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February118-14, 2013 VOL. XVI NO. 07 03 | January -17, 2013


PhP40.685 friDAY, february 8, 2012 | Tel. 888-366-0008

Asian Americans: Fastest-growing racial group in California A

GOPAC reaches A2 Manila milestone in fighting corruption

A3 Groups thumb down

exceptions in Freedom of Information bill

diplomat’s A3 Veteran advice to PH: ‘Stop offtangent remarks’

A4 Asian-Americans

fastest-growing racial group in California

smokers spurn A5 Bicolano vice amid skyrocketing cost of cigars

A6 Editorial: Seeing

through the facade

DOLLAR - PESO EXCHANGE RATE wants to rediscover the B1 Tenor Arthur Espiritu Philippines


B1 Pinoy alcoholic beverages 101

B2 Jennylyn Mercado,

umiyak dahil may nabuntisan si Patrick Garcia

President Benigno S. Aquino III converses with bone cancer patient Jericho Navarro Rafols at the Philippine Orthopedic Center (POC) in Maria Clara cor. Banawe Streets, Sta. Mesa Heights, Quezon City on Friday (February 08, 2013). The visit coincides with the President’s 53rd Birth Anniversary. In photo is POC chaplain Fr. Arnold Abelardo, CMF. (Photo by: Jay Morales / Malacañang Photo Bureau).

Time” to hit cinemas

B4 Three faces of women all set to be told in new drama series

B6 Felipe De Leon’s “Noli

Me Tangere” opera to debut in NYC in October

B7 Denmark Discovers

Why “It’s More Fun in the Philippines”

Turn to page A2

Aquino receives visiting German Foreign Minister in Malacañang


resident Benigno S. Aquino III received Thursday German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle and his delegation in a courtesy call at Malacañang’s Music Room. Prior to Westerwelle’s courtesy call on President Aquino, he met with Foreign Secretary


Albert del Rosario during a bilateral meeting.

Among the issues discussed by Del Rosario and Westerwelle were the political consultation process between the Philippines and Germany, the Framework Agreement for Mindanao peace, economic relations and the Fraport issue, defense cooperation, West Philippine Sea

issue, Filipino seafarers welfare, official development assistance (ODA), and the ongoing activities of German foundations in the Philippines.


he Dept. of Justice has ordered the release of 18 suspected Abu Sayyaf Group members accused in the kidnapping of six Jehovah's Witnesses in Patikul, Sulu on Aug. 20, 2002. In a 12-page resolution of the Anti-Terrorism Task Force which was approved by Prosecu-

tor General Claro A. Arellano, 13 of the suspected ASG members were ordered release because they are different from the persons identified in the charge sheet. On the other hand, five other suspects were ordered released for lack of probable cause.

Those ordered released due to mistaken identity are former Commissioner of the Department of Education Ustadz Ahmadsali A. Badron, who is also member of the Reconciliation and Unification of the ARMM; Hajer Arasani; Jammal Sawaban; Robin Sahiyal; Alton Ladhalaam;

Westerwelle arrived in the Philippines as both countries prepare for the 60th anniversary Turn to page A3

Germany backs PHL call to settle WPS disputes thru int'l law Turn to page A3

DOJ orders release of 18 suspected ASG members

Edwin Siarot Sawaldi; Mohammad Said Sali; Adzhar Nawali; Abdullan Hussih; George Nami; Abdullah Ussih; Jeheri Jeron and Manny Ismael. "There appears to be no proof of their participation in the kidnapping much less evidence of their purported membership in

the Abu Sayyaf Group. Said accused were not positively identified by prosecution witnesses Amily Mantec and Roland Ulla," the DOJ resolution said. Those ordered released for lack of probable cause are JumTurn to page A3

Two Fil-Ams inducted as San Conquering Tourette Syndrome By KARMELA GABRIELLE TORDECILLA | VERA Files Francisco commissioners G


and Julia’s first B3 Coco movie “A Moment in

sian Americans are the fastest-growing racial group in California who are playing a more prominent role in the state's businesses and politics, a report said Monday. California's Asian American population, now nearly 5.6 million, or 15 percent of the state's population, grew 34 percent between 2000 and 2010. The state's Latino population grew 28 percent, while its White population decreased 5 percent over the same decade, said a report released by the Asian Pacific American Legal Center and Asian Law Caucus. On the economic side, Asian Americans owned more than half a million businesses statewide in 2007, employing about 910,000 people and dispensing more in payroll than businesses owned by any other racial group except for Whites. The group also showed increased citizenship, with voter registration in the state up 51 percent between 2000 and 2008, a growth rate second only to Latinos, the report said. Meanwhile, Asian Americans in California also face issues such as immigration, poverty and healthcare. Roughly 416,000 Asian Americans living in California are undocumented, 15 percent of the state's undocumented residents, the report said. Unemployed Asian Americans in the state grew 196 percent from 2006 to 2010, the highest of any racial group statewide, data from the U.S. Bureau of

t formal ceremonies held on January 31 at San Francisco’s City Hall, San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee inducted into office new and re-appointed Commissioners of the City and County of San Francisco that included two notable Filipino-American community leaders, Ms. Carmen Colet, as Asian Art Commissioner and Ms. Marily Mondejar, as Commissioner in the Commission on Community Investment and Infrastructure (CCII).

Ms. Colet, who was first appointed to the Asian Art Commission in 2010, is the only Filipino-American in the Commission. The Commission is responsible for the determination of policy for and the administration of the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Ms. Mondejar joins the CCII which succeeds the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency. Turn to page A4


Lozada finds no support from Aquino


or Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada, star witness in NBN/ZTE deal, one of the biggest scandals in the Arroyo administration, it’s like he and his family are back to where they were exactly five years ago when he was abducted by police officers and he had to seek refuge with the nuns. They were informed by members of the Pasig City Police that the San-

By ellen tordesillas VERA Files

digan Bayan has issued an arrest warrant for Lozada in connection with a graft case filed by Erwin Santos, the current president of Philippines Forest Corporation , and Arroyo’s hatchet man when the former was a resource person in the Senate investigation on the anomalous $320 million telecommunications.

oogle Marlon Barnuevo and you will come across a music video uploaded on YouTube in 2007. The song is called “Aking Hiling” by six-piece local band 3rd Avenue. Pause the video at 0:57. That’s him playing the keyboard. Google Marlon Barnuevo and you will surely come across a video called “Tourette Syndrome Testimonial.” Click it. Hear his story. The real Marlon Barnuevo, a graduate of the De La Salle-College of St. Benilde, now works there as an Industrial Design instructor. When he’s not teaching, he plays gigs in music bars and composes

The 3rd Avenue Band

music in his home-based recording studio. Every first day of classes, 32-year-old Barnuevo tells his students that he has Tourette Syndrome (TS) to “avoid further complications.”

A quick look at Barnuevo may not make you realize there is something different about him. His motor and vocal tics are chronic involuntary movements. Turn to page A7


Vilma Santos, sumusuko na sa paggawa ng indie film

Turn to page A5

to page A5 Gawad Kalinga Headquarters in the Turn Philippines has activated Operation Walang Iwanan and is currently undertaking emergency relief efforts in most affected areas in Mindanao and targeting to give away 10,000 food packs to affected families. For more information on the relief efforts in the Philippines, please visit Check donations can be mailed directly to:  GK USA, 13860 Stowe Dr., Poway, CA 92064, Memo: Disaster Relief



A2 A2


JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012 8-14,

5th Conference of the Global Organization of Parliamentarians vs. Corruption. President Benigno S. Aquino III addresses the 5th Global Conference of the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption Opening Ceremony at the Reception Hall, Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City Jan 31, 2013. GOPAC, an international network dedicated to good governance and combating corruption throughout the world, has provided information and analysis, established international benchmarks, and improved public awareness through a combination of global pressure and national action. (Photo by: Benhur Arcayan / Malacañang Photo Bureau/PNA)

Manila GOPAC reaches milestone in fighting corruption T he well-attended 5th Global Conference of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC) ended Saturday, reaching a milestone with the signing of the Manila Declaration. This recognizes the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) as the first legally binding and internationally accepted instrument in the fight against corruption.

”GOPAC members agree that corruption is a plague that affects individuals at the local level, and that this plague can have serious consequences globally," Angara said in a press conference. A record-high 429 participants, including 12 heads of parliamentarians from 78 countries, participated in the four-day conference. ”Corruption is largely measured by perception because cor-

ruption is based on people’s experience. It is a gut issue for many. Eliminating corruption therefore necessitates changing experiences, changing how people experience governance,” Angara, newly elected chair of GOPAC and current chair of the Southeast Asian Parliamentarians Against Corruption, said. "As legislators, we cannot remain idle. We must be part of

Accused in Aman Futures' P12-B scam wants to be state witness


ne of the accused in the P12billion pyramiding scam allegedly committed by the Aman Futures Group Philippines, Inc. expressed her willingness to turn state witness in the case. Aman Futures has been alleged to have duped P12 billion from 15,000 victims in Visayas and Mindanao. During Thursday's hearing at the Dept. of Justice on the com-

plaint for syndicated estafa filed against Pagadian City Mayor Samuel Co, Donna Coyme said since last December she has submitted her application to be placed under the DOJ's Witness Protection Program. Coyme added she has also been interviewed as part of the process of her application to be covered by the WPP. Likewise, Coyme clarified she

was not an official of Aman Futures and she was just an investor and was a tutor to the child of Fernando "Nonoy" Luna, the president of Aman Futures. Coyme said she would like to testify to tell the truth and to give justice to the other victims of Aman Futures. She appeared before the DOJ hearing as a witness of Fabian Tapayan, one of the complainants against Co. (PNA) q

Labor Statistics showed. Asian Americans living below the poverty line statewide increased 50 percent over a similar period, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. "As the state legislature begins to tackle a new policy agenda, safety net programs remain critical to those in our community who are

trying to get back on their feet." said Hyeon-Ju Rho, executive director of ALC in San Francisco. Healthcare is another critical issue. Approximately 14 percent of Asian Americans in California do not have health insurance, higher than the 10-percent rate for Whites.

"We hope the report promotes a better understanding of our growing and diverse communities," said Joanna Lee, senior research analyst at APALC. "California can't craft good public policy on Asian Americans and NHPI without good data," Lee added. (PNA) q

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the solution, even while there are those among parliamentarians who have been party to corruption," Angara added. With the common goal of combating corruption and promoting good governance, the Manila GOPAC participants to

enhance the capacity of parliamentarians to adapt international standards to national needs, strengthening anti-corruption strategies and monitoring their respective countries' compliance with the UNCAC. "The agreement also urges

parliamentarians to participate in anti-corruption meetings on the international stage, and work with international organizations and civil society on anti-corruption initiatives," Angara said. Turn to page A4

Aquino to join sorties of Team PNoy


s campaign period for senatorial candidates in the May mid-term elections kicks off Feb. 12, Malacanang Thursday said President Benigno Aquino III will be joining the Liberal Party's campaign sorties. "The President has promised to support his senatorial slate. It’s very important for us that, from a governance point of view, that the Senate slate that was chosen by the President -- Team PNoy, wins in this election," said Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office Secretary Ramon Carandang in a press briefing. "We have a challenging three years ahead of us. We have not finished all the work that we have sought out to do. We still need to bring in more investments. We still need to combat poverty. We still need to fight corruption," he stressed. And, for the administration

By Lilybeth G. Ison to continue to move towards the right direction, Carandang said, "we need support from members of the Senate," "The President has chosen his team. He is going to support them. He is going to campaign for them and we are hoping that, if the public is happy with the achievements of the Aquino administration over the last three years, then they will support the President’s choices for the Senate," he said. Carandang, however, clarified that the President may not join every sortie of Team PNoy, but "he will actively campaign for them." Meanwhile, LP campaign manager Sen. Franklin Drilon earlier said a 12-0 victory for Team PNoy in the May polls can be achieved, just as the administration was able to generate a 6.6 percent economic

growth in 2012. "We are confident that we would be able to convince the people that Team PNoy is the right team to put in the Senate because they will be the one to push the reforms that the President has started and were finished before his term is over," he said. Drilon said they will not vacillate in highlighting the achievements of the administration visa-vis the strengths of the 12 Team PNoy senatorial candidates. He said this is to "make a distinction between the administration candidates, the PNoy Team, and the opposition." Drilon said the popularity of the President will trickle down to his chosen candidates. "We ask the question: are we better today compared to June 30 of 2010? If we are, we should continue supporting the President and his team," he said. (PNA) q



NEWS NEWS Groups thumb down exceptions in Freedom of Information bill

February 8-14, 2013 July 27 - August 2, 2012


ANILA – Advocates of the Freedom of Information (FOI) bill have called for transparency in governance but what if the version that awaits approval by the Congress would institutionalize secrecy? The consolidated bill House Bill 6766 or the FOI bill lists ten points of exceptions, all of which are present in Malacañang’s version of the FOI. These exceptions prompted the Makabayan coalition of progressive partylist groups in Congress to withdraw their sponsorship of the bill. Groups that frequently ask government agencies to release information on various matters also raised objections to the exceptions. ‘Misnamed’ Independent think-tank Ibon Foundation deemed that the current FOI bill is misnamed “because it institutionalizes government confidentiality and secrecy to the detriment of genuine transparency, accountability and participation by citizens in democratic governance.” The HB 6766 exempts information pertaining to national security or de-

By RONALYN V. OLEA fense, information that refers to the foreign affairs of the Republic of the Philippines from public access. Records of minutes during decisionmaking and policy-formulation, including the opinions and advice given then, are not to be disclosed. Drafts of resolutions, ordera, memoranda or audit reports of any branch of government are also to be exempted from access. Any information that pertains to internal or external defense, law enforcement and border control is also not to be disclosed. Information obtained by any committee of either House of Congress in executive session is also to be exempted from disclosure. Other exceptions include trade secrets, personal information of a natural person, classified as privilege communications in legal proceedings by law or by Rules of Court, and if information is already made accessible through other means. “The Malacañang-driven bill confirms that the government is afraid of

genuinely empowered citizens who will take them to task for their pro-foreign and pro-elite governance,” Jose Enrique Africa, executive director of Ibon Foundation, told in an email interview. Africa lamented that “policy-making is already very secretive and opaque” and the restrictions in the FOI bill “would just formalize and institutionalize what is already being done under an Orwellian-speak Freedom of Information law.” Orwellian describes the situation, idea, or societal condition that George Orwell identified as being destructive to the welfare of a free and open society. Already secretive In a recent report, Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda claimed that FOI proponents “had no qualms” about the Aquino administration’s transparency. “In fact we have been very transparent and, in fact, we intend to show you the list of measures that we have done to show that we have been transparent in our transactions,” Lacierda said.

programs, the operational data and impact assessments of the conditional cash transfers, on the US military presence in the country particularly data on visits by US land, sea and air forces, and many others. A recent report by US-based International Budget Partnership listed the Philippines as one of the 77 countries that failed to meet basic standards of budget transparency. A 2011 study by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) revealed that access to information is “more difficult” under Aquino compared to the previous administration. “The Office of the President is among the topnotchers in denying transparency,” Malou Mangahas, PCIJ executive director, revealed during a forum in 2011.


Lacierda’s statement is contrary to what Ibon Foundation has experienced as well as the results of independent studies. Africa revealed that several times government agencies denied them vital information. Among the official requests the research institute made include information on far-reaching international agreements such as the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), the proposed European Union-RP Free Trade Agreement (EURP FTA). The group also asked for data on the oil monopolies in the country, particularly oil pricing, trade, stocks and inventory data; on mining firms’ operations, particularly environmental impact assessments; on so-called anti poverty

Dangerous provisions Africa said the exemptions for records of minutes and drafts pre-empts real participation at the crucial early stages of policy-making. While there is already jurisprudence Turn to page A5


Veteran diplomat’s advice to PH on UN case vs. China: ‘Stop off-tangent remarks’ By lauro l. baja, jr. | VERA Files T he Philippines has finally brought to the compulsory dispute mechanism of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) its conflict with China over some areas in the West Philippine Sea. Finally, because many believe that this action should have been done before 25 August 2006, when China declared “it does not accept any of the procedure provided for in section 2 of Part V of the Convention referred to in paragraph (a) (b) and (c) of Article 298 of the Convention.” Be that as it may, we should accept and support the wisdom and circumtances which led the Philippines to file the case with the Arbitral Tribunal. Views on why only now, why the Arbitral Tribunal, and why file it all, should now focus on how best to contend with China’s possible defense that the dispute is subject to its reservations. That we filed the case is not yet an

achievement and we should be fully prepared and persevere just in case proceedings start. The first obvious step is to desist from too much off-tangent remarks that may pre-empt the positions of prospective arbitrators and also our counsels. We also run the risk of telegraphing our positions. President Aquino cautioned against “giving the other side a preview of everything that we will do.” General expressions of support from nations should be welcomed with quiet dignity and gratitude. Besides the case may fall already under the subjudice rule. Our statement of Notification and Claim has remarkable parallel with the Statement of Claim of Barbados against Trinidad and Tabago concerning the delimitation of the exclusive economic zone and continental shelf between the

Lauro Baja at the UN

two states. There may be lessons to be learned comparing the two Statements. The Barbados Statement is more detailed than the Philippine Statement. Unless it is a matter of tactics or strategy, we must specify in our Memorials, which I assume will be submitted later, what we want the Arbitral Tribunal to award us, and why. This will avoid a possible decision not to take cognizance of the case for failure to state legal,convincing cause of action. In subsequent submissions, we

must define what we mean by “unlawful activities”; specify the “acts of interferences” by China, what and where are the “rocks” located; why is China’s nine-dash-line contrary to UNCLOS; and what provisions or articles of the Convention have been violated. If reports in the printed media are correct, the Philippines is requesting the Arbitral Tribunal to issue among others, an Award that “Declares that China’s rights in regard to maritime areas in the South China Sea, like the rights of the Philippines, are those that are established by UNCLOS, and consist of its rights to a Territorial Sea and Contiguous Zone under Part II of UNCLOS, to an EEZ under Part V, and to a Continental Shelf under Part VI.” Do we really admit that China has such rights in the South China Sea? It is important that we submit a petition for “Provisional Remedies” to protect our sovereign rights in the West

Philippine Sea. The fact that we have gone to the Arbitral Tribunal will not stop Chinese activities in the area. It is right and necessary since the case will take years before a decision is made, it at all. Some believe our resort to arbitration is a sign that our diplomacy failed. Perhaps but this should not prevent the Philippines from trying again. Both countries desire a peaceful and just solutions to the South China Sea issue. And domestic structures and geopolitical environment are ever changing. Diplomacy requires confident, creative and consistent improvisation and imagination to deal with uncertainties in a creative way. (The author is a veteran Philippine diplomat. He was the Philippine Permament Representative to the United Nations (May 2003- Feb.2007). Prior to that, he was Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Policy.) q

Aquino receives German FM FROM PAGE A1 of the establishment of diplomatic relations next year. Despite the contentious Fraport issue which remains a challenge for both countries, Del Rosario said “this single case should not prevent German companies from working with their Filipino partners to exploit opportunities in the energy, manufacturing, business process outsourcing, tourism and other infrastructure projects under the public-private partnership and other schemes.” The Philippines and Germany have built strong economic partnership in recent years. The Philippine-German economic relations remain robust,

Del Rosario said. Germany is the country’s largest trading partner in the European Union with bilateral trade amounting to 3.1 billion dollars in 2011. Germany is also the biggest source of tourists for the Philippines in Europe with 61,193 arrivals for the same year. German foreign direct investments in 2011 stood at 21.7 million dollars. In addition, Germany is one of the leading sources of official development assistance to support the implementation of development projects in the Philippines, Del Rosario added.

Aside from maintaining vibrant trade relations, the two countries have been working to re-invigorate defense relations. According to Del Rosario, Germany also expressed its support to the Philippine position towards a peaceful resolution of its territorial dispute with China in the West Philippine Sea. Accompanying Westerwelle during the courtesy call were German Ambassador Joachin Heidorn, Director General for Asia, Latin America and the Near and Middle East Clemens von Goetze, and Private Secretary to the Foreign Minister Markus Kleft. q

Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to try to declare as illegal China’s expansive claim to the South China Sea, part of which is known in the Philippines as West Philippine Sea.

territorial limits of coastal states. The Philippines and China are both signatories to the treaty. China is citing historical entitlements as basis for its huge claims over the South China Sea, which is dotted with islands, shoals, cays, reefs and rock formations and is believed to be rich in oil and natural gas. Many have feared the conflicts could be Asia's next flashpoint. “I think all countries in the region have an interest in a stable and peaceful development and this is the position the German government take,” Westerwelle said. “The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Chinese economies are closely linked by a free trade agreement and this shows us everyone gains from cooperation and not confrontation.” q

Germany backs PHL call to settle WPS disputes thru int'l law By Michaela del Callar


ermany on Thursday backed the Philippines’ call for the settlement of disputes in the South China Sea through international law, a position long frowned on by China, which claims the resourcerich waters nearly in its entirety. While Germany says it does not take sides to the sea row involving the Philippines, China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan, visiting German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle called on claimants to resolve their overlapping claims peacefully. “We appeal to all sides to resolve all the questions in accordance with international law and in a peaceful and cooperative way,” Westerwelle told a news conference. Westerwelle’s statement adds an important voice to a Philippine move to initiate arbitration process under the United Nations

China has yet to officially declare if it would get involved in the landmark case. Manila has maintained that a rules-based approach is the only legitimate way in addressing disputes through a legal framework such as the UNCLOS. UNCLOS is a 1982 accord by 163 countries that aims to govern the use of offshore areas and sets

DOJ orders release... FROM PAGE A1 lie Orie; Jul Ahmad Ahadi; Arabi Sali; Sonny Boy Barakim and Abdulwahab Hamja. "In every criminal prosecution, the prosecution must prove two things: 1) the commission of the crime and 2) the identification of the accused as the perpetrator of the crime. Cursory

identification does not suffice to convict the accused. What is needed is positive identification made with moral certainty as to the person of the offender," the DOJ resolution said. The six Jehovah's Witnesses were abducted in 2002 by the group of Radulan Sahiron.

The kidnapping-for-ransom case is now pending before the Pasig City Regional Trial Court Branch 266. The DOJ moved for the reinvestigation of the case following the claims of some of the accused that they were arbitrarily arrested. q



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A4 A4 NEWS Palace: Gov't to provide incentives to investors


he government will give incentives to investors wanting to put their money in the Philippines as long as their businesses benefit the consumers and the economy as a whole, a Palace official said Thursday. Issues were raised after the Board of Investments (BOI) granted a six-year term tax incentives to a Thai company producing meat products. But the local hog and poultry industries complained that


it negatively impacted on their businesses. In a press conference at Malacañang Thursday, Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Of-

fice Secretary Ramon Carandang said striking the balance between foreign investors’ interests and those of the local industries is the real challenge for the government. “Exactly that’s the challenge— striking the balance. Certainly, no one will doubt that a large investment in our agricultural sector is something that we’re encouraging and it may or may not have negative effects on some of the players,” Carandang said. “But in the end, if it leads to,

Aquino oks salvage plan for USS Guardian


resident Benigno Aquino III has approved the plan to salvage the USS Guardian, a minesweeper of the United States Navy, which was grounded at the Tubbataha Reef. Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office (PCDSPO) Secretary Ramon Carandang, in

a press briefing Thursday, said the President approved last night the plan, which was presented by Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio "Jun" Abaya, on how to extricate the USS Guardian. "It was presented to him (Aquino) by Secretary Abaya and he has approved it as presented.

The President approved the plan with no revisions," he said. The US Navy earlier said the "sectioning" of the USS Guardian in several parts appeared to be less destructive. Initial report said around 4,000 square meters of the Tubbataha Reef, considered as a World Heritage Site, has already

first of all, better consumer prices, more stability, and a more reliable supply, and if it leads to more export earnings, then that’s something that we would weigh against the possible negative effects.” Carandang also said that the fact that the BOI has issued the incentives to the Thai company means there has already been a process for weighing the positive and negative effects of its business. Asked if the government is adopting similar policies of other

countries, he said the premise is not really based on whether or not the Philippines is giving incentives but how to prioritize the grant of support. Among the government’s priority areas include tourism, agriculture and infrastructure, he said. “We have chosen these areas because these are areas where we believe that investments and jobs will do most to alleviate poverty. There are certain sectors kasi

na ‘pag nag-invest ka diyan you won’t generate as many jobs as, say, other sectors,’” Carandang said. “Agriculture is one sector where we feel that there’s a strong anti-poverty component so we’re encouraging that. It has nothing to do with whether or not other countries are granting similar incentives but it has everything to do with whether we want the economy to grow in a more inclusive way,” he added. (PNA) q

been flattened. Commodore Enrico Efren Evangelista, commander of PCG

Palawan District and head of the Tubbataha task force, said the rigging of the four anchors and the pre-positioning of the Smit Borneo, a salvage ship, are still ongoing. He said the rigging may take two days because it has to be precise in order to pre-

vent any further damage to the reef. After the rigging, heavy equipment like blowers, pumps and other tools will be transferred to the USS Guardian. By that time, Evangelista said, containment barriers and safety nets will be put into place in the area. He said a crane ship -- Jascon, who is still in Singapore, will be arriving to help in the salvaging operation. (PNA) q By Lilybeth G. Ison

Fil-Am legal aid group renews effort to assist Filipinos and Fil-Ams


he Filipino American Legal Defense and Education Fund or FALDEF held its firstever press session with members of the Filipino-American media at the Philippine Center in New York on January 29. Consul General Mario L. De Leon, Jr. noted how FALDEF remains an active partner of the Philippine Consulate in reaching out to Filipino nationals and providing vital information and legal advice on US immigration and labor issues. Consul General de Leon mentioned the numerous “Know Your Rights” Seminars and legal clinics conducted by FALDEF in cooperation with Consulate as being instrumental in guiding many Filipino nationals in the US Northeast on immigration matters. FALDEF President Atty. JT Mallonga spoke to the media about the major advocacies and cases handled by the organization including acting as counsel for Pulitzer prize-winning jour-

nalist Jose Antonio Vargas. He spoke of their current advocacy work for potential recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and the need to combat human trafficking. Ms. Rina Hernandez, a human trafficking victim, now represented by FALDEF was likewise present and shared her experiences and relayed the assistance she received from the Consulate and FALDEF. The FALDEF Team also outlined the forthcoming major projects of the organization including a FALDEF Reception set for March 1 entitled “A Night of Hope” with special guest speakers Judge Lorna Schofield, the first Filpino-American to be appointed as a Federal Judge in the US and Mr. Victor Bolden, Corporate General Counsel of the City of New Haven, Connecticut. FALDEF will likewise host its first gala event with the conferment of the Defend, Serve and

Two Fil-Ams inducted...

Educate Awards (DSE) awards in October 2013. Atty. Mallonga likewise announced that FALDEF has been invited to a panel on “Legal Assistance to Filipinos in Distress in the US” during the Global Summit of Filipinos in the Diaspora in Manila organized by the Commission on Filipinos Overseas. The FALDEF Team will likewise be honored by US Ambassador to the Philippines Harry Thomas at a reception in February. To further strengthen its fight against human trafficking, FALDEF will launch a counterpart organization in the Philippines called PhilDEF in Manila in February. Founded by Filipino-American lawyers, FALDEF provides pro bono legal services to Filipinos facing immigration and other related cases in the US. FALDEF likewise conducts seminars and clinics on immigration law for community members. q

FROM PAGE A1 authority for the major approved clude Mission Bay, Hunters Point development projects which in- Shipyard/Candlestick Point and Transbay Terminal, and manages the former Redevelopment Agency’s assets in Yerba Buena Center. Ms. Colet is the current Chair of the of San Francisco Manila Sister City Committee (SFMSCC), and Ms. Mondejar is the President of the Filipina Women’s Network. With their appointments, Ms. Colet and Ms. Mondejar join the growing list of Filipino- Americans holding appointed and elected public positions in the Newly-inducted San Francisco Commissioners Carmen Colet and Marily Mondejar, Bay Area. q together with Mayor Edwin Lee and Consul Reginald Bernabe. (DFA photo)

The CCII exercises land use, development and design approval

Filipino receives Australian Public Service Medal


ilipino Guillermo “Bill” Capati, a registered engineer in Queensland in the field of civil and environmental engineering, was awarded a Public Service Medal by the Governor General of Australia during the 2013 Australia Day celebrations in January. The Award is in recognition of Mr. Capati’s outstanding public service to the sustainable water future of the Gold Coast and broader South East Queensland region. Mr. Capati is presently working with the Manager Service Sustainability, Gold Coast Wa-

ter, Gold Coast City Council, Queensland, managing much of the strategic long-term planning for the City’s water and wastewater needs which includes longterm water planning and recycled water release. His excellent professional achievements and vast experience, combined with dedication and hard work, enabled him to reach greater success in his career. The Public Service Medal affirmed his earlier recognition as “Public Sector Professional of the Year” by the Institute of Public Administration Australia Queensland in 2009, and the

“Eric Brier Memorial Award” by Engineers Australia Queensland Division in 2010. He is a fellow of Engineers Australia and the Australian Institute of Management and an Adjunct Professor at the Advanced Water Management Centre of the University of Queensland. Philippine Ambassador Belen F. Anota recognized and congratulated Mr. Capati and encouraged him to share his insights and best practices with Filipino engineers, in the hope of achieving the same kind of sustainable water planning for the Philippines. q

Manila GOPAC reaches milestone... The parliamentarians also agreed to help build the capacity of fellow legislators to exercise anti-corruption oversight functions in their respective countries by developing support networks for parliamentarians, and to strengthen relations with organizations that work on oversight issues. "One important resolution we all agreed upon is to help each other develop and roll out resources to strengthen anti-money laundering regimes," Angara said. ”We must do all we can to aid the efforts of our fellow parlia-

mentarians to recover stolen corrupt assets through domestic legislation and initiatives,” he added. Other agreements include the pledge of parliamentarians to allow the public, and civil society, to participate in the fight against graft and corruption by providing education and access to information, as well as protecting the rights of anti-corruption advocates. The delegates also resolved to disseminate and implement recommendations for the development of effective and com-

JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012 8-14,

FROM PAGE A2 prehensive systems of ethics and conduct at global, regional and domestic levels. They also agreed to uphold fundamental international standards while recognizing the differences in political and cultural contexts in which legislators work. Lastly, a Global Task Force set up for Women in Parliamentary Work agreed to provide a network of support for women parliamentarians to enhance their capacity to participate in the fight against corruption. (PNA) q

(Photos above, from left) Ms. Mellie Soriano, chairman of the Board, PB-USA, Inc.; Ms. Anna Bennevente, Senior Regulatory Specialist, Registrar Corp.; Consul General Maria Hellen Barber De La Vega; Mr. Carlos MartinezTomatis, Division VP, ABF Global Supply Chain Services, Inc.; and Mr. Eddie Ferrer, President, PB-USA, Inc. Products displayed during the seminar. (Photo below) Group photo with speakers, PB-USA officers, members, and seminar participants. (DFA photo)

ConGen promotes trade and investment at Pangasinan Brotherhood-USA, Inc. seminar P hilippine Consul General to Los Angeles Ma. Hellen Barber De La Vega was invited as guest speaker at the Seminar pioneered and organized by the Pangasinan Brotherhood (PB) – USA, Inc. on Trade-Product Sourcing and Manufacturing (Philippine Products) held at the Long Beach Marriot on January 26. Various speakers were invited to participate in the seminar which was attended by around 140 participants. Speakers covered topics, such as experiences in starting a business, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations, banking, letter of credit and Small Business Ad-

ministration (SBA) loans, taxation, and customs. In her remarks, Consul General Barber De La Vega highlighted the One Town One Product and the contributions that small- and medium-scale enterprises provide to the Philippine economy. The Consul General also mentioned that the timing is right to invest in the Philippines given the recent positive economic indicators and investment climate resulting from the Philippine Government’s thrust towards transparency and good governance. Trade Representative Archimedes Gomez answered

questions raised by the attendees regarding specifics of doing business in the Philippines The seminar aims to create trade and business awareness among participants interested to be entrepreneurs and to do business in the Philippines, particularly in Pangasinan. Samples of various products from Pangasinan were also showcased at the seminar area. PB-USA, Inc. President Eddie Ferrer expressed the hope that the seminar would encourage other Philippine town associations and organizations to host similar economic and business seminars in the future. (DFA news) q

Karapatan ng lahat na makalanghap ng hanging walang usok sa kanilang bahay. Ang secondhand smoke ay nakakapasok sa mga giwang, pintuan at bintana sa bawat yunit ng apartment. Kahit hindi kayo naninigarilyo, maari pa rin na ang inyong pamilya ay maapektuhan. Alamin ang mga hakbang tungo sa isang malayan at walang usok na pabahay.

Para sa karagdagang kaalaman hinggil sa Smoke-Free Apartments Project, tumawag sa People’s CORE sa 213-241-0995. Funded by California Department of Public Health.



July 27 - August 2012 Ferbruary 8-14, 2, 2013



Bicolano smokers spurn vice amid skyrocketing cost of cigars By Danny O. Calleja A

fter 30 years of being addicted to cigarette, 46-year-old bus driver Alex Agripa here has recently given up the vice. Farmer Noel Moralejo, 34, of Camalig, Albay, did the same thing to end his about 20 years of being tobacco-hooked while Elias Espineda, a 55-year-old fisherman from Sorsogon City who had been smoking since he was 15 made smoking cessation his New Year’s resolution for 2013. All three, along with many others in Bicol who have lately spurned the habit, said they could no longer afford the price of cigarettes that had increased by as much as 100 percent or more than P20 per pack. A pack of formerly low-priced local cigarette brand now costs P30 per pack, a price that is more than double than its retail cost before Jan. 1. Another brand that cost P26 per pack before is now sold at P46. These prices prevail when these locally popular brands are bought from supermarkets and grocery stores. The price is inflated further to as much as P20 more when bought from sari-sari stores and sidewalk vendors on a per-stick basis. For the ordinary smokers, the price has become very expensive as a result of the enforcement of the Sin Tax Law (Republic Act 10351) from which the

government started levying increased taxes on cigarettes at the opening of 2013 to raise around P34 billion this year. The law reduced the old three-tier tax rate on cigarettes to two to simplify the collection of the specific tax in such a way that a uniform tax of P12 is imposed on every machine-packed cigarette retailed at P11.50 and below and a higher rate of P25 for those sold at over P11.50. In 2014, the tax rate will be P17 and P27 for cigarettes sold at P11.50 and below and above P11.50, respectively. A large percentage of the proceeds would be channeled to the government’s health care programs. Increasing the collection from this source is not the only concern of the government but also protecting the health of the people. According to the Department of Health (DOH), tobacco smoking kills at least 10 Filipinos every hour and threatens one-third of the Philippine population that are at risk of dying from debilitating diseases due to tobacco use. Cancer, heart disease, stroke and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases are considered as the top four tobacco-related diseases. “I can no longer afford the cost now.

Imagine a pack of cigarette priced more than a kilo of rice. Smoking cessation is the option I have taken which I believe is the best decision I made for this year,” Espineda said. How he did it? Espineda narrated that he just told himself that “from this time on, I will no longer smoke.” That was on the eve of the New Year’s Day when he was deciding for himself what new resolution to follow for the year.

After deciding on it, he said, he announced the decision to his family and they celebrated New Year with additional color: a tobacco-free home. “Defeating my craving for a smoke was very difficult during the first two to three days, but after surviving the period without it, my desire to puff even a single stick was gone. My passion for cigarette was changed to hatred even seeing other people smoke under my noses,” Espineda recalled. It is good that some of his close friends have also ceased smoking for reasons similar to his, he said.

Lozada finds no support from Aquino... FROM PAGE A3 It’s disturbing. So alarming that today, members of the Association of Major Religious Superiors of the Philippines are meeting with some members of the Aquino cabinet at the Department of Justice at 9 a.m. on Lozada’s situation. Would Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda be there? Lacierda was the lawyer of Lozada when they were still working to bring down Gloria Arroyo. Last Saturday, Lozada wrote close friends and supporters after getting a frantic call from his wife, Violet. Excerpts from that letter: “Early this morning of Feb. 2, 2013 around a little past 7AM, elements of the Pasig City Police came to my house looking for me. Violet, who was home at the time, spoke with them. They told her of the arrest warrant that had been issued against me by the Sandigan Bayan based upon the charges brought to me by the Ombudsman, (approved by Conchita Carpio Morales.) “They also told her that by this time they are certain that my arrest warrant has been received by the other law enforcement units... CIDG, NBI, etc. They told her that it would be wise for me to post bail because I can be arrested anytime, anywhere. After which they left our home. (I somehow have this funny feeling why they will go to such length. For I see no plausible reason why they would be so charitable to us to deserve their advice.) “Violet is so freaked out after the police left when she called me. I'm assuming due to the recent incident in Batangas where the police served an arrest warrant to a man suspected of some involvement with jueteng. The man peacefully went with the police dressed only in his briefs,

because he was not even allowed to wear his pants. About 50 meters away from the house where the man was taken, he was shot dead with the explanation that he attempted to shot one the arresting policemen. “ Lozada was referring to Fernando Morales, allegedly a member of the jueteng network of Vic Siman who was among those killed in an ambush in Atimonan, Quezon last month. The police visit also reminds the Lozadas of the traumatic experience upon his arrival from Hongkong afternoon of on Feb. 5, 2008. He was personally met at the airport by airport and police

that he was kidnapped. It was during that circuitous journey home that Lozada had his sort of epiphany. If before that he was unsure of whether take the “safer” option chosen by his good friend Romy Neri, who kept quiet, he decided to do his share for the Filipino people and tell all what he knows of the project that would have defrauded the Filipino people of P14.8 billion. Lozada surfaced on Feb. 7, 2008 in a 2 a.m. conference at La Salle Greenhills and confirmed that persons close to Malacañang had a hand in his kidnapping, which is related to the ZTE deal. The decision to take on Ar-

officers including NAIA Assistant General Manager Angel Atutubo, then Chief Superintendent Romeo Hilomen of the Police Security and Protection Office, Senior Superintendent Paul Mascariñas, and retired master Sergeant Rodolfo Valeroso working with the Aviation Security Group. He was brought to Laguna and Libis, during which time he met with former presidential chief of staff Mike Defensor who gave him P50,000 and told him to call a press conference and deny

royo and her “greedy group”, in the words of another NBE/ ZTE witness, Dante Madriaga, drastically changed Lozada’s life. He and his family lived under the sanctuary of the De La Salle brothers for two- and-a- half years that Arroyo was in power. In his email, Lozada said “I feel so bad to let her (Violet) go through these tribulations all over again, especially that she is alone at home. It was different when we were at the sanctuary, somehow it has a built -in sup-

Groups thumb down exceptions... that expressly limits executive privilege, Africa noted, it is not a standing absolute blanket right rather, as the name implies, “a privilege that moreover needs to be justified on a case-to-case basis.” “Expressly exempting records and drafts institutionalizes undemocratic executive secrecy. All these exemptions abridge the people’s right to participate in the most important social, economic and political decisions of government,” Africa pointed out. The group also said that “the very broad and very general definition of national security unfortunately means that information on foreign affairs can also be included among the exceptions from disclosure.” Ibon Foundation has been consistent in its research work on international agreements that affect Filipino people’s lives.

“The government is already abusing its authority and control over information as it is – the anti-FOI law just gives them further legal basis for doing so,” Africa said. Meanwhile, human rights group Karapatan also raised alarm on the inclusion of “national security” in the list of exceptions. In an interview, Cristina Palabay, secretary general of Karapatan, said the Malacanangimposed FOI would provide “legitimate mechanism to absolve state actors in cases of human rights violations.” “Every violation cannot be investigated thoroughly as state forces or the President can easily invoke national security in non-disclosure of information,” Palabay said, “This also blurs the question on command responsi-


bility.” Palabay said invoking national security is “very dangerous” as this “would abridge almost all civil and political rights of the people.” “With the realities today – many are being killed, disappeared and tortured by state security forces – a Malacanangsponsored FOI bill would worsen the violations,” Palabay said. “There is so much information that, were it available to the public, could be used to feed a more genuinely democratic and consultative process of decisionmaking,” Africa said. “A watereddown FOI bill will just reinforce what is already a pattern of information denial by the government which is fearful of genuinely engaging its citizens on policies it knows are anti-people and antidevelopmental.” q

Beside the fact that it favors his pocket, Espineda said he has been feeling good now that he no longer smokes. “Maginhawa sa pakiramdam. It makes me feel more energetic. I sleep more soundly than before.” “Let us leave now the luxury of smoking to the rich. Anyway, with their money, they could easily afford the vice and even the cost of treatment and medicines when illnesses associated with tobacco use come attacking their health,” Nestor Bon, a store owner in Tabaco City, said. Besides withdrawing from smoking, Bon said he has also taken away cigarettes from the items he sells in his store. “Matumal at madalang na ang bumibili (Only few now are buying).” For Rose Olarte-Orbita, an antitobacco campaigner who heads the Smoke-Free Albay Network (SFAN), these are welcome developments. “Thanks to the administration of Pres. Benigno Aquino III and to the present Congress for the Sin Tax Law, a measure where all their predecessors failed. The best side of it on our part is brought about by the news that so many smokers are now kicking out the deadly habit,” Orbita said. The government first asked the parliament to enact a law raising taxes on "sin" products as early as the 1990s, but a strong lobby by tobacco manufactur-

port mechanism which she can lean on during times like these.” With Arroyo out of power, Lozada does not feel the supposed change under the Aquino administration. He is continuously being prosecuted while many of those who were allies of Arroyo are very much part of the Aquino administration. A prosecutor involved in the plunder case against Arroyo et al on the NBN/ZTE deal, asked Lozada awkwardly if he would still be a government witness even if the government is also trying to jail him on the PFC case. Lozada told him his being a

ers dampened the adjustment. City Mayor Geraldine Rosal here has also expressed appreciation of the sin tax. “This is a big boost to our campaign towards a tobacco-free environment for our city since we are informed that a lot of smokers in our barangays have been giving up cigarettes.” The campaign for tobacco-free communities by the city government was started in 2009 with the strict enforcement of its Smoke-Free Ordinance enacted in 2009 that prohibits smoking in all public places of the city--including government offices, public conveyances, malls and parks. For this, the city government has won the DOH’s Red Orchid Award in a row of three years, the latest of which was last year--making it a Hall of Famer in the health agency’s recognition of LGUs’ successful implementation of anti-smoking programs in their localities. This city, along with the province of Albay which has been implementing since last year its own anti-smoking ordinance, has also adopted the Blue Ribbon Campaign of the World Health Organization (WHO) for ridding communities of cigarette smoke. Themed “Saving Lives from SecondHand Smoke,” the campaign focuses on raising awareness on the dangers of second-hand smoke, especially among children. q

witness in the NBN/ZTE case is “duty to the Filipino people.” In his email, Lozada said, “Personally, I am angry and hurt at the same time that this is happening under this administration...The pain is always deeper when my family is the one getting hurt. “ He added:“Hindi ako sumisingil ng utang na loob sa mga nakapuwesto ngayon, lalo na sa mga Aquino at mga kabinete niya. Pero itong patuloy niyang pagkukupkop sa kaisa-isang testigo ni Gloria Arroyo sa akin bilang presidente ng Phil. Forest Corp sa loob ng halos 3 taong niyang

pagiging pangulo. Ito ay isang hindi tahasang paraan upang hayaan ni PNoy na ipagpatuloy ang mag harassment cases sa akin ni GMA.. na ngayon nga ay humantong na dito sa masakit na kalagayang ito.” Lozada related that a common friend with President Aquino said to him: “I am sure that PNoy will never take the side of an Arroyo crony". Lozada replied: "I am sure that PNoy will not take the side of an Arroyo crony. What I am afraid of is that PNoy finds a common cause of their disdain for me or what I stood for". q

A6 A6


OPINION PINION O Musings Meg Yarcia



Seeing through the facade

t's election season once again. All over print, radio, television and the web, candidates and political analysts are exchanging their thoughts about platforms, about political power, about the economy, about what really ails the Philippine society. And it's time that we heighten our senses for detecting untruths, lest we make the mistake of electing the wrong leaders (again). The campaign period is a time for witty catchphrases. These days, we are bombarded with references to 'tuwid na daan' (the straight path) and promises of 'pagbabago' (change). Some are so comfortable using matters of faith in their platforms, and swear a 'God-centered leadership'. Others boast of their 'political will'. Let's tackle these one by one. Tuwid na daan is a potent metaphor for governance. It did catapult Noynoy Aquino to presidency in the 2010 elections, and it should be no source of comfort. If anything, it shows how desperate Pinoys were for a leadership we could trust, that they opted for someone with no record, versus the others with some credentials but whose name had been associated with that sin widely propagated as the cause of our misery these days: corruption. But if we study it more closely, a tuwid na daan should not simply be about freeing the government of corruption (which is what the administration prides itself in trying to accomplish, although we know there is much work to be done; also, we know that if ever the current regime has been truly aggressive in hounding the 'corrupt', it is too much coincidental for them to be politically unaligned with Aquino. The fact is, the administration has been active in prosecuting its political rivals, but does nothing about the hoodlums within). More than anything, a straight path should be about a government whose very direction is sound and grounded on a concrete analysis of the country's problems. If, for example, Aquino has recognized the highly skewed distribution of resources, especially of land, then following a straight path means ensuring the swift distribution of Hacienda Luisita. That has yet to happen. Many candidates these days are also too fond of saying they intend to bring their Christian agenda to the table. True, we've been a predominantly Christian populace for the longest time. But as the recent RH debacle showed, faith should never mix with politics, because we may end up upholding anti-people policies, just because a religion's belief pushes for it. As world history would likewise show, tagging God as one's adviser does not really make politicians more sincere. It just gives them a front with which to hide their elitism and wrongdoings. Finally, the 'political will' phrase. It's amusing how this term often crops up in an anti-poor context. Order the demolition of the informal settlers' homes to clear a space for urban development (when they really mean a shopping complex) and you have a lot of it. Same if you have the 'courage' to revise the country's policies to be more welcoming of foreign investors. Or if you make EDSA less friendly to commuters and the so-called ‘undisciplined’ PUV drivers. The irony is, political will should be about going against someone in power, supposedly in favor of the many. Yet, politicians are using it to justify their unpopular policies. No, it's not quite political will. Political patronage is the more apt term. We'll be hearing more of these, these euphemisms that really mask evil, evil intentions. Let's just hope that the Pinoy voters will see through the facade. q

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've been a healthy eater for as long as I can remember. I grew up not being allowed to eat tsitsirya (junk food, especially MSGlaced chips), and softdrinks. Being half-Ilocano, I was raised with vegetables always on the dining table. I fondly remember munching carrots or cucumber with mayonnaise for snacks, or seeing ginisang ampalaya (sauteed bitter gourd) or tossed fern salad in our lunchbox while my grade school classmates ate jellyace and candies and Chiz Curls or PeeWee or Rinbee from nearby stores for our breaktime, then hotdogs and rice for lunch. When I tell my friends today stories like that, they cringe and pity me. The fact is, I never found myself deprived of fun. And later, when I have children of my own, I would most likely introduce them to the same kind of diet. Here in the Philippines, the advocacy for healthy eating is often perceived to be a whim of the rich. I wash a sprig of broccoli in the office pantry, and get teased – lovingly, I might add – that I'm being sosyal. But to my mind, I was just eating what the rest of us should, if we care about our health at all.

JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012 8-14,

Good food

Everyone should be able to access good food. And yet we see how all around us are messages that it is okay – in fact, cool – to eat bad food. In the grocery or a sari-sari store, one can find P20 tuna mixes in can, three-fourths of which is just the brown sauce. There's the ulam fix, which is really just sauce with bits of meat (I would guess they are innards or those pieces left when the actually safe parts are already packed for delivery to supermarkets) in sachet. Then a popular food label released a product that makes rice look and taste better, the message being, it is okay if you can afford only the cheap variety; we can make it look expensive. I sincerely hope these things will be banned. Food, as a basic necessity of life, should be a primary concern of the government, and history teaches us that you can tell a lot about a country based on what the government feeds its people. And the judgment will definitely be harsh if the people are eating way below their nutritional needs, while its leaders can afford to dine in the most expensive places where the ingredients are freshed (or imported from countries where they are produced with high standards of quality). Sadly, in the Philippines, the mindset is about exporting the good food we have. Since lands are not owned by the farmers, there is little motivation or support for organic practices that

result in better products. Instead, what we have are mass-produced items, meat from industrial farms where the animals are injected with hormones to speed up their growth, vegetables sprayed with a lot of pesticides because the mono-cropping scheme makes them prone to attacks. We have stringent procedures for marking a product as export-quality, and leave the rest for the people to consume. Shouldn't the goal be to ensure high standards for safety for the Filipinos as well? If you want to access good food in the Philippines, the best bet is just to plant stuff in the garden and harvest them, or buy from the wet market and prepare your own food. I just hope the people will have time for it. I hope families will stop instilling in children's minds that it is a treat to bring them to fast food on special days. I hope parents don't buy into the marketing that a bottle of soda is the finishing touch to every good meal. I hope children will grow up not thinking that a bag of chips is what constitutes comfort food. Because in the end, what should bring comfort to our tummies are home-cooked meals, filled not with artificial seasoning, but with flavor that comes out with all-natural ingredients, laborious preparation, and a lot of love. I doubt any of today’s fast foods can offer that. q

The Truth Behind The Facts Komunidad Art Garcia


ome revealing data shows that more than 40% of the more than 12 million “illegal immigrants” came to the country legally. They have visa and did not cross the border from Mexico or else where. In that category are more than 1 million Filipinos who arrived with visa and overstayed in America. This is the reason why some Filipinos refused to recognized that they came in the “country illegally. The contend that they have documents and spend their fortunes to come to America. Unlike their Mexicans and other South American brothers and sisters who crossed the borders. What a lame excuse and a practice of inutile chauvinism. ***** The Deferred Action For Childhood Arrival (DACA) report said that 3,000 Filipinos enrolled in the program for legalization. Its 6th in the entire country. Still very small compared to 1.5 million Filipinos who have no


legal papers. Some people called them “Illegal immigrants” or “ undocumented immigrants.” Well, this proved what President Obama said that this measure is “temporary” and just give the 4 million immigrants a little leeway not be subjected to deportation and to sat, work or study in the country while fixing their papers. Unless a real comprehensive immigration reform law is enacted, this temporary measures will not suffice. The Morton Memorandum and the DACA are just stop-gap measures that will never fill the vacuum and the replace a genuine comprehensive law for all immigrant, more than 12 million of them in the country. ***** The Asian American and the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population are the fastest –growing racial groups in California. The Asian Americans grew from 34% between 2000 and 2010 while the NHPI population grew 29%. In comparison the Latino population grew 28%. Among the Asians, the South Asians were the fastest growing groups are the Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Sri-Lankan and the Indian population.Among ther NHPI

population, the Fijian Americans grew significantly. ***** In economy, Asian Americans and the NHPI contribute significantly to the 9th –largest economy of the world. Actually California slid from the world’s 5th largest economy to the 9th. They owned over a half-million business statewide in 2007 employing 910,000 people. California has the largest Asian American and NHPI consumer market with $ 712 billion in 2010. ***** The Asian Americans and NHPI continue to face language barriers. Nearly 1.7 million Asians are limited English Proficient (LEP) and it hinders their capability to find jobs and access basic services. This is an increase of 11% since 2000. Unemployment increased to 196% among Asian American since the economic crisis of 2006 to 2010. Over the similar period, more than 50% of these people increased to 50% or more than 540,000 among Asian Americans and 27,000 among the NHPI. This is a higher poverty rate compared to other population. These are the facts, now we must savor the real truth so we can understand the reality of today’s world. q

Figures Do Not Lie, But Liars Figure

newly released report from a non-profit agency in California culled and analyzed from the Census 2010 data said that Filipinos are relatively well educated. Up to 93 percent of Filipinos have a high school diploma or higher, and 46 percent have a bachelor’s degree or higher. But he sad part is that the data also shows along with Laotian, Cambodian and Pakistanis, young Filipinos have the lowest University of California (the state university system) admission rates. At the same time, the report also showed that while California’s per capita income is at $29,188 and the Asian per capita income is $29, 841 Filipino per capita income lags at $26,971. Indians have the highest Asian per capita earnings at $40,303. White per capita income is $42,052. However, the economic situation characterized by jobless growth and chronic recession

By POMPYANG DE CYMBAL pointed out that the Filipino community is next only to Indians in having the least poor and least low-income members among Asian groups in the state—6 percent of Filipinos are poor and 17 percent low-income. The data also showed that more than half of Filipinos in the state–58 percent–are homeowners, while 42 percent are renters, compared with 63 percent Chinese homeowners and 64 percent white homeowners. On the health situation, heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes are the leading causes of death among Filipinos in California, and 11 percent of them have no health insurance. ***** What is funny is that when we read the report as it was reported in the Philippines, some smart wags reported that Filipinos are now the largest Asian population

in California. As it was something to be proud of. Little that Filipinos in the Philippines know that some wags did not include in the data and did not explain that their report did not include more than one million Taiwanese in their report. They excluded the Taiwanese as if they are not Chinese just to push the Filipino data in the forefront. The Filipinos numbered 1,474,707 according to the data. And the Chinese ( excluding the Taiwanese) were around 1, 340,111. But if you will add the Taiwanese that numbered 109,928, the difference will be just small. Just a measly 66, 000 difference. I just shake my head in disbelief! ***** The latest analysis of the election results corrected the old data from exit polls that 75% of Asian American voters supported Turn to page a7

July 27 - August 2, 2012 February 8-14, 2013

Figures do not... FROM PAGE A6 President Barack Obama. The new data gave a higher percentage of Asian voters of 82 % who voted for the re-electionist Democrat President. Immigrant rights advocates pointed out that the Asian voters voted resoundingly for the immigration reform agenda of the president. A signal for a more vibrant participation of the Asian American community in the political agenda of the country. ***** Immigration is really a big issue of the Asian community. In November 1012, out of the more than 4.3 million in the family immigration backlog, more than half of it are from Asian countries. The Asian and Pacific Islander population sponsored over 40% of all


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family-based visas in 2010. Asian immigrants have been forced to wait as long as 23 years to be reunited with their families largely due to the limitations and inefficiencies of the broken immigration system. Of more than 1.4 million Asian American adults, three-fourth of these population are foreign born. And yet, Asian American have a high stake on the immigration reform debate but Asian American voices are rarely heard. Now the figures are showing that Asian Americans are being involved in this debate. They showed up for immigration reform in great number during the immigrant Rights Upsurge in 2006. They will be more visible and more active now.

Remembering martial law with a book launch. Speaker Feliciano R. Belmonte, Jr. cuts the ribbon during the exhibit and launching of the book on martial law on Feb 4 at the North Lounge of the Batasang Pambansa building. Also in photo are: (from left) Rep. Rene L. Relampagos, Bohol, 1st District; Norma Liongoren, owner of Liongoren Gallery; Rep. Teddy A. Casino, BAYAN MUNA party list; Rep. Jorge Banal, 3rd District, Quezon City; Rep. Luzviminda C. Ilagan, GABRIELA party list; Rep. Hemidina R. Abad, Batanes Lone District, and Deputy Speaker Rep. Maria Isabelle G. Climaco, Zamboanga City, 1st District (PNA photo by Johnny D. Guevarra)

Conquering Tourette Syndrome In the Philippines, tics are often wrongly referred to as mannerisms. Barnuevo, who first experienced motor tics at age 8, tried to diagnose himself by researching about his condition in encyclopedias. His attempt at self-diagnosis turned out to be futile, simply because he had the wrong word in mind. Mannerism was not an entry in any of the encyclopedias he read as a child, but Tourette Syndrome, Barnuevo later found out, was.

Tic-toc Tourette Syndrome is a neurological condition that affects the central nervous system. Complications in the nervous system, particularly in certain parts of the brain, are believed to cause tics such as eye blinking, head turning and facial grimacing. Symptoms usually appear between the ages of 7 and 10. Because of his tics, Barnuevo was mocked and ridiculed at school. His classmates would mimic the abrupt tensing of his muscles and the uncanny way his face twitched. Sometimes they would tell him he’s “crazy.” At the suggestion of relatives and family friends, Barnuevo’s parents took him to psychologists and psychiatrists, convinced that his tics were a behavioral problem. Violeta, his mother, used to scold him for his mannerisms. Despite his young age, Barnuevo had the notion that he was being taken to the wrong people. To be taken to psychologists and psychiatrists meant that what he had was a mental condition. He knew otherwise. Do what you love One day, Violeta took her son to the eye doctor because he was blinking more than usual. The family ophthalmologist suggested that his incessant eye blinking and so-called mannerisms could be neurological in nature and referred them to


a neurologist. That was when Barnuevo found out he had Tourette Syndrome. He then underwent a series of neurological tests. He was only 10 or 11 at the time, and was already experiencing the onset of vocal tics. His father initially found it hard to accept that their only child has Tourette Syndrome. But after his diagnosis, what Barnuevo felt above anything else was relief. It was an odd kind of joy to find out that what he had—this condition which made his body tremble out of his own accord—has a name.

Marlon Barnuevo co-founded the Philippine Tourette Syndrome Association.

He realized it exists in encyclopedias; it is a recognized disorder of the human nervous system; he is not the only person who has to deal with unwanted jerks and twists of the body. And most of all, he realized: “I wouldn’t die from Tourette Syndrome.” TS is considered a lifelong chronic disorder. But part of Barnuevo’s relief upon his diagnosis came from the fact that TS is not degenerative. Hence, he decided he would not let his disorder stop him from doing what he loved best. Among all his cousins, Barnuevo is the only one skilled with a musical instrument. He spent most of his childhood learning how to play the piano. However, his creativity is not limited to composing music—what ultimately led him to a designing career was his flair

for drawing and his knack for tinkering with old electronics. Barnuevo described himself in high school as “one of those people who knew what path to take” after graduation. In college, he took Industrial Design while working on his music. Whenever he plays the keyboard, he noticed his tics subside. Social barriers Barnuevo doesn’t need auxiliary devices to help him function, as other persons with disabilities do. What encumbers him in his battle with Tourette Syndrome is public ignorance toward his disability. It is this ignorance, exactly, which has led Barnuevo to face “social barriers,” defined by the Magna Carta for Persons with Disabilities as “characteristics of… society which limit the fullest possible participation of disabled persons in the life of the group…including negative attitudes which tend to single out and exclude disabled persons and which distort roles and interpersonal relationships.” Barnuevo recalled when his high school teacher, who was delivering her lecture in class, suddenly stopped to look at him. Everyone shifted their attention toward him, curious about what was going on. Unaware that Barnuevo has TS, the teacher harshly addressed him, “Mr. Barnuevo, stop making those noises!” But cutting words can be just as hurtful as silent actions. Once, while at the back of an FX van, Barnuevo sat across a mother and her small son. The boy pointed at him, who was then overcome by tics. The mother yanked her son’s arm away, so he would face away from Barnuevo. The same kind of attitude affected Barnuevo’s relationship with his first girlfriend. He dated her after graduating from college; they were both members of the church choir. His girlfriend

did not treat him any differently, but her family did. Her parents believed that TS was contagious—and worse, that it was fatal. They feared that if Barnuevo and their daughter had their own family, their children would acquire Tourette Syndrome. Tourette Syndrome is an inherited disorder. A patient’s offspring carrying the TS gene might not develop the disorder, but there is a strong possibility that the offspring’s offspring will. Barnuevo, who wants to have a family of his own someday, is currently in a relationship. He and his girlfriend sometimes perform as a duo in music bars. She sings the lyrics, he plays the music. Post-grad Looking back, Barnuevo refuses to believe TS prevented him from getting employed. He told himself there were other reasons. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities encourages equal opportunities in the workplace for all PWDs. It prohibits “discrimination on the basis of disability” in all forms of labor, including hiring and employment. Equipped with good grades and an impressive portfolio, Barnuevo applied in at least 20 companies. He received positive feedback from only five likely employers. His first job as a designer was at an American-owned company where he was able to produce designs for big corporations. In 2004, he resigned from his job to focus on his musical career with 3rd Avenue. When 3rd Avenue disbanded, he applied as an instructor at his alma mater. Aside from teaching and performing as a keyboardist, Barnuevo offers audio-editing services from his own home-based recording studio. But there are times when TS gets in the way of his work, es-

pecially when he is free-hand drawing or typing on the computer. Work, for Barnuevo, also means managing the nonprofit organization he co-founded in 2007. The Philippine Tourette Syndrome Association (PTSA), the first organization of its kind in the country, aims to spread information about Tourette Syndrome to Filipinos. Regardless of all the misconceptions about TS, Barnuevo said it would be unfair to think that TS is the only disorder that needs to be understood by the public. Because there are so many other disabilities that need attention. They are ignored, and sometimes, even forgotten. Control Barnuevo hopes discrimination against people with Tourette’s, especially children, would stop. “I would like to think that more sensitive people would think there is something wrong with me medically,” he said. From the difficulties he experienced, Barnuevo has become a stronger person. He now takes the stares and tactless words lightly, but he admits that he sometimes still gets hurt. “I may not have conquered Tourette’s, alright. Perhaps, I never will. But what’s important is that I’ve conquered two things that are even harder to conquer— the fear of living life, and the fear of loving others completely,” wrote Barnuevo in a testimonial he shared at the PTSA website. “Life can be as hurtful as much as it is beautiful. Insecurities ought not to put us down, but to merely put our feet on the ground.” The author is a senior journalism student at the University of the PhilippinesDiliman. She submitted this story for the journalism seminar class “Reporting on Persons with Disabilities” under VERA Files trustee Yvonne T. Chua. q

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8-14, JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012

What's Inside B5

Three faces of women all set to be told in newest GMA drama series, “Bukod Kang Pinagpala” “Be Careful with my Heart,” finalist in the 2013 NY Festivals


Felipe De Leon’s “Noli Me Tangere” opera to debut in NYC in October


Denmark discovers why “It’s More Fun in the Philippines”



Coco and Julia’s first movie “A Moment in Time” to hit cinemas


A FILIPINO-AMERICAN PUBLICATION 3355 W. Spring Mountain Road, Suite 25, Las Vegas, NV 89102

VOL. XV 27 - August 2, 2012 XVINO. 30 February 8-14, 2013 07| July | Tel. 888-366-0008

Vilma Santos, sumusuko na sa paggawa ng indie film INDEX



unay ka, Virginia, hindi negatibo ang ibig sabihin ng salitang “suko” o ng pangngalang “pagsuko” o kahit ang mga pandiwang “sumusuko” kahit na sa ordinaryong pananaw ng isang tao lalo na sa mabilis na pamumuhay ngayon sa lipunan ay “negative” ang katangang suko. Kasi nga publisidad lamang ang sinasabing “pagsuko” ni Vilma sa paggawa ng isang independent film o ang tinatawag na indie film. Nakakadalawang araw lang ng shooting si Santos para sa kanyang tinaguriang “indie” film na “Extra” na isa sa mga opisyal na lahok sa Directors Showcase ng 2013 Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival ng Cultural Center of the Philippines. Natuwang na produksyon nito ang Quantum Films ni Atty. Joji Alonso at sa direksyon naman ni Jeffrey Jeturian.

Ayon kay Atty. Alonso, inuna nang kunan ang simula at wakas ng pelikula. “Kasi, ang setting ng beginning at ending ng istorya ay iisa kaya kinunan na ni Jeffrey ang mga eksena,” pahayag ni Joji. “Puro tracking shots lang inuna namin kaya nakatapos kami. This is because of Vilma’s busy schedule,” paliwanag ni Alonso. Batay sa takbo ng mga pangyayari, parang nadadala si Vi sa paggawa ng indie film, ayon sa obserbasyon. Kasi nga ay talagang kokonti ang taong gumaganap sa paggawa ng produksyong malaya tulad ng indie at ang panahon ng kalendaryo ng shooting days ay limitado lamang. Kaya sinasamantala ni Ate Vi ang kanyang maluwag na iskedyul isang beses sa isang linggo. Pero pulido naman ang pros-

eso ng produksyon nina Jeffrey at Joji lalo na sa propesyunal na rikositos dahil mahuhusay at bating ang mga alagad ng sining na ito. Premyadong filmmaker si Jeturian kaya kayang-kaya niyang makalikha ng isang maipagmamalaking obra na tinatampukan ng isang magaling ding aktres at Star for All Seasons na artista. At kung mananalo si Santos sa mga parangal sa loob at labas ng showbiz ay maaaring maiba ang kanyang desisyon at persepsyon sa paggawa ng indie film.

Jennylyn Mercado, umiyak dahil may nabuntisan si Patrick Garcia PAHINA B2 Erich Gonzales, karangalan maging kapareha si Coco Martin PAHINA B2 Piolo, gagawa muli ng PAHINA B2 pelikula


Tenor Arthur Espiritu wants to rediscover the Philippines By elizabeth lolarga F vera files

or a much-in-demand tenor like Arthur Espiritu who has performed at Teatro alla Scala, Piccolo Teatro di Milano, both in Italy, and with Opera Fuoco in Paris, he would like to rediscover his country of origin. Espiritu, who grew up in Tanay, Rizal, migrated with his family to the United States in the late 1990s when he was 14 years old. Two- and- a- half years ago, he came back for a one night off concert and swept Manila’s classical music community off their feet. He has been back a few times to perform, the last of which was as Count Almaviva in the fulllength production of The Barber SOURCE: BANGKO SENTRAL NG PILIPINAS of Seville last July at the Cultural


Center of the Philippines. On Feb. 6, at 7 p.m., the new-


ly-wed Espiritu will sing in “The Poet Speaks” with Najib Ismail on the piano at the Ayala Museum, Makati Ave., Makati City.

After Feb. 17, he flies out of Manila and heads straight for Italy to do his first Cassio from Verdi’s Otello at the Teatro Comunale di Luciano Pavarotti Modena and Teatri Comunali di Piacenza. Rehearsals start on Feb. 18. After Otello, which ends in March, he flies to Pittsburgh to do Don Ramiro in Rossini’s La Cenerentola with the Pittsburgh Opera. He said he plans to return here on the second week of May. With his new bride he wants to visit Davao, Palawan and perhaps Bohol. Apart from this he is open to projects that’ll benefit mainly young aspiring singers.

any connoisseurs have lamented Filipinos' lack of a wine culture, and it is true to a certain extent. As opposed to European dining tables where it's probably a staple to pair the main dish with a bottle of red or white, common Pinoy homes would most likely offer their guests a glass of sparkling soda, or a fruit juice. The situation is understandable, if one takes into account the tropical climate, which makes it impossible for families to keep a wine cellar. At the most, some colder places in the country - Tagaytay, Benguet and Kalinga, to name a few - do have such a wine-making tradition. Here

By meg yarcia are some popular alcoholic beverages available around the country:

Tapuy (rice wine). Many homes in the Cordillera make tapuy, which is ideal for keeping themselves warm amid their region's sometimes unforgiving climate. It is often sweet with just a hint of the

turn to page b6

Pinoy alcoholic beverages 101 M

Turn to page B5

In cooperation with:

alcohol, and one can have as many as four to five glasses before getting tipsy. The variety of the rice used makes all the difference, and just like wines, the older it gets, the better. Fruit wines. We may not have grapes, but we do have strawberries, persimmon, rattan, mango, duhat and bugnay, among other fruits which make for a wide range of fruit wines. Persimmon, rattan and strawberry wines are most often available in the northern regions, while the South has mango and guyabano wines. Davao City is actually branding itself to be the country's turn to page b6


Cagsawa Festival traces lost town, boosts people’s identity By Alfredo L. Vargas Jr. F or the first time in the history of this town, residents here and visitors alike will have a chance to trace the lost Albay town of “Cagsawa” and look up to the ardent desire against all odds by its inhabitants to preserve their identity as a people through the centuries. Albay Gov. Joey Salceda, with his penetrating advocacy to advance the whole province as ecoand histo-cultural tourism destination, personally carried out extensive research studies about how life was in Cagsawa prior to and after the whole town was buried under tons of volcanic debris in 1814. The lost Cagsawa town was geographically located about 11 kilometers southeast of the crater of Mount Mayon.

Contest sponsor: In the month-long celebration of Cagsawa Festival this February, various events are focused on commemorating the February 1, 1814 Mount Mayon eruption, one of the two most violent and treacherous volcanic events ever recorded. Records revealed that the significance of the day, being

the eve of “Candelaria” (Feast of Candles), was ironical. Instead of prayer, psalm and hymn recitals, it was dominated by nature’s fury and people's hysteria. The belfry of the baroque church built in the place by Franturn to page b7

Filipino American TV

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JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012 8-14,

Jennylyn Mercado, umiyak dahil may nabuntisan si Patrick Garcia H

indi napigilan ni Jennylyn Mercado na umiyak nang umiyak habang kausap ang mga peryodistang pampelikula nang mabanggit ang pangalan ni Patrick Garcia sa pagkikipag-usap sa kanya kamakailan. Nang pumirma si Jennylyn ng panibagong kontrata sa GMA Network, pinagkaguluhan siya ng mga movie reporter at naitanong agad ang tungkol sa kaso ni Patrick. Nauna na rito ang pagkaka-post ng mga karanasan ni Mercado sa Facebook at Twitter na wala ngang sustento si Garcia sa kanilang anak na si Jazz. Hindi umimik man lang ang aktres sa kawalan ng aktor ng suporta sa kanya bagamat ang nagrereklamo ay ang mga nagma-

mahal sa kanya. Pinayuhan naman si Jen ng kanyang talent manager na si Becky Aguila na huwag nang sumagot sa anumang upasala laban sa kanya at pabayaan na lang si Patrick sa gusto nitong gawin sa kanyang buhay. Pero nang malaman nga ni Mercado na nakabuntis na naman si Garcia ng bagong babae, dito na umanod ang mga luha sa pisngi ni Jennylyn. Hindi nga siya makapagsalita habang naaalala ang pagdating sa kanya ng mga balitang may nabuntisan na naman si Patrick na babaing hindi taga-showbiz. Gayunman, kahit na parang pinagbagsakan siya ng langit at lupa sa masamang balita, nakapagpabangon naman sa kanyang diwa ang pagpirma ng bagong kasunduan sa

GMA Network. Inalo nga siya ng mga taga-Channel 7 sa pagdadalamhati sa pagkakabuntis ni Patrick sa ibang babae. Bagamat wala na siyang nasabi laban kay Garcia ay naniniwala si Jen na pinagkakasya siya ng Panginoong Diyos sa mga biyaya kapalit ng siphayo sa pag-ibig. Tanging si Jazz na lang anya ang nagbibigay sa kanya ng lakas ng loob na magpatuloy sa buhay. Gayundin ang pakikipagrelasyon niya kay Luis Manzano. Pero para anya kay Jazz ang hindi na niya pagtugon sa mga katanungan tungkol sa pagbuntis na naman ni Patrick sa ibang babae.

Erich Gonzales, karangalan maging kapareha si Coco Martin A ktor na ang pananaw sa kanya ng mga tao kabilang ang mga kasamahan sa showbiz kaya naman nakakaangat na ang estado ni Coco Martin sa lahat ng mga tao sa industriya ng aliw. Sino nga ba naman ang hindi hahanga at gagalang sa kakayahan ni Coco sa pag-arte samantalang siya ay nagmula sa matitinik na tagalikha ngpelikula, halimbawa’y si Brillante Ma. Mendoza, na isang premyadong internasyunal na alagad ng sining? Kaya naman kahit na sino ay luluhod sa kanyang talento. Isa na rito si Erich Gonzales na katambal ni Martin sa soap opera ng ABS-CBN na “Juan de la Cruz,” isang maalamat na panoorin. “Tagahanga po ako ni Coco kaya nang sabihin sa akin na siya ang katambal ko sa teleserye, I was very excited at honoured,” pahayag ni Erich na tunay na inaalagaan ng ABS-CBN.

Maraming batang aktres ang pinagpilian sa kapartner ni Martin pero sa katuusan, napagpasyahan ng pangasiwaan ng istasyon na ipagkaloob kay Gonzales ang pambihirang pagkakataon na makapareha ang ma-

husay at premyadong bituin ng kasalukuyang henerasyon. Isang drama at aksyon ang “Juan de la Cruz” at mapapasabak si Coco sa matitindi at mahihirap na mga eksena. Pero sanay na siya mula pa nang matuklasan siya ni Deo Fajardo, Jr. at Ihman Isturco. Bihira lang ang nakakaalam ng personal na kasaysayan ni Martin pero mahalaga sina Deo at Ihman sa pamamayagpag ng aktor ngayon. Mahalagang balikan ang kasaysayan ng isang tao para lubos na maintindihan at malaman ang mga implikasyon ng pagkilos at pagdedesisyon nito. Nang magbalik-bayan nga si Ihman ay hindi nakalimot si Coco na pasyalan ang nakatuklas sa kanya at nagdala kay Brillante para bigyan ng isang natatanging pelikula, ang “Masahista” na siyang naghatid sa dambana ng kasikatan sa kanya.

Controversial Fil-Briton filmmaker Jowee Morel, balik-Pilipinas mula Bali, Indonesia; handa na para sa Viva Films


akabalik na sa bansa ang kontrobersyal at nakakaintrigang Fil-Briton director na si Jowee Morel mula sa halos isang buwang bakasyon grande sa Bali, Indonesia. Isang masayang Jowee ang nakausap namin sa telepono at sinabi niyang “paraiso talaga ang Bali sa Indonesia.” “Walang sinabi ang Pilipinas sa artistic temperament ng mga Balinese sa magandang mga tanawin sa kanilang bansa. “Oo, maganda rin ang Pilipinas, ang mga beaches dito pero hindi artistic ang pagkakagawa. Sa Bali, talagang makikita

mo na pinaghirapan ang pagkakadisenyo ng mga beach nila kaya naman mamamangha ka,” paliwanag ni Morel na sanay na sa maraming kultura ng mga bansa sa mundo. Bilang Fil-Briton na madalas manirahan sa London, gamay na ni Jowee ang mga bansa sa United Kingdom tulad ng Scotland at Wales at mga nasyon sa Europa tulad ng Spain, Holland, Switzerland gayundin ang mga bansa sa Asia tulad ng Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Korea at iba pa at siyempre, sa Estados Unidos. Ang kaalaman ni Morel sa mga kultura sa iba’t ibang bansa ang kanyang nagagamit sa kanyang mga pelikula,

pinakahuli sa “Leona Calderon” ni Pilar Pilapil na binila ng Viva Entertainment sa Filmmakers Entertainment nila nina Pilar at Andy Villalba.


indi titigil si Piolo Pascual na mapatunayang mahusay siyang

artista. Ngayong soap opera pa lang ang kanyang ginagawa sa ABS-CBN, natatutok siya sa paggawa ng pelikula para sa kanyang sariling produksyon kasosyo ang mga kaibigan at kasamahan sa trabaho. Ayon sa premyadong manunulat na si Marilag Bautista, nakikipagmiting na si Piolo sa kanyang kapatid na mandudulang pampelikula na si Lualhati Bautista, kilalang alagad ng sining na sumulat ng mga kuwentong “Bata, Bata Paano ka Ginawa?” “Dekada ’70,” “Itlog” at marami pang iba. “Ipinakilala pa nga sa akin ni Lualhati si Piolo one time,” kuwento ni Marilag na tuwang-tuwa sa pagkamay at pakikipaglitratuhan kay Pascual. Ayon sa bunsong Bautista, malapit nang magsimula ang pelikulang pagsasamahan nina Piolo at Lualhati. Bilib na bilib si PJ, palayaw ni Pio-

lo, sa kahusayan sa pagsulat ni Lualhati kaya naman ipinahanap pa ng aktor ang progresibong iskriprayter sa lahat ng sulok ng daigdig. Nasa may Fairview lang naman ang panganay na Bautista kaya naman madaling natagpuan. “Naku, sana naman ay magkasunud-sunod na muli ang mga projects ni Lualhati kasi napaka-prolific niya,” pahayag ni Marilag. Sinabi niyang magkasundungmagkasundo sina Lualhati at Pascual kaya sila ay magka-team. Nagkasama ang dalawa nang gawin ni Piolo ang “Dekada ‘70” na siyang nagbigay sa aktor ng kanyang mga parangal sa kahusayan sa pagganap. Masusi ang pagsulat ni Lualhati ng script ng pelikulang idinirehe ni Chito S. Roño kaya naman mauulit muli ang pagsasama nina Bautista at Pascual kahit hindi si Chito ang direktor. Inaasahanang mamamayagpag na naman ang karera sa pag-arte ni Piolo sa 2013.

kulang Pilipino, ang prestihiyosong samahan ng mga kritiko sa Pilipinas, kung mapapasama sa nominasyon ang pelikula dahil nag-premiere night na naman ito nang walang pagbebenta ng tiket sa Gateway Cinema One sa Cubao. May mga resolusyon ang mga awardgiving body sa Pilipinas kung paano mapapasama sa nominasyon ang isang pelikula na naipalabas na kahit isang beses lang sa loob ng isang taon. Ang desisyong ito ng MPP o ng Young Critics Circle o Star Awards o Pasado o Gawad Tanglaw o Famas ang hinihintay nina Pilar at Jowee dahil bahagi ito ng marketing ng obra.

na imbitahin ang publiko para manood ng kanyang “Les Miserables” ay sinabi ng aktres na bakit hindi si Lo ang maganyaya sa mga tao para manood ng pelikula. Samu’t sari ang mga takbo ng utak at pagpapahayag ng mga tao sa pagpapanayam ni Ricardo kay Anne na nasulat

byu rin ay maraming dahilan o sanligan ang diretsahang pagtatanong ni Ricky kay Anne kabilang ang takdang oras na ibinigay ng may hawak ng promosyon ng “Les Miserables” sa mga mamamahayag na inimbitahan sa junket. Para kay Jowee Morel, ang kontrobersyal at nakakaintrigang Fil-Briton filmmaker na nagdirek ng “Leona Calderon” ni Pilar Pilapil, simple lang ang sagot niya sa alingasngas na dulot ng panayam. “Anne Hathaway is just a bitch,” walang kagatul-gatol na pahayag ni Jowee. Ayon kay Morel, baka wala lang sa mood si Hathaway kaya gano’n ang pagtugon nito sa mga kuwestyon ni Ricky. “Wala naman sa the way Ricky threw the questions to Anne. Puwede namang maging polite siya kay Ricky, e,” wika ni Jowee. “Kung ako ang direktor ni Anne Hathaway, pinagsabihan ko ‘yan pagkatapos ng panayam. “Bakit ang interview ni Ricky kay Amanda Seyfried went well at hindi naman siya nagtaray kay Ricky. Bitch lang ‘yang si Anne Hathaway,” pag-ulit ni Morel ng kanyang komento. q

Morel: “Anne Hathaway is just a bitch”


Piolo, gagawa muli ng pelikula na isinulat ni Lualhati Bautista

Ngayong balik-Pilipinas na si Jowee ay haharapin na niya ang pagdidirek ng mga pelikula at telebisyon sa Viva Films, ang kumpanyang kumontrata sa kanya sa direksyon dahil bilib na bilib sa kanya ang mag-amang Vic at Vincent del Rosario. Nakatakda na ring itanghal sa mga sinehan sa Marso ang “Leona Calderon” na tumatalakay sa Overseas Filipino Worker o OFW sa London na si Leona Calderon at ang mga personal na mga problema niya sa lunsod na ‘yon bilang manggagawa. Nakikipag-usap na rin si Pilapil sa mga miyembro ng Manunuri ng Peli-

atuloy ang pagdagsa ng mga reaksyon, kampi man o kontra, sa peryodistang pampelikulang si Ricardo F. Lo, mas kilala rin sa tawag na Ricky Lo, kaugnay ng kanyang panayam sa Hollywood actress na si Anne Hathaway kamakailan sa ibang bansa. Ang interbyu ay naganap nang imbitahan si Ricky ng produksyon ng “Les Miserables” o ng advertising and promotion nito para maipalaganap sa Pilipinas at sa buong mundo ang pelikula. Kontrobersyal ang pagkakainterbyu ni Lo kay Anne dahil sa higit pa sa dalawang pagtanggi ng aktres na sumagot sa mga tanong ni Ricardo. Una nang itinanong ng peryodista kung ano ang masasabi nito sa pagbabawas nito ng timbang na 25 lbs at kung paano nito binawi ang bigat. Ikalawa’y nang tanungin ni Lo si Hathaway kung nakaranas na ba ito ng kahirapan o pagdarahop sa kanyang buhay. Nang kunin naman ng movie writer ang reaksyon ng premyadong bituing pang-Hollywood kaugnay kay Lea Salonga, bumanat ang huli na napag-usapan na nila ang tungkol kay Lea. Nang pakiusapan pa ni Ricky si Anne

sa Facebook, Twitter, email, magasin, pahayagan at naisahimpapawid sa radyo, telebisyon at sa webcast gayundin sa mga umpukan at usapan ng mga tao sa buong daigdig. Para sa amin ay magandang senyales ito sa pagpuna ng madla sa pag-iinterbyu ng mga peryodista sa mga artista dahil nasasanay at naiensayo ang kritikal na pag-iisip at pang-unawa ng mga ito. Pero bilang manunulat at nag-iinter-

Geoff Eigenmann feels more pressure with the success of “Forever”


ery happy but pressured." Iyan ang nararamdaman ni Geoff Eigenmann nang ibinahagi ng sa kanya ang balitang mataas ang ratings ng primetime series niyang Forever sa pilot week nito. Sa aming pagbisita sa set ng Wagas: Mga Totoong Kuwento ng Pag-ibig ng GMA News TV last January 24, kung saan kasama rin niya ang kanyang Forever co-star na si Heart Evangelista, Geoff shared his thoughts about being back in primetime, what fans can expect from Forever, and how it feels to play Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago's husband. "I'm very happy about it kasi we've been preparing for Forever since November. And along the way, andaming changes na nangyari. We were supposed to be for the afternoon [block], and then naging early primetime before the news. So I'm very happy with all the changes," kuwento ni Geoff. Dagdag pa niya, "More pressure, basically, kasi siyempre primetime 'yun, but very happy kasi lahat ng pinagpaguran

namin, lahat ng pinaghirapan namin, it's all paying off right now. And the number one thing is nag-eenjoy lahat ng mga Kapuso. If they're happy, we're happy." Sinigurado naman ni Geoff na marami pang dapat abangan ang mga viewers sa Forever. "Marami pang aabangan, turn to page b6


February October 26 8-14, - November 2013 July 27 - August 2, 2012 1, 2012


Coco and Julia’s first movie “A Moment in Time” to hit cinemas The phenomenal love team of 2012 Coco Martin and Julia Montes are all set to give their loyal supporters the perfect Valentine’s treat as their highly anticipated first movie “A Moment In Time” will soon hit cinemas in the Philippines on February 13. Produced by Star Cinema, “A Moment In Time,” tells a unique tale of love between two unique individuals, Jilian (Julia) and Patrick (Coco), who according to Coco and Julia is a perfect story this Valentine’s month. “This time, gusto naming magpakilig, magpa-in love at mang-inspire ng bawat manonood. Sa movie kasi, iibahin ko ang mundo ng karakter ni Julia na Jilian. Tuturuan ko siya kung paano mabuhay,” shared Coco. “Di ba ‘pag may boyfriend o girlfriend ka, minsan may mga bagay kang nagagawa na kahit alam mong labag ‘yun sa prinsipyo mo ay gagawin mo pa rin dahil in love ka. At ‘yung mga bagay na ‘yun ang dapat abangan sa movie.”

Julia added that the love story of Jilian and Patrick will surely make the viewers feel the joy, excitement, and pain true love. “Tungkol siya sa dalawang taong nagmamahalan na sa gitna ng maraming conflicts nila ay mapapaisip ang moviegoers kung sa ganoong sitwasyon ay ano ang susundin mo–puso mo ba o isip mo,” said Julia. “Hindi lang love ng teenagers ang tina-tackle ng movie kundi maging ‘yung relationships at challenges sa family kapag may dumarating na mga problema.” Their characters were so close to their hearts that Coco and Julia both admitted that they can relate with their emotions. Julia related, “Pareho kami ni Jilian na sweet at ma-effort pagdating sa love. Pareho din din kami na laging nagpu-prove ng sarili na iba ‘yung nakikita o naiisip ng tao sa akin sa totoong ako.” Coco, meanwhile shared that through his role Patrick he had the chance to show the other side of himself.

“Madalas na nilang akong nakikitang seryoso, umiiyak, at galit na galit. This time, makikita nila ang isa pang parte ng pagkatao ko,” he said. “Kadalasan sa lahat ng mga soap opera o pelikula na ginagawa ko ako ‘yung nagre-react, ako ‘yung suplado, ako ‘yung hard-to-get. Dito sa ‘A Moment In Time’ baligtad naman, ako naman ‘yung masiyahin, jologs, kalog. Basta kakaiba!” Coco and Julia further shared that if there is one lesson about love that the moviegoers will learn from their first big screen team-up, it is having the will to fight for your decision. “Hindi lang sila kikiligin at maiiyak sa movie, matututo din silang manimbang kung ano nga ba ‘yung ipaglalaban nila, ‘yung taong minamahal nila o ‘yung kapakanan ng mas nakararami,” said Julia. “Sa buhay naman kasi, tayo ang nagde-desisyon sa lahat, lalo na kung paano mo pangangalagaan ang isang bagay tulad ng isang relasyon. Choice na

ng tao ‘yun kung paano natin aalagaan o kung gusto mo ba siyang mawala o hindi,” Coco said. Like Coco and Julia, director Emmanuel “Manny” Palo is also proud of the unique story of “A Moment In Time.” “It is a story about a couple who met and fell in love na biglang may nangyari sa kanilang past na magiging hadlang

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para ipagpatuloy nila ang kanilang relasyon,” said Direk Manny. “Sabi nga sa pelikulang ito: ‘love can happen by chance, but love can also be lost by choice.’ Kasi minsan may mangyayari sa buhay mo na hindi inaasahan at ‘yung pangyayaring iyon ang maaaring magTurn to page B6


8-14, JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2013 2012 B4 ENTERTAINMENT A4 NEWS Three faces of women all set to be told in newest GMA drama series, “Bukod Kang Pinagpala”


itness what a mother can do to gain the love of her child as GMA Network presents Afternoon Prime’s newest drama series, Bukod Kang Pinagpala. It will replace Sana Ay Ikaw Na Nga beginning February 11. Created by the GMA Entertainment TV group, Bukod Kang Pinagpala sets to unfold the stories of three women and their experiences in fighting for their loved ones. Starring in the series are the network’s prime actors and actresses headlined by Camille Prats, Jackie Rice, Jennica Garcia, Carl Guevarra, Mona Louise Rey, and Mark Anthony Fernandez.

Coming back to the teleserye scene, Mark plays the role of Leandro Alcuar, who owns Bessie’s Garden and Restaurant. Just like any other father, Leandro longs for a child but, unfortunately, his wife Bessie (Camille), cannot give him one. Supporting the business and living with Bessie is her cousin Ofelia Almazan, played by Jennica. Because of her husband’s death, Ofelia single-handedly raised her daughter Lizzie. Ofelia devoted her life to Lizzie who dies because of heart failure. Making things more complicated is the character of Jackie as Janet Perez. She is the woman

who deeply admires Leandro because of his looks and wealth. Ambitiously wanting Leandro’s attention, she viciously schemed to have a child with him. When she was about to tell Leandro the news that she is preganant, Janet finds out that Bessie is also pregnant. In memory of Ofelia’s daughter, Bessie will name her child Lizzie, who will also eventually die because of an accident. Janet decides to go abroad and leaves her child Lara, played by Mona Louise, together with a letter, in front of the house of Leandro. Unfortunately, it is Ofelia turn to page b8

What makes you proud to be Kapuso?


n celebration of Kapuso Month this February, your favorite GMA stars share what they love about being a ceritified Kapuso and why they are proud to be part of this network. Alamin kung ano ang mga sagot nina Marian Rivera, Richard Gutierrez, Alden Richards, Andrea Torres, Mikael Daez, at iba pa ninyong Kapuso idols sa tanong na "What makes you proud to be Kapuso?" Marian Rivera: "Ang GMA kasi ang isa sa nagbigay sa akin ng break nung ginawa ko ang Marimar, so simulat noon talaga ay maraming projects ang binibigay sa akin ng GMA, malaki ang tiwala nila sa akin. The mere fact na binibigyan nila ako ng ganoong kalalaking projects ay sobrang proud na ako to be Kapuso." Richard Gutierrez: "I'm proud because we can reach millions of Filipinos all over the

world, and we are able to entertain Filipinos and we give them the best shows that we can do."

Alden Richards: "I'm proud to be Kapuso kasi marami akong napapaligayang tao sa ginagawa ko. Marami rin akong nai-inspire, and malaking bagay sa akin 'yun. malaking tulong 'yun sa

isang artista kasi nabibigyan ng purpose 'yung trabaho namin. Andrea Torres: "I'm very proud to be a Kapuso kasi ang ganda ng working relationship na mayroon tayo dito sa GMA. Ang ganda ng samahan ng bawat isa, nakikita ko 'yun, talagang nagtutulungan lahat." Mikael Daez: "I love the atmosphere here. I'm a big believer of togetherness, and malakas ang togetherness dito sa GMA." Benjamin Alves: "I'm proud to be Kapuso because ang mga artista po natin dito ay humble, talented, and generous with charity work." Elle Ramirez: "Proud ako kasi, gaya nga ng mga kasama ko sa Protege, sinasabi nila na andami din nilang pinagdaanan na mga auditions and VTRs, pumila ng sobra. Sobrang suwerte ko kasi sa hinaba-haba ng pila, dito din naman pala ako mapupunta

sa Kapuso network. Very thankful ako doon." Frencheska Farr: "Siyempre proud na proud ako dahil una sa lahat, ang Kapuso, alam naman nating lahat, ay very genuine, galing talaga sa puso 'yung mga ginagawa natin para sa mga tao." Kris Bernal: "I'm proud to be a Kapuso kasi alam ko na ang motivation ng network na ito, ang pagiging isang Kapuso, ay mabigay kung ano 'yung needs

ng mga tao, kung ano 'yung mga gusto nila, mga pangarap nila. 'Yun yung mga binibigay namin." Kylie Padilla: "I'm proud to be Kapuso because ang ganda ng mga show, ang babait ng mga taong nakakatrabaho ko, and you are really given a chance to show your talent." Luis Alandy: "One thing I realize is that it's not just work for me. 'Yung binibigay ng Kapuso sa akin, hindi lang basta trabaho. Sila 'yung nagturo sa akin kung paano makisama sa tao, na everything is not just work-related." Manilyn Reynes: "Ang shows natin, kasi sila ay may mga aral na nakakapulutan ng mga tao, nagpapasaya, nagpapaiyak, nakakatulong, lahat na!" Paolo Contis: "I get the chance to work with the best people, not only off-cam pero oncam din. That's what's great about working for the Kapuso network, para kayong iisa - walang mataas, walang mababa."

Rocco Nacino: "[Proud akong maging Kapuso] dahil dito ako nagsimula." Ruru Madrid: "Proud na proud ako dahil ito ang nagbibigay saya sa bawat tao na nanonood, at kapag Kapuso ka, professional ka kaya maganda ang iisipin ng mga tayo sa'yo." Zandra Summer: "'Yung Kapuso lang talaga ang nagtanggap sa akin. I've been through a lot of auditions, and dito lang pala ako mapupunta sa Kapuso." Abangan ang Part 2 ng interview na ito, soon on q

Toni Gonzaga to host ‘The Voice of the Philippines’


ltimate Multimedia Star Toni Gonzaga is officially the host of The Voice of the Philippines, the country’s edition of the worldwide hit singing competition The Voice, after ABSCBN made its big announcement last Sunday (Feb 3) on The Buzz. “It’s a singing competition with a different concept. We will showcase the best singers in the Philippines like you’ve never seen them before,” Toni shared to give viewers a glimpse on what to expect on her new show. One of the most sought after and most bankable hosts in the country today, Toni became the face of reality shows Pinoy Big Brother and Pinoy Dream Academy and among the hosts of noontime show Happy Yipee Yehey, and showbiz talk shows Entertainment Live and The Buzz. Apart from that, she is also a versatile television and movie actress, certified recording star, sold-out concert performer, covergirl, and credible product endorser. Toni will be the Pinoy coun-

terpart of Carson Daly who hosts the more popularly known US edition of The Voice with Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Cee Lo Green, and Blake Shelton as celebrity coaches. The Voice is a unique singing competition where auditions are based solely on vocal ability. In the first stage called the “blind auditions,” all four coaches must listen to the artist without facing him or her and must press their respective buttons if they want the artist to be part of the team they will mentor. Hitting the button will also trigger the coach’s chairs to swivel so that the coach can finally see the face behind the voice. The coaches get to choose the contestants to form their respective teams. They will then dedicate themselves to develop their singers via mentoring and will pit two of their own team members in the second round called the “battle rounds.” After the vocal face-off, the turn to page b7

Marian Rivera reveals big secret in “Temptation of Wife”


he lead star of GMA’s toprating drama Temptation of Wife divides her time between the tapings of her primetime soap and the shooting of her upcoming film, My Lady Boss. Marian, however, assures her fans and supporters that she will follow her doctor’s advice to rest and follow her cut-off during tapings. Meanwhile, more shocking

revelations and confrontations will be revealed in the episodes this week as Chantal finally breaks her silence and reveals her real identity to the Salcedos. Chantal announces to everyone that she is Angeline! Before Heidi (Glaiza de Castro) could even expose what she discovered about Chantal, she cuts off her speech and divulges

how Heidi masterminded her death which killed her baby. She also discloses that Stella is responsible for her miscarriage during her first pregnancy. What will be Heidi, Stella, Romeo and Marcel’s reaction with Angeline’s big revelation? Can Heidi once again walk away with her crime? Will Angeline forgive Marcel and give him another chance? q

finalists. Whose dreams will be fulfilled and whose lives will be changed next and emerge as the

next grand winner? Watch out for “Pilipinas Got Talent” coming very soon on ABS-CBN. q

Big Three judges return for “Pilipinas Got Talent 4” T

he Big Three judges of “Pilipinas Got Talent” are back as the country’s biggest and grandest talent-reality show returns on television soon on ABSCBN. The Queen of All Media Kris Aquino, Comedy Queen Ai Ai Delas Alas, and ‘The Expert’ Freddie “FMG” Garcia will take their seats in the judges panel and decide who among the hopefuls got talent. Their keen eye for talent already fulfilled the dreams and changed the lives of various


February 8-14, 2013 July 27 - August 2, 2012


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“Be Careful with my Heart,” finalist in the 2013 NY Festivals T he country’s most-loved daytime kilig-serye “Be Careful With My Heart” has once again proven its unique mass appeal as it recently earned a slot in the roster of finalists for the telenovela category of the prestigious 2013 New York Festivals World’s Best Television and Film, which will culminate in Las Vegas Nevada on April 9. With their show’s first international recognition, “Be Careful With My Heart” lead stars Jodi Sta. Maria and Richard Yap are both happy for the show and for all the TV viewers who watch them everyday to follow the love story of now household names Maya (Jodi) and Sir Chief (Richard). “I believe that we have a give and take relationship with our viewers, which makes the show successful,” said Jodi. “We inspire them and we are inspired also by them to do better to give them a wholesome, family-friendly, and child-sensitive kilig-serye in the morning.” Richard, meanwhile, gave special thanks to newbies in TV soaps, who are now all hooked to “Be Careful With My Heart. He shared, “Many of our viewers are first timers in terms of watching a teleserye and with that I’m so thankful and I promise that we’ll work better for all of you.”

Since it started last July 2012, “Be Careful With My Heart” has changed the daytime viewing of the whole nation. In almost seven months on-air, the show has been reaping several achievements including its record-breaking national TV ratings, being the only daytime teleserye to launch a bestselling official soundtrack and release its DVDs, jampacked mall shows, and being one of the most viewed programs on TFC or The Filipino Channel. The show was such a big hit that it quickly invaded the digital world as it managed to become a daily hot topic on social networking sites like Twitter, one of the most liked fanpages on Facebook and the most viewed program on TFC. TV and in the video-on-demand site I Want TV. With the phenomenal support of Filipinos worldwide to their show, Maya (Jodi), Sir Chief (Richard) and the whole “Be Careful With My Heart” gang are all set to personally thank everyone and to bring them good vibes in a special world tour that will visit Asia, Middle East, USA and Europe this 2013. Now that Sir Chief has accepted the resignation of Maya, will it be easy for him to find a replacement? Can Maya really go on with her life away from the

Lim family and her Sir Chief? Or will Sir Chief make a way to bring Maya back to their family? Continue to follow the country’s newest noontime habit, “Be Careful With My Heart,” everyday, 11:45am, before “It’s Showtime” on ABS-CBN’s Prime-Tanghali. Also, don’t miss “Be Careful With My Heart Sabado Rewind” every Saturday, 10:30 am, before “It’s Showtime.” For more updates, log on to, follow @ becarefulheart on Twitter; and ‘like’ the show’s official Facebook fanpage at

ABS-CBN has most nods among PHL networks


BS-CBN Corporation emerged as the most nominated TV network in the Philippines in this years’ New York Festivals with eight of its entertainment and current affairs programs making it as finalists in different categories. In the field of news and current affairs, ABS-CBN got the most nominations for four of its programs namely: “Johnny: The Juan Ponce Enrile Story” (Biography/Profiles category); “Failon Ngayon: Mine Tailings” (Current Affairs category); “Ang Simula” (History

and Society category); and “Krusada: Child-Headed Homes” (Social Issues category). ABS-CBN’s entertainment offerings proved to be world class with three programs making it to the finalist roster, namely: the hit romantic comedy “Be Careful With My Heart” (Telenovelas category) and “Budoy” (Drama category). ABS-CBN also bagged a nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a “Maalaala Mo Kaya” episode. The Kapamilya network’s “A Call to Arms” was also named finalist in the Sports

Program Promotion category. Overall, ABS-CBN received eight finalist slots, beating GMA Networks’ three and TV5’s one. New York Festival’s World’s Best Television & Films competition honors programming in all lengths and forms from over 50 countries. All finalists will be awarded with a finalist certificate and entries, which will be promoted to Gold, Silver or Bronze awardees, will be announced during the awarding ceremony to be held on April 9 at The NAB Show in Las Vegas. q

Believe in the power of true love all over again as GMA News TV launches “Wagas: Mga Totoong Kuwento ng Pag-ibig”


ome of award-winning documentary programs, GMA News TV takes its documentary production to the next level. The channel produces a groundbreaking series focusing on extraordinary, real life love stories sure to inspire even those who have become cynical about love. “Wagas: Mga Totoong Kuwento ng Pag-ibig” will air Saturdays starting February 9, five days before Valentine’s Day. Combining interviews with real life couples with reenactments of their story’s highlights, 'Wagas' is a docudrama that features visual narration by some of the country’s emerging movie directors and will have in its cast some of the brightest actors of today. For its first four episodes, watch out for these moving love stories: The love story of Senator Miriam Defensor and Narciso “Jun” Santiago Cast: Heart Evangelista and Geoff Eigenmann Directed by: Rember Gelera Written by: Danzen Santos Highly



and possessing an acerbic tongue, Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago is one of the most powerful stateswomen the nation has ever known. Few realize that the controversial lawmaker is also a devoted wife to Atty. Narciso Jun Santiago for more than forty years. Their unusual love journey that spans decades began in the hallways of the University of the Philippines where the senator, while serving as the first female editor in chief of the Philippine Collegian caught the eye of the rich, campus heartthrob. From being a new lawyer to being a wife and mother to becoming a political

icon, Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago has always had her husband Jun steadily by her side. The Love story of Emy Gaite Aka “Nicole Hyala” and Renly Tinana Cast: Alessandra De Rossi and Mark Anthony Fernandez Written by: Danzen Santos Directed by: Lem Lorca He was a fan. She was a radio star. It took a while before Nicole and Renly’s paths crossed. But when it did, it led to forever. Renly left his girlfriend after he

found out that he was being cheated on. He turned his affections to the popular disc jockey after falling in love with her voice and her humor. He started anonymously sending coffee to her radio station every morning. Intrigued by her secret admirer, Nicole one day waits in the reception so she could receive the coffee herself. Will it be love at first sight for the two?

newfound fame and fortune, Chef Boy continues to be a loving partner to Mely and parent to their four children.

The love story of Chef Boy Logro and Ermilinda Logro Cast: Mike “Pekto” Nacua, Isabel Oli, Buboy Villar Written and Directed by: Paul Sta Ana

Their love story began with a twenty peso bill. Edwin wrote his phone number on a twenty peso bill, hoping it would lead him to the girl of his dreams. As fate would have it, the twenty-peso bill falls into the hands of two female best friends. One of the girls – Jenny – sends Edwin a text message. Soon, they become text mates. What Edwin doesn’t know is that Jenny is a little person. She would describe her best friend instead of herself every time Edwin asked. After deciding to reveal the truth, Jenny agrees to meet Edwin. Against the odds, they fall in love, get married, and are still together to this day. Watch out for these inspiring stories of true love. q

The first woman in Chef Boy Logro's life would also be his last, for he married his first love. As a child, the famous chef was so traumatized by his father's womanizing. He vowed to himself that he would remain faithful once he meets the woman of his dreams. That woman was Mely whom he meets when he moved to Manila in search of a job. Despite having to work abroad in search of greener pastures, Chef Boy remained true to his vow. Even with his

The love story of a charcoal maker and a little person (Edwin and Jenny Botis) Cast: Aljur Abrenica, Marilyn Apolinar, Mara Lopez Written by: Paul Sta Ana Directed by: Adolfo Alix, Jr.

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JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2012 2012 8-14,

Felipe De Leon’s “Noli Me Tangere” opera to debut in NYC in October


hilippine National Artist for Music Felipe Padilla de Leon’s opera “Noli Me Tangere” is on its way to the New York stage in the fall. The staging of the “Noli” is being undertaken by a production team composed of FilipinoAmerican artists and members of the Filipino-American Community in the United States (US) Northeast. The shows will be held in the first weekend of October at Hunter College, New York, as part of the celebrations of the birth centenary of Maestro de Leon and Filipino-American History Month. The New York Production

(Left photo, from left) Mike Dadap, Loida Lewis, Karrel Bernardo, and Gerry Gaddi. (Right photo) Dadap and Bernardo perform a classic piece by Felipe Padilla de Leon. (Photos by Carissa Villacorta and Tess de Vega/DFA)

Team spoke about the opera staging at a meeting with Fili-

pino community members at the Kalayaan Hall of the Philippine

Center on January 31. Consul General Mario L.

de Leon , Jr. congratulated the “Noli” New York Production Team and expressed the hope that many members of the community will help spread the word about the show in order to secure more exposure for Filipino artists and Philippine artistic works. Various members of the production team including community leader Loida Nicolas Lewis, Ms. Aida Bartolome of the Foundation for Filipino Artists, Inc., renowned guitarist/conductor and the production’s Musical Director Michael Dadap, Stage Director May Pamana, and Assistant Musical Director Dr. Rene Dalandan spoke about the need

Tenor Arthur Espiritu wants to rediscover the Philippines

When it was pointed out that his wedding fell on the day the world was supposed to end, he said, “Christina and I did not know it was the Mayan calendar’s end-of-world date. Her Chinese aunt recommended Dec. 21. We originally wanted the 20th. She said it was bad luck. ‘Better on the 21st,’ she exclaimed. So we got married on the 21st. Christina is in the music world. It’s gonna be a musical family!” From a boy who was into pop music singing Gary Valenciano songs, Espiritu success in the classical music arena, is heartwarming. While in high school in New Orleans, he won a statewide voice competition which paved the way to his pursuing a course in music at the University of New Orleans. He went on to study at the Oberlin

Conservatory of Music with the late Richard Miller He won the 2009 George London Award, the La Scala Award as part of the Belvedere Vocal Competition in Vienna, Austria, second place in the Irene Dalis Vocal Competition, the Rose-Palmai Tenser Mobile Opera Guild Award, among many. He said, “If it was awards that I’m after, I’d rather quit singing. I’m serious about what I do. An award is just a symbol, a bonus. The award I look for is completing a successful show/concert/ recital or when I have silenced my worst critic, myself.” He shares some performance incidents that helped hone his resourcefulness. He recalled how as a young artist while in the chorus of Cosi Fan Tutte, “I was one of the guys carrying

the big cakes for the marriage scene. The guy on the other side carrying the cake fell. I followed him. The cake broke into three. One fell into the French horn area and hit a percussion instrument. The second one rolled around the stage like a dropped coin. The third was chased by me and my cake partner. It was hilarious. Everyone on stage lost their concentration. They were all laughing. One of the leads played it off and improvised. We followed suit.” Before a performance, Espiritu studies the composer and lyricists. “I study the other characters. I imagine the temperaments their characters have. Sometimes the learning and the discovering happen during rehearsals where you’ll know what the stage director wants, also the conductor, especially your col-

Najib Ismail

leagues. That’s what I find interesting in preparing for a piece: discovering new possibilities, both musically and dramatically.” When he does comedy, his technique is: “If it’s a funny line or funny physical gesture or position, I interpret it in the most natural way. Overdoing or underdoing won’t cut it. I’m always

to bring the production to New York. They were joined by Gerardo Gaddi and Karrel Bernardo who were part of the Chicago production of the “Noli” in 2012. Composer and scholar Bayani Mendoza de Leon, son of the national artist, also spoke through Skype about the cultural and historic context of his father’s works. The community members at the meeting were also treated to special performances of de Leon’s “Sapagkat Mahal Kita” by Karrel Bernardo and “Ako’y Pilipino” by tenor Rogelio Peñaverde. The team is still in the process of finalizing the cast for the opera. (DFA news) q


in the moment with no preconceived ideas or anticipations. Each moment is fresh, always flowing. In some texts, there are subtexts involved. Forgive me if what I said is a bit of a doozy. I play along with subtexts and hidden meanings behind what I’m about to sing, say or do. If it involves an inside joke that most people can get or it’s something that I don’t get, I ask around or do research.” He protects his voice by getting plenty of sleep, by not drinking or smoking. He doesn’t eat anything spicy that would irritate his throat in normal circumstances. He drinks roomtemperature water, neither too hot nor too cold. When it’s cold, he protects areas where the cold air can penetrate his lungs by wearing ear muffs, scarfs to protect his throat and a jacket.

He said in the Philippines, “you can easily get sick. You walk outside on 25-30-plus degrees temperature, then walk into a mall with the air conditioning blasting, then add the sweat you accumulated from walking outside. Voila! Your lungs get a draft, you get a cold or what I call throat tickles.” His dream is to do Werther, “my favorite opera. I’d like to sing some jazz, maybe do a cross-over album. I listen to all kinds of music. I don’t limit myself to classical. I like Swahili songs from Africa, a lot of choral pieces. I want to do Westside Story again.” His other wish: to record Filipino songs with a recording company when the opportunity comes. Excerpts from Espiritu’s performances can be viewed in his website q

Cultural activities unveiled in Manila to mark Chinese Lunar New Year


rich array of cultural activities displaying Chinese culture were unveiled at Shangri-La Plaza in downtown Mandaluyong, Philippines, as part of the celebrations to mark the Chinese lunar New Year this coming Sunday. The celebrations, which included Chinese film show, traditional Chinese painting exhibition, demonstration of Chinese

handicrafts and a photo show on modern China, attracted a large crowd of Filipinos and Chinese. Philippine Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda attended the occasion and read a letter of President Benigno S. Aquino III who was in the southern city of Davao. In the letter, Aquino said: "For Filipinos and Chinese alike, the Lunar New Year is an occa-

sion to celebrate the rich heritage that our nations cherish. For this reason, I declared the Chinese New Year as a special non- working holiday last year - a gesture of recognition from the Filipino people to the Chinese community of our nation." "Relations between China and the Philippines stretch centuries back... Through activities like this, we can further strength-

Philippines participates in Bijorhca Int'l Fashion Accessories Fair in Paris T

he Philippines once again participated in the Bijorhca International Fine and Fashion Jewelry show which was held at Porte de Versailles in Paris on January 18 to 21. Held twice a year, Bijorhca brings together around 400 designers of fashion accessories and jewelry. The show normally attracts around 13,000 visitors representing gifts retailers, de“Tribune USA isand committed to promoting the Philippines, the Filipino partment store buyers buypeople and their culture through responsible and ethical editorial ing offices. It is one of the prepractices. We hope to improve the lives of all mankind through peace mier destinations for the global and cooperation.” Founders, December 1997 fashion accessories business. officials, showed support for theINC. Phils. and Blue Planet Inc. were Philippine Embassy officials, CORRESPONDENT SYSTEMS, AMERICAN (Nevada) four Philippine manufacturers together with Center for Inter- TRIBUNE U.S.A., LLC (California) joined by first-time exhibitor by visiting their Joanique. The Philippine prodnational Trade Expositions and and exporters Publisher respective booths in Bijorhca. ucts on display were a testament Missions (CITEM) Executive SID BALATAN For this edition of the event, of the outstanding creativDirector Rosario Virginia GaeEditor-In-Chief participantsEditor like Unijel, ity and Layout tosFinance and Philippine Trade and veteranContributing artistryCoordinator of the Filipino. and Administration G. Designare Manufacturing MILAGROS ENRIQUEZ ANTONIO YAP ART GARCIA Investment Center (PTIC)-Paris (DFA news) q

Pinoy alcoholic beverages 101 Community Editor ROMY BORJE

Business Development Officer JOHN PRAISE from page B1

Associate San Bureau Chiefs BasiFrancisco (sugarcane wine) - Sugfruit wine capital,Editor so the place ALVAREZ MANUEL arcane fields are PANIS aplenty in the may ROSEMARIE soon have aS.wider range of ERLINDA PANIS Philippines, and naturally, a long offering. Former Editor-In-Chief MAX GELERA ALVAREZ Mem.) Bureau Chief timeMetro ago, Manila a farmworker or two Lambanog (coconut(Invodka). PEDREGOSA decidedLANI it can be turned into a Best known as a product of Que3355 W. Spring Mountain Road, Suite 25, Las Vegas, NV 89102 drink. These days, Naguilian, in zon, lambanog is a clear drink Tel: 888-366-0008 Fax: 702-765-0034 Email: La Union holds an annual Basi that is for the true drinker. It it isconstitutes made of gives a burning feeling as it goes Reading or viewing Festival. any part ofBasically, this publication Letters to the Editor sugarcane is boiled down the throat just liketo vodka, acceptance and agreement of alljuice of the that following terms Do have a comment or want write a letter to be published and conditions. Any and fermented, all claims against in print or online? You may then andTribune if youUSA are and is then best taken inemail for any and all pastwondering or present acts, or omissions only if you to waive and release any and all copyrights howerrors, it tastes like, basi shots. Theagree proverbial 'tagayan', must be presented in accordance with the terms and to submitted matter. where men in the province sit is what vinegar is, if it was not conditions specified at down together (and which infermented longer. termsandconditions.htm. Disclosure in this manner shall Advertising cludes prodding passersby to how we can help Of course, all ofFailure these be accepted as full and complete legal should public notice. Would you like to advertise or learn to abide with these terms is agreement ofthere no controversy. with your marketing Youlammay email accounting@ drink a shot) oftenefforts? features be unavailable, is the old, or known call 213-480-8787. banog. It has been since reliable and highly ubiquitous Terms and Conditions the time of the Spanish. beer, although we do have limTuba is the lambanog before cooked then fermented, and has ited choices. With the best comWebsite: Submission deadline is Wednesday at 1 p.m. it got distilled, that's(pictures, why it is redtasty pulutan, a sweet-bitter All images ads, graphics) mustflavor. be atMost least good 300dpipany, PDF and filesthe aremost preferred. dish. It is made of coconut sap, tuba is supplied by Leyte. it will be just as fine. q

en our partnerships, which open more doors of opportunity for the citizens of both our countries," Aquino said. Just as the Chun season (Spring Festival) reminds us of new beginnings, may this festival serve as a new opportunity for us to forward dialogue and cooperation in all our spheres of activity, he said. In response, Chinese Am-

bassador to the Philippines Ma Keqing said, "China is willing to share with its neighbors the fruits of development, not only the economic benefit but also the products of culture. The cultural differences between China and the Philippines will only inspire us to appreciate each other's works of fine art and understand the complexity and subtlety of human nature."

"I believe the Chinese films, photo and painting exhibitions will enrich your experience of Chinese New Year with more details of life that the average people are living in China," she said. These activities, organized by the Confucius Institute of Ateneo University, will run through Feb. 10. (PNA/Xinhua) q

Geoff Eigenmann feels more...

we're definitely going to improve our story. We're going to make it better and better every week and sana people will just keep on watching at sana padami ng padami ang sumusuporta sa Forever." Excited din si Geoff sa current project niya for GMA News TV, ang Wagas: Mga Totoong Kuwento ng Pag-ibig, airing on February 9. "This is the love story of Senator Miriam DefensorSantiago and her husband, Mr. Jun Santiago. We start with their

college days, with how they met and how they prospered from just being friends to ending up in a 40-year marriage." Hindi man daw niya nakausap ang mag-asawa ay nakaalalay naman si Heart sa kanya, lalo na't malapit ito sa pamilya ng senador. "I didn't have the chance, but lahat ng mga details na alam ko I got from Heart because she is very close to the family. She gave me some tips on how Sir Jun was, and I just applied it. And okay na-

bago sa buhay mo.” Meanwhile, the top caliber co-actors of Coco and Julia are all delighted with the experience of doing with the phenomenal love team. For Gabby Concepcion and Cherie Gil, who are playing the role of Jilian’s parents in the movie, Coco and Julia are both easy to work with. “They’re nice to work with, magaan. Para silang mag-barkada talaga. I think they’ve been obviously working a lot together

already so they’re very relaxed,” said Cherie. “I’m enjoying Julia very much because there’s a lot of instinctive potential in her and she’s very sensitive, down to earth, focused, and masaya.” Gabby added, “Bagay sila Coco at Julia sa isa’t isa. Okay katrabaho ang tambalan nila dahil wala kaming hassle sa set and everything was smooth sailing.” Also featured in “A Moment In Time” are Cherie, Gabby, ZsaZsa Padilla, Ella Cruz, and

Coco and Julia’s first movie...

Phad Thai Noodles | from page B8 1-2 limes (cut into wedges) 4. Make a space in the middle of the wok (by pushing the chickPreparation (Phad Thai): en to the sides) and add the eggs 1. Combine light soy sauce, until scrambled. black soy sauce, tamarind paste 5. Add the rice noodles and the and powder, sugar, black pep- sauce mixture. Use chopsticks per, vinegar, garlic powder, and to stir the noodles and ingrefish sauce in a bowl. Mix thor- dients together. Get the spatula oughly and set aside. under the noodles, lift them up 2. Heat a non-stick wok (or fry- and flip them over (this will ing pan) over high heat and add keep the noodles from breakpeanut oil. ing). 3. Heat oil for 1 minute and add 6. Continue using the chopshallots, stir-frying for 1 minute sticks and spatula, flipping and or until golden brown. Add the stirring the noodles for 6-8 chicken and stir-fry for 8 min- minutes, or until they’re soft. utes, or until fully cooked. 7. Add the spring onions and

FROM PAGE B2 man, people were very happy. I'm really enjoying playing them." Patuloy na panoorin ang Forever, weeknights bago mag-24 Oras, sa GMA Telebabad. Also watch out for Wagas: Mga Totoong Kuwento ng Pag-ibig, with Heart Evangelista as Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago and Geoff Eigenmann as Mr. Jun Santiago, this Saturday, February 9, 2013, at 7:00 p.m. on GMA News TV Channel 11. -- Michelle Caligan, q

FROM PAGE B3 the twins from PBB Teen Edition 4 Joj and Jai Agpangan. Don’t miss the first-ever big screen project of Coco and Julia, “A Moment In Time,” to hit cinemas nationwide on February 13, 2013. For more information and latest updates about “A Moment In Time” simply visit, http://facebook. com/StarCinema and q

stir for 2 minutes. Add the bean sprouts and stir constantly for 30 seconds. 8. Turn off the heat and add the ground dried shrimp. Sprinkle Thai chili on top (if desired), and serve hot with ground peanuts, fresh lime wedges, fresh bean sprouts, chives, or green onions. Thanks to Maya Kitchen for the recipe. For more information, log on to or

July 27 - August 2, 2012 February 8-14, 2012


Denmark discovers why “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” F

rom January 18 to 20, close to 45,000 Danes discovered why it is indeed more fun in the Philippines through the collaborative efforts of the Philippine Embassy in Oslo, the Philippine Honorary Consul General in Denmark, the Department of Tourism office in London, C&C Travel, and the Filipino community organizations in Denmark, all of whom heavily and heartily promoted the various travel and tourism attractions in the Philippines during the Ferie & Fritid i Bella (Holiday & Leisure in Bella) held at the Bella Center in Copenhagen. Despite this being the first time for the Philippines to participate in this annual event, the Philippine booth, located at the Around the World section of the Bella Center and which featured various brochures about the Philippines and several “It’s more fun in the Philippines” videos playing in a loop on a TV screen, was inundated by many Danes expressing curiosity and interest, and for some, fun-filled memories about the Philippines, clearly displaying the growing and heightened awareness of many in Denmark about the

wonders of the Philippines and the fun to be had in the country. A 30-minute Filipino cultural extravaganza, which ran from January 19 to 20 at the Bella Center, helped to further promote the Philippines at Ferie & Fritid. Entitled “Fiesta Filippinerne! (Fiesta Philippines!) A showcase of the dances and songs of the fun islands of the Philippines,” the extravaganza featured performers from the Mabuhay Organization of Filipinos in Denmark and BUKLOD DK, Filipino-Danish organizations. They performed traditional and contemporary dances and songs from the Philippines which were watched by a very appreciative Danish audience who flocked to the open theater upon hearing the distinct Filipino brand of merry folk music and seeing the fun-loving performances onstage. Ferie & Fritid i Bella is an annual event which attracts between 40,000 to 45,000 would-be Danish tourists who are looking for destinations to go to for their next annual vacations.

B7 A7

The Philippines, which has received prime promotion from prestigious tourism and other media outlets like Condé Nast, Trip Advisor, and CNN, to name a few, is steadily becoming the next travel destination of choice in Southeast Asia by Danes and Scandinavians as a whole. The number of Danish and other Scandinavian tourist arrivals to the Philippines have been steadily increasing year after year. Tourism figures show that tourists from Denmark registered a 4.24% growth rate from 2011 to 2012 while the whole of Scandinavia registered an impressive 12.32% growth in tourism arrivals to the Philippines, with Sweden leading the pack, growing by 21.33% in that period. A total of 13,556 Danish tourists visited the Philippines last year, comprising 22% of the 60,334 total number of Scandinavian tourists who visited the Philippines in 2012. Through these collaborative efforts, the Philippine Embassy in Oslo continues to proudly showcase why it is indeed more fun in the Philippines. (DFA news) q

Cagsawa Festival traces lost town... ciscan priests in 1724 has remained until today the silent witness of the catastrophe and proof of the once-flourishing town of Cagsawa. The festival will also highlight how disaster risk reduction management (DRRM) was done by survivors in the aftermath of the 1814 eruption such as the massive relocation to where and what this town is now. Salceda went over written accounts of Spanish friars and church records to ascertain that this town was once called “Cagsawa” more than two centuries ago, with its center of governance and booming commercial district located about five kilometers from where the present poblacion is. Records also show that this town continued to be called Cagsawa until the 20th century, long after the original town was buried. Until 1905, dead residents of this town were still registered in the church’s Book of Burials as residents of “Cagsawa."


The last entry in the Book of Burials, in which the parish is called "of Cagsawa," is dated July 11 of the same year. The last entry in the Baptismal Book under such name is dated April 10, 1907 while in the Book of Marriages is dated July 23 of the same year. These entries were signed by the late Fr. Vicente Rojo, of the Orders of Friar Minor, who was the parish priest during that time. He was believed to have personally decided to change the name of the parish from Cagsawa to Daraga without giving any reason. According to Salceda, there is no offi-

FROM PAGE B1 cial document that changed the name of Cagsawa into Daraga and probably, the people then simply assumed that Daraga is Cagsawa. Bouncing back from the 1814 devastation, the place progressively emerged as a well-to-do town as described in the writings of Fedor Jagor, a well-known German scientist-traveler, when he came to Daraga in 1870. What is worth further emulating among the early natives of Daraga by its present generation was their firm opposition to all attempts, by persuasion or by force, to give the town other names than how it was called after relocating from Cagsawa. Cagsawa Festival this year will also devote events in honor of local heroes such as the councilman named "Budiao," who led a strong resistance against the Spanish conquistadores. A village was later named after him; built with a church and laid with wide open streets by Spanish authorities in

Iloilo City charms HK mag editor


Hong Kong magazine editor fell madly in love with Iloilo City’s cultural and tourism attractions. “Ello Iloilo!,” exclaimed Matt Fleming, managing editor of "Time Out Hong Kong" magazine as they went hopping mad with one of the prettiest cities in the Philippines last December. Fleming shared his wonderful experience in a two-page feature of fascinating churchheritage-bar-and-restaurant hopping that came with captivating photos of Customs House or Aduana Building at Muelle Loney in City Proper, Jaro Cathedral, and Nelly Garden Mansion in Jaro district. Mayor Jed Patrick E. Mabilog on Monday said the HKbased promotion boosts the city’s image in an effort to attract more tourists particularly from Hong Kong which is now being served by direct flights to Iloilo. "Step forward Cebu Pacific with lights to the ‘heart of the Philippines’, Iloilo, the regional center of the Western Visayas and slap bang in the middle of the country," said Fleming in his article. “The new service has opened up the region to us Hongkongers and has also created a quick, clear route up to the beaches…,” he added. Iloilo, with a population of more than 450,000, was the "textile capital of the Philippines" in the 18th century but now the city serves more as an

The Philippines' travel and tourism booth was inundated by hundreds o f interested Danish would-be tourists during the recently concluded Ferie & Fritid i Bella (Holiday & Leisure in Bella) held from 18-20 January 2013 at the Bella Center in Copenhagen. (DFA photo)

recognition of his bravery and participation in setting order and system in the area. The village kept its name up to the present. Aside from the belfry of Cagsawa church, the fragments of the stone walls of the church in Budiao are also mute witnesses to the 1814 eruption episode. The name “Daraga” is believed

DOT-DENR team up to promote biodiversity-friendly ecotourism


administrative center, the writer noted. “We found it to be beautiful and hospitable, with culture and heritage galore, particularly as we embarked on ‘church hopping.’ We then came up with the idea for ‘restaurant’, ‘bar’ and ‘heritage’ hopping excursions – and we invite you to follow us on our trail,” Fleming stressed. He was charmed by the churches saying “it’s about the Godly way that some of them in and around Iloilo have been constructed. The architecture is magnificent. Set against a brilliant blue sky, when the sun hits the church’s façade, it’s like there really is something otherworldly going on.” “Church hopping is already an established activity in Iloilo. There are countless homes to God here, each with their own charm. We recommend starting at the daddy of them all, Jaro Cathedral before moving out

to Molo Church. Church hopping takes a full day but we’d recommend it as time heavenly spent,” Fleming suggested. “Iloilo is proud of its nosh. From the traditional noodles ‘n’ soup, La Paz Batchoy is best in town to Japanese and Italian, there are plenty of quality restaurants to enjoy as complements to some of the awesome street food available, Fleming further praised in his article. "We suggest tapping up restaurants and its divine seafood menu featuring delicious sinigang stew and perfect fish dishes where everything seems to cost half of what it does in HK,” Fleming said of Ilonggos’ gastronomic treat. “So, it’s worth getting hopping mad in Iloilo... Remember: it’s friendly, beautiful and so cheap you forget you’re paying anything at all. You won’t want to leave. That’s probably the biggest problem,” quipped Fleming. (PNA) q

iodiversity-friendly ecotourism in the Philippines will now be given more attention starting this year. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (DENR-PAWB) initiated a partnership with the Department of Tourism (DOT) to boost sustainable ecotourism and socioeconomic growth for local communities in eight project sites of five regions in the country. With the objective to put tourism in the forefront of biodiversity conservation, DENR head, secretary Ramon J.P. Page and DOT chief, secretary Ramon R. Jimenez, Jr. signed an memorandum of agreement (MOA) at the Eastwood Richmonde Hotel on Friday to work together in developing and implementing biodiversity-friendly ecotourism activities. Among the sites to be developed include the Magapit-North East Cagayan, Quirino Protected Landscapes in Cagayan and Quirino provinces of Region 2 in the Luzon biogeographic region; Malampaya Sound in Palawan; Mt. Siburan in Mindoro Occidental in Region 4B which are treated as separate biogeographic regions; The Central Panay Mountains encompassing the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz and Iloilo in Panay Island together with the Northern Negros Natural Park situated in the province of Negros Occidental, Region 6; Mt. Hamiguitan National; World Heritage Park in

Manila, Cebu-based Anglers to join Int'l Fishing Festival Solution to Puzzle


anuel San Agustin, who is helping the Department of Tourism (DOT) in the hosting of the 1st International Fishing (Pamunit) Festival to be held May 18-19, said there are already groups of anglers from Manila, Cebu and even Bacolod City that have confirmed their participation to the event. He said that the festival will be held in Oton, Iloilo, which is being promoted as “one of the fishing destinations” in the entire

Philippines. San Agustin, who joined the installation of the artificial reefs led by Governor Arthur Defensor, Sr. Thursday morning, said that the project is a welcome development and could really help restore and preserve the rich marine resources of the town of Oton in southern Iloilo province. He narrated that it was about 20 years ago when he himself started to do fishing as a hobby in the coastal waters of Oton.

coined from one of the main characters of the mythical epic of Mount Mayon, “Daragang Magayon” (beautiful maiden) as an affirmation that it was fun then living in the peaceful town of booming commerce and industry. Local historians then regard this town as the "pride and life of Albay.” (PNA) q

He said he is happy to help organize the fishing festival with the DOT, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and the local government of Oton headed by Mayor Vincent Flores. For the fishing festival, the DOT has allocated P200,000 for the prizes of those who will join in the competition depending on their categories such as whoever caught the biggest fish and the most number of fishes. (PNA) q

Davao Oriental, Region 11 together with Lake Mainit situated between Agusan Norte and Surigao Norte provinces of Region 13 for the Greater Mindanao biogeographic region. “The Philippines is close to risk not only because there are direct threats but more importantly because our environment is largely unprotected from the most dangerous threat of all— public ignorance,” Jimenez said during the press conference. He added that among instances of public ignorance was that of the fragility of the country’s natural resources as well as the igno-

rance of the ways people can help to sustain those resources. Jimenez also said that what the country needed was the convergence of the efforts of not only those who understand the risk but also those who have the public influence to protect against those risks and those who have always cared enough to support these efforts. “For the DOT, the importance of biodiversity is quite obvious: Nature especially when it is unique is worth the visit. The world is travelled for much less than the incredible wonders,” he said. (PNA) q

Toni Gonzaga... coach must then choose who among the singers will advance. Those who will survive in the battle rounds will proceed to the third stage— the live performance shows— wherein viewers can save them from elimination by voting. In the end, each coach will have one star artist left to compete against the other team’s finalists and the last one standing will be named “The Voice of the Philippines.”


from page B4 Unlike other ABS-CBNproduced talent shows such as Pilipinas Got Talent and The X Factor Philippines, contestants of “The Voice of the Philippines” can make it through the different rounds mostly because of their vocal ability. Let the voice of the Philippines be heard! For audition details like the show’s official Facebook page at TheVoiceABSCBN or follow @ TheVoiceABSCBN on Twitter. q


B8 A8 Condo type artificial reefs, commonly known as fish condominiums, were dropped into the sea waters of Oton, Iloilo. (PNA photo by Iloilo Bureau)


Three faces...

FROM PAGE B4 who first sees Lara and reads Janet’s letter. Longing for a child, Ofelia decides to keep Lara and lies to Leandro and Bessie about the true identity of the child. Another twist comes in when Janet, now married to a rich Japanese businessman, comes back and tries to get Lara back. Three faces of motherhood, all longing for a child. Who deserves to be the mother of Lara? Is it Bessie who can give her the future she needs; Ofelia who fights against all odds just be with her; or her real mother Janet? Joining the cast are Frencheska Farr as Diana, Krystal Reyes as Janella, Djanin Cruz as Paula, Zandra Summer as Amy, and Carlo Gonzales as Oscar. Completing the cast are seasoned actresses Glenda Garcia as Miling, Sharmaine Suarez as Becca, and Anna Marin as Raquel. Under the direction of Don Michael Perez, Bukod Kang Pinagpala is supervised by Lilybeth G. Rasonable as Overall in charge of Production, Redgie Acuña Magno as AVP for Drama, Ali Marie N. Dedicatoria as Program Manager, and Executive Producer Winnie Hollis-Reyes. The creative team is headed by Jun Lana as Creative Director with Roy Iglesias as Creative Head, Creative Consultant, Des Garbes – Severino, Headwriter RJ Nuevas, writers Jules Dan Katanyag, Leilani Chavez, and Borgy Danao and Brainstormers Tin Novicio, and Gilda Olvidado. q

Phad Thai Noodles

had Thai (or Pad Thai or Phat Thai) has got to be the favorite Thai dish in our family. When we went to Bangkok a few years back, Phad Thai was always in our buffet. I also found out this dish is listed at number 5 on World’s 50 most delicious foods readers’ poll compiled by CNN Go in 2011. The distinct flavor of Phad Thai is due to the tart Tamarind and lime flavor. I once bought a pack of “Pad Thai” flavor mix because I thought it was more convenient to cook it that way. But there is nothing like cooking from scratch. Fortunately, Chef Tum Supawade Lungtip of Jatujak Thai Restaurant showed the secrets of this popular

JulyFebruary 27 - August 2, 2012 2012 8-14,

courtesy of Noemi Lardizabal-Dado

dish. Most of the ingredients can be found at your supermarket shelves. Ingredients: 1 1/3 tablespoons light Thai soy sauce 2 teaspoons Thai black soy sauce 1/4 cup tamarind paste 1-2 tablespoons tamarind powder (sinigang powder) 1/2 cup sugar 2 teaspoons black pepper 2 tablespoons white vinegar 1 1/3 tablespoons garlic powder 5 tablespoons Thai fish sauce

Call 888-366-0008 to Advertise in

1/2 cup peanut oil 1/4 cup minced shallot 500 grams chicken breast (cut into bite-sized pieces) 4 pieces eggs 1/2 kilo dried rice stick noodles (small size, approximately 1/8- inch wide; soaked in cold water at least 3-4 hours, do not drain before using) 8 stalks spring onion (cut into 1 1/2 inch lengths) 4 cups bean sprouts 1 tablespoon ground dried shrimp 1 tablespoon ground Thai chili (optional) 1/4 cup ground roasted peanut Turn to page B6

Tribune USA February 8-14  

Tribune USA weekly issue, 8-14 February 2013

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