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Sep 29, 2010

Call issued for Leyte Gulf Landings Subiran Regatta participants

Philippine Information Agency

Tacloban City -- The Subiran Regatta Committee for the Leyte Gulf Landings anniversary celebration, is calling for individuals who would be interested to participate in the Leyte Subiran Regatta which will be conducted on October 20, 2010.

Mr. Gilbert Eco, the Subiran Regatta coordinator said that the Leyte Subiran Regatta will be conducted at the Mac Arthur Beach in Palo, Leyte as special feature in this year's Leyte Gulf Landings anniversary celebration.

Interested participants for this year's Regatta are encouraged to register early at the Icot Caravan Office at the Leyte Grandstand. They may see Gilbert Eco at the Icot Caravan Office or call him up at 321- 4053 or 325-3080.

The final briefing and distribution of sails to the participants will be conducted on October 11, at 2:00 o'clock in the afternoon at the Leyte Capitol Gym.

The Leyte Subiran Regatta is the first of its kind in the whole province of Leyte. First incepted in 1975, it revived the sailboat regatta as a sporting event.

A regatta, as defined by Webster's New World Dictionary, as a meeting for boat races. Subiran, in the Waray dialect means attractive and colorful native boats, slim outriggers with single sails, painted and decorated with buntings of many hues, commonly used by Visayan fishermen for fishing and traveling short distances along the coast.

This display of the art of sailing crafts is a much-awaited moment by Leyteños and Samareños.

While Leyteños usually flock at the shore of Cancabato Bay along Ramon Magsaysay Boulevard, this time they will flock at historic Red Beach in Palo, Leyte, to witness this unique race of boats, which is considered to be environment-friendly because the fishermen use sails in running the boat.

Every year no less than 30 participants from Carigara and Tacloban (Leyte), Basey and Marabut (Western Samar), Biliran and even Eastern Samar join the competition.

Over a stretch of 8 nautical miles (approximately 15 kilometers), the racers, mostly fishermen themselves, outsmart each other to win big prizes at stake.

To ensure fairness, the Region 8 coast guards are always assigned at every point to record a certain area being reached.

Despite the rains and big waves, the participants bravely sail on. The boats run without the use of gasoline and engine. They are environment-friendly.

The aim of this competition is to enhance the skills of boatmen in the use of sails and more importantly, to promote tourism in the province of Leyte and Samar.

Sep 26, 2010

Robinsons expanding
its mall in Tacloban

By Marites S. Villamor

BusinessWorld Online, Philippines

"Tacloban opened only in June last year. It's doing well so we're expanding," Lourdes T. Alano, vice-president for lease said in a briefing here as part of a press tour of the company's projects in Cebu.

An additional 4,500 sq.m. of area for lease will be made available in Tacloban.

Gokongwei-led Robinsons Land Corp. is also building a budget hotel under the brand Go Hotel in Tacloban City.

ep 25, 201

TOMECO confirms
46 cases of vandalism

by Din Marie B. Amlih

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The Traffic Operations Management Enforcement and Control Office (TOMECO) confirmed yesterday that they have 46 cases of violators who have been vandalizing the traffic signs in the City.

Isabelo Lagutan, TOMECO spokesperson, said that the 46 cases were from their last 3 weeks inspection in the whole City. Some of these cases were missing traffic signs in Burgos and del Pilar Streets, another 3 missing steel plates, traffic signs with stickers, some with paints on and just recently at the back of Gaisano Central were a traffic sign was painted just like the color of the wall.

Lagutay commented that maybe those people who make all these things just hate TOMECO or the administration of the city itself.
Because of this, their office made a move to stop all these things. They have created intelligence operations where those people will be the one to monitor these activities and will be the one to apprehend those violators.

This intelligence is composed of 18 volunteers who are now into shifting every night around the city. The one who will be liable for this violation will be facing criminal cases like vandalism and destruction of government property.

As of now, TOMECO still monitors the number of vandalism cases and ensures that there will be no more traffic signs that will be destroyed.

Sep 23, 2010

DPWH released P1.3 billion for dredging in one week - Drilon

By Marvin Sy

Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines -- The Arroyo administration had released more than P1.3 billion to six provinces and two cities in just a week a few months before the May 10 elections, Sen. Franklin Drilon said yesterday.

               Former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo

They are: Romblon, P370 million; Albay, P302 million; Tacloban City, P160 million; Antique, P145 million; Biliran, P120 million; Butuan, P80 million; Catanduanes, P80 million; and Pampanga, P62.5 million.

Drilon said based on the summary of releases from the Department of Public Works and Highways for 2010, the projects related to flood control, specifically the dredging, desilting and re-channeling of rivers.

"We all know that dredging is a rich source of corruption because it is very difficult, if not impossible, to monitor accomplishments in dredging," he said.

"You cannot measure how deep the dredging went."

Drilon said the projects bore no indication of irregularity on paper.

The releases were covered by special allotment release orders from the Department of Budget and Management issued between Feb. 18 and 26, he added.

Drilon said for Romblon alone, a total of P370 million was released for 14 projects in just a day.

"Why was there such a rush to release P370 million in one day to Romblon, to desilt and deepen these rivers, which are even free-flowing rivers?" he asked.

"The circumstantial evidence in law is there. There is reason to believe that it was not used for the purpose intended."

Drilon said the P5-billion Pasig River dredging project would be completed next year to supposedly increase its depth from four to six meters and expand its navigational lane from 40 to 60 meters.

He intends to look further into the issue to find out who was responsible for making these releases, he added.

The dredging of Laguna de Bay includes the development of a disposal area for contaminated sediments, Drilon said.

Sep 23, 2010

P1.3B for river rehab
spent in polls, says Drilon

By Christian V. Esguerra - Philippines

MANILA, Philippines -- A group of rivers located in eight provinces in Luzon and the Visayas received a whopping P1.3 billion for rehabilitation from the past administration.

Unfortunately, the amount spent for "de-silting and dredging" supposedly ended up being used for the May elections this year, according to Senator Franklin Drilon, chairman of the finance committee.

"To me, this was clearly used in the elections," he said in a press conference after the committee hearing on the proposed 2011 budget of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Asked if he had evidence to support the allegation, he replied: "The circumstantial evidence in law is there. There is reason to believe that it was not used for the purpose intended."

Drilon pointed out that the entire amount was released in just eight days, from February 18 to 26 this year, or some three months before the elections. He said the amount was contained in separate special allotment release orders.

Among the eight provinces that benefited from what the senator described as "unusual releases" was Pampanga, home province of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Pampanga received a total of P62.5 million for the rehabilitation of seven rivers there. The fund for Pampanga was actually the smallest among the eight provinces, according to the "Summary of Releases for Congressional Initiatives" for 2010.

The other provinces were Romblon (P370 million), Albay (P302 million), Tacloban City in Leyte (P160 million), Antique (P145 million), Biliran (P120 million), Butuan City in Agusan del Norte (P80 million), and Catanduanes (P80 million).

A total of 70 rivers in these eight provinces reportedly benefited from the fund release, according to the document made available by Drilon.

"We will go deeper into this," he said. "We will find out who are responsible for this."

Because of the P1.3-billion fund release, the senator said his committee would closely monitor the planned dredging of the Laguna Lake, which has an allocation of P18.5 billion.

ep 22, 201

No case filed yet vs alleged mastermind in Granados killing

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Councilor Jeric Dane "Tata" Granados said that they have yet to file a criminal complaint on the purported mastermind on the killing of his father a week ago.

The councilor said that they are still gathering necessary documents that could lead to their filing of the case against the person the family suspect to be responsible on his father's death.

Yesterday, Granados was at the regional office of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) accompanied by his lawyer to make a personal follow up on the case.

He could not say when they would file criminal case against those whom the family suspect to be the mastermind on the murder of his father.

Last September 15, the councilor's father, Manuel,57, was gunned down by a lone assassin, later identified as Brian Bautista, right outside their house located at People's Homesite and Housing Corp. (PHHC).

A murder rap has already been filed last Thursday against Bautista who is now detained at the city jail.

Councilor Granados said that the family is mourning on the death of their patriarch, a known businessman in the city who is into public transport business.

"Of course, we are sad. Who would be happy if your father was killed just like that," he said.

Asked if the motive on the killing of his father has something to do with their business, the neophyte councilor declined to answer.
He also refused to answer further questions.

But he offered to say that his father would be buried this Saturday with a necrological service to be held before the interment.

Councilor Granados also said that with the family still in deep mourning and preoccupied with their plan to file a murder charge against the person or persons they believed to be behind the killing of their father, he could not attend today's regular session at the city council.

Mayor Romualdez, in a separate interview, said that he is deeply looking with concern on the development of the case against the murdered businessman.

He assured the Granados family and the public as well that justice would be served to the victim and his family.
The city mayor said that the police authorities in the city and even the members of the National Bureau of Investigation are doing their respective roles in making sure that the Granados murder would be solved.
Meantime, City Prosecutor Ruperto Golong said that the Granados family can still file a murder case against those whom they suspect to be the mastermind.

They can do it as a supplemental case, he said.

It was his office who filed the murder case against Bautista last Thursday.

ep 21, 2010

Pay parking area to be built in Tacloban to avoid double parking

by Rey Gerilla Grado

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The Traffic Operations, Management, Enforcement and Control Office (TOMECO), with the aid of the City Government of Tacloban, plans to build a pay parking area here next year. This was discussed by the Chief of TOMECO (ret.) Col. Salvador Estudillo in a recent press briefing conducted at TOMECO's Information and Education Service Center.

Estudillo revealed that because the city still doesn't have an area where drivers can park their vehicles, the double parking scenario usually is seen to be leading to having heavy traffic.

"As of this moment, Tacloban City doesn't still have parking area that is open to public, and because of this, the streets of Tacloban especially those that are one way streets are having a double parking scenario and we cannot blame the drivers why they do it," TOMECO Chief said.

"As I can observe based from the roving activity that we have, there are some one way streets in the City mostly in the downtown area of Tacloban that experience double parking area, for which is not good because other vehicle is having difficulties on passing through that area," he explained.

In connection to this problem, TOMECO recommended to City Mayor Alfred S. Romualdez to build a new pay parking area at the downtown area of Tacloban so that this problem would be solved.

"On my talk with the City Mayor Romualdez, I have recommended that there is a need for the city to come up with a pay parking area so that problem on having heavy traffic because of having double parking on some streets would be stopped," he added.

Estudillo expressed that the city mayor agreed to his recommendation because Mayor Romualdez himself experienced traffic while traveling in Tacloban.

According to Estudillo, Mayor Romualdez is now studying as to where they should put this pay parking area that would be built in the downtown area of Tacloban.

Moreover, having this pay parking area would be beneficial because this can be an income generating project of the city government.
"This project would be beneficial to the city government because aside from the purpose of stopping the double parking scenario and heavy traffic, this would also be a means of raising funds that would be utilized on projects that would be rendered by the city government to its constituents,"Estudillo disclosed.

ep 21, 2010

Pino: The restaurant
of celebrities

by Ven S. Labro

Leyte Samar Daily Express

The Pino Seafoods Restaurant in Tacloban City has brought dining experience to the mall, where diners can enjoy good, delicious food - whether they are eating alone or with the barkada, having lunch after shopping, or dining out with the family or with a date.

Pino Seafoods Restaurant, which boasts of having the best baked scallop in town, offers an array of delectable Filipino and Spanish cuisine at affordable prices. It boasts of a "seafood market" section where customers can chose and order fresh fish and seashells, and then have them cooked the way they want it, like into tinola (stewed fish), sinugba (grilled) or kinilaw (raw fish).

The "seafood market" offers different kinds of fresh fish such as lapulapu, tonto, blue marlin, tangigue, mamsa, danggit, and others. Also available Are fresh squids, shrimps and seashells including scallops, says Carlyn S. Maraya, the OIC of the Tacloban branch of Pino Seafoods Restaurant.

Maraya, a graduate of BS in Nutrition and Dietetics, says she assists costumers with health problems in choosing the right healthy food.

Open from 10 a.m. to 12 midnight and located in the ground floor of Robinsons Place in Tacloban City, the Pino Seafoods Restaurant also serves popular Filipino dishes such as kaldereta, bistek Tagalog, kare-kare, sisig, dinuguan, chicken pork adobo, sugpo sa gata and crispy pata.

Pino also offers favorite Filipino vegetable dishes such as Bicol express, laing, tortang talong, pinakbet and adobong kangkong. It also serves hot soups like bulalo, sinigang, tinola na manok, and chicken binacol. For noodle lovers, the restaurant has pancit luglug, bam-i, pancit canton, and sotanghon.

With the array of dishes it serves, no wonder that Pino Seafoods Restaurant has become a popular dining place, not only for mall-goers and locals but also for celebrities including foreigners like the Air Supply.

Celebrities like Bong Revilla, Richard Gomez, Jessa Zaragosa, Abjur Abrenica, the B-Meg Derby Ace Llamados basketball team including team manager Alvin Patrimonio and ace player James Yap, the popular singing group Sponge Cola and the Marcos family, including Madame Imelda, Mayor Alfred and his wife Councilor Kringkring, have been, at one time or another, customers of the Pino Seafoods Restaurant in Tacloban City.

Maraya recalls that when they visited the restaurant, Gov. Imee Marcos loved their kinilaw, while Rep. Lucy Torres adored their halo-halo.

She emphasizes though that celebrities and the other costumers enjoy the same professional service, good ambience and delectable foods that the Pino Seafoods Restaurant is proud of.

According to Maraya, the place, which can accommodate 80 to 100 customers at one time, also has tables and chairs at the patio where customers can enjoy their beer and beverages while listening to the music of a local acoustic band, which plays classical and popular music every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night.

The Pino Seafoods Restaurant in Tacloban City - the restaurant of celebrities - is one of the five branches of the Pino Cuisine and Restaurant. It also has three branches in Cebu City and one in Davao City.

ep 20, 2010

CAAP 2011 budget includes
P70 M for DZR airport's ILS

by Reyan L. Arinto

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Some P70 million has been included in the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) 2011 budget for the installation of instrument landing system (ILS) at the Daniel Z. Romualdez (DZR) Airport, according to a sectoral representative at the Lower House.

Rep. Neil Benedict A. Montejo of the An Waray party-list said he made sure that the budget be included so that ILS would immediately be installed so that DZR Airport could handle night landings and take off and even during poor to zero visibility of the airport.

"I had a talk with Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Undersecretary (Glicerio) Sicat and we threshed out problems concerning our airport. We found out that there was already a budget for that last year," Rep. Montejo said in an interview with Leyte Samar Daily Express.

"Within the budget year, it is expected that our airport would already have an ILS," Montejo said.

An ILS is a ground-based instrument approach system that provides precision guidance to an aircraft approaching and landing on a runway using a combination of radio signals and in most cases, high-intensity lighting arrays to enable a safe landing during reduced visibility due to fog and heavy rains.

"During zero visibility, flights to Tacloban are usually diverted to Cebu because we lack aeronautical equipment in our airport. So, this is good news for us," Montejo added.

"It is up to CAAP to implement the project. But as I have learned, CAAP is also bent on putting up the system," Montejo said.

Aside from the additional aeronautical safety equipment, the DZR Airport is also undergoing rehabilitation particularly its apron and runway. A new terminal building is also programmed for construction by way of a build-operate-transfer scheme.

The DZR Airport is classified as a principal domestic airport and the seventh busiest airports in the country in terms of passenger volume.
The airport currently has six flights to and from Manila daily and two flights to and from Cebu daily.

ep 18, 2010

Exorcising & cleansing Tacloban

Leyte Samar Daily Express

Tacloban has greatly improved. The whole city has really changed, buildings have grown bigger, and the population has drastically increased, people are more empowered, businesses and economic activities have become brisk and vigorous. Tacloban today is a far cry from what it was when it became a city in 1953.

ven the ensuing years, streets were unpaved and dirt roads were common. The houses and buildings were small, ordinary and modest. Taclobanons' lives were simple then. To come to Tacloban was a blessing, a special treat for people from other places in the region.

Today, the city has grown big and lives have grown complicated. The surroundings have become modern, more beautiful and scenic. But with the good things are also the bad side to progress, more people to take care, more garbage to dispose, more problems to tackle and more challenges to meet.

The City government has so much on its hands and sometimes it is quite overwhelming. The whole thing cannot be managed by a single man or by the government. There is a need to walk hand in hand to meet all the challenges ahead.

Tacloban's garbage has increased in volume; our thoroughfares and villages are littered with trash and dirt which people just wantonly throw around without thought. Limpyo and Mahusay Tacloban campaign has been enforced for so long now yet people have never learned to cooperate or take it seriously.

In some interior streets and places, rugby boys abound doing the worst thing, destroying their frail bodies with cellophane of the toxic substance glued to their noses. Even the Social Workers and Police cannot do anything about the problem.

The families and community must do more rigid actions to curb the problem if not eradicate them. How could we have a strong and dependable future generation if we will not rid such addiction from our children?

Lately, we have had isolated cases of violence in our midst; incidents that manifest some lawlessness in our ranks. People are starting to fear for their and their children's lives. Even a 3-year old was not spared from being raped and violently mauled. Honest and practically peace-loving citizens are terminated mercilessly.

We do not want such to continue in our small community, our beloved city. But the PNP and other law enforcement agencies cannot do it alone. They cannot protect 250,000 - 350,000 people at a time everyday. People are called to be vigilant and to go hand in hand in protecting one another.

It is high time we all decide to maintain the image of Tacloban as a beautiful, safe and clean city with the people still enjoying a laid back life. We need to exorcise the evils of our society; we must decide to clean Tacloban now once and for all.

ep 17, 2010

Mayor Romualdez concerned
on murder of businessman

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- City Mayor Alfred Romualdez is having a very serious concern over the murder of businessman Manuel Granados.

This was disclosed by his wife, Councilor Cristina Gonzales-Romualdez, who added that the mayor is hoping that the case would be solve immediately.

But despite this latest murder to hit the city, Tacloban remains to be generally peaceful, the lady councilor stressed.

"The mayor has been talking with our police authorities and even lawyers right after he learned about the incident. He's really concerned about this incident," Romualdez said.

"He really wants the case be solved immediately," she added.

Last Wednesday, Granados was shot to death by a lone gunman while he was about to board his vehicle parked outside their residence at People's Homesite and Housing Corp. (PHHC).

The suspect, Ryan Bautista, is heavily guarded at the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC) who is recuperating from a gun shot wound he sustained from the security escort of Granados.

Granados, whose family is engaged into public transportation business, is also the father of neophyte Councilor Jeric Dane Granados.
The family declined to give any media interviews with police authorities.

Granados got involved in a recent controversy as some public utility jeep operators and drivers questioned the entry of the family-owned vehicles to the Manlurip area without the necessary franchise.

Councilor Romualdez said that while the murder of Granados shocked the entire city, the incident should not be interpreted that the peace and order situation of Tacloban is getting worst.

"Tacloban remains to be generally peaceful and safe. It is still safe to walk around. In fact, we could still see several foreigners in our streets," she said.

Romualdez also said that the Granados incident would not affect the business climate of the city as she maintains that the confidence of businessmen towards the city authorities remains.

"The business climate of Tacloban remains okay," she said.

The council official maintains that peace and security remains to be one of the priorities of the Romualdez administration.

Granados is the second close associate of Mayor Romualdez to have been gunned down.

Last March 5, Freddie Anido, then the manager of the New Bus Terminal, was also gunned down by two riding-in-tandem suspects while he was cruising Barangay Caibaan. His murder remains unsolved as of this time.

ep 17, 2010

VM Antoni says SP may call attention of city police on peace and order

by Roel Amazona

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The City vice-mayor here said that there is a possibility that the Sangguniang Panlungsod will call the attention of the City police office to inform them and update on the present peace and order situation and security and the preventive measures that the police force is implementing to address the problem.

"Just like what we had before when we noticed that the problem of criminality in the city was considered to be alarming, we have the power to summon or call the law enforcers leadership in this city to update us on what are they doing to update us in the present situation of the city as far as criminality is concerned and their actions to prevent this things to happen," Vice-Mayor Arvin Antoni said in an interview.

The said question was asked to the presiding officer of the Sangguniang Panlungsod after it was noticed that two heinous crimes happened in the city of Tacloban in less than a month with the latest that of the killing of the father of Tacloban City Councilor Jeric Dane Granados.

"Right now the investigation of the said crime is still on-going, but I know that in the next few days the issue on peace and order and security will be the next hot issue for the members of the City council," Antoni said.

Antoni added that although killings in the City can be considered as isolated cases, the said problem can still have a bad impact to the City considering that its leadership is busy in promoting and inviting businessmen who are prospective investors.

"This will really affect the present business situation of the City, once this problem will not be solved," Antoni said.

"But this problem is inevitable and the City is not the only one experiencing this kind of problem, this happens everywhere, but it should not be taken for granted by law enforcers," Antoni added.

"I am just hoping that justice will be served for the victims and the family in the recent crime incidents that had happened in the City," Antoni added.

"We hope that these crimes would be solved soon because this has a lasting effect on the present peace and order situation in an area and on the business climate of the City. With the solution of the crimes, I hope this would ease the worry of businessmen in the City," Antoni added.

Prior to the killing of the father of Councilor Granados, a mother of two was hacked to death by her neighbor in Marasbaras.
In the latest incident in the City, the perpetrator of Councilor Granados' father was apprehended by the police and now under their custody for proper questioning and investigation to know who is the mastermind of the said crime.

ep 17, 2010

Vehicle operators
not yet disciplined

by Enrico C. Liba

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Traffic Operations Management Enforcement and Control Office (TOMECO) says vehicle operators are not yet disciplined in abiding traffic rules and regulations.

In an interview with Leyte Samar Daily Express, Isabelo Lagutan, public information officer, said that operators are still hard-headed in following traffic rules.

As of last month of August, TOMECO records 1,783 number of apprehension for traffic violations covering from the first month of the year, January to August, TOMECO records 9,581 number of apprehension for traffic violations.

Lagutan said that compared with last year there is really an increase in the number of traffic violations which proved that people, especially vehicle operators, are not yet disciplined and still committing the same violations over and over again.

Lagutan also answered assertions that are being thrown to their office. He said that there is no truth that they are treating the people rudely as many claim. Instead, he said that they are the ones who discourteously treat the enforcers like nagging them and there are also cases that vehicle operators are shouting at them.

Lagutan also said that if only people are disciplined enough, they will not apprehend them if only they could follow traffic rules.

Lagutan claimed that as one of their activities in celebrating their 1st anniversary, they will conduct more enhancements like traffic literacy patrol targeting school communities. He explained that this is better than disciplining people like students rather than those who are old enough but still ignorant.

"Our job is like a fight between David and Goliath, our only weapon is the law," he concluded.

ep 16, 2010

Businessman pa of Tacloban councilor shot dead in PHHC

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Police investigators are still to determine what could be the motive behind the killing of businessman Manuel "Boyin" Granados, father of neophyte Councilor Jeric Dane Granados.

PO1 Enrique Cua, case investigator of the Police Community
Precinct 2 of the Tacloban City Police Office, examines the
single motorcycle and the gun (on the pavement) that was
ellegedly used in gunning down businessman Manuel Granados
yesterday morning in Brgy. 72, PHCC, Tacloban City.
(Lito Abala Bagunas)

The 57-year old victim was shot on his back with a bullet exiting to his chest, which resulted to his death, Senior Inspector Jorge Longjas, police community precinct commander at Abucay sub-station office, said in an interview.

Based on their initial investigation, Granados was about to board his vehicle parked just outside their house at People's Homesite and Housing Corp. (PHHC) Village, this city, at around 7:20 yesterday morning when the suspect approached and shot him.

The suspect, who was on board a motorcycle, also struck the victim with a bladed weapon, wounding the victim on the arms.

Some members of the Granados family brought the victim to the Divine Word Hospital but his attending doctors declared him dead on arrival at 9:10 am.

Several slugs of caliber .45 and 9mm were recovered by the members of the scene of the crime operatives (Soco). Also recovered by police authorities were a .45 caliber pistol, the motorcycle used by the suspect and his cellular phone.

Longjas said that the suspect, who was later identified as Rian Bautista, 33 years old and single, was shot on his back and is now recuperating at the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC) with members of the special weapon and tactics (SWAT) guarding him.

It was the personal bodyguard of Granados, said to be a member of the intelligence group of the Philippine Army, who shot and hit the suspect who was about to escape, Longjas said.

Longjas declined to say what could be the motive of Bautista in killing Granados, a well-known businessman in the city whose family is into public transportation business, except by saying that their investigation is still on progress.

Recently, Granados got involved in a controversy as some of his public utility vehicles were plying the Manlurip route, this city, without the necessary franchise.

As of press time, Councilor Granados, who was just recently elected in last May 10 elections, declined to grant media interviews.

A relative of the family, Florencio Aguilos, who is the board secretary of the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board, asked the media to give them some "privacy."

"But we will issue a press statement (on the incident)," Aguilos said.

A witness of the incident, who asked not to be identified, said that at around 6:45 on that morning, the alleged suspect had parked his motorcycle in an area just less than 20 meters away from the house of the victim.

"I thought he was just a regular collector as he was reading a piece of paper while at the same time, he was talking on his mobile phone," the witness said.

ep 16, 2010

Cebu Pacific ready to hire
300 new flight attendants

Leyte Samar Daily Express

Cebu Pacific (CEB) is hiring 300 flight attendants to augment the airline's workforce in time for the arrival of four brand-new Airbus A320 aircraft. This aircraft delivery is scheduled from October 2010 until January 2011.

The CEB team has scheduled a recruitment campaign in Cebu (September 16 at the Cebu Midtown Hotel) and initial screening in Manila (September 20 and 27 at the CEB Training and Development Center, Domestic Airport Road, and October 6 at the Crowne Plaza Galleria Manila).

"We are scheduled to add more flights to Kota Kinabalu, Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta and Seoul in time with our Airbus A320 aircraft deliveries, and we need more cabin crew to handle our additional capacity," said CEB VP for Marketing and Distribution Candice Iyog.

"This continuous hiring of cabin crew from all over the Philippines also contributes to nation-building by providing job opportunities. In the past, we have hired flight attendants from our recruitment campaigns in Davao, Cebu, Iloilo and Bacolod, among the many other destinations we fly to," she added.

Qualifications for being a CEB flight attendant include a dynamic personality that embodies CEB's culture of fun, at least 5'3″ in height for females and at least 5'7″ in height for males, weight that is proportional to height, clear complexion, good eyesight, and good set of teeth.

The applicants must also be college level, proficient in Filipino and English, and are willing to be assigned outside Metro Manila. They are advised to bring along their updated resumé and recent 2×2 photo. Screening is on first-come first-serve basis.

Iyog added, "We have already successfully trained 120 flight attendants this year, and our 70th batch will soon graduate by the end of September. After rigorous training on safety and service, and competency checks, Batch 70 with 19 females and 9 males will be welcomed into the CEB family."

"We encourage young graduates to apply so that they can experience being part of a young, fun, and service-oriented firm committed to providing high-quality service across Asia," she said.

CEB currently has a fleet of 10 A319, 11 A320 jets and eight turbo-prop ATR 72 aircraft. It expects to take delivery of a total of 24 brand-new Airbus A320 until 2014. For more information, visit the website at

ep 15, 2010

Illegal numbers games still rampant in EV, says police

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Police authorities in the region said that campaign on the operations of illegal numbers games across the region remains to be a priority.

The drive against operations of these illegal numbers games surfaced anew as several close associates of President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino have been accused of receiving money from gambling lords.

Senior Superintendent Manuel Cubillo, chief of the police and community relations office of the regional headquarters of the Philippine National Police, admitted that illegal numbers games like swertres continue to exist in various parts of the region.

"In fact, there are always arrests being made of persons who are engage in illegal gambling like swertres," Cubillo said.

He, however, said that data on this has yet to be consolidated by his office.

Cubillo said that the campaign on illegal numbers games is one of the priorities of the police regional leadership.

"Whether there is an issue or not, our campaign continues," he said, referring to allegations that presidential associates, to include some local officials, are receiving pay offs from gambling lords or financiers.

But he maintains that the existing illegal numbers games in the region are not as extensive as that of Luzon.

Here in Tacloban, swertres continues to exist despite campaign of the police authorities against those behind the illegal numbers game whose winning results are taken from that of the government sanction numbers game of the same name, Senior Inspector Ma.Bella Rentuaya, information officer of the Tacloban police office, admitted in a separate interview.

"We don't tolerate such illegal activity. We conduct raids against those involved on this illegal numbers game," Rentuaya said.

Money on this illegal activity seems to be easy, says "Pilita," a resident of Tacloban who has been acting as a bet collector for more than a year now.

She said that of the average bet of about P7,000 a night, she gets 30 percent of it.

"That is really a big money for poor people like us," Pilita, who asked her full identity be disclosed, said admitting that she is very "cautious" on dealing with her prospective bettors considering that she is into illegal activity.

She said that all the collections she made are remitted to a "coordinator" which she declined to identify. In turn, the coordinator, remit the money to the financier whom she said a resident of the city.

According to her, people tend to bet on "swertres" because of expected good winning.

A bet of P5 merits a P2,000 winning, she said. The bigger the bet, the bigger the prize money, Pilita said.

Sep 15, 2010

Caluwayan Beach Resort
to expand next year

by Sarwell Q. Meniano

Leyte Samar Daily Express

MARABUT, Samar -- The Caluwayan Palm Island Beach Resort in this town will expand its facility next year to attract more gatherings in the area, the property's manager said.

         Caluwayan Palm Island Resort & Restaurant is
        located in Barangay Caluwayan, Marabut, Samar.

Zenaida P. Consimino, manager of the family-run business, claimed that the ambience of the resort is perfect for meetings but it is hampered by the absence of facilities such as function hall with apartments for seminars and conferences.

"This place has drawn many visitors especially during weekend after we built a pool. Foreigners like this place because of serenity while locals came to experience recreation," claimed Consimino, a native of Caluwayan village.

She added that conference hall will initially require about P3 million. "We have to put a lot (of investment) and build a name." The family is also considering setting up water bungalows.

The resort was opened in 2005 and it has been a venue of various special occasions. The three-hectare property offers possibilities for island hopping, rock climbing, other aqua-sports activities and sightseeing.

"The idea of setting up a resort started when our friends love to visit in our place because it's very relaxing," she added.

The rock formations visible along Marabut shores has driven investors to buy properties in the area and set up a resort but only the property owned by the Consiminos is accredited by the Department of Tourisms so far.

The resort is called "palm island" because it is flanked with rivers dotted with coconut trees.

Among the amenities in Caluwayan are bistro bar lounge, grill house, beach cottage, boat rental, shower house, and infinity pool. To accommodate the guests overnight, the resort has two open cottages and four beach villas. Room rates varies from P1,000 to P4,000.

The property surrounded by a breathtaking view of towering rock islands and islets with secluded coves and coral gardens. Consimino said that the place is ideal for scuba diving, snorkeling, sea kayaking, sailing, and swimming.

For an entrance fee of only P20, one can enjoy sun-bathing or simply lazing on the beach enjoying the view of the beautiful seascape.

The resort can be reached by car - 45 minutes drive from Tacloban City, passing through the famous San Juanico Bridge that connects Leyte and Samar; and the ancient town Basey, which is famous for its unique cave and mats.
The resort can also be reached directly by boat from Tacloban City port area.

Tourism industry in Marabut town boomed about 10 years ago after an international hard sports competition and expedition was held in the town. Since then, the municipality continued to welcome tourists from different parts of the country and around the world.


Spend a beautiful and relaxing day at the
Caluwayan Palm Island Resort.
This resort and restaurant is located in
Marabut, Samar and can be reached by car.
It's only 45 mins drive from Tacloban City.
Click HERE to read more..

Sep 13, 2010

Apostol says P7-M pay
for SSS post 'too small'
to be called obscene

by Joey A. Gabieta - Philippines

TACLOBAN CITY -- In a country where more than a third of the population survives on less than P100 a day, Leyte Rep. Sergio Apostol considers peanuts the P7 million he claimed to have received last year when he was a member of the board of Union Bank.

    "That amount (PHP 7,000,000.00) is too small for it to be
  (described) as obscene .." says Leyte Rep. Sergio Apostol.

"That amount is too small for it to be (described) as obscene," Apostol, who represented the Social Security System (SSS) on the board of Union Bank," yesterday said.

"I believe we were entitled to it. We worked for it," added the lawmaker, who also served as a legal adviser of then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

The former SSS board director described as "publicity-seekers" critics of the hefty compensations that he and other Arroyo allies received from the SSS and government firms.

Apostol said the amount was too small for him to be criticized.

The Leyte lawmaker was reacting to an earlier disclosure by Sen. Franklin Drilon, the head of a Senate committee investigating the hundreds of millions of pesos received by Arroyo allies in various government firms.

Drilon said Apostol was among SSS executives who received a total of P46.3 million in director's fees in 2009 from Union Bank.

The senator said the amount was nearly half the P100.4 million in dividends that the SSS received from Union Bank in 2009.

The other SSS executives mentioned by Drilon were Thelmo Cunanan and Romulo Neri.

Apostol said the amount that he received was also too small compared with the income generated by SSS, the state-run pension fund for workers in the private sector.

"SSS is earning as it remains to be one of the richest corporations in the country," he said. "Those who are saying that what we received was obscene are publicity-seekers."

Profit share, per diem

Besides director's fees, Apostol received P15.4 million in profit share from Union Bank, according to the Senate finance committee.

The committee said Apostol got from Union Bank a total of P25.1 million in profit share and per diem from 2008 to 2009.

Last week, President Benigno Aquino III issued an executive order suspending all allowances, bonuses and incentives of board members of government financial institutions (GFIs) and government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs).

Executive Order No. 7 created a task force that will review the remuneration granted to members of the board, officers and rank-and-file employees of GFIs and GOCCs.

The order came after the probe by Drilon's committee found that the compensation packages of some GOCCs and GFIs far exceeded those of other government officials and staff.

Sep 13, 2010

PAF 8, RC Tacloban donate garbage cans to the city

by Jizabel G. Quiminales

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- In support of the program of the city government to make Tacloban City clean and beautiful, the Philippine Air Force (PAF) Tactical Operations Group 8 (TOG8) in cooperation with the Rotary Club of Tacloban (RC) donated 20 garbage cans to the City on Thursday.

         The Magsaysay Blvd in Tacloban City, commonly
                               known as "Magz Bar"

Colonel Anselmo DP Junsay III, Group Commander PAF TOG8, said the donation of garbage cans is part of their Civil Military Operations (CMO) Program.

They conduct CMO in their area of responsibility specifically Eastern Visayas region, wherein they focus on environmental protection activities, Col. Junsay said.

Meanwhile, Victor Ariel Reyes, president of the Rotary Club of Tacloban, stressed that they saw the need for garbage cans especially at the Balyuan area.

"During our clean up project last August 28, we noticed a lot of garbage along Magsaysay Boulevard. We also noticed that there were no garbage cans. This is our way to help keep the city clean and green," Reyes said.

Reyes also added that, "cleaning the area also helps reduce the chances of dengue."

Also, Junsay disclosed that they couldn't do the project alone. They coordinated with the RC Tacloban to help them in making the community a better place to live - clean, peaceful, and productive. RC Tacloban is an organization that provides "Service above Self."

"TOG8 and RC Tacloban are privileged to be in the service to the people of Tacloban and the whole Eastern Visayas region," Junsay said.

Sep 11, 2010

City councilor Glova asks concerned citizens to monitor minors in computer shops

by Enrico C. Liba

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- City Councilor Neil Glova called the attention of concerned citizens to have social responsibility regarding the prohibitions of minors in computer shops in the City during class hours.

Glova is asking the public such as computer shop operators, Barangay officials and especially the parents of minors to have social responsibility in monitoring computer shops which violate Ordinance No. 2009-10-162 of the city government.

He asked for the cooperation of Barangay officials to keep an eye on computer shops within their area of responsibility. Likewise, Glova told the parents of students, especially the minors, to watch over their children during class hours.

The City councilor also added that computer shop operators should follow all the restrictions set by the city ordinance or else the running of their business will be cancelled.

"I will not hesitate to recommend the canceling of franchise if they violated the ordinance," Glova stressed.

Some of the restrictions set by City Ordinance No. 2009-10-162 are prohibiting the minors during class hours, the façade of the establishment should be visible from outside and there should be no serving of liquors and cigarettes inside the computer shops.

He also warned some computer shop operators who still do not have business permits and for whose permit is near to expire to have immediate action on this.

According to Licensing Officer Therese Rachelle Jadloc, as of September 9, 2010 they already have consolidated 92 registered computer shops all over the City.


Sep 10, 2010

Region 8 Leaders Mulling
to Build Own Power Plant

By Jack C. Gadaingan

Manila Bulletin

TACLOBAN CITY -- Top leaders in Eastern Visayas are now considering an option to build the region's own power plant harnessing the geothermal fields in Tongonan, Leyte in an effort to solve the power shortage in the area.

  The Leyte Geothermal Production Field in Tongonan, Leyte

It was gathered that the continuing privatization of the power sector industry including the generating plants and ancillary services had posted electricity-shortage problems to the host region, Eastern Visayas.

As this developed, Leyte Gov. Carlos Jericho L. Petilla, who was recently nominated to lead the Regional Development Council in Region 8 (RDC8), said that to avoid being affected by the looming power shortage, they should exert efforts to build their own generating plants.

This idea has already been suggested to other governors of Region 8, and they are all open to it as an option, he said.

However, they would have to wait for the power supply situation in the entire Visayas to normalize first before going ahead with the building of their own power-generating plant at the government-owned geothermal fields in Tongonan, Leyte.

"It is an option should we continue to experience power shortage problems. However, knowing that this would really be costly, it will be an option we have to reserve as a last recourse," Petilla said.

The plan, it was learned, is dependent on the outcome on the commercial operations of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) in the Visayas, which can be gleaned this coming September 26.

At the moment, the power situation in the Visayas remains volatile, but is hoped to improve, the leaders said.

Through WESM, which will again be operated by Philippine Electricity Market Corporation (PEMC), power can be bought through bidding to the highest buyer.

And the law has mandated power utilities (distribution firms) to source at least 10 percent of their power requirements from WESM, where big power suppliers cut deals.

Sep 10, 2010

Alfred pushes for Tacloban's lone congressional district

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Mayor Alfred Romualdez said he is pushing for Tacloban be declared as a lone congressional district, separate from that district now represented by his cousin, Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez.

The city mayor made this disclosure when asked if he favors a proposal of Representative Sergio Apostol to create new congressional district for Tacloban and another congressional district covering some towns to be carved out from the first and second districts of Leyte.

Having its own congressman could spell more progress for Tacloban, Mayor Alfred Romualdez said.

Romualdez said that he is set to discuss the matter with his cousin, Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez this weekend. Rep. Romualdez is the incumbent congressional representative of Leyte's first district of which Tacloban is part of.

"Actually we have already discussed the matter briefly but this weekend, we'll talk more about it," the mayor said.

He said that when he moved for the reclassification of Tacloban into a highly urbanized city last 2008, he was also pushing for the city to have its own congressional representative.

Romualdez, however, was quick to say that if ever Tacloban would become a lone district, he would not seek for a congressional post.

"I will not run for congressman," he said.

The city mayor said that having another congressman would be an advantage considering that it would mean another voice who can seek help from our national leaders.

"If our government authorities are really sincere in pushing progress and development for Eastern Visayas, (the creation of another congressional district), will be a big step," Romualdez, who is on his second term as mayor, said.

An additional congressman could mean another leader coming from the region who can lobby for assistance before our national leaders, he explained.

He said that Tacloban, the regional capital for Eastern Visayas, could qualify to have its own congressman just like other HUCs in the country.

Under our laws, creating a new congressional district requires a population of at least 250,000. But based on the 2007 population census, Tacloban has only 218,144 residents.

Romualdez, however, said that Tacloban has now close to 240,000 people. The National Statistics Office is set to disclose its 2010 population census this December.

"Our population is growing by at least 10 percent every three years," he said.

Romualdez, who was once a congressman, said that creating a new congressional district requires a rather long process which starts in the filing of a bill at the House of Representatives for the purpose.

Counting the long process, the population of Tacloban could have satisfied the required number by then, the city mayor said.

At present, Tacloban is part of Leyte's first congressional district which covers the towns of Palo, Babatngon, Tanauan, Santa Fe, Alangalang, San Miguel and Tolosa.

Sep 09, 2010

Tanauan riders reign in
Skimfest at Borongan

Philippine Information Agency

Tacloban City -- The Tanauan riders once again showed their dominance in the skimboarding water sports as they ran away with the choicest prizes at the Borongan Skimboarding Competition held on September 5, 2010.

For the third time in just one week, the skimboarders of Tanauan, Leyte once again brought home the bacon. The first was on August 29 when Leo Espada beca,e champion at the Palm Beach first Skimboarding Competition in Hongkong. The second was on August 29 when another Tanauan skimboarder won the Zambales Challenge in Iba, Zambales.

Tanauan, Leyte Mayor Agapito Pagayanan, Jr. informed the Philippine Information Agency that the Tanauan riders bagged all the prizes at the Skimboarding Competition in Borongan which was held in line with the town fiesta of Borongan on September 8.

Mayor Pagayanan said that Roberto Yanuario bested the other riders to become champion at the Borongan skimboarding competition. The first runner up went to Roderick Espada. The second runner up prize was won by Leo Espada while the 3rd runner up trophy was claimed by Niko Cobacha.

All of these Tanauan riders have at one time been declared as champion in the various national skimboarding competitions held in Tanauan, Leyte.

The Tanauan Mayor expressed satisfaction on the development of the skimboarding competition which started at Tanauan in 2001 and which is now popular in the other places of the country.

Tanauan will always be remembered as the birthplace of skimboarding in the country but as former Tanauan Mayor Roque Tiu who started the development of the skimboarding as water sports in Tanauan and in Leyte, he would rather that Tanauan be also remembered as the Skimboarding Capital of the country.

Sep 08, 2010

City gov't has good finances, claims Tacloban treasurer

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The city government remains to be on a solid footing, financially.

This was disclosed by City Treasurer Zosima "Susan" Cordaño who said that they are on their way of meeting their collection target for the year.

She said that the good financial standing of Tacloban could be attributed to their conscientious measures that they have enforced to ensure that they could meet the target collection.

"We are very, very solid. Our finances are very stable," Cordaño said.

The monies collected by her office are deposited to various depository banks of city which it uses for its various projects and programs that would benefit the city residents.

Based on the records, the city government has generated an income of more than P493.20 million covering the first eight months of the current fiscal year.

This means, Cordaño said, they were able to reach 69 percent of their target collection goal of P713 million for the year. The income generated by the city government was sourced from local collections and its share on the internal revenue allotment (IRA).

"And we are very optimistic that we can even over reach our target goal for the year," she said.

For the first seven months of the year, her office was able to collect more than P208.5 million from various local sources. The amount collected was higher by seven percent compare to last year of the same period.

The rest of the funds of the city government come from its P285.14 million IRA share.

The strict implementation of the city revenue code which includes imposition of fines for traffic rules violations and the strengthening of tax collections to all business operators within the city were the major reasons why the city government was able to meet its target collection.

Cordaño said that the positive tax collection of the city government has been a "trend" for the past three years or since Mayor Alfred Romualdez assumed office.

She also noted that since Tacloban was elevated as a highly urbanized city, not only its local taxes increased but even its share on IRA.

For this year, Tacloban is expected to receive around P409 million for its share on IRA. The increase on IRA share of Tacloban was relatively higher prior to its reclassification as an HUC, Cordaño said.

The city was receiving just over P300 million when it was still a component city of the province, a category which ceased in 2008 after more than 50 years.

Sep 08, 2010

Lawmaker asks Tacloban mayor to take decisive action on proposed fish port

by Joey A. Gabieta

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- A member of the council of this city has asked Mayor Alfred Romualdez to take a decisive action on the proposed fish port before it becomes too late.

       Proposed Tacloban City fish port (TV Patrol Tacloban)

he proposed fish port should now be on an actual field work if only the city mayor or his representatives would discuss the matter with the officials of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources which would fund the project, said Councilor Neil Glova, vice chair on the committee on agriculture.

Glova said that based on the information he gathered from BFAR Regional Director Juan Albaladejo, the city mayor or even his representative has not discussed the matter further.

In particular, the councilor said, the BFAR's main concern now is if the lot offered by the city government would be enough to accommodate the proposed fish port.

Apparently, the lot offered by the city government to the BFAR appeared not within the desired specifications in terms of size.
"They want a bigger location and not just a fraction of what they wanted," Glova said.

The BFAR had wanted close to 40 hectares for the proposed fish port. But the city government reportedly offered less than five hectares of land.

The proposed fish port project is estimated to cost at least P300 million.

Glova, a radio broadcaster-turned- councilor, said that the city government should take advantage to this proposed project of the BFAR considering its benefits.

But in a previous interview, the city mayor had expressed his willingness to cooperate just to make the multi-million project come into reality.

He said that he is just waiting for the BFAR people to finish on their surveys which include soil analysis on the proposed area which they have just done recently.

If indeed the city government would accommodate the proposal of the BFAR to make the proposed fish port meet its required lot area, several barangays located near the now identified area would be affected.

The site of the proposed fish port covers the wet market at the old public market which also covers the old bus terminal. If the 40-hectare needed would be complied, several villages would be hit, affecting thousands of residents in the process.

Sep 08, 2010

Dengue cases
decreased in EVRMC

by Jane Francis L. Quilaga

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- This time there is a decrease in the number of admission of dengue patients at the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical center (EVRMC).

EVRMC Nursing Supervisor Dolores Casio revealed this during the forum at Express it at the Park, when asked about the status of dengue cases in the hospital.

Casio said that the number of admission of dengue cases at the present is lower compared to the last few months where the peaks were on the months of May, June and July due to the rainy season.

The supervising nurse added that amid the alarming death cases of dengue in the region for the past months, only one was from Tacloban.

"We have death cases but they were not from within Tacloban but from neighboring towns," Casio said.

The decrease in the number of admitted patients in EVRMC was also because of Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez's effort in the Search and Destroy Operations against dengue.

Sep 06, 2010

EVRMC needs additional
blood for dengue victims

by Ivy Lombendencio

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center is in need of more stocks of blood for dengue patients.

       A volunteer from the Philippine National Red Cross
     briefs a blood donor before the blood letting process ..

According to Dolores Casio, supervising nurse of EVRMC, the hospital needs 7,000 units of blood every year but as of now they lack blood because of the peak of dengue cases last May, June and July.

In relation to this, the EVRMC and Mayor Alfred Romualdez will be spearheading a Voluntary Blood Donation this coming September 18, 2010 at the V&G subdivision.

After six months donating blood, a person can also make another donation, Casio added.

"The demand is more but the supply is less, so we are now disseminating this information to the public to donate blood for us to help the dengue victims," Casio said.

Sep 06, 2010

Crime rate in Tacloban
drops by 20%

by John A. Figueroa

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- In connection with the celebration of the 16th Crime Prevention Week, the City Philippine National Police of Tacloban proudly informed Thursday that the crime rate in the City has dropped to 20 percent this year.

Police Senior Insp. Ma. Bella D. Rentuaya, chief of the Police Community Relation in the City, said that this high decrease of crime rate is due to their massive campaign against crime.

"We have now captured wanted persons because of the help given by the public and they are now getting aware of this matter," Rentuaya informed Express.

It was also found out that crime against property is the existing primary crime in the City.

The city police is now visiting different government schools in Metro Tacloban because it was also discovered that the primary crime involving students is the R.A 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.

The school visit will instill knowledge to the students on the crimes existing in the community and this is still in connection to the crime prevention week.

Sep 06, 2010

Gov. Petilla says EV may opt to build power plant if electricity not enough

by Reyan L. Arinto

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- Leyte Gov. Carlos Jericho L. Petilla said that governors in Eastern Visayas may opt to build a power-generating plant if at all the region cannot get sustainable power from power companies.

  The Leyte Geothermal Powerplants currently supply power
   not only to the Eastern Visayas region but also to Central
  and Western Visayas and on to Luzon via submarine cables.

But Gov. Petilla said this plan will depend on the commercial operations in the Visayas of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) this coming Sept. 26.

"That is one of the options that the region can do if at all we cannot get sustainable power from various companies," Gov. Petilla said in an interview with Leyte Samar Daily Express.

The Visayas' power situation remains volatile, but it is expected to improve in a few months, according to Gov. Petilla.

"But we have to wait for Sept. 26 because that would be the piloting of open access of WESM. Power could now be bought through bidding. So, it would depend on the outcome of the WESM if we may or may not come up with our own plant," the governor said.

The WESM will be operated by Philippine Electricity Market Corp. (PEMC). Distribution utilities are mandated by law to source at least 10% of their power requirements from WESM, where big power suppliers and users forge supply deals.

The governor, who is the sole nominee from the government sector to the Regional Development Council (RDC), said the governors in the region would have to wait for the power supply situation in the entire Visayas to normalize before going ahead with the building of its own power-generating plant at the government-owned Leyte geothermal fields.

Sep 06, 2010

`Task Force Spaghetti´
now operates in Tacloban

by Jizabel G. Quiminales

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- "Task Force Spaghetti" of the City Government here started fixing overhead electrical lines along Zamora Street AT THE downtown area last Saturday and this will continue on the next Saturdays.

       A typical view in downtown Tacloban with overhead
            electrical lines hanging all over the street ..

Engr. Dionisio De Paz, officer-in-charge of the City Engineer's Office, said that "Task Force Spaghetti" involves the Leyte Electric Cooperative (LEYECO II), all telecommunication companies (Bayantel, PLDT, Globe, and Smart) and cable TVs (Leytenet and FilProducts) in compliance with ordinance no. 2010-11-10.

Those who will fail to do their duty will be given corresponding penalty, De Paz added.

"Task Force Spaghetti" aims to put in order these scattered overhead electrical lines and remove those dangling wires not only in downtown areas but also other suburbs that are still within the territorial control of the city of Tacloban, De Paz further disclosed.

The support services of the said task force include TOMECO, City Engineer's and City Architect's Office, and the General Services Office.

According to Isabelo Lagutan, TOMECO spokesperson, they received communication from LEYECO II requesting for their assistance in controlling the traffic so as to guarantee the safety of everyone.

This step of the city government will surely add to the beauty of Tacloban and will impress the visitors, Lagutan commented.

On the other hand, De Paz stressed that his office together with the City Architect assist by monitoring the process and helping in removing some store signs which will cause complexity to the process.

Rudolph Mate, general services officer, stated that they are the ones providing them the equipment. One that he mentioned was the crew truck.

The team didn't set deadline as to when this project will end. What is sure is that it will only stop if all these overhead electrical lines will no longer look like "spaghetti."

Sep 06, 2010

Virgin coconut oil producer building plant in Eastern Visayas to expand business

By Sarwell Q. Meniano

BusinessWorld Online, Philippines

TACLOBAN -- A virgin coconut oil (VCO) producer from Maguindanao wants to expand to Eastern Visayas, the second top coconut producer in the country, to meet rising demand for natural products in foreign markets.

 One liter of virgin coconut oil requires 10 to 12 big coconuts,
             according to a producer from Maguindanao.

Reynaldo R. Pacheco, Jr., chief executive officer of Organix Solutions, Inc., said his firm had decided to build a processing plant in the region. A study is being conducted to determine the ideal site for the facility.

"I like this region because it's been a top coconut producing area and the peace and order situation is good," Mr. Pacheco told BusinessWorld in an interview at the sidelines of the third regional coconut summit held in this city last week.

Organix, maker of the Coco Licious VCO brand, operates a production plant in Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao. The company, which was established in 2003, has been exporting VCO to the United States and other Asian countries.

"Our market is a combination of those countries and the local market.

We also have a strong demand here," Mr. Pacheco said.

The company plans to expand its US presence and tap other global markets, but is constrained by the limited capacity of its production plant in Maguindanao, he added.

The Maguindanao facility is capable of producing only 1,000 to 1,500 liters of VCO in one day, or up to 18,000 liters a month. A purchase order from the US requires 17,000 liters on the average, Mr. Pacheco said.

"The United States is a big market and we want to strengthen our presence there but we are careful because they will demand for a bigger volume. If we are not capable of producing their order, we will lose our credibility," he said.

Mr. Pacheco said he was optimistic the firm would find a regular supply of coconuts in Eastern Visayas, where there are 71.1 million coconut-bearing trees. One liter of VCO requires 10 to 12 big coconuts.

"With the right supply we can double or triple our growth," he added.

Organix VCO is considered premium grade with its "fresh and pleasant" coconut aroma, and a shelf life of at least three years, he said. It is used as carrier oil for massage therapy oils, creams, and lotions.

Mr. Pacheco said growing awareness of the benefits of coco-based oil has allowed his company to grow rapidly.

"Coconut and natural tropical products have become integral to staple diets, supplements, and personal care solutions worldwide, contributing to wellness, health and beauty," he added.

Sep 03, 2010

Robinsons to
franchise `Go Hotels´

By Neil Jerome C. Morales

BusinessWorld Online, Philippines

GOKONGWEI-LED Robinsons Land Corp. is planning an aggressive expansion of its budget hotel brand Go Hotels for the next five years, officials said on Friday.

To facilitate the opening of 30 new branches, Go Hotels, which targets casual and business travelers, has opened its doors to franchising.

"Due to high demand for excellent accommodations, is now welcoming offers from parties who are interested to franchise or sell their land," Liz D. Gregorio, general manager, said in a statement on Friday.

On Friday, the property developer formally launched Go Hotels' flagship branch, a 223-room hotel occupying the fifth and sixth floors of the 17-storey prime office condominium Robinsons Cyberplaza at Pioneer Center in Mandaluyong.

"We now have 30 malls, theoretically we know we have 30 locations where we could build in," said Frederick D. Go, president and chief operating officer of Robinsons Land.

Mr. Go said new malls in the pipeline include Robinsons Bacolod in 2011; Palawan, Iloilo, Tacloban and Cebu in 2012; and Pangasinan, Zamboanga and General Santos in 2013.

Robinsons Land owns and operates the Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn in Ortigas Center and Summit Ridge in Tagaytay. The firm is also into the development of residential and office buildings.

Mr. Go said franchisers would account for half of the "conservative" expansion estimate. "[Franchisers] build and operate. We provide the system, brand, management and online booking system," Mr. Go added.

Go Hotels in Mandaluyong started commercial operations in May. The occupancy rate has so far averaged 90%, Ms. Gregorio said.

Shares in listed Robinsons Land, whose profits grew by 11% in the first half to P2.59 billion due to mall expansion, closed at P15.00 each on Friday from P14.42 on Thursday.

Sep 03, 2010

Leyte Samar Photography Club

Leyte Samar Daily Express

Leyte Samar Photography Club (LEYSAMFOTO Club, Inc) is proud to present the BIGGEST photography event of the year as we bring in 3 of the biggest names in the industry in the sequel workshop THROUGH THE EYES OF THE MASTERS II: The BIG 3!

A Photoshop Seminar featuring the first Adobe Certified Instructor MR. JUN MIRANDA plus PRODUCT FOOD photography by internationally acclaimed MR. IBARRA DERI and MR. MARK FLORO.

Shooting on Oct 16-17, 2010 at the CCA, Leyte Park Hotel. Early registration period until Sept. 30 for P3500 only. Register online now at Great bonuses for the 1st 30 registrants.

A PRE-WORKSHOP Basic Photography Seminar will be conducted for those who wish to refresh on the essentials. This will be held on October 10, 2010 8am to 5 pm at the ACLC College, Real St. Tacloban City.

Registration fee @ Php500 for non workshop participants and Php 250 for those who registered for the workshop. You may inquire at or sms TRICIA @ 09055984525. SEE YOU!

Sep 02, 2010

PRO-8 continues to accept
police applicants for 2010

by Ivy D. Lomdendencio

Leyte Samar Daily Express

PALO, Leyte -- The Police Regional Office 8 continues to accept Police Officer 1 applicants for the calendar year 2010.

The recruitment started last July 1, 2010 and will continue until the deadline of submission of folders on September 10, 2010 to the Regional Personnel and Human Resource Doctrine Division (ORPHRDD), PRO 8.

PRO-8 sets a quota of 300 qualified applicants in Eastern Visayas. As of September 1, the statistics of applicants range more than 300 in count already.

The minimum qualification for PO1 are as follows: Must possess a formal Baccalaureate Degree, must be eligible in accordance with the standards set by Commission with NAPOLCOM PNP Entrance, RA 6506 (Licensed Criminologist), RA 1080 (Bar and board examination), PD 907 (Honor Graduate) or CSC professional, must have NO pending case in any court, must be at least 5'4" in height for male and 5'2" for female, and must not be less 21 years old nor more than 30 years of age.

Following are the initial requirements: duly filled-up PDS CY 2005, xerox copy of live birth from NSO, transcript of records and diploma duly authenticated by the school registrar and eligibility duly authenticated by the issuing office, 1pc 2×2 black and white ID picture indicating applicant's name, local clearances (Barangay, Police Provincial Office, Mayor's, MYC, RTC, Provincial Prosecutors and NBI) and medical certificate from City/ Municipal Health Office.

The processing and screening of applicants is scheduled on September 13, 2010.

The starting salary of the new police officer is P17,000. The dress code for PNP applicants should be plain white T-shirt in denim pants and rubber shoes with socks.

The training of the qualified applicants will be at the Regional Training Center in San Jose, Tacloban City for a period of six months.
According to Police Senior Superintendent Manuel Enage Cubillo, "upon taking their oath as new PO1 they can already receive their initial salary."

The oath-taking will be on December 1, 2010 at the Regional Office of PNP. For more information one may contact (053) 323-8814 and look for PO1 Ramil Naputo.

Sep 02, 2010

Mayor Alfred's `MASA´
receives positive response
from Taclobanons

by Butch Licopit Manog

Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY -- The Mayor Alfred's Social Action Center (MASA) program of the City government is receiving positive acceptance from the constituents in the city on its first month of operation.

Evelyn Cordero, MASA OIC administrator, said that their office has already served 63 barangays in the city and has already rendered services to at least 25 barangays for their legal needs, nine for free civil registration, seven barangays were given free medicines; 17 were given PhilHealth cards, two for burial services and three for financial and information assistance. All in all, they were able to help 2,244 recipients.

"Indeed, more people are aware that we are already having office giving direct services to Taclobanons," says Cordero.

She also added that what they are doing is an innovation of delivery of services by linking with other offices like Congressman Ferdinand Martin Romualdez's office to seek for assistance.

MASA now has a resident lawyer in the person of Atty. Pacanan and a resident doctor, Dr. Gloria Fabrigas, to answer both for legal and medical problems.

Soon, their office will also have feedback mechanism for Taclobanons to bring their concerns to the City government and plans to conduct medical mission.

<<< OCT (01-31) 2010 NEWS




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