>>> JAN 2008 <<<
Local news for
Tacloban, Leyte, Philippines
Definitive Source of News and Information about the Tacloban region.
Jan 28, 2008
Leyte Gov exhorts Sacred Heart College to continue to produce leaders
Philippine Information Agency
Tacloban City (January 28) -- Leyte Governor Carlos Jericho L. Petilla, in his speech during the Students' Assembly on the occasion of the 50th Founding Anniversary of Sacred Heart College in Tacloban City, commended the school administrators and faculty to continue producing leaders for the community.
Governor Petilla said that the he noticed that there are many leaders, in governance and in the business sector who are products of Sacred Heart College which was used to be called Sacred Heart School.
This, Governor Petilla said, speaks well of the quality catholic Chinese education that the school is providing the children of Region 8.
Governor Petilla informed the students the state of education in the province today where many high school students are unable to go to college unlike the students at Sacred Heart who only have to choose which school to go.
The best teachers, according to Governor Petilla are those who are able to inspire their students to aspire for more education. This is the kind of teachers, Sacred Heart College has, he said.
Governor Petilla commended the School for being good partners of the province of Leyte, by producing for the province its future leaders. The presence of the school insures the sustainability of good leaders for the province, he said.
Governor Petilla also commended the presence of a very active alumni association in the school. The alumni association that is supportive to the school is a asset that will fast track the implementation of important development projects for the school.
Present during the activity were the 1,000 students, the administrators and faculty members, the school alumni association led by its President Mrs. Caroline L. Andrade, parents and PIA Director Olive Tiu who is the other speaker and guest in the Student Assemby.
In the same occasion, Governor Petilla assisted by Director Olive Tiu and Mrs. Caroline Andrade, cut the ribbon for the Photo Exhibit which showed all the different batch of graduates since the school started its humble beginnings with nipa huts as the classrooms up to what it is today.
Governor Petilla also turned over to the school and the barangay council the covered path walk infront of the gate of the school, so that the students will have protection from the rain and the heat of the sun.
The Sacred Heart College is one of the two Chinese schools in Tacloban City. It is now being managed by the Sisters of Mary Immaculate Conception from Taiwan.
Jan 27, 2008
P900-M rehab of Tacloban Airport set in 2008
By Joey A. Gabieta
Inquirer.net - Philippines
TACLOBAN CITY -- The rehabilitation of the Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport, the lone airport operating in Eastern Visayas, will start in 2008 on an estimated cost of nearly P900 million.
The Tacloban city government will put up P350 million as its counterpart, with the national government footing most of the cost of rehabilitating the airport, according to city administrator Jimmy Yaokasin.
Once finished, the city government will run the airport for 15 years before turning it over to the national government.
Yaokasin said they have been waiting for the approval of the P1.227 trillion 2008 national budget to secure the P530 million national government counterpart, which would be released through the Department of Transportation and Communications.
Based on the proposed memorandum of agreement between the DOTC and the city of Tacloban, the funds coming from the DOTC would be used for land acquisition and site development; relocation of the affected families; improvement of the airport's runways and procurement of navigational facilities, among others.
The city government, in turn, would be responsible for the rehabilitation of the airport's terminal building.
The city would run the terminal on a build-operate-and-transfer scheme and turn it over to the DOTC after 15 years, enough for it to recoup its investment, Yaokasin said.
The city government would raise its P350 million counterpart through a loan from a still unnamed financial institution, Yaokasin added.
The city administrator said the MOA would be set for signing after the approval of the national budget in Congress.
The agreement will be signed by Mayor Alfred Romualdez, representing the city government, and DOTC Secretary Leandro Mendoza, representing the national government.
Yaokasin said Secretary Cerge Remonde, head of the Presidential Management Staff, promised to help fasttrack the signing of the MOA.
He said Remonde, the Cabinet Secretary for Regional Development (Cord) for Eastern Visayas, earlier met with the city administrator in Malacañang and personally made a commitment for the immediate signing of the MOA after the passage of the national budget.
The 2008 national budget is still being deliberated by members of the bicameral conference committee, responsible for reconciling the House and Senate versions of the General Appropriations Act.
Mayor Romualdez said the DZR Airport must be improved as it would be an important component to his administration's campaign to attract tourists and investors to the city and other parts of the region.
Jan 13, 2008
Tacloban facing P30-M IRA loss due to creation of new cities
By Joe A. Gabieta
Inquirer.net - Philippines
TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines--Mayor Alfred Romualdez of this city has expressed fear that the city's share in the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) for 2008 would be reduced by as much as P30 million due to creation of new cities.
Romualdez said the projected loss in Tacloban's share of national would be "huge" and could even affect the delivery of basic services and delay the realization of his programs and projects for 2008.
"The creation of new cities last year is to be blamed for this reduction in our IRA share. And it should be noted that some of these new cities even failed to meet some of the requirements like income," Romualdez told the Philippine Daily Inquirer (parent company of INQUIRER.net) on Saturday.
"This [reduction of IRA share] is really a big issue among cities now. We don't really know why there was a rush to convert these [towns] into cities," he added.
Romualdez, however, did not explain how he arrived at the projected P30 million reduction in the city's IRA, the main source of revenue for most local government units in the country and representing their share in national funds.
In 2007, Tacloban, which has a population of over 200,000, received around P250 million as its IRA share.
In Eastern Visayas, three big municipalities became cities last year -- Baybay (Leyte), Catbalogan (Samar) and Borongan (Eastern Samar).
The incomes of these newly created cities came into question when data surfaced that their annual revenue did not reach P100 million, the minimum income for towns to qualify for conversion into cities.
All three new cities have almost similar incomes -- around P20 million from its locally taxes and P70 million of IRA.
Aside from Tacloban, the region's capital, the other cities in the region are Ormoc (Leyte), Maasin (Southern Leyte) and Calbayog (Samar).
And as part of his initiative to offset the projected loss of Tacloban's IRA share, Romualdez said he recently issued an order to the local treasury and licensing office to intensify their local tax collection.
Romualdez said the city has been generating almost P300 million in local taxes from the more than 2,000 business establishments operating in the city annually.
He said he has been aggressively campaigning to attract more investors into the city.
Mall operator Robinsons, is set to start groundwork at its mall site here within 2008. Top officials of Robinsons, who came to the city last December, refused to divulge the exact amount of their investment but it is believed that it could reach at least P1 billion.
Jan 12, 2008
Gaisano Superstore moving to a new location in Tacloban
by Mrs. Arlene Schmidt
And as when that's not enough the management of the Gaisano Superstores, presently being the biggest shopping center in the city, is set to construct its own building as part of its expansion within the year.
The new location of the shopping center is along Real Street. The construction of the new Gaisano could bring in around P500 million for the city.
Jan 11, 2008
Newsupdate on Robinson's shopping complex in Tacloban
by Mrs. Arlene Schmidt
Tacloban City (January 11) -- According to our informant Sir Owen Onida, a CPA and teacher from Saint Paul's Business School in Palo, Leyte and a good friend from city administrator Jimmy "Jim-Jim" Yaokasin the Gokongwei group plans to start construction of it's Robinson's shopping mall project here in February this year 2008 and doors are to be opened in December in 2008 this year.
The company will develop the 4.08-hectare property that used to hold the old Marasbaras Terminal Complex into a midsized P1-billion shopping center. The mall is expected to hire around 1,500 workers.
Robinsons Malls General Manager Cornelio Mapa confirmed in Manila that a mall would be constructed in Tacloban.
"We acquired a property there and we intend to develop it," he said.
But he added that the company has yet to finalize schedules.
"We're talking with them (Tacloban officials)," he said.
Aside from the shopping mall project, the company also plans to build a hotel on a four-hectare lot at the Marasbaras district, four kilometers from the city proper:
The investment for the shopping mall and hotel will reach around P2 billion.That is the single biggest investment yet for the city.
The construction of the mall and hotel will start in February and will be completed in November.
That means, by 2008, Tacloban City will have an additional shopping mall.
Tacloban's only shopping complex at present is the Gaisano mall located downtown.
It took about a year before the Gokongwei group decided to go ahead with its shopping mall project in Tacloban City, which has a population of around 200,000. Tacloban is also the regional capital of Eastern Visayas, with over four million population.
The presence of the new mall will serve as a magnet for other investors and manufactures.
The investment will also mean jobs for the people of the city and nearby areas.
The site of the future Robinson's Mall is currently used by bus companies that ply the Luzon-Mindanao routes. It is also about a kilometer away from the city's Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport where the Gokongwei-owned Cebu Pacific has three daily flights.
Jan 07, 2008
Tanauan town eyes development of skimboarding area into tourist destination
Philippine Information Agency
The Bantay Dagat Area in Barangay Sto. Nino, Tanauan, Leyte will soon be developed into a water sports tourism destination. This will be the town's small contribution to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's Super Region concept of development envisioning Central Philippines as the tourism center of the Philippines.
Tanauan Mayor Roque Tiu informed that per instruction of President Arroyo when she visited Region 8 in November, the Department of Public Works and Highways in Region 8 is now facilitating the transfer of the property to the local government of Tanauan, Leyte so that it will be developed into a water sports tourism destination.
It would be recalled that the Bantay Dagat Area has been the venue of the National Skimboarding Competitions in the municipality where skimboarding in the country was born several years ago, and which gained for the municipality as the Skimboarding Capital of the Philippines.
Mayor Tiu said that the municipal officials are scheduled to meet with DPWH Director Jaime Pacanan this week in order to present to him the required papers needed for the turn over of the property to the local government of Tanauan.
Prior to this meeting, the DPWH has been in contact with the municipality regarding the President's instructions, and for that the local government is grateful, Mayor Tiu revealed.
When the papers are completed and the property has been turned over to the local government, the blueprint for the development of the area will be finalized, Mayor Tiu added.
In the meantime, Mayor Tiu said that he has already talked to local investors who are willing to develop the area into a water sports tourism destination. He will also formally talk to the Leyte Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Mayor Tiu envisions an area which offers various watersports like skimboarding, jetski, banana boats, boating in a lagoon, kite boarding, skate boarding which the public can avail of by renting the equipment needed.
The place will have a daily activity and will be complete with facilities like restobars and comfort facilities, and an area for camping.
Mayor Tiu said the municipality is lucky in getting the support of President Arroyo and the support of the Provincial Government of Leyte through Governor Carlos Jericho Petilla. He intimated that he will also request for the support of the Regional Development Council through its chairperson, Mayor Mel Sarmiento, and the support of the Philippine Tourism Authority and the Department of Tourism.
The National Skimboarding Competition is now on its 4th year and has always been held in Tanauan, Mayor Tiu said. Already, Tanauan has already caught the interest of and facilitated visits by riders from the different parts of the country and other countries.
For this to get going, get better and bigger, all Tanauan need is a little push and support from the stakeholders in government and in the private sector, Mayor Tiu said.
Jan 02, 2008
Tacloban generally peaceful on New Year's day
By Leonilo Lopido
Philippine Information Agency
Aside from the revelry that usually comes as a welcome to the incoming year, Leyte and Tacloban City was generally peaceful on New Year's day.
Colonel Romulo Cleve Taboso, chief of police of Tacloban City said that no untoward incidents happened on New Year's Day except for several reported minor ones which were reported to the City PNOP.
Colonel Taboso said that the first incident reported is one minor traffic accident in the downtown area but no serious injury was noted.
There was also a hacking incident which happened at 2:00 o'clock in the morning but this is more of a family problem, Colonel Taboso added.
The other incident reported, Colonel Taboso said, was the slight eye irritation sustained by one passerby who was watching a lighted fountain firecracker.
Other reported cases from the Police Log Book on January 1 include a case of pickpocketing along Zamora Street, alarm and scandal because of drunkenness at the Old Children's Park, shoplifting at Gaisano by an 18 year old guy from Sagkahan and boarding house robbery at Real Street.
Colonel Taboso said that he is happy that the New Year started peacefully. He sees this as a good indication of the year ahead.
For 2008, Colonel Taboso said that the Philippine National Police in Tacloban City will continue to implement the programs of PNP Chief Avelino Razon, which he said are being followed according to the time frame specified,
The Tacloban City Philippine National Police will also focus on the capability build up particularly on upgrading of firearms and of the communication facilities and equipments per thrust of City Mayor Alfred Romualdez.
Colonel Taboso said that the Mayor has been very supportive of the programs of the Philippine National Police, the reason why the City PNP is doing well and will continue to strive to provide the best service to the citizenry.
Colonel Taboso also called on the people of Tacloban to continue their support to the Philippine National Police particularly by reporting any uncommon occurrences in their respective areas so that the PNP will be able to assess and respond accordingly.
Jan 01, 2008
4th National Skimboarding tilt ends in a big bang
Philippine Information Agency
The 4th National Skimboarding Competition held at Tanauan, Leyte, the skimboarding capital of the Philippines, was a big success, Mayor Roque Tiu announced.
"Judging on the success of the Competition, we are now contemplating of making two competitions annually," Mayor Tiu said. The summer or Easter Sunday Competition which is the usual schedule of the national skimboarding competition will still be continued while the December Competition will still push through every year.
This will still depend on the availability of sponsors for the event, Mayor Tiu said. While he knew that Leyte Governor Carlos Jericho Petilla and the other sponsors, will still be willing to sponsor the two skimboarding events, he said that he still need the support of more benevolent benefactors and the promotional support from the national government so that this competition will really be included in the annual Tourism activities of the Philippines.
Several members of the media voiced out the need for the support of the national government so that the Skimboarding initiatives of the local government of Tanauan, Leyte will get a big boost. This kind of activity which has been launched through local initiatives, must be given the necessary logistics and promotional support from the national government, the local media opined.
The Competition was capped with an Awarding ceremonies, followed with a Reggae Party which lasted until three o'clock the following morning. This was participated in by hundreds of participants and other spectators from the different parts of the country.
Two hundred skim riders participated in the three categories of the National Skimboarding Competition, the groumet division for the youngsters category, the Wahini Division for the women participants and the Open Men's Division for the professional skim riders.
As in the past, the riders from Tanauan lorded it in all categories, over the other riders from all over the country. This is not a hometown decision, Mayor Tiu said, because the judges came from the Philippine Skim Association.
For the groumet division, Jhonry Cinco got his second championship title, followed by Frande Piamonte, Carl Gabas and Hendric Vargas, all of Tanauan, Leyte.
Woman rider Sheryl Pajelleno was again adjudged as the Wahini Division champion for the second year. The other winners are Kikay Espada, Tina Cumpio, all of Tanauan; and Jamaica Salceda of Cebu as the 3rd runner up.
Obet Yanuario emerged as champion in the Men's Division. Obet was the emerging champion last year but he ended up as a runner up because he suffered a foot dislocation on the last day of the competition.
Dariel Espada of Tanauan, who was last year's champion, won as the first runner up while cousin Leo Espada who is this year's first International Malaysian Skimboarding Champion emerged as 2nd runner up. Dags Hermosa of Cebu placed 3rd runner up.
As Philippine Skimboarding Association President Juan Duazo of said, the Skimboarding competition in Tanauan, does not only provide a venue where the riders can compete and enjoy the ocean, it is also an opportunity to meet other riders from all over the country, renew friendships and develop love for the sea and nature. When one loves the sea so much, that will really make him want to protect the environment.
He thanked Mayor Tiu and the local government of Tanauan for taking the lead in promoting skimboarding as water sport.flights.
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