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Serving a seamless society





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poised to become ‘smart city’ By MAYA M. PADILLO


or Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), Davao City is poised to become a smart city because of its potential and is offering to help the city to be developed into a smart city through innovations.

A smart city is a designation given to a city that incorporates information and communication tech-

nologies (ICT) to enhance the quality and

performance of urban services. “We want to transform Davao as smart city and we can offer our expertise. Because smart city is very comprehensive,” said Ambassador Michael Peiyung Hsu, Taipei Economic and Cultural Of�ice in the Philippines during the opening of Taiwan Expo 2019 at SM Lanang Premier’s SMX Convention Center in

Lanang on Friday. TAITRA Chairman James Huang described Davao City as the engine boosting regional economy and that their coming to Davao City is timely as they want to show the best Taiwan has to offer in terms of technology innovations in the areas of smart city, smart healthcare, Taiwan lifestyle,


Dancers wearing fairytale characters-inspired dresses perform enchanting Christmas dance during SM City Davao’s grand Christmas launch dubbed “An Enchanting Christmas”held at the Annex event center on Friday evening. Lean Daval Jr



Taiwan External Trade Development Council chair James Huang hands over to Governor Douglas Cagas of Davao del Sur a heart-shaped Taiwan Expo material which symbolizes the Taiwanese organization’s $20,000 financial assistance to the quake victims of Davao del Sur during the opening of Taiwan Expo 2019 at SMX Convention Center in Lanang, Davao City on Friday. Lean Daval Jr

Taiwan’s trade groups extend financial aid to quake victims T

Davao City LGU offers stress debriefing for quake victims

By MAYA M. PADILLO Taiwanese non-pro�it trade organization extended �inancial assistance to earthquake victims of Davao City and Davao del Sur.


The �inancial aid amounting to P300,000 was received by Davao City from the Taiwan Association Incorporated and another P1 million (20,000 US dollars) was donated to Davao del Sur by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA). The �inancial assistance were personally extended by TAITRA Chairman James Huang to Dr. Malou Monteverde, a trustee of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce

and Industry Inc (DCCCII) and Governor Douglas Cagas during the opening of the Taiwan Expo 2019 held at SM Lanang Premier’s SMX Convention Center in Lanang, Davao City on Friday. “The expo encourages more cooperation between the Philippines and Taiwan. This is the �irst kind in Davao and we have come to Davao in a time when the island of Mindanao is tested by Mother Nature and be-

fore we came here some friends suggested that we postponed the expo for security concern. And I said no. We must come. Actually we are used to earthquakes in Taiwan,” Huang said. Huang said despite of all the calamities he believes Taiwan as the closest friend and neighbor of the Philippines, they must come and standby the Filipino people. “This is the time that Taiwan should come and I want to say to all Filipinos that today we are all Filipinos. We are all Mindanaons and Taiwan and the Philippines, we are family,” he said.

Founded in 1970, TAITRA is Taiwan’s foremost non-pro�it trade promoting organization, Sponsored by the government and industry organizations, TAITRA assists enterprises to expand their global market reach. With a headquarter in Taipei, TAITRA has a team of 1,300 specialists and operates �ive local of�ices in Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Taichung, Tainan and Kaohsiung as well as 60 branches worldwide. Together with Taipei World Trade Center (TWTC) and Taiwan Trade Center (TTC), TAITRA has formed a global network dedicated to promoting world trade.

presented the P300,000 cheque to Bansalan and the P500,000 cheque to Magsaysay. Magsaysay Mayor Arthur Davin personally accepted the cheque as he expressed gratitude for the generosity of the people of Mati and its of�icials led by Mayor Michelle. “It gives us more strength and energy to hurdle the crisis we are facing right now every time we receive donations. We can rely feel a sigh of relief. Thank you City Gov-

ernment of Mati thru Mayor Michelle Rabat for the P500,000 cash assistance for the people of Magsaysay,” Mayor Davin said. After Magsaysay, the Mati of�icials proceeded to Bansalan for the check turnover before heading back to the City of Mati. Mayor Michelle said that since Mati has not been affected much by the series of tremors that devastated the provinces of Davao del Sur and North Cotabato, she deemed it proper for Mati LGU to

share part of its calamity fund to the people of Bansalan and Magsaysay. “It is but human nature for us to respond to our fellow Filipinos, Dabawenyos at that, who are in distress. Whatever little we may have, we deem it proper to share and help. Hope that this assistance would somehow alleviate the sufferings of our brothers and sisters in the two most-affected towns. If only we could give more, we would have,” Mayor Michelle said.

Mati LGU turns over P800K financial assistance to Bansalan, Magsaysay


ity of Mati of�icials led by City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Of�icer Charlemagne Bagasol and former councilor Allan Andrada, who represented Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat, formally turned over the P800,000 �inancial aid to Bansalan and Magsaysay municipalities most affected by the series of strong tremors that hit Mindanao last month. The Mati of�icials left for Davao del Sur Friday morning and immediately


he Davao City government’s help to quake-hit areas is now extended to stress debrie�ing for quake survivors to cope with their trauma from the earthquake and aftershocks during the last two months. In partnership with the Philippine Commission for the Urban Poor (PCUP), the city government through the City Social Services Development Of�ice (CSSDO) will conduct stress debrie�ing sessions with quake survivors in North Cotabato. The teams who are composed of various volunteers group are currently undergoing training on holding stress debrie�ing sessions for Kidapawan City and the towns of Tulunan and Makilala in North Cotabato on No-

vember 8 and 9. “Their recovery is a long process and we are praying for their recovery the fastest as possible. We coordinated with our Local Government Units for interventions,” said PCUP Commissioner Norman Baloro. He said the CSSDO and PCUP have come up with a holistic approach on how to conduct the stress debrie�ing sessions in the quake-hit areas. “We need stress debrie�ing because the quakes have traumatized them. Sometimes, they no longer know what to do when they experience another quake,” he said. Baloro emphasized the need for stress debrie�ing sessions to help the people regain their strength and will help them go back to normalcy. CIO

50 ex-rebels in Bukidnon get P2.7-million cash aid


t least 50 former rebels of the New People’s Army (NPA) who have surrendered to military authorities, received cash assistance of more than PHP2.7 million on Friday. The cash assistance was part of the government's Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP) intended to help former rebels start a new life with their fami-

lies. Given at the headquarters of the Army's 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB) in Malaybalay City, the awarding of the cash assistance was attended by representatives of the regional of�ices of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development, as well as local police and military








Dengvaxia fate now up to Palace – DOH


Elizabeth Zimmerman, former wife of President Duterte, together with the President and her grandchildren, (from L-R) Stingray, Yair, Bella, Sharky and Stonefish, poses with Santa Claus during SM City Davao’s

grand Christmas launch dubbed “An Enchanting Christmas” held on Friday night. Lean Daval Jr

alacañang will have the �inal say on whether or not controversial dengue vaccine Dengvaxia could return to the shelves, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Saturday. Duque said French manufacturer Sano�i Pasteur has appealed the revocation of its certi�icate of product registration to the Of�ice of the President. The Food and Drug Administration �irst suspended Dengvaxia’s registration in 2017 after Sano�i Pasteur admitted that its vaccines pose a serious health risk to individuals who had no prior history of dengue infection. The Department of Health in August this year rejected Sano�i Pasteur’s plea for it to reverse the FDA’s decision. Duque said Sano�i Pasteur failed to submit the required documents on its risk management plans.

“So now the ball is in the court – I guess the next level of appeal has to be with the OP (Of�ice of the President),” Duque said in a media brie�ing. “So we leave it to the OP to decide on the matter because the appeal is now pending,” he added. Duque stressed that if Malacañang would allow the selling of Dengvaxia in the country, “it has to be under very strict conditions.” “Kailangan itesting mo na muna yung bata kasi ang (You have to conduct tests on the children because the) risk with Dengvaxia is when you give it to children who never had dengue infection in the past. So it is your duty or the doctor to estabish whether a child has had prior dengue infection or not,” he said. “It is safe to use it but the protection rate is not even very high,” he added,

he Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB 11) has recommended for the immediate relocation of families from three critical barangays in Bansalan, due to the instability of the ground and slopes attributed to the recent earthquakes. Based on the MGB-XI report on its rapid ocular inspection conducted on November 5-6, 2019, occurrences of tension cracks and landslides were con�irmed in Barangays Altavista, Anonang and Managa. In Brgy. Altavista, Purok 3, Purok 5 and Sitio Sunop of Purok 7 were considered threatened by impending landslide primarily because of tension cracks. MGB-XI’s report as of Friday revealed that majority of the houses were

built on the roadside situated along ridges which is generally susceptible to landslide. "Meron pang mga residents in these critical areas. De�initely, we recommend for immediate evacuation of these people to safer grounds,” stated Beverly Mae M. Brebante, Geosciences Division OICChief of MGB-XI. According to the report, tension cracks in Sitio Malupo in Brgy. Anonang were observed crowning along steep slopes directly going towards Miral River. The residents observed that the openings started gradually from Oct. 16 to Oct. 31 earthquakes. At least two to three households have evacuated from below the said slope. But the barangay captain reported that sev-

Gov’t to keep PH ‘safe, T adaptive, and resilient’


MGB 11 recommends immediate relocation in 3 Bansalan bgys


resident Rodrigo Duterte’s administration will work harder to ensure that the Philippines is still “safe, adaptive, and resilient,” Malacañang said Friday as the country commemorates the 6th anniversary of super typhoon Yolanda that wreaked havoc in Eastern Visayas.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo gave the assurance as he acknowledged that the super typhoon had caused massive deaths and destruction of infrastructure and livelihood in the central Philippines. “The Of�ice of the President joins the entire nation in remembering the 6th anniversary of super typhoon

Yolanda (international name Haiyan),” Panelo said in a statement. “The Of�ice of the President recognizes that natural hazards have become the new normal in the 21st century, and therefore, we must continue to be relentless in creating safe, adaptive and resilient communities. It is our collective responsibility,”

Some schools in Cotabato still not ready for resumption of classes


ome schools here damaged by the series of strong quakes are still not �it for learners, a school of�icial said. Salome Sumalinog, assistant principal of the Makilala Central Elementary School (MCES), said their classrooms have cracks on their walls, beams, and columns. There are at least 47 classrooms at MCES, she said. Sumalinog said of�icials from the Department of Education (DepEd) in North Cotabato and in Region 12 told them it is still not safe to hold classes inside their rooms. The DepEd of�icials are planning to construct at least 47 temporary learning spaces at the MCES school ground. However, it will take weeks or months to complete the construction, according to Sumalinog. Other schools dam-

aged by the quakes include Makilala National High School, Malasila National Vocational High School, Malasila Elementary School and Saguing Elementary School. The Makilala Institute of Science and Technology (MIST), a school initiated by the local government unit, has also incurred major damages, especially its main building. Cracks are seen on its walls, beams, columns, and posts. These schools, according to Makilala LGU of�icials, are used as temporary shelters or evacuation centers of quake victims from different barangays. Once classes resume, the evacuees have to transfer to a place just a few meters away from the temporary learning spaces, Sumalinog explained. “The evacuees can stay here in the school ground. We are not saying they have


he added. One of the most powerful tropical cyclones ever recorded in the country, Yolanda unleashed its wrath in Eastern Visayas on November 8, 2013. Around 6,300 people died while over 4.4 million people were rendered homeless after Yolanda hit the central Philippines. Panelo said the Palace honors those who were on the front lines, including government agencies, several organizations, and volunteers who helped the country “during one of the most dif�icult times our country faced.” “We laud the exemplary resilience of our own peo-

ple, which in the face of great adversity, have remained steadfast and have moved forward,” Panelo said. Panelo said the devastation in Eastern Visayas caused by Yolanda has taught the government a “hard lesson in public service.’ He guaranteed that the President and his administration would continue focusing on a platform of “tapang at malasakit”, particularly when it responds to the needs of typhoon victims. “Yolanda has likewise taught us, especially those in the bureaucracy, a hard lesson in public service. Tapang

GOV’T, P9

MGB 11, P9

THUMBMARK. A personnel of the Department of Social Welfare and Development stationed in an evacuation center at the Makilala Institute of Science and Technology compound in North Cotabato takes a thumbmark from an elderly woman on Friday as proof that aid has been released. MindaNews photo by GG BUENO


No price hike for some Noche Buena products


he Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) reported that a total of 134 Noche Buena products have maintained their prices while six products have lower prices in 2019 compared to last year’s suggested retail price (SRP) list. In a 2018 versus 2019 comparative SRPs of Noche Buena products released by the agency, 134 product lines, such as queso de bola, cheese, sandwich spread, mayonnaise, spaghetti, elbow and salad macaroni, spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, as well as creamer products have maintained their prices since last year. Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez shared the news amid recent reports that 92 products have increased their prices. Every year, there are increases for a few premium brands and most would have minimal increases. However, brands for mass-based markets do not usually change. “This is due to their fear of competition and the probability of losing market share in a price-sensitive segment,” Lopez said in a statement. Six products, including queso de bola, spaghetti, and tomato sauce, even decreased their prices by PHP11. Among the six products are Danes Cheese Ball, Amigo Segurado spaghetti, La Filipina spaghetti, Del Monte Filipino Style tomato sauce, and Del Monte Original tomato sauce.

Meanwhile, among the 134 products with no price increase, nine were queso de bola (Ques-O, Magnolia, Che-Vital, Danes); 11 were cheese (Eden, Danes Classic, Kraft Cheddar, Che-Vital quickmelt); 14 were sandwich spread (Eden, Cheez Whiz, Best Food, Lady’s Choice); 14 were mayonnaise products (Eden, Best Food, Lady’s Choice); 13 were spaghetti products (El Real, Fiesta, La Filipina, Royal, Sunshine, Ideal Gourmet, Balducci, San Remo); 17 were elbow and salad macaroni (Sunshine, Fiesta, Ideal Gourmet, Royal); 19 were spaghetti sauce products (Amigo Segurado, UFC, Del Monte, Sunshine, Fiesta, Royal); 10 were tomato sauce (UFC, Del Monte, Amigo); and three were creamer products (Angel Krem, Alaska Crema Combi, Asada). Ham manufacturers have introduced new sizes for some of their products. These variations are available in smaller packs, which offer lower cash out for consumers. DTI recently issued the SRPs of Noche Buena products, which serve as a price guide for consumers as they prepare for the holidays. Noche Buena products are not considered part of the necessities and prime commodities, and they are not under price control. Lopez advised consumers to purchase their Noche Buena and Media Noche needs at supermarkets,


Taipei Economic and Cultural Office of the Philippines representative Ambassador Michael Peiyung Hsu says in his message during the opening of the two-day Taiwan Expo 2019 held at SMX Convention Center on Friday that Taiwan External Trade Development Council chose Davao

of Filipinos. “Yung pinag-aaralan natin kung ano ang uri ng pagkain na very low nutritional value, in fact some food have zero nutritional value, ‘yung ang tututukan,” he said. He said one of the proposal is putting labels on the food to help the people choose what they eat. “Meron diyan potential food labeling types of intervention para alam ng taumbayan kung ano ba ‘yung pagkain na mas masustansiya at ano yung hindi masustansiya,” Lambino said. He clari�ied that there is no formal proposal on imposing tax on salty food. “Wala pa pong speci�ic na proposal. What we really want to focus on are low nutrition or zero nutrition food. Ang objective is to improve the health status of the Filipino people,” he said. In October, DOH spokesperson and Undersecretary Eric Domingo said there’s nothing concrete yet but they are studying the possibility of taxing food with too much salt. He said the experience of several countries showed that taxing on unhealthy food led to reduced consumption and pushed companies to reformulate their products. He added too much salt in the diet could cause hypertension, heart and kidney diseases. Some senators have already opposed the plan.

City as the organization has noticed great economical potential in Davao Region and it is considered as the agricultural center of the Philippines. Lean Daval Jr

Energy experts push for cleaner fuel in PH A

group of energy advocates have formed the Philippine Energy Independence Council (PEIC) whose main goal is to move both the government DTI, P9 and the private sector to explore new indigenous, renewable, and cleaner energy options for the country.

Finance dept. not backing proposal to tax salty foods

he Department of Finance is not pushing for imposition of taxes on food with high salt content, two of its of�icials said Friday. In separate occasions during a tax reform seminar and workshop for media practitioners, Finance Undersecretary Karl Chua and Assistant Secretary Antonio Lambino III said there is an ongoing study but it will not focus on tax imposition. “We are studying it but it seems like the best way to do it is by regulation and promotion of the health aspects, not from the tax,” Chua said. Lambino said there is now a technical working group composed by the DOF, Department of Trade and Industry and headed by the Department of Health studying how to lessen the consumption of food with less or zero nutritional value. “Ang priority talaga natin ay suportahan ang health status ng ating mga kababayan, gawing mas malusog ang populasyon ng Pilipinas. So we are working with DTI and DOH to �igure out ano nga ba ang mga dapat mabawasan na pagkonsumo ng pagkain na very low or zero nutritional value,” he said. He said the objective of the study is to push for healthier eating habits and improve the health status


The PEIC seeks to initiate and sustain public discourses on energy reserve issues with the speci�ic goal of pushing for the country's eventual energy independence. The Philippines is falling behind its Southeast Asian neighbors in terms of energy independence as the country continues to rely heavily on oil and gas imports while energy demand continues to increase. On September 3, energy leaders from the Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries highlighted this observation during an in-depth panel session called “Energy Independence: Indigenous is Energy Security” during this year’s Powertrends at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City. The energy experts who participated in the panel discussion were Dr. Arthur Saldivar-Sali, author of “Black Gold: The Search for Oil to Power a Nation” and former PNOC chief geologist; Anton Safronov, chief commercial of�icer of Parami Energy (Myanmar); lawyer Kiril Caral, managing counsel of Shell Philippines B.V.; Ramon Clarete, project director of Gas Policy Development Project (GPDP); Jeoffrey Caranto, president of National Geothermal Association of the Philippines (NGAP); and Rob Fisher, development manager of

Tamarind Resources (Malaysia). The panelists gave useful insights on how the country can learn from its neighbors on the area of energy independence, as well as solutions on addressing the current energy situation and responding to future trends where energy demand is expected to grow. “We cannot afford to not do anything. We don’t want to go back to the 90s where we were not ready to cope with the energy demands of the country," Clarete said. Natural gas for cheaper electricity

Natural gas is an energy source that is a viable but an underdeveloped alternative to oil, with the only major development in the Philippines being the Malampaya Deep Water Gas-to-Power Project, which was a result of the collaboration between the Philippine government, Chevron, and Shell Philippines Exploration BV (SPEX). It has since then supplied power to 40 percent of Luzon or 30 percent of the whole Philippines. However, Safronov, Myanmar-based Russian energy expert, has observed that high electricity rates remain in the country. Recalling his time working for French petro-

leum �irm Total, Safronov said this is the reason why the company chose to look into the Philippines to invest in. He said what we are paying per kilowatt-hour is “almost the same amount of price that Singaporeans pay.” Safronov believes that the Philippines’ long-time partnership with Shell is an opportunity to learn from one of the best technological leaders in natural gas. He hoped that the country can take this further to contribute to its self-sustaining production, so the Filipinos will ultimately be able to pay a low price per kilowatt-hour of electricity. Caral, meanwhile, said the success of natural gas exploration in the country has become the solution to the intermittent nature of renewable energy as natural gas is considered not only indigenous but also stable. “The Malampaya project was a huge success. Malampaya’s help in meeting a substantial part of the country’s energy demands merits new explorations in this area,” he said. Caral added that to elevate the Philippines' energy independence, the Department of Energy should continue pushing for more onshore and offshore explorations in the Philippines. “We need to have more Malampayas. We need to be able to replicate the success that Malampaya has achieved,” Caral said. He said there is a need to remove legal uncertainties and provide physical stability for investors, which are critical in times of low oil prices. “It is important for the government to strike the

right balance between getting its rightful share but also making it attractive and competitive compared to other countries,” he said. PH once a trailblazer in energy independence

Given the country’s present energy woes, it might be far-fetched to think that the country was once on track toward being self-suf�icient regarding its energy needs, but Sali said it did happen during the Marcos era, when the government-owned Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) was established. Sali, who served as PNOC chief geologist, technical director of the Petroleum Board, and deputy director of the Bureau of Energy at the time, said the PNOC was “drilling 10 exploration wells a year and had one discovery every year from 1974 to 1986.” Their initiatives also pushed the Philippines to rank second in geothermal power just after the United States. For 12 years, the efforts of the Ministry of Energy and the PNOC reduced the dependence of the country to global imports. At the time, the country's energy supply went from zero percent indigenous to 50 percent indigenous. In other words, half of the Philippines energy requirements then were supplied by indigenous energy sources. “We came from very active to almost none. And that is the major reason why we are at the bottom of the Southeast Asian energy picture,” he added. “The abolition of the Ministry of Energy and the removal of PNOC's status





Remembering PTA The uproar over the cutting down of trees at the Clifford Park in Roxas Avenue reverberated around so much as to elicit immediate response and action from city of�icials. Thanks to social media, the issue generated massive sympathy. It was indeed a woeful sight to see the trees at the park gone with just sweeps of a chainsaw from what was supposed to be a plan to rehabilitate this patch of recreational and relaxation area couched right at the very heart of the city. But the ill-advised cutting cut through the hearts of people who have marvelled at the beauty of these trees amidst concrete structures. For sure, it also cut through the fortress of environmental consciousness as one of the city’s last lines of defense against global warming and climate change are knocked down haplessly. Why? Netizens asked. Yesterday, Mayor Sara Duterte issued an apology. The city government was to rehabilitate Clifford Park in order to make it hold more people and update its amenities for park users. The problem is, there was no clear instruction not to cut the trees. And so overzealous workers, unaware of its repercussions to the environment and the value of those trees, sprang to the site and buzzsawed the poor trees. In a sweep, the trees are gone.


Providing solutions to a seamless global village.

Mayor Duterte promised to plant trees again in the park as part of its redevelopment plan. This incident brings back memories of the old Palaruang Lungsod or the PTA sports complex. Had social media presence been as intense as it is now, would the PTA be saved too from being converted to what is now the People’s Park? Perhaps it will not change the decision but maybe the sports and �itness component may still be integrated in the design. Back then, the old PTA was home to the country’s football team, then the reigning national champions. It was also home to joggers, collegiate athletes, tennis club, baseball and softball players and anyone into �itness. The afternoons at the old PTA were festive and teeming with sweat-drenched men and women, and children as well. Without an active venue for expression, there was no way those who wished to keep the remaining open space in the city could stop from the impending redevelopment. The PTA was eventually lost. That was then. Davao City has forgotten PTA and have embraced People’s Park. Like the PTA, this latest environmental misdeed to Clifford Park will also be forgotten once the redevelopment is done. But the wounds it endured from the loss of its trees will linger for now. ANTONIO M. AJERO Editor in Chief


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BANNING PLASTICS “The problems of plastics have been created in our lifetime. Half the volume of the plastic ever manufactured was made only in the last 15 years. The costs of inaction are rising and jointly, we can roll out urgent and concrete actions.” – Agata E. Pawlowska, World Bank Acting Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines *** During the 43rd Cabinet meeting in Malacañang last November 6, Presidential Spokesperon Salvador Panelo told the press that President Rodrigo R. Duterte is mulling to ban the use of plastics in the country. But Panelo never elaborated which kind of plastics are to be banned. These days, plastics are everywhere. At home, you can �ind chairs, tables, and cabinets made of plastics. In the kitchen, you may discover that plastics have also invaded: cups, plates, forks, and spoons. Water, soft drinks and sauces now comes in bottles made of plastics. Other items where plastics are part of them are ball pens, computers, toys, helmets, trophies, cars, motorbikes, vases, etc. It may not be all types of plastics that will be banned but only those single-use plastics. In

a news dispatch, British Prime Minister Theresa May dubbed these items as one of “the greatest environmental challenges facing the world.” Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu agrees. “Plastic, particularly those for single-use packaging, has greatly contributed to the degradation of the environment,” he points out. Associated Press quoted Sherri Mason, chair of the geology and environmental sciences department at the State University of New York at Fredonia, as saying: “We have to confront this material and our use of it, because so much of it is single-use disposable plastic and this is a material that doesn’t go away. It doesn’t return to the planet the way other materials do.” Most of these single-use plastics end up in the oceans. The most prevalent among them are the plastic bags. “Since they were introduced in the 1970s, plastic bags have in�iltrated our lives,” wrote Caroline Williams in New Scientist. The typical plastic bag that weighs just a few grams and is a few millimeters thick might seem thoroughly innocuous were it not for the sheer volume of global production: 500 billion to one trillion a year.

The United Nations estimates there is now 100 million tons of plastic waste in the oceans, with the vast majority coming from land-based sources. The implications of that are still not well known, but there is growing and alarming evidence that it has begun to disrupt ecosystems and �ind its way throughout the good chain, including humans. Some studies have singled out the Philippines as among the largest sources of discarded plastics that ends up in the ocean. A 2015 report on plastic pollution by the Ocean Conservancy charity and the McKinsey Centre for Business and Environment ranked the Philippines third – just behind China and Indonesia, two of the world’s most thickly-populated countries. According to the said report, the Philippines generates 2.7 million tons of plastic waste each year with 20% – the of half a million tons – of that leaks into the open seas. “There is lack of statistics on the amount of plastic in the Philippine waters,” observes Agata E. Pawlowska, World Bank Acting Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines. “What is known is that the amount of mismanaged plastic waste is continuously increas-

ing, and that the plastic crisis requires urgent action.” Plastics “is in our air, our water, our food, our excrement,” said Nina Butler, the chief executive of�icer of More Recycling, a research and consulting company that works with the plastics industry on recycling. “It’s very, very pervasive.” “Plastics freed us from the con�ines of the natural world, from the material constraints and limited supplies that had long bounded human activity,” Scienti�ic American stated. “The arrival of these malleable and versatile materials gave producers the ability to create a treasure trove of new products while expanding opportunities for people of modest means to become consumers.” But these opportunities come with a price. Every day, Filipinos buy 163 million pieces of sachets, according to the environment group The Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives. That’s almost 60 billion sachets a year! Sachets are typically made up of laminated �ilm of plastic and aluminum. Deemed to be dif�icult to recycle, it often ends up in land�ills, or in waterways or oceans. Here’s a report from the

Worldwide Fund for Nature: “As the Philippines is one of the socalled ‘sachet economies,’ most of the debris gathered during clean-ups are plastic, including single-use sachets for shampoo, toothpaste, creams, laundry soap, and even food,” said Dan Ramirez, the organization’s communications and media manager, in an article featured in its website. Because they are easy to sell – which is why even in remote communities, you see ribbons of sachets hanging from neighborhood stores – large multinational manufacturing companies continue to market them. Interestingly, the Philippines has a law on solid waste but it is poorly enforced. Likewise, it doesn’t regulate packaging manufacturing. There are several laws on banning the use of plastics but they remain pending in Congress. Senator Francis Pangilinan has �iled Senate Bill No. 40, which seeks a ban on the importation, manufacture and use of all single-use plastics. Senator Cynthia Villar, on the other hand, �iled Senate Bill No. 333, which prohibits the issuance of single-use plastics by food establishments, markets and retailers.


A BRIEF HISTORY OF DAVAO GAY BARS At a time when the hottest social subject that keeps bobbing in and out of the headlines, at least historically, is about LGBTQIA+, it’s about time we take a peep at the gay revolution that has affected Davao’s milieu over the years. Davao region, in fact, has been at the forefront of gay movement in Mindanao for decades now. In retrospect, the �irst ‘same sex marriage’ in the country happened in Compostela Valley on February 4, 2005 between two members of the New People’s Army (NPA). The event, well chronicled in media, was done under the rules of the underground movement. To the credit of the LGBTQIA+ community, the �irst Pride March in Davao City was held on March 4, 2016, followed by another similar event three months later, on June 1, 2016. Thereafter, on a yearly basis, the gay parade has been done every June in the city’s downtown area. (The �irst Pride March in Asia was conducted in Manila on June 26, 1994.) A testament to the growing LGBTQIA+ movement in the city are the gay and lesbian

associations that have sprouted in recent years. The more active clubs are Boulevard League of Gays, Salmonan Isla Verde Miniforest LGBT, Ugnayan LGBTQ of Ilang Association, Buhangin United Gays Association, United Gay Association, Lez Be Friends, Pretty Boy Academy, GLUTA, HUBAG. COM, Boyzone Davao, Planet Eagle Family, Fab LGBT, Racos Davao, United Gays Association of Toril, Inc., The Friendzone, and LGBTQ Davao City by MGO and Lesbian. LGBTQIA+ revolution started in Davao way, way earlier. Outside their usual participation in comic skits, beauty parlors, fashion design events, and beauty pageants, open gay and lesbian social involvement started more openly in the late 1970s. Davao’s �irst gay bar (name forgotten) opened in 1980 in a renovated garage; it was a discreet drinking pub situated directly across present-day Tower Inn along Elpidio Quirino (formerly Tomas Claudio) street. The waiters, typically macho and good-looking, wore undershirts (singlets) and �ish-net briefs that made the crotch conspicuous. The

gay lounge did not operate long enough after its existence was reported over radio station dxRH and raided by the police. In the 1990s, the most popular gay bar was Midnight, situated at the junction of J.P. Cabaguio and J.P. Laurel Avenues. It was, for some time, a trendy drinking pub but over time it became notorious for nocturnal brawls. Efforts were made to revive its halcyon days by changing its name, but the notoriety attributed to the place eventually led to the bar’s demise. In 2000, another gay bar (name forgotten) later sprang along Graciano Lopez-Jaena Street, the road leading to Rizal Memorial Colleges campus at Quiambao Heights. It operated in a stand-alone structure that used to be a snack lounge. Its most noticeable landmark was the statue of a squatting Mexican, chin on his knees and with his sombrero, a broadbrimmed felt hat. Inside, it had a dais where macho dancers presented their sensual performances. The city’s longest surviving gay bar is Boyztown, launched in the early 2000s

and now operating at The Site, at Jacinto Extension corner Mapa Street. The businesss has already undergone three reincarnations in identity and management. It is known among the LGBTQIA+ simply as Bt Davao, a short form of its original name. Outrage, an online magazine, in its July 27, 2013, travelogue titled ‘Bt: Where the boys are in Davao City,’ described the haunt’s ambience: “But, no, [Bt Davao] isn’t a grandiose place. It’s actually but a small place – a loft-like venue, with the downstairs area able to host over 50 people (tightly gathered together), and the upstairs area able to host 30 more people (also tightly gathered together). There are tables outside, too, for 20 or more people – though because of the 1:00 AM curfew, there are more who prefer to stay inside even if the place gets (too) packed (for it to still be comfy). “But exactly because it’s a small-ish place, is why many �lock to it. People know people. They chat. They say hello. They smile. And for the too-obvious tourist like me (current state: long hair, so VERY non-clone-

like for a gay person), they stare, craning heads to check out the “stranger” in their midst. This is a community of sorts. Of Davao City’s MSM [men having sex with men] … “There’s singing, too. Bt is, after all, a singalong bar. And no, good voice is not a prerequisite – particularly because just about everyone singing may already have had a drink or two by the time their r turns come. But that they have fun, that’s apparent.” (Paragraphing mine.) There used to be a gay bar (name forgotten) also along Rizal Street in the 2000s, just beside the Phil-Am building. Prior to its conversion, it was a popular cabaret-type nightclub. Today, Davao’s extant gay bars include, among others, the Halley’s at Bacahoa Village in Cabantian, Buhangin District; comedy bar Zigudo along Florentino Torres Street; Stre3ts Urban Lifestyle Pub at Loyola Street, Obrero District; Fame Disco Pub at corner Legazpi and San Pedro streets; Adam’s Apple Bar, also known as Salambat, at Km. 7, J.P. Laurel Avenue; and Masculados Restobar at Anda Street.




“If the rice farmers are hurting grievously from the 30% drop in the farm gate price of palay as a consequence of rice tarif�ication, the coconut farmers, who are poorer than the rice farmers in the �irst place, are even worse off,” wrote national scientist Dr. Emil Q. Javier in his Manila Bulletin column. “The price of coconut has dropped 40% since last year.” This must be the reason why a teacher from Davao City wrote in his social media account: “The price of copra is very cheap but the coconut oil is expensive. What is the Department of Agriculture doing? When will it be able to help the thousands of coconut farmers in the Philippines?” The Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), the government’s agency tasked for the coconut industry, wrote in its website: “The �luctuation of domestic copra market is cyclical and this is beyond the control of the PCA or any government agency. This is because the domestic copra price is dependent to the coconut oil price in the global market. “The global coconut oil price, on the other hand, is determined or affected by the supply and demand situation of other vegetable oils (that is, oil palm, soybean, rapeseed, sun�lower, olive oil, etc.) in the international market,” PCA continued. “Though the Philippines is the biggest exporter of coconut oil in the world, coconut oil is just one of the many vegetable oils produced globally. As such, its price is greatly affected by the movement of prices of other vegetable oils.” Since December 2017, the price of palm oil in the world market has been going down. This explains the very low price of copra as companies in the international market using vegetable oils buy more palm oil as the supply is high and the price is low. “But if the supply of palm oil goes down,” PCA said, “prices of vegetable oils (including coconut) will again go up.” Filipino coconut farmers, however, can still manage to increase their income by not solely depending on copra. There’s more to coconut than just copra. Benjamin R. Lao of barangay Eman in Bansalan, Davao del Sur has proven this. When he inherited the 5-hectare farm land from his parents in 1998, there

were already coconut trees growing. Every three months, he harvested from as low as 400 to as high as 600 nuts. Since commercial fertilizers were very expensive, he planted different nitrogen �ixing species like Flemingia macrophylla, Desmodium rensonii and Indigofera anil in various parts of the farm. The leaves from these leguminous shrubs that fell below the ground became instant organic fertilizer for the coconut trees. Several months later, the coconut yields markedly increased to 15,000 nuts per quarter. “Some of my neighbors told me it was a miracle,” Lao says. Although the money he made from copra was good, he wanted to earn more. After attending a seminar conducted by PCA, he thought of producing coconut sugar from the coconut sap or toddy. Lao learned from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) that coconut toddy contains 12%-18% sugar in its natural form with important vitamins and amino acids. It is also rich in nutrients and high in potassium. Phosphorus, magnesium, sulfur, calcium and vitamin C. The �lowers of the coconut tree provide the sap that is made into sugar. In his research, Lao found out that a coconut tree in good stand can yield an average of two liters of sap daily. At least four coconut trees are needed to produce one kilograms of sugar per day. “The production of coconut sugar is very simple,” he says. “It is just a natural process of heat evaporation to convert liquid sap to solid form of sugar granules. It requires no complicated and high-cost machineries or equipment nor a huge capital.” What one thing about coconut sugar is that is all natural. That is why it is recommended to people with diabetes, a disease that af�licts more than 5 million Filipinos. “Coconut sugar has low glycemic index, a measure of blood sugar, thus good for diabetics and those having prostate problems,” Lao says. “It has also glutamic acid, the same ingredient that can be found in Viagra.” In the beginning, he only sells the locally-produced coconut product inside his farm. Believing there was an untapped market for such product, he hired people and started producing other alter-

native sweeteners like coco honey and coco sap drink that are used for desserts and other delicacies. Lao later registered these products with the Department of Trade and Industry under the moniker Donnabelle – a combination of the names of his two daughters. He started distributing his products in some outlets in nearby areas and the cities of Davao, Digos, General Santos and Butuan. Outside of Mindanao, his coconut sugar is being sold in Cebu and Metro Manila. Due to the increasing demand for his products, he decided to incorporate Lao Integrated Farms Inc. in 2009. Since then, he has been exporting his products to the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and other countries. “My coconut sugar is guaranteed 100-percent free from chemicals,” he assures. But it’s not only coconut sugar that is very popular abroad. Teriyaki alldip sauce, another coconut-based product, is also a hit among foreign consumers. People who buy his products are assured that they are �it for human consumption as his farm has earned various local and international organic and safety certi�ications. Today, 80% of his coconut products are exported. He credited this achievement to continued research. Despite the success and awards he received, he never stopped doing studies on how to improve the quality of his products. In fact, he was named by DOST as a magsasaka-siyentista. “As a farmer-scientist,” he says, “I was able to focus on researching about coconut sap products. It took us eight months to study on how to make export-quality coconut syrup.” Lao has gone a long, long way. The son of a farmer, he used to walk two kilometers to get to his school during his basic education. When he was attending high school, he went to the town proper and helped the poultry business of his aunt. He went to Davao City and attended the erstwhile International Harvardian University where he got his Political Science degree. He later became a town councilor and then vice mayor of his hometown in Bansalan. He was working in

Davao City as director of the Bureau of Immigration and Deportation but fate intervened. His mother called him to divide equally the 40 hectares of their land among the eight siblings as inheritance. “I am the �ifth child but I was unanimously chosen to assign which portion of land should be given to each sibling,” he recalls. For some unknown reason, Lao selected the land that was so infertile that only cogon grass would thrive on it. His brothers and sisters never bothered to ask him his reasons; they were happy to get their own shares. “My parents wanted me to be a lawyer,” he admits. “But I wanted to toil the land to produce food to feed my family and earn sustainable income.” In another interview, he says, “Farming is really my �irst love.” Lao is not only a coconut farmer; he is also an organic farmer. In his farm, you won’t see his farm workers using chemical pesticides. “I had a tragic experience with chemical pesticides when I was still a teenager while cultivating rice in our farm located at the neighboring barangay,” he reveals. Instead, he recommends using Eman, an acronym for “epitibo, mura at natural” (effective, cheap, and natural). “This is a concoction composed of fresh goats’ manure, kakawate, makabuhay, and hot pepper,” he says. “These are soaked together for 48 hours and after that the concoction is ready for use.” According to Lao, Eman is effective in repelling plant pests and diseases. “We are committed to help preserve our environment,” he points out. “We want to teach Filipino

farme r s through natural method and that is by not using commercial fertilizers or pesticides.” To people who have been to his farm, they have described it as a haven. You don’t see only livestock and crops but ornamentals as well. “It’s nice to see beautiful �lowers underneath the trees,” Lao says. “In addition, the �lowers serve as breeding areas for bene�icial insects like spiders and dragon�lies.” He believes in adding value to a product. “Value adding is an important component in a farming system,” he explains. “For instance, if you have goats, you must know how to produce fresh milk and having other saleable products from the animals. In the case of coconut, don’t think only of copra because it is cheaper; you can always have another product to sell.” Aside from his coco-based major products, he also has ice cream using goat’s milk with �lavors such as malunggay, turmeric, durian and sour soap. He also incorporates his coconut sugar into a tea: mangosteen tea, malunggay tea, turmeric tea, and lemon grass tea. His success gone unnoticed. In fact, he received several recognition from different award-giving bodies: Most Outstanding Coconut Farmer from the Department of Agriculture in 2008, Productivity Olympics National Winner in 2009 from the Department of Labor and Employment, Micro Entrepreneur of the Year Presidential Award in 2009, Business Excellence Award from the Bank of the Philippines in 2010, and Organic Farmer of the Year in 2011 from the Department of Agriculture. Despite all these awards, Lao remains humble. “Even if I now have a

higher income,” he says, “I still need to feel the ground beneath my feet. For me, success is measured by how many people you can help.” In fact, he has employed some 67 regular employees in his farm who are paid higher than other agricultural workers in Davao region. Some of the children of these employees are “scholars of the farm,” who receive 100% tuition subsidy and allowance. According to Lao, there are also a group of farmers who help him in collecting toddy from other areas. “Some are former overseas contract workers and there are also who were members of the New People’s Army before,” he says. “There are also those coming from indigenous people’s groups. Imagine if my farm doesn’t exist, who will give them employment in this rural area?” Before they can join the group called Lao Mananggite and Employees Association, they have to be trained �irst the proper way of harvesting tuba. “The product is treated with immense care,” says Winea Adianon, a member of the association. “It should be stored in a clean, dry container and should be checked every few hours. One mistake and the product is ruined.” The coconut pilots, as those farmers who climb coconut trees are called, are paid per kilogram of the �inished coconut sugar from their harvest. Seven liters of fresh coconut toddy is equivalent to one kilogram of coconut sugar. Every week, they can earn from P7,000 to 10,000. Adianon says that his salary is more than enough compared to what he used to receive. In fact, he is very thankful with the opportunity of being a member of the association as he was able to build a house for his family. “From P480 per month, a salary that would barely allow my family to eat, we’re now living comfortably,” he says. Benjamin R. Lao is a farmer with an entrepreneur mind. “Have a businessman mindset and always think of the future,” he advises. “Don’t be contented with small things. Even if you’re from a small village, you can always have big dreams.”






LET’S take a step back in time for a rare ghoulish Halloween fun.

Just like that, and it was totally an exciting spooktacular moment at the Royal Ballroom as it rolled out a vintage “Euphoria” Halloween party at The Royal Mandaya Hotel on October 26, 2019. Every year, TRMH comes out with a shocker and this one definitely was a certified magnitude 6.5 shocker. Huge jack-o-lantern pumpkins welcomed the kids who all came in their most adorable costumes and transformed the Royal Ballroom into a spooky house where exciting shows and games raised the energy level to the roof. The kids’ party inclusions were the bubble show, face painting, parlor games, raffle prizes, the spooky photobooth and loot bags for their sweet tooth. Enchanting three-year-old girl, Gail Nathalia Ponce de Leon, garbed in a Snow White costume, was awarded with the Most Colorful Costume. The feisty six-year-old Sashi Camello won the Best Superhero Costume with her Ninja attire and Venom Bride Samantha Mae Pantras bagged the Fantasy/Scariest Costume award. TRMH also awarded two lucky kids as Mister and Miss Halloween 2019---Marl Andrei Gorgonio who



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Marco Polo Davao laid out the world-class art exhibit of the famous artist and sculptor, Rey Mudjahid “Kublai” Millan, displayed at the hotel lobby not solely for profit, but to aid the genuine intentions of support in collaboration with the Rotary Club of Waling-Waling Davao and Southern Philippine Medical Centre to provide excellent holistic care for the indigent children as it stands as a shining beacon of hope for every kid afflicted with cancer and their families. “This event showcases the beautiful artworks of the famous Davaobased artist Kublai Millan, entitled INAANAK Series, which I am sure would appeal not only to your eyes but to your hearts as well”, says Rotary Club of Waling Waling Davao President Teresita P. Yniguez, “Always remember that as your purse is emptied, your hear is filled” she added. The proceeds of this event will be used to support the House of Hope Foundation for Kids with Cancer, the Rotary Club’s End Polio Now campaign, and the renovation of the Palliative and Hospice Care In-patient Unit of the Southern Philippines Medical Centre (SPMC). For more information, please contact 0917 701 7490 / 0933 855 6233 and look for Cheryl Leilani M. Gomez.


PHOENIX, GLOBE BUSINESS, PROVIDE FREE MOBILE CALLS TO #78737 PHOENIX LPG Philippines, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Inc., now offers free mobile calls to its SUPER LPG delivery hotline #SUPER (#78737) powered by Globe Business, the enterprise arm of Globe Telecom. This mobile solution allows fast and easy access to delivery services for anyone who needs a Phoenix SUPER LPG whether in Metro Manila or in the provinces. To avail of free calls, customers just need to press the hashtag

(#) key before dialing 78737 on their cellular phone, regardless of the mobile service provider. “We would like to thank Globe Business for further strengthening Phoenix Petroleum as a trusted LPG provider,” said Phoenix LPG Philippines, Inc. President Henry Fadullon. “Our credible and efficient green alternative fuel for home cooking is now a convenient call away through #SUPER. We could not be happier that more people can now discover the joys of cooking as we give modern Filipinos the freedom to

master their kitchens.” To this, Globe Business Senior Vice President Peter Maquera responded, “We are honored to have been chosen by Phoenix as their partner for this endeavor. Globe Business always aspires to provide Philippine enterprises opportunities to elevate service delivery and customer-centricity, and that is why a growing number of the country’s top companies have and are partnering with us to avail of the #Hashtag service.” Globe Business enables large

corporations to catapult their business towards success. Combining its homegrown knowledge of the Philippine market with the latest innovations, they are able to provide the right technology, infrastructure, and know-how to businesses from a wide range of industries. By doing so, Globe Business creates positive impact not only for enterprises, but also for the entire country. To know more about Globe Business and how it can move your digital future, visit http://


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THE 15th Cinema One Originals was officially set in motion with psychological horror film “The Lighthouse” opening the film fest held at Ayala Malls Manila Bay, attended by the stars and filmmakers of the eight films in competition, “Metamorphosis,” “Utopia,” “Tia Madre,” “Yours Truly, Shirley,” “Lucid,” “O,” “Sila-Sila,” and “Tayo Muna Habang Hindi Pa Tayo.” Acclaimed filmmaker Robert Egger’s “The Lighthouse” truly lit up the film festival with its gripping narrative about two lighthouse keepers who gradually lose their sanity when a storm hits the isolated island on which they are posted. The film received universal praise not only for its darkly enticing premise but also because of the exceptional performances delivered by its leads, Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson. Sure enough, it also encapsulates what this year’s festival theme “Kaya Mo?!” stands for, which is to challenge filmmakers and audiences in advancing brave storytelling and viewing films. Aside from “The Lighthouse,” other World Cinema feature films this year are “The Father,” “The Invisible Life of Eurice Gusmao,” “Knives Out,” “Matthias and Maxime,” “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” “The Truth,” and “The Two

Popes.” The Restored Classics roster, meanwhile, includes the painstaking restoration works from ABS-CBN Film Restoration and FPJ Studios. Part of the line-up are Eddie Romero’s multigenerational epic “Aguila” in which Fernando Poe Jr. breaks his own mold for possibly the first and last time, Mario O’Hara’s gritty quasi-noir “Bulaklak Sa City Jail” one of his most distinctive collaborations with Nora Aunor, Abbo De La Cruz’s unflinching tale of greed “Misteryo Sa Tuwa”, two experimental postmodern comedies Peque Gallaga’s “Bad Bananas Sa Putting Tabing” and Ishmael Bernal’s “Tisoy”, and two of Carlitos Suigon-Reyna’s fastidious, flamboyant melodramas “Hihintayin Kita Sa Langit” and “Saan Ka Man Naroroon.” #C1Originals also showcases six original short films that will put into the spotlight tales from various walks of life. Janina Gacosta & Cheska Marfori’s “Ang Gasgas na Plaka ni Lolo Bert” features the story of a closeted gay man in his 60s with HIV whose life takes a sudden turn after discovering an old vinyl record in a package, while Jan Andrei Cobey’s “The Slums” exposes a documentary team’s exploitation of an underprivileged family’s television loss.

Meanwhile, “Last 234!” by Genevieve Ofiana highlights an undesirable incident in a senior cheerleader’s journey to his last performance. Ivan Cortez raises questions on the actions of officers in power through one fateful incident involving four friends in “Sa Gitna ng Lungsod.” Don Senoc’s “Sa Among Agwat (In Between Spaces)” underscores the bond between siblings in light of their impending separation because of adoption, while “Ang Lumunod Sa Atin” by Sonia Marie Regalario centers on a teenager’s province homecoming and the supernatural events that ensue upon his return. Cinema One Originals has been producing breakthrough films with stimulating contents for the Filipino audience for 15 years. All these years, its purpose has been to provide filmmakers, first-timers and otherwise, a platform to fully realize their visions. The 15th Cinema One Originals will run until November 17 at Trinoma, Glorietta, Ayala Manila Bay, Gateway, and Powerplant Makati. There will also be screenings at Vista Cinemas in Iloilo and Evia Lifestyle and in Cinema Centenario, Cinema ‘76, Black Maria, UP Cine Adarna, and FDCP Cinematheque Manila.


7 LPG DELIVERY SERVICE (L-R) Phoenix LPG Philippines, Inc. General Manager for VisMin Evelyn Gerodias, Phoenix LPG Philippines, Inc. President Henry Fadullon, Globe Chief Commercial Officer Albert de Larrazabal, and Globe Business Senior Vice President Peter Maquera make the partnership between Phoenix Petroleum and Globe Business official.

THIS Sunday, travel and wildlife program Born to be Wild premiers its three-part anniversary special to celebrate its 12 years on television. As a young vet starting his hosting job in Born to be Wild nearly 12 years ago, Doc Ferds Recio met “Zambo”, a baby dugong in Zamboanga City. Zambo was found stranded in a port, alone, without its mother. Marine mammal experts and veterinarians bonded together and tried to rehabilitate Zambo, hoping the baby dugong can be released back into the wild. Sadly, Zambo did not survive. Since then, Doc Ferds has gone on to encounter more dugongs in the wild, including a group of dugongs in an island in Davao. But Doc Ferds has always wanted to document the dugong in a protected state, to see the species thriving free from danger, unlike the stranded dugong he once encountered. Finally, the time has come. In Palawan, a friendly dugong called “Aban” is well-loved by the locals for changing their lives and livelihood. Here, the dugong is protected in its very home. In Tawi-Tawi, residents are no stranger to crocodiles. Saltwater crocs have long thrived in the mangroves of Tawi-Tawi and encounters with humans are not unheard of. But recently, a much larger croc with a different “marking” on its head has been seen in the area. The strange marking was observed in a crocodile surrendered in the Marines camp in Tawi-Tawi. Experts suspect that the crocodile is not the saltwater croc typically found in the Philippines, but a migrating croc from Malaysia. Doc Nielsen Donato and croc experts employ DNA analysis to confirm this. If true, why are these larger crocs migrating to Tawi-Tawi? Born to be Wild’s three-part 12th anniversary special premieres Sunday, November 10, right after AHA! on GMA 7.

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wore Miguel Rivera from the movie Coco, and Zian Marly Pascua in her creepy Pennywise outfit from the IT movie. The winners for the Halloween costume contest were given two gift certificates for lunch or dinner buffet at Kamayo Cafe. This prestige hotel also prepared a spook-tastic night for the kids-at-heart until midnight where they flaunted their most scary costumes as well. Danrey E. Batistis in his “Samantha” character won the best Halloween costume for the male category. Samantha, is a runaway groom who reveals his true identity during his wedding. Emma Emaño in her “Exotic Black Spiderwoman,” character won the best Halloween costume for the female category. The best couple of the night was Crisanta Panao and Juliana Mayormita in their

Spiderman and Alyas Linda from Raffy Tulfo in action costume. Winners were given a gift certificate for an overnight stay for 2 in a superior room. The Best Halloween Squad

were the Five Robbers from Money Heist--Torch Gacuma, Josan Fua, Adonis Marikit, Micah Gatchalian & Mat Banico. The five of them were given a gift certificate for lunch or dinner buffet at the Kamayo Cafe. The costume contests were judged by TRMH’s General Manager Mr. Benjamen Banzon, Glenn Estipona of Events Library Shop and Marilyn Roque of Mindanao Times. Cocktail drinks sponsored by Cocktails & Dreams and Mixed Temptation were served all throughout the night accompanied by the elated house music by DJ Torch. Creeptastic Banquet at Kamayo Cafe

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Aside from Euphoria at The Royal Ballroom, Kamayo Cafe has also prepared a Halloween surprise for diners. Veggie lovers may add devil eggs in their salad or warm themselves with the bloody tomato soup. Meat lovers may feast on the Beef Bloody Intes-


tine, Homemade Black Pasta with Eyeball meat sauce and have a slice of a Carving Zombie Arm. Oh yes, the kids certainly had a blast with the Bloody Halloween Cupcakes, Tombstone Cheesecake, Dracula’s Teeth, RIP cake and Ine Eye Rumball for desserts.


UP AND FURNITURE A1 ABOUTa silly method but for EJ and





green technology, and agriculture and �ishery industries. Agriculture and �isheries are two of Davao’s most important industries showing potential to become an innovation hub in various �ields. Hsu said they want to help the region in precision farming. In fact, the region’s Department of Agriculture (DA) will send a team to Taiwan to study on precision farming. According to Huang, Taiwan is famous for agriculture technology and they are offering smart agriculture technology that can enhance ef�iciency not only on land but on �ishery industry as well. “The future of �ishery is technology. Taiwanese companies have their latest technologies to help you upgrade and transform your �ishery industry,” he said. Taiwan is the powerhouse of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and according to Huang Taiwan offers some of the best semi-conductor in ICT technology and solutions. “We will show you our latest innovations. We believe Taiwan’s technology can fuel the Philippines’ growth and help your economy to thrive even higher,” he said. Taiwan also has the best healthcare services.

During the expo, the Taiwan Healthcare Pavilion promoted their smart medical industry. The pavilion assembled eight high-quality health industry companies of Taiwan that presented the specialties and strengthens Taiwan’s health industry including medical services, smart medical equipment and devices. “In our healthcare pavilion you can see how Taiwanese companies is among the world’s best in terms of technology,” Huang said. The expo also highlighted Taiwan’s edge in technological innovations pavilion wherein it displayed the country’s most elite, world-class brands in technology to Filipino buyers and industry traders. Among the featured companies is the Geosat Aerospace and technology Inc that features that application of commercial drone system in building smart city in today’s lifestyle. There was also the CalComp technology (Philippines) that showcased the “AI Robot”, “In the past we focus on Luzon island and we have direct �light via Cebu in Visayas so Visayas has more exposure to Taiwan. Now we will actually work in Mindanao. Let Mindanao has more exposure to the people in Taiwan. This year TAITRA chose Davao to be

the place of holding the event as they have noticed the potential of Davao. It is meaningful to hold this event in the city of President Rodrigo Duterte as it marks the milestone of the relationship between Taiwan and the city of Davao,” Hsu said. The �irst of its kind in Davao, the expo encourages more cooperation between the Philippines and Taiwan. This global expo brought Taiwanese companies seeking to forge business collaboration with their Filipino counterparts. Organized by Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) and TAITRA, which is a non-pro�it trade organization, the expo is the country’s main platform for its companies to explore business opportunities with their counterparts in Southeast Asia and South Asia. Around 100 Taiwan exhibitors attended and showcased their expertise in various industries such as technology, agriculture, design, medical care, and tourism. The event also featured Taiwanese companies covering a wide range of categories such as Smart City, Taiwan Lifestyle, healthcare, agriculture, �isheries, and Taiwan tourism. “This is an event of great signi�icance because it enable us to share the fruits of technological and

industrial development of Taiwan. The event also provide opportunities to further enhance the industry technological and agrioucltural cooperation between Taiwan and the Philippines,” Hsu said. With the Taiwan expo in Davao, organizers are optimistic that bilateral relations between Taiwan and the Philippines can go further in business, tourism, industries and any other �ields. Hsu is also hopeful that a Davao-Taiwan direct �light will be established in the near future so that Davao and Taiwan businessmen can work together in priority the areas. “Soon this connectivity will be established and all what is needed is we have to understand each other and know each other better then we have to �ind out how we can achieve our goals step by step,” he added. Hsu is optimistic that Taiwan Expo 2019 will lay the foundation to broaden the cooperation not only to trade and investment but also in culture, tourism, higher education between Taiwan and Davao. “Here in this great city of Davao, we see new beginnings, new hopes, and new dreams. Together we’ll make new journeys, seize new opportunities and realize new prospects,” he said.

“The people of Mati is one with the people of Davao del Sur, North Cotabato and all other areas affected by the tremors. What we lack in logistics

we will make it up in our prayers for their safety,” she added. The City of Mati LGU sourced its �inancial aid from the Disaster Risk

Reduction and Management Fund amounting to P600,000 while the remaining P200,000 came from the Stockpiling of Emergency Supplies Ap-

propriation of the CDRRMO. As of August 2019, DRRMF adjusted balance is P54,110,126.77. (CIO MATI)

authorities. Two of the bene�iciaries, couple Dival and Jenecel, brought their M16 ri�les when they yielded. The couple received cash assistance of PHP400,000, which they said would help them start a new life with

their two children. DILG 10 (Northern Mindanao) Assistant Director Yvette Tolentino-Sunga called on the recipients to use the cash assistance properly. “Please use your money wisely. That is not a pay-

ment for your surrender but assistance from the government to help you start a new life. The ECLIP is not going to be forever,” Sunga said. She said the former rebels would also receive livelihood training and ed-

ucational assistance from the government. Lt. Col. Ronald Illana, 8IB commander, said the unit remains eager to accept NPA rebels who want to surrender and avail of the bene�its under ECLIP. (PNA)

eral residents are still on the ground refusing to be evacuated. In Brgy. Managa, reported tension cracks and landslides in four puroks have also been con�irmed. The report disclosed that series of tension cracks were observed in the view deck in Purok Pananag B, reaching to the households threatening at least nine. But, the cracks were relatively related to the disruption of natural

slopes due to the development of road network. MGB-XI recommended to cordon the view deck of Purok Pananag B to prevent civilians from entering the affected area. Purok Pluto is also highly susceptible to landslide, and most of the residents evacuated to Brgy. Proper, while others chose to stay in safer grounds closer to their farms. Landslide and tension crack in Purok Venus were

found out along the highway going to Brgy. Kapatagan, while tension crack induced by typical earthquake and minor ground effects were observed in Purok Neptune. Jesil Jaum, Bansalan Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Management Of�ice (MDRRMO) of�icer, said they still have to plan the forced evacuation of the remaining affected families in these areas. MGB-XI also recom-

mended for the immediate removal of landslide debris along the creek to prevent damming which may cause more damages if not addressed. Further, the agency advised the barangay LGUs and MDRRMO to constantly monitor the existing slope instability (tension cracks/ruptures/slumping) which may be aggravated during heavy rainfall and possible aftershocks. (Carina L. Cayon/PIA)

to leave the evacuation site. But we have to continue our classes,” she stressed. Sumalinog said they still await announcement from DepEd as to the resumption

of classes. Omar Obas, Cotabato schools division superintendent, said classes will resume on Monday although there are schools that re-

main not �it for occupancy. Obas mentioned the Makilala National High School and the Buena Vida School. He stressed that they still

have to assess when would be the right time for learners to return to their classes in these damaged public institutions. (Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)

as a government-owned private corporation (GOCC) resulted in the stoppage of all energy projects in

the ensuing post-Marcos years,” Sali said. This drove many of Sali’s colleagues to leave

the government and the Philippines and be hired to manage the energy arms of foreign governments and

private �irms in New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, and other countries. (PR)



MGB 11... FROM4


The VGM Pawnshop, Inc. will hold a Public Auction Sale to all unredeemed and unrenewed items on the following schedule listed below at 9:00 O’clock in the morning. Ang VGM Pawnshop, Inc. magasubasta sa tanang prenda nga wala nalukat sa maong sumusunod nga mga petsa sa alas 9:00 sa buntag. DATE PAWNED


DAVAO May 0131, 2019

Sasa Maa Panabo Main Panabo Branch


May 0131, 2019

Sandawa Matina Ulas

DATE & PLACE OF AUCTION Nov. 21, 2019 (Thurs.) 9:00 AM VGM Pawnshop, Inc, Panabo Branch 1 Quirino St., Panabo City

Nov. 28, 2019 (Thurs.) 9:00 AM VGM Pawnshop, Inc, Sandawa Branch VGM Bldg. Sandawa St., Davao City

THE MANAGEMENT Nov. 7, 8, 11, 2019


CFP NO. NNN112419685 NNN707265168 613928-1

CONTRACT NO. 1003582 1003519 86848

were lost. Any transaction entered into shall be null and void. Nov. 4,11,18/19


and malasakit (Courage and compassion) became buzzwords from a people weary of government apathy.” From 2013 to 2017 alone, some PHP67.1 billion were released for the rehabilitation works in the hardest-hit areas in Eastern

Visayas, the Department of Budget and Management earlier said. The National Housing Authority is also targeting the completion of at least 62,668 housing projects between 2019 and 2020. (PNA)

noting that four in 10 children could stil be infected with Dengue despite getting vaccinated. Reports of alleged deaths from Dengvaxia caused fear of vaccines in general, which led to a dramatic drop in the country’s vaccination coverage. The Dengvaxia scare is being blamed by some for the outbreaks of measles and

polio, as parents refuse to get their children. Duque said there has been an improvement in the country’s immunization program following the rise in the number of cases of vaccine-preventable diseases. He appealed to the public to believe that all vaccines being used in the country have been proven to be safe.

where prices are monitored by the DTI. To help consumers, Lopez shared smart tips for Noche Buena and Media Noche shopping: -- Prepare your shopping list using the SRP list at before going to the leading supermarket in your area. You can also check it via the e-Presyo mobile app. -- Watch out for promo bundle packs in the promo section. Most food manufacturing companies offer bundle packs of Noche Buena products, which provide savings. Some of these bundle packs are spaghetti with

sauce and cheese; and macaroni with mayonnaise and fruit cocktail. -- Look for products that are not expiring soon. “Most importantly, I advise consumers to choose the products they �ind value for themselves and their family. It is advised to do the Christmas grocery shopping early and avoid the holiday rush,” Lopez said. “DTI would like to ensure that consumers will always have the value-for-money product and brand options that they can choose from, especially this Christmas season,” he added. (PR)



NOT DONE YET A4 INdulge! EDGEDAVAO Davao (SPCD) Saints and with 3-0 card, followed Mats College of Technol- by JMC Kings (2-0), Asian ogy (MCT) Navigators at International School of 6:00 pm. Aeronautics and TechnolAt 7:00pm, the un- ogy (AISAT) (1-1), Atebeaten University of Min- neo de Davao University danao (UM) Wildcats Knights (1-2), Mannywill Pacquiao(Addu) says evenBlue at 40, he is not finished yet. stake its clean slate against BCD (0-1), UM Penaplata DMMA College of South- (0-1), and Rizal Memoern Philippines (DMMAC- rial Colleges (RMC) SP) Mariners to wrap up Bulldogs (0-2). Saturday's quadruple header sponsored by The



Collegiate Sponsors League (CSL) Escandor Cup resumes at the Davao City Recreation Center. Escandor Cup/CSL photo VOL.11 VOL.12 ISSUE 241 ISSUE • SUNDAY-MONDAY, 6VOL.12 • SUNDAY-MONDAY, MARCH 24-25, 17-18, 2019 ISSUE 51 •FEBRUARY TUESDAY, 21,2019 VOL.12 ISSUE 45 • SUNDAYMONDAY, MAYMAY 12 -13, 2019





Brokenshire notches 2nd win in a row By ADAM B. MORRELL

T House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, Chairperson of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC), and Senior Vice President for External Affairs, Business Development, and Security of Phoenix Petroleum Atty. Raymond Zorrilla shake hands after signing a platinum spon-

sorship agreement as witnessed by PHISGOC Chief Operating Officer Ramon Suzara and Phoenix PULSE Fuel Masters Team Manager Paolo Bugia during a press event at the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga.

Phoenix backs SEA Games P hoenix Petroleum, the fastest-growing and leading independent oil company in the country, has signed on as a platinum sponsor of the 30th SEA Games, which will be held in the Philippines from November 30 to December 11, 2019. As purveyor of fuels with Phoenix PULSE Technology and owner of Philippine FamilyMart, the company is the of�icial fuel and convenience store partner of the biennial regional event. House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, Chairperson of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC), and Senior Vice President for External Affairs, Business Development, and Security of Phoenix Petroleum Atty.

Raymond Zorrilla signed the agreement during the of�icial signing ceremony on October 28 at the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga. Also present as witnesses during the signing were PHISGOC Chief Operating Of�icer Ramon Suzara and Phoenix PULSE Fuel Masters Team Manager Paolo Bugia. “We at Phoenix value the importance of sports, and how it can change lives for the better. It is especially true for many of us Filipinos. Hosting the upcoming SEA Games here in the Philippines is both a great honor and a challenge, hence, we decided to come on-board and give assistance. Phoenix supports this event to show warm hospitality to our guests

from neighboring nations and to inspire more Filipinos to develop a passion for sports and one day bring more pride and honor to our country,” Atty. Zorrilla said. Meanwhile, PHISGOC Chairman Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano expressed his gratitude to the supporters and said, “Thank you very much for your investment in the Filipino people. With 56 events, this promises to be the most viewed and biggest SEA Games and it is not an easy thing to do.” Set in 23 cities across the country, the 30th SEA Games is expected to attract over 10,000 athletes representing 11 nations. This is the fourth time that the Philippines will serve as the host country.

Phoenix Petroleum has had several recorded involvements in Philippine sports. The company has its own team, the Phoenix PULSE Fuel Masters, at the Philippine Basketball Association, and recently showed support for Filipina weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz with a P2M sponsorship for her Olympic bid. Earlier this year, the Phoenix Young Drivers’ Program was launched to give budding racers the opportunity to build a career in motorsports. Phoenix is also a supporter of the Siklab Atleta Pilipinas Sports Foundation, a non-pro�it program that aims to help athletes with the ultimate goal of obtaining the Philippines’ �irst Olympic gold medal.

he Brokenshire College of Davao City (BCDC) Green Dragons showed too much �irepower to tame the Rizal Memorial Colleges (RMC) Bulldogs 84-59, in the resumption of the Collegiate Sponsors League Escandor Cup Friday afternoon at Davao City Recreation Center. The Green Dragons earned their second win behind a relentless hustle on the defensive end backed with big plays down the stretch. Since snapping their two-game losing skid the last time out, the Green Dragons appeared much energized on the court and with their second straight win, they now secured a .500 winning percentage with a 2-2 card. They will play against AISAT on Sunday to cap the eliminations. Another win will ensure them the third spot in the quarter�inals.

Head Coach Arnolfu Rojas was elated with their sudden bounce back after a sluggish start in the competition. The Green Dragons lost two straight games against power house contenders Jose Maria College Kings and Holy Cross College of Sasa Spartans, which they will either face once more in the knockout round slated third week of November. The Green Dragons’ strong display of will against the Bulldogs was fueled by Rojas’ calm and simple guidance. Robert Dimas went all out, �illing his stats with 17 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks to claim the Mandarin SPC-Branch player of the game. The league is bankrolled by Presidential Adviser on Sports Glenn Y. Escandor and backed by Davies Paints, Max’s Fried Chicken, PTT Lubricants, and Mandarin SPC-Branch.

Brokenshire College have won two straight games after losing its first two in the Collegiate Sponsors League Escandor Cup. CSL photo


PREPARING FOR THE SEA GAMES National dailies report that the National Sports Associations (NSAs) have predicted a winning haul of 220 gold medals this coming SoutheastAsian (SEA) Games. It is an outrageous projection that baf�les me, considering that in the last SEA Games, the Philippines had landed a far 6th with a haul of only 24 golds, 33 silvers and 64 bronzes. How in heaven’s name do we pole-vault from 24 golds to 220, and from 6th to 1st is just too mind-boggling for me. The fearless forecasts came out during the coordination meeting of the NSAs with Team Philippines chef de mission and Philippine Sports Commission Chair William “Butch” Ramirez.

Of course, the fact that we have homecourt advantage will be a big factor. The last time we hosted this event in 2005, we had won the overall championship with 113 golds, with the Thais coming up second with a distant 87 golds. It is a known fact that in the SEA Games, host countries have been notorious in padding up games where they are strong in, hence the brilliant showing of the host nations is expected. But to have an eventual haul of 220 golds is just preposterous. I simply cannot comprehend how our NSAs can boast of such �igures considering their recent results. We are simply setting ourselves up to lose by putting

up such high expectations from our athletes. Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino tempered their statements, saying: “I think winning 130 to 180 gold medals is doable.” The 220 golds predicted by the NSA leaders collectively have never been achieved by Team Philippines in the Games. For that matter, it has never been achieved by any country ever before in the SEA Games. The highest gold medal tally so far recorded has been the 182 gold haul by the Indonesians when they hosted the Games in 2011. The contact sports are expected to bring in majority of the haul with arnis projecting at

least 15 golds out of 20 events while our �ighters from wrestling, judo, kickboxing, jiu-jitsu and sambo are con�ident they can contribute at least �ive victories each. Boxing has been a perennial multiple-gold performer as well, and so with wushu and taekwondo. Other expected medal producers include dancesports (10 golds), athletics (9 golds), gymnastics (9 golds) and skateboarding (8 Gs). Still, the projected 220-medal gold rush - if accomplished - may not only elicit expressions of pleasant surprise, it may just subject the SEA Games to charges of rigging and the like. Eventually, it may just serve to cast doubts on the

integrity of the Games. I have remained silent over the preparations for the SEA Games in the hope that our athletes may not be subjected to undue distractions. Suf�ice it to say that I am rooting for our athletes, despite the many problems I have witnessed with Philippine Sports. Reform Philippine Sports stands committed in support of the country’s efforts to host and compete in the incoming SEA Games. The sportsfest is scheduled invenues across Metro Manila and Southern Luzon, Subic and New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac. A total of 1,115 Filipino athletes will see action in 56 sports with 530 events o be contested.



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Edge Davao Volume 12 Issue 174 | Sunday-Monday, November 10-11, 2019  

Edge Davao Volume 12 Issue 174 | Sunday-Monday, November 10-11, 2019  

Profile for edgedavao