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Business permits in just 2 hours

Motorcycles with fake documents impounded NORTH COTABATO - More than 100 motorbikes and pedicabs with dubious registration documents were impounded by local police and Land Transportation Office (LTO) here since December 31, a police official said. The motor vehicles were seized following joint operations of LTOMidsayap, the local police

Founded 2006


and elements of the Army’s 34th Infantry Battalion. “Most have expired registration papers, others (have) none at all,” said Superintendent Gilbert Tuzon, Midsayap town police chief. The impounding of dubious motor vehicles was part of security measures implemented by the local police following intelligence reports of bomb attacks during the

GENERAL SANTOS CITY - The local government has unveiled a so-called Business Permits and Licensing System (BPLS) that will allow the issuance of business permits in just two hours or even less. Dubbed as FAST, which stands for Friendly, Accessible, Simple and Timely, the new system was formally rolled out recently with the start of the annual registration

holiday season. Just recently, some 30 motorcycles with several registration violations were impounded at a checkpoint in Barangay Patindigin and San Isidro. At least 60 motorcycles were also impounded at a checkpoint in Barangays Salunayan and Kapinpilan. Ten motorbikes were confiscated on December 31. Continue on page 3

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Barangay, SK polls in May Mindanao. There is no resolution yet from the Comelec en banc to postpone the elections in Mindanao, said Comelec Regional Director Marlon Casquejo, adding, they already conducted hearings with election officers and the completed

the clustering of precincts. Davao Region has about 3 million voters, including the voters for SK. Of the total number, 1.2 million are in Davao City, including the 9,000 voters who registered in November 2017. Of the 1.2 voters, 919,000 are regular voters,

down the process in compliance with the guidelines set by the national government. She was referring to Joint Memorandum Circular 01, series of 2016 issued by the Department of Trade and Industry, Department of the Interior and Local Government and Department Information and Communications Technology. Continue on page 4


Jan. 8-14, 2018

Tacurong bomb suspects captured

OTABA TO CIT Y–D espite being under mar tial The military’s Western killed in similar fighting in ABAT CITY Despite martial law nP hilippines Mindanao Command and Tacurong City on Friday law,, violence continue in souther southern Philippines wher e at least 6 people had been in fighting the army’s 6th Infantry Di- after gunmen attacked where betw een warr ing families in M indanao vision did not release any two houses and shot dead between warring Mindanao indanao.. Just recently, armed erupted in Gandamato vil- information of the clashes. one of the occupants. Continue on page 4 Two people were also members of warring lage. Dipatuan and Amanodin families clashed in Lanao del Sur’s Bacolod Kalawi town that left at least 4 people dead. It was unknown if there were more casualties on both sides, but police said those slain in the fighting were all from the group of Amonodin family. The clashes stemmed from an old land and political feud. But it was unclear how the warring clan members managed to pass through military and police checkpoints in the town or whether authorities were unaware or failed in their intelligence gathering that could have prevented the President Rodrigo Duterte personally reaches out to family members of the fire incident victims deadly fighting that at NCCC Mall in Davao City on December 24. (Presidential Photos)

DAVAO CITY – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it is ready to hold the synchronized barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections in May unless there is a declaration of postponement in connection to the second extension of martial law in

and renewal of business permits here that will run until January 20. Geraldine Zamora, chief of the Business Permits and Licensing Division, said they had further streamlined the processes in the renewal and application of local business permits to fast track their issuance. From the previous 15 steps, which usually take two to three days to complete, she said they had cut

according to Casquejo. Last year, the Comelec en banc passed a resolution postponing the barangay and SK elections in Mindanao in October following the first extension of martial law by President Rodrigo Duterte. Continue on page 5

TACURONG CITY - Police are holding 3 people suspected as behind a deadly bombing here as authorities continue to investigate the attack. At least 2 people were killed and more than a dozen injured when a

homemade bomb went off outside a KTV bar on New Year’s Eve. Two of the suspects were among the injured, according to Senior Superintendent Raul Supiter, Sultan Kudarat police chief. Continue on page 3

Police continue probe on deadly mortar blast PAGADIAN CITY – Police were still investigating the mortar bomb explosion that left over a dozen casualties inside a plywood factor y in the southern Filipino province of Zamboanga del Norte. It said the explosion occurred last week while

workers were tinkering with the explosive they recovered in the town of Sirawai. Six people were confirmed dead from the powerful blast that also injured 7 others, all workers of the Sirawai Plywood Lumber Corporation. Continue on page 5

South Cotabato investments reach P56-M

GENERAL SANTOS CITY South Cotabato province has received some P56.2 million in project investments in the last three years under the World Bank-supported Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP). Based on the PRDP’s midterm review, beneficiaries in the province under its Investments for Rural Enterprises and Agricultural and

Fisheries Productivity (IREAP) component garnered the highest in Mindanao for the period. Marites Tanseco, PRDP project development officer, said among the projects was the P39 million cassava granules production and marketing venture in Polomolok town that started operating commercially last year. Continue on page 2



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The Mindanao Examiner

Jan. 8-14, 2018

ARMM hires 192 teachers in Sulu province SULU – The Department of Education of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DepEd-ARMM) hired 192 public school teachers in Sulu province. ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman signed the appointment papers and deployment orders of the teachers who will be sent to different public elementary and secondary schools in the province. Gov. Hataman was assisted by Dr. Tim UndainSanchez, Sulu schools division superintendent. The teachers were hired January 4 after undergoing a screening process that included validation of their credentials, a comprehensive examination, a teaching demonstration, and a panel interview that guaranteed only good quality teachers

were hired. “Definitely hindi ko kayo kilala. Na-appoint kayo dahil competent kayo, hindi dahil may kumausap sa akin at may ‘malakas’ sa akin,” Gov. Hataman said, adding, the applicants were assessed on equal footing to eliminate nepotism and so-called patronage system that reportedly beset the DepEdARMM’s hiring of new teachers in previous years. Gov. Hataman challenged the newly hired teachers to help improve the status of basic education in the region by giving their full commitment to teaching and in nurturing the holistic development of students. “Kung hindi nag-improve ‘yung quality ng education sa schools kung saan kayo na-deploy, ibig sabihin mali

na na-appoint kayo,” Gov. Hataman said. A special body from the regional government was also created to monitor the teachers’ timely reporting to their assigned schools and their compliance with the terms of their deployment. Presently, there are more than 500 public elementary and secondary schools in Sulu. The ARMM is composed of nine divisions that include Maguindanao I and II, Marawi City, Lanao del Sur I and II, Lamitan City, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi. Gov. Hataman also addressed several issues and concerns of hundreds of teacher applicants during a short forum held here. (Bureau of Public Information)

OFW killed in Zamboanga City ZAMBOANGA CITY – A Filipino overseas worker who came home for a vacation was killed in a gun attack in Zamboanga City in southern Philippines, police said. Police said the 30-year old Sadikal Apostol was heading home in Santa Catalina village when a lone gunman shot him along Martha Drive. The assailant

escaped on a motorcycle after the shooting. Apostol was shot in the body and face and died instantly from the attack. The motive of the killing is still unknown, but police said the attacker was waiting for Apostol and even called his name before shooting him dead. The man was also

brought to the hospital, but doctors said Apostol had been dead already when he arrived. Police said Apostol was shot with a .45-caliber pistol. No individual claimed responsibility for the murder. Gun attacks are not uncommon in Zamboanga where hired killers actively operate. (Mindanao Examiner)

4 injured in Maguindanao ambush COTABATO CITY – Four people were injured when unidentified gunmen ambushed a truck carrying picnickers in the troubled province of Maguindanao in southern Philippines, police said. Police said the truck was carrying over 2 dozen people and heading to Digos City in Davao del Sur province when ambushed in the town of Pagalungan.

The victims came from North Cotabato’s Midsayap town and among the wounded was a nine-year child and the driver, Jully Pacquira, 31. Two others wounded in the attack have been identified as Roland Custodio, 30, and Carol Samaranos, 29. Police said the driver did not stop even though he was shot and drove until they reached the safe zone and

sought help from authorities. No individual or group claimed responsibility for the ambush, but the province is known lair of rebel groups. Maguindanao Governor Esmael Mangudadatu did not give any statement on the attack or the violence in Maguindanao, one of 5 provinces under the Muslim autonomous region. (Rhoderick Beñez)

South Cotabato investments reach P56-M Continued fr om page 1 from She said project-lead Polo Samahang Nayon Multi-Purpose Cooperative presently sells its produce to San Miguel Corporation through a marketing arrangement. “The implemented projects have already changed the lives of many beneficiaries, especially the poor farmers,” Tanseco said. The other approved subprojects in the province are the P17 million “Enhancement of Production and Marketing of Dried Green Coffee Beans” in Tupi town and the P17.9 million “Integrated Cacao Production, Processing and Marketing of Fermented Cacao Beans” venture in two cluster areas

in the area. Cluster members of the coffee project received last month an initial P1.3 million in support grant through its lead proponent Tupi Coffee Growers’ Association, Inc. The provincial government, through Gov. Daisy AvanceFuenntes, earlier signed implementation management agreement with the Department of Agriculture in Region 12 for the rollout of the cacao project. The sub-project mainly aims to increase farmers’ productivity and income by producing cacao beans and expanding cacao production in the province. Six cooperatives in two cluster areas will lead the project’s implementation in the mu-

nicipalities of Tampakan, Tupi and Polomolok. These are the Cacao Coffee Growers Association, Lambayong Diversified Farmers Cooperative and Palo 19 Farmers Association in the upper valley cluster, and the Tibud Sa Katibawasan Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Glamang Small Coconut Farmers Association and Tupi Banana Growers Association in the lower valley cluster. The local government is currently waiting for the approval of its proposed P30-million “Dairy Production, Processing and Marketing” sub-project that will benefit local livestock farmers. (Hydee Templonuevo)

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The Mindanao Examiner

Jan. 8-14, 2018

ARMM allocates funds for typhoon victims COTABATO CITY – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) said it has allocated funds and is now extending various forms of assistance to individuals and families affected by flash floods and landslides brought about by typhoon “ Vinta” (Tembin) in Lanao del Sur province. Governor Mujiv Hataman said the ARMM’s Humanitarian and Emergency Action Response Team (HEART) Operation Center in Cotabato City is coordinating with local government units and disaster risk reduction management councils

across the region, especially in Lanao del Sur, to assess the impact of the storm. As of Saturday, the province of Lanao del Sur has reported the heaviest damage. ARMM officials are also closely monitoring the situation in Basilan because of continuous heavy rain in the province. So far, reports received from the remaining provinces of the region, specifically Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi, have not been as alarming. “Members and officials of the regional Humanitarian Emergency Action and Response Team have already been

deployed,” Gov. Hataman said, adding, relief packs were distributed in areas affected by the heavy rains. ARMM-HEART reported that as of Saturday, at least 12 towns in Lanao del Sur experienced heavy flooding and landslides and these are Wato, Balindong, Bubong, Madalum, Tugaya, Bacolod Kalawi, Madamba, Tamparan, Piagapo, Calanogas, Maguing, Poona Bayabao and Ditsaan Ramain. The number of reported deaths and missing residents, subject to validation by the Department of Health-ARMM, are as

Tacurong bomb suspects captured Continued fr om page 1 from Supiter declined to name the suspects until the cases of multiple murder and frustrated multiple murder are filed in court. He said the two suspects were arrested in the hospital after they were initially

treated from minor injuries. Pedicab driver Dominador Datahan, 45, and his passenger Ali Suharto, 19, died while being treated in a hospital hours after the IED exploded inside the pedicab. Another passenger, Aladin

Laguiab, 21, was critically injured. “We have witnesses who provided police probers with detailed statement,” Supiter said, adding, they were still investigating the motive of the attack. (Edwin Fernandez)

Motorcycles with fake documents impounded Continued fr om page 1 from Tuzon said the deployment of police and military checkpoints on all entry and exit points of Midsayap was made after intelligence reports showed local terrorists

had plotted to bomb the town. Police have been placed on triple red alert since the holidays and will continue this month as the town prepares for Halad Festival, an annual historical and cultural event

where farmers hold thanksgiving party for the bountiful harvest the previous year. The Halad celebration coincides with the Feast of Sr. Sto Nino in Midsayap. (Edwin Fernandez)

follows: Piagapo: 10 deaths; Bacolod Kalawi: 2 deaths, 1 missing; Madalum: 4 deaths, 1 missing; Tamparan: 1 death; Tugaya: 2 deaths; and Wato Balindong: 2 deaths. In Poona Bayabao, 25 villages were inundated, three of these reported heavy damage to properties. The town’s provincial road remains impassable as of Saturday morning. Torrential rains triggered landslides in the towns of

Tugaya, Bacolod-Kalawi, and Madalum also resulting in closure of roads. In Madalum, mounds of earth and debris covered about 200 meters of the road. “Challenging ang pagpasok sa Madalum for rescue and relief operations. Kailangan pa natin ng road clearance,” Gov. Hataman said. Since Friday night, the Department of Public Works and HighwaysARMM and Region 10 and

the district engineering offices in Lanao del Sur are now clearing up the roads and bridges affected by the floods and landslides with support from the 6th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army. “Isang probinsiya lang sa rehiyon ang pinaka apektado ng bagyong Vinta, pero hindi natin sila dapat pabayaan lalo pa’t katatapos lang ng Marawi siege,” Gov. Hataman said. (Bureau of Public Information)


The Mindanao Examiner


Continued fr om page 1 from One of the attackers was also slain in the fighting that police claimed was connected to a long running feud between two families. Clan war or locally

known as “rido” is not uncommon in the restive region, especially in Muslim areas where honor, pride and dignity is valued as more important than one’s life. Police were investigat-

ing both clashes. Aside from clan war, security forces are also battling Muslim and communist rebels in different areas in the region. (Mindanao Examiner)

Business permits in just 2 hours Continued fr om page 1 from Under the new system, Zamora said the process only involves the filing and assessment, payment and the then the claiming of business permits. “Our original target was to have the business permits released in 40 minutes to one hour but since this is a new system, we (are) giving it at least two hours,” she said, adding, among the major changes was the setting of the basic requirements for application and renewal to just the barangay clearance and the unified form. Zamora said they also simplified the assessment of gross sales by allowing the immediate approval of declarations of 15 percent and above. Under the previous system, the review and assessment of gross sales of business took two to three days, she said. Aside from these, she said they also implemented

the automated or computerized transfer and sharing of documents in all city government offices involved in the issuance of business permits. She clarified that the basic clearances required in the previous system still remain, but are no longer required during the renewal and registration period. She said business owners are required to complete within 90 days the necessary clearances such as those issued by the Bureau of Fire Protection, Office of the Building Official, Pagibig Fund, Social Security System and the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. or PhilHealth. Except for PhilHealth, she said all local government and national government agencies issuing the clearances would be available in the one-stop-shop situated at the city’s Investment Center during the processing period.

The city government crafted the new BPLS with technical assistance from the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Strengthening Urban Resilience for Growth with Equity (SURGE) Project for the initiative. The city is among the current recipients of the $47.8 million SURGE Project, which aims to further enhance economic development in various key cities in the country. The five-year project, which is a component of USAID’s Cities Development Initiative, “assists cities and adjacent areas to plan effectively, guarantee basic public services, reduce business transaction costs, promote competitiveness, support sustainable development, and reduce disaster and climate change risks while ensuring inclusive and sustainable growth.”


Jan. 8-14, 2018


The Mindanao Examiner

Jan. 8-14, 2018

Blast near police base kills 1, injures 4 more in restive Maguindanao province COTABATO CITY – A roadside bomb exploded on New Year’s Eve in the troubled province of Maguindanao in southern Philippines and killed a policeman while at least 4 others were wounded in the attack blamed on local jihadists. The blast, which occurred near the provincial police headquarters in Shariff Aguak town, also damaged a prowl car. The attack was believed carried out by the

Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters whose members were mostly from the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front which signed an interim peace deal with Manila in 2014. It was unclear how the BIFF managed to sneak through the town’s center and planted the improvised explosive undetected. There was no immediate statement from the 6th Infantry Division or the military’s Western Mindanao Command in

connection to the failure of security forces to prevent the attack. Police confirmed the blast, but gave little or no details about the daring bombing. Both the provincial governor, Esmael Mangudadatu, and the BIFF, which is fighting for a separate Muslim state, also did not give any statement on the bombing. The victims were rushed to hos(Mindanao pital. Examiner)

Barangay, SK polls in May Continued fr om page 1 from Casquejo said the Comelec en banc resolution was already superseded by Republic Act 10952, the act postponing the October 2017 barangay and SK elections. Under the rules and regulations implementing RA 10952 of Comelec Resolution No. 10213 promulgated on October 24, 2017, the elections will be conducted on the second Monday of May. He said it is not yet certain whether the Comelec en banc would see the need to postpone again the barangay and SK polls in Mindanao because of martial law which could have an implication to the security of candidates, Comelec, among others. Comelec has yet to hold consultations with local officials on whether to hold or not the elections in May. Casquejo recalled that the

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postponement last year was approved by COMELEC in an en banc resolution on August 15 following a consultation with local officials. The postponement was considered because of martial law. He said all parties had been notified and there was no opposition to delay the elections, which was scheduled on October. However, Casquejo said Davao region could still hold the elections in May, trusting on the capability of the police and military to secure the people, candidates, and the Comelec. Casquejo said the New People’s Army (NPA) still poses as a threat to candidates and its extortion activities. The Comelec will also reset its schedule such as acceptance of the Certificates of Candidacy, date of the campaign period. Casquejo said the campaign normally starts 15 days before the Elec-

tion Day. The barangay and SK officials are on hold over status, unless removed or suspended for cause, until their successor shall have been duly elected and qualified. Also under the rules, the barangay officials who are ex-officio members of the Sangguniang Bayan, Sangguniang Panlungsod, or Sangguniang Panlalawigan, as the case may be, shall continue to serve as such members in the Sangunian concerned until the next barangay election. The Liga ng mga Barangay at the municipal, city, and provincial levels shall, not later than July 31, 2018, conduct elections for ex officio positions in the sanggunians under the supervision of the Department of the Interior and Local Government. (Lilian Mellejor)

ARMM Governor Hands Over Infra Projects To Panglima Estino town In Sulu

SULU – Residents of Panglima Estino town are expected to benefit significantly from high-impact infrastructure projects turned over by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) to the local government. ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman led the turnover ceremony on January 4 and he was assisted by Don Mustapha Loong, Regional Secretary of Public Works and Highways; Rep. Abdulmunir Arbison, Mayor Benshar Estino and AzZamier Arbison, district engineer of Sulu’s 2nd District Engineering Office. The projects included the Sagay-Sagay Water Supply System Level II, or communal faucet units, and a school building at the Panglima Estino National High School. The water system project now supplies the community of Panglima

Estino with safe and potable water. In the past, the community sourced its supply of drinking water from deep wells and water pumps, which put their lives at risk from water-borne diseases. For instance, residents of Barangay Marsada, an outlying village, used to get its drinking water from a deep well with salty water. The municipal government of Panglima Estino is currently planning to establish a water district that would further improve water services to its residents. Mayor Estino said once a local water district is established, the residents will only pay for the transmission and administrative costs of the water supplied to them. Meanwhile, a six-classroom school building at the Panglima Estino National High School was also turned over by the ARMM through

Gov. Hataman. The new school building would cater to senior high school students. The ARMM, under the Hataman administration, has already poured in a total of P323.77 million worth of infrastructure projects to Panglima Estino since 2012. This year, a 5.5 kilometer road in this town will be paved with a total cost estimated at P109.50 million. Panglima Estino is a 5th class town in Sulu province composed of 12 barangays with almost 30,000 residents. The turnover of the projects coincided with the town’s 37th Founding Anniversary. Gov. Hataman lauded the local government unit of Panglima Estino and its residents for contributing to the town’s progress and development. (Bureau of Public Information)

Police continue probe on deadly mortar blast Continued fr om page 1 from “Melecio Arcenal, Chief Security Of Sirawai Plywood Lumber Corporation reported to Sirawai municipal police station that his men found a mortar and brought it to their bunkhouse, but it accidentally exploded,” said Chief Inspector Helen

Galvez, a regional police spokesperson. “Six persons died on the spot and seven persons were wounded. Personnel of Sirawai police station are still conducting a follow-up investigation on the incident,” she added. It was unknown where

the victims found the mortar or if it came from the military arsenal or not. Rebel groups active in the province also use mortar as one of their weapons. No other details were available by the police as investigation is going on. (Mindanao Examiner)


The Mindanao Examiner

Jan. 8-14, 2018

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The Mindanao Examiner

Jan. 8-14, 2018

LETTERS FROM DAVAO by Jun Ledesma ‘It was a good yyear ear ear’’ WE HAVE SEEN the litany of achievements of Duterte administration. It dwarfed the entire six years of the Aquino regime. It could have done better except that it has to first fix a lot of damages wrought by an inept regime that has likewise institutionalized corruption and abetted crime the most horrific of it all – the drug syndicates. Space or brevity must have limited some significant achievements of the Department of Finance and am referring to the upgrades of credit ratings of the Philippines from investment grade to investment grade and stable. While early on Standard & Poor’s claimed that President Duterte’s war on drugs and alleged extra-judicial killings are factors that account for the static rating by December 2017 it grudgingly acceded that something good is happening in the Philippines under Duterte’s watch. Finance Sec. Sonny Dominguez and his team deserves the credit. Fitch and Moody’s in their “investment grade and stable” rating in December enunciated that the issues surrounding drugs and EJK have nothing to do with the rosy economy of the country and its image as capital investment destination. The country’s economic performance for one is top in Asia and there is no turning back with the expected massive spending on infrastructures and government services starting 2018 and beyond. The Duterte government achievements scoreboard makes the moribund opposition drooling. Still on Finance, expect the billionaires who are also the country’s tax dodgers to cough up. TRAIN or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion gives a huge relief to 99 percent of those small taxpayers saving the ar least P50,000.00 in tax cut! But demands and exacts the reasonable taxes from the rich especially the filthy rich. Last year sampling of Lucio Tan (P6-billion), Mighty Cigarettes (P40-billion) and the Prieto and Rufinos’ one-mile asset that they are accountable to the government in still unquantifiable amount as yet? There is a subliminal message to be absorbed why candidate Rodrigo R. Duterte refused to accept donations from the rich and famous: just pay your taxes correctly and you’re okay. The Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bureau of Customs are churning more collections under a continuing reforms. President Duterte himself did dramatic and radical transformations in the area of Foreign Affairs and security. He was chided and lectured on by self proclaimed experts in diplomacy and security alliances especially with the generous expletives he is famous for. But as he admitted to the point of being

apologetic, he told media men in this year’s Christmas party, “but that is me”. Duterte’s foray into foreign affairs and diplomacy might be severely lacking in refinements but he put across his message clearly and direct and one cannot quarrel with what he achieved in such a brief moment. He virtually altered the outlook of the western countries on small sovereign nations. He overhauled alliances by an unwritten rule of mutual respect and cognizance of sovereignty. While Aquino made enemies with China which is the world’s second largest economy resulting in unquantifiable losses of opportunities Duterte reversed that with the resumption of trade, financial assistance with cheap money interest, massive infrastructure projects that will come into fruition by 2018. World leaders to include Xi Jinping of China, Vladimir Putin of Russia, PM Shinzo Abe of Japan and, to the dismay of the socalled Yellowtards, US Pres. Donald Trump who became his virtual phone pal. The Department of Agriculture under Sec. Manny Pinol, did exemplary well. Productivity is better than expected and could have performed better if not for the natural calamities that the country has to contend with. Maybe the Bureau of Fisheries under it may try something out of the box. Propose to China to convert that disputed island into a one big marine laboratory. China provides the infrastructures while the Philippines the technical aquatic expertise. Make a 10-mile no-fishing marine haven around the island and guarded by the joint coastguard forces of China, Philippines and Vietnam. The Philippine Coconut Authority under Cabinet Sec. Jun Evasco is about to embark on a massive replanting program. The Aquino government allocated billions of pesos to fight ‘cocolisap’ infestation but applied the wrong solution. Well, what do we expect from a certain Kiko Pangilinan? The replanting program was a big failure on account of massive graft in high and low places. Replanting as well as new areas had been programmed by PCA. Finally we have to give accolade to our Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police for combating internal threats, terrorism and syndicated crime. The AFP and PNP are more prepared and better equipped now than any other time in history. Furthermore we see a disciplined forces in the AFP and while there are a few remaining scalawags in the PNP the cleansing process is done without let-up. We from Mindanao are comfortable and secured with their presence even under the aegis of martial law. If you do not believe me look at the various surveys on the popularity and trust of Filipinos on President Duterte and his

government. This will end my perspectives for year 2017 and we look forward to 2018 the Build, Build, Build era. The beginning of the new Philippines. Mindanao and Davao City, from where I live and write, may have suffered from natural calamities but we had seen, suffered and endured worse scenarios and even man made tragedies than that. We do our thing to rebound quietly and come out stronger each time. We mourn the deaths but after the the last note of the dirge fades we will sing again just like the birds after the worst of storms. Happy New Year! ‘Ibon ma ’y umaawit ma’y matapos ang bagy o’ bagyo ANG TREHEDYA na nangyari sa Lungsod ng Dabaw noon bisperas ng Pasko ay pambihira. Maaga pa lang ay itinaas na ang alarma para sa bagyong Vinta kung saan kasama ang lungsod sa mga daraanan nito. Si Mayor Inday Sara Duterte ay maagap na nagpalabas ng mga paalala sa mga naninirahan sa mga baybayin, tabi ng mga ilog at mga lugar na tinamaan na noon ng mga pagbaha at binalaan na maging mapagmatiyag at lumikas. Nang tumama ang Vinta sa kalupaan at nananalasa sa Davao, Surigao, Agusan, Compostela Valley province, ang hangin sa Lungsod ng Dabaw ay kalmado at maagang sumikat ang araw. Pinagisipan ko sanang ipagpaliban ang tradisiyonal na Christmas Party na isinasagawa para sa mga empleyado ng Mindanao Journal kasama ang ilang mga malalapit na kaibigan sa media ngunit dahil nakagugulat na maganda naman ang panahon, ay napagpasyahan naming na ituloy ito. Kasabay nito ang aking biyenan at aking anak na si Kristine at tatlong apo ay nag datingan din para sa aming Christmas reunion. Ang dalawa kong anak na lalakeng sina Dante at Ferdinand na naninirahan sa Gem Village sa Ma-a, ay kasama namin sa kasiyahan. Bandang 7:00 ng gabi at isang kapitbahay ang nag text sa kanila na ang tubig-baha ay papasok na sa subdibisyon. Ang kaibigan ni Dante ay tumawag din at nag-aalok ng kaniyang sasakyan para mailipat ang mga importanteng gamit sa mas ligtas na lugar. Agad silang umalis sa party at pumunta sa Ma-a at nang sila ay makarating doon hanggang tuhod na ang tubig baha. Ikinarga nila ang lahat ng kaya nila sa van at agad ding umalis. Ang aking tahanan ay nasa mas mataas na lugar. Mula sa aming kinalalagyan, dinig ang mayat-mayang sirena at pagdaan ng mga rescue trucks at ambulansiya ng 911. Tumawag ako sa 911 upang itanong kung anong nangyayari. Maagap ang kanilang tugon. “Sir pinasok na ng

rumaragasang baha ang Jade Valley” at nagpapatuloy ang rescue operations. Inililikas na rin ang mga nasa Gem Village at nagiikot ang mga opisyal ng barangay upang payuhan ang mga residente na agad ng magsilikas. Nagulat ako. Ang aking mga anak ay nandoon. Kinuha ko ang aking cellphone at tinawagan sila. “Dito na kami sa harap ng bahay ninyo Pa,” tugon ni Ferdinand. Nagpatuloy kami sa aming Christmas dinner at exchanged gifts na may kahalong kaba. Kaya’t nagpasyang maagang magsi-uwian. Habang inihahatid ko ang aking mga kaibigan sa labas nagsimula ng umambon. Maya-maya pa, Si Allan Abais ng dxAB ay nag text at sinabi na si Secretaty Bong Go ay nasa lugar na ng kalamidad sa Jade Valley at tumutulong sa mga na istranded sa baha na mga residente. Noon pa man si Secretary Bong ay isang magaling na jet skier at laging kasama sa mga rescue operations. Ang mga anak ko ay bumalik na uli ng Gem Village sa Ma-a pag sikat ng araw ngunit bumalik din kaagad. Ang buong village ay lubog na sa baha at ang mga tao ay hindi na pinayagang makapasok pa maliban sa mga rescue teams. Sikat na ang araw. Maya-maya pa tumawag ang Club Samal, isang resort sa tabing dagat sa Island Garden City of Samal, upang ipaalam sa akin na kalmado daw ang dagat at pinayagan na ng coast guard na makatawid ang mga ferry sa pagitan ng Davao at Samal. Nawalan na kami ng pag-asa sa bahay ng aking mga anak sa Gem Village, kaya bumiyahe na kami sa Club

Samal na isang bagonggawang resort at hotel na pagmamay-ari ng aking kaibigan at Chairman ng Davao City Water District, Ed Bangayan. Habang kami ay nagbibiyahe patungo sa pier upang tumawid sa Samal Island, ang mga balita tungkol sa baha ay nangunguna pa ring balita sa radyo. Ngunit kinalaunan isang ulat ang pumasok hinggil sa nasusunog na NCCC Mall. Sa alam kong laki at lawak ng gusali hindi ko lubos maisip kung bakit ang mga tao sa ika-apat na palapag ay na-trap at hindi makalabas. Sa katunayan ang mga balita sa radio ay nakatuon ng matagal sa mga binahang village kung saan nagpapatuloy ang rescue operations mula pa ng gabi ng ika 23 ng Disyembre. Kayat nakagugulat na marinig na hindi lang iilan ang nasawi. Si Pangulong Duterte na noon ay nasa Biliran at sa iba pang panig ng Mindanao ay agad na umuwi upang makita ang lawak ng pinsalang dala ng baha at sunog. Talagang hindi kapanipaniwala ngunit kaharap ko ang masakit na reyalidad at katotohanan. Sino nga ba ang makapaniniwalang ang dalawang kalamidad na ito ay mangyayari. Maganda ang lagay ng panahon sa Lungsod ng Dabaw. Ang init ng araw ay matindi. At paanong ang isang gusali gaya ng NCCC mall ay magiging nag lalagablab na patibong? Napaka-pambihira. Pasko sana at maaring mag diwang dahil nailigtas ang lungsod mula sa bagyo at malakas na ulan na nanalasa sa ibang probinsiya at lungsod na dinaanan nito kung saan

kasama sana ang Lungsod ng Dabaw. Lingid sa kaalaman ng MBA Gaga Davao City ang malakas na ulan na bumuhos sa mga kabundukan kabilang na ang nasa karatig na probinsiya ay bumaba at dumaloy sa Tamugan at Davao River na nag dala ng rumaragasang tubig baha sa mga ilog. At paano naman ang sunog sa NCCC Mall? Wala akong sagot diyan. Ang masasabi ko lang sa ngayon ay isang seryoso at masusing imbestigasiyon ang dapat maisagawa. Isang napaka-lungkot na bahagi at pangyayari ito upang isulat lalo na at panahon ng kapaskohan. Nais kong ibahagi ang isang makahulugang talatang mula kay Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy ngunit sa abot ng aking maalala: “Ang Dios ay hindi magbibigay sa atin ng krus o pasanin na mas mabigat pa kaysa sa makakaya natin. Gusto niyang maging masaya tayo, hindi malungkot. Umaawit at humuhini ang ibon pagkatapos ng bagyo, bakit hindi natin ito magawa? ” Ako ay nalulungot at nakiki simptaya sa mga nabiktima ng baha at sunog. Ang aking mga anak ay nawalan ng kanilang mga computer at iba pang mahahalagang gamit sa baha. Ngunit ito ay mga material na mga bagay na maaring mapalitan agad o sa kalaunan. Subalit sa mga nasawi sa nag aalab na sunog at baha walang salita o kataga ang maaring makapawi sa kanilang kalungkutan sa ngayon. Umaasa akong ang awa at pagmamahal ng Diyos ngayon Pasko ay madama ng mga nawalan ng kanilang mga mahal sa buhay. (Jun Ledesma)


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Jan. 8-14, 2018

Defense department trumpets accomplishments

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Eastern Mindanao

THE DEPARTMENT of National Defense (DND) touted the improvement of the Philippines’ security ties with its foreign counterparts in addressing issues on terrorism and radicalism as one of the agency's major achievements in 2017. On international defense and security engagements, the DND successfully hosted various activities in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana chaired the 11th ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) and 4th ADMMPlus on 23-24 October 2017 in Clark, Pampanga where defense ministers of ASEAN member countries exchanged views on regional and international defense and security issues, said DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong. Last October, defense officials of the ASEAN member-states signed the “Joint Declaration on Partnering for Change, Engaging the World” as well as documents on ADMM and ADMM Plus initiatives, and issued a joint statement on counter ing extremism, radicalism, and terrorism.

Andolong said the DND also conducted the ASEAN Defense Senior Officials Meeting (ADSOM) and Working Group and ADSOM Plus WG meetings in Manila and Cebu during the first quarter of 2017, and discussed proposals for cooperation between ADMM and ADMM Plus, which was followed by the ADSOM and ADSOMPlus meeting proper. The DND participated in the 14th ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) Security Policy Conference where leaders, including North Korea, exchanged views on regional and international defense and security issues, reserve forces, and regional security. In line with improving security ties with its ASEAN partners, the Philippines also signed the terms of reference on the Joint Committee on Military Cooperation and the launch of the Trilateral Air Patrol ( TAP) in Subang, Malaysia also in October. Last June, Andolong said the Trilateral Maritime Patrol ( TMP) was launched in Tarakan, Indonesia. Defense ministers of the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia witnessed the launching of the Maritime Command

Centers facilitating trilateral cooperation among the three countr ies in addressing security challenges in the region. Lorenzana also had multilateral engagements including the Moscow Conference on International Security in Moscow, Russia and the Halifax Inter national Security Forum in Nova Scotia, Canada in April and November, respectively. He also paid an official visit to Singapore to meet with his counterpar t and deliver a special address on ASEAN cooperation at the 5th Shangri-La Dialogue Sherpa Meeting, which is the first time a special dinner address was held in the said for um. And he led the department in engaging more countries to suppor t the Philippines’ peace and secur ity agenda in the region. Among the defense cooperation agreements entered into by the DND this year were those with Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Czech Republic, New Zealand, Russia, and UK. Logistics and defense industr y arrangements were also signed with China. (Priam Nepomuceno)

LTO Visayas to print 5-year license cards CEBU - The Land Transportation Office in Central Visayas said it will begin printing driver’s license cards with five-year validity. LTO Regional Director Alita Pulga said at least 20 printing machines are expected to arrive soon for

Western Mindanao

all licensing centers and extension offices in Cebu. LTO has to cope with over 200,000 license cards. The extension offices in the cities of Mandaue, Cebu, Talisay, Lapu-Lapu, Tagbilaran, Dumaguete, as well as at Driver’s License Renewal Office at


SM City and Robinson in Dumaguete City are set to address the backlogs. The new license card is laser engraved and made of polycarbonate material which contained several security features, Pulga said. (Luel Galarpe)


Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper Jan. 8-14, 2018  
Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper Jan. 8-14, 2018  

Jan. 8-14, 2018