While Palace, LGU’S to increase farmers’
Gov’t agencies told to conserve energy
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who is well
aware that energy conservation is an important element of energy policy
specially when the price of oil in the world market hits historic heights
almost every week, issued last week an order to all government agencies to
efficiently use energy so as to reduce energy cost.
In Administrative Order (AO) 228 titled
“Addressing the Rising Cost of Energy,” which the President signed last
Monday, June 2, all government agencies were ordered to reduce their
transport fuel consumption in liters by 10 percent starting this month.
The AO further stated that all government
buildings must turn off their air conditioning units at 4:30 p.m. Exempted
from this order are offices on a 24-hour work.
By next month, the President wants all
government offices to implement plans to replace all incandescent lamps
and by September, all agencies shall convert 20 percent of their vehicles
in major cities to liquid petroleum.
“Agencies shall install and/or adopt other energy saving
technology with the help of the Department of Energy and/or the Department
of Science and Technology,” the AO stated. (PIA-ZN)
Zambonorte DepEd head receives scouting awards
Having shown his invariable commitment and
support to the scouting movement, Dr. Habib Adzhar H. Sarahadil,
provincial schools division superintendent of Zamboanga del Norte and
Zamboanga del Norte-Dipolog-Dapitan (ZanDiDap) Council commissioner,
received citations from the Boy Scout of the Philippines (BSP) during the
52nd Annual Council Meeting held recently in Tagaytay City.
Doctor Sarahadil brought home two plaques, one
citing him as the 2008 Outstanding Local Council Scout Commissioner and
the other recognizing his “invaluable support and remarkable efforts that
contributed to the success of the 2007 BSP fund drive.”
Sarahadil’s unparalleled dedication to the
development of scout leaders and scouts earned him the awards.
It could be recalled that Sarahadil was one of
the Philippine delegates who participated in the 21st world scout jamboree
in Hylands Parks, Chelmsford in London on July 27–August 8, 2007.
BSP espouses the development of leadership
skills among the young through scouting with emphasis on values formation,
skills development and peace advocacy.
For his part, Sarahadil is grateful for the awards as these
are a living proof of the trust and confidence the well-meaning people
have in him. (Franklin P. Gumapon, PIA-ZN)
PPA to build more RO-RO ports
The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) will
start building the new batch of roll-on, roll-off (RO-RO) facilities under
the government’s Greater Maritime Access (GMA) program.
The GMA project involves the construction of
85 ports nationwide over the next four years with a budget of
P11.7-billion financed by a loan from Spain.
Proposed locations for the new ports include
Isabela, Aurora and Pangasinan in North Luzon, as well as Quezon, Romblon,
Mindoro and Cavite in Metro Luzon. Areas in Palawan, Masbate, Albay and
Eastern Samar are being considered in Central Philippines, while Surigao
del Norte, Davao and Cotabato are among the possible RO-RO venues.
The PPA will use prefabricated steel ports and
the RO-RO projects will include passenger terminals with solar-powered
RO-ROs helped save as much as 30% in cargo handling. It
facilitates regional trade. It has an impact on agriculture and tourism
because it provides people mobility. (PIA-ZN)
The estimated 17,000 books which were
inadvertently published as donated by Rotary Club of Dipolog on the front
page of the June 1, 2008 issue of this paper, are actually donated by THE
CHILDREN’S INTERNATIONAL-PHILIPPINES HOUSING FOUNDATION, INC., represented
by Ms. REBECCA FUELLOS.
The Rotary Club served only as facilitators
for the release and distribution of said books, while the City Government
through Mayor Evelyn T. Uy shouldered the expenses in bringing the books
Our apologies. - CIO
Call sounded for the rich not to take
advantage of NFA rice
Stressing that the National Food Authority (NFA)
subsidized rice is primarily intended for the poor to help them cope with
the rising food prices, Malacanang appealed to those who are better off in
life not to take advantage of buying NFA rice.
Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita made the
appeal during his weekly press conference in Malacanang in a move to
ensure that the NFA rice would be available to those who need it most.
“We appeal to our citizens, not necessarily in
Mindanao but in other areas where the NFA rice is supposed to be sold out
to the poor, not to take advantage of this cheap commodity but instead buy
what they can afford to buy,” Ermita said.
“They can help indirectly the poor community
by having cheaper rice such as NFA rice available to our poor community,”
He also extended his appeal to the members of
the media to help disseminate the government’s call to the public on this
particular issue. “It is very important that the media will try to help us
on this,” he said, adding that it is also imperative to inform the public
that we have enough supply of rice.
He stressed that “this is in line with the
earlier instruction of the President that the NFA rice pegged at P18.25
per kilo and P20.00 per kilo will only be sold to the poor. (PIA-ZN)
Razon assures only ‘best’ M14 for PNP
Philippine National Police authorities assured
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo that the PNP “will never allow the
procurement of any of sub-standard equipment that will endanger the lives
of police personnel in the field.”
“We will always get the best equipment for our
men fighting in the field,” Police Director General Avelino I Razon Jr.
said in reaction to what he calls a “systematic and well-organized”
disinformation effort spread thru text messages circulated among media
personnel and PNP officials.
Among others, the text message claimed that
there is an anomaly behind the PNP’s scheduled procurement of 1,000 units
of 5.56mm M4 rifles worth P95-million, an allegation which the PNP Chief
Razon appealed to media to help the PNP verify
who is behind these unfounded allegations. “The allegation is unfair,
malicious, and irresponsible as it casts a bad image on the PNP as well as
its leadership,” he remarked.
He also challenged the authors of this
disinformation campaign to be ready to substantiate their accusations.
“The procurement process is transparent and above-board. In fact, it is
still ongoing and we have not yet placed our orders to the manufacturer,”
the Chief PNP explained.
He added that all procurements of the PNP are
closely monitored by an Oversight Committee of NAPOLCOM to ensure
transparency and compliance with Republic Act No. 9184 or the Government
Procurement Reform Act.
He also stressed that the approval of
procurement contracts in the PNP is not an individual decision exercised
by any PNP official. “It is reached through a consensus among members of
the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) chaired by the Deputy Chief for
Operations (TDCO) with members representing the Legal Service, Directorate
for Comptrollership, Directorate for Logistics, Directorate for Research
and Development, and Logistics Support Service,” Razon explained.
Meantime, Police Deputy Director Emmanuel R
Carta, Deputy Chief for Operations and BAC Chairman, said that the
Committee will continue to process the procurement of 1,000 units of M4
rifles for the Special Action Force, the Regional and Provincial Mobile
Groups and selected SWAT units.
Dispelling charges of anomaly, Carta clarified
that it was NAPOLCOM that issued the specifications for the 5.56mm M4
rifle sought to be procured. According to him, said specifications were
based on SAF requirements to meet its demand for more effective firepower
and sustained accurate firing capability for its weapons.
“Among the Napolcom-approved specifications is
the independent sear-disconnector system (ISDS) in the rifle that will
rapidly reduce the cyclic rate of the weapon for greater accuracy in
sustained firing conditions, the BAC Chairman further explained. He
pointed out that among the proponents for the supply of the preferred M4
rifles, only Ferfrans met the NAPOLCOM specification on the reduced cyclic
rate. Said proponent has an independent sear-disconnector system patented
to its name.
“Under Section 50 of RA 9184 and in accordance
with existing rules, the BAC will proceed with an alternative method of
procurement, which is direct contracting, since only one proponent met the
standard specification,” Carta said.
Since year 2000, similar M4 rifles from Ferfrans had been
in the arsenal of SAF which its troops prefer. Its satisfactory
performance has been tested in field conditions. To date, SAF has not
encountered any major problem with the weapon. (PIA-ZN)
DOE to investigate companies regarding oil,
LPG price hike
The Department of Energy will investigate
local oil companies and distributors of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for
allegedly imposing price increases that do not reflect actual fluctuations
in the world market. The recent P1.50 increase in LPG prices imposed by
small dealers are not reflective of international contract prices.
The DOE will likewise investigate an oil company’s forecast
that local gasoline prices will increase to P65 per liter. The company
should make sure that the price increases are justified by increases in
the price of crude. The announcements they make should truly reflect the
situation in the international market. (PIA-ZN)
PGMA orders early completion of infrastructure
With barely two years left of her term,
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is making sure that her legacy
infrastructure projects, topped by big-ticket road, bridge, airport and
tourism facilities are completed before she bows out of office in 2010.
At the 32nd meeting of the National Economic
and Development Authority (NEDA) Board in Malacanang last week, the
President underscored the need to fast-track the construction of the
She cited the critical importance of these
infrastructure projects to the economic development of the Super Regions.
The President said she would take a hands-on monitoring of the progress in
the implementation of these projects.
“One of the most important things that
transpired during the meeting was the President’s directive that the
concerned agencies, specifically the Department of Transportation and
Communication (DOTC) fast- track the completion of these projects because
we have only two more years to go,” Deputy Spokesperson Lorelei Fajardo
The deputy presidential spokesperson added
that in said meeting the Investment Coordinating Committee (ICC) submitted
to the President a list of “must” infrastructure projects that should be
started during the second quarter of 2008.
While many of these projects are scheduled to
be completed by 2010, some multi-year facilities will be finished only
These infrastructure projects are integral
parts of the President’s long-term goal of achieving a seamless, efficient
and cheaper means of transporting people and goods through the Strong
Republic Nautical Highway (SRNH) and the soon-to-be completed
“It was discussed during the meeting how to
fast track the completion of these projects, what else is needed so we
could attract more tourists to the country,” Fajardo said.
The Arroyo administration is banking on the
tourism sector, one of the top dollar earners to realize its goal of
creating six to one million new jobs by 2010. The government is targeting
some five million tourist arrivals by that year.
In her message during the signing into law of the 2008
P1.227-trillion national budget, the President said that P200-billion has
been allotted for government infrastructure. (PIA-ZN)
Gov’t gains on anti-money laundering campaign
Since the enactment of the Anti-Money
Laundering Act in 2001, the government registered significant gains in its
anti-money laundering campaign. It has frozen P1.371-billion, based on
12,038 suspicious transaction reports (STRs) received from 2001 to
The bulk of the amount at P956-million was
related to pyramiding scams or violation of Securities Regulation Code and
the amount has been returned to the investors/victims.
Other unlawful activities involved in the STRs
involved drug-related cases, swindling, kidnapping for ransom,
terrorist-related, robbery, jueteng and graft and corruption.
The increasing numbers indicate the high level
of cooperation by banks in reporting STRs to the AMLC. It is also
indicative of banks’ growing participation in halting criminal proceeds
into the financial system.
From a mere two STRs reported in 2001, the
number it received and investigated by AMLA has steadily increased: 132 in
2002; 215 in 2003; 555 in 204; 1,048 in 2006 and 3,949 in 2007. As of May
this year, the STRs received 1,839.
Since 2001, a total of 102 cases have been
filed by the AMLC, 72 cases of which are still ongoing in various courts.
Of the pending cases, 38 are money laundering cases, 21 are civil
forfeiture cases, 10 are petitions for extension of freeze order, two are
applications for freeze order and one application for bank inquiry.
One case pending with the Ombudsman involved a
total amount of P303.272-million while 15 others pending in the RTCs
involved a total amount of P203-million.
Seven cases are still in the level of the AMLC, involving a
total of P1.4-billion and covering 143 STRs. (PIA-ZN)
Estafa vs. ‘awit’ group dismissed
The estafa case filed against eight suspects
who claimed belonging to the ‘Awit sa Kabataan’ group was dismissed on May
The suspects were Danilo Mingo, Gemarie
Parinisan, Joel Pepito, Amelita Quinson, Leone Rondina, Abner Taballer,
Fermin Teofilo and Jun Velasco.
Earlier, Vic Pepito who claimed he was the
director of the radio program declared that the suspects were legitimate
solicitors from radio DYKC of Cebu.
It was learned that the group succeeded in
soliciting amount from sponsors here in the city but failed to hold the
program which should have been hooked up in RPN9 DXKD, Dipolog City.
that the suspects were back to Cebu last May 22 yet.
(Press Freedom, Vol. XX
RD Parawan pledges more projects
Citing the food production program of the
province as admirable, Regional Director Oscar Parawan of the Department
of Agriculture assured the province of more projects.
Gracing the graduation of farmers under the
Unibersidad ni Lando sa Kahanginan, RD Parawan expressed his pleasure over
the completion of two farm to market raods in Katipunan and Salug.
He disclosed that another corn post harvest
processing and trading center shall rise in Liloy after the establishment
of one at Sergio Osmeña, Z.N.
“I admire how the provincial government eyes food
production in the area,” the regional director declared.
(Press Freedom, Vol. XX
TVI faces closure?
The Toronto Ventures Incorporated is possibly
facing a threat of closure when Canadian-based investors declared to
withdraw their investments on mining operations at Siocon, Zamboanga del
Source disclosed that this was the reason why
TVI had recently scouted for local investors to put in more capital into
its Canatuan Gold Project at Siocon.
It was learned that the Canadian investors
withdrew its capital because the company failed to follow the operation
procedures as agreed upon.
Earlier, Atlas Mining Development Corporation
was reportedly convinced by TVI to invest and had put in an initial
investment of P42M for ist copper project.
However, when it surveyed the project at
Siocon, Atlas reportedly withdrew its intention of partnership with TVI.
Some mayors were also invited to join the company due to
the financial grip it had been experiencing but no one had yet committed
himself to invest.
(Press Freedom, Vol. XX No.