August 30, 2007


Yano assumes top Army post

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, also the AFP Commander-in-Chief, recently appointed Lt. General Alexander B. Yano as the 49th Commanding General of the 80,000-strong Philippine Army. He assumed Command of the premier armed service in ceremonies in Fort Bonifacio on August 24 presided by Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro. Yano replaced Lt. Gen. Romeo Tolentino who have reached the mandatory retirement age. Yano is taking the top army post at a crucial time when the AFP (specifically the Philippine Army and Philippine Marines) is faced with a perilous threat from the Abu Sayyaf Group while trying to save and revive the peace initiatives with the MILF.

Before becoming the new Army Chief, Yano served as Southern Luzon Command Chief whose jurisdiction covers the national priority area for counterinsurgency operations of the government comprising Regions 4A (CALABARZON), 4B (MIMAROPA except Palawan) and 5 (Bicol Region). He also served as Army Chief of Staff, Commanding General of the Civil Relations Service, Assistant Division Commander of the 9th Infantry Division (Bicol), Commanding General of 601st Infantry Brigade (SOCSARGEN) and Commanding Officer of Task Force Zamboanga (Zamboanga City).

The late Zamboanga City Mayor Maria Clara Lobregat aptly referred Yano as the “Liberator of Cabatangan”.

He had a successful stint curbing terrorism in Mindanao when he became commander of Task Force Zamboanga in 2001 coinciding with the infamous Lamitan incident that followed the Dos Palmas kidnapping. Various terrorist threats from ASG and MNLF breakaway groups have marked Zamboanga City during his tour. He spearheaded a public information advocacy drive among various sectors of the community in Zamboanga to make the public aware of the nature and characteristics of terrorism and what the citizens can do to help address the problem. It was during his watch when the Cabatangan crisis erupted where around 300 fully armed MNLF breakaway elements held up in that former MNLF enclave more than a hundred hostages. The 2-day operations which involved political negotiations, along with military actions ended with the safe release of all hostages and the eviction of the rogue MNLF elements from Cabatangan – an area that they occupied since the forging of GRP-MNLF agreement in 1996. As a testament to this accomplishment, the late Zamboanga City Mayor Maria Clara Lobregat aptly referred Yano as the “Liberator of Cabatangan”.

General Yano is a true native of Zamboanga del Norte, having been born and raised in Sindangan. Alex or Boy, as he is fondly called by friends, is the eldest of 5 children. His parents, Inigo and Gloria Badong were both public school teachers in his hometown. His father became councilor after his retirement and served undefeated for three successive terms. His brother, Engr. Inigo Yano Jr., is now serving his last term as town Councilor. Another brother, Cesar is a Colonel in the Army who graduated from PMA in 1980. Yano completed his elementary studies in Sindangan Central School and graduated in 1965 as salutatorian. He graduated high school from St. Vincent’s College, Dipolog City in 1969 as 1st Honorable Mention.

His ambition was to become an engineer and enrolled at the famous Cebu Institute of Technology (CIT) in Cebu City to take up Civil Engineering. While in CIT, he became very much involved in student activism which was at its height in the early 70s. Taking an abrupt turn in life, he decided to take the PMA entrance exams in Cebu in 1971 and placed among the top 10 successful examinees that year. He entered Asia’s premier military institution in 1972. He was a plebe (1st year cadet) when martial law was declared in September 1972. As a PMA cadet, he excelled in extra-curricular activities, particularly in athletics. In 1975, he established 2 PMA athletic records – in high jump and 400 meter hurdles. To date, his academy record in hurdles remains unbroken. He was also a boxing and karate champion in PMA during his cadet days. At one time, then Cadet Yano also served as Associate Editor of “The Corps”, the cadets’ regular magazine publication. During his final year in PMA, he acted as the Regimental Adjutant, a coveted position in the hierarchy of the PMA’s Cadet Corps.

He served at one time as Operations Officer (S3) of the 101st Infantry Brigade in Piñan in 1988 under then Col. Cesar Fortuno as Brigade Commander. He was part of the original members of the Brigade when it transferred from Sicayab to its present base in Pinan. In 1991, he served briefly as Operations Officer (G3) of the 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division in Pulacan, Labangan, Zamboanga Del Sur. The following year, he commanded the 44th Infantry Battalion, then based in Oroquieta, with jurisdiction over the whole province of Misamis Occidental. He succeeded then Major Romeo Tolentino as head of that battalion. (Mindanao Star, Vol.III No.30)

Credits: Mindanao Star is published once a week and is circulated to the 25 Municipalities and 2 Cities of the province of Zamboanga del Norte. Mindanao Star can be reached through the following contact info: #096 Doña Concepcion Macias Montaño Building, Gen. Luna Street, Dipolog City; Phone/Fax No. (065) 212-2676; Mobile No.: 0919 735 6967. Email:


 Potungan ambush leaves 2 dead, 1 critical

Three unidentified motorcycle-riding assailants rained bullets into the victims’ jeep at Sitio Bagakay, Potungan, Dapitan City at 7:00 pm on August 31. PSI Glen Dulawan, OIC-Chief Of Police of Dapitan City identified the fatalities as Remlani Quiñones, former SB member of Sibutad and his sister-in-law Marlyn Quiñones. Felix Jumalon, a resident of barangay Libay, Sibutad was immediately rushed to the Zamboanga del Norte Cooperative Hospital for treatment.

Inspector Dulawan disclosed that Remalani’s group were on their way home from Dipolog going to Sibutad.

About 50 meters before the bridge in Bagakay, Potungan, a blue motorcycle with three men on board suddenly appeared beside the jeep and fired using the 45 caliber pistol at Remlani who was driving the vehicle at that time. Remlani was hit in the head and neck and died on the spot. Investigators believed that stray bullets went into Maryn who was seated beside Remani at that time, marlin was hit in the eye. Inspector Dulawan also disclosed that Jumalon was just a hitchrider who took a ride just at the crossing of Potungan when the victim passed by. He satat the backseat.

Seated in front were Remlani, Marlyn and her niece Ester Quiñones who escaped the rain of bullets. The investigators are looking into two angles of the ambush. Remlani operated a ball mill plant and had gold diggings in the area. It was believed that the ambush was staged to oust him from the business, Police investigators thought this business rivalry may have triggered the murder. On the other hand, some speculations also surfaced. Marlyn was the wife of Remlani’s brother who is an overseas contract worker.

The victims may have been suspected to have an affair thus prodding an interested party to hire hitmen to ambush the dou. Witnessed claimed that the suspects were already seen earlier in the area waiting for the victim. Police believed that it was only Remlani the suspect were after but Marlyn and Jumalon were also hit during the ambush. The suspects were seen retreating towards Barangay Opao but when policemen assigned in Barcelona Police Box responded, they were no longer located.

Some witnessed saw them going towards Crasher but police recovered jacket and sweatshirts only in the area. Investigators believed they may have changed their clothes to avoid investgation by witnesses. Up to this day, no clues have not yet been found to lead the investigators to the culprits. While police operatives are still in hot pursuit of the killers. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)

Credits: Press Freedom is published every Saturday and entered as 3rd class mail matter in Dipolog City. Printed by Young Printing Press with Editorial Office located at Upper Turno, Dipolog City. Tel. No. (065) 212-4343 or 212-6665. Email: freedom_nandau


Lando, Belen sign MOA

Provincial Governor Rolando Yebes and Dipolog City Mayor Evelyn Uy formally signed the Memorandum of Agreement on August 29 as regards the controversy on sand and gravel, ending the two-month coldwar.

It could be remembered that both leaders had earlier met at Dapitan on August 7 to resolve the issue. However, the agreement was not finalized when the document was found wanting in some matters earlier discussed in Dapitan.

Provincial Governor Rolando Yebes and Dipolog City Mayor Evelyn Uy formally signed the Memorandum of Agreement on August 29 as regards to the controversy on sand and gravel, ending the two-month cold war.

Recently however, Gov. Yebes and provincial Attorney Jes Gal Sarmiento Jr. and Mayor Uy and Atty. Kenneth Rosal finally signed the documents at the conference room of Gov. Yebes. In the MOA, the provincial governor shall help the city government of Dipolog City in obtaining the help of valid permitees to haul sand and gravel from Katipunan or Barangay Opao, Dapitan city since the city government does not hold any valid permit yet.

The said haulings of minerals from the quarry sites are for the infrastructure projects of the city.

The governor also pledges to help the city to ask private land owners to exempt it from paying passage fees. Regarding the issuance of gratuitous permit, the Dipolog City Government agreed to comply all the requirements like recommendations, permits, certificates and endorsements from the LGU, Provincial Mining and Rregulatory Board, Mines and Geo-sciences Bureau and Environmental Management Bureau, Region IX, Zamboanga.

Gov. Yebes also promised that when such permit shall have been issued, the city government can extract sand and gravel from the old quarry site in Layawan River after the moratorium period which runs from three to six months. Included in the MOA was the agreement that both shall withdraw the cases each filed before the Ombudsman and court: Theft of Minerals against former mayor Roberto Uy and mandamus against Gov. Yebes. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


 Maclang: criticized, praised

Dipolog’s new police chief, Police Chief Inspector Reynaldo Maclang was recently subjected to ‘roasting’ by critics, at the same time praised by some officials as he assumed PNP leadership in the city.

Mayor Evelyn Uy recently commended the new police chief when his office arrested a rape suspect of a 14-year-old girl of Laoy, Olingan identified as Celestino Geronimo. Moreover, Maclangs’s early leadership also led to the capture of suspected cellphone snatcher Manolito Alampangan at Velasco’s compound on August 18 and the subsequent capture of his companions identified as TJ Tamparong, Ronald Lacaya, Alger Bastasa and Edgar Gantalao.

Si Dipolog Police Chief Inspector Reynaldo Maclang

“I am pleased with Inspector Maclang’s performance,” the city mayor said, adding that she had directed the police chief to continue hitting the criminals in the city, and maintain peace and order for good. Meanwhile, Dipolog City Vice mayor Senen Angeles was also elated with the initial triumphs of Inspector Maclang.

However, he only wished that the new police chief would sustain what he had earlier done, or “we will recommend for his replacement,” the vice mayor warned. On the other hand, City Councilor Peter Co challenged Inspector Maclang to do more than apprehending helmetless motorcycle drivers but rather concentrate on heavier offenses.

Atty. Co stressed that non-wearing of helmets among motorist is only a light offense but rather the new PNP leadership should focus on primary peace and order problems of Dipolog City like robbery and theft, holdup, snatchings, car napping and the like. Some Dipolognons were also seen raising protests against small tari-tari in the Barangays. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


DMC’s Founding Anniversary a Roaring Success

Exalting its thirty-third Founding Anniversary with no less than one week of full-blast celebration, DMC College successfully wraps up its series of festivities on August 25, 2007 with the classy Tribal Party and Fashion Show at the DMC Gym, as a formal conclusion to and acknowledgement of the triumph of the entire festival, which showed off, among others, the Kamikazee Concert and Ms. DMC pageant.

The 33rd Founding Anniversary spun off on August 20, 2007 with the customary citywide parade, participated by the DMC community and the ROTC Reservist Officers of Dipolog City, who showed up to convey their full support to the celebration and pay tribute to the president of DMC, Atty. Alberto P. Concha, who ranks as a Lt. Col. and is the Brigade Commander of the 91st Infantry (SRES) Division of the Philippine Army. The parade was promptly followed by the Opening Program, complete with the usual torch-lighting, banner raising rites and Pledge of Sportsmanship led by the new principal of DMC Science High School, Dr. Danilo Daniel, to open the Sports Competitions. Also included in the opening program was the launching of DMC’s new mobile classroom, the 60-seaterschool bus with a 32” flat-screen TV, the entire design of which was conceptualized by Engr. Richard T. Concha, and which was formally inaugurated by Mrs. Filomena T. Concha and Mrs. Pacita Lim. The DMC ROTC Unit Tactical Inspection was then held at the DMC Grounds, in the presence of the distinguished Inspector-Officers of the Philippine Army.

The successful contestants during the DMC Beauty Pageant.

The incomparable Kamikazee captivated Dipolog City in the night of August 20 with its high-flying performance at the DMC Open Field, yet again proving DMC’s dedication to giving the best kind of enjoyment to its students and guests, following last year’s magnificent performance of the popular Bamboo. The Kamikazee concert, marking the full opening of the Founding Anniversary, entertained not only the DMC community but patrons from all over the cities of Dipolog and Dapitan and the province of Zamboanga del Norte.

Day 2 of the Founding Anniversary was highlighted with various sports competitions among the different teams of the college, which included basketball, volleyball, badminton, table tennis, darts, chess, street soccer, and the first ever Cyber Games. The spectacular Cheerdance competition was held in the evening of August 21. The following day was highlighted with the Extemporaneous Speech contest in which the best and brightest of DMC were judged by the prominent lawyers, Atty. Alan Ranillo, Atty. Jeffrey Ortega and Atty. Yolando Villaruz. In the afternoon, basketball enthusiasts were rewarded with the knuckle-crunching game between DMC’s athletes and the varsity players of Negros Oriental State University (NORSU). The day was rounded off with the Musical Night and Variety Show, which showcased the amazing talents of various DMC students.

The fourth day of the celebration was hallmarked by championship games of the sports competitions, and two more thrilling basketball games, namely; the La Salle University Varsity against DMC, and the Doctors’ Friendship Games in the afternoon, played by the MDs of Dipolog Medical Center Hospital. The Doctor’s Dinner Party was conducted in the evening, where the most distinguished medical practitioners of Dipolog and neighboring cities, headed by DMC’s Vice President Dr. Stephen Yap, joined in to celebrate the Founding Anniversary.

The highly-anticipated Ms. DMC pageant was conducted in the night of August 24 at the DMC Open Field. The most beautiful women of the college vied for the crown in the sleek and elegant pageant, adjudged by a few of the most prominent personas of the city headed by Atty. Christopher Mah. The awarding ceremonies of the 33rd Founding Anniversary of DMC College Foundation is held during the final day, during the Tribal Party and Fashion Show. The roaring success of DMC’s celebration is a great accolade to the deserving students, the unwavering support of the administration, and the selfless service of the faculty and staff behind the remarkable week. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


Liloy celebrates 56th anniversary
Press Club choice almost made it as Miss Liloy ’07


The Municipality of Liloy culminated on August 22, 2007 its weeklong celebra-tion commemorating its 56th founding anniversary. Activities which started on August 16, 2007 included a parade, motorcade, karambola, Invitational Basketball Cup 2007, inter-barangay 2-cock derby, volleyball, badminton, chess, off-road competition, drag race, medical/dental civic in coordination with LANDO-BIBO of Governor Rolando E. Yebes, battle of the bands, agri-day, boxing and search for Mutya ng Liloy 2007. The most applauded and well attended affair was the search for Mutya ng Liloy 2007 held at Liloy gymnasium in the evening of August 21, 2007.

The occasion was also graced by the presence of Board Member Anecito S. Darunday, representing Gov. Rolando E. Yebes, former Board Member Pancrasio Ajero, representing Cong-ressman Cesar G. Jalosjos, Board Member Norbideire Edding of the 3rd District and all municipal officials of Liloy led by its new mayor, Jaime “Siobing” Lim.

Crowned Mutya ng Liloy 2007 was Romagien Gomez with Krizia Nica Ione Estoconing as 1st runner-up and Mary Arth Balingit as 2nd runner-up. The Zamboanga del Norte Press Club’s choice, Krizia Nica Ione Estoconing, as “Darling of the Press” almost made it as Mutya ng Liloy 2007. She was awarded by the Press Club P2,000.00 cash prize, a trophy and a sash. The award was handed personally by Atty. Anecito S. Darunday, a press club member, in behalf of ZNPRC president, Edith Tomong. (LC. Pagente, ZNPC)


Mayor Soriano appeals for military installation

What happened in Siocon on May 3, 2003 could have been a horrible nightmare to Mayor Cesar Soriano and the whole Siocon town.

Recently, reports reaching him of small armed groups seen landing in Siocon, Sirawai, Sibuco and Baliguian gave the town another shiver. Mayor Soriano believed that the “Triple S-B” towns are presently the sanctuary of runaway Abu Sayaff members when the military launched major offensive against them.

During the Provincial Peace and Order Council Meeting on August 28 here, the town mayor expressed apprehensions of another 2003 tragedy, if the military would not be visible in the area. He disclosed that two Moro Islamic Liberation Front Camps are situated in Camp Salman and another camp in sitio Panubigan, Barangay Balagunan which is situated about 15 km from Siocon poblacion.

He disclosed further that the PNP force in town could be powerless if attacked considering that the PNP 903rd Mobile Group was recently transferred to another area. However, Col. Magalso of the 102nd Brigade based in Ipil, Sibugay stressed that the concentration of the military’s might is in Basilan and Jolo and they have to content themselves with their own force covering the Triple S-B and the entire Zamboanga Sibugay area.

On the other hand, Provincial Police Director Senior Superintendent Mario B. Yanga understood Soriano’s predicament but he disclosed before the council that he could not possibly answer the mayor’s need as police personnel in the province were already getting fewer. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


Attrition Recruitment Program Phase II slated

The Zamboanga del Norte Provincial Police Office under the able leadership of Police Senior Superintendent Mario Biong Yanga (DSC) CSEE, Officer-In-Charge through its Police Community Relations (PCR) Branch based in Camp Hamac, Sicayab, Dipolog City would like to inform the general public that there will be a PO1 Regular Recruitment for CY 2007, PRO9 is directed to prepare for the conduct of CY 2007 PO1 Attrition Recruitment Program Phase II. The appropriate letter of instruction and other clearances will be issued as soon as available. In this connection, all interested and qualified applicants are advised to submit their application to PRO9, ORPHRDD Recruitment Section, and the following requirements as basis in determining whether they meet the minimum qualification standards.

Under Section 14, RA 8551 as follows:
1. Eligibility - NAPOLCOM PNP Entrance/RA 1080/RA 6506 CSC PO1-PO Onward July 1998
2. Age - Not below 21 years old but not more than 31 years of age upon Oath taking.
3. Height - 1.62 cm or 5’4” for male and 1.57 cm or 5’2” for female
Specific Requirements:
1. College Diploma/Transcript of Record (Duly Authenticated by School Registrar)
2. Birth Certificate (Authenticated by NSO & LCR)
3. Eligibility (Authenticated by NAPOLCOM, PRC.CSC) 

Local Clearances:

NBI (Original) Physical/Medical Clearance, Barangay Clearance, Local Police Clearance, Regional Trial Court, Municipal Trial Court (Mindanao Star, Vol.III No.30)


Dipolog Nursing School yield 65 new Nurses

Sixty five graduates from the two Nursing schools of Dipolog City passed the June 2007 Nursing Licensure Examination, the complete results of which were announced formally by the Professional Regulations Commission on August 26, 2007.

Sixty four of the successful examinees hail from Dipolog Medical Center College Foundation, Inc. Fifty seven out of 86 first-time test takers from the said college passed the exam, garnering an equivalent of 66%. One student from Andres Bonifacio College also passed, exacting a total of 11% percentage passing for the school

The national passing rate of the June 2007 Nursing licensure exam is 48% with only 31,275 passers out of 64,909 examinees, which include First-Takers, Repeaters, and Voluntary Retakers. The examination took place on June 9-10 in various schools of Manila, Cagayan de Oro, Davao, Iloilo, Legazpi, Lucena, Tacloban, Tuguegarao and Zamboanga.

Nine thousand nine hundred eight voluntary retakers who passed the June 2006 Board exam but whose results were unacceptable to CGFNS due to the purported leakage also made it through parts III and V of the aforesaid exam. The results of the voluntary retake were released by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) shortly after the announcement of the regular exam passers by PRC was made.

DMC College Foundation and Andres Bonifacio College are the only two schools in Dipolog who offer the Bachelor of Science in Nursing course. Neighboring schools within and around the region also produced over eight hundred professional nurses, with varying overall percentages: Ateneo de Zamboanga University-70%; Western Mindanao State University-54%; Brent Hospital, Inc.-50%; Misamis University-42%; and Medina College-13%.

The surge of the nursing profession marks hopeful implications for the many, especially with the recent opening of the newly constructed Pearson Professional Center in Makati City on August 22, which is the long-awaited international testing center for the National Council Licensure Examinations (NCLEX) in the Philippines. This development offers a decisive edge for all Filipino nurses who wish to work in the United States, for they no longer need to travel to Hong Kong or Guam to take the NCLEX.

Filipino nurses continue to be in demand in the United States, and experts say that the demand is unlikely to drop in the next twenty years. Schools that promulgate the Nursing profession are hopeful that their role as education providers has given a more significant contribution to the country’s economic development, in addition to enriching the quality of life of their graduates. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


NPA mass grave found

A mass grave that is beleived to be the work of the New People’s Army were recently found at Barangay Femagas in the town of Katipunan here on the province of Zamboanga del Norte.

Katipunan mayor Cris Eguia disclosed that the discovery came about when a Non-Governmental Organization together with the witness of the killing of the victims visited his office to report the incident. It was learned from the group that those buried in the mass graves were former members of the NPA who were believed by their comrades as Deep Penetration Agent of the Military.

Three graves sites were already marked by the group. Authorities believed that included in those graveyards were sons of prominent personalities in Dipolog and the province such as David Barrios and Vicente Gonzales, Jr.

Both joined the movement in the past. However, they were no longer found and were believed to be kind by their own comrades in the movement thinking they were DPAs. Mayor Eguia disclosed that he had already ordered the military to keep watch on these sites while waiting for the coming of the Forensic experts to identify the remains.

In this initial investigation, mayor Eguia bared there were 10 cadavers of persons in just one graveyard. “There could be more in those two sites,” the mayor predicted as rumors claimed there were several people killed in the area during the height of NPA activities here. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


PGMA: Poverty reduction our over-arching goal

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said on Thursday that her administration’s bold economic reforms are not only working, they are producing the much-needed funds for the government’s efforts to reduce poverty in the country.

In a press briefing in Malacanang, the President explained that alleviating the widespread poverty is the over-arching goal of her administration. Reducing poverty is also the driving force behind her economic reform programs, she added. Poverty reduction is “our over-riding objective — ang pagbalansiyado ng kaban ng bayan ay unang hakbang lamang; gumagawa tayo ng matagal nang dapat gawing pamumuhunan sa human at physical infrastructure.”

The President said upgrading the country’s competitiveness forms part of her administration’s strategy for poverty reduction. Investments create additional jobs – “mas maraming trabaho, mas konting kahirapan.” “Kasama rito ang bilyun-bilyong piso sa edukasyon, kalinga sa kalusugan at training; kasama ng bilyun-bilyon sa mga bagong tulay, kalsada, pantalan…”

“Hanggang ngayon, mataas ang ating hinahangad – naharap natin ang hamon,” the President said, even as she pointed out that earlier, “no one thought we could get more revenue, cut down on tax cheats, strengthen the peso and move the stock market.”

Recalling the initial pessimism that her economic reforms would work, the President said, “No one thought we could bring our budget into balance, pre-pay our debts, at dagdagan ang trabaho – ngunit nagawa natin. Our new-found money for investments allows us to pick up the pace of growth.”

“Umu-ubra ang ating plano sa ekonomiya – today we have the latest glowing indicators to show for it,” the President said. The Chief Executive rattled off the latest accomplishments of her administration, saying: “For the second quarter of the year, gross domestic product or GDP rose by 7.5 percent – the fastest in two decades.”

“Gross national product or GNP rose by 8.3 percent – this brings our first semester economic growth to 7.3 percent … (and) “we’re confident of meeting our full-year growth forecast of 6.1 to 6.7 percent,” she said. Admitting that a lot of work remains to be done, the President said the government cannot rest on its laurels: “Dapat hindi tayo magpahinga, kundi sumulong at i-sustento ang momentum sa susunod na tatlong taon. Ita-translate natin ang mga positibong resulta ng ating mga reporma sa ekonomiya sa mga tunay na biyaya para sa taong-bayan.”

“To sustain our expansion… (and) to boost the domestic economy,” the President called on the business leaders present “to join hands with our economic team in advancing crucial initiatives toward faster and faster growth.” The initiatives include the following: (1) achieve our revenue and deficit targets to maintain investor and creditor confidence and keep the flow of low-interest capital strong; (2) intensify domestic growth and investment, especially micro, small and medium enterprises, exports and agri-business, tourism and infrastructure, and addressing business concerns over power costs and red tape; and (3) “be merciless in ripping through undue obstacles in the way of long-overdue priority infrastructure.”

She said she had given “strict marching orders to the BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue) and (the Bureau of) Customs in three meetings since July to hit their targets or else – and they have been meeting their targets.” She added that “with resolute collection and payment of the right taxes, we shall all enjoy ample, cheap funds for business and development.” The President also called on Trade and Industry Secretary Peter Favila to “please slash more red tape, as well as the drag of power costs on our exporters and manufacturers.”

She also reiterated her directive to the Department of Energy (DOE) last week “to ensure our power cost production strategy.” “DOE has committed to privatize half of National Power Corporation’s generating capacity in the months ahead, along with the National Transmission Corporation (Transco) which has attracted interest from nine consortia.” The President also said she hopes Congress would prioritize the bill amending the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) and open access for industrial users of electricity a reality.

For the third initiative, the President said she assigned the clearing up of the obstacles impeding priority infrastructure projects to the super regions champions, the infra agencies, state corporations, and the infra-monitoring task force of the Presidential Management Staff (PMS). “Let us end the days when our public works were held back by huge deficits and reenacted budgets. To this end, I also urge Congress to speedily enact next year’s budget for hopefully even faster growth in 2008,” she said.

The President also directed the PMS to push government and private financial institutions and non-government organizations “na magpahiram sa mga micro, small at medium na negosyo – ito ang saligan ng ating akonomiya, dapat palawakin natin sila sa sapat na pautang at technical assistance.” Among those present during the presentation of the 2007 Second Quarter and First Semester Economic Performance were Roger Dallas, president and manager of the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines; Toshifumi Inami, president of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Philippines; Jesus Arranza, president of the Federation of Philippine Industries; and Benjamin Philip Romualdez, president of the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines. (PIA-ZN)


Art & Culture
Don Gurrea
Visual Artists gathered in Cagayan de Oro

Visual artists all over the Philippines gathered last August 17, 2007 for the opening of SUNGDUAN 4: EX.TENSIONS, a visual group art exhibit by selected visual artists nationwide held at the Museum of Three Centuries, Capitol University, Cagayan de Oro City.

A project of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts - Committee on Visual Arts ( NCCA-CVA ) in cooperation with the Philippine Association of Print makers, Inc. and the Capitol University, the month-long art exhibit tackles different issues and concerns that transcend religious, political, and socio-cultural barriers.

Collateral programs include a Curators’ Forum at the Capitol University Library Building led by the art project’s curatorial team composed of DR. PATRICK FLORES (Project Director), CHRISTOPHER ROLLO (CVA Head),  EILEEN LEGASPI-RAMIREZ (NCR Curator), WIRE TUAZON (Luzon Curator), RADEL PAREDES (Visayas Curator), KELLY RAMOS-PALAGANAS (Mindanao Curator), and AMBIE ABANO  (Project Coordinator).

A Printmaking Lecture - Workshop was held on August 18 to 19, 2007 at the Museo de Oro, Xavier University, Ateneo de Cagayan. Exhibition of workshop outputs is being held at the same venue until September 18, 2007. Conducting the said lecture - workshops were renowned Manila-based artists composed of RAUL ISIDRO, FIL DELA CRUZ, AMBIE ABANO and BENJIE CABRERA.


Among the Dipolog and Sindangan- based artists who attended the art opening in Cagayan de Oro City are ELENA GAMALINDA ( Project Coordinator for Western Mindanao Women Artists ), VICENTE LAPUT, JR. ( Coordinator for Zamboanga del Norte, Art Caravan ), IVY ASPRER, LORNA BENTULAN, BETH BORDADO-GURREA, KU GAMALINDA, LEAH GAMALINDA, DES LAPUT, EMMA PRIMA, PINKY RABINO, RUBY SABANAL, JOVENTINA SASUMAN, and CHOI WILLKOM. Exhibit runs until September 18, 2007. (For inquiries and suggestions, please contact 0926 6033 968 or Email at (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)

Credits: The New Nandau is a member of the Publishers Association of the Philippines (PAPI). Editorial office is located at 076 Quezon Avenue, Dipolog City with Tel. No. (065) 212-3794; Cell No. +639205201041


Usa ka domestic helper nga Dipolognon ang nahiagum sa kabangis sa mga kamot sa iyang agalon nga arabo sa dihang nakatilaw kinig kastigo ug kulata hinungdan sa naangkon niining mga bun-og sa iyang kalawasan ug nakabsan sa iyang kinabuhi sa usa sa mga tambalanan

Si Liza Tagod Bayubay usa ka domestic helper 33 anyos, taga Minaog ning dakbayan sa Dipolog ang nahiagum sa kabangis sa mga kamot sa iyang agalon nga Arabo sa dihang nakatilaw kinig kastigo ug kulata hinungdan sa naangkon niining mga bun-og sa iyang kalawasan ug nakabsan sa iyang kinabuhi sa usa sa mga tambalanan didto sa Saudi Arabia bag-ohay palamang.

didto sa Saudi Arabia bag-ohay palamang. Si Liza Tagod Bayubay, 33 anyos, taga Minaog ning dakbayan sa Dipolog, OFW didto sa Riyadh, Saudi Ara-bia ang nakabsan sa iyang kinabuhi tapos makaangkon ug grabeng bun-og sa iyang kalawasan. Gituhoan sa kaubang

Credits: The New Nandau is a member of the Publishers Association of the Philippines (PAPI). Editorial office is located at 076 Quezon Avenue, Dipolog City with Tel. No. (065) 212-3794; Cell No. +639205201041. Email: freedom_nandau

Mayor Evelyn Uy defers demolition OF SQUATTERS

The squatters living in Laoy, Olingan could be more than happy when Dipolog City Mayor Uy agreed to request of their houses.

Earlier, Mayor Eguia appealed to Mayor Uy to reset her schedule of dismantling the squatters houses because some residents cautioned his office they might be included in the demolition although they are already in the Katipunan


Laoy, Olingan has been established as the boundary between Katipunan and Dipolog. Mayor Eguia disclosed that a big stone served as the boundary marker but it was lost to the treasure hunting activities of Cong. Roseller Barinaga and Hiroshi Ikeda on the pretext that it was the future site of a wharf.

The town mayor wanted to talk mayor in order not to displace some residents there who were really establishing their homes in Katipunan soil, and not in Dipolog. Mayor Uy declined to talk about it before the recent Provincial peace and Order Council; instead, opted to talk with Mayor Eguia alone. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)




Take it or leave it
Pat M. Tubungbanua

When headlines scream rampant killings everywhere; children and women physically and emotionally abused left and right; brazen stealing in broad daylight; daring hold-up in the highways and byways; father blindly raping his own child or step-child, and recently we hear of a grandfather doing his thing on his own grandchild; then foreign employers sarcastically raping Pinay OFW’s; senseless and heartless abducting’ just anybody, in exchange for a few thousand pesos we call ransom in the present-day fashion of getting rich quick.

But when so money is immediately coming – just stuck the helpless and lifeless victim in a suitcase, then let it float, Moses-like.  And then along with the so-called high-tech style – unwary adults as well as the not – yet – adults trooping into secret cubicles to glee or gloat over what they are viewing night or day – all for sensual pleasures!. . . And then here we have brother fighting against brother like what they are doing now in Basilan and elsewhere in our countryside’s. . . My GOD; this was not the picture of the world we first came into.  WHAT is going on?  THAT is what’s on  but WHY?  Don’t start asking why.  But these are isolated cases, many skeptics would be quick to justify.  ISOLATED?  But then Mother nature (the weather, for example) has no qualms either in displaying her own bad mood, her bad nature.  She’s dismayed,  frustrated at our senseless, selfish ways.  So, if man insists on and persists in going his own ways, so be it.  Well, GOD can do even worse.  Even the worst!

Just a minute, before you say something negative, like prophesying gloom and doom, I’m not.  Far from it.  Because from where I sit I can still see the verdant hills, the majestic mountains, the glorious sunset, the enigmatic moon, feel the refreshing waters, enjoying the love, trust, and faith of a few friends, of a family that has pioneered in the growth of this town (now a city), am enjoying also beautiful music – all GOD’s creation.  And all beautiful.  I can not want anything more. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


Credits: Press Freedom is published every Saturday and entered as 3rd class mail matter in Dipolog City. Printed by Young Printing Press with Editorial Office located at Upper Turno, Dipolog City. Tel. No. (065) 212-4343 or 212-6665



Gov’t on track to meet full year 6.1 - 6.7 percent growth target – PGMA

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said Thursday that the government is on track to meet its full year economic growth target of 6.1-6.7 percent. In a press briefing in Malacanang, the President said that based on additional data, the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 7.3 percent in the first semester of the year.

“We are confident of meeting our full year growth forecast of 6.1-6.7 percent. Based on additional data, our statisticians have also revised the first quarter GDP growth. And that’s why I said that GDP grew in the first semester by 7.3 percent,” she said. GDP is defined as the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period of time. Citing latest economic indicators, the President said that in the second quarter of the year, GDP rose by 7.5 percent, the fastest in 20 years, while gross national product (GDP) hit 8.3 percent.

“This brings our first semester economic growth to 7.3 percent,” she added, as she attributed the country’s improved economy to all Filipinos here and abroad. She warned, however, against complacency. “While our economy has reached a new level of maturity and stability with one of the strongest macroeconomic fundamentals in two decades, we must sustain the momentum” of economic growth, she said. “To sustain our expansion and global business, we must undertake more efforts to boost the domestic economy. We call on the business leaders gathered here to join hands with out economic team in advancing crucial initiatives toward faster and faster growth,” the President said.

In her report on the Performance of the Philippine Economy for the Second Quarter of 2007, Estrella Domingo, assistant secretary general of the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB), said the GDP growth for the second quarter of 2006 was 5.5 percent while that of the GNP was 6.4 percent. During the same period this year – April to June 2007 – the growth rate for GDP was 7.5 percent while that for GNP was 8.3 percent.

For the first half of 2006, the GDP growth rate was 5.6 percent compared to this year’s 7.3 percent; while last year’s GNP growth rate was 6.4 percent compared to 8.0 percent this year, Domingo added. Domingo also noted that during the second quarter of 2007, the industry sector grew by 8 percent compared to last year’s 4.4 percent.

She attributed this to the big jump in the growth rate in the mining and quarrying sub-sector which registered a record 33.3 percent growth this year, compared to only 3.3 percent last year. The construction sub-sector of the industry sector also recorded a growth rate of 21 percent during the same period, compared to last year’s 4.0 percent. (PIA-ZN)



 The Turning Point
Edwin G. Bernido
Loving Jesus Christ Above All Things!

Happy is the man who knows what it is to love Jesus, and to despise him for Jesus’ sake. We must quit everything we love for the love of Jesus, because, He wishes to be loved alone and above all things.  The love of all created being is treacherous and fickle, but the love of Jesus is faithful and unchangeable.  He that clings to the creature falls with its fall, be that embraces Jesus shall stand firm forever.  Love Him and hold Him fast as your friend, for He will never forsake you though all others hold aloof, He will never allow you to come to eternal ruin.  Sooner or later you must be parted from all others whether you like it or not.

Happy is the man who knows what it is to love Jesus, and to despise him for Jesus’ sake.

Living and dying, hold fast to Jesus Christ, and trust yourself to the faith of Him who alone can help you when all others fail such is the nature of your beloved that He will not allow anyone to share your heart with Him.  He will have it for Himself alone, and reign there as a king upon His own throne.  If you could empty your heart of all love of creatures, Jesus, would gladly come to dwell with you.  If you place any trust in men. Apart from Jesus, you will find it so much loss.  Lean not on this hollow reed for all flesh is grass, and all the glory thereof shall fade like the flower of grass. You will soon be misled if you put faith in the seeming power of any man.  For if you seek consolation or help from others, you will generally meet only with loss.  If you seek Jesus, in everything, you will certainly find Jesus.  If on the other hand you seek yourself, you will find yourself, but to your ruin.  For if a man does not seek Jesus Christ, he harms himself more than the whole world and all the enemies of his soul could do


The person who tries to live alone will not succeed as a human being.  His heart withers if it does not answer another heart.  His mind shrinks away if he hears only the echoes of his own thoughts and finds no other inspiration. Nothing can change our position in Christ!  We are a survivor, we are a conqueror!  We are born in the spirit of God to be a winner, not a looser, a victor not a victim. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 46)


Credits: Press Freedom is published every Saturday and entered as 3rd class mail matter in Dipolog City. Printed by Young Printing Press with Editorial Office located at Upper Turno, Dipolog City. Tel. No. (065) 212-4343 or 212-6665




CO asks for P3M Aggie budget

City Councilor Peter Co, Chairman, Committee on Agriculture of the Sangguniang Panlungsod recently asked P3M budget for Agriculture for 2008.

He disclosed that he talked it over with the other members of the committee together with the City Agriculturist. But before the plan would reach the city mayor’s office, he planned to draft a concrete plan for the development of agriculture in the City.

He disclosed the Committee Planned to buy a lot for a demo farm, to provide seedlings to the barangays and to conduct deworming activities for animals. He disclosed further that his priority was to have a integrated model farm and training center and to focus on production and marketing. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)


Yebes to Mayors, PNP: protect the environment

Who would not feel the sting of the plight of the displaced indigenous people and the destruction of the mining companies conducted abusive mining activities?

Provincial Governor Rolando Yebes recently called upon the mayors and the PNP and Military elements to implement laws on environmental protection. During the recent provincial peace and order council meeting, he disclosed there have been mining activities in Sindangan, Sibutad, Sibuco, Sicon and other areas without any permit from the provincial office.

He urged to conduct investigation in the area and submit report ti his office for proper action. Mayor Rolando Tablezo of Leon Postigo cofirrned reports that a mining operation is ungooing inside his municipality particularly in Barangsy Titik.

However, he said, this didinot hold any permit from his office. He pictured that these small-scale miners were abused by rebels who asked them revolutionary taxes.

The town mayor then appealed to the PNP and the military to help him in the control of these illegal activities. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)



Subanens protest against mining; seek help from U.N.

The ardent desire to stand as one order to protect the environment and their ancestral land moved the Subanen leaders of Jose Dalman to protest against the impending mining activities of the TVI Resource Incorporated.

The leaders disclosed they knew about the final draft of the Memorandum of Agreement between the National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) and TVI Resource Inc. when it was published in the TVI website on April 25, 2007. If signed, TVI would be operating another mining activity in the area, an expansion activity of the company.

However, the Subanen leaders protested against the MOA considering it was only represented by Maximo Tigon and not by the majority of the people as Subanen tradition so requires. Kagawad Felomino Ango of barangay Tamarok disclosed his brothers in the Subanen Tribal Council were already readying a petition denouncing the MOA and the impending TVI destruction of the area.

It was learned that the area already declared a watershed area, believed to be their counterpart of the marine sanctuary of Jose Dalman.

They have sent copies of the petition to Gov. Rolando Yebes who in turn referred it to the Sangguniang Panlalawigaa for appropriate action. Recently Manila Bulletin writer Ellalyn B. De Vera disclosed they have asked the intervention of the United Nations (UN) on all forms of racial discrimination and the governments alleged discriminatory policies and actions against them, in relation to its promotion of large-scale mining in their ancestral lands.

She pointed out that the leaders feared what happened to Canatuan, Siocon could happen to them and such could violate the principles set by their Subanen ancestors, which included the principles of being pro-life, propeople, pro-God and pro-environment. Recently, Kagawad Ango of Tamarok filed a case against NCIP Provincial officer Lista Cawanan before the Ombudsman. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)



Press Freedom Editorial
Man of the hour

Police Chief Inspector Reynaldo Maclang of the Dipolog PNP could not have fully understood the peculiary of Dipolognons when he was recently showereed with praises, at the same time roasted with harsh criticism.

Barely three days after he reported for duty, he had successfully secured a rape suspect,  a drug suspect and five other suspected cellphone snatchers.

These initial triumphs elated the city mayor hereself and some others who have always shivered at the various crimes stalking the people by day and by night.

However, not everybody was happy. As small tari-tari mushroomed in some barangays in Dipolog and illegal gambling continued to pin down the poor peole to utter poverty, who is indeed happy?

But the man himself frankly claimed he’s not a supercop and could not do his job without he help of the people, the officials and media community. Let’s give time.

Dipolog City has seen quite a number of Police Inspectors and we had given them enough time to show their rare, to prove their worth, Inspector Maclang included. He’s not a superhero, he has xome failing of a human being too. (Press Freedom, Vol. XIX No. 47)

Credits: Press Freedom is published every Saturday and entered as 3rd class mail matter in Dipolog City. Printed by Young Printing Press with Editorial Office located at Upper Turno, Dipolog City. Tel. No. (065) 212-4343 or 212-6665





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