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Angeles City News December 2014

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Herbal remedies for diabetes.JPG
How to get the best out of the Malunggay
Moringa (Malungay) leaves compared to common foods
Values per 100gm. edible portion
Nutrient Moringa Leaves Other Foods
Vitamin A 6780 mcg Carrots: 1890 mcg
Vitamin C 220 mg Oranges: 30 mg
Calcium 440 mg Cow's milk: 120 mg
Potassium 259 mg Bananas: 88 mg
Protein 6.7 gm Cow's milk: 3.2 gm
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Angeles City Catholic Church
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Sacrifice of the faithfuls by crucifying themselves.
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A Barangay Clearance is NEEDED in order to get a Business License.
So why is the barangay name not in most business addresses?
Ask your Barangay Captain/Chairman to create a Resolution to make it mandatory to put the barangay name in all Business addresses.

Contents

PGKM wants educated professional politicians in government

By Ashley Manabat

ANGELES CITY – After advocating for a minimum educational requirement for politicians in order to eliminate incompetent and inept public officials, the Pinoy Gumising Ka Movement (PGKM) is now contemplating on pushing for a law that for the next 50 years only those qualified can be voted in public office.

The PGKM said a 50-year experimental period should be made into a law that only qualified candidates can be voted into public office in order to professionalize governance.

“Botu tala pamu detang megaral (Let’s vote for those who finished their studies),”said PGKM Chair Ruperto Cruz. The law should also allow those who lack college education to finish their courses, he added.

“Atin lang time magaral detang e megaral (Those who did not finish their studies should now have time to study),” he said. In the meantime, let’s weed out the corrupt public officials, he added.

Cruz said this is a challenge to Congress to enact a law that would professionalize politicians and finally set our course on the right path to good governance. “Anya mesira ya ing Pilipinas (The Philippines was ruined) because of the kind of politicians that we have.

They tailored fit everything to their advantage because of their greed,” Cruz said. Meanwhile, Cruz said the PGKM also supports the plan of Senator Miriam Santiago that only taxpayers should be allowed to vote.

Why should Filipinos trust their future to persons who don’t even participate in nation building (referring to non-taxpayers)? Santiago asked. How come corporations promote their employees based on the merit of their studies? Why not government? Cruz asked.

“We should level up now,” he added. Earlier, Cruz said thePGKM is advocating a bill that will require politicians to hurdle a set of criteria or standards in order to be qualified for election into public office.

Cruz said incompetent public officials who know nothing about governance usually resort to corruption. He said unqualified public officials get themselves elected only to advance their selfish interests.

However, Cruz said even if the public official’s intention is noble, his lack of educational background and knowledge in governance will most likely also result in “a weak leadership that promotes poor economic policies resulting to unequal distribution of wealth PGKM wants educated professional politicians in government and poor educational policies that contribute to the unemployment problem and promote social injustice.”

Cruz said public officials should not only be competent and knowledgeable in governance but should also be good managers. But if a public official lacks even the most basic educational qualification, then his constituents will surely suffer because of his ineptitude.

Cruz said the electorate should be shielded from merely popular candidates. Blood relations or through consanguinity to an incumbent public official should not be the key to holding public office, he added.

Angeles village chief portrays Rizal at hero’s 118th martyrdom rites

By Joey Pavia (Contributor)

MANILA – A barangay captain of Angeles City portrayed Jose Rizal for the fifth straight year on Tuesday during the commemoration of the 118th martyrdom anniversary of the national hero who was executed here on December 30, 1896.

Salapungan Barangay Captain Reynaldo “Rey” Malig said “I am deeply honored to play the role of Rizal as proud member of the Order of the Knights of Rizal (OKOR).”

“The Knights of Rizal led by our past and present leaders made it a point to commemorate the execution of our national hero to remind us of his martyrdom and love for the Filipino people,” said Malig.

Businessman Reghis Romero II, immediate past Supreme Commander of the OKOR and native of Angeles City, used to portray the role of the Rizal before Malig first played the same role in 2010.

Romero said the OKOR “has been reminding the members of the group and the rest of the Filipinos to contribute to nation building.”

OKOR Supreme Commander Jeremias “Jerry” Singson joined Romero, Malig and other OKOR officials at the start of the ceremony at the Fort Santiago in Intramuros.

At 5:30 a.m., Malig started to walk from Fort Santiago, where Rizal was jailed before his execution by Filipino soldiers of the Spanish Army 118 years ago. He walked with arms tied and holding a Holy Rosary for almost an hour before reaching the Rizal Park.

“I made a research and I found out that Rizal was smiling while walking on his way to the place where he would be killed by firing squad. He was not afraid to die for his country,” said Malig.

Frank Crawford said he and his wife, Sonya, flew all the way from Toronto, Canada to join the annual ceremony of the OKOR to commemorate the martyrdom of Rizal. He is the regional head of the OKOR in Canada and head of the Youth for Rizal in Canada.

“I joined the Knights of Rizal 15 years ago and I really admire his love for the country,” said Crawford. His wife is the vice president of the Kababaihang (women) Rizalista in Toronto.

Peter Pluckebaum, head of a foreign chapter in Germany, and OKOR Supreme Chancellor Avelino Torres acted as priests and walked beside Malig during the commemorative walk.

The affiliate groups of the OKOR are The Las Damas De Rizal (women) and the Kabataang Pangarap Ni Rizal (youth).

President Benigno Simeon Aquino III, Vice-President Jejomer Binay and Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada led the ceremony and wreath-laying for the national hero at the Rizal park.

Singson and members of the OKOR joined Aquino during the ceremony.

LOOK: Lapid wants to be Angeles mayor

(ABS-CBNnews.com)

Senator Lito Lapid on Monday officially declared his candidacy for mayor of Angeles City in the 2016 elections.

Lapid, a former Pampanga governor, has lawyer Willie Rivera as his running mate.

It is not Lapid's first time to seek a local government position after serving as senator.

He was defeated by a large margin by now Vice-President Jejomar Binay as Makati City mayor in the 2007 elections.

Earlier this year, Lapid bought a P16-million mansion in Angeles City and changed his residential address in his registration with the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Lapid is expected to slug it out with incumbent Angeles Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan.

Anakpawis bill A vet in each town in agricultural PHL

By Ding Cervantes

ANGELES CITY- For a country that has remained largely agricultural for centuries, it doesn’t make sense that no official slot for veterinarians has ever been provided by law in local governments.

Noting this, Anakpawis Partylist Rep.Fernando Hicap filed Monday House Bill 5297 or “An Act Providing for the Mandatory Appointment of a Municipal Veterinarian Officer.”

The bill cited its “purpose of decisivelyaddressing the proliferation of contagious and harmful animal diseases in the countryside and the immediate delivery of public veterinary services to far-flung villages here the raising and production of farm animals is concentrated.”

“Our economy is largely agricultural, but our farmers in the towns have no veterinarians to go to when confronted with problems with their animals. Hence, I am proposing the mandatory appointment of veterinarian in every municipal government,” Hicap said.

He said the bill would mend Section 443 of the Local Government Code of 1991 by including a municipal veterinarian to the list of officials in the municipal government.

“The bill likewise wants to expand the duties and functions of public veterinarians by tasking them to render services at least once a week in every barangay of the city or municipality they are assigned to,” he added. Hicap said his bill would guarantee that “treatment of livestock diseases would be delivered swiftly on the municipal level, to benefit poor farmers.”

Book on ‘Pisamban Maragul’ launched

By Reynaldo G. Navales (Sun.Star Pampanga)

ANGELES CITY -- Love for cultural heritage, piety, generosity. These endearing virtues of Angelenos made it possible for Curia Sancti Rosarii, Inc. (CSRI) a non-government organization affiliated with Holy Rosary Parish (HRP) of Angeles City, to produce a coffee table book which was launched yesterday at the Holy Rosary Parish Hall.

The book, “Pisamban Maragul: The Living Church of Angeles City,” tells the story and history of the Holy Rosary Parish of Angeles City in narratives and images pieced together from oral recollections of Angeles folks coupled with centuries-old handwritten accounts by early chroniclers and parish priests. Edited by Nina L. B. Tomen in collaboration with Bishop Pablo Virgilio S. David, D.D., the book features contributions from local writers and researchers including Daniel Henson Dizon, a descendant of Angeles City’s founders; archaeologists Joel Pabustan Mallari and Charlene Manese Pangilinan; poet Aida Aguas; and Joy L. Cruz, Executive Director of Kuliat Foundation, Inc. among others. Photographers Jing Torno and Lucio Sison of Museo ning Angeles took the lead in capturing captivating images of Pisamban Maragul and the Angeleño community.

“The book looks at Pisamban Maragul (literally a huge church), not just as a church structure but as a living church – a community that prays together and grows together in faith and service to society,” says editor Tomen. Tomen has written and edited a number of books about Kapampangan church heritage including Kuraldal Atlung Ari of Sasmuan and Libad Bangka of Apalit; Santiago Apostol Church of Betis; and more recently, Apung Mamacalulu of Angeles City.

Among the highlights of the coffee table book are the reminiscences of parish elders, the documentation of the parish’s cultural heritage, and the history of Holy Rosary Parish from the time it began as a capellan (a chapel under Parroquia de San Fernando) in 1812 to the time it became a full-pledged parish in 1829, on to the war years until the modern era. A significant part of the book explores the concept of creating new heritage in the church which merges the principles of heritage conservation with heritage creation. Featured in this section are the newly-renovated structures and newly-introduced rituals that have the potential to be considered heritage pieces in the future.

“This book is our way of making people love and appreciate their church better and the role they play in building it – not just the edifice but the community,” says Bishop David, Parish Priest of Holy Rosary Parish. “Last year, we launched the I Love HRP campaign with the tagline I Am. I Love. I Serve. Before love can grow, one has to know more about what he or she seeks to love. Service is a fruit of this love.” In a number of articles, Bishop David shares his thoughts about the community he leads – its virtues, its treasures, its unique characteristics.

“Pisamban Maragul: The Living Church of Angeles City” is available at the Holy Rosary Parish Office from December 27 to January 18, 2015. The book will be available at a discounted price. Regular price after the Christmas season is P 1,500.00.

“This is not a fundraising project,” says Bishop David. “It is really a gift of nostalgia, our tribute to the pious and generous parishioners of HRP. It is also the perfect Christmas gift for cultural heritage lovers and advocates."

This year, Holy Rosary Parish is celebrating its 185th year of proclamation as a parish.

DOTC looks into extension of $7-billion commuter rail system to Clark Green City

By Lorenz S. Marasigan

THE Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is studying the possibility of extending the country’s commuter rail to the envisioned Clark Green City (CGC), a Cabinet official said.

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio A. Abaya said the Bases Conversion and Development Authority has sought his office’s assistance to review the prospect of extending the $7-billion Integrated Luzon Railway to Clark in Pampanga.

While the prospect is still unclear, the DOTC said it will also study the possibility of building a spur line going to Clark.

“[Extending the commuter rail] is going to be costly. What is clear to us is that we will extend the Philippine National Railways [PNR] all the way to Cagayan and Isabela,” Abaya said.

He added that the line to the 9,450-hectare metropolis in the north might use train coaches that will run at a speed of 150 kilometers per hour (kph).

“Clark is 100 km away. If it travels at 150 kph, you get there in 40 minutes. You don’t need a bullet train to get there,” Abaya said.

The commuter rail is a 90-km elevated railway system that will link Malolos, Bulacan, and Calamba, Laguna, and is seen to serve commuters in Mega Manila.

Japan International Cooperation Agency is currently conducting a feasibility study for the line that will interconnect three regions—the National Capital Region, Central Luzon and Calabarzon.

Once the study is completed, the contract will be presented to the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) Board, which is chaired by President Aquino.

Meanwhile, the P607-billion CGC would be a mix of industrial, institutional and commercial areas, which would apply green technologies using renewable energy from sustainable sources by all facilities and buildings in the proposed community.

Neda approved in August 2013 the master plan for the development of the 9,400 hectares of idle land within the Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone as a green city.

The Neda Infrastructure Committee has endorsed the master plan to President Aquino for final approval.

The CGC project is expected to generate as much as P1.57 trillion in revenues every year, contribute at least a 4-percent share to the gross domestic product and employ as many as 925,000 workers once completed.

A 50-year development program, the CGC project will cost P607 billion, of which P59 billion will be spent for the first five years, coming mostly from the private sector through the public-private partnership program.

PGKM joins ex-solon’s call for Pacquiao suspension

By Ashley Manabat

ANGELES CITY – The Pinoy Gumising Ka Movement (PGKM) has joined the call of former Senator Rene Saguis-ag for the suspension of Rep. Manny Pacquiao from the House of Representatives up to the end of his term.

Earlier, Saguisag lambasted the fighting congressman-Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) playing coach for treating Congress as a “hobby” and as top absentee in his letter to the editor published by the Inquirer.

Ruperto Cruz, PGKM chair, and like Saguisag, has also called for the suspension of Pacquiao from Congress sayingthe work of a congressman is “a full time job.” Cruz said Pacquiao should know his limitations.

It is very clear that the PBA is just after his money and Pacquiao’s pockets are being picked literally by greedy corporations for their own selfish interests, he added.

Cruz said the PBA has violated its own rules in allowing Pacquiao as playing coach for Team KIA for pecuniary interest. “Why should the PBA bend its rules for Pacquiao if it is not interested in getting his money?” Cruz asked.

Cruz also criticized the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) for giving the Pinoy boxing icon the honorary rank of acommodore.

A Philippine News Agency (PNA) report said the PCG has conferred the rank to Pacquiao which is equivalent to brigadier general in the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) making him an honorary “one-star general.”

It was supposedly a gift on his 36th birthday. The report also said the Sarangani representative took the oath as a member of the PCG Auxiliary unit on Wednesday last week. Pacquiao currently holds the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the AFP’s Reserve Force.

The Coast Guard is an attached agency to the Department of Transportation of Communications (DOTC). It was reported that the PCG rank was bestowed upon Pacquiao allegedly to access use of his yacht and helicopter in emergencies such as calamities.

Cruz expressed doubts if Pacquiao would allow use of his vehicles. And even if he did, Cruz questioned their appropriateness for such purposes as rescue, retrieval and relief operations.

“If the PCG rank is an award for Pacquiao for possible use of his chopper and yacht, then why did not the PCG awarded the same ranks to those individuals who have long been lending their equipment, vehicles to government during calamities,”

Cruz asked, even as he mentioned the Ayalas, Lopezes, Aboitizes and others as having served such purpose.

At the rate ranks and titles are bestowed upon Pacquiao, from seargeant to colonel in he Army to commodore now, a national hero status as “Pambansang Kamao”

Cruz said he would not be surprised if religious groups would push for his canonization as a saint. “God forbid that President Aquino would declare him Honorary President,” Cruz said.

“Then, pours would   not anymore be a banana republic but a garbage  republic.”

This is the reason why the PGKM is calling for competence in governance, he added.

High hopes for better 2015 Pampanga bids 2014 goodbye

By Ding Cervantes

Pampanga is bidding 2014 farewell short of big good news. With less than two years in the Aquino administration, only the promise of a P1.2 billion low-cost carrier passenger terminal seems to have gained foothold in the hopes of Capampangans, Binay, Central Luzon folk, that the Clark international Airport would be the pivot for an economic boom past the devastating eruption of Mt. Pinatubo in 1991.

The year 2014 also prominently headlined a non-Capampanganin local newspapers. Tondo, Manila-born Defin Lee was arrested in March over an alleged P6.6-billion syndicated estafa case on his Xevera housing projects in Mabalacat City and Bacolor town, and has remained at the provincial jail in the City of San Fernando since then.

His lawyers linked housing czar Vice Pres. Jejomar Binay to the case, and Lee himself had openly said he would be doomed should Binay win the presidency in 2016.

Lawmen and criminality were also highlights in this province this passing year, the lawmen pursuing suspects in gory crimes and hauling big, as much as P7 billion of shabu in two areas in the City of San Fernando last September.

These accomplishments were, however, negated by cases where criminal groups were headed by some policemen themselves. CLARK AIRPORT PROMISE It was a government promise that dated back to Executive Order No. 174 signed by then Pres. Ramos in 1994.

Clark, it said, was to be the future site of the country’s premier international gateway. Even through Capampangan ex-Pres. Gloria Macapagal- Arroyo, Clark airport struggled towards realizing EO 174.

Local folk in this struggle knew all too well that prominent Metro Manila-based tycoons lacked enthusiasm for this move. But it was a measure that Capampangans saw as necessary to build up the confidence of more airlines to oper-ate at Clark.

Only recently, newly installed Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) President- CEO Emigdio Tanjuatco urged the national government to make an unequivocal declaration of the Clark airport as a premiere gateway under a dual airport system in the country.

“This will significantly boost the confidence of airlines to establish regular flights at Clark,” Tanjuatco said, as he cited the experience of Japan which now has four international airports and where the biggest, the Narita International Airport, is located 60 kilometers east of central Tokyo.

Tanjuatco said that an executive order from Pres. Aquino on such declaration would be “fine”, but that a “strong statement” from the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) would do.

Clark is noted to have its own “catchment” area for potential passengers in the four regions north of Metro Manila, while the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) has the regions south of the metropolis.

This, on top of a study indicating that some three million passengers from Central and Northern Luzon who had flown abroad via NAIA are either not aware of Clark flights or claim that Clark did not have flights to their destinations.

“We are targeting this three million people so we are pursuing plans to have a P1.2 billion low cost carrier terminal finished at Clark soonest,” he noted.

The P1.2 billion is included in the General Appropriations Act for 2015 amid target to have the new terminal totally finished, if not operational, by the time Pres. Aquino steps down in 2016.

Tanjuatco said the new terminal would increase the Clark airport’s capacity to as much as eight million passengers annually. Tanjuatco said CIAC is continuing with its “roadshow” campaign to make folk in Central and Northern Luzon aware of Clark flights and convince them that Clark is a better option than NAIA for its proximity and convenience of both travel and facilities.

The good news on the airport was from Pampanga 1st District Rep. Joseller “Yeng” Guiao who had worked for the P1.2 billion budget for a lowcost carrier (LCC) terminal for the Clark airport in the GAA, a first in the history of the airport.

This, on top of reports that Pres. Aquino had tasked the Department of Transportation and Communications ((DOTC) to conduct a feasibility study for a new high-speed railway to link Clark to Metro Manila.

DELFIN LEE SAGA

Binay orchestrated the cases against him. “Vice Pres. Binay, face me in the Senate. Ilabas po natin ang katotohanan at magkaalaman na tayo kung sino po and sinungaling sa atin,” Lee said in a post in the Globe Asiatique Faceboon account.

Addressing Binay, Lee said“kailangan ko pa pong magpa- subpoena sa Senate para lang masabi ko ang totoo. Humarap din po kayo (I need to be asked to be subpoena’s by the Senate to tell the truth.

Face the Senate, too).” Lee reminded Binay that “you have always said that you are being a victim of politicking. I am not a politician but isn’t it true that your politicking is victimizing me?” “That is what you are doing to me, you are using me in politicsto boost your popularity,” he said.

Lee reiterated in his post that he had been “dealing with Pag-IBIG Fund for 20 years without negative record norany debt.” “But when you (Binay) assumed post, I suddenly became a scam artist in less than a month. The fact is that Globe Asiatique had even been a top performer.

Your agency had used my projects as models to lure buyers and borrowers. Instead of supporting me, you sought loopholes to create a scam without basis,” he also said.

He reminded Binay that “we have met each other in nine cases filed before the Court of Appeals before nine divisions with 27 justices. You did not win, all the decisions favored Globe Asiatique.” But his debate challenge fell on deaf ears.

Not even theSenate could have served asenue or the debate, after a judge of the Regional Trial Court in San Fernando barred Lee from attending a Senate hearing on his case.

Lee said he would “rot” in jail in case Binay becomes president in 2016, but recent surveys showed Binay’s presidency has become a challenged scenario.In March, national and local headlines knew one name: Delfin Lee.

Initially labelled as fugitive, he was finally arrested in Manila for being allegedly involved in syndicated estafa costing P6.6 billion of government funds for his housing projects in Bacolor and Mabalacat in Pampanga.

But Globe Asiatique President Delfin Lee challenged Vice Pres. Jejomar Binay to a debate in the Senate “for us to let out the truth and find out who is lying.” He believed that

DRUGS, CRIMES AND COPS

The estimated street value of the drugs was placed at P7 billion. Amid such accomplishments were cases that egated the police image.

In July, authorities busted a criminal group headed by rookie policeman following his arrest and those of his four cohorts shortly after they robbed the residence of a British national in a posh subdivision at Barangay Sta. Cruz, Porac town.

The gang leader was identified by the police as PO1John Paul Tanglao, 25, detailed at the Regional Public Safety Battalion 3 (RPSB3) stationed in Porac and a resident of Marcos Village, Barangay San Nicolas, City of San Fernando.

The other suspects were Joey Guiao, 46, alias Kuya, of Sta. Lucia, City of San Fernando, Dennis Bigeras, 36, of Pulung Maragul, and Mark Navarro, 25, alias Mac-mac, of Villeras Compound, Pulung Maragul, both in Angeles City.

Senior Supt. Marlon Madrid, officer-in-charge (OIC) of Pampanga Provincial Police Office (PPO), said Tanglao, armed with M16 rifle and clad in police uniform, accompanied by other members of the gang, barged into the residence of Nigel Martin Witty, a Briton, and accused the victim of running a cybersex den.

The suspects, Madrid said, shoved the victim inside the house at gunpoint as the suspects started to cart off his belongings in the house. The incident was witnessed by Witty’s live-in partner Suzette Soriano.

Miro said the suspects were about to leave the victim’s residence onboard a blue Toyota Fortuner (ZHF- 737) when intercepted by operatives from the PPO Intelligence Branch and Pampanga Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).

Last September, criminal charges were filed against four Chinese nationals who were arrested in a raid on a “mega” shabu laboratory and storage facility in the City of San Fernando. The big catch was shabu and related paraphernalia worth some P7 billion.

Charged before the Department of Justice were Neri Tan, Willy Yap, Jason Lee, and Ying Ying Huang alias Sophie Lee. All suspects, except for Huang, were from Xiamen, China.

The fourth suspect was from Fujian province. The Philippine National Police’s Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Force and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency arrested the suspects in two separate raids in a warehouse” in Greenville Subdivision, Barangay San Jose.

And in another “warehouse” in Richtown Subdivision, Barangay Sindalan, all in San Fernando. Several boxes of shabuwere seized in a house in Greenville Subdivision where three of the suspects were arrested. Authorities said they recovered more than 1,000 kilos of shabu from a makeshift lab.

Security in place for 2015 int’l events in Clark- PAF

By Astrud Aguinaldo

CLARK FREEPORT – “It’s all systems go” for a heightened security measure in this freeport in preparation for the upcoming Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Hot Air Balloon Festival and the Balikatan Exercises here next year.

This was the assurance of Brig. Gen John Oliviamor Estabillo, commander of the 600th Air Base Wing of the Philippine Air Force (PAF), during an interview last Wednesday. According to Estabillo, Task Group Clark was formed in support of the upcoming international events here in 2015.

The PAF commander said the heightened security measures were made in close coordination with the Clark Development Corp. (CDC), Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) and other concerned government agencies.

“We are doing our best kasi nakatingin sa atin angbuong mundo (the whole world is looking at us), I hope everything will work as planned,” Estabillo said.

“We have an excellent outlook for 2015, always back to zero, everything is new. Whatever lapses we had in the previous year, we’ll try to improve this time,” Estabillo assured.

The PAF wing commander said the highlight of this year’s accomplishments was the PAF Day on July 1 held at the Haribon hangar and graced by President Aquino as guest of honor and speaker.It can be recalled that on January 10, 1993, the 600th Air Base Wing was activated replacing the Clark Air Base Command (Cabcom).

The 600th Wing continued to provide base security and a wide variety of ground support services since then, Estabillo said.

Lazatin: Rodriguez’s re-election bid good for San Fernando

By Joey Pavia (Contributor)

ANGELES CITY -- Former first district Representative Carmelo "Tarzan" Lazatin welcomed Monday the decision of third district Representative Oscar "Oca" Rodriguez to seek re-election, allowing a "harmonious relationship" between officials in the nearby City of San Fernando.

In a phone interview, Lazatin said both Rodriguez and City of San Fernando Mayor Edwin Santiago "are doing very good in their respective posts and there is no reason for them to clash in 2016."

“Economic progress is easier to attain when congressmen and mayors are in peace and harmony. More importantly, they are willing to work together for the benefit of the people,” said Lazatin.

“I will be the first to be hurt if they will slug it out in politics next year because they are both long-time friends,” said Lazatin.

It could be recalled that rumors circulated that Rodriguez wants to make a comeback as mayor of this city and challenge his long-time political ally, Santiago. Rodriguez was a former three-term mayor and Santiago was then his vice-mayor on three occasions.

“It heals,” said Santiago when asked to comment about the decision of Rodriguez to seek a second term as congressman in 2016. He did not elaborate.

Lazatin said “Santiago, just like Rodriguez then, is doing well as mayor.”

“What I admire most about Santiago is that there will be no tax increase in the city next year,” he added.

Lazatin said "the local economy improved tremendously during the time of Rodriguez as mayor."

US custody of Pemberton hit

By Reynaldo G. Navales

CLARK FREEPORT -- Anakpawis Partylist Representative Fernando Hicap described as "highly condemnable" the United States government's hard stand to retain the custody of US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton, suspect for the murder of transgender Jennifer Laude.

Hicap said the people should strongly demand not only for the Philippine government to assert custody of the American soldier while the murder case is still being prosecuted, but also for the immediate termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA).

The lawmaker said that the recent development on the Laude murder case is a clear demonstration that VFA is favorable to the US and disadvantageous to Filipinos.

"Ito ang pinakadahilan kung bakit nananawagan na kaming ibasura ang VFA dati pa - maaaring gahasain, patayin o agrabyaduhin ng mga sundalong Amerikano ang mga pamilya natin, kababayan, ngunit hindi sila mapapasailalim sa ating justice system. Ang bagay na ito ay nagpapatunay na tinatapakan ng VFA ang ating pambansang soberanya," (This is the very reason why we have demanded the termination of the VFA from the very start - US soldiers could rape, kill and violate our loved ones, fellow countrymen, but they could not be subjected to our justice system. This fact certainly illustrates how the VFA is undermining our national sovereignty) Hicap said in a statement.

Anakpawis said that the government has not only been incapable of protecting the welfare of Filipinos against American infringements but, more appallingly, has in fact been acting as an accomplice to these very violations through its defense of the VFA and the promotion of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA).

The group also said that the US government’s undercutting of the Philippine justice system, is just one of the many examples of how it has been acting out its superpower status, along with its brazen disregard of international laws and conventions as recently disclosed by reports of its use of torture methods against imprisoned suspected terrorists.

“Kayang i-invoke ng US government o embassy ang anumang probisyon ng VFA dahil nga nagsisilbi sa kanila ito at kontra sa interes ng mga Pilipino,” (The US government through its embassy could conveniently invoke any of the VFA provisions as these actually serve their side to the detriment of Filipino interest) Hicap said.

“Ang paggigiit ng Amerika sa custody kay Pemberton ay sampal sa ating pagka-Pilipino dahil hindi maipagtanggol ng gubyerno ang ating sistemang panghustisya at pambansang soberanya. Hindi tayo makapag-desisyon sa sarili nating teritoryo." (US assertion of Pemberton custody is a slap in the face of the Filipinos because the government could not uphold our justice system and national sovereignty. We could not even decide independently within our own territory) Hicap said.


Burials resume at Clark Veterans Cemetery

(Angeles City Voice)

Burials at the Clark Veterans Cemetery (CVC) has resumed after the Bases Conversion Development Authority suspended the interment at the war veterans’ resting place on December 1.

Earlier, United States Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) urged the Philippine government to end the suspension of burials. He also wrote to Philippine Ambassador Jose Cuisia Jr. requesting his assistance on the issue.

Cusia responded saying the Philippine government would work to address the concern.

On Monday, the State Department confirmed to Senator Ayotte that the burial suspension has ended and that burials occurred last week.

“The United States and the Philippines enjoy a close and important relationship, and I am deeply thankful that the government there responded so quickly to my concerns. The burial suspension created unnecessary hardships for families of veterans grieving the loss of their loved ones, and I am so pleased that burials have resumed,” Ayotte stated in his letter.

“I look forward to continuing to work with the Philippine government and the State Department to ensure that procedures are put in place at the Clark Veterans Cemetery to ensure that families of veterans do not confront unnecessary bureaucratic hardships and delays in the future,” she added.

Clark Veterans Cemetery is the final resting place in the Philippines for more than 8,300 United States service members and their dependents.

Ayotte introduced bipartisan legislation to restore the Clark Veterans Cemetery, which was signed into law by President Obama last year. Her legislation – which was cosponsored by Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) – requires the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) to restore, operate, and maintain Clark Veterans Cemetery to honour the courageous Americans buried there.

Following Ayotte’s legislation becoming a law, the US and the Philippines signed on December 16, 2013 a memorandum of understanding regarding Clark Veterans Cemetery, which explicitly provided for new burials there.

60 elderly, 43 orphans overjoyed after receiving gift packs from CDC

(Clark Development Corporation)

CLARK FREEPORT ZONE, December 19 (PIA) -- The state-owned Clark Development Corporation (CDC) has successfully completed its third and last leg of gift-giving activities, benefiting 103 orphans and elderly from two home care shelters in the cities of San Fernando and Angeles.

CDC External Affairs Department (EAD) Manager Angelo ‘Sonny’ Lopez Jr. said 43 more orphans staying at Duyan ni Maria Children’s Home of Angeles City Inc. were overjoyed after receiving Christmas packages such as one cavan of rice, grocery items, slippers and other food items delivered right to their doorstep last Wednesday by EAD staff and volunteers from other CDC departments.

The shelter houses 23 girls and 20 boys, with the youngest aged two years old and the oldest, 23-years old. The latter is now a 3rd year student taking up Bachelor of Science in Education.

The CDC workers also distributed Christmas packs at Bahay Pagibig (House of Prayer) in barangay Telabastagan, which accommodates 60 senior-beneficiaries. Of the number, 20 are men and 40 are women.

The senior citizens got grocery packages consisting of food and non-food items such as shampoo, toothpaste, detergent soap, and one cavan of rice brought to the center by the CDC employees.

“It may not be too much but we hope to have filled the void in their hearts and made them happy this Christmas season,’’ said Lopez.

Echoing CDC President/CEO Arthur Tugade’s earlier statement, Lopez said CDC’s support for the communities, people with disabilities (PWDs) and the indigenous peoples, is not ‘seasonal.’ “It does not end on Christmas Day or this festive season. Our support and commitment particularly to the community is constant that is why we continue to do projects for them, hold education/awareness activities and conduct jobs fairs, among others as proposed under our corporate social responsibility (CSR) program.’’

He added, “The gift giving is an annual tradition for CDC and as a regular part of our CSR program to make less fortunate children, families or orphans in communities nearby Clark feel the spirit of Christmas through the gifts and our moral support.’’

CDC’s four-day gift-giving project turned out a success, benefiting a total 168 orphans, physically and mentally challenged individuals and elderly from four home care centers within areas contiguous to Clark. The activity started last December 12 and ended on December 17.

Angeles employees to get P10,000 bonus

(AC-CIO)

ANGELES CITY -- Plantilla personnel of the City Government will each be getting an additional P10,000 Productivity Enhancement Incentive (PEI) bonus before Christmas as Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan approved the passage of Supplemental Budget No. 3, ordained by the Angeles City Council during a Special Session on Wednesday.

“Our permanent, co-terminus, contractual and casual employees deserve this additional productivity bonus especially those at the front line services. This is based on Executive Order No. 80 issued by President Benigno Aquino III and its implementing guidelines, DBM Memorandum Circular No. 2014-3 dated December 2, 2014,” Pamintuan said.

“Actually, we wanted to grant this incentive even to our Job Order personnel. However, rules and regulations of the Civil Service Commission as well as the Department of Budget and Management prevent us from doing so,” he added.

DBM MC No. 2014-3 states that local government units have the discretion to set the amount “depending on the LGU finance capability” and subject to certain conditions.

Section 4.0 of the said circular excluded the following from receiving the PEI bonus: consultants and experts hired to perform specific activities or activities with expected outputs; laborers hired through job contracts; student laborers and apprentices; and individuals and groups whose services are engaged through job orders, contracts of services or other similarly situated.

This PEI bonus is on top of the P12,000 received by each City Government employee as part of the new Collective Negotiation Agreement (CNA) signed by Pamintuan and the employees union Agenda, as well as the 13th month pay and the P5,000 cash gift.

Cine Kabalen bares Kapampangan film-making winners

By Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay

ANGELES CITY -- Carlo Catu's "Mis Da Ka" was awarded the Best Film in this year's Fourth Cine Kabalen Film Festival.

The winners were announced at the Cinema 4, SM City Clark recently. The 10 Kapampangan short films from different towns and cities in Pampanga vied for the following major awards: Gintung Tugak (Golden Frog), Gintung Salaksak (Golden Kingfisher), Gintung Matsin (Golden Monkey), Gintung Tikbalang (Golden Kapampangan Centaur), GintungDapu (Golden Crocodile) and the distinguished Gintung Damulag (Golden Carabao) for the best film. The trophies were designed by Kapampangan artist Don Reich De Dios.

The other winners include Best Sound: Susukdul King Banua (Cheska Salangsang, Mexico); Best Music: Jona (Tin Velasco, Angeles); Best Editing: Talapangabus (Justine Dizon, San Fernando); Best Production Design: Talapangabus (Justine Dizon, San Fernando); Best Cinematography: Paboritu Que Ing Cantang Ini (Petersen Vargas, Apalit); Kulturang Kapampangan Award: Talapangabus (Justine Dizon, San Fernando); Best Screenplay: Ing Purmerung Kembut Nang Anton (Kelvin Aguilar, Bamban); Best Direction: Mis Da Ka (Carlo Catu, San Fernando); Best Child Actor: Bambalito Lacap, Qng Sepu Ning Pabelu (Brianne Amparado, Angeles City);Best Actor: Joe Galang, Qng Pangacupas Ning Matingcad Cung Cule (Jerome Cunanan, Victoria); Best Actress: Leo Sarmiento, Mis Da Ka (Carlo Catu, San Fernando); and Second Best Short Film: Qng Pangacupas Ning Matingcad Cung Cule (Jerome Cunanan, Victoria).

A special citation (semi-finalist) was also given to “Kulit” by Josue Gopez of Angeles City while posthumous awards went to Agnes De Guzman and Alexis Tioseco.

Festival Director Jason Paul Laxamana (Magkakabaung) led the awards ceremony as well as the acquaintance dinner of the filmmakers and guests at the Museo ning Angeles.

The film festival is a project of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the Holy Angel University Center for Kapampangan Studies, the City of Angeles and the Angeles City Tourism Office, in cooperation with Kamaru Productions, MuseoNing Angeles, Angeles City Library, HAU Theatre Guild and SM City Clark.

Previously under the Sinukwan Kapampangan Film Festival, Cine Kabalen aims to encourage Kapampangans, especially the youth, to create digital films in the Kapampangan language and tell stories that explore Kapampangan culture and issues experienced by the local community, thereby contributing to the diversity of Philippine cinema.

Group urges appointment of municipal veterinarians

By Reynaldo G. Navales

ANGELES CITY -- Anakpawis Partylist representative Fernando “Ka Pando” Hicap filed Tuesday House Bill 5297 or "An Act Providing for the Mandatory Appointment of a Municipal Veterinarian Officer."

Hikap said the move is for the purpose of decisively addressing the proliferation of contagious and harmful animal diseases in the countryside and the immediate delivery of public veterinary services to far-flung villages where the raising and production of farm animals is concentrated.

“Agrikultural ang ating ekonomiya, ngunit ang mga magsasaka sa mga munisipalidad ay walang matatakbuhang beternaryo para sa kanilang mga problema sa mga alagang hayop, kung kaya, ipinapanukala naming magkaroon ng batas na magtatakda ng isang veterinarian sa bawat munisipalidad,” (We have an agricultural economy but farmers in the municipalities do not have a veterinarian to run to for their livestock problems. Hence we propose that a law be enacted providing for the mandatory appointment of a veterinarian for every municipality) Hicap said in a statement.

The bill proposes to amend Section 443 of the Local Government Code of 1991 by including a municipal veterinarian to the list of officials in the municipal government. The bill likewise wants to expand the duties and functions of a public veterinarians by tasking them to render services at least once a week to every barangay of his city or municipality they are designated to.

“Kung maipapasa ang panukalang ito, ang kinakailangang atensyon at lunas sa mga sakit ng mga alagang hayop ay kagyat na maibibigay sa antas munisipal, sa kapakinabangan ng maliliit na magsasaka,” (Hopefully, if this bill is passed, the needed attention and treatment of livestock diseases would be delivered swiftly on the municipal level, to benefit poor farmers) Hicap said.

Pope Francis musical wows theatergoers

By Ernesto Y. Tolentino

SUPERB! World-class! Impressive! Fantastic!

These were the admiring words uttered by the theatergoers who trooped to the Holy Angel University Theater in Angeles City last Friday for the matinee presentation of the Pampango-produced stage musical “I Love (expressed in the symbol of a heart) Pope Francis – The Musicale” - in English.

Even the members of the Capampangan in Media, Inc. (CAMI), who were invited to the show by the production’s creator and director, Andy Alviz, were awed by what they described as a top-notch musical on the life of Pope Francis that has the potentials of becoming a blockbuster not only in the Philippines but overseas, as well, not only because of its global appeal but how it was carried out by the mostly amateur (volunteer) thespians of Pampanga.

Even the crowd that attended its maiden staging on November 29 at the same venue was wowed by the theme, and the 24 original songs of the musical, as well as the flawless performance of the cast, a mixture of mature and young actors, with two actors barely in their teens, despite minor technical glitches such as the awful sound system.

The production touched on the life of the Pope, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, from his young days in Argentina, where he even worked as a bouncer before entering the priesthood, to the time when he became known as a bishop of the street for identifying with the poor to his rise to the papacy, and the Filipinos’ “joyful” anticipation for his visit to the county (named San Felipe in the play) in January next year.

It was this essence – the character of the Pope, the circumstances of his rise to the Vatican hierarchy and the “surprising” manner by which he’s carrying out his job as a leader of the more than a billion Catholics in the world, and the people’s positive reaction to all he what he says and does - that this stage production captured vividly, which explains the audience’s ecstatic reaction to the musical.

In fact, this excited air of anticipation, even before the doors to the theater were opened to let the crowd in, was clearly felt among the prospective Pampango audience, many of whom may have been told of the “happy experience” by those that watched the musical’s maiden staging on November 29.

That “happy experience” felt by those who have viewed the musical may be attributed to the seamless progression of the play scene after scene, marked by the interplay of humor, wit and kindness.

It was obvious, especially during the early scenes of the musical’s first part, those in the audience were so enthralled by what they’re viewing they were, initially, at a lost on how to react: whether to applause or not at the end of each scene, laugh loudly at the witty repartee, or even respond to the call for public participation in one part of the play.

But it did not take long for the crowd to catch on and let their hair down, so to speak, in expressing their feelings throughout the play that, not surprisingly, they gave the musical and the actors a rousing standing ovation.

They, too, obviously had the “happy experience” felt by those who watched the musical earlier.

More than this, last Friday’s crowd apparently felt proud that an all-Filipino group, made up mostly of amateur thespians consisting of students, a priest, lay leaders and society matrons, could produce such a musical that could equal those that have been churned out on Broadway in the US or even London and other theater capitals in the world.

“It definitely is an experience to watch this musical on Pope Francis, and everyone in this country, must see it, and will definitely fall in love with it” one media observer quipped.

Of course, this is not surprising considering that the men and women behind it is led by Alviz, who honed his craft in theater production during his long stint as resident choreographer of the popular Miss Saigon, a musical dominated by Filipino talents, like Lea Salonga.

Alviz had earlier told CAMI members that he collaborated the musical with writer-lyricist Randy del Rosario under the aegis of Teatru Kapampangan.

The duo was also behind the highly-acclaimed musicals, like Ima, Beauty Parlor, Perry the Musical, Ciniong and Tulaok: A Lenten Musical, produced for the Pampango cultural group ArtiSta.

Last Friday night was the gala presentation of “I Love Pope Francis”. This will be followed by another run on January 10, 2015, also at the HAU Theater.

Alviz said plans are now being worked out for the musical’s presentation at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) next year, in cooperation with Rotary International.

Bookings are also now being arranged for the musical’s run next year in Cebu, Iloilo and other key cities in the country and, hopefully, in London and finally, Rome, Alviz said.

Part of the proceeds of the musical’s presentation will go to Teatru Kapampangan’s beneficiary – the AeTahanan, a dormitory in Sta. Rita that houses Aetas taking up college.

Despite politics, Law enforcement essential says AC Mayor

By Reynaldo G. Navales

Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan said Friday that he has asked all sectors to “bring back sanity” in this city amid on-going improvements and projects like addressing traffic woes.

In a recent forum Pamintuan stressed that the projects and programs being implemented by his administration are all geared for the convenience and safety of Angeleños, whatever their politics.

“I hope that our critics will help us bring back sanity in Angeles City. Very recently, I was informed that some transport groups who are affected by the implementation of the stricter traffic scheme will rally against me,” he said.

“It seems that tricycle and jeepney drivers we caught because of violations are defended by our critics and political opponents. Isn’t that insanity? Despite the inevitability of negative politics we enforce the rule of law because ew promised Angelenos that we will put law and order in our streets. And that I am not afraid to do” Pamintuan added.

He said the City Government is looking at each and every concern, from road improvements, parking, dangling and dead cables and electric posts, to beautification and development of parks.

“You know, rather than criticizing, I invite our detractors to join us in making Angeles City a beautiful city. Elections are too far ahead and we have a lot of work still to be done. We wouldn’t want a perfect world for nothing,” Pamintuan said.

Orphans receive Christmas gifts

By Reynaldo G. Navales

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Clark Development Corporation (CDC) has donated grocery items, food packages, and other household goods to the children of the Bahay Bata Learning Center in Angeles City.

The donation, which included two cavans of rice, grocery items, toiletries, and free meals, will benefit the orphans staying inside the learning center.

At least 23 kids received bags of grocery items containing toiletries such as bath soap, detergent, chlorine, dish washing liquid, toothpaste and shampoo.

The kids were also given evaporated and condensed milk from the staff of the CDC External Affairs Department (EAD) Community Services Section (CSS).

CDC-EAD Manager Angelo “Sonny” Lopez Jr. said the orphans also got a pair of slippers and were provided free lunch.

“This is just one of the many activities we have prepared as ‘Pamaskong Handog’ for the orphans and the elderly this Holiday season. It is our way of giving back to the community and encouraging a positive impact on the environment and stakeholders,” Lopez said.

The Angeles Bahay Bata Center was launched in 2001 by members of the Rotary Club of Clark Centennial to address the plight of the street children.

The group’s mission is to place the children in a safe and caring environment and to give them all the basic necessities where they are then given the chance to develop and mature.

“By giving them education, psychological support and spiritual guidance, recreational activities and a sense of hope, they have an opportunity to realize their potential, whether it be academically, musically or on the sporting field,” according to the center’s website.

Lopez said CDC president and Chief Executive Officer Arthur Tugade encouraged CDC employees to share their blessings to the less fortunate members of society around the Freeport.

The CDC-EAD staff also assisted the SMX Philippines Kabalen Chapter and the Unified Rainbow Foundation of Angeles City in two separate gift giving activities yesterday.

At least 85 students and 125 residents of Sitio Haduan were given school supplies and other goods provided by SMX Philippines.

A total of 400 Aeta children in Sitio Target, Sapang Bato, Angeles City received free meals and toys from the Unified Rainbow Foundation.

The CDC-EAD also facilitated the distribution of medical kits to 21 children from the Children’s Joy Foundation Inc.-Pampanga.

Police: City dad’s aide death a suicide

By Jess Malabanan

ANGELES CITY – The police chief here yesterday said that the death of the security aide of Councilor Edu Pamintuan was apparently a suicide case based on the text message found in the victim’s cellular phone.

“A text message sent by Alfredo Sangil Pring indicates family problem, and it could be the reason behind the suicide,” said Sr. Supt. Eden Ugale over the phone.

“Kapag ako ay nawala ay ‘wag na ninyo akong hanapin,” said the text message sent to Pring’s wife shortly before the alleged suicide happened according to Ugale.

Pring, a member of the city’s Civil Security Unit (CSU) detailed at Pamintuan’s official residence along Jasmine Street, Montenegro Estate, Barangay Sto. Domingo here was found dead by his colleague shortly before midnight on Dec. 9.

Ugale said Pring suffered single shot in his upper abdomen and died on the spot. A .9mm caliber pistol believed to be his service firearm and spent shell for the same gun were recovered near the victim’s body.

“Maybe there was a family problem,” said Ugale but did not elaborate.

Pring, 33, is a resident of 229 Purok 3, Brgy. Manibaug Libutad, Porac town.

Police said Pring was sprawled on the ground with blood oozing from his body when discovered by Jerome Moore, also a member of CSU.

Ugale said Moore was invited for questioning to shed light on the incident.

CDC to bring Christmas cheers to less fortunate kids, elderly

By Reynaldo G. Navales

CLARK FREEPORT ZONE – Less fortunate children and elderly from select orphanage and nursing homes in Clark’s adjacent areas are guaranteed to receive early Christmas gifts soon---thanks to the annual gift giving activities of the state-run Clark Development Corporation (CDC).

The gift giving is a yearly tradition of CDC and regular part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program to make the less fortunate children, families or orphans in communities near Clark feel the spirit of Christmas through gifts, food baskets or meals shared by CDC employees and volunteers.

“The end goal is to make the orphans and those in the nursing homes, happy. This is part of our CSR initiatives to implement projects and programs that are meant to address community concerns, needs and aspirations,” said CDC president and Chief Executive Officer Arthur Tugade.

“Another aspect of our mission is to allow volunteer employees a chance to give back to their community by sponsoring a Christmas present or spending quality time with the orphans,” he added.

The gift giving, which will be facilitated by the External Affairs Department (EAD) Community Services Section (CSS) will be held for four consecutive days in the following areas: Bahay Bata in Cuayan, Angeles City (December 12), Munting Tahanan in Barangay Mabiga, Mabalacat, Pampanga (December 15), Bahay Pag-ibig in Holy Angel Village, Telabastagan (December 16) and Duyan ni Maria in Josefa Ville Angeles City (December 17).

Under the proposed mechanics for inviting voluntary employee participation signed by CDC-EAD Manager Angelo “Sonny” Lopez, Jr, an employee, individual or group office and department should choose to sponsor a Christmas gift being wished for a specific child in his other hand-made Christmas card sent to the CDC.

Employees with their families can also share quality time with the orphans or children who are eager to be in the company of a caring family during the actual Christmas gathering.

In his radio program Clark in Action on DU 105.5 FM, Lopez encouraged the participation of volunteer employees during the scheduled dates.

He also extended his gratitude to individuals and companies who supported the initiative and assisted in the form of food, gifts and sponsorships for the CDC-led project.


6,350 students to benefit from senator’s scholarships

By Reynaldo G. Navales (With Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay)

ANGELES CITY -- At least 6,350 high school students in Central Luzon, 1,530 of them in Pampanga, stand to earn scholarships from the educational assistance program of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano.

This, after President Benigno Aquino III signed Cayetano's bill, which mandates all state universities and colleges to give automatic admission and provide scholarship grants to the graduating top 10 public high school students of their respective graduating classes.

The scholarship covers the tuition and other miscellaneous fees on the first year.

“It's a merrier Christmas for thousands of Filipino students who will benefit from the Iskolar ng Bayan law, granting scholarships to thousands of students,” Cayetano said.

"I've been fighting for this since 2008, and thank God, it's finally a law!" Senator Cayetano said. "I've always believed education should be free for all. This is a small step towards achieving that goal," he added.

"Tamang-tama ang timing ng pagpirma ng Pangulo Aquino. Ito ang aking pamaskong handog sa libo-libong pamilyang Pilipino," Cayetano said.

The majority leader estimated that close to 80,000 public high school students graduating on top of their classes will benefit from the law, now referred to as "Cayetano law."

The senator, however, lamented that the Iskolar ng Bayan would have covered more students if only government funds were spent judiciously and were not squandered through corruption.

"Kung walang nagnanakaw at magnanakaw, hindi lang top 10 bawat school, baka umabot pa ng top 20 o higit pa ang makikinabang dito. Sana marami pa ang matutulungan kung matapos na ang nakawan at patuloy na pag-aabuso sa kaban ng bayan," the senator said.

"We've proven this in Taguig City. Since 2011, the city under Mayor Lani Cayetano has been allocating funds for its 8,000 scholars," he said.

"Ganito kapag walang korap sa gobyerno, bigay todo ang biyaya sa bawat pamilyang Pilipino," Cayetano stressed.

Education officials estimate that some 79,130 graduating high school students will benefit from the Cayetano law next school year.

Kapampangan film showing at SM City Clark set December 13

By Ian Ocampo Flora (With Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay)

ANGELES CITY -- Kapampangan films will be shown for free this December 13 (Saturday) from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at SM City Clark Cinema 4 in Angeles City.

This is part of the annual CineKabalen Kapampangan Film Festival (CKFF).

From 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., exhibition films will be shown including two award-winning Kapampangan short films. “Lisyun Qng Geografia” (Geography Lessons) by Petersen Vargas is one of the three winners of Best Picture in the recently concluded Ika-26 Gawad CCP Para sa Alternatibong Pelikula at Video.

The film also won Best Thesis in the UP Film Institute earlier this year and has participated in international film festivals in Thailand and General Santos City. “U.S.F.A” by Jason Paul Laxamana is also one of the three winners of Best Picture in Gawad CCP. The humorous short film has also participated in a film festival in San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.

From 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., the 10 finalists in the CKFF short film competition will be shown. This year's finalists include: “Mis Da Ka” (I Miss You) by Carlo Catu of San Fernando; “Paboritu Que Ing Cantang Ini” (Favorite Song) by Petersen Vargas of Apalit; “Ing Purmerung Kembut Nang Anton” (Anton’s First Hip Shake) by Kelvin Aguilar of Bamban; “Qng Pangacupas Ning Matingcad Cung Cule” (Fadeaway) by Jerome Cunanan of Victoria, Tarlac; “Qng Sepu Ning Pabelu” (At The Tip of The Candle Wick) by Brianne Amparado of Angeles; “Jona” by Tin Velasco of Angeles; “Andrea” by Clarklouis Sanchez of Magalang; “Post Hoc Ergo” (After This) by Myron Espinosa of Mabalacat; “Talapangabus” by Justine Dizon of San Fernando; and “Susukdul King Banua” (High As The Sky) by Cheska Salangsang of Mexico.

The finalists will vie for awards and cash prizes, including P15,000 for the Best Picture and P8,000 for the Second Best Picture.

All films will be shown on the big screen in high definition quality with English subtitles.

For inquiries or group reservations, please contact 0915-2601946.

CKFF4 is a project of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the Holy Angel University Center for Kapampangan Studies, the City of Angeles and the Angeles City Tourism Office, in cooperation with Kamaru Productions, Museo Ning Angeles, Angeles City Library, HAU Theatre Guild and SM City Clark.

HAU bags top animation awards

By Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay

ANGELES CITY -- A student and a teacher from the Holy Angel University (HAU) have been named among the top animators of the country after bagging awards from this year's Animahenasyon Philippine Animation Festival, held at the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde School of Design and Arts in Manila.

Animahenasyon is an annual festival of original Filipino animated films, sponsored by the Animation Council of the Philippines, Inc.

The HAU entry “The Unusual Pet” won first prize in the Professional Division (TVCs, OBBs, Infomercials, Teasers and Demo Reels category), while the other entry, “That Social Virus” won first prize in the Student Division (Animated Shorts - less than 30 minutes category).

The Unusual Pet is directed by Leonardo Calma, animated by Bryan Paguio and Mervyn Domingo, written by Robby Tantingco and narrated by Alberta Supan. It was produced by the HAU Center for Kapampangan Studies.

Meanwhile, That Social Virus is directed, animated and written by Bryan Paguio. It was produced by the HAU College of Information and Communications Technology.

Calma is a creative artist and instructor of the HAU Center for Kapampangan Studies while Paguio is a student of the HAU College of Information and Communications Technology.

Running for about ten minutes, Calma’s That Social Virus tells a cautionary tale about the social ills created by social media. Similarly, Paguio’s The Unusual Pet narrates the peculiar story of a boy who raised a worm as his pet.

Not expecting the victory as it was his first time to participate, Paguio said, “it was totally unexpected because we just went there assuming to bring home just a certificate of appreciation."

He also shared the rewards and hardships of being a young animator.

“It could be difficult at times because it is very challenging to entertain people through animation. But it always feels great when people appreciate your work,” said Paguio.

Meanwhile, Calma said the school’s victory signifies the creativity of the Kampapangans.

He also cited the Emmy award-winning Kapampangan animator Jesus “Jess” Española, who works on the long-running TV series The Simpsons.

Cabigting lauds Lazatin’s dedication in public service

(SunStar Pampanga)

ANGELES CITY -- Angeles City Vice Mayor Vicky Vega-Cabigting praised first-termer Councilor Carmelo "Pogi" Lazatin's enthusiasm in fulfilling his duties as a councilor.

Cabigting lauded Lazatin as she delivered the "Ulat ng Paglilingkod" during the City Council's Regular Session last December 2 at Hausland Pavillion, Timog Residences.

Cabigting noted that despite being a first-time Councilor, Lazatin has shown great dedication in his work.

"Lazatin always makes sure to ask questions and participate in the deliberation for measures being passed in the City Council and would fervently express his opposition if he finds any proposed ordinance and resolution to be lacking," Cabigtin said.

For his part, Lazatin, a son of former Pampanga First District Representative Angeles City Mayor Carmelo "Tarzan" Lazatin, said that he always asks questions precisely because he is a first-time Councilor.

"While this isn’t exactly my first time serving as a public servant, I'm not arrogant enough to presume that I already know everything," Lazatin said. "Although I believe that I have a particular skillset and knowledge to offer to the table, having come from a business background, I recognize that I still have a lot to learn as a legislator."

"That's why I ask a lot of questions," Lazatin added, "I want to understand just exactly how the process works and I want to make sure that we follow these processes."

During the event, veteran Councilor Max Sangil lauded Lazatin's community assistance projects including feeding programs and financial and medical assistance to residents of Angeles City.

Sangil also cited Lazatin's proposed legislative measures, which are beneficial to a lot of Angeleños.

These include a proposed ordinance to allocate 10% of the City’s total annual budget for housing programs for the city’s urban poor members.

Sangil also mentioned two other resolutions including the request to the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources to conduct an investigation into the state and operations of the City’s Material Recovery Facility (MRF) in Barangay Pampang. Reynaldo G. Navales

The other one is the request to the City’s Environment Management System (EMS) and other concerned offices to present the city’s total expenses on garbage hauling.

Angeles observes World AIDS Day

By Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay

ANGELES CITY -- World AIDS Day was marked in this city with educational seminars as local health officers went to different schools to lecture on various aspects of the HIV/AIDS.

The World Health Organization (WHO) revealed that in 2013, 35 million people were living with HIV, 2.1 million people were newly infected with the virus and at least 1.5 million people died of AIDS.

In the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) reported that the number of people living with HIV/AIDS is up by 32 percent this year.

Compared to the 427 cases last year, the country recorded a total of 565 cases from January to September of this year.

In addition, the HIV and AIDS registry from 1984 to 2014 also showed that more men (18,948 cases) were infected than women (2,030 cases).

“The statistical data were actually quite alarming know that more guys are infected by AIDS,” said student Mark Erwin Dizon.

Dr. Lenario Santos, health officer of Angeles City, said Filipinos are now more aware and open-minded to undertake HIV testing than before.

“The history shows that people from the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) community are more vulnerable to infection,” said Santos.

In Angeles City, local health workers observe World AIDS Day each year as an opportunity for people to gather in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to remember people who have died.

“As a student, I learned many things about AIDS based on the school lectures but this seminar made realize that there are still many things that I do not know. In the future, I hope to impart the things that I have learned here to my fellow youth,” said student Divina Ibay.

Meanwhile, health officers hope the educational seminars will contribute in the efforts of the government to reduce the infections in the country to zero.

Angeles exec to launch ‘Kabuhayan Patrol’

By Reynaldo G. Navales

ANGELES CITY -- Vice-Mayor Vicky Vega-Cabigting is set to launch this December 16 the "Kabuhayan Patrol" program that aims to help micro entrepreneurs expand and improve their businesses here.

Cabigting said that the program targets sari-sari storeowners, small carinderia owners, and tricycle and jeepney drivers.

The program highlights livelihood talks and seminars that aim to equip and enrich the skills and orientation of small entrepreneurs in improving their businesses.

The vice-mayor added that the program will also provide additional capital.

The event will also see to the raffle of five winners each for sari-sari store and small carinderia owners each receiving P1,000 and P2,000 worth of goods. Five consolation prizes will also be drawn from each sector to receive P1,000 each.

Five tricycle and five jeepney drivers will also be selected to receive P1,000 and P2,000 worth of gasoline and oil. Five consolation prizes worth P1,000 each will be drawn from the two sectors, respectively.

"We are now coordinating in the grassroots level to identify the people who will participate in the program. We are also trying to increase the benefits to be given out depending on the availability of the funds of our supporters and donors," Cabigting added.

The program, she said, is in line with the Barangay Micro Business Enterprises (BMBE) Law. The law empowers government to help in the development of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME).

Cabigting said that the "Kabuhayan Patrol" is their contribution to the further development of small enterprises. She added that the growth of MSMEs will result to increased livelihood and employment in the grassroots level.

"One of the major reasons that kept our national economy afloat during major financial crises is the MSME sector. We owe a lot to them and so we must do everything to help them expand and grow," Cabigting added.

In the last five years, the MSME sector accounted for about 99.6 percent of the registered businesses in the country by which 63 percent of the labor force earn a living. Around 35.7 percent of the total sales and value added in the manufacturing come from MSMEs as well.

Pamintuan underscores role of education in development

By Reynaldo G. Navales

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan has underscored the importance of education on urban development and support to indigent families.

“In our city, we established an institution of hope, the City College of Angeles, for the benefit of our poor but deserving students – and I believe that involving the poor is what inclusive growth for urban development is really all about.”

Pamintuan stressed these during a panel discussion at the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) South-South City Leaders Forum held at the ADB Headquarters in Mandaluyong recently.

The mayor was the only local chief executive from the Philippines invited to attend this gathering of more than 50 mayors, governors and leaders from South Asia.

He was also requested to be one of three other mayors to address the forum on the topic “Inclusive Cities – Expanding Possibilities for People”. Joining him were Kinlay Dorjee, Mayor of Thimphu Municipal Government in Bhutan and C. Hari Kiran, Municipal Commissioner of Vijayawada Muncipal Corporation in India.

“Right now, on a national level, the idea of inclusive growth is still an aspiration. But on the local level, as we are doing in Angeles City, adopting the strategy of involvement, engagement and mobilization of the people can make such aspiration real,” he expressed.

Pamintuan was chosen because of the successful innovations he was able to implement in Angeles towards its development as an inclusive city.

“Angeles has taken the critical steps to ensure that the poor can benefit from our economic growth; and our programs, projects and plans such as the city college and the Renal Care Unit are some of the many things we have done towards this end,” the mayor said.

Based on the comments and questions of the participants, one of the most inspiring sharing during the two-day session is the story behind the establishment of the City College of Angeles and its contribution in improving the quality of lives of the people and offering better opportunities for the youth.

The organizers and some of the invited experts confirmed that giving priority to education is one of the major pillars for cities to be considered as livable, competitive and inclusive.

Other topics discussed and presented during the meet included Green & Resilient Cities – Urban Regeneration, Urban Financing – Developing New City Investment Strategies and Competitive Cities – Exploring New Models for Growth”.

Hosted by the ADB, the South-South City Leaders Forum has been formulated on the premise that solutions to the multiple and interconnected problems cities face must come from cities themselves.

Its objective is to spread good ideas and experiences amongst cities and help build a strong network amongst city leaders, especially in developing Asia and the Pacific.

12,000 informal workers target of Balibago social program

By Chris Navarro

ANGELES CITY – Some 12,000 informal workers including barangay officials, tanods and bar workers in the entertainment district of Barangay Balibago here will soon enjoy the government social protection coverage program which was apparently been deprived from them for a very long time.

Barangay Balibago Chairman Rodelio “Tony” Mamac, together with the Social Security System (SSS) and Pag-Ibig Fund, the other day forged a memorandum of understanding (MOU) seeking for mandatory compliance to social protection coverage to both regular and informal workers in that village.

“Most of the workers especially in the entertainment sector are not even members of the SSS, Pag-ibig, and Philhealth. This inspired us to formulate an enabling law, which was already approved, seeking for mandatory compliance to social protection coverage to all workers,” said Mamac, shortly before the signing of MOU held at the barangay hall conference room.

Citing the importance of social protection coverage, Mamac said health and other personal problems such as burial fees and hospital bills, which are often times shouldered by the local government especially for indigents families, would no longer be a problem for his constituents.

Mamac said he was inspired to formulate a measure following the death of a lady beautician whose family sought hospitalization and eventually funeral assistance. “Kung may Philhealth at SSS, hindi sana ganoon kalaki ang problema.”

He said the Barangay Council has approved the allocation of P1-million from its annual budget for the counterpart share of the contribution of its barangay officials, employees, and tanods for SSS and Pag-ibig. The payment will start on January 15 next year.

“The move was the first in the history of local governance,” said SSS Angeles City Branch head Normita Cruz.

Mamac said entertainment and funhouse workers are also included in Barangay Ordinance No. 6, also known as the mandatory compliance to social protection coverage.

He warned owners of business establishments of suspension and non-renewal of clearances should they be found liable violating the ordinance.

“The main purpose of this is to intensify the coverage of all workers on social security protection through SSS, Philhelath, and Pag-ibig while doing business within the jurisdiction of Barangay Balibago,” the MOU stated.

The signing of the MOU was the main highlight of “Salakot” Festival activities, which kicked-off Monday.

Clark Water reduces rates by P1

By Reynaldo G. Navales

CLARK FREEPORT -- Early this year, Clark Water Corporation (CWC) has become the lowest water utilities in Central Luzon, even in other economic zones.

Though lowest, the water firm continues to provide world class services to its 1,987 clienteles inside this Freeport.

Now, after signing a lease extension recently with Clark Development Corporation, the water firm in Clark has announced the reduction of P1.00 in their per cubic meter rates, making it the lowest even among other economic or Freeport zones in the country today.

Despite the increased demand for water and wastewater services, water rates and charges inside this Freeport is still lowest compared to other economic zones and other local water utilities, said Jesus Laigo, chief operating officer of CWC.

Laigo said of the total number of clients, only more than 200 firms in Clark consume huge volumes of clean of water, especially semiconductor and manufacturing firms.

In his reports submitted to the CDC, the water firm said it is still maintaining its programs in support of the thrust of the state-owned firm to provide sound business policy among its stakeholders.

The announcement was made by Laigo at the Kapihan sa Bale Balita sa Clark spearheaded by Capampangan in Media, Inc. (CAMI) recently.

With this, Laigo said that CWC will continue to “provide balance in the process of our services, with the benefits it provides our customers and the environment, and our ability to sustainably finance our operations.”

CWC is the exclusive water and wastewater operator of the Clark Freeport Zone (CFZ) and Clark Special Economic Zone (CSEZ).

In an earlier study, the tariff comparison with other economic zones show that water rates in Clark is lower compared to that of Baguio Water District and Metro Cebu Water District on their charges on residential, commercial, and industrial categories.

In a study conducted earlier, the water rate in Clark is P11.71 per cubic meter for residential while Baguio City is P41.23 per cubic meter and P15.42 in Metro Cebu. The commercial rate for Clark is P27.25, Baguio P89.35 and Metro Cebu, P46.67. The industrial rate in Clark is P26.98, Baguio P120.09 and Metro Cebu P48.38.

With the prevailing rates, Clark Water has reduced P1.00 in the present rates, Laigo said.

Clark is also lower than other surrounding water utilities on its water charges on residential rates compared to Angeles Water District with P21.07 per cubic meter, Balibago Waterworks System, Inc. at P24.13, Mabalacat Water District at P22.17, and San Fernando Water District at P20.92. For commercial rates, Angeles charges P58.57, Balibago P46.38, Mabalacat P62.70 and San Fernando P67.50. For Industrial rates Angeles charges P54.04, Mabalacat P63.10 and San Fernando P68.79. Balibago however has no industrial rates.

The waste water charge in Clark is also lower than Subic Bay Freeport Zone. Clark residential rates is P16.40 per cubic meter while at Subic, it is at P35.61.

The commercial rate in Clark is P38.15 while Subic it is P43.15 and Industrial rate for Clark is P37.78 while Subic charges P48.22, the recent study said.

“The Clark Freeport Zone is seen to be a major business hub in the Philippines and we would like to support the realization of this objective through our company’s efficient provision of water and environmental services,” said Laigo.

Although CWC has the lowest rates, the firm has significantly improved its water services on the sufficient water supply security, single digit non-revenue water, and 100 percent potable water with strong pressure.

The firm also doubled its treatment capacity for wastewater while improving its effluent quality to further satisfy its customers, Laigo said.

“For the coming years, we are forecasting an upsurge in our locators’ water supply requirement. By the year 2017, we are anticipating that water consumption will grow by about 75 percent in the Freeport Zone, and that’s within the said area only,” said Laigo.