Kung way supply contract, ang kahoy gikan sa illegal loggers.
EDGEDAVAO P 15.00 • 20 PAGES
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
Serving a seamless society
Sans 5-year log supply
DENR to padlock Davao wood firms By Lorie Ann A. Cascaro and Edward C. Lactaoen
OOD PROCESSING plants in the Davao Region found without capability to get raw materials for the next five
years will be padlocked by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources 11 (DENR 11). DENR 11 regional director Jo-
selin Marcus Fragada said the processing plants without sustainable supplies for the next five years will be shut down. Currently, out of 158 processing plants in the region 70 are operational.
Guesting at Club 888 Media Forum at The Marco Polo Davao last Wednesday, Fragada said his office is more particular as to the sources of supply of wood industries in the
‘Bobot’ Sebastian dies at 69
VIOLATOR. A law enforcer of the Land Transportation Office issues a traffic citation ticket to a driver who committed a traffic violation along Ponciano Reyes Street here. [LEAN DAVAL JR.]
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HE REMAINS of former Agriculture Secretary Roberto “Bobot” S. Sebastian will be brought to Davao City today from Manila, according to information reaching this paper yesterday.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) headed by Secretary Proceso J. Alcala expresses its deepest sympathy to the family and loved ones of former Agriculture Secretary Sebastian for his untimely demise. He
was 69. “The Department is saddened over his loss and we wish that his family, relatives, and friends will find solace and strength in memories of him. We share their grief,
and our thoughts and prayers continue to be with them as they gradually overcome this moment of grief,” Secretary Alcala said. Surviving Bobot are wife, Melba
THE BIG NEWS
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
AFP modernization on the right track
HE modernization of the Armed Forces (AFP) will make significant headway in the coming years, thanks to the wholehearted support of President Benigno S. Aquino III, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin said Wednesday. He made this statement following Aquino’s announcement the government will continue to pursue the AFP modernization program, in his State Of The Nation Address Monday. The President said: “After only one year and seven months, we have been able to allocate over P28 billion for the AFP Modernization Program. “This will soon match
the P33 billion set aside for the program in the past 15 years. “And we’re only getting started: if our proposed AFP modernization bill is passed in Congress, we will be able to allocate P75 billion for defense within the next five years.” “I am very pleased with the level of support President Aquino has shown to the defense establishment,” Gazmin stressed. The DND chief added he expects the modernization bill to be successfully passed by legislators and thus provide more funding for equipment badly-needed by the Army, Navy, and Air Force. [PNA]
PHL, Germany to sign new tax treaty in 2013
HE Philippines and Germany are set to sign in 2013 a new tax agreement aimed at increasing German investments in the country, the Department of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday. In a meeting in Berlin last July 20, both countries have concluded the third and final round of negotiations on the revision of the accord, called Agreement for the Avoidance of Double Taxation with respect to Taxes on Income and Capital, at Germany’s Federal Ministry of Finance. All outstanding issues were resolved during the last round of the five-day negotiations, with both parties agreeing on the adoption of new standards in the tax treaty, the DFA said quoting a report from its embassy in Berlin. The new tax treaty is designed to protect against the risk of double taxation where the same income is taxable in the Philippines and Germany. It is also aimed at preventing fiscal evasion and fostering cooperation between Philippine and other tax authorities by enforcing their respective tax laws. An effective international tax treaty is expected to facilitate trade and investments, the DFA said. “This new tax treaty will provide German investors with certainty and guarantees in the area of taxation,” Philippine Ambassador to Germany Maria Cleofe Natividad said in her report to the DFA. “It will bolster our economic diplomacy efforts here in Germany.” Philippine and German officials have agreed to ensure early completion of their respective domestic requirements for the ratification of the new treaty. “The signing of the new agreement is expected to take place in Germany early next year,” the DFA said. Amid an unresolved airport terminal
dispute between Manila and Berlin, Germany remained a significant economic partner of the Philippines. The problem started under the presidency of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo after the US$ 350 million Ninoy Aquino International Airport III project undertaken by German firm Fraport AG and its Filipino partner Philippine International Airport Terminal Co. (Piatco) was expropriated by her government in 2002. Manila and Berlin, under the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III, have vowed to resolve the dispute in a timely manner and not to let the issue affect the bilateral ties between the two countries. From January to November 2011, total bilateral trade was valued at US$ 2.9 billion, with Germany as the biggest export market for Philippine goods in Europe. German companies in the Philippines include Continental Temic, Siemens, Lufthansa Technik, Daimler Benz, BMW, Bayer, and Bosch. Bureau of Internal Revenue Commisioner Kim Jacinto-Henares headed the Philippine delegation during the negotiations. Other members of the delegation were: were Undersecretary Carlo Carag of the Department of Finance, Assistant Commissioner Marissa Cabreros of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Atty. Charadine Bandon of the BIR International Tax Division, and Director Mersole Mellejor of the Department of Foreign Affairs. The German delegation was headed by Dr. Wolfgang Lasars of the Federal Ministry of Finance. He was assisted by Ms. Simone Richter, a senior tax expert from the same Ministry, and Heinz-Josef Johansmeier, a legal expert from the Federal Foreign Office, Sven Green and Nadine Lichtblau of the Federal Ministry of Economy and Technology. [PNA]
BRIEFING. National Home Mortgage Finance Corp. (NHMFC) president Dr. Felixberto U. Bustos Jr. presents the transaction background, investment considerations and terms and conditions of NHMFC’s Bahay Bonds 2 during
the general investors’ briefing and launching yesterday at the Grand Men Seng Hotel. [LEAN DAVAL JR.]
SSS collects P1 billion from OFWs in 5 months
HE Social Security System (SSS) collected a total of P1.07 billion in contributions of overseas Filipino workers during the first five months of this year, up by 13 percent from its P944.75 million collection for the same period in 2011. SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Emilio de Quiros, Jr. noted that key to the agency’s coverage and collection drive in the OFW sector is providing overseasbased members easy access to their membership records and SSS services despite being employed abroad. “Recent SSS initiatives such as enhancing our range of website services, opening a 16-hour SSS call center, uploading instructional YouTube videos and starting an official SSS Facebook page
Automated elections to proceed
ALACAñANG maintained on Wednesday that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) has enough resources to proceed with automated elections in 2013. Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the election-governing body can tap into its vast savings to augment its regular budget and hold the automated counting of election returns in next year’s midterm elections.
to address member concerns were all created with OFWs in mind,” he said. Members can check their contributions, loans and benefits at the SSS website (www.sss.gov.ph) or via the SSS call center (920-6446 to 55). They can also view SSS videos or contact SSS by looking up “Philippine Social Security System” at Facebook and YouTube. The SSS also bared the list of winners under its Member-Get-Member (MGM) promo, which serves as its banner program this year for promoting active SSS membership of OFWs. The OFW sector is among the most vulnerable labor groups in terms of social security protection as OFWs are often not covered by the social security institutions of their host countries.
The state-run institution has a total of 45 winners from its monthly MGM raffle draws since January 2012. The winners will receive a cash prize of P10,000 each, which they can claim at the SSS main office in Quezon City or through their designated bank account. De Quiros said nine MGM raffle winners are drawn every month for January to June 2012. The latest batch of winners include Aileen Barbosa and Divina Pagaduan, who are both from Hong Kong; and Vitaliana Hara Hernando from Singapore. MGM winners from the Middle East were Auricel Tolentino and Pensees Dawny Figueroa from Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; and Felipa Sanchez from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. “We currently have
four repeat winners who have shown impressive initiative in encouraging their fellow OFWs to become active SSS members. Two of them, Ms. Barbosa and Mr. Figueroa, won thrice so far because of their dozens of successful referrals,” de Quiros said. Rounding up the list of May winners from Europe and the rest of the world are Demetrio Joven from Milan, Italy; Catalina Dizon and Karen Perpetua Blas, who are both based in London, United Kingdom. The OFW with the highest number of referred nominees will receive a cash prize of P50,000 and a plaque of appreciation during the MGM grand raffle draw in September 2012. The Grand Prize is a trip back to the Philippines and a vacation package for two in Boracay Island. [PR]
president of the National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation, who was in a road show at the Grand Menseng Hotel, Davao City last Tuesday, said an average Filipino can avail of BB2. The major determinant of the BB2 was the customer financial survey (CFS) made by the BSP in the national capital region, Regions 1, 7 and 11 in 2009-2010 and presented this year, Bustos said.
He cited that one of the results of CFS showed that the average income of Filipinos is P104,000 a year; and only 20% of Filipinos have savings account, he said. “The NHMFC is trying to meet the requirements of the countryside and do its best to help in developing savings of people and to access banking system,” he said. He said investors, who
NHMFC Bahay Bonds 2 come as low as P5,000 By Lorie Ann A. Cascaro
HE National Home Mortgage Finance Corporation (NHMFC) is inviting all wage earners to invest in Bahay Bonds 2 (BB2), which are residential mortgage-backed securitization of low-cost and socialized housing loans available in denominations as low as P5,000. It has 4.8% coupon rate and additional amounts in multiples of P5,000. Felixberto U. Bustos, Jr.,
THE BIG NEWS
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
Davao software developers to get rich for their ideas By Maybelle Anne Yutiamco
AVAO software developers will now have a chance to turn their ICT (information communication technology) ideas into multi-million peso ventures. Eriberto Barriga, Jr., president of ICT-Davao, Inc. (IDI) yesterday that the association is collaborating with Smart Telecommunications Company, to hold “Idea Space” program this Saturday at SM City Davao. Davao City is the first to hold “Idea Space,” as the same event will also be con-
ducted in Cebu and Manila. The event will focus primarily on local software developers interested to make profitable ventures through their creative ideas or applications concerning software development. Barriga said Idea Space will be beneficial to developers who do not have financial grants to start ventures on their own. “Idea Space” will require teams of five members each who may be students, teachers or professionals to register before joining the pro-
gram. The top three groups this coming Saturday will be qualified to pitch for the venture capital. A 500 million-peso grant good for five years will be given to the team which gives the best idea. ICT Davao is the umbrella organization of information and technology groups in Davao City. The group’s main intention is to bring Davao into the global arena in terms of software development and technopreneurship.
DACS brass doubts Aquino’s stats on PhilHeath members Librado opposes bills
DESTINATION. Eriberto “Bert” Barriga Jr., executive vice president of ICT Davao, says that Davao City is the desired destination for ICT products during the Club 888 media forum yesterday at The Marco Polo Davaol. [LEAN DAVAL JR.]
By Jade C. Zaldivar
HE Davao Association of Colleges & Schools (DACS) has its doubts on the statistics presented by President Aquino in his State of the Nation Address, when he stated that the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) membership rose to 85 percent of the country’s populaton . “That 85 percent seems unbelievable,” DACS representative Danny Montaña told Edge Davao in a text message. Montaña was among those in the country who questioned the credibility of the President’s statistics on PhilHealth membership. Last July 15, the National Statistics Office (NSO) reported that the total population of the Philippines as of May 1, 2010 was 92,337,852, 85% of which is approximately 78,487,175.
Other sources say the estimated population in 2011 was 95.8 million, of which 85% would be 81,430,000 Filipinos. According to the writers of Palipasan.com(http:// palipasan.blogspot.com), the December 31, 2011 data of PhilHealth tells otherwise, saying that PhilHealth closed 2011 with 27.91 million members, with a volume of dependents at 50.45 million for a total of 78.39 million or 82 percent of the population based on the projected 95.8 million population in 2011. Montaña also said that Aquino should stop mentioning the Martial Law regime. “The point of reference to the dark days of the Marcos dictatorship and of the Arroyo administration are over already. It’s the third
year of the Aquino Admininstration,” he said. Montaña agreed that corruption should be eradicated in the country. He also admitted that those opposing the government, particularly activists and the New People’s Army, pose a hindrance and an obstacle to the development of the country, but nevertheless “they verbalize the inner situation of the country.” “The Leftists will always be there, but more than that they are Filipinos as well. Their street marches (will remain) as an expression of democracy,” he said. “In the end, I appreciate the positive changes, projects and advocacies (of the President). However, I’m still looking for his vision for the Philippines by the time his term ends in 2016,” he added.
He admitted he was appointed to the SC by former President and now Pampanga (2nd District) Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, but he voted that the Truth Commission was constitutional which shows his independence. If he is appointed Chief Justice, Abad said the first thing he will do is to forgive. “We can’t have healing without forgiveness. I hope the branches of government can reconcile,” Abad said. He said the Church and the State should not get too entangled with each other.
“We are a poor country. A jury system would be expensive,” Abad said. He noted that 90 per cent of jury trials take place in the United States and the rest of the world has abandoned the jury system. Abad said the jury system will not work in the Philippines. In the Philippines, Abad said, a judge has no control over the proceedings, adding it is the lawyer who dictates the evidence presented in court. Likewise, Abad pro-
Abad proposes ordinary SC cases be finished in 1 hearing
UPREME Court Associate Justice Roberto Abad Wednesday proposed that ordinary SC cases be finished in one hearing with a judgment rendered at the end of the day. During the public interview by the Judicial and Bar Council, Abad said he has a bias for an “insider”, adding if an “outsider” is appointed Chief Justice, it shows mistrust in the justice left in the SC. Abad told the JBC he is unhappy with case congestion and the delay in the courts.
By Lorie Ann A. Cascaro
AVAO City Councilor Leah Librado-Yap filed a resolution opposing House Bill 6069 and Senate Bill 3130 which include the Southern Philippine Medical Center in Davao City among 26 public hospitals nationside to be corporatized,. The resolution was approved on first reading last Tuesday in the Sangguniang Panglunsod (SP). In the resolution, Librado said that based on experience, the corporatization of government-owned hospitals will not benefit the people and health workers. “Expensive health services in GOCC hospitals cause delay in the treatment of patients, like in the case of more than 1, 600 cardiac patients waiting to be operated on at the Philippine Heart Center,” the resolution said. Librado said privatization of government hospitals , which logically follows
n SPMC one of 26 to be corporatized corporatizing, can only mean higher hospital fees and harder access to health care. She also said that the public, especially the women in Davao City, has already expressed their opposition to the two bills, saying that it will result in the increase of the mortality and morbidity rate of mothers and infants. During the SP session, members of progressive women group Gabriela staged a silent protest inside the SP while wearing paper caps bearing the slogan “NO TO HOSPITAL PRIVATIZATION!.” They are also conducting community fora to educate people on the ill effects of the hospital corporatization bills when enacted as law. The women groups are gathering signatures from
the public to drum up opposition against the passage of the bills. The signatures will be attached to their petition paper and submitted to Congress in time for the resumption of sessions on July 31. House Bill 6069 authored by Rep. Anthony Golez, Jr. was approved on second reading during the second regular session of the 15th Congress; while SB 3130 authored by Franklin Drilon is being lobbied in the Senate. The resolution said these bills will transform 26 public hospitals into GOCCs, with fiscal autonomy to raise income for its operations; turning public hospitals assets into investable funds; allowing business; and, eventually converting these to income generating corporations.
He said the vehicle was registered to businessman Luis Tan, who also owns the hardware store. The blast triggered a huge fire that totally burned the vehicle nd caused the vehicle’s fuel to spread towards other nearby vehicles but was immediately contained by responding elements from the Bureau of Fire Protection. Store employees and bystanders said they initially heard a loud explosion coming from inside the vehicle before flames engulfed it.
“It was an incendiary explosion,” Monteagudo told reporters. “It may have been caused by a container that was filled with gasoline, placed near the vehicle’s fuel tank and was set on fire,” he explained. A tricycle driver identified as Alfredo Sanchez, who was just passing by at the time, sustained severe injuries after he was hit by debris coming from the vehicle. he is recuperating at a local hospital here. [Allen Estabillo/MindaNews]
Cops clueless on GenSan blast
UTHORITIES are still determining the motive behind the blast caused by an incendiary explosive that injured a tricycle driver in General Santos City Tuesday night, according to Chief Supt. Alex Paul Monteagudo, Region 12 police director. Monteagudo said the explosion at around 8 p.m. involved an Isuzu Crosswind sports utility vehicle parked in front of the Sarangani Merchandising II hardware store along Papaya Street.
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
Secretary Paje lauds reactivation of Environmental Ombudsman D
EPARTMENT of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje has lauded the reactivation of the office of the Environmental Ombudsman, stressing the move has given the citizens’ environmental rights a more prominent position in the Aquino administration’s crusade against graft and corruption. “By resurrecting the office of the Environ-
mental Ombudsman, Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales has made, in one stroke, protecting the citizens’ environmental rights a centerpiece of her agency’s mission,” Paje said. Reiterating his gratitude for the Ombudsman’s “display of political will to enforce environmental laws,” Paje said the reactivation of an environmental team by Morales “has taken the next step further in build-
ing institutional support within the bureaucracy to DENR’s initiatives for environmental justice.” Around 26 lawyers of the Ombudsman’s Office have been put together to act as investigators and prosecutors pursuant to an existing memorandum of agreement between the Office of the Ombudsman and the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) forged in 2004 to monitor government officials’ compliance in imple-
menting the country’s environmental laws and policies. “This move is indeed a huge step in this Administration’s strides to transform the nation’s attitude toward environmental citizenship,” said Paje. Under the agreement, the Environmental Ombudsman will closely keep an eye on citizens’ complaints on violations of environmental laws while the IBP shall act as the receiver of complaints
and reports on violations of environmental laws. In the event that the concerned public officials refuse or fail to take appropriate action, IBP will forward the matter to the Environmental Ombudsman. The IBP will also provide active legal assistance to the Ombudsman’s prosecutors. The agreement also provides a link-up by the Ombudsman team and IBP with other government law enforcement
agencies, such as the Philippine National Police, the National Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice. Paje noted that the clout of the Environmental Ombudsman likewise covers elected and appointed public officials suspected of being remiss in their duties resulting in the violation of environmental laws or nonimplementation of Philippine environmental standards.
They earlier projected 2013 to mark the start of reversal in the decades-old denudation trend that characterize much of the country’s forest land. NGP projections show there’ll be more vegetated than denuded areas nationwide beginning next year. The government targets greening by 2016 some 1.5 million hectares of land in various NGP sites. DENR’s proposed NGP budget for reforestation and related activities in 2013, as recommended by the Department of Budget and Management, is about P5.77 billion. The proposed budget will cover production of some 150 million seedlings to be planted in the target areas. Site preparation, maintenance of the planted ar-
eas and 33 clonal nurseries, production of mycorrhiza plant growth booster and hiring of 1,200 extension officers are also covered in the target NGP budget. NGP’s proposed budget for 2013 is over twice the P2.1- billion appropriation the government set for this program in 2012. DENR reported that latest available data show some 2.68 million seedlings have been planted in 374.34 hectares of forest land in Regions 7, 10, 13 and Metro Manila as of June 22 this year. A total of 3,005 persons planted the seedlings, DENR said. Greening under NGP in 2011 involved planting nearly 90 million seedlings in 128,558 hectares of forest land nationwide, DENR data also show. [PNA]
PHL targets higher greening output T
HE government plans reforesting next year more of the country’s unproductive, open, denuded and degraded forest land. Such reforestation will be undertaken through the government’s priority 2011-2016 National Greening Program (NGP) which seeks to help address concerns on environmental protection, food security, poverty alleviation and climate change. For 2013, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) set as NGP’s greening target some 300,000 hectares of forest land nationwide. That plan exceeds the 2011 and 2012 NGP greening targets of 100,000 hectares and 200,000 hectares, respectively. Authorities expect NGP to mark a milestone in 2013.
DENR eyes new technology in forest protection drive
ROM drones to hand-held x-ray machines, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources is looking at new technologies in protecting the forests. Newly designated DENR 11 Regional Executive Director Joselin Marcus Fragada said that they are eyeing the introduction of these high-tech equipment in the region. Foremost among the list is the Walleye imaging system which is capable of seeing into and through solid objects. Fragada said that the Walleye could be used in examining container vans particularly if the Department is not allowed to open the vans. Last June 29, P16million worth of hotlogs coming from Davao laden
in container vans were confiscated in Manila’s Pier 16. This led to the relief of DENR 11 including Regional Executive director Jim Sampulna, Regional Techinical Director Hardinado Patnugot and Forest Resources Conservation Division Chief Claudio Jumao-as. Fragada said that they are expecting two of these walleyes to be deployed in Davao if these are acquired. The Walleye portable x-ray imaging technology utilizes scattered x-ray reflections to create images of concealed objects and is a perfect tool for border and maritime inspections particularly in detecting concealed contraband. Meanwhile another technology the DENR is eyeing would be the use of drones to watch over
forests. The drones could fly over remote forests and take pictures or images if they had detected illegal logging activities. Fragada said that images taken from drones are a lot clearer since they are more nearer to the target as compared to using satellites for imaging. Meanwhile Eriberto Barriga, Executive Vice President of ICT Davao, an umbrella group of Information Communication Technology industry stakeholders in the city said that there are numerous IT applications which can help the DENR in their mission to stop illegal logging. Among them is the use of Google Earth technology which can be used for image analysis. In the province of Laguna,
provincial police using Google earth were able to locate illegal logging sites. Logging activities would appear as white spots in Google Earth maps enabling police to pinpoint the exact location of the loggers. Barriga said that aside Google Earth there are other applications which could help the DENR and there are developers in Davao which can develop various programs and applications. One such application he recommends is requiring loggers and logging companies to tag RFIDs (Radio Frequency Identification) in young trees. This way the DENR can monitor if the trees were prematurely cut or there was excessive cutting of allowed volume. [PIA 11/RG ALAmA]
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
Stat Watch 1. Gross National Income Growth Rate (At Constant 2000 Prices)
5.8% 1st Qtr 2012
2. Gross Domestic Product Growth Rate (At Constant 2000 Prices)
6.4 % 1st Qtr 2012
3. Exports 1/ 4. Imports 1/ 5. Trade Balance 6. Balance of Payments 2/ 7. Broad Money Liabilities
USD 4,931 million May 2012 USD 4,770 million Apr 2012 USD -135 million Apr 2012 USD -209 million Mar 2012 P 4,580,674 million Apr 2012
8. Interest Rates 4/
4.1 % May 2012 P131,403 million May 2012 P 5,075 billion Apr 2012
9. National Government Revenues 10. National government outstanding debt 11. Peso per US $ 5/
P 42.78 Jun 2012
12. Stocks Composite Index 6/
5,091.2 May 2012
13. Consumer Price Index 2006=100
130.1 Jun 2012
14. Headline Inflation Rate 2006=100
2.8 Jun 2012
15. Core Inflation Rate 2006=100
3.7 Jun 2012
16. Visitor Arrivals
349,779 Apr 2012
17. Underemployment Rate 7/
18.8 % Jan 2012
18. Unemployment Rate 7/
7.2 % Jan 2012
MONTHLY AVERAGE EXCHANGE RATE (January 2009 - December 2011) Month Average December November October September August July June May April March February January
42.85 42.70 42.86 42.66 43.62
43.31 43.64 43.27 43.45 43.02 42.42 42.81 43.37 43.13 43.24 43.52 43.70 44.17
45.11 43.95 43.49 43.44 44.31 45.18 46.32 46.30 45.60 44.63 45.74 46.31 46.03
PUBLIC-PRIVATE ROUNDTABLE ON MINDANAO ENERGY. The heads of the Mindanao Energy Power Alliance (right), the Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives, and other business support organizations met on July 3 at a roundtable discussion with Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras and senior energy officials to discuss private sector recommendations for a sustainable power supply, in the run-up to the 21st Mindanao Business Conference to be held August 2-4 in Butuan City. The series of high-level economic policy
roundtables at the Traders Hotel in Manila, which focused on strengthening Mindanao’s competitiveness in agriculture, mining and transport in addition to energy, was organized by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA), with support from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) through its Growth with Equity in Mindanao (GEM) Program, which is implemented under the oversight of MinDA.
Mindanao infra budget focused on improving road connectivity M
INDANAO, which currently has the lowest ratio of paved roads to overall road infrastructure among the country’s regions, is now set to get a larger allocation from the national government’s proposed annual budget for infrastructure. This was reported by Secretary Rogelio Singson of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), at a roundtable discussion among business leaders and senior officials on Mindanao infrastructure policy held recently at the Traders Hotel. The roundtable was organized by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) with support from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) through its Growth with Equity in Mindanao (GEM) Program, which is implemented under the oversight of MinDA.
“Sixty-nine percent of national roads in Mindanao are unpaved. Mindanao has the lowest paved road ratio,” said Secretary Singson. “It is clear that Mindanao should get a bigger share of the budget.” Under the proposed FY2013 budget, Mindanao will receive PhP27.62 billion, or 26.1 percent of the national infrastructure budget, up from PhP20.4 billion the previous year. Infrastructure budget allocations for the other regions are as follows: Northern Luzon - 24.1 percent; Southern Luzon - 20.4 percent; the National Capital Region - 14.6 percent, and Visayas -19.4 percent. “Our objectives are to improve the country’s attractiveness as an investment destination by enabling seamless connectivity, and to lower the costs of communication and transportation,” said Angelito Colona, PCCI vice president
for transportation and logistics. Secretary Singson also pointed out the bottlenecks in implementing road infrastructure projects in Mindanao, including right of way and security issues, shortage of cement suppliers in parts of the region, the practice of truck overloading which results in faster road deterioration, and the need to integrate ports and airports with road systems. The meeting included a presentation by the Philippine Inter-Island Shipping Association, on issues affecting freight rates in domestic shipping, focusing on Mindanao. The roundtable was part of the run-up to the 21st Mindanao Business Conference, or “MinBizCon,” which will be held August 2-4 in Butuan City. The highlight of the annual conference is the presentation of the Mindanao Business Policy Agenda to President Benigno Aquino III.
The formulation of the agenda began with broadbased regional policy consultations held in Mindanao’s major cities to identify and address bottlenecks that hold back trade and investment, and to clarify government rules, regulations and timelines. Drawing on the outputs of these consultations, a draft policy agenda was compiled by MinDA in collaboration with PCCI. The draft listed the most urgent policy concerns, as well as required government actions and private sector commitments. The regional consultations were followed by high-level roundtables focusing on specific sectors, including infrastructure, which were held in Manila on July 3-4 with MinDA and Cabinet officials and private sector representatives for a thorough review of the draft policy agenda, and for government to formulate appropriate responses.
as of august 2010
Cebu Pacific Daily Zest Air Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Philippine Airlines Daily Philippine Airlines Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Cebu Pacific Mon/Tue/Thu/Fri/Sun Philippine Airlines Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Silk Air Mon/Wed/Sat Cebu Pacific Thu Cebu Pacific Tue/Wed//Sat
5J961 / 5J962 Z2390 / Z2390 5J593 / 5J348 PR809 / PR810 PR819 / PR820 5J394 / 5J393 5J599 / 5J594 5J347 / 5J596 5J963 / 5J964 PR811 / PR812 5J595 / 5J966 MI588 / MI588 5J965 / 5J968 5J965 / 5J968
5:45 5:45 6:00 6:10 7:50 7:50 8:00 9:10 9:40 11:30 12:00 18:55 12:55 13:35
Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Cebu-Davao-Iloilo Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Zamboanga-Davao-Zamboanga Cebu-Davao-Cebu Iloilo-Davao-Cebu Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Cebu-Davao-Manila Davao-Cebu-Singapore Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila
6:15 6:25 6:30 7:00 8:50 8:10 8:30 9:40 10:10 12:20 12:30 13:35 13:25 14:05
Silk Air Thu/Sun Cebu Pacific Mon/Tue/Wed/Fri Philippine Airlines August Zest Air Daily Cebu Pacific Daily Philippines Airlines Daily Cebu Pacific Mon/Tue/Thu/Sat Cebu Pacific Daily Cebu Pacific Tue/Sat/Sun Cebu Pacific Daily Airphil Express Daily Philippine Airlines Daily except Sunday Philippine Airlines Sunday
MI566 / MI566 5J507 / 5J598 15:55 Z2524 / Z2525 5J967 / 5J600 PR813 / PR814 5J215 / 5J216 5971 / 5J970 5J973 / 5J974 5J969 / 5J972 2P987 / 2P988 PR821 / PR822 PR821 / PR822
18:55 15:00 Mani2Mani 16:05 16:35 16:55 18:00 18:40 20:00 20:30 20:30 21:20 22:20
Davao-Singapore Cebu-Davao-Cebu 16:50 Cebu-Davao-Cebu Manila-Davao-Cebu Manila-Davao-Manila Cagayan de Oro-Davao-Cagayan de Oro Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila Manila-Davao-Manila
15:20 15:30 16:45 17:05 17:45 18:20 19:10 20:30 21:00 21:00 21:50 22:50
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
RDC brings dev’t plan to ComVal
SALMON GALORE. A sashimi expert of a restaurant at Camella Northpoint uses salmon instead of first class tuna due to the lack of supply of the latter. [LEAN DAVAL, JR.]
SSS contribution collections up nine percent to P39.93 B M
ONTHLY contributions from Social Security System (SSS) members amounted to P38.95 billion from January to May this year, reflecting a nine percent jump from the agency’s P35.86 billion collection over the same period in 2011. SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Emilio de Quiros, Jr. said private sector employees contributed P33.72 billion, or P2.64 billion more than last year’s fivemonth total of P31.08 billion. Nearly seven out of every ten SSS members are employees. “The nine-percent increase in collections from employees was complemented by double-digit jumps in remitted premiums from other sectors such as household helpers, voluntary members and overseas Filipino workers,” he said. Contributions, which are considered the lifeblood of the 54-year-old pension fund, serves as a determining factor in members’ availment of
benefits and loans. Members with bigger and more contributions are entitled to higher benefits and greater loanable amounts. De Quiros also noted that OFW collections for the five-month period reached P1.07 billion, up by 14 percent from the P939.90 million total for January to May 2011. Contributions from household helpers totaled P92.24 million, which was 15 percent higher than P80.10 million last year. The institution also collected P1.92 billion from voluntary members, reflecting an 11 percent increase from the previous year, while contributions from self-employed workers rose six percent for a five-month total of P2.14 billion. “Contributions from farmers and fisherfolk, who are covered as selfemployed, surged 27 percent to P12.36 million. We are prioritizing selfemployed workers such as market vendors and those in the transport sector to enable them to get
SSS protection as well,” he said. The SSS is poised for the nationwide implementation of the “AlkanSSSya,” a program that aims to help informal sector workers regularly set aside a small portion of their daily earnings for contributions. It employs a scheme similar to saving through a piggy bank. According to de Quiros, the implementation early this year of the “TrikanSSSya,” the precursor of the “AlkanSSSya,” has encouraged hundreds of tricycle operators and drivers in Metro Manila to register for SSS coverage or reactivate their membership. “We plan to replicate this innovative savings scheme through partnerships with various types of workers’ associations within Metro Manila and all over the country so more people will benefit, especially those who need social protection the most,” he added. The “AlkanSSSya” concept involves setting up a large coin bank with se-
Bandila, chair of the ARMM Business Council, said the President’s SONA was “well understood by the people.” “We appreciate the SONA of the President,” he said. But he noted that in attracting investments to Mindanao, a key factor would be the signing of the GPH-MILF final peace agreement. “It is the only way for us to fully convince investors to put in their capital
to the (autonomous) region and the rest of Mindanao,” he said. Vicente Lao, Mindanao Business Council chair had earlier said that the unstable peace and security situation in Mindanao, especially in the conflict-affected areas, is a national issue that “imperils the productivity and competitiveness of business firms in the Philippines.”
ARMM biz leader: “Final peace pact key to good investment in Mindanao”
HE key to good investment in Mindanao is the signing of the final peace agreement” between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Datu Haron Bandila, a business leader in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), said in response to the third State of the Nation Address of President Benigno Simeon Aquino III.
cure individual compartments where members can conveniently drop loose change for their SSS contributions. The accumulated daily savings will be counted and collected by SSS Account Officers at the end of every month.
HE Regional Development Council 11 proactively advocated Davao Region’s development blueprint to the Comvaleños during a multi-sector forum hosted by Governor Arturo Uy at the Provincial Capitol in Nabunturan on 12 July 2012. Dubbed as the RDP Roadshow: Bringing the Regional Development Plan to the Provinces,” this event aimed to generate local support for RDP strategies and programs in the remaining Plan period. Approximately 250 participants composed of local chief executives, business groups, government and private sector stakeholders and media practitioners attended the event. Vice-Governor Ramil Gentugaya, Congresswoman Ma. Carmen Zamora and League of Municipalities of the Philippines National President Mayor Reynaldo Navarro rallied the Comvalenos in a show of support for the Plan. The Roadshow Team consisted of RDC 11 officials, member agencies and key resource persons. NRO 11 Director Maria Lourdes Lim, ex-officio RDC 11 Vice Chair, represented Chairperson, Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, and expressed deep appreciation to Gov. Uy for the opportunity to bring the Plan closer to his constituents. “The RDC acknowledges that this Roadshow constitutes the big test for our
Plan’s acceptability and viability on the ground.“ Director Lim read the message of the RDC 11 Chair for the Comvaleños. She added that the RDP certainly holds a lot of promise for Comvaleños as it defines strategies that address ComVal’s peculiar characteristics and responds to its peace and development challenges.” The Roadshow included back-to-back video presentations on the RDP, 20112016 and the Davao Gulf Area Development Plan, which conceives the establishment of the country’s first integrated port complex along the Davao Gulf. PPP Center Deputy Executive Director Ferdinand Tolentino discussed government’s Public-Private Partnership Program for sustainable local development, followed by an overview of the Peace and Development Outreach Program by AFP 10th ID Brigadier General Ariel Bernardo. A press conference capped the half day affair. This first of a series of RDP roadshows spinned off from the successful Philippine Development Plan Caravan conducted in Davao City in November last year with then Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Cayetano Paderanga, Jr. The RDP roadshow shall proceed to Davao del Norte, Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley, and the City of Davao.
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On the fast lane By Carlo P. Mallo Photo by Rude Dolfo
“Business is not all about the money; we also want to be proud of the products that we offer.”
IS fleet may just be a little over 200 taxicabs plying the city streets, but his fleet is one of the most talked about and most sought after in the city. After all, no other taxicab has made it to national news on both mainstream and social media without even having a public relations firm backing him. And why wouldn’t he be talk of the town or the country when he is the first to introduce the ATMs and debit cards as form of payments for taxicabs in a country where having a ATMs, debit, and credit cards are seen as a form of luxury? Yes, an initial fleet of 25 taxicabs are plying the streets of Davao City not only with a Point-of-Sale (POS) machine, but also equipped with a Global Positioning System. “If they can do this abroad, then why can’t we do it here in Davao?” Pierre Ryan Tan, owner and brainchild of the Mabuhay Black Taxi, said in a interview with Edge Davao. While everyone is still awestruck with the recent innovation that Pierre has done with his fleet, he is already busy working with the next innovation that he will implement with his cabs. “If you do not innovate, you will be left behind. Business is not all about the money, it’s a different sense of fulfillment when you feel proud about the products that you are offering,” Pierre said. Since he was in college, Pierre has always thought of being in the transportation business, particularly taxicabs. “I started when I was still in college. I started with just one taxi. I learned the ropes of business with that one taxi unit,” Pierre said. One of the first innovations that Pierre initiated was with the logo for his then white colored fleet. “While others would put a small logo on the front two doors, I wanted my logo to occupy the entire two doors on the side of the unit. I want it to be big,” Pierre said. Soon after, Pierre started introducing a series of innovations like putting magazines inside his taxicabs, LED signages, and introducing his blue fleet, which he dubbed as Blue
Taxi. Aside from having one of the youngest fleet, Pierre also made sure that his drivers are also well dressed and properly groomed. “It’s not just about the company image but to show them that people deserve better service. Once people realize that you have clean taxis and drivers, they will choose you over the others, which would translate to better profit for the drivers,” Pierre said. Last June, Pierre introduced one his most ambitious innovations so far – the Black Taxi, which is equipped with a POS machine and GPS technology. While countries like Singapore and Taiwan have applied such technology for the longest time, it is the first time that such technology is being used in the country. “This is the direction that public transport is headed for, we just applied it before it actually arrived here,” Pierre said. Tan said Black taxis were patterned after black-colored luxury car taxis found in other developed countries. “We want our black taxis to be set apart from the rest; the black color denotes elegance and formality” Tan said. “But unlike other black luxury taxis abroad where there is much higher flag-down and tariff rates, Davao City Black Taxis have the same rates as regular taxis,” he added Pierre said that Black Taxis provide comfort, convenience and safety to passengers. Black Taxi Drivers have stricter dress code, being mandated to wear black pants (no jeans, faded pants) and black leather shoes (no colored rubber shoes) they also undergo training to handle the taxis unique high-tech features. While he revels in the publicity that is being generated by his Black Taxis, Pierre continues to oversee the operations of his fleet waking up at 6 a.m. to be in the motor pool before 8 a.m. If one is wondering what Pierre does in the company’s motor pool at 8 a.m., he says that he will be busy putting the company logo on the next fleet of taxicabs that will arrive in the next few weeks. “I just want to make sure that the company logo is put on correctly,” Pierre said.
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The hills are alive
ABAWENYOS ought to be elated that a concrete proposal has been submitted at last in the Sangguniang Panlungsod that the Matina Shrine Hills be proclaimed a nature reserve zone. The proposal comes from Councilor Rachel Zozobrado-Nagayo, who represents Davao City’s third district, where riches of nature still abound, and sometimes correctly referred to as this booming city’s last frontier. Rachel’s proposal, hopefully, will force the hand of our lawmakers to take a definitive position on what to do with the once lush Matina Hills now threatened with unbridled development activities, one of which is the establishment of high-end housing subdivisions. As they say, the issues are joined, a situation wherein a dynamic debate can now commence on what policy the city government should adopt by way of land use, zonification and classification of Matina Shrine Hills or parts of it. This is an opportunity for an honest-togoodness scrutiny of the real situation in
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OLIVIA D. VELASCO General Manager
this indubitably famous landmark of the city. The discussions can start with an inventory of the housing development projects and other establishments in place on top and around the hills and compare these with the area’s holding capacity. Environment experts’ participation in the ensuing public hearings should be sought so that they can explain the importance of the hills to the city’s ecological balance in the burgeoning metropolis. What about the safety of the residents of subdivisions at the foot of the hills? While landslides are a reality in the area, how often do they occur and how damaging have they been? It is true that there are already cracks and visible sinkholes in some parts of the hills? What happens to the owners of the titled lands who must be aching to develop or sell the prime lots there? These and many, many more questions have to be answered in a series of hearings that could even outlast the current city council. But as we said, Councilor Rachel’s proposal has joined the issues. Let the debates begin. ANTONIO M. AJERO Editor in Chief
ALBERTO DALILAN Managing NEILWIN L. BRAVO Sports and Motoring ARLENE D. PASAJE Cartoons
RAMON M. MAXEY Consultant
GREGORIO G. DELIGERO CARLO P. MALLO Associate Features and Lifestyle KENNETH IRVING K. ONG KARLOS C. MANLUPIG • JOSEPH LAWRENCE P. GARCIA LEANDRO S. DAVAL JR., Creative Solutions Photography LORIE ANN A. CASCARO • JADE C. ZALDIVAR • MOSES C. BILLACURA Staff Writers
Columnists: MA. TERESA L. UNGSON • EDCER C. ESCUDERO • AURELIO A. PEñA • ZHAUN ORTEGA • BERNADETTE “ADDIE” B. BORBON • MARY ANN “ADI” C. QUISIDO • LEANDRO B. DAVAL SR., • NIKKI GOTIANSE-TAN • NICASIO ANGELO AGUSTIN • EMILY ZEN CHUA • CARLOS MUNDA Economic Analyst: ENRICO “GICO” G. DAYANGIRANG
JOCELYN S. PANES Director of Sales
SOLANI D. MARATAS Finance
RICHARD C. EBONA IMELDA P. LEE Advertising Specialists
AGUSTIN V. MIAGAN JR Circulation
CAGAYAN DE ORO MARKETING OFFICE
LEIZEL A. DELOSO | Marketing Manager Unit 6, Southbank Plaza Velez-Yacapin Sts. Cagayan de Oro City Tel: (088) 852-4894
MANILA MARKETING OFFICE
ANGELICA R. GARCIA | Marketing Manager Blk. 1, Lot 10, La Mar Townhomes, Apitong St., Marikina Heights, Marikina City Tel: (02) 942-1503
The threatened low-lying fruit
OR almost a decade now, business process outsourcing has been the saving grace of our economy. It has become the home of new and yet unskilled college graduates that our country produces year in and year out. Add to this the number of undergraduates or college dropouts who are almost bound to positively contribute to the unemployment figures. Even those already employed are lured into joining the bandwagon because of the more lucrative compensation and the less stressful and more appealing work environment in the call centers. As of 2011, the BPO industry generated about US $9 billion in revenues - accounting for a 4.8 percent share of the country’s GDP, and employs more than 640,000 full-time call center agents. The horizon of the business outsourcing industry seems unending and limitless. BPO companies continue to grow; some have expanded the line of their services and operations while the larger ones have gone into geographic expansion. As a response to the latter, many local government units have offered them “space” as possible investment location of BPOs. Not bad because of the reward that they bring to the local economy and to local residents. Such reward is within reach and easy to reap. There areseveral threats to the industry, though. First is the possible saturation of the market. Many opine however that this will not happen very soon as the industry is still very much in the stage of diversification and expansion. Second is the presence of competitor-host countries like India. While this is a real threat in the future, we can probably address this by further developing the skills and knowledge of our human resource to respond to the growing and expanding needs and requirements of outsourced services such software development, paralegal services, animation and game development to name a few. The third threat the industry faves is the pronouncement of US President Obama in his State of the Union in January 2012 where he strongly campaigned against the relocation of jobs and services overseas, and urged the US and other foreign business leaders to reinvest in American workers and proposed tax reforms to lawmakers to provide incentives and promote insourcing. In December last year, a bill was introduced in the US House of Representatives that seeks to discourage American companies from outsourcing customer calls outside the US. Among others, the bill – co-sponsored by Republican and Democrat representatives – would require US companies to fully disclose their outsourcing operations and disqualify them from Federal grants and guaranteed loans. Likewise, the bill – once passed – will mandate all offshore agents in the formal sector to disclose their geographic location to their customers and offer them a choice to be transferred to their American counterparts. Being the biggest call center services provider in the world, the Philippines is put at great risk with this pending US bill. It seems, however, that the government and the BPO industry are taking things lightly. On the other hand, there could be some wisdom in not over reacting as many believe that there is a strong likelihood that the bill will not be passed. For one, and from a commonsensical perspective, the proposed legislation will only restrain US companies from being competitive and cost efficient. Outsourcing allows companies to minimize their operating costs while delivering the same, if not much better, quality of service. If only for this, there is no reason for our BPO industry to panic because the quest for more cost efficient ways of doing things will surely govern global market forces more than any piece of legislation. Notwithstanding these, we should not be too complacent. Even if the proposed billf ails to pass or even if the legislation is seen merely as a political rather than an economic move, our BPO industry needs to be vigilant against such and similar threats in the future.
O R M A L LY, at this stage, negotiations for Manny Pacquiao’s next fight should already be within the realm of fight purses and pay per view sharing. But as of this writing nothing has been penciled about Pacquiao’s next fight. Not even his possible opponent, although a November date has already been arranged. Top Rank’s Bob Arum is set to fly to Manila next week to confer with his prized ward, who looks like he is intent on biding his time after a controversial split decision loss to Timothy Bradley in June. The Bradley fight was the second longest in between fight for Pacquiao who last fought Juan Manuel Marquez prior to that in November 2011 – a lull of almost seven months. It was only topped by exactly eight months between his Antonio Margarito and Joshua Clottey fights which also started a succession of fights that lasted the full distances. Pacquiao has been limiting his ring appearance at two fights a year since 2009. The last time he fought three times or more in a year was the year before that, in 2008, when he fought Juan Manuel Marquez (2nd fight), David Diaz and Oscar de la Hoya. The De la Hoya fight redefined his career from a mere top tier fighter to as a crossover boxing
What’s next? superstar. It is likely Pacquiao will have another fight early in 2013 after his fall fight this year. Pacquiao will make the most of these two fights as Philippine elections are scheduled for May next year. He had already declared he is stepping down as a member of the House of Representative and will run for governor in Sarangani. With Pacquiao everything is unpredictable, however. But with a dearth in big money fights, Pacquiao could be fighting for a little lesser money since the Miguel Cotto fight or even the Ricky Hatton bout. Although nobody really believed he lost the Bradley fight, some of Pacquiao’s bargaining power may have been compromised by the bum decision and the relatively poor result of the pay per view proceeds. His Bradley fight reportedly failed to top the one million PPV buys – the second time it failed to reach that number in eight fights that dated back to the De la Hoya match. The other fight that failed to register a million PP buys was the boring victory over Clottey. His long vacation to Israel and France after his Bradley loss was also timed when Congress was in recess. In the absence of any excitement and hype for his next fight, Pacquiao stories have been relegated to the inside pages which have also alarmed many Pacquiao watchers. Could it be that Pacquiao’s popularity is already waning or is it because the string of uneventful fights, including a controversial victory over Marquez in
their third fight, has taken some luster on his shining star? Is Manny, as a boxer, also already on the decline? It is hard to imagine that at his age, at 33, Pacquiao has burned himself out. Could it also be possible that the distractions that have accompanied all his life while in preparation for a fight have finally taken their toll and that Manny has already lost the zeal and passion for the sports that brought him fame and fortune? Only Pacquiao can figure that out. But as growing and divergent personal, political and, now, spiritual and religious entourage competing and grabbing for his attention, even the master of organized chaos will eventually break down. Resentment is reportedly growing among his longtime political advisers and personal friends over the sudden influx of preachers in Manny’s entourage, some of them camping out at his mansion long after he was gone for training. Perhaps it is time for Pacquiao to listen to his longtime coach and father figure Freddie Roach. It is time to drop and temper, even temporarily, his political and religious activities during trainings if he is to recover from his succession of poor performances. His 33-year-old body can only take too much physical beating and distraction. Otherwise, it is time to quit boxing. [Edwin G. Espejo is a MindaNews contributor and writes for www.asiancorrespondent.com.]
Confidence tricks for the euro zone
HE euro crisis is to a great extent a confidence crisis. Sure, there are big underlying problems such as excessive debt and lack of competitiveness in the peripheral economies. But these can be addressed and, to some extent, this is happening already. Meanwhile, a quick fix for the confidence crisis is needed. The harsh medicine of reform is required but is undermining confidence on multiple levels. Businesses, bankers, ordinary citizens and politicians are losing faith in both the immediate economic future and the whole single-currency project. That is creating interconnected vicious spirals. The twin epicentres of the crisis are Spain and Italy. The boost they received from last month’s euro zone summit has been more than wiped out. Spanish 10-year bond yields equalled their euro-era record of 7.3 percent on July 20; Italy’s had also rebounded to a slightly less terrifying but still worrying 6.2 percent. As ever, the explanation is that the summiteers came up with only a partial solution and even that was hedged with caveats. Although the euro zone will probably inject capital into Spain’s bust banks, relieving Madrid of the cost of doing so, the path will be tortuous. Meanwhile, a scheme which could help Italy finance its debt will come with strings attached – and there still isn’t enough money in the euro zone’s bailout fund to do this for more than a short time. The two countries’ high bond yields aren’t just a thermometer of how sick they are. They push up the cost of capital for everybody in Spain and Italy, while sowing doubts about whether the whole show can be kept on the road. Capital flight continues at an alarming rate, especially in Spain. The so-called Target 2 imbalances, which measure the credits and debits of national central banks within the euro zone, are a good proxy for this. Spain’s Target 2 debt had grown to 408 billion euros at the end of June, up from 303 billion only two months earlier. The
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analysis By Hugo dixon Italian one was roughly stable but still high at 272 billion euros. The loss of confidence is harming the economy. Spain’s GDP is expected to shrink by 2.1 percent this year and a further 3.1 percent next year, according to Citigroup, one of the more pessimistic forecasters. The prospects for Italy are not much better: a predicted 2.6 percent decline this year followed by 2 percent next year. Shrinking economies are, in turn, pushing up debt/GDP ratios. Citigroup expects Spain’s to jump from 69 percent at the end of last year to 101 percent at the end of 2013, in part because of the cost of bailing out its banks, while Italy’s will shoot up from 120 percent to 135 percent. These eye-popping numbers then reinforce anxiety in the markets. All of this is having a corrosive effect on the political landscape. In Italy, the situation is especially precarious as Mario Monti, the technocratic prime minister, has repeatedly said he will resign after next spring’s elections. The centre-left Democratic Party, which is leading in the opinion polls, is still committed to the euro. But the second and third most popular political groups – the Five Star movement led by comedian Beppe Grillo, and Silvio Berlusconi’s PdL – are either outright eurosceptics or toying with becoming so. The situation is slightly better in Spain because Mariano Rajoy has a solid majority and doesn’t officially have to face the electorate for three and a half years. But hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets last week to protest against the latest austerity measures. Pundits are starting to speculate that Rajoy may not last his full term. And if the Italian and Spanish governments can’t carry their peo-
ple with them along the reform path, the fear is that Germany may no longer support them. High borrowing costs, capital flight, and economic and political weakness: to escape this vortex, the immediate priority is to get Spain’s and Italy’s bond yields back down. The goal should be to cut borrowing costs below 5 percent – a level that would no longer be that worrying. While most of the ways of doing this have been vetoed by Germany, at least two haven’t. One is to leverage up the European Stabilisation Mechanism, the region’s bailout fund, so that it has enough money to fund both Madrid and Rome. Neither Germany nor the European Central Bank want to let the ESM borrow money from the ECB itself. But what about lifting the cap on how much it can borrow from the market? Another option would be for the core countries, led by Germany and France, to subsidise Spain’s and Italy’s interest rates directly – giving back to the southern Europeans part of the benefit they are enjoying from their own extremely low borrowing costs. If they agreed to close half the gap between the core and the periphery, such a scheme would cost around 75 billion euros over seven years, according to a Breakingviews’ calculation. An interest-rate subsidy would also give markets the confidence that Madrid and Rome would be able to finance their debts and so could further lower their borrowing costs. There would, of course, have to be conditions. In Italy, Monti needs to embark on a second wave of reforms. In particular, he should launch a mass multi-year privatisation programme and a big one-off wealth tax to cut Italy’s debt. But after Spain’s recent plan to clean up its banking sector and further tighten its belt, there is little more to be asked of it. Germany is right to insist on reforms. But it should balance the stick with a bigger carrot. Otherwise, the single currency from which it benefits so much could collapse.
With Syria imploding, is Hezbollah next? Commentary By Benedetta Berti
OURS after the bombing that killed senior security officials in Damascus on July 18, Hezbollah’s leader resolutely backed his ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. But such support does not help this militant group, which relies so heavily on Syrian assistance. The occasion for the remarks by Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah – delivered from the safety of his bunker in Lebanon – was the anniversary of Hezbollah’s “divine victory” in the July 2006 war against Israel. However, there was nothing victorious about his televised appearance. It merely confirmed Hezbollah as increasingly out of touch with the Arab Spring – hastening its decline. After the 2006 war, many Lebanese and many in the greater Middle East perceived Hezbollah as a legitimate and powerful military and political organization. Indeed, it has since gained the majority in Lebanon’s coalition government. But Hezbollah’s unwavering loyalty to the brutal Assad regime places it on the wrong side of history – costing it support and exacerbating sectarian and political divisions in Lebanon. This is confirmed in my conversations with people in Lebanon and the region, and in the Lebanese and Middle Eastern media. Polls by the Pew Research Center released this month also show Hezbollah losing its luster. The favorable view of Hezbollah in the past five years dropped by 36 percent in Egypt and 25 percent in Jordan. In the sectarian tinderbox that is Lebanon, views of Hezbollah are more polarized than ever, with 94 percent of the Sunni community against Hezbollah and 94 percent of Lebanese Shiites approving of them. Support from local Christians is also diminishing, with only about a third of the community openly favoring Hezbollah. But its crisis goes further. Hezbollah looks out of touch with the discourse of the Arab Spring itself. It called for mourning over the July 18 attack, even while it refused to speak out against the thousands of Syrians killed by the Assad regime. While the militant group Hamas has invested significant political capital in shifting its rhetoric and alliances to fit the post-Arab Spring period, Hezbollah’s message and loyalties have not adapted. Its double standard toward freedomseeking Arab revolutionaries demonstrates that it’s part of the ancient régime. Hezbollah’s stubborn stance presents a strategic and operational challenge as well. Historically, Syria has served as the connecting link between Iran and Lebanon, allowing the flow of weapons and logistical support to Hezbollah. Also, Syria’s strong presence and influence in Lebanon made sure that Hezbollah’s weapons and “resistance” agenda would not be challenged from within. As the Syrian regime looks to be imploding and civil war rages, both functions are threatened. What’s more, a post-Assad Syria will likely reverse the existing partnership with Mr. Nasrallah’s group. The political opposition in Syria has heavily criticized Hezbollah’s support for the regime, with protesters burning Hezbollah flags and openly accusing Nasrallah of having blood on his hands. The May kidnapping of a group of Lebanese Shiites in Syria by an anti-Assad opposition group is a perfect example of this enmity. The kidnappers initially requested Nasrallah’s apology to them as a condition for releasing the captives. Regime change in Syria could also give a powerful second wind to the backers of Lebanon’s 2005 “Cedar Revolution” who rebelled against Syria’s military presence and outsized influence in their country. This would undermine Hezbollah’s political position. Hezbollah therefore finds itself in a weaker position – ideologically, politically, and strategically. The picture looks more bleak if it is found that Hezbollah, in partnership with Iran, is involved in the July 18 suicide bombing of Israeli tourists on a bus inBulgaria. Hezbollah denies any role. Still, it’s plausible they were involved. If that’s the case, the group’s decision to project power through attacking soft Israeli targets – after repeatedly failing to hit “official” ones like Israeli embassies – reflects declining strength.
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Davao Cyber Expo 2012 at SM Annex on July 27
T’S all systems go for the biggest and grandest Davao Cyber Expo at The Annex this July 2729. The eternal battle between the forces of the Legion and the Hellbourne gets more intense this weekend as Heroes of Newerth joins DCE 2012! With the DOTA tourney, catch the excitement as the best gamers all over Mindanao battle it out for this year’s crown at the LAN Party Xtreme. From custom-built mid-tower to full-tower systems, get a glimpse of the region’s best rigs at the annual TechXtreme brought by BlinQue. Plus, experience the latest in the computer world with
the Tech Exhibit by Asus. Other exciting happenings are Cosplay meet, Street Fighter 4 and NBA2K12 Tournaments, blogging competition and a whole lot of surprises! The coolest gathering of tech geeks and fans is made possible by SM City Davao, Cyberzone and e2 Events. All hip, all here! PC gamers and enthusiasts unite, and experience the cyber world at the City’s hippest hub, SM City Davao The Annex! For inquiries, please call 297.6998 local 126. Visit www.smcitydavao. blogspot.com or like SM City Davao on Facebook for event and promo updates.
SOCIAL SPORTS. Regional Director Ester A. Versoza is set to lob the first ball to open the 2012 DSWD Wellness Program via Inter-Office Bowling Tournament at Dover Lanes Bowling Center. Twelve teams will vie for the championship games slated December at NCCC Mall Bowling Arena. (DSwD/ CARmELA CADIGAL-DuRoN)
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POKER. Nate Lorenzana (top left), July Pokerface of the Month, bagged P110,000 with his winning card, Ace of Hearts and Six of Cloves. Von Kierulf (bottom left), trailed second with P55,000 cash. Both, along with 8 final table players (left), are entitled a seat to the 3rd Kadayawan
Eagle Cup 1-Million Poker Tournament slated August 17-19 at the Metro Card Club Davao, Quirino Ave. Davao City. Check facebook.com/metrocardclubdavao for more poker tournament updates and monthly schedules.
COMMUNITY SENSE 11
NATION BRIEFS Accomplishment
day after President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III gave his third State of the Nation Address, Vice President Jejomar Binay has come out with his own accomplishment report. According to a report from his office, Binay has been busy looking out for the welfare of Overseas Filipino Workers either by bringing them home or protecting those for deployment.
NVESTMENT grade rating is within reach for the Philippines given the economic achievements mentioned by President Aquino during his third State of the Nation Address (SONA) last Monday, the central bank chief said. “Consecutive rating actions on (the Philippines) indeed recognize the efforts towards fiscal consolidation, the continued strength of the country’s external position and the strides the government has made on improving governance,” Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said.
HE provincial police director of Compostela Valley was removed from his post on Monday after a large volume of explosives was discovered deposited in a house just beside the gates of the provincial police headquarters in Barangay Poblacion, Nabunturan town. Southern Mindanao police director Jaime Morente said Senior Superintendent Timoteo Pacleb was sacked along with two other Compostela Valley police officials, namely intelligence chief Senior Inspector Noe Sobretodo and operations chief Superintendent Roderico Roy Jr.
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Vietnam, Philippines slam U China’s Sea garrison plan
.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday mourned the death of his Ghananian counterpart John Evans Atta Mills, praising his role in Ghana’s development. “It was with great regret that I learned of the passing of President John Evans Atta Mills of Ghana,” Obama said in a statement, recalling his trip to the West African nation in 2009 and his hosting of Mills at the White House early this year.
IETNAM and the Philippines on Tuesday lashed out at China’s moves to establish a military garrison in the South China Sea, amid escalating tensions in the disputed waters. Hanoi filed a formal protest with Beijing against the plan outlined by China this week to station troops in Sansha in the disputed Paracel Islands, saying it “violates international law”. Manila, which is involved in a dispute over another archipelago, the Spratly Islands, also weighed into the row, summoning the Chinese ambassador to lodge a complaint against the garrison announcement. An intensifying spat over the South China Sea -- the site of key shipping routes and thought to have vast oil and gas reserves -- has seen a barrage of diplomatic moves between the countries with competing territorial claims. Taiwan, one of several
Thitu Island, part of the disputed Spratly group of islands, in the South China Sea. Vietnam and the Philippines on Tuesday lashed out at China’s moves to establish
a military garrison in the South China Sea, amid escalating tensions in the disputed waters.
claimants to portions of the Spratly chain, plans to boost firepower at its base on that archipelago’s biggest island Taiping from next month, Taipei’s coastguard said on Tuesday. Longer-range artillery and mortars are to be added to existing weaponry at the site, in a move that could further stoke tensions in the region.
China says it owns much of the South China Sea, while Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Brunei and Malaysia each claim portions. The disputes have become particularly acrimonious in recent weeks, with Vietnam and the Philippines criticising what they call Chinese encroachment. Beijing’s garrison plan “violates international law,
seriously violates Vietnam’s sovereignty... and is invalid,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Luong Thanh Nghi told AFP. China attracted Hanoi’s ire -- and sparked a series of rare protests in the Vietnamese capital -- when it last month designated Sansha as its administrative centre for the Paracels and the Spratly Islands.
emy Hunt said the numbers to be provided by G4S “continue to rise significantly” but that ministers would “leave nothing to chance” in Britain’s biggest ever peacetime security operation. In total, 18,200 soldiers are now helping to guard 10,500 competitors at the Games, alongside thousands of private guards and police. Meanwhile, the London organisers were struggling to keep secret the details of the opening ceremony overseen by
“Slumdog Millionaire” director Danny Boyle after spectators at a rehearsal leaked images and details through social media. Tens of thousands of people attended a technical rehearsal on Monday, one of the final runthroughs before Friday’s £27 million ($42 million, 34.5 million euro) spectacular. Boyle pleaded with the audience, which included guests of the Games organisers and family of those taking part, not to leak details
about the event. The Twitter hashtag “savethesurprise” was emblazoned on the stadium’s giant screens. Boyle and his creative team have done their best to keep most details of the opening ceremony secret. Organisers have already revealed that the show features an idyllic British scene including live animals, as well as a tribute to the state-run National Health Service, reportedly involving giant hospital beds.
Britain drafts in more soldiers to plug security gap at Olympics
RITAIN has drafted in another 1,200 troops to plug a security gap at the London Olympics left by the failure of a private security firm to provide enough guards. The deployment announced Tuesday, just three days before the opening ceremony, takes the extra troops brought in for the Olympics to 4,700, after security giant G4S said it could not provide the 10,000 guards it had originally promised. Culture Secretary Jer-
NOTICE OF LOSS Notice is hereby given by LOYOLA PLANS CONSOLIDATED INC. that CERTIFICATE OF FULL PAYMENT No(s). 59958 under LOYOLA PLAN Contract No(s) NNN 710309045 issued to TEODORA F. CALAPINI was lost. Any transaction entered into shall be null and void.
IGHT people were reported missing in a flash flood in the capital of West Sumatra province that inundated homes in five sub-districts, forced hundreds of people to evacuate and sought refuge in higher ground, local media reported on Wednesday. The flood struck Padang at about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday during the time people were breaking their fasting, following more than three hours of heavy downpour. The waters reached as high as four meters but was down to around one meter on Wednesday morning.
to plug a security gap at the London Olympics left by the failure of a private security firm to provide enough guards.
OUTH Korea is considering extending its reconstruction mission in Afghanistan by two years, a move that would allow some 60 combat troops to continue to protect its aid workers in the war-torn country until 2014, a government official said Wednesday. Some 150 Korean aid workers and police officers have conducted a reconstruction mission in the northern Afghan city of Charikar since mid2010, protected by some 350 troops stationed there. Their mission is set to end at the end of this year.
AUDI Arabia will extend $ 100 m grants to Pakistan, the Prime Minister’s office has said. Saudi Finance Minister Dr Ibrahim Al-Assaf also called Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf and told him that the Saudi Finance Ministry was going to send $ 100 million immediately on the directives of King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz for the welfare of the people of Pakistan.
British soldiers guard the entrance to Horseguards, venue for the beach volleyball competition, in London on July 24. Britain has drafted in another 1,200 troops
HE U.S. ambassador on Wednesday urged North Korea to learn from the recent political and economic reforms in Myanmar to improve the lives of its own people, but warned the North’s new leadership will be further isolated unless it abandons its nuclear ambitions. U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Sung Kim also said his government has “lost confidence” in working toward resuming dialogue with North Korea after it reneged on the Feb. 29th deal with Washington, an agreement to swap denuclearization steps for food aid, by defiantly launching a longrange rocket in April.
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Comelec to file motion GPH to MILF: Stop infighting against Arroyo bail that undermine peace gains T G
HE chairperson of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Wednesday said that they will file an opposition to the order allowing former president and Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to post bail in her election case. Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said the poll body will file a motion for
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region. “We have instructions to close, suspend operations or ban sources of processing plants that do not have supply contracts,” he said. He added that wood processing plants must be able to provide DENR 11 lists of sources of wood with supply contracts which will prove that their business can be sustained in the next five years without getting all the supplies from Davao. Supply of wood may either be from private plantations or imported, otherwise it is illegal logging, particularly from natural growth forests as stipulated in executive order 23 of President Aquino. However, the DENR 11 will have more time to fully validate the processing plants after putting up safety nets for the region in the next three months, which, according to him, are very
reconsideration “Thursday morning, at the latest,” and discuss the evidences that they have presented. “We will point out that our evidences are not weak, and we will convince the judge that he might change his mind,” Brillantes said to members of media at the House of Representatives where he supervised the holding of mock elections to test the accuracy and reliability of automated election
crucial. He cited that among the safety nets, DENR will take full control over checkpoints, including entry and exit points, as well as convergence areas toward ports. Fragada said that he will reduce the number of checkpoints inspecting lumber shipments and instead strengthen checkpoints in strategic areas. He said that he would like to focus on keeping watch at entrance and exit points for lumber shipments. Fewer checkpoints would be easier to control, according to Fragada, and he also expressed his desire to strengthen the Port Integrated Clearing Office to control the shipment of wood from parts within the region. Increasing linkages with local government units and military and police forces are essential to enforcing these watches and Executive
machines. A Pasay City court earlier granted Arroyo’s motion for bail in an election sabotage case filed against her in November 2011, saying the evidence presented by the Comelec was weak. Brillantes expressed disappointment over the court’s ruling but said that it was the “judge’s discretion,” and added that the granting of bail should not affect the electoral sabotage case itself. [PNA]
Order 23. He also mentioned that ports need to be secured and that an integrated clearance office will be activated inside Davao port and in other ports, both private and run by local government units. Already established but deactivated a few years ago for the lack of logistics support, the Port Integrated Clearance Office (PICO) will be activated next week, Fragada said, adding that he will start its initial funding while waiting to acquire a hand-held x-ray instrument that can permeate through sealed container vans to ensure transparency even as it is prohibited to open the vans. He recalled that the illegally cut logs worth P16 million confiscated in Manila purportedly shipped from Davao were falsely declared as cement.
“I think Comelec should look into their savings. I think they have substantial savings in their budget,” Lacierda said. He added that during his discussion with Budget Secretary Florencio Abad on the issue recently, the Budget Chief informed him that
Comelec had ample savings. “They have enough savings. That should not be a problem. The automated elections (in 2013) will continue,” Lacierda said. Comelec chairman Sixto Brillantes raised a howl over the drastic cut in budget allocation the Com-
mission may receive in the 2013 General Appropriations Act (GAA) that was slashed from P24-billion to P8-billion. Brillantes warned that with this cut, the Comelec may have to revert to manually counting ballots in next year’s elections. [PNA]
Abad said former Chief Justice Renato C. Corona is also his friend, adding he supported Corona during his impeachment trial. Corona was impeached as the Philippines’ 23rd Chief Justice and removed from office for culpable violation of the Constitution and betrayal of public trust on May 29, 2012. Abad said he is loyal to his friends but will not betray the Constitution for a friend. Abad stressed an SC outsider will eventually learn the ropes, and that, the import thing is his ability and character to gain the trust of his colleagues. “We have to clean up the courts, we need to put our act together when it comes
to fighting corruption,” he said. Abad pointed out if the en banc decides on all cases, then there will only be one functioning body. “Maybe we should have two Supreme Courts. One that will handle appeals and another to handle constitutional cases,” he said. “If we follow the current system, the Maguindanao massacre case will take 20 years to finish,” Abad said. The Maguindanao massacre claimed the lives of 57 civilians, including 15 women and 30 media practitioners in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao province on Nov. 23, 2009. Abad was grilled by the JBC from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
posed to limit the Bar exams to four subjects only. “Our curriculum is so crowded. Students just learn the law but not the practice,” he said. Abad said multiple choice questions in the Bar exams are a time-tested measure of knowledge. He added the essay portion in the Bar exams aims to see how student will sort out relevant facts, identify issues and prepare convincing arguments. In Japan, Abad said, students are required to pass through rigid apprenticeship before becoming a lawyer. “We established Task Force Kalayaan which monitors criminal cases and makes sure the cases are moving,” Abad said.
OVERNMENT of the Philippines (GPH) senior military adviser Brigadier General Leo Cresente Ferrer on Wednesday called on the leadership of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to impose discipline among its forces and peacefully resolve infightings instigated by “ridos” or clan wars among its base commands. Ferrer made the call in the midst of news of positive developments on the peace table that points to a possible signing of a peace agreement between the two parties, as well as in deference to the celebration of the Holy Month of Ramadhan. “We call on the MILF to show their collective sincerity and commitment to the peace process especially now that we are on the homestretch of the negotiations. It is high time that the MILF resolves peacefully these infightings, ‘ridos’ or clan wars within its ranks,” Ferrer said. “We also urge them to stop and settle these internal conflicts immediately in reverence to the Holy Month of Ramadhan so that Muslim communities celebrate the holy month with their families in the peace and safety of their homes,” he added.
Ferrer’s call was prompted by reports as of 2 p.m. on Tuesday, barely five days after the start of the Ramadhan, of another fighting that erupted between combined troops of Commanders Basco and Abdul Haq of the MILF’s 105th base command against the combined forces of Commanders Baksan and Jerry of the MILF’s 106th base command along the boundaries of barangays Kulambog and Gadungan in this municipality. An 18-year-old girl was reportedly wounded by a stray bullet during the crossfire. She is currently recovering at the Rural Health Unit. Subsequent reports also bared sightings of uncoordinated MILF troop movements from Brgy. Libutan in Mamasapano town where allegedly more or less 80 fully-armed men with highpowered firearms under a certain Commander Abdul Haq arrived and merged with the group of 105th base commander Buddy Sali at Brgy. Kolambog, SSB, Maguindanao supposedly to augment a certain Commander Kubota at Sitio Kinalinan, Brgy. Tukanakuden also in Sultan sa Barongis. As of today, reports said more than 360 displaced
families have already evacuated to nearby schools and to Brgy. Poblacion Barurao of the same town for their safety. The GPH-MILF Joint Coordinating Committees on the Cessation of Hostilities (JCCCH) is now on the ground and exerting all means to stop the fighting after the MILF ceasefire representatives failed to foil the conflict’s eruption. Ferrer said that the 45th Infantry Batallion who is assigned in the area is also closely watching the situation along with the other security components of the 6th Infantry Division under Gen. Rey Ardo. “The AFP is closely monitoring the situation as we ensure the safety of civilians and communities affected by the fighting,” Ferrer said citing reports that emissaries from the MILF sent earlier to pacify the warring groups were not heeded as the fighting continues. He also challenged the MILF hierarchy to show command and control of their ranks by disciplining and reprimanding warring troops who undermine the primacy of the ongoing peace negotiations with the Philippine government. [PNA]
served as the country’s Special Envoy for Agriculture to the World Trade Organization. Before his stint in the DA, Sebastian served as the president and chief executive officer of Verdant Ventures as well as president and chief operating officer of Marsman Estate Plantation, Inc., Nova Vista Management and Development Corp. and Tagnanan Estate. He started out with the Philippine Packing Corp. (PPC) and moved to manage the Marsman banana plantations from 1976 to 1983 and later became its president.
He also served as president of various industry groups, like the Philippine Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA), Confederation of Philippine Exporters Foundation, Inc. in Region 11 and Samahang Magsasaging ng Davao, Inc. He was also a member of the Philippine Business for Social Progress, Davao City Chamber of Commerce, Inc. and Rotary Club of Davao. His remains lay in state at the Heritage Park in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City until July 25 and flown to Davao City yesterday. [DA Information Service]
in the country, with an issue size of P603.7 million. BB2 securities are classified in Class A senior note with P300 million (50%) for retail investors and cooperatives; Class B senior note with P120 million (20%) for institutional investors; and, Class C subordinated note with P183.7 million (30%) for NHMFC. Bustos said Bahay Bonds 1 which was launched in March 23, 2009 was worth P2.06 billion and fully subscribed. It was the first residential mort-
gage-backed securities issued in the Philippines by a government agency. The NHMFC said the bonds will be listed with the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corporation (PDEx), making the BB2 tradable in the secondary market, which refers to purchase or sale transactions done after the original issuance. The NHMFC is a secondary mortgage institution to attract long term funds to provide strong and sustainable housing finances.
Erum Regis; children, Rommel Patton R. Sebastian, June Genevieve R. Sebastian and Robert Charles R. Sebastian. Serving under then President Fidel V. Ramos, Sebastian as DA chief introduced the Key Production Approach (KPA) which became the basis in the formulation of the Medium-Term Agricultural Development Plan (MTADP). The MTADP laid down the foundation for the ascension of Philippine agriculture to meet the challenge of competing globally. Sebastian served the DA from 1992 to 1996. Thereafter, from 1996 to 1997 he
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have existing accounts in Land Bank, only need to fill out some forms, while those who do not have will comply with requirements such as identification cards, and other pertinent documents. To be sold to the public during the offering period from July 26 to August 7, 2012, Bahay Bonds can also be used as collateral to Land Bank lending facilities; and, are exempted from 20% withholding tax. Bustos said BB2 is the first ever retail residential mortgage-backed securities
VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
This US Olympic fencer traces her roots in Davao T
(top photo) Lee Kiefer in action against fellow US fencer Nzingha Prescod. (Middle) In the cover of Kentucky Living magazine. (Right) in action during the Olympic qualifiers. (Lower photo) Testing her sword.
By Neil Bravo
HERE’S a compelling reason for Davao to root for an American athlete in London. Lee Bacani Oropilla Kiefer is the United States’ top female foil fencer and she’s competing in the 2012 Olympics in London. Most significantly, she is half-Filipino. Let’s take it further. Most, most significantly, her mother Teresa Ann Oropilla is from Tagum City in Davao. That makes this fencing phenom a certified Dabawenya. The newly-turned 18 Kiefer is now the reigning American women’s foil champion and currently ranked no. 7 in the world. She is now in London and she will begin her quest for the gold medal in the women’s foil event on Saturday (July 28). Dr. Janice BacaniCarandang, Lee’s aunt, bared the Fil-American’s lineage to EDGE Davao in an exclusive interview. Dr. Carandang is a first cousin of Teresa who migrated to Louisville, Kentucky in 1973. Teresa is now a Psychiatrist practicing in Lexington, Kentucky and married to Steven Modlin Kiefer from Cincinnati, a Neurosurgeon practicing in Lexington. Lee’s mother Teresa, who studied in St. Mary’s College in Tagum, is the daughter (younger of two kids) of Dr. Teresita Bacani- Oropilla from Tagum. Dr. Oropilla was US-trained Pediatrician practicing in Tagum in the 1960s up to 1973, then she trained and practiced as a Psychiatrist
in Louisville, Kentucky until her retirement. She was also a Professor at the University of Louisville. When Lee was formally announced as a member of the US Olympic delegation last April, Dr. Carandang said the young fencer wished for her family in the Philippines to root for her and pray for her triumph in London. “Being an Olympian is already a big accomplishment, and bringing home a medal would already be a bonus. We just want Lee to do her best and we want her to know that we are very proud of her,” Dr. Carandang said. “She is definitely an improvement of the race, and I in particular am very proud that we share the same gene pool. Her family in the Philippines is very proud of her and we want the world and the Filipinos in particular to get to know this amazing girl.” Lee is the middle child of a brood of three. She is sandwiched by elder sister Alexandra (2nd year college at Harvard) and brother Axel (high school student). The Kiefers learned the sport from their father Steve who is team captain of the Duke University fencing team in the mid-80s. Their dining room served as their first training area
when it was converted into a fencing club.
to quit. From fencer to famous, Lee has risen to the world rankings. She is now ranked seventh in the world in foil, and has won 14 gold medals at various events, including the top spot at the 2010 Cadet World Championships. She was also a member of the U.S. team that won gold at the 2009 Junior World Championships. H e r mother described Lee as “ultra-competitive.” Her father thinks she has the makings of a great
Lee reportedly did not like fencing at first because she finds the bag heavy. But she has since learned to like the sport and the rest was history. She said she was too scared
fencer. Steve once said in an interview that all three of his children are bright and athletic but he feels Lee is “wired” to fence and is so agile that she is “ballerina-
like on the strip.” Steve thinks that Lee is one of the most mentally tough people he knows with an intense and almost visceral dislike for losing. Once when Lee lost, she would break the pencils over her knee. Lee moved from Harvard to become a fencing scholar at Notre Dame, choosing to become a Fighting Irish over Duke and Harvard. She was recently featured in the cover of Kentucky Living, a Kentucky-circulated magazine. Like her parents and aunt, she also wants to become a doctor. Dr. Carandang recalls Lee as a talkative and cheerful as a child. “She was a sweet child who was very affectionate to her family, even to relatives she would meet for the first time.”
She said Lee does not speak Filipino but she understands some words because they had a constant stream of Filipino visitors. She calls her cousins Ate or Kuya and loves to eat adobo, tocino, and rice. “When she was young, she even eats with her bare hands—very Filipino.” The first and only time Lee was in the country was in 2004 when she was 10. She stayed with her family in a Davao hotel but spent nights in her grandfather’s house in El Rio Vista and travelled to her mother’s hometown in Tagum. Carandang hopes Lee will have the chance to come to the country again when her Olympic stint is over. For now, Lee is fully focused on winning a medal in London although the young fencing sensation believes her best shot will be in 2016.
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Davao Food Trip: Day 1 By Carlo P. Mallo Photos by Wizbren Ang
BEING a Dabawenyo, I have my own list of restaurants in the city that I would mentally choose from whenever I would think of eating. But little did I know that there are a hundred restaurants out there that I must have overlooked or missed.
Or in most cases, I was ordering the wrong food from the restaurant. When Unilever Food Solutions asked me if I wanted to go on a food trip, I immediately said yes. And that is how my five-day long food coma started. Who knew that Davao has so much to offer at the break of dawn? Probinsya restaurant at the Victoria Plaza car park has one of the best breakfast buffets in town that will bring you back memories when it was still abuela who manned the kitchen – when everything was cooked from scratch and substitutes were a big no-no. Nearly all my favorite Filipino dishes are present for breakfast! Yes, I can live on puto, puto bumbong, sapin-sapin, and all these other carb-laden local deli-
cacies. Oh, they also have kare-kare and their own version of liempo with laing that is to die for. One can only guess the cups of rice I consumed that morning alone! It was that good that I simply threw out my one-cup-ofrice-a-day diet out of the window. But what made eating at Probinsya extra special? It was seeing an old friend and spending the entire morning catching up. It’s a good thing Probinsya is a buffet restaurant – as what better way to catch up with an old friend than over a never ending serving of one’s favorites? **Catch our Food Issue next Thursday for the continuation of our Davao Food Trip.
A2 INdulge! ENTERTAINMENT UP AND ABOUT
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SM Girls Teens’ Wear Redhead Model Search 2012 SM Girls Teens’ Wear is now looking for the next batch of Redhead Models this 2012! The search is open for girls 15 to 25 years old, single and at least 5’1” in height. Do you think you have what it takes to be the next Redhead Model? From July 13 to September 6, simply purchase P399.75 worth of any regular priced item of the brand Redhead found at the Girls Teen’s Wear section at all SM Department stores nationwide to qualify you to register. Each P399.75 single receipt corresponds to a unique registration code which can be redeemed at booths found inside the Girls Teen’s Wear section, along with an application form. Fill out the needed details required and make sure to submit a full body photo and a close up head shot photo with each application form. There are 2 ways to join: 1 - submit application forms at designated booths at the GTW section at SM Department stores or 2 - online submission at www.sm-gtw.com or www.facebook.com/sm.gtw. Last day for submission of all application forms is on September 6, 2012. Announcement of the Top 12 finalists will be made on-line by September 14. They will undergo training modules on make-up, styling and modeling. Public voting will be open from September 14 until September 27 for the Top 3 winners. The 3 Redhead winners will be announced and presented to the public during the Candy Magazine Annual Fair on September 29, 2012. Glamorous prizes await the top 3 winners including a 1-year contract with Elite Models Inc, Redhead clothing allowance, a 1-year subscription to Candy Magazine and cash prize worth P40,000. So what are you waiting for? Grab this once in a lifetime opportunity! Join now and you might be part of the next batch of Redhead Models. For more details, log on to sm-gtw.com or like us on Facebook.com/SM.GTW. For inquiries or updates, you can also follow us on Twitter @sm_gtw.
Sun Cellular’s latest TVC looks to take the blame off ‘The Other Woman’ SUN Cellular and Neuron l Campaigns & Grey, a Grey Group company, have played with humour and over-the-top acting to create a new tongue-in-cheek television spot for Sun Broadband Wireless called“The Other Woman”to increase top of mind brand recall amongst the target audience. Launched in June 2012, the entertaining spot communicates the message that Sun Broadband Wireless now provides an excellent Internet surfing experience - even better than before. The thirty second TVC starts off with a shot of a housewife viewing photographs of her husband posted on a social media site. Poor internet connection results in the slow loading of an onlinephotograph which reveals a ‘mystery’ blonde kissing her husband on the cheek. The wife gets upset and goes into a hyperventilating fit of rageand is shown flying and bursting through walls martial arts style in her house slippers and landing a powerful kickonto her husband’s chest without any questions asked. As she gets ready to deliver yet another power punch with her fists, her daughter nonchalantly saunters in showing off her newlycolouredblonde hair. The realization dawns that the ‘other woman’ in the photograph is actually the couple’s own daughter and the misunderstanding was the result of a slow internet connection. To view the TVC, please visit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =C0JDIfD1Plc&feature=youtu.be Explained Jun Ureta, Creative Director of Neuron/ Campaigns & Grey, “The storyline delivered was rooted in relatable situations depicting scorned women and experimental teenagers in a humorous setting. In an increasingly wired world, miscommunications in the digital space can be avoided with a consistent, fast and reliable Internet connection that gives users timely information and enables a more enjoyable surfing experience.”
Tickle wiggle riddle by Bai Fauziah Fatima Sinsuat Ambolodto, MBA
FOR the past few days, I have been on the search for the best sweets that could satisfy my sweet cravings. It was hard having to rush downtown to that particular cupcake place after work only to find out it is already closed. Alternatively, having to go to that tiny kitchen just to find out they have it closed because it is way past their operating hours. Frustration only made me crave for them more. Sweets, for me, forms part of my comfort food list. Aside from coffee, burger, Jalapeno and cheese flavored snack and ice cream, sweets are but the next big thing. I tend to eradicate all there is in my head for the meantime and just enjoy the explosion in my palate as I bite on those sweet little nothings from the best café’s in town. I would often buy and gobble on anything with chocolate and caramel in them as soon as I get home after a long day’s work. Last week, I have been fortunate enough to taste the best Banoffee Pie and Snickers Cake ever. With just the right amount of sweetness, it was indeed an explosion of magical flavors in my mouth. Not to mention having it paired with an espresso to marry the flavors all together. Thanks
Jeff, Ivan and Christian for re-introducing me to their cakes. Come weekend, I opted to finally settle in my kitchen, whip batches after batches of sweet nothings, mix, and match them with flavors of Asia. Here they are. . . Akiss’ Munchkins An offbeat version on the all time favorite snack poppers, munchkins, with center filling made of mango and green tea. A sure crowd pleaser! Crushed Graham crackers, 3 cups 1 cup sweetened condense milk 3 tablespoons powdered tea (Pour contents of readily available tea over a pan over medium heat. Toast until fragrant – do not burn. Transfer to a mortar and pestle and mash away until powdered. ) 2 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted 1 mango, pureed 1 thumb of ginger, pureed with the mango Powdered sugar, for coating In a blender, puree one ripe mango, powdered tea and ginger together. Transfer to a ramekin and set aside. In a large bowl, combine 3 cups of crushed graham crackers (You can use any type of biscuits), condense milk and unsalted melted butter. Mix thoroughly. Cover bowl with cling film
and refrigerate for 30 minutes. NOTE You can add milk to incorporate the mixture together. The mixture must be sticky enough to form into balls. Take the mixture from the refrigerator and pat hands with powdered sugar or oil. From mixture into small bite size balls. Flat the balls between the palms and create a well in the middle. Scoop a bit of the mango-tea-ginger puree in the middle. Gently close the balls. Repeat. Roll balls into powdered sugar and refrigerate. Elle’s S’mores An adult take on the usual campfire s’mores. This one is perfect for anytime snack. Make them in batches, refrigerate and pop all day long. Warning: this one is addictive – just ask my officemates. 1 pack Graham crackers 15 pieces nougat chocolate bars Unsalted butter 1 pack marshmallows 1 tablespoon coffee powder 1 cup peanut butter ½ cup Mudslide 5 tablespoon mudslide, for dipping Dip graham crackers in mudslide. Line pan with soaked graham crackers enough to create bottom layer. In a separate bowl, melt nougat bars over double broiler. Add peanut butter, mudslide, butter and coffee powder and mix thorough-
ly. Pour half of the mixture over lined graham crackers. Freeze for 30 minutes. Melt marshmallows in microwave until bubbly. Pour over frozen nougat and chocolate peanut butter mixture. Pour remaining chocolate peanut butter mixture over melted mallows and top with dipped graham crackers. Freeze overnight. Slice in bars and Serve. Jacob’s Cups O’ Fruits Chocolate coated siomai wrapper filled with sweet fillings to satisfy my cupcake cravings. Mold siomai wrappers in cupcake molders. Bake for 5 minutes or until it turns a lighter shade of brown. Pull out from molders and set aside. Pour readymade chocolate syrup on the insides if the molded siomai wrappers. Coat all sides to ensure even distribution. Chill for 10 minutes. Filling 1:In a separate bowl, mix all purpose cream, Japanese mayonnaise and drained fruit cocktail. Freeze for 30 minutes. Filling 2: combine ripe mango, ginger and green tea powder in a blender. Blend until smooth. Assemble your cups: Pour fillings in the middle and serve cold. Top with cinnamon powder. Tell me what you think of this week’s recipe. Email me your questions, suggestions and comments at iamtheroyalchef@gmail. com. Happy Cooking!
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The Jackson Family feud
E! Online tells you what you need to know MORE details are starting to trickle in about the growing rancor within the Jackson family that began with reports of matriarch Katherine Jackson’s alleged disappearance Saturday and exploded into a police investigation into an alleged physical altercation at her home Monday.
Caught in the middle? Michael Jackson’s three children—Prince Michael, Paris and Blanket—who’ve become the center of reports that all the in-fighting stems from concern over their well-being, and who should look out for them. In order to help you keep all your Jacksons straight— hey, they are a big, sprawling clan—here’s a handy primer on who’s who: Michael Jackson: The King of Pop, who died of a propofol-induced cardiac arrest in 2009, stated in his will that the sole beneficiaries of his estate are the Michael Jackson Trust and his three children. No other family members beside Jackson’s children and Katherine were authorized to receive an allowance from the estate, which was
reportedly valued at $500 million at the time of his death and has supposedly generated over $1 billion since. Prince, Paris and Blanket Jackson: The singer’s three children figure prominently into the ongoing family drama. A Jackson family insider tells E! News that 15year-old Prince has been in summer school and is set to finish on July 27. This mess, the insider notes, has been “a total distraction” for him. Michael’s 14-year-old daughter Paris has been the most vocal of the siblings, tweeting about her dismay over her family
and expressing her frustration that she hasn’t seen her grandmother in over a week. Ten-year-old Blanket is the singer’s third and youngest child. Per Michael’s will, the three children were authorized to receive a monthly amount, to be paid directly to their grandmother, Katherine. Katherine Jackson: The 82-year-old family matriarch was reported missing on Saturday by her nephew Trent, but her son Jermaine Jackson refuted such claims, insisting that she was actually safe and sound in Arizona, where she was resting per doc-
Did Katie drop any hints about her break-up? TIMING is everything. And C Magazine is probably tripping over itself with glee having not only bagged celeb of the moment Katie Holmes as its September issue cover girl, but also having the fortune (or misfortune?) of interviewing her just one day before news of her divorce broke. So, was the pachyderm present and accounted for in the interview room? And did Katie drop any hints about her imminent foray into becoming the ex-Mrs. Tom Cruise? Depends on whom you ask. If you take Katie’s words to the magazine at face value, it seems pretty much media-trained par for the course. “I’m ready to take on some more challenging roles,” she said. “I feel
like I worked so much at such a young age that I really wanted to have life experiences. I feel more balanced and like I have more to bring to the table. I always felt like I wanted to catch up [in my personal life] to what I was doing [in my career].” Nothing out of the ordinary there, then. She also took time to wax party-line philosophical about her clothing line. But then things became more interesting when asked if daughter Suri brought Holmes closer to her soon-to-be estranged hubby. “I don’t know. I mean...I don’t know,” Holmes said. “People have been having babies a long time.” As for Cruise himself, Holmes made no direct mention of him. As in, none. At all. Which,
according to the interviewer, was a sign in itself that there was perhaps trouble brewing in paradise that, within 24 hours, would bubble right over. “Going back over the tapes, there were signs: Holmes was certainly very aware of herself, laying a couple cards on the table but never showing her whole hand,” writer Kelsey McKinnon told WWD of the encounter. “Most noticeably, the one name decisively absent from her lexicon: Tom Cruise. She never actually refers to him by name over pages and pages of transcription.” Perhaps because she knew, what with the timing and all, anything she said would be parsed and analyzed to within an inch of its life? Good thing that’s not happening.
tor’s orders and under the care of her daughter Rebbie Jackson. A source tells E! News that as of two weeks ago, Katherine was in good health, noting, “She was completely fine and healthy and chipper.” The source alleges that several siblings are trying to build
a case to place Katherine under a legal conservatorship so that they can gain closer control over her affairs and the welfare of Michael’s children. Katherine and the children were the sole designated beneficiary of the King of Pop’s life insurance policy. Randy, Jermaine, Janet and Rebbie Jackson: Katherine’s four children, a source claims to E! News, are attempting to assume control over the monthly $86,000 allowance that Katherine receives from the estate. That allowance reportedly covers Katherine and the children’s needs, including rent, nannies, security, a chef, school tuition, activities and groceries. Although Katherine’s Arizona trip has sparked speculation that the move was a ploy to bar the matriarch from seeing her
grandchildren, Jermaine quickly shot down such reports. “No-one is being ‘blocked’ from speaking with Mother,” he tweeted. “She is merely an 82-yearold woman following doctor’s orders to rest-up and de-stress, away from phones and computers. Everyone has been well aware of this within the family, but I would like to reiterate my reassurance to the outside world that Mother is fine. In the meantime, thank you for all your thoughts and concerns.” Trent Jackson: A family insider tells E! News that Trent, who had initially reported Katherine as missing, has been trying to create a buffer between the siblings while she’s away, and has supposedly been essential in helping her manage the day-to-day operations of the household.
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Art inside the kitchen
THEY say the way to a person’s heart is through their stomach. And for inspired chefs and chefs-in-training, the way to get inspired is through the tools one uses, this was the inspiration behind Gastro Chef. Merging Scandinavian design with meticulous Filipino craftsmanship, Gastro Chef’s lines of hi-quality knives, cutting boards, serving accessories, and wine racks create an unforgettable kitchen and dining experience. Endorsed by some of the Philippines’ top chefs, including Chef Sau del Rosario, each Gastro Chef piece is not only functional but is in itself also a piece of art. Wooden cutting boards are naturally resistant to bacteria and are thus lesslikey to contaminate food versus plastic or acrylic boards. Gastro Chef’s board are not only pleasing to the eye, but are dried and processed using the latest
wood processing technologies. An essential investment in any kitchen is a properly balanced knife. Made of high-carbon high-quality 440A stainless steel with Rosewood handle,s Gastro Chefs knifes are the stars of every meal preparation. Personally though, I love the wine bottle holders that allow you to cantilever a wine bottle to give the illusion of it floating in midair, truly a beautiful conversation piece made of simple yet precision design. Gastro Chef’s complete line of preparation, service, and presentation items are now available at Chimes Specialty Store at Sales Street and Abreeza Mall.
Gastro Chef’s Norman Vega shows off one of Gastro Chef’s Cheese Board
One of Gastro Chef’s beautiful wine bottle holders.
Some of the many wooden cutting boards by Gastro Chef.
Gastro Chef’s steak knives and magnetic knife holder.
Up close with
RIK Spoelstra completed his fourth season as head coach of the HEAT and his 17th as a member of the organization. He was elevated to his current position on April 28, 2008 when HEAT President Pat Riley stepped down as head coach, and made him the league’s youngest head coach. In his first four seasons, Spoelstra has led Miami to a 194-118 record and four consecutive postseason appearances. During his rookie season, despite having one of the NBA’s youngest rosters, Spoelstra led Miami to its greatest single-season improvement in franchise history. He took a 15-win team from the previous season and directed them to a 28win improvement, marking the greatest singleseason improvement by a rookie head coach in NBA history, bettering the previous record of a 20-win improvement by Chicago Bulls Head Coach Ed Badger during the 1976-77 season. It also marked the seventh-best singleseason improvement in NBA history by any coach. As a result of a 43-win season, the most by a head coach in his first year guiding the HEAT, Spoelstra led Miami to the 2009 NBA Playoffs. The 2009 postseason appearance made Miami just the second team in NBA history to win 15-orfewer games one year and make the postseason the next, joining the 1968-69 San Diego Rockets. He followed that impressive debut with a 47-35 record during the 2009-10 season and another trip to the playoffs. Miami recorded 23 road wins, the fourth most in franchise history, including eight straight to finish the season. Under Spoelstra’s leadership the HEAT closed the season by winning 18 of its final 22 games, including a 12-3 record in March which earned him NBA Eastern Conference Coach of the Month honors. Known for his defensive mindset, Spoelstra led Miami to one of its best defensive seasons ever, allowing the fewest field goals (2,813) in the NBA during the 2009-10 season and finishing second in both points allowed (94.2) and field goal percentage allowed (.439). During the 2010-11 season, his third as head coach, Spoelstra led the HEAT to a 58-24 record. The 58 wins marked the thirdmost in franchise history and only the seventh time Miami has posted a 50-win season. Additionally, the HEAT’s 28 road wins were the second-highest total in franchise history, tying for the most in the NBA that season. Spoelstra’s defensive gameplan held opponents to under 40 percent shooting from the field 18 times while placing Miami amongst the best defensive teams in the league as they finished first in
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Fil-Am coach returns with the NBA trophy
point differential (+7.5), second in opponent field goal percentage (.434), sixth in points allowed (94.6) and ninth in opponent threepoint field goal percentage (.345). Spoelstra was named the NBA Coach of the Month for December 2010 as he led Miami to a 15-1 record en route to their third consecutive playoff berth under his guidance while capturing the Eastern Conference Championship. In the shortened 66-game 2011-12 NBA season, Spoelstra managed to produce a very respectable 46-20 record, good enough to place the Heat 1st in the Southeast Division for the second straight year. In June, 2012, Spoelstra etched his name in the history books by becoming the first FilipinoAmerican and only Asian head coach to lead his team to an NBA championship. As an organization, the Heat are the first NBA champions to trail in three different series on their way to winning the title. Miami was down 2-1 to Indiana, 3-2 to Boston and 1-0 to Oklahoma City. Before taking over the reigns as the sixth head coach in franchise history, Spoelstra had served the HEAT in a number of roles in his first 13 years. He originally was hired as video coordinator and over the years
was promoted to assistant coach/ video coordinator, assistant coach/ advance scout and assistant coach/ director of scouting before ascending to his current position. He made a name for himself around the league with his game preparation and superb attention to detail. In his seven seasons as the HEAT’s assistant coach/director of scouting, he had the primary role of developing game plans for Miami’s upcoming opponents. To that end, he coordinated the video staff and advance scouts while overseeing the development of scouting reports and videos. Spoelstra has earned the respect of players throughout the league with a strong reputation as a teacher over the years by heading the HEAT’s Individual Player Development Program. As an assistant coach, where he also served for three seasons (2005-07) as the head coach of the HEAT’s summer league team, and as the HEAT’s head man now, he has worked tirelessly with many of Miami’s young players in areas of fundamentals, skill development and shooting. This consistent emphasis of fundamentals contributed to the HEAT setting a franchise-record in 2008-09 for fewest turnovers in a season, committing 96 fewer turnovers than the previous franchise record, and then responding the following season with the second fewest turnovers in a season. Additionally, Spoelstra helped design and integrate a proprietary statistical database and scouting software for the HEAT. Under Spoelstra, the HEAT continues to embrace the use of technology and continues to use the stateof-the-art statistical software to evaluate team productivity, individual player productivity and trends for both the HEAT and the team’s opponents. That use of technology as a teaching tool also included putting the team’s video playbook on iPads for his players. In 1992, he graduated from the University of Portland with a degree in communications. While attending Portland,
Spoelstra was the starting point guard for four years and was named the West Coast Conference Freshman of the Year in 1989. Upon graduating he spent two years as a player/coach for Tus Herten, a team in the professional sports league of Germany. A team member of the NBA FIT initiative, Spoelstra takes pride in encouraging families to engage in physical activity and healthy living practices with their children. Additionally, he created “Spo’s Shooters”, in conjuction with the Miami HEAT Community Education Ticket Program. This program reaches out to South Florida’s less fortunate student-athletes and gives them the opportunity to enjoy HEAT games and meet their favorite HEAT players and role models. Raised in Portland, OR, Spoelstra, who was inducted into the Jesuit High School Athletic Hall of Fame in September 2009, is the first Asian/Filipino-American head coach in any of the major North American sports leagues. He has returned to his native Philippines in past summers with the NBA and U.S. State Department to host clinics and promote education, health and wellness to thousands of at-risk youth. Spoelstra is the son of Jon Spoelstra, a long-time NBA executive who has guided the Portland Trail Blazers, Denver Nuggets, Buffalo Braves and New Jersey Nets. His mother, Elisa Celino is a native of San Pablo, Laguna. In 2008 and 2010 when Spoelstra visited his mother’s hometown he described it as a “truly life changing” experience. Furthermore, having grown up in the US he explained that he wanted to develop a stronger connection with the culture and his relatives. His grandfather, Watson, was a Detroit Tigers beat writer for many years.
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VOL.5 ISSUE 103 • JULY 26, 2012
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Kia Rio Cup opens U16
HE Kia Rio Cup Davao Interclub Futsal Tournament, also known as the 5:30 2D Cup, is extending its coverage to include an Under-16 Boys Division. Due to a clamor from the football community, the Kia Rio Cup will be playing the U-16 division on its final playdate on August 5 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. The three-day tournament will be held on August 2 and 3 for the first two rounds of eliminations and on August 5 for the Semifinals and Finals. The event, organized by Bravetower Events Promotions, will be staged at The Annex of SM City Davao. “We added the Under-16 division in order to give our young futsal players the needed exposure,” said Match Commissioner Ching Delos Reyes. “Of course, we are happy to have kids play in the Kia Rio Cup. Afterall, the brand is identified with
football,” Paco Mendoza, manager of Kia Motors Davao, said. Kia is the main presentor of the event which is also backed up by the Philippine Sports Commission, SM City Davao, Futsal de Davao and Phoenix Petroleum Philippines. The main event of the tournament is the men’s second division event with six clubs already confirming their participation. These are Crocs FC, Belisario FC, Club Futbol di Garreli, DMMA, Phl Rabies, and Alia Orange FC. The U-16 division has a cut-off year of 1996 and is open to both school-based and non-school-based clubs. It will mark the first time that futsal will be played at SM City Davao. A 2012 Kia Rio, which was also launched during the Kia Rio Cup match between the Philippine Azkals and Korea recently, will be displayed during the playing dates of the event.