Your latest news happening from here at home and abroad

news 80


more news...

Army officer says San Jorge mayor is misinformed

802nd IB commander determined to destroy the remnants of NPA in Leyte island

Town dad seeks relief of top army officers in their locality

Taiwanese donor sends another P1.8M for Guinsaugon scholars

Calbayog makes it as one of 15 Dream Cities of RP

RDC 8 requests PGMA to appoint permanent Co-chair, submits nominees

St. Mary’s Catbalogan champions General Info Quiz for Catbalogan Fiesta

Tacloban New Transport Terminal now operational

Ancient town in Samar gears up for its 415th Grand Fiesta

2 towns in Eastern Samar complete Water Development Project


Samar’s No. 1 Most Wanted fell

September 12, 2006

Samar Police Director Isdalih Idja Abah (seated) presented to the media Ereneo Gacita y Pakit (2nd from left), Samar’s No. 1 most wanted person, who was arrested in Calbiga, Samar on September 8.

CATBALOGAN, Samar  – Police authorities here scored in its campaign against wanted person’s with the arrest of Samar’s No. 1 most wanted criminal recently.

Elements of the PNP’s San Sebastian Municipal Police Station led by P/SInsp. Nestor Juan finally collared murder suspect Ereneo P. Gacita, 42 years old and a resident of Brgy. Canticum, Calbiga town, some 50 kilometers south from Samar’s capital, last September 8.

                Insp. Juan, in a press conference Monday, informed they received intelligence reports that Gacita was spotted in Brgy. Canticum. After receiving the information he then coordinated with the Calbiga Police Station and the PNP Provincial Mobile Group stationed in the said barangay to arrest the suspect who showed no sign of resistance.

Gacita has a standing warrant of arrest issued by Judge Rogelio Jucobo of the Regional Trial Court Branch 27 in Catbalogan for the alleged murder of Sergio Cabuenza, a barangay councilor of Brgy. Hita-asan, San Sebastian last March 10, 1993 during a drinking session.

In a related development, San Sebastian Police likewise arrested recently another suspect identified as Dondo Abaigar, 55, and a resident of Brgy Balogo, Hinabangan, Samar who is facing homicide charges.

Abaigar, who is confirmed by the military intelligence reports as former member of the New People’s Army (NPA), South Samar Front under the Jovito Ragay Command, was charged for the killing of Narciso Bercito of Brgy. Balogo, Hinabangan town last July 13, this year. The suspect, however, is reportedly suffering from mental impairment.

Insp. Juan suspected that the officials of the guerrilla command let go of Abaigar since he is already of no use to the Revolutionary Movement due to his mental condition.

Samar PNP Director P/Supt. Asdali Idja Abah, meanwhile, said he will immediately submit a report to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and to the PNP higher headquarters so that those police officers who took part of the apprehension will be given the credit.

He said these recent apprehensions have a great impact to the government’s campaign against criminality.





NDCC commends So. Leyte effective rehabilitation plan

By REBECCA G. CADAVOS (PIA Southern Leyte)
September 12, 2006

MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte  – The National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) supported the province’s rehabilitation plan for an effective local governance, NDCC Executive Officer Glenn J. Rabonza disclosed during his visit here last Friday, September 8 at the provincial capitol.

Rabonza revealed that NDCC will refer to the master plan developed by the Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council (PDCC) and will probably replicate the same in the provinces of Guimaras and Albay, where another calamity hit their areas.

Rabonza further commended the PDCC through its Chair Gov. Rosette Lerias because of the holistic plan. It already integrates all efforts from different stakeholders including non-government organizations (NGOs) not only locally but also internationally.

“If something is lacking, NDCC will support, funds will be taken from united donations” Rabonza said. The local government will do the guidance, Rabonza quoted NDCC Chair Avelino Cruz as one of their guidelines in preparing a master plan.

They will assist the local community based on the program developed at the local level. It specifically helps build lives and their community as well, in addition to the sustainability of the survivors. Their program prioritizes livelihood centers, school buildings, day care centers and scholarship for the survivors. They are something meaningful to the victims, Rabonza added.

Meanwhile, NDCC bared their budget allocation for Southern Leyte, P100-M for Subangdaku Flood Control Project in Sogod, P37-M for mitigating projects, and the released P9.2-M for the site development for the 1st relocation site in Brgy. Magbagakay, St. Bernard. NDCC had a total of P106-B donated funds for disaster stricken areas, Rabonza revealed.

Office of Civil Defense (OCD) Administrator Rabonza during the Oplan: Kinabukasan meeting was accompanied with PHIVOLCS led by Renato Solidum, PAG-ASA Head Nilo Presco, Department of National Defense (DND) Undersecretary Ernesto G. Carolina and some of their staff.





VP Noli closes illegal dumpsite

September 9, 2006

VP De Castro serving the closure order to the owners of illegal dumpsite in Cabuyao resettlement site.

MANILA, Philippines  – Owners of an illegal dumpsite in Cabuyao, Laguna was served Wednesday a closure order by Vice President and concurrent Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) Chairman Noli 'Kabayan' De Castro as this was deemed to protect the health of some 8,000 families.

Despite resistance from around 200 protesters, mostly workers of the Severino Hain Enterprises Inc., which owns and operates the dumpsite, De Castro personally handed over the Cease and Desist order issued by Department of Natural Resources and Environment (DENR) to the owners of the illegal facility.

With the order, De Castro said operations of the dumpsite would be terminated. "This means that starting immediately after I handed the closure order, no dump trucks would be allowed to enter this facility," De Castro told the owners.

The owners attempted to justify confined operation of the dumpsite but De Castro stood firm on the DENR cease and desist order dated September 6, 2006.

"It is very clear from the order that the illegal dumpsite has made a lot of violations and is severely affecting the health and life of the relocatees. This facility has to be closed now," De Castro said.

Thus, De Castro instructed PNP Laguna Provincial Director Sr. Supt. Col. Luisito P. De Leon to make sure that the dumpsite remains closed at all times.

"If possible, I want you to station your men here just to make sure that the order is being enforced at all times. I will have this facility monitored," he added.

The facility is allegedly being used as dumpsite for mixed wastes and is causing health hazards to residents of the adjacent Southville, the government's resettlement area for railway families from Manila, Makati, and Cabuyao, Laguna.

Despite complaints from residents and repeated closure orders from DENR and the local government, the facility reportedly continued to produce leachate wastes in the dumpsite, detrimental not only to the Southville relocatees but also the entire Laguna Bay.

"This is why we're determined to close it now. More would be in danger if the bay gets affected," he explained.

De Castro also questioned why the dumpsite has been accommodating wastes from Biñan and Los Baños when it is located in Cabuyao. He said the dumpsite should not have been allowed by the local government to operate in Cabuyao in the first place.

After the closure, De Castro said a rehabilitation plan should be implemented jointly by the NHA, DENR and the local government on the facility. These include: slope finalization, improved perimeter fencing and prescribed covering for completed cells, daily application of soil covering at the active area, installation of additional signage, improved operation of Material Recovery Facility (MRF), decrease the area of active cell, improved drainage system, improved security measures and installation of gas vents.





Biliran province mourns death of Ex-Gov Danny Parilla

By JUN OLIVA / PIA Biliran
September 9, 2006

NAVAL, Biliran  – Governor Rogelio Espina of this province enjoins all Biliranons Friday in mourning the untimely death of former Governor Danilo Parilla, who was shot dead Thursday in Cebu City allegedly by Eugenio Corpin.

Parilla has served Biliran province as governor from 1998-2001 and as vice governor from 1992-1998. After his defeat in the 2001 elections, he has led a quite private life with his family and business.

"He is a Biliranon who has served his people capably, and his death is a loss not only to his bereaved family but to the entire province as well," Governor Espina said.

However, Governor Espina is disheartened by a news article posted September 7, 2006 in GMANEWS.TV linking the alleged assailant Eugenio Corpirn to him as "former bodyguard of the powerful Espina clan."

Said article also reported PNP Region 7 Chief Superintendent Silverio Alarcio to have said that Corpin was a bodyguard of the Espinas who was placed on probation after being accused of participation in a robbery.

The article added that "Corpin was linked to a robbery in 2005 where he and six other supposed bodyguards of the ruling Espina political family allegedly robbed a Vietnamese couple.

"They [GMANEWS.TV] must have used a PDI article published in March 18 of last year which carried the title ‘Pol bodyguards rob couple in Biliran’, which also alleged that the robbers "were mostly identified as bodyguards of the ruling Espina political family," Governor Espina commented.

"I have since denied the allegations which were erroneous and even the Sangguniang Panlalawigan has issued a resolution strongly condemning the erroneous report and also to demand rectification from both writer Dr. Rolando Borrinaga, PDI Visayas Bureau and publisher of the paper," he stressed.

To set the facts straight involving the PDI article, the Governor issued a press release on the same day clarifying that only Eugenio Corpin was found to be connected with the provincial government, not the seven robbers as reported by PDI; and also as a security agent assigned to the capitol grounds as per records by the Administrative Department, not as jail guard assigned as bodyguard to the governor, as alleged in the same PDI report.

At the time of the robbery, Corpin’s appointment papers were still being finalized, and he was dropped from the payroll after the incident and was never connected with the provincial government or any of its officials since then.

Governor Espina is categorically refuting the GMANEWS.TV article as malicious for borrowing information from a news item which has already been found to be erroneous and not based on facts.

He said that he is deeply saddened for the death of a man who has the strength of character and willpower to advance the cause of his fellow Biliranons, but he could not appreciate the malicious reporting of GMANEW.TV which can only tarnish the quite and pious observance of the former governor’s passing.





Crime rate in Region 8 decreased by 8 percent

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
September 9, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte  – The crime rate in Region 8 decreased by about 8% in the past eight months, from January to August 2006 as compared to the same period of last year.

This was revealed by Col. Cleve Taboso, chief of the operations and planning division of the PNP Regional Command 8, during the Harampang Ha PIA media interaction held Thursday morning.

Col. Taboso said that the crime occurrence in Region 8 from January 2006 to August 31, 2006 totaled to 159 lower than the 2,098 crimes committed from January to August 2005. He said that what is worth noting, is the increase in crime solution efficiency.

He revealed that the province with lowest crime rate is Southern Leyte while the province with the highest crime rate is Biliran. Among the Region’s cities, the city of Maasin has the lowest crime rate while Tacloban City has the highest crime rate considering the population of the city and the fact that it is the center of trade and activities in the Region. It is in Tacloban where people from different parts of the Region converge, he said, and so it will follow that the crime rate will be also be higher.

Further, Col Taboso reported to the media that with regards to the illegal drugs problem in the Region, the Task Force has conducted 57 operations and 71 prosecutions. He bared that the biggest drug operations they have conducted so far is the one in Baybay, Leyte where 3 kilograms of marijuana was found in the possession of a woman pusher.

He said that the operatives has no knowledge of big time drug dealers in the Region. What they noted is the shift of preference of the users from shabu to marijuana. Accordingly, there is also a shift as to the source of the illegal drug. Whereas before the source is from Manila, the operatives now noted that the source is usually in Central Visayas.

He said that the reason for the change of preference of the users is the very prohibitive price of shabu which he said is about P5,000.00 per gram.

He advised the public to be more vigilant and to coordinate with the Philippine National Police for any unusual happenings in their respective places. He said that the Philippine National Police is not an enemy of the people but the defender of the people from anyone who wants to sow havoc and disorder in the society.





Ombudsman files graft charges against Samar Governor, 6 others for anomalous purchase of medicines

Press Release
By Office of the Ombudsman
September 7, 2006

Governor Mila Tan

Ombudsman Ma. Merceditas N. Gutierrez yesterday ordered the filing of graft charges against the Governor of Western Samar and six others for the alleged anomalous  purchases of medicines and other goods worth P16.1M without public bidding for the period Dec. , 2001 – Dec. 2002.

In a 36-page Resolution, Ombudsman Gutierrez found probable cause and hence ordered the filing of eight informations for Violation of RA 3019 ( Anti-graft and Corrupt Practices Act) against Gov. Milagrosa Tee Tan; Treasurer Damiano Zerda Conde Jr.; Budget Officer Maximo Darunday Sison; Administrative Officer Rolando Bolastig Montejo; Gen. Services Officer (GSO) Aurelio Bardaje Jr.; GSO Record Officer and Inspector Numeriano Legaspi; Accountant Romeo Chan Reales; and several John and Jane Does.

The said officials were charged by the Isog Han Samar Movement of Catbalogan, Samar represented by Fr. Noel Labendia of the Diocese of Calbayog, Catbalogan, Samar, based on investigation conducted by the Commission on Audit (COA) on selected transactions of the Province of Western Samar from Jan. 1, 2001 – April, 2003.

Among the transactions audited were for the purchase of medicines worth  P3.9M;assorted goods and rice – P10.6M; and electric fans – P1.6M for a total of P16.1M.

Investigations also reveal that no competitive public bidding took place for the purchase of electric fans as the delivery of the same were made even before the conduct of public bidding.

Based on records, the respondents also used the occurrence of typhoon “KIdang” on Dec. 4-5, 2001 to justify their action to dispense with the public bidding and instead resort to an emergency purchase of various medicines and goods.

However, it was found out that while the emergency purchases for various medicines and goods were intended for victims of typhoon “KIdang”, “the Sangguniang Panlalawigan Resolution No. 88-2001 attached to the Disbursement Vouchers refers to typhoon “Nanang” which hit the province of Samar on Nov. 6, 2001.”

At the same time, one emergency purchase of assorted medicines was anchored on a request made by the Local Health Board of Gandara dated Oct. 22, 2001, two months prior to the occurrence of typhoon “Kidang”.

The other purchase was based on a letter-request of the Tarangnan Municipal Mayor dated Dec. 3, 2001, a day before the locality was hit by the typhoon.

On the other hand, it describes as “absurd” the emergency purchase of rice and goods from Wilmart’s Mini Mart seven days after the typhoon. Also, the canvass, issuance of Purchase Order, the delivery of the merchandise and the inspection took place in just one day. The Office of the Ombudsman said the transaction is highly suspect as Wilmart’s Mini Mart only has a capitalization of P100,000 and is not even registered as a rice supplier. It is also 107 kms. away from Samar which makes it improbable to deliver several hundreds of sacks of rice in just one day.

As a result, Ombudsman Gutierrez ordered the filing of eight Informations for Violation of Sec. 3(e) of RA 3019 before the Sandiganbayan against the said respondents. All respondents were likewise found guilty of Grave Misconduct, Dishonesty and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service and were meted the penalty of dismissal from the service.

However, since Tan was re-elected during the May 2004 elections, the said penalty cannot be imposed on her.

Assistant Ombudsman Mark E. Jalandoni then directed Gov. Tan and the Dept. of Finance to immediately implement and report the implementation of the Decision to the Office of the Ombudsman within five days from receipt of the same.



◄◄home I next►►