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MNLF peace rally yields weapons

A photo released by the 6th Infantry Division to the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner shows the seized MNLF weapons.

Founded 2006

SECURITY FORCES are in heightened alert after army soldiers intercepted a huge number of armed followers of former Libyan firebrand Nur Misuari in southern Philippines. Some 250 MNLF members led by Ustadz

Jamaluddin Abdullah had travelled from the town of Pandag to the neighboring Buluan town in Maguindanao province on September 14 where army soldiers stopped them and told the group to surrender their weapons.

Abdullah’s group was on their way to the Buluan gymnasium to attend the so-called “Federal Victory Achievement of the entire MINSUPALA” which refers to the whole of Mindanao region and Continue on page 5

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BARMM shuts down Tawi-Tawi nickel mining


HE BANGSAMORO Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has suspended all nickel mining operations in the southern province of Tawi-Tawi as it reviews mining policy in the mineral-rich, but volatile region. Environment, Natu- industry audit. million wet metric tonnes ral Resources and Energy The Philippines was (wmt) of high-grade ore, or Minister Abdulrauf Abdul the world’s second-larg- nearly 90% of 2.66-million Macacua was also quoted est nickel ore producer in wmt of the high-grade maby Reuters as saying that 2018 after Indonesia, with terial the Philippines exthe nickel mining oper- both Southeast Asian na- ported to China in the first ations in the province tions as the top two suppli- half of 2018 came from Tahas been suspended in- ers to biggest buyer China. wi-Tawi, one of 5 provincdefinitely as the regional And latest available indus- es under the BARMM. government conducts an try data showed that 2.34 Continue on page 3

Military is source of illegal weapons in South – Murad Ebrahim

Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim (PCOO)

FORMER REBEL CHIEFTAIN Murad Ebrahim, now Chief Minister of the Muslim autonomous region, has claimed that the main source of illegal weapons and ammunition in the volatile region of Mindanao is the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Speaking at a television news program, Ebrahim, who had Continue on page 2

A government militia guards a mining site in southern Philippines. (Mindanao Examiner Photo)

Sulu holds ‘Mangosteen’ Festival SULU PROVINCE REMAINS the biggest source of Mangosteen (Garcinia mangostana) in the South and Continue on page 3

Sulu Governor Sakur Tan poses with exhibitors during the recently concluded Mangosteen Festival. (Sulu Govt. Photo)

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The Mindanao Examiner

September 23-29, 2019

Military is source of illegal weapons in South – Murad Ebrahim Continued from page 1 waged decades of deadly secessionist campaign in the South as head of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), pointed to the military arsenal as the source of the weapons. Ebrahim said illegal weapons in Mindanao bear the markings of the Department of National Defense (DND). “Most of the firearms are still coming from the armory of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. I think that’s the main source because now we do not see any firearms or weapons coming (from) outside (of the Philippines). Maybe before, during the early (19)70s, there were firearm purchases outside of the country, but today it is no longer happening,” Ebrahim said, adding, “it is up to the military to be strict in the control of the firearms.” It was not the first time that the MILF made such accusation. In July 2003, rebel spokesman Eid Kabalu admitted that his group had been buying weapons from government soldiers. “There’s no direct links between the MILF and the AFP. We do buy firearms and ammunition, not necessarily from the AFP directly. We understand through our simple inquiry that these firearms come from the (government) arsenal,” he said. Kabalu’s admission came after hundreds of renegade soldiers staged a coup and captured the posh Oakwood Premier apartment building and Glorietta Mall in the country’s business district of Makati City and they accused the Arroyo administration of illegally selling weapons to the MILF, as well as to the Islamic extremist Abu Sayyaf group and communist rebels. The putschists also accused defense officials of masterminding terrorist bombings in Mindanao and blamed it on the MILF and other militant groups to prolong their rebellion and get more military and financial aid from Washington. They demanded the resignation of President Gloria Arroyo and other senior officials for alleged corruption in the military before peacefully surrendering after long negotiations. Both the AFP and DND have denied Ebrahim’s allegations, but admitted it had lost weapons and ammunition during battles. “Nakarating po sa am-

A Moro Islamic Liberation Front soldier guards a checkpoint in Maguindanao province. (Mindanao Examiner Photo) ing kaalaman ang statement ni Ginoong Murad. At alam naman po namin na may mga kaso ng pagkawala ng mga baril at bala, sa mga nangyaring bakbakan at sa mga ambush na nangyari, na nagdaan. Pero ito naman po ay naka-record sa atin. Pero kung mayroon po tayong ganiyang impormasyon at makakakuha pa po tayo ng iba pang detalye buhat kay Chairman Murad, ay magsasagawa po tayo ng karampatang inventory at imbestigasyon,” said military spokesman Brigadier General Edgard Arevalo. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said there were no reports of losses or pilferages of firearms in military armories. “As far as I know we have no leakage in the AFP. No report of losses or pilferages of firearms in AFP armoires or supply rooms,” he said and also echoing Arevalo’s statement that weapons had been lost in fighting with rebel forces in Mindanao. “Quite a number of firearms were lost by soldiers in encounters with lawless elements and agaw-armas. Over the years, a substantial number of firearms were lost in this manner,” Lorenzana said. Director Aresenio Andolong, chief of the DND Public Affairs Service, has assured the public that they will run after anyone from the defense establishment involved in gunrunning activities. “We take cognizance of Chief Minister Al-Hajj Murad Ebrahim’s comment. We assure the public that anyone from the defense establishment

who is found guilty of gunrunning or pilferage of firearms and munitions will be dealt with severely and sanctioned accordingly. The DND is strongly against the proliferation of loose firearms and will not tolerate any individuals or groups that violate Philippine gun laws,” he said. But just recently, security forces intercepted some 250 soldiers of Nur Misuari, chieftain of the Moro National Liberation Front led by Ustadz Jamaluddin Abdullah, on their to a peace rally in Maguindanao’s Buluan town and confiscated 37 automatic weapons and three .45-caliber pistols from them. Police and military freed Abdullah’s group without filing criminal charges against those who were caught carrying automatic weapons. Major General Diosdado Carreon, the division commander, said MNLF members are prohibited to carry weapons. “MNLF members can converge for dialogues and other peaceful activities as long as they are not in uniform and under arms as this is prohibited in the security agreements indicated in the September 2, 1996 Government of the Philippines-MNLF final peace agreement,” he said. There was no immediate statement from Misuari. And Carreon did not say why no charges were filed against Abdulla’s group for carrying illegal weapons, especially at a time while the whole of the southern Philippines are under martial law. (Mindanao Examiner)

Protests vs. Shell continue REPRESENTATIVES OF climate-impacted communities have been staging solo protests at the Shell headquarters at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig, calling on the company to face the people. The series of protests was started by super-typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) survivor Joanna Sustento, who was taken into custody by dozens of police officers in the vicinity of the Shell headquarters to the nearby police precinct, just 2 hours into her peaceful protest. “Since then, individuals hailing from different parts of the country have stood up to Shell at the company’s doorstep, each of them doing this not only for themselves and their loved ones, but for all of us. Celebrities and netizens have also shared their messages of support for these brave Filipinos,” said Greenpeace. It said fossil fuel companies like Shell continue

to rake in huge profits while the people and the planet suffer. “Up to now, these corporations have not acknowledged their responsibility for fuelling climate change. We have to make Shell listen, and hold them accountable for their role in the climate crisis we’re now living with,” Greenpeace said. In April, the Public Radio International reported that Royal Dutch Shell PLC became the first major oil and gas company to announce plans to leave a leading US refining lobby due to disagreement on climate policies, citing its support for the goals of the Paris climate agreement. In its first review of its association with 19 key industry groups, Shell said it had found “material misalignment” over climate policy with the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, and would quit

the body in 2020. The review is part of Shell’s drive to increase transparency and show investors it is in line with the 2015 Paris climate agreement’s goals to limit global warming by reducing carbon emissions to a net zero by the end of the century. It is the latest sign of how investor pressure on oil companies, particularly in Europe, is leading to changes in their behavior around climate. Last year, Shell caved in to investor pressure over climate change, setting out plans to introduce industry-leading carbon emissions targets linked to executive pay. Its chief executive, Ben van Beurden, has since repeatedly urged oil and gas producers to take action over climate and pollution, staking out a more radical position than the heads of other major oil companies. (Mindanao Examiner)

Greenpeace photo released to the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner shows a lone protester outside Shell headquarters in Taguig City.

The Mindanao Examiner

September 23-29, 2019

BARMM shuts down Tawi-Tawi nickel mining Continued from page 1 Tawi-Tawi accounted for 27% of overall nickel ore exports, totalling 15.8-million wmt, to China during the sixmonth period. “The suspension order was due to the on-going review of mining policy in BARMM,” Macacua said, adding, the audit is being conducted as the local government prepares to push for the enactment of a Bangsamoro Responsible Mining Law that will serve as a road map for the region’s mining industry. A performance assessment and evaluation team has been created to review the mining firms’ operations, with no definite timeline as to how long the suspension will be, but the BARMM suspension order covers four mining companies actively operating in Tawi-Tawi out of seven that have been given permits, Macacua said, without identifying the four. The suspension was based on a memorandum order dated August 5 issued by the regional government, Macacua said in an e-mail reply to Reuters’ queries about the status of mining in Tawi-Tawi, where SR Languyan Mining Corp, the country’s top supplier of high-grade material to China, operates.

SR Languyan’s average monthly ore exports this year is around 416 500 wmt, Macacua said. There is no government data available about the size of ore deposits left at SR Languyan’s project. SR Languyan is expected to shut its mining operations later this year as ore deposits at its project are nearly depleted, Jaynul Ali Sambarani, head of mines and geoscience services at BARMM’s environment ministry, told Reuters. Environmentalists said nickel mining activities have destroyed the environment on Tumbagaan Island in Tawi-Tawi’s Languyan town. In 2016, the Regional Legislative Assembly had asked the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to issue an order stopping all destructive mining activities in the Muslim autonomous region. Assemblyman Hanibal Tulawie, the chairman of the Committee on Environment and Ecology, previously said that a resolution was passed asking the DENR to immediately issue a “cease-anddesist” order on all mining companies operating in Tawi-Tawi and also in Basilan, Sulu, Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao provinces. Tulawie said he had re-

ceived numerous complaints from the public and environmentalists who are opposed to destructive mining methods. Photos of nickel mining operations in Tumbagaan Island posted on Facebook showed huge trucks and barges hauling off red soil, which was allegedly being shipped to China where it is processed. Reports indicate that Tumbagaan Island is totally devastated because of mining explorations and the on-going nickel mining activities in Languyan municipality and Panglima Sugala. By next year, when Indonesia bans nickel ore exports, China is expected to rely mainly on the Philippines for supply of the material for stainless steel and electronic vehicle battery, according to the Reuters report. The bulk of the Philippines’ total nickel ore output usually comes from the main mining region of Caraga, also in the south. Philippine nickel miners may ramp up ore output by next year as they expect the Indonesian ore export ban and brisk demand to keep prices elevated. Their production capacity, however, is limited by a number of factors, including government-imposed mining curbs, industry ex-

ecutives said at a Philippine mining conference recently.

(By Reuters, with additional reporting from the Mindan-


ao Examiner and The Zamboanga Post.)

Sulu holds ‘Mangosteen’ Festival

Sulu Governor Sakur Tan poses with exhibitors during the recently concluded 2nd Mangosteen Festival. (Sulu Govt. Photo) Continued from page 1 with tons of fruit harvest annually, local officials have turned the season into a grand festival. The 2nd Mangosteen Festival which was recently held in the Capitol Ground in Patikul town attracted a huge number of visitors wanting to taste the many kinds of delicacies made from the exotic tropical fruit. Governor Sakur Tan led the opening of the festival which showcased different products made from Mangosteen by each of the municipalities. The Mangosteen jam manufactured by “Sulu Originals” was the best seller. The festival, which was started by then Governor Toto Tan - now the deputy governor - is much awaited not only in Sulu, but in Mindanao because of the huge supply of the purple fruit that even manufacturers of health supplements get their Mangosteen here. And this prompted younger Tan to embark on a festival which saw various delectable products made from mangosteen – from jam to ice cream and tea and coffee, and even a potent tonic drink. “Sulu’s Mangosteen is the best because of our fertile lands and the love we exert in maintaining our

farms. There is love and dedication, and even during harvest time, everybody is out there and picking ripe mangosteen, and that is why it is the best,” Tan said, adding, the “festival is a great way to bring opportunities, possibilities and celebrate what is part of our very own landscape.” Tan is also one of the forefronts in the promotion of mangosteen products and has encouraged health companies which are into mangosteen supplements to put up production plants in the province to cut high cost of shipping fruit cargoes to Manila or other parts of the country. Sulu’s mangosteen jam is getting good reviews from food and dessert aficionados. The festival, according to Tan, also featured other non-mangosteen food products. According to the website Organic Facts, health benefits of mangosteen include a reduced risk of cancer, inflammation, allergies, and diabetes. It has antioxidant, antifungal, and antibacterial properties which help in protecting the body against various ailments and also boosts the immune system. Mangosteen is also beneficial in maintaining healthy skin, weight management, and providing relief from diarrhea and dysentery.

The popular website – – also cited Sulu, saying that mangosteen does not have many varieties, except for the one which is found in the province and its islands. “It seems that the people of Southeast Asia realized the medicinal value that this fruit had a long time ago. Relying on it as a form of treatment for different medical conditions is the reason why scientists have continuously carried out studies and research to confirm these healing allegations. So far the benefits of this fruit have been proven scientifically over the past 3 decades,” it added. Mangosteen is a healthy fruit, which is rich in water, energy, protein, carbohydrates, and fiber. Essential nutrients such as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, zinc, copper, and manganese are found in this fruit. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, it contains vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, and vitamin A which are required for maintaining good health. Other vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, folate, folic acid, carotene, and cryptoxanthin are also found in it. (Zamboanga Post and Mindanao Examiner)

PLDT upgrades mobile services in Sulu SULU – Representatives of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) flew to Sulu and met with provincial government officials to discuss expansion project of its mobile communication network. Acting Governor Toto Tan met with Bernard Castro, PLDT First Vice President for Customer Service Fulfilment Management, and his staffs. Tan said the PLDT group has begun upgrading its mobile services of Smart Communications and facil-

ities in the province and is expected to be completed later this year or early 2020. Smart Communications is a wholly-owned wireless communications and digital services subsidiary of PLDT. It serves approximately 95% of the country’s cities and municipalities with its combined 2G, 3G, and 4G LTE network, providing mobile communications services, high-speed internet connectivity, and access to digital services and content to over 58.7 million Filipinos through its commercial

brands Smart, TNT, and Sun. Smart also offers satellite communication services under the brand Smart World. As part of PLDT’s massive digital transformation program, Smart said it has committed to give more than 90% of the population access to its most advanced LTE network in order to support the country’s growing digital economy, as well as provide the best customer experience for an increasingly digital lifestyle. (Mindanao Examiner)


The Mindanao Examiner

September 23-29, 2019

Sulu Pictures in the News

AS SUPPORT OF the Sulu Provincial Government to barangays in their effort to quickly response whenever there are calamities specifically huge fires, Acting Governor Abdusakur Toto Tan II turned over units of water pump with complete accessories to the eight barangays of Jolo. The equipment can also be used for water distribution to barangay residence. (Sulu Govt. Photos)

GOVERNOR SAKUR TAN inducts officers of the Organized Farmers Association from the 19 Municipalities of Sulu province. With the theme: “Empowering Farmer Leaders Toward Agricultural Development through Agripreneurship”, Tan in his speech reminded farmers that agriculture plays an important role in alleviating poverty in the Province. “Work for your next generation.”, Tan told the farmers. Tan praised MAFAR-Sulu headed by their Provincial Agri Officer Mercian Aspi, for their efforts in developing agriculture in Sulu.He reiterated his commitment to support the agricultural industry in the Province. (Sulu Govt. Photos)

MEMBERS OF THE Tausug Active Youth Organization, Inc. expressed their gratitude to Governor Sakur Tan for his strong support and for attending the 10th Induction Ceremony. Governor Tan is guest speaker and inducting officer. (Photos by Datu Yldon Kiram)

A TOKEN PRESENTED to Governor Sakur Tan by Colonel Antonio Bautista, commander of the Metro Jolo Integrated Task Force. Also in the photo are Vice Governor Toto Tan and Mrs. Bautista. (Sulu Govt. Photo)

COURTESY CALL on Governor Sakur Tan at his office by UN High Commissioner on Refugees-Integrated Resource Development Tri-people led by Atty. Maureen Dela Cruz and team members Anihar Annuari, Hindun Angsa, Nasser Antao and Persada Gadjali. (Photo by Nahbin Jubaira)

GOVERNOR SAKUR TAN hands over financial assistance to Lieutenant Colonel Alex Agula in support of the renovation of billeting station at the brigade headquarters in Jolo town. (Sulu Govt. Photo)

The Mindanao Examiner

September 23-29, 2019

MNLF peace rally yields weapons Continued from page 1 the provinces of Sulu and Palawan. The rally was reportedly coordinated with the municipal government of Buluan. Soldiers intercepted Abdullah’s group after villagers were alarmed by the huge presence of armed soldiers of Misuari, chairman of the MNLF. The 6th Infantry Division said it confiscated 37 automatic weapons and three .45-caliber pistols from the MNLF members. Major Homer Estolas, chief of the Public Affairs Office, said Abdullah’s group surrendered 21 M16 automatic rifles, three M14 rifles, one Ultimax light machine gun, two M4A1 Carbine rifles, two Garand rifles, one Browning automatic rifle, one M203 automatic rifle with grenade launcher, one M79 rifle grenade launcher, one Springfield rifle and , and one Carbine. “Among the group were 37 personalities who are in military uniform

with firearms. The group were reminded by the troops of 40th Infantry Battalion under Joint Task Force Central that wearing of military uniforms under arms is in violation of the peace agreement signed between the MNLF and GPH. As a result, the MNLF members voluntarily surrendered their firearms to the troops as a gesture of respect to the peace agreement between the government and MNLF,” Estolas said. Police and military freed Abdullah’s group and it was unknown why authorities did not file criminal charges against those who were caught carrying automatic weapons. Major General Diosdado Carreon, the division commander, said MNLF members are prohibited to carry weapons. “MNLF members can converge for dialogues and other peaceful activities as long as they are not in uniform and under arms as this is prohibited in the securi-

ty agreements indicated in the September 2, 1996 Government of the Philippines-MNLF final peace agreement,” he said. There was no immediate statement from Misuari. And Estolas and Carreon did not say why no charges were filed against Abdulla’s group for carrying illegal weapons, especially at a time while the whole of the southern Philippines are under martial law. In September 2013, a similar rally in Zamboanga City turned into a deadly battle between Misuari’s soldiers and supporters and security forces after authorities intercepted them and foiled their plan to raise the MNLF flag at City Hall. Zamboanga City leaders and residents are still demanding justice for the MNLF siege that left over 200,000 people without homes following weeks of street battles. It was the second time that MNLF forces raided Zamboanga. In Novem-


A photo released by the 6th Infantry Division to the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner shows MNLF leader Ustadz Jamaluddin Abdullah with military officials. ber 2001, Misuari’s loyal forces also attacked the city and left dozens of civilians dead and wounded. Heavily-armed MNLF gunmen also took hostage over 100 civilians, including women and children, and used them as shield and pawn so they can negotiate with the government and eventually al-

lowed to escape to Basilan and Sulu provinces. In 2016, Mayor Beng Climaco banned all MNLF rallies in Zamboanga City following attempts by Misuari’s group to hold another peace caravan despite the charges against Misuari. “The destruction wrought by the 2013 siege continues to linger,

as internally displaced persons – both Muslims, Christians and Lumads, most of whom are those who eluded the conflicts in Sulu and Basilan – have suffered the brunt of the MNLF attack in Zamboanga,” Climaco said. (Mindanao Examiner. With additional reporting from The Zamboanga Post.)

Kidapawan City has new water filtration plant

City Legal Officer Atty. Paolo Evangelista.

MKWD General Manager Stella Gonzales.

MKWD Chairman of the board of directors Dr. Alfredo Villarico.

KIDAPAWAN CITY – Residents here will soon enjoy the health benefit of clean potable water after the Metro Kidapawan Water District (MKWD) recently inaugurated a “Rapid and Slow Sand Filtration Plant (Phase 2) as part of its modernization program. Dr. Alfredo Villarico, chairman of the MKWD board of directors, led the inauguration which was attended by City Legal Officer Atty. Paolo Evangelista who represented Mayor Joseph Evangelista; and Councilor Maritess Malaluan. MKWD General Manager Stella Gonzales said the P18-million new filtration plant is expected to fully provide complete service to water consumers by next year as they continue addressing water connection to the villages, especially Balabag and San Roque. Assistant Manager Sandy Alquiza also said the filtration plant, which gets it water source from the Saguing River, will ensure adequate supply of clean and safe drinking water for the

From Left, City Legal Officer Atty. Paolo Evangelista, MKWD Chairman of the board of directors Dr. Alfredo Villarico, MKWD General Manager Stella Gonzales, and Perez Barangay Chairperson Jabert Horbista. (Mindanao Examiner photo - Rhoderick Beñez) residents. Alquiza said the quality of water here is way better that in other areas in Mindanao and has a lower turbidity based on international standard set by the World Health Organization. (Rhoderick Beñez)


The Mindanao Examiner

September 23-29, 2019

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Duterte admits ordering Daanbantayan mayor’s ambush


RESIDENT RODRIGO DUTERTE has admitted ordering the May 2018 ambush of then Mayor Vicente Loot, of Cebu’s Daanbantayan town, whom he accused of being involved in the illegal drug trade. “General Loot, putang ina mo! Nanalo pa, na mayor. Inambush kita, animal ka, buhay pa rin!” Duterte told the crowd during his speech during at the oath-taking of newly appointed government officials in Malacañang. Loot, a former police

organ and tissue donations from donors who have been declared brain dead. The same DOH issuance created PhilNOS in June 2010 to act primarily as the central coordinating body for all organ donation and transplantation activities in the country. Villanueva said the program is aimed at having a “national self-sufficiency” of organ donation and transplantation. “The awareness campaigns of the DOH also aimed to prevent organ trafficking by enhancing policies and systems in support of ethical and legal organ and tissue donation and transplantation,” he said. He said the law does not allow foreigners to receive organs from non-related Filipino donors

because the program discourages “incentivized” organ donations, where living organ donors not related to the recipient are motivated to donate their organs for monetary reason. Renal disease ranks ninth among other diseases that have a high mortality rate in the country, according to Angelie Brook Cejudo, senior health program officer of DOH-7. The DOH has been distributing information kits to the public which included an organ donor card registration form to drum up the drive to acquire more potential donors who wanted to give out parts of their bodies once they passed away. (John Rey Saavedra)

President Rodrigo Duterte (PCOO photo) and Mayor Vicente Loot (From his Facebook page) general, survived the ambush, but the attack wounded four other people with him.

He was on a boat arriving with his family in Daanbantayan town from a trip on Mala-

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo and Senator Risa May Hontiveros. (Photos from their Facebook pages)

spascua Island when gunmen attacked them. The current mayor of Daanbantayan town is Sun Shimura, a stepson of Loot. Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo quickly reacted on Duterte’s admission of the crime and said: “Let us be clear and categorical - the President did not order the ambush of General Loot. It is silly and absurd to conclude that PRRD (President Rodrigo Roa Duterte) is behind the ambush just because he misspeaks the Pilipino language which is not his native tongue

DOH campaigns for organ donation CEBU CITY - The Department of Health (DOH) has launched an information campaign on organ donation and transplantation, targeting families of individuals considered as potential organ donors. The DOH encourage families to consider organ donation of deceased relatives, including those who have been declared legally and medically brain dead, to help others in need of transplantation. Dr. Jonathan Neil Erasmo, chief of local health support division of DOH in Central Visayas, said the information drive aims to heighten con-

or first language.” According to Panelo, what the President intended to say was: “Inambush ka na, buhay ka pa.” “That has been his line as shown by the transcripts of some of his previous speeches every time he touches on the topic of General Loot’s ambush. Inambush kita, buhay ka pa” is uttered by a Bisaya President who is not proficient in Pilipino, the vernacular language used in the capital city of Manila and in most areas in Luzon,” Panelo said.

“The Filipino nation by this time is already familiar and used to the language of the President who invariably uses a mixture of English, Bisaya (Cebuano dialect) and Pilipino in communicating with the nation,” he added. Senator Riza May Hontiveros laughed off Panelo’s statement and calling him a “Duterte Translator” after comparing him to the Google Translate - a free service that instantly translates words, phrases, and web pages between English and over 100 other languages. “Kung may Google translator, may Duterte translator din. Yan si Secretary Sal Panelo. Kapag sinabi ng Pangulo ang kulay ay pula, kay Secretary Panelo, ito ay itim. Kapag nambastos ng kababaihan ang Pangulo, joke lang ito kay Secretary Panelo. Kapag umamin ng pagpatay ang Pangulo, slip of the tongue lang ito kay Secretary Panelo,” Hontiveros was quoted as saying by the online news Inquirer. net. (Cebu Examiner)

sciousness on the benefits of organ donation. “We have other potential parts of our body which will be shared to the rest of our people needing such opportunity for them to grow, to live and to have quality of life. We have been seeing some information with regards to how do we prolong the lives of the individuals,” Erasmo said. “Seeing those people who are already deceased, they have the opportunity to extend the lives of other people and share their gift of life so that those who are still alive can have quality of life,” he added. Gerard Paolo Villanueva,

transplant coordinator of Philippine Network for Organ Sharing (PhilNOS), said the need of organ transplantation is rising due to growing number of cases of hypertension and diabetes. “Siempre nandiyan ang pagtaas ng risk na magkaroon tayo ng end-stage organ diseases. So siyempre umaabot na tayo sa end-stage organ diseases, hindi na gumagana ang organs niyo. Ang sagot diyan ay kailangan mapalita,” he said. World Health Organization 2017 data showed that deaths caused by various end-stage organ diseases involved up to 230,000 Filipinos, which may be addressed through organ trans-

plantation. However, organ donation from brain dead patients had been dismally low in the country. Under DOH Administrative Order 2010-0019, all tertiary hospitals and trauma centers are required to have a procurement transplant coordinator. In the administrative order, all patients deemed to be brain dead or in a state of imminent brain dead must be referred to procurement transplant coordinator of clinical donor coordinator, according to Villanueva. Republic Act 7170 or the Organ Donation Act of 1991, later amended by RA 7885, allows

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