Archive for May, 2015

MGB orders confiscation of black sand

DAGUPAN CITY – The Mines and Geosciences Bureau in Region I has ordered the confiscation of the black sand illegally mined in coastal villages of Lingayen, the agency head said.
MGB Region I Carlos Tayag said the agency issued the order of confiscation to the Xypher Builders, Inc. early in May after the company failed to show documents that its activities were legal.
The company appealed for the reversion of the decision, but Tayag said the agency sustained the order .
“ We sustained the decision because the company cannot show documents like permits from the government, and that it was not granted environmental compliance certificate ECC,” he said.
Still, the company could file one last appeal before the MGB would issue the final decision, he said.
Tayag said the agency would coordinate with the Lingayen police for temporary custody of the black sand.
The company was contracted by the provincial government of Pangasinan to undertake required earth activities and to remove unsuitable materials such as magnetite sand to make it suitable for growth of specific grasses for a golf course project.
Tayag said the 9,588 cubic meters of black sand (around 30,000 metric tons) would be bidded out by the MGB, but still has to seek clearance from the agency’s central office. The amount from the sale would accrue to the government coffer, he said.
In an earlier interview, Environment Management Bureau Ilocos Region Director Maria Victoria Abrera said the ECC issued to the provincial government for an 18-hole golf course in Lingayen, was not a permit for the establishment of the project.

She said ECCs were not permits for projects and the proponents must still secure the necessary permits for each of the project components.

Tayag said ECCs are not permit but they set the conditions that the project proponents must abide with, including acquisition of permits.

May 31, 2015 at 9:52 pm Leave a comment

Masinloc mayor hits China’s Navy presence in town

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

LINGAYEN – The presence of Mainland Chinese in the West Philippine Sea is not only the problem of the fisherfolk in Masinloc, Zambales but of the people of the Philippines, Masinloc Mayor Desiree Edora said.
Edora, who was here for the Fish Producers Forum, said the fishermen chased by the motor boats of the Chinese Navy are not only from her town but fishermen from Sual, Bolinao, and other towns of Pangasinan.
She said the aqua rich Bajo de Masinloc in Scarborough Shoal where the Chinese Navy has strong presence is 15 to 18 hours ride by a small boat during fair weather from her town.

Masinloc, Zambales Mayor Desiree Edora.

Masinloc, Zambales Mayor Desiree Edora.

The water around the Bajo de Masinloc (Under Masinloc in English), she stressed, has been the bread and butter of more than 2000 fisher folks.
Masinloc has 47,000 population.
Edora said the stand-off with the Chinese, who travelled 467 miles from Mainland China, started in 2012.
Fishermen have been reporting to Edora sightings not only of the Chinese but Vietnamese trawl fishers who exploit the water of Scarborough Shoal, a part of this town since the time of the Philippines Spanish colonizer in the 18th Century.
The Shoal is only 123 miles of West Subic Bay – a former U.S Naval Base.
“Bajo de Masinloc, that name, has been written on the old maps,” she said.
According to Wikipidia several official Philippine maps published by Spain and United States in 18th and 20th centuries show Scarborough Shoal as Philippine territory. The 18th-century map “Carta hydrographica y chorographica de las Islas Filipinas” (1734) shows the Shoal then was named as Panacot Shoal. The map also shows the shape of the shoal as consistent with the current maps available as today. In 1792, another map drawn by the Malaspina expedition and published in 1808 in Madrid, Spain also showed Bajo de Masinloc as part of Philippine territory. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:51 pm Leave a comment

MAGANES: Who’s now running the affairs of the provincial government?

vir maganes

Had Governor Amado T. Espino Jr. already turned over his responsibilities to his “anointed son” and namesake Espino III the rein of provincial government?

Is an ex-officio member of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan the second highest official of the province?

These I asked because almost all speaking engagements of Governor Espino has his son as his proxy, to the envy maybe of the supposed next in ranks like the vice governor and the senior member of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.

Governor Espino has shifted his gear from his previous mantra that politics should take a backseat for a while and concentrate on the affairs of the province.

He has by all means manifested that indeed his son, being his anointed candidate for 2016 elections, will already practice as a governor. This is not surprising though. The old Espino has to parry off the meteoric rise of the popularity of gubernatorial aspirant Mark O. Cojuangco, who has been busy circulating within Pangasinan, visiting villages together with his vice gubernatorial running mate Calasiao Mayor Mark Roy Macanlalay. The duo has been received warmly by the villagers in their sorties bringing along with them the “Medikalinga sa Pangasinan Program” and espousing their development advocacies for the full take off of Pangasinan’s progress. The Espino camp, although silently fearful, has found a formidable political foe on Cojuangco who is perceived to be the gubernatorial aspirant to beat.

In its news story, Politikskoop: “Son and father versus husband and wife in Pangasinan 2016,” a source of “Politiko” said as posted at the website that if Cojuangco has P1.5 billion, the Espinos have to spend P2 billion to steer up their (Espino) campaign in 2016 elections.

What a statement! If indeed that statement is true, where will the Espinos get their money? Is it from their businesses? Isn’t it appalling to know that they have billions of pesos to drumbeat Espino III gubernatorial aspiration? I am not categorically saying here that the Espinos have no billions of pesos. They might have other sources of income and only the Statement of Assets and Liabilities (SALN) that will prove, if there are other speculations.

Pangasinenses are aware that Governor Espino has only more or less P900,000 annual salary and with eight years as governor, he has only a total of P7.2 million salary? Cojuangco who we all know is a billionaire, a fortune accumulated from their family businesses and not from the public funds or illegal means not to mention that there’s the Nationalist Peoples Coalition (NPC) to back him up.

Is it true that the old Espino has transferred his residency to Bautista and registered as a voter there? If that is true, then he has already abandoned Bugallon, a town that adopted him for years to become a congressman of the second district. And if the same news was true that he will be pitting against incumbent 5th District Rep. Kimi S. Cojuangco, then the political situation in the province particularly 5th District will be more exciting.

We have to recall that in 2013 elections, Mark and his wife Kimi were on the front defending the old Espino on the issue of jueteng and illegal black sand mining. Amid the pressures of President PNoy being the second cousin of Mark, they stood firm on their resolve to support Espino through thick and thin. And now, this is what they got. The person they catapulted to power is the same person who now professed himself as their number one nemesis in politics. But on the Cojuangco side, they never resented and repented on what they did as they were allies during that elections in 2007 up to 2013.

As the days before the filing of certificates of candidacies draw near, we will be expecting more political alignments and re-alignments. Who among the local officials will finally be at the side of the Cojuangcos and Espinos? Who among the media men who are now divided will eventually transfer their loyalties to either of the two camps? Who will get the grassroots support? (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:46 pm Leave a comment

Cojuangco, Macanlalay inspire Villasis cagers

By Virgilio Sar. Maganes

VILLASIS- “Sports is very important in our everyday life. It’s not only in winning that you become victorious. Winning is also participating, since you have to show your best. You have participated in a competition to show your skills and prowess.”

This was said by former 5th District Rep. Mark O. Cojuangco, a gubernatorial aspirant in the 2016 elections, to the players, coaches and managers of the 21 villages here during the Victory Ball and Awarding Ceremonies held at the town’s Covered Auditorium last May 19.

Cojuangco lauded the municipal officials headed by Mayor Libradita Go-Abrenica for organizing the inter-barangay basketball tournament, which he said a proper outlet for the youth of not only shunning themselves from vices like drugs but also for their physical fitness improvement.

“Like you, I will also enter into competition in 2016 elections. Last year, I presented myself as an alternative candidate for governor in the province of Pangasinan. I declared such intention because the incumbent governor is already on his last term and whether we like it or not, he is barred by law to seek another re-election,” Cojuangco said explaining on the side that he is more than qualified to take over the governorship in 2016.

He also said he has the qualities and experiences to steer the affairs of the provincial government of Pangasinan in order to continue the progress of the province, citing his previous accomplishments when he was the elected representative of the 5th District for three terms from the year 2000 to 2010.

“I believe that the provincial government should work hand in hand with the local government officials especially the barangay officials in order to bring services to the people,” Cojuangco said.

He scored Governor Espino by asking what projects has the provincial government done in the 21 villages here adding that during his term as representative of the 5th district he saw to it that the 212 villages have projects out his priority development assistance fund (PDAF).

On the other hand, Calasiao Mayor Mark Roy Q. Macanlalay congratulated the municipal officials for the staging of the tournament and lauded the players from the villages including their coaches and managers for showing their sportsmanship during the tournament. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:45 pm Leave a comment

School paper advisers undergo journalism workshop

By Virgilio Sar. Maganes

URDANETA CITY- Thirty three elementary and secondary teachers from private and public schools who are advisers of school newspapers in this city have undergone a three-day workshop on Campus Journalism conducted by Mavic Lee’s Tutorial Center last May 25 to 27 at the Library Building of Urdaneta City National High School (UCNHS).

The workshop aimed to immerse the teachers on the aspects of news writing and broadcasting, both for radio and television, in preparation of the annual competition of campus journalists during the Press Schools Conferences from the Division Level up to the national level, an activity sponsored by the Department of Education (DepEd).

Maria Victoria Mones-Lee, an experienced television production staff of I-Witness, The Price Is Right, At Iba Pa, etc. in various TV stations who now owned the tutorial center, led the workshop and talked on the importance of students’ role in the changing world through mass media, television news production and journalists’ code of ethics.
This writer served as the main facilitator on topics such as news writing, editorial writing, copy reading, photo journalism, headlining and broadcasting focusing on preparing news radio scripts and radio newscasts.

The workshop used the experiential approach to learning where the participants were given news prompters to write followed by short lectures on the topics being discussed.

On photojournalism, the participants were given assignments simulating a news production group where they took shots of the given subjects.

The participants underwent workshops on news writing for print, radio and television, which afterwards were critiqued pointing out weaknesses of the outputs.

Virgilio Cuison, school paper adviser of Anonas National High School and president of the Association of Urdaneta City School Organ Advisers (AUCSOA) said the approach provided by the workshop’s facilitators was new and gave him more knowledge and skills in campus journalism.

“I have attended seminars on campus journalism before where resource persons talk too much during their lectures without letting us experience the process involved on the aspects of journalism. Your approach has given us more insights particularly on the new trends on journalism,” Cuison said. “I am now more inspired to coach my students.” (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:44 pm Leave a comment

CORTEZ: Panalo sa rebid ang gobyerno


GOOD DECISION. May maganda palang naging resulta iyong desisyon ni PNoy para sa re-bid ng Cavite-Laguna Expressway (Calax).Opo, kumita ang gobyerno ng PhP15.6 billion dahil sa desisyon ni PNoy.

Una naipanalo ng Ayala-Aboitiz ang bid sa CALAX nitong June sa pamamagitan ng technicality.

Ang bidding para sa government projects ay dapat kung sino ang mas mataas ang bid, iyon ang mananalo.

Noong June bidding, ang San Miguel Corporation ay nagbid ng mas mataas na PhP20.11 billion kumpara sa Ayala Aboitiz bid na PhP 11.66 billion lang at sa mas lalong mababang bid ng Metro Pacific na PhP11.3 billion.

Pero inaward ng DPWH ang contract sa mas mababang bidder na Ayala-Aboitiz dahil sa technicality.

Nadisqualify and San Miguel Corporation dahil expired na ang bond nito!

Hindi nagustuhan ni PNoy ang nangyari. Rebid ang order ni PNoy.

Kaliwa’t-kanan ang naging bira laban kay PNoy dahil ginusto ni Presidente na magkaroon ng rebid.

Nito lang May 26 bidding ay nagbid ang Sand Miguel Corporation ng PhP22.2 billion pero natalo ito sa bid ng Metro Pacific na PhP27.3 billion.

O hindi po ba mas mataas ang resulta ng rebid?

Ang winning bid ng Metro Pacific na PhP27.3 billion ay hindi hamak na mas mataas sa unang award ng DPWH sa Ayala-Aboitiz na P11.66 billion lang.

Ang laki ng difference, hindi po ba? Napakalaking PhP15.6 billion ang naidagdag sa halaga ng CALAX.

Parang kumita ang gobyerno ng PhP15.6 billion dahilsa desisyon ng Presidente.

Walang regrets ang kampo ni Ramon Ang , kahit na natalo ang San Miguel Corporation. Walang naganap na dayaan.

“There is no regret about losing a bid. I rarely regret making a losing bid,” said Ang. ”I am very satisfied with the result because there was no cheating…it is good for everybody and for the country. Real competition gives the best value to the government.”

CANNOT BE SUED. Hindi puedeng kasuhan ang sitting president. Kaya naman ang nauso ay kinakasuhan ang Presidente kapag wala na siya sa Malakanyang. Share ko po sa inyo kung bakit hindi daw dapat kasuhan ang sitting president.

There is no other position quite like the presidency. The President runs the affairs of the government and if cases are filed against him, the exercise of his sovereign functions will be impeded, detrimental to the State. In Nixon vs. Fitzgerald (457 US 731), the US Supreme Court explains the rationale for presidential immunity:

“Because of the singular importance of the President’s duties, diversion of his energies by concern with private lawsuits would raise unique risks to the effective functioning of government. As is the case with prosecutors and judges – for whom absolute immunity now is established – a President must concern himself with matters likely to ‘arouse the most intense feelings.’…Yet, as our decisions have recognized, it is in precisely such cases that there exists the greatest public interest in providing an official ‘the maximum ability to deal fearlessly and impartially with” the duties of his office… This concern is compelling where the officeholder must make the most sensitive and far-reaching decisions entrusted to any official under our constitutional system. Nor can the sheer prominence of the President’s office be ignored. In view of the visibility of his office and the effect of his actions on countless people, the President would be an easily identifiable target for suits for civil damages. Cognizance of this personal vulnerability frequently could distract a President from his public duties, to the detriment of not only the President and his office but also the Nation that the Presidency was designed to serve.”

CAN BE SUED. Kung hindi dapat kasuhan ang sitting President, puede bang kasuhan ang sitting Vice President.

Eto po ang sabi ni Atty. Mel Sta. Maria. How about the Vice President? There is nothing in the Constitution explicitly delineating his specific functions. He is not the public officer who “must make the most sensitive and far-reaching decisions entrusted to any official under our constitutional system.”

However, Section 3 of Article 7 provides that “the vice president may be appointed as a member of the cabinet.” The word “may” emphasizes that his appointment is not mandatory. He can even refuse any appointment. And even if the Vice President accepts, his retention is at the pleasure of the president. Should the Vice President be criminally charged, the president can relieve him from his cabinet duties. In such case, the Vice President, though still in office as such, has essentially nothing else to do.

Unlike the President, the Vice President will have time defending the cases filed against him without prejudice to the affairs of the country. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:43 pm Leave a comment

Stroke broadcaster son thanks Cojuangco

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

DAGUPAN CITY– A son of a veteran radio man here lauded former Pangasinan Congressman Mark O. Cojuangco for paying his father’s hospitalization bill after he suffered a stroke

Broadcaster Joey Ballesteros

Broadcaster Joey Ballesteros

Jerome Ballesteros, 28, said that former 5th District Representative Cojuangco
shelled out P200,000 after his father Joey Ballesteros, 63, announcer of DWPR-Power Radio, underwent a surgery to remove a blood clot in his head after the stroke.
Jerome denied also reports of Rannie Manaois, a bloc timer of Bombo Radyo-Dagupan that it was only Governor Amado T. Espino who chipped in P20,000 while the management of DWPR, Cojuangco’s owned station, gave only P2000. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:41 pm Leave a comment

ORTIGOZA: VP Binay on benefits of aphrodisiac


This refers to Mon Tulfo’s column on the popularity of Senator Chiz Escudero for the vice presidency and Davao City Mayor Rod Duterte as threat to the presidential bid of Senator Grace Poe. Talking about popularity, if Escudero runs as the vice presidential tandem of presidential hopeful Senator Grace Poe, DILG Sec. Mar Roxas is more popular than him based on the April 2015 Social Weather Station (SWS) polls.
Roxas was No. 2 with 12% while Escudero was far at No. 4 with 6%. I could not understand the logic of Mr. Tulfo, a Davaoeno, that because Duterte (No. 3 or 15% SWS Presidential) has not declared his intention to run for president he would be a threat to Grace Poe (No.2 with 31% SWS Presidential). But Poe and even Roxas, just like Duterte, did not yet declare publicly their moist eyes for the presidency. So in case the duo declare their ambition, their polls stocks would spike too just like what Tulfo argued on Duterte?
I observed this kind of reasoning when I asked two weeks ago Roxas Political Campaign Lieutenant Congressman Mel Sarmiento. “Dapat mag VP na lang si Roxas dahil hanggang ngayon kulelat pa rin siya sa survey,” I said.
Sarmiento retorted : Kasi hindi pa siya nag-declare ng intention niya for presidency, matagal pa ang election.
Sannamagan, even Roxas and Duterte did not declare their intention for the country’s top post their everyday three times a day 30 seconder at ABS-CBN and GMA-7 TVs betray their being mum on their presidential ambition.
“Bakit pa sila nagbabayad ng milyon-milyong TV ads kada araw?

I was at the office of a close associate and political operator of Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay when he told me that Binay was warmly received by the wide eyed people of the two provinces Ilocos when he barnstormed there. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:33 pm Leave a comment

RPOC tackles disaster management plans of agencies

By Venus May Sarmiento
PIA Pangasinan

DAGUPAN CITY – The Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) of Region I convened here on May 26 and tackled the management plans of its member-agencies in the event of disasters like typhoon, flood and earthquake.
RPOC Chair and Dagupan City Mayor Belen Fernandez said the council had to come up with a realistic approach on disaster preparedness to be able to inform local officials on the proper things to do.
“We have our measures in-placed but we want to know what kind of preparedness is needed. We might be prepared for a one meter high tsunami but, God forbid, the impending disaster might reach four meters high. This we have to know and be prepared for,” Fernandez said during the RPOC meeting held at the Stadia.
As the region and the province of Pangasinan is home to a hydro-power plant, the council asked representatives of the San Roque Power Corporation (SRPC) on the multi-billion plant’s preparedness in case of a high magnitude quake.
Engr. Milania Abubo of the Dam Monitoring Unit of SRPC, said the corporation follows an emergency action plan and intense dam monitoring after an earthquake. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:27 pm Leave a comment

DepEd ready to implement K to 12 in Dagupan

DAGUPAN CITY – The Department of Education (DepEd) here said it is ready for the implementation of the K to 12 basic education program to provide better education to all Dagupeños.
Ma. Linda Ventenilla, chief education supervisor of DepEd-Dagupan, said nearly all teachers from the five public secondary schools and 34 elementary schools in Dagupan City have undergone training according to K to 12 curriculum contents and standards.
Ventenilla said the program will provide students who are unable to continue their studies in college with additional skills and knowledge to prepare them for employment and excel in a competitive labor market after their senior high school.
“We conducted a survey with students and employers in Dagupan for us to be able to match the courses to offer to the students with the applicants’ job qualifications that the employers are willing to hire,” Ventenilla said during the ‘Pantongtongan Tayo’ radio program of Philippine Information Agency-Pangasinan aired over DZMQ Radyo ng Bayan on Tuesday.
Ventenilla said technology livelihood education courses to be offered for senior high schools in this city are as follows: general education curriculum, accountancy, computer hardware servicing, business management, fish processing, and science engineering technology and mathematics. (more…)

May 31, 2015 at 9:24 pm Leave a comment

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