  Udarbe Memory Chapel, the late Chairman Emeritus of the Board of Trustees Roman T. Yap represented by Mrs. Mary Consolacion Yap, the generous former Chairman of the Board of Trustees Fred S. Dael and his corporate associates represented by Rachel Gadiane Silliman, Outstanding SUCN alumna and donor of the Nursing Education  Building Olivia Villaflores Yanson, long time patron of the Robert B. and Metta J. Silliman Library and College of Nursing William Barry Thompson, and the donor of the Allied Health Sciences facilities and of the research arm of Dr. Angel C. Alcala, the Angelo King Foundation, Inc. represented by the President Teddy Kingsu. Present to do honors of the floral offering for Dr. Horace B. Silliman were Nathalie Yap and Allen King.

Someone asked, "Why does your Founders Day feel festive with the people in high spirits?" We explained that the people who come are our alumni, most of whom join the re-unioning classes.  Represented this Founders Day were the following:  SUHS 1939, SUHS 1947, SUHS 1948, SUHS 1949, SUHS 1951, SUHS 1952, SUHS 1954 (donated a Verano painting to celebrate their Emerald year), SUHS 1955, SUHS 1956, SUHS 1957, SUHS 1959 (they launched the Rabor Bird Walk to celebrate their golden year), Law 1959, BSN 1959, SUHS 1962, a general gathering for Class of 1964 represented by students who graduated that year from grade school to high school, college to graduate school in celebration of their Sapphire year, SUHS 1965, SUHS 1966, SUHS 1969, Pre-Med 1969, BSN 1969, BSN 1989, Accounting 1970, SUHS 1974, SUHS 79 (mounted a photo exhibit to celebrate their Ruby decade), SUHS 1984 (celebrated their Silver year), SUHS 1989, SUHS 1990, SUHS 1994, SUHS 1999, Accountancy 1999, Elementary 1999, SUHS 2004 , the alumni groups from Aklan, Bacolod, Bukidnon, Cabadbaran, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu Alumni, Davao (with their winning colorful performance in Parada Sillimaniana), Dumaguete, SoCKSarGen ( South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and General Santos), Metro Manila, Misamis Occidental, Palawan, Western Samar, Tacloban, Tanjay, ZAMBASULTA (Zamboanga, Basilan, Sulo and Tawitawi), Antique, Melbourne, Acacia (Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and Western Pennsivania), Singapore, NCR(Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia), Honolulu-Hawaii, Central Texas and from the following organizations Demolay, Rhoans, Pan Hellenic, Beta Sigma and Rizal Youth Club.

15-year-old Glenna Duch, a high school student whose mother is a Filipina and the father from Denmark, was crowned Miss Silliman 2009. Joining her were the runners-up: Miss Silliman COED Joahnna Saad of the College of Engineering and Miss Silliman Headline Girl Djerica Mate of the College of Mass Communication.

The College of Computer Studies won the University Cheerdance Competition.  Junior Philippine Physics Society got Booth of the Year at the Hibalag Festival.

The centerpiece of the celebration was the Sunrise Service which had the 2009 Outstanding Sillimanian Rev. Dr. Francisco D. Somera Jr. as preacher. The Rev. Dr. Federico Agnir was the speaker on Silliman Sunday, the 23rd of August.

TIPON in Dumaguete was a huge gathering that lasted until the wee hours of the morning.
IN MEMORIAM: Theonilo Pala (BSME 1977) on August 8, Nostradamus A. Villanueva (SUHS 1964) on August 8 And  Leila Berenguel Alano on August 21. (If you know of a Sillimanian not in our memorial list, please inform us.)
Thank you for always being there for dear old Silliman.  President Malayang has requested this office to regularly update you about happenings on campus.  We are also interested in knowing what you and your alumni chapter are doing. Please keep in touch and update your file with our office if you have not done so. We would truly appreciate it.  You may reach the President's Office through this email address: or our Alumni Affairs Office through this address:, or

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Silliman University Alumni Activities

Alumni chapters also celebrated their Alma Mater's 108th birthday in the following ways:

Sillimanians in Cebu City sponsored a feeding of street children and a Basketball Friendship Game with Bradford Church. And University President Dr. Ben S. Malayang III was their guest preacher on August 16 for Silliman Sunday;

Singapore alumni had a picnic on August 15 at Pasir Ris Park with young alumni excited that the first Miss High School to win the Miss Silliman crown was with them, they made sure they had photos taken with Atty. Carlisle "Jingle" Dans – Cortes.
And on the same day, the Bukidnon alumni also gathered for a Founders Day fellowship at Central Mindanao University.

Former Silliman Church CYF President and now administrative pastor at UCCP Pasay City Rev. Bobby Alguso gave the sermon on Silliman Sunday, August 26 at Ellinwood Church Malate.

Metro Manila Sillimanians led by their president, Mr. Rod Pepito  had an evening of Filipino love songs during their annual fellowship dinner at the Ayala Ballroom of the Makati Sports Club on August 15.

The celebration on Silliman campus officially started with a worship service on August 16 at Silliman Church. The preacher, Rev. Bernadette Amistoso Morales, spoke on the Founders Day theme.

The lectures included: Dr. Evangelyn C. Alocilja of Michigan State University on "Nanoparticie-based Biosensors," former BOT Chairperson Prof. Leonor Briones on "Economy: A Case Study of Negros Oriental," Dr. Elsa Austria-Bulado on Faculty Evaluation, Dr. Marlinda R. Sardovia-Iyer of Ohio State University on "Trends in Newborn Screening for Inherited Disorders," Dr. Viad Mariano on "Digital Image Processing;" Dr. Perla Maturan Tayko on "Thinking and Tinkering with Organizational Development in Large Systems Change;" OSA 2009 Eduardo on "Entrepreneurship: The Davao Experience," OSA 2009 Dr. Kenneth E. Bauzon on "Career Options for Political Science Majors;" OSA 2009 Francisco D. Somera Jr. at the Church Workers Convocation; Dr. Rachel Gadiane Silliman on "Pilipino and The Quest for National Lingua Franca;" Engrs. Jovie S. Aclaro and Yolanda Tan Aclaro on "Engineering Education and Competing in the Global Market;" Sapphire Reunion prime mover Dr. Leslie E. Bauzon on "The Study of Philippine History and Building the Filipino Nation towards Sustainable Unity, Stability and Progress based on Cultural Pluralism;" Dr. Gideon Z. Alegado on "A Quest for Excellence in Higher Education: The Other Ingredients;" Jenny Lind Elmaco on "Global Governance: Panacea or Penumbra to Democracy," Dr. Ruth Cang Chang on the "Role of Parenting in a Child's Development;" Dr. Christian Emanuel Mancao on "Chronic Muscle Pain;" Little Village's Sheilah Lynn L. Domalaon on "Streams: The Compassionate Life."
 Lectures from SUCN '59 and '69 were given by Dr. Luz Sobong-Porter who gave the keynote address; Dr. Nancy Bohanon  on "Cardiovascular Research and Diabetes;" Dr. Enrique Ostrea "Neonatology;" and Aspen-Meti Corporation Atty. Martin Laburada on "Trends on High-Fidelity Simulation in the Philippines."

This Founders Day's Eminent Person Lecture had Mr. Bert Hofman, the Country Director of The World Bank Group on August 26 at the Luce Auditorium. Last year, we had His Excellency Former Philippine President Fidel V. Ramos.

 The 2009 Outstanding Sillimanian awardees are: EDUARDO A. BANGAYAN in the field of Entrepreneurship, FRANCISCO D. SOMERA JR. in the field of Military Chaplaincy, KENNETH E. BAUZON in the field of Political Science, and MACARTHUR F. CORSINO in the field of Foreign Service.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

PBA Pre-season Games 2009 in Urdaneta, Pangasinan

The pre-season games, highlighted by simultaneous matches in Urdaneta City, Pangasinan and Concepcion, Tarlac, get the ball rolling for the 35th year of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).

The annual exhibition series held prior to the start of the season and involving all 10 teams, kicks off on Sept. 25 at the Astrodome when the rebuilt Coca-Cola Tigers test the mettle of last year's Philippine Cup runner-up Alaska Aces in the lone Friday game set at 6 p.m.

The Tigers are expected to parade new recruits Ken Bono, Larry Rodriguez, Jojo Duncil and the year's no. 3 overall pick in Chris Ross against the solid, veteran rotation of the Aces bannered by former league MVP Willie Miller, L.A. Tenorio, Joe DeVance and Sonny Thoss.  

The following day, the league takes its act to the provinces as Barangay Ginebra and defending Fiesta Cup champion San Miguel clash in Pangasinan in a rematch of last year's season-ending Finals.

The 4 p.m. match will see for the first time Arwind Santos and Denok Miranda suiting up for the Beermen following their off-sea-son acquisition from Burger King and Sta. Lucia, respectively.

The Kings on the other hand, are set to flaunt new faces Enrico Villanueva, Rich Alvarez, Paolo Bugia and Celino Cruz. The pre-season games may also be used by coach Jong Uichcio as perfect opportunity to slowly get back Mark Caguioa in shape after the prolific Ginebra scorer sat out the entire 34th season owing to an injury.

On the same time and date as the Ginebra-San Miguel game is the clash between Burger King and Purefoods in Tarlac. The Giants will have in their arsenal no. 2 d

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Noynoy Aquino for Philippine President Movement in Bohol Island

The tsunami called "Noynoy for President" has hit Bohol shores.

On Sept. 21, multiple sectors of Boholanos will launch the MOVE (Movement of Volunteers to Elect) Noynoy, their local version of the many similar voluntary movements now sprouting around the country primarily to help elect Sen. Noynoy Aquino as the next Philippine President.

The movement launching will be held at the JJ's Seafood Village, K of C Drive this city at 3 p.m. It will be preceded by a motorcade along the city's major thoroughfares.  

In a meeting held last Monday at the Casa Reyfrancis Inn and Restaurant this city, the movement convenors finalized the plans for the launching which coincides with the declaration of the Marcos martial rule that effectively snuffed out democracy in the country almost 37 years ago, put the late Sen. Ninoy Aquino as the first martial law detainee and finally stamped out with the assumption of Cory Aquino (Ninoy's wife and Noynoy's mother) as president in 1986.

The group also mapped out strategies to bring the movement down to all the barangays and spread it among all the sectors in the province.

It maybe recalled that Bohol was among the first provinces where a signature campaign was initiated to convince Sen. Noynoy Aquino to run for the 2010 presidential elections.

The group was specifically buoyed with the latest SWS survey in Luzon where Sen. Aquino garnered 50% of those polled as their presidential choice with Sen. Manny Villar a far second with 14% and former Pres. Erap Estrada at third with 13%.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Cheaper Medicines and Drugs in Philippine Towns

Cheaper medicines are now also available in small town pharmacies across the country. 

This as the total implementation of the mandatory price cut of some medicines takes effect since September 15, or last Tuesday.
The mandatory price cut, now implemented in small drugstores in towns takes effect a month after the law ordered pharmacies with automated ordering systems to implement since August 15. 

Brought down by the government's implementation of the Cheaper Medicines Act and the voluntary offer by pharmaceutical companies, the move also makes easy public access to seven categorized drugs

Some of the categorized drugs are anti-hypertensives, anti-cholesterol, anti-thrombotic, anti-diabetics, anti-biotics and anti-cancer drugs. 

On this, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has directed the Department of Health (DOH) and the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) to monitor the implementation of the law. 

Bohol Sangguniang Panlalawigan Committee on Health Chair Cesar Tomas Lopez has called everyone in communities to help monitor the implementation of the law in as much as it should help alleviate the concerns of people taking maintenance drugs

Lopez, who is a physician by profession said any drugstore who does not properly implement the law should be reported right away.

Included in the price cut are anti-hypertensives Telmisartan's Micardis, Aprovel, Norvasc, Lipitor and Zithromax, Cytosar-U and Adriblastina.  

Also in are anti-thrombotics like Plavix and anti-diabetic Diamicron. 

Antibiotic Tacozin's Piperazillin, Ciprobay, Flagyl, Augmentin's are sold at half the price in pharmacies. 

The rest of the medicines with shaved prices are anti-cancer drugs Blenoxane, Paraplatin, Platinol, Cytoxan, Vepesid, Pirunethol and Zexate. (PIA)

September 21 Philippine Non-working Holiday

The Office of Muslim Affairs has determined September 21 as the start of the Muslim Ramadhan. 

Over this, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo declared the day a regular holiday, to commemorate the Eid'l Fit'r. 

By virtue of Proclamation 1880, the president has propped up Republic Act 9177, which declared the regular observance of the Eid'l Fit'r as a regular holiday all throughout the country. 

The government's Office of Muslim Affairs (OMA) has earlier determined the feast of the Ramadhan in accordance with the Islamic lunar calendar. 

The Muslim commemoration of the feast starts September 21, OMA said. 

According to the President, declaring the day also promotes cultural understanding and integration of the entire Filipino nation because it affords Christians the chance to join Muslim brothers in the observance of the feast. 

Moreover, in the proclamation, she said the declaration brings the religious and cultural significance of the Eid'l Fit'r to the fore of national consciousness. 

The proclamation has also lengthened to one more day the weekend, allowing domestic tourists enough time to experience the country's potentials. (PIA)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Philippine Election 2010: Advice for Noynoy Aquino

By Frony Fortich
Columnist, Sunday Post

As one who considers Noynoy Aquino to be my idol, I am going to bring a copy of this manuscript to the candidate, who lives a few minutes away from my apartment.

 Finally on the 40th day of death of President Cory Aquino, Noy Aquino finally declared himself as a candidate for President.

 There was excitement as Senator Noy Aquino ascended to the rostrum at Casino Filipino. As he delivered his speech, there was a stark difference between Senator Benigno Aquino and his son. Clearly, his type of speech was conversational, quite boring and was deadpan, to say the least.

 He hardly talked about the proposed changes, and the programs of government that he was going to implement to implement. To me he was an even prey to dirty politics. Already, word is spreading around that he is just riding on the legacy of Ninoy and Cory Aquino, his venerable parents.

 It is time, Noy needs a changeover. Firstly, he needs the services of a coach, to train him in public speaking putting more fire and emotion in his speeches. Filipinos always look for candidates who could deliver fiery speeches. Believe me a good speaker does not even have to promise falsehoods. He can still be a fiery speaker and still speak about the truth.

 For Noynoy Aquino's campaign to be successful, he must have a speech writer, the likes of Teddy Boy Locsin to prepare his speeches, and public pronouncements.

 He must also organize a writer's bureau one, to prepare information on his programs of government and other department, the press bureau to organize the TV and newspaper interviews.

 Another group must have to deal with Internet activities, establishing websites, facebook, Twitter,

 and other popular sites in  the internet. Sending emails to private individuals should also be done.

 Fund raising can also be done in the Internet. President Barack Obama credited his victory to a successful Internet campaign, this can be replicated in the Aquino campaign. A presidential candidate has already started a campaign encouraging people to establish facebook account using their laptop facilities.

 Noynoy Aquino, has millions of supporters who are not only willing to be volunteers but also willing to contribute. Firstly he should announce in the papers, account numbers where people can deposit

 their donations and those for the piso sa piso donations, boxes in malls and groceries where people can drop their money or donations.

 Organizations which can be authorized to raise money should be accredited for purposes of accounting otherwise some groups would take advantage of the eagerness of donors. That way every donation would be fairly accounted. And Noy should announce on a regular basis, how much amount has been raised and how the money was spent. Since this is a public concern Noynoy should assure the contributors that their money is well spent including using an auditing group. These acts would help raise the level of awareness on the part of the contributing public that Noynoy has a different and unique campaign. Noynoy has a league of volunteers and even that should be well managed para hindi kalat. Noynoy has an uncle who is smart when running a political campaign. He is Paul Aquino and Butz Aquino, they have expertise in running political campaigns. Lupita Kashiwara, Ninoy's sister can also be utilized, although she is presently with the administration of President Gloria Macapagal. 

 I hope that Noynoy can win and change the politics in this country. Of course, he should organize a council of leaders to chart the campaign drive so it can be well organized and potent and their advices can be listened to. 

Stray Dogs in the Philippines

By Joe Espiritu, Sunday Post

Some barangays, which are above Bunga Ilaya, particularly Laca and Buyog and farther beyond are scared of a pack of wild dogs roaming at night. People had called them lobo, which is supposed to be a Visayan version of wolf.  This roused our interest hoping that Angel Locsin might be one of them. This earned us dirty looks. It seems those guys were serious.

 Canine marauders wander at night attacking livestock from pigs, goats to carabaos. They had already caused damage, inflicting teeth marks on unprotected bellies and necks. Folks are afraid that they will ultimately attack little children roaming at night. This would pose danger to the populace if those animals contacted rabies.

 Since sources of those stories are barangay secretaries of Laca, Buyog and some citizens of Cantuyoc, their stories could be taken as true. Those dogs grew up in the garbage dump located in Bunga Ilaya. Some people owning land near the dump saw habitations of dogs around the garbage dump. Those are available. Garbage is usually source of something edible to those unfortunate animals.

 Once they set up their dwellings, the mate and breed. Naturally, they consider intruders animals or humans as hostile. Once their numbers grow, food supply becomes scarce. This is a perfect proof of the Malthusian Theory. While food is abundant those animals proliferate. However, when food is scarce, they start to scavenge. When they hunt for prey, they become a threat.

 Not all native dogs are timid. Some are ferocious by nature. Even the most timid dog becomes dangerous when hungry. Untamed they may rely upon their feral instincts to survive. They may find small animals such as young goats and pigs easy prey. According to recent stories, they are now hunting in packs. It takes only one rabies-infected dog to spread the incurable disease.

 The law or rule against cruelty to animals must be temporarily; this dog pack will have to be eliminated. The first encounter with a wild dog was with an immature one. It is no different from the domesticated species. It does not respond to friendly advances. Someone we know brought home a cute puppy from the dump to raise. Even after a long time despite friendly advances and offers of food, the puppy remained wary. It petted, it will shy off and if cornered it will bare its teeth. It had not outgrown its fear of humans.

 We wonder why barangay authorities of those places did not raise an alarm. Perhaps the treat is not so serious but if one hears the stories of Kiling Bayron and Henyo Edubas, barangay secretaries of Laca and Buyog respectively, they would elicit concern. A fellow cannot doubt the word of Kiling Bayron; he cannot lie convincingly to catch a girlfriend. Neither would one doubt Henyo Edubas. He would not lie even if his  life dependson it. .

 Perhaps, the proper office to catch those dogs is the DA. They had been conducting campaigns against rabies. The problem is how to catch those dogs so that they can be immunized. We suggest is to assemble a safari of dog lovers, those who prefer the cooked variety. There would be many who would be interested.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Congressman should publish the projects funded by their pork barrel allocations

Congressman should publish the projects funded by their pork barrel allocations.

 This was the challenge aired by Vice Gov. Julius Caesar Herrera to Boholano solons.

 "They should do this in the spirit of transparency," the vice-governor said.

 Every congressman is entitled to pork barrel allocation of P70 million annually.

 Herrera said that the people deserve to know how the solons distribute their allocations in their district.

 "There are many towns who felt left out in the sharing of allocations so they are now demanding to know how their congressmen spend their pork barrel," he added.

 The vice-governor said that congressmen have a responsibility to make a report even if the people do not ask for it.

 He added that this is important if they want to enjoy the trust and confidence of the people.

 "The best way to do this is to make public the projects that benefited from their pork barrel," he added.

 Herrera pointed out that a congressman who has served for three terms had a total of P630-M in his pork barrel allocation.

 If there are 14 towns in a district and the congressman decides to distribute his pork barrel equally, it will mean that every town will receive a share of P5-M.

 At the end of his three terms, a town should receive at least P45-M from its congressman.

 Herrera said that while there are towns which receive more than P5-M in one year, there are also others which received less than P1-M every year.

 The vice-governor pointed out that as taxpayers, the people deserve to know where and how the pork barrel funds are spent.

 "They have a right to know what are these projects, where they are located and how the people have benefited from them," he added.

 Herrera said that the people will surely appreciate it if they see that the projects serve the interest of the people.

 "Only those who have something to hide will not make a formal report to the people," he added.

 The vice-governor said that it is not the discretion of the congressman to release the list of projects but rather their responsibility and duty.

 He pointed out that many people are slowly losing faith in their public officials because of a lack of transparency.

 "If they refuse to heed the people's clamor to come out with an official list of their projects, they cannot prevent people from suspecting that there is something rotten going on," Herrera warned. - Sunday Post

Sustainable Markets for Philippine Farm

      In line with the government's long-term goal to ensure food security and raise farmers' income in the countryside, the Department of Agriculture (DA) is calling on food manufacturers to help build ready and sustainable markets for the country's farm and fishery produce.

      This will be through contract growing and other marketing arrangements with small producers.

       According to DA, this will make agriculture a more profitable investment for its small producers, as the department has been stepping up its efforts to bring farm produce directly to urban markets for better prices and identifying the appropriate hardware and infrastructure investments needed to modernize crop production.

      One key component of this initiative is the establishment of barangay bagsakan (village drop-off centers) and bagsakan centers around Metro Manila and in the regions.

      In Bohol, DA is set to put up bagsakan centers in the municipalities of Anda, Balilihan, Loboc, Corella and Sevilla

      Besides increasing production, small farmers and fisherfolk should also be provided assistance in opening markets for their produce and facilities to cut back their post-harvest losses.

      Under this concept, market-matching with buyers are being done for groups of crop growers or fisherfolk who are known for or are experts at producing specific commodities.

      The DA, through Secretary Arthur Yap, has always advocated the new thinking that agriculture is also a business endeavor. (DA/tots) 

Monday, September 7, 2009

Biggest Medical Mission in the World

TODAY, some two million patients get treated, and by any luck, one individual walks his way to the millionaires' row if he wins in the P75M richer tax-free lotto for this year's diamond anniversary draw of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO). 

The PCSO offers the P75-million lotto, in time for the agency's 75th Anniversary today. 

"For the 75 years of continued support, we are giving away more than P100M pesos in our diamond anniversary traditional Sweepstakes Draw as our way of thanking Filipinos, says PCSO Visayas director William Medici during a press conference here.  

A huge part of the lotto proceeds get poured into the agency's social services programs.  

According to Dr. Larry Cedro, 30% of the PCSO lotto go to charity upon which some 163,940 individual patients across the country have benefited from the agency's medical assistance program.  

Health authorities revealed that an estimated 6,660 Boholano patients have benefited from the agency's charity funds and other services. 

From the proceeds, PCSO also maintains endowment accounts at the Gov. Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital in Tagbilaran and some municipal health facilities. 

Today, more than 100,000 doctors, dentists, nurses, pharmacists, health workers, medical professionals and concerned citizens from government and private sector perform the record breaking biggest act of charity in the country. 

All of Bohol's 1109 barangays would be covered in the mission, says Capitol Health consultant Fancy Baluyot.  

The "100 Percent in One Day" project of the PCSO's entails nationwide medical, dental and information- gathering mission to cover all of the country's 41,995 barangays.  

The project is envisioned to be both the 75th Anniversary of PCSO and a window for marginalized Filipinos from all over the country to access medical care and organized charity assistance, says Rosario Uriarte, PCSO General Manager and Vice Chair.  

Four doctors, two dentists, four nurses and one pharmacist assisted by health professionals, army doctors and Barangay health workers and tanods set-up the mission areas and its security.  

Aside from general checkups, minor surgeries like the removal of cataracts and lumps, dental services, eye examinations, bone scan and ear check monitor will be available in selected medical mission sites located in government hospitals and rural clinics.

Feeding missions are also coordinated by church based groups to coincide with the missions, sources revealed. 

The mission also distributes free medicines to patients at the sites, mission coordinators in Bohol say. 

"PCSO has been doing monthly medical and dental missions for several years now," says Uriarte. "But this is the first time we'll hold it in large scale in one day, targeting more than two million patients." 

The feeding missions would be conducted in selected barangays, mostly in depressed areas, in coordination with church-based groups and civic organizations.  

The "One Hundred Percent in One Day" project, according to Uriarte, is envisioned to be an annual activity that will serve as a vehicle for spreading the "charity virus," and make organized and systematic sharing coupled with volunteerism as a way of life for Filipinos. (PIA)

Bohol Wants Tourism Spots Gun-free

BOHOL police officials do not just want gun-free tourism areas here. 

In a recent move presented to the Provincial Tourism Council, PSSupt. Edgardo Ingking bared the plan to transform tourism areas into "Discipline Zones" (DZ). 

"We want to help create an environment to sustain Bohol's tourism potential by strictly imposing order, maintain and sustain the law enforcement efforts by making sure basic laws are followed," he told council members. 

The police proposal also dovetails with the out-going tourism council chairman Peter Dejaresco who said Bohol's greatest challenge is to sustain its tourism momentum. 

"Unchecked incivility and disorder breeds crime," Ingking, who may have this as his last legacy to Bohol before he bows out as provincial commander here stressed. 

In designated pilot tourism areas, he explained, police would go for zero crime tolerance on basic laws in traffic, squatting, pollution, illegal vending, sanitation and applicable local ordinances. 

In these areas, anti-littering, smoking areas, traffic laws, environmental laws, discipline and some local ordinances like stakeholder uniforms may be strictly enforced to impose order. 

To be implemented in tandem with the business sector, police and the civil society, the "Discipline Zone" plan creates a formidable force against crimes, he assured. 

Set to be a three phased plan, the DZ would start its three month pilot implementation after the stakeholders shall have identified the areas. 

Stakeholders would be trained, craft strategies and formulate plans, propagate the communication plan to generate awareness, deploy personnel and asses the situation monthly. 

The overall aim is to have the Department of Tourism (DOT) accredit the place as Discipline Zone, the Camp Dagohoy based cop said. 

Ingking admitted that the plan was an offshoot of the Environmental Security on Tourism workshop hailed by DOT Undersecretary Salvador Sarabia a few months ago. 

Asked which tourism areas he want to pilot, the top cop said he mulled the [plan for Panglao Island or Loboc, well established tourism areas already. (PIA) 

HIV AIDS Hospital in Bohol Philippines

Health authorities in Bohol vow to activate nine more Hospital Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Core Team (HACT) after taking the cue from Bohol regional hospital. 

According to Board Member Cesar Tomas Lopez, Sangguniang Panlalawigan Committee on Health, after the reactivation of the Gov. Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital HACT and Center, other government hospitals would follow suit. 

In fact, there is already a step to identify more government and private hospitals for possible HACT Centers, Lopez, who is also a doctor, added.
The move, one of the more proactive steps by local authorities against the threat HIV AIDS however dents less over the large misinformation about the disease. 

AIDS, a disease that could be fatal to people affected by it, stigmatizing to their families can be preventable provided people practice healthy and safe sex and blood transfusions. 

But operating on the context of largely migrating Boholanos, local authorities have drafted anti-HIV AIDS measures to map out a local response to the disease and other sexually transmitted infections. 

Lopez, who, along with the Provincial HIV AIDS Multi-Sectoral Council (PHAMSC) he chairs, has lobbied for the activation of the HACT in the rural health units of Ubay, Talibon and Carmen this time said next in line would be government hospitals. 

A HACT is a team of doctor, a nurse, medical technologist and a social worker basically equipped the respond to the proper management in the onset of a possible case of infection, says Provincial HIV AIDS coordinator Mila Israel.

These personnel based in hospitals undergo at least two weeks of intensive training in disease control and management and would be the patient's support team before they could be referred to the regional treatment hub at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in nearby Cebu, she explained. (PIA)

Friday, September 4, 2009

Philippine Abu Sayyaf Terrorist To Be Forgiven?

MALACANANG has shut down efforts to offer amnesty to the members of the Abu Sayyaf saying the group has been nothing but a bunch of criminal outlaws. 

But Deputy Spokesperson Anthony Golez also said the situation is different with accused political offenders who deserve a bit of "leniency" 

Golez said the decision to deny amnesty to the Abu Sayyaf came after careful study, and considering popular calls for justice and retribution as well as weighing the pressing imperatives of peace and development in Mindanao. 

"They are lawless. They are proven to be kidnappers, gun runners, extortionists and they have been doing illegal things. They don't deserve to be given an amnesty," Golez stressed as quoted in reports. 

"The decision also reflects our confidence that the peace process will not be affected by the denial of amnesty to a fringe gang of bandits and terrorists," Golez said. 

On the statement's effects to ongoing negotiations, he adds, "Our government believes that the peace process can and should continue on the basis of good faith discussions between government and mainstream political rebel groups, following the UN-sanctioned principles of DDR or disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration." 

The Abu Sayyaf – or Bearer of the Sword – wrote its early history in blood, staging kidnappings, bombings and beheadings to draw attention, recruits and funds from the al-Qaeda terror network of international fugitive Osama bin Laden. 

The homegrown terror group is now listed as a foreign terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union and the United Nations. 

The international terrorist tag has also allowed US helping the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in its campaign against the Abu Sayyaf. (PIA)

Arthur Yap: Political Celebrity and Favorite in Bohol, Philippines

By Joe Espiritu

A few days ago, Secretary of Agriculture Arthur C. Yap distributed checks to be spent for farm to market road projects. By local standards, the amount distributed is considerable, some two hundred thousand pesos per barangay. With Jagna having thirty three barangays, the total amount shelled out was some six million six hundred thousand pesos. The distribution is not limited to Jagna alone but to several towns within the Third District of Bohol. The timing of the distribution is significant. 

 Election is just nine months from now. It is no secret that Atty. Art Yap is eyeing for the lone congressional seat of the Third District. It is still a long way from the formal declaration like the filing of candidacy, but should this happen; the cozy arrangement of the Big Four, if there is any now, will be in turmoil. Or perhaps the arrangement is not so cozy.

 During happier days, Gov. Erico Aumentado, Cong. Edgar Chatto of the First District, Cong. Roberto Cajes of the Second District and Eladio Jala of the Third District were the power brokers. Few would run without their blessings and if they would run at all, they will have to join the opposition. Most did not. They simply wait for better times. Now, because the law had decreed that no one can run for the same post for the fourth time, those who had graduated will look for other positions.

 Informed sources say that Gov. Aumentado will run for his old seat, as Congressman, in the Second District. Edgar Chatto and Roberto Cajes will run for Governor and Vice Governor. This would be a logical assumption since Chatto would play second fiddle to no one so Cajes has to if he has to stay in the running.  They would be against a formidable team of Julius Herrera and Tomas Abapo or Conching Lim although most prefer Tommy because of his bigger clout.  The First District Congressional seat is up for grabs, the Second goes to Gov. Aumentado but the Third will be contested by Jala the elder this time.

 In the gubernatorial race the Herrera - Abapo or Lim tandem will be in the opposition. The Chatto – Cajes – if they agree to the arrangement will be in the administration party. However, there was that story by highly informed sources that the Big Four took their oaths as members of the Nacionalista Party in one of the visits of Sen. Manny Villar to Bohol. The same informed sources said that they promptly went back to their old party the next day.

 Then comes D A Secretary Art Yap. All signs point out that Yap is running for the Congressional seat in the Third District. Since Yap is in the administration and a Cabinet Secretary at that, he must have the blessings of Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.  In order to avoid inconvenience, PGMA must pack the Congress with her men so Yap must win whatever happens.

 Sec. Yap must be persuaded to run for a higher post. As an Agriculture Secretary, he had a wider coverage. He must be convinced that the Third Political District of Bohol is too small a pond for him. On the other hand, it seems as if Sec. Yap is following a political agenda. After the 2010 election, there would be a clamor for a Chacha to create a unicameral parliamentary form of government. Should this happen and PGMA wins a congressional; seat in Pampanga, she might vie for the Prime Minister position. With the majority of Congressmen hers, this would be a possibility.