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Cagayan de Oro City News

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Cagayan de Oro - Archived News

Cagayan de oro city river.jpg
Aerial View of Cagayan de Oro City

Contents

4 airline passengers from northern Mindanao cleared of MERS

By Bobby Lagsa

Inquirer Mindanao

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines—Four of six persons from Northern Mindanao who returned to the country on an Etihad Airways plane that carried a Filipino nurse who had tested positive for the Corona virus that causes the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome have tested negative for the dreaded virus, health officials said. Dr. Adriano Subaan, assistant director of the Department of Health’s regional office in Northern Mindanao, said the four cleared residents were among five Etihad passengers the authorities had managed to “isolate” for MERS-CoV testing. Subaan said health authorities obtained specimens from the five passengers and had these tested at the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Manila. He said the results came in on April 22 and four of those tested were negative for the virus behind the killer respiratory disease first discovered in Saudi Arabia in 2012. “They were discharged the following day,” Subaan said. Subaan said the result of the laboratory test on the fifth passenger has yet to be transmitted by the RITM to the regional DOH office. He said a sixth Etihad passenger from Northern Mindanao had not been taken into DOH custody for isolation because that person had left for Ilocos Norte. “We have made communication to the DOH in Ilocos to trace the sixth passenger,” Subaan said. Subaan declined to identify any of the passengers. The massive effort to locate returning Filipinos from the United Arab Emirates via Etihad Airways Flight No. EY 0424 was launched nationwide last week after it was learned that among the passengers was a male nurse who had tested positive for MERS-CoV. This passenger has since emerged negative for the virus after two tests conducted by the RITM. Subaan said there were also other residents of Northern Mindanao who recently returned from the Middle East and had voluntarily submitted themselves for testing. “They were not on the same flight, but said they wanted to be tested for fear of infection. So far all of them are negative,” Subaan said.


WORM’S EYEVIEW: The Pathetic State of Our Democracy

By Manny Valdehuesa

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews/23 April) — It’s really too bad that we’ve passed up so many opportunities to entrench the democratic spirit and institutionalize democratic habits and practices in our society, especially at grassroots level, and more so in Mindanao.

Had our leaders and putative shakers taken this task seriously ever since the formal recognition of our independence in 1946, by now we would perhaps have become the exemplars of the democratic system in the developing world, perhaps even be a developed and more progressive nation.

We’ve had so many elections, inaugurated freedom and independence countless times, held numberless rituals extolling democracy; but for lack of vision, leadership, political will, and sustained affirmative action to institutionalize them we’re still stuck on trial-and-error mode.

Like the legend of Sisyphus, we’re ever trying to scale the heights, backslide to starting point, and back to dreaming.

The biggest opportunity we fumbled was EDSA ‘86 and the post-Martial Law period. It awakened such primal instincts in us to excel, individually and collectively, to become a beacon to peoples yearning for freedom and good governance. We even sponsored the first-ever Conference of Newly-Restored Democracies, with President Cory no less as keynote speaker.

Alas, it turned out to be ningas cogon, a pentecostal outpouring as fleeting as the weekend it took to hold it. It could have been the perfect opportunity to start over. Flush with the spectacular success of EDSA, we could have seized the day, refocused the beam of democracy, and marched resolutely to the Promised Land of a people-powered, democratic, and progressive polity.

But we naively left the task of harnessing the societal fervor to the Yellow Forces; we actually expected heroic performance from them, cleansing our system, banishing the excesses of the past from it. Trustingly, we relegated to them the task of building a righteous and just government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

But no such heroics took place; a pity, because, drunk with heady optimism then, even rabid ambition moved most everyone to gamble on a new dispensation to the extent of subordinating ego for the common good.

At the time, you could feel the fervor and the patriotism surge through the many triumphal gatherings and parties held among former street parliamentarians here and abroad. It was exemplified in the bonhomie that characterized post-EDSA camaraderie among far-left, far-right, and middle forces who congregated to celebrate. You would bump into the likes of Jose Ma. Sison, Bernabe Buscayno, Linggoy Alcuaz, Nelia Sancho, Charles Avila, Victor Corpus, Cesar Arellano, Steve Psinakis, among others; and even Norberto Gonzales, Nur Misuari, Nikki Coseteng, Parouk Hussin, Jun Magsaysay, Raul Manglapus, Joe Concepcion, even Doy and Celia Laurel, and so on.

But, I guess, “once-an-oligarch, always-an-oligarch” unless there is massive and determined vigilance by people with a keen sense of sovereignty.

No sooner did the celebrations cease than swarms of oligarchs and political entrepreneurs descended upon Malacañang and Congress and the rest of the bureaucracy. What we thought was the restoration of democracy and the rise of idealism and statesmanship morphed into what turned out to be a retaking of privilege: a reinstatement of the sense of entitlement among the already wealthy and privileged.

The reign of greed and dynasty and money reasserted itself and took advantage of the unguarded triumphal euphoria. What privilege or advantage Martial Law had snatched from the inheritors of the cacique system reverted to those that previously held the monopoly.

So it is not surprising that basically the same faces, the same dynasties, and the same spirit of acquisitiveness and cupidity in Marcos’s “New Society” would return, recover previous advantages, and ultimately dominate as they do today.

One need not look beyond the laughable party system to understand how bastardized politics has become. Except for the mountain-bound Communist claque, no group claiming to be a party exists today except in the minds and pockets of their putative leaders. The so-called United Nationalist Alliance, for example, is not really a political party, as are the Liberal and Nacionalista “parties”—which are basically the personal vehicles of their patrons and financiers.

It’s a pathetic political situation given the presence of so qualified, experienced people in academe, the professions, and countless civil society groups.

Actually it is they who failed to take the cue; it is they and their institutions that failed our society. Somehow they forgot that to be able to act effectively in a democracy, citizens must address social problems with social solutions, political problems with political solutions, and disorganization with organized approaches by organized individuals.

But they left the task of conceptualizing and mobilizing a new structure and system for post-EDSA society to the melee of a free-for-all laissez faire competition. This ensured that only the most aggressive and entrepreneurial of politicos would prevail and dominate, effectively turning politics and democracy into a transactional arena.

DPWH bares ongoing infra projects in CdeO

By pia.gov.ph

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 22 – The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH-10) submitted to the City Council committee on public works the list of projects being implemented in the city as of March 2014.

Based on the status report submitted by Officer In Charge-Assistant Regional Director Efren Berba, ongoing projects are: paved to paved access road leading to Dao Heritage Tree and Mapawa Nature Park in Cugman, gravel to paved construction of coastal road including road right-of-way, road opening construction of coastal road.

The list includes the construction of flood control works (flood wall) along Cagayan de Oro River (Cathedral Section), retrofitting/rehabilitation/strengthening J.R. Borja Bridge and widening of Sayre Highway, Puerto-Alae Section including road right-of-way.

Meanwhile, the gravel to paved road concreting and improvement of the drainage structure along Berjaya Resettlement Area Phase II in Camaman-an is already complete, according to the report.

According to the DPWH official, the submission of the report to the committee is in line with the agency’s policy of close collaboration and coordination with the city government. (JBD/CdeOSP/PIA) - See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/index.php?article=1461398136336#sthash.IiPaYufk.dpuf

PNP strengthens security preparation for Lent

By Kierra Rubillos

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 21 (PIA) — The Police Regional Office (PRO), region 10, heightened its security alerts for the long vacation during the Lenten season on April 17-20, this year.

All provincial and city directors were ordered to check and supervise their respective security preparations and plans, said Police Chief Superintendent Isagani F Genabe, Jr., PRO-10 Director.

In line with this, 176 motorist assistance desks and 217 police assistance centers across northern Mindanao were created in coordination with local government units (LGUs) and barangay security officials to ensure security of local and foreign motorists and commuters.

The different police units were also directed to team up with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for joint police and military checkpoints on all public places such as churches, bus terminals, sea and air ports, markets, malls and beaches.

According to PCSupt Genabe, this is pursuant to its vision for a safer region to live, invest, visit and work. (KMR/PIA) - See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/index.php?article=1461398051512#sthash.7PCSMasr.dpuf

Permit Monitoring

By Camcer Ordoñez Imam

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – The Joint Inspection Team (JIT) of this city will start monitoring the compliance of business permits and licensing requirements on April 22. The inspections will be conducted Tuesdays and Thursdays, starting with newly-registered businesses operating in the city’s urban villages. The JIT was created by City Mayor Oscar Moreno, in compliance with Joint Memorandum Circular No. 01, Series of 2010, issued by the Department of the Interior and Local Government, and the Department of Trade and Industry. “This is nothing new,” the mayor said, adding that the joint circular provides guidelines in the implementation of standards in processing business permits and licenses in all cities and municipalities. (Camcer Ordoñez Imam)

DTI-MisOr launches four shared service facility projects

By SHARMAINE CARIÑO

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 19 (PIA) -- Four Shared Service Facility (SSF) projects of the Department of Trade and Industry - Misamis Oriental (DTI-MOR) were launched recently to give Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) here and in the province access to better technology and more sophisticated equipment.

Through a signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), projects were granted to Talisay Romblon Products Producers Association on Technology Upgrading for Misamis Oriental Banig Weavers; Sannicolandia Weavers Association on Acquisition of Equipment for Bayong and Banig Production; Kimaya People’s Multi Purpose Cooperative (KIPEMCO) on SSF on Bottled Spanish Sardines, Differently-abled Women Network (DAWN) with Tailoring Livelihood Project for Women with Disabilities.

SSF is a livelihood assistance program that intends to give Micro Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) access to better technology and more sophisticated equipment for marketable production and competitiveness acceleration.

“The SSF project is envisioned to assist most of the 81, 221 SMEs with high potential to expand and it will generate an additional 200,000 jobs in various locations of the country,” said Ma. Eliza A. Pabillore, Provincial Director of DTI-MOR.

The project was implemented with the cooperation of government line agencies, the academe, the local government units and private organizations. (SIC/PIA10)

Lawmakers seek regulation of gun replicas

By Dennis Carcamo


MANILA, Philippines - Two Mindanao-based legislators have filed a bill in Congress, seeking to regulate the importation, manufacture, sale, use and transport of airsoft rifles and pistols for public security and safety.

Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, principal of House Bill 3805 or the "Airsoft Imitation Firearm Law," said Letter of Instruction 1264 signed by former President Ferdinand Marcos in 1982 bans the import, sale and public display of gun replicas.

However, he said purchase of airsoft guns and the movements of airsoft players are largely untouched by the government, with only a few confiscated shipments marring that record.

"No direct regulations have been placed on the airsoft community and players of all ages and background are welcomed to play," Rodriguez said.

He said his proposal provides that it is the declared State policy to protect the public from harm due to the unregulated manufacture, sale, use and transport of any toy look-alike or imitation firearm.

Last March, Philippine National Police chief, Director General Alan Purisima said under Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulations Act, toy guns and replica firearms are subject for confiscation by authorities.

Headlines ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 His warning came amid complaints that toy guns and replica firearms are sometimes being used by criminals, especially armed robbers, on their victims.

Purisima warned criminals and other persons who will use imitation firearms in committing crimes that they may be imprisoned for violation of RA 10591.

The PNP-Firearms and Explosives Office meanwhile stressed that even a homemade revolver called the "paltik" can be considered an imitation firearm along with toy guns and airsoft guns, hence they are covered by the rules on intellectual property rights.

Rodriguez said organized airsoft started in the country in 1985, and interest in the hobby had gone up and down several times over the past 20 years.

"The airsoft gaming community initially conducted their games in secrecy, but in recent years has reached the mainstream due to the tremendous surge of newbies, owing to the advent of cheap China-made airsoft guns," said Rodriguez.

House Bill 3805, co-authored by Abante Mindanao partylist Rep. Maximo Rodriguez, provides that an airsoft rifle or pistol includes battery operated, spring and gas type powered rifle or pistol which discharge plastic pellets only as bullets or ammunition.

It differs from replica as the latter does not fire plastic pellet with very low projectile velocity.

The bill also provides that an airsoft rifle or pistol, a special type of air gun, shall be used in sporting activities such as war games stimulation only.

All airsoft rifles or pistols shall not exceed 550 feet per second velocity using .20-gram pellets. An airsoft rifle or pistol exceeding the said limit shall not be eligible for registration.

It also provides that all natural and juridical persons who intend to manufacture, import or sell airsoft rifles or pistols shall apply for permit from the Department of Trade and Industry and shall be registered with the PNP.

There shall be a distinctive marking for airsoft rifle or pistol as an integral part, a permanently affixed blaze orange or red pulp in its barrel. Such mark shall be at the tip of the muzzle not less than 6.35 centimeters in length.

Upon the one-time registration with the PNP for those airsoft rifles or pistols with no serial numbers, a barcode sticker bearing a permanently assigned unique serial number shall be affixed on a conspicuous part of the airsoft rifles or pistols.

The barcode sticker shall remain valid for the lifetime of the gun. Those airsoft rifles or pistols with existing serial numbers shall be registered using their individually affixed serial numbers. Airsoft riles or pistols shall be painted with bright red or orange color on their tip, the bill provides.

Any person registering an airsoft rifle or pistol must not be below 18 years old and must be a bonafide member of a duly accredited airsoft club. Airsoft teams or clubs shall seek accreditation with the PNP.

Each airsoft club shall have a minimum of 10 registered owners of airsoft rifle or pistol, who shall be local residents, and shall abide by the Code of Conduct, Safety and Rules of Engagement for Games which shall be formulated by a National Airsoft Association for airsoft players and shall be applicable and binding upon all, during games.

Prior to the use of a particular area as airsoft game site, the operator or duly authorized person in charge of the proposed airsoft game site shall inform in writing the Chief of Police who has jurisdiction over the said area for the conduct of any game, simulation, shooting competition or exhibition of airsoft rifles or pistols. When located in populated areas the game site must be enclosed and secure from public view. Furthermore, no person below 18 years old shall be allowed inside the game site.

The bill also requires authorized dealers of airsoft rifles or pistols to secure the necessary permits prior to the conduct of a show or exhibition.

The DTI in coordination with the PNP and other concerned government agencies shall promulgate the necessary implementing rules and regulations within 90 days after the enactment of the proposed Act.

Any person or entity found to have violated provisions of the proposed Act shall be liable to a fine of not less than P100,000 or an imprisonment of not less than six months, or both at the discretion of the court, the bill provides.

City jail violates BJMP memo

By Jigger J. Jerusalem

A GOVERNMENT agency that was denied entry inside the jail in Cagayan de Oro City to verify the incident of a hunger strike staged by the inmates, accused the jail warden for defying a memorandum which allows the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to get access to the prisoners.

Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro obtained a copy of the memo, dated September 16, 2009, addressed to all Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) regional directors and was signed by Rosendo Dial, then BJMP chief, who guaranteed that CHR personnel should have access to the prison complex.

“… the Commission on Human Rights has visitorial powers over jails, prisons, or detention facilities and their personnel, therefore, are authorized to visit our jails to look into the human rights conditions of our inmates and should not be barred from visiting our jails and interviewing inmates upon presentation of proper identification papers and a valid Mission Order from their superior,” the memo reads.

“Clearance from this Office or from the Regional Director of the Jail Provincial is not a requirement for allowing them to visit and they should be given immediate access inside our facilities subject to the usual security procedures during their visits,” it added.

The memo furthered that “barring the CHR staff from visiting our facilities is unconstitutional and could subject our personnel to administrative and/or possible criminal actions.”

More than a hundred of inmates of the Cagayan de Oro City jail staged a hunger strike Monday morning to demand response from city jail officials on their concerns. Read the related story here.

Victorio Aleria Jr., CHR-Northern Mindanao supervising investigator, said that when he and a co-worker visited the city jail at Barangay Lumbia on Monday, they were not permitted to enter the area where the members of the BM 29 group are confined.

In a previous interview, Jail Superintendent Erwin Kenny Ronquillo, city jail warden, said Alleria and his companion were not allowed access to the BM 29 block due to security reasons, owing to the brewing tension on Monday when the inmates held a hunger strike to air their demands.

Aleria said CHR should have been allowed to enter the prison complex where the BM 29 gang members are living so that they could see firsthand the real situation inside the facility.

Before they could make a followup visit to the city jail, Aleria said they received information that nine of the BM 29 leaders were transferred to the Gingoog city jail Monday night.

In a text message sent to Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro Wednesday afternoon, Ronquillo has confirmed the transfer of the BM 29 leaders.

Ronquillo said the BM 29 group was complaining about the food, water and visitation privileges.

Except for the visitation arrangements where the BM 29 inmates demanded that their children could enter their section, Ronquillo said the prisoners’ issues were properly addressed.

Aleria said the warden could have ordered escorts for the CHR officials so they could interview the members of the BM 29 and discuss their grievances without danger of harm or violence from the inmates.

He said it was the BM 29 members who informed the CHR through text messages of their complaints.

This was also confirmed when the jail guards confiscated cellphone units from the BM 29 inmates.

Aleria said how a cellphone could be obtained by a prisoner was through a visitor, a jail keeper or a trustee, an inmate who’s given permission to go in and out of the prison compound.

He added there was really nothing to fear if the jail guards have conducted regular inspections then all forms of weapons would have been confiscated from the inmates.

The recent situation at the city jail paled in comparison in the past few years where violence inside the prison was rampant and where an inmate was even killed and buried inside the jail complex, Aleria said.

When asked if he would lodge a complaint before the BJMP regional office in Northern Mindanao against Ronquillo for disallowing them entry to the BM 29 compound, Aleria in a text message Wednesday said, “We are still looking at the implications and weighing things down.”

Aleria said there is really no need to inform or remind Ronquillo of the BJMP memo since jail keepers are expected to know about it.

CAAP corrects safety issues, gets upgrade from FAA

By Jasper Marie Oblina-Rucat


CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 16 (PIA) – The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) has taken a notch higher after receiving a Category 1 status of civil aviation safety by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Laguindingan Airport Area Manager, Jose Budiongan said in a phone interview that “Category 1 means that we are no longer restricted and additional routes to the United States are granted. When we were in Category 2, we were restricted because we had a lot of safety issues and concerns.”

He said that with Category 1 status, we are elevated and at par with developed countries in terms of compliance to the standard set by International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

He added that this level up status is a result of collective efforts of the entire CAAP team in the country.

Meanwhile, Department of Tourism Region 10 Director Catalino Chan III said that this upgraded status gives the country a good chance of getting more tourists from American communities. He said that America is the second largest country including balikbayans who come to the Philippines.

He added that DOT may have to come up with more marketing directions like take home a friend, wherein when balikbayans can also invite a friend to come, when they plan to come home. This will benefit not only the Philippine Airlines, but also other airline companies since we are upgraded to be safe.

He said this could potentially surpass the requirement of the percentage increase for tourists who come to the Philippines and even Cagayan de Oro.

After seven years, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has finally upgraded the country’s civil aviation status from Category 2 to Category 1, enabling Philippine air carriers to open new direct flights to the US.

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) of the UN officially lifted the significant safety concerns it had earlier cited as requiring urgent solutions from the government. The ICAO cited the Philippines’ “active commitment” and “positive response” in international efforts to upgrade standards in aviation safety.

The ICAO sent an audit team to the Philippines last month to conduct a validation mission of the corrective actions undertaken by CAAP that had been identified by the UN specialized agency as necessary in securing the nod of approval of the international aviation community.

Philippine air carriers can now fly to the United States with additional routes to the East Coast. (JMOR/PIA10)

PRO-10 heightens operations against criminalities

By Kierra M. Rubillos


CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 15 (PIA)—The Police Regional Office (PRO)-10 directed anew all its city and provincial units to do operations against all forms of criminality.

According to Police Chief Superintendent Isagani F. Genabe, Jr., PRO-10 regional director, the movement is part of the thrust of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in serving and protection the society.

Further, he said this is at par with PNP’s strategic focus named Competence Organizational Discipline Excellence Development-Professionalism or “CODE-P: 2013 and Beyond.”

With this, from April 4 to 11, PRO-10 was able to conduct 10 operations on illegal drugs, confiscating 750.37 grams of Methamphetamine hydrochloride with an amount approximating to P5,254,644.00, so with two sticks and one stalk of Marijuana dried leaves.

Four operations on illegal gambling were done which resulted in the arrest of six persons, confiscating items worth P91,594.00.

For carnapping, two operations were conducted, arresting two persons.

Five operations were also conducted with eight persons arrested with loose firearms and five weapons confiscated.

For wanted persons, 27 operations were conducted by virtue of Warrant of Arrest, arresting 25 persons.

Also, PRO-10 honored four officers serving as members of the Regional Chaplain Service 10, initiating the Basic Bible Seminar on workers from Regional Headquarters, Provincial Police Office (PPOs)/City Police Office (CPOs), retirees and civilian parishioners at Saint Ignatius de Loyola Chapel on April 3 this year.

The four officers were: PSupt Joel B Barallas, SPO1 Luvimin A Bangis, PO1 Genis C Novo, and PO1 Jonathan E Adaza. (KMR/PIA)


Hiring of nurses for Dubai, Saudi on-going at DOLE-10 office

By pia.gov.ph

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 14 – The Skills International Co. Inc. with POEA License Number 020-LB-013112-R is recruiting 100 to 200 staff nurses, senior nurses and charge nurses for Dubai and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with minimum salary of $2,200 per month.

Applicants should have at least three years minimum experience in tertiary hospitals.

Qualified applicants will be posted at Dubai Health Authority in UAE, King Fahd Armed Forces Hospital and Prince Sultan Military Medical City in Saudi Arabia.

Interested applicants are advised to personally submit, from April 14-16, their application letters resumes at Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Regional Office 10, Monte Carlo Building, Phase 1, RER Drive Subdivision, Kauswagan Highway, this city. (DOLE-10)

Syndicate eyed behind illegal logging in Oro

By Jigger J. Jerusalem


A WELL-ENTRENCHED syndicate may be behind the rampant illegal logging activities in the city’s upland villages, said the head of the City Local Environment and Natural Resources Office (Clenro) in Cagayan de Oro City.

Edwin Dael, Clenro chief, said the logging syndicate involves a financier who bankrolls the operations, an insider at the environment office who can tamper a permit for the transportation of logs, and village residents who are paid a measly amount to do the cutting of trees.

‘Dansolihon-Talakag’ connection

In an intelligence report Dael received, the group behind this is known as the “Dansolihon-Talakag connection” that he suspects to be responsible for threatening him and his fellow Clenro workers for their anti-logging efforts.

“We are slowly piecing together the events so we can get to the bottom of this,” Dael told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro by phone Sunday afternoon.

Dael has a list of the persons behind these illegal logging operations but he could not yet release it to the media pending further investigation and verification.

He is certain that the transporting of illegally cut lumber using a “recycled” permit that can pass through the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (Cenro) checkpoint in Barangay Lumbia without question is the handiwork of a syndicate.

But to further prove and eventually uncover the activities of this syndicate, Dael said he has to dig deeper and do more investigating.

Dael and city councilor Zaldy Ocon, chairman of the City Council’s environment and natural resources committee, are set to conduct an ocular inspection in the next few days to substantiate the report that cut logs equivalent to 30 truckloads lying by the roadside in Barangay Tignapoloan are ready to be transported.

Dael would present his findings to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Northern Mindanao (DENR-10) regional executive director Ruth Tawantawan, specifically on the allegation that a legitimate permit is being tampered and used again to transport illegally cut logs.

He said he is wondering why the loggers could get away with the transporting of the cut lumber using a tampered permit.

“We will prove that there are permits which are recycled,” he said.

A recycled permit is actually a legal piece of paper issued by the Cenro in Talakag, Bukidnon to people who cut trees in DENR-approved areas under the Community-Based Forest Management (CBFM) scheme in Talakag, Dael said.

The permit only becomes illegal when it is used again to transport cut lumber that did not come from Talakag but from Cagayan de Oro.

Dael added that for a fee, a permit could be manipulated to make it look like nothing has been tampered with in the details.

But, he said, the discrepancy shows when the information contained on the permit does not coincide with the actual cargo. Dael said this (discrepancy) is the reason why they had been successful in confiscating illegally transported logs.

Aside from that, Dael will also ask DENR-10 to find out what happened to one of the confiscated two trucks filled with cut lumber that went missing which allegedly came from Pigsag-an.

To his knowledge, Dael said there are no more big trees in Pigsag-an. “Our suspicion is that those logs came from [Barangay] Tumpagon,” he said.

Dael also heard reports that some members of the Indigenous People (IP) communities in the city’s mountain villages are being hired by the syndicate to cut the forest trees.

He said these people are paid for every tree cut to haul them to pick-up areas.

These local residents are doing the hard labor and yet they are paid a measly fee.

“They (lumad) live on a ‘hand-to-mouth’ existence. The money they earned from illegal logging has not improved their lives,” he added.

Bill seeks to exempt foreign aid from VAT

By John Carlo Cahinhinan

A BILL has been filed in the House of Representatives, which seeks to exempt from value-added tax (VAT) all donated imported goods for medical and education, humanitarian relief and similar purposes.

Cagayan de Oro City Representative Rufus Rodriguez said that House Bill 4054 will exempt donated goods from VAT and the entry and distribution of donations for the benefit of the less fortunate will be facilitated.

"It is thus proposed that donated items or goods from foreign donors which are for the non-profit, charitable, medical, educational, humanitarian, relief purposes for the benefit of the poor and needy should be VAT-exempt," said Rodriguez.

He cited that Section 107 of the National International Revenue Code provides that there shall be levied, assessed and collected on every importation of goods a VAT equivalent to 10 percent based on the total value used by the Bureau of Customs in determining tariff and customs duties plus customs duties, excise taxes, if any, other charges, such tax to be paid by the importer prior to the release of such goods from customs custody.

Rodriguez said the NIRC further provides that where the customs duties are determined on the basis of the quantity or volume of the goods and the VAT shall be based on the landed cost plus excise taxes.

"Donated items or goods from donors abroad which are for non-profit, charitable, medical, educational, humanitarian and relief purposes shall be exempt from VAT under this provision," the bill stated.

The bill also stated those subject to exemption of import duties under the Tariff and Customs Code shall likewise be exempt from the VAT payment

“Those donations or food, medicine and equipment for use in the government relief and rehabilitation programs for calamity affected areas as mandated in Presidential Memorandum Order No. 36 Series of 1992, which have been approved for exemption from import duties, shall likewise be VAT-exempt," the bill stated. (Sunnex)


City equips journalists, broadcasters on calamity protocols

By Kierra Rubillos

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, April 11 (PIA) — In order to provide more accurate information in times of disasters, the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC) and City Information Office (CIO) of Cagayan de Oro city government conducted a media orientation on disaster strategies and protocols at the CDRRMC office on April 8.

This is to provide the press people an idea and common understanding on how the devices/facilities work at the CDRRMC operation center including pertinent information on weather coverage, said Maricel Casiño-Rivera, CIO chief.

Underscoring the importance on disaster preparedness, CDRRM Officer Col. Mario Verner Monsanto (ret) said it is our responsibility, as government, to educate our reporters especially on early warning system.

For his part, CDRRMC weather specialist Virgil Lago discussed the council’s methods and principles in preparation for any future disaster.

Lago also tackled about their sources (national/local) of weather information, as well as their communication and evacuation protocols.

The press people also observed how the CDRRMC checks on the weather conditions of the city through their monitoring systems, so with the Automatic Rainfall Warning System and Automated Weather Station.

“We don’t want to create panic, we just want the people to be prepared,” said Col. Monsanto, as he stressed on the value of preparedness towards any calamity. (Kierra Rubillos/PIA) - See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/index.php?article=1461397206826#sthash.L0LX5Y20.dpuf

Cagayan de Oro Archived News

The older news reports are kept here.

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