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ISSUE #53

SEPTEMBER 2020 • FREE

EXCLUSIVE

Dingdong Dantes Ecstatic to Continue Entertaining Filipinos via GMA Pinoy TV Japan’s Shinzo Abe Resigns as Prime Minister Due to Illness Duterte Says Ph-Japan Ties Greatly Flourished Under Abe Philippines Wins Best Overseas Diving Area Award in Tokyo www.filipinojapanesejournal.com www.filipinojapanesejournal.com


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FILIPINO JAPANESE JOURNAL • SEPTEMBER

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CONTRIBUTORS Din Eugenio is a Tokyo-based Filipino

press photographer whose work has appeared in publications like TIME (digital edition), ABC News, Daily Mail, Philippine Star and Philippine Daily Inquirer. He completed his professional photography course at the prestigious New York Institute of Photography in 2004. Before coming to Japan, he worked as a still photographer for Regal Films, a film outfit in the Philippines, from 1997-1999. He is the only Filipino press photographer officially accredited to cover the Tokyo International Film Festival since 2013. He regularly covers Hollywood movie premieres in Japan.

PUBLISHER D&D PRESS JAPAN EDITOR-IN-CHIEF FLORENDA CORPUZ ASSOCIATE EDITOR LEN ARMEA

Oliver Corpuz

is a budding photographer from Tokyo. He took up photography courses at Philippine Center for Creative Imaging.

CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER DIN EUGENIO CONTRIBUTING WRITERS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS OLIVER CORPUZ ARLENE DONAIRE ART DIRECTOR VERJUBE PHOTOGRAPHICS

Arlene Donaire is a development economist and project management specialist

by profession. She has worked in various government and consulting assignments for the past 27 years. She also served as Information and Public Relations Officer of the Tokyo-based Asian Productivity Organization back in 2010-11. She has been featured as Photographer of the Week by Manila Bulletin's Picture Perfect and won the nationwide Masskara Festival Photo Contest in 2014. She shoots with her Fujifilm X and Benro system.

CIRCULATION & DISTRIBUTION MANAGER JIRO KURANE MARKETING OFFICERS CORAZON KURANE MICHIKO CORPUZ EDITORIAL & ADVERTISING OFFICE 334-0011 SAITAMA-KEN, KAWAGUCHI-SHI, MITSUWA 1-12-6 ANNEX OKA 102 MOBILE 080-9153-2430

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Contents HEADLINE

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Editor's Note

Japan’s Shinzo Abe Resigns as Prime Minister Due to Illness

Editor-in-Chief

ON THE COVER

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EXCLUSIVE

Dingdong Dantes Ecstatic to Continue Entertaining Filipinos via GMA Pinoy TV

IN THE NEWS

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Duterte Says PHJapan Ties ‘Greatly Flourished’ Under Abe

VISIT PHILIPPINES

Florenda Corpuz

COVID-19 Survivor Iza Calzado: ‘Every Breath is a Blessing’ ENTERTAINMENT

owadays, we are constantly being barraged with disturbing COVID-19 statistics from across the globe, including Japan and the Philippines. The pandemic, which is caused by an unforeseen virus, has rapidly affected the day to day life, and is slowing down the world economy. As of press time, there are about 28.3 million confirmed cases around the world, with over 900,000 deaths. The story of COVID-19 continues until a successful vaccine or antiviral drug is developed to prevent or treat the infection. Nobody is immune to being exposed to the new coronavirus. We need to take care of ourselves, and make sure the virus doesn’t spread. Our cover story, “COVID-19 Survivor Iza Calzado: Every Breath is a Blessing’,” touches this aspect. The multi-awarded actress’ fight against the deadly virus has given her a greater appreciation of life.

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Philippines Wins Best Overseas Diving Area Award in Tokyo

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HEADLINE

Japan’s Shinzo Abe Resigns as Prime Minister Due to Illness WORDS BY FLORENDA CORPUZ PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF © CABINET PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICE

TOKYO – Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, announced in a news conference on Aug. 28 that he has decided to step down due to a flare-up of his chronic illness -- ulcerative colitis, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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be, 65, who has managed his intestinal condition for nearly eight years, said he had suffered a relapse of the disease. Part of his statement in Japanese translates to English as: “Thirteen years ago, my chronic ulcerative colitis took a turn for the worse. In just one year, I suddenly resigned from the post of prime minister, causing great inconvenience among the public. Later, fortunately, a new drug was very effective, and I returned to great shape physically. I again took up the weighty responsibility of serving as prime minister, thanks to support from the people. Over the last almost eight years, I have kept my chronic illness fully under control and have had no trouble devoting all of my energy every day, day after day, to the job of prime minister. “However, I was told during a regular checkup in June that symptoms of a relapse could be seen. Since that time I have continued to devote all my energies to my duties while taking medicine, but from roughly the middle of July something unusual happened to me healthwise, and I began to get quite physically exhausted. Then, at the beginning of August a relapse of my ulcerative colitis was confirmed. As for my treatment from now, a new drug has been added to the medication I have been taking until now. At the re-examination I underwent at the beginning of this week, this new drug was confirmed to be effective. But it is necessary to have this medicine administered continuously for a while and it is difficult to foresee the result. “In politics, the most important thing is to deliver results. I have been saying this ever since my administration was inaugurated, and over these seven years and eight months, I have dedicated myself completely to achieving results. It would be unacceptable if I were to err in an important political decision or fail to achieve results because of the pain of not being at peak physical condition while being sick and undergoing treatment. I have made the determination that, as I have become unable to confidently live up to the mandate from the people, I should not continue in the position of prime minister. “I will resign my position as prime minister. “We must avoid to the greatest possible extent a situation in which our response to the coronavirus, the most important issue right now, encounters obstacles. For the past roughly one month, this has been my entire focus. I worried about this terribly. For now, the spread of infection that we had seen from July has shifted into a declining trend and we succeeded in compiling countermeasures to be implemented 6

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with our eyes fixed firmly on the winter. I decided that if we are to transition to a new administration, this is the only timing possible. “I have taken on a wide range of challenges over these seven years and eight months. Regrettably, there are also many issues that remain. At the same time, there are things that I achieved or made a reality in the course of taking on various challenges. All of this is thanks to the people, who placed strong confidence in us and encouraged us during each national election. I thank you sincerely. “Despite such support, I am to resign with another year in my term of office—a year still left to go— leaving various other policies still on the way to being realized and the coronavirus epidemic at hand. I express my heartfelt apologies to the people for this situation. “I intend to manage to recover my physical health fully through my treatment and support the new administration as a member of the Diet. “I thank the Japanese people sincerely for these eight years.” Abe was first elected as prime minister in 2006. He resigned in 2007 due to his illness, returned to power in December 2012 after overcoming the inflammatory bowel disease, and on Aug. 24 became Japan’s longest-serving prime minister having led the country’s government for 2,799 consecutive days.


ON THE COVER

PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF OAFF

WORDS BY LEN ARMEA PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF ABS-CBN

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Award-winning actress Iza Calzado celebrated her 38th birthday on Aug. 16 feeling grateful, renewed, and optimistic after admitting in public last March that she was afflicted with the new coronavirus. After surviving COVID-19, she makes it a point to live life with more meaning by inspiring and shedding light on important health, social, and political issues.

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he most meaningful birthday yet. As I bathe in God’s love and light, I am filled with gratitude to be able to continue this beautiful journey called life — with a deeper understanding that every waking moment and every breath is a blessing,” she captioned an Instagram photo of her in a white bathing suit taken at The Farm in San Benito, Batangas. With millions of people who tested positive for the pneumonia-causing virus around the world, Iza’s story is a beautiful reminder to live life with meaning because tomorrow is never promised.

Surviving the Ordeal It was in the second week of March when Iza started experiencing dry cough and fever and was advised by her doctor to be wary of other symptoms. A week after, she was brought to the hospital due to pneumonia and got tested for COVID-19. It took another week before she got the results, which confirmed that she was positive for the said virus. The body positivity and self-love advocate recalled being scared for her life, but with her family and loved ones’ support, she was able to remain calm and hopeful. “After two weeks of battling COVID-19, pneumonia and a nasty bacteria called Acinetobacter Baumannii, I am alive and for that I am truly grateful. I know that so many of you sent your love and support and I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to all of you. Please know that even if I didn’t get to read all the messages, I felt the love and good energy and that you helped me pull through one of the darkest moments of my life. Everything by God’s Grace, of course, but your prayers did so much for me. I hope in some way, I can pay it forward,” Iza said after she survived the disease. Since her recovery, Iza has been active in spreading awareness about

the virus by using her social media platforms to give valuable information and reminding everyone to wear a mask and to take all necessary precautions to ensure health and safety. She also donated her blood plasma to the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) for COVID-19 patients with severe cases. “I never knew that giving my blood would be such an emotional moment for me. Perhaps it’s because, as a COVID-19 survivor, I truly felt that this was one of the most powerful ways I could help my fellow Filipinos during this time,” she said. She also met with the nurses who took good care of her while she was in the hospital to express her gratitude for their help and encouragement during her battle with the deadly virus. “Allow me to shine the spotlight on my amazing team of nurses (missing a few though!) from Asian Hospital who gave me the best love and care any patient could ever ask for,” Iza enthused. “Together with my brilliant doctors, I really couldn’t have asked for a better team to help me fight and beat COVID-19. I am forever grateful,” she added.

The two are inseparable until one night, a gruesome crime changes their destinies – Ellice accidentally kills the son of a powerful congressman who attempts to rape her, and Marissa takes the blame as Ellice’s father offered her Php10 million and a promise that she is not to spend a day in jail. Iza’s ecstatic to take on this project despite the challenges caused by the pandemic. “Grateful and honored to be working with our amazing team on such a blessed project. We hope you enjoy the show we have worked so hard on during this unique time to bring entertainment and, hopefully, good learnings into our lives,” Iza, a Yakushi Pearl awardee for being the Best Performer at the 12th Osaka Asian Film Festival (OAFF) for her exceptional acting in Jerrold Tarrog’s “Bliss,” quipped.

Taking On a New Project Iza stars on a new teleserye entitled “Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin” which is airing on Kapamilya Channel and on Kapamilya Online Live during weekdays afer “FPJ’s Ang Probinsiyano.” It also includes Jodi Sta. Maria, Sam Milby and Maricel Soriano under the direction of F.M. Reyes and Avel Sunpongco and produced by JRB Creative Production. Apart from the stellar cast, the series also marks a major milestone as it is the first teleserye to be fully launched on Kapamilya Online Live. The story revolves around two best friends Marissa (Jodi) and Ellice (Iza) who hail from different worlds: Ellice is from an influential family and lives a fancy life, while Marissa is a simple lass living with her mother Lucing (Maricel).

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ENTERTAINMENT

EXCLUSIVE

Dingdong Dantes Ecstatic to Continue Entertaining Filipinos via GMA Pinoy TV INTERVIEW BY FLORENDA CORPUZ WORDS BY LEN ARMEA PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF GMA

TOKYO/MANILA – Homegrown Kapuso star Dingdong Dantes has been in the showbiz industry for more than two decades – entertaining his legion of fans around the world by taking on different roles for television and films. And there’s no stopping the actor who just turned 40 years old recently.

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n an exclusive interview with Filipino-Japanese J o u r n a l , Dingdong express e d t he importance of creating quality content as an artist, and how he can interact with his fans around the world with the help of GMA Pinoy TV. GMA Pinoy TV, GMA Network’s flagship international channel, which relentlessly provides Kapuso viewers abroad the best of Filipino programming, marks its 15 years of service. It was initially launched in Guam, Japan, and USA in 2005. “More than them getting something from us, entertainers, ako I think I also get even more from them as our viewers,” Dingdong quipped via Zoom interview. “Whenever we go to the countries that have GMA Pinoy TV, ‘yung interaction na ‘yun ay very valuable for us – we get to listen to their personal stories, ‘yung

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journey nila. Kung paano sila napunta sa bansang ito, bakit sila nariyan, what motivates them and then we learn so much. Pagbalik namin, may bago kaming perspektibo sa kung paano namin pwedeng tingnan ‘yung trabaho, kung paano namin pwedeng tingnan ‘yung buhay. But more importantly, mas ginaganahan na kami to create more shows for them,” added Dingdong, who admits that one of his dreams is to participate in the Tokyo and Osaka marathons. Dingdong recalled that his fondest memory with GMA Pinoy TV was when he and the whole “SOP” cast and crew went to San Francisco in the United States to launch the programming platform in 2005. “It’s been 15 years since we started it… and if my numbers are correct parang 27 of the shows I have appeared have been showed sa mga kababayan natin that’s why

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ako I’m just looking forward kung kailan kami makakabisita lalung-lalo na sa Japan, isa sa mga paborito kong puntahan na lugar.” Dingdong also thanked his Filipino fans in Japan who got hold of FilipinoJapanese Journal’s issue where he was the cover star. The said issue generated buzz and was featured by local media such as Manila Bulletin, Inquirer Bandera, and GMA News among others. “Sa lahat po ng readers ng FilipinoJapanese Journal sa Japan, sa lahat po ng Kapuso natin diyan, thank you for getting a copy of the magazine. Kung nakikita niyo ‘yung ngiti ko sa cover na ‘yan eh ganyan po ako ka-excited parati kapag nalalaman ko na makikita ko na kayo. Sana one of these days, when this [COVID-19] is all over, when it is already safe, ma-meet and makausap ko na kayo nang personal,” the beguiling actor enthused.


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To place job vacancy ads in Filipino-Japanese Journal, call 080-9153-2430 or email filipinojapanesejournal@yahoo.com 求人広告のご掲載に関してのお問い合わせはフィリピ ノジャパニーズジャーナル局までご連絡ください。 Tel: 080-9153-2430 メール: filipinojapanesejournal@yahoo.com FILIPINO JAPANESE JOURNAL • SEPTEMBER

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IN THE NEWS

Duterte Says PH-Japan Ties ‘Greatly Flourished’ Under Abe WORDS BY FLORENDA CORPUZ PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF TOTO LOZANO/RENE LUMAWAG/SIMEON CELI JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO)

MANILA/TOKYO – President Rodrigo Duterte said the Philippines’ ties with Japan have “greatly flourished” during Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s term.

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he bilateral relations between the Philippines and Japan, now a Strategic Partnership, greatly flourished during his tenure,” Duterte said. “What we have worked for and achieved together lays the foundation for an even closer friendship and cooperation between our countries in the future,” he added.

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Duterte, in a statement on Aug. 29, expressed “much regret” when he learned about Abe’s resignation. “Through many years of our engagement, I have seen a leader with a bold vision and firm determination to do what was best for his country and our region,” he stated. The Filipino leader said he will not forget the Japanese premier’s “kindness and strength of character.” He recalled that Abe was “gracious” to accept his invitation to visit Davao

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City. “I and Honeylet welcomed him and Madame Akie warmly to my humble home,” he recounted. Duterte, who calls Abe “a true friend closer than a brother,” said he prays for the latter’s “speedy and full recovery.” Abe, Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, announced in a press conference on Aug. 28 his decision to resign after suffering a relapse of ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease, in June this year.


VISIT PHILIPPINES

Philippines Wins Best Overseas Diving Area Award in Tokyo PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF DOT-TOKYO OFFICE

TOKYO – The Department of Tourism (DOT) announced that the Philippines was picked number one for the first time as the Best Overseas Diving Area at the Marine Diving Awards 2020 held recently in Ikebukuro.

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he Philippines garnered 814 out of the 3,572 total votes cast by subscribers of Japanbased Marine Diving Magazine from May 2019 to February 2020, and by visitors during the Marine Diving Fair 2019. Saipan and Palau took the second and third spots, respectively. “For the first time after 20 years, the Philippines was selected no.1 in this category,” the DOT said in a statement. The prestigious award was conferred in a ceremony held during the Marine Diving Fair 2020 at Sunshine City last Aug. 23. Marine Diving Magazine cited the diving sites in Cebu, Bohol, Moalboal, and Busuanga which are teeming with whale sharks, snappers, dugong, other big fishes, large schools of sardines and long mackerels, and other rare and endemic species. These diving sites, the magazine said, have “captured the hearts of many divers and make them want to revisit the Philippines again and again. And with its easy access from Japan and reasonable tour prices, the Philippines is no doubt a first pick for many diving lovers.” “This award is a testimony that diving is more fun in the Philippines, with each underwater paradise offering a unique adventure and experience to behold, and return to. Our underwater landscape is a colorful kaleidoscope of nature's living jewels, one that divers cannot find anywhere else,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said. Participating in the three-day diving fair, the DOT featured in its booth underwater videos of various Philippine diving spots. Five Philippine resorts held online meetings with visitors. Dive is one of the top tourism products under the National Tourism Development Plan 2016-2022. The DOT is set to issue guidelines for the operations of diving establishments to ensure the health and safety of divers under the new normal. “When the situation is better and with the easing of travel restrictions around the world, we hope to again showcase to divers not only our underwater jewels and biodiversity, but also our brand of culture and hospitality,” Puyat added.

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Filipino-Japanese Journal September 2020  

Covid-19 Survivor Iza Calzado: 'Every Breath is a Blessing'

Filipino-Japanese Journal September 2020  

Covid-19 Survivor Iza Calzado: 'Every Breath is a Blessing'

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