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Palace rules out nationwide martial law; Reds gird for war By John Paolo Bencito, Maricel V. Cruz and Francisco Tuyay THE Philippines will not experience another dictatorship under President Rodrigo Duterte, Malacañang said Thursday, as it tried to assure the public his administration would not put the entire country under martial law to quell

current and looming threats to national security. However, Communist Party of the Philippines founder Jose Maria Sison told the militant cadres to prepare for a “people’s war” against Duterte’s planned crackdown against insurgents under the pretext of a nationwide martial law. Saying that Duterte will Next page

TRAIN ratified despite lack of quorum---solon By Maricel V. Cruz CONGRESS has ratified the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion or TRAIN bill a day before it was to adjourn for the Christmas break, but one militant lawmaker called it an “invalid ratification” as only 10 members of the

House of Representatives were present in the plenary session. The Senate ratified the bicameral conference committee report for the TRAIN—the Duterte administration’s key tax legislation—and other proposed bills on the 2018 Next page

ILLEGAL FIREARMS NOT ALLOWED. Guns which were recovered from the Maute terrorists who laid siege in Marawi City are cut into small pieces during the ceremonial disposal of confiscated, surrendered and recovered firearms that was presided by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte at the headquarters of the Philippine Army at Fort Andres Bonifacio in Taguig City on Dec. 13. Presidential Photo

Ranks of jobless adults shrinking By John Paolo Bencito and Julito G. Rada

VOL. XXXI • NO. 301 • 3 SECTIONS 16 PAGES • P18 • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2017 • •

ADULT joblessness in the third quarter of 2017 went down to 18.9 percent or an estimated 8.7- million adults—the lowest recorded joblessness rate since the 18.4 percent recorded in September 2016, according to the latest survey of Social Weather Stations.

The September 2017 adult joblessness rate was 3.3 points below the 22.2 percent rate in June 2017 or 10.5 million adults that consisted of those who voluntarily left their old jobs at 10.4 percent (est. 4.8-million adults), those who involuntarily lost their jobs at 6.6 percent (est. 3.1-million adults), and first-time job seekers, at 1.9 percent Next page (est. 860,000 adults).

Duterte chides Aquino Says vengeance not my style, won’t initiate charges By John Paolo Bencito and Macon Ramos-Araneta






Dynasty ban Sereno ‘dreaming’ when she linked Palace to impeachment restricting, says Rody PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte, himself a patriarch of a family of politicians, rejected any move to carry out the constitutional provision banning political dynasties in the country, saying that this will be a “restriction” against the free will of the voters to choose their leaders. “I cannot fathom about this dynasty, it’s a restriction,” Duterte said in a speech before his partymates in the ruling PDPLaban Wednesday night. “This anti-dynasty, it’s a restriction of the freedom of an individual, not a people, a choice who would be their leaders.” Making his case, Duterte said that sovereignty, or the full right and power to govern “could only be placed in the hands of people who are elected, their choice”—even if the ones in position were rich or influential people.

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CHIEF Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno was simply “dreaming” when she thought President Rodrigo Duterte was behind moves to remove her from office. The President himself said that Wednesday night during the benefit Christmas Dinner of the ruling PDP-Laban party, insisting that he has no plans to interfere

with the work of the legislative and the judiciary. “Ito si Sereno, sabi niya, [Sereno here, she said] ‘Duterte had a hand’—no. Maski magtanong ka kahit sino diyan, [Ask anyone around], anybody now connected [with the case]—she is just dreaming,” the President said. “I don’t know what she’s talk-

ing about, I don’t mind, and I never interfere,” he added in Filipino. The President, however, said he is “not apologizing or making any excuse” for when he questioned Sereno’s alleged partisanship and corrupt acts during her five-year term as Chief Justice. Earlier, Sereno said she has no idea on Duterte’s motive in push-

ing for her ouster, considering they have never had any personal conflict. “We have had no personal skirmish at all. The only time I remember that he made a remark against me was in connection with the letter I wrote to him in August of 2016, requesting that Next page

“To be filing cases against a former President, hindi ko ugali ‘yang ganun [that’s not in my character],” Duterte

For federal pitch, Du30 vows to make amends with ABS By John Paolo Bencito PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is willing to call it quits with broadcast giant ABS-CBN, whose television franchise expires in 2020, should it agrees to promote federalism— an idea which he admits ‘doesn’t seem to ring a bell’ among Filipinos. “If you can help with the federal system campaign and you make a slogan also for unity and to preserve the republic, I’ll make amends with MlaStandard

you,” Duterte said in a speech during a benefit Christmas dinner at Pasay City. “Just dedicate a portion of your time, your expensive and precious time on TV, help us promote federalism. I’m willing to shake hands with you,” he added. Towards the end of his speech, he likewise made the same proposal to other media entities whom he had a beef in the past. “If you support this, you networks, I won’t ask for anything else, that’s it,” said Duterte. Next page ManilaStandardPH


ENGEANCE is not in his attitude, President Rodrigo Duterte said Thursday, as he shot down calls to slap charges on his predecessor, Benigno Aquino III, who is being investigated for a controversial P3.5-billion anti-dengue inoculation program for more than 700,000 school-aged children implemented during his term.

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Facebook et al told: Pay for use of news

SHARED SUSTENANCE. President Rodrigo Duterte chats with Philippine National Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa during a boodle fight at Fort Andres Bonifacio in Taguig City. Presidential Photo

PARIS―Nine European press agencies, including AFP, called Wednesday on the Internet giants to be forced to pay copyright for using news content on which they make vast profits. The call comes as the EU is debating a directive to make Facebook, Google, Twitter and other major players pay for the millions of news articles they use or link to. “Facebook has become the biggest media in the world,” the agencies said in a plea published in the French daily Next page Le Monde.

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CBCP: End attacks against priests T and hold those responsible to account. The pastoral statement did not name names but urged the government to stop its “security forces” from lodging attacks against church leaders and workers. “Nassa demands that the government stop its security forces from acts of violence on church people who com-

mit themselves to serve and work with the poor towards empowerment and development,” Tirona said. Paez, 72, was abducted by still unidentified gunmen on Dec. 4. The abduction occurred hours after Paez, a coordinator of the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines in Central Luzon, facilitated the release

of a political prisoner in Cabanatuan City. Government critics believe the priest was executed by government security forces because of his advocacy. Tirona said as long as the government only served the few, “conflict of interest” could push the institution to attack anyone working for social justice.

“Church people are only complementing the government’s task in promoting, defending and fulfilling the human rights of Filipinos for the common good,” he said. “For the sake of justice and the rule of law, Nassa calls upon the Duterte government to conduct a thorough investigation of the incident and arrest the perpetrators.”

istration began to focus on dengue after he received a memo in 2010 from former Health secretary Enrique Ona highlighting the five regions that reported alarming surges in dengue cases. Around 2.8 million people were at risk of contracting dengue then, he added. Aquino said no one objected to the program before, during and after its implementation. “I have stressed that before the government decided on Dengvaxia, while deciding on it, after making a decision and until now, nobody had objected to the vaccine,” he said. The former President said he would have been made to answer a different kind of issue by critics if his government failed to address the spike in dengue cases. “If what Sanofi said did not come out, and I decided to just let my bosses suffer, I supposed you [would] have a different question and charges against me—why did you abandon the Filipinos?” he told the senators. Aquino also admitted he went to Paris in 2015 for the COP21 conference, and at the sidelines, he had meetings with different companies, including with officials of Sanofi. He said the vaccine went through “local and international processes,” noting the United States Food and Drug Administration has been regulating the international clinical trials. “Since it passed through this process, Dengvaxia is also safe for the public,” Aquino said.

“I also stressed: It was not only the Philippines which approved Dengvaxia. Mexico and Brazil did it ahead of us,” he noted. Senate Blue Ribbon committee chairman Senator Richard Gordon said he had no questions on Aquino’s credibility, amid doubts on the speedy approval of the vaccine’s procurement. “I supposed the dengue vaccine, so it was immediately approved by the FDA, it immediately got a SARO [special allotment release order] that warranted the purchase of the vaccine,” Gordon said. “Well, again, I’m sorry Mr. President, that it was a coincidence. You had a meeting in Paris on Dec. 1 and then this immediately arrived, and the SARO was immediately received and the money was later released,” Gordon said. The SARO for the purchase of the vaccine was issued on Dec. 29, 2015, almost three weeks after Aquino’s meeting with Sanofi Pasteur officials in Paris on Dec. 9. Health advocate Dr. Anthony Leachon defended Aquino, asking how could the former President be held liable when he was fed with wrong information. “I was asked the other day, whether the ex-President and secretary of Health [Janette Garin] is liable for this one. My answer is basically, if the bad science or wrong information has been fed to the president, how could you blame the President if he was fed by wrong information and even WHO [World Health Organi-

zation] or even (former Health Secretary Janette) Garin?” Leachon said. Leachon, also an independent director of the government-run Philippine Health Insurance Corp., said the problem was that when the dengue crisis was brought to the President, he thought there was a sense of urgency involved. “So, you cannot mix your science and your health with politics, but it all started with deceptive or wrong information sir,” he told the Senate hearing. Dr. Antonio Dans of the National Academy of Science and Technology also said the situation was borne from “bad science mixed with politics.” “Because there was no policy to separate politics and science, the FDA is under the DoH, then we lose the check and balances. FDA should be independent from DoH,” Dans said. At the same hearing, Thomas Triomphe, Sanofi Pasteur’s head for Asia-Pacific, told senators there is no “worldwide” scare over the Dengvaxia vaccine, which continues to be marketed and used in 10 other countries. “It is important for the public to understand that the vaccine continues to be good, effective and safe,” Triomphe said. “There is no reason for public panic.” Triomphe also said Sanofi Pasteur is ready to “collaborate and reengage” with the Department of Health in the investigations and review of the government’s dengue immunization program.

Still, the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption said it recommended filing plunder charges against Aquino. VACC counsel Ferdinand Topacio said the group made this call after noting that Aquino and other Cabinet members during the previous administration “accumulated millions of pesos worth of illgotten wealth” from purchasing the vaccine. Along with Aquino, the anti-crime group recommended plunder charges against former Budget secretary Butch Abad, Garin, and other Health officials. In another development, Philippine National Police Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa ordered the monitoring of at least 14,000 police personnel who were inoculated with the controversial vaccine produced by Sanofi Pasteur. Dr. Reimound Sales, PNP General Hospital chief, previously announced that the first batch of policemen across the country were inoculated in September, while the second batch was immunized during the PNP Health Service 24th anniversary last Nov. 21. These prompted Dela Rosa’s order, he said. “To those unfortunately vaccinated by this [program], I am giving instructions to Dr. [Edward] Carranza, director of [the PNP] Health Service, to monitor everything. I would be sorry if something happened [to the policemen],” Dela Rosa said after visiting wounded policemen at the PNP hospital in Camp Crame.

pearances of activists and opposition figures. “This is not the same martial law that we had in 1972. Courts remain functioning, Congress remains existing, the Bill of Rights and the Constitution is enforced,” Roque, a human rights lawyer before joining Duterte’s Cabinet, said in a news briefing. “So, I don’t think there’s been any legal basis for the fears of many that there will be the return of dictatorial rule. Neither has there been any systematic or gross violations of human rights so far,” he said. Meanwhile, lawmakers on Thursday backed the move of Congress to extend martial law in Mindanao to Dec. 31, 2018, citing the “numerous benefits” of the decision. Voting 240-27, the House of Representatives and the Senate, in a joint special session, approved the Resolution of Both Houses 13, which called for the extension of martial law and the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus until the end of next year. The Senate voted 14-4, while the House voted 226-23. Rep. Makmod Mending Jr. Anak Mindanao party-list, said the people of Mindanao are generally in support of both moves, but lamented that Palace officials failed to honor their commitment to provide Congress with a weekly update on the implementation of martial law in Mindanao.

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Raneo Abu. The Palace, however, thanked Congress for ratifying the TRAIN bill and the P3.767-trillion national budget for 2018, two key measures it said would provide sufficient funding for the administration’s priority programs. Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque noted that the TRAIN bill, together with other complementary measures to be passed early next year, would yield more than P120 billion worth of revenues during its first year of implementation. He said these added revenues are essential for the administration’s “Build, Build, Build” Program that aims to ramp up government’s infrastructure spending, “with the end goal of easing congestion, spurring trade and investment, and reducing poverty.” Revenues collected from the new tax package would be used to fund various social protection programs on health, education, and housing, Roque added in the Palace briefing. However, Tinio said since there was no quorum and no actual vote was taken at the House, the ratification “is clearly invalid.” “The brazen railroading of this TRAIN wreck on the poor exposes yet again the blatant disregard of the Duterte administration and its Supermajority in Congress for even

the most minimal standards of democracy,” he said. Among other new regulations, TRAIN would impose a P50 per metric ton excise tax on coal manufacturers, both local and foreign, in the first year of implementation, P100 in the second year, and P150 in the third and succeeding years. Presidential Decree 972 has provided that local coal is taxfree, including from excise tax, value-added tax and customs duties. The coal tax issue was among the contentious provisions of the TRAIN, until both congressmen and senators agreed to raise the coal excise tax, which has been unchanged since 1976. Quirino Rep. Dax Cua, chair man of the House committee on ways and means, said the f inal version of the TR AI N bill was a product of thorough discussions between the two chambers. “For the same reason that we kept the VAT exemption on renewable energy… these are both part and parcel of a widerange of discussions on fiscal incentive,” Cua said. Cua maintained the imposition of VAT and other taxes on coal manufacturers would be taken up in the second package of TRAIN. The bill also imposes double the excise tax rates of all

non-metallic minerals and quarry resources, and all metallic minerals including copper, gold and chromite from the current two percent excise tax to four percent; and on indigenous petroleum from the current three percent to six percent. TRAIN, however, also proposes reducing the income tax rate of individual income earners, thus giving them higher take-home pay. It provides an exemption for the first P250,000 annual taxable income and raised the tax exemption for the 13th month pay and other bonuses from P82,000 to P90,000. The bill also imposes higher tax on fuel and fuel products, brand new automobiles, tobacco products and sugarsweetened beverages. Early Wednesday, the Senate joined the House of Representatives in the special joint session of Congress and voted 14-4 in favor of extending martial law in Mindanao until Dec.31, 2018. The Senate also approved Wednesday on third and final reading Senate Joint Resolution No. 11, which would raise the base salary of military and uniformed personnel starting January next year. It adopted House Joint Resolution 18 as an amendment to Senate Joint Resolution 11. With Macon Ramos Araneta and John Paolo Bencito

those with money tend to be in politics, full stop.” “The sad reality is whether be it unitary or federal, the rich tend to be elected,” Roque said in response to fears that a federal form of government would only perpetuate fiefdoms and political dynasties. “But what we are pushing now is for a system of government where local governments will have access to resources because they are in the best position to address the needs of their local constituencies,” he said. Section 26 of Article II of the Constitution provides: “The State shall guarantee equal access to opportunities for public service, and prohibit political dynasties as may be defined by law.” While several bills have been pending banning such, the legislature, itself lorded by dynasts, has failed to pass an anti-dynasty law some 30 years after the ratification of the 1987 Constitution. John Paolo Bencito


tember 2017. The survey, conducted from September 23 to 27, was conducted among 1,500 adults with sampling error margins at ±3 percent for national percentages. On Tuesday, the Philippine Statistics Authority said the unemployment rate rose to 5 percent of the labor force in October from 4.7 percent a year ago, but the ranks of the underemployed sank to a 10-year low. According to official data, the areas with the highest unemployment rates were the Ilocos Region (8.2 percent), National Capital Region (6.1 percent),and Central Luzon (6.0 percent). Unemployment actually describes workers who do not

have jobs but who want jobs and are actively seeking jobs. Workers who are laid off or who quit their jobs but do not seek a new job are not considered unemployed if they don’t keep looking for work, according to economists. Underemployment, on the other hand, is a measure of employment and labor utilization in the economy that looks at how well the labor force is being utilized in terms of skills, experience and availability to work. This is different from unemployment in that the individual is working but is not working at his full capability, according to economists.

Underemployment posted its lowest rate in more than 10 years, a reflection that the country’s decent work agenda is moving forward, the National Economic and Development Authority said Tuesday. In the October 2017 Labor Force Survey of the Philippine Statistics Authority, a Nedaattached agency, the underemployment rate or the proportion of those employed wanting additional work hours declined to or was recorded at 15.9 percent in October 2017.This is lower by 2.1 percentage points from the 18.0 percent recorded in 2016. That rate represents approximately 893,000 less underemployed workers.

alleged debt owed to him by the Lopez-owned broadcast giant, but insisted that he would be willing to discuss the terms with them. “But you’ve done a wrong. You still owe the government. Do your part, maybe we can talk about it,” said Duterte, adding that he is not asking those critical of him to stop reporting negative about his administration. On Tuesday night, Duterte said that Filipinos are not ready for a shift to a federal type of government, despite his continuing efforts to get them to embrace the idea. “[The] problem is the Filipinos are not ready for a federal type. It doesn’t seem to ring a bell in the Visayas and Mindanao,” Duterte said during a party he hosted for reporters. ABS-CBN, whose 25year franchise expires on March 30, 2020 — is facing difficulty in getting a fresh congressional franchise from the 17th Congress in the face of the president’s threat to block any bill renewing its franchise for allegedly swindling him during the campaign. He also expressed displeasure over a negative TV campaign ad against him, using children reacting negatively to video clips of Duterte cursing at Pope Francis and his joke about the gang rape and murder of an Australian missionary during a prison riot in Davao City in 1989. Last April, Duterte had signed into law renewing the franchise of ABS-CBN’s closest, rival GMA Network Inc. for another 25 years. The 72-year-old Duterte is set to finish his six-year term until 2022.

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information sent in by reporters on the ground.” “Access to free information is supposedly one of the great victories of the Internet. But it is a myth,” the agencies argued. “At the end of the chain, informing the public costs a lot of money.” News, the declaration added, is the second reason after

catching up on family and friends for people to log onto Facebook, which tripled its profits to $10 billion last year. Yet it is the giants of the net who are reaping vast profits “from other people’s work” by soaking up between 60 and 70 percent of advertising revenue, with Google’s jumping by a fifth in a year.

Meanwhile, ad revenue for news media fell 9 percent in France alone last year, “a disaster for the industry.” “Years have passed (without anything being done) and free and reliable news gathering is now threatened because the media will simply no longer be able to pay for it,” the news

agencies added. “Diverse and reliable news sources, a pillar of democracy, risk being undermined.” Attempts by news outlets in France, Germany and Spain to force Internet giants to pay have only resulted in them coughing up a “few symbolic crumbs,” they added. AFP

By Vito Barcelo

HE Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines on Thursday called on the government to stop the attacks on church people following the killing of priest Marcelito Paez in Jaen, Nueva Ecija. The CBCP-National Secretariat for Social Acton, Justice and Peace chairman,

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due process be afforded the judges,” she recalled. In previous speeches, Duterte said he would be filing impeachment raps against Sereno himself, and called for her resignation for allowing herself to be used as a pawn to throw him off the presidency. Palace Spokesman Harry Roque also stressed that Duterte wanted Sereno “to be removed altogether, by all means”—and that her resignation would spare the judiciary from “further damage.” On Thursday, Sereno debunked a claim made by Eligio Mallari, a lawyer allied with the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption, about the inordinate delay in the resolution of a pending case involving the Philippine National Bank over two parcels of land in San Fernando, Pampanga. Mallari has complained that since the case was filed in Feb. 8, 2013, the case has not moved. The Chief Justice denied that the case has been pending for 37 years as the lawyer claimed. “This is untrue. There have already been three decisions by the Supreme Court on these parcels of land, all of which are entitled ‘Spouses Mallari vs. PNB’: G.R. no. 61093, decided on May 25, 1988, G.R. no. 106615 on March 20, 2002 and reversed on January 15, 2004,” she said in a statement. John Paolo Bencito and Rey E. Requejo

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“surpass” the rate and proportions of the Marcos dictatorship, Sison warned that the “gross and systematic” violation of human rights in Mindanao would certainly escalate after the President decided to place communist rebels as the “main target” of his extended martial law until 2018. Duterte has succeeded in convincing Congress to extend martial law in Mindanao for another year, as police and military officials warned of active jihadist and communist recruitment operations in the region. “As in the time of Marcos, the battle cry of the revolutionaries today is: People’s war is the answer to martial law!” Sison said. He drew parallels to the alleged terror tactics and flagrant human rights violations during the Marcos regime, which drove many to go underground and join an armed struggle. But Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the government and the military have not abused their powers since declaring martial law in Mindanao on May 23, when firefights erupted between state forces and Islamic State-inspired terrorists in Marawi City. Roque said Duterte’s martial law is different from the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos’ authoritarian rule, which saw killings and enforced disap-

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“He could be the son of a b****, but if he is the choice of the people, wala tayong magawa talaga. Even if it is the haciendero who holds the feudal power over a plantation,” he added. Duterte, who has been in politics since 1986, had several members of his family also in public service. His father Vicente was an acting mayor of Danao City in Cebu from 1946 to 1948 and the Governor of the undivided Davao province from 1959 to 1965. The late Duterte also served as Minister of General Services during the first term of Ferdinand Marcos. His children—Sara and Paolo is currently the mayor and vice mayor of Davao City, respectively. The fatherand-daughter tandem had swapped positions as mayor and vice mayor in the past. In a Palace news briefing, Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque admitted that “only

State workers get longer holidays

Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona, said the authorities must take immediate action

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told his colleagues in the ruling PDP-Laban party Wednesday night during a benefit Christmas dinner for victims of the recent terrorist-led siege of Marawi City. Aquino, the former President, remained mum on Duterte’s position not to file cases against him or officials of the previous administration. “No comment,” Aquino told reporters at the Senate, where he testified in defense of his decision to purchase the dengue vaccine Dengvaxia and allowing immunizations to proceed a month before the May 2016 elections. Testifying before a joint Senate committee hearing on the dengue vaccine program, Aquino said he gave the green light to procure Dengvaxia using the government’s “unutilized” funds for 2015 since the savings were set to expire at the end of that year. “If by Dec. 31, you do not utilize these unutilized funds, it reverts to the national treasury, then how do you fund it? You can go and ask for a supplemental budget, which requires new sources of revenue,” Aquino told the Senate Blue Ribbon and Health and Demography committee members. The Department of Health has said at least 830,000 public school students have been vaccinated with Dengvaxia in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, and Cebu province. Aquino said his admin-

national budget before it adjourned its session Wednesday night. Under the 17th Congress’ legislative calendar, the Senate will resume its session on Jan. 15, 2018. Led by Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, the Senate approved the bicameral report for the 2018 General Appropriations Bill or HBN 6215, on Tuesday, Dec. 12. The bicameral report for the TRAIN bill, or SBN 1592, was approved on Wednesday night, Dec. 13. But ACT Teachers Party-list Rep. Antonio Tinio, a member of the militant Makabayan Bloc, said what happened was “a total farce and travesty of so-called representative democracy.” “With barely 10 people on the floor and despite my very clear objections due to obvious lack of quorum, the presiding officer and majority floor leader proceeded to adopt the final report of the tax reform bill’s bicameral conference committee, copies of which were not even on hand,” Tinio said. The lawmaker said he would elevate the issue to the Supreme Court. Tinio questioned the quorum during Wednesday’s plenary session presided by House Deputy Speaker and Batangas Rep.

From A1 The adult labor force participation rate was at 73.1 percent or an estimated 46.1-million adults. This was a 1.6-percent decrease from the 74.7 percent (est. 47.1-million adults) labor force participation rate in June 2017. Optimism that there will be more jobs, however, decreased by 1 point from 46 percent in June 2017 to 45 percent in September 2017, while pessimism that there will be fewer jobs rose by 3 points from 15 percent in June to 18 percent in September. Net Optimism on Job Availability score is down from high +28 in Sep-

“Yet neither Facebook nor Google have a newsroom... They do not have journalists in Syria risking their lives, nor a bureau in Zimbabwe investigating Mugabe’s departure, nor editors to check and verify

By John Paolo Bencito and Rey E. Requejo GOVERNMENT workers will have more time to spend the holidays after Malacañang on Thursday announced the suspension of work nationwide on Dec. 26, 2017 and Jan. 2, 2018. Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea announced the work suspensions through Memorandum Circular 37 dated Dec. 13, which was released only on Thursday. “Work in government offices, including government-owned and -controlled corporations, government financial institutions, state universities and colleges, local government units and other agencies and instrumentalities is hereby suspended on 26 December 2017 and 02 January 2018,” the circular says. The Supreme Court also announced the suspension of work in all courts nationwide on Dec. 26, 2017 and Jan. 2 next year following Malacañang’s announcement. The Palace said it announced the work suspensions “to give employees of the government full opportunity to celebrate the holidays with their families and loved ones.” Malacañang earlier issued Proclamation 50 and 269 declaring Dec. 25, 2017 (Christmas Day) and Jan. 1, 2018 (New Year’s Day) as regular holidays. But the “agencies whose functions involve the delivery of basic health services, preparedness or response to disasters and calamities, and/or the performance of other vital services shall continue with their operations and render the necessary services.”

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The President said that he hasn’t forgotten about the




SC junks Leni supporters’ plea By Rio Araja


UPPORTERS of Vice President Leni Robredo have lost their petition before the Supreme Court seeking to pay the balance of her counter-protest fee in relation to an election protest case filed by former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

The high court, sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, ruled against the petition on Nov. 7, 2017,

affirming its July 11 decision rejecting Robredo’s supporters petition, on the grounds that the pro-

ponents of the Piso Para Kay Leni movement has no legal interest in the matter subject of the protest. Robredo, whose victory in the May 2016 election is being challenged by Marcos Jr. on fraud allegations, has yet to pay the P7.439 million out of the P15.4 million required of her by the PET. She had asked for more time to raise the amount which the tribunal granted. The Piso Para Kay Leni movement then petitioned the PET for them to pay the balance, raising P7,520,679.04 from some 25,000 supporters over the past few

months. Following the PET’s decision, the group said it wanted to turnover the fund to Angat Buhay priority projects, the flagship antipoverty program of the Office of the Vice President . The group met with Robredo at her office in Quezon City on Wednesday where they planned how to properly turn over what they collected from their initiative. “The money given by thousands of VP Leni supporters will now promote the welfare of our poor countrymen as this was the alternative plan from the onset in the

event that our petition would not be granted by PET,” said Museo Pambata founder Cristina LimYuson, one of the founders of the movement. The group said the OVP will identify a high-impact project or two that will benefit from the fund drive. Angat Buhay head Georgina Hernandez welcomed the decision of the proponents to donate the money collected by the group that was intended to partially fund Leni’s counter-protest against Marcos. “It will go a long way in helping poor communities as part of VP

Leni’s advocacy to uplift the lives of Filipinos living in the fringes of society,” she said. The movement composed of 25,000 supporters of Robredo expressed their desire to donate the P7,520,679.04 after the Presidential Electoral Tribunal denied a motion for reconsideration to accept their contribution. According to Hernandez, the Office of the Vice President shall identify a high-impact project or two to benefit from the P7.4-million budget. The recommendation will be ready by January, she said.

DoJ chief vouches for De la Rosa at BuCor

Church tells faithful: Be attentive at dawn mass AN OFFICIAL of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the PhilippinesPublic Affairs Committee urged the faithful to be active and attentive when attending Simbang Gabi (dawn masses), which would start on Saturday. Fr. Jerome Secillano, CBCP-PAC executive secretary said that the people owe it to God and to the Church to be energetic when they attend church service. “I think the people owe it to the church, to God to be very much alive when they attend church service. So the burden is not on the priests. People should feel responsible that when you are inside the church you should be attentive,” he said in an interview. With this, the Catholic priest added that the priest should also deliver relevant homilies to get the attention of the churchgoers since some of them fall asleep during homilies. “You should fully participate in the celebration. But of course the priests are also expected to deliver not entertaining homilies but relevant, substantial homilies that will edify the people,” he said. “We don’t want our priests to be entertainers. Sometimes the priests are tempted to entertain people so that people will not fall asleep. But the mass is not an entertainment,” Secillano explained. Asked on what topics should be discussed, the CBCP-PAC official said, “Not necessary current issues. When we speak of relevance it should also be relevant in the life of the individual. Let’s say for example, there are so many problems that an individual faces. So at least the word of God should offer some solace. Should offer some assurance.” PNA

SHRINE SPRUCED UP. In its efforts to preserve the Rizal Monument, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines and the National Parks Development Committee has partnered with Kärcher, the global leader in cleaning technology, to spruce up the Rizal Shrine at the Luneta on Dec. 14, 2017. For this year, Karcher has chosen the Philippines as its beneficiary for the campaign with the cleanup of the Rizal Monument which, throughout the years, has seen its fair share of wear and tear. It’s (no longer) white granite obelisk, together with the bronze statue of Rizal, is, unfortunately, a far cry from its original look as streaks of black dirt collected over the decades tarnishes its once-regal appearance. Norman Cruz

Harbour Centre posts gains on rising cargo volume THE country’s leading private international commercial port for bulk and breakbulk cargoes is headed for a full-year 15-percent increase in gross revenues on the heels of a 7-percent rise in vessel throughput and a 3-percent uptick in cargo volume. Chairman Reghis M. Romero II of Harbour Centre Port Terminal Inc.) said those figures would bring the company’s total domestic and foreign cargo volume to 6.5 million metric tons by yearend. Romero II attributed that unprecedented growth to HCPTI’s sound operating efficiencies and fiscal management, making the employ-

ees perform well to increase volume completion while reducing vessel turnaround time. The HCPTI, according to Romero II, has an in-house Port Academy that regularly trains personnel on the required skill-set prior to deployment. “Driving HCPTI’s much-improved operating systems are strict adherence to global standards in all management aspects, real-time cargo and documentation processing and monitoring, compliance with government-enforced international security protocols, and a continuing equipment re-fleeting program,” Romero II explained. Part of the re-fleeting program

is the acquisition of another seven brand-new 15-tonner forklift that was delivered early this year to beef up cargo-handling capacity amid the consistent rise in volume and demand. For next year the company will have an initial allocation of P700 million of CAPEX projects focusing on facilities and IT upgrade, which will be internally funded. Just recently, the company passed the audit and earned from TUVRheinland the certifications of the International Organization of Standards for Quality Management 2008, the Environmental Management Systems 2004 and its latest

2015 version, while retaining that of the Occupational Health & Safety Assessment Series. The HCPTI was also recertified by the Office of Transportation Security for another five years for compliance with the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code. Only last October, the HCPTI launched the latest 3.0 version of its Unified Port Operations Realtime Technology, which enables clients to monitor and track the movements of their cargoes and documents online. “With the fast economic development of the Philippines, we pursue our vision as the gateway to progress,” Romero II stressed.

Tourism, S’pore airlines set blitz to spur India arrivals THE Department of Tourism is ready to roll out the red carpet for a significant increase in Indian arrivals into the Philippines following the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement with Singapore International Airlines. Through the one-year collaboration, DoT and SIA will hold joint marketing initiatives that will implement activities to promote the Philippines to the Indian market

through social media, familiarization tours, and roadshows, among others. The agreement was signed byTourism Undersecretary Benito Bengzon Jr. and SIA Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing Campbell Wilson at the Makati Diamond Residences. Also present during the signing were DoT Regional Directors. “This is a milestone for the

Philippines. The India market is growing at a very fast rate. In fact, we are expecting to reach 100,000 arrivals by end of 2017. This joint agreement is envisioned to sustain and further strengthen this growth in the next years,” said Bengzon. Bengzon also disclosed that the department is not only looking at the headcount but also with the revenue it would generate.

“An Indian tourist, in average spent at least 1000 US dollars, just imagine if we are able to meet the 100,000 mark of Indian tourist. Also, part of our strategy is to make them stay longer on the Philippines by developing new products that would meet their needs,” he said. SIA and its sister company SilkAir also agreed to bring tourists not only to Manila but also to secondary destinations.

JUSTICE Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has backed President Duterte’s appointment of Philippine National Police chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa as director of the Bureau of Corrections after his extended term ends. “Definitely I support his appointment and I know that his stint as CPNP will be very useful in addressing the problems in the BuCor. I was consulted several months ago on his forthcoming appointment as BuCor chief. I wholeheartedly agreed and supported it,” Aguirre said in a text message. Aguirre, who exercises administrative supervision over the BuCor, also revealed that he already endorsed the appointment of three mistah of Dela Rosa as deputy directors of BuCor namely: Retired police generals Valfrie G. Tabian, currently officerin-charge, Melvin Ramon G. Buenafe and Gen. Heriberto O. Olitoquit. Dela Rosa will retire on Jan. 21 next year, when he reaches the mandatory retirement age for police officers. BuCor’s operating units include New Bilbid Prison in Muntinlupa City, Abuyog Penal Colony in Leyte, Correctional Institute for Women in Mandaluyong City, Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm in Puerto Princesa in Palawan, Sablayan Prison and Penal Farm in Occidental Mindoro, San Ramon Prison and Penal Farm in Zamboanga City and the Davao Prison and Penal Farm. President Duterte earlier admitted that he would first extend Dela Rosa’s term as PNP chief for at least three months. “I have that discretion to extend even beyond retirement age,” Duterte disclosed. “I still have a lot to do. I want to do some things in Mindanao of utmost importance and I need to extend the tour of duty of General Dela Rosa to something like two to three months,” the President said. Rey Requejo

Honasan-backed measure raises MUP base pay By Macon Araneta STARTING next month, military and uniformed personnel will receive an increase in their base pay after the Senate approved Wednesday on third and final reading two resolutions seeking the increase. Senate Joint Resolution 11, introduced by Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, Panfilo Lacson, Gregorio Honasan II and Cynthia Villar, will increase the base pay of MUP. Honasan said the President has repeatedly made promises of higher salaries to the military and the police personnel. ‘‘In support of this commitment, he said this joint

resolution, if enacted into law, would double the MUPs base pay,” Honasan said in his sponsorship speech. Honasan, chairman of the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security and sponsor of the bill, said that once the joint resolution would be enacted into law, the base salary of all military and police personnel, including jail guards, firemen, coast guards and those under the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority and the Philippine Public Safety College would double. He cited a Department of Budget and Management report which showed that the compensation package

would result in an average increase of 58.7 percent for all MUPs. A joint resolution, like a bill, requires the approval of both houses and the signature of the President. It has the force and effect of a law once approved by the President. “Let me emphasize that under existing laws, the base pay schedule of military and uniformed personnel or the MUP was last increased eight years ago,” Honasan said. He said that the increase in salary for MUPs would motivate those in active service to perform better and be more committed to the service. At the same time, he said,

increase in compensation would encourage civilians to join the service, thereby improving the recruitment process and reinvigorating public service. “Adjustments to the compensation of our military and uniformed personnel to make it commensurate to their role in security, public safety and order is long overdue,” Honasan said. “Unlike other vocations, uniformed personnel experience almost daily, risks of losing their lives, physical injury or psychological trauma,” he said. “Our uniformed personnel including their families give up personal comfort so that ordinary Filipino citizens may live in peace,” he added.

FREE WI-FI. Converge ICT Solutions, Inc. and the city government of Makati have started digging the city streets prior to the installation of fiber optic cables to provide free Wi-Fi connections for all barangays. By early 2018 it is expected that Makati City residents specially students will have the free Wi-Fi connections with increased speed. Diana B. Noche




Adelle Chua, Editor


‘Unlimited peace’


HE effectiveness of martial law in Mindanao can only be gauged if relative peace is achieved on the island and its economy progresses as fast as the rest of the whole nation. Investors are shunning Mindanao because of lawlessness and the lack of peace and order that do not guarantee the safety of workers and executives alike, and ensure a return on investments. Without capital from businessmen, Mind-

anao is unable to create jobs fast enough to address the unemployment on the island. And with no jobs around, some of the population have grown restive while others joined a rebellion that they believe could change the status quo.

Congress may have perceived Mindanao’s dilemma. In a joint session, Congress on Wednesday granted President Rodrigo Duterte’s wish to extend martial law in Mindanao for another year to enable him to put an end to threats of terrorism and allow the rebuilding and rehabilitation of the region. Malacañang welcomed Congress’ decision and quickly downplayed fears that

the move was a prelude to a declaration of martial law in the entire Philippines. Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea told the joint session of Congress that Malacañang did not seek an unlimited martial law. What the government wants, he says, is “unlimited peace.” “In sum, the factual basis that compelled the President to declare martial law and suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas

corpus in Mindanao, as affirmed by the Congress and validated by the Supreme Court, continues to exist,” Medialdea said. Quelling the Muslim rebellion and neutralizing terrorists that include Abu Sayyaf Group in Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi and other Islamist militants should be the immediate results of martial law imposition in the south. The government is now vested with

powers to go after rebellious forces and terrorists without much legal impediments with the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus. With peace hopefully restored in Mindanao and the element of uncertainty much reduced, business should flourish in the region. Job and other economic opportunities will eventually quiet the discontent in the troubled island.

When Trump’s electoral magic fades By Jonathan Bernstein

What good faith, Boss? LOWDOWN

JOJO A. ROBLES NOYNOY Aquino said he acted in good faith. And besides, he explained, nobody ever told him that what he was doing was wrong. These are the two “defenses” that Aquino seem to be preparing against charges that his administration endangered more than 800,000 children when he implemented a hastily-prepared vaccination program to combat the dengue virus. Good faith is always presumed in a government program, based primarily on the principle that no sane officialdom will act against the interest of the people. The same presumption of good faith got Noynoy and

his budget officials off the hook in the Disbursement Acceleration Program, which was first declared illegal by the Supreme Court but which later allowed the defense in a second, companion ruling. President Rodrigo Duterte himself cited the presumption of good faith in official actions of everyone in government, speaking about the Dengvaxia scandal earlier this week. But many media outlets were only too willing to play down the fact that Duterte emphasized, as well, that he will await the results of the various investigations being conducted by both Congress and the Executive before acting on the matter. In other words, Aquino, in his appearance before the Senate yesterday, once again asked the public to allow him the presumption

of good faith. But he neglected to mention why his government’s indecent and unprecedented haste in implementing the P3.5-billion Dengvaxia immunization

Aquino was really the worst kind of despot: The unthinking, unfeeling, unaccepting of responsibility kind.

program—from the approval of the campaign to the allocation of the required funds to the strange method

of implementing the rollout—destroys his plea to be given that benefit which he seeks. To recap, it took Aquino and his health and budget officials only a year to devise an immunization program that had not yet been cleared for implementation on such a massive scale. He met suspiciously with officials of Dengvaxia maker Sanofi several times, disregarded warnings by reputable international and local public health groups, skirted budgetary processes by realigning funds for the program from a specifically earmarked fund to a government hospital and rolled out the massive program during that very tight period from late 2015 to right before he stepped down in the middle of last year. I’m not saying that Aqui-

no did not have the best of intentions when he and his officials dreamed up the campaign. All I’m saying is that his government’s actions nullified his excuses that he was only thinking of the welfare of his “bosses” when he short-circuited a system intended to prevent such hasty decision-making—especially in a matter like the Dengvaxia rollout, where his haste may waste many lives. *** As for nobody telling him that he was doing anything wrong, that is still Aquino’s fault. If he had not developed a culture where his officials were so afraid of opposing him while he was president, Noynoy would have heard the opposition to his Dengvaxia program – and it would certainly have given him pause.

There certainly was opposition enough, and from very credible, apolitical sources. But the World Health Organization and the various local public health specialists who advised caution before the rollout never had a chance. If Noynoy had not always been so sure that he was right even if he had only heard one side, he would have encouraged critics like the Department of Health’s own Formulary Executive Council that wanted to—and which had every right to—overrule the Food and Drug Administration on Dengvaxia. But the FEC, unfortunately, was ignored by Health Secretary Janette Garin, the official tasked by Aquino to implement the program, damn the torpedoes.

THE day after Alabama, Donald Trump is now the president in the most danger of losing renomination since Jimmy Carter in 1979. He’s in this position despite campaigning against Roy Moore in the Republican primary, correctly saying that Moore would be a bad general election candidate. Then, the scandal that engulfed Moore after his nomination left Trump with no good choices. One can argue Trump made the decision that was best for his party and even his presidency. But obviously none of it worked, and that fact alone will cause his party to start asking existential questions. How many Republicans in Congress and elsewhere are wondering this morning just how bad November 2018 is going to be? How many are asking the same question about November 2020? And is there anything they can do about it? Look at the state of Trump’s presidency. His unpopularity stands at record levels at this point in an administration. Women accusing him of sexual assault and harassment have launched a new push against him. Republicans who have witnessed several indictments can’t possibly agree with Trump that the Russia investigation is hogwash. I’d be surprised if very many of them believe Trump’s denials of what the women are saying about him, either. One of the major assets of any new president is the belief that he has some sort of electoral magic. Trump, who shocked the world with his 2016 victory, had more than most. It’s surely dissipated by now. What else? His White House, never particularly functional at the best of times, is already losing deputy national security advisor Dina Powell in the new year, and it’s likely she won’t be the only one. We don’t know how long White House Chief of Staff John Kelly will last. Over in the executive branch, rumors still have Secretary of State Rex Tillerson about to leave, and

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Opinion From A4

president by this time next year. Every potential Trump challenger from within the Republican party is going to worry that waiting could allow someone else to jump in and lock up support. I’ve argued all year that the risks of opposing Trump are minimal for Republicans. After Alabama, more and more Republicans are going to believe that. A serious nomination challenge still requires a serious challenger, and while I think some challenger is now likely it’s far from clear that a real threat will emerge. Nor is it clear that a top-ranked challenger would do better than Ted Kennedy against Carter in 1980 or Ronald Reagan against Gerald Ford in 1976, both of whom fell short. Then again? Trump still has two more years to disqualify himself from renomination. I wouldn’t bet that he won’t manage it. Bloomberg

How to avoid the worst possible Brexit Bloomberg Editorial AT A European Union summit this week, the bloc's leaders are expected to formally declare that the Brexit talks can move forward. Not a moment too soon. Britain and the EU have spent 18 months since the UK's decision to quit avoiding the main issues—namely, their future trading relationship and a plan for getting from here to there. With Brexit scheduled for March 2019, no further delay is affordable. The topics now confronting the negotiators are more complicated than the ones that have occupied them so far. Last week's supposed "breakthrough" over the divorce settlement shouldn't fool anybody: Even now, avoiding an exit that wounds Europe and cripples the UK won't be easy. Tentative agreement has been reached on the settlement of UK liabilities, the status of EU citizens in Britain, and the future of Ireland's border with Northern Ireland. That last question, in particular, is by no means solved, but EU negotiators have rightly decided not to let it hold things up any further. This suggests a softening of Europe's approach to the talks—marked up to now by a calculated, and tactically shrewd, lack of flexibility. The UK should reciprocate with less vacillation and a new willingness to make specific workable proposals. The next stage of the talks is likely to concentrate on the transitional arrangements that will come into effect in 2019. These should be kept as simple as possible – meaning, in effect, that the UK should conform in full to EU rules for a minimum of two years, even though it will give up any say in what those rules may be. Presenting this unpalatable prospect to voters will be a severe political test for Prime Minister Theresa May and her government. May's weakness was underlined this week when members of her

own party voted with the opposition on the need for parliamentary approval of an eventual Brexit deal, resulting in her first big legislative defeat. Despite her political frailty, she needs to lead, rallying the country behind a transition that lets UK businesses continue to operate as usual, until a long-term arrangement can be concluded. Therein lies the greatest challenge. Britain would like to establish the closest possible trade relationship with the EU —covering services (especially financial services) and not just goods—while separating itself from the EU system of governance. That is not an absurd thing to want, but it will be a very difficult thing to achieve, because the EU has bound its economic and constitutional arrangements closely together. There's no template for what Britain wants. Its current trade relations with Europe are virtually seamless, going far beyond what even the most ambitious bilateral free-trade deals have achieved. On the most optimistic assessment, any trade deal Britain might reach with the EU will fall short of what it currently has. And working through the details of a new accord is an enormous task. Nonetheless, an ambitious deal is worth the effort—for the EU as well as Britain. Europe knows from experience the benefits of unfettered international commerce. And its leaders needn't worry too much that a successful Brexit would encourage other countries to leave the union, because even a relatively successful Brexit is bound to fall short of Leavers' hopes. Perhaps the declaration of "sufficient progress" on the divorce settlement will lead to a more productive phase in this unfortunate process. If both sides keep in mind the benefits of liberal trade and the importance of close cooperation in defense and other matters of mutual interest, they can avoid the calamity of an angry and disorderly split.

What... From A4

The context here is that Aquino surrounded himself with sycophants and yes-men during his term because he considered even the slightest criticism as a personal slight. This is also the reason why Aquino could listen only to the advice of a suspended national police chief when he planned and executed the raid that would end up as the Mamasapano Massacre—Aquino only listened to the people he wanted to listen to, and they always told him what he wanted to hear. Aquino cannot claim good faith when his implementation of the Dengvaxia program was the result of his usual process of deciding first and letting his subalterns do whatever dirty work needed to get the job done


Coming back full circle

When... others could follow. All this is happening just as confirming executive branch nominees just got harder (with the party’s Senate margin shrinking to 51-49). And finding replacements may be difficult, given the president’s reputation, his lack of popularity, and the increasingly difficult path to any policy success. It also doesn’t help that Trump doesn’t appear to have many friends in Washington. So, yes, two things are increasingly likely. Party actors at all levels are going to contemplate whether they might be better off with another nominee in 2020, and some of them might even start imagining the benefits of Trump exiting even sooner than that. Potential primary challengers are going to inch closer to running. After all, the Iowa Caucuses are about two years away. A dozen or so Democrats will be openly running for


afterwards. And he must not be allowed to pretend one more time that he answers to “bosses” when he always unilaterally decided their fate—whether they liked it or not, whether they were consulted or not or whether the decision would harm them or not. Aquino, despite his supposedly being descended from icons of democracy, was really the worst kind of despot: the unthinking, unfeeling, unaccepting of responsibility kind. Aquino never cared about the people, whom he considered mere numbers needed by a foreign drug company in order to test an unproven vaccine. He was the boss of all bosses—and everyone should heave a long sigh of relief knowing that he no longer is.

BACK CHANNEL ALEJANDRO DEL ROSARIO CALL it karma or whatever but what is happening to former President Benigno Aquino III teaches us a lesson in life. And that is whatever you wrought, you shall reap. Take the case of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno who is facing impeachment at the House of Representatives. It is only a matter of time before the articles of impeachment are forwarded to the Senate for trial. That CJ Sereno is now embattled brings back memories of how Noynoy Aquino harnessed all his presidential powers to help impeach and convict former chief magistrate Renato Corona who was appointed by former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. Corona died a broken man after being unseated as Supreme Court Chief Justice. The same thing is now happening to Aquino’s appointee, CJ Sereno.

Then there is (call it poetic justice) Senator Leila de Lima who had former President Arroyo arrested and placed under hospital detention for four years. Arroyo was stopped at the airport on her way to seek medical attention abroad. De Lima was arrested at the Senate and presently held at the Taguig detention center. Indeed the gods, if not fate, have a way of dispensing retribution. Aquino is facing a raft of more serious criminal cases including use of the illegal Disbursement Acceleration Program which former Senator Jinggoy Estrada claimed was used to secure the conviction of Corona. Noynoy Aquino is also being held accountable for sacrificing the lives of 44 commandos of the Philippine National Police Special Action Forces in Mamasapano, Maguindanao. Aquino was in nearby Zamboanga with his top Cabinet officials and Armed Forces top brass but he didn’t sent in reinforcements to the beleaguered SAF 44 who were butchered

by combined forces of the MILF, Abu Sayyaf and the BIFF. Add the recent scam in the P3.5-billion purchase of the Dengvaxia vaccine. If PNoy’s culpability is proven, he’s looking at prison for life. A change of address from the Aquino house on Times Street to the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa may not be at all remote. More bad news for Aquino. His appointee as Supreme Court Chief Justice Sereno could be unseated in a Senate trial. Another ally’s —Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales—term of office expires in July next year, adding to the dire prospect of prosecution and conviction. The last but the most scary scenario is that President Duterte is appointing PNP Director General Ronaldo “Bato” dela Rosa as the next Bucor chief in Muntinlupa. “Bato” for sure will not allow the former president to bring along his cook, yaya and hair stylist (?) whom he mentioned in his last State of the Nation Address. Not

even brother –in-law Manolo Abellada as butler if Noynoy is given his own kubol. On another front, a joint session of Congress approved the extension of martial law for another year. Although the final vote was an overwhelming yes,( 240 to 27 .) those who voted against the extension of military rule in Mindanao warned that allowing martial law could condition the people’s mind to learn to live in an abnormal situation. What if martial law in Mindanao was extended not only in duration but in scope to include the whole country? This was the concern of Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, Senators Risa Hontiveros, Francis Pangilinan , Paulo “Bam” Aquino . Magdalo Party List Rep Gary Alejano Rep. Tom Villarin, and Buhay Party List Rep. Lito Atienza. Atienza questioned the basis for the length of martial law extension in Mindanao. He aired his concern it could be a prelude for the proclamation of martial law nationwide. While he sup-

ported martial law during the Marawi crisis, Atienza said he cannot accept its imposition for the entire year of 2018 as he cited the constitutional provision that military rule can only be imposed for 60 days. Villarin voiced the same concern the one year extension of martial law would desensitize the citizenry into accepting it as the new normal. This poses a danger to the holding of a free and democratic elections, said Villarin. The lopsided vote did not come as a surprise to the opposition which called Congress a rubberstamp pad of the Palace. Martial law was declared in Mindanao when Maute/ ISIS terrorists laid siege on Marawi City. It was extended for five months to the end of this year. Another year of martial law in Mindanao up to December 31, 2018 is stoking suspicion on what President Dutere’s real game plan is. Is the Duterte playbook laying the ground for a nationwide imposition of martial rule to extend his term?

Feeling good, feeling secure FORMATION GARY OLIVAR THE Social Weather Stations 3rd quarter survey conducted last September came up with another piece of good news for President Duterte. When asked if they expected their personal quality of life to improve in the next 12 months, 47 percent of respondents answered yes, while 4 percent answered no. This produced a net personal optimism rating of +42, classified “Excellent” and two points higher than the previous June survey. When asked if they thought the Philippine economy would get better or worse, the optimists at 43 percent outnumbered the pessimists at 12 percent. The resultant net rating of +30, again “Excellent”, was three points higher than the previous quarter. Looking backward, when asked if their lives had improved or worsened over the last 12 months, the “gainers” at 39 percent outnumbered the “losers” at 19 percent. The net gainers score of +19 is “very high”. These latest numbers simply continue upbeat trends that generally go way back to the waning months of the previous administration. But I’ll have to say that this persistent sense of well-being

also has a lot to do with people feeling good about their current President. *** In fact, the scores may have been even higher if not for a methodological change at SWS: In September, they polled a total of 1,500 respondents, whereas last June (and perhaps earlier) they polled only 1,200 respondents. The additional 300 all came from “Balance of Luzon”, with the three other regions (NCR, Visayas, Mindanao) still at 300 each. Now it’s possible that “balance of Luzon” has twice the population of any of the other 3 regions (not likely) or that other technical reasons may justify this change (as a humble layman, I’m always open to being corrected by the experts). And if Pulse Asia made the same change, that would ease my mind—although frankly, at sampling sizes of 1,200 to 1,300, the predictive benefit of adding even more respondents is marginal. But what may be more relevant in this case is the fact that Duterte has generally been doing poorest in the “balance of Luzon” region. I saw this in the regional breakdown of his earlier scores on drug war-related issues. So if you increase the weighting for that region, you pull down his overall rating. I do hope there’s a far less sinister reason for this methodological change at SWS. It

sends chills up my spine to think of the implications otherwise for the opinion surveys that have become a universal barometer of public sentiment, and thus the basis for democratic governance, in between our elections. *** In another piece of economic good news, Neda reports that nearly a million underemployed workers were able to get decent work as of October. Based on the October labor force survey, this means that the underemployment rate— the number of employed persons who want additional work hours—declined to 15.9 percent, or around two points lower than the same month last year. Reducing underemployment means raising the quality as well as the value-add of work performed by our labor force. Neda now wants us to focus on policy reforms that will increase and improve the labor-force participation of women. Among them: Full implementation of the RH Law Improved access and affordability of child-care services Policies that promote work-life balance, including a regulatory framework to allow part-time work and work-from-home even in the formal sector Retraining services for women returning to the work force Enhancing maternal and paternal benefits

Improved access of women to entrepreneurial opportunities These are all good, prowomen, pro-employment policies. We’ll look forward to Neda driving the reforms through, including legislative remedies that may be needed if they’re not yet covered by appropriate laws. *** A large part of feeling good about one’s prospects and the economy is also feeling good about one’s safety. We’ve already heard so many anecdotes about average citizens feeling much safer now when they walk our streets at night, in spite of (or perhaps because of) all those alleged extra-judicial killings beloved by writers of lurid headlines. Now that Congress has agreed to extend martial law in Mindanao, we’ll wager that the citizens of that region—who were in fact the strongest supporters of extension—are feeling safer. And, characteristically, Duterte has again upped the ante against his critics by telling his favorite audience—the soldiers at Army headquarters in Taguig— that he won’t rule out taking martial law nationwide if “enemies of the state” converge to try and topple the government. Predictably, these statements raised an outcry among the usual suspects. Opposition Congressman

Edcel Lagman claimed that the government victory at Marawi meant there was no longer any armed uprising to justify martial law in Mindanao. With all due respect to Cong. Edcel, we’ll still take the word of our troops on the ground over his. For his part, leftist partylister Carlos Zarate warned that Duterte actually wants to impose “unli” martial law. The problem with his theory is that Duterte did in fact go out of his way to ask permission from Congress first, not just once, but twice. And Gabriela, by some twist of illogic, said the President couldn’t invoke the CPP-NPA rebellion as a reason to extend martial law now in Mindanao, since that rebellion has been around for decades and has spread nationwide. Gabriela ought to be more careful with what it says: A long-running and nationwide rebellion in fact sounds like a great reason to put the entire country under martial law. At the end of the day, martial law is an option granted by the Constitution to the head of state, albeit hedged by all manner of preconditions and notice requirements. Whether or not that option is exercised will depend entirely on how its targets—the terrorists, rebels, drug lords, criminals—behave themselves. Readers can write me at

Hitting the ground running VIRTUAL REALITY TONY LOPEZ JUST before flying to Washington DC to take up his post as the newly minted ambassador to the United States, Ambassador Jose Manuel G. “Babe” Romualdez asked President Rodrigo Roa Duterte for any specific instructions or mandate in dealing with the world’s only superpower and the Philippines’ long-time ally, America. “Is there anything you want me to do?” Babe asked Duterte, actually the chief architect of the Philippines’ foreign policy. “Just do your job,” was the President’s crisp but incisive reply. Babe told me in a tv interview: “That clearly tells me that it’s important for us to communicate our concerns with the United States. At the same time, keep that relationship on an even keel. So we have to promote good relations with the US. So doing my job and looking at my job description, we will be there to represent the President and be able to communicate to every single American and to people in Washington DC, to the US Congress, to the US President, and to the Defense establishment what our policy is: ‘We would like you to

join us especially when it comes with military relationship’. And there are things here that we have to disagree on or we will agree to disagree.” Babe comes to his Washington DC job with nearly half a century of skill and experience as a newsman, a broadcast and public relations executive, as a civic leader, and as a no-nonsense businessman managing and owning a publishing house and one of the most highly regarded public relations, advertising and marketing multinationals in the Philippines. Philippine-US relations are at a critical point. Initially, President Duterte great dislike for America. He cursed then President Obama and vowed not to visit the United States. Duterte is not alone in his attitude. A 2017 Pew Research survey found out that only 49 percent of Filipinos think of the US as the world’s leading economic power, down from 66 percent in 2015 and 68 percent in 2014. And only 78 percent of Filipinos have favorable image of the US, down 14 points from 92 percent in 2015 and 2014. To reboot PH-US relations, Duterte has sent Babe Romualdez to Washington DC. Enthused Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto after Romualdez’s Commission on Appointments confirmation hearing which the nominee

breezed thru easily on on Aug. 23, 2017: “Our man in Washington DC is no babe in the woods in US affairs. Though principally based in Manila, he has enough contacts in the American capital that he can be considered a Beltway insider. So wide is his network, I was told, that should [President] Trump drain the swamp, those flushed away and those who will remain are surely friends of his. So wired is he with the beating heart of the US government, that a friend has joked that if the nominee decides to swim across the Potomac unannounced, someone in Foggy Bottom will be waiting with a set of dry clothes for him.” “But more than connections,” Recto explained, “[Babe] has many other competencies, not to mention the communication skills, which make him a fine diplomat. He is articulate in both the spoken and written word. He was a TV reporter, and remains a working journalist, churning multiple columns in a week, in addition to running a publishing house.” Ralph, grandson of the late nationalist Filipino senator and statesman Claro M. Recto, added: “Though he [Babe] has not held public office, he dabbles in policy, which qualifies him as a public intellectual whose views shape major decisions taken by those in power. He is an influencer, but of the cere-

bral kind, whose contributions to civic debates are not confined to 140-character blasts, or trollfriendly memes, but in well thought-out think pieces.” Chimed in Senator Panfilo Lacson, chairman of the CA Committee on Foreign Affairs which vetted Romualdez: “You [addressing the Senate President, Aquilino Pimentel III, CA chair] and I will agree that his sartorial elegance and refined public relations make for effective diplomatic bilateral relations with the United States.” “This serves the country in good stead as observed during the onslaught of typhoon Yolanda in November 2013. His close ties with the US Embassy expedited the response of USS George Washington, which made possible rescue missions and emergency airlifts to Leyte.” “Our nominee’s policy of mutually beneficial cooperation anchored on mutual respect and equality as sovereign nations are crucial to maintaining the longstanding relations between the Philippines and the United States, with no less than the current US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim welcoming his appointment with warm congratulations will guarantee strong diplomatic engagement with the US,” said Senator Lacson. The CA briefing paper, Lacson noted, “says he is an

Americanophile, which is good, because it means that he is abreast with US developments, and attuned to policy debates that would have an impact on our country.” Romualdez emphasizes that “President Duterte on many occasions has stated that the Philippines is America’s best friend in Asia.” “This will be our guiding light,” says Babe, “as our team at the Embassy will work to ensure that the partnership between the United States and the Philippines remains to be a clear and decisive commitment to the principles that underpin the alliance. We look forward to bright prospects ahead, and I have every confidence that we will be successful in our mission with the support and partnership of leaders in the US government, the Fil-American community, our friends and all stakeholders.” The US was the Philippines’ biggest trading partner in 2016 (out of 226 trading partners) and the second biggest market for Philippine exports (out of 213 export markets), accounting for 16 percent of total PHL exports. The US is also the Philippines’ third largest investor. Over the past five years, US foreign investments in the Philippines have amounted to P165.93 billion.




Du30 to sign EO on new cell sites By John Paolo Bencito


RESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte will soon sign an Executive Order that will streamline local permits needed for the construction of new cell sites in a bid to improve Internet speeds in the country, Department of Information and Communications Technology Eliseo Rio Jr. said.

“An EO is now ready for the ease the construction of new President's signature that would towers by removing the red tape

in granting NGA and LGU permits,” Rio said in a Facebook post last Dec. 12. Under the new EO, the gover nment, through a PPP arrangement with a private tower provider, “will build common towers to be leased to the telcos, including the third player, who then will get more mobile frequencies due to better allocation policies.” The lack of infrastructure is blamed for the slow speed of data

access in the country. Over the weekend, Palace officials announced that state-run China Telecom Corp. could become the Philippines’ third telecoms player, in a bid to stir up competition in an effort to boost notoriously poor Internet services. During a recent bilateral discussion with Chinese leaders, Duterte offered Beijing the “privilege” of challenging a longstanding duopoly dominated by PLDT-Smart and

Globe Telecom. In his State of the Nation Address in July 2016, Duterte directed DICT to develop a national broadband plan to accelerate the deployment of fiber optic cables and wireless technologies to improve Internet speed. The President approved the new plan in March. It will serve as the data backbone for the national government portal and free public Wi-Fi.

BI deports 47 Korean ‘wanted’ fugitives By Joel E. Zurbano AUTHORITIES on Thursday deported 47 Korean nationals wanted for various offenses in their country. The deportation came after Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre, Immigration associate commissioner Toby Javier and the bureau’s chief legal officer Arvin Santos turned over the fugitives to officials of the Korean justice department. Naia chief immigration officer Marc Red Mariñas said the foreign fugitives boarded Jeju Air flight 7C2382 at the airport terminal 1 and were escorted by Korean Interpol personnel. He said the deportation was part of the process of decongesting the immigration jail from foreign inmates. Mariñas said that the Bureau of Immigration is also set to deport another fugitive convicted for sexual assault in the United Kingdom. British authorities sought the help of the Philippine immigration for the arrest of Mark Christopher Wyatt who was convicted in the British court but fled the UK in violation of his parole or for breaching a supervision order and notification requirements. Wyatt was arrested by the bureau’s fugitive search unit at his home in Camiling, Tarlac. Authorities recently installed cameras in each Immigration counter at the Naia to capture images of all departing and arriving passengers. The measure, initiated by the Immigration bureau, covers all local and foreign passengers, as well as international airline pilots and crews.

CANDLES FOR THE KING. Senator Grace Poe said a prayer and offered candles at the tomb of her late father Fernando Poe Jr. (Ronald Allan Kelley Poe in real life). She is joined by Poe’s wife-actress Susan Roces (not in photo) and their relatives as they commemorate the late actor’s 13th death anniversary at the Manila North Cemetery. Lino Santos

EU shows film in honor of Pinoy migrant workers By Sara Fabunan IN THE context of the Human Rights Month, the EU Delegation arranged a special screening of the film ‘Sunday Beauty Queen’ to honor Filipino migrant workers. The film, screened at the Alliance Francaise de Manille, follows the lives of five Filipino domestic workers in Hong Kong, who had left families back home in order to support them. Mattias Lentz, Chargé d’affaires, a.i., of the EU Delegation, said in his welcoming remarks that “for many OFWs, working overseas is not easy. Work conditions can be difficult and immigrants might not enjoy the same rights as back home. Women migrants, especially those employed in low-paying jobs, largely bear the brunt of abuse and

exploitation. This is something that the EU is very much concerned about.” “We believe that the vulnerability of migrants can be addressed through the strengthening of intergovernmental and inter-regional cooperation, where civil society organizations and other non-state institutions play important roles,” he said. Among those who attended the screening were Undersecretary Lou y Arriola, Office of Migrant Workers, Department of Foreign Affairs, the film's director Baby Ruth Villamara, Commissioner Gwen Gana from the Commission on Human Rights, Carmelita Nuqui, president of Philippine Migrants Watch and popular actress Juana Change who has a role in the film. Also in attendance were the advo-

cates for migrants’ rights and members of the diplomatic corps. Since 2005, the EU has funded 17 projects worth P1 billion to address human trafficking, illegal recruitment and strengthening of migration systems and institutions. A recent initiative is the newlylaunched regional program called “Safe and Fair: Realizing women migrant workers’ rights and opportunities in the Asean region,” which aims to make labor migration safe and fair especially for all women migrants in Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, Arriola credited the EU for its fair treatment of migrant workers and also stressed that the Philippines’ policy to maximize all avenues and forums where the rights, interests and welfare of Overseas Foreign Workers could be advanced.

Film director Baby Ruth Villarama said that “like the champions that we are in our work and our families, we hope we can continue to champion the hidden heroes in our migrant work force and find inspiration through their stories. “As we commemorate the value of human rights this month, we can only hope that by uplifting the voiceless in our society, we can uphold human dignity, and ultimately celebrate equality— not just exclusively on Sunday but everyday 24/7,” she said. There are an estimated 10 million Filipinos either working or living abroad. The remittances they send back every year to their families in the Philippines constitute a substantial part of the GDP of the Philippines.

Cebu-bound CEB flight diverted to Nagoya, Japan A CEBU Pacific Air flight from Narita to Cebu was diverted to Nagoya, Japan due to a technical glitch, the airline disclosed on Thursday. In its advisory, the CEB management said “flight 5J 5063, bound for Cebu, was diverted to Nagoya, Japan due to a technical issue. The aircraft has landed safely at the Chubu Centrair International Airport.” It added the aircraft departed Narita Airport at about 12:05 p.m. and expected to arrive Cebu at 4:40 p.m. “We have contingencies in place to assist passengers and expedite checking of the aircraft. We will provide updates as soon as possible. We apologize for the inconvenience, but it is imperative we prioritize the safety of the flight and all our passengers,” the airline stated. Some passengers expressed their disappointments through social media. “Yung papunta ka ng Cebu tapos dinala ka sa Japan! Kainis!,” said Jelly Pantoja Aureus in her Facebook account post. Jayoma MJ also said “Bound to

Cebu sana, napuntang Japan because of technical issue. Nakakabahala but somehow lucky, Instant nakapunta ng Nagoya.” The incident happened as Transportation department secretary Arthur Tugade ordered the transport sectors—aviation, railways, road and maritime—to further intensify their respective safety and security measures in preparation for the Christmas season when thousands flock to terminals to travel and spend the holidays in the provinces. He also reminded transportation officials and personnel to assure the riding public not only safety and security, but also comfort while in the various bus terminals, sea and airports, and train stations. The transportation chief also pointed out that both the government and commuting public “must be proactive, alert and vigilant,” share information and maintain close coordination among stakeholders that would further improve the security safety nets in the transport sectors. Joel E. Zurbano

TOPNOTCHERS. The topnotchers in the recent licensure examination for teachers were introduced to the media during the Pandesalan Forum in Quezon City. Most of the topnotchers came from poor families and some are disabled. Manny Palmero

Basilan ex-mayor suspended for 6 mos By Rio N. Araja THE Office of the Ombudsman on Thursday ordered a six-month suspension on Vice Mayor Roderick Furigay of Lamitan, Basilan for grave misconduct back when he was still a mayor. Ex-bids and awards committee chairman Florence Herrera, city accountant Nilo Sotto, and members Ignacio Enriquez, Olivia Ablao and Raquel Hibionada were also found guilty of simple misconduct and were ordered suspended for one month. In 2012, respondents paid P548,256 to HHH Developer and Real Estate Inc. for the supply of construction materials in connection with its KulayBato boat landing project and P175,000 to Furigay College Inc. for its fiveday scuba diving course as part of its geographical protection and awareness program. Ombudsman probers found out respondent Furigay was closely related to the owners and incorporators of HDRI and FCI. Despite this, HDRI and FCI’s failure to submit affidavits of disclosure of relationship, the city still awarded the contract to the two businesses. As a result, the Commission on Audit disallowed the payments in June 2012 and ordered their immediate refund. In October 2012, HDRI and FCI refunded the amount of P723,256 to the local government. “Respondents Furigay as the approving officer of the contracts and the ensuing disbursements, Sotto as the certifier of the regularity as well as the completeness of the supporting documents, and Herrera, Enriquez, Ablao and Hibionada as the BAC members, who recommended the award, are liable for misconduct,” the decision read.

Reinforce transport security —DOTr

THE Department of Transportation has directed the railways, road, maritime, and aviation sectors to reinforce their security measures in preparation for the influx of passengers trooping to the provinces for the holiday season. “May I once agai n reiterate the great importance of maintaining and assuring the safety, security and comfort of the riding passengers and the public,” DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said in a statement Thursday. “Accordingly, please continue implementing and improving our security and safety measures to protect people, facility, structures, equipment, and the like,” he added. Tugade also said that both the government and commuting public “must be proactive, alert and vigilant,” share information and maintain close coordination among stakeholders to further improve the security safety nets in the transport sector. The transport sector had activated its “Oplan Biyaheng Ayos” to ensure the security and safety of the thousands of commuters who flocked to bus terminals, seaports, airports, and train stations for the traditional exodus to the provinces during last month’s observance of All Saints’ and All Souls’ Day.






Manila Cockers Club holds P3m Mega Derby T

HE Manila Cockers Club, the latest innovator in one of the most popular sports in the Philippines, is currently holding its year-ending event—the Breeders Festival Mega 9 Stag Championship Derby until Dec. 22. The mega derby will have its biggest prize of the year amounting P3 million, eclipsing its recent 6-stag Breeders Festival, which carried a prize money of P 2 million. MCCI enthusiasts expect this latest derby, to be aired live via satellite through Cignal TV Channel 109 (Gametime TV), to feature the former participant breeders and champions of the MCCI derbies held this year. The main thrust of MCCI’s operations is to revitalize the breeding industry and provide aficionados a new method of appreciating the game of sabong.

MCCI’s operations enhanced the viability of small- and medium-sized breeding farms across the country. Hundreds of breeders from Kalinga Apayao, Isabela, Nueva Ecija, Bataan, Pampanga, Laguna, Rizal, Batangas, Quezon, Iloilo, Bacolod, Cavite, Basilan, and Davao, among others, have participated in MCCI’s derbies as it has allowed them to pit their game fowls against the best breeders in the country. The demand for fighting cocks have increased on account of MCCI’s operations which likewise caused a

surge in the demand for game fowl feeds, vitamins and supplements, and other related businesses. This event, as well as its derbies held this year 2017, could not have been possible if not for the advances in technology over the past years. Electronic commerce is now the norm as businesses have adopted processes that are attuned to the cyberage. In sum, MCCI’s operations represents a step forward for the game of sabong. The transition to the modern age is inevitable as technology will not cease to develop. E-commerce is no longer a concept, but a global standard or practice for trade and commerce. MCCI embraced this concept as it continues to reach breeders and aficionados all over the country to uplift the industry and the game of cockfighting.

The legality of sabong is beyond question as there is a national law that gover ns it—the Cockfighting Law of 1974, the landmark legislation which declared cockfighting as one of the authorized gambling activities in the country. MCCI operates in accordance with this law and the innovations introduced by MCCI on sabong is prescribed by the Electronic Commerce Act of 2000. As mentioned, the cockfights held by MCCI are broadcast live thru Cignal TV—a licensed satellite television network—and bets placed in MCCI’s betting terminals are accepted, transacted, and consummated in MCCI’s duly-licensed cockpit arena in Carmona, Cavite. The betting terminals of MCCI are likewise licensed by the respective

Local Government Units where they operate in accordance with the Local Government Code of 1991. These laws allow MCCI to revolutionize the game of sabong in this modern age. The operations of MCCI proved to be a source of much-needed government revenue, both for the national and the local government. As of the 3rd quarter of 2017, MCC has remitted to the National Government the amount ₱40 Million in taxes. It is projected that MCCI will remit by yearend a total of P53.7 million to the National Government. Furthermore, MCCI has so far, accumulated the amount of ₱3.2 Million which will be paid to the Municipality of Carmona by the end of 2017. The total amount due is expected to reach around ₱7.9 Million.

St. Benilde booters zoom to solo NCAA lead

COLLEGE of St. Benilde came alive in the second half as it pounded Arellano University to zoom to the solo lead in the seniors’ division of the 93rd NCAA football competition at the Rizal Memorial Complex grounds Wednesday night. Leading by just a goal

in the first half thanks to Vincent Erik Lovitos’ 12th minute heroics, the Blazers unleashed a four-goal onslaught in the second half to power them to the top with 13 match points on four wins and a draw. Lovitos and Major Dean Ebarle accounted for three

Naga, Cebu host Dagitab Tennis Festival THE region’s leading and rising junior players and members of the national pool take center stage in the next two weeks as they slug it out for top honors, ranking points and cash prizes in the Dagitab Tennis Festival at the City of Naga tennis courts in Naga City, Cebu. Local ace Vhon Tudtud, coming off a victory in the PPS-PEPP Argao leg last week, tries to make it back-to-back in the boys’ premier division with Troy Llamas, Paul Coderos and Mark Albarracin and the rest in the 32-player draw out to foil his title drive. Bless Coderos also guns for another win in the girls’ 18-U side and like Tudtud, the Consolacion, Cebu bet will have her hands full against the likes of Elizabeth Abarquez, Hazel Coderos and Joanne Taganile in the Group 2 event hosted by Naga City Mayor Kristine Vanessa Chiong and the various LGUs. Over 220 entries are seeing action in the juniors division which got under way yesterday (Thursday) with matches in all boys’ section (18-, 16-, 14-, 12-) and 10-unisex where Gio Monito from Parbo, Cebu is also eyeing a second straight victory after winning the crown in Argao. Meanwhile, the qualifying rounds for the men’s and women’s singles in the Open division will be held today (Friday) and tomorrow with action in the main draw also set to start tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon, according to PPSPEPP Sports Program Development director and organizer Bobby Mangunay. For details, call 0915-4046464. Back in juniors play, Ashley McKenzie sets out for another two-title feat in the girls’ 14- and 16-U categories after upending fancied rivals in the Argao stop of the country’s premier talentsearch sponsored by Palawan Pawnshop headed by president/CEO Bobby Castro and presented by Slazenger. But to score a repeat, McKenzie will have to pass through Hazel Coderos and Lyrah Repollo, among others, and if she ever hurdles the two seeded bets, she will still have the likes ot Avril Suace and Alexa Milliam to hurdle in the upper half of the 14-U draw. Abarquez, Milliam, Repollo and Coderos are also the players to beat in the 16-U side of the tournament backed by the Unified Tennis Philippines, including PPS-PEPP, Cebuana Lhuillier, Wilson, Toby’s, Dunlop, Slazenger and B-Meg.


6/49 00-00-00-00-00-00 P0.0 M+ 6/42 00-00-00-00-00-00 P0.0 M+ 6 DIGITS 00-00-00-00-00-00 3 DIGITS 00-00-00 2 EZ2 00-00

of their team’s four second half goals and finished with a brace apiece. Carmelo Vicente Genco scored CSB’s only other goal. The Chiefs skidded from No. 2 to No. 3 as the San Beda Booters were held to a 1-1 standoff by

the Lyceum Pirates. Both San Beda and AU had 10 match points but the former had better goal differential, 27-1. Nimrod Balabat scored on the 51st minute to give San Beda, the defending champions, a 1-0 lead but Levi Malihan struck back

with a rocket of his own on the 73rd for the split. LPU, which forced CSB to a scoreless draw two weeks back, remained in the magic four with six points. In the only other game, Perpetual Help and Mapua fought to a 2-2 standoff.


Republic of the Philippines 5th Judicial Region REGIONAL TRIAL COURT Branch 10 Legazpi City In the matter of the petition For cancellation and re-issuance of Decree No 324230 and issuance of Original Certificate of Title to Lot No, 13250 of the Cadastral Survey of Albay, Cad M- 11836 Pablo Clemente, Petitioner, -versusLand Registration Authority of Quezon City and the Albay Provincial Register of Deeds, Respondents. x-----------------------------x NOTICE OF INITIAL HEARING TO: (1) Pablo Clemente- No. 0537 Langka St, Delta Subdivision Pag-Asa Drive, Rawis, Legazpi City; (2) Atty. Alvin C. Belarmino- Rm. 206, Los Baños Bldg., Rizal corner Peñaranda St. Legazpi City; (3) Ma. Russel Bas- Purok 7, Bascaran, Daraga, Albay; (4) Jaime and Vilma Majadillas- Purok 2, Bascaran, Daraga, Albay; (5) Rodolfo Maralit- Maralit Compound Brgy. 38, Purok 2, Barriada, Legazpi City; (6) The Registrar of Deeds of Albay- LRA Twin Bldg., Alternate Road, Bitano, Legazpi City; (7) The Land Registration Authority- East Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City; (8) The Solicitor General - 134 Amorsolo Street, Legazpi Village, Makati City; (9) Land Management Bureau - DENR, Binondo, Manila; (10) Land Management Bureau - DENR Region V, Rawis, Legazpi City: (11) Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region V - Rawis, Legazpi City; (12) The Provincial Prosecutor Office of the Provincial Prosecutor, Bonot, Legazpi City; and, (13) TO ALL WHOM THIS MAY CONCERN: GREETINGS: WHEREAS, a verified petition has been filed by Petitioner through counsel, praying of this Honorable Court that after notice, publication and hearing, judgment be rendered as follows: 1.) By cancelling Decree No. 324230 covering Lot No. 13250 of the Cadastral Survey of Albay issued on March 22, 1924 of the Land Registration Court of the then Court of First Instance of Albay; 2.) Order the Land Registration Authority to re-issue the same decree on the Lot No. 13250 in accordance with the doctrine enunciated by the Supreme Court in the case of Republic of the Philippines vs. Heirs of Spouses Donato Sanchez and Juana Menses, G.R No. 212388, December 10, 2014; 3.) Order the Land Registration Authority and the Albay Provincial Register of Deeds to issue an Original Certificate of Title on Lot No. 13250 in the name of Gregoria Lodiana. Lot No, 13250 is more particularly described as follows: “A parcel of land (Lot No. 13250 of the Cadastral Survey of Albay), with the improvements thereon, situated in the Municipality of Daraga. Bounded on the E. by Lot No. 17206; on the SE. by Lot No. 17208; on the SW by Lot No. 12104; and on the NW. by Lot No. 17203. Beginning at a point marked “1” on the plan, being N. 2 deg. 51’ E., 836.60 m. from B.L.M. No.1; thence N. 19 deg. 10’W, 33.59 m. to point “2”; thence N 67 deg. 35’ E., 90.42 m. to point “3”; thence S. 3 deg. 44’ W.. 35.32 m. to point “4”; thence S. 66 deg. 13’ W, 76.78 m. to the point of beginning; containing an area at two thousand seven hundred and nineteen square meters (2,719), more or less. All points are referred to are indicated on the plan; bearings true; declination 0 deg. 55’ E.; date of survey, November 1914-April 1920.” NOW THEREFORE, NOTICE is hereby given that the initial hearing of said petition is set on February 12, 2018 at 8:36 o’clock in the Mornining before the sala of this Court Regional Trial Court 5th Judicial Region, Branch 10, Hall of Justice, Rawis, Legazpi City, and on said date and time all -persons who may have interest therein may appear and show cause why the petition should not be granted. Let a copy of this Notice be published in the Official Gazette for two (2) successive issues at the expense of the petitioner. Also, let a copy of this Notice be published in a newspaper of general circulation (broadsheet) once a week for two (2) consecutive weeks at the expense of petitioner. Let a copy of this Notice be posted at the Bulletin Board of this Court, at the main entrance of tile Municipality Building of Daraga, Albay, and in a conspicuous place where the property is located at the expense of the petitioner. Likewise, petitioner is hereby directed to furnish the Office of the Solicitor General, the Office of the Land Registration Authority, the Office of the Register of Deeds of Albay, the Regional Office of the Department of Environment and. Natural Resources, the Land. Management Bureau - DENR, Binondo, Manila, the Land Management Bureau - DENR, Region V, Rawis, Legazpi City, the Office of the Provincial Prosecutors, as well as the adjoining owners of the properly subject of this petition with copies of the petition together with its annexes within five (5) days from receipt hereof and to submit compliance thereto in court within the like period. WITNESS the Hon. MARlA THERESA G. SAN ]UAN-LOQUILLANO, Presiding Judge, RTC, Branch 10, Hall of Justice, Rawis., Legazpi City, this 5th day of December 2017 at Legazpi City, Philippines.


LOUIGI P. GLEDERA OIC/Acting Branch Clerk of Court


The Philippine Ports Authority, through the Corporate Budget of the Authority for CY 2017, intends to apply the following sum being the Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC) to payments under the contract for the following items: Lot No. Qty.


Approved Budget for Price of Bid the Contract (ABC) Documents

2 BACPGCS11(b)2017

1165 OEM Branded Laptop units Computers (B), brand new

4 BACPGCS11(d)2017

272 Laser Printer with wireless LAN, units brand new

5 BACPGCS11(e)2017

150 136 Column 9 Pin DOT MATRIX units PRINTER, brand new

P 5,845,000.00

7 BACPGCS11(g)2017

250 Inkjet – A3 Printer, brand new units

P 3,500,000.00




(MS-DEC. 15, 2017)


Delivery Period


Enhancing People’s Lives and Empowering Communities through FAIR Shelter Solutions



P 1,904,000.00

P 1,000.00

Within Forty Five (45) Calendar Days from the receipt by the successful bidder of the Notice to Proceed

P 5,000.00

P 1,000.00

P 69,499,000.00

Bids received in excess of the ABC for each lot shall be automatically rejected at bid opening. The Philippine Ports Authority now invites bids for the procurement of the above IT Resources (Lots 2, 4, 5, and 7). Delivery of the Goods is required within forty five (45) days from the receipt by the successful bidder of the Notice to Proceed. Bidders should have completed, within five (5) years from the date of submission and receipt of bids, a contract similar to the Project. The description of an eligible bidder is contained in the Bidding Documents, particularly, in Section II. Instructions to Bidders. Bidding will be conducted through open competitive bidding procedures using a non-discretionary “pass/fail” criterion as specified in the 2016 Revised Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act 9184 (RA 9184), otherwise known as the “Government Procurement Reform Act.” Bidding is restricted to Filipino citizens/sole proprietorships, partnerships, or organizations with at least sixty percent (60%) interest or outstanding capital stock belonging to citizens of the Philippines, and to citizens or organizations of a country the laws or regulations of which grant similar rights or privileges to Filipino citizens, pursuant to RA 5183. Interested bidders may obtain further information from the Philippine Ports Authority’s Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) and inspect the Bidding Documents at the address given below from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. A complete set of Bidding Documents may be acquired by interested Bidders on 15 December 2017 from the address below and upon payment of the applicable fee for the Bidding Documents, pursuant to the latest Guidelines issued by the GPPB, as shown above. It may also be downloaded free of charge from the website of the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PhilGEPS) and the website of the Philippine Ports Authority, provided that bidders shall pay the applicable fee for the Bidding Documents not later than the submission of their bids. The Philippine Ports Authority’s Bids and Awards Committee will hold a Pre-Bid Conference on 27 December 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at the PPA Function Room, 7th Floor, PPA Bldg., Bonifacio Drive, South Harbor, Port Area, Manila, which shall be open to all prospective bidders. Bids must be duly received by the BAC Secretariat at the address below on or before 10 January 2018 at 1:00 p.m. All bids must be accompanied by a bid security in any of the acceptable forms and in the amount stated in the bidding documents. Bid opening shall be on 10 January 2018 at 2:00 p.m. at the 7th Floor, PPA Building, A. Bonifacio Drive, South Harbor, Port Area, Manila. Bids will be opened in the presence of the bidders’ representatives who choose to attend. Late bids shall not be accepted. The Philippine Ports Authority reserves the right to reject any and all bids, declare a failure of bidding, or not award the contract at any time prior to contract award in accordance with Section 41 of R.A. 9184 and its IRR, without thereby incurring any liability to the affected bidder or bidders. For further information, please refer to: BAC Secretariat, Philippine Ports Authority 5th Floor, PPA Bldg., A. Bonifacio Drive, South Harbor, Port Area, Manila Telephone/Fax No. 527-47-35 527-83-56 to 83 loc. 539 PPA Website:

This Supplement/Bid Bulletin No. 01 is issued to inform all prospective bidders of the following clarification, modification or amendment made to the items in the Bidding Documents for the abovementioned subject, to wit: FROM Invitation to Bid The SHFC now invites bids for Supply and Delivery of Five (5) units of Pick-up Truck and One (1) unit of Passenger Van.Delivery of the Goods is required within 20 calendar days from the date of receipt of the Notice to Proceed. Bidders should have completed, within two (2) years from the date of submission and receipt of bids, a contract similar to the Project. The description of an eligible bidder is contained in the Bidding Documents, particularly, in Section II. Instructions to Bidders Bid Data Sheet 1.1 The Procuring Entity isSocial Housing Finance Corporation The name of the Contract is Project No. 2017-03:Supply and Delivery of Pick-up Truck and Passenger Van.

TO Invitation to Bid The SHFC now invites bids for Supply and Delivery of the two (2) lots namely: a.) b.)

Five (5) units of Pick-up Trucks One (1) unit of Passenger Van

Bidders may submit one separate bid for each of the two (2) lots or may submit one (1) bid for one (1)lot only. Provided however that the total cost of the two (2) lots shall not exceed the ABC of Php7,200,000.00 Delivery of the Goods is required within 45 calendar days from the date of receipt of the Notice to Proceed. Bidders should have completed, within two (2) years from the date of submission and receipt of bids, a contract similar to the Project. The description of an eligible bidder is contained in the Bidding Documents, particularly, in Section II. Instructions to Bidders Bid Data Sheet 1.1 The Procuring Entity isSocial Housing Finance Corporation The name of the Contract is Project No. 2017-03:Supply and Delivery of the two (2) lots namely: a.) b.)

Five (5) units of Pick-up Trucks One (1) unit of Passenger Van

Bidders may submit one separate bid for each of the two (2) lots or may submit one (1) bid for one (1) lot only. Provided however that the total cost of the two (2) lots shall not exceed the ABC of Php7,200,000.00 Bid Data Sheet Bid Data Sheet 28.3(a) Partial bid is not 28.3(a)The goods are divided into two (2) lots listed allowed. The goods are below: grouped in a single lot and the lot shall not be a.) Five (5) units of Pick-up Truck divided into sub-lots for b.) One (1) unit of Passenger Van the purpose of bidding, evaluation, and contract Bidders have the option of submitting one separate award. bid for each of the two (2) lots or may submit one bid In all cases, the NFCC for one (1) lot only. Provided however that the total computation, if cost of the two (2) lots shall not exceed the ABC of applicable, must be Php7,200,000.00. sufficient for all the lots or contracts to be The bid opening for the two (2) lots shall be awarded to the Bidder. undertaken on the same day. Similarly, the evaluation, post-qualification and contract award shall be undertaken on a per lot basis. In all cases, the NFCC computation, if applicable, must be sufficient for all the lots or contracts to be awarded to the Bidder. Section V. Special Section V. Special Conditions of Contract Conditions of Contract 16.1. The Bidder shall allow the inspection and 16.1. The inspection and tests conduct of test drive during the post-qualification that will be conducted is: Test stage. Drive Section VI. Schedule of Section VI. Schedule of Requirements Requirements 45 calendar days from the date of receipt of the Notice to 20 calendar days from the Proceed (NTP) date of receipt of the Notice to Proceed (NTP) Section VII. Technical Section VII. Technical Specifications Specifications Five (5) units of Pick-up Truck at least 2017 model 41. Model Section VII. Technical Section VII. Technical Specifications Specifications One (1) unit of Passenger Van at least 2017 model 37. Model

By authority of the SHFC Bids and Awards Committee, we hereby amend the Bidding Documents to include the aforesaid amendments. For guidance and information of all concerned.

ADRIAN FERDINAND S. SUGAY Chairperson, PPA Head Office Bids and Awards Committee for the Procurement of Goods and Consultancy Services (HO-BAC-PGCS)





Sgd. ATTY. JOSE D. MELGAREJO BAC Chairperson Standard – Dec. 15, 2017

( M S - D E C .15 , 2 0 17 )



Riera U. Mallari, Editor Reuel Vidal, Assistant Editor



Westbrook, George lift Thunder past Pacers LOS ANGELES—Russell Westbrook recorded his ninth triple double of the season and Paul George made a successful return to Indiana as the Oklahoma City Thunder edged the Pacers 100-95 on Wednesday. The four-time all-star George was booed loudly whenever he touched the ball in his first return to the Bankers Life Fieldhouse arena since being traded five months ago. But George’s return went off without a hitch as he scored 12 points and backed up Westbrook’s 10-point, 17 rebound and 12 assist performance in front of the hostile crowd of 17,900. George was traded to Oklahoma City in exchange for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis after he told the Pacers he didn’t plan to re-sign with the club at the end of this NBA season. “He had incredible poise,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said of George. “He didn’t shoot well, but I thought his defense was critical.” George knew the environment would be a physical and mental test. “I’m glad the circus is over with and now everybody can move on,” George said. “I’m not sure what they (fans) wanted me to be, a circus act or some kind of show. “I played my hardest. I thought I took what the city is about and that’s being blue collar.” Steven Adams scored 23 points on 11-of-16 shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead the Thunder. The Thunder improved to 13-14 on the season as they registered their first two-game season sweep of Indiana since 2012-13 and snapped the Pacers’ fourgame winning streak. AFP

Froome: ‘I broke no rules’ PARIS—Four-time Tour de France winner Chris Froome says he has not broken any rules after returning an “adverse” drugs test result during his victory at this year’s Vuelta a Espana. Froome had twice the permissible amount of asthma medication Salbutamol in his system during the Grand Tour race which he won in September, the UCI and his team revealed on Wednesday. “I understand this comes as a big shock to people,” Froome said in an interview with the BBC published late on Wednesday. “I certainly haven’t broken any rules here.” Cycling’s governing body UCI said an anti-doping test on September 7 showed more than the allowable level of Salbutamol which can be taken without needing a therapeutic use exemption (TUE). The 32-year-old Froome told the BBC he simply upped his dosage on the advice of the team doctor after his asthma symptoms got worse. “I have been a professional cyclist now, treating my symptoms and racing with asthma, for 10 years,” said Froome. “I know what those rules are, I know what those limits are and I have never been over those limits.” AFP

Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder drives to the basket against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Thunder won, 100-95. AFP

MVP wants best-ever Gilas PH to World Cup By Randy Caluag


ANNY Pangilinan, lifetime honorary chairman of the Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas, said the hosting of the FIBA World Cup in 2023 will bring a lot of opportunities for the Philippines, including the forming of what could be the best national team ever under the Gilas program. “It (World Cup) may be six years from now, but we should start building the team now,” said Pangilinan at a press conference Thursday at the Crowne Hotel in Ortigas Center during the celebration of the Philippines’ successful bid to host the cage body’s biggest tournament. With national coach Chot Reyes, sitting beside him,

Pangilinan suggested some names that could still be around in the 2023 squad, such as Japeth Aguilar and the youth brigade, such as Kiefer Ravena and company. “We might not have the likes of Jason Castro anymore, but of course it’s still the call of the coach (to form the team),” added Pangilinan, more popularly known in the

business and sports community with his initials MVP. Pangilinan also confirmed that the Philippines is given the privilege of an outright berth as the leading proponent to host the World Cup. Rep. Robbie Puno, vice chairman, said that he is finding ways to form a law “that would see to it that associations or teams will lend their players to the national team when needed and as long as it is within the bounds of the constitution.” The formation of the national team will coincide with organizing the working committees for the hosting job, along with Indonesia and Japan. Meanwhile, the Philippines’ share of hosting the World Cup is sure to break

attendance records. SBP president Al Panlilio promised this a week after the Philippines earned the right to co-host the FIBA tournament with Indonesia and Japan. “So, we can definitely surpass that with the final game to be held in the Philippines,” said Panlilio. Panlilio noted that the highest attendance in a finals game was 35,000. He said that compared to a Meralco-Ginebra finals, they drew a crowd of 54,000 when it was held in the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan a few months back in the Philippine Basketball Association finals. Top officials of the International Basketball Federation are expecting a daily turnout

of more than 50,000 fans. For Panlilio, this will be a huge operation when the time comes. “It’s a huge market in terms of corporate and marketing efforts, not only for the group but for FIBA,” added Panlilio. The municipality of Bocaue, Bulacan will play host to the games at the Philippine Arena. The competition will see the group stage held in the Philippines, Japan and Indonesia, with the final phase headed to the Philippine capital city of Manila. “This is the end of the beginning. We have to look for a team for 2023,” said Pangilinan. “It will be the current batch of rookies that will play by then.” With Peter Atencio

2 Filipinos in World 9-ball semis DOHA—After a day of intense pool drama mostly played at the highest levels of the sport, the 2017 World 9-ball Championship has come down to just four players remaining. And what a final four it promises to be. In one semifinal, Taiwan’s newest pool playing super hero, 22-year-old Wu Kun Lin, will take on Filipino veteran Carlo Biado, who at 34 years old seems more ready than ever to ascend to the mountain top. In the other semifinal sits another Filipino, Roland Garcia, who once studied at the foot of the legendary Efren Reyes and has, this week, been showcasing similar magicianlike skills. The 36-year-old Garcia will square up against pool’s new wunderkind in 18-year-old Albanian Klenti Kaci. Both semifinals will be a Race to 11, alternate break and

will be played at 10 a.m. Doha time(GMT +3) at the Al Arabi Sports Club. The finals will be a Race to 13, alternate break and will begin at 2 p.m. Doha time. Not only did Wednesday’s action ensure that pool will have a brand new, first- time champion come Thursday evening, but it also proved that old axiom that seems to be a common occurrence in pool; once you think you’ve seen it all, something else quickly comes along to prove you wrong. In this case, unfortunately, that something else had absolutely nothing to do with pool skills played out on the blue pitch. The incident in question happened right at the start of the quarterfinals on Wednesday. Biado had come off a grueling test against fellow Filipino Jeffrey Ignacio, outlasting his younger compatriot 11-7 to advance to the final 8.

After a 90 minute rest, Biado sat in his chair waiting for his opponent, China’s Liu Haitao, who had earlier stormed back from a 10-8 deficit to win his final 16 match, 11-10 against Taiwan’s Ko Ping Chung. The veteran Liu, however, was nowhere to be found. As it turned out, Liu had gone back to his nearby hotel between sessions for a bit of a rest and had likely forgotten to wake up in time. Tournament officials at the hotel were able to rouse Liu and put him in a van to try and beat the clock, where rules stated that players get a 15-minute grace period to show up for a match. But Liu arrived at the Al Arabi Sports Club 10 minutes past the grace period and found himself disqualified. A shell-shocked Liu couldn’t believe what had just happened, and neither could Biado, who was awarded the match by an 11-0 score line without firing in a single ball.

Samahang Basketball ng Pilipinas officials, led by Chairman Emeritus Manny Pangilinan (center), Vice Chairman Robbie Puno (left) and president Al Panlilio (second from left), Foreign Affairs Sec. Allan Peter Cayetano and national coach Chot Reyes hold a specially made gold-colored ball as a symbol to their united efforts for the country’s successful bid to host the FIBA World Cup in 2023. Pangilinan said the hosting of the FIBA World Cup in 2023 will bring a lot of opportunities for the Philippines, including the forming of what could be the best national team ever under the Gilas program. Randy Caluag

Horn retains crown BRISBANE—Australian Jeff Horn retained his World Boxing Organisation welterweight title with an 11th round technical knockout win over English challenger Gary Corcoran in Brisbane on Wednesday. Horn, in his first title defence since he upset Philippine boxing hero Manny Pacquiao in Brisbane in July this year, finished strongly to batter Corcoran and force the decision. Horn is now in line to face the undefeated American Terence Crawford (32 wins in 32 fights) in Las Vegas in April. Asked about Crawford, Horn said: “It’s a big possibility. If that is what everyone wants to see, I guess that is what is going to happen.” The win took Horn’s career record to 18 wins, 12 by KO, with one draw. “I felt my timing was a bit off but I got him in the end. He definitely pushed me in there,” Horn said. “We both had cuts over our eyes and I was just trying to wear him down.” Corcoran’s corner threw in the towel in the 11th round after the Englishman had endured a savage beating from Horn, leaving his face a bloodied mess. British boxer Amir Khan is another who has designs on Horn’s world title belt and was ringside on Wednesday with a potential fight between the two next year. Horn, who reached the quarter-finals of the light-welterweight division at the 2012 Olympic Games, has never lost a professional bout.

Barakos near Fil A title; Southwoods, Forest Hills prepare for showdown By Dexter See BAGUIO CITY—Batangas Barakos slowed down at the Baguio Country Club course, where they shot a measly 97 points for a three-day total of 367 and a 27-point lead in Fil A, even as Manila Southwoods tries to move closer to the top podium when games resume in the premier Fil Championship at the same course in the 68th Department of Tourism Fil-Am Invitational Golf Tournament Friday.

The Barakos, who had a scoring splurge on Day 2 with a two-under and one-under scores, submitted 97 points for a 367 total and tow Team Surigao I (99-340) and San Miguel, which shot the flight-best 107 for a 337 total. In Am A, Royal Northwoods made 115 points for 316 to break the tie with Tiyo Paeng, which scored a 112 and 313 total. Another three shot down is Alaska Royalink which shot a flight-best 119 and a 310 total. Baguio’s Team II earned addi-

tional points to widen its lead to 20 in Fil D. Bernard Capuyan made 25 points to pace the team’s 87 point production for a three-day total of 275, 20 off their nearest pursuer. Noel Sebastian had 24, Richard Solang made 21, while Peter Go holed out with 18 points to count for the team and saw their 11-point advantage widen to 20. Uragun Golf B assumed second spot after a 78 and a 255 total, four off Pacific Rim, which fired 73 points.

Bing Alcantara scored 26 points as Team Surigao made 89 for a 271 and the virtual championship in Am D as their lead ballooned to 36 points. Cool Jocks made 74 and 235, while Uragun Golf A submitted 80 for 218 and third spot with a round remaining. Meanwhile, the real battle begins now in the championship flight. This is according to the youngest Manila Southwoods player in Joo Hyung Kim, the 15-year-old,

who shot 39 on Day 2 and helped the team to an eye popping 11-under for 155 and 301 total and a fourpoint lead on first-round leader Forest Hills. Forget John Hay, said the 15-year-old, who played for Luisita in 2015 when he was 13 years old. “It was just really the beginning to get the momentum as we go to BCC,” he said. “It will be tough. BCC is one tough course and we all know that. This is where the battle will take place.”

SM opens new mall in Batangas B2


Ray S. Eñano, Editor Roderick T. dela Cruz, Assistant Editor FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2017


Megawide lowest bidder for Clark IN BRIEF Fitch raises debt scores of 8 banks

GLOBAL debt watcher Fitch Ratings raised the credit scores of eight major universal and commercial banks in the Philippines, following the upgrade of the Philippines sovereign rating to “BBB” from “BBB-.” Fitch upgraded the longterm issuer default ratings of government-run Development Bank of the Philippines and Land Bank of the Philippines to “BBB-“ from “BB+” with stable outlooks. Fitch also revised upward the support rating floors of DBP, LandBank, Bank of the Philippine Islands, BDO Unibank, Inc., Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., China Banking Corp., Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. and Philippine National Bank. “The upgrades of the IDRs on DBP and LBP are driven by the upward revisions of their support rating floors. The SRF revisions stem from Fitch’s expectation of an improving sovereign fiscal profile, which was one of the factors underpinning the upgrade of the sovereign ratings,” it said. It said this strengthening sovereign profile should enhance the state’s ability to provide extraordinary support to the banks, if needed. Julito G. Rada

By Darwin G. Amojelar


EGAWIDE-GMR Consortium, a joint venture of Megawide Construction Corp. and GMR Infrastructure of India, submitted the lowest bid among five groups for the engineering, procurement and construction of the P12.5-billion Clark International Airport expansion project. The Transportation Transportation and the Bases Conversion and Development Authority said Megawide-GMR Consortium submitted a financial

proposal of P9.36 billion for the project, lower than the proposals of China State Construction Engineering Corp. Ltd. amounting to P12.29 billion; China

Harbour Engineering Co. Ltd., P11.73 billion; Sinohydro Corp. Ltd., P10.67 billion; and the consortium of Tokwing Construction Corp. and China Machinery Engineering Corp., P12.44 billion. Megawide-GMR Consortium’s proposal is still subject to a thorough review and post-qualification by the special bids and awards committee. Louie Ferrer, the consortium representative, said the company would ensure that they would meet all post-qualification requirements.

“We’re also bringing our learnings from MCIA Terminal 2 to Clark. Megawide will be able to deliver CIA’s [Clark International Airport’s] construction requirements on time and with the same quality of engineering excellence that the company is known for. Clark has immense potential and we share the government’s vision in anticipating CIA’s growth and future needs,” he said. Megawide-GMR Consortium is the builder and operator of the new CebuMactan International Airport,

Marsh suspends top executive

FOLLOWING an investigation led by the Financial Conduct Authority in the United Kingdom, leading insurance broker Marsh recently suspended the head of its UK aviation practice, Marcel Chad. He was replaced by Mark Costin, formerly from the Marsh aerospace team. The FCA investigation was prompted by a number of allegations that Marsh shared competitively sensitive information regarding their aviation insurance accounts. The FCA is likewise examining whether the Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group, Willis Towers Watson and UIB are guilty of the same ethical violation. The infringement ostensibly happened in the Philippines, when Marsh UK was accused of sending representatives from its Singapore office to meet with the top executives of a local airline. During the meeting, the Marsh executives allegedly disclosed highly confidential and proprietary information, which led to a complaint filed by one of the country’s top non-life insurers before the UK High Court. Before a final ruling could be reached, Marsh chose to settle the matter out of court. Marsch UK, in a letter sent to the Philippine Insurance Commission regarding the incident, acknowledged that their intention was to solicit the insurance business of the airline, adding that “Marsh was now able to compete” with other local insurance companies. Moreover, they stated that the purpose of the meeting was to “invite the airline to consider giving Marsh Philippines and Marsh UK an opportunity to tender for the account.” Under Section 100 of the Amended Insurance Code, however, a reinsurance broker may only tender brokerage services to an insurer, and cannot tender insurance brokerage services nor insurance services directly to a client. Consequently, the IC is now examining the manner by which Marsh uses “fronting insurers” in the country, and whether this practice allows them to bypass Philippine laws and conduct business in the Philippines without a license.

ternational Airport expansion project, announced that none among the bidders which submitted the eligibility documents was included in the list of debarred firms of the World Bank. The Clark International Airport new terminal building is envisioned to accommodate an additional 8 million passengers per annum. The expansion project also involves the construction and installation of all required associated facilities―both landside and airside, to support operations of the new terminal.

PH set to sustain strong growth in 2018—Pernia By Julito G. Rada

Jollibee opens more stores in 3 countries

JOLLIBEE Foods Corp. remains aggressive with its overseas expansion, with the opening of a store at Brunei International Airport and additional outlets in Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates. Jollibee said in a statement the opening of new stores overseas was in line with its vision to be among the top five largest restaurant companies in the world. The newest store in Brunei, located in front of the airport’s arrival area, is a part of the company’s response to the strong market demand for the brand. “When we started our first Jollibee Brunei branch back in 1987, we wanted to appeal not only to Filipinos, but to locals as well. Thirty years on, we are very happy to see the growth of Jollibee into a brand which is well-loved by the Bruneian community,” Jollibee chief executive Ernesto Tanmantiong said. Meanwhile, the sixth Jollibee store in Hong Kong in located in Wan Chai, which has a population of around 180,000 citizens and 15,000 Filipinos. Meanwhile, the ninth store in UAE is the largest Jollibee branch in that country and is surrounded by residential areas where most Filipinos live in. Jenniffer B. Austria

“The Clark EPC project will generate more jobs for Filipino construction workers and engineers. It will also generate business for local suppliers, contractors, even financial institutions! Infrastructure projects can have a positive, inclusive effect on the economy and we look forward to partnering with Filipino talents to deliver another world class terminal,” Ferrer said. Meanwhile, the International Finance Corp.-World Bank, the acting lead transaction adviser to BCDA in the conduct of the bidding activities for the Clark In-

NEW HYDROPOWER PROJECT. Hedcor, Aboitiz Power Corp.’s subsidiary that operates and manages run-of-river hydropower plants, breaks ground for the 19-megawatt Bineng Combination Hydro project in La Trinidad, Benguet, sustaining the said municipality’s story as a hydropower host community. AboitizPower and Hedcor representatives, along with the local government officials of La Trinidad, unveil the geotag of the Bineng Combination Hydro project.

BSP keeps rates unchanged despite Federal Reserve hike THE Monetary Board, the policy-making body of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, kept the benchmark interest rates at record low levels Thursday, despite an earlier decision by the US Federal Reserve to increase interest rate by a quarter point. Bangko Sentral Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo said in a news briefing the board kept the interest rates at 3.5 percent for overnight lending, 3 percent for overnight borrowing and 2.5 percent for overnight deposit. The reserve requirement ratio was also left untouched. “The board’s decision was based on its assessment that the outlook for the inflation environment has been broadly unchanged,” Guinigundo said, adding that the baseline forecasts remained within the target range of 2 percent to 4 percent for 2018 to 2019. Guinigundo said the overall balance of risks to the inflation outlook remained tilted to the upside because of possible higher crude oil prices. The board also maintained the inflation average forecasts of 3.2 percent for 2017, 3.4 percent for 2018, and 3.2 percent for 2019, the same numbers predicted during last previous meeting. Guinigundo said while there might be potential transitory effects on consumer prices from the proposed tax reform program, various mitigation measures and the resulting improvement in output and productivity were expected to temper the impact on inflation over the medium term. Julito G. Rada

Metro Pacific spending P30b for Cebu-Cordova Expressway CEBU Cordova Link Expressway Corp., a subsidiary of Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., said Thursday it will spend P30 billion over the next three years to build an expressway linking Cebu City to the town of Cordova in the island of Mactan. MPTC president and chief executive Rodrigo Franco said the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway Project was expected to start construction in the second quarter of 2018 and to be completed by 2021. He said the company would borrow P20 billion from six local banks to partly finance the project, while the remaining P10 billion would be funded through equity. Franco said the project would help decongest the two existing Mactan-Mandaue and Marcelo Fernan bridges, where traffic was building up in both approaches particularly during peak hours. CCLEC earlier awarded the P22.6-billion design-andbuild contract to Cebu Link Joint Venture, which is composed of Spain-based Acciona Construccion SA, First Balfour Inc. of the Lopez group and D.M. Consunji Inc. for the CCLEX project. Allan Alfon, president of CCLEC, said with their partner contractors, workmanship in implementing the project would be of first-class quality and in accordance with the best modern practice for design and construction. Darwin G. Amojelar

THE Philippines is poised to post a steady and strong economic growth next year with the implementation of tax reforms and massive infrastructure projects, Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said Thursday. “Seeing these developments, we see steady and strong economic performance continuing in 2018,” Pernia said in his year-end report. Pernia said with the Philippine Development Plan already in place and following the approval by the National Economic and Development Authority board of 20 infrastructure projects, “next year should pave the way for more projects rolling out.” He said the ground-breaking of Clark International Airport expansion was in fact set on Dec. 20 this year. Pernia said the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act would boost the revenueto-GDP ratio and fund the government’s massive infrastructure program that could eventually increase the spending capacity of the average working Filipinos. He also mentioned the successful launch of the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022, the latest upgrade of the Philippines debt score to “BBB” from “BBB-“ by Fitch Ratings, the stronger trade and economic partnerships with other countries and the recovery of the wartorn Marawi City in Mindanao.




Higher tax to make PSE less competitive By Jenniffer B. Austria THE Philippine Stock Exchange will become less competitive to foreign investors, after Congress passed a measure raising tax on stock transactions, PSE president Ramon Monzon said Thursday. The bicameral conference committee on Wednesday night increased the stock transactions tax to 0.6 percent from 0.5 percent as a part of the government’s move to raise revenues to fund infrastructure projects. “On the surface it might look small. But what we have to understand is that the Philippine market does not operate alone. We really compete with other exchanges for the money of foreign investors. If the stock transaction tax will increase, then the friction cost

will also increase,” Monzon. Monzon said the local bourse already has the highest friction cost in the region at 0.5 percent and this would increase to 0.6 percent. Monzon said other exchanges have no stock transaction tax at all. He said while the measure might not significantly affect small local investors, this would have a significant impact on foreign investors that were trading millions of dollars. “In developing the capital markets, we have to be conscious of what other exchanges are doing in the region, and globally. Foreign investors go to a place where there is less transaction cost. So if we have transaction tax, then we will become very uncompetitive compared with other exchanges,” he said.

Stock market advances; Bloomberry, GT Cap up


TOCKS rose for a second day, sending the benchmark index to a one-month high, after Congress passed a tax reform bill and Fitch Ratings upgraded the country’s debt score. Congress ratified the tax reform bill raising levies on coal, cars, soft drinks and cosmetic surgeries to finance the country’s crumbling infrastructure. The Philippine Stock Exchange index, the 30-company benchmark, jumped 101 points, or 1.2 percent, to close at 8,461.06 Thursday, as five of the six major sectors advanced. It was

also up 23.7 percent since the start of the year. The heavier index, representing all shares, also gained 56 points, or 1.2 percent, to settle at 4,938.54, on a value turnover of P7.6 billion. Gainers outnumbered losers, 110 to 103, while 33 issues were unchanged. Sixteen of the 20 most active stocks ended in the

green, led by gaming company Bloomberry Resorts Corp. which surged 6.7 percent to P11.20 and conglomerate GT Capital Holdings Inc. which climbed 5 percent to P1,270. SM Prime Holdings Inc. rose 3.6 percent to P37.80. Meanwhile, the dollar suffered fresh losses on Thursday as Asian investors followed their New York counterparts in shifting out of the unit, unmoved by another interest rate hike and an upbeat assessment of the world’s top economy. The fall in the greenback

was mirrored in a broad sell-off in regional equities as traders ignored another record finish for the Dow on Wall Street. The dollar was hit by selling after the much-anticipated central bank meeting, which provided little to excite buyers, despite tentative hopes US lawmakers are on course to push through market-friendly tax cuts. The Fed lifted borrowing costs as expected and said economic growth would be stronger than initially forecast, while inflation would




FINANCIALS 3.35 52,000 59.95 12,450 106.4 1,235,490 155 1,727,080 2 772,000 33.3 423,800 10 1,900 15.5 800 33.25 717,100 7.54 300 0.66 10,000 1.78 652,000 925 50 0.63 3,389,000 99 2,023,190 0.88 1,502,000 55.25 74,120 235 13,740 96.1 100 55.7 1,440,090 251.4 357,820 1,924 74,580 86.6 84,360 1.31 32,000

173,260 745,534 130,404,073 265,894,876 1,548,520 14,105,545 18,992 12,490 23,881,555 2,262 6,600 1,206,000 46,250 2,102,100 199,996,583 1,313,370 4,112,334 3,242,682 9,610 80,386,585.50 89,729,720 143,566,490 7,307,304.50 42,190

675,293 2,287,767 74,078,424 478,555.00 6,439,535 35,148,847 65,420 -2,784,264.50 7,054 11,959,769.50 -2,195,254 -2,083,274 -

39.55 12.28 0.64 1.37 16.7 0.217 4.75 16.02 43 19.82 62.6 65 1.89 5.28 11 11.22 14.64 11.06 7.19 5.75 17 62.35 23.95 11.3 18.7 2.3 243.6 4.2 3.3 21.4 27.9 18.66 17.1 320 0.192 9.04 2.45 5.81 9.28 6.68 8.39 1.56 11.9 60 6.4 538 4.97 4.45 2.04 13 5.25 0.133 1.17 150 3.1 1.9 24 0.77

INDUSTRIAL 40.7 1,525,300 12.7 1,660,300 0.64 2,482,000 1.39 434,000 17.1 138,200 0.223 2,010,000 4.82 3,623,000 16.28 252,300 44 576,000 19.82 23,100 64 2,406,290 67.9 210 1.89 166,000 5.28 40,200 11.24 4,100 11.4 5,622,800 14.78 773,900 11.5 954,600 7.23 1,291,800 5.79 4,491,500 17.02 1,112,300 62.5 103,570 24.3 54,400 11.3 100,500 18.96 189,100 2.34 22,707,000 244 1,358,220 4.33 3,505,000 3.48 24,000 22 500 28.1 836,700 18.9 568,800 17.82 5,517,800 324.4 864,060 0.193 470,000 9.05 2,900 2.47 2,201,000 5.87 324,400 9.33 738,400 6.95 273,500 8.45 74,400 1.56 278,000 12 126,100 60.05 380,880 6.55 17,800 540 16,790 5 238,000 4.45 3,000 2.09 220,000 13.12 915,900 5.4 277,700 0.133 300,000 1.18 149,000 154 1,786,680 3.1 40,000 1.9 1,642,000 24.05 36,600 0.77 772,000

60,957,815 20,716,810 1,599,980 600,510 2,556,418 439,250 17,603,090 4,086,640 25,133,095 464,435 150,636,660 13,679 315,340 212,704 45,148 64,109,700 11,446,410 10,740,902 9,339,935 26,017,070 18,956,214 6,469,075.50 1,317,970 1,137,784 3,580,128 57,766,400 332,196,616 15,228,090 81,420 10,760 23,483,170 10,800,542 96,942,186 279,383,600 91,240 26,255 5,446,850 1,904,840 6,875,846 1,882,770 624,995 433,830 1,533,014 22,875,294.50 114,557 9,074,405 1,187,680 13,350 457,700 12,020,542 1,482,855 40,250 175,330 272,284,590 125,700 3,123,650 879,895 598,430

34,045,165 6,840,832 17,440 540,050 2,233,024 2,038,535 0 10,499,798 -938,600 246,510 -5,112,758 -2,681,703 3,004,192 1,174,260 -535,516 144,362 -4,321,630 -80,406,058 -11,079,450 -11,612,935 696,394.00 -14,458,040 216,763,400 3,860 -42,030 20,250 -1,715,974.00 4,188 -288,995.00 2,718,453 -1,085,415 1,007,860 1,036,896 137,200,682 -1,735,610 -709,495 -

0.3 68.25 15.92 7.04 0.36 0.385 1,006 7.41 14.18 7.76 0.182 1,202 70.15 5.2 0.7 5.63 18.24 0.33 6.47 3.57 0.046 1.07 2.06 109.5 2.71 977.5 0.82 1.75 278 0.227 0.181 0.188

HOLDING FIRMS 0.31 1,280,000 70.2 975,240 16 7,079,300 7.04 600 0.385 6,260,000 0.395 950,000 1,015 329,085 7.45 2,752,100 14.24 11,396,800 7.76 9,300 0.182 10,000 1,270 481,070 73 2,008,170 5.2 2,000 0.72 1,093,000 5.7 184,600 18.68 1,563,400 0.345 7,860,000 6.7 24,628,000 3.65 333,000 0.046 15,400,000 1.07 133,000 2.06 166,000 111.6 440,650 3 891,000 997 325,770 0.84 16,000 1.81 2,154,000 284.6 2,700 0.24 70,000 0.181 30,000 0.188 510,000

395,400 67,628,511 113,517,336 4,227 2,400,250 369,750 333,839,370 20,475,610 162,292,632 72,259 1,820 604,891,860 144,549,900 10,400 773,930 1,052,039 28,745,434 2,820,450 163,216,732 1,209,970 709,000 144,070 341,960 48,575,846 2,764,660 322,511,735 13,280 3,868,530 755,070 16,540 5,430 96,800

4,701,106.50 -11,217,588.00 -119,955,500 -2,038,908 35,889,190 340,932,375 50,564,548.50 32,371 4,870,080.00 131,300 116,148 -115,000 5,080,558 15,000 -100,682,135 -16,290 19,670 -

1,884,518 6,586,440 512,586 325,300 2,552,960 474,894,520 4,656,960 2,362,390 424,548 1,182 1,200 5,433,350 55,160 1,343,400 46,500 2,845,885 636,760 325,710 34,848,900 3,215,420 408,900 110,635,618 11,632,150

-551,332 -68,100 -85,056,040 2,211,540 961,110 123,130 2,990,600 509,400 -570,240 24,629,550 27,283,372 -







3.33 59.9 104.2 153.5 2.01 33.05 9.99 15.7 33.45 7.54 0.66 1.9 925 0.59 98.1 0.85 55.75 237 96.1 54.25 250 1,925 86.8 1.32

3.38 59.95 106.4 155 2.02 33.35 10 15.7 33.45 7.54 0.66 1.97 925 0.64 99 0.9 56.8 237 96.1 55.9 253 1,925 86.85 1.32

3.3 57.9 104.2 152 2 33 9.99 15.5 33.2 7.54 0.66 1.78 925 0.58 98.1 0.83 55.2 235 96.1 53.6 247.8 1,924 86.5 1.31


39.65 12.58 0.67 1.42 16.98 0.221 4.75 16.1 43.15 20 64 65 1.9 5.3 11 11.5 14.64 11.12 7.25 5.8 17.2 62.5 23.95 11.4 19.1 2.54 248 4.37 3.3 21.4 28 18.66 17.12 320 0.197 9.08 2.5 5.9 9.28 7 8.45 1.56 12.2 61 6.41 542 5 4.45 2.09 13.14 5.27 0.135 1.18 150.1 3.15 1.92 24.1 0.78

40.7 12.7 0.67 1.42 20 0.223 4.94 16.3 44 20.5 64 67.9 1.93 5.3 11.24 11.62 14.84 11.5 7.28 5.82 17.22 62.95 24.8 11.4 19.2 2.7 248 4.4 3.48 22 28.3 19.1 17.82 324.4 0.198 9.08 2.5 6 9.35 7.1 8.45 1.57 12.26 61 6.55 542 5 4.45 2.14 13.18 5.55 0.136 1.18 154 3.16 1.93 24.1 0.78


0.315 69.2 16.08 7.05 0.36 0.385 1,011 7.45 14.3 7.8 0.182 1,210 71.5 5.2 0.72 5.74 18.24 0.34 6.55 3.79 0.046 1.1 2.06 110.3 2.89 980 0.82 1.8 280 0.227 0.181 0.198

0.315 70.2 16.22 7.05 0.395 0.405 1,020 7.45 14.4 7.8 0.182 1,270 73 5.2 0.73 5.74 18.68 0.38 6.7 3.79 0.047 1.1 2.06 111.6 3.34 997 0.84 1.83 284.6 0.24 0.181 0.198


5.71 1.09 11.4 2.26 0.96 43.9 3.69 4.75 5.47 5.82 6 0.485 1.18 0.207 0.47 38.6 0.67 0.141 1.87 1.42 0.74 5.22 0.36

5.71 1.09 11.98 2.39 0.97 43.9 3.83 4.77 5.48 6 6 0.495 1.18 0.209 0.47 39 0.67 0.141 1.92 1.44 0.8 5.28 0.365

5.68 1.04 11.4 2.26 0.92 43.05 3.69 4.72 5.47 5.82 6 0.485 1.16 0.206 0.46 38.6 0.65 0.141 1.85 1.42 0.74 5.2 0.355











0.38 0.58 6.17 21.95 2.54 3.15 36.6 1.03 7.68 0.84 5.78

0.385 0.59 6.22 21.95 2.65 3.19 37.8 1.03 10.48 0.85 5.89

0.375 0.57 6.11 21.65 2.31 3.15 36.6 1.01 7.68 0.84 5.66

0.375 0.58 6.22 21.7 2.42 3.19 37.8 1.02 10.2 0.85 5.89

2,590,000 3,624,000 509,700 1,450,100 7,476,000 20,000 9,256,400 1,022,000 75,400 60,000 3,546,400

978,500 2,098,620 3,142,823 31,541,155 18,372,480 63,440 345,414,010 1,037,480 724,650 50,990 20,629,679

112,911 -6,191,705 -38,160 182,941,010 96 8,104,477


20.5 34.8 1.46 0.47 0.043 5.14 10.58 0.073 99.85 9.06 7.14 3.64 8.6 1,000 1,754 5.75 18.18 5.24 3.43 104.9 8.36 0.136 1.32 3.05 15.5 4.35 1.22 23.35 0.53 5.6 7.19 3.88 17 2.7 11.12 4.82 140 8.12 1,479 1.29 0.365 50.05 93.7 5.82 3.26 1.68 1.99 3.81 1.03 8.31

20.65 35 1.59 0.485 0.043 5.14 11.2 0.075 100 9.18 7.15 3.71 12.22 1,000 1,760 5.79 18.18 5.32 3.7 105.4 8.37 0.165 1.86 3.24 15.5 4.56 1.23 23.5 0.53 5.6 7.48 3.9 17 2.8 11.12 4.82 140 8.27 1,500 1.3 0.375 50.05 93.7 5.9 3.37 1.69 2.77 3.95 1.06 8.53

20 34.65 1.46 0.465 0.043 5.13 10.54 0.072 99 8.98 7.14 3.05 8.6 960 1,740 5.7 17.44 5.15 3.03 103.8 8.34 0.136 1.32 3.05 15 4.3 1.18 22.3 0.53 4.6 7.18 3.88 15.8 2.68 11.1 4.82 133 8.05 1,452 1.28 0.36 49.05 92 5.82 3.23 1.66 1.99 3.81 0.99 8.2

SERVICES 20.3 34.7 1.5 0.465 0.043 5.13 11.2 0.072 99.25 8.98 7.15 3.05 12.22 980 1,750 5.7 18.18 5.2 3.04 104.5 8.36 0.165 1.8 3.23 15 4.5 1.21 22.35 0.53 4.79 7.38 3.89 15.8 2.78 11.1 4.82 133 8.06 1,500 1.3 0.36 49.6 92.9 5.84 3.36 1.68 2.77 3.94 1.01 8.29

132,800 154,900 812,000 1,140,000 16,900,000 20,001,000 24,355,700 22,160,000 182,440 1,715,300 3,600 2,316,000 1,956,700 8,290 57,010 564,200 13,100 7,715,900 1,875,000 2,151,730 402,000 133,400,000 29,253,000 146,000 50,600 3,408,000 221,000 2,902,800 11,000 11,414,500 22,094,300 147,000 1,600 2,827,000 11,500 4,000 25,160 835,300 121,890 968,000 2,110,000 723,790 272,160 57,800 1,011,000 4,324,000 5,358,000 772,000 11,636,000 5,242,800

2,688,475 5,393,005 1,232,580 534,850 726,700 102,605,140 267,921,104 1,610,280 18,114,634.50 15,487,323 25,739 7,758,460 22,115,037 8,210,800 99,753,440 3,226,021 236,538 40,373,688 6,592,540 224,723,870 3,360,624 20,787,020 50,908,440 455,960 759,068 15,138,920 265,350 66,768,120 5,830 56,311,832 163,122,227 570,920 25,660 7,746,270 127,670 19,280 3,381,067 6,801,927 179,821,675 1,252,750 771,350 35,897,617 25,253,025 337,897 3,345,680 7,257,010 14,656,310 3,014,420 11,822,590 43,679,410

209,255.00 -11,950 128,153,882 -6,777,565.50 354,814 41,340 -33,220 -13,872,715 -881,852 336,140 21,214,028 -412,650 12,410 126,730 7,080 -2,926,175 -427,088 104,519,308 -27,190 350,520 -2,643,248 -59,857.00 24,830,740 -554,850 20,717,814 -2,353,513 229,950 516,600 -115,240 -191,910 13,825,660


0.0022 1.57 4.45 13.6 1.71 1.6 0.32 7.2 2.64 0.162 0.161 0.0099 0.01 1.77 6.4 1.53 0.45 0.94 0.012 0.013 0.012 2.06 5.81 8.32 37.8 0.007

0.0022 1.57 4.45 15 1.71 1.62 0.32 8 2.64 0.165 0.164 0.0099 0.01 1.79 6.4 1.58 0.45 0.94 0.012 0.013 0.012 2.21 5.88 8.4 37.9 0.007

0.0021 1.54 4.4 13.6 1.69 1.59 0.31 7.1 2.6 0.162 0.161 0.0099 0.01 1.77 6.3 1.5 0.45 0.91 0.012 0.012 0.011 2.06 5.78 8.12 36.1 0.0065

MINING & OIL 0.0022 916,000,000 1.55 4,836,000 4.42 240,000 15 7,300 1.7 12,000 1.6 2,429,000 0.31 30,000 7.25 6,600 2.63 908,000 0.164 7,730,000 0.164 1,790,000 0.0099 100,000 0.01 17,000,000 1.77 72,000 6.36 245,800 1.57 298,000 0.45 30,000 0.91 195,000 0.012 5,800,000 0.012 1,000,000 0.012 165,300,000 2.11 22,000 5.88 417,700 8.12 1,872,600 37 3,025,600 0.0065 21,000,000

1,995,000 7,513,860 1,061,570 104,448 20,450 3,892,080 9,500 49,185 2,375,390 1,260,040 292,480 990 170,000 127,890 1,563,616 449,090 13,500 179,520 69,600 12,600 1,975,300 46,650 2,432,271 15,341,418 111,915,690 137,000

-431,750 -57,370 296,850 -3,200 -203,400 -8,200 -451,930 -17,050 -7,800 -2,060 -651,212 30 -19,275,580 84,500


35 520 105.5 523.5 5.45 1,020 101 1.1 1,003 103.5 108.4 77.4 81.5 77 78.2

35 520 106.5 523.5 5.45 1,020 101.1 1.1 1,003 103.5 108.4 77.5 82.7 77 78.2

34.45 500 105.5 523.5 5.44 1,020 101 1.08 1,003 103 108.4 77.35 81.5 77 78.2

PREFERRED 34.45 73,200 500 5,000 106.5 42,690 523.5 130 5.45 445,500 1,020 930 101.1 650 1.1 84,000 1,003 200 103 390 108.4 10,550 77.5 29,620 82.7 150,400 77 10,000 78.2 500

2,527,840 2,562,270 4,508,475 68,055 2,427,688 948,600 65,665 92,380 200,600 40,209 1,143,620 2,291,673 12,330,300 770,000 39,100

-2,377,505 -2,368,839 57,200 -





WARRANTS 2.94 1,021,000



20,764,810 494,970 816,320 27,752,020

-13,678 3,192,720






PROPERTY 5.69 1.05 11.98 2.27 0.92 43.3 3.83 4.75 5.48 6 6 0.49 1.16 0.207 0.46 38.8 0.65 0.141 1.88 1.42 0.8 5.25 0.355

331,200 6,220,000 44,300 141,000 2,726,000 10,947,300 1,231,000 499,000 77,600 200 200 11,110,000 47,000 6,500,000 100,000 73,200 966,000 2,310,000 18,497,000 2,258,000 530,000 21,116,800 32,570,000


9.22 2.99 4.3 4.93

9.73 3 4.45 4.93

8.28 2.99 3.98 4.6
























8.28 3 3.98 4.8


2,309,800 165,000 199,000 5,886,000




VALUE 2,170.84 (up) 12.15 969,890,919.49 FINANCIAL INDUSTRIAL 11,187.26 (up) 83.96 1,626,696,245.16 HOLDING FIRMS 8,572.80 (up) 151.11 2,047,047,183.52 PROPERTY 3,942.78 (up) 38.22 SERVICES 1,609.14 (up) 22.96 1,175,077,267.325 MINING & OIL 11,601.56 (down) 119.51 1,589,525,263.41 PSEI 8,461.06 (up) 101.45 153,038,488.5992 All Shares Index 4,938.54 (up) 56.56 7,615,917,862.75 Gainers: 110; Losers: 103; Unchanged: 33; Total: 246

also improve. It also said its projections for three more rate rises next year were on course. However, Marvin Loh, senior global market strategist at Bank of New York Mellon, told Bloomberg News: “Markets are generally interpreting the meeting as a dovish hike. “The improved view in 2018 may be driven by tax reform, which will not have a long-lasting impact.” A below-par reading on inflation added to selling in the dollar, which retreated against most other currencies in New York. It fell through the 113 yen mark, while the pound was above $1.34 and the euro broke $1.18. On equity markets, Tokyo ended 0.3 percent lower as exporters were weighed by a stronger yen, while Shanghai dipped 0.3 percent and Singapore fell 0.8 percent. Hong Kong gave up 0.2 percent, Sydney eased 0.2 percent and Seoul dropped 0.5 percent. Taipei and Wellington were all in positive territory. Oil prices edged up but only made a small dent in Wednesday’s losses, which came despite another report showing US inventories had fallen. “That suggests a lot of, perhaps all, the current news about tightness in the oil market is already priced,” said McKenna. There are also worries that an output cap agreed by major producers in OPEC and Russia could be lifted next year. With AFP, Bloomberg

SM opens new mall in Batangas SM Prime Holdings Inc., one of the leading integrated property companies in Southeast Asia, opened a new mall in Lemery, Batangas. SM Prime said in a disclosure to the stock exchange SM Center Lemery added 25,000 square meters to SM Prime’s gross floor area in the Philippines. “Lemery has been a gateway to different attractions in Batangas, and with this, it’s been continually developing to meet the needs and standards of its residents and visitors. SM Center Lemery takes part in meeting these needs. The exciting mix of offerings in the mall are sure to delight every Batangueños, as we have also done in SM City Batangas and SM City Lipa,” SM Prime president Jeffrey Lim said. Opening with almost 90 percent of space leaseawarded, SM Center Lemery has three floors of mixed retail and food tenants topped with preferred household brands such as SM Hypermarket, BDO, Ace Hardware, Miniso, SM Appliance Center, Watson’s, Simply Shoes and Surplus. This is the sixth mall topened by SM Prime this year. The first five malls were SM Center Pulilan in Bulacan, SM Center Tuguegarao Downtown in Cagayan, SM City Puerto Princesa in Palawan, SM Cherry Antipolo in Rizal, S Maison at Conrad Manila in Pasay City and SM CDO Downtown Premier in Cagayan de Oro. SM Prime now owns 66 mall in the Philippines with gross floor area of more than 8 million sqm. It also operates seven malls in China with 1.3 million sqm of retail space. Jenniffer B. Austria

World Leaders set to discuss nuke crisis BEIJING―South Korean President Moon Jae-In will meet with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Beijing Thursday amid mixed US signals about potential talks to resolve the North Korean nuclear crisis. Relations between Beijing and Seoul have encountered their own rough patch over the US military’s deployment of a powerful anti-missile defense system in the South to counter the North’s threats. Moon hopes to “normalize” ties during the visit, his office has said, after Beijing imposed economic measures against South Korean companies, a move seen as retaliation for the installation of the THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) system. China sees the deployment as a threat to its own security. Moving past the disagreement has become increasingly important amid growing concern that bellicose rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang could spark war on the Korean peninsula. “The highlights to watch of the visit would be whether the two sides [Seoul and Beijing] can start a dialogue and cooperation mechanism on the DPRK [North Korea] nuclear issue,” said Zhu Feng, international studies professor at Peking University. AFP

Bid against extramarital sex rejected JAKARTA―A bid to make all sex outside marriage illegal was thrown out by an Indonesian court Thursday, as concerns grow over the rising intolerance in the world’s biggest Muslimmajority country. Five out of nine judges on the Constitutional Court in the capital Jakarta narrowly rejected the push to criminalize extramarital relations. The unsuccessful petition would have affected unmarried heterosexuals and gay people, who cannot marry in Indonesia, several months after the arrests of a group of men accused of holding a “gay party”. The court heard a judicial review filed by the Islamic activist group the Family Love Alliance that sought to alter the criminal code. “The appeal is rejected in its entirety,” said the Constitutional Court’s chief justice Arief Hidayat. AFP


FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2017 Cesar Barrioquinto, Editor

‘6,700 Rohingya killed in first month of Myanmar violence’ YANGON-At least 6,700 Rohingya Muslims were killed in the first month of a Myanmar army crackdown on rebels in Rakhine state that began in late August, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said on Thursday. The figure is the highest estimated death toll yet of violence that erupted on August 25 and triggered a massive refugee crisis, with more than 620,000 Rohingya fleeing Myanmar for Bangladesh

over a three-month period. The UN and US have described the military operation as “ethnic cleansing” of the Muslim minority, but have not released specific death tolls. “At least 6,700 Rohingya, in the most conservative estimations, are estimated to have been killed, including at least 730 children below the age of five,” MSF said Thursday. The group’s findings come from six surveys of more than 11,426

people in Rohingya refugee camps and cover the first month after the crisis erupted. “We met and spoke with survivors of violence in Myanmar, who are now sheltering in overcrowded and unsanitary camps in Bangladesh,” said the group’s medical director Sidney Wong. “What we uncovered was staggering, both in terms of the numbers of people who reported a

family member died as a result of violence, and the horrific ways in which they said they were killed or severely injured.” Rohingya refugees have shocked the globe with consistent stories of security forces and ethnic Rakhine Buddhist mobs driving them out of their homes with bullets, rape and arson that reduced hundreds of villages to ash. Rights groups say the crack-

down was the culmination of years of persecution and discrimination against the Muslim group in mainly Buddhist Myanmar, where they are effectively stateless and denigrated as outsiders. Earlier this month the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said the military-led crackdown appeared to include “elements of genocide”. AFP

Strongman Hun Sen digs in P

HNOM PENH―Secured by family and party ties, Chinese cash and his own ruthless political instincts, Cambodian strongman Hun Sen has taken a wrecking ball to the kingdom’s fragile democracy in a campaign to extend his 32-year rule. The 65-year-old is now the world’s sixth longestserving civilian leader, bumped up a place by last month’s fall of Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe. And his grip on the country is stronger than ever, as the brash premier extinguishes rivals and fortifies his family’s control over the poor nation. In a religious ceremony for “peace and stability” in early December, the premier prayed beneath Angkor Wat―the Khmer empire’s most glorious monument and a symbol of power and continuity. The event was choreographed to show Hun Sen as the pivot point of a nation that is now effectively a one-party state after the main opposition party was dissolved by the Supreme Court. “Hun Sen needs a halo... which he creates by drawing on mythology. It’s artificial,” opposition leader Manila Standard Sam Rainsy told AFP from France where he now lives BIRTHDAY. Indian schoolchildren celebrate the birthday of chimpanzee Rita, 58, at a zoo in New Delhi on December 14. AFP TODAY

UN boss: Don’t sleepwalk into war over North Korea TOKYO―United Nations chief Antonio Guterres Thursday warned the world against “sleepwalking into war” over North Korea, as he called for diplomatic efforts to banish nuclear weapons from the Korean peninsula. Speaking on a visit to Japan, Secretary-General Guterres said: “The worst possible thing that could happen would be for us all to sleepwalk into a war that might have very dramatic circumstances.” The UN Security Council has imposed three rounds of sanctions over the past year against North Korea over its increasingly powerful missile and nuclear tests. Guterres said those sanctions need to be implemented “by North Korea first of all, but also fully implemented by all the other countries whose role is crucial”.

He urged “diplomatic engagement that allows for...denuclearization [of the Korean peninsula] to take place in a peaceful way”. “It is important for all parties to understand the urgency of finding a solution,” he told reporters at a later briefing. Speaking alongside Guterres, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe echoed the call to “fully implement United Nations Security Council resolutions” and hold “meaningful dialogue toward denuclearization”. The secretary-general’s trip comes after Jeffrey Feltman, the UN’s political affairs chief, visited North Korea earlier this month. Feltman said he had been told in Pyongyang that North Korea wanted to avoid war and said he

“fervently” hoped the “door to a negotiated solution will now be opened wide”. On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Washington was ready to talk to Pyongyang “without preconditions”, interpreted by many as a shift in the US position. Washington’s top diplomat told the Atlantic Council policy forum that North Korea was welcome to talk about anything at a first meeting―even the weather. However, the White House and Tillerson’s own department later stressed that the US position on North Korea “had not changed”. “The secretary was not creating a new policy, our policy remains exactly the same as it was,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Wednesday. AFP

Thailand cuts back trade with N. Korea

TRIAL. Judge Marion Hohenecker is pictured before the continuation of a trial in the so-called Buwog affair on December 14 in Vienna. The case centers on 9.6 million euros ($11.3 million) in alleged bribes paid out following a 2004 government sale of state properties. AFP

BANGKOK―Thailand has drastically reduced trade with North Korea amid the mounting international pressure to isolate the pariah state, the government said Thursday, as a senior US envoy arrived for talks on Pyongyang’s nuclear program. The kingdom is one of several Southeast Asian countries to host a North Korean embassy, and once enjoyed valuable economic ties with the reclusive regime. But the commerce ministry said Thursday trade with Pyongyang had “plunged” and would soon be nonexistent as Thailand complied with the UN resolutions to cut off North Korea in response to its increasingly powerful missile and nuclear tests. “It’s expected that by late 2017 there will be no export or import of goods between Thailand and North Korea,” said Pimchanok Vonkorpon, director of the Thai Commerce Ministry’s Trade Policy and Strategy Office. The announcement came as US Special Envoy for North Korea policy Joseph Yun arrived in Bangkok for talks with senior Thai officials, according to the US embassy, which declined to provide more details. Yun’s visit is part of a December 11-15 trip to Asia―including a stop in Japan―”to discuss ways to strengthen the pressure campaign following the DPRK’s latest ballistic missile test,” the US State Department said in an earlier statement, referring to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the North’s official name. AFP

Notice is hereby given to the public that a lost Vehicle Sales Invoice No. 116720, hereby declare that the above Sales Invoice Number is lost, Please report to our company if any person tries to present this invoice. Honda Cars Manila Bay,Aseana City Bradco Ave Macapagal Paranaque City. tel no 236-7000 as per Doc No 448, page no 90, book no Vl11,series of 2017.

in self-exile. “He is a dictator... and dictators often rely on a cult of personality.” Hun Sen vowed last month to hold on to office for at least 10 more years, but batted away comparisons to Mugabe who served into his 90s. But critics say the Cambodian premier is cut from the same cloth and is going to increasingly great lengths to secure his monopoly on power. Hun Sen’s Cambodian People’s Party will in effect be unopposed in the elections next year after Rainsy’s Cambodia National Rescue Party was disbanded and its parliamentary seats and local posts redistributed. The opposition had been tipped for power after making big gains in 2013 elections, but Hun Sen methodically picked off its leaders with legal cases before the Supreme Court delivered the knock out blow in November. AFP

For fast ad results, please call

Advertising Department 832-5547

(MS-DEC. 15, 2017)

Section I. Invitation to Bid Republic of the Philippines Philippine Rural Development Project Invitation for Rebidding of the Construction of Bridge at Bagong Silang – Macatoc FMR Identification No. PRDP-IB-R04B-ORM-005-000-000-2014-R3 Loan No. 8421-PH December 15, 2017 1.

The Government of the Philippines (GoP) has received a Loan from the World Bank towards the cost of Philippine Rural Development Projectand it intends to apply part of the proceeds of this Loan to payments under the contract for the Construction of Bridge at Bagong Silang – Macatoc FMR /PRDP-IB-RO4BORM-005-000-000-2014-R3.


The Provincial Government Unit of Oriental Mindoro, implementing partner of the Department of Agriculture, now invites bids for Construction of Bridge at Bagong Silang-Macatoc FMR. Completion of the Works is required by 270calendar days. Bidders should have completed, within the last five (5) years, a contract similar to the Project. The description of an eligible bidder is contained in the Bidding Documents, particularly, in Section II. Instructions to Bidders.


Bidding will be conducted in accordance with relevant procedures for open competitive bidding as specified in the IRR of RA 9184, with some amendments, as stated in these bidding documents and is open to all bidders from eligible source countries as defined in the applicable procurement guidelines of the World Bank. The contract shall be awarded to the Lowest Calculated Responsive Bidder (LCRB) who was determined as such during post-qualification. The Estimated Project Cost for this project is Twelve Million Eight Hundred Sixty-Eight ThousandPesos (Php12,868,000.00).


Interested bidders may obtain further information from the Bids and Awards Committee of the Provincial Government of Oriental Mindoroand inspect the Bidding Documents at the address given below from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Mondays to Fridays.


Interested Bidders may purchase a complete set of Bidding Documents startingDecember 15, 2017from the address below and upon payment of a nonrefundable fee for the bidding documents in the amount of Five Thousand Pesos (PhP 5,000.00). It may also be downloaded free of charge from the website of the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PhilGEPS) and the PRDP website ( provided that bidders shall pay the non-refundable fee for the Bidding Documents not later than the submission of their bids. As part of the transparency measures being instituted by the Department of Agriculture (DA) the bidders can virtually visit the site of the above-described subproject at where geotagged base photographs on 50-meter interval and track are viewable. The DA, however, requires that all potential contractors who will be awarded contract under the project shall have undergone geotagging training provided by the PRDP Project Support Office. The Provincial Government of Oriental Mindoro will hold a Pre-Bid Conference on January 4, 2018 at 10:00AM at the 2nd Floor Governor’s Office Conference Room, Provincial Capitol Complex, Camilmil, Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro, which shall be open to all interested parties.


Bids must be delivered on or beforeJanuary 16, 2018 at 10:00 AM at the BAC Office, Provincial Capitol Complex, Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro. All bids must be accompanied by a Bid Securing Declaration (BSD). Bids will be opened in the presence of the bidders’ representatives who choose to attend at the address below. Late bids shall not be accepted.


The Provincial Government of Oriental Mindororeserves the right to accept or reject any bid, to annul the bidding process, and to reject all bids at any time prior to contract award, without thereby incurring any liability to the affected bidder or bidders.


For further information, please refer to: ENGR. ELMER V. DILAY Chairman, Bids and Awards Committee Provincial Capitol Complex, Calapan City (043) 286 7144 (SGD) ENGR. ELMER V. DILAY Chairman, Bids and Awards Committee

(MS-DEC. 15, 2017)


Jimbo Owen Gulle, Editor


friday, december 15, 2017

LocaL government units

P400-m Calapan Water plan OKd By Robert A. Evora

QUEZON DONATION. Presidential Adviser for Southern Tagalog Jose Maria Necomedes Hernandez (left) joins Quezon Gov. David C. Suarez (second from left) in turning over a mobile SWAT van, four

motorcycles and Armalite rifles with bulletproof base and helmet, donated by the provincial government to the Quezon Philippine National Police command headed by Provincial Director Sr. Supt. Rhoderick C. Armamento. Assisting the turnover are Armed Forces Southern Luzon Commander Brig. General Ernesto Ravina, PNP Region 4A Director Chief Supt. Ma. O Aplasca, and DSWD Assistant Secretary Jose Antonio Hernandez (inset photo). The event was held during the ‘Yakap Bayan Project Usad’ graduation ceremony of 192 drug surrenderers from different towns in Quezon. Benjie A. Antioquia

Brit biz eye Iloilo trip


HE British Chamber of Commerce in the philippines is organizing a trade mission to Iloilo province in March next year, continuing a commitment to expose businesses in the United Kingdom to the different areas of the philippines outside Metro Manila. In a press briefing in Makati City, BCCp chairman Chris Nelson said the trip to Iloilo comes on the heels of a successful year for the business group, which included a similar trade and investment mission to Davao

CAR gets P770m for Pamana projects By Dexter A. See BANGED, Abra—the government has implemented p770 million worth of payapa at Masaganang pamayanan or pAMANA projects in the six provinces of the Cordillera region over the past five years. In a report to the regional peace and Order Council in the Cordillera, the regional Department of the Interior and Local Government office reported that 68 projects received the funds coursed through the agency to help alleviate the former conflictstricken areas. In 2012, 20 projects were funded worth over p50 million, followed by 12 projects in 2013 (p211.8 million), but no funds were released for similar projects in 2014.

City last March. two British companies out of 65 have already set up shop in Davao—the hometown of president rodrigo Duterte—following that trade mission, as Nelson said the chamber’s members

looked to invest in the philippines for the long term. Iloilo City, the economic center of panay Island and the Western Visayas region, could expect as many visitors as Davao had in the first quarter of 2018, the BCCp chief added. “It has been a very good year for the Chamber, and we have continued, in partnership with the British Embassy Manila and the [UK] Department for International trade, to promote the philip-

pines as an opportunity for our companies,” he said. the BCCp has assisted over 1,600 British companies since the start of the UK’s Overseas partner Delivery project in April 2014. these services include contact referrals, market introductions, market researches and trade missions, Nelson noted. Clients of the chamber were mainly from the information and communication technology, food and beverage, construction, pharmaceutical and

medical device, and business consultancy industries. Most of them are small and medium enterprises that are eager to see if their products or services are a match for the philippine market, and often ask the BCCp on how easy it is to do business in the country despite the negative press it has been getting, Nelson said. He noted that UK-philippine trade relations remain consistent, as Britain is the largest European investor

In BrIef


Students of Governor Ferrer National High School dance in colorful costumes with an icon of General Trias City’s patron saint, St. Francis of Assisi, during the Street Dance competition in celebration of GenTri’s 269th foundation anniversary and second cityhood anniversary.

Federal Land, gK continue ‘m.o.v.e.’

QC mayor wants standard disaster approach QUEZON City Mayor Herbert Bautista wants a more standardized and systematic approach to barangay-level disaster response and management. During the First responders training session for Barangay DrrM committee members at the Quezon City Disaster risk reduction Management headquarters, Bautista said the standardized

disaster response is a continuous drive to improve the city’s disaster preparedness and response capabilities. According to the mayor, a standard system is needed to ensure the city’s 142 barangays follow the same protocols and procedures in emergency management and response. “Are we together? We have different concerns,

different for each barangay. there must be one system. that’s where we can see our unity,” Bautista said. He emphasized the need to set a standard in barangay-level disaster response to ensure that all barangays are following the same track in protocols and training. Bautista also proposed holding localized baran-

gay-level Gawad Kalasag seminars to ensure that best practices are met. “Even though each barangay has the complete equipment, we still need a system. that’s what we are lacking. If all 24 areas of QC will treat itself as an island, all barangays can sustain its need during emergencies,” the mayor added. Rio Araja

Aboitiz, Pilmico train co-op members into entrepreneurs tHE Aboitiz Foundation, the corporate foundation of the Aboitiz Group, in partnership with the group’s food unit pilmico recently trained multipurpose cooperative members in Iligan City to become entrepreneurs. Fifteen members of four coo p e r at ive s — E nt r e -Wor ke r s Multi-purpose Cooperative, Mikro Group of Entrepreneurs MpC, Hindang Banana Farmers MpC, and the Iligan Wood and Bamboo Manufacturer MpC—became certified bakers after passing the National Certificate II training on Baking and pastry production.

in the country worth more than 1 billion British pounds (Us$1.2 billion or p60.47 billion) in 2015. total trade, on the other hand, amounted to over one billion euros (p59.58 billion) in 2016. Nelson, who has been in the philippines for 15 years including stints in the banking and tobacco industries, noted that he went back to Davao last July 21 to show the BCCp’s support to the Davao Investment Conference or Davao ICON.

CALApAN CItY, Oriental Mindoro—the privatelyowned Calapan Water, the lone water service provider here, is investing p400 million to improve its water supply system and benefit its present and prospective consumers in the provincial capital. CW’s improvement and development action plan will generate an additional 15 million liters of fresh and potable water per day for its customers, management said during a presentation Friday. “this is in line with Calapan Water’s commitment to accelerate major infrastructure projects and improve the delivery of water service,” explained CW president roderick A. Ongcarranceja. this project includes the construction of pipelines, finding new water sources, building a storage facility for additional water supply, constructing a treatment facility, and installing booster pumps to ensure sufficient water pressure in CW’s service areas. the additional 15 million liters a day would benefit up to 25,000 households and businesses here in Calapan City. so far, the water company has installed 14,600 connections in its serviced areas in 35 barangays. part of the plan is laying of 26.4 kilometers of additional transmission and distribution pipelines to deliver more water to CW’s existing service areas, as well as to expand to other areas in Calapan and reach more customers. Among the initial areas targeted are the outlying barangays of Managpi, puting tubig and sapul.

pilmico provided the co-op members with bakery kits to ensure they can start their small bakery businesses and add to their respective cooperative’s income. these co-ops will also receive training sessions on Entrepreneurial and Business Management that will enable them to develop their bakery business plans. Under its Enterprise Development focus area, the Aboitiz Foundation aims to build the capabilities of community members to help themselves through sustainable livelihood and employment opportunities.

STADIUM OPENS. Senator Cynthia Villar graces the opening of the newly built

Caloocan City Sports Complex in northern Caloocan. Mayor Oscar Malapitan (in orange jacket) assists Villar as Mrs. Edna Malapitan (second from left), Vice Mayor Macario Asistio (left) and Philippine Sports Commission Chairman Butch Ramirez (right) look on. Also present are 1st District Rep. Dale Gonzalo Malapitan, members of the city council, city department heads and guests. Jun David

As pArt of its ongoing partnership with the Gawad Kalinga Community Development Foundation Inc. leading property developer Federal Land Inc. recently built and turned over 26 new homes for families living in pililla, rizal. through the “Make Our Volunteerism Enrich (M.O.V.E.) Lives” initiative, over 82 Federal Land employees from different departments helped build the homes. the employees’ active involvement reflects the vision of the company’s patriarch, George s.K. ty, to “promote better lives for Filipinos by providing them with better homes.” “Our M.O.V.E initiative is in line with in Federal Land’s mission to go beyond building structures and create communities where lives can thrive, and aspirations may be realized,” shared MaryAnn Zorrilla- Amamangpang, Federal Land Inc. head of Human resources. “the commitment to make these homes available to our countrymen is one that is shared by all of us who work at Federal Land.” With this recent addition, Federal Land has built about 346 homes since partnering with GK in 2013. the homes are spread across 16 communities located in Metro Manila, tarlac, Laguna, Cavite, Zambales Iloilo, Capiz, Maguindanao, and surigao del Norte, to name few.

Folk rock legends in malolos concert MALOLOs CItY—It was the ‘70s and early ‘80s, and their guitars and music became part of a youthful generation that raised patriotism to a nation then embroiled in an era of chaos and military rule. On Dec. 17, three icons of that generation—pinoy folk rock legends Coritha, Lolita Carbon and Heber Bartolome—will serenade this historic city and bring back nostalgic sounds in a rare concert at the tikay-Morato Concert Venue inside the 1st Malolos Industrial City in Barangay tikay here. City Mayor Christian D. Natividad said the concert will feature the signature songs of Coritha, Lolita Carbon of the group Asin, and Heber Bartolome of the group Banyuhay, whose popularity peaked during the late ‘70s when disco music started to dominate the airwaves. the concert, dubbed as “pamaskong Handog ng Lungsod ng Malolos at ng philstar properties–Gabi ng OpM” will be held at the back of shakey’s Malolos along McArthur Highway. “the music of these iconic folk legends will remind residents of Malolos—the birthplace of democracy in Asia and Africa—of their great heritage and the importance of love for country and fellowmen,” Natividad said. Orlan Mauricio

Isah V. Red, Editor Bernadette Lunas, Writer fRIday, decemBeR 15, 2017


Life CultuRe and Media

Le Bassin aux nymphéas, harmonie rose (Waterlily Pond, Pink Harmony) by Claude Monet is currently on display at National Gallery Singapore

Musée d’Orsay’s

Auguste Renoir's Gabrielle à la rose (Gabrielle with a Rose)

collection of Monet, Renoir and more


f the conservative art academy in 19th century Paris had its way, the only paintings recognized as masterpieces today might be the carefully composed and often theatrical paintings that characterized the schools of Neo-Classicism and Romanticism.

however, in the 1860s, a group of young painters such as Claude Monet and Auguste Renoir began to challenge the status quo by taking a revolutionary approach to painting light and using color—giving rise to one of the most recognizable and beloved art movements today: Impressionism. Inspired by the rapid technological innovations of the late 19th century, these Impressionists moved out of their studios to open air to capture the fleeting effects of light as it appeared before their eyes, using newly available pigments and discoveries in the science and theory of color. to trace the development of the movement most closely identified with the emergence of the modern era, National Gallery Singapore collaborated with the Musée d’Orsay in Paris—one of the world’s leading modern art museums—to present Colours of Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Orsay. Dr. Eugene Tan, director of National Gallery Singapore said, “Impressionism is one of the most influential movements in the history of art, fascinating artists and art audiences around the world and across centuries. In fact, the influence of Impressionism can be seen in many works of Southeast Asian artists. As National Gallery Singapore endeavors to bring art closer to the people, we are excited to present the first Impressionist exhibition in Southeast Asia. the selection of works from the Musée d’Orsay’s collection provides both art aficionados and the newly initiated an accessible and visually powerful introduction to Impressionism and some of its defining themes and ideas. We hope visitors will enjoy this rare opportunity to get up close

with these significant paintings and deepen their understanding between the art of Southeast Asia and the world.” Curated by Marine Kisiel and Paul Perrin from the Musée d’Orsay, the exhibition features a collection of over 60 stunning masterpieces by the foremost innovators of the art movement. Giving a nod to the Impressionists’ radical use of color, the paintings are presented in thematic sections based on colors used by leading artists of Impressionism such as Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir, and Paul Cézanne at different stages of their careers. Beginning with the blacks used by painters in the 1850s and 1860s to represent realities of their time, the exhibition examines how Impressionists used white and blue tones to capture snowscapes and their shadows; lush greens and blues to depict the french landscape; and in the latter stage of the movement, soft pinks and purples to create new harmonies and more subjective realities. Visitors will get up close with Le Bassin aux nymphéas, harmonie rose (Waterlily Pond, Pink harmony), a painting of one of Claude Monet’s favorite subjects—his pond with a Japanese-style bridge, filled with waterlilies—which he painted repeatedly. Other masterpieces on display include Auguste Renoir’s Gabrielle à la rose (Gabrielle with a Rose), which breathed new life into the great european tradition of the female nude; and Le berceau (the Cradle), arguably the most important work by the first lady of Impressionism, Berthe Morisot.

Berthe Morisot's Le berceau (The Cradle)


Katsuki Nogami’s 'Yamada Taro Project' is a unique interactive installation that catches the attention of viewers

The Witcher and Other Fiction from Central Europe

A glimpse of art in the future WhAt would art in the future look like? this was the rationale behind Interstices: Manifolds of the In-Between, an exhibition presented by the Japan foundation Asia Center (JfAC) and co-produced in partnership with De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB). held recently at various locations within DLS-CSB’s School of Design and Arts (SDA) campus, Interstices featured Japanese artists Tsuyoshi Hisakado, Houxo Que, Katsuki Nogami and Ryoichi Kurokawa, alongside filipino counterparts Tad Ermitaño, Ivan Despi, Derek Tumala and Ian Carlo Jaucian. the show was part of WSK: Festival of the Recently Possible, an annual international contemporary electronic, digital and experimental art festival in the Philippines. Since its launch in 2009, it has explored the diverse range of cross-disciplinary artistic activities in the context of digital culture and performance with focus in collaborative projects within the region. It aims to blur, deconstruct, and re-imagine the preconceived notions of how technology diverges, merges, and works together. Multi-awarded interdisciplinary media

artist Tengal Drilon, WSK founder and artistic director, curated the exhibit. Benilde’s Center for Campus Art Director Architect Gerry Torres said it was instructive for students and the public to be exposed to current trends in art making worldwide. Media art key figure ermitaño featured his work Spinning Jimmy, his take on the iconic wheel, which revolutionized automation. A video of the artist kicking a wall at one edge of a monitor causes the tV to slowly slide in reaction to the filmed movement. Despi’s Music for the Impaired, together with ermitaño’s Bell, captured the hearts of the hearing impaired. Despite their works being audio-based, it connected with them through the vibrations they produced. Despi’s piece is a site-specific video installation projected on the college’s Black Box theater façade with synchronized sounds. Bell alluded to animist notions about electricity. the pieces consisted of a vibrating electromagnet powered from a power source. Sound vibrations and humming could be felt and heard from the construction. tumala’s Cartography of Violence mapped out the sensorial notion of experiencing violence through immersive light.

the work created illusions of how a gunshot could be visually presented. Jaucian’s Drawing Space with Time consisted of an array of clocks ticking out of unison. “time is a central theme in my artistic research. for even when it is not discussed explicitly, what still remains is the logic of causality, a primary ingredient of any narrative.” he said. Bright and interactive works by the Japanese artists likewise captured the attention of guests. Nogami’s Yamada Taro Project explored the international identity and anonymity of technology through semi-cyborgs which masquerade as other people via selfies. hisakado’s After That utilizes hundreds of small circular mirrors to render a shattered gallery interior. Que’s 16.777,216 View showcases a vibrant and psychedelic cross between the traditional medium of paint and the modern fluorescent screens of gadgets. Kurokawa’s [unfold.alt] focuses on the relationship between science and art through a multisensory exploration of cosmology. torres said the exhibit was “a glimpse of what is to come. this is the art of tomorrow.” he emphasized.

the best fantasy stories begin with a quest, writers –František Novotný, Julie Novákosuch as to battle deadly monsters. Readers vá, Slovaks –Juraj Červenák, Alexandra embark on the quest and become part of it, Pavelková, and filipinos Elyss Punsalan with ignited imagination. Now the Polish and Edgar Calabia Samar. the translations author Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witch- are provided by popular filipino authors Bob er, main hero Geralt of Rivia, worldwide Ong, Joselito Delos Reyes, Eros S. Atalia, household name in the gaming sphere, em- and Beverly Wico Siy. “this is the first barks on his journey to Philippine shores. anthology of its Readers of all kind in the Philipages will be glad pines is a dream to know that they come true.” accan now become cording to co-edpart of the Witchitor Dean francis er’s quest with Alfar, a stalwart unlimited boundand champion aries through its of speculative much-awaited fiction. “havfilipino translaing these stories tion, published from Central euby Visprint. Ang rope available in Manggagaway at filipino makes iba pang Kathangthem immediAgham at Pantasya ately accessimula sa Gitnang ble to the wide Europa at Pilipinas readership here (the Witcher and [in the Philipother fantasy and pines]. the exScience fiction from change of stoCentral europe and ries and ideas the Philippines), a is vital to the unique anthology segrowth of litlected and edited by erature.” foremost speculative In the past fiction writer Dean 'Ang Manggagaway at iba pang Kathang-Agham decade, specuFrancis Alfar togethat Pantasya mula sa Gitnang Europa at Pilipinas' lative fiction er with József Bencze, has captured hungarian Ambassador and acclaimed poet of his time and Ja- the imagination of filipino readers and auroslav Olša, j r., Czech Ambassador and thors. “translations are powerful tools that founding father of the Czech science fiction have helped in the development of literature in the Philippines; it has forged a path in widenmonthly Ikarie’. Being officially launched recently in the ing the market and accessibility of literature residence of hungarian Ambassador József in all parts, even outside of Manila. therefore Bencze, the exciting science fiction and fan- with the help of our supporters and avid readtasy from the Czech Republic, hungary, Po- ers, we are now working on other projects land, Slovakia and the Philippines comes alive which will further the horizon for collaborain filipino. the all-star roster of contributors tive translation projects, especially with the is led by Andrzej Sapkowski (author of The possibility in other filipino languages enaWitcher, the next Game of Thrones already bling a deeper reach for more european litin series development with Netflix) and in- erary works, including science fiction”, says cludes hungarian Csilla Kleinheincz, Czech Ambassador Jaroslav Olša, jr.


FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2017 Isah V. Red, Editor • Nickie Wang, Writer

Jane Oneiza Instead of apologizing, she recently took to Twitter to defend herself for being tardy in an event that promoted her movie. She appealed that she’s given a call time, which apparently an hour later compared to the time the members of the press were informed that the event would start. So, attendees, including the director and the other members of the cast, had to wait for her before the program could start. Paraphrasing the words of a showbiz columnist and talent manager who was there and waited impatiently, “She’s a virtually unknown star to even be late in her own presscon.”

McLisse The tandem rose to fame during their stint in Pinoy Big Brother. They later appeared in FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano and a commercial for a leading fast food chain. Currently, the two are starring in the teleserye The Good Son and will appear in an MMFF entry this Christmas. Soon, McCoy de Leon and Elisse Joson are set to star in their own movie that will start filming early next year. And did we mention that the love team also has just released an album? You see, McLisse is definitely on a roll.

Miho Nishida Early this week, the former PBB housemate shocked some netizens after her recent photos circulated online. Many of them even came up with a term to describe their observation. They said she’s “Xander Fording” because she’s totally unrecognizable – her eyes, chin, complexion and most especially her nose are cunningly different from what they were a month ago when she walked the runway for Bench Under the Stars. Perhaps, the photos people saw online were of an entirely different person. Can we report Miho as missing already?

Coco Martin The 36-year-old primetime star said in a recent interview that he doesn’t have any time for love, and we totally understand why. In the latest big screen reincarnation of Ang Panday, Coco wore many hats – having written the script, directed, and starred in it. He is so passionate about the movie because it employed at least 100 actors and talents, not including the crew. Obviously, Coco has better priorities than his personal needs. And if that what makes him genuinely happy, people are totally fine with that. Unexpectedly Yours Two weeks since its commercial release, the movie starring Sharon Cuneta, Robin Padilla, and Julia Barretto and Joshua Garcia is still doing good business. Boosted by generally favorable reviews and positive audience reactions, the Star Cinema movie pulled off a whopping P157 million gross sales making critics believe that apart from the popular love team, Robin and Sharon are still reliable box office stars.

Janica Nam Floresca Who is? She’s the grieving girlfriend of Hashtags member Franco Hernandez who perished a month ago due to a drowning incident. While Franco’s devastated family has already moved on, Janica is still making noise online blaming some people. Due to her constant public appearance, observers can’t help but ask if she’ll also soon join showbiz because it seems as if she wants too much public attention. CYAN MAGENTA YELLOW BLACK

Pia Wurtzbach pitches for Aquafina


Standard Republic of the Philippines TODAY Department

of Transportation


2nd Floor, Integrated Bar of the Phililippines Bldg., Dona Julia Vargas Ave., Ortigas Center, Pasig City

NOTICE OF TOLL RATE IMPLEMENTATION TARLAC - PANGASINAN - LA UNION EXPRESSWAY In accordance with the Toll Concession Agreement by and among the Department of Public Works and Highways, the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) and Private Infra Dev Corporation, the following pre-accepted rates for Segment 7 (Binalonan to Pozorrubio) of the TPLEX, inclusive of VAT will be collected starting December 27, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. Class 1

Php 35.00

Class 2

Php 88.00

Class 3

Php 106.00

The updated toll matrix for TPLEX (La Paz - Pozorrubio) follows: La Paz-Pozorrubio Toll Rates (VAT Inclusive) CLASS 1 (Cars & jeepneys, including taxis, vans, pick-ups, etc. or vehicles with 2 axles and an overall height of up to 7 feet) ENTRY/ EXIT

La Paz








La Paz Victoria












































CLASS 2 (Buses & trucks with 2 axles & a height of more than 7 ft.; Light Vehicles with more than 2 axles & a height of up to 1 ft. (vehicles with trailers) ENTRY/ EXIT

La Paz








La Paz Victoria














































CLASS 3 (Trucks with 3 or more axles and a height greater than 7 feet) ENTRY/ EXIT

La Paz






La Paz Victoria












































Any interested expressway user shall have the right to file, within a period of thirty (30) days from the date of the first publication of this Notice, a petition for review of the applicable toll rates for Segment 7 (Binalonan to Pozorrubio) with the TRB at the 2nd Floor, Integrated Bar of the Philippines Building, Dona Julia Vargas Avenue, Ortlgas Center, Pasig City. By Authority of the Board:

Date of First Publication: December 8, 2017 (MS-DEC. 8/15/22, 2017)

(SGD.) ENGR. ABRAHAM P. SALES Executive Director II / Hearing Officer

THE best only deserve the best. That’s why Aquafina, the bottled water brand trusted by consumers around the world, will soon come to the Philippines. Known for its purity, Aquafina has won over people everywhere, since its first introduction in the U.S. in 1994. The brand hopes to change the game once again with its expansion to the local market, as they launch their #BestAt campaign, coupled with the unveiling of its newest endorser, none other than Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach. The perfect example of the someone at her best, Pia’s backstory inspires Filipinos everywhere to persevere, stand out, and eventually become the best. “I joined pageants because I wanted to show everyone how great Filipinos are,” shared Pia, during the official brand launch held in Ibiza Beach Club, Nov.16. “Even if I had to join over and over again, I never gave up because of that goal. I wanted Filipinos to be confident that they could be the best at everything.” As the world’s best-selling bottled water brand, Aquafina likewise aims to bring out the best in every Filipino. “Pia totally embodies our philosophy. We believe that each person has what it takes to be the best at something,” declared Melai Pia Wurtzbach as the face of the world’s Lazaro-Javier, PepsiCo Category leading purified bottled water products ON ITS 25th year, the magic lives on. In celebration of Star Magic’s silver anniversary, the first all-digital Star Magic Catalogue featuring the inimitable talent management’s roster of artists was launched on the Star Magic website and NoInk app. For over 12 years, ABS-CBN Publishing, Inc. has been producing the annual special publication for the country’s premier talent agency. The country’s biggest and up-and-coming stars fill the 2018 Catalogue with page after page of beautiful photos captured by photographers Shaira Luna, Ria Regino, Rxandy Capinpin, Joseph Pascual, Dookie Ducay, Edward dela Cuesta, and Mark Nicdao. ABS-CBN Star Magic royalties Jericho Rosales, Angelica Panganiban, Jodi Sta. Maria, Kristine Hermosa, Bea Alonzo, and Piolo Pascual, this generation’s big names Kathryn Bernardo, Liza Soberano, Enrique Gil, and Daniel Padilla, as well as newbies and rising stars are in this latest collection. The Star Magic Catalogue 2018 is surely a collectible that fans shouldn’t miss! Everyone can check out starmagiccatalogue. com for exclusive photos, updates and behind-the-scenes videos. To download the Star Magic Hub on your Android and iOS gadgets, just head on over to, click the options tab and then click the “Add to Home Screen” option.

manager for Juices and Water. “Aquafina hopes to give every individual the inspiration they need to become their best self,” “My partnership with Aquafina is like a match made in heaven. I’m honored to represent a brand that’s not just a global bestseller, but also inspires excellence in my fellow Filipinos,” said Pia. “I’ve always advocated for the best for my countrymen, and that’s what we’re getting with Aquafina.” The brand prides itself in delivering consistently crisp taste in every bottle, no matter the market, across the globe. Aquafina water is purified using the best technology available, which removes chlorides, salts and other substances that can affect the taste of water. With this, you’ll get pure water consistently every time you open an Aquafina bottle. It’s no wonder that the queen herself chooses Aquafina. Aquafina will soon be available in all leading supermarkets and grocery stores at Php 10.00 for 350mL, P15.00 for 500mL and P24.00 for 1L. Get a taste of the world’s best-selling water! Visit www. to learn more about how you too can become the #BestAt anything you please.

Star Magic’s first e-catalogue

Biggest and up-and- coming Kapamilya stars fill the first ever Star Magic e-catalogue




Montero Sport wins ‘model of the year’ award T

HE Mitsubishi Montero Sport won the major title for the Model of the Year Award as it landed as the Auto Focus People’s Choice Awards for being the Midsize SUV of the Year. Two special awards in the Media’s Choice category under the midsize SUV were also awarded to the Montero Sport. Among its contenders on the midsize SUV segment the Montero Sport was voted by the media as top in terms of safety features and engine performance. Thus, coveting the Best Safety Features and Best Engine Performance Media’s Choice awards. Last year, MMPC launched the all-new Montero Sport which is equipped with world’s first clean diesel engine. The Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control (MIVEC) clean diesel engine boasts of a low compression ratio, thus reducing fuel consumption, smoke and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions as well as maximizing the output of the Variable Geom-

etry Turbo (VGT). Apart from the all-new 4N15 engine, this year MMPC introduced an upgraded Montero Sport with an improved innovative all-around safety features. The top of the line Montero Sport GT boasts an array of safety features such as Ultrasonic Misacceleration Mitigation System, Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) System, Blind Spot Warning System, Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution (RISE) Body, 7 SRS Airbags, Hill Descent Control, and Hill Start Assist. The Montero Sport being one of MMPC’s bestselling vehicles is known to deliver topnotch performance and class-leading

features. Since its introduction in the Philippine market, the Montero Sport has captured the market looking for a midsize SUV that will not only deliver great performance but also flaunts superb styling. The AFPCA is yet another testament that the Montero Sport is a true winner in its class noting as well the accolades it received during last year’s Car of the Year. Meanwhile, another bestselling model, the Mitsubishi Adventure also got the top spot on the model of the year MPV category. With several contenders, Mitsubishi Motors’ two (2) models outshined the others with its first class per-

From left: Butch Gamboa, Chairman/CEO of Sunshine Television (STV), organizer of the AFPCA/AFMCA; Froilan Dytianquin, MMPC FVP for Vehicle Sales and Marketing; Gerry Aquino, Awards Committee Chairman.

formance, versatility, features and design, making it the first choice of the people in their respective categories. From left: Butch Gamboa Chairman/CEO of Sunshine Television (STV), organizer of the AFPCA/AFMCA, Froilan Dyt-

ianquin—MMPC FVP for Vehicle Sales and Marketing, Gerry Aquino—Awards Committee Chairman Receiving the awards during the ceremony was MMPC’s FVP for Vehicle Sales and Marketing Froilan Dytianquin. “Again

these accolades validate Montero Sport’s excellent performance and outstanding safety features. And with these awards, we become motivated and committed to continuously provide the best vehicles for our valued customers”, Dytianquin said.

Gift yourself with worry-free journeys this Christmas

Hyundai keen on infra buildup in south IN SUPPORT of the national government’s infrastructure agenda, Hyundai Asia Resources, Inc. , aims to scale its capacity and resources anticipating a boost in transport and construction come 2018. HARI, with four dealerships in Mindanao to date – Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, Southern Mindanao (Davao), and Zamboanga City – looks to developing its network buoyed by the region’s strong economic performance reported in May 2017. According to regional growth statistics, Davao grew by 9.4 percent in 2016, thanks to its industry sector, as construction surged to 25.8 percent (from 10.2 percent) in the same year. Meanwhile, Northern Mindanao posted a recordhigh growth in the last six

years, with its gross regional domestic product reaching P305 million in the same period. “Infrastructure helps in leveling the field for growth, allowing cities and provinces to maximize their full potential particularly for Mindanao. It’s encouraging not only for Hyundai, but for the rest of the business community to expand our presence in the country further,” HARI President and CEO, Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo said. In the 2017 World Economic Forum Competitiveness Index, the Philippines’ ranking was dragged down by its current weak state of infrastructure; with the global institution calling on public and private sector to address this huge gap in development.

Heeding this call, the ‘Build, Build, Build’, the government’s massive infrastructure program, is expected to take off in 2018, with a P1-trillion allotment in the National Budget. This will increase public construction tenfold, with private sector expecting to follow – as government accelerates spending for main roads, bridges, seaports, airports nationwide. Parallel to the government’s widespread efforts is the completion of Hyundai’s commercial division dealership facilities in ten key locations nationwide by end of the first quarter of 2018. Situated in growth centers in CALABARZON, Western Visayas, and Mindanao, these facilities cover a widerange of trucks, buses, and special-purpose vehicles to

service large-scale and commercial accounts and SMEs. With construction on the rise, Hyundai’s commercial division foresees expanding to 20 locations by 2020. Hyundai General Santos, the first dealership in Mindanao to be given a “Narra” pre-certification by the Philippine Green Building Initiative for Best Green Practices and the first Hyundai dealership in Mindanao to implement the new Global Dealership Space Identity standard. “As opportunities open for the automotive industry, we are determined to provide reliable transport solutions as well as strengthen our drive for constant innovation. One with the country in its vision, we are ready to face 2018 headstrong,” Perez-Agudo added.

Christmas is just around the corner, bringing with it heavier traffic than usual. Wherever you’re headed this season—the mall for last-minute shopping, a gettogether, or just trying to make your way home amidst the holiday frenzy, your vehicle breaking down should be the least of your worries. Cross out this form of holiday stress from your list and gift yourself with peace of mind while on the road with the help of Pilipinas Shell. Gain confidence to brave the Christmas rush by having your vehicle checked and getting an oil change from the professionals at a Shell Helix Oil Change+ service center. All mechanics at Shell Helix Oil Change+ have undergone extensive training at the Don Bosco Technical

Institute and can competently perform safety checks and engine oil change services using quality Shell lubricants. You can even watch the expert mechanics through the large glass windows of the service center’s air-conditioned lounge, or simply sit back, relax, or go over your to-do list as you enjoy the free WiFi and refreshments while your car gets serviced. For utmost convenience, the records of your visits are also tracked by Shell Helix Oil Change+ service centers in order for the attentive staff to alert you once your car is due for its next oil change. No prior appointment is needed to experience Shell Helix Oil Change+ in over 200 Shell stations nationwide.

“We at Shell understand how important it is for Filipinos to celebrate the holiday season with their loved ones. People are more dependent on their vehicles at this special time and we always make sure that we are available whenever motorists need us,” says Anthony Lawrence Yam, Pilipinas Shell Vice President for Retail. “Aside from our premium fuels and lubricants, we offer top-notch services for both our customers and their vehicles. We encourage our customers to make oil changes a habit, to help give them trouble-free rides every day.” At Shell Helix Oil Change+, you get more than just an oil change. You also get peace of mind with every drive.

Mazda tops 3 categories in 2017 Car of the Year—Philippines awards THE all-new CX-9 seven-seat crossover, the Mazda2 V+ 5-door hatchback and the MX-5 RF sports car were the top picks in their respective categories in the recently concluded 2017 Car of the Year - Philippines. Organized by the Car Awards Group, Inc., the annual automotive award-giving activity recognizes the best vehicles available in the country based on real-world qualitative and quantitative scoring. CAGI is composed of motoring journalists from various Philippine print, television, radio and online channels. This year’s COTY Test Fest was con-

ducted over two days with fortyone cars and trucks evaluated. Twenty-three category winners emerged with Mazda taking titles in three classes. The all-new CX-9, launched only last April 2017, was voted as the best in the Large Crossover All-Wheel Drive category. It’s striking Kodo: Soul of Motion-inspired styling along with the potent 2.5-liter SKYACTIV G turbocharged engine, superb handling and premium interior finish secured the title for the seven-seat Mazda flagship. Meanwhile the Mazda2, 2015 Car of the Year-Philippines awardee, once again gained another

Best Subcompact Car title as the mid-range V+ hatchback variant was recognized by CAGI as the best in its class for 2017. Now equipped with Mazda’s groundbreaking G-Vectoring Control technology, which aids in cornering and straight-line stability, the 2018 Mazda2 improves on an already award-winning package by enhancing passenger comfort and driver feel. The newly introduced MX-5 RF, with its Power Retractable Hard Top design that retains a fastback profile with the roof down, was the 2017 Best Sports Car awardee. Its unique auto-

mated folding roof further complemented the already nimble handling and lightweight feel of the fourth generation MX-5 roadster, itself a World Car of the Year awardee in 2016. “Mazda has been very consistent in providing new generation models that are not only stylish but are also excellent value for money propositions for consumers,” says Steven Tan, president and CEO of Bermaz Auto Philippines, the exclusive distributor of Mazda vehicles and parts in the country. He adds, “We fully support CAGI’s thrust to provide car buyers with information to aid in

their automotive purchase. Mazda vehicles are designed to give consumers the best choice in quality, performance and safety while providing superior ownership value and this year’s results once again show that we have been consistent in delivering this promise.” Bermaz Auto Philippines, Inc. is the exclusive distributor of Mazda vehicles and parts in the Philippines. Its current product lineup now includes the Mazda2 sub-compact sedan and hatchback, the Mazda3 compact sedan and hatchback, the Mazda6 fullsize executive sedan and sports wagon, the CX-3 freestyle crosso-

ver, the all-new CX-5 five-seater and the all-new CX-9 seven-seater premium crossovers, the MX-5 2-seater sports roadster and the BT-50 pickup truck. There are 19 Mazda 3S dealerships located across the Philippines and Metro Manila – Mazda Greenhills, Mazda Pasig, Mazda Quezon Avenue, Mazda North EDSA, Mazda Makati, Mazda Alabang, Mazda Otis, Mazda Cavite, Mazda Sta. Rosa, Mazda Pulilan, Mazda Pampanga, Mazda Dagupan, Mazda Cabanatuan, Mazda Tarlac, Mazda Negros, Mazda Cebu, Mazda Iloilo, Mazda Cagayan De Oro and Mazda Davao.





Nissan equipps the X-Trail with a’Smart Sensor’ that provides a 360 degree visibility for the driver.

Nissan sets the standard in intelligent mobility Text and photos by Genevieve Tiu


ECHNOLOGY is often a concept that we read about, but rarely experience. With the speed at which it shifts, there seems to be no catching up to it. In recent years, it has expanded into a new industry — motoring. Self-driving technology is only one part of the story. What is important to the here and now are features that are instantly relevant to the regular consumer. These are features for the eve- sort, where a special customized tion where a convoy deliberately ryday driver, whether a newbie driving track was built. After drove in close to the car’s blind learning the ropes for the first Nissan product planner, Cyrus spot. The third activity was the time, a seasoned professional, or Macasera gave a refresher on the most interactive, as the attendees simply a soccer mom who makes Nissan Intelligent Mobility con- were invited to drive a blackeda daily commute for her family. cept, the afternoon’s activities of- out X-Trail to try the around-view Enter Nissan Intelligent Mobility ficially opened. Four units of the monitor — the windshield, driv(NIM). Nissan Philippines, Inc. 2018 X-Trail were driven up to La er’s and front passenger windows gave us a taste of what it is like to Union specially for the weekend. were all covered with sunshade, get behind the wheel of the 2018 These were the enhanced version rendering the driver blind and X-Trail and experience the ad- of the popular compact crossover, completely dependent on the NIM vantage that its brand of “automa- now upgraded with the advanced sensor system! It was a unique tion” has to offer. Intelligent Mobility technologies, experience; unnerving and chalThe Nissan team, headed by fresher styling, and better perfor- lenged our instincts, but was the Senior Marketing Manager, Dax mance. best demonstration of how useful Avenido, shuttled select memThe first NIM demo touched on the NIM system can be. bers of the media to La Union, the moving object detection and Nissan Intelligent Mobility is on board the perfect vehicle for rear cross traffic alert, with the all about creating a community people smuggling, the Urvan. instructor showing how the four between cars and people, and it The new Urvan Premium was pre-installed cameras in the X- was highlighted best in the new quite the ride — it answered the Trail worked together to give the X-Trail. As NPI President and public clamor for a wider body driver a 360-degree visual per- Managing Director, Ramesh Narand, finally, a 5-speed automatic spective. The second demo was an asimhan said, “With Nissan Intransmission, while also upgrad- actual ride, highlighting the blind telligent Mobility, our customers ing its basic features. The larger spot warning signal, a very useful can enjoy each adventure as they seating capacity meant that the smart sensor that acts as a driver’s drive safe and sound. We want entire contingent traveled in just “third-eye” where he cannot see. them to treat the new X-Trail as 3 vans, with each person comfort- Once we were moving at 30km/h, a partner that looks out for them ably occupying one seat, and has the sensor engaged and a blinking so they can have a fun and hassleample space for both head and leg orange light came on in the direc- free time on the road.” rooms.The seats were adjustable and leans back the same way that an aircraft seat would, perfect for stretching out and settling in for a long journey. Most of us will agree — the ride itself was smooth, surprising for a large van, that everyone pretty much got to snooze their way to La Union, a province known for its softbroom, hand woven blankets and rice wine. However, what we traveled for waited at the end of the journey, at Thunderbird Re- The X-Trail’s dash layout is well-designed with controls within easy reach.

The problem with parking

Parking in this country is a nightmare with urban planners, building owners and mall developers at a loss on how to improve their parking facilities.

Text and photo by Dino Ray V. Directo III WHENEVER this writer drives to a destination, the first thing that he considers is parking. The driving public is well aware of the hassles of finding a parking space in a business district or a mall during weekends. It is a welcome gesture from a building owner to provide a convenient and affordable parking. Parking that is difficult to find, inadequate or expensive tends to frustrate consumers and contribute to spill overs, which is a major problem now for our government. Unlike in progressive countries were the people have good access to public transportation and related services, people in our country are forced to drive themselves to work due to the sheer unreliability of our public transportation system. This is the reason why the government or private companies must provide local commuters and car owners the convenience of driving to their destination knowing that park-

ing would never be a problem. Due to the lack of parking facilities, car owners are forced to park along the secondary or sometimes main roads to go about their business. This create problems because streetside parking eats up precious space, and sidewalks are also compromised. This problem is evident around Metro Manila and in the business districts of Makati, Ortigas and Makati. Conventional parking space have become obsolete whose focus is primarily on quantity. It assumes that, when it comes to parking, more is always better and there can never be too much. Yet this abundance of space does not eliminate parking problems due to the sheer volume of vehicles. In a report from the Land Transportation Office (LTO), there are currently 1.74 registered vehicles operating in the NCR alone. Local Government Units and Land Developers/Owners must start thinking or provide off-site parking for an individual buiding or facility. In developed countries such as Japan, Singapore and in Europe, car

stackers and mechanical garages are the norm. Although there are existing parking facilities like makeshift lots with chicken wire fences and worse, car owners are advised to park at their own risk due to lack of security. If something happens to your car, the car park operator is not liable for damages or theft. Read the fine print, and you’ll see that even giant malls like SM, their car park rules state that the mall is not liable for any damages and theft done to your car. So what blanket of security do consumers have while being charged with a steep price for parking for a few hours shopping at their malls? With the onslaught of Christmas, and the never ending flow of new cars from the car dealers, the MMDA will have its hands full as it continues its campaign to rid the streets if illegally parked vehicles and illegal vendors. While building modern structures is a welcome sight for urban development, developers and city planners should keep in mind that parking is not option, it’s a

Manila Standard - 2017 December 15 - Friday  
Manila Standard - 2017 December 15 - Friday  

The digital edition of Manila Standard: A nationally circulated newspaper published daily in the Philippines since February 1987.