Phil. Army hits
NPA in Samar anew
DPAO, 8ID PA
November 21, 2018
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan
City – Troops of Charlie Company, 14th Infantry (Avenger)
Battalion, Philippine Army encountered more or less 10
CPP-NPA-Terrorists (CNTs) in the area of Brgy Concepcion, Paranas,
Samar on November 20, 2018 at 7:50 p.m.
While the troops are
conducting combat operations in the area to confirm presence of
armed men in the said barangay, they were fired-upon by armed CNTs
that prompted the firefight that lasted for 10 minutes that forced
the CNTs to scamper to different directions.
During clearing operations
in the area, soldiers recovered from the encounter site two
improvised explosive device, one rifle grenade, empty magazines and
empty shells of AK46, M16 and M14.
"Our troops are still in
the area conducting pursuit operation while we continue to validate
and confirm information regarding the casualties of the fleeing CNTs,
on the other hand, our engaged troops are safe with no casualty",
said Lt. Col. Jimmy V. Jimenez, Commanding Officer, 14IB, 8ID, PA.
Lt. Col. Jimenez further
explains that the Stormtroopers through the Avenger Battalion will
continue to intensify offensive against the CNTs in the area of
Samar "to degrade their armed components to further eradicate the
CNTs by 2019 in our Area of Operations". "Rest assured that our
Battalion will remain to be vigilant in performing our mandated task
to serve the Waraynons and in Securing the Island of Samar", Lt.
Col. Jimenez added.
DPWH to rise P372
M worth of school buildings in Leyte
November 21, 2018
CARIGARA, Leyte –
In support to the education program of the government, the
Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Leyte Second District
Engineering Office will implement a total of P372 million worth of
29 units of school buildings or 159 classrooms under the Department
of Education’s (DepEd) Basic Educational Facilities Fund (BEFF).
Out of 29 school
buildings, 25 units are already on-going while 4 units are
processing its contract documents.
There are four (4) units
each in the municipalities of Carigara and Jaro, three (3) units
each in Burauen and Capoocan, two (2) units each in Barugo, Dagami,
Dulag, Julita, Mac Arthur and Pastrana, and one (1) unit each in La
Paz, Mayorga and Tabontabon.
District Engineer Carlos
Veloso said that these classrooms will be in multi-storey structures
that will utilize and provide conducive learning environment for the
increasing number of students under the K-12 program.
Veloso expressed the
willingness of the department to aid the DepEd in its continuous
aspiration to educate and guide these young men and women in the
The BEFF is an annual
budget of the Department for its School Building Program, which
covers the improvement and maintenance of school facilities.
politics’ very much alive in Congress - BMP
November 21, 2018
QUEZON CITY –
Militant labor group Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP)
assailed members of the House of Representatives claiming that “pork
barrel politics is still alive and kicking”. This, after Senator
Ping Lacson disclosed at a press briefing Monday that insertions by
congressmen have stalled the budget hearings.
The group further
disclosed that the practice of pork allocations is more prevalent
this year because of next year’s midterm elections.
The Supreme Court in 2013
ruled that pork barrel is unconstitutional after allegations that
Janet Lim-Napoles and several legislators siphoned public funds to
bogus and ghost non government organizations.
In a statement, Leody de
Guzman, chairperson of the group and senatorial aspirant said, “We
are certain that these congressmen are aware of the 2013 SC ruling
and yet they have continued the anomalous practice of allocating
funds and projects to perpetuate their dynastic rule over their
“Their mandate is to
legislate laws, oversight and deliberation. Budget insertions by
congressmen for their pet projects has the same effect on the entire
fiscal process as with the previous practice of direct and blatant
congressional pork barrel. Both practices strengthens political
patronage, where grave abuse of discretion most likely leads to
graft and corruption,” he adds.
BMP says it is not
surprising that the public perceives Congress as a corrupt
institution, filled with traditional politicians who earn their
living through kickbacks, horse trading, and authoring laws for
legislators are severely detached from the people that they rely
more on sharing their loot of the national coffers to their
constituents. It is a share in the public pie that only increases if
they enjoy the good graces of the Executive branch,” De Guzman
The concrete needs of the
people, the labor leader asserted “towards wholistic and genuine
national development should be the primary basis in the allocation
of government funds, not the selfish motives of politicians who
label completed projects as part of their achievements. Credit
should be accorded to where it is due, to no other than the
taxpaying public who do not owe anything, not even “utang na loob”
to these unscrupulous trapos”.
“Labor reminds our
legislators that the ink on the five-year old Supreme Court ruling
has not dried. The people’s righteous anger against the pork barrel
is still alive and fresh on our collective memory. If they fail to
exercise prudence, this indignation by the voting population will be
reflected in next year’s elections.
De Guzman, meanwhile,
emphasized that the congressional craving for budget allocation to
their districts is goaded by the austerity measures of the budget
department to the much needed social services, which is essential to
providing decent lives to the workers and the poor.
It has been reported that
the several departments will suffer from severe budget cuts. The
DepEd’s proposed Basic Education Facilities Fund for 2019 will lose
P69.4 billion compared to 2018, while DOH’s Health Facilities
Enhancement Program (HFEP) fund was clipped of P30.3 billion under
its cash based budgeting system.
“It is utterly disgraceful
that we have congressmen who fight tooth and nail for every penny of
budget allocation to advance their selfish political motives, while
the public suffers from runaway inflation caused by anti-poor tax
reform packages,” he lashed out.
The BMP says the taxpaying
public have been hit by a triple whammy. “First, the poor are
overtaxed with VAT and excise taxes on petroleum. Second, the budget
cuts to national government agencies providing social services to
the people has led to a shift in fund allocation towards the
discretion of self-serving government officials. Lastly, these
politicians will profess to being pro-poor as they use public funds
to woo the voters into reelecting them into office”.
Soldiers who were
wounded-in-action receive assistance from DOLE
November 20, 2018
CATBALOGAN CITY –
Three soldiers from Eastern Visayas who were wounded-in-action
during the Marawi siege receive livelihood assistance from the
Department of Labor and Employment Regional Office 8 on November 15,
2018 at the 8ID Stormtroopers Clubhouse, Camp General Vicente Lukban,
In a simple turnover
ceremony, Jessa Jean Noguit, Norma Nablo and Gemma Aban, wives of
PFC Jerson C. Noguit, CPL Maximo Nablo, Jr. and CPL Edgie Aban
personally received the agri-business projects amounting to more or
less twenty thousand pesos (P20,000) each with big smiles on their
“I am so thankful that we
are given this kind of aid by the government. This will be a big
help to our family and we will do our best to make this business
grow,” Mrs. Noguit said.
Said livelihood assistance
was a joint effort of DOLE and 8th Infantry Division of the
Philippine Army. DOLE RO8 Director Yahya A. Centi, Assistant
Division Commander, BGen. Eliezer L. Losanes and DOLE Samar Field
Office Head, Mr. Edgar B. Tabuyan graced the activity and personally
awarded the livelihood grants.
Director Centi expressed
his heartfelt thanks to the Philippine Army for being an active
partner of DOLE in advocating its programs and services to the
public particularly in the grassroots level.
“I’d like to recognize the
efforts of our friends in the PA for being so enthusiastic in
helping us bring our programs especially the DOLE Integrated
Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (DILEEP) closer to our
clients. Serving the public becomes lighter when you know you have
strong linkage with other government agencies”, said Centi.
The awarding ceremony was
followed by an orientation seminar conducted by DOLE to capacitate
the different operating units of 8ID implementing Community Support
Salary Increase petition to Senate as 2019 budget is deliberated
Alliance of Concerned
November 19, 2018
QUEZON CITY –
Teachers from the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) headed to the
Philippine Senate today to submit their petition for salary
increase, which garnered around 25,000 signatures.
“The clamor for a
substantial pay hike remains to be loud and strong, as evidenced by
the thousands of education workers as well as parents and other
supporters from 17 regions who signed the petition. The strongest
justification of its urgency is the still-at-peak Philippine
inflation,” declared Joselyn Martinez, ACT National Chairperson.
The upper house is
currently deliberating the 2019 National Expenditure Program and ACT
is pushing for legislators to take into account the demands of
teachers and education workers for immediate economic relief and
better standard of living.
“The government claims to prioritize social services but the budget
proposal released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM)
tells a different story,” lamented Martinez. She added that the
shift from obligation-based to cash-based resulted in a 6.4%
decrease in the actual amount of the budget allocation for the
education sector, which is in contrary to DBM’s claim that it
increased by 12%.
“We urge the Senators not only to heed our demands but to do what is
constitutionally mandated of them,” Martinez pressed, citing Section
5 Article 5 of the 1987 Constitution which states that:
The State shall assign the highest budgetary priority to education
and ensure that teaching will attract and retain its rightful share
of the best available talents through adequate remuneration and
other means of job satisfaction and fulfillment.
“We are exhausting all possible means to advance our calls, which is
why teachers will also go on a Sit-Down Strike on November 29 to
show the government that we are united and resolute in our demand
for decent salaries,” declared Martinez. The group first made the
announcement in a forum last week.
“The protests, which could take on various forms, will continue as
long as education workers suffer and the education system crumbles.
We will carry on the fight,” concluded Martinez.
ACT is calling for a P30,000 salary for Teacher I, P31,000 for
Instructor I, and a P16,000 minimum pay for all government workers.
They are also demanding for a P3,000 increase in the Personnel
Economic Relief Allowance (PERA) in light of the erosion of the
values of salaries due to the TRAIN-induced inflation.
left: Steven Zheng of Alibaba.com; Ray Alimurung, CEO of
Lazada Philippines; Undersecretary Nora Terrado; Farhad Sami,
Senior Director for International Policy and Public Affairs
of Alibaba Global Business Group; Gladys Chun, General
Counsel and Head of Government Affairs at Lazada Group; Tony
Yin, Global Business Development Manager at Alibaba.com.
visit Alibaba campus in China
November 19, 2018
MAKATI CITY –
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary for Trade and
Investments Promotions Group (TIPG) Nora Terrado headed the recently
concluded 60-man Philippine delegation in their technical visit to
the headquarters of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba in Hangzhou,
China on November 4, 2018.
The visit was conducted on
the sidelines of the first China International Import Expo, where
the Philippines participated. Known as the “Alibaba Campus,” the
headquarters accommodates around 9,000 employees.
Led by Farhad Sami, Senior
Director for International Policy and Public Affairs of the company,
Alibaba representatives toured the Philippine delegates to the
150,000-sqm open office space that has a campus-style layout.
As the world’s leading
e-commerce platform, Alibaba shared with Filipinos its best
practices on providing fundamental technology infrastructure and
marketing reach that help small and medium businesses grow.
For many, the rise of
Alibaba and its recent influence on the global market have ushered a
new retail era and changed the consumer behavior of mobile-connected
During the visit, Lazada
Philippines CEO Ray Alimurung presented how Filipino entrepreneurs
could benefit from doing business in the digital economy.
“The Southeast Asian
e-commerce market is ready and it’s growing fast,” he said. “Now is
the time [for Filipino business owners] to research, test, and learn
the e-commerce market,” he added.
Meanwhile, Terrado hoped
that the visit to the Alibaba Campus had been insightful for the
Filipino exporters. She also encouraged Filipinos to continue to use
online platforms such as Alibaba in order to enter the Chinese
market – especially now that China’s demand for Philippine
agriculture products like fresh fruits is growing rapidly.
“For years, Alibaba has
shown how internet can provide small companies with infrastructure
and marketing reach, which help merchants and brands grow and
compete more effectively in the global market,” she said. “Through
this tour, we seek to learn and adapt the company’s ways of doing
business within e-commerce and cross-border transactions.”
Inflation rate in
Eastern Visayas climbs to 6.9% in October 2018
November 16, 2018
TACLOBAN CITY – The
Inflation Rate (IR) of Eastern Visayas continued to increase at 6.9%
in October 2018. This IR is 0.4 percentage point higher compared
with the 6.5% IR a month ago, and 3.6 percentage points higher than
the recorded 3.3% IR in the same period last year. The regional
inflation rate was 0.2 percentage point higher than the 6.7%
national average in October 2018.
Leyte and Southern Leyte
posted the highest increase of 0.8 percentage point each. Leyte
registered 7.1% IR in October from 6.3% in September, while Southern
Leyte recorded 4.0% IR in October from 3.2% in September. Biliran
recorded a 0.3 percentage point increase from 5.1% in September to
5.4% during the reference month.
On the other hand, 0.2
percentage point decrease in IR were noted in Northern Samar and
Samar settling at 6.3% and 8.1%, respectively. Eastern Samar
registered a 0.1 percentage point decrease, from 8.9% in September
to 8.8% in October. It is still, however, the highest IR among the
provinces during the reference period. Southern Leyte, meanwhile,
posted the lowest at 4.0%.
Among the commodity
groups, housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels registered
the highest increase of 2.2 percentage points. It was posted at 8.3%
in October 2018 from 6.1% in September 2018. This can be attributed
to the huge increase in the index of electricity, gas and other
The transport index also
registered an increase of 1.4 percentage points in October 2018
(8.6%), from 7.2% in September 2018. Contributing to the uptrend
were the gains seen in the index of operation of personal transport
equipment and transport services.
The heavily weighted food
and non-alcoholic beverages eased to 8.9% in October 2018 from its
previous month’s rate of 9.2%, a decrease of 0.3 percentage point.
This can be traced to slower price increases of fruits, fish, oils
and fats, and vegetables.
Education further deflated
to 16.4% in October 2018, recording a 0.2 percentage point decrease
from the -16.2% a month ago, attributed to the decrease in the index
for tertiary education.
The Purchasing Power of
Peso (PPP) of the region remained at P0.80 in October 2018. This PPP
implies that goods and services worth 100 pesos in October 2018 only
costs 80 pesos in 2012.
All provinces sustained
their PPP from last month, except Leyte and Southern Leyte, which
registered a 0.01 centavo decrease each in PPP compared with their
figures in September 2018. Leyte and Biliran recorded the strongest
PPP at P0.82. Southern Leyte ranked second at P0.80, followed by
Eastern Samar at P0.78. Northern Samar and Samar posted the weakest
PPP at P0.75.
maintenance of road asphalt overlay along Daang Maharlika
(SM) (Sn Isidro - Sn Juanico Br.) - K0719 + 219 - K0720 +
964; K0720 + 990 - K0721 + 000, Samar.
P27-M asphalt overlay in Calbayog
MAE ANGELICA R. COMOTA
November 16, 2018
CALBAYOG CITY – The
Department of Public Works and Highways Samar First District
Engineering Office (SFDEO) completes the preventive maintenance on a
major road section along Daang Maharlika.
The project covers 3.542
kilometers of asphalt overlay starting from Brgy. Malopalo to Brgy.
Tinambacan in Calbayog City. It has an allocation of P27 million
sourced out from the 2018 Regular Infrastructure Fund and is under
contract with B. Vicencio Construction.
personnel installed thermoplastic pavement markings along the
newly-preserved road to provide accurate road markings that will
reduce vehicular accidents.
This particular road
section connects Manguino-o Port to the city proper and experiences
a high volume of traffic. Most of the vehicles plying along the
highway are trailers and trucks carrying cargo from Cebu.
Both public and private
vehicles also use this road to transport people from north to south
of the country.
With the completion of
this project, the aforementioned road users are provided with a
faster, safer and more convenient travel experience that will
contribute to the continued economic boom of the city.
DPWH-Biliran DEO completes access road connecting Brgy.
Villa Consuelo and Brgy. Libtong, Naval, Biliran
November 16, 2018
NAVAL, Biliran –
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Biliran District
Engineering Office completes first phase of the construction/
improvement of access road from National Road Junction (NRJ) of
Villa Consuelo connecting Brgy. Libtong Road in Naval, Biliran.
The project involves the
construction of two lanes road with a length of 1.20-kilometer and a
width of 6.70-meter with construction of drainage costing P30M.
Brgy. Villa Consuelo and
Brgy. Libtong is known for its coco sugar products and potential for
ginger powder processing, turmeric, banana chips, cacao and coffee
among others, hence prioritized under the 2018 implementation.
According to District
Engineer David P. Adongay Jr., the said project involves
reconstruction of 7.0-kilometer road and 30-linear meter bridge to
be implemented on a multi-year basis up to year 2020.
The completion of the
project will provide a better and faster transport of the
agribusiness: food and resource-based processing in Brgy. Villa
Consuelo and Brgy. Libtong Naval, Biliran. This will benefit more or
less 1,000 road users.
Through better road
linking trades and industries, more locals will be encouraged to do
business that will eventually help improve the economic situation in
appointees, associates also running in party-list race
November 12, 2018
QUEZON CITY –
Kontra Daya observed that there are party-list groups whose nominees
are recent incumbent government officials, including some who are
still believed to be supportive of the President despite their
controversial removal from public office.
The first nominee of
Pambansang Nagkakaisa sa Paggawa at Agrikultura is Socrates Piñol,
provincial board member of North Cotabato and brother of Department
of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Emmanuel Piñol.
The first and third
nominees of Gawing Una Tagumpay ng Ordinaryong Mamamayan are worth
noting, as the first nominee, Rex Anthony Villegas, is a former
board member of Nayong Filipino who was fired due to a complaint by
another board member who happens to be a niece of President Duterte.
The third nominee, Maria Katrina Nicole Contacto, is a legal counsel
of Duterte in the latter's disqualification case in the 2016
elections. She is also chair of the Youth Affairs Committee of
The Hugpong Federal
Movement of the Philippines has as first nominee Peter Laviña,
former administrator of the National Irrigation Administration (NIA)
who resigned amid corruption allegations, according to news reports.
Party-list’s first nominee is Jonathan Dela Cruz, former board
member of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) who was
fired due to alleged contract anomalies.
The first nominee of Bahay
para sa Pamilyang Pilipino, Inc., Naella Rose Bainto-Aguinaldo, was
appointed member of the Career Executive Service Board by Duterte in
2017. She also happens to be the wife of Commission on Audit (COA)
Chairperson Michael Aguinaldo.
For the Global Workers and
Family Federation, the first nominee is Ermie Lagman Garon, a
commissioner of the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW)
representing the business and industry sector and is a member of the
People’s National Movement for Federalism.
The first nominee of
Rebolusyonaryong Alyansang Makabansa, Inc. (RAM) is Aloysia Tiongson
Lim, wife of Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chair Danilo
Based on its public
pronouncements, the Duterte Youth Party-list is apparently
supportive of the President and runs on a platform of countering
another youth party-list group that is known to be critical of the
administration. It is the only party-list group that has used
“Duterte” in its name. The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) must
examine if such group is legitimately seeking to represent the youth
or is merely using the name of the President for political gain. The
group is also associated with Duterte appointee Ronald Cardema of
the National Youth Commission which raises questions on the role of
the government agency in the affairs of the party-list group.
Calls to COMELEC
COMELEC Spokesperson James
Jimenez said in a media interview that the poll body scrapped the
review of party-list groups due to the ruling of the Supreme Court
in 2013 – i.e., that nominees do not have to be part of the
marginalized and underrepresented sectors they claim to represent.
However, Kontra Daya
asserts that COMELEC can still look into several issues related to
the party-list groups. For example, the poll body can conduct a
public hearing on party-list groups and the track records of their
nominees in order to clarify their decision to run in the 2019
Some nominees appear to
have become overnight members and nominees of their party-list
groups, particularly during the period of the filing of candidacies,
thus raising questions regarding their track record and advocacy.
This may be the case for party-list groups whose nominees only
recently resigned from government just in time for the filing of
their certificates of nomination and acceptance.