Manila Standard - 2022 October 24 - Monday

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PBBM: Life getting hard today

Admits people struggle coping with inflation, vows aid to poor sectors

PRESIDENT Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Sunday admitted life “is getting hard” for Filipinos amid rising inflation, as he committed his administration to giving continuous assistance to vulnerable sectors who are most hurt by surging consumer prices.

Fuel price cuts next week: diesel P1, gas 20-30 cents

THE country's

P1 per

to P0.30

by

a.m. Tuesday.

Unioil Petroleum Philippines said it

prices by P0.90

for

to

and P0.20

for

This week's rollback follows

secutive weeks

Rino

The Chief Executive made this com mitment as he led the distribution of gov ernment cash assistance to various sec tors in Talisay City, Negros Occidental. Mr. Marcos also led the celebration of the 43rd MassKara Festival in the prov ince’s capital, Bacolod City, even as he acknowledged how many Filipinos con tinue to struggle to make ends meet with the costs of basic goods and necessities

rising further due to recent oil price hikes.

“We know that life is getting hard today. Prices for basic commodities are increasing, gasoline, crude, all our basic necessities are increasing. That’s why even in our own small way, at least we can help,” he said in Filipino.

“As long as the people need help, the government will do everything to some how help them,” he added.

The President, who also heads the Department of Agriculture (DA), reiter ated his promise to prioritize efforts to increase food production and lower the prices of food products (see related sto ry on A2 – Editors).

He specifically cited problems beset ting the country’s sugar supply, noting how the industry has been “neglected” for several years.

Police claim Lapid case solved; kin disagree

THE police consider the murder of broad caster Percival Mabasa—also known as Percy Lapid—to be solved, even though three of the suspects are still at large, and the mastermind has not been identified

and charged.

In an interview on radio dzBB, South ern Police District (SPD) director Police Brig. Gen. Kirby John Kraft said they consider the case solved because they have identified the suspects, they have some of them in custody, and they have filed a case against them.

On the other hand, he said the investi

gation continues.

Roy Mabasa, brother of the killed broadcaster, disputed this, lamenting that investigators may face a dead end follow ing the death of alleged “middleman” Jun Villamor last Friday, as the mastermind of the crime is yet to be determined.

"Our definition of 'solved' is different...

Wait not for new COVID vax, get boosted—DOH

THE government’s vaccine expert panel advised Filipinos against waiting for bi valent vaccines to arrive in the country and instead focus on getting boosted with currently available jabs that have been found to be as effective in combating COVID-19.

Dr. Nina Gloriani, the head of the panel, said vulnerable populations like the elderly and the sick stand to benefit the most from the protection given by the newly developed bivalent vaccines,

Ex-PNP chief Cascolan is DOH usec

FORMER Philippine National Police chief Camilo Cascolan has been appoint ed as an undersecretary of the Department of Health, the agency confirmed Sunday. Cascolan took over from Roger Tongan as undersecretary, while lawyer Cha rade Mercado-Grande was also appointed as assistant secretary, the department said in a statement.

The DOH said it will provide more de tails about the new appointments as soon as available.

The Health Department still has no Secretary, almost four months since President Ferdinand Marcos Jr assumed power.

The Chief Executive said he would

At MassKara, Marcos says PH tourism is back

PRESIDENT Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Sunday said the tourism sector is back on track as he cited Filipinos' resiliency and talent in bringing the country to the path to recovery.

"It is a good thing to remind people that the pandemic may have been diffi cult. The pandemic really put us through the wringer, but we are back. The pan demic is fading away. We are learning to manage it."Marcos said in a welcome luncheon at the Masskara Festival in Bacolod City.

The Masskara Festival, a grand cel ebration for Bacolodnons to mark their milestones for conquering hardships, serves as a reminder of "all the opportu nities" for Filipinos to thrive, the Presi dent said.

With its theme “Balik Yuhum!” which means to smile again, the Mass kara Festival is back for its 43rd annual celebration after two years of being sus pended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Xi Jinping still China's leader in historic third 5-year term

BEIJING—Xi Jinping secured a historic third term as China's leader on Sunday and filled his inner circle with close allies, achieving after a decade in power com plete dominance over the ruling Commu nist Party.

The party's Central Committee elected

Xi as its general secretary for another five-year term, bringing the country back towards one-man rule after decades of power-sharing among its elite.

"I wish to thank the whole party sin cerely for the trust you have placed in

TAGLE: VATICAN ALLOWS CHINA TO PICK BISHOPS GOLDEN CHRISTMAS. SM Aura Premier invites all to spend Christmastime in resplendent shades of gold, an immersive tunnel display, and a light show overlooking the Bonifacio Global City. Pictured are (from left) Taguig City Rep. Ading Cruz; Steven Tan, President of SM Supermalls; Taguig City Mayor Lani Cayetano; Taguig City Rep. Pammy Zamora; and Hans Sy, Executive Committee Chairman of SM Prime Holdings, Inc.
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oil firms are expected to cut pump prices
as much as P1 per li ter effective 6
will roll back
per liter
liter
diesel
per liter
per liter
gasoline.
two con
of price hikes.
Abad, Department of Energy di rector for the Oil Industry Management VOL. XXXVI • NO. 250• 3 SECTIONS 16 PAGES • P20 MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 • www.manilastandard.net • mst.daydesk@gmail.com
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FIL-CANADIAN SURGEON
SWORN IN TO SENATE NEWS / A2 Next page Next page Next page Next page Next page Next page
FEELING FESTIVE. President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. shows his exuberance as he addresses the crowd in Bacolod City for the celebration of the 43rd MassKara Festival on Sunday. He
said the
country’s tourism sector is back on track thanks to
the
talent and resilience of Filipino performers and workers (inset). Presidential Photos 5
MORE YEARS.
China's President
Xi
Jinping waves after introducing the members
of the
Chinese Communist Party's
new Politburo
Standing Committee,
the nation's top decision-making body, in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on October 23. Noel Celis/AFP

‘Still better with PBBM at Agri helm’

MORE problems in the agriculture sector can be immediately addressed with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. at the helm of the Department of Agriculture, an official said Sunday.

"I think it helps that our President is the head of the DA because the agriculture sector has many needs that will involve other agencies as well,” said DA spokes person Assistant Secretary Kristine Evan gelista.

Evangelista made the statement amid calls by some lawmakers to appoint a fulltime agriculture chief.

On Thursday, Mr. Marcos said he is

PBBM:...

From A1

Mr. Marcos also expressed hope that the time would come when Filipinos would no longer need assistance from the government.

In Talisay, he handed over the Assis tance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS) ranging from P5,000 to P10,000 to 100 recipients.

The AICS is a program of the Depart ment of Social Welfare and Development that provides immediate relief assistance to individuals and families affected by ca lamities and other emergencies or crises.

He also turned over mock checks to six farmer organizations amounting to P88 million under the DA’s Philippine Rural Development Project.

The DA distributed palay seeds to 100 farmers, a corn mill, and three incubators.

On Saturday, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the govern ment is fast-tracking the distribution of cash aid to the poor and vulnerable sectors and increasing the food supply in the country “to give Filipinos a comfortable life.”

As director general of the National Economic and Development Author ity (NEDA), Balisacan said poverty in cidence could have been higher had the government failed to further reopen the economy and distribute targeted subsidies to low-income households, public utility drivers, farmers, and fisherfolk.

This was indicated in a recent Social Weather Stations survey that revealed

Police...

From A1

If we say 'solved', we had gotten into the mastermind," Berteni "Toto" Causing, a counsel for Mabasa’s family, added.

For Mabasa's camp, the case remains unsolved until the mastermind has been unmasked and charged.

However, Kraft said: “’Closed’ is dif ferent from ‘solved.’ We continue with our investigation to determine who the culprits are.”

The SPD director said the investiga tion includes a review of Mabasa's radio program from 2021 to 2022.

The police have also coordinated with the father of the alleged first middleman Villamor, who died inside the New Bili bid Prison (NBP).

Joel Escorial, who surrendered to the police and admitted pulling the trigger on Mabasa, said it was the inmate Cristito Villamor Palaña who asked him to kill

At...

From A1

"Now it is time for us to all go back to work, to all go back to our normal lives, to remind ourselves of all the op portunities that were before us, before the pandemic that we now after—that we have normalized the situation a little bit—then it is time for us to go back to all of those endeavors that we were un dertaking before the COVID hit," Mr. Marcos said.

The President led the culminating ac tivities of the MassKara Festival as well as the inauguration of The Upper East, a township and industrial estate develop ment in the province.

The President said the Masskara Fes tival is an example of what theadminis tration has been trying to promote despite the "difficult things."

"We have tried very hard to remind people that it is time again, as I said to bring us back to where we were before and even to go further and to know that we have—although things are difficult," he said.

"It is time for us to go back and ex ercise once again, show once again the Filipino resilience, the Filipino resource fulness, the Filipino industry, the Filipino talent," Mr. Marcos added.

From A1 which target both the original COVID-19 strain and its Omicron subvariants.

But she warned against solely pin ning hopes on the arrival of the new jabs to fight the threat of the Omicron XBB subvariant and XBC variant, which have already been detected in the Philippines.

staying as DA Secretary because there are matters that only the President can do, es pecially on pressing agriculture problems that need to be addressed.

“There are things that a President can do that a Secretary cannot. The problems are so difficult that it will take a President to change and turn it around,” he said.

The President said the problems in the agriculture sector are so “deeply embed

about 49 percent of Filipino families see themselves as poor.

Meanwhile, higher inflation will offset any gains enjoyed by families of over seas Filipino workers, exporters, business process outsourcingcompanies and for eign tourists from the stronger US dollar against the Philippine peso.

In a recent report, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. chief economist Michael Ricafort said the peso has depreciated by 15.2 percent against the greenback since the start of 2022, benefitting those who earn in or owned US dollars.

But he said “any advantage may be eroded by higher prices or inflation al ready at a new four-year high of 6.9 per cent in September 2022 and could poten tially reach 7 percent levels until around October 2022,” he said.

The US dollar corrected lower against major global currencies on Oct. 21, amid reports that some Federal Reserve officials were concerned about over-tightening de spite earlier hawkish signals from Fed of ficials.

Ricafort said the peso exchange rate remained relatively stable for the fourth straight week already at below the 59.00 psychological markafter the President sig naled that the government might have to defend the peso in the coming months.

Mr. Marcos said the government could use interest rates to mitigate the impact of inflation, which is the administration’s main priority.

Inflation in September 2022 rose to a four-year high of 6.9 percent from 6.3 per cent a month ago, driven mainly by faster in

and three companions to kill the broad caster in exchange for P550,000.

Kraft said they would focus on the gunman's account to identify others who were involved in the killing.

He also said Escorial's bank account corroborated the gunman's account that he and his companions were paid P550,000 to kill Mabasa.

A second middleman, identified by Escorial as Christopher Bacoto, is now under the custody of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology.

Escorial identified his accomplices as Israel Dimaculangan, Edmund Dimacu langan, and a certain Orlando. Escorial said the order to kill Mabasa came from inside the NBP.

A complaint for murder has been filed against Escorial and his three alleged ac complices, police said Wednesday.

The Department of Justice will start today, Monday, its preliminary investiga tion of the murder complaint filed against Escorial and the three accomplices he

In a vlog Saturday night, the President urged Filipinos to explore, travel, and dis cover the beauty of the Philippines.

"Always remember, traveling to the beautiful places in the Philippines will pave the way for our continued recovery," he said.

"A huge chunk of our revenues comes from our fellow Filipinos, so I will con tinue encouraging all of you to visit our beautiful tourist spots," the President added.

Mr. Marcos encouraged spending next week's four-day holiday during "Undas" (All Saints’ Day) by visiting tourist sites.

October 31 and November 1, which fall on Monday and Tuesday, are nonworking holidays.

"Let's begin traveling this All Saints' Day. The reason why I declared October 31 as a special non-working holiday is to allow us to have more time with family and plan our vacation," he said.

Meanwhile, First Lady Liza Ara neta-Marcos was honored Sunday in a tree-planting ceremony inside Bacolod City's Upper East township, which is owned and developed by property giant Megaworld.

Megaworld honored the First Lady by dedicating a Bitaog tree, the first tree of its kind to be planted inside the 34-hectare township development. (See full story online at manilastandard.net)

“That's going to take a little longer,” Gloriani told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.

She said the more urgent threat is the waning immunity of Filipinos nearly a year since booster doses were made avail able.

“Waning immunity for COVID is fast — whether natural immunity or vaccine-induced, it takes four, five, up to six months. As time passes, more of our countrymen remain unboosted. So, we

ded” that it would take a while before these are resolved.

“It’s not that fast, it’s not that easy to bring it back to the good system it was be fore. So I think I am still needed there,” Mr. Marcos said.

The President said he will appoint someone to replace him once “DA’s func tions are properly institutionalized” and “structural changes have been made.”

"When it’s fixed, and the situation is normalized," he said.

It is for the same reason, Mr. Marcos said, that he has yet to appoint a Health Secretary.

At present, Undersecretary Maria Ro sario Vergeire is the Health department’s

creases in food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The September rate was significantly higher than the 4.2 percent a year ago and was the fastest since the 6.9 percent both in September and October 2018 during the rice crisis. This brings the first ninemonths' average to 5.1 percent.

The peso settled at a record low of 59 per US dollar four times this month alone, on Oct. 3, 10, 13, and 17, 2022.

Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno signaled possible continued intervention in the peso exchange rate market to pre vent it from breaching the P60-per-dollar level by using about $10 billion of the country’s gross international reserves.

Earlier, BSP Governor Felipe Medalla said the economy was strong enough to withstand local policy rate hikes.

The Monetary Board, the policy-making body of the BSP, raised the benchmark poli cy interest rate by another 50 basis points to 4.25 percent on Sept. 22 to rein in inflation and to support the depreciating peso.

The move followed an earlier 75-basis point hike by the US Federal Reserve to tame the persistently high inflation in the world's biggest economy.

Since the start of the year, the BSP has raised the policy interest rate by 2.25 per cent to 4.25 percent, from the record low of 2 percent when the year started.

The BSP maintained the 2 percent in terest rate in 2021 to support the econo my’s recovery from the pandemic.

Also on Sunday, Senator Juan Edgardo Angara said the government must do more to uplift the lives of indigenous peoples (IPs), who remain among the poorest and

named.

The Dimaculangan brothers and “Orly” or “Orlando” have not been ar rested and their whereabouts are still un known. Escorial surrendered to the PNP, saying he feared for his life.

It was not known immediately if the two other persons identified by Escorial have been included in the complaint filed by the PNP.

In his affidavit, Escorial tagged Villa mor, alias “Idoy” as the person who con tracted him to kill Mabasa for P550,000.

The DOJ also said that Escorial re vealed that his three co-respondents were instructed to join him because a certain Christopher Bacoto (Yoyoy), also known as “Jerry Sandoval,” talked them into helping him kill Mabasa.

Earlier, the Bureau of Corrections (Bu Cor) said there were two prisoners with the surname of Villamor detained at the NBP in Muntinlupa City.

BuCor Deputy Director General Ga briel Chaclag identified them as Jun Glo

Xi...

From A1

us," Xi told journalists at Beijing's Great Hall of the People after the closed-door, rubber-stamp vote was announced.

Xi, 69, was also reappointed head of China's Central Military Commission, keeping him in charge of the People's Liberation Army.

He is now all but certain to sail through to a third term as the country's president, due to be formally announced during the government's annual legislative sessions in March.

Sunday's developments cement him as the most powerful leader since Commu nist Party founder Mao Zedong.

In a wide-ranging acceptance speech on Sunday, Xi made signature remarks celebrating China's rise as a global power and its success under his rule.

"The world needs China," Xi said.

"After more than 40 years of unflag ging efforts towards reform and opening up, we have created two miracles—rapid economic development and long-term so cial stability."

Six of Xi's proteges and allies were also unveiled on Sunday alongside him as members of the Politburo Standing Com mittee—the party's apex of power that

cannot wait for the bivalent vaccines,” she said in Filipino.

Gloriani added that the Department of Health (DOH) already has a plan for re serving shots of the bivalent vaccine for the Philippines. But they are set to be pro cured by early 2023.

The panel head also cited the find ing of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Strategic Advisory Group of Ex perts (SAGE) that there is no sufficient

officer-in-charge.

A PUBLiCUS survey for the third quarter showed 63 percent of respondents approved of Mr. Marcos’ decision to take on the DA portfolio.

On Friday, President Marcos met with the agriculture cluster of the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) to discuss his administration’s priorities, specifically mea sures to ensure food security in the country.

During the meeting in Malacañang, the President received recommendations from the PSAC on digital farming meth ods and supply chain improvement strate gies that will boost the government’s food security program. (See full story online at manilastandard.net)

most disadvantaged social groups in the country.

Angara lamented that little headway has been made to improve the lives of the IPs although Republic Act 8731 or the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act (IPRA), which was enacted more than 25 years ago.

“We have over a hundred IP groups in the Philippines comprising anywhere between 14 million and 17 million indig enous cultural communities (ICCs). Much has been said to protect the rights anden sure the welfare of our IPs, but the reality is they continue to be among the most dis advantaged groups,” Angara said.

According to the World Bank, while IPs comprise only 6 percent of the global population, they account for nearly 20 per cent of the world’s extreme poor.

“What exacerbates the situation of our IPs is the absence of reliable public data on ICCs and more often than not, this leads to situations where they are neglected in the delivery of basic, social, technical, and even legal services,” Angara said.

To help remedy the situation, Angara has filed Senate Bill 1167 or the Resource Centers for Indigenous Peoples Act of 2022, which seeks to establish ICCs/IPs resource centers in strategic places, as de termined by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), taking into consideration their ethnological locations.

These centers will be composed of three major service areas, namely: the Statistical Service Area; Human Devel opment Index Service Area; and the Do mains Management Service Area.

ba Villamor and Jose Palana Villamor.

Jun died at the NBP hospital on Oct. 18 while Jose was transferred to the Cus todial Center of the Philippine National Police (PNP) on Oct. 20, Chaclag said.

He said the two Villamors are cousins.

Over the weekend, the national presi dent of the Integrated Bar of the Philip pines (IBP) said Escorial could be acquit ted if he becomes a state witness.

IBP's Burt Estrada said it is an option for the prosecution to have the accused be discharged to be a state witness and use his or her testimony to solve a crime.

Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Re mulla earlier said it is possible that Esco rial could end up as a state witness if he provides vital information that could lead to the identification of the mastermind in Mabasa's killing.

The lawyer for the Mabasa family, Berteni Causing, said the family is will ing to have Escorial declared a state wit ness to unmask the mastermind. (See full story online at manilastandard.net)

rules the country.

Li Qiang—a former chief of staff for Xi who oversaw a grueling two-month Covid lockdown in Shanghai this year— was named as number two in the Stand ing Committee.

This means he is likely to take over as premier from Li Keqiang, a former Xi ri val who will retire next year.

Close aide Ding Xuexiang and Guangdong party chief Li Xi, a long time confidante of the president, were among other allies named in the Stand ing Committee.

"The new Politburo Standing Com mittee confirms decisively that Xi has consolidated power at the top of the Com munist Party to an extentunseen since the Mao era," said Neil Thomas, a senior China analyst at Eurasia Group.

"Xi has installed allies onto all seven seats of the Communist Party's top deci sion-making body, allowing him to domi nate the political system for the foresee able future."

Alfred Wu Muluan, a Chinese politics expert at the National Universityof Sin gapore, said: "It is all Xi's people, signal ing he wants to rule even beyond a third term."

Xi abolished the presidential two-term limit in 2018, paving the way for him to govern indefinitely. AFP (See full story online at manilastandard.net)

evidence yet of a substantial difference in the efficacy of the bivalent boosters over the monovalent ones currently in use.

This was why, she said, Filipinos should take advantage of the shots.

“The current vaccines still produce good results and protection when given as boosters. Let’s not wait for the upcoming vaccines because we do not know if they will arrive,” she said. (See full story on line at manilastandard.net)

Fil-Canadian Osler sworn into Senate

A FILIPINO-CANADIAN surgeon and professor has been sworn into Canada's Senate, representing Manitoba.

Dr. Flordeliz "Gigi" Osler, who re placed former Justice Murray Sinclair, is the first Filipina ever to be appointed to the Senate of Canada.

“I feel like I have very big shoes to fill, and I want to honor his shoes and work hard on behalf of all Manitobans. I love this province.

Nothing makes me happier than to be able to represent Manitoba,” Osler told The Winnipeg Free Press in an interview.

“I’d like to tell everyone to have big dreams. It can happen. Ithappened to me, and I just feel so absolutely humbled, for tunate and ready to get to work," she added.

Tobias Enverga Jr. was the first Fili pino appointed to the Canadian Senate, having served from 2012 until his death in 2017.

Osler is the first woman surgeon to be elected as president of the Canadian Med ical Association (CMA).

It was during her stint as CMA presi dent that the group developed a policy on equity and diversity. (See full story on line at manilastandard.net)

Vatican allows China to pick bishops again

VATICAN CITY—The Vatican said Sat urday it had renewed a secretive 2018 deal with Beijing allowing China to choose bishops on the mainland and then have Rome approve them.

It said the deal had, as widely expect ed, been renewed for two years.

"After appropriate consultation and as sessment, the Holy See and the People's Republic of China have agreed to extend for another two years the Provisional Agreement regarding the appointment of Bishops," read a statement from the Vati can press office.

The agreement, signed in September 2018, was previously extended in Octo ber 2020.

Philippines' Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle said "the intent of the Holy See is only to favor the choice of good Chinese Catholic bishops, who are worthy and suitable to serve their people.

"But favoring choices of worthy and suitable bishops is also in the interest of national governments and authorities, in cluding Chinese ones."

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin said there had been careful study of the accord, "taking into account the particular characteristics of Chinese history and society and developments... of the Church in China". AFP (See full story online at manilastandard.net)

Fuel...

From A1 Bureau, attributed the rollback to several factors, including the announcement of the United States that it will release 15 million barrels of oil per day starting in December.

He said there was also a continuing de cline in fuel demand andemerging reports that the pronounced production cut by two million barrels per day by the Organi zation of the Petroleum Exporting Coun tries and its allies may not happen.

Abad said oil demand slowed down due to "the effect of interest hike and the high fuel cost."

The US Energy Information Agency reduced its 2023 global oil consump tion forecast by 500,000 barrels per day to 101.03 million barrels per day, citing lower GDP growth.

On Oct 18, the oil companies imple mented a per liter increase in gasoline by P0.80, diesel by P2.70, and P2.90 for kerosene.

These resulted in the total year-to-date adjustments at a net increase of P16.45 per liter for gasoline, P38.50 per liter for diesel, and P29.65 per liter for kerosene.

Ex-PNP...

From A1 only do so once the country's COVID-19 situation had normalized.

Before his appointment at the DOH, Cascolan was undersecretary at the Of fice of the President in February 2021 under the Duterte administration.

He had served as PNP chief from Sep tember to November 2020.

Cascolan held various positions with in the PNP, including Director of the PNP Civil Security Group and chief of the Di rectorial Staff, among others.

He also served as the director of the Na tional Capital Region Police Office in 2018.

Cascolan was among those who au thored Oplan Double Barrel, which be came the PNP’s flagship program in the war against illegal drugs.

Newsmst.daydesk@gmail.com A2
MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022
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All-New Nissan Livina: Making everyday more exciting for everyone

NISSAN Philippines added another gem to its already impressive lineup in the country, the All-New Nissan Livina made its way to the competitive market of multipurpose vehicles with a strong highlight to its spaciousness and versatility.

When searching for the perfect 7-seater family MPV, we all want an all-around vehicle that can fit everything we need but still looks and feels fun to drive. The All-New Nissan Livina is just that.

AN EXTERIOR THAT EXUDES ELEGANCE

Starting at the front, the All-New Livina is designed with sleek lines that complement Nissan’s signature V-motion grille and halogen headlights with LED DRLs. As we move towards the back, its blacked-out pillars make it seem that the roof floats over the rest of the vehicle. And when paired with 16” machine-finished alloy wheels and a rear combination lamp with signature LEDs, the crowd can’t help but stare at this fine piece of Japanese engineering.

WHERE SPACE MEETS VERSATILITY

The All-New Nissan Livina can comfortably fit a family of seven with plenty of room to spare for luggage, thanks to its spacious cabin and multiple storage compartments. Hauling long and large gear? The Livina’s second-row seats are built with a fold-flat function, while third-row seats can be split 50:50 to accommodate bigger luggage. It’s also loaded with user-friendly tech such as 7” touchscreen display audio for seamless connectivity and Intelligent Key System for easy vehicle access without the need

A spacious ride for your family with Nissan’s new MPV

to take the key out of your bag. And to ensure comfort no matter where you’re seated, the All-New Nissan Livina is equipped with exceptionally cool front and rear air-conditioners that the brand is unquestionably renowned for.

ALL-AROUND SAFETY AND CONFIDENCE Drive with peace of mind and focus more on enjoying your family trip, thanks to the Livina’s suite of Nissan Intelligent Mobility drive-assist technologies. To name a few, these features include Hill Start Assist, Vehicle Dynamic Control, Traction Control System and Antilock Brake System. This multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) also comes with a rear view camera and parking sensors for added convenience when backing up your vehicle. And to help keep the whole family safe, the ISOFIX system and SRS Airbags come standard with every All-New Nissan Livina.

A PLEASURE TO DRIVE AND BE DRIVEN IN

The Livina is built with a firm yet comfortable suspension that’s paired with high ground clearance and a long wheelbase. The result? A stable, relaxing, and confidence-inspiring ride on every family trip. Apart from this, its capable 105 PS engine can provide up to 141 Nm of torque, enabling you to go on exciting drives with the family everyday.

PREMIUM COMFORT AT A REASONABLE PRICE

The All-New Nissan Livina starts at PHP 1,029,000 for the base E MT model, while its top-of-the-line VL AT variant can be yours for P1,209,000. To sweeten the deal, the VL AT variant only requires twice-ayear maintenance and has a class-leading 5-year warranty, giving you peace of mind. Want to know more and start livin’ the excitement? Visit nissan.ph/livina to get a quote, find a dealer, and test drive this stylish, comfortable, and versatile 7-seater MPV now.

A3MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 mst.daydesk@gmail.com

SC slashes water concessionaires’ fines from P1.8b to P406 million

Printing Office facing plunder, graft raps with Ombudsman

OFFICIALS of the National Printing Office are facing a consolidated complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman for a supposed P197-million transaction with a private company for the printing of ballots for the May 2022 elections.

The group Task Force Kasanag-International filed plunder, graft and corruption, grave misconduct, and gross neglect of duty complaints against NPO Director IV Carlos Bathan and engineers Benedicto Cabral, Yolanda Marcelo and Leah Dela Cruz.

Holy Family Printing Corp. president Leopoldo Gomez was also implicated.

The task force’s president, John Chiong, said the NPO agreed to refund the P197-million income of the government from a deal with the Holy Family Printing Corp. for the printing of ballots for the national and local elections last May.

Based on the joint revenue and revenue-sharing agreement between the NPO and Holy Family Printing, the NPO was supposed to earn P2 per ballot and 16.88% of the income from the printing of ballots, while 83.11% would go to Holy Family.

Despite such, the Holy Family Printing Corp. charged the NPO for the 16% that was supposed to be the printing offices’ earnings.

Chiong said the transaction with a private company must initially pass through the Commission on Audit and should not have been directly dealt with by the NPO.

Bathan said the complaints were “unfair and malicious,” and that he had not yet authorized any transactions regarding a joint venture agreement.

“To set the record straight, the present leadership of NPO has not yet signed nor authorized any transaction, bidding, or replicate the questionable joint venture scheme. Hence, the case filed by Mr. John Chiong is grossly unfair and malicious,” the NPO official said in a previous statement.

NPO is conducting “open and competitive biddings” according to the provisions of Republic Act 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act, he stressed.

THE Supreme Court has reduced the fines imposed on water concessionaires from the previous P1.8 billion to P406 million, it said as it affirmed a recent decision.

Maynilad Water Services Inc., Manila Water, and Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) were fined a combined P1.8 trillion three years ago for their non-compliance with the Clean Water Act.

The SC in 2019 fined Maynilad and MWSS P921,464,184, and fined Manila Water and MWSS the same amount separately.

With the decision, published by the High Court last Thursday but made available only over the weekend, they now owe a combined P406 million, or P202,256,726.22 each.

The water concessionaires were “found liable for violation of Sec. 8 of the Philippine Clean Water Act,” the

High Court said.

Section 8 required the connection of existing sewage lines in all subdivisions, condominiums, commercial centers, and other establishments, including households, to an available sewerage system.

In 2009, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) slapped a P29.4-million fine on MWSS, Maynilad, and Manila Water for their alleged failure to install and maintain wastewater treatment facilities within five years after the Clean Water Act was enacted in 2004.

The Court of Appeals upheld the DENR’s decision in 2013.

In separate motions for reconsidera-

tion, Maynilad and Manila Water asked the SC in 2019 to reverse its decision, saying it was “impossible” to establish a complete centralized sewage system within five years.

On Friday, Manila Water said in a statement that it is “reinforcing its commitment to the Philippine Clean Water Act as the company operates more wastewater treatment plants to ensure that domestic wastewater from households does not contribute to the pollution of rivers and other water bodies.”

Manila Water said it now operates 41 treatment facilities, increasing the company’s wastewater treatment capacity by 925%, from the previous 40 million liters per day (MLD) to 410 MLD at present.

It added that it is set to build 12 additional single sewage treatment plants (STP), and targets to have a total of 53 wastewater facilities with 1,156 MLD treatment capacity that will cover 100% of its concession area.

Chief Justice leads info push on lawyers’ accountability

SUPREME Court Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo will lead the second leg of the information and consultation drive for the proposed Code of Professional Responsibility and Accountability (CPRA) today at the Matina campus of the University of Mindanao in Davao City.

Expected to join the Chief Justice in the second leg of the Ethics Caravan are justices of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals and Sandiganbayan, trial court judges and court personnel; members of the different chapters of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines; and members of related government entities and organizations, and the academe.

The Davao City caravan will be for Regions IX, X, XI, XII, CARAGA, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

The CPRA is the proposed set of rules on the ethical conduct and accountability of lawyers in the practice of law. It seeks to amend the 34 -year-old Code of Professional Responsibility that was adopted in 1988.

The first leg of the caravan was held last Sept. 14 at the University of San Carlos in Cebu City for Regions VI, VII, VIII, and Palawan.

The other caravans will be held in Naga City in November for Regions IV-B and V; in Baguio City in January 2023 for Regions I, II, and the Cordillera Autonomous Region; and in the National Capital Region (NCR), also in January 2023, for Regions III, IV-A, and the NCR.

During the Cebu City caravan, Chief Justice Gesmundo stressed the addition of “accountability” in the proposed CPRA “as a significant change reinforcing ethical commitment among lawyers.”

“It is time to change not just the Code itself, but the people’s attitude towards it. We must convince everyone that ethics is a way of life,” Gesmundo said.

Suggestions and inputs gathered during the caravan will be submitted to the SC for its consideration.

The SC said the Ethics Caravan will culminate in the National Summit on Ethical Standards for Lawyers in February 2023. Rey E. Requejo

ASEAN exec: COVID-19 was bloc’s biggest challenge

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia—The COVID-19 pandemic, which had a devastating impact on the whole world, was one of the greatest challenges addressed by the Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN).

“It is the most difficult, as countries closed their borders,” noted ASEAN Secretary-General Dato Paduka Lim Jock Hoi during the 11th Editors’ Roundtable organized by the Indonesia-based Eco-

Sentro Artista hosts cellphone nature photography exhibit

SENTRO ARTISTA recently hosted the Up Close & Natural photography exhibit to promote mobile phone photography to captivate the beauty of nature at its finest over the weekend.

Around 50 visual artists from all over the Greater Manila—20 to 30 mobile photographers and junior photographers —flocked to the Arton Strip by the Rockwell in Quezon City to showcase their works.

“We get to discover some new things and new aspects that are visible to the lens and even to the simplest mobile camera,” Marjorie Ruiz, the organizer of Up Close and Natural photo exhibit, said.

Ruiz explained the objective of promoting mobile photography is to connect indi-

viduals who do appreciate visual arts, particularly the environment and commune them with nature’s best visuals.

“Through mobile phone photography, we see the different realms. In sharing our work with one another, we form meaningful relationships regardless of status, beliefs, and location,” she added.

The event exhibit was graced by first district Quezon City Rep. Arjo Atayde and veteran journalist Jay Ruiz to give a home to the country’s professional and non-professional artists.

Sentro Artista was formed for the benefit of the country’s various painters, photographers, sculptures, musicians, actors, and actresses, among others, to promote their work.

nomic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) and Khmer Times in Cambodia.

Recognizing the importance of mitigating its socio-economic effects, Lim said the regional bloc joined forces to cushion COVID-19 shocks which also claimed the lives of millions of people.

He noted that the ASEAN came up with a steadfast commitment to respond to the pandemic.

Lim said they raised funds to bankroll the need for medical equipment and supplies

and medicines of the ASEAN communities.

He said the ASEAN laid down a concrete framework, making its communities more robust and more resilient to return to the pre-pandemic level.

Another challenge faced by ASEAN, Lim said, is the Myanmar crisis, which he described as “no light at the end of the tunnel due to the extended junta.”

While the 10-nation ASEAN crafted better strategies and institutional capacity to help, Lim insisted the bloc should not be held hostage by this crisis.

Measly budget won’t let us hit 1m/yr housing target—Acuzar

WITH a measly budget for 2023, the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) will not be able to realize the plan of the Marcos administration to build 1 million houses every year, Housing Secretary Jose Rizalino Acuzar admitted.

In the recent Senate hearing of the DHSUD’s proposed budget, Acuzar noted it will be difficult to achieve this housing program of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Sen. Robin Padilla asked Acuzar how the agency can build 1 million houses a year when the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) only approved P3.95 billion for the DHSUD under the 2023 National Expenditure Program (NEP).

Padilla said this represents barely half of the agency’s proposed P7.61 billion budget for this year.

Acuzar thus pleaded with the senators to consider the additional P36 billion they have been asking to fund the interest subsidy of the housing program and address the country’s 6 million housing backlog within six years.

Boy Scout adult leaders, volunteers feted

PARTICIPATING in the scouting movement helps develop character and deserves acknowledgement.

As part of the National Scouting Month Celebration, the Boy Scouts of the Philippines (BSP), National Capital Region-Quezon City Council recognized the contributions of adult leaders and volunteers in their service to the scouting movement and the youth during the Gawad Parangal (National Court of Honor 2022) at Quirino High School, last Saturday, October 22.

Close to 200 awardees consisting of Quezon City Boy Scouts of the Philippines (QC-BSP) officials, schools division administrators, principals, school leaders, teachers, and volunteers in Quezon City attended the event.

Among the awards given include Gold (10), Silver (15) and Bronze (31) Merit Medals; Gold, Silver and Bronze Service Awards, and Meritorious Recognition to the Most Active Schools of SDO-QC.

BSP QC Chairperson and Councilor Godofredo T. Liban II, along with former Councilor and BSP QC Vice Chairman Jorge L. Banal Sr., QC Sangguniang Kabataan Federation President Councilor Noe Lorenzo Dela Fuente III, and Board Members Fe Esperanza C. Pangan, Agnes C. Castor, and other staff of BSP QC spearheaded the activity.

Dr. Antonio C. Merino, QC BSP Council Scout Executive, announced the council’s plans for the BSP-QCC’s 65th anniversary, including the production of a Souvenir Program that will highlight the organization’s activities and accomplishments.

Based on the DHSUD proposal, which was approved by President Marcos, the housing agency and the private sector would provide housing for a recipient, who would be the principal lender and will be charged 1% interest.

The remaining interest for the housing loan will be paid by the government.

Acuzar said the private sector has many sources of funds, like banks and capital market, which will be used by the government for the housing program.

Meanwhile, Sen. Cynthia A. Villar scored the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) for their plan to put up a building amid their tight budget.

FPA officials said they are planning to put up a laboratory where fertilizers and pesticides will be tested.

But according to Villar, for a regulatory agency like FPA, their P250-million budget is already big. She also said the agency used to have only P100 million in allocations. Macon Ramos-Araneta

NewsA4 MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 mst.daydesk@gmail.com
BIG BROTHER. Manila Police District Director Brig. Gen. Andre P. Dizon monitors the CCTV cameras at the MDRRMO-Operations Center in Manila City Hall to ensure order, safety, and police presence in the city’s cemeteries a week before All Souls Day or Undas. The MPD also monitors all roads leading to cemeteries to strengthen police visibility. Norman Cruz ART HAVEN. Seasoned journalist Jay Ruiz, his wife Marjorie Ruiz, and Quezon City First District Rep. Arjo Atayde (from left) lead the ribbon cutting of Sentro Artista’s home over the weekend at the Arton Strip by Rockwell in QC. MAKATI FIRE. Firemen hose down the remains of a restaurant following a re that
broke out at 11:37
a.m. on Makati Avenue and JP Rizal Street in Makati City.
With 48 re
trucks
and re
ghting equipment on the scene, the blaze
was quickly put out an
hour
later.
Diana Noche

When good news turns bad

BUT first, really good news.

The president flew to Leyte to inaugurate the Son et Lumiere improvement on the iconic San Juanico Bridge that his mother, then First Lady Imelda Romualdez, initiated and his father Ferdinand Sr. constructed.

It linked Palo, Leyte, which is beside Ta cloban City, the relatively prosperous capi tal of Imelda’s home province, to Basey in then and now, impoverished Samar, where residents used to be ferried by rickety pump boats to the regional capital in Tacloban.

Then Samar representative Sharrie Ann Tan thought as early as 2015 that one way of inviting public attention to her province was to light up the San Juanico Bridge, as if to tell the rest of the country that there is life, and a beautiful and large island on the other side of that bridge.

From Basey, the town where the most beautiful banigs are handwoven painstak ingly by its townspeople, one could motor eastwards, first to historic Balangiga, where the bells have been returned through the in sistence of President Duterte, and thence to the Pacific seaboard where lies Calicoan and its white sand, and Guiuan’s surfing waves in Eastern Samar.

Further northeast from Guiuan are Taft and Sulat with its islets ringed with white sand.

From Basey, going north, one reaches the seafood capital of Samar, the capital Catba logan, and therefrom Calbayog City.

Farther north is another province, North ern Samar, whose capital, Catarman has a unique airport where the runway is inter sected by a street.

The province, which is where ferries from Sorsogon in mainland Luzon dock to traverse the so-called Maharlika Highway, also has beautiful islands such as Biri with its white sand and beautiful rock formations etched through time by the splashing waves of the sea.

But now Governor Tan’s bright idea to light up the bridge saw fruition only when the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone (TIEZA), formerly the Philippine Tourism Authority, drew up the plans for a light and sound show in 2017 and made it a priority project along with the Boracay improvements and floating piers in several Palawan tourist destinations.

By 2018, work began on the San Juanico project.

Thus did the Son et Lumiere spectacle that Pres. Marcos Jr. witnessed last week see fruition.

The project would have been finished in 2021 had it not been for the pandemic which delayed completion. It is a project that Pres. Duterte should have inaugurated, but per haps the right timing came with the new president, whose parents built the bridge.

If the light and sound spectacle was of “Imeldific” standards, and would have wowed Dick Gordon as well, I am particu larly elated because my son-in-law headed TIEZA at the time.

***

What we thought was a breakthrough in the Percy Lapid murder case suddenly broke down. It was good news turned bad.

The confessed gunman surrendered to the police on Thursday, October 13, for fear of his being liquidated by the mastermind and his cohorts after he became hot copy with his likeness in the CCTV cameras subse quently flashed in the news.

Within the three days prior to his being presented to the press by the DILG secretary

and the OIC-PNP Chief, he had confessed who gave him, two Dimaculangan brothers, and a certain Orlando, the orders to kill the commentator.

Having a solid lead based on the confes sion of gunman Joel Estorial, you would expect the police to execute a dragnet for a certain Jun Villamor and coordinate with the NBP or the DOJ to secure the guy.

It is not as if there are a thousand Villam ors in our jails.

The NBI was called to do an autopsy, but what was autopsied days after Villamor died was his embalmed body, not a fresh cadaver, not even a frozen or refrigerated body

But no, they first had to make a grand show of Estorial before the media.

Three days after, the OIC-PNP chief was telling Karen Davila over Headstart at ANC that they have secured the “middleman.”

Yet just hours later, we were all told that the alleged middleman, Villamor, had died in Munti on October 18, under yet unknown circumstances, just four hours after the gun man was presented to media.

And then, the NBI was called to do an autopsy, but what was autopsied days after Villamor died was his embalmed body, not a fresh cadaver, not even a frozen or refriger ated body.

Contaminated by embalming chemicals, what use was the autopsy?

But wait, the PNP assures us. They have another middleman, this time ensconced in the BJMP, a detainee awaiting conviction by the court. And for sure, they have “secured” him!

Would the other middleman, a certain Christopher Bacoto, yet spill the beans, assuming he knows anything, or was just another layer in the clearly well-conspired crime?

Why would he, after what happened to Villamor?

This is either a case of publicity-hungry Keystone Kops or even worse, some of the “protectors of the citizenry,” the “guardians” of law and order, were part of the conspiracy.

Oh well, this is the Philippines! ***

I filed this article days before I left for a brief vacation in some other clime. I won’t be around during the Undas holidays and a week thereafter, and would not want to file travel stories while out of the country.

Game-changing names

WHAT’S in a name? The Shakespearean poser would have merited a more emphatic answer— Plentiful.

And that is how my favorite foodie-partner would surely have answered after doing the rounds of restaurants, resto-bars and cafes dot ting some parts of Cavite – also home of noble heroes who fought for freedom during the near ly 400-year Spanish era.

Pandemic or not, the saying remains the same.

If by any other name a rose would smell just as sweet, and that names make news, then it should follow that a brand would bring in cus tomers particularly with a name that is catchy, attention-getting and has a nice ring to it.

Filipinos in general, and Cavitenos in par ticular, have a special fondness for doublemeaning words or phrases. Double entendre.

In Tagaytay City for instance, there’s a place along the Taal ridge that is frequented by local and foreign tourists in search of gastronomic pleasures.

The resto is called “Brewed Awakening” and the reference is quite obvious: coffee in varied variants – Amadeo, barako etc. It’s served hot or cold to perk you up. Its menu of epicurean offerings includes hot bulalo soup and deepfried tawilis, which is endemic to Taal Lake.

In Dasmarinas City, along the road leading to an exclusive golf course, lies a bake shop that proudly calls itself “Breadwinner” (in big, bold, all caps letters.

The pun (or pun de sal) isn’t lost. But the clincher comes from an apparent Clint East wood fan who has modified an expression from an Eastwood movie to suit his purpose. The resto goes by the business name,” Bake My Day.” Take that, punk!

The brand of Caviteno wit and humor is quite infectious.

But long before the Cavitenos and the rest of our countrymen were made to bite the bul let in the aftermath of the COVID pandemic, Quezon City had stamped its signature brand names.

If by any other name a rose would smell just as sweet, and that names make news, then it should follow that a brand would bring in customers particularly with a name that is catchy, attention-getting and has a nice ring to it

Along Tomas Morato, for instance, a tat too artist boasts original ink and calls its shop, “Tanging Henna.”

And who could ever forget the urban leg end about a resto called “Cooking Ng Ina Mo” which drew a rival in “Cooking Ng Ina Mo Rin.” Along this line, I still have to see a place called “Kain-deria.” (Editor’s Note: There is one such in Santa Mesa, Manila called “Baba lik Carinderia”).

Old hat or novel, the whole point of this cre ative, mental calisthenics is that Filipinos love to play with words, a practice that makes one to lighten a situation or spice up a conversation in front of a local or a foreign traveler.

This practice speaks of Filipino tenacity even in the face of adversity and makes life less miserable.

It is an endearing, enduring trait. It can be a game-changer.

(The author is a freelance writer.)

CITYold-timers will probably recall the scene along an estero parallel to G. Araneta Avenue and E. Rodriguez Avenue in Quezon City.

There was a huge car assembly plant of an established American brand that stood on top of the waterway, but below it were infor mal settlers, or perhaps more accurately in the politically incorrect lingo of the time, a big squatter colony consisting of urban poor families living in ramshackle hovels.

Newspapers liked to publish the photo graph of that scene to highlight the contrast between affluence and extreme poverty in the country – or the yawning gap between the rich and the poor.

Fast forward to 2022, and, well, that un forgettable image isn’t there anymore. The car assembly plant had moved elsewhere, perhaps because of acute embarrassment over their overpowering presence in an ur ban poor area.

Has the inequality narrowed down since then? Not so.

Recent research conducted by the inter national humanitarian aid agency Oxfam on the impact of COVID-19 showed that “rich and poor countries alike exacerbated an explosion of economic inequality since the start of the outbreak of the pandemic from 2020.

In their 2022 study that measured the Commitment to Reducing Inequality (CRI) Index by looking at government policies and actions to fight inequality in the first

Inequality

These days, newspapers show the gap between the very rich and the very poor in this country by juxtaposing photos of the imposing skyscrapers and luxury sports cars in Bonifacio Global City and urban poor enclaves in certain parts of Manila and Quezon City

two years of the pandemic by reviewing the spending, tax and labor policies and actions of 161 countries, the Philippines landed a “dismal” overall rank of 102nd.

While this was a slight improvement from 109th in 2020, the Philippines is still lagging behind other countries.

Based on the 2022 CRI Index, the coun try’s performance in “reducing inequality through progressive spending” on health, education, and social protection dropped from 99th in 2020 to 106th this year.

Compared to the 2020 CRI Index, the

Philippines’ education budget was slashed by 15 percent. The health budget increased marginally, while the social protection bud get increased by 28 percent.

“It’s quite disheartening though not unex pected to see how the Philippines fares com pared to other countries when it comes to allotting resources to crucial public services such as education and health,” Oxfam said.

Oxfam pointed out that while the Philip pines saw an increase in social protection this year, “it is still considered low compared to other countries,” especially when Filipi nos have been grappling with joblessness and high cost of food and living expenses.

Essential health coverage, Oxfam said, is already lower than the regional average (excluding high-income countries or HICs) with about 55 percent of the population having no coverage of essential health care and being burdened by out-of-pocket health spending.

It said this “pushed more people into pov erty, resulting in further inequality.”

“The results of the CRI Index show how much the COVID-19 pandemic has exac erbated the widespread inequality that Fili pinos have already been experiencing. To get out of this situation, the government will need to make immediate and impactful changes.”

These days, newspapers show the gap between the very rich and the very poor in this country by juxtaposing photos of the imposing skyscrapers and luxury sports cars in Bonifacio Global City and urban poor en claves in certain parts of Manila and Quezon City.

Nothing much has changed, it seems, from many years past.

Empower the private sector and we will prosper

WHEN we go out to work or to play in this espe cially difficult time of high inflation and the linger ing but hopefully the end game of the COVID 19 crisis, we see the people on the move, most still wearing face masks and carrying on with life as survivors of a global pandemic that has inflicted deep scars in our economy.

Recovery and figuring out what one needs to do in the evolving post pandemic environment is on the mind of everyone. For most Filipino bread winners, ensuring the economic well being of his or her dependents is the daily challenge.

News reports recently published the findings of the Stratbase group’s commissioned survey con ducted thru Pulse Asia Research Inc. which probed into the role of the private sector reveals hard re alities that should prove very instructive insight for government on the people’s economic plight.

Conducted on September 17-21, 2022, the study did face-to-face interviews with 1,200 re spondents nationwide and an error margin of +/- 2.8. The survey scoped the National Capital Region, the balance of Luzon, Visayas, and Min danao, sampled at 300 respondents respectively.

The first question tested respondents on wheth er they agreed or disagreed that “The private sec tor plays a crucial role in accelerating economic growth” to which 86 percent or approximately 9 out of 10 Filipinos agree and only 3 percent dis agree. If you apply the error margin that’s practi cally zero. 11 percent did not give an opinion.

This sentiment aligns with the May 2022 data of the Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) re port on Employed Person per Sector which es timated 9.4 percent working in government or government-controlled corporations while the rest of the over 90 percent employed individuals are working in the private sector and earning their in come from either private enterprise, family oper ated businesses, or being self-employed.

The economic survival of 9 out of 10 employed individuals in the Philippines are supported by the businesses of the private sector.

The Stratbase commissioned survey also probed on what the public sees are the country’s problems that pri vate investors’ interventions will be important.

The question asked the respondents their opin ion on which issues the private sector can address

to boost the Philippine economy. Respondents were allowed to identify up to three issues.

Not surprising, creating jobs was the top answer at 69% closely followed by the private sector’s proven ability to “Help uplift the lives of Filipinos out of poverty” at 65 percent. About half of the respondents (49 percent) see the value of private enterprises in expanding livelihood opportunities.

The highlights of the PSA’s July 2022 Labor Force Survey gives a workforce perspective on the current job situation which is of course driven and dominated by the private sector

Again, these views are reflective of the PSA’s August 2022 report on the country’s unemploy ment rate that hit 5.3 percent from 5.2 percent which translates to 2.6 million unemployed with an increase of 79,000 more with no jobs last July.

A year-on-year comparison shows a substantial improvement from the 3.98 million unemployed in august 2021 from jobs created by the gradual increase in economic activities when mobility re strictions were eased.

The Stratbase survey’s test statement on wheth er “The government and the private sector should engage in partnership in order to sustain the coun try’s economic recovery” received an even stron ger response with 89 percent saying they agree and a mere 1 percent disagreeing and 10 percent with neutral answers.

In my opinion this is virtually unanimous and

sends the strongest message to President Marcos Jr. and his administration on the direct impact of the private sector’s economic success and their personal prospects for prosperity.

The highlights of the PSA’s July 2022 Labor Force Survey give a workforce perspective on the current job situation which is of course driven and dominated by the private sector.

The reports said, “By broad industry group, the services sector remained as the top employment hub, having absorbed 58.8 percent of the total em ployed persons in July 2022.

“The agriculture and the industry sectors account ed for 23.5 percent and 17.7 percent, respectively, of the 47.39 million employed persons in July 2022.”

The year-on-year top five sub-sectors with the largest increases in employed persons listed in the report are: wholesale and retail trade, repair of mo tor vehicles and motorcycles (2.14 million); Agri culture and forestry (1.74 million); Accommoda tion and food service activities (498 thousand); Other service activities (354 thousand); and public administration and defense, compulsory social se curity (206 thousand).

On the other hand, the report also noted the top five sub-sectors with a total of approximately 202 thousand decreased employments namely: Professional, scientific, and technical activities; Information and communication; Manufacturing; Water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities; and Mining and quarrying.

Our people understand that when the private sector is given the chance to unleash its innate in novativeness, aggressiveness, cutting edge exper tise, drive for sustained and long-term growth, and financial resources, the potential is limitless and in this digital world borderless.

Empower the private sector to do what they do best, and we will prosper.

Thousands join Hungary teacher rebellion over ‘humiliating’ pay

HUNGARY’S failing schools are becoming the focus of swelling protests, with pupils and parents backing teachers sacked for rebelling over “humil iating” low pay and years of government neglect.

With supermarket cashiers paid more than most teachers, thousands have joined the protests since the beginning of September, with human chains formed around schools across the country.

Last Friday students burned letters threatening teachers with dismissal near the Interior Ministry, which has been put in charge of education by na tionalist premier Viktor Orban, who restricted the right to strike in February.

Another mass protest is planned for Sunday.

Budapest high school teacher Katalin Torley was sacked along with four of her colleagues last month for refusing to teach classes in protest at low pay and severe restrictions on the curriculum, which critics say is biased toward Orban’s conser vative and nativist agenda.

Torley, who has taught French for 23 years, told AFP her sacking had been “very painful... Teach ing is the most important activity of my life. I am very attached to the pupils.”

But after years of unsuccessful lobbying for better conditions, “we’ve had enough... Kicking us out is a message to the others not to dare do the same,” she said.

Tightly controlled Hungarian teachers are the lowest paid of any EU member in the OECD at just 60 of other Hungarian university graduates, according to EU figures.

The government acknowledges that pay is too low. But it has tied a planned rise—to 80 percent of the average graduate salary by 2025...

Primary school salaries start around 170,000 forints (410 euros) a month, rising to a maximum of 396,000 (950 euros) for high school teachers —about the same as what a supermarket cashier earns.

The government acknowledges that pay is too low. But it has tied a planned rise—to 80 percent of the average graduate salary by 2025—to longawaited EU funding held up over concerns over Hungary’s corruption and slipping democratic standards.

But Torley said a pay hike that barely matches infla tion “will not be enough” to quell the protests, pointing to “serious structural problems” in education.

Hungary is already in the grip of a chronic teacher shortage, with few young people joining the profes sion and 40 percent of teachers aged over 50.

According to the EU, the centralized manage ment of schools also leaves school directors with

limited autonomy to improve teaching quality, fur ther eroding morale.

As part of sweeping reforms since Orban returned to power in 2010, locally-run schools were nationalized with a central authority controlling textbooks that teachers must strictly follow.

Critics of the hardline anti-immigration Orban say the curriculum is riddled with ideological bias. ‘System on its knees’

The lack of a separate education ministry is symbolic of the government’s “criminal neglect” of the sector, according to Szabolcs Kincse, of the PDSZ teachers union.

“The Hungarian education system is not fall ing apart, it is already on its knees,” Kincse told reporters Monday.

Underfunding over the last decade has meant that schools regularly have to ask parents for dona tions towards basic items like chalk and furniture, he said.

And in international comparisons, Hungarian students perform well below the EU average.

“I want my kids to get something out of the ed ucation system before it collapses altogether,” an IT worker and father-of-two Daniel Fogaras, 43, told AFP at the demonstration outside the Interior Ministry.

For Akos Bozai, a 17-year-old student, the pro tests “demonstrate our power to tell the teachers, ‘We are standing for you, your rights and a better educational system.’”

But he said success would only come “if teachers continue their civil disobedience and strikes.” AFP

EDITORIAL
EvEryman Published Monday to Sunday by Philippine Manila Standard Publishing Inc. at 6/F Universal Re Building, 106 Paseo de Roxas, corner Perea St., Legaspi Village, Makati City. Telephone numbers 8-5646225 and 8-5646229 (connecting all departments), (Editorial) 832-5554, (Advertising) 832-5550. P.O. Box 2933, Manila Central Post Office, Manila. Website: www.manilastandard.net MEMBER Philippine Press Institute The National Association of Philippine NewspapersPPI can be accessed at: manilastandard.net Former Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno Board Member & Chief Legal Adviser Anita F. Grefal Treasury Manager Baldwin R. Felipe Head—Ad Solutions Edgar M. Valmorida Circulation Manager
ManilaStandard ONLINE Joyce Pangco Pañares News Editor Jimbo Owen Gulle City Editor Rolando G. Estabillo Publisher Honor Blanco Cabie Opinion Editor Lino M. Santos Chief Photographer
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Editor mst.daydesk@gmail.com MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 A5

DOTr chief says PH transport sector ready for All Saints’ Day

Advocacy group urges smooth implementation of SIM Card Law

A CONSUMER advocacy group hailed the passage of the SIM Card Registration Law and expressed op timism that concerns on its imple mentation will be ironed out through transparent processes, sound plan ning and inclusive consultation.

“There is nothing that cannot be resolved through dialogue and ra tional discussion,” said Atty. Tim Abejo, co-convenor of CitizenWatch Philippines.

“We finally have this opportunity to set in motion a law that protects ordinary citizens from fraudsters, thieves and other sinister elements pillaging our digital space. We have to do this right.”

Republic Act 11934 -- An Act Re quiring the Registration of Subscrib er Identity Module (SIM) -- was passed by both Houses of Congress on September 28 and signed into law by President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. on October 10.

The law enables the state to “pro mote responsibility in the use of SIM cards and provide law enforce ment agencies the tools to resolve crimes which involve its utilization and a platform to deter the commis sion of wrongdoings.”

But numerous groups have raised concerns that the law, despite its lofty objectives, might hit a snag in its implementation and may be used by some sectors to violate the rights of and target some users.

Abejo said the primary practical concern among telco subscribers is the required registration of some 100 million SIMs in the country within 180 days from the effectivity of the law.

“This will need a strategy that will be as painless and non-disrup tive as possible for consumers and that will be achieved within the shortest and most feasible time line,” Abejo said.

“The people also have to be given clear guidelines on how to register, and where.”

According to the law, existing subscribers have to register their SIM with their respective public telecommunications entity (PTE) within 180 days; the Department of Information and Communications Technology may extend this by an other 120 days.

DEPARTMENT of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Jaime Bautista said the transportation sector is prepared for travelers to the provinces in the days leading to All Saints’ Day on Nov. 1

NLEX Corp. meanwhile said that it will implement additional traffic management measures from October 28 to November 2 in anticipation of the increased traffic volume this coming ‘Úndas.’

Bautista said air, land, and sea travel units have been expanded to accommo

date the expected increase in the number of passengers, ABS-CBN News reported.

The official said the airports are ready for more flights, while more buses and passenger jeepneys are also expected to accommodate more passengers.

“Our airports are ready for more flights. Our bus companies and land transport have an arrangement to make more buses and jeepneys available. Our ships especially from Batangas going to Mindoro and other destinations in South Luzon are also ready to support the needs of our travelers,” Bautista, quoted by the ABS-CBN News report said.

Travel ports are set to launch the annual “Oplan Biyaheng Ayos” later this week to focus on passenger assistance, while the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said that help desks will be set up at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) composed of public affairs, operations,

police, and medical personnel.

The MIAA said it will also monitor congestion and long queueing, and ensure critical airport infrastructure, equipment, and back-up systems are ready to use.

J. Luigi Bautista, NLEX president and general manager meanwhile said “we will heighten our operations as we are pro jecting an increase of around 10 percent in our average daily traffic of 278,000 at NLEX and71,000 at the SCTEX.”

With vehicular traffic expected to grow, traffic and toll operations teams will have full deployment to manage the traffic and assist motorists during the long holiday weekend.

Over 1,000 patrol crews, traffic mar shals, security teams, incident response teams, and toll lane personnel will be fielded to ensure safety and provide im mediate assistance to travelers. Emer gency medical services will also be aug mented.

Comelec unable to hold BSKE in Dec. ‘if lawyer’s plea is granted’

THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) will no longer be able to conduct the Barangay and Sanggu niang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) on December 5 if the Supreme Court (SC) approves the petition of election lawyer Romulo Macalintal.

Macalintal has asked the SC to re ject Republic Act 11935, which re schedules the BSKE to next year.

During a hearing on the Comelec’s budget, Comelec chair George Erwin Garcia said the poll body had to slow down their preparations after Presi dent Ferdinand Marcos Jr. signed the law postponing the BSKE.

“As far as the Comelec is concerned, we prepared fully, but as of October 10, 2022, we slowed down the preparation because of the law signed by the Presi dent. And so, if we will be asked if we are ready to hold the elections by De cember 5, then we will say that there is no material time on the part of the commission to proceed with the elec tion by December,” Garcia said.

He also said Comelec “will proceed with the printing of the ballots later and such other activities in relation to October 2023 elections,” he further said.

If the SC will order the Comelec to proceed with the elections this De cember, Garcia stressed they can no longer do it, especially the printing of ballots and procurement of other needed materials and equipment.

The Comelec will face the SC today for an oral argument regarding Macal intal’s petition.

Garcia also said in the same hear ing that the P500 million given to the Comelec by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) would not be enough to even build a foundation for the building that the Comelec is eyeing.

In the same hearing, Sen. Imee Marcos questioned Garcia on what the Comelec will do if only P500 million is provided. “To be very honest and frank, not many contractors may par ticipate in the bidding, if it will only be P500 million,” Garcia said.

Manny Pacquiao says he will make a political comeback

ruption, I wanted to eliminate corrup tion and then I wanted our country to progress,”Pacquiao said.

During his guesting on the South Korean variety show “Knowing Bros,” which aired late Saturday, Pacquiao talked about his recent run for the coun try’s top elective post, ABS-CBN News reported.

“I joined because I wanted to disci pline the people. When it comes to cor

Belmonte feted in Argentina mayors’ summit

QUEZON City Mayor Joy was hailed as the guest of honor in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and was awarded a Special Diploma by government officials at the Buenos Aires City Legislature Palace, where the C40 World Mayors Summit was held.

The C40 is a network of mayors of nearly 100 world-leading cities col laborating to deliver the urgent action needed right now to confront the cli mate crisis.

Quezon City has been a member of the C40 Cities network since 2015, and is the only city in the Philippines nomi nated for the 2022 C40 Cities Bloomb erg Philanthropies Award.

Argentina cited Belmonte’s brain

child GROWQC, an initiative that fo cuses on food security and sustainabil ity via urban agriculture that gave the city its nomination under the category Innovative Climate Solutions.

The city expressed her gratitude for the Buenos Aires City government, dedicating the honor to “QCitizens who have found common cause to support our GROWQC project, and other initia tives by our administration.”

“Let’s continue to show them how truly world-class our city is,” Belmonte said. “Our seat at the C40 network is proof of the QC government’s commit ment to the welfare of this generation and the next,” she added.

Host and comedian Kim Yongchul then asked Pacquiao if he has any plans to run again, to which he replied: “ I still have plans. There’s still that pas sion to help people”.

Viewers can see Pacquiao’s interview uploaded on the official “Knowing Bros” YouTube channel.

Pacquiao also talked about his sing ing career, past boxing matches and meeting Korean heartthrob Ji Chang Wook, the ABS-CBN News report said.

In the latter part of the episode, Pac quiao played games with the hosts and his fellow guests, one of which involved him mimicking the dances to popular K-pop songs like EXO’s “Love Shot” and 2PM’s “My House.”

DAR: more than 500K farmers benefit from moratorium on land amortization

OVER half a million farmers stand to benefit from the moratorium on payment of land amortization, according to the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).

DAR Secretary Conrado Estrella III said more than 500,000 agrarian reform beneficiaries are expected to benefit from the one-year moratorium on payment of land amortization and the corresponding 6 percent annual interest.

The suspension on payment of amor tization and interest covers a combined 1.18 million hectares of agricultural lands awarded to 654,000 farmer-ben eficiaries.

“This should be of great help to our beneficiaries because they can make use of the money intended for the payment of annual amortization and interest for

farm inputs or other livelihood activities to augment their income,” the DAR chief said.

The one-year moratorium covers “the financial obligation to pay the total cost of the land and the 6-percent interest un der Presidential Decree No. 27, series of 1972 or the Operation Land Transfer, as well as the principal value of the 30-year land amortization under Section 26 of the Republic Act No. 6657 or the Compre hensive Agrarian Reform Law.”

Mr. Marcos ordered a year-long mora torium on the annual amortization and interest payments of the farmer-benefi ciaries.

Estrella said the executive order was in preparation for another fulfillment of the administration’s commitment to con done the loans of the farmers with unpaid amortization and interest.

The Gabriela party-list on Sunday meanwhile welcomed an order from the Comelec dismissing the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict’s final attempt to investigate another entity’s bank ac counts in relation to its petition to can cel the registration of the sole women’s partylist.

Pimentel bats for probe of bridges, safety review

SENATE Minority Leader Aqui lino “Koko” Pimentel III on Sunday pressed for a deeper probe into the collapsed bridge in Loay, Bohol that killed four people in April this year. He also called for an investigation into the collapse of other bridges, and for a safety review of all the country’s bridges. Pimentel issued the call amid the recent collapse of a bridge in Bayambang, Pangasinan last Thursday.

“Are all our bridges still safe?” Pimentel asked following a series of collapses of bridges in the country?” Pimentel said.

He also cited the collapse of Borja Bridge in Catigbian, Kulafu River Bridge in Davao City , and an old bridge in Majayjay, Laguna.

“I am worried. The incidents are very alarming. They put doubt on the structural integrity and safety of all our bridges,” Pimentel said. “It is time to evaluate the safety of our bridges,” he added.

He said the collapse of Clarin Bridge over Lobo River which killed four people and injured 15 more should have been a wake-up call for both the national and local governments.

“It should have triggered a safe ty review of our bridges by the DPWH,” Pimentel stressed.

“Whether it is a local bridge or a DPWH-constructed and -main tained bridge, the government should order a probe and a thorough and detailed assessment of the over all safety of our bridges led by the DPWH,” Pimentel stressed.

He said that a regular assessment of our bridges by the DPWH could prevent any untoward incident from happening again.

NewsMONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022A6
FORMER senator Manny Pacquiao plans to return to politics after a failed presidential bid. ALL SOULS’ DAY PREPARATIONS. Relatives clean and paint the tombs of loved ones at the Manila South Cemetery on Sunday in preparation for All Souls’ Day. Hundreds are expected to visit following the reopening of cemeteries after two years due to the COVID-19. (Inset) Taguig City municipal cemetery workers along with the family members exhumed the remains of a deceased person for relocation to a nearby columbary. Norman Cruz and Manny Palmero TRIBUTE TO A NATIONAL ARTIST. A tribute to soprano Fides CuyuganAsenso at the Metropolitan Theatre in Manila. Cuyugan-Asensio was the first Filipino voice scholar who graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the USA in 1955. Since then, she has become one of the leading performers and producers of opera in the Philippines. Teddy Pelaez SOIL CARGO. A vessel filled with soil docks at Manila Bay on Sunday. Various environmental groups and fisherfolks are opposing the 25 reclamation projects in Manila Bay that have already been registered and approved by the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) which will affect 10 million families. Danny Pata

Palestinian militant killed in explosion in West Bank

A PALESTINIAN militant was killed Sunday in an explosion in the occu pied West Bank, police said, with Is rael staying silent on allegations from fighters that it was behind his assassi nation.

Tamer al-Kilani was killed over night in the Old City of Nablus in the northern West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said.

A Palestinian police inspector told AFP that Kilani was killed in an explo sion in Nablus, where the Lions’ Den militant group has emerged in recent months.

The group described Kilani as one of its “fiercest fighters” and blamed Israel for his death overnight.

“The treacherous occupation (Israel) put a sticky TNT device as the way to assassinate” Kilani, the group wrote on Telegram.

Palestinians gathered on Sunday around the charred remains of a mo torbike that was allegedly laden with explosives.

At Nablus’s Rafidia Hospital, Kilani’s mother and sister stood over his body.

The Israeli military refused to con firm its involvement in the killing when contacted by AFP.

An army spokeswoman said Kilani was involved in attacks targeting Israe lis and had previously been jailed by Israel.

The Fatah movement described the killing as a “cowardly assassination” in a statement published by the official Palestinian news agency Wafa.

Dozens of Palestinian militants and civilians have been killed this year amid an uptick in Israeli military raids, most targeting the northern West Bank.

The army spokeswoman said Israeli forces “will continue to operate at all times and in all places from which ter ror attacks against Israelis emanate.”

Nineteen Palestinians and two Israe li soldiers have been killed so far this month, according to an AFP toll. AFP

ALL-MALE TEAM. This combination of photos shows China’s President Xi Jinping (left) and other new members of the Communist Party of China’s Politburo Standing Committee (top, from left) Wang Huning, Cai Qi, Zhao Leji, (bottom, from left) Li Xi, Li Qiang and Ding Xuexiang, as they meet the media in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on October 23, 2022.

CHINESE

Literature finds unlikely socmed partner in TikTok

Sarah Sprinz’s series of young adult books has received a boost from an unlikely quarter: a community of literary enthusiasts on social media platform TikTok.

The #BookTok trend has exploded in recent times, with a growing num ber of readers posting reviews and engaging with writers, while authors use it to promote their works.

To some, it seems counter-intuitive – a platform known for short and of ten light-hearted videos is not the ob vious place to encourage an activity like reading that requires deep con centration.

But videos with the hashtag have racked up billions of views, and helped to propel the popularity of some works, while bookshops are rushing to set up stands where cre ators can film videos.

The trend “is super important for me”, Sprinz – author of the hit “Dunbridge Academy” series, set in a boarding school in Scotland – told AFP in an interview at the Frankfurt book fair.

“Personally for me, I believe it played a role (in my success), be cause I have seen a lot of videos rec ommending my books.” AFP

PARTY’S NEW LEADERS

No women in Politburo for first time in 25 years

THE Chinese Communist Party’s top body will have no full women members for the first time in 25 years, according to the new Politburo roster released Sunday.

Sun Chunlan, the only woman sitting on the previous Politburo, has retired, and no other women were appointed.

Here are the men who will rule Bei jing for the next five years, in order of seniority.

Xi Jinping

The 69-year-old was re-elected as general secretary of the Communist Party, paving the way for him to secure a third term as Chinese president at the government’s annual legislative sessions next March.

Xi abolished the presidential two-term limit in 2018, paving the way for him to govern indefinitely.

He has consolidated power since becoming general secretary in 2012, partly through a wide-ranging anticorruption campaign that brought down his political rivals.

This means that “elite promotions are less of a balancing act between rival

factions and more of a loyalty contest within Xi’s dominant faction”, said Neil Thomas, senior China analyst at Eurasia Group.

Li Qiang

The former Shanghai party chief and Xi confidant was promoted to num ber two in the party hierarchy, making him likely to be named premier at next March’s legislative sessions.

It would be an unusual appointment since Li, unlike most past premiers, does not have experience as a vice premier managing central government portfo lios.

The 63-year-old rising star’s pros pects were seemingly in doubt after he bungled a harsh two-month lockdown of Shanghai earlier this year that saw resi dents left with a lack of access to food and medical care.

This “showcases to everyone that loyalty rather than popularity is the key for your promotion,” tweeted Yang Zhang, an assistant professor at American University in Washington.

“The disaster of Shanghai Lockdown did not stop Li’s elevation precisely be cause he followed Xi’s order despite all criticism.”

Li is viewed as one of Xi’s favourites, having served as the leader’s chief of staff while he was party boss of the af fluent Zhejiang province between 2004 and 2007.

Zhao Leji The 65-year-old former head of the party’s top anti-corruption watchdog has remained on the Standing Committee, being promoted to number three in the party hierarchy.

The experienced administrator has been party secretary of two provinces and a Politburo member since 2012.

Wang Huning Xi’s ideology tsar and existing Stand ing Committee member has been pro moted to number four in the party lineup.

Dubbed the “brains behind the throne,” the 67-year-old former univer sity professor has devised ideologies for three current and former Chinese presi dents, and is the architect of Xi’s “China Dream” slogan, as well as the country’s more assertive foreign policy.

In one of his most famous works, “America Against America,” he argued for the US’ inevitable downfall due to wayward cultural values like decadence and individualism.

Cai Qi

Current Beijing party chief Cai Qi has been promoted to the Standing Commit tee and becomes the head of the General Secretariat, managing the day-to-day af fairs of the party, according to a member list released by Xinhua.

The 66-year-old is seen as a close po litical ally of Xi due to his time working under him in the provinces of Zhejiang and Fujian. AFP

Urgency lacking as TB passes COVID as biggest killer–expert

FOLLOWING gargantuan global efforts against COVID-19, tuberculosis is once again the world’s biggest infectious killer, a top expert has told AFP, la menting the lack of focus on rooting out TB.

Mel Spigelman, president of the non-profit TB Alliance, hailed the swift and dramatic progress to rein in the COVID pandemic, with a vast array of safe and effective vaccines, tests and treatments developed in the space of two years.

“But the juxtaposition with TB is pretty stark,” he said in a recent interview.

Tuberculosis, once called consumption, was the world’s biggest infectious killer before the arrival of COVID-19, with 1.5 million people dying from the disease each year.

With global COVID deaths steadily declining, “TB has regained the dubious distinction,” Spigelman said.

The TB Alliance, a non-profit working to develop and deliver faster-acting and affordable drugs against the disease, especially in poorer countries, points out that based on the annual death rate, TB kills 4,109 people a day.

That compares to 1,449 people a day dying due to COVID, calculated from the 40,578 deaths reported in the past 28 days on the Johns Hopkins University dashboard.

But unlike COVID, there appears to be little, and even waning, interest in taking on TB.

In fact, the pandemic had a devastating impact on efforts to battle tuberculo sis, with TB hospitals taken over for COVID care, and lockdowns preventing patients from coming in for diagnosis and care. AFP

Far-right Meloni takes over as Italy’s 1st woman PM

GIORGIA Meloni formally took over as Italy’s first woman prime minister on Sunday, a day after being sworn in as the leader of the country’s most right-wing government since World War II.

The handover of power from outgo ing premier Mario Draghi to Meloni will take place at Rome’s Chigi Palace and a first cabinet meeting will follow shortly afterwards.

The symbolic act at the seat of Ita ly’s government will see former Eu ropean Central Bank chief Draghi, in charge since February 2021, hand over a bell used by the cabinet president to manage cabinet debates.

European Union chiefs, wary of the far-right taking power, on Saturday said they were ready to cooperate with the new coalition government led by Meloni’s post-fascist and Eurosceptic Brothers of Italy party.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen congratulated Meloni and said she held “good” tele phone talks with her, while Meloni said she was ready to work with the bloc’s leaders.

La Stampa daily spoke of a “Euro

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni pean beginning” on its front page on Sunday. “Meloni: down to work, with pride,” blared the Corriere della Sera.

On Saturday, Meloni and her 24 ministers took the oath before Presi dent Sergio Mattarella at the Quirinal Palace in Rome, once home to popes and kings of Italy.

The 45-year-old’s appointment is a historic event for the eurozone’s thirdlargest economy and for Brothers of Italy, which has never been in government.

It won 26 percent of the vote in last month’s election, compared to eight and nine percent respectively for Mel oni’s coalition partners, former leader Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia and the far-right League led by Matteo Salvini.

A former admirer of former dictator Benito Mussolini, Meloni has managed to distance her party from its fascist roots.

Major challenges including soaring inflation and Italy’s high debt ratio—the eurozone’s high est after Greece—await the new government.

Meloni’s cabinet, including six women, suggests a desire to reassure Italy’s partners. She ap pointed Giancarlo Giorgetti as economy minister, who served under the previous government of Mario Draghi.

Giorgetti, a former minister of economic development, is con sidered one of the more moderate, pro-Europe members of Salvini’s League.

Meloni also named exEuropean Parliament president Antonio Tajani, of Forza Italia, as foreign minister and deputy prime minister.

Salvini will serve as deputy prime minister and minister of in frastructure and transport, which will likely disappoint Salvini. AFP

by the Court

Report) from Court

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Case Study Report (Home

Worker Ms. Teresita GonzalesMatriz.

the same to be in order, it is hereby ORDERED as follows:

1. Let this Order be published once a week for three (3) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation, to be selected by raffle pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 1079, at the expense of petitioners;

2. In accordance with the Rule on Adoption1, which requires that the date for the hearing on the petition where there is an application for change of name, shall not be within four (4) months after the last publication of the notice, let this petition be set for hearing on February 23, 2023, March 23, 2023 and April 27, 2023, all at 8:30 o’clock in the morning, on which dates and times, any interested person may appear and show cause, if any, why the amended petition should not be granted; and 3. Petitioners are further directed to furnish the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Local Civil Registrar of the City of Manila, the Office of the Solicitor General with copies of the Amended Petition and to submit proof of service at least five (5) days before the scheduled hearing.

SO ORDERED.

Quezon City, Metro Manila, August 25, 2022.

(Sgd.) LILY ANN V. MARCOS-PADAEN Presiding JudgeCopy furnished:

Office of the Solicitor General Counsel for the Republic of the Philippines 134 Amorsolo Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City ACP Vanessa Juvy O. Balita Public Prosecutor DOJ Building, Quezon City Hall Compound Brgy. Central, Diliman, Quezon City Atty. Orchids C. Albino-Mateo Counsel for Petitioner 31 C Gladiola St., Roxas District, Quezon City Ermer Dela Cruz Santiago Cherry May Santiago Petitioners 4325 Bok’s Apartment, Saint Anthony Street Bagbag, Novaliches, Quezon City 1 A.M. No. 02-6-02-SC, sec.12(4).

(MStandard - Oct. 10, 17 & 24, 2022)

REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES REGIONAL TRIAL COURT NATIONAL CAPITAL - JUDICIAL REGION BRANCH 217 - QUEZON CITY rtc1qzn217@judiciary.gov.ph 09278600957

LAST

SORIANO,

APPROVAL OF

TESTAMENT

SPEC. PROC. NO. R-QZN-21 -05939-SP ALEGRIA O. FERRER.

Alegria O. Ferrer

of the Last Will and Testament of the deceased, Araceli Cariño Soriano.

The petition al leges that petitioner Alegria O. Ferrer is the best friend and the named Executor in the Last Will and testament of deceased Araceli Cariño Soriano; that Araceli C. Soriano executed and left said Last Will and testament last updated on June 16, 2020 and executed in accordance, with the laws and formalities of the Republic of the Philippines; that the subscribing witnesses to Will are Eva S. Adan and Sonia Dando; that the Decedent is a Filipino Citizen and a resident of No. 39 Moses Street, Filinvest Homes II, Batasan Quezon City; that petitioner Alegria O. Ferrer, named in the Will as the Executor thereof, be allowed to serve without the required bond and that the petitioner is legally qualified, competent, willing and ready to accept the appointment as Executor of the Last Will of Araceli C. Soriano and hereby signifies her willingness to serve and discharge her duties and responsibilities as such; that after the burial and hospitalization expense, Decedent left properties consist of real and personal properties estimated assess value of One Million Eight Hundred Thousand Pesos (Php1,800,000.00) more or less; that the Testatrix at the time of the execution and updating of the said will, was 66 years old, of sound mind, and not acting under duress, fraud or undue influence and ‘was in every respect capacitated to dispose of her estate by will ; and that the decedent was survived by the Executor and her Siblings, namely, Marcela D. Soriano, Arsenia S. Ferrer, Vivian S. Peralta, Jessie S. Veloria, Susan S. De Vera, Fidel C. Soriano, Virginia C. Soriano and Loila S. Cervantes.

WHEREFORE, let this petition be set for hearing before this Court located at Room 604, Sixth Floor, Hall of Justice - Annex,. Diliman, Quezon City on January 26, 2023 at 8:30 in the morning at which place and on which time, all interested persons must appear and file their opposition/s to the petition.

Let this Order be published at the expense of the petitioner in a newspaper of general circulation throughout the Philippines once a week for three (3) consecutive weeks prior to the date

World MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 || A7 extrastory2000@gmail.com Manila Standard TODAY Republic of the Philippines National Capital Judicial Region Family Court Branch 13 Quezon City, Metro Manila fc1qzn0013@judiciary.gov.ph/ (0961) 6034815 IN THE MATTER OF ADOPTION OF MINOR JUAN MIGUEL SUMNGAT SARMIENTO AND HIS CHANGE OF NAME TO JUAN MIGUEL SUMNGAT SANTIAGO, Special Proceeding No. R-QZN-21-03631-SP SPS. ERMER SANTIAGO and CHERRY MAY SANTIAGO, Petitioners. x--------------------------------------------------------------x ORDER Received
is
Social
Study
Social
Finding
IN RE PETITION FOR
THE
WILL AND
OF ARACELI
Deceased.
Petitioner. x ------------------------------------------------------------x AMENDED ORDER This is a verified petition filed by petitioner
for the approval
of hearing. Further, let copies of this Order, together with the petition and its annexes be served upon the heirs, devisees and legatees, at least twenty (20) days before the hearing . SO ORDERED. Quezon City, Philippines, October 3, 2022. (MStandard -Oct. 17, 24 & 31, 2022) (Sgd.) CARLO D. VILLARAMA Presiding Judge ATTY. PHYDlAS EMMANUEL RAMOS Counsel for Petitioner Pamaran Ramos & Partners Law Offices Unit 402 4/F MG Bldg ., 150 Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village, Makati City praplaw@yahoo.com per_law@yahoo.com.ph ATIY. CLEMENTE D. FAJARDO, JR. Counsel for the Oppositors Fajardo Ruiz-Valenzuela Law Firm Unit D, 5th Floor Tempus Place Condiminium ll, No. 27 Matalino St., Diliman, Quezon City 1100 Fajardo_ruizvalenzuela_lawfirm@yahoo. ALEGRIA O. FERRER Petitioner No. 39 Moses St., Filinvest Homes II, Batasan, Quezon City MARCELA D. SORIANO Sibling 70 Taft Street, Binalonan, Pangasinan bernaduras@gmail.com ARSENIA S. FERRER Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan danca.veloria19@gmail.com VIVIAN S. PERALTA Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan visorperalta@gmail.com CDV/cjh JESSIE S. VELORIA Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan danica.veloria19@gmail .com SUSAN S. DE VERA Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan susandevera@dep.ed.gov.ph FlDEL S . SORIANO Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan danica.veloria19@gmail.com VIRGINIA C. SORIANO Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan visorperalta@gmail .com LOILA S. CERVANTES Sibling No. 186 Soriano St., Manaoag, Pangasinan danica.veloria19@gmail.com EVA S. ADAN Subscribing Witness No. 23 Matatag St ., Quezon City SONIA DANDO Subscribing Witness Blk.10A, Lot 1, Avocado St Cristina Homes, Caloocan City (MS-OCT. 24, 2022)
COMMUNIST
AFP
OUTPOURING OF GRIEF. The mother of Tamer al-Kilani mourns over her son’s body at the Rafidia Hospital in Nablus on October 23, 2022. A Palestinian police inspector told AFP that Kilani, an alleged militant, was killed in an explosion. AFP

IN BRIEF

Stocks expected to trade in a tight range this week

THE benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index is expected to move within a tight range this week on thin volume amid con tinued concerns over interest rate hikes.

Analysts said investors were closely watching key market indicators including the October inflation rate and the trend in commodity prices as these could provide clues on what the Monetary Board would decide in its November policy meeting.

The BSP has raised its key policy rate by 225 basis points since the start of the year to 4.25 percent.

Aside from the upcoming BSP meeting, investors are also watching the third-quarter earnings of listed firms.

Online brokerage firm 2TradeAsia.com said earnings of selected firms, including banks and industrial companies, remained upbeat as growth drivers were intact.

“While cash remains to be the undisputed king in times of volatility, dry powder has to go somewhere at some point, especially once broader market fundamentals start to inflect,” 2TradeAsia.com said.

CIMB Bank PH posts

39% transaction growth

CIMB Bank Philippines, a commercial lender providing innovative mobile-first digital banking solutions and services, end ed the third quarter with a total transaction value of P197 billion, up by 39 percent from a year ago.

The bank also grew its customer base to 6 million customers, a million more than in the previous period.

CIMB Bank Philippines chief executive Vijay Manoharan said over the weekend the bank’s continuous growth in the past four years was a testament to its unwavering commitment to drive the digitalization of the country towards financial inclusion and giving customers greater value.

“We are humbled by what we have achieved because we owe our success to our six million customers, who we are commit ted to help each of them and their families to solve their financial needs and help them realize their dreams,” Manoharan said.

CIMB, the country’s pioneer in digital banking, continues to enjoy strong growth in deposit offerings. By the end of the quar ter, the bank increased its deposit and cashin transactions this year to more than P100 billion.

Julito G. Rada

Tan’s MacroAsia unit to offer fixed-line Internet

TERA Information and Connectivity Solu tions Inc., a subsidiary of MacroAsia Corp., plans to become a fixed-line internet service provider for both business and residential users in the next three to five years.

The company signed a memorandum of understanding with Gur Lavi Corp., one of the Philippines’ fastest-growing telecom munications distributors, as it aims to de liver “end-user experiences as technology and tier 1 internet services provider to the LT Group Inc.,” a listed holding company of tycoon Lucio Tan.

MacroAsia expressed hope that team ing up with GLC would reduce operational costs and boost digitalization efforts as it strives to recover from the pandemic.

“We feel that GLC has technical expertise and good understanding of the whole tech side that we can leverage on. We can learn from them that’s why we are grateful for this partnership, and we wish to also impart our expertise and knowledge in helping other companies in their digital transformation journey,” TERA president and chief operat ing officer Eduardo Luy said. Darwin G. Amojelar

FPIP DONATION. Lopez-led economic zone operator First Philippine Industrial Park Inc. donates hand-washing stations to 15 public schools in its two host cities in Batangas province as part of the company’s support to help control the spread of Covid-19 and other infectious diseases. Flashing the thumbs-up sign are school children from Cale Elementary School in Tanauan City. With them are (from left) Tanauan City councilor Czylene Marqueses, FPIP vice president and head of external affairs Ricky Carandang, Tanauan School of Fisheries administrator Dr. Shirley Siman, Tanauan City councilor Sam Bengzon and other school officials.

PEZA worried over BPOs’ double-dipping on tax perks

THE Philippine Economic Zone Authority warned over the weekend that the transfer of registration by business process outsourcing companies to the Board of Investments may result in double dipping on multiple tax incentives.

“We don’t see any value with paper transfer. They are prepared to bend the rules on no double dipping in incentives in support of BOI, but why can’t they do the same for PEZA,” PEZA officerin-charge Tereso Panga said, referring

to the support given by the Fiscal Incen tives Review Board to the BOI.

The Department of Trade and Indus try issued the guidelines for the trans fer of IT-business process management firms to BOI under Memorandum Cir cular No. 22-19.

BPOs were given an option to transfer their registration to BOI from PEZA to skip the requirement of having most of their employees return to offices. BPOs registered with PEZA were given a leeway on work-from-home setup at the height of the pandemic, but are now required by the law to house their operations in registered IT centers or economic zones.

The BOI and PEZA separately provide tax incentives to registered enterprises.

The IT Business Process Associa tion of the Philippines underscored the importance of favorable government policies on incentives and remote work, more reliable digital infrastructure, tal

ent development and improved ease of business.

The group said reliable policies would help the industry achieve its goal of adding 1.1 million employees to the IT-BPM talent pool.

“We cannot do anything if the FIRB and BOI will issue the guidelines on pa per transfer. We are bound to implement it. However, we will continue to pres ent as option the PEZA board-approved WFH 30 percent limit until March 2023 to IT locators who would want to keep their PEZA status while availing of the designated IT centers and without need for paper transfers,” Panga said.

The circular provides that PEZA will continue to administer the fiscal incen tives of the registered business enter prises, including the validation of their income tax holiday incentives and issu ance of value added tax certification and other applicable certificates.

Metro Pacific eyes acquisition of two to three agri firms

INFRASTRUCTURE conglomerate

Metro Pacific Investments Corp. plans to ramp up investments in the agricul ture sector as it finalizes two to three acquisitions over the next six months.

MPIC chief finance officer June Cheryl Cabal-Revilla said the group would announce a new acquisition over the next few weeks. She said two more in the pipeline might be completed in the first quarter of 2023.

Cabal-Revilla said the upcoming deal would be bigger in size com pared to the first acquisition.

Metro Pacific acquired in June a 51-percent stake in The Laguna Creamery Inc. to take over the Car men’s Best Group for P198 million. The Magsaysay family will own the remaining 49 percent.

MPIC chairman and chief execu tive Manuel Pangilinan said the com pany was focused on expanding its investments in the agriculture sector Pangilinan said the group had no immediate plans of acquiring Roxas Holdings Inc. which is 50.9-percent owned by MPIC’s parent firm First Pacific Co. Ltd.

“We have not discussed about it. We should allow MPIC to develop its own agri food business before we ra tionalize,” Pangilinan said.

“Right now, it is just Carmen’s Best, but I think we are looking at several agri ventures which hopefully in the near future we can announce,” he said.

Nissan PH announces plan to launch 23 electric vehicle models by 2026

NISSAN Philippines Inc. announced plans over the weekend to introduce 23 electric vehicle models by 2026 and an other 15 by 2030.

Nissan Philippines president Juan Miguel Hoyos said the company started working towards this goal by strength ening the Blue Leaf program―a part nership with like-minded companies and government agencies by harnessing the capabilities of electric vehicles on top of mobility functions.

“We are strengthening this initiative by welcoming more partnerships with organizations who share with us the same vision,” Hoyos said Friday at the second day of the 10th Electric Vehicle Summit at the SMX Convention Hall in

Pasay City.

Blue Switch is a program that opens partnerships between Nissan and pub lic and private sectors to address social concerns by leveraging the unique capa bilities of electric vehicles for purposes beyond mobility.

Nissan initially teamed up with First Gen Corp. for the launch of Green Wheels Project which continuously de velops a fast EV charging station pow ered by renewable energy.

Nissan also engaged the Department of Energy, Philippine Disaster Resil ience Foundation, Gawad Kalinga, Mad Travel, Gateway Group, Manila Electric Co., Power & Equipment Supplies Inc. and the Electric Vehicle Association of

the Philippines to join the program to further expand electrification of mobil ity in the Philippines.

Nissan also worked with the Depart ment of Tourism to promote the devel opment of eco-tourism and successfully deployed the Nissan LEAF―the firm’s first fully-electric sedan, to help in di saster response among distressed com munities in Cebu and Tacloban.

It also unveiled the e-Power technol ogy with the introduction of the Nissan Kicks at the summit.

Hoyos said the car firm already com mitted to take its sustainability vision a step higher to shape a safer and more re silient future for the Philippines.

RHI is an integrated sugar company that expanded its business interests to include bioethanol and co-generation. It operates a sugar mill and a refinery in Nasugbu, Batangas.

MPIC, which has investments in power distribution and power genera tion, toll road, water distribution and hospitality, had announced plans to venture into the agriculture sector to reduce the country’s dependence on food imports amid the global supply chain disruptions and high inflation.

Pangilinan also said the group was no longer interested in the modern ization of Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

The Department of Transportation earlier said it would entertain new proposals for the multibillion-peso rehabilitation and upgrade of NAIA.

Aboitiz Power to buy another 35.4% stake in Mindanao coal plant operator

ABOITIZ Power Corp. expects to com plete the acquisition of an additional 35.4-percent equity stake in STEAG State Power Inc., the operator of the 210-mega watt Mindanao coal-fired power plant in the next 60 days.

“We have conditions precedent on both sides―STEAG and PSALM [Power Assets and Liabilities Management Corp.]. We’re looking at probably the next 60 days to have everything closed down, lenders consents and the PSALM’s,” Aboitiz Power presi dent and chief executive Emmanuel Rubio said in a recent forum.

Aboitiz Power received early this year a transfer notice from STEAG GmbH of Germany, which owns a 51-percent stake in SPI, of its intention to sell the shares.

DOTr set to begin construction of 3 EDSA Busway concourses for commuters’ convenience

THE Department of Transportation said over the weekend it would soon start the civil works for the construction of three busway concourses along Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue.

“These concourses are stra tegically located along EDSA providing accessible and con venient access for commuters,”

Transportation Secretary Jaime

Bautista said.

“The concourses will feature state-of-the art architecture with concierge, ticketing booths, turn stile for the automated fare col lection system as well as ramps and elevators,” he said.

Bautista said that once com pleted, the concourses would serve around 300,000 daily com muters along EDSA.

The SM Group and the DOTr signed a memorandum of agree

ment for the construction of the EDSA Busway concourses in November 2020. Under the agreement, the concourses are to be built at SM Mall of Asia in Pa say City, SM Megamall in Man daluyong City and SM North EDSA in Quezon City. SM invested over P120 mil lion for the project.

The concourses are expected to boost the efficiency of the EDSA Busway―a joint proj

ect of the DOTr, Department of Public Works and Highways and the Metro Manila Development Authority.

The government launched the EDSA Busway at the height of the pandemic in June 2020 to provide seamless movement of high-capacity public utility buses.

DOTr assistant secretary for road transport and infrastructure Steven Pastor had said that addi

tional concourses would be con structed in other stations of the EDSA Busway.

“Through our private part ners, the Double Dragon and Wenceslao Group, the next two concourses would be located at Roxas Boulevard and Maca pagal Avenue. On top of that, there would be four additional stations at Buendia, Taft, Roxas Boulevard and Tramo,” Pastor said.

The company informed STEAG it would exercise its right of first refusal to purchase the portion it is entitled to, which is equivalent to 35.4 percent of the company’s total issued and outstanding capital stock.

Aboitiz Power, which owns 34 percent of SPI, said it would end up owning a 69.4-percent equity interest in the com pany after the acquisition.

The parties executed a share purchase agreement on Sept. 15. The Aboitiz Power board approved the proposed ac quisition on Aug. 24.

The company is acquiring 109,258,684 common shares of SPI for $0.226 per share, equivalent to 35.4 percent of the total outstanding shares for $36,081,554.90.

Rubio said the Mindanao coal plant would be transferred to PSALM by 2031.

“We’ll operate it until the end of the cooperation period,” he said.

Aboitiz Power is looking at the com pletion of the Mindanao-Visayas Inter connection project to address the trans mission constraints in Mindanao, so that excess capacity from the plant can be sold elsewhere.

SPI was established to undertake the development, financing, construc tion, testing, commissioning, operation and maintenance of the 210-MW coal power plant, including the transmis sion line and related facilities, at the PHIVIDEC Industrial Estate in Misa mis Oriental.

BusinessRay S. Eñano (on leave), Editor Roderick T. dela Cruz, Assistant Editor business@manilastandard.net extrastory2000@gmail.com A8 MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 PSE INDEX CLOSING Friday, October 21, 2022 -72.43 PTS. 5,983.56 F oreign e xchange r ate Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas • FRIDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2022 Currency Unit US Dollar Peso United States Dollar 1.000000 58.9860 Japan Yen 0.006662 0.3930 UK Pound 1.124100 66.3062 Hong Kong Dollar 0.127406 7.5152 Switzerland Franc 0.996115 58.7568 Canada Dollar 0.726375 42.8460 Singapore Dollar 0.702642 41.4460 Australia Dollar 0.628000 37.0432 Bahrain Dinar 2.652801 156.4781 Saudi Arabia Rial 0.266241 15.7045 Brunei Dollar 0.700182 41.3009 Indonesia Rupiah 0.000064 0.0038 Thailand Baht 0.026151 1.5425 UAE Dirham 0.272279 16.0606 Euro Euro 0.978700 57.7296 Korea Won 0.000699 0.0412 China Yuan 0.138581 8.1743 India Rupee 0.012074 0.7122 Malaysia Ringgit 0.211551 12.4785 New Zealand Dollar 0.568000 33.5040 Taiwan Dollar 0.031187 1.8396 Source: BSP TOTAL VOLUME 429,162,322 TOTAL TRADES TOTAL VALUE (IN PHP) 4,506,967,444.20 DECLINES 104
CEO FORUM. Angkas chief executive George Royeca (second from right) puts the spotlight on the crucial need to explore the power of micro, small and medium enterprises in helping move the economy forward. Royeca was one of the panelists in the CEO Forum during the 48th Philippine Business Conference and Expo. SM Investment Corp. vice chair Tessie Sy-Coson (fifth from left), also a panelist in the forum, echoed Royeca’s statement, saying if the government could make things simpler for MSMEs, entrepreneurs and businesses would definitely grow. Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc. chief financial officer Manuel Lozano (right) said the banking sector should recognize the important role of MSMEs in economic growth and should make things easier for them.

UST players congratulate each other after scoring a points against Lyceum of the Philippines in the Shakey’s Super League Collegiate Pre-season Championship at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum.

Eagles clobber Warriors, tie Bulldogs at 2nd place

Santo Tomas, Adamson nail 2nd round SSL berths

UNIVERSITY of Sto. Tomas and Adamson University completed the second round cast after dominating their respective foes in the Shakey’s Super League Collegiate Pre-season Championship at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum over the weekend.

The Tigresses s a 25-17, 25-19, 25-22, crushing of Lyceum of the Philippines University behind stellar performances from Angeli Abellana and Regina Jurado on Saturday.

UST closed the group stage with a perfect 4-0 win-loss record to join the Lady Falcons, who defeated Emilio Aguinaldo College in straight sets 2514, 25-14, 25-19, in the second round along with De La Salle University and Far Eastern University in Pool F.

Facing off in the other second round bracket are University of the Philippines, University of Perpetual Help, reigning University Athletic Association of the Philippines champion National University and Ateneo de Manila University.

In the second round which will begin next week, teams will play another round robin against the squads they have not faced in the first round to determine their rankings in the knockout quarterfinals.

ANTIPOLO

CITY—The Ateneo Blue Eagles’ 91-76 clobbering of the University of the East Warriors has put them in a comfortable place at the end of the first round of the 85th University Athletic Association of the Philippines men’s basketball tournament at the Ynares Center here.

Coach Tab Baldwin believes this after the Blue Eagles posted their fifth win in seven matches, their second consecutive victory since absorbing a 71-76 overtime loss to the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons.

“We’re pretty comfortable from where we’re at. Of course, we’d like to have a higher placing. But, there’s two games where we lost competitive games,” said Baldwin as Ateneo enters the second round in second place in a tie with the National University Bulldogs.

Dave Ildefonso unloaded a gamehigh 20 points for the Blue Eagles, who picked up their 11th straight victory

Arcilla, Joven smash foes to boost 3-peat bid

TOP seeds Johnny Arcilla and Jonard Joven lived up to their billing as they smashed Mario and Reymart Sabas, 6-0, 6-2, on Sunday to set in motion their “three-peat” bid in the men’s doubles of the 39th Philippine Columbian Association Open Tennis Championships at its Plaza Dilao indoor shell court in Paco.

It was an impressive start for the duo of Arcilla and Joven, who hail from Butuan City and Sultan Kudarat, respectively, as they seek a third straight doubles’ crown since reigning supreme in 2018 and 2019, or just before the COVID-19 pandemic happened.

They play the winner of the duel between the tandem of Alex and Jules Lazaro and the duo of Luis Assitio and Jerry Bernabe, which was being played at press time, tomorrow in this nine-day meet sponsored by Smart/PLDT, official ball Dunlop, Manila councilor Jong Isip, San Jose Salt, W. L. Food Products, Palawan Pawnshop and Pagcor.

“We’ve been partners for five years now,” said the 42-year-old Arcilla, who likewise jumpstarted his title bid in the men’s singles by walloping John Jeremiah Tomacruz, 6-2, 6-2, Saturday.

Also advancing were Kristian Tesorio and Rafael Liancgo, who downed Rollie Anasta and Jeson Blando, 6-1, 6-3; Abdulquohar Allian and Argil Lance Canizares, who edged Bruce Ivan Valenzuela and Jose Gadon, 5-7, 6-4, 13-11; Andrei Cagmat and Elvin Geluz, who humbled Joseph Victorino and Roy Tan, 6-3, 2-6, 10-8, John Jeric Accion and John Altiche, 6-0, 6-1 winners over Alfonso Villar and Jan Latrell Javier; Heinz Carbonilla and Lajer Gonzaga, who turned back JD Benitez and Hilbert San Jose, 7-6 (2), 6-4; and Jose Antonio Tria and Bryan Saarenas, who slammed Jeffry Villanueva and Mitchie Frencillo, 6-3, 6-2.

over the Warriors over the last six years.

The Blue Eagles, who remain a strong contender for a Final Four spot, made big moves at the start of the third period, and after taking a two-point lead, 46-44, at halftime.

A jumper and a triple from Ildefonso found their marks during a pivotal 17-0 blast, which widened their lead to 17, 63-44 at the 6:02 mark of the third.

Ildefonso combined for 14 points with Rence Padrigao and Angelo Kouame, at the start of the second half.

The Red Warriors, who share fourth with the Adamson Falcons at 3-4, fell behind after they were held to just six

point in the third period.

“We played very good basketball today, especially in the second half. We are getting better, we’re growing and learning,” added Baldwin.

Abellana scored 15 points to pace the Tigresses while Jurado added 12 points including nine off kills. Xyza Gula chipped in seven attacks and an ace for the Espana-based squad.

“At least my young players are stepping up. It’s good that we have the momentum going into the second round,” UST coach Kungfu Reyes said.

The Lady Pirates, who were relegated to the classification round, absorbed their second straight defeat for a 2-2 card.

Zonxi Dahab and Joan Doguna led LPU with eight and seven points, respectively.

Adamson, on the other hand, banked on the trio of Lucille Almonte Aprylle Tagsip and May Ann Nuique to finish Pool B at second spot with a 3-1 slate.

Almonte, Tagsip and Nuique had 10 points each for the Lady Falcons, who kept the Lady Generals winless.

In the other Saturday match, NCAA champion College of St. Benilde closed its Pool D campaign on a winning note after beating listless Letran, 25-12, 2517, 25-19, for a 1-2 slate.

Mr. Mainit-Soberano bare-knuckle clash gets personal

REAL action is in store in the Universal Reality Combat Championship as the first ever bare-knuckle exhibition fight between Kenjhons “Mr. Mainit” and Map Soberano set Thursday nigwht is getting a little bit personal.

Kenjhons and Soberano, 39, are not just there to entertain the crowd at the Xylo at the Palace in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. They are also determined to crush each other for pride and glory in URCC 80’s Bare Madness.

“I promise to show how I burn somebody like Map with my bare-knuckle flaming fists and people who do not see the value of life,” the 40-year-old Kenjhons, whose true name is Kenneth Serrano.

“It’s going to be a bloodbath and I will use his own blood to wash my face,” Soberano of Central Taguig said. “I’m hoping

he [Mr. Mainit] won’t be running around for entertainment. It will be entertaining if he’ll go toe-to-toe with me.”

For inquiries about tickets sale, go to www.urcc.online and download the event’s app https://apps.wix.com/placeinvites/join-lp/b4e05b90-55a0-40a8-8fac17ccf4a2c074?ref=pre_banner_

URCC Global Chairman Arnold Vegafria and URCC founder Alvin Aguilar expect the bare-knuckle bout will definitely be an interesting bout for Filipinos worldwide, knowing how local fight fans love the mano-mano fistfights without gloves.

“Filipinos do love combat sports very much and we’re expecting that the first ever bare-knuckle fistfight to be held on Thursday in the Philippines will be a blockbuster,” Vegafria said. “This is going to be the first time here in Philippines

although it’s already being held in the Europe and the US. So everyone is excited about this big event.”

Aguilar believes many Filipinos will excel in bare-knuckle boxing, adding that most Filipinos are known fighters and never back down from any challenges.

“Here is another avenue for our countrymen to excel, bare-knuckle boxing. We have to prove to everybody that we Filipinos are the real boss when it comes to real fists, and we’ll show it in our first ever bare-knuckle fight in our country,” Aguilar said.

Besides the super fight between Mr. Mainit and Soberano, Kimbert Alintozon and JV Baldonasa will collide in the bareknuckle 125-pound category, while Elias Duran and Ronnel Esperas will fight in the bare-knuckle 145-pound class.

Young Reig pulls off shocker as Quiambao reigns anew

SUBIC—Upstart Irienold Reig Jr. pulled off a stunning reversal in the talent-laden men’s side of the Alveo 5150 Subic Bay with a blistering start while Bea Quiambao turned in another superb all-around performance to nail a second 5150 crown at the Subic Bay Boardwalk here yesterday.

Making his first crack at 1.5km-swim, 40km-bike and 10km-run racing, the 19-year-old Reig didn’t disappoint, dominating the opening leg in impressive 18:32, slowing down a bit in bike (1:08:58) before hanging tough in the closing run with a 41:27 time to edge Raymund Velasco for the men’s overall crown in 2:12:48.

Velasco trailed in the swim (22:44) but rallied in bike (1:04:22), only to fall short despite a 40:47 clocking in run to settle for runner-up honors (2:13:05) in a tightly-fought duel of power, speed and endurance that started in shady skies and ended in scorching heat.

Julian Teves posted a solid 1:03:27 time in bike after a 20:57 clocking in swim to wrest control but failed to match Reig and Velasco’s searing finish to end up third in 2:13:53 after a 45:14 showing in run.

The wiry Reig’s victory showed the vast potential in the Quezon City find, who is currently training under the developmental team of the national triathlon squad.

He also ran away with the 15-19 age group title while Teves topped the 25-29 age group and Velasco bagged the

35-39 title in the event sponsored by Alveo, SBMA, Finis, Rudy Project, Sante Barley, Lalamove, Active, Manila Bulletin and Tempo.

Quiambao, meanwhile, timed 2:23:24 to nail her second 5150 diadem this year after winning in Bohol last July which marked the return of the event organized by the IRONMAN Group/Sunrise Events, Inc. after a two-year hiatus due to pandemic.

Like Reig, the Next Tri Step stalwart used her swimming prowess to seize control and momentum, checking in with a best 19:12 clocking, then logging 1:12:10 in swim before capping her romp with a 47:45 time in run. She beat Kath Lagunsad, who timed 2:41:50 with leg times of 27:34, 1:14:32 and 53:52, while celebrity Bubbles Paraiso came in third in 2:50:48 (26:42, 1:18:23 and 1:00:12).

Quiambao also kept the 20-24 diadem while Lagunsad took the 30-34 age group honors and Paraiso lorded it over the field in 35-39 division of the last short-distance endurance event for the season.

Other age-group winners were Rae Musni (F1519/3:01:19), Gaea Maranon (F25-29/3:00:43), Ma. Lourdes Cabero (F40-44/2:51:05), Rizza Bautista (F45-49/2:58:48) and Janet Ching (F50-54/3:13:00), Adrien Arqueza (M2024/2:27:27), Gabb Rosario (M30-34/2:17:38) and Haythem El-Ansary of Australia (M40-44/2:17:28).

B1MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022
Padrigao, who hit 11 points with Bryan Andrade, handed the Blue Eagles their biggest lead at 20 with his two charities, 81-61, with 6:02 remaining. Irienold Reig Jr. Ange Kouame gives his Ateneo coach Tab Baldwin a low- ve.
Sports

Marinduque top chessers ready to face rated players

PROMISING chess players from Marinduque will get a rare chance to play against visiting rated players in the BKCCI Rated Chess Tournament slated at the Boac Convention Center from October 27 to 29 this year.

Executive chess player and event coordinator Giovanni Buhain of the organizing Boac Knight Chess Club, Inc., headed by Engr. Lauro Bautista, said six BKCCI Chapter champions and another selected Boac player will face known and rated chessers from outside Marinduque, particularly from Metro Manila and PCAP’s Laguna Heroes of team owner Dr. Fred Paez.

“BKCCI Rated Chess tournament is an event that aims to help our homegrown potential gems in the sport to hone their talents and earn Rating Points or FIDE Rating. They can only achieve that if they compete against rated rivals. That is our main goal in pushing through with this event that is fully supported by our local government unit here, led by Gov. Presbiterio Velasco, Jr. and our lone Rep. Lord Allan Velasco,” said Buhain, a popular government public works contractor in the region.

Buhain, who will be accorded the title Deputy Governor of District 3820 Rotary Club International 2023-24, extended his appreciation to fellow Marinduqueño, Philippine Executive Chess Association president Dr. Paez, who will send his proteges from Laguna and Manila for the Boac chess event.

Meanwhile, another huge chess festivity Marinduquenos will take centerstage on November 9—the 1st Marinduque Governor’s Cup Chess Championship—a birthday treat from Rep. Velasco, with the full backing from Gov. Velasco.

Cash prizes, elegant trophies and medals are at stake for top the achievers.

The country’s first lady grandmaster WGM Janelle May Frayna will grace the momentous event also organized by BKCCI.

Celtics down Magic for 3rd straight win

LOS

ANGELES—Boston forward

Jayson Tatum poured in 40 points as the Celtics beat the Orlando Magic 126-120 on Saturday to improve to 3-0 in the fledgling NBA season while the Philadelphia 76ers fell to 0-3.

The rebuilding San Antonio Spurs stunned the Sixers 114105 in Philadelphia, where frustrated 76ers coach Doc Rivers said after the game his team was “not ready” to win yet.

In Orlando, Tatum’s exploits and a 27-point contribution from guard Derrick White helped the Celtics notch another win in a game that featured 21 lead changes with neither team able to build a double-digit advantage.

Orlando big man Wendell Carter knotted the score at 111-111 with a put-back dunk with 4:23 to play.

Carter then fouled Tatum and Tatum’s two free throws ignited a 10-2 scoring run that put Boston up for good.

Terrence Ross led the Magic with 29 points and top draft pick Paolo Banchero added 23, but Orlando fell to 0-3.

That’s also where the 76ers found themselves after the inexperienced Spurs -- whose championship chances were downplayed by none other than coach Gregg Popovich before the season -- drained 16 three-pointers on the way to their second straight win.

Devin Vassell scored 22 points, Keldon Johnson added 21 and Tre Jones chipped in 17 for San Antonio while Doug McDermott made four three-pointers on the way to 14 points.

San Antonio’s top-scoring trio all have less than three years experience in the league, and Popovich said he was impressed

with the young team’s performance on the second night of a road back-to-back.

“What it showed me was they are serious about getting better and knowing what the league is like,” Popovich said. The Spurs withstood a 40-point performance from Philadelphia’s star big man Joel Embiid but held James Harden to 12.

“We’re not ready yet,” Rivers said. “Honestly, we’re just not. We’re not ready to win yet. You can feel that and so we’ve got a lot of work to do.

“It’s almost like we played these first two games hard, competed, and then felt like ‘OK, now we can win some games’— you’ve still got to go out and earn the game.” AFP

Top guns

up

Verde golf chase

Olympian vows bigger swimming program next year

OLYMPIAN and former national mentor Pinky Brosas promised to hold a better and bigger swimming program by the Congress of Philippine Aquatics, Inc., on a national scope, focusing on grassroots development next year.

Brosas said all cluster heads in 15 regional areas of COPA are done forging partnerships with their respective local government units and the Department of Education to conduct not just tournaments but educational programs for the athletes, coaches and teachers.

“The inclusion of provincial teams and underprivileged students from public schools is a testament of COPA’s serious campaign to open swimming to a much wider community. We firmly believe that swimming or any other sports is not exclusive to certain groups or community. And right now, inclusivity is happening,” said Brosas.

The swimming official was referring to the over 100 swimmers from public schools in Manila and teams from Leyte, Cagayan Valley, Cebu, Samar and Misa-

THE pandemic caused physical disruption of classes and cancellation of sports activities. Most students found themselves with more time at home in front of laptops and mobile phones. With the recent return of millions of students to face to face classes, MILO® Philippines partnered with different stakeholders to improve physical literacy of kids by introducing them to sports fundamentals.

Getting them to be more active has been a shared goal of the Back to School, Back to Sports program of MILO® Philippines in collaboration with local government offices, the Department of Education (DepEd), civil society organizations and sports teams.

Kids were energized in various barangays as they engaged in different sports such as Basketball, Football, Karate, Running, led by MILO® Champions and local athletes in their respective regions.

In this weekend caravan, hundreds of kids were introduced to basic drills,

mis Oriental, who joined COPA’s Reunion Swim Challenge leg 3, which come to a close on Sunday at the Teofilo Ildefonso swimming pool inside the Rizal Memorial Sports Center.

“Swimmers come and go, but coaches

“We

and trainors, nandiyan lang ang mga ‘yan kaya kailangan natin silang ma-educate sa tamang pamamaraan. Kapag tama ang nasimulan, walang duda na tama lahat ang approach sa mga batang atleta,” added Brosas, who was part of the Philippine Team in

the Munich (1972) and Montreal (1976) Olympics.

Brosas joined COPA co-founder and tournament director Chito Rivera and technical head Richard Luna in awarding the medals to all the winners, headed by Nicola Queen Diamante and Paulene Beatrice Obebe, who both grabbed their third gold medals in the event organized by Samahang Manlalangoy ng Pilipinas, Philippine Sports Commission, Speedo and MILO.

Diamante, 11, collected her third mint by winning the girls’ 11-yrs 50-m backstroke, clocking 34.41 seconds, while Obebe claimed the 12-yrs class with a time of 36.82 seconds as they shared the ‘Most Prolific Swimmer’ award.

On Saturday, Diamante, the pride of RSS Dolphins Swim Club, shone in the girls: class A 50-m butterfly (34.72) and 50-m freestyle (31.69), while Obebe dominated her 12-yrs class, winning the 50-m freestyle (29.97) and 50-m butterfly (31.22).

The multi-titled Mondilla seeks to close the PGT season the way he opened it in 2020 when the 2019 Philippine Open champion bested four others in the most crowded playoff cast in Tour history to win the PGT Asia crown at Pradera before the circuit took a forced hiatus due to pandemic.

The Del Monte ace still expects to go through a wringer this week, given the depth of the competing field and the wind conditions forecasted at the long, challenging layout for the week, guaranteeing another wild finish to the P2 million championship organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc.

But Lascuña, another multiple winner in the ICTSI-backed circuit, is out to snap a run of sorry finishes, including back-to-back runner-up efforts at Eagle Ridge-Aoki and Riviera, while Que hopes to cash in on his length in dealing with the Pradera challenge and ending a long title spell.

Gialon, Van der Valk and Bibat, on the other hand, try to become the only twoleg winner in this year’s edition of the PGT after ruling the Caliraya Springs, Splendido Taal and Eagle Ridge-Aoki legs, respectively, with the two other champions – Miguel Tabuena (Luisita) and Juvic Pagunsan (Riviera) – skipping the final leg.

But a slew of others are going all out to upstage the fancied bets and fuel their respective title drive, including Rupert Zaragosa, one of those who lost to Mondilla in the playoff, Ira Alido, Reymon Jaraula, Jay Bayron, Jhonnel Ababa, Joenard Rates, Orlan Sumcad and Quiban, who is back on the local circuit after stints abroad.

Focus will also be on journeyman Rico Depilo, whose tied for fourth finish at Riviera where he strongly contended in one stretch of the final round should make him one of the players to watch in the next four days with Ivan Monsalve and Sean Ramos heading the young guns’ challenge in the event.

Back to school, back to sports with MILO PH

strations, MILO Champions were also present onsite and virtually to share their grit stories of how they persevered to succeed. Karate Champion and star scholar Jamie Lim, award-winning Taekwondo Champion Japoy Lizardo, and running Champion Rio dela Cruz also shared their success stories, making the event more inspiring for moms and kids.

“Masaya ako at nakasama kami sa Back To School, Back To Sports Program ng MILO, kasi nag-enjoy ang anak ko sa mga sports, lalo na sa Taekwondo at soccer, gusto na nga daw niya laging maglaro ng sports kasama ng mga classmates niya,” says Ressian Del Mundo of Batangas, mom of nine-year-old Cris James.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022B2 Sports
fire
ICTSI Pradera
TSA 2nd ANNIVERSARY, COLLAB WITH AESTHETICS TOYOTA. The Shop Automotive head William Pe and wife Shaira Sian-Pe pose for a photo during a meet-and-greet and collaboration with Aesthetics Toyota and fellow members and admins on the 2nd anniversary of TSA last September 25 at the O Square 2 upper deck parking in Greenhills, Mandaluyong. Pe and Aesthetics Toyota president Jethro Esquera thank the sponsors, who supported the event. Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics drives to the basket during the game against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. AFP CLYDE Mondilla is primed for another stab at Philippine Golf Tour glory, so do Tony Lascuña, Angelo Que, Zanieboy Gialon, Guido Van der Valk, Michael Bibat and the come-backing Justin Quiban even as Chanelle Avaricio returns to hunt for a fourth crown in the ladies side of the ICTSI Pradera Verde Championship unfolding Tuesday in Lubao, Pampanga. Nicola Queen Diamante in action Participants learn taekwondo moves and proper form, giving them an exciting first experience of sports.
are a nation of
Champions, and through these development programs,
we
hope
to get more
kids into sports by making them experience fun being into sports with their peers. It starts here, and hopefully we can discover, hone and support our next generation Champions from these barangays,” says Carlo Sampan, Head of MILO Sports. “It is an honor to partner with MILO® Philippines in introducing sports to kids during this back to school season, be- cause we believe that these initiatives also teach them values such as respect, discipline and teamwork,” adds Rocky Samson, Secretary General of Philippine Taekwondo Association. Aside from doing sports demon- Kids get basic lessons on dribbling

OVER the weekend, multimedia star Toni Gonzaga faced the entertainment press to talk about her latest show on ALLTV. Simply titled Toni, the talk show airs daily at 5:00 p.m.

Donning a plain mid-length white dress, she immediately greeted her audience upon arriving at the venue and proceeded to answer questions from the eager entertainment scribes.

Since the start of the election period early this year, the 38-year-old singer, host, and actress has been drawing flak for her decision to leave ABS-CBN, her mother network for almost two decades, and began joining President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.’s campaign sorties as main host and performer. Just recently, she was launched as the ambassador of an ecommerce platform’s October sale promo, which did not quite sit well with netizens who vowed to boycott the company.

“I think it’s normal for people to have speculations when you make big decisions or when you sign a contract. I choose not to dwell on those things_ on negativity and bashing online. Any decision that you make na sinunod mo yung desisyon ng puso, it will lead you to the right path. And it will give you peace in your heart,” she stated. “When you make the right decision, and there’s peace in your heart, that’s priceless.”

“I don’t want to dwell on anything that’s damaging or anything that’s not

Taylor Swift's 10th album crashes Spotify

AMERICAN singer-songwriter Taylor Swift marks her gradual return to pop with the release of her 10th album Midnights, which sparked an online fan frenzy following its witching hour release on Friday – and crashed Spotify in the process.

Swifties from the United States to France and Britain were forced to wait patiently for hours to get their first earful of Swift’s latest sound on the streaming platform – released at the stroke of midnight.

Despite the technical problems, the

hugely anticipated work set a record as the most-streamed album in a day, Spotify said.

The album’s 13 songs tell “the story of 13 sleepless nights scattered throughout my life,” Swift explained on Twitter. Together, they form “a full picture of the intensities of that mystifying, mad hour.”

Once all Spotify issues were resolved – mostly within the hour—enthusiasts discovered melodies set to an electropop beat, complete with synths, dubstep-inspired rhythms, and a more

androgynous side to Swift’s vocals.

The 32-year-old, who began her career in country before shifting to pop and becoming a megastar, abandons her more recent indie-folk vein in the new album. The pop sound marks a departure from Evermore and Folklore, her two previous albums which were written during the pandemic, the latter of which won Album of the Year at the 2021 Grammys.

In Midnights, which includes the smooth vocals of Lana Del Rey in

TONI TALKS

Multimedia star chooses peace of mind over entertaining negativity and controversies

the duet “Snow on the Beach,” Swift evokes a certain dreamy mystique, complete with nighttime ruminations – her reflections on growing older and the complications of love.

True to Swift form, the songstress had a surprise up her sleeves for her loyal fans.

She released an extended 20-song version at 3:00 am on the East Coast titled Midnights (3am Edition). The seven extra ballads, she said, were “songs we wrote on our journey to find that magic 13.” AFP

of people from all walks of life, from celebrities to content creators, to normal people, where these interviewees can share their moving stories to uplift and spread good vibes to the Filipino audience. The show aims to be more than just a talk show, it also aims to be a safe space for fellow Filipinos with fresh inspiring stories where their voices can be heard.

Toni’s pilot episode featured her best friend, Mariel Rodriguez-Padilla where during the guesting, Toni and Mariel reminisced the triumphs and hardships in their 18 years of friendship and how it strengthened throughout the years.

In the succeeding episodes, the inspiring story of the online seller, Joanalyn Palacio, and the struggles of her journey with her son with hydrocephalus were shared. They were also chosen as a beneficiary of the profit from the live selling of Toni and Marielle on September 9 as support for the medication of her son.

Toni also featured some of the biggest television and online personalities in the country for the succeeding episodes including Bayani Agbayani, Dr. Willie Ong, Ninong Ry, Dr. Vicki Belo, and her real-life sister, Alex Gonzaga.‘

ALLTV airs daily from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. with a solid lineup of entertainment and news and can be viewed through Analog and Digital Free TV using digibox or through cable channels such as Planet Cable, Cignal TV, Skycable, Cablelink; as well as in major channels in provinces across the country.

healthy for my soul. I choose to move forward,” she added.

Toni is also celebrating her 20th year in showbiz. Asked about the best decisions she learned from being in the industry for two decades now, the multimedia star spoke about staying true to her core despite all the challenges that confront her.

“I never gave up on myself. Even when everybody was giving up on me when I was starting, even when no one was believing in me, and everybody was turning their backs on me, I never gave up my myself, my dream, and my faith. For as long as you believe in yourself, you

continue to make your soul and your spirit alive.”

Talking about her new show, she said it is a dream come true for her as it carves a milestone for her career as she also celebrates her comeback on national television.

Meanwhile, Toni was emotional during the unveiling of her own studio and new “home” which was one of her goals as one of the prominent TV hosts in the country.

“I’m so grateful, kasi ang tagal ko nang in-aspire ito, finally I have my own studio for my own show,” Toni said.

The show’s format spotlights on stories

WinWyn Marquez’s winning moments

ABS-CBN drops ‘Cattleya Killer’ suspenseful trailer

production to screen at MIPCOM, the world’s largest content market.

HER being a star is destiny manifesting into reality, Teresita Ssen Lacsamana Marquez is a true showbiz royal. Her mother, the legendary Alma Moreno embraced the Third Force during the height of the Nora Aunor-Vilma Santos movie queen rivalry that spanned for so many decades. Her daddy dearest is basketball player, comedian, former public servant, and now seasoned actor Joey Marquez.

This Kapuso star had her lioness’s share of antagonistic characters in the many primetime and afternoon show offerings in GMA 7.

Her aunt is the one and only Melanie Marquez, an original Filipina supermodel with the title of first runner-up from the legendary Ford Modelling Agency contest, and 1979 Miss International titleholder. Thus, it is no longer a puzzlement when WinWyn Marquez became the first Filipina to become victorious in the 2017 Reina Hispanicoamericana beauty pageant. We all know that title and pop culture history made, is just the beginning of more winning moments for this beautiful maiden.

Marquez’s latest triumph as best actress in this year’s International Film Festival Manhattan (IFFM).

Clad in an all-black smart casual ensemble, the blooming Marquez shares that everything still feels surreal to her.

“Up to now, there are times when I want to pinch myself and wonder if totoo ba talaga ito? I cannot believe it. The adrenaline high is still in my system. Being super happy about it I must say is an understatement.”

“I was putting my daughter to sleep

when they messaged me about it,” Marquez recollects about how she found out about the victory. “I don’t want to believe it at first, baka kasi prank siya. And I needed to contain how I was feeling kasi nga ayokong magising ang baby ko. It only became real to me when I received the message that was requesting for a speech. That message hit me hard in a great way. Hindi ko alam kung sisigaw ako, iiyak. Ang saya-saya talaga.”

The film Nelia is Marquez’s first lead role where she portrayed the titular character of a nurse who uncovers the truth behind the suspicious demise of patients in the hospital she serves.

“Doing the movie was challenging to all of us because I believe that because of the coronavirus threat, but the staff, the production team, everyone made sure that we were all safe I’d also like to add that the trust and confidence of the producers and my director Lester Dimaranan, added more fuel to that passion I am telling you about. I love acting. Giving heart and soul to the characters I portray is artistically and personally fulfilling for me. Giving Nelia her voice, feelings, and emotional truth, they are all rooted to my passion and commitment to my craft of being an actress,” Marquez explains.

Nelia is an A&Q Production Films’ first film offering that competed at the 2021 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF). The

Motherhood becomes Marquez and enjoys every second of being a hand-on-mommy with Luna, her firstborn daughter. She quips: “Being a mother is tiring, fun and always exciting. There is always something new to learn. The moments I have with Luna, I will forever treasure. The breastfeeding, the burping after she feeds, the cooing, and smiling, the wonderful baby smell, everything and anything about her, I cherish.”

She was in her six month of pregnancy when she announced it during the Nelia grand press conference. Six months after, the international best actress win, and four months prior, she divulges: “I had the opportunity to work alongside award winning actors in the Ligalig with A-listers Allen Dizon, Snooky Serna, and our National Artist Ms. Nora Aunor Sobra akong na-star struck kay Ms. Nora. Ni hindi niya ipaparamdam sa iyo na siya ang nagiisang superstar and lalong wala siyang kahit na anong yabang sa katawan even with her current stature as a Pambansang Alagad ng Sinig.”

Marquez points out with the sweetest smile on her lovely face: “My firstborn Luna is my God-given lucky charm.”

Nelia is now available to watch on AQ Prime Stream

The two-minute trailer starts by featuring a woman’s corpse with a Cattleya flower on top of her face, leaving investigators baffled as it is reminiscent of the style of Gene Rivera (Aga Muhlach’s character in Sa Aking Mga Kamay), a serial killer who terrorized Manila two decades ago.

The trailer shows viewers pivotal scenes in the six-part series, which is adapted from the 1996 Star Cinema movie Sa Aking Mga Kamay, including the return of Joven (Christopher de Leon) as the NBI agent who will handle the case of cryptic murders and Anton (Atayde) telling his dad, Joven, that the new killer is not a copycat since he thinks the killer has developed his own pattern.

As seen in the trailer, Cattleya Killer also offers a glimpse of the action-packed and sinister scenes that will keep viewers on the edge of their seats. Arjo’s other acclaimed costars appearing in the trailer are Jake Cuenca, Jane Oineza, Ria Atayde, Ricky Davao, Nonie Buencamino, Ketchup Eusebio, Frances Makil-Ignacio, Jojit Lorenzo, Rafa Siguion-Reyna, and Zsa Zsa Padilla

Meanwhile, Cattleya Killer had its premiere screening at MIPCOM Cannes on October 19, marking a milestone for Philippine entertainment as it was the first Filipino

In attendance were the team from ABSCBN and co-producer Nathan Studios Inc., including ABS-CBN International Production head Ruel Bayani, Arjo, Ria, and their parents and co-producers, Sylvia Sanchez and Art Atayde

“I would like to dedicate all our efforts to our Kapamilyas, our kababayans, the Filipinos all over the world. To champion Filipino talent in the global stage is one thing, but to provide them joy, pride, honor, and inspiration – that to ABS-CBN is a true measure of our success,” Bayani said before the premiere screening.

Directed by Dan Villegas, written by Dodo Dayao, and executive produced by Bayani, Cattleya Killer will be released for international audiences as ABS-CBN continues its global march. The country’s leading content provider, ABS-CBN continues to forge new partnerships to promote Filipino stories and talent all over the world.

Cattleya Killer follows Almost Paradise, the first American TV series filmed entirely in the Philippines, which ABS-CBN co-produced with Hollywood’s Electric Entertainment.

Other ABS-CBN International coproductions in the pipeline are Concepcion a crime family series centering on a Filipino kingpin in Los Angeles starring Sharon Cuneta, and Sellblock, a New Bilibid Prisonset drama that involves an American agent to be headlined by Jericho Rosales

MONDAY, OCTOBER 23 2022 B3 nickie.standard@gmail.com Nickie Wang, EditorEntertainment
film’s producer is Atty. Aldwin Alegre, coproducer and screenwriter Atty. Melanie Honey Quiño ON OCTOBER 20, ABS-CBN released the trailer of Cattleya Killer, the upcoming international drama series starring 2020 Asian Academy Creative Awards Best Actor Arjo Atayde Awardwinning singersongwriter Taylor Swift WinWyn Marquez has recently taken home the best actress award in this year’s International Film Festival Manhattan (IFFM) WinWyn Marquez (left) and ‘Nelia’ director Lester Maranan The multimedia actress chooses to move forward instead of dwelling on that’s unhealthy for her soul Toni (center, seated) with members of the entertainment press ABS-CBN’s ‘Cattleya Killer’ starring Arjo Atayde joins other screeners for the 2022 MIPCOM in Cannes, France (Photo by France Loremi Cedo) From left: Ria, Arjo, Sylvia, and Art Atayde at the MIPCOM in Cannes Toni Gonzaga hosts a daily talk show on AllTV

A delightful discovery

ITHAS been several months since my friend, Loleth So, shared with me details of their properties in Newport City. She is the Area Sales and Marketing Director for Megaworld Hotels and Resorts, one of the largest hospitality chains in the country.

I told Loleth that I have had the opportunity to stay at Savoy Hotel but I didn’t know they also had a Belmont Hotel in the same area. I told her that I’ll find time to check it out “one of these days.”

Last week, I felt the need to get away from my usual sphere of activity, to go to some place new, but within Metro Manila, as I didn’t want to drive too far. I remembered my promise to check on Belmont Hotel, so I booked myself for the weekend.

I seldom go to Newport City so I am really not familiar with the buildings there. I had to drive slowly looking for the hotel on the street behind Savoy Hotel going towards Newport World Resorts. After passing by more than half of the buildings on that street, I finally found Belmont Hotel.

This 470-room, 4-star property is strategically located across NAIA Terminal 3. In fact, it’s the first hotel one sees when using the footbridge that connects Terminal 3 to Newport City. To me, its location right beside the Shrine of St. Therese of the Child Jesus is also a big plus factor. Catholic “staycationers” will find it easy to do their Sunday duties when booked at the hotel, as I did.

The check-in process by the efficient Front Office staff was a breeze and, in no time, I found myself enjoying the comforts of my very spacious and well-designed room which had all the accoutrements of modern-day living.

What made the room even more appealing was the relaxing smell of aromatherapy oil. I am a true disciple of these essential oils because I know they are suitable for respiratory disinfection, are effective decongestants, and have proven psychological benefits, that’s why I also have them at home.

Before I yielded to the powerful temptation of just enjoying the comforts of my king-sized bed and shutting off the outside world with some restful sleep, I decided to check out the hotel’s swimming pool. When staying in hotels, I always do some laps as part of my exercise regimen and try to shed some unwanted calories after a hearty meal.

Rooftop swimming pools always sweep me off my feet. There is something about them that makes me want to jump in right away. It could be the breathtaking view that I see from that height or the non-stop breeze that blows from all directions, or the combination of both that motivates me to try it out right away.

Well, when I got to the hotel’s rooftop, it didn’t take long for me to find myself

doing my laps from one end of the pool to the other. Luck was on my side because I had decided to check out the pool at a time when nobody else was there, giving me all the peace and quiet that my weekend stay was meant for.

But the piece de resistance of my stay at the Belmont Hotel was my dining experience. No wonder Café Belmont, the hotel’s main dining outlet, was always teeming with customers. They were all enjoying Executive Chef Jayvee Barraca’s culinary masterpieces. When I had my dinner, one item on the menu immediately

caught my attention—Beef Salpicao. It was described as “sirloin cubes sauteed in garlic, onion, mushroom, capsicum, red wine and glazed in brandy.”

It was the first time I knew of that dish cooked that way so I had to have my taste of it. As expected, it was heavenly. The meat was so tender and the alcoholic ingredients raised its taste to perfection! Needless to say, it was a dinner worth talking about.

The following day, I had the urge to check out the other “gems” the Café Belmont menu may have for lunch. Sure enough, another

item got me excited—Pork Humba. Its description as a Humba Recipe from Ronda Cebu thrilled me because Ronda is the town next to Dumanjug, my father’s hometown in Cebu. My siblings and I would spend our summers in Dumanjug and one of the favorite recipes of our paternal grandmother was the “Humba of Ronda.” So this item on the hotel’s menu immediately evoked pleasant memories of my youth. And, yes, the slow braised pork belly with black beans, soy sauce, and vinegar of Café Belmont tasted exactly like what my grandmother used to cook for us. The only difference is that the hotel’s version is more special because it is garnished with breaded boiled eggs.

The other thing that made any meal in this dining outlet most enjoyable is the service of its staff. I know that all hotel employees are always trained to be very courteous but the team at Café Belmont raises courtesy to a higher level. I felt like royalty every time I walked into the place, and everyone knew exactly when those little snippets of table service have to be done without anybody telling them. I was so pleased with their service that I made it a point to personally congratulate Jeffrey

Arcelon, the outlet manager, and his team, to make them aware that their exemplary service didn’t go unnoticed. Food and Beverage Manager Francois Punzalan certainly did wonders with their training.

As a stakeholder in our tourism industry, I am in high spirits to have Belmont Hotel right in front of our country’s main gateway. It is an exhilarating oasis and the perfect welcome for weary travelers from long hours of flying. Kudos to General Manager Socrates Alvaro, for everything that the hotel stands for. He has made it a sterling showcase of what our country is all about—great, friendly, happy people, good food, and a haven of modern-day Filipino leisure living.

More information on Belmont Hotel and its offerings may be obtained through (+632) 5318-8888 or info@belmontmanila.com

YOUR MONDAY CHUCKLE:

SIGN OUTSIDE A HOUSE: FOR SALE: Computer and Encyclopedia, both in good condition. No longer needed. Got married. Wife and mother-in-law know everything.

For feedback, I’m at bobzozobrado@ gmail.com

Philippines, France mark 75th year of diplomatic relations with on-ground, exciting events

FROM October to January, the Philippine and French embassies will feature several events that highlight the ever-strengthening relationship between the Philippines and France.

Quest Plus Clark is ‘Passionately Pink’

OCTOBER is a pink month at Quest Plus Conference Center, Clark as the hotel launches “Passionately Pink,” a campaign that puts the spotlight on Breast Cancer Awareness and celebrates the beauty, bravery, and determination of the women who have been touched by this disease.

As a way to celebrate the campaign, Quest Plus Clark organized a Pink Day event on October 11. The afternoon started with a yoga activity, with the scenic Mimosa Plus Golf Course as the backdrop, led by Arlene Macalino Bang of Mind & Soul Yoginis. The wellness activity aims to promote healthy exercise that all women can be a part of and enjoy.

Refreshed and revitalized, the ladies head on to Baker J Cafe for the Pink Tea Talk with guest speakers Dr. Maria Jesusa SicatManarang, Stage Zero representative Jikay Kairuz, Arlene Maacalino Bang, and The Medical City Clark’s Assistant Medical Director Dr. Michael Dizon.

From the basics of breast cancer to ways of supporting a patient, all these and more were discussed during the talk. “Every year, we want to elevate the discussion on breast cancer and we intend to play our part in spreading awareness and in rais-

ing funds for this cause,” Quest Plus Clark’s General Manager Michael Gapin shares.

Aside from the event, the hotel has prepared special promos that will run for the whole month of October. Stay in Quest Plus with the Think Pink room package, dine at Mequeni Live with the Dinner in Pink buffet on Saturdays, and have your own Passionately Pink Abe bear as a souvenir —part of the proceeds from the sales on all Passionately Pink packages will be donated to Stage Zero by Project

Pink, a non-stock, non-profit organization, which aims to encourage and empower patients, families, and communities to conquer cancer through knowledge, emotional, social and spiritual support.

To book your Passionately Pink packages, email clarkrsvno1@questhotelsandresorts.com or call (045) 599 8000. Get the latest news and promotions of the hotel, visit www. questhotelsandresorts.com/clark or like and follow Quest Plus Clark on Facebook and Instagram.

In a press conference held on October 18, Ambassador of France to the Philippines, Her Excellency Michèle Boccoz, and Assistant Secretary Jaime Victor B. Ledda, Assistant Secretary Office of European Affairs of the Department of Foreign Affairs, presented the line-up of activities that highlight French and Filipino collaboration, talent, and creativity.

This year’s 75th anniversary is a half-year-long gala that illustrates the steadfast friendship between the two countries. The festivities will reach their peak this month of October, with four major events planned to inspire and amaze the public, such as the Marcel Proust-inspired art exhibit called, In Search of Lost Time by Stéphane Heuet that opened on October 16.

Other events will be held in November and December, with a closing ceremony to be conducted around the middle of January, in line with the Sinulog Festival.

With the highlighted events, both embassies hope to showcase the continuing commitment of France and the Philippines to boost and expand their partnership on various fronts, most notably in trade and investment, defense

and maritime cooperation, industrial development, clim ate action, and culture and people-to-people exchanges.

Diplomatic relations between France and the Philippines were first established in 1947 when both countries signed the Treaty of Amity in Paris. Since then, both countries have taken significant steps to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific area and uphold international law. Joint action in the fight against climate change and the promotion of cultural exchanges are undertaken between the French and Filipino people.

The celebration of the 75th Anniversary in 2022 through all the events jointly organized by the Embassy and Filipino partners highlight the strong and vibrant relations between the two countries, mixing business with pleasure, from gastronomy to art, basketball to the cinema, education to dance, and everything in between.

The enthusiasm of both people in working together, creating together, playing together, and performing together is a significant and meaningful promise for a bright future for the next 75 years.

LifeB4 MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 Nickie Wang, Editor Joba Botana, Associate Editor Patricia Taculao Editorial Assistant E-mail: lifeandshow.manilastandard@gmail.com
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The facade of the proudly local brand, Belmont Hotel The hotel’s spacious and functionally designed living room The hotel’s rooftop swimming pool is de nitely a perfect come-on for anybody seeking physical relaxation Café Belmont’s perfectly trained staff led by the Outlet Manager, Jeffrey Arcelon (seated, center) Attendees at the Passionately Pink’ event Pink Day Yoga at the Hilltop From left: H.E. Michèle Boccoz, French Ambassador to the Philippines; Cyril Soenen, Chef, The Admiral Hotel; Philip Gauthie and Marc Piton, Counsellor for Cooperation and Cultural A airs, Embassy of France From left: Joey Reyes, Technical Consultant, Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP); H.E. Michèle Boccoz, French Ambassador to the Philippines; and Victor Ledda, Undersecretary, Department of Foreign A airs

commons

Sharing network • Connecting communities

A world of local news at your fingertips

LOCAL news has been likened to a glue that holds communities together. But in a fast-changing media landscape, community newspapers are barely getting by, struggling to make that crucial pivot to thrive in a digital world.

SM Supermalls President wins as Global Filipino Executive of the Year

Community newspapers in the Philippines all felt the pinch during the COVID-19 pandemic, with lockdowns and mobility restrictions hastening the shift to digital news platforms for many legacy media.

For the Philippine Press Institute, the national association of newspapers with over 70 community and national dailies as members, one viable solution is to band together under one online platform that will collate and curate local news from across the country.

The idea, first brought up by PPI chairman Rolando Estabillo in 2019—several months before the COVID-19 pandemic broke out—has now become a full-fledged news aggregator in the form of the PPI News Commons that not only supports good community journalism but is also very much commercially viable.

The numbers do not lie. The pioneering news platform is the widest-reaching news aggregator in the country – from dailies and weeklies in the northernmost part of Luzon to the southernmost part of Mindanao.

With about 70 member-community newspapers on board, the PPI News Commons has a total annual collective reach of 45 million in terms of website visits and 24 million in terms of Facebook followers.

“Long before the COVID-19 rampage around the globe, newspapers have already been reeling from the deep slump in subscriptions and advertising, triggered mainly by online platforms creeping into the flow of news and information. As if it was not enough to trouble, the pandemic hit home hard. As a result, the industry’s landscape is strewn with layoffs, furloughs, pay cuts, and redundancies, if not outright business closure,” Mr. Estabillo said in a speech before representatives of PPI member-newspapers ahead of the launching of the PPI News Commons today (Monday, Oct. 24, 2022).

“This is the reality on the ground that we are dealing with, to which the PPI News Commons may provide some solutions. This news-sharing platform online strings together PPI members scattered all over

the country into one cohesive group,” he said.

Mr. Estabillo noted that given their instant wider market base, community papers in the PPI News Commons loop now have greater leverage to access advertisements.

“The PPI NewsCommons aims to harness the individual potential of our members into one dynamic platform without the burden of a big start-up cost. A typical community paper, which is perennially weighed down by limited resources, will be hard put to put up the needed resources to expand operations on its own. But by joining this sharing platform, you have opened a window for yourself to better prospects not only for today but over the long-haul,” he added.

STEVEN Tan, President of SM Supermalls, was awarded Grand Winner for Global Filipino Executive of the Year in the recently concluded Asia CEO Awards.

The Asia CEO Awards honors Filipino companies, entrepreneurs, and executives that have both excelled, and have made a significant positive impact on society. Finalists are included in a Circle of Excellence from which a Grand Winner is chosen.

Under the leadership of Tan, SM Supermalls withstood the difficulties of the pandemic, and experienced a strong rebound and the economy opened. The company managed to recover its mall revenue, occupancy, and foot traffic targets. SM continued to be the first choice for market entry of new global brands to the Philippines, with the opening of the largest IKEA in the world at SM Mall of Asia Complex. SM was the only mall operator to open new developments from 2020 until 2022. SM Supermalls also partnered with LGUs nationwide and became a key player in helping the country and the economy bounce back from the pandemic through its COVID-19 testing and vaccination program with over 10.5M jabs delivered.

“We are simply people helping other people, and giving back to our communities has always been a part of SM’s mission and DNA,” said Steven Tan.

Rising stronger from the pandemic, SM launched “Safe Malling at SM”, a comprehensive campaign that reinvented the malling experience, ensuring that every customer is safe and protected against COVID-19 in all its malls. Part of this campaign is the launch of its e-commerce platform, SM Malls Online, giving customers the option to shop for essentials from home. New and safe malling experiences such as DOH’s Farmers’ Produce Markets, Paw Parks, outdoor dining, and bike lanes among others were also introduced.

“On behalf of SM Supermalls and the Sy family, I am honored and grateful to receive this recognition, and I dedicate this to our team, the Sy family and Mr Henry Sy for his inspiration. With this award, we at SM Supermalls promise to remain committed in serving our communities, constantly evolving and innovating to build a better future for the Filipinos,” Tan said.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 C1 www.manilastandard.net SPECIAL ISSUE PPI
NEWS
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Committed to continue serving the communities, SM Supermalls embraced the changes brought by the pandemic with agility, innovation, and responsiveness to the needs of its employees, customers, and tenants. The announcement of the winners of the 2022 Asia CEO Award was held last October 11 at the Manila Marriott Grand Ballroom. Steven Tan, President of SM Supermalls

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Sharing network • Connecting communities

Philippine Press Institute:

58 years of promoting good journalism

THE Philippine Press Institute (PPI) has been around for 58 years, a testament to the organization’s commitment to its two core missions: that of protecting press freedom and elevating journalistic ethics among its membernewspapers.

PPI is the country’s national association of newspapers and is regarded as the nation’s oldest professional media organization.

A non-stock, non-profit private organization that is officially registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission, having been established in 1964 and again revived in 1987, after it became dormant throughout the period of martial rule (1972 – 1986).

HISTORY

On July 3, 1986, the reorganized Board of Governors held its first meeting. This is seen as the official mark of the institute’s comeback. In accordance with the rules of the Philippines, it was incorporated on June 8, 1987.

The PPI is responsible for representing the concerns and interests of the newspaper industry in all fora and across the media while promoting ethical standards for the growth of professional Filipino journalists.

The vast majority of the country’s most influential provincial, national, and daily and weekly newspapers are members of this organization.

The institution works to protect the rights and freedoms of Filipino journalists as they do their jobs. It also creates and spreads information about opportunities for journalists to improve their careers and runs training programs and educational activities for journalists in the country.

This institution is overseen by a board of trustees that gets together once every three months to discuss business. All member newspapers’ publishers and editors are eligible to run for election to the board each year.

The Philippine Star, Manila Standard, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Journal, Malaya Business Insight, and BusinessWorld are among the major newspapers represented on the board.

The PPI does not lack luster at its helm. Former chairmen topbilled by The Manila Times’ Joaquin “Chino” Roces, the Manila Chronicle’s Eugenio Lopez Jr., and

BusinessWorld’s Raul Locsin have all guided the prestigious institution to what it is today.

For day-to-day business, it employs a permanent secretariat run by an executive director. Prior CEOs include Juan Mercado, Adlai Amor, Alice Villadolid, Isagani Yambot, Ermin Garcia Jr., Guillermo Santos, and Jose Pavia.

PRESENT LEADERSHIP

Currently, Rolando Estabillo of Manila Standard is the ChairmanPresident of PPI, while Mindanao Times’ Amalia B. Cabusao is Vice President & Trustee for Mindanao.

“I laud the regional trustees and members for keeping up with the times, especially because the pandemic took a toll on the survival of the newspapers,” said Estabillo during his reelection as chairman last year, vowing to keep the institute relevant in the age of social media and the information disorder, and responsive to the needs of its members through its current programs and digitalization project.

Dexter A. See from Herald Express is the Corporate Secretary, while Joenald M. Rayos (Pahayagang Balikas) acts as Treasurer And Trustee for Luzon.

Ariel C. Sebellino is its Executive Director and head of training operations and special projects.

Rounding up the Board of Trustees are: Juliet J. Javellana Trustee, Philippine Daily Inquirer

Alfonso G. Pedroche Trustee, The Philippine Star / Pilipino Star Ngayon

Alex Rey V. Pal Trustee For Visayas, Metropost Dalmacio C. Grafil

Leyte Samar Daily Express, Visayas, Publisher

Adrian Michael A. Amatong

The Mindanao Observer, Mindanao, Managing Editor

Maria Monica Anne Macasaet Trustee, Malaya Representative

Augusto B. Villanueva (+) Trustee, Philippine Journalists Inc. Manila Standard News Editor Joyce Pañares is the Seminar Director of PPI.

PROGRAMS AND ACTIVITIES

PPI’s three most prominent initiatives are the Community Press Awards, the National Press Forum, and Civic Journalism.

The institute regularly hosts seminars and workshops on topics such as writing, libel and ethics, newspaper management, and coverage of special interest activities.

These interests include talks on the environment, business and economy, health, science and technology, children’s rights, women’s issues, ethnic conflicts, governance, elections and surveys, multimedia, and social media with the help of its local partners. Every so often, it hosts roundtable conversations on editorial ethics and publishing industry issues among its members.

ALEX REY PAL Trustee for Visayas, Metropost MONICA MACASAET Trustee, Malaya
C2 || MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 www.manilastandard.net SPECIAL ISSUE PPI
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ROLANDO G. ESTABILLO Chairman, PPI and Publisher, Manila Standard AMALIA B. CABUSAO Trustee for Mindanao, Mindanao Times ADRIAN MICHAEL A. AMATONG Trustee for Mindanao, The Mindanao Observer DEXTER A. SEE Corporate Secretary, Herald Express JOENALD M. RAYOS Trustee for Luzon, Pahayagang Balikas ALFONSO G. PEDROCHE Trustee, Pilipino Star Ngayon DALMACIO C. GRAFIL Trustee for Visayas, Leyte Samar Daily ARIEL SEBELLINO Executive Director JULIET LABOG-JAVELLANA Trustee, PDI

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Sharing network • Connecting communities

A platform for journalists, by journalists

THE advent of technology ushered in numerous opportunities for nearly every industry. For the news industry, it allowed the public to gain easy access and real-time updates on current events. Yet some local news organizations struggle with gaining an audience, especially with the presence of fake news peddlers that threaten the credibility of journalists.

Eager to protect local journalists’ interests, the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) launched the PPI News Commons, which connects communities from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao through quality community journalism.

PPI News Commons is a space where local journalists can share their stories with a broader audience and disseminate information promptly and aptly to the public anytime, anywhere. It also signifies the organization’s evolution through the years, demonstrating that news and the people who tell them evolve with the times.

Some topics available on the platform include current events, politics, business, features, and COVID-19 stories, among other sections. Although the platform emphasizes local news stories from provinces or nationally, readers can also get news updates from global events.

However, the main goal of the PPI News Commons is to give media outlets and their journalists a springboard for a wider audience without additional costs. It’s no secret that many news agencies, especially the print media, struggle with modernization. The latest effort from PPI ensures that these organizations have a space online

where they can share relevant stories, connect with their audiences, and secure the future of journalists.

“It is both commercial and altruistic in nature: the former as an add-on to what they are already naturally doing to earn, the latter to seek opportunities for them via revenue-sharing amongst members through Ads. Its strength lies in the PPI members’ inherent capacity to bring to the fore stories from the ground as they are immersed in various communities where ‘small’ newspapers thrive,” said PPI executive director Ariel Cervantes Sebellino.

Thanks to its growing audience, the PPI News Commons hopes to expand its reach and content from regional and national news to a global-scale effort.

“We want the PPI News Commons to go full-blast and be competitive. It is a work in progress. I see it evolving as a force to reckon with in the ASEAN.

The ambition is to go international, meaning to bring together also foreign publications run by Filipinos elsewhere outside the Philippines. In the long run, we want it to be lucrative for the benefit of PPI members,” Sebellino shared.

Besides consolidating various local news agencies on one platform, PPI News Commons is also trailblazing innovation in the advertising industry, given its uniqueness and the advantages

surrounding its circumstances.

Through PPI News Commons, advertisers can easily reach their target market through precise digital ad placements on the platform.

For instance, businesses looking to reach audiences in Mindanao can visit the PPI News Commons and view member newspapers based in Mindanao to implement a more targeted and efficient approach.

“The sheer number of website visitors and Facebook followers of all PPI member-community newspapers that are part of the PPI News Commons ensures your message gets delivered,” Neitiviti Marketing Director Joyce Pardo said.

As the well-known saying goes, “If you can’t beat them, join them,” and the PPI News Commons jumped onto the modernization of society and banded together to create the most efficient approach to sharing credible information from news outlets in the Philippines.

EMPOWERING AND LAUDING JOURNALISTS

Creating the online consolidated space for the PPI’s member news outlets is only one of the many steps the organization takes to protect and inspire the journalists who painstakingly carry

out their duties as newspersons. The reputable organization also recognizes the efforts of its members through the annual Civic Journalism Awards.

The Awards program aims to raise the standard of journalism in the countryside and honor print news organizations for their editorial excellence and role as catalysts for community development.

“It will always be a living testament and legacy of community media’s resilience and aspiration to provide good journalism, which, after all, is a social or public good. There’s a treasure trove of meaningful stories from the ground. That is the character of Civic Journalism—bringing in more voices, engaging common folk—and in the end, building better communities,” Sebellino said.

Local news organizations are again up for recognition in the annual Awards program today, October 24, as the PPI holds the Civic Journalism Awards at Century Park Hotel.

PPI holds the Annual Civic Journalism Awards in partnership with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation (KAF) and the Philippine Associate of Communication Educators (PACE) Foundation. Together, they launched the Annual Community Press Awards for Excellence in 1996, the first and only awards program of its kind.

When KAF ended its support in 2005, the PPI took the helm and maintained the awards program annually. In 2008, the Coca-Cola Export Corporation

(TCCEC) became its institutional partner. That year, TCCEC began supporting PPI’s efforts in improving reportage through training courses, especially in civic journalism.

Since then, the Awards program has focused on Civic Journalism. It coincides with the principal partner’s corporate social responsibility program, which seeks to promote journalism as a medium for community feedback and participation.

Journalists are vital in any society as they risk life and limb to relay the news for the public interest. Modernization shouldn’t be a rival to their existence. Through PPI News Commons, the PPI proves that journalists from traditional media have a fighting chance in the digital world. PPI also recognizes the efforts of journalists who go above and beyond the call of duty.

“From a ‘conservative’ to a more proactive print organization, the PPI learned to embrace the influx of changes throughout the years. In the past, its focus was entirely print, which, as we all know, is the backbone of journalism. Besides being an organization, it consciously and conscientiously evolved into a platform for innovations and learnings as it has opened its doors for wider engagement,” Sebellino said. With all these efforts, local newspersons now have a safe community created by their concerned colleagues in the industry to continuously prove that journalism is as relevant as ever, no matter the platform.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 C3 www.manilastandard.net SPECIAL ISSUE PPI
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CCPC applauds PPI thrust to hold media accountable

INTHE year 2014, from August to October, the Philippine Press Institute (PPI), the national association of newspapers, held consultations with media groups in the cities of Bacolod, Davao, San Fernando in Pampanga, and General Santos to discuss “how press councils can serve their communities.”

In any one of the four cities, where the press council still had to be organized

or had faltered, the forum infused new sense of purpose and fresh energy.

PPI, through then president Jesus Dureza and executive director Ariel Sebellino, advocated for the press council as “media’s way of showing its social responsibility to the public” and “proving that media do not need intervention from government.”

PPI’s 2014 project followed the earlier initiative of CMFR or Center for Media Freedom & Responsibility to help organize press councils.

Marcventures Mining completes 400th shipment

The Cebu Citizens-Press Council, which CMFR helped organize in 2005, was pleased and honored to be a part of the PPI project with CCPC’s two managers as active participants in the four-city forums, sharing with colleagues in other places of the country the Cebu media experience in creating and nurturing a press council.

Thus, CCPC applauds the current efforts of PPI, through its president Rolando Estabillo and executive director Sebellino, to pursue

the project started eight years ago. CCPC has evolved, since its founding 17 years ago, into something more than just a complaints mechanism. CCPC has spoken out on proposed media-related bills, at times even initiating legislation; removing causes of irritants in media-news sources relations through dialogues and consultations; working with other media organizations on common concerns; and helping defend and promote a free but accountable media.

PPI’S 3 MEDIA-CITIZENS COUNCILS IN LUZON, VISAYAS AND MINDANAO

MARCVENTURES Mining and Development Corporation (MMDC) recently completed its 400th shipment since it started operations in August 2011. Onboard MV Bao Express, the 20th shipment was a milestone, having the highest volume to date at 19,327 WMT (wet metric tons). Completed within three days the shipment had a grade estimate of 1.30 % nickel and was sent to China from MMDC’s causeway in Carrascal, Surigao del Sur. MMDC  at the 6th Caraga Mining Symposium

The Emergency Response Team (ERT) of Marcventures Mining and Development Corporation (MMDC) participated in the First Aid and Fire Extinguishment Competition during the 6th Caraga Mining Symposium and Safety Competition in Surigao City.With the theme “Caraga Mining Industry: Moving Forward Responsibly and Taking the Challenges” the event was held the Philippine Gateway Hotel in Surigao City.The Safety Competition was conducted at the Provincial Sports Complex.

SPECIAL ISSUE PPI Sharing network • Connecting communities NEWS commons C4 || MONDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2022 www.manilastandard.net
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