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WORKERS repaint the minaret of the Ecoland Islamic Center Mosque along Quimpo Blvd. as Muslims are set to observe the holy month of Ramadan next week. BING GONZALES

Medical leave • Mayor Duterte in Singapore BY ANTONIO L. COLINA IV / MINDANEW

DAVAO CITY (MindaNew) — Mayor Sara Duterte confirmed Wednesday that she took a five-day medical leave for Singapore, a day after she left the country from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. In her statement re- from April 6 to 10. was for “personal health leased by the City InformaT h e p r e s i d e n t i a l management.” tion Office, Duterte said daughter said her reason She, however, did not she took a leave of office for flying to Singapore elaborate.

w w w. m i n d a n a o t i m e s . c o m . p h

The mayor said she was able to secure a travel authority from the Department of the Interior and Local Government before leaving the country.

Mindanao Times

Her younger brother, Vice Mayor Sebastian “Baste” Duterte, has been designated as acting mayor until Saturday. She said that all protocols for her return, in-


cluding the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction or RT-PCR testing and the 14-day quarantine, have been pre-arranged. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews) mindanaotimes





CARRY King Cuerpo of the Land Transportation Office Operations Division urges owners to register their vehicles as the agency extends for another 30 days the registration of vehicles with plate numbers 3 and 4. Cuerpo is among the guests of the AFP-PNP media forum. BING GONZALES

COVID vaccination hotlines to receive calls from seniors BY RHODA GRACE B. SARON

THE city government hotlines for COVID-19 vaccination program are now available for senior citizens as they are the next to get inoculated. Dr. Josephine Villa- but most especially to Da- would like to have themfuerte, head of the City bawenyo senior citizens selves listed should go to Vaccination Cluster, said who are next in the priority their district and barangay although everyone can call list of vaccinees,” said Vil- health centers but there are others who do not know the hotlines, the priority lafuerte. now are the elderly because She added that listing where their district health they are the next in the of senior citizens for vac- offices are or which district, priority list of those to get cination is still ongoing they belong so they can ask the shots. in the district centers and through the hotlines. We “This hotline is for they can call the hotlines on hope that this can be more all who have questions what they need to do to get convenient for them,” she said. and concerns regarding included in the list. vaccination registration, “Initially, those who ( / COVID / 10)

Exec: SPMC to handle all COVID-19 patients

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews) – All coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in Davao City will now be referred to the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), to give private hospitals a “breather” as the city recorded fewer active cases, a top health offi-

cial confirmed Wednesday. Speaking over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR 87.5), Dr. Ashley Lopez, Davao City Health Office (CHO) acting head, said the COVID-19 beds at SPMC have been underutilized, leaving more beds vacant for weeks already.

As of April 6, the government-run SPMC, which has been designated as the city’s primary isolation unit for COVID-19 patients, recorded a COVID-19 ward bed utilization rate of only 44.8 percent. ( / EXEC / 10)

5 NPA 2 nabbed for illegal substances FOI crucial step in rebels fight vs. corruption surrender in SK A MILITARY official in Central Mindanao believed the New People’s Army has continued to lose its grip on villages in Sultan Kudarat after a top leader and four members surrendered on Monday. (

/ 5 NPA / 10)

LAW ENFORCERS arrested a nephew of late leader of the New People's Army and a man on a sports car in separate operations against illegal substances this week. First to get arrested was Jonathan Elegio Pitao, 34, laborer, of Barangay 23-C during an operation on Sunday. Three days later, soldiers supervising the Sirawan checkpoint collared Zyrone Rois Pedregosa Manansala while trying to escape in his sports car.

Captain Rosario Aguilar, spokesperson of Davao City Police Office, said Pitao, nephew of the late Leoncio Pitao, known in the revolutionary movement as Kumander Parago, was arrested while trying to sell a sachet of shabu to a police officer pretending to be a user of the prohibited substance. Seized from him were eight sachets of shabu, a mobile phone, a handgun and other personal effects. On the other hand, Colonel Consolito Yecla,

Task Force Davao commander, said Manansala, who was traveling to the city from Gensan, tried to evade the soldiers supervising the Sirawan checkpoint. The soldiers then pursued him as he was eventually captured at Agton St. Toril while still in his sports car. Seized from him was a container with marijuana inside. Criminal complaints were still being prepared against them. By Rhoda Grace B. Saron

MANILA – A lawmaker at the House of Representatives on Wednesday said the passage of the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill would be a necessary step to boost President Rodrigo Duterte's battle against corruption as it pushes for greater accountability and transparency in government. During the House Committee on Public Infor-

mation's hearing on 19 bills relating to FOI, Parañaque City Rep. Joy Tambunting said the adoption of a policy of full public disclosure of government transactions would guarantee the right of the people to information on matters of public concern. Tambunting, who authored House Bill 644, said allowing access by the (

/ FOI / 10)







With her numerous literary achievements, she is identified as the “Mother of Davao Literature.” A multi-awarded poet, fictionist, essayist, multi-media artist, and independent publisher. She is one Dabawenya poet nationally recognized as confirmed by her her life’s works which have received numerous awards, including the National Awards: Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature, and the Gawad Alagad ni Francisco Balagtas.” Apart from her books and her literary awards, it is her pioneering and tireless work on the Road Map Series (editorial work to promote the work of artists based in Davao) and the Davao Harvest (the country’s first literary anthology that featured regional writers.) that set her apart from her peers in Davao City and elsewhere.

Datu Bago Awardees 2020 announced

THE Datu Bago Awardees Organization Inc. announced yesterday the 2020 Datu Bago Awardees last Tuesday. Councilor Pilar Braga, chair of the DBAOI said that the conferment will be done on a virtual platform to comply with health protocols on huge gatherings. The awardees are: Tita Lacambra Ayala for Literature and Arts (posthumous), Renato B. Lumawag for Journalism (posthumous); Leoncio Villa Abrille and Arturo Milan for Business; Atty. Susan Cariaga for Education; Andry K. Lim for Agriculture and Environment, and Dr. Ruben Robillo for the Medical Field. The conferment last year was postponed due to the imposition of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in March. This event is traditionally part of the Araw ng Dabaw celebrations.

CARIAGA, SUSAN P. Category: EDUCATION Active in numerous projects that have helped the people around her community improve their way of life (Barangay 7-A). Brainchild and spearheaded in the establishment of the “College Education Behind Bars” program in Ma-a city jail in coordination with USEP and with CHED recognition. And at present establishing in Davao Penaly Colony (DAPECOL) campus for the “College Education Behind Bars” extension program to provide quality college level education to the inmates of DAPECOL in Panabo, Davao del Norte.


Category: BUSINESS

Active in the investment promotion in Davao City as an ideal investment and tourism destination. A champion in small businesses and promoting entrepreneurship to alleviate poverty. Partnered with the City government as President of Davao City Chamber in helping build better infrastructure for the people of Davao City as instrumental in backing up the creation of the Davao City International Airport Authority which was signed into law on August 30, 2019 by President Rody Duterte. An inspiring community servant and volunteer and supported projects like Gawad Kalinga Davao, Our Lady of Victory Training Center, St. Francis Xavier Regional Major Seminary and Medical Mission and Job Fair. Led action in emergency responses in recent disasters like the Mindanao Earthquake by launching an emergency response center which received donations from business community and was able to raise more than Php1.4M in cash and an estimated amount of Php1.5M in kind. A total of six(6) relief distribution were conducted, with more than 6,000 families assisted.


Together with his father, Dr. Isaac T. Robillo, Sr., set up the Calinan General Hospital, the first hospital in the community after realizing the need for healthcare services in the far flung community of Calinan and Marilog. Initiated various community services in sport to environmental campaigns such as for recyclable materials, against marine life destruction through clean-up derive and mangrove tree planting along Davao River and the rehabilitation of Vanishing Island. Is active in community involvement in tribal communities through health and education. Instrumental in accepting foreign students for practicum and training purposes in Davao City as he initiated linkages and affiliations with some Nursing schools in The Netherlands resulting in an exchange program by sending several students and social workers to Holland for educational tour and exposure.


Category: JOURNALISM Started as radio announcer with UMBN (DXDS, then DXMC). A prominent Davao photojournalist whose perspective and eye for detail has allowed most of the public to live vicarious moments through his pictures of Davao and history. Highly contributed on the documentation of Davao City since the 1980’s through photos and visuals. Contributed much on the photographical history of Davao City. Mentored many youth photographers of the Camera Club of Davao as one of its pillars and his many artistic takes of various points of interest in Davao, Mindanao and recently countries visited by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. His humble beginnings and person belies the greatness of his work and the impact it has contributed not only to Davao history documentation but also the country’s perspective; past, present, and hopefully the future.

LIM, ANDRY K CATEGORY: Agriculture & Environment He comes across as a passionate and authentic advocate for sustainable agriculture through natural and organic farming methods which are environment -friendly farming and even natural livestock growing. He has turned his back on his family’s business as a young man, to fearlessly strike out on his own. Initially working with Lumad, he was co-founder of the Tribal Mission Philippines, an organization that looked into the comprehensive development of the marginalized and later in 1990 was registered with SEC as Tribal Mission Foundation International, Inc. He focused on agriculture and expanded his knowledge through his engagement with other agriculture organizations nationwide fostering sustainable farming and briefly, cultivating the Lim family’s farm in Calinan.

VILLA-ABRILLE, LEONCIO P. Category: BUSINESS Spearheaded the giving of land to the landless, an advocacy of the Cesario Villa-Abrille Family. Through his dedicated leadership, made possible the transfer of informal settlers across the DCWD Matina and UM Matina to property of the family in Biao, Guianga, Tugbok District as relocation site at no cost to them. Philantropic works through support of the church and the religious by donating church sites, donation of Memorial Lot to the Marist Fathers and instrumental in the construction of parish convent and rehabilitation of a church. As Estate Administrator,, donated school site and initiated the establishment of the Don Cesario Villa-Abrille scholarship program. Also gave support to health endeavours, an advocate in the promotion of culture and international understanding and supported business, civic and other organizations in their initiatives particularly the JCI Senate and Rotary International through his active involvement in community services.





Halal production pushed

THE Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) is pushing for the actual production of Halal products in Mindanao. During the virtual 1st Halal Agri-Fishery Congress conducted by the Department of Agriculture in Region 9 (DA-9), Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that numerous Halal products' promotions had been done, and yet no reported Halal produce was ever mentioned. "MinDA would like to that various local government body, but it actually has been take the lead right now be- units (LGU) not only in the merely confined to meetings, cause we cannot simply pro- Bangsamoro Autonomous conferences, policy-making, mote halal. We have press re- Region in Muslim Mindanao promotion. Active local govleases, but we do not actually (BARMM) but in Mindanao, ernment participation should have the product. How can we where a huge population of be encouraged," the MinDA join the bigger Halal market?" Muslims are located but does chief stressed. He also emphasized that he added. not have an initiative in prothe Halal program should He emphasized that the moting halal products. Halal market's valued size is at "I believe that our Halal also include the develop2.11 billion USD with a poten- programs through the years ment mechanism, branding, tial to grow to 3 billion USD were only promoted. I hope sourcing of Philippine Halal by 2023. Piñol also noted I'm not going to offend any-


Developer reports resilient 2020 Results LEADING developer in VisMin Cebu Landmasters Inc. (CLI) reported P 8.30 billion in consolidated revenues in 2020, closely matching 2019’s P 8.50 billion resulting from “the immediate deployment of catch-up measures shortly after the relaxation of lockdowns triggered by the pan-



/ HALAL / 10)

SEC to launch new registration system

THE SECURITIES and Exchange Commission (SEC) is migrating to a new company registration portal by April 19 to provide the public with a more secure, transparent, and efficient online facility for easy company registration. Called the Electronic

Simplified Processing of Application for Registration of Company (eSPARC), the webbased system will accept new applications for registration of One Person Corporations (OPC), corporations with two to four incorporators, as well as regular domestic and

foreign-owned corporations — both stock and nonstock. “With eSPARC, our goal is to provide users with a complete, end-to-end company registration system linked to a unified and centralized company information database


/ SEC / 10)

Firm warns against 2021 ECQ to hit GDP target top deadly diseases DOF:

MANILA – The latest surge in coronavirus disease (Covid-19) infections is expected to result to below-target growth for the Philippine economy this year, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III. “Well, I think it’s going to be lower than what we expected. This surge in the contagion, which is incidentally happening in Brazil, Canada, France, and Turkey, and other places is certainly not good for the economy,” he said in an interview over Bloomberg TV on Tuesday.

He estimates the latest lockdown to cost the economy “one half of 1 percent.” Economic managers have set a growth target, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), of between 6.5 and 7.5 percent this year. The country is registering a surge in new cases since March this year, with the new record-high registered last April 2 at 15,310 infections. The government has initially set a week-long enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) for the National Capi-

tal Region (NCR) and four nearby provinces-- Bulacan, Rizal, Cavite, and Laguna-collectively called NCR Plus from March 29-April 4 but extended this for another week, or until April 11, to address the rising infections. Dominguez pointed out that despite this development, the death rate in the country remains below those of Western countries at 12 deaths per 100,000 individuals compared to over 150 deaths per 100,000 individuals in other countries.


/ 2021 / 10)

AMID the continued fight against COVID-19, bancassurance leader BPI-Philam urges the public to be wary of other diseases that cause the most deaths in the Philippines. According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the top causes of death in the country in 2020 were ischemic heart diseases (99,680 registered deaths), neoplasms or cancers (62,289), and cerebrovascular diseases (59,736). The same diseases were the top causes of death from 2015 to 2019 as well.

The leading death cause, ischemic heart diseases, increased about 2.3% this year from the 97.5 thousand deaths in 2019 and the average 82,547 deaths from 2015 to 2019. Meanwhile, neoplasms and cerebrovascular diseases decreased 9.3% and 6%, respectively, from 2019. “On top of our battle with the pandemic, it’s clear in the statistics that certain diseases have been taking a toll for several years now. It’s crucial then to take ac-


/ FIRM / 11)





Davao Light donates tools to five public high schools RECOGNIZING the importance of public-private partnerships for the development of the education sector, Davao Light and Power Co., Inc. and its social development arm, Aboitiz Foundation, Inc. recently turned over electrical tools and equipment to five (5) public high schools in Davao City. Dubbed as e.Lab Plus, the project further expands the electrical laboratories (e.Lab) that Davao Light turned over to public high schools in its franchise area since 2014. The refurbished electrical laboratories are already equipped with the necessary tools and equipment. Now with the Project e.Lab Plus launched in 2017, the company adds more tools and equipment needed by students of the Electrical Installation and Maintenance (EIM) Course under the Technical-Vocational (TechVoc) Program in senior high schools. “We are here to deliver a commitment to continue to sup-

port DepEd in its Technical-Vocational Program,” said Rodger Velasco, President and COO of Davao Light, during the turnover last March 26 at the company’s admin office in C. Bangoy Sr. Street, Davao City. “Although students are still in the homes for modular learning, we are providing these electrical tools and equipment in preparation for the face-to-face or blended learning,” added Velasco. Aside from basic electrical tools and personal protective equipment such as hard hats and leather gloves, the company also provided items for the installation of fire alarm and CCTV systems, motion sensors, and telephone intercom. The recipients of these items are Doña Carmen Denia National High School, Mintal Comprehensive National High School, Tacunan National High School, Talomo National High School and Teofilo V. Fernandez National High School. Davao Light will also conduct a Project e.Lab Plus turnover to three (3) public high schools in Davao del Norte within the year. To date, the company has already set up a total of 39 electrical laboratories within its franchise area.

A DEPED, Davao City LGU and Davao Light partnership. Davao Light President and COO Rodger Velasco and DepEd XI Regional Director Dr. Allan Farnazo lead the guests and beneficiaries in the ceremonial turnover of electrical laboratory tools and equipment. Thru this donation, Davao Light hopes to assist in providing the EIM graduates with the right skills needed by the power industry. Also present to show support to the project are 1st District Councilor Pilar Braga and 3rd District Councilor Alberto Ungab.

PROJECT e.Lab Plus. Launched in 2017, Project e.Lab Plus further expands the refurbished electrical laboratories (e.Lab) that Davao Light turned over to public high schools in its franchise area since 2014.

SUPPORT to DepEd’s TechVoc Program. Basic electrical tools and personal protective equipment such as hard hats and leather gloves are some of the items donated by Davao Light to five (5) public high schools in Davao City for the students of the Electrical Installation and Maintenance (EIM) Course under DepEd’s Te c h n i c a l - Vo c a t i o n a l (TechVoc) Program in senior high schools.

ADDITIONAL tools and equipment. Davao Light also provided items for the installation of fire alarm and CCTV systems, motion sensors, and telephone intercom.





We need to restrain our ‘horses’

A tribute to Fr. Swamy Aug. 1, 1953 - April 5, 2021)

FR. SWAMY'S untimely deHis gift was so great he didn't mise shocked everyone whose have to do the rituals. But lives he touched. And those are the consequences weighed so BY MARIA EMBORNAS far too many lives-- not only in heavy on his well-being and India, and the Philippines, but on his family, that he had to even those as far as the US, France, UK, Japan, and lay low on this. many other parts of the world. He then advocated promoting prayer -- on remindMany of us who knew him considered him as a ing everybody to acknowledge the presence of God saint for his kindness, charity, humility, eagerness to anytime, anywhere. He wanted everybody to "pray help, and of course, for his rare gifts of healing and unceasingly" as commanded by St. Paul in 1 Thess exorcism. While on earth, he performed what we con- 5:17. Hence he taught us the short but miraculous sidered as miracles. prayer: "Come Lord Jesus, come into my life. Bless Many do say that with Father's passing, we lost a me, help me, heal me." saint. I would say we gained one in heaven, one who He printed prayer books, one of which is a small personally knows us. one, which includes basic Catholic Prayers and Cat"We need him here on earth," as many of his echism, distributed to school children in different parts friends say. Who can argue with that, when in many of the country. situations Fr. Swamy was always the 'call' and 'go to' Then he concentrated more on how to be able to priest. Whenever there were family crises, we thought help future generations. The Ave Maria Holy Family of and went to Fr. Swamy. Whenever there were sick- Ministry, a group of volunteers to assist Fr. Swamy and nesses, especially those that even doctors couldn't whom he trained personally, reaches out to mothers, give medical explanations for, it was always 'call teaching them to pray for their children while pregFr. Swamy.' Whenever we experienced paranormal nant, and even before conception. challenges, we would 'call Fr. Swamy.' Whenever we He helped countless poor children and families, experienced difficult and 'impossible' situations, again, teaching them to pray and care for the environment 'call Fr. Swamy.' by tree planting, gardening, and even providing food Father, on his part, would always be eager to help. items and school supplies for them with the help of Always. He was ever so selfless to the point of losing his his friends. health, family, some friends and associates. And still, April 17, 2021 is supposed to be Fr. Swamy's 39th he continued to help. He experienced persecution. He Ordination Anniversary. On this day, his celebration was also misunderstood. There were times he felt alone will be in heaven. He performed miracles here on and abandoned. But always, the inherent kindness earth, and as he is now in heaven, our 'go to' and 'call and goodness in him made him be eager to help more. him' priest, our saint, our Fr. Swamy can surely do He was so sought after for his exorcism ministry. more miracles for us with his prayers.



P ublished by M indanao T imes Corporation, with Editorial and B usiness O ffices at P onciano R e y e s c o r . P a l m a G i l S t ., Davao City. Telephone numbers (082)227-3252 or 227-9535 local 24 and 300-0854, Fax - (082)2250309. Publisher:

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WE do not have any idea how deep is the ambition of some critics of the administration, especially the politicians aspiring to be back in the corridors of power, to rid the country as fast as possible of the present government leadership. Ye s , b e c a u s e somehow they have explored even the wildest imagination to craft all kinds of issues that could stoke the people’s hatred to those running the government, especially the President. Think of this. Some of the vicious critics are saying that the administration is harboring a game plan in arriving at the much desired “herd immunity” in an out-of-this-world manner! According to these critics that include politicians in the opposition, some media personalities who are possibly under the payroll of these politicians or some pharmaceutical companies wanting to sell their products in the Philippines, the game plan of the administration is to allow as many people as possible, if not all, to get infected of the dreaded CoronaVirus. In the process, the critics allege, the desired herd immunity will be attained even if the mass vaccination is not yet completed. Why? According to the critics’ allegation, the government will then be able to achieve the herd immunity because those infected by the virus will now be able to produce by themselves the antibodies that will make them immune to the disease. Wow! That indeed is one of the wildest imaginations of the critics who are salivating of the power. But sorry, a medical doctor, Dr. Edsel Salvana, an expert in infectious diseases and a member of the Department of Health’s technical team assisting in the fight against the deadly virus, the claim is indeed a product of the critics’ wildest imagination. She said that it is not true, and that no government in the whole world has adopted such a move as a policy in acquiring herd immunity. She also stomps on the suggestion that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorize the medical practitioners to prescribe a certain brand of animal drug to be used in treating humans infected with CoViD 19. The doctors say, the drug regulator (FDA) should first acquire enough clinical basis to approve the use of such drugs for humans even if there are supposed testimonies given by this and that doctors saying that they have factual knowledge of the said drug’s efficacy. Seeingly, Dr. Salvana was saying that her technical team cannot be bullied around even by politicians and self-proclaimed powerful media personalities into recommending to the FDA the approval of the animal drug for human use without them first getting the opportunity to weigh evidences that will support the said drug’s benefits than its risk to humans. And then come this self-proclaimed powerful media personality who claims in his television and Facebook broadcast that certain executives in the Department of Health (DOH) and the FDA are making money in approving or delaying or not acting on application for authorizations in the use of certain drugs for the Filipino people. The guy is pushing strongly the granting of authority to the makers of the controversial drug to market it in the Philippines claiming that it is very inexpensive compared to the one which is now being used against CoViD 19. And the media personality is emphatic in saying that money is involved in all actions of the DOH and the FDA. He even said that he himself will file the necessary charges against the DOH and FDA executives if they will not resign from their post. The guy really may be thinking that everybody in the country believes he is an ex-cathedra. That he is without sin. That all he claims about the officials of the two government agencies are gospel truth simply because he has his name. ************************ In Davao City no less than Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio announced the other day that private hospitals here will no longer admit CoViD 19 patients. No, not because they do not want to. But it is because there is now a steep decline in the number of CoViD 19 infections in the city that these can already be attended to solely by the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC). After all, SPMC has been designated by the government as the referral hospital for people infirmed with the deadly virus. But actually, the move is some kind of a strategic fallback of the private hospitals in the city. Yes, because the hospitals concerned will use their relieved CoViD time in making preparation and adjustments to the possibility of a surge of infections in the days to come. Well, it’s like making hay while the sun is shining. Yes, now that Davao City is experiencing a comfortable respite in the cases of new infection, it bodes well if this leeway is taken advantage of for whatever required preparations by the private hospitals. As we said in our yesterday’s column, “Better prepared than sorry.”





A New Geopolitical Paradigm Between Iran and China UNDOUBTEDLY, a global economic war is developing. It is a new kind of Cold War, although not one based on ideology such as past geopolitical tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States, But it is a war for international legitimacy, a struggle for hearts, minds, and money in a very large part of the globe that is not aligned with America or with NATO. The global balance of power is shifting, and for many countries, the smart money might be on China now. Countries in Asia, like the Philippines as well as others, are closely watching the rise of this international order, led by China. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi took his second trip to Middle East countries ; Turkey , Iran, the United Arab Emirates , Oman and Bahrain , right after the Alaska Summit which was held between China and the United States. Wang’s visit to the Middle East to promote the internationalization of the Chinese currency , and build a safe haven for U.S dollar depreciation. Last week, Iran and China signed a twenty-five year strategic cooperation agreement addressing economic issues arising during the U.S sanctions on Iran. However, the devil, as always, is in the details, and those details apparently remained to be sorted out in the form of specific contracts and plans for cooperation. But China is taking advantage of Iran’s sanction-ridden economy as the Iranian government fears its loss of sovereignty in the complex geopolitics of the Middle East. Having for decades attempted to prevent China’s espionage and theft of intellectual property, military technology, and trade secrets and technology, the United States has tried to guard its key technology, including computers chips, semiconductor fabrication equipment tools. More recently the US has done end runs to keep Huawei, the world’s biggest telecom equipment maker, out of the markets. The question is what does this jockeying mean for the high-tech industry and for the global economy? Will America succeed in blocking the Chinese megacompany? Whoever captures the high tech fields, like those of quantum computing, space technology, biotechnology, and artificial intelligence, will hold the power. The European Union is also involved in the ongoing trade war between China and the U.S. The U.S and certain EU countries to pressure China for the Human rights and democracy. This situation puts pressure on third party countries to choose a side between the U.S and China . China uses many ways to block U.S influence in other countries. But China’s high tech Huawei is expecting to take advantage of Beijing’s twenty-five years partnership deal with Iran

to gain a monopolistic position in the development of Iran’s 5G network and to replace its Swedish rival, Ericsson, which left Iran due to American sanctions. Whether it be artificial intelligence or space technology, China is rapidly becoming a dominant player in the high tech race. For example, while America is dealing with the political mess from the leftist liberals’s power grab, and the West is combating the Covid-19 virus, China surprised the Western intelligence services with the sudden launch of a trio of Yaogan-31 ocean reconnaissance satellites. This was the China’s third launch since January. This clearly shows that China is rapidly trying to catch up with the United States. Once China surpasses the US military, China will try to push America out of the region, and America’s ejection from South East Asia will mean the end of America‘s super power. The main goal of China is to deter Washington’s military intervention in the Pacific. The Yaogan satellite constellation’s ability to track and target US military assets is important for China. Many developed nations, including the United States, have partially started their 5G mobile services, so that there is an ongoing race among developing nations, especially in the Middle East. The Chinese‘s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to increase China’s economic and strategic presence across Eurasia, to offer Iran an economic lifeline, and to leverage a new deal with the United States. Iran sees the long term political, economic, and security agreements as a necessary means of combating U.S hegemonic power in the region over Iran. In today’s political climate China shows itself as a rising and increasingly influential world power, and Iran is ascending as

one of the power players in the Middle East, as Iran’s nuclear aspirations increasingly dominate its relation with America and the West. But China remains one of Iran’s strongest allies on the Security Council. Russia, China, and Iran are against American military and interventionist policies in the Middle East and seek to eliminate the supremacy of the American dollar looming over the global economy. Not many Americans realize it, but America’s dominance in high tech innovation is now in question. We are living in a world full of uncertainty, and, as a result, the paradigm of global governance has begun a crucial shift, making adaptations for both large and small nations. China, Iran, and Russia are taking advantage of the American withdrawal from the global stage. China is seeking to balance its relations with Iran and with those states that see themselves locked in regional competitions with Iran. Involved nations have to understand and timely to adapt to this shift, both individually and collectively. The new geopolitical paradigm is shifting in two directions. The first is led by the United States and Western countries; the other paradigm shift is toward the world stage with China leading the way, supported by Iran, Russia, and Turkey. The old paradigm of world governance seems to have failed to overcome the challenges that include the current pandemic, climate change, wars, and ethnic conflicts. The Coronavirus pandemic may be an important turning point in American history. The inadequate healthcare, a distrusted electoral process, a cancel culture laid bare over the last several months, the slow economy, the current mediaenflamed rise of hate against Asian Americans, the ascension of China, a deficient immigration policy, and a lack of leadership—all indicate that the country needs to address a host of issues and that the old solutions will not work anymore. The reason China is becoming a world power lies in the country’s consistent investment in high tech innovation. Chinese visit in the middle East also to block the U.S oriented opinion in the region. Not only Iran has received massive investments from China, but Numerous major Chinese companies have chosen Turkey as a regional hub for their companies. As China shifts the global paradigm and in the process links arms with Iran among others, a cadre of allies resists its expanded military footprint in part through technology as well. (Dr. Aland Mizell is President of the MCI and a regular contributor to Mindanao Times. You may email the author at:aland_mizell2@hotmail.com)

The Lumads are Our People, Too! (1) First of seven parts (Editor’s note: This article is a slight revision of the lectures the author delivered between the years 1999 and 2000 to two major audiences --- the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility in Metro Manila and the Bishops-Ulama Forum, now known as Bishops-Ulama Conference, in Davao City.) Introduction The Lumads are the indigenous peoples of Mindanaw. They constitute approximately five percent, clearly the minority, of the total Mindanaw population in the 1990 census. The rest of the inhabitants in the region are Muslims, also indigenous, estimated at 20 percent; settlers and their descendants roughly make up the balance of 75 percent. It should be pointed out that a good portion of or assimilated into the latter segment are descendants of native inhabitants who were converted to Christianity in the Spanish period, mostly from northern and eastern Mindanaw. How they became minorities is the story of this paper. Not only have they been reduced to a numerical minority in their own lands, they have also been marginalized in other aspects of our national life. Their minoritization involved mainly the state machinery, with unwitting participation from the major segments of the population. It is not our intention to find fault, merely to lay down the facts in the hope that we may be able to help secure for them a well deserved social space in the Filipino nation. Their situation is not beyond help. The Lumad Communities and Their Ancestral Domains in Mindanaw  The Lumads are the Indigenous Cultural Communities of Mindanaw, namely, in alphabetical order: the Ata, Bagobo, Banwaon, Bla-an, Bukidnon, Dibabawon, Higaunon, Mamanwa, Mandaya, Mangguwangan, Manobo, Mansaka, Matigsalug, Subanen, Tagakaolo, Talaandig, T’boli, Teduray and Ubo. We have 19 in the list but there can be more because aside from distinguishing themselves by their ethnolinguistic identity, they also, and more commonly, refer to each other by their geographic names or their place of habitation. It can easily increase to 35, using their own

ANGAY-ANGAY LANG: RUDY BUHAY RODIL definition of tribu (tribe). Origin of the Name Lumad and its Significance The name Lumad grew out of the political awakening among them during the martial law regime of President Ferdinand Marcos. In June 1986, representatives from 15 tribes agreed to adopt a common name in a congress, which also established Lumad Mindanaw. This is the first time in their history that these tribes have agreed to a common name for themselves, distinct from the Moros and from the migrant majority. Lumad is a Cebuano word meaning indigenous. The choice of a Cebuano word may be a bit ironic -- Cebuano is the language of the natives of Cebu in the Visayas -- but they deemed it to be most appropriate considering that the various tribes do not have any other common language among themselves except Cebuano. Lumad Mindanaw, the organization, is no longer intact, but the name remains and is, from all indications, gaining more adherents. The use of Cebuano Bisaya in northern-eastern Mindanaw has been there, already noted by the Spanish missionaries when they got there in 1590s. This is easily observed that east of Cebu as far as Bohol, Leyte and Samar and northerneastern side of Mindanaw, their languages are heavily influenced by Cebuano; on the west, that part of Negros is Cebuano-influenced but that portion facing Panay, it is heavily Ilonggo-influenced. It is very important to note that this phenomenon took place prior to the resettlement programs imposed by the American colonialists and carried over by the Republic of the Philippines. In short, contact via trade and language easily travelled across the sea. But notice that large islands like Mindanaw and Luzon, contact in between communities was extremely more difficult by overland travel, thus, more languages emerged as a result. Linguist experts can tell us more about this reality on the ground.

Lumad-Mindanaw›s main objective was to achieve self-determination for their member tribes, meaning selfgovernment within their ancestral domains and in accordance with their customary laws under the sovereignty of the Republic. The decision to have a common name was crucial and historic. This was a first in Lumad history. Earlier, they were called by various names by outsiders, which they shared with other indigenous groups all over the country. They were labeled paganos by the Spaniards or referred to simply by their tribal identities. They were tagged Wild Tribes or Uncivilized Tribes or non-Christian Tribes by the Americans. They were officially named the  National Cultural Minorities or just Cultural minorities or simply Minorities by the Philippine Government. They were renamed Cultural Communities in the 1973 Constitution; this was revised to Indigenous Cultural Communities in the 1987 Charter. Bisayans call them nitibo; Tagalogs call them tagabundok or katutubo. Christian churches used to prefer the name Tribal Filipinos but today they are among the more active users of the name Lumad, and in a more respectful tone. Except for paganos, all these denominations also included the Moros. (To be continued)


All pawned items items that expired during the month All pawned that expired during theof JANUARY 2021, if not renewed or redeemed on month MAY, 2015 if not reor beforeofMARCH 2021 will be renewed sold to theorpublic deemed on or before JULY 14, 2015 will be on MARCH 16, 2021 at 9:00a.m. at our pawnshop sold to the public on JULY 16, 2015 at 9:00 premises.

a.m. at our pawnshop premises.

Gipahibalo ang tanan na ang FIRST COLOR PAWNSHOP magasubasta sa tanan Gipahibalo ang tanan na nga angnag-expired FIRST sa bulan sa ENERO 2021. Ang tanan prenda ibaligya COLOR PAWNSHOP magasubasta sa tanan sa publiko karong MARSO 16, 2021 sa alas 9:00 sa nga nag-expired sa bulan sa MAYO 2015. buntag.

Ang tanan prenda ibaligya sa publiko karong HULYO 16 sa alas 9:00 sa buntag.


#47 Lao St., Toril, Davao City Tel. No. 295-2460

9GEMS Pawnshop Inc. Egger Bldg., Matina Crossing Davao City Tel. No. (082) 285-7069


All pawned items that expired during the month of FEBRUARY 2021, must renewed or redeemed two (2) days prior the Auction Schedule stated below. If not renewed or redeemed it will sold to the public on its respective auction schedule and premises @ 9:00am. Gipahibalo ang tanan nga ang GOLDVALUE PAWNSHOP, INC., maga-subasta sa tanan nga nag-expired sa bulan sa PEBRERO 2021. Ang tanang prenda ibaligya sa publiko sa mga petsa nga nakabutang sa ubos, sa oras nga 9:00 sa buntag.

BRANCHES AUCTION DATE TEL. NOS. BAJADA APRIL 06, 2021 321-8705 (Beside NBI Office) BABAK SAMAL APRIL 21, 2021 301-4019 SAN PEDRO APRIL 08, 2021 227-6772 CABAGUIO APRIL 27, 2021 321-6223 TIBUNGCO APRIL 29, 2021 222-2494



All pawned items that expired during the month of JANUARY 2021, must renewed or redeemed two (2) days prior to the Auction Schedule stated below. If not renewed or redeemed, it will be sold to the public on its respective auction schedule and premises @ 9:00 a.m. Gipahibalo ang tanan nga ang NARDING PAWNSHOP, INC., maga-subasta sa tanan nga nag-expired sa bulan sa ENERO 2021. Ang tanan prenda ibaligya sa publiko sa mga petsa nga nakabutang sa ubos, sa oras nga 9:00 sa buntag. BRANCHES Lapu-lapu, Agdao Matina Crossing Tibungco

AUCTION DATE MARCH 10, 2021 MARCH 23, 2021 MARCH 15, 2021

TEL. NOS. (082) 327-2104 (082) 297-5786 (082) 296-413015

PANABO’S PAWNSHOP, INC. Panabo (Main) MARCH 31, 2021 (084) 628-8418 Panabo (Branch) MARCH 15, 2021 (084) 628-842

ROSEGOLD PAWNSHOP & JEWELLER Main – San Pedro Cor. Anda Street Davao City Tel. Nos. (082) 221-1477; (082) 221-0355; (082)222-5039 Email us @ rosegoldpawnshop@gmail.com Accepts: Jewelry, Appliances, Watches, CellPhones and Any Valuable Items Highest Appraisal and Low Interest Rates at 3% Wholesaler and Retailers on all kinds of jewelry Rosegold Pawnshop Lapu-lapu Street, Agdao Davao City Tel. No. (082) 225-3637

Rosegold Pawnshop Ilustre St., Davao City (Fronting Limso Hospital) Tel. No. (082) 222-2104

Rosegold Pawnshop Ilustre Street, Davao City (Beside NCCC Hardwaremaxx) Tel. No. (082) 295-6199

Rosegold Pawnshop KM6 Crossing Buhangin, Div. Road, Davao City Tel. No. (082) 241-2355

NOTICE OF AUCTION SALE All Jewelry and other articles pawned at Rosegold Pawnshop San Pedro-Main, Rosegold Pawnshop Ilustre, Rosegold Pawnshop Bolton, Rosegold Pawnshop, Agdao and Rosegold Pawnshop Buhangin from OCTOBER 16, 2020 to NOVEMBER 15, 2020. If not redeemed or renewed on or before APRIL 16, 2021 will be sold to the Public Auction on APRIL 19, 2021 at Rosegold Pawnshop San Pedro-Main from 9:00am to 6:00pm.

Toy Bldg., Lapu-lapu St., Agdao, Davao City

NOTICE OF AUCTION SALE All pawned items that expired during the month of OCTOBER NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER 2020 must be renewed or redeemed two (2) days before the Auction Schedule stated below. If not renewed or redeemed, it will be sold to public on its respective auction schedule and premises @ 9:00 A.M.

All pawned items that expired during the month of DECEMBER 2020, if not renewed or redeemed on or before FEBRUARY 15, 2021 will be sold to the public on FEBRUARY 16, 2021 at 9:00a.m. at our pawnshop premises. Gipahibalo ang tanan na ang AL-JOS PAWNSHOP magasubasta sa tanan nga nag-expired sa bulan sa DISYEMBRE 2020. Ang tanan prenda ibaligya sa publiko karong PEBRERO 16, 2021 sa alas 9:00 sa buntag.

Gipahibalo ang tanan na ang DIAGOLD PAWNSHOP INC., magasubasta sa tanan nga nag-expired sa bulan OKTUBRE NOBYEMBRE UG DISYEMBRE 2020. Ang tanang prenda ibaligya sa publiko sa mga petsa na nakabutang sa ubos, sa oras nga 9:00 sa buntag. EXPIRY DATES OCTOBER 2020 NOVEMBER 2020 DECEMBER 2020

AUCTION DATES APRIL 08, 2021 APRIL 08, 2021 APRIL 08, 2021


San Pedro street, Davao City (Fronting Queen Bank) Tel. No. (082) 222-1561 ; (082) 321-0128 Email: goldstandardpawnshopofdavao@gmail.com

Accepts: Jewelry, Appliances, Watches, Cellphones and any valuable items Highest Appraisal and Low Interest Rates at 3% Wholesaler and Retailers on all Kinds of Jewelry


All jewelry and other articles pawned at Goldstandard Pawnshop San Pedro, Goldstandard Pawnshop Ilustre from OCTOBER 16, 2020 TO NOVEMBER 15, 2020 if not redeemed or renewed on APRIL 16, 2021 will be sold to the Public Auction on APRIL 19, 2021 at our Pawnshop premises from 9:00am to 6:00pm.

NOTICE OF AUCTION SALE All pawned items that expired during the Months of FEBRUARY 2021 (Regular Items) and MARCH 2021 (Gadgets) must be redeemed or renewed two (2) days prior to the Auction date schedule as stated below. If not redeemed or renewed will be sold to the public on its respectively auction date schedule at its premises at 9:00 AM. BRANCHES: San Pedro (Main) Agdao Toril Bolton Digos City

AUTION DATE APRIL 15, 2021 APRIL 15, 2021 APRIL 15, 2021 APRIL 15, 2021 APRIL 15, 2021

Tel. No. 327-8832 327-6275 327-8503 392-3022 333-9945



All pawned items at METRO GOLDBRILL PAWNSHOP that expired during the months of JANUARY 2021, if not renewed or redeemed on or before the scheduled dates of auction below will be sold to the public on the following dates as stated below. Ginapahibalo ang tanan na ang METRO GOLDBRILL PAWNSHOP magasubasta sa tanan nga nag-expired sa bulan sa ENERO 2021, kung dili malukat, ibaligya sa publiko niining mga musunod na mga adlaw. EXPIRY DATES JANUARY 2021







Roque Bldg., Matina Crossing, Davao City Tel. # 234-6367


All pawned items of GOLDVISION PAWNSHOP, INC. that expired during the month of FEBRUARY 2021, if not renewed or redeemed it will be sold to the public on its respective auction schedule and premises at 9:00 a.m. Gipahibalo ang tanan na ang GOLDVISION PAWNSHOP, INC. maga-subasta sa tanan nga nag-expire sa bulan sa PEBRERO 2021. Ang tanan prenda ibaligya sa publiko sa mga petsa nga nakabutang sa ubos, sa oras nga 9:00 sa buntag. BRANCHES


General Lao, Toril


Agton. Toril Buhangin Magallanes Tagum Saavedra, Toril Agdao

2nd Level, Gaisano Mall of Davao, J.P. Laurel Ave., Davao City Tel. No.: (082) 221-3355 • (082) 305-9496 2nd Level, SM Lanang Premier, J.P. Laurel Ave., Davao City Tel. No.: (082) 295-1505 • (082) 321-0525 email: jrosejewels@yahoo.com • www.jrosejewels.ph

16, 2021 16, 2021 13, 2021 07, 2021 23, 2021 16, 2021 29, 2021

TEL. NO. 291-2406 291-2952 241-0223 224-3138 216-3425 291-1349 327-2348

NOTICE OF AUCTION SALE All pawned items that expired during the Months of FEBRUARY 2021 (Regular Items) and MARCH 2021 (Gadgets) must be redeemed or renewed two (2) days prior to the Auction date schedule as stated below. If not redeemed or renewed will be sold to the public on its respectively auction date schedule at its premises at 9:00 AM. BRANCHES:


Tel. No.

C.M. Recto (Main)

APRIL 15, 2021



APRIL 15, 2021



All pawned items that expire during the month of JANUARY 2021 must be renewed or redeemed two (2) days prior the Auction Schedule stated below. If not renewed or redeemed it will be sold to public on its respective auction schedule and premises @9:00a.m. Gipahibalo ang tanan nga ang GABBY’S INFINITE PAWNSHOP INC. magasubasta sa tanan nga nag expire sa bulan sa ENERO 2021. Ang tanang prenda ibaligya sa publiko sa mga petsa nga nakabutang sa ubos, sa oras nga 9:00 sa buntag. BRANCHES




APRIL 16, 2021



APRIL 01, 2021


APRIL 16, 2021

All pawned items expired on FEBRUARY 2021 - MARCH 2021 Will be displayed in a public Auction On APRIL 16, 2021 at 10:30 a.m.





(from page 2)

Based on the latest data, the City Health Office (CHO) listed about 120,000 senior citizens and that they will be given the shots after the vaccination of frontline workers is



completed. Those who want to get information on the program may call or send messages to 0961 073 4965 for Smart, and 0927 022 9087 for Globe.

(from page 2)

“Our (COVID-19) numbers right now are low that we can accommodate more at the SPMC, where they can be attended to, particularly the moderate, severe and critical cases,” he said. Lopez, however, said that this does not mean that the private hospitals would abandon their responsibility in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. He added that they must be prepared to reopen their COVID-19 wards should the need arises. Under Department of Health (DOH) Administrative Order No. 2020-2016, all public hospitals are required to allocate at least “30% of its total bed capacity for COVID-19 cases, while private hospitals should allot at least 20%.” Lopez stressed that private hospitals should backup SPMC in case the latter could no longer accommodate COVID-19 cases. Last Monday, Mayor Sara Duterte urged private hospitals in the city to prepare for a possible surge amid the alarming rise of COVID-19 cases in


the National Capital Region. She confirmed the different private hospitals in the city, during a recent meeting, agreed not to accept COVID-19 patients, but will refer them to the SPMC, due to the fewer positive cases reported in the locality in the past few weeks. The private hospitals will reopen their COVID-19 beds if there will be a surge that will be beyond the capacity of SMPC, she added. As of April 6, the DOHDavao Region reported 26 new cases, bringing the total to 21,878, of whom 794 are active, 20,138 have recovered and 946 ending in deaths across the region. Out of the total, Davao City, which reported the highest COVID-19 cases in Mindanao, tallied 13,849 cases. The city recorded 297 active cases, 12,873 recoveries and 679 deaths. Davao de Oro reported 1,401 cases, Davao del Norte with 3,592, Davao del Sur with 1,461, Davao Occidental with 220 and Davao Oriental with 1,355. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)

(from page 4)

demic in the first half of 2020,” says CLI chairman and CEO Jose Soberano III. Revenues grew by 18% from the third quarter’s P 2.20 billion to P 2.59 billion in the fourth quarter. Despite lockdowns that restricted construction activities and hampered movement across various sites, the company ended the challenging FY2020 environment with a P 1.85B parent NIAT, only an 8% decline versus its 2019 figures which the company has attributed to its marketleading VisMin advantage and sustained demand across its residential product line. “We have learned much from this pandemic and look forward to offering safe and healthy homes and communities to address not only the great housing backlog in VisMin but also what families really need,” Soberano highlighted. CLI bucked the pessimistic trend by beating its 2019 reservations sales performance with record P 14.25 billion of new sales in 2020 versus only P 12.67 billion in 2019, a 12% rise. The company’s economic housing brand Casa Mira accounted for 69% of 2020 sales; its midmarket Garden Series, 19%; and high-end Premier Masters, 10%. Strong sales take-up also resulted in unrealized revenue of P 20.4 billion. “There is a real estate boom and a global trend towards safer and healthier homes. With CLI’s agility, we’re able to take advantage of this new kind of demand,” said Soberano. CLI ended the year with an additional 4,300 homes added to its inventory spread over nine projects worth P 11.4 billion. Newly launched projects were 71% sold by the end of 2020. Other revenue contributors included the leasing income business which accounted for P 55.2 million while maintaining a

healthy occupancy rate of 79%. Citadines Cebu City, CLI’s first hotel project posted P 54.6 million in room rentals with an average occupancy of almost 50% for the year. Soberano coins 2021 as the year of “rebound and abound”, and the company is expected to resume its growth trajectory, targeting 15% - 20% upside. CLI has a total of 25 projects in the pipeline; 15 of these are P 19 billion residential developments that will be launched in 2021, supplying over 7,500 units to the sustainable housing market. A total of P 12 billion will be spent for capital expenditure in 2021 to expand the firm’s landbank and complete its ongoing development including Latitude Corporate Center which is expected to increase total GLA to more than 28,000 sqm, almost double from 2020. “Moreover, we understand that our market prioritizes great values which we will deliver by being more cost efficient, digitally enabled and sensitive to the needs of our stakeholders,” Soberano added. CLI announced a cash dividend of P 0.25 per share to shareholders on record as of April 16, 2021, to be paid out on May 10, 2021, in recognition of the firm’s stellar performance in 2020. Since its listing in June 2017, CLI has declared a total of P 0.85 per share in cash dividends. It also declared a 123% stock dividend to strengthen the capital base of the firm that now has more than P 50 billion in total assets. This is to prepare it for significant equity raising opportunities. Cebu Landmasters has the largest market share at 12% among real estate firms providing vertical and horizontal projects in Visayas Mindanao, according to a real estate market study by Santos Knight Frank as of 3Q 2020.

(from page 2)

public to government-held information would be necessary in the exercise of the people's right to effective and reasonable public participation at all levels of decision-making. "Enabling the people to exercise their right to information will assure a vigilant public against unscrupulous government officials from committing atrocity against the integrity of our nation," Tambunting said. Tambunting said it is high time for the FOI bill to be enacted into law in order to intensify the government' fight against corruption. "This will stand as a staunch reminder to all government officials and employees of their duty to the people as well as the obligation to always act for the benefit of the people. President Duterte has declared a war against corruption, and the enactment of the FOI bill is a needed step in this battle," Tambunting said. Deputy Speaker Eddie Villanueva, meanwhile, cited

5 NPA...

several rifles and other personal belongings. Major General Juvymax R. Uy, commander of the 6th Infantry Division and the Joint Task Force Central, said the surrender manifested the waning of support for the group particularly in the area of operations of the unit. Uy said that since January, 37 rebels have already surrendered. By Rhoda Grace B. Saron

(from page 4)

“We are coping with this surge and the best way we thought to do it was to have a curtailment of activities especially in the Metro Manila area for at least two weeks,” he said. The country has imposed movement restrictions since mid-March 2020 but these have been eased following the drop in the number of infections to allow a recovery in domestic activity. Last year, the whole of Luzon, which accounts for around 70 percent of GDP, was placed under ECQ from March 17 until end-April, with the movement restriction in NCR extended until end-May. Other areas around the country were also placed in various levels of movement restrictions to contain the spread of the virus. Because of the quarantine measures, domestic output registered a -9.5 percent print last year, with the second quarter figure posting a decades-long contraction of -16.9 percent. Meanwhile, Dominguez said the government continues to have fiscal leeway despite the financing for Covid-related programs since last year. Last year, the government extended PHP5,000 to PHP8,000 cash aid to around 18 million low-income households and to workers belonging to sectors greatly affected by the quarantine measures.

standing that the data about official transactions will be open to public scrutiny and questioning. He also noted that the proposal would help uplift the public’s trust to the government. "We have seen how transparency has done this in some areas, like Pasig for instance, where their local chief executive has opened data about public bidding to his constituents. The act not only led to more cost-efficient projects; it made the people of Pasig more confident, and I must say proud, about their local government," he said. He said government transparency encourages public participation in the conduct of facilitating the country’s daily businesses. "An honest government with transparent systems also encourages investors, thus advancing micro and macroeconomic growth. For this reason, laws that guarantee people’s right to public information have already


(from page 2)

Lieutenant Colonel Romel Valencia, commanding officer of 7th Infantry Battalion, said the rebels surrendered to the headquarters of the battalion in Barangay Kalawag II, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat. Va l e n c i a s a i d t h e group, headed by its political officer, was part of the Sub-Regional Committee Daguma, Far South Mindanao Region (FSMR). The rebels turned over several


Transparency International’s 2020 Corruption Perceptions Index showing that the Philippines was ranked 115th out of 180 countries with a score of 34 out of 100. "We have a very alarming corruption problem, and we cannot say that these are just mere numbers or perceptions. Dahil alam po natin, na ang bawat pisong kinukurakot sa kaban ng bayan ay katumbas ng pagsagasa sa karapatan ng mga Pilipino sa maayos at may dignidad na pamumuhay, lalo na sa panahong tulad nito, na marami sa ating mga kababayan ang lubhang nangangailangan (As we all know, every peso stolen from the nation's coffers is equivalent to ramming through the Filipinos' right to live in dignity and security, especially at this time where a lot of our people are in dire need of help)," Villanueva said. Villanueva said the FOI bill will pave the way to a more conscientious government, owing to the government officials’ prior under-

For this year ’s ECQ, the government is using the PHP23 billion untapped allocation under the Bayanihan 2 law as subsidy for around 80 percent of the population in the NCR Plus. To provide a boost in domestic economic activity last year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) injected an equivalent of nearly PHP2 trillion in the financial system through, among others, the total of 200 basis points cut in the central bank’s key policy rates and up to 200 basis points reduction in banks’ reserve requirement ratio. BSP also extended PHP840 billion worth of liquidity boost to the national government last year through a PHP300 billion short-term repurchase deal and a PHP540-billion cash advance. Both of which have been redeemed and repaid last year. Last December, BSP’s policy-making Monetary Board (MB) approved another PHP540 billion provisional advance to the national government to help in the government’s recovery programs. Dominguez discounted another move to further tap the central bank for liquidity boost this year. “We will probably look to wind it down sometime late this year or early next year, depending on the situation,” he added. (PNA)

(from page 4)

products, Halal Commodity Value Chain Approach, Halal Integrity, and provide opportunity. With the program, Piñol underscored that the current focus is only on policy support, information, and minimal Halal goods production. "We need to coordinate the LGU to do this and the concerned sectors to continue the training but on the production site. And this should be the focus on our efforts right now," he added. Meanwhile, MinDA's ongoing Halal flagship programs focus on Mindanao Halal Fisheries Development and Livestock Production.


been adopted all across the world," he said. During the same hearing, Presidential Communications Undersecretary and FOI Program Director Kris Ablan said that they have received a total of 87,417 FOI requests as of March 31, 29,490 of which are paper-based while 57,927 are electronic-based. For the classification of eFOI users, 12,388 users (29 percent) were coming from the academe, 8571 (20 percent) were from the government, 4615 (11 percent) were from the local government, 2678 (6 percent) were from civil society organizations, 743 (1 percent) were from the media, and 13,739 (32 percent) were from other users. Ablan noted that the success rate for FOI requests is at 48 percent. He said a total of 4,206 FOI receiving officers have been designated across government agencies, while 520 agencies are currently onboard the eFOI portal. (PNA)

The livestock component is undertaken in partnership with BARMM - Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Agrarian Reform (MAFAR) and the Australian Government through the BIMP-EAGA subregional cooperation. "Halal word is often misunderstood for they thought that it is only for Muslims which is of course wrong. Because in essence, Halal actually comes to food production means ensuring healthy food. And in our case, our Halal initiatives in MinDA look at employment generation and sustainable livelihood," he further added.

(from page 2)

that will simplify the company registration process while also refining how we process information,” SEC Chairperson Emilio B. Aquino said. “This initiative further strengthens our ongoing digital transformation, as part of our efforts to further improve ease of doing business in the country.” eSPARC will replace the Interim Registration System (IRS), which is currently used for the registration of OPCs and corporations with two to four incorporators, as well as the Company Registration System (CRS) for the registration of regular domestic and foreign-owned corporations. Only applications for the registration of partnerships and foreign corporations will be accepted and processed in the CRS once eSPARC goes live. Applications submitted through the CRS prior to April 19 will still be processed by the system, unless applicants are instructed to resubmit their applications through eSPARC. On eSPARC, applicants or their duly appointed representatives may submit their proposed company names, input company information, and upload the documentary requirements for review of the Commission. The system will also feature a real-time inquiry

facility on the status of their applications. The new system will be integrated with the SEC Cashiering System and SEC Payment Portal to provide a faster, seamless, and convenient means to pay registration fees. Further, eSPARC will be linked to the Central Business Portal, the national government’s centralized platform that allows the public to access registration forms, fill out information, and submit requirements needed for business registration and related transactions. To make way for the system upgrade and migration to eSPARC, the IRS will undergo a scheduled maintenance from 6 p.m., April 8 to 9 p.m., April 11. eSPARC is the latest initiative in the digital transformation program of the SEC. On March 15, the Commission launched the Online Submission Tool, which allows for the online submission of annual financial statements, General Information Sheet, and other covered reports. Earlier on March 1, the Commission launched an online payment portal, giving clients the option to settle their registration and other transactions fees through online banking or their digital wallets.



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tion towards enabling more

Filipinos with access to quality yet affordable health care while implementing the necessary sector reforms. BPI-Philam is committed to do its part by providing solutions that not only address immediate needs but have long-term benefits too,” said BPI-Philam Chief Executive Officer Surendra Menon. BPI-Philam combines the power of a robust life and health insurance plan with its proprietary wellness program to help Filipinos manage their expenses and take better care of their total wellbeing. It recently launched an investment-linked life and health insurance product that gives considerable protection and better access to medical care with minimal out-of-pocket expenses. The product, MedLife Protect Plus, covers even the leading diseases like hypertensive diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, cancers, and diabetes except when it is a pre-existing condition at the time of subscription. When choosing a health insurance plan that can help address top diseases, BPI-Philam says consumers should check whether the policy provides enough coverage for basic in-patient hospitalization, critical care, surgical benefit, and emergency services; recovery care coverage; as well as access to a wide network of health care providers. This is crucial to ensure the early management of diseases and give the patient better chances at recovery. MedLife Protect Plus, for instance, provides coverage of up to 90% of medical costs and access to the wide network of accredited providers by leading healthcare administration firm AVEGA. This includes but is not limited to the Asian Hospital and Medical Center, Makati Medical Center, Manila Doctors Hospital, St. Luke’s Medical Center (Quezon City and Bonifacio Global City), The Medical City, and Cardinal Santos Medical Center. Terms and conditions apply. Prevention through healthy lifestyle choices While it is uncertain how many Filipinos are predisposed to the top deadly diseases, there are ways to prevent and control them be-


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AUCTION SALE! The DAVAO ROS-VER PAWNSHOP, INC. and NEW PAG-ASA PAWNSHOP will be having its JOINT AUCTION on all unredeemed pawned items left during the month of February 2021. The said items will be sold to the public at the following VENUE AND DATE. Gipahibalo ang publiko na ang DAVAO ROS-VER PAWNSHOP, INC. og ang NEW PAG-ASA PAWNSHOP; magsubasta sa tanang prenda nga naremata atong Pebrero 2021. Ang tanang prenda dungan nga ibaligya sa publiko sa mga sumusunod nga dapit og petsa:

EXTRAJUDICIAL SETTLEMENT WITH SPECIAL POWER OF ATTORNEY Pursuant to Sec. Rule 74 of the Revised Rules on Court of the Philippines, notice is hereby given that the late Bienvenido S. Amper who died intestate on October 17, 2008; at Calinan, Davao City; that the deceased at the time of his death left a parcel of land covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. T-439277 of the Registry of Deeds of Davao City, situated in Barangay Riverside, Calinan, City of Davao, containing an area of Fourteen Thousand (14,280) Square meters more or less, has been the subject of EXTRAJUDICIAL SETTLEMENT WITH SPECIAL POWER OF ATTORNEY, made and executed by and among his heirs per Doc. No. 79; Page No. 17; Book No. 151; Series of 2018 of the Notary Public SALVADOR M. BIJIS of Davao City. (MT-Apr. 8, 15 & 22, 2021)

fore they worsen or become fatal. In the same way that the WHO provides information and guidance on various evidence-based interventions, BPI-Philam is giving customers the option to integrate their MedLife Protect Plus plan with Philam Vitality, a science-backed health and wellness program. By making healthy lifestyle choices, Philam Vitality active customers reap rewards in the form of special perks from lifestyle establishments, as well as boosts in insurance coverage by as much as 50%. “We cannot emphasize enough the importance of making conscious lifestyle adjustments to address the global concern on health and wellness. Small improvements in daily habits add up and help prevent or at least delay the onset of diseases,” Menon said. Proven performance At less than a year since its launch in September 2020, MedLife Protect Plus has already been able to service a client who was diagnosed of having a small myoma. A former overseas Filipino worker who came home to be with her family for good due to the pandemic, the patient was diagnosed in just a month after getting their policy. The prescribed surgery would have cost her about PHP200,000 in medical bills, a sizable amount for many Filipino families, but her health card covered most of it, allowing the patient

to focus on getting better instead. “Dismissing life and health insurance thinking that one is physically fit or doesn’t feel anything out of the ordinary is equivalent to having a false sense of invincibility to life’s uncertainties. But having certain diseases cause the most deaths year over year should be proof enough that the threat is ever present. We can’t always control what will happen in the future, but we can always focus on what we can do to secure it,” Menon said. The premium payment can go as low as PHP1,986 per month for an 18-year-old male, payable until the age of 65 and with benefit coverage until 80 years old. Premium will vary based on several factors such as age, gender, and health status. MedLife Protect Plus is designed to benefit the underserved market including freelancers, owners of small businesses and their employees, as well as OFWs and their families. Apart from health insurance, it provides up to 90x life insurance benefit and built-in cash value passive income through investments. The provider, BPI-Philam, is the bancassurance arm of AIA Philam Life in the Philippines. More information about products and services is available at the website <bpi-philam.com>, thru the virtual assistant Bessie (via Messenger), or on Facebook <fb.com/BPIPhilamOfficial>.

SSS releases P10.49 B in maternity benefits in 2020 The Social Security System (SSS) released P10.49 billion under its maternity benefit program with some 290,000 female members as beneficiaries in 2020, almost double the amount paid by the state pension fund in 2016. SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio said based on tentative data, the steep jump in benefit releases occurred in 2019 when an additional P3.35 billion in maternity disbursements was recorded, following the implementation of Republic Act 11210 (105-day Expanded Maternity Leave Law). “Since the allowed maternity leave was extended up to 105 days, it is expected that the benefit releases will also dramatically increase. Based on our data, the average annual disbursements in 2016 or three years before implementing the law is at P6.16 billion. Now that it has been implemented since March 11, 2019, the average annual release is now pegged at P10.45 billion,” Ignacio said. However, the SSS Chief noted a slight decrease in the total number of beneficiaries last year, attributing this to quarantine restrictions imposed by the government since March 2020 to stem the COVID-19 infection.  “Since the community quarantine affected the transacting public wanting to visit government offices and the fact that pregnant women are considered high-risk individuals during this pandemic, pregnant and even lactating mothers who are SSS members chose to stay at home and postponed their appointments. Hence, we expect a higher number of benefit applications this year,” said Ignacio. SSS branches also implemented social distancing measures and other safety protocols, thus limiting the number of transactions received and processed last year at the height of the pandemic. “The maternity benefit provided by SSS has a 10-year prescriptive period. Prior to the submission of their claims, it is an important requirement for our employed female members to notify their employer. For selfemployed, voluntary, and OFW members, they should have at least personally notified SSS about their pregnancy,” Ignacio added. Employers may submit the Maternity Notification of their employees through their My.SSS account. For self-employed, voluntary, and OFW members, they may submit

their Maternity Notifications via the My.SSS facility in the SSS website or thru the SSS Mobile App. On the other hand, members are required to enroll a valid disbursement account using the Disbursement Account Enrollment Module (DAEM) under the E-Services menu of My.SSS for their benefit proceeds to be credited directly to this bank account. For further information about DAEM, kindly visit the following links: https://bit. ly/3ewMXEg and https://bit.ly/2Ostj1k.   The SSS Maternity Benefit is a cash allowance granted only to female SSS members. To qualify, she should have paid at least three monthly contributions within the 12-month period immediately preceding the semester of her childbirth, miscarriage, or emergency termination of pregnancy. The 105-Day Expanded Maternity Leave Law increases the compensable number of days for maternity leave benefit from the initial 60 days for normal delivery, or 78 days for caesarian section delivery to 105 days for live childbirth, regardless of the type of delivery, and an additional 15 days paid leave if the female worker qualifies as a solo parent. In case of miscarriage or emergency termination of pregnancy, the entitlement is 60 days of paid maternity leave. The law also gave additional consideration to women by further expanding the allowed maternity leave for pregnancy, miscarriage, or emergency termination, regardless of frequency, from the previous limit of only the first four deliveries or miscarriages. “We understand the challenges faced by our female members since childbirth is one of the challenging experiences for a woman.  SSS acknowledges our female members because of the significant role they play in our society, particularly in our labor industry. This is why we are trying our best to give them social security protection during these times. Notably, the higher the contribution they pay, the higher the amount of benefit they will receive from SSS,” Ignacio concluded.  Announcements and other information are posted on official SSS accounts on Facebook and YouTube at “Philippine Social Security System,” Instagram at “mysssph,” Twitter at “PHLSSS,” and the SSS Viber Community at “MYSSSPH Updates.”

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Mindanao Times, April 08, 2021  

Mindanao Times, April 08, 2021