Saturday, March 29, 2014

Governor Espino with Limgas Bets

Governor Espino with Limgas bets.  Governor Amado T. Espino, Jr.
 (seated, center), Vice Gov. Jose Ferdinand Z. Calimlim, Jr. (standing, left)
 and Board Member Raul Sison (standing, right) flash the number one
sign with the top 25 finalists of the search for Limgas na Pangasinan 
2014 during a courtesy call at the Governor’s Office, Capitol Building in
Lingayen.  The lovely and intelligent ladies are set to vie for the much
coveted crown during the pageant and grand coronation night on April
 30 at 7:00 p.m. at the Capitol Plaza in Lingayen.

Manhunts for San Carlos Kap in robbery ongoing – PD Blanco

By Mortz C. Ortigoza
The acting provincial police director (PPO) of Pangasinan said manhunt operation against the village chief of San Carlos City, Pangasinan is ongoing after he was charged with robbery and frustrated homicide against a checker of a business entity.
In a spot and progress reports given to Northern Watch by Senior Superintendent Sterling Raymund Blanco it said  that Isla Barangay Chairman Lamberto Caguioa Villa, Jhon Caguioa Villa, and Marco Navarro Caguioa have been charged with robbery with frustrated homicide at the city prosecutor’s office of San Carlos City.
The charged under National Prosecution Service (NPS) Docket NO.1-07-INQ-14-C-0021, was dated March 17, 2014.
Among the three only the barangay chairman absconded while the two have been apprehended immediately after the commission of the crimes.
Police spot reports said that on March 15 the suspects were seen having transaction at Barangay Tayambani with Saturnino Antiola Casipong, 35, who is a checker of Cebu Agri Business and a resident of Bacood, Sta. Mesa, Metro Manila.
Suddenly, one of the suspects shot him several times.
Although wounded Antiola managed to run away, and hide from the suspects.
Malefactors, however, took his back pack with undetermined contents, wallet with more or less P10,000, and his motorcycle Honda XR 200 (Enduro) color red.

PMA vs. USMA (West Point) on Honor Code

5 feet 4 inches, Army 2nd Lt. Christy Isis "Ice" Achanzar, a native of Davao,
 made history in May 31, 2008 as the first Filipina to graduate from the male-
dominated United States Military Academy (USMA) in West Point, New York.
 She is also the first female cadet from the country’s premier military school, the
 Philippine Military Academy (PMA) to enter Westpoint. She also earned the
prestigious Superintendent's Award for Achievement, an award of gold wreath
 insignia bestowed to the top 20 percent of cadets who excel in academic, military
 and physical programs of USMA.

Friday, March 28, 2014

1Km Concrete Road costs P15M – DPWH

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

DPWH XI Regional Director Mariano R. Alquiza inspects the on-going road
 upgrading project at Brgy. Lavigan Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental.
(This road section leads to the famous three generations lighthouses at
San Agustin).
LINGAYEN – The chief of the 2nd Engineering Office of the Department of Public Works & Highway based here said that the government spends at most P15 million for the construction of a kilometer of national highway. 
Eng. Elpidio Paragas explained that a kilometer of road without a shoulder costs the government P15 million.
“Basta sa carriage lang. Walang shoulder na maganda,” he said in Filipino.
He explained that if the construction bided to private contractors by the DPWH is for re-blocking it costs the public coffer P12 to P13 million for a kilometer of the national highway.
 Re-blocking, he said, is removing those damaged parts of the highway and replaced them with a new concrete. 
He stressed that a 1.3 kilometer asphalt overlay cost the government P10 million a kilometer.
Asphalt overlay is a pavement surface treatment that combines one or more layer of asphalt with one or more layer of fine aggregate. In the United States, chip seals are typically used on rural roads carrying lower traffic volumes, and the process is often referred to as "asphaltic surface treatment"
“It’s P10 million but the thickness (of the asphalt) is two inches (only),” he said.
Paragas cited that the price is different if the thickness of asphalt is four inches.
Construction of public infrastructures like highway in the Philippines bided to private contractor goes into different process.

A source at the DPWH who asked anonymity explained that what makes DPWH projects more expensive than the one built by the private sector are due to the following instances.
He said if a private entity like the Chinese Chamber Commerce can construct a P350,000 more complete school house, the DPWH or Department of Education through a private contractor spends P650, 000 for the same size, width, and height school edifice that sometimes lacks a door knob, ceiling, toilet, and paint.
 He said it becomes more expensive because of the following  government sanctioned deductions: Engineering and Administrative Overhead Expenses, 3.5%; Value Added Tax, 12%; Contractor’s Profit (CP), 10%; Overhead Contingency (OC), 10% or a total of 35.5% or P216,000.

BIR Western P’sinan laggard in Tax Collection

By Mortz C. Ortigoza


LOT FOR BIR EASTERN PANGASINAN: A Filipino Chinese couple (4th and 3rd from Right) in Urdaneta City donated a sizeable lot in Brgy. Anonas in the city where the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s Revenue District Office - 6 can relocate due to its limited office space in the city proper. Leading in the giving of plaque of appreciation is BIR Assistant Commissioner Nelson Aspe (4th from Left). Other of the tax agency’s personalities are RDO-4 chief Renato Molina, Assistant RDO-4 chief Charmaine dela Torre, and Region 1 Director Arnel Guballa. The giving of plaque was part of the BIR’s launching of its Register, File, and Pay program in recently at the regional office in Calasiao, Pangasinan.

CALASIAO – Comparing the cumulative collection of the Bureau of Internal Revenue in Region 1 in the January to February period this year, Revenue District Office -5 of the BIR based in Alaminos City was the "slowpoke" among its counterparts in the region as it failed to exceed its collection last year. 
Records obtained by Northern Watch at the BIR regional office here showed that RDO-5, that covers the first and second congressional districts, collected only P128,228,039.61 versus its P139,427,845.11 collection in 2013.
The collection plunged was P11,199,805.50 (-8.03%). 
RDO-5 is under the watch of RDO chief Emir Abutzil.
There are six RDOs in Region in Region 1 under the leadership of Director Arnel Guballa.

Strategic Media Partner of Pistay Dayat

pc_GMA TV10-GATE signingGovernor Amado T. Espino, Jr. (front row, 3rd from left), Vice Gov. Jose Ferdinand Z. Calimlim, Jr. (front row, 4th from right), GMA Central Luzon Station Manager Jonathan T. Balingit (front row, 2nd from left) and GMA Central Luzon-Dagupan Stn. Sales and Marketing Rep. Arrian Zulueta (front row, left) flash the number one sign after the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement that formalizes the partnership between the province of Pangasinan and GMA Network Incorporated-Regional Station in Dagupan for extensive promotion, coverage and telecast of Agew na Pangasinan and Pistay Dayat which reels off this April 5 to May 1. Also in photo are some of the department heads and chiefs.

Police Activates PAC, K-Pulis Dagupan

Dagupan City's Chief of Police Supt. Christopher Abrahano (2nd from left)  presented to the advisory council the Dagupan PNPs "K-PULIS DAGUPAN "
K-PULIS DAGUPAN stands for Kaibigan ng Pulis Dagupan, a conglomeration of several groups supportive to Dagupan PNP.

The Dagupan City Police Station (DCPS) convened on March 28 its Advisory Council. 

In a modest ceremony different sectors in the community composed the council. Lawyer Jose Netu Tamayo represented the Sangunian Panglunsod; Dr.Ashok Vasandani represented the Media in his capacity as Vice President of the Pangasinan press club,; Eduardo Go represented the Non Government Organization, Mr. Mario Lim represented the Business Sector and the Chinese Community, Mr. Rob Erfe-Mejia, the Dagupan Practical Shooters Association; Director Derick Dawis the Department of Interior & Local Government; and Pastor Jun Centeno the religious sector. The council members elected Atty. Tamayo and Dr. Ashok Vasandani as Chairman and Vice Chair respectively.

The City Advisory Council was convened by the DCPS to help steer its peace and order programs and initiatives and to attain certification for the PNP Performance Governance System (PGS).

The council members vowed to help the Dagupan PNP achieve its strategic objectives in line with the PNP Patrol Plan 2030 by giving sound advice and tangible support to kick-off future law enforcement programs. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

P’sinan PNP Hurdles Test for Millennium Challenge Corp.


LINGAYEN – The provincial police office (PPO) based here has passed recently with flying colors the evaluation made by the national police headquarter on the Integrated Transformation Program – Performance Governance System (ITP-PGS).
POLICE CART – San Carlos City Police Chief Supt. Rodolfo Castro (2nd from Left) explains his impressions on the Community Assistance Referral Team (CART) to Police Regional Office-1  Chief Directorial Staff Marlou Chan (extreme left), PRO-1 Director Moro Virgilio Lazo and Acting Police Provincial Director of Pangasinan Sr. Supt. Sterling Raymund Blanco (3rd, 4th from left, respectively).
ITP-PGS is where six government agencies that include the Philippine National Police are scored by selected evaluators on good governance through the Balance Score Card (BSC) system as required by the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) – a United State assistance funding body.
”We have just passed the tough “initiation stage”,” Sr. Supt. Sterling Raymund Blanco, Pangasinan PPO’s acting director, quipped when asked about the March 4 evaluation he and his top brass attended at the national police office in Manila .
BSC is a quantifiable tool in measuring accomplishment and various plans and programs of the organization with a vision of being a highly capable, effective, credible government body.
A source, who asked anonymity, at the PPO credited the stewardship of Police Region Office-1 (PRO-1) Chief Directorial Staff Sr. Supt. Marlou C. Chan, Blanco’s predecessor here, who was responsible in coaching the brass in their preparation for the evaluation by the Technical Working Group (TWG) headed by Deputy Director Marcelo Garbo, Jr. at the PNP Headquarter.
“One of the laudable measures implemented by the PPO before the prying eyes of the TWG was the police cart, a mobile community assistance referral team assigned in each police stations in Pangasinan, initiated by Chan and the Police Patrol 101, piloted in the province, conceptualized by Chan and former Police Regional Office-1 Director Ricardo Marquez.
The PPO’s brass, according to Blanco, will be returning in Manila for the next test called “compliance”, and if it passes it will return for the final evaluation called “proficiency stage” of the ITP-PGS.
The source said these tests are not as tough as the “initiative test” Blanco and the brass attended recently.
PNP chief Director Allan Purisima warned recently PPO directors and chiefs of major cities around the country to hurdle the “initiative stage” in two try otherwise they would be sacked from their post.
The latest victim of this warning from Purisima was the chief of police of Legazpi City.
Since November 24 last year, 53 PNP offices/units have passed the PGS initiated status.
The PGS-Certification is led by Purisima, Garbo, and the PNP Center for Police Strategy Management’s office. They are aided by the National Advisory Council for Peace, Transformation, and Development, PNP-TWG, and others

Saturday, March 22, 2014

8 Ambassadors to Witness Bayambang’s Guinness Bid


BAYAMBANG, Philippines – The bid of this revolutionary capital of the country for the Guinness Book of World record would be “star-studded” with the arrival of five to eight envoys.
Mayor Ricardo Camacho said ambassadors of Japan, France, Canada, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Bangladesh, and Mainland China will be coming on April 4 to witness the eight- kilometer longest grill attempts of his burgeoning town.
DRONES FOR LONGEST GRILL: Glen Guapo( Extreme left) the owner of
Quadcopters from La Union explains to Bayambang Mayor Ric Camacho
how the four copters would cover the grilling of fresh water based fish in the town's
bid  in April 4 for the longest grill in the Guinness Book of World Record.
National figures like Senator Bam Aquino signified his attendance, too.
Camacho said his administration is preoccupied nowadays on the Guinness bid and the 400 years Anniversary of this town as they are fast approaching.
The quadri centennial will be held on April 5 while the Balikbayan Night will be on April 6.
Janice Hidalgo, the media liaison officer of the mayor, said the mayor has just met the staff of PTV 4 on the news coverage that will be carried by the network on the ground and a quadcopter, a drone, with high power video camera that will document the grills and the roasting of fresh water based fish from the air.
“We plan to use four quadcopters for the Malangsi Festival on April 4,” Glen Guapo, the operator of the drone, said.

Killing Notorious Criminals


Lately the name of Erwin Tulfo, anchorman of TV-5, Nilo del Prado, radio commentator of
Robbers summarily executed allegedly by the police in the Philippines.
GMA-7, and a TV and radio personality were dragged as recipients of grease money from the controversial National Agribusiness Corporation (Nabcor).
“Erwin Tulfo, a television news anchor, and Carmelo del Prado Magdurulang, a radio talk show host, were allegedly among the beneficiaries of the diversion of congressional allocations from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) coursed through state-owned National Agribusiness Corp. (Nabcor) and subsequently to ghost projects of bogus foundations, according to checks and accompanying documents made available to the Inquirer.
Former Nabcor officials Rhodora Mendoza and Vic Cacal said that a check for P245,535 was issued to Tulfo on March 10, 2009, drawn from a Nabcor account at United Coconut Planters’ Bank (UCPB), Tektite Branch PSE Center, Ortigas,  Pasig City.
Three checks were separately issued to Magdurulang by Nabcor in 2009—on April 27,  May 14, July 6—totaling P245,535—all drawn from the same Corporate Account No. 00196-000848-4 in UCPB, they said” published by the Philippine Daily Inquirer March 19 issue.
A beleaguered Tulfo and del Prado denied that they encash the checks.
Son of a gun, I remembered one newspaper writer who received a check from a politician when they were still patting- at- the- back friend. When the host jumped ship to the generous or “galit sa pera ”rival of the politician and started training his gun on his former friend, the latter commissioned some media men by exposing  him as willing recipient of checks from him.

Gov. Espino w/ new PMA graduates from Pangasinan

  Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr (6th from left) and Pangasinan Rep. Leopoldo N. Bataoil
(center) flash the number one sign with Philippine Military Academy’s Top 5 graduate
 Noel DV.  Raguindin (extreme left) of Dagupan City together with 13 other graduates of the
 PMA Siklab Class of 2014 - all Pangasinenses - during a courtesy call
at the Governor’s Office, Capitol Building in Lingayen last March 19.

Friday, March 21, 2014

“No truth on alleged prostitution activities” -- ESL teachers

ESL teachers belie CIDG’s prostitution theory.  Some 30 ESL (English as Second Language) teachers of the total 130 tutors of the Kame Hachi Corporation tutorial center located in Avenida West, Poblacion, Lingayen that was raided by the CIDG March 17 evening firmly belied CIDG-NCR reports that prostitution activities are prevalent in the alleged cybersex den. A day after the raid, the ESL tutors asked for Provincial Legal Officer Geraldine Baniqued’s (left) legal assistance on the issue. The Legal Officer immediately asked local media’s intervention and give the ESL teachers a chance to air their side and defend themselves. She said Provincial Employment Services Officer Alex Ferrer could attest to the legitimacy of Kame Hachi Corporation’s operation -- the tutorial center being a partner of the provincial government during special recruitment activities. The Integrated Bar of the Philippines – Pangasinan Chapter has expressed support to the ESL teachers who filed a suit to proper authorities to clear their integrity. 

Lingayen -- “We are English teachers, not sex workers.”

This outburst of anger from a tearful online English teacher at the Kame Hachi Corporation who declared her team were online ESL (English as Second Language) teachers of the Kame Hachi Corporation.
Early this week, a group of about 20 CIDG police officers raided the ESL school located at Avenida West, Lingayen  purportedly to verify reports that prostitution activities have been prevalent in what they called a cybersex den.
A search warrant for the violation of Expanded Anti-trafficking in Persons Act of 2012 was issued by the Regional Trial Court for the CIDG’s raid.
The raiders, however, found no solid evidence to back their prostitution theory.
 Instead, they confiscated desktop and laptop computers, digital cameras, cellular phones and other documents and tools allegedly used for prostitution activities in the area.
Corporate owners of the ESL tutorial school Takayuki Umeda, ErlindaTandoc, Leonora Ceralde, Josephine Gille, Rafael Tandoc were likewise arrested and  detained at the Camp Crame in Quezon City for further investigation.
After the raid, reports aired in the national television portrayed the ESL teachers as “sex workers.”
 “Hindi kami gagawa ng isang bagay na alam namin na ikakasama namin, at alam ng mga magulang namin ang lahat ng ginagawa namin dito,” Shertina, one of the on-line teachers said. She lamented the dreadful experience they had in the hands of the CIDG officers during the raid.
“Why would we sacrifice our integrity as degree holders and licensed professionals?” Shertina, who’s already two years and 7 months tutor at the Corporation, added.
The traumatic experience has become a stigma as we fear of what those who saw the raid on TV might think about our job, Shertina said.
Zia, ESL teacher, on the other hand, asked why all CCTVs were immediately removed when the CIDG officers raided the whole building.
“Without CCTV recordings of the raid, how can we prove to people of the grave harassment the police officers did to us?” she said.
“Nilagay nila kami sa isang kwarto, dinuro-duro nila kami, tinignan mula ulo hanggang paa tapos sabay silang magtatawanan,” she said.
Marilou Austria, supervising staff of the tutorial center, said many of their ESL teachers are Mass Communication graduates and licensed professionals; and belied a report from the CIDG that minors are caught teaching in the tutorial center.
Local media in Pangasinan have already corrected an earlier report that a sex toy was confiscated in the manager’s room, verifying it as “a massage gadget.”
A day after the raid, some 30 of the total 130 teachers of the tutorial center asked for Provincial Legal Officer Geraldine Baniqued’s legal assistance.
Having heard the side of the ESL teachers, the Legal Officer immediately asked the local media to give the ESL teachers a chance to air their side and defend themselves, adding that Provincial Employment Services Officer Alex Ferrer could attest to the legitimacy of Kame Hachi Corporation’s operation.
“Is being beautiful a crime now?” Baniqued said when informed that the evidence gathered by the police raiders was the fact that most of the tutors were beautiful young professionals.
“Partner namin sila sa employment kasi nakiparticipate sila sa Jobs Fair at sinusunod din nila yung proseso ng recruitment at nagcomply naman sila sa minimum age and other rules ng employment,” PESO Ferrer said.
The Integrated Bar of the Philippines – Pangasinan Chapter has expressed support to the ESL teachers who are planning to file a suit against the team of police raiders to clear their integrity.

Investors, tax efforts driver of Urdaneta City's growth

By Mortz C. Ortigoza
URDANETA CITY – The investors’ friendly projection of the administration of Mayor Amadeo Gregorio Perez III and his personnel’s efficient tax collection become the spark plug of this burgeoning city’s infrastructure binge.
Mayor Perez said that based on a year-on-year real property tax (RPT) collection, his administration chalked up P66.5 million in year 2013 versus the P64.3 million it collected in year 2012.
“Urdaneta City has the biggest RPT collection in Region 1,” a source, who asked anonymity at the city hall, said.
The mayor explained in the past that despite the absence of any tax hike in the last ten years, this city’s tax collection efficiency spikes every year.
The mayor said the drivers of the economic boom here are the constructions of infrastructure facilities and farm-to-market roads.
Building of these facilities not only generates jobs to people but expedites movement of goods and services.
One of the big ticket businesses that put shop here was the Agri-Pinoy Trading Center (APTC)
According Secretary Proceso Alcala of the Department of Agriculture the establishment of APTCs throughout the country is in line with the Aquino government's continuing efforts to enable small farmers earn more profit. These farmers will now have a venue where they can market their products directly to institutional buyers.
Another investment that entered here last January was the 144 vendor stalls’ Xentromart Bagsakan (entrepot) considered as the biggest agri-trade center in Pangasinan.
These APTCs are expected not only to provide thousands of livelihood opportunities for residents but additional revenues for the local government.

Limgas na Pangasinan 2014 official bets named

Lingayen --- This year’s 23 official Limgas na Pangasinan candidates from various municipalities and cities in the province will be presented publicly during the regular flag-raising ceremony of the provincial government on March 24 at 7am.

            The official candidates of Limgas na Pangasinan, province’s most prestigious beauty search, will pay a courtesy call to Governor Amado T. Espino, Jr. right after the flag-raising ceremony. Media presentation of the candidates immediately follows after the courtesy call.

Official Limgas na Pangasinan 24 candidates are: Angela Dayag (Asingan), Sunshine Escat (Urdaneta City), Cindy Tomelden (Sta. Barbara), Sheena Cabagui (Urdaneta City), Divina Tanda (Alaminos City), Justine Veronica Roque (Bolinao), April de Guzman (Binmaley), Irene Badion (Burgos), Jelly Fernandez (Lingayen), Almarie Quintos (Anda), Princess Khrista Ventura (Sison), Carla Exclamador (Lingayen), Apple Joy Bacay (Alaminos City), Mae Kathleen Salvadeon (Tayug), Marienne de Guzman (Lingayen), Jefferlyn Perez (Bayambang), Mary Joy Paras (Bugallon), Marimar Arandia (Dagupan City), May Averence Hortaleza (Dagupan City), Marielle De Vera (Binmaley), Yaldene Ferrer (Lingayen), Jacqueline Macatiag (Sual) and Allysa Ashley Calimlim (Villasis)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Swanky, Elegant Town Hall Cost P32M only

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

The New P32 million town hall of Sta. Barbara, Pangasinan. It is located in Barangay Maningding and
 near the national highway.
STA BARBARA - The mayor of this robust town disclosed that the swanky and elegant new municipal hall here cost only P32 million.
Zaplan's declaration ran smack on city and town halls in the country that have been built in the same price but half the size of the new municipal edifice here.
The new P9 million Sangguniang Bayan building.
"The problem with these LGUs (local government unit) some of the funds mostly borrowed from government owned Land Bank and Development Bank of Philippines and private banks went to the pocket of the mayor, vice mayor, and councilors," media man Harold Barcelona, a close friend of Zaplan, said.
Zaplan said that the P32 million is only for the construction of the town hall located at Barangay Maningding. "Iyong landscape sa harap ng muncipio may pondo sa municipio, iyong mga designs sa pader galing na sa private funds ko," he said.
"Talo sa ganda ang Kapitolyo sa Lingayen dito. Maraming mga magpapa-picture dito na mga ikakasal," Barcelona said.


MALL OWNERSHIP : In case the decision of the Supreme Court become final and executory the huge multi million pesos edifice of a mall owned by the Magic Groups of Companies will be under the ownership of the local government unit in Malasiqui, Pangasinan after the high tribunal rejected in December last year the appeal of former Dagupan City Mayor Benjie S. Lim. Petitioner Mario Armas, a resident of the town, argued at the lower courts that the transaction between the town and the company that led to the construction of the mall at the municipal land was imbued with patent illegality. (Mortz Ortigoza)

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Capitol intensifies war vs TB

                                                 Capitol intensifies war vs TB

Lingayen- - -The Provincial Board led by Vice Governor Jose Ferdinand Z. Calimlim, Jr. has approved Provincial Ordinance No. 6-2014 which creates the Pangasinan Koalisyon Alis TB (PangKAT) and the provincial multi-sectoral alliance (PMSA) tasked to unify efforts towards improving tuberculosis  case detection in Pangasinan.

The vice governor said the two groups aims to support the national government’s effort to institute an effective program for TB control through the Department of Health and other line agencies.

The PMSA, according to  Calimlim, will serve as the coordinating body for public-private sector partnerships and shall advise the provincial government in the implementation of the policies and strategies of the National TB Control Program involving various government line agencies, civil society groups and the private sector.

The Pangasinan PMSA is made up by Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. (Chairperson), President of the League of Municipalities-Pangasinan Chapter (Vice Chair for the Public Sector), and the Provincial Health Officer (Secretary General).

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Braganza's Former Ally Hits News reports vs Black Sand

By Mortz C. Ortigoza
FORMER NEMESIS: Vicente Oliquino (holding a microphone), former arch
 critic of Governor Amado T. Espino on the alleged black sand mining
in Lingayen, Pangasinan lauded the governor on his eco-tourism
 project in the place since it can generate employment for the
 people there.Others in photo are  Mines and Geosciences Bureau
 Regional Director Carlos Tayag , Provincial Housing  
and Urban Development Coordinating Officer Engr. Alvin Bigay
(4th and 5th from left, respectively,and the village chiefs of

LINGAYEN – A former ally of Governor Amado T. Espino’s gubernatorial rival and his complainant on the black sand mining here dismissed the series of news reports on national dailies that he called the Ombudsman to expedite the case against the governor and other respondents.
Vicente Oliquino, in a press conference called by the provincial government, said the reports asking the Ombudsman for “a speedy resolution of the case that they filed in January 2012 since they want a legal precedent that black sand mining cannot be allowed in the province,” were baseless and not true.
“That black sand issue is already done. The issue was rehashed. Media men should check how the provincial government (under Espino) has improved the (economic-tourism) area, “ Oliquino, president of the anti-mining group Aro Mo Ako Sambayanan (Aromas), stressed.
Oliquino was a zealous ally of gubernatorial bet Hernani Braganza, former mayor of Alaminos City, in the 2013 election before he started heaping praises to the governor.
He said if he wants to parrot something on the black sand he would personally calls media men.
“Except from the reporter of the Philippine Star, I did not call or meet those reporters that quoted me in the national dailies”.

No black sand mining ever, says Pangasinan exec

LINGAYEN, Pangasinan – The chief of the provincial government’s housing and urban development coordinating office yesterday took exception to a published story in the March 12 issue of national dailies, denying that there is “”continuous extraction of black sand along the Lingayen shore.”
“What black sand mining are they talking about?,” Engr. Alvin Bigay, provincial housing and urban development coordinating officer, said when sought for comment on the story yesterday adding that “Black sand mining never happened in Lingayen, Pangasinan.”
In preparation for the golf course development, unwanted materials, such as magnetite sand, have to be extracted to allow grass and other golf course vegetation to grow, a necessity the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) recognized and allowed, Bigay said.
Earlier, Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Director Carlos Tayag said that the extraction of the magnetite or black sand was necessary because turf grass would not grow with its presence in the golf course area.
According to Orpheus Velasco, provincial information officer, the black sand mining issue was used by the political detractors of Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. during the election campaign period in a desperate bid to damage the credibility of the governor.
Governor Espino, now on his third and final term, won by an overwhelming landslide in the May polls over his lone rival.
Even after the Environment Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) issued an Environment Compliance Certificate (ECC) for the proposed golf course, the opposing political camp manipulated the local village officials to file the complaint before the anti-graft body, Velasco said.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Cojuangco in a fisticuff with Congressman; challenges solon for Boxing Match

Former Congressman Charlie Cojuangco
March 12, 2014 7:31 AM
Rep. Jeffrey Ferrer
A son of businessman Eduardo Cojuangco Jr. has reportedly agreed to a boxing match between him and Negros Occidental Rep. Jeffrey Ferrer, with each camp betting P100 million, his relative said Monday.
Former Pulupandan, Negros Occidental mayor Magdaleno Peña said Carlos Cojuangco took him up on his suggestion after confirming that he indeed figured in a brawl with Ferrer at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) on March 6.
“Cojuangco agreed to face Ferrer in a boxing match (at the Bago City gymnasium) and that the face-off should be done within 30 days for a good cause.  The proposal would be for the two camps to place as bet money P100 million each and the one who will win the match gets his money back and the loser will donate his money to the victims of Super Typhoon Yolanda,” Peña said in a statement.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Espino Camp reacts on my Cojuangco’s Interview


Are members of the 16th Congress still illegal recipients of the 10, 20 or more percent cut (S.O.P in the vernacular) on every project they interceded from Malacanang? 
Pangasinan Gov. Amado T. Espino shows the plaudits
the province reaped from the national government.
He was with Provincial Administrator Rafael Howard
Baraan who wrote a letter to the author on the latter
article on Mark Cojuangco.

In the March 6 page 2 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer “ ‘Pork” still working for lawmakers” by Leila B. Salaverria, she wrote: “The PDAF (Priority Development Assistance Fund) was then realigned to six executive agencies – the Commission on Higher Education (P2.66 billion); Department of Education (P1.022 billion); Department of Health (P3.69 billion); Department of Social Welfare & Development of Social Welfare & Development (P4.71 billion); Department of Labor & Employment (P3.69 billion); and Department of Public Works and Highways (P9.654 billion)”.
Does it mean if a subservient congressional ally of Malacanang can chalked up P10 million from one of this government entities through the imprimatur of the power-that-be, does it mean it is still monkey business as usual between the solon and his favorite private contractor?
As you know, one of the motivations for politicians in running for congressional office is the S.O.P they can get from the private contractor or supplier that implements a government project they chalked up. Before the evil Janet Napoles brought them to hell, the greediest of them I know in Region 1 pocketed up to 60% of a project allocated in a dredging operation of a river. This anomaly ensued through a conspiracy with the private contractor, members of the DPWH and Commission on Audit, and the lawmaker. Only 40% or P4 million goes to the haphazardly made operation while the P6 million of the P10 million projects have been divided by these vultures where the Lion share goes to the heartless solon.
With Malacanang needing the votes of members of Congress for important bills, it can marshal these vulnerable solons by ordering the heads of these departments and agencies to implement some of the billions of pesos of projects at their disposal to the district or constituency of the congressman or senator.
A hundred of millions of pesos project for the district of a congressman could make a difference between a pork less solon and a gluttonous solon that gets P20 million kickback a year from the conniving private contractor.
Has pork barrel indeed returns with a different name, different system of distribution, and with a vengeance?
“Sa akin iyong P200 million pork (2014) ko pina re-alligned ko sa calamity fund,” Senator Alan Peter Cayetano told me in Pilipino when I told him about my above observation when he dropped-by at the Dagupan City museum in March 10.
“Incase a congressman who has clout with Malacanang chalked up say P10 million projects from DPWH, can the solon asks his favorite private contractors to bid and give him his 10-20 percent cut? Has the pork returned” I posed to Cayetano.
“Maybe it has returned,” he retorted.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Buckle down to work, not politics – Gov. Espino

LINGAYEN – “Political contests are too far down the road to waste our time and energies with. Instead, we must roll up our sleeves and buckle down to work to strengthen the pillars of progress in Pangasinan.”

Former Congressman Cojuangco (2nd from left) announced
to media men his intention to run for the governorship.

This was the statement issued by Gov. Amado T. Espino, Jr. in brushing aside persistent clamor by members of the local media for his comments on a recent announcement made by former 5thdistrict congressman Mark Cojuangco declaring his bid for governorship in the 2016 elections.
“Like what I have said in my State of the Province Address (SOPA) last February 10, let us set aside politics first but rather unite, help and support each other for the welfare of Pangasinenses,” the governor said.

Cayetano for President: At the expense of Binay, Roxas?


In January this column headlined “Alan Peter Cayetano for President”. That article stemmed from my conversation with Senator Allan Peter Cayetano when he graced the Ulopan ng Sumisigay Ed Dagupan, Inc (USADA) where he distributed P150, 000 seed money to the members of USADA in Dagupan City so they can lend among themselves to better their small scale aqua products’ business. USADA is headed by Ronnie Cayabyab.
Presidential wannabe Mar Roxas and spouse
TV anchor woman Korina Sanchez.
I had a little role in that meeting since I was the one who drafted the letter of Ronnie to the Senator who arrived in the Bangus City through a helicopter.
In a huddle with the solon I told him that as a presidential dark horse I would be egging him in my column to run for the presidency as the landscape between presidential wannabes Vice President Jojo Binay and DILG Secretary Mar Roxas were and are still fluid.
Son of a gun, when I was opening the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s March 6 issues I saw the news title “ I want to be President: Cayetano eyes 2016 run” by lined by Norman Bordadora.
“Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano is preparing for a possible presidential run in 2016, stressing that he is not just interested in contesting the highest post, he intends to win it. In an interview with ANC television yesterday, Cayetano said his people have been conducting surveys to gauge his chances in a presidential election two years from now. He even hinted at plans for an advertising campaign to boost his stock,” Bordadora reported.
Cayetano’s recent fling in the presidential saber rattling significantly cost Binay as the former denounced the latter credibility.
Take these instances: 
Cayetano said the Vice-President is downplaying the testimonies of whistle-blowers against his allies, Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Jinggoy Estrada. This runs counter to Binay's statements against former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo whom he accused of corruption.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Domantay bows to SC decisions on Magic Mall

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

MALASIQUI – An ambivalent Mayor Armando Domantay could only quipped “that’s justice in the making” after the Supreme Court rejected his appeal and his fellow appellants on a civil case filed against them on a disputed municipal land here. It would be recalled that five years ago Mario Armas and Osmundo Lambino sued Domantay, former Dagupan City Mayor Benjie S. Lim, and some municipal officials here with provisional relief and writ of preliminary injunction. 
Magic Mall

The complaint against them stemmed when the members of the Sangguniang Bayan (town council) and Domantay passed and approved a resolution, respectively, despite the lack of quorum in empowering Domantay to sign a contract with Magic Group of Companies (MGC) to put a mall here. MGC is owned by the family of Lim. But several years ago the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in San Carlos City, Pangasinan rejected the petition of Armas and Lambino saying the contract between the local government unit here and MGC was above board. In July 7, 2013 the Court of Appeals, upon the emphatic arguments of Armas in a petition he personally wrote, reversed the decision of the RTC. In December 11, 2013 the SC denied the petition of MGC and the appellants by telling them that the petition failed to show any reversible error in the CA’s resolution as to “warrant the exercise of the court’s discretionary jurisdiction”