P 15.00 • 20 PAGES
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
Serving a seamless society
2 shot dead 3 days after gun ban ends By Jade C. Zaldivar
Indulge! Page A4 Science/Environment Page 14
WO people were shot dead Tuesday, three days after Davao City’s monthlong gun ban expired March 31. The first victim was Eddie Cano Yu, 45, an electrician and church worker of Barangay Baliok, Toril, who was shot by one of two men who barged into his
n Attempted homicide case filed
against stabbing suspect house at about 8 pm April 3 while he was watching television with his live-in partner, Marife Castillo, who was not harmed. Yu died on the spot from gunshot wounds in the head and body. One of the suspects was described as about 5’5” tall, slim and in his mid-thir-
ties while the other was about 4’11” and of medium build. Both wore ballcaps. The suspects fled aboard a motorcycle that had been parked in a dimly-lit portion of the street outside the victim’s house. Recovered from the crime scene by responding Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) were two deformed slugs.
F2 SHOT, 13
Sports Page 16
BUBBLES. Two girls send bubbles flying in the air as they display toys that they are selling at the front stairs of the San Pedro Cathedral in the city. [KARLOS MANLUPIG]
Gov’t offices turned ‘stations of the cross’ By Lorie A. Cascaro
Follow Us On
ILITANT groups yesterday turned the Davao region’s offices of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Energy (DOE), Presidential Commission of Urban Poor (PCUP), Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Mines and Geosci-
ences Bureau (MGB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) as “Stations of the Cross” yesterday in depicting the Passion of Jesus Christ dubbed “Kalbaryo sa Kabus” (Calvary of the Poor). These government offices or “stations of the cross” represent specific issues or policy that make the poor suffer, said Sheena Duazo, spokesperson of
Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN), which led the procession, along with members of Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (KADAMAY), Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), Samahan ng Maralitang Kababaihang Nagkakaisa (SAMAKANA) and other progressive organizations. The groups dramatized the “true” Via Dolorosa (Way of Sorrows) of the poor, which includes the people’s wors-
THE BIG NEWS
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
Greening of Mindanao is Earthsoul’s advocacy By Lorie A. Cascaro
one-year old group but with members already years old in practicing environmental protection and organic farming, the Earthsoul Solutions, Inc. aims greening Mindanao by finding common grounds among private and public sectors to work together for environmental concerns, said its president, Ibno Turabin during the Club 888 Forum at The Marco Polo Davao yesterday. “A Mindanao that is green, its waters teeming with life and its people producing food the natural way, at peace with nature and each other,” so goes the group’s aspiration. The Earthsoul is pushing for agro-reforestation, which includes productive trees such as mango, cacao, coffee and rubber that will help farmers earn from the yields of the trees without cutting them. In this way, the farmers will take care of the trees and there will be a successful reforestation, said Ed Cejar, the group’s corporate secretary. The group’s strategies involve collaborating with government, other like-minded groups and individuals; raising awareness
of Mindanaonons on environmental issues through information and education; advocating organic agriculture; demonstrating practical solutions that every Mindanaonon can do; and recognizing best practices in environmental protection and organic agriculture. It primarily advocates assisted natural reforestation using endemic plants and agroforestry for carbon sequestration; watershed rehabilitation and management; home and industry waste reduction; low-cost waste disposal and recycling technology; organic food crops, poultry, livestock and aquaculture; reviving and improving indigenous food crops and farming practices; mangrove rehabilitation and protection; designation and protection of marine sanctuaries; and, access of farmers to organic agriculture technology. Initiating the Green Caravan (April 17-19) and the First Mindanaonon Environment Summit (April 2022) in Davao City, the Earthsoul did not invite mining companies for the summit but will be inviting them later when the people would be more educated. Turabin said it is still too early for the
CHICKS. A customer peers on the little yellow chicks being sold in the activity center of a shopping mall in the city which is part of the preparation for Easter Sunday. [KARLOS MANLUPIG]
organization to invite mining companies, especially so because most environmentalists are against mining. However, in its mission to help find a common ground and bring about synergy among them, the group will continue its information and education campaign and to provide varied experience, expertise, skills, time and commitment of their volunteers and members to achieve their ultimate goal which is a green Mindanao.
Dutertes amenable to having a Muslim as city mayor…’if’
By Jade C. Zaldivar
OTH City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio and Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte welcome the thought of having a Muslim for city mayor. The elder Duterte said during his latest TV program episode Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa, “I would be happy to see a Muslim city mayor, so long as he is fair and would receive the people’s support.” Duterte was referring to the United States of America’s president who is of African descent. “Kanang America, it was conquered by Britain (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland). They conquered
$500million SAN Miguel Corp. has firmed up a deal to acquire 49 percent of tycoon Lucio Tan’s PAL Holdings Inc. for about $500 million, thereby obtaining a significant foothold in nationl flag carrier Philippine Airlines.PDI
the natives (Iondians), settled and brought in slaves from Africa, kanang himoon gyug slave. Karon who would have thought that the American president would be a descendant of the slaves?” he said. Duterte-Carpio in a statement concurred with her father’s statement, saying the decision on who should become city mayor rests on the populace. She, however, added that this may not be possible at the present time. “Kaya lang, the candidate may not get the needed number of votes. For you to win man gud you need the majority’s support. Mao gani nang I would want nga naa silay
THE National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has approved the plan of ABC Development Corp., operator of TV5 broadcast network, to borrow P3 billion from banks. BW
sectoral representative sa City Council,” the mayor added. Duterte-Carpio said she would support having a Muslim leader sitting as a member of the city council. The 16th City Council has three sectoral representatives: (1) Association of Punong Barangays president Paolo Duterte, (2) Sangguniang Kabataan president Jashera Gonzales; and (3) the Indigenous People’s representative Berino Libayao Mambo-o, who was sworn into office January this year. The vice mayor also said he would be amenable to having a gay rights representative in the Council to represent the “third sex” sector.
21 NUMBER of ranking police officers in Davao City convicted by the Ombudsman for failure to solve killings in the city during their tour of duty. ED
Bystanders nab pickpocket
suspected pickpocket was nabbed by concerned citizens Monday, April 2, and turned over to the police in Buhangin. The victim, Aurelia Encabo Canque, 57, a widow and resident of Matanao, Davao del Sur was aboard a jeepney from Panacan heading towards Davao City proper at about 10:45 am when another passenger, Anecito Entod Julian, 49, job-
less, of Mintal Relocation, took her wallet from her shoulder bag and alighted along with another unidentified male passenger. However, another male passenger, Romeo Corona Crisostomo, 42. had seen Julian pick the woman’s bag and immediately jumped off the jeep and gave chase, shouting for help from bystanders. Collared, the suspect surrendered the wallet
which contained P4,000 and a Pensioner’s ID. The suspect was endorsed to PO2 Jerwen Gasta who was aboard a mobile patrol car. Recovered from the suspect was a red backpack believed to have been used as cover while he stole the wallet. The suspect is facing a case of theft before the City Prosecution Office under Prosecutor Faizal Padate.[JADE C. ZALDIVAR]
gaming software, clean and biotech. After its successful launching of the ON3 2011 Program in Mindanao, ON3 is dedicated to discovering, mobilizing and forming a healthy entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Philippines to foster the development and growth of global companies. “Davao City will become popular as a pool of talents. When Davao City enjoys a good reputation for being a source of talents, investors will start flocking here. And that they will look at the possible commercialization of any new ideas and any new technology not just in other parts of the world but also here,” she
said. Learning from the experience last year, Holganza said, this year’s competition will have a representative from the Intellectual Property Office to ensure that innovators have registered their intellectual property (IP). Out of 11 entries in Mindanao’s competition last year, three backed out for not having IPs, afraid that their ideas would be pirated. Thus, interested participants in the competition who do not own IPs have nothing to worry about because there will be free IP registration at the event proper. “What we’re looking for is to build a vibrant ICT industry, and a culture of
Davao to benefit from ON3 pitching winners
IT Holganza, president of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Davao, said Wednesday that in the long run, Davao City would benefit from the winners of the ON3 pitching competition even if their products and/or services could be commercialized abroad by prospective investors. The 2012 ON3 Pitching Competition, which will be held April 13, 14 and 15 at Martha’s Place, Brokenshire College, Madapo Hills, Davao City, is accepting newbie companies inclined to technology, especially the consumer web, internet, mobile phone, wireless connectivity, social media,
P11billion 4,600 BUDGET surplus posted by the government in February, its first in six months, as a result of slower spending for the period, according to the Bureau of Treasury. BW
NEW HIV (human immuno virus) infections monitored by Department of Health in the Philippines last year. There were only about 600 HIV cases in 2001. Sine 1984, some 3,700 Filipinos have died of AIDS-related causes. PDI
4,000 NUMBER of personnel from different units ordered deployed by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio to implement the integrated security and safety plan during the Lenten season. ED
THE BIG NEWS
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
House approves whistleblower law
HE House of Representatives has approved on third and final reading a measure that seeks to curtail graft and corruption in government by providing protection, security and benefits to whistleblowers. With 234 affirmative votes, the House passed House Bill 5715, to be known as the “Whistleblower Protection, Security and Benefit Act of 2011,” which aims to promote good governance and safeguard national interest through the prosecution of corrupt and erring public officials and employees. The measure was filed in accordance with the State’s declared policy, which states that public office is a public trust. It is the policy of the State to promote and ensure full accountability in the conduct of its officers and employees, and exact full retribution from those who shall engage in graft and corruption practices. Rep. Teddy Casiño (Party-list, Bayan Muna), author of the bill, said an honest to goodness measure protecting whistleblowers should
be enacted into law to attract more people to come out in the open and denounce the corrupt officials in the government. Rep. Neri Javier Colmenares (Party-list, Bayan Muna), another author of the bill, said it is imperative that a mechanism be set up to secure the person of a whistleblower and counter the stigma of ostracism so that the potential whistleblower or informant on graft and corrupt activities will not hesitate to come out in the open. Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara (Lone District, Aurora), also an author of the measure, said the government needs a new institutional mechanism for integrity and accountability to eliminate scandals and restore credibility in public service. “The litmus test for such reforms is the government’s treatment of whistleblowers. Those ‘who blow the whistle’ are most often fired and ostracized by friends and coworkers. They are accused of having a grievance with their employer or trying to profit from their accusations,” Angara said.
ASEAN to accelerate economic integration
OUTHEAST Asian leaders agreed to accelerate the ongoing integration initiatives in five of the area’s sub-regional groupings as they vowed to “redouble” the efforts towards the establishment of a single economic community in the region by the year 2015. In its five-page declaration adopted during its 20th summit here on Tuesday, the leaders and heads of states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) vowed to provide the necessary support to further build up its five sub-regional growth areas, which includes the resurging Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, PhilippinesEast ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA). BIMP-EAGA comprises the entire sultanate of Brunei Darussalam; the provinces of East and West Kalimantan, North Sulawesi, Kalimantan, Maluku island chain and Irian Jaya in Eastern Indonesia; the federal states of Sabah and Sarawak and the federal territory of Labuan in Eastern Malaysia; and, the islands of Mindanao and Palawan in the Philippines. The region’s other sub-regional groupings are the Greater Mekong Sub-Region Economic Cooperation, IndonesiaMalaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle, Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy and the Cambodia-Lao-Viet Nam Development Triangle. “(We) do hereby agree to continue to support the
initiative for ASEAN integration as well as other sub-regional growth areas…that would bridge the development gap within ASEAN,” the leaders noted in its 32-point “Phnom Penh Declaration on ASEAN: One Community, One Destiny.” The declaration was signed by the region’s 10 heads of states, including President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III. As support to the subregional economic integration efforts, the leaders agreed to “operationalize and utilize fully the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund (AIF) to further improve physical connectivity and narrow the infrastructure development gap in ASEAN.” In an earlier meeting here, ASEAN’s finance ministers initially set the formal launching in May of the AIF, which is a US$4billion financing project that may be accessed by member countries through the year 2020. The fund, which was announced last year, was started with an initial equity contribution of $485.2 million, with $335.2 million coming from nine ASEAN members and the remaining $150 million provided by Asian Development Bank (ADB). In a press conference at the Peace Palace here on Tuesday afternoon, ASEAN Secretary General Surin Pitsuwan said they will utilize the AIF to jumpstart the implementation of priority projects identified under a regional master plan on connectivity.[ALLEN V. ESTABILLO / MINDANEWS]
BANG BANG. A young kid absent-mindedly pokes a toy handgun in his mouth as he tends a motorcycle parked at the grounds of the Davao City Hall. There are some parents in the city who are apprehensive in allowing their
children to play with toy guns fearing that it may impart to them the culture of violence. [KARLOS MANLUPIG]
Bidding set in June
P90M study for Leyte-Mindanao power interconnectivity project By Lorie A. Cascaro
O be bid out in June, a study worth P90 million will determine the cost of a LeyteMindanao interconnectivity project, said Department of Energy (DOE) Undersecretary Ina Magpale-Asirit last Tuesday at the Grand Regal Hotel, Davao City. This project will connect the Mindanao grid to that of Leyte, therefore creating a one loop for all power grids in the country. Compared to Luzon and the Visayas, Mindanao is isolated, MagpaleAsirit said, as there is no underwater line or any cable to share the energy generated from one island to another. Luzon and the Visayas have a line underwater that allows exporting power from Luzon to the Visayas or vice-versa should there be a need to augment the supply of either of the grids.
“Regardless where your generator is located, the power can actually be shared. Ideally it can be shared,” she said. However, Mindanao does not have that line connecting to other islands’ grids. Magpale-Asirit said there were plans to have it about 15 years ago but, unfortunately, have not been pursued until the new administration. The Administration, she added, has realized that there is really a need to have interconnection, to have more investors confident of the reliability and stability of power supply across the entire grid. “This will also give investment comfort level to those who will be putting up power in Mindanao, should there be more to be put up in Mindanao to make it also available to other grida,” she said. The DOE was able to engage with the National Grid Corporation of the
Philippines (NGCP) in this study. The NGCP then filed a petition with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) for a study of the Leyte-Mindanao Interconnectivity project. “Everything has to start with a study. Anything as big as that cannot begin without making sure of your timelines, terms of reference and the kind of work to be done,” the DOE Usec said. The NGCP was able to get the approval from the ERC last August and is finalizing the terms of reference. Luzon has an excess of 2,000 MW even at its peak of dispatching, while the Visayas can export over 200MW, sometimes 300MW, from a total of 610MW capacity. Citing projects of power generation in Luzon and the Visayas by late 2012, 2013, 2014, she said there are no issues of power supplies in the islands. “If we have more
players in the market, then certainly it will be for the benefits of the consumers who will now be able to have the least cost available,” she said. The study will take one year, excluding the bidding period which will take three months, and another one year for the assessment. But, she said, the entire project may take 10-15 years according to NGCP considering all the processes and availability of equipment needed. The study will also show the cost of the project. She also mentioned the need for a power development plan, including the projection of demand and supply until 2030 for private sectors to see which part has needs for more generation capacity. To bring out the data to the stakeholders and industries that need them, the DOE is conducting information and education campaign and investment forums.
DOE circular, eases blackouts but jacks up price of electricity
AYAN Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño yesterday revealed that the issuance of the Department of Energy (DOE) of a stop-gap measure last month, with department circular DC 2012’03-0004, which directs electric cooperatives to nominate their needed power to supply their demands may have lessened the black outs but jacked up the
n Casiño says gov’t takeover of power barges Power Sector Assets and
to alleviate Mindanao power crisis needed
price of electricity in Mindanao. “This is what the electric cooperatives have been trying to prevent but the DOE was able to push for it with the circular. The choice was reduced to having higher power rates or no electricity at all,” said Casiño.
“It appears that there is enough power supply in Mindanao. The problem is that it is too expensive so the power distributors are not buying for fear of going bankrupt,” the lawmaker said. He said power rates dramatically increased in Mindanao after the
Liabilities Management Corporation or PSALM privatized the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) which then entered into an Ancillary Services Procurement Agreement or ASPA with Therma Marine, Inc. involving two privatized power barges, Power Barges 117 and 118.
THE BIG NEWS
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
ASEAN for reforms of economic laws
EMBER states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have agreed to initiate reforms in their economic laws and policies to harmonize the implementation of regional agreements towards the targeted establishment of a single economic community within the next three years. Dr. Surin Pitsuwan, ASEAN Secretary General, said ministers and state leaders attending a twoday regional summit here acknowledged the need to amend some of their national laws, rules and regulations to ensure the full implementation of the ongoing regional integration efforts. “Now they are going to concentrate on the implementation at the national levels, so that national laws, national rules, national regulations will be amended, reformed in place in order to implement the major agreements,” he said in a press conference at the sidelines of the 20th ASEAN Leaders’ Summit that ended Wednesday. Surin said the member states have so far ratified 70 percent of the regional economic deals but there were agreements that remained pending due to conflicts with na-
tional or domestic laws and policies. Trade Undersecretary Adrian Cristobal, who represented the Philippines in the economic meetings, earlier admitted that the country is facing some legal constraints with regards to the implementation of the agreements in investments and the services sector. He said government is on track with its commitment towards the regional integration initiatives but is presently slowing down because of some restraints in the Constitution, specifically with the liberalization of the services sector, the foreign equity contribution and investments. The Constitution limits foreign equity investments in specific economic activities to a maximum of 40 percent. Surin said they have been working with the member states for the fine tuning of their laws related to the agreements on investments, in goods and the services sector. “All these things are important to move ASEAN forward to make it into one market,” he said. Aside from the policy reforms, Surin said ASEAN leaders were also pushing for more cross-border exchanges between small
and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the region. “They want to increase the intra-regional trading from 25 to 40 percent (of the region’s gross domestic product). That is very, very critical if we want to make it into a strong integrated market,” he said. He said ASEAN members were also addressing the “issue of inequality” in the region by adopting a strategy of equitability that aims “to make sure that growth in ASEAN is balanced, inclusive and equitable – in a sense that all member states can equally benefit from every growth, development and prosperity as a consequence of development or engagements with the external parties.” Despite the challenges currently facing the regional grouping, Surin said ASEAN remains on track in its integration efforts. “I think the road to the (establishment of the single economic) community in 2015 is on track. The leaders, the ministers have called for the doubling of efforts and cooperation by all mechanisms, all sectoral bodies of ASEAN in order to (ensure that it) move forward,” he added. [ALLEN V. ESTABILLO / MINDANEWS]
ENVIRONMENT SUMMIT. Edmundo Cejar from Earth Soul Solutions, who is also an active practitioner of organic farming, invites the people of Mindanao on Wednesday to participate on the Green Caravan that will converge in the city’s People’s Park on April 19 which will be followed by the 1st Mindanaonon Environment Summit on April 20-22. Cejar added that they are aiming to showcase the best and practical practices on environmental protection in the island. [KARLOS MANLUPIG]
HE Davao City Water District advises customers that its call center will not be able to attend to bill queries and other services requiring the use of computers on April 7, 2012 from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. DCWD’s General Services department has scheduled a power supply shut-off which will affect the Bajada office where its call center is situated. Said power cut is need for the maintenance check-up of all electrical lines and the tapping / transferring of electrical connection. The DCWD management advises the general public that leak reports will still be accommodated as well as servicing of leak repairs. Customers will still also be able to inquire about possible emergency water interruptions in their areas. Once power supply resumes, DCWD call center operations will also normalize. For any queries, complaints and comments, they can contact the DCWD 24hour hotline 221-9412 or 0927-7988966. [JOVANA CRESTA T. DUHAYLUNGSOD]
COLONVERSATIONS. Dr Robert Bandolan of the Southern Philippines Medical Center urges the public on Wednesday to be aware and critical on the cases of colorectal cancer in the region. He added that one of the
major problems in handling colorectal cancer in the region is that it is difficult to follow-up the patients after discharge because most of them are from far-flung areas. [KARLOS MANLUPIG]
Explore a world of fun this Easter at Abreeza Mall!
N April 8, Abreeza Mall fixes up a colourful concoction for kids and kids-at-heart in a day of discovery to celebrate Easter Sunday! Join EASTER EXPLORER, a whole day affair offering a series of activities that spell fun and excitement and a chance to bond with family and friends. As one big family, start the day off with an Easter Mass at 9 am at the Activity Center, to commemorate the glorious resurrection of Jesus Christ. At 10 am, have a fun-filled picnic at
Abreeza Park (in front of the Mall) with activities for the whole family. Kids can participate in the Egg-venture Hunt, Egg Pinata, face painting, balloon twisting, arts & crafts and play in the giant castle bouncer. Watch out for our friendly mascots as they strut their way in this summer soiree and join our games for great prizes and freebies. Families can also enjoy their lunch together at the park with food outlets and carts available in the area.
At 4 pm, Abreeza Mall brings you the Mad Science crew from Manila to perform interesting science experiments that will wow both kids and parents alike at the Abreeza Mall Activity Center. Watch Easter Egg-bert and his friends do live science demos and cool experiments to fire up your kids’ interest and imagination. There’s so much in store for everyone, so come and join the fun this coming Easter Sunday, April 8 at Abreeza Mall!
their host-country’s currency as payment for one or two years’ premium contributions, depending on the number of years specified in their OEC. Migrant workers who want to sign up with PhilHealth need only to scan their accomplished PhilHealth Member Registration Form (PMRF) and send it to PhilHealth Special Programs Department on any day of the week via electronic mail with the following addresses to firstname.lastname@example.org orphilhealth_ email@example.com PhilHealth president and chief executive Dr. Eduardo P. Banzon said that the partnership was a big favor, not just for PhilHealth, but particularly for Filipino workers overseas members as well. >p>He also said said:“We are really trying to expand, among other things, our benefits, which will redound to the welfare of our members. We believe that we should be much more aggressive in ensuring that our OFW members continue to be eligible.” He added that “we have been challenged, mandated by the President and Health Secretary (Enrique) Ona to prime universal health care.
It’s a daunting task, difficult task. We believe it’s doable. But with partners like Land Bank, the more it becomes doable for us.” On the other hand, Landbank president and chief executive Gilda Pico said that “we are very pleased with this arrangement with PhilHealth. We hope that this will pave the way for a more convenient collection and remittance system for PhilHealth contributions for our overseas Filipinos. We have always looked at the OFWs as our valuable partners in economic development.” She also said that “we assure you that Landbank will support your objective of promoting better health and improve the quality of life of Filipinos.” Also present during the signing ceremony were PhilHealth executive vice president and chief operating officer Atty. Alexander A. Padilla, Senior Manager for Treasury Department Dr. Evangeline F. Racelis, Landbank executive vice president, Head, Institutional Banking and Subsidiaries Sector Cecilia C. Borromeo and 1st vice president, Head, OFW Remittance Group Roberto S. Vergara.
LandBank now collects PhilHealth premiums from OFWs, migrants
HE Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) recently signed a Collection and Remittance Agreement (CRA) with the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) for the collection of premium contributions of Filipino workers overseas and migrant workers. The LandBank, which has been a partner of PhilHealth for the past 14 years, will be collecting premium contributions abroad through its accredited remittance companies (RemCos) based in Europe, USA, Australia, Canada, Middle East, and throughout Asia. The RemCos started collecting premium contributions last March 15, 2012 from Fiulipino workers overseas and migrant workers based in HongKong, Macau, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) through its foreign tie-ups namely, Pacific Ace Forex H.K., Macau Pacific Ace Remittance, Ltd., and Al Rajhi Bank in KSA. When paying their PhilHealth premium, workers overseas need only to present their PhilHealth ID card or Overseas Employment Contract (OEC) as proof of identity to the RemCos’ authorized representative. They may use
1. Gross National Income Growth Rate (At Constant 2000 Prices)
3.5% 4th Qtr 2011
2. Gross Domestic Product Growth Rate (At Constant 2000 Prices)
3.7% 4th Qtr 2011 USD 3,342 Million Nov 2011 USD 4,985 Million Nov 2011 USD -1,643 Million Nov 2011 USD -114 Million Dec 2011 P4,442,355 Million Nov 2011
3. Exports 1/ 4. Imports 1/ 5. Trade Balance 6. Balance of Payments 2/ 7. Broad Money Liabilities 8. Interest Rates 4/
4.71% Oct 2011 P128,745 Million Nov 2011 P 4,898 Billion Oct 2011
9. National Government Revenues 10. National government outstanding debt 11. Peso per US $ 5/
P 43.65 Dec 2011
12. Stocks Composite Index 6/
3,999.7 Sept 2011
13. Consumer Price Index 2006=100
128.1 Jan 2012
14. Headline Inflation Rate 2006=100
3.9 Jan 2012
15. Core Inflation Rate 2006=100
3.4 Dec 2011
16. Visitor Arrivals
284,040 Sept 2011
17. Underemployment Rate 7/
19.1% Oct 2011
18. Unemployment Rate 7/
6.4% Oct 2011
MONTHLY AVERAGE EXCHANGE RATE (January 2009 - December 2011) Month
Average December November October September August July June May April March
43.31 43.64 43.27 43.45 43.02 42.42 42.81 43.37 43.13 43.24 43.52
45.11 43.95 43.49 43.44 44.31 45.18 46.32 46.30 45.60 44.63 45.74
47.032 46.851 48.139
48.161 48.146 47.905 47.524 48.217
48.458 47.585 47.207
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
P125 wage increase is not feasible T
HE Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) reiterated its position that the proposed across-the-board P125 daily wage increase is not feasible at the moment. In a news release, DOLE Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said that while the agency cannot support the proposed acrossthe-board P125 daily wage increase because it will weigh down heavily on the economy through higher prices, loss of jobs, and slower overall economic growth. In July 2010, a group of Congressmen filed a position paper with the Committee on Labor and Employment, which grants a daily across-the-board P125 increase to all employees in the private sector, whether agricultural or non-agricultural, regardless of capitalization and number of employees in connection with House Bill No. 375,
otherwise known as “An Act Providing for a P125 Daily Across the Board Increase in the Salary Rates of Employees and Workers in the Private Sector and for Other Purposes.” Baldoz said that based on the study made by the National Wages and Productivity Commission, or NWPC, the increase called for in the proposed measure will translate to a daily additional effective labor cost of P156.49 per employee per day (assuming a six-day workweek), or P4,081.78 per month per employee, or P48,981.37 per year per employee. “Taking into consideration the 15.7 million wage and salary workers employed in private establishments nationwide as of July 2011, an across-the-board P125 wage hike will translate to an additional labor cost of about P2.5 billion per day, (P156.49 x 15.7 million wage and salary
workers), or P64.2 billion per month, or P770.7 billion per year,” Baldoz said. A P125 across-the-board wage increase, Baldoz said, will result to higher Inflation rates, which she said will further erode workers’ incomes. “The NEDA estimated that if wages were increased by P125 across-the-board in July 2011, inflation rates would have risen by 11.7 percentage points, effectively breaching the target inflation range of 3-5percent,” she said. The NEDA also estimated that the wage increase would have displaced about 344,000 in 2011, which would have brought unemployment from a range of between 7-7.2 percent to 7.9-8.1 percent. Baldoz explained that implementation of P125 wage hike this year would mean displacement of some 353,000
DOLE to employers: pay proper holiday wages
HE Department of Labor & Employment reiterated its call to public sector employers to observe appropriate pay rules during the holidays. In a news release, Labor & Employment Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz urged all private sector employers in the country to bear in mind the welfare of their workers by observing the applicable pay rules and other core labor standards during the nationwide holidays. A long vacation awaits Filiupino workers beginning next weekend due to three regular holidays: Maundy Thursday (April 5), Good Friday (April 6), and Araw ng Kagitingan (April
The dates are specified in President Benigno Aquino III’s Proclamation No. 295, declaring the regular holidays, special (non-working days), and special holiday (for all schools) for the year 2012 issued on November 24, 2011, as among the ten regular nationwide holidays in the Philippines. Earlier, President Aquino also issued Proclamation 360 declaring April 7, 2012 (Black Saturday) as a special nonworking day throughout the country. Under this scheme, employees who decided to work on Saturday are set to receive 30-percent increase in their daily rate.
workers that could bring unemployment from 6.8-7.1 percent to 7.7-8 percent. The labor chief warned that the combined effects of higher unemployment and higher inflation rates could invariably slow down GDP growth, weaken viability of micro, small and medium enterprises which comprise 99 percent of total establishments by forcing many of them to downscale, if not cease operation. “The more serious impact, of course, would be the erosion of the country’s competitiveness and loss of investments,” she said, saying higher labor costs will erode the country’s competitiveness against other Asian countries in attracting foreign direct investments. An additional P125 to the current minimum wage of P426 will result in a daily minimum wage of P551.
Airlines post positive growth in Feb ‘12
LOBAL airline industry has reported strong performance in February, according to statistics released by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Tuesday. It recorded an 8.6 percent improvement in passenger demand and a 5.2 percent rise in cargo demand compared to the same month last year. Several factors contributed to the favorable result, including weaker traffic during the unrest in middle-east a year ago and the Carnival in Brazil in February, a month earlier than in 2011. Despite relatively strong
performance in February, IATA’s projection for industry outlook remains negative. “The outlook is fragile. Improvements in business confidence slowed in February. This will limit the potential for business class travel growth and it implies that an uptick for cargo is not imminent,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO. Rising fuel costs is another concern for the industry, as it could further erode the margin of airlines, which is already recorded at a very low level, according to the agency.
energy Jose Alejandro said “diesel plants and power barges should remain to be in government hands as dispatchable reserve or standby power.” Alejandro posited that the Agus complex in Lanao can raise its dependable capacity through dredging, rehabilitation and expansion efforts. “The Agus complex has the potential to produce up to 800 megawatts of power for about nine months instead of only six months of the year, and a potential year-round dependable capacity of up to 350 MW,” he calculated.
This supply capacity, he added, can be complemented by the 450-MW capacity of “slow speed” diesel-based power plants. The proposed hydro-diesel mix will bring an increase of at least P1.00 per kilowatt-hour “in spread-out fixed costs,” said Alejandro. Currently, the Agus complex can produce hydropower at P3.00 per KWH. He pointed out that this would mean that their proposed hydro-diesel mix approach would bring power generation cost to only P4.00 per kilowatt-hour, at the most. [MINDANEWS]
Biz group, environmentalists nix increasing power cost in Mindanao
NVIRONMENTALISTS and a major business group were one in saying that the government should adopt strategies to maximize the power generating potential of Mindanao’s hydroelectric plants instead of increasing the cost of power in response to the daily power outages plaguing the island Miguel Varela, president of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) said raising the cost of power to augment supply would be “disastrous” to power consumers in Mindanao, “as is now being expe-
rienced in Luzon and the off-grid areas.” The low cost of power “was the key driver in making businesses locate and thrive in Mindanao and would be the strong platform in achieving peace in the area,” Varela said in a statement. The power crisis in the island needs “a blend of strategies uniquely crafted for the island,” he said, adding renewable sources of power “should be Mindanao’s core energy source.” To complement this approach, PCCI vice president for 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 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
SM Lanang Premier to reshape malling in Mindanao I N the preview of SM Group’s rising premier mall last March 22 for its tenant partners; the country’s top retailers, food chains, service centers and merchants had a first look of the soon-toopen SM Lanang Premier. “Davao plays a pivotal role in SM Supermall’s expansion in Mindanao. The opening of SM City Davao in 2001, then considered a bold and formidable move, has opened for us a wealth of business opportunities in the south,” SCMC president Anna Maria S. Garcia shared in her keynote speech. The new mall, which is located at the northern part of the city, has a total land area of 100,000 square meters. It has a 4-level structure built with a modern design inspired by the origami. It has a Gross Floor Area of almost 145,000 sqm and a Gross Leasable Area of approximately 84,000 sqm. World-class Facility The new mall will carry some of the best features of existing SM
Premier malls. The Skygarden which is located at the property’s façade will have restaurants amidst a lush garden with refreshing water features. Inside the mall is the Flat Café, floating above the ground and offers a vast view of The Atrium. The mall’s Ground Level will house international retail brands like Forever 21 as well as key SM retail anchors, SM Supermarket, SM Department Store. At the rear section of the mall will be a strip of restaurants both at the Ground and Second level overlooking the sprawling outdoor event area called The Park. Also on the second level are 6 Digital Theaters (including SM Center Stage), the IMAX Theatre, the SM Bowling Center, and the Science Discovery Center. The mall’s third floor will house the SMX Convention Center Davao, perfect for the growing MICE events (meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions) in the region.
SM Prime’s biggest and first-of-its-kind premier mall development project in Mindanao, SM Lanang Premier is believed to set world-class malling and
shopping standard in the region. It will re-shape the malling experience in Mindanao bringing luxury that is within reach.
Rising within the property is the Park Inn by Carlton of the Radisson Blu which may also be accessed from the mall through a bridge way at the second floor. All these facilities are SM’s response to the growing demands not only of the Davao market
but of the Tourism industry and its nearby provinces as well. A Green Mall The first class mall, SM Lanang Premier, incorporates green architecture and environmentfriendly features as part of SM’s sustainability efforts. The mall building
itself takes only 40% of the total property with paver blocks used in the open parking area to minimize surface run-off water. It will also have the city’s first rain catchment system minimizing storm water peak flow, surface run-off and siltation. The mall is also de-
megawatts of un-contracted capacity, the operation of Iligan Diesel Power Plant (IDPP) for 100 megawatts, the transfer of power barges and accelerate energy efficiency program. Asirit said the IDPP is on shutdown since June 2010 and there is also a pending clearance with the Commission on Audit (COA). Asirit said the operation of IDPP is a very important source to augment the power supply requirements of Mindanao even as she said that according to the representative of Conal Holdings, once it is turned over to them they can immediately operate it and initially generate 20 megawatts. Edgardo S. Calavio, head for marketing of Conal Holdings said on the first month it can produce 20 megawatts, then an additional 15 MW on the second month and
another 15 MW on the succeeding month plus an additional 15 MW on the 5th month and it will fully deliver 96 MW on the 6th month of operation. A total shut down of Pulangi Hydro Plant is scheduled on April 17 for a major repair of the head start channel. Lao, however, requested to defer it to few more days if only to give some time for the COA to act on the pending clearance. Given the information that the Commission will convene next week, Lao said maybe it would already give clearance and the go signal for the IDPP to be turned over to Conal. But Asirit said they do not want to press on the COA because this is an independent office and COA looks at all government agencies and not only for the Energy department. “We just hope that
resolution will be done soonest,” she said. Asirit also said the scheduled repair is set on April 17 and they still need to discuss with the appropriate agencies whether they still could defer the shutting down of Pulangi Hydro Plant. National Power Corporation officer-incharge for Mindanao Operation Rudy Brioso said the repair is inevitable because of the scouring at the headrace channel. He said the scheduled date is timely when the water is low otherwise they would not be able to conduct the needed repair of the channel when the water is high. He said the Pulangi Hydro Plant is powered by run-over water that comes from the Pulangi River and covers 1,952 hectares of reservoir. He said they are targeting to complete the repair of the channel within three weeks. (PNA)
shared desire to bring about better quality of life for our peoples, I am pleased to inform you that the Philippines has ratified the Asean Plus Three Rice Reserve Agreement in March 2012,” the President said during the Plenary Session of the 20th Asean Summit here in Cambodia. The Philippines is look-
ing forward for the implementation programs under the initiative for the benefit of the people in the Asian region. Asean’s partners in the agreement include China, Japan and South Korea, which have committed to finance the rice reserve agreement. Under the pact, Asean members and China, Japan
and South Korea are to disburse million respectively to put up an endowment fund. Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam contribute US$ 107,500 , respectively while Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar allot US$ 83,000 each.
Government is doing something about power crisis: biz leader
business leader in Mindanao took note of what government is doing for the power supply problem in the island. Mindanao Business Council (MinBC) chair Vicente Lao said the government is doing everything that needs to be done in order to address the power shortage here. In an interview after the Mindanao Stakeholders Meeting with heads and representatives of the state power bureau on Tuesday at Grand Regal Hotel here, Lao said there are actions that need to be addressed soonest if only to provide shortterm solution to the current power problem. Energy Undersecretary Josefina Patricia M. Asirit, among other officials, presented short term solutions that would provide additional power supply namely the Mindanao Coal-fired Power Plant (STEAG) for 10
PHL committed to ensure regional food security, says Aquino
RESIDENT Benigno S. Aquino III told his counterparts in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) that the Philippine government has already ratified the Asean Plus Three Emergency Rice Reserve (APTERR) agreement that will strengthen food security in the region. “As an indication of our
signed with skylights and will use LED’s to ensure efficient energy consumption. Park finders will also be installed at the Basement Parking to minimize carbon output from vehicles. It will also utilize recycled water for its cooling tower and for comfort room flushing.
TESDA graduates land jobs at Singapore Air
OB was no longer elusive to three young men, who have started to work for Singapore Airlines as aircraft mechanics after undergoing training under the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). Roland Allan Nicolas, Christian Paul Fulmaran and Mark Gerald Galarce recently began their career with the Singapore Air Engineering Philippines (SIAEP) based in Clark, Pampanga. They will start as maintenance trainees for SIAEP’s Maintenance Training Program for one year as prelude to their regularization at the prestigious airlines firm. The job opportunity came just after four months of intensive training that started in November last year with Aerotechnik Services Inc., TESDA’s partner in providing free technical vocational education to Nicolas, Fulmaran and Galarce through the Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP). “The opportunity that TESDA has given us has led us to work at this very prestigious company which we know will greatly change our lives and open doors for more employment in the future,” the three said in a letter to Secretary Joel Villanueva, TESDA Director General. Villanueva said he considered the achievement of the three graduates as another feat for technical vocational edu-
cation in the country. “They just finished training, and here comes a job opportunity at hand. This shows that highquality vocational education could be a path as well to great jobs,” Villanueva said. Nicolas, 21, said waiting for the opportunity to avail of the TESDA and ASI training was worth it because he really wanted to become an aircraft mechanic. “There were challenges I encountered while taking my course. I experienced getting a failing grade on my major subject, but that experience motivated me more to finish my course and continue to fulfill and achieve my dream to become an aircraft mechanic,” he said. “I call on the youth, particularly the newly graduates from high school to take tech-voc courses as well, more so, if they really have the talent. And also, the important thing is they love what they are doing,” Nicolas added. Fulmaran, 21, said the training from TESDA and ASI was an enhancement to the earlier course he took in college. During the training, Fulmaran recalled the difficulties he had to hurdle, such as his daily two-hour travel to the training site. “I think the prospects of this course are big as they open up opportunities for jobs at big airlines,” he said. (PNA)
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
Making role models Text by Carlo P. Mallo Photograph by Ghea Jabile Make-up by Buddy Congson Hair by Hairs and Nails Salon
HERE are models and there are Glam Models. Ask anyone in the fashion industry in Davao City about modeling, whether for ramp or for commercial, only one name comes to mind – Glam Model House. Established in the year 2000 by Jon Nuñez, Glam Model House has emerged to become the city’s longest running modeling agency. One of the basic rules that any model should know is how to walk with your chin up. Not only does it show proper posture but also, it helps the model exude confidence. If there is one thing that set Jon apart from all other managers of modeling agencies, it is his passion and how he takes care of his talents. “From the very start I make it clear that modeling is something that they should do during their spare time, studies must always come first,” Jon said. To make sure that his talents have the right priorities, Jon makes it a point to meet with the parents and discuss with them how the modeling industry in the city works. “It’s my way of earning the trust of the parents and to show that we are a legitimate modeling agency.” “In this industry, you only have your name as
proof, that is why it is very important that you take care of it, whether you are a model or a manager,” Jon said, stressing that his agency is only involved in the strictest sense of modeling. “I do not allow my models to go out on dates with clients, that is why I deal with the clients directly so I can also set down the rules.” If other modeling agencies tolerate unbecoming behavior of their models, it is something that Jon won’t turn a blind eye on. “I want to mold them to become, not only models, but as role models. As people that the rest of the community will look up to. People to be respected. But to achieve that, they must also respect themselves,” Jon said. Another perception that Jon tries to refute is that models are just beautiful or handsome, with minimal gray matter. “People still think that models are dumb. But that’s not the case with the models we have here. Several of the talents that we have are able to gradu-
“I want to mold them to become, not only models, but as role models.”
ate from college in 4 years, while others graduated top of their class or with honors,” Jon said, adding that it makes him proud. “My role in their lives is not as a manager but more of a ‘tita’ who guides them.” Jon started his career early in the modeling industry, at 15 years old. “Even when I went to Manila to study my premedicine course at the University of the Philippines-Manila, I would still make sure to do shows and shoots every time I am in Davao during summer breaks. It is something that I just love to do,” Jon said. Finally listening to his heart’s song, Jon went back to Davao and put up Glam Model House in 2000. And as they say, the rest is history. Despite his success, Jon continues to walk the busy streets of Davao, rides the jeepney, and scouts the malls for potential talents, while maintaining to be under the radar. In the sidelines, doing what he has always loved, Jon looks on as his roster of models strut down the catwalk chin up, knowing that they have been molded not just for print ads or the runway, but also to be role models of tomorrow’s youth.
8 VANTAGE POINTS
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
The history and meaning of Holy Week COMMENTARY BY RICHARD BUCHER
What’s good about Good Friday?
HE phrase sounds illogical, considering that it was on a Friday—probably to be dated April 3, A.D. 33 (Answers. Com)---when Jesus Christ died on the Cross. In the liturgical calendar of the Western church, it is the Friday before Easter. The exact origins of the name are uncertain…some argue it stems from the use of “Good” as an adjective applied to the day, which is an Old English synonym for “holy.”Others argue it is a corruption of the word “God,” in the same way that “Good Bye” comes from the phrase “God be with Ye.” Christians believe the day is “good” because the message of Easter is of Christ’s victory over sin, death, and the devil; as the Apostle Paul wrote: “Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.” It is believed that, in Jesus’ death on the Cross, He took once and for all the sins of all mankind upon Himself, in our place. This gift He extends to everyone who will believe in Him. Believing in the Good News of the Gospel is our hope. Jesus, the Son of God, who died for our
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sins, was raised again for our justification, we who believe being made in right stead with God. Calling the day of the Crucifixion ‘Good’ Friday is a designation that is peculiar to the English language. In German, it is Mourning Friday. And that is what the disciples did on that day---they mourned They thought all was lost. In Rev. Kenneth Collins’ website, he says, ”Perhaps Good Friday was originally God’s Friday…but I think we call it Good Friday because, in pious retrospect, all that tragedy brought about the greatest good there could be.” He adds: “I can see virtue in either terminology. If we call it Mourning Friday, as in German, we are facing reality head-on, taking up the cross, if you will, fully conscious that the Christian walk is seldom a walk in the park. But if we call it Good Friday, as in English, we are confessing the Christian hope that no tragedy---not even death--can overwhelm God’s providence, love and grace.” To which we say, Amen. ANTONIO M. AJERO Editor in Chief
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HAT is this thing we call Holy Week and the special days within it? What is the history of the annual celebrations that happen in this leading to Easter? In other words, though we know that the events that we remember during Holy Week really happened to Jesus (e.g., the procession into Jerusalem, the Last Supper, His death on the cross, His resurrection), when did Christians begin to annually observe them as we do? And, what is the significance of our observances today? Holy Week As we now practice it, Holy Week is the last week of the 40 day season of Lent and the week preceding Easter. In Holy Week we focus on the last week of Christ’s life, remembering especially His passion and resurrection. Though calling this week “Holy Week” is more of a recent innovation, the annual observance of the festivals within it are of ancient origin. Palm/Passion Sunday Palm Sunday is the commemoration of our Lord’s triumphant entry into Jerusalem five days before His crucifixion. Scripture records this incident in Matthew 21:1-11, Mark 11:111, Luke 19:29-44, and John 12:12-19. This day takes it’s name from the fact that as Jesus approached Jerusalem on a donkey (in fulfillment of Zechariah 9:9), the huge crowd that followed carried palm branches as they praised Him. The people hailed Him as the long awaited “Son of David,” that is, the Messiah. Though not annually observed at first, by 600-1000 a.d. Palm Sunday was being given full treatment, especially by Christians aligned with Rome. This treatment was part of a growing emphasis at the time to imitate as closely as possible the last days of Christ’s life. Holy Thursday Holy Thursday remembers the events in the upper room the night before Jesus died. These upper room events are described in Matthew 26:20-30, Mark 14:17-26, Luke 22:14-35, and John 13 – 17. Matthew, Mark, and Luke focus on the institution of the Lord’s Supper and the eating of the Passover meal. John focuses on the words of Jesus and His washing of the disciples feet. Since it was on this night that Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper, that sacred meal has often been the chief emphasis of Holy Thursday. The Lord’s Supper is celebrated and often its meaning is rehearsed. At the end of the service, the altar is stripped, in preparation for Good Friday. This symbolizes Christ’s being stripped by the Roman soldiers prior to His crucifixion. The Pascha — Good Friday, Easter Vigil, and Easter As we would expect, Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection have been annually observed from the earliest times. Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection are described in detail in Matthew 27-28, Mark 15-16, Luke 23-24, and John 19-21. However, Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection were not celebrated exactly as we do now. With texts such as John 1:29 and 1 Corinthians 5:7-8 in mind the first Christians celebrated Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection in one festival, called the Pascha (Greek for “Passover”). What about the Easter Vigil? Already in the Third Century a. d., Christians practiced a strict fast which ended after sundown on Saturday evening before Easter. After 313, the Vigil was the time for catechumens to be baptized. As such it also ushered in Christ’s resurrection following Paul’s linking of baptism with Christ’s resurrection (cf. Romans 6:1-5). The theme of light conquering darkness is also prominent. Easter, the celebration of Christ’s resurrection, is the queen of the Christian holy days. The word “easter” and the German “Ostern” come from common source, referring to the direction from which the sun rises. In other words, the word referred to the celebration of the spring sun, when all things returned to life. This symbolism was transferred to the resurrection of Christ who brings us new life. There is no evidence that the word “easter” was the name of a Anglo-Saxon goddess “Eostre.” This is based on a passage in the writings of the Christian author, Bede, who in the eighth century erroneously ascribed the word to the goddess. To this day, no research has been able to find any mention of Eostre in Germanic mythology. Easter celebrates Christ’s victory over sin, death, and the devil, as well as the promise of our justification and everlasting life. The season of Easter lasts 50 days until the day of Pentecost. Holy Week is a marvelous opportunity for Christian growth. It offers incredible potential for satisfying spiritual hunger. It does this by exposing those who attend its services to God’s Word and Sacrament. In other words, we grow in Holy Week not by imitating Christ’s last days. We grow as the Holy Spirit works through the Gospel and Sacrament that we hear and receive during these days. This Holy Week, taste and see that the Lord is good!
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
Carrying the cross to the peak of Mt Apo
OLY WEEK for us climbers of the Mt Apo Climbers Association of Davao or MACADAC was a time for a threeday climb to the Philippines’ highest peak several years ago. Most, if not all, of us now are retired, not only from our nine-to-five jobs, but also from climbing itself. Some of us have now joined the soil of the earth six feet under the ground or turned into ashes, God bless them all. MACADAC started in the mid-seventies by architect Ed Viacrusis, insurer Rey Sorongon, boyscout leader Tony Uy and a few others whose names escaped me at the moment, when the climbing of mountains wasn’t a fad yet in Davao. Around 1980, I started climbing Mt Apo with MACADAC and accepted as a member, climbing the highest peak at least twice or thrice a year: Holy Week Climb, Summer Climb, and New Year Climb. I can’t recall how many times I’ve climb Mt Apo, all I know is that I’ve memorized all the trails going to the peak better than memorizing the roads at the subdivision where I live today. My knees started to give way and the usual stamina left me during the Centennial Climb of the Mountaineering Association of the Philippines or MAP even before our big group of 300 climbers was waylaid sometime in 1989 by the communist New People’s Army led by Commander Benzar at Sibulan, Sta Cruz, Davao del Sur and captured as “prisoners of war” by the NPA. If you recall, we were all released unharmed after three days under the barrel of the gun by NPA guerillas while camped at the village school grounds. The release took place after intense negotiations by Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and Tony Uy with the heads of the NPA political committee, based in a secret safehouse in Davao City. This all went well, of course, except for the fact that the NPA kept the four foreigners who joined our climbed, for “special interrogations” after they were suspected
as foreign “spies” which were, of course, denied, by those guys from Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and the US. Benzar, who had just recovered from a bout of chicken pox at that time, asked Ed and I to act as “alalays” and interpreters for the four foreigners, but I begged off because of my losing stamina and failing knees. To make this long story short, we were all released by the NPA after three days, while the foreigners were released later after eleven days, their pictures with the NPA captors splashed all over the front pages of the New York Times, all smiling at the camera owned by one of the foreigners and used by the armed rebels as one of their propaganda coup. If this NPA capture never took place, I would still be climbing Mt Apo today, but this little interruption in our annual traditional climbing activities, sounded the death knell for many of us “first generation” climbers at MACADAC. Of course, the sons and daughters of MACADAC climbers carried the torch for us as the “second generation” climbers who love the sports of mountain climbing. A typical climb for us starts with a twomonth jogging and physical conditioning at the PTA grounds now known as People’s Park before the actual climb to Mt. Apo. Following our favorite trail at Makilala, our trek starts off the highway going inland along rice fields and uphill on dirt road to New Israel, a small village of cult followers of the late Rev. Guivernas who believe this is the gateway to Heaven on this slope of Mt Apo. Greeting us whenever we arrive at this strange village are smiling women with long hair in long white dress, looking like angels from Heaven, as well as hundreds of excited monkeys jumping from tree to tree around this forested village, our first jump-off point to Mt Apo. From here we would spent the night, making final preparations for the assault to the peak at early dawn. Promptly at 4:00 am after a quick breakfast of rice and dried meat an hour earlier, our climbing group of about a dozen climbers of men and women would start making our way thru the dark winding trail with flashlights, a long uphill climb thru the
thick dark forest to our next camp about six hours away. This camp called “Makalangit” or like-heaven, looks almost like heaven, a clearing in the middle of a thick forest along Mt Apo slope, halfway to the peak. It’s a beautiful place specially early in the morning when thick fog envelops the whole place, you almost expect St Peter or God himself to come out of the clouds. Lest you think it’s a very pleasant climb for us, it’s a slow painful, tortuous climb carrying our 30 kilos of supplies (food, thick clothing, utensils, blankets, tent, etc) in our backpacks, all the way to the 10,000 feet peak, the country’s highest. On the third day, we would reach Mt. Zion at the base of the peak itself where we rest for an hour before continuing the slow climb to the top, passing thru thick talahib and cogon before reaching the rocky portion where all plants are dwarfed by the cold, high elevation over many centuries. For us climbers, it’s like carrying the cross of Christ when climbing to Mt Apo peak which resembles like Calvary if you just take a closer look. For pagans, agnostics, atheists and anti-Christ jerks out there, this sounds corny, to say the least, but one feels closer to God when climbing Mt Apo after realizing that you’re 10,000 feet closer to God than everybody else during Holy Week. To top it all, when you’re inside your tent, fast asleep on Saturday night on top of the peak itself--- after Christ was nailed to the cross the previous day--- you’ll be treated to a glorious day at dawn the following day Sunday, the day Christ resurrected from the dead. As you open the day to a new day, you’ll see the golden sun rising above the horizon over the distant mountains below, still covered with fog and orange-tinted clouds, over Davao Gulf so far away below. It’s the most beautiful sunrise you’ll ever see in your life, you’d shed tears of joy, not only because of its unrivalled beauty but because it reminds you that God is really alive and all around you no matter where you are… (Comments? Email : tradingpost_ firstname.lastname@example.org)
Thus, instructed his trusted adjutant, Ret.Gen. Rex Piad, special envoy on transnational crime under the Office of the President to lead a composite team comprising AOCD-CIDG, Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) officials and a representative of the producer-claimant aimed at conducting an ocular inspection where the confiscated products are currently safely stored. The“fertilizerscam”seemedlikesomething that would eventually be a test case for Gen. Piad. “This is the first time our office has encountered such complaint,” Piad told media during a brief press conference, and added his office only came to know about the clandestine activities when the FPA and the manufacturer seek assistance from them. Even with the busting of the syndicate, still, two things make the discovery more than a little noteworthy. The first is simply that the syndicate’s tentacles have already spread far and wide. That’s a very big deal: many were convinced that the syndicate is already full-blown and full-grown – a crime committed supposedly would be considered as economic sabotage. Secondly, it has turned out that way. Adulterating, misrepresenting and mislabeling of products had been emerging gradually over the past years in big increments without getting notice by authorities or perhaps they have been playing deaf and blind or looking at the opposite direction for obvious reasons. Now, they are all reacting quickly, but in the real sense this illegal trade practices are actually old news. That could ultimately prove to be an even bigger deal. The “specialized mixing process” – in fact, evidently makes farmland unproductive. Adulterated fertilizers could in theory supply harmful components that would affect our farms involving plant and soil damages. To avoid a similar illegal undertaking to happen, Piad urged the public to immediately inform his office or any concern government agencies so it could act on it posthaste. The inspection team led by Piad believes that two factors may
have helped them succeed - extensive investigation and surveillance operations, and cooperation and coordination among concerned agencies. What makes the achievement even more significant is that it makes the people, most notably the most affected sector – the lowly farmers’ groups wary about the problem. “The early detection of the illegal business operation is an important step forward,” said Piad, “but perhaps it’s just one obstacle out of the way.” The President, he said is particularly concern about the welfare and future of the poor farmers directly affected by the unscrupulous trade practice, therefore on my part more time and effort had to be exerted to solve the prevailing unbearable problem and the early solution of the case. With the participation of the transnational crime agency under Piad in solving the rampant adulteration of fertilizer products, the serious problem is coming to a head. Appropriate charges had been readied against all those allegedly involved in the syndicate. But since there is no existing law that would qualify the case into an economic sabotage, they might as well be charge for the crime of violation R.A. 8293, section 168 in relation to 170 – intellectual property rights, adulteration, misrepresentation and mislabeling of products. The Transnational Crime agency could be under test because it might not be as well informed as some would like it to be. The truth, suspecting many in the industry is complicated: fertilizer dealers actually help some dubious and enterprising people and at the same time damage others. To figure out what’s the impact of the case have a dangerous effect on poor farmers – economically. Concerned agencies need a much larger, broader surveillance and investigation networking. We the people, the poor farmers in particular would like to see the day that the perpetrators are put behind bars. How about it, Gen. Piad, sir?
ULL-BLOWN AND FULLGROWN SYNDICATE – Top government officials talk openly about the recent discovery of a Davaobased syndicate engaged in adulterating branded fertilizer products with industrial salt. The widespread illegal business undertaking sent an alarming signal that reaches even the doors of Malacanang prompting President Noynoy Aquino to instruct concerned government agencies to immediately act on it. The disturbing situation emanated from a complaint filed by a leading fertilizer manufacturer against unscrupulous dealers in Davao City who allegedly adulterate, misrepresent and mislabel their products. By virtue of a search warrant issued by the court, a crack team of AntiOrganized Crime Division (AOCD)-Criminal Investigation Detection Group (CIDG) elements immediately raided a warehouse believe to be the place of the syndicate’s clandestine operation somewhere in Maa area few days ago. The quick raiding operation yielded a tangible answer a result of several weeks of thorough investigation and surveillance operations. Caught in the act while conducting the “mixing process” were seven workers including the alleged mastermind-dealer, and all the suspects were immediately arrested by the raiding team while one still remained at-large. Thousands of sacks of adulterated fertilizers ready for delivery in different parts of regions 11 and 12 are confiscated. The “hot items” are now being stored in a safe place under the custody of AOCD-CIDG to be presented as evidence. The successful operation against the highly illegal trade probably didn’t satisfy President PNoy who could be sensitive enough to the alarming situation and immediately acted on it.
A test case for Gen. Rex Piad
ASEAN leaders fail to come up with protocol on Spratlys SPECIAL FEATURE BY ALLEN V. ESTABILLO/MINDANEWS
OREIGN ministers of theAssociation of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) failed to come up with a common stand over the disputed Spratly Islands in the West Philippine Sea especially on dealing with powerhouse China. But the ministers agreed to continue with the high-level discussions over a proposed code of conduct (COC) for the settlement of the disputed maritime space and islands, and hopes remained high that the issue would be settled soon. “We stood by our position (for ASEAN) to conclude first the drafting of the COC before we sit down with China,” Philippines Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario told reporters after their meeting at the Office of the Council of Ministers’ Peace Palace in Cambodia. He said other parties wanted China to sit down with them before the drafting of the COC but “we did not agree to that.” Reports said Indonesia is pushing that ASEAN should have initial discussions with China first before the draft COC is presented to them. Indonesia, which chaired the ASEAN last year, had facilitated the laying down of the guidelines for the proposed code. Tension has continued to rise since last year over the disputed maritime area due to the alleged incursions of Chinese naval units, which the Philippines and Vietnam strongly protested. Aside from the three countries, Taiwan and ASEAN states Brunei and Malaysia have also claimed portions of the disputed territory, which reportedly hosts significant oil and gas deposits. ASEAN and China initially signed a declaration of conduct over the dispute in 2002 and agreed on the guidelines for its implementation in July last year. In January, ASEAN started discussions for the drafting of the COC, which it hopes to conclude before the planned ASEAN-China Summit here in November. Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Hor Namhong said the DOC will serve as basis for the settlement of the dispute. “We agreed that the settlement should be based on the principle and spirit of keeping peace and stability in the South China (West Philippines) Sea,” he said. Namhong said they decided that the settlement of the disputed area would be based on existing international laws, specifically the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas. He said the drafting of the COC will follow a “step by step” process that would be determined in the succeeding talks. Del Rosario said they’re still hopeful that they would sign the code this year. “The Philippines hopes that the code of conduct will be a real move forward not merely in terms of form, but more importantly in substance,” he added.
10 COMMUNITY SENSE PBGEA, TUCP, DANA Foundation build 3 classrooms in Kapalong T F
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HE Pilipino Banana Growers and Exporters Association, Inc. (PBGEA), in partnership with the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) and Nader & Ebrahim S/O Hassan (NEH) Philippines, Inc through its DANA Foundation, formally inaugurated and turned over a newly constructed three-classroom building to Semong Elementary School at Brgy. Semong, Kapalong, Davao del Norte last March 26, 2012. The new school building complements the existing buildings in the school to accommodate all its students from Kindergarten to Grade 6. PBGEA Community Development Chairperson Dondon Jimenez said the classroom-building project, dubbed “TUCP in Mindanao Project” or taking up classroom problems in Mindanao, primarily aims to provide adequate school buildings to afford students with an appropriate learning environment
and to address the acute classroom shortage in public schools. “While our banana industry is focusing on providing and propelling economic development, we also want to contribute and address the social needs of the community,” Jimenez said in his message during the turn over rites. Besides Semong Elementary School, PBGEA and TUCP also turned over two-classroom building to Elias P. Dacudao Gumalang School of Home Industries at Brgy. Gumalang, Baguio District, Davao City. Another three-classroom building will be turned over to Datu Paglas in Maguindanao this second quarter of the year. “This will not be the first and the last. This is just the beginning,” PBGEA Executive Director Stephen Antig, who was also present during the event, said. According to Antig, education has always been part of PBGEA’s cor-
porate advocacies. They continuously reach out to various places especially to far-flung areas to provide classroom where it is much needed and provide scholarship program to less privileged youngsters. “We value education very much. Tungod niana, sulod sa sobra 30 ka-tuig, adunay sobra libo ka mga iskolars na ang among napaskwela ug kami magpadayun pa hangtod nabuhi ang sagingan. (Because of that, for more than 30 years, we have sent over a thousand of scholars to school and we will continue serving until the banana industry exists.) We will definitely do everything we can to continue helping community in giving our children the best realms of education,” Antig said. Likewise, TUCP Representative Raymond Democrito C. Mendoza said they will be planning for more projects for Davao del Norte to bring community support services towards improving people’s lives and help
alleviate poverty through education. “Importante dyud ang edukasyon. Mao ni ang pundasyon sa tanan (Education is very important. This is the foundation of everything.),” he added. Davao del Norte Vice Governor Victorio R. Suaybaguio, Jr. extended his warmest appreciation to the stakeholders saying “We are very grateful that we have private groups who are always ready to give assistance to our schools to improve and raise the quality of education.” The turnover ceremony also gained the support of Kapalong Mayor Edgardo Timbol, NEH Philippines, Inc. Sales and Marketing Manager Jennifer Karla Briones, DepEd Davao del Norte Representatives Cristy C. Epe and Engr. Lolita Andanon, Jovy Villar, who represented Davao del Norte Gov. Rodolfo P. del Rosario, Semong Brgy. Captain Joevin Doriman, and the barangay council of Semong.
TURNOVER. TUCP Representative Raymond Democrito C. Mendoza and Semong Elementary School Principal Alexander P. Redaniel cut the ceremonial ribbon.
EDGEDAVAO April 3, 2012
OR a worry-free observance of the Lenten break, we wish to inform our subscribers of our customer service facilities that are open during the period. For inquiries, customers can text HELP to 1234, chat with us on Yahoo! Messenger (YM ID: Talk2GLOBECHAT), Facebook (http:/facebook.com/ globeph), Twitter (@talk2GLOBE), Email (talk@ globetel.com.ph) or visit our website (www.globe. com.ph). These channels are open 24/7. Our talk2GLOBE Hotlines are also open on normal operating hours to serve subscribers. Call (02) 730-1000 (toll-free from any Globe Landline) or 211 (toll-free from your Globe mobile phone). To continuously en-
joy Globe Prepaid services and offers during the Lenten break, subscribers are advised to avail of their choice promos early by dialing *143#, the easy-to-use quick-service menu of Globe. Globe stores nationwide will be closed on Good Friday and will resume operations on Black Saturday. However, Globe Stores in Baguio and Boracay will be open throughout the Lenten week. For postpaid subscribers, bill payments made after April 3, 2012 will be posted on April 11, 2012. Kindly schedule your payments accordingly to avoid any inconvenience. Thank you and we wish everyone a solemn and meaningful celebration of Lent.
CEB increases seat capacity by more than 20% this summer
HE Philippines’ largest national flag carrier, Cebu Pacific (PSE:CEB) adds 22% more flights from April to May 2012, in preparation of the travel surge during the summer months. “Because of this increased seat capacity, passengers can take advantage of CEB’s trademark low fares for travel this April and May. Plan your family or friends’ exciting summer vacation by checking out the low-fare options on www. cebupacificair.com,” said CEB VP for Marketing and Distribution Candice Iyog. CEB encourages passengers to take advantage of its trademark lowest fares for travel this summer. Low fares to the following leisure destinations are still up for grabs: Siargao, Naga, Legazpi (from Manila and Cebu), Cebu, Tagbilaran (Bohol), Dumaguete, Davao, Bacolod, Iloilo and Cagayan de Oro. Those who wish to go home for the summer or spend summer break on a Southern adventure can also buy CEB’s low fares to the following destinations: Zamboanga, Surigao, Ozamiz, Tacloban, Zamboanga, Butuan, Cotabato, Pagadian and Ozamiz. “CEB operates the largest destination network in the country and to the ASEAN. With 22% more flights, we continue to show our commitment in promoting travel within the Philippines, through our trademark
lowest fares, and youngest and largest aircraft fleet,” Iyog added. The following CEB routes will have daily flights from February 8 to June 15, 2012: Cebu-Dipolog, Cebu-Legazpi and Cebu-Pagadian. Three more weekly flights will be added to the CebuPuerto Princesa route, making it 10 times weekly from March 17 to June 4, 2012. From March 24, 2012, CEB is also adding flights to the following routes: Manila-Legazpi and Manila-Puerto Princesa (total of 4 daily flights each). Legazpi is the gateway to whale shark encounters in Donsol, Sorsogon. Meanwhile, CEB remains the largest airline operating to and from Puerto Princesa, which is worldrenowned for its Underground River. The summer peak months will also see flight frequency increases for the following routes: Cebu-Bacolod (total of 17 weekly flights), CebuCaticlan (3 daily flights), Cebu-Davao (5 daily flights), and Cebu-Siargao (4 weekly flights). CEB is the only airline flying direct to Siargao, an international surfing destination. Flight frequency additions will be extended from March 24 to June 4, 2012 for the following high-traffic routes: Manila-Cebu (total of 99 weekly flights), Manila-Bacolod (40 weekly flights) and Manila-Iloilo (7 daily flights).
11 Summer kids camp Cotabato allocates P5.5 M for year 2 commences upgrading laboratory facilities D EDGEDAVAO
ELEGATES from different elementary schools in Aleosan, Cotabato during the opening program of the 2nd Summer Kids Peace Camp in the said municipality. Thousands of grade five pupils from public and selected private institutions from Pikit, Aleosan, and Magpet, Cotabato attended the 2nd Summer Kids Peace Camp held in their municipalities on March 9-11, March 15-17, and March 19-21, respectively. Governor Emmylou “Lala” J. Taliño-Mendoza who started this summer activity for Grade V pupils last year in coordination with the Department of Education and the local government units is both proud and happy to address the children and the teacher-facilitators. “There should be no discrimination. Everyone has an equal opportunity. No matter what the sexual orientation, tribe or religion. And if you have discipline in your studies, you will go far,” the governor said instilling the value of education and a just society to young Co-
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
tabateños in all 3 municipalities. The lady governor also challenged the future leaders of the province to “put into practice what you learn during this 2nd summer kids peace camp and serve as role models to the younger pupils when you go back to school.” One big gathering of Muslim, Indigenous People and Christian kids, the 3-day camp teaches the participants leadership skills, encourages involvement in community development, inculcates moral values and introduces the diverse cultures of the tri-people living in the province they were born into and may someday lead. A total of 25,000 grade five pupils from the 17 municipalities and 1 city of the province including the participants from Antipas, Matalam, M’lang, Kabacan, Pigcawayan, Makilala, Arakan, Tulunan, Carmen, Banisilan, Alamada, Midsayap, Libungan, Pres. Roxas, and Kidapawan City are expected to attend the said event scheduled this March until May.//LAFIDCD//
HE Provincial Government of Cotabato has appropriated P5.5 M for the strengthening of two laboratory facilities in the Province of Cotabato under the Agriculturang Pinoy (AgriPinoy) Program of the Department of Agriculture (DA) in a memorandum of agreement signing at the provincial governor’s office held last January 12, 2012. Recognizing the importance of upgrading the existing laboratory facilities to accomplish the Agri-Pinoy program objectives, Governor Emmylou “Lala” J. Tali?o-
Mendoza has extended financial assistance to the Department of Agriculture - Regional Office XII (DA-RFO12) headed by Regional Executive Director Amalia J. Datukan, for the enhancement of the Amas Soils Laboratory and the Balindog Tissue Culture Laboratory amenities. Provided with upto-date tools, supplies, and equipment, the Tissue Culture laboratory in Balindog, Kidapawan City will be producing twentyfive thousand (25,000) pieces of high-quality Lacatan and Cardava Banana potted seedlings
which will be distributed by the Cotabato PLGU to marginal farmers in the province. On the other hand, the Soils Laboratory located in DA-CEMIARC Compound, Amas, Kidapawan City shall provide technical assistance to farmers on the interpretation of the results of laboratory analyses and will be rendering soil pH analysis (acidity and basicity), organic matter, Phosphorus and Potassium and Fertilizer Assay per request of farmer clients free of charge. The Agri-Pinoy Program works in partner-
ship and active participation with national government agencies, Local Government Units (LGUs), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), Farmer Organizations (FO), and private stakeholders in providing agricultural development focused on food security and selfsufficiency, sustainable agriculture and fisheries, natural resource management and local development. The Amas Soils Laboratory and Balindog Tissue Culture Laboratory upgrading will cost P1M and P4.5M, respectively.//IDCD-LAF//
Male PNCOs get permanent quarters and fitness center
ith a fully furnished living quarters and a fitness center, Police Non-Commissioned Officers (PNCOs) will no longer live in quarters made of light materials and no longer will they be out of shape. Governor Emmylou “Lala” J. Taliño- Mendoza, together with 2nd District Representative Nancy A. Catamco, Police Provincial Director Superintendent Cornelio R. Salinas, and Police Regional Director represented by Deputy Regional Director for Administration Chief Superintendent Lester O. Camba, led the inauguration of the Male PNCOs’ Quarters and the Gov. Lala Fitness Center inside the Cotabato Police Provincial Office (CPPO) grounds at Amas, Kidapawan City last February 24, 2012. Fully furnished with bunks, lockers, electric ceiling fans, restrooms, and kitchens,
the quarters will be a permanent housing facility to 20 male PNCOs from PO1 to SPO4 during their duty inside the provincial police office. The Gov. Lala Fitness Center on the other hand is equipped with exercise machines to help the police force maintain physical fitness so they are better prepared to respond to crime incidents. “We are looking out for the well-being and the welfare of our male PNCOs. The completion of these two projects are aimed to boost their morale and self-esteem. They now have a decent and comfortable residence and a fitness center here at CCPO,” PD Salinas stated. The completion of the two amenities was made possible with funds from the Cotabato provincial government, proceeds from the 2nd Gov. Lala Shoot fest during the 2011 Kalivungan Festival, and donations from generous
DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman stresses the importance of sending children to school and submitting to regular health check-up through the Pantawid Pamilya program during her recent visit in Mati City. [DSWD/SHERYLL JANE B. SANICO]
‘Strive hard for your dreams’ - Cotabato Governor reminds college leaders
trong determination and courage can take you even to your highest dreams. This was the message conveyed by Cotabato Governor Emmylou “Lala” Taliño-Mendoza as she spoke to college leaders attending the first ever leadership-peace camp for college students in the province held last February 27-March 1 at the Our Mother of Perpetual Help Shrine, Binoligan, Kidapawan City. “Whoever you are, whatever tribe or family line you may belong to, you will really succeed as long as your will is strong, you have deep faith, and you work hard for it.” The governor, who has served as Ex-Officio Member of the Sangguniang Panlalwigan during
her youth as SK Federation President, told delegates that the provincial leadership is counting on them to lead the province and even the nation in the near future. This, she said, is the reason why activities such as this are being conducted not only to hone their leadership skills and mold them into better persons but more importantly lead them to understand each other’s customs and beliefs and subsequently enjoy each other’s company despite their cultural and religious indifferences. During the 4-day camping event, socialization and teambuilding activities were also conducted to develop camaraderie among the participants who came from different college
institutions all over the province. The students also engaged in an educational tour to PNOCEDC Geothermal Site at Kidapawan’s barangay Ilomavis; an orientation on Environment and Global Climate Change was also conducted during the said visit. Last year, same camping activities were also conducted for Grade V pupils (Summer Kids Peace Camp) with more than 18,000 delegates as
well as high school leaders (High School Leadership-Peace Camp) with 210 participants. Last Friday, March 9, the 2nd Summer Kids Peace Camp kicked off at the municipality of Pikit and will be followed by another ‘kids camp’ for the municipality of Aleosan on March 14. This year’s summer camp for children is scheduled to last until May this year when all LGUs are done. //lqg.idcd-pgo//
‘SOME companies sell their ores to sister companies abroad, which is considered transfer pricing.’ --Environment Secretary Ramon Paje on the disadvantageous practice of transfer pricing of mining firms.BM
NATION BRIEFS Surplus
HE government posted a budget surplus of P10.655 billion in February despite higher spending, as revenues increased during the month. The February surplus reversed the P21.490billion deficit the government incurred in the same month last year and brought the deficit in the first two months of the year to P5.288 billion.
FTER serving six months in the Carribean country, the 155-strong Filipino peacekeeping forces commissioned by the United Nations (UN) were welcomed and honored Wednesday morning at the General Headquarters, Camp Aguinaldo in Metro Manila. The 14th Filipino contingent to Haiti, which arrived March 18, was welcomed and awarded by Major General Gregorio Macapagal, theArmed Forces Deputy Chief.
HILIPPINE telecom firms lose millions of pesos in revenues annually to hundreds of illegal operators that bypass global payment systems to convert long-distance calls to domestic. A leading telecom executive described the magnitude of the problem following the arrest on Friday of three Taiwanese nationals and their Filipino cohort for allegedly running a call bypass fraud syndicate from their condo units in Makati City.
HILIPPINE Airlines said Wednesday it had sold a minority stake in the loss-making carrier to San Miguel Corp, one of the country’s biggest conglomerates, but both sides refused to disclose details. San Miguel, bestknown for its beer but which has diversified into a wide range of business sectors in recent years, will also take a minority stake in PAL’s low-cost airline, Air Phil, as part of the deal, a joint statement said.
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
Fierce clashes in Syria S as regime reinforces
IERCE clashes erupted after Syria’s regime sent reinforcements into rebel areas despite a truce pledge, as the UN said it was rushing a team to Damascus to pave the way for peace monitors. The surge in violence on Tuesday killed at least 38 people, including 25 civilians, mostly in north and central Syria, and saw a string of arson attacks on homes, activists and monitors said. It came a day after peace envoy Kofi Annan told the UN Security Council that President Bashar al-Assad had given assurances he would “immediately” start pulling back his forces and complete a military withdrawal from urban areas by April 10. The United States accused Assad of failing to honour his pledged troop withdrawal, as monitors reported heavy fighting in opposition strongholds in the southern region of Daraa, the central
REINFORCEMENTS. An image grab taken from a video on YouTube April 3, shows a Syrian army tank in Hamouriyah, a suburb of Damascus. Fierce clashes
erupted after Syria’s regime sent reinforcements into rebel areas despite a truce pledge.
city of Homs, northwestern Idlib province and near the capital. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has charged that the army is torching and looting rebel houses across the country in a campaign that could amount to crimes against humanity. Dozens of armoured personnel carriers ar-
rived in Dael, a town in Daraa province where the uprising against Assad began in March 2011, as well as in Zabadani, a bastion of the rebellion near the border with Lebanon. Clashes in the Atbaa area of Daraa left three civilians and two soldiers dead, according to the Observatory.
In Idlib, heavy fighting took place on the outskirts of the town of Taftanaz, where five civilians, four rebels and seven soldiers were killed amid heavy machinegun fire and shelling, the Britain-based monitoring group said. Clashes killed two civilians elsewhere in the province.
Cambodian capital Phnom Penh. “After the CoC (code of conduct) has been finalised by ASEAN, then ASEAN member states will meet with China.” Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said there was a “big disagreement” at a session earlier when ASEAN Secretary General Surin Pitsuwan announced that China might be invited to take part in the drafting of the code. “We are saying that we’re happy to invite China but this should be done after the approval of the CoC (by ASEAN). I think
that we should be masters of our own destiny as far as the CoC is concerned,” del Rosario told reporters, adding that Vietnam expressed a similar sentiment. He said that it would be difficult for ASEAN -which operates by consensus -- to have all of the 10 members agree on inviting China to be involved in the code’s drafting. “I believe that they need to have consensus if they are going to pursue this and they will not have consensus,” del Rosario said. “We are trying to do it as fast as we can, but
what we are objecting to is we don’t want China to be invited in terms of the drafting and the decision making.” Asked which countries wanted China to take part, he said: “I think Cambodia would be one of them.” Cambodia is the current chair of ASEAN’s rotating leadership. During Indonesia’s chairmanship of the regional bloc least year, ASEAN and China agreed on a set of guidelines for the proposed code, ending a nine-year impasse. The code is envisioned to be a legally binding document aimed at preventing small incidents in the South China Sea from escalating into bigger conflicts that could draw in major world powers like the United States. ASEAN members Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam along with non-members China and Taiwan have overlapping claims in the South China Sea, a conduit for more than one-third of the world’s seaborne trade and half its traffic in oil and gas. The Philippines and Vietnam accuse China of aggressively asserting its claims in recent years. The United States meanwhile asserts a “national interest” in keeping the sea’s shipping lanes free and open.
PHL urges united ASEAN stand on South China Sea A
SEAN should forge a common position on a proposed code of conduct aimed at easing tensions in the South China Sea before talking with China, Philippine President Benigno Aquino said Tuesday. Aquino told fellow leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations that the fundamentals of the proposed code should be “internal” to the regional bloc’s members, according to a statement from the Philippine foreign ministry. “It is important that we maintain ASEAN centrality,” Aquino said at the annual ASEAN summit in the
OUTHEAST Asian leaders agreed Tuesday to take a phased approach in developing an Asean instrument to protect migrant workers in the region. In a joint statement on the first day of a twoday summit, they instructed labor ministers to continue implementing the Asean declaration on protecting and promoting migrant worker rights signed by Asean leaders in Cebu in 2007.
ARTH Hour cofounder Andy Ridley challenged the Filipinos to use their “united voice” to inspire other countries to participate more in the environmental cause. “Use your voice. That unity of voice is amazing. It is an important thing to share with other countries,” Ridley said, lauding the Philippines for its “massive, extraordinary engagement” in Earth Hour.
LEADER. Pres. Benigno Aquino reads documents during the recently-concluded 20th Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in Phnom Penh.
EVENTEEN people died Tuesday when a night-time fire tore through a two-storey Moscow market warehouse where migrant workers from a former Soviet republic were camping out in squalid conditions. “According to preliminary information, they were migrant workers. Their identities and ages are being verified,” the Russian emergencies ministry said in a statement.
35-metre (115foot) tsunami could hit the Japanese coast in the wake of a massive earthquake, an expert panel has said after revising its worst case scenario projections following last year’s disaster. If a 9.0-magnitude quake struck in the Nankai Trough off central to western Japan huge swathes of the Pacific coastline could be inundated, with 20-metre-plus waves hitting areas from Tokyo down to the southwestern island of Kyushu.
RIVERS hoping to slip the surly -- and traffic congested -- bonds of Earth moved a step closer to realizing their dream, as a US firm said it had successfully tested a street-legal plane. Massachusetts-based firm Terrafugia said their production prototype “Transition” car-plane had completed an eight-minute test flight, clearing the way for it to hit the market within a year.
HE first batch of an expected 2,500 US Marines to be deployed in Australia began work Wednesday as Washington bolsters its presence in a strategically vital region, to the irritation of China. Some 200 Marines touched down in tropical Darwin overnight as part of an enhanced defence cooperation outlined during a visit by US President Barack Obama in November that rankled Beijing.
2 shot... FFROM 1
In the other incident was reported by the Bunawan police the same night. Shot dead was Junrey Abado Gicali, 19, single and jobless, resident of Purok 4, Upper Ilang, Barangay Ilang where the crime transpired. Gicali was walking on the road at about 8:30 pm when an unidentified male suspect wearing a white sando shirt and maong shorts aboard a blue Honda XRM shot him once in the head resulting to his instantaneous death. The suspect fled aboard his motorcycle along Mudiang Road, Ilang.
Recovered from the crime scene was one fired empty shell of Cal. 45 pistol which is now in the custody of the responding personnel of SOCO 11. Meanwhile, a case of attempted homicide was filed against Vincent Ensomo Arias, suspect in a stabbing incident last March 30. Arias allegedly stabbed Kenneth Miranda Sasam, 18, a motorcycle driver. The suspect and victim, both residents of Ilang, Tibungco, were reported to have engaged in a heated argument prior to the occurrence of the crime.
At about 9:45 pm that same day, Arias, armed with a knife, went looking for Sasam. Finding Sasam in Purok 5, Bugac, Ilang, he stabbed the victim in the left part of the chest and the left thigh. Concerned citizens reported the incident and responding Central 911 medical emergency services brought Sasam to the Southern Mindanao Medical Center for treatment. The Bunawan police arrested Arias, who is now facing a case of attempted homicide before the City Prosecution Office under Prosecutor Jay Karel Sanchez.
and washing his hands to escape from accountability of the people’s sufferings; and the modern Roman centurions, who are represented by the oil companies, private power corporations, and Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Oplan Bayanihan. “As Pontius Pilate violated human rights, so does P-Noy through his acrimonious neglect of consumer welfare while he pays homage to oil, energy and food cartels and other foreign investors,” said Duazo. The groups blame President Aquino for the jacked-up prices of oil and basic commodities due to State deregulation and the Value Added Tax (VAT). Duazo also cited the energy crisis and the looming increase in power rates bolstered by the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA); low wages; the failure of land reform; and the government’s neglect to protect State’s resources as Aquino’s responsibilities. The procession ended at the Davao Light Power Corporation, where the groups contin-
ued to call for “immediate substantive economic reforms” and not just doleouts as “band-aid solutions” that will not save the people from the current economic turmoil. Earlier, in a press release, the Christians for National Liberation-National Democratic Front of Southern Mindanao stated that the Lenten season should be an occasion to emulate the life of Jesus for He was the embodiment of righteousness, justice, and peace. “Jesus’ Messiaship was demonstrated through his deeds, his sacrifice, and his revolutionary resistance to the evils of the Roman Empire,” the group said. It also cited Jesus’ mission statement as written in Luke 4:18-19, declaring His commitment to the poor and taught the people to call for the total liberation, freedom from captivity, captivity from the fascist machinations of the Roman Empire, enslavement from indebtedness, enslavement from domination of the Roman ruling class of slave masters.
ening economic crises and human rights violations. “Gutom tungod sa kawad-on. Kalisud tungod sa walay trabaho, ubos ang suhulan. Uhaw sa batakang serbisyo sosyal sama sa panglawas, edukasyon, trabaho o panginabuhian, pabalay, ug pagrespeto sa tawhanong katungod. Suportahan ang P125 usbaw nga suhulan, ibasura ang mga polisiya ug programa nga kontra katawhan,” said Toto Bolcan, spokesperson of KADAMAY-Southern Mindanao. “The Kalbaryo sa Kabus reminds the public that the suffering of Jesus in His passion and death are repeated today in the sufferings imposed on the poor by forced evictions, hunger, landlessness, joblessness, high prices, and low wages. However, the resurrection of Jesus is also repeated with the poor’s struggle to reclaim human dignity and attain genuine justice and development,” the groups said. Depicted in the procession were the “new” Pontius Pilate, who is President Benigno Aquino III for “Noynoying”
and became the first man to enter the annual event last and win. Calaway is the only remaining WWE wrestler to have also appeared on the first episode of its Raw television program. Another favourite wrestler of mine is The Rock. Between The Undertaker and The Rock, the latter is more popular having appeared in several movies. The latest of which is The Journey II. The Rock’s real name is Dwayne Douglas Johnson. Johnson is widely considered one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time. He won a total of 16 championships in WWF/E.
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This included nine World Heavyweight Championships (the WWF/E Championship seven times and the WCW/World Championship twice), two WWF Intercontinental Championships, and five times as co-holder of the WWF Tag Team Championships. He was the sixth WWF/E Triple Crown Champion, and the winner of the 2000 Royal Rumble. Johnson’s first leading role as an actor was in The Scorpion King in 2002. For this film, he received the highest salary for an actor in his first starring role, earning $5.5 million. He has since appeared in several blockbuster movies such
as The Rundown, Be Cool, Walking Tall, Gridiron Gang, The Game Plan, Get Smart, Race to Witch Mountain, Planet 51, Tooth Fairy, Doom, The Other Guys, Faster, and most recently Fast Five starring opposite Vin Diesel and Paul Walker. Tuesday night’s wrestlemania marathon rolled past midnight and into the early minutes of Wednesday. No regrets though. My sidekick Jumar lost his bet twice against my boys—The Undertaker (who extended his Wrestlemania streak won 20-0 over Triple H) and The Rock (who beat John Cena).
Coal areas generates 69 bids T HE Department of Energy (DOE) on Wednesday said it received 69 bids for 38 coal areas in its fourth Philippine Energy Contracting Round (PECR4) for coal last March 30. Undersecretary Jay Layug, Chairman of the DOE Review and Evaluation Committee (REC), said the department opened 69 bids from various companies who have expressed interest in investing in coal exploration in the Philippines. The REC is tasked to examine, evaluate, and review the legal, technical, and financial qualifications of the PECR 4 applicants. In determining the winning bidder, the REC will be guided by the criteria set out in DOE Circular No. DC 2011-012-0010
(Reiterating a Transparent and Competitive System of Awarding Service and Operating Contracts for Petroleum and Coal Prospective Areas…), consisting of legal qualification (10%); technical capability (30%); financial credentials (30%); and work program (30%). The opening of new bids clearly showed increased private companies’ interest to invest in exploration and development of indigenous coal resources in the Philippines from the previous years. This development will, once commercial production occurs, further reduce the country’s dependence on imported coal and will consequently result in dollar savings arising from decreased coal importation. Certain coal areas gar-
nered multiple bids, particularly Areas 18-A and 18-B in Bislig and Lingig, Surigao del Sur, which the DOE considered as the most prospective in coal resources. Areas that did not receive any bids in PECR 4 will be offered in the next contracting round. Some old and new players have submitted applications, including PNOC Exploration Corp., Semirara Mining Corp., Benguet Corp., Blackstone Mineral Resources, Inc., Altura Mining Phils. Inc., South Peak Coal Resources, Inc., Superfine Mines and Minerals, Inc., and Empire Asia Mining Corp. The DOE expects to award the winning bidders their coal operating contracts within 150 days from the opening of the applications.
“Thus, a logical solution is for the government to take over the power barges of Therma Marine and add it to the grid as cheap base load power instead of expensive ancillary power,” Casiño said. “Temporarily taking over the power barges will lower prices allowing power distributors to buy cheaper power and supply it to customers. Based on Article XII Section 17 of the Constitution, the government can temporarily take over or direct the operation of any privately-owned public utility or business affected with public interest, if there is a national emergency, when the public interest so requires,” he added. “In the long term, the government should immediately rehabilitate the hydropower plants in Mindanao and tap solar power systems and other renewable energy sources to augment existing supply,” the progressive solon said. Rep. Casiño is the author of House Bill 5405
or the proposed One Million Solar Roofs Act which provides for incentives and financing facilities to encourage the use of solar energy by ordinary electricity consumers like residences, offices and small to medium business establishments. “With government harnessing the solar resources of the country and providing for incentives for massive deployment of solar energy systems, the prospects of attaining energy independence from oil companies and significantly lowering electricity prices in the medium-term are realizable. Power crises then like in Mindanao would be a thing of the past,” ended Casiño. Mindanao’s power demand is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4.56 percent from 2011 to 2030. Demand is projected to exceed existing generation capacity by 2014 unless additional power generation capacity is installed.
capitalists in the world, where at least 300 capitalists look at possible investments every year. “Many of our investors are looking for innovative businesses actually. But, since they do not know what it’s all about, they’re afraid that they may lose their shirt in this project. We hope that through these activities they will be educated, have an occasion to bring together, and they will see how it works in the Silicon Valley,” Matunog said. He also hopes that success stories like that of Eric Su, creator of Piclyf, a social networking using photos to describe life moments, will be the one to help us promote
the activities here. “Meron na kasi tayong trainings for students, entrepreneurs, and outsourcing investors, ang kulang na lang natin ay capital,” he said. Representatives of the Silicon Valley will come during the competition in Davao City to help look at the new ideas of shortlisted contestants, and to mentor them to be able to qualify in the countrywide finals in July. Usually, three to four winners from each of the four elimination legs: Cebu in Visayas, Davao City in Mindanao, and two legs in Luzon, will be taken to the national finals. [LORIE A. CASCARO]
According to Casiño, “since April 1, 2010 there had been at least a 100% increase in electricity in Mindanao. In 2009, it was P49.70/ kilowatt-hour/ month; in April 2010 it was P560 per kwh/ month and in May P606 per kwh/month. Now the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation or PSALM has transferred to the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), a private corporation, the function to manage and maintain its transmission facilities in order to deliver efficient and quality power transmission services in the country,” Under the ASPA, Therma Marine would sell additional power to the Mindanao grid at a more expensive rate than when the power barges were still being used as baseload plants. Using the ASPA, the NGCP obtained a provisional authority for new power rates which is the cause of the exorbitant power rates today.
innovation,” said Sam Matunog of ICT Davao and president of the Davao Software Group. He added that successful stories of innovators and entrepreneurs will help encourage young people and investors to invest in innovative projects and businesses. Two winners out of the five entries from Davao City in the nationwide final round of the 2011 ON3 Pitching Competition, the Piclyf and Rad Solutions are on their way to Silicon Valley in California. The two startup companies will undergo three-month training with Silicon Valley, which is the capital of venture
EDGEDAVAO 14 SCIENCE/ENVIRONMENT Spread of early flowering plants ‘aided by fire’ VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
study has highlighted the importance of wildfires in allowing flowering plants to spread during the Cretaceous period (145-65 million years ago). Researchers suggested that conditions at the time, like higher temperatures and atmospheric oxygen levels, established “angiosperm fire cycles”. The “small, weedy” plants were able to regenerate after a fire, giving them an advantage over conifers, they said. The findings have been published on the New Phytologist journal’s website. “The Cretaceous is the period when flowering plants (known as angiosperms) first evolved,” explained co-author Andrew Scott from the Department of Earth Sciences at Royal Holloway, University of London. “It was also a time when there was a large number of fires, partly because there were probably higher atmospheric oxygen levels than there are today.” Research suggested that oxygen made up about 25% or higher during this period, compared with 21% today. “Angiosperms, particularly weedy angiosperms,
can do particularly well in these sorts of circumstances; they can regenerate very fast and take advantage of such a regime,” Professor Scott told BBC News. Continue reading the main story “Start Quote We now know that fire had a much more important impact in the Earth system than previously thought” Professor Andrew ScottRoyal Holloway, University of London “They can also quickly provide fuel ready to be burnt; this means that they have quite a good competitive advantage over other plants.” He said that many of the early angiosperms were small, herbaceous or shrubby “weedy plants”, so when wildfires - especially surface fires - frequently swept through an area, it created a positive feedback cycle. “It prevented other plants getting into an area - most of the trees at this time were conifers. If you have relatively regular fires then the trees can never grown above the height of the flames. This meant that gymnosperm plants, such as conifer trees, which had previously dominated the landscape, were unable to
CIENTISTS say they have new evidence that our ancestors were using fire as early as a million years ago. It takes the form of ash and bone fragments recovered from Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa. The team tells the journal PNAS that the sediments suggest frequent, controlled fires were lit on the site. The ability to use fire is regarded as a key step in human development because it gave us access
to cooked foods and new technologies. Stone tools found at Wonderwerk Cave indicate the ancestor in question may have been Homo erectus, a species whose existence has been documented as far back as 1.8 million years ago. Establishing precisely when humans first acquired the ability to control fire has been very difficult. There have been several claims that the skill was in existence even earlier than at Wonderwerk.
KEY ROLE. Fire has always played a key role in shaping landscapes around the world regenerate as quickly as the angiosperms and lost the opportunity to shape the surrounding habitat. “It was rather like the savannahs of today - if you did not have fires in Africa, then you would not have savannahs.” ‘Novel fire regime’ Explaining the link between the spread of angiosperm plants and fire patterns at the time, Profes-
sor Scott said the level of oxygen in the atmosphere played a key role in allowing a “novel fire regime” to become established. “In the geological past, there have been fluctuations in atmospheric oxygen, in particular if you get below 15%, then you cease to get the spread of fire,” he said. “If you get to 25% and above, you can burn wet-
But they have all been challenged, with sceptics arguing the fire remains from open sites could have been the result of natural blazes ignited by lightning. In contrast, the PNAS team, which consists of scientists based at US, Israeli, German and South African institutions, says statements about the Northern Cape cave are far more secure. If correct, the Wonderwerk discovery would push the earliest indisputable controlled use of fire back
by about 300,000 years. In their paper, the researchers describe burnt remains of grasses, brushes, leaves and even bones in the cave’s sediments some 30m back from the entrance. This makes it far less likely that what they are viewing is material from wildfires that was simply blown into the cave by wind, they argue. The depth of the sediments also suggests fires were lit on the same spot over and over again.
ter and wetter plants. The impact of this is that as you increase atmospheric oxygen, then you can increase the places where fires can start and how often they occur. “So you have the coincidence of the evolution of flowering plants, which have an advantage over a number of other plant systems, linked together with a period of increase fire
that clears out all competitors. “This would have allowed angiosperms to really diversify, quicker than they would have done otherwise.” Evidence of the relatively rapid emergence and spread of the flowering plants was found in charcoal deposits that dated back to the Cretaceous period.
Evidence of ‘earliest fire use’ bared Fires ‘changing seed evolution’ S
EVIDENCE. Wonderwerk Cave is in the Northern Cape and was occupied by ancient human species
UMAN-made fires are influencing the evolutionary process of some plant species’ seeds, a study has shown. Scientists found that seeds that were less rounded and coated in thicker protective hairs were more likely to survive fires used to clear scrub. The study was carried out in an area where natural fires were very rare, allowing the researchers to analyse the impact of human activity. The results appear in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “Our findings provide insights into the understanding of the evolution of seed traits in fire-prone environments and demonstrate that human-made fires can be driving evolutionary changes in plant species from ecosystems where fire does not occur naturally,” the researchers wrote. The study was carried out in an area within Chile’s matorral, a Mediterranean eco-region on the nation’s west coast. Playing with fire Most Mediterranean eco-regions (in southern Europe, California, South Africa, Australia) have a long history of being subject to natural fires, result-
ing from lightning strikes, yet the central area of the matorral in western Chile is an area where such fires are extremely rare. “Macroevolutionary studies indicate that fire has driven the diversification of plant species with seed persistence (fire-resistant or fire-stimulated seed banks) in Mediterranean ecosystems, particularly... where fire has been more frequent or intense,” the Chilean scientists explained. “Nevertheless, we have little knowledge on how fire acts on the variability of seed traits among individuals to drive evolutionary changes in natural populations.” The researchers chose their study area because evidence suggested that fire had not featured in the natural landscape for the past “few million years, probably accounting for the lack of fire-dependent reproduction in matorral flora”. But, they added, that fires in the area - as a result of human actions - had been common since the mid-16th Century as a result of the Spanish colonisation, and had increased even more since the human population expanded during the 19th Century.
Tiny Kitchen is tiny no more
THERE was a time when you felt like wanting to have a bit of Spanish-Filipino food. So you make your way to Torres Street, ready to sink your teeth into some honest-to-goodness Gambas, Salpicao, Paella, Pasta, and to-die-for desserts at Tiny Kitchen. And when you get there, get thwarted by the fact that the Tiny Kitchen was that, tiny, and there were no tables for you to sit down properly and eat. Good thing it is all in the past as Tiny Kitchen moved their address down the road and into a much bigger space. Finally, guests have the space to sit down and have their favorite dishes and desserts. Better still, every favorite dish still tastes as good as before. My personal favorites from the Tiny Kitchen would be their Paella Valenciana, Paella Negra, and Rosemary and Tomato Chicken. Of course a growing restaurant also means new menu items like the savory and comforting Don Quixote which is slow cooked beef paired with al-dente penne pasta. I also loved their version of Salpicao. Dessert at the Tiny Kitchen is like dying and immediately waking up in heaven, many thanks to an entire display of luscious chocolate cakes, various cheesecakes raging from chocolate cookie cheesecakes, to the classic blueberry cheesecake, and my favorite dulce de leche cheesecake. If you are not afraid of butter, then I suggest you go for their uber luxurious sylvannas, either in chocolate, mocha, or in its original flavor. If one is dieting and were to count the calories, I really would suggest going straight to dessert at the Tiny Kitchen to make every calorie count. And surprisingly,
even with the additional space, the Tiny Kitchen was still jam-packed, a true testament to the restaurantâ€™s delicious food. Follow or chat me up on twitter @kennethkingong for foodie finds, exciting happenings, or even just crazy nothings.
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 â€˘ APRIL 5-7, 2012
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
The Jack of all fruits
By Jims Vincent T. Capuno
THE fruit is called a variety of names around the world. The English one, jackfruit, is generally cited as deriving from the Malayalam chakka or cakkai via the Portuguesejaca, the name for it used by the physician and naturalist Garcia de Orta in his 1563 book. However, a botanist named Ralph Randles Stewart argued that it was named after William Jack (1795-1822), a Scottish botanist who worked for the East India Company in Bengal, Sumatra and Malaysia .
Like most tropical fruits, Westerners considered jackfruit as somewhat weird and exotic. It is enormous and prickly on the outside and it looks somewhat like the controversial durian (although it tastes like heaven, it smells like hell). Once a jackfruit is cracked open, what you will find inside are pods or “bulbs.” Often referred to as the seeds, these bulbs are actually the fleshy covering for the true seeds or pits, which are round and dark like chestnuts. The fruit juices are extremely sticky, so people often oil their hands before preparing the fruit. Actually, the “bulbs” are delicious raw or as ice cream, jelly, chutney, syrup and jam. An American journalist describes jackfruit in these words: “The ripe fruit smells like rotting onions from the outside, but the fruit flesh inside smells like banana or pineapple.” Nutritionists claim the fruit is nearly as calorie-dense as the custard apple. Hundred grams of the edible flesh, including the seeds, contains almost 100 calories, most of it as sugar and starch. The flesh is rich in beta-carotene and potassium, while the seeds are rich in thiamine and riboflavin-B vitamins. Here’s a word of warning: Eating uncooked, unripe fruit can cause indigestion; the culprit is an enzyme that inhibits the gut’s protein-digesting enzyme called trypsin. However, cooking destroys this inhibitor. On the other hand, the ripe fruit increases gut motility and can cause diarrhea among those
who eat too much of the fruit. There’s more to jackfruit. The pulp, when boiled in milk, yields delicious orange-toned custard, while frying dry, salted bulbs serves up an alternative to potato chips. Jackfruit seeds (nuts) can be roasted like chestnuts, or boiled. If left to cook inside the flesh (for example, in curries or other cooked dishes), the nut softens and can easily be eaten. Jackfruit also possesses some medicinal properties. The Chinese consider jackfruit pulp and seeds tonic, cooling and nutritious, and to be “useful in overcoming the influence of alcohol on the system.” The seed starch is given to relieve biliousness and the roasted seeds are regarded as aphrodisiac. The ash of jackfruit leaves, burned with corn and coconut shells, is used alone or mixed with coconut oil to heal ulcers. There are also reports that the latex, when mixed with vinegar, promotes healing of abscesses, snakebite and glandular swellings. The root is a remedy for skin diseases and asthma. An extract of the root is taken in cases of fever and diarrhea. The bark is made into poultices. Heated leaves are placed on wounds. The wood has a sedative property; its pith is said to produce abortion. Recent laboratory studies show that lectins found in jackfruit and its seeds may have antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and immunostimulative properties. However, clinical study is still lacking. The currently available research examines the role of jackfruit leaves
in increasing glucose tolerance. More studies in humans are needed to define jackfruit’s potential role in diabetes. In agriculture, jackfruit is also indispensable. In some areas, the jackfruit is fed to cattle. The tree is even planted in pastures so that the animals can avail themselves of the fallen fruits. Surplus jackfruit rind is considered a good stock food. Jackfruit is also good in controlling pests. The golden apple snail is one of the major rice pests in Asia, including the Philippines . If they are not controlled, they can devastate the rice crops causing huge losses to farmers. In Malaysia , some farmers are using jackfruit instead of pesticides to control the snails. They put rotten jackfruits in their rice fields. This is how they do it. Fresh rotten jackfruits with strong smell are collected. These are carefully place in a suitable spot with running water and populated with golden snails as bait and should not be submerged under water. The bait is left overnight and in the morning, snails that gather on and around the jackfruit are collected and destroyed. The rotten jackfruit may be replaced if and when necessary. Jackfruit (scientific name: Artocarpus heterophyllus) is native to southwestern India and Sri Lanka . It was reportedly cultivated for food as early as the 6th century BC in India . At approximately 25 centimeters in diameter, jackfruit is reportedly the largest tree-borne fruit in the world.
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
One Direction declines Michelle Obama’s invite! I
T’S official: Everyone from Selena Gomez to Michelle Obama is a One Direction fan!
The Simon Cowellcreated British boy band had everyone gushing— and dancing—at the Kids’ Choice Awards on Saturday. “I think they’re awesome,” Victoria Justice told me. “They’re supercool. They’re super down to earth and I think they’re really talented…The fact that they’re from the U.K. and have those accents, it’s very appealing to a lot of people and they’re all supercute guys.” Those guys, if you don’t know by now, are Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson, Niall Horan, Harry Styles and Zayn Malik. Their album Up All Night made Billboard history by becoming the first debut album by a British group to enter the chart at No. 1. X Factor star Rachel Crow met them recently in New York City. “Their songs are in my head all the time,” she said. Their hit “What Makes You Beautiful” is her favorite. “I pretend they’re singing to me,” Crow smiled.
During 1D’s Kids’ Choice performance, Gomez, Swift and even the First Lady got out of their seats to dance. Glee���s Chris Colfer was walking the orange arrivals carpet just a few feet in front of the guys. It wasn’t easy interviewing anyone when 1D was around, because the screaming was deafening. Colfer cracked, “Maybe we’ll do a One Direction tribute episode.” Ha! And 1D seems to be on a campaign to work with
Bruno Mars. They recently told E! News they wanted to collaborate with the “Grenade” hitmaker and reiterated it on Saturday. “If we could work with anyone in the world, I think we’d pick Bruno Mars,” Harry said. “He’s just incredible. He’s got the voice. And he’s a great performer.” And if that doesn’t work out, Louis joked, “Susan Boyle.” Moreover, E! Online reports that Simon Cowell’s British boy band, who has
the Cyberzone. Boost your gadgets with the iButterfly application, hunt for the Easter iButterflies at SM City Davao on Sunday, and win prizes! Check out posters for promo mechanics. All hip, all here! Spend
the hippest Easter at the City’s hippest hub, The Annex! For inquiries, please call 297.6998 local 126. Like SM City Davao on Facebook or visit www.smcitydavao. blogspot.com for event and promo updates.
It’s an EGGciting Easter and iButterfly Hunt at SM City Davao!
AT SM City Davao, there are more reasons to celebrate Easter!
Shake those bunny ears and strike a pose! Gather your friends and family at SM’s EGGstremely Giant Eggs photo area from March 31 to April 8 at The Annex- Atrium. And, have your fill of yummy goodness and fun trinkets for keepsakes at the Eggciting Bazaar on April 7-8. On April 8, Sunday, Easteriffic Funfare awaits all kids for a magical afternoon with games and prizes. Kids from 4 to 12 years old may hop their way to SM in their cutest, wackiest and most colourful bunny costumes! The party starts at 1 PM while the Easter Bunny Costume begins at 3 PM. Registration is on-going. Plus, iButterfly flies to
taken the world by storm, is so booked they can’t even pencil in an appearance at the White House. Yeah,
we’re serious. One Direction ran into Michelle Obama at the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice
Awards on Saturday, and the first lady extended an invitation to the White House’s annual Easter Egg Roll on Easter Monday. But sorry, they’re busy. The band’s spokesperson explained that the boys had to decline “due to prior commitments.” The Sun reports that although they won’t be able to make the event, Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson were all thrilled to meet the first lady. Styles even reportedly chatted with the first lady, who was joined by daughters, Malia, 13, and Sasha, 10, by asking how they order pizza at the White House. (How do they order pizza at the White House?!) Maybe next year, Michelle, as long as you extend the invitation for that now.
A4 INdulge! FOOD
You can now buy your favorite Business Paper from any of these establishments still at Php 15.
Gen. Santos Drive, Koronadal City Telefax No.: (083) 520-0816 Mobile No.: 0922-843-9427 email: email@example.com
Let there be fish Compiled by Carlo P. Mallo
DON’T fry that fish just yet. Just because it’s Holy Week it doesn’t mean that you have to stuff yourself with the same old fish recipes that you have grown accustomed to. With 5 days off this weekend, why not try these two fish recipes we got from Yummy.ph? It’s a new twist to some of your old favorites, and it’s easy to make, too! FIVE-SPICE FISHBALLS 250 g cream dory fish fillet (or any white fish available) 6 tablespoons cornstarch 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1 teaspoon white sugar 2 tablespoons finely chopped young onion 2 tablespoons finely chopped eggplant 2 tablespoons finely chopped carrots
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HELPING YOU MAKE INFORMED BUSINESS DECISIONS.
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
vegetable oil, for deep frying For the five-spice sauce 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1/2 tablespoon minced garlic 1 medium onion 2 tablespoons soy sauce 2 cups water 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon iodized salt 1 teaspoon chili flakes 1-2 teaspoons five spice powder Procedure: 1 In a food processor, chop the fish fillets until it resembles a coarse paste. Add in all the other ingredients except for the oil and mix until combined. With wet hands, take 1/2 to 1 tablespoon of the mixture and form into balls. 2 Heat oil in a deep pan. When the oil is hot, deep fry fish balls until golden. Drain in paper towels. Set aside. 3 Make the five-spice sauce: In a dry pan, lightly toast the
flour. Dissolve the flour in a bit of water. Set aside. In the same pan, sauté garlic until golden brown. Add onions and cook until transparent. Add the rest of the ingredients for the sauce except for the flour slurry. When it starts boiling, add the flour slurry and continuously mix until thickened. 4 Assemble your shooters: Pour a tablespoon or two of the sauce in a shot glass. Place skewers with 3 fish balls into it and serve immediately. Cooking tip: No food processor? Finely chop the fish using a sharp chopping knife. FRIED TILAPIA IN SOY VINAIGRETTE 400 grams tilapia, deboned 1 pinch salt 1 pinch ground pepper 3 tablespoons AA powder 2 to 3 cups vegetable oil For the soy vinaigrette sauce 1 tablespoon garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon onion, finely chopped 1/2 cup soy sauce 1/2 cup vinegar 3 pieces siling labuyo a pinch of salt Procedure: 1 Fillet and pat dry tilapia. Slice into thin strips 2 Season with salt and pepper, then coat with AA powder. 3 Heat vegetable oil. When it’s hot enough for frying, carefully drop in the tilapia fillet strips one by one to prevent them from sticking. 4 Fry until golden brown and crispy. Serve with soy vinaigrette on the side. 5 Make the Soy Vinaigrette Sauce: In a bowl, mix together the following: garlic, onion, soy sauce, vinegar, siling labuyo, salt. Serve with the pata or tilapia. This versatile dipping sauce is great for grilled meats too. Cooking tip: Drain the fried fish so they remain crisp until ready to serve.
VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012 EDGEDAVAO MT. APO BOULDER FACE CHALLENGE
9 foreign teams head cast I F
IVE teams from Singapore plus a team from Vietnam, Australia, Indonesia and the Asia Pacific will battle it out with various local and national teams in the much awaited 2nd International Mt. Apo Boulder Face Challenge slated on April 28-29, 2012 in the Municipality of Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur. The international teams will be competing against teams from Metro Manila, Cabanatuan City, Cebu City, Davao City, General Santos City, Digos City, Bukidnon, Davao del Norte and Sta. Cruz,
Davao del Sur including four corporate teams and teams representing some of the event’s sponsors, namely R.O.X., San Miguel Corporation and Franklin Baker, in what is believed to the one of the most difficult adventure races in the country. The competing teams, composed of three members - 2 racers and a logistics crew, will conquer water, land and altitude in a 24-hour extreme challenge that will entail four disciplines: mountain biking, trekking, water tubing and running. From the beach lines
of Sta. Cruz, the teams navigate themselves through the municipality’s rugged terrains and wild rivers, then scale the peak of Mount Apo - the country’s highest peak passing through its grueling boulder face. The entire stretch of the race is around 70-80 kilometers. A project of the Department of Tourism Xl and Local Government of Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur, the champion team of the 2nd International Mt. Apo Boulder Face Challenge will receive P150,000 while the sec-
NBA ROUND UP
ond and third placers will pocket P100,000 and P75,000, respectively. The top five finishers will also receive a consolation prize of P10,000 each. The annual event is supported by the Mountaineering Federation of Southern Mindanao (MFSM) and corporate partners San Miguel Corporation, Aboitiz Power Corporation, Zest Air, Columbia Sportswear, R.O.X. (Recreational Outdoor Exchange) Philippines and Primer Group of Companies.
James fires 41 as Heat beat 76ers 99-93, Lakers blow big lead
EBRON James arrived at work a little earlier than usual on Tuesday (Wednesday Phl Time), warming up more than three hours before tip-off with hopes of finding his rhythm. With Dwyane Wade out, Miami needed some extra offense—and James delivered. James scored 14 straight Miami points in the fourth quarter and finished with a season-high 41, helping the Heat clinch a playoff spot with a 99-93 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. It was the 16th straight home win for Miami, which has won its last 11 regularseason games against the 76ers. The Heat also moved within 2 1/2 games of Chicago in the race for the Eastern Conference’s best record.
“It was a grind,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “No question, it was a grind.” Mario Chalmers had 19 points, Chris Bosh scored 17 and Udonis Haslem grabbed 11 rebounds for Miami, which improved to 9-1 without Wade this season. Wade sat with a bruised left knee, leaving his status for Wednesday’s showdown with Oklahoma City in some doubt. Evan Turner scored 26 points for Philadelphia, which fell 1 1/2 games behind Boston in the Atlantic Division. Lou Williams scored 18, Spencer Hawes added 12 and Andre Iguodala had 11 before leaving in the third quarter with a left eye contusion. Lakers blow big lead, hold off Nets 91-87 In Los Angeles, Kobe
Bryant’s tiebreaking 3-pointer bounced off every available surface, pinballing around the rim and backboard while Staples Center held its collective breath. Yet the Lakers and Nets all seemed to know exactly where the ball would end up. Mostly because they know the guy who shot it. Bryant scored 24 points and rattled home that decisive 3-pointer with 6.8 seconds left, and Los Angeles blew every bit of a 17-point lead before holding on for a 91-87 victory over New Jersey on Tuesday night. The NBA’s leading scorer closed out yet another victory in memorable fashion, beating the shot clock with a 26-footer that bounced roughly a halfdozen times before falling. Put it this way: Accord-
Rene Saguisag on Caloy Loyzaga:
ing to the official box score, Bryant took the shot with 10.1 seconds left, and the clock didn’t stop for another 3.3 seconds. “It was just one of those shots, I guess,” Bryant said. “The basketball gods were with us tonight.” That sure didn’t appear to be the case for most of the fourth quarter. Los Angeles led by 12 with 10 minutes left, but Deron Williams led an 18-6 run for New Jersey, tying it on a 3-pointer with 1:29 to play. Bryant made a long jumper moments later, and the Lakers controlled the ball for 52 straight seconds during the final minute with an offensive rebound and an out-of-bounds deflection. Bryant then made his third 3-pointer, and Williams missed his own 3-point attempt.
Simply the best ever C
THE BIG DIFFERENCE. Carlos “The Big Difference” Loyzaga (4) led the Philippines to a 3rd place finish in the 1954 World Championships in Brazil. Due to the legendary cage star’s illness, Loyzaga’s son Chito recently quit his post in the Philippine Sports Commission.
hito Loyzaga is one refutation of the Greek saying that great fathers seldom have great sons. Chito has resigned his membership in the Philippine Sports Commission to be with his ailing father in Australia. I can still remember when Carlos Loyzaga was called Pomfret after a Canadian athletic great. I can recall when he
am already in my hometown by the time I email this piece for today’s issue which I almost forgot. Tuesday night, I was glued to my TV set anticipating the action in Wrestlemania XXVIII. Growing up as a child, I watched the annual professional grapplefest since Wrestlemania III. Those were the era of Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant, George “The Animal” Steel, Jake the Snake Roberts and Jim “The Hacksaw” Duggan. It was easier to know the wrestling pros of the past since there was just a few of them. Today, there a bunch of wrestlers and it’s not easy knowing their names. Tuesday night, I was rooting for The Undertaker and The Rock. The Undertaker (Mark William Calaway) is one of the most recognizable wrestlers of all time. Simply because there is no one dressed and packaged like him. He is one of a kind. Calaway is the most veteran of all wrestlers under the WWE fold. Calaway began his wrestling career with World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) in 1984. He joined World Championship Wrestling (WCW) as “Mean” Mark Callous in 1989. When WCW did not renew Calaway’s contract in 1990, he signed with the World Wrestling Federation in October and, after shortening his name from Kane the Undertaker to simply The Undertaker, has remained with the company since. The Undertaker has two contrasting personas. The first is the role of The Deadman, an undead, occult-like figure, which has consisted of many different styles. He debuted his original Deadman persona during his own on-camera debut at Survivor Series (1990). At this event, the Undertaker was clad as a Western mortician. Next, in September of 1999, the Undertaker appeared as the leader of the Ministry of Darkness (with similar
apparel). Since Wrestlemania XX, the Undertaker has appeared as a hybrid version of the Deadman character, using elements of the previous Deadman incarnations. His other persona has been that of The American Bad-Ass, a biker, which he portrayed from May, 2000 through November, 2003. The Undertaker is also associated with various specialty matches: the Casket match, the Buried Alive match, the Hell in a Cell and the Last Ride match. An important part of the character is the Undertaker character’s half-brother Kane, who has also played an important role in The Undertaker’s character development. Kane was introduced in 1997, and has both feuded with The Undertaker and performed in a tag-team with him as the Brothers of Destruction. The Undertaker holds an unrivaled record of being undefeated at WrestleMania, WWE’s premier pay-per-view event, with a 20–0 record. Among other accolades, Calaway is an eight-time World Champion having won the WWF/E Championship four times and the World Heavyweight Championship three times as The Undertaker, and the USWA Unified World Heavyweight Championship once under the Master of Pain character. The Undertaker is also a seven-time World Tag Team champion: a six-time WWF Tag Team Champion and one-time WCW Tag Team Champion. The Undertaker was the winner of the 2007 Royal Rumble
led the Philippine team to a No. 3 finish in word basketball in Brazil in 1953. I was in Rizal High then and rooted for Ateneo, whose rival was San Beda. La Salle was not even in the radar screen at the time, with all due respect. It was San Beda versus Ateneo which drew mammoth crowds to the ovenlike Rizal Memorial Stadium, for the big enchilada, the Zamora Trophy, which San Beda got and retired after three years as champion, thanks to Pomfret. When I got to San
Beda in 1955, I might have been torn between Ateneo’s Moro Lorenzo, et. al. and San Beda’s Caloy, et. al. But that little love for San Beda, slowly grew and grew, until it became a passion that whipped the blood. It still does — umpa, umpa — if fan came from fanatic, I can only agree. Time was when the NCAA was king, but later wracked by violence in the 60′s, it was suspended. And revived. Elitist Ateneo and La Salle were unaffordable to me in 1955. San Beda, our
YES! VOL.5 ISSUE 24 • APRIL 5-7, 2012
11 of 16 PBA stars confirm Gilas II stint
YES. Gary David of Powerade (top left), Ranidel De Ocampo of Talk N Text (bottom left) and Alex Cabagnot of Petron Blaze (top rght) have all confirmed their tint with the Gilas II program.z
LEVEN of the 16 invited PBA stars have said “Yes” to the Gilas II Pilipinas national program. This means, only James Yap, Marc Pingirs of B-Meg, Alex Cabagnot and Arwind Santos of Petron Blaze and Marcio Lassiter of Powerade have not confirmed their stint. Kelly Williams, Jimmy Alapag, Jayson Castro, Larry Fonacier, Ryan Reyes and Ranidel de Ocampo of Talk ‘N Text, LA Tenorio and Sonny Thoss of Alaska, Gabe Norwood of Rain or Shine, Gary David of Powerade, and Enrico Villanueva of Barangay Ginebra signed the letter of intent to join the pool of the national team. Gilas II coach Chot
Reyes confirmed the participation of the players in a text message sent to InterAKTV. In a previous interview, Reyes said he expects all 16 players to commit to the national team’s cause as it is the ultimate dream even of players playing in the PBA. “I still believe that it’s every players’ dream to play for the national team,” he said. Yap and Pingris are still competing in the ongoing PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinals, where their team is trailing 1-0 to Meralco. Cabagnot, Santos, and Lassiter, meanwhile, are on the sidelines after failing to make it to the quarterfinals of the tournament.
JUMP FOR JOY. Maria Kirilenko of Russia celebrates winning the women’s doubles final with team mate Nadia Petrova against Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci of Italy on day 14 of the Sony Ericsson Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center in Key Biscayne, Florida.