Saturday, December 30, 2017

Celeste spikes tourism in District with billions

By Mortz C. Ortigoza
BOLINAO - Pristine beaches, golden shorelines, lush vegetation, million years old Hundred Islands, clear turquoise water from falls, Renaissance-style black coral stones made church, breathtaking caves, and other gems are the draws of the nine towns and city’s Western Pangasinan that made its tireless congressman moves heaven and earth to lobby for billions of pesos funding from the national government to maximize the potentials of the areas.
First District Representative Jesus “Boying” Celeste said that the initial cash flows for the constructions of the billions of pesos national highway at the coastal areas to amplify tourism  that he shepherded in the national budget was the fruit of his consultations with municipal and village officials.
 Photo  Credit: MC Santiago

He cited that the vaunted national artery that snake near the seashores  materialized because of the collaboration and cooperation of the Departments of Public Works & Highways, Tourism, Environment & Natural Resources, and Philippine Tourism Authority.
Press report said that public work activities had already billowed at the coastal areas of this rustic town and Alaminos City.
Photo Credit: Johnny Galimba

Friday, December 29, 2017

‘Crackers - hating - Duterte causes lower no. of injuries – Doc

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

DAGUPAN CITY – The reason that plunged the numbers of injuries from firecrackers explosion from last year’s record and those in the 2017’s New Year revelry had been credited to President Rodrigo Duterte’s disliked to many of them.
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Region-1 Medical Center Director Joseph Roland Mejia said that because of the Davao City’s ordinance banning firecrackers that President Duterte crowed to be emulated by the whole country, many Filipinos heeded it.
Middle this year Duterte ordered the regulation of firecrackers and pyrotechnic devises through Executive Order No. 28.
Mejia cited that in the records of December 21, 2016 to January 5, 2017 there were 38 firecracker injuries treated by R-1MC compared to the same days in the data of nineteen years that spanned from 1998 to 2015 Doctor Mejia distributed to media men.
Dr. Noel Manaois, a senior surgeon at R1MC, said that the other reason for the decline in the firecrackers’ injuries happened because of the strict implementation of their sale by this City’s local government unit under Mayor Belen T. Fernandez and the police.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

DPWH exec cites “legacies” after retirement on Dec. 31

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

DAGUPAN CITY – The elevation and transformation to modernity of the AB Fernandez Avenue in this city is one of his legacies to the people here and at the Department of Public Works & Highway he would be looking after his retirement on December 31 this year, a District Engineer (DE) cited.
DE Rodolfo “Boy” Dion, who supervised two congressional districts in Pangasinan, said that without the transformation of the AB Fernandez Highway from its previous asphalt condition it would now become a state of disrepair.
“Siyempre existing asphalt iyan kung hindi na improve iyan panahon ngayon nasira na,” he stressed.
Dion supervises the Second and Fourth Congressional Districts at his office based in Lingayen, Pangasinan.
The two districts are represented by Congressmen Leopoldo Bataoil and Christopher de Venecia, respectively.
BRASS – Retiring Department of Public Works & Highway’s District Engineer Rodolfo “Boy” Dion (left) of the 2nd Pangasinan Engineering District poses with former Five-Time House Speaker Jose de Venecia during the latter 81st birthday held in Manila recently.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

PEZA head welcomes more power plants in Pangasinan

DAGUPAN CITY –Director General Charito B. Plaza of the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) recently told newsmen here that construction of more power plants, including another coal-fired power plant in the town of Sual, is welcome in line with the government’s plan to create a mega-economic zone in Pangasinan.
PEZA Director General Charito Plaza bares plan to put up a mega-economic zone in Pangasinan.

Plaza said big foreign companies are eyeing Pangasinan for their expansion and conversion of the province into a mega-economic zone will open this possibility.
This move requires stable and cheaper supply of power to sustain the operation of the industries to be put up provided the power plants to be constructed conform with environmental standards, she said.
Plaza led the opening program of the 2017 Luzon Economic Zone Summit for Pangasinan and La Union held recently in this city.
Among the guests were Baguio City Economic Zone Administrator lawyer Rene Joey S. Mipa, 2nd District Rep. Leopoldo N. Bataoil,  Sual Mayor Roberto  Arcinue and Pozorrubio Mayor Ernesto Go.
Mayor Arcinue happily welcomed this develop

Monday, December 25, 2017

Dagupan LGU's Workers Celebrate Xmas Night

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35 carabaos butchered daily for palate of P’sinense

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

MANGALDAN – The supervisor of the abattoir here said that 35 carabaos are slaughtered everyday to satisfy the palate of the people of this town, nearby Dagupan City, and other municipalities.
Slaughterhouse Supervisor Veronica Junatas said that 24 hours a day with 27 personnel garbed on their sanitary uniforms like red t-shirts, black head covers, and rain boots not only   butchered countless numbers of hogs and cattle but water buffaloes in the stockyard located half a kilometer from the municipal hall here.
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CARCASSES of water buffaloes on a side and supine positions
 at the slaughterhouse of Mangaldan in Pangasinan Province.
Most of these carabeefs are served to pigar-pigar (deep fried beef sprinkled with fresh slices of onions) restaurants here and nearby Dagupan City and Pindang (dried cured beef) stores that people inside and outside the mammoth Pangasinan province patronized.
Pigar-Pigar or Beng-Beng and Pindang are popular delicacies in the province.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Promises Delivered by Sen. Bam

Edukasyon. Trabaho. Negosyo. Before 2017 ends, let’s look back on the campaign promises delivered by Sen. Bam Aquino in just 4 years. Tuloy ang laban sa 2018.

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Friday, December 22, 2017


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P10,000 BONUS - Dagupan City Mayor Belen T. Fernandez gives P10, 000 perk to each of the regular employees of the local government unit.  P5, 000 came from the Performance Enhancement Incentive while the other P5,000 came as cash gift of 5,000.00. The mayor released P5, 960,000.00 for distribution to these deserving public servants this Christmas Season.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Incoming BIR Reg’l Chief a P’sinense

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

CALASIAO – The four provinces’ tax regional office based here will be headed finally by a Pangasinense after the national office of the Bureau of Internal Revenue appointed a daughter of Dasol, Pangasinan.
According to a source, who asked anonymity, BIR Makati City’s Assistant Regional Director Clavelina S. Nacar will assume the post of outgoing Region-1 Director Teresita M. Dizon in January 8 next year after the latter was promoted to Assistant Commissioner of the tax agency.

DIRECTOR - Incoming Region-1 Director Clavelina S. Nacar (right) of the Bureau of Internal Revenue and spouse former Dasol Mayor Noel Nacar. Photo- grab from Facebook.

Nacar, the wife of former Dasol Mayor Noel Nacar, used to be the Revenue District Office -5 Chief of Western Pangasinan based in Alaminos City.
“She then became RDO chief in Metro Manila, Assistant Regional Director in Region 9 San Pablo City and Assistant Regional Director of Makati City,” the source disclosed.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Why snipers are glamorized?

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

Can you still remember that famous and courageous soldier who took off his Kevlar helmet and bullet vest as quid pro quo to ISIS rebels in Marawi City so he could save a four years old girl  and other Christian hostages from the ISIS rebels in Marawi City in exchange of containers of water, soft drinks, and biscuits?
Yap, he is Army Captain Jeffrey Buada, commander of the 15th Scout Ranger Company.
After he was feted recently by his town Mangaldan in Pangasinan for his conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in Marawi, I asked Buada, a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy, about those incidents while we consumed our snacks treated by Mangaldan Mayor Bona Fe D. Parayno and the town’s chief of Police Superintendent Jeff Fanged.
 Buada’s wife told me that the spouse is a sniper, too.
A sniper with his M-24 Sniper Weapon System. 

Indeed he was as I saw earlier on his shoulder badge a sniper’s logo embroidered with a glaring red word “Sniper”.
Marksmen like Buada played a major role in the urban warfare in the Philippines where the State Security just won in a protracted Pyrrhic victory against the international terrorist Islamic groups and their associates’ Maute Muslim rebels in the now scorched to that ground Southern Philippines’ city.
What price glory when the entire city was not only obliterated but turned into smithereens? JesusMariaHusef! 
When Lieutenant Colonel Fanged, an alumnus of the Philippine National Police Academy,  posed what Buada was thinking when he was saving each of the hostages unarmed while enemy snipers lurking around ready to shoot him.
“Siguro magda –dive din ako doon sa (inaudible). Parang tinitingnan ko na rin medyo tumaas na rin ang confidence ko alam ko marami naka secure and nakabantay sa amin. Pag may nangyari  sa amin sigurado ako may makapag react ng mabilis. Naka focus sila sa pag secure sa amin (I’ll duck for cover. I have self-confidence because I know my comrade in arms were watching. In case something happened to me and my companion I know they were there to fire at the enemies. They were focus on our security),” Buada said.
“How many rebels you negotiated? Those who hid around? Do they have snipers?” I posed.
“They were 40 to 60 (combatants),” The Scout Ranger’s warrior told me on the tough but easily annoyed and hungry Moro ideologues they were chasing and exchanging shoots for several days.


The other day I was browsing the book I bought at Book Sale in Robinsons - Calasiao titled “Into the Fire”. It was a firsthand account of the most extraordinary battle in the Afghan War. It was narrated by Marine Corporal Dakota Meyer, a recipient of the Medal of Honor - an award that happened after three decades in the history of U.S combat, and written by Bing West, a Marine combat veteran who served as Assistant Secretary of Defense in the Reagan Administration. Bing is also a veteran of the wars in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. He is also an award winning war correspondent and book authors that suit him best as he had an actual experiences of what he penned.
I relished Page 32 of the book as Dakota said that the U.S Marine Corp emphasizes on marksmanship.
“Every Marine is a rifleman. It makes no difference what rank you are or how sophisticated your job is. Marine General Jim Jones was the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe and served as President Obama’s first national security adviser. Even in those prestigious top jobs, he still signed his emails as “Rifleman,’ Meyer cited.
He said the U.S Marines were acknowledged as having the finish sniper training program. He cited that in that training school of the Corps if you qualified, where 50% of the candidates failed, one received a special “Military Occupancy Specialty” – 0317 that the holder, just like those pin or badge given to the Scout Rangers and Navy SEALs, is given pride and fulfillment.
Meyer said that civilians are wowed and mystified with the sharpshooters that many of them posed when they meet one: “How many enemies have you killed?”
He cited that the greatest snipers in the world so far were Finnis Sniper Simo Hayha who held the world record of most killed enemies in World War II when the Soviets invaded his tiny country.
“He killed more than 500 Russian soldiers. He was called the “White Death” because his white camouflage uniform blended into the snow”.
The other celebrated sharpshooters were a platoon of South African soldiers, recruited from big  animal game hunting, to fight in World War 1 in Europe. Each of these former hunters average by 125 Germans and their allies killed in that mostly trench battles.
“In Vietnam, Marine Sgt. Carlos Hatchcock, killed 93 of the enemy. In Iraq, Chris Kyle, a SEAL, recorded 160 kills”, Meyer said.
Son of a gun, my favorite Vasily Grigoryevich Zaytsev, whose true- to- life story was put into film titled Enemy at the Gates casting actor Jude Law as Zaytsev, was not mentioned by the Marine Medal of Honor Awardee and Bing West.
Vasily was a sharpshooter of the defunct Union of Soviet Socialist Republic in World War – II.  Before November 10, 1942, he killed 32 German soldiers with a standard-issue rifle. Between November 10, 1942 and December 17, 1942 in the Battle of Stalingrad Zaytsev killed 225 enemy soldiers, including 11 snipers that probably included that swashbuckling German Major the Fuehrer Adolf Hitler ordered sent to haunt down the effing pain- in- the- ass Russian’s marksman.

                                        Glamorized and Glorified
What romanticized and glamorized the sniper, for me, came from the chutzpah of British Director Stanley Kubrick in his Full Metal Jacket’s flick, critics said the best combat movie ever produced, where Marine Drill Master Gunnery Sergeant Hartman showed his antics and skills.
Hartman, who in real life is Marine Corps Retired Staff Sergeant Ronald Lee Ermey (born March 24, 1944), was a former Marine Drill Instructor and a student at the University of Manila when he was assigned at Subic Naval Base when the Yanks were still here in the early 1980s.
In Full Metal Jacket, based on the novel “Short Timers” by Gustav Hasford, the foul mouthed drill sergeant lectured the Marine recruits at Parris Island, South Carolina before they were transported to Vietnam by citing historical events and characters about the greatness and danger of an excellent or a rogue Marine marksman.
Here are the excerpts from those exchanges:
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: Do any of you people know who Charles Whitman was? None of you dumbasses knows? Private Cowboy?
Private Cowboy: Sir, he was that guy who shot all those people from that tower in Austin, Texas, sir!
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: That's affirmative. Charles Whitman killed twelve people from a twenty-eight-story observation tower at the University of Texas from distances up to four hundred yards. Anybody know who Lee Harvey Oswald was? Private Snowball?
Private Snowball: Sir, he shot Kennedy, sir!
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: That's right, and do you know how far away he was?
Private Snowball: Sir, it was pretty far! From that book suppository building, sir!
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: All right, knock it off! Two hundred and fifty feet! He was two hundred and fifty feet away and shooting at a moving target. Oswald got off three rounds with an old Italian bolt action rifle in only six seconds and scored two hits, including a head shot! Do any of you people know where these individuals learned to shoot? Private Joker?
Private Joker: Sir, in the Marines, sir!
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: In the Marines! Outstanding! Those individuals showed what one motivated marine and his rifle can do! And before you ladies leave my island, you will be able to do the same thing!
Geez whiz! 
Scout Ranger Captain Jeff Buada and his Sniper's Badge

By the way, according to Corporal Dakota Meyer the standard sniper rifle is the 16.5 pounds M40-A3 equipped with an adjustable cheek rest, a heavy twenty-four-inch barrel, and a bipod stand. It has a 7.62 millimeter (.308) rifle based on the Remington 700 short action fired the M118LR 7.62x51 HPBT military action-only cartridge that retained supersonic speed out to nine hundred meters.
“In addition, we used the standard infantry M4 5.56 millimeter rifle and the monster M107 Barret. 50 –caliber,” he stressed.
The Barrets were the favorite show boat of the Moro rebels in the South but expert said since they were locally and crudely manufactured their accuracy and lethality are doubted.
The first time I touched, held, and wielded an empty sniper M24 Sniper Weapon System (SWS) was when Police Superintendent (Lieutenant Colonel) Noel Vallo acquiseced to my request when he was the Chief of Police of the 86 villages’ San Carlos City, Pangasinan several years ago.
Vallo’s Uncle Vivencio Vallo, a former town administrator and a lover of combat history, told me his nephew whom he considered his son is a sniper and a graduate of the PNPA – the police version of the elite PMA where Scout Ranger Captain Buada graduated in 2007.

(You can read my selected columns at and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Ombudsman sides with Malasiqui’s principal

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

MALASIQUI – The legal squabble at the national high school here between the principal and her male teacher has been stopped by the Ombudsman when it exonerated the former.

On a nine pages resolution dated November 7, 2017, Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon Gerard A. Mosquera dismissed the Anti-Graft & Corrupt Practices Acts  (Republic Act No. 3019) and administrative cases filed by Vladimir Y. Laxamana against Principal IV Olive Paragas Terrado for lacks of probable cause and substantial evidence.
VINDICATED: Malasiqui National High School Principal IV Olive Paragas Terrado is all smiles these days after the Ombudsman exonerated her on the criminal and administrative complaints filed at the Anti-Graft Body by her subordinate at the MNHS. Her receipt of the decision coincided with her birthday.
The legal complaint that became acrimonious inside and outside the media circles in the province started when Laxamana filed on March 17, 2017 a complaint at the Ombudsman for Luzon in Metro Manila against Terrado.
Laxamana said respondent committed the misused of the two canteens’ funds that started when she assumed her post in May 2014.
He raised the following complaints that Terrado manipulated the income of the canteen since her assumption as principal in May 2014 and misused the funds; she did not allow the teachers to form a cooperative to manage the canteen; the absence of financial reports of the projects funded by the Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) of MNHS; no financial reports on the popularity contests and other income earning projects spearheaded by respondents; Terrado was not fair in giving teaching loads to faculty members as she gave lesser loads to teachers who were closed to her; she did not accept and act on the promotion papers of complainant and Ms. Rowena Dollente; Terrado did not allow the students to join the Division Schools Press Conference due to lack of funds and MNHS had no school paper upon her instruction; she did not support the projects of the student leaders like the program for Teacher’s Day; and the fire extinguishers are placed in the room of respondent and not in their proper places.

In June 7, 2017 the Ombudsman directly asked Terrado to file her counter affidavits to each of the complaints of Laxamana.
She said that it was the head of the TLE Department and not her who designated the teacher-in-charge of the canteen. The teacher who managed the canteens prepared a monthly “Report on Canteen Operation” which was audited by other teachers. These monthly reports were also filed with the Commission on Audit (COA) by the School Senior Bookkeeper; the canteen funds were not misused nor mismanaged. They were also never used for her personal benefit. They were used to finance activities that were related to or within the ambit of the enumerated items in DepEd Order No. 8, Series of 2007. The COA even approved it; it was the teachers themselves who did not want to pursue the formation of a cooperative due to the required documents to be submitted pursuant to Section 7.0 of DepEd Order No.8, Series of 2007. The DepEd Order also did not mandate that a school canteen be managed by a teachers’ cooperative; there were financial reports on projects funded by the MOOE of MNHS. These financial reports have been and continued to be published and posted in the Transparency Board located at the most conspicuous part of the Administrative Building; Terrado had no participation in the fund-raising activities for the construction of the school gym. The projects mentioned by complainant were project of the Parents-Teachers Community Association (PTCA), MAPEH teachers, Math Department and the MNHS teachers. The financial statements on the construction of the school gymnasium, signed and audited by the concerned teachers/officers, were only noted by her; the absence of school paper and non-participation to the Division School Press Conference were due to financial constraints. Pursuant to DepEd policies, no contributions were asked from the students for school years 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 for the school paper; and the fire extinguishers are located in strategic places of the school building.

On August 7, 2017 the parties submitted some of their positions that reiterated their accusation and defenses.
The Ombudsman ruled that Laxamana failed to prove that Terrado controlled the income of the two canteens and that the income from the canteens’ operations was used by the latter for her personal gain or benefit. Terrado had no direct control in the collection, deposit and withdrawal of their funds. Complainant also failed to prove that the canteen funds were devoted to any other endeavor not included in the guidelines prescribed by DepEd Order No. 8 Series of 2007.Laxamana was not able to establish that respondent refuse to form a teachers’ cooperative to manage the school canteen. No evidence was presented to show that the teachers complied with all the documentary requirements for the formation of a cooperative. Laxamana also failed to prove the distribution of teaching loads by respondent was inequitable like the teachers close to Terrado were given lesser teaching load than others. Respondent sufficiently explained that the mentors mentioned by Laxamana have ancillary duties and responsibilities in addition to their regular teaching loads, and that Section 13 of R.A 4670 (Magna Carta for Public School Teachers) was applied to all teachers, without distinction. Finally, complainant was not able to prove that Terrado refused to act on his and Ms. Dollente’s promotions despite their qualifications. The records show that there were no existing items for the positions they applied for.

Monday, December 18, 2017

KBP-Pangasinan chapter is nation’s best


DAGUPAN CITY - The Pangasinan chapter of the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster sa Pilipinas was recognized  as the best chapter in the Philippines. 

KBP President Herman Basbano and  Chairrman Ruperto Nicdao, Jr. led the awarding ceremony during the Incentive Program for 2016  held  at the Clark Freeport in Pampanga on November 16, 2017.

Mark Espinosa, chairman of KBP-Pangasinan Chapter  for 2017, received the award on behalf of the officers.

“We are very happy with this recognition and we will do our best to continue to be of utmost service through proper broadcasting and projects,” Espinosa said.

Espinosa said Pangasinan chapter  has been on the second spot for two straight years and for 2016, the chapter  officers are happy to be declared as number one or the ‘Best Chapter’

KBP-Pangasinan chapter  holds a weekly forum every Thursday in partnership with the Philippine Information Agency and Pangasinan media. Environmental awareness is also being implemented   with the project ‘Oplan Broadcastreeing.”  

It has also initiated projects such as ‘Ballet and Ballads' and Media Tours in partnership with other civic organizations. (VHS/PIA-Pangasinan)

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Dads to replace suspended P’gasinan Mayor, Veem

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

ASINGAN – A lady councilor here said that that the first top two elected municipal legislatures will replace temporarily the mayor and vice mayor here who were suspended for one year by the Ombudsman.
Councilor Evangeline Dorao cited that Councilor and Lawyer Joshua Viray and Councilor Mel Lopez will replace Mayor Heidee Chua and Vice Mayor Carlos Lopez, Jr. after the Ombudsman Conchita C. Morales issued a suspension order last October 13 against them.

She said the assumption of Viray and Lopez will take effect after the full implementation of the order by the Department of Interior & Local Government that according to an expert will take anytime from now.
“I was the only one to have the courage to write the Ombudsman and their indifference (Chua and Lopez) not to reply on my letters,” Dorao told this paper.
The issue according to Dorao was when the mayor and vice mayor of this Eastern Pangasinan town adorned last year with their names and pictures the ambulance bought by the local government unit (LGU).

The Royal House called Casa Real

CASA REAL – The almost restored Casa Real that imposes its grandeur at the poblacion area in Capital Town Lingayen, Pangasinan.
The monumental and stately P85 Million edifice’s renovation materializes because of the intercession of Pangasinan Second District Congressman Leopoldo Bataoil to look for funding from the Department of Public Works & Highway and Tourism Infrastructure Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA).
The solon said the completion of the former 1,480-square meter two-storey stone masonry and brick building will be finished next year.
The third and final phase waits for the remaining funding from TIEZA that would bankroll the perimeter fence, equipment, and other facilities.
Royal House is one of the grand government edifices that used to be the seat of the provincial government of the huge Pangasinan’s province during the Spanish Colonization. It was where the Alcalde Mayor or the Governor who acted also as the Judge of the Court of First Instance or the present Regional Trial Court. The National Historical Commission of the Philippines declared it as a National Landmark by citing its “outstanding and unique example of civil architecture from the Spanish and American colonial periods".
Upon its completion, Casa Real will be a museum for Pangasineneses and tourists to see the artifacts and mementos of the old Pangasinan province.

The almost restored to its old glory Casa Real (above photo) and the worn-out national landmark left to the elements.

Text and Photo by Mortz C. Ortigoza  

Yuletide's Greetings from Mayor CTQ and Wife Niña

"Maligayang Pasko at Manigong Bagong Taon, BALON BAYAMBANG! God Bless Us All" - Bayambang Mayor Cezar T. Quiambao and wife Mary Claire "Niña" José - Quiambao.

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Con warns people on hard jail life

                      Crime Does Not Pay

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

DAGUPAN CITY – A convicted cattle rustler in Pangasinan recalled the hardship of being a detainee at the jail here and the years he spent at the National Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa.
Jose de Guzman (not his real name) told Northern Watch Newspaper that aside from the skin diseases like galis (scabies) that afflicted him inside the Bureau of Jail, Management, & Penology (BJMP) here for his two years and two months detention, he slept squatting because the cement floor were filled with prisoners who lay like sardines because of congestion.
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HELL - The hellish existence of being a detainee in a Philippine prison.
Photo Credit: News.comau
The BJMP’s buildings have been occupied by more than one thousand inmates despite the capacity of the dormitories there to occupy 300 detainees.
“Tatlong tabo lang ng tubig ang puwedi mong gamitin sa kada araw na ligo mo doon?” De Guzman lamented.
He said after being convicted by the Regional Trial Court here he was sent to the national penitentiary in Muntinlupa to serve the between 10 ten years and more than 17 years of sentence meted to him.
He cited that punishment by leaders of convicts to a violent prisoner was harsh.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Gen.“Bato” visits Bay Area

By Gabriel Ortigoza
Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, chief of Philippine National Police and so far, the most popular general of the Philippines today, was the guest of honor at Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco Friday evening.
Philippine Center Kalayaan Hall was filled up with several Filipino-American civic organizations. Bay Area Fil-Am police officers came and look snappy on their uniform.
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Handling my book on leadership to Philippines
National Police's Director General
Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa.
Former mayor now Daly City council member Glenn Sylvester presented a plaque containing city ordinance which designates December 8th as General Ronald Dela Rosa Day.
On his acceptance speech, Gen. Dela Rosa thanked Glenn Sylvester and the city of Daly, which has about 30% Fil-Am population, for the recognition. The general offered his invitation for Glenn to visit the Philippines and he told the council member that he will direct the PNP to declare everyday as Glenn Sylvester Day.
Gen. Bato updated the Fil-Am organizations on the purpose of his US trip to Washington DC and the status of Philippine government’s war on drugs.
The general hinted drug lords and drug addicts are salivating for his mandatory retirement when he reached the age of 56 on January 21, 2018.
Photo-op followed after his speech. Everybody in the hall wanted to take photo with this famous and very accommodating general.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017


DAGUPAN CITY – This city has been conferred anew as finalist in the 2016 Presidential Award for Child-Friendly Municipalities and Cities by the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) during the Gawad Parangal held at the Rizal Hall in Malacañang Palace on December 12.
Mayor Belen T. Fernandez received the Plaque of Recognition for the city from Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Undersecretary and CWC Officer-in-Charge (OIC) Emmanuel Leyco, CWC Executive Director Mary Mitzi Cajayon-Uy, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Eduardo Año and Department of Health (DOH) Assistant Secretary Maria Francia Laxamana.
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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte graced the conferment ceremony.
This was the third time that Dagupan City was finalist in the Presidential Award for Child-Friendly Municipalities and Cities since 2014. As a finalist, the city received P50,000 from the CWC.
“It is with great measure of happiness, honor and satisfaction that I received this conferment in behalf of the children of Dagupan. Our children are our true source of indescribable joy, and it is compassion and care that drives us to work harder for them. We are self motivated to pursue plans, programs, policies and projects for children because we believe that a city that takes care of its children takes care of the future,” said Fernandez.
Fernandez disclosed that like other municipalities and cities, Dagupan is a great believer in the dreams of the children.
“When we plan our activities, when we pursue our programs, when we evaluate our goals and targets, when we reassess and honestly critique our assumptions and identify gaps in our strategies, we always put the best interest of our children in mind because as Eleanor Roosevelt said the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their (children) dreams,” she said. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Dec. 12, 2017)

Study says Sual power plant not causing water pollution

SUAL, Pangasinan – Recent monitoring activities conducted by water specialists on marine, groundwater and stream water around the Sual Coal-Fired Power Plant  show that water quality in the area continues to meet the standards set by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
The monitoring activities were conducted by AECOM Philippines, Inc. from April 25-26 and July 17, 2017.
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Sual Coal Power Plant runs by Team Energy in Sual, Pangasinan is the
 biggest power  plant in the country with its 1,218 megawatts energy

AECOM Philippines, Inc. is a subsidiary of AECOM International, which is listed in Fortune Magazine’s 500 richest companies and has branches in 150 countries.
The report submitted to the DENR Central Office last November 17  said that “water quality samples were collected from previously established monitoring stations consisting of nine marine water quality monitoring stations in Baquioen Bay and Pao Bay, four stream water quality monitoring stations in Lugulog River, and four groundwater quality monitoring stations located in Sitio Bangayao, Sitio Salumagui and Sitio Lugulog in Barangay Pangascasan where the power plant is located, and in Sitio Calupani in Barangay Capantolan here.
The sampling techniques used to collect the water samples were based on three guidelines:
1.       DENR Administrative Order No. 1990-34 or the Revised Water Usage and Classification/Water Quality Criteria

Monday, December 11, 2017

What constitutional amendments? Just change the PSA to draw investors

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

Sa Pilipinas meron ho tayong 2.76 million (January 2017 NEDA) na unemployed at 2.2 million na overseas foreign workers (OFWs) as of 2016 according to
Ilagay natin na kalahati sa OFWs na ito ay napilitan lamang magtrabaho abroad because of glaring unemployment problems dito sa Pinas. So, kung may pagkakataon na may trabaho dito, ay dito na nila pipiliin na mamalagi.
Image result for foreign direct investment
Photo Credit: The Southern Times
Siyempre, malapit sa pamilya at peace of mind kay mister na nasa abroad.
Why? Anak ng baka, mababantayan niya si misis sa lurking adulterous relationship sa kay kumpare na mukhang matagal ng may pagtitinginang malagkit ang dalawa sa isat-isa.
Sanamagan, that’s the social cost of working abroad!
So how can the government mediate for these unemployed and OFWs to have jobs in the country?
Singapore, Malaysia, and Vietnam took most of the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the ASEAN - 10 Region with U.S $77.83 Billion for the three of them while the Philippines got $7.93 Billion, according to the 2016 ASEAN Investment Report.
Our lethargic FDI figures happened because, one reason, our law dangles only 40% and even 30% for the foreign investors to control the capital of the corporation here while the Filipinos are given 60% and even 70% control of the business.
Sa media industry nga 100% Pinoy ownership, pero iyan ay nasa Constitution at hindi nakalagay sa Public Service Acts.
For decades this First Filipino Policy I called xenophobic or bias against foreigners deprive us with the presence of more FDIs where many of them even transferred, as a contract with the host country, their technological blue prints how they manufactured their products.
Have you seen air-conditioned buses plying the highways in the Philippines? Their brands are no longer Japanese’s Hino and Isuzu or South Korean’s Hyundai and Daewoo but those cheap but world classes Mainland China’s Yutong, Shenlong, and others.
Yes, the chink eyed Sinos not only snared more foreign investment but also chalked up how to make those products built by the Americans, Japanese, Germans, and others.
China is making now a commercial airline’s Comac C919 that would compete with American owned Boeing and selected European countries owned Airbus.
Thanks to transfer of technology if not cyber thievery the Chinese are famous, too he he he!
All-encompassing pala itong FDI’s hosting, kasi may employment na sa mga tao, magkaka industrialization pa sila.
Thanks to Representatives Gloria Arroyo, Arthur Yap, Joey Sarte-Salceda, Jose Christopher Belmonte, and Manuel Monsour Del Rosario (the last one a Taekwando champ but through God’s miracle turned into an economic solon) where last September 8, 2017 their combined four bills passed the third reading in the House of Representatives.
How about its counterpart in the Senate to complement it?
Here’s Senator Bam Aquino when I interviewed him about the amendment of the Public Service Acts in the Senate.
“Well, una meron po kaming bill na ina-amend iyong Public Service Act. Pinapaliitan na public service. I think iyong matitira lang po ay tubig at kuryente. Pero lahat ay iba gaya ng Telco, gaya po ng internet service dapat binubukas natin iyan sa mas maraming players.
Iyan ho ang isang paraan para gumanda ang serbisyo sa ating bayan para may kumpetisyon”.
Aquino said the amendment of the PSA is not the absolute silver bullet to solve our economic problems.
He cited that other problems that discourage investors to come to our shore are corruption, red tape, arduous requirements to get a franchise, and others.
“Kailangan ng telco sa Pilipinas, kailangan  mo pa dumaan sa  Kongreso e alam mo naman napakahirap na proseso iyan. Dadaan ka sa NTC. Naparaming permit magtayo ka ng power plant 300 signatures iyong kailangan, sino naman mahihikayat magtayo ng negosyo dito kung ganoon kahirap iyan?”.

The Senate version, a combination of five bills that are similar to the Lower House, talks about the amendment of the public utilities in the PSA.
These utilities are mentioned at Section 11 of Article 7 of the 1987 Constitution where the law says they could be amended, altered, or repealed by Congress.
So the anxiety about somebody questioning the amendment as unconstitutional to the Supreme Court has been answered by the provision at Section 11 that says in part: “Neither shall any such franchise or right be granted except under the condition that it shall be subject to amendment, alteration, or repeal by the Congress when the common good so requires”.
According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) among the 104 countries including the Philippines the five most-affected industries in competition are transportation, media, electricity, telecommunications and mining, oil and gas.

Hinihimay ko dito ang pag pasa ng Congress ng
 batas kung paano magka trabaho ang 3 million 
unemployed at paano padamihin ang foreign
 investors para bumalik na ang mga OFWs.
Mabagal kasi ang pagpasok ng Foreign Direct
 Investment dito sa Pinas versus sa Singapore,
 Malaysia, Vietnam, others

Three of these industries, transportation, electricity and telecommunications are considered “public utilities” in the Philippines.

The old Commonwealth Act No. 146 or known as Public Service Acts restricts the ownership of public utilities. It is the reason that discourages foreign investors to come to our country and instead go to Thailand, Singapore, China, and Vietnam where they can own up to 100% of the capital and the control of the board of directors.
Commonwealth Act No. 146 or famously known as Public Service Acts covers the following public utilities:
“…any common carrier, railroad, street railway, traction railway, sub-way motor vehicle, either for freight or passenger, or both with or without fixed route and whether may be its classification, freight or carrier service of any class, express service, steamboat or steamship line, pontines, ferries, and water craft, engaged in the transportation of passengers or freight or both, shipyard, marine railways, marine repair shop, [warehouse] wharf or dock, ice plant, ice-refrigeration plant, canal, irrigation system, gas, electric light, heat and power water supply and power, petroleum, sewerage system, wire or wireless communications system, wire or wireless broadcasting stations and other similar public services”.
This lengthy coverage of the public utilities in Acts No. 146 have been chopped and replaced by House Bills 5828 limiting its coverage with the clause “person that operates, manages, and controls the distribution and transmission of electricity, and water pipeline distribution system or sewerage pipeline system for public purpose” where Filipinos could still continue to control 60% of the corporation.
That House Bill 5828 has hurdled the third reading last Sept. 8, 2017.
Meanwhile, five bills have been filed in the Senate which also seeks to amend the Public Service Act.
If the Senate version can pass the third reading, say, March next year, the Bicameral Committee of Congress approved it by June 2018, and the pro-foreign investors' President Rodrigo Duterte signs it into law by August, we can have that FDI friendly come- on statute in the last quarter of next year.
Surely that policy could solve our unemployment and mitigate the mass exodus of our people abroad where many of them are maltreated and sexually abused by their employers in the Middle East.
Can you imagine the benefits the travelers derive if more players in the aviation industry to compete with Philippine Air Lines and Cebu Pacific whose delayed flights become a regular bane to commuters? Can you imagine investor for power plants come in droves thus decreasing the prices of electricity here that are bane too with other investors?
Isa po ang Pinas sa may pinakamahal na kuryente sa mundo.

Sa article “Philippines Has 5th Highest Cost of Electricity in the World” it says:
No wonder even Filipino Chinese tycoons are moving out of the Philippines to put up their factories in China, where electricity rates are nearly a third of the Philippines. Have you noticed that even shampoos and toothpaste are now made in Thailand and Indonesia? Electricity in Thailand costs nearly half that of what it costs in the PH, in the cost of electricity in Indonesia is only a fifth! (Manila Times)”.
Of course the migration of big time traders in the Philippines to China is no longer feasible because as what business mogul Cezar Quimbao told me the minimum wage in the urban areas in China is P1,350 a day presently while Manila is P512 for non-agriculture worker.
But nobody rejoiced in the Philippines. Filipino and foreign investors relocated instead to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos because the minimum wage there is P200 a day and a businessman or corporation can owned the business 100%.

But with more public utilities in the Philippines liberally owned by investors and with the government curbing corruption and the taxing requirements a businessman has to undergo to get a franchise, the economic landscape in our country would not only be a threat to the ASEAN 10 but to the world in the snaring game of FDI.

(You can read my selected columns at and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at