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Cebu City News May 2015

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View of Cebu City from the bay
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Aerial View of Cebu City
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Aerial View of Metro Cebu
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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
Cebu City Cathedral
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Magellan's Cross in Cebu City
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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.
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Mormon Temple Lahug cebu city philippines


170,000 students return to public schools Monday

By Jean Marvette A. Demecillo / JMO (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - An estimated 170,000 students are expected to return to public elementary and secondary schools in Cebu City tomorrow.

Of this number, 120,000 students are in primary school while 50,000 are in the secondary level. There are 135 schools in the city.

“Cebu City is ready for Monday. The Brigada Eskwela really helped,” said Department of Education-Cebu City Schools Division Supt. Dr. Rhea Mar Angtud.

For the city’s Local School Board, different concerns were raised during the meeting last Friday as to the general preparation of the opening of classes.

These concerns include management of the influx of students, traffic, petty crimes, accidents, ambulant vending-illegal structures, peddling illegal drugs, destructive extra-curricular activities, fraternity activities, vandalism, school’s security, illegal terminals, children that may get lost or kidnapped, pedestrian safety and parent patrol, bullying, shortage of water, garbage, fire hazards, disaster or man-made incidents, congested boarding houses, pollution and sanitation, health issues, food quality, food contamination, and/or epidemic health issues.

Mayor Michael Rama said the specialization and expertise of all agencies and departments at City Hall will be needed to address these concerns. Freeman ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch:

“To enlighten our burden in addressing this and to lighten our responsibility, divided the concerns to concerned stakeholders. The matter of efficacy and effectiveness can be improved in the Balik Eskwela,” he said.

Angtud said there will be no makeshift classes in all public schools.

“No makeshift classes. Tanan na sa sulod classroom, day ug night ra sa tanang high schools sa urban city. Gi-maximize ang use sa classrooms,” she said.

She said there are 12 public elementary schools that will hold double shifts (day and afternoon) since these are among the most congested schools in the city.

These include Barrio Luz E.S, Guadalupe E.S, Don Vicente Rama Memorial E.S, Inayawan E.S, Camputhaw E.S, Lahug E.S, Pasil E.S, Quiot E.S, San Nicolas E.S, Talamban E.S, Tejero E.S, and Tisa E.S.

Angtud said the DepEd central office has given the city’s division over 270 classrooms while the central office has opened 232 teaching items and has finished trainings last Friday.

LSB chief Ronald "Raddy" Diola admitted that city’s schools are “sorely lacking” in terms of classrooms, which the board intends to address in the coming months.

“Some still have makeshift classrooms in schools where their buildings have been declared as unfit after the earthquake. It is for this reason that I have established policies that would ensure that only quality workmanship goes to each building constructed and that safety and security of our students and teachers is the primordial consideration,” he said.

Meanwhile, the City Traffic Operations Management has identified 27 public and 48 private schools that should be monitored.

CITOM operations chief Jonathan Tumulak said the office will deploy one traffic enforcer each to Cebu City Central School, Banilad Elementary School, Barrio Luz Elementary School, Zapatera Elementary School, Mabolo Elementary School, among others.

Tumulak said there are 17 schools that CITOM will not deploy personnel to because there are barangay tanods in the areas where they are located.

“Suggest lang pod namo sa public schools nga naa lang unta’y drop off area for students inside the schools para likay sa disgrasya and mo minus pod ang traffic,” he said.

Dad proposes medical aid of P50,000

By Razel V. Cuizon

CEBU City residents may soon avail themselves of a wider range of free medical care from public and private hospitals.

Councilor Eugenio Gabuya Jr., in his proposed ordinance, wants the City to grant a maximum of P50,000 in medical aid every year to qualified residents, or their dependents, who are admitted to a government hospital or to a private hospital accredited by the City.

To qualify, the resident must present a medical abstract, voter’s certificate issued by the Commission on Elections, barangay clearance or certification for residency requirement and the hospital bill.


The requirements will then be evaluated by the Department of Social Welfare and Services.

“The benefits of this ordinance may also be availed by a direct descendant or ascendant of the qualified and bona fide resident, whether legitimate or otherwise,” read the proposed ordinance.

Gabuya said his proposal will complement the City’s Hospitalization and Medicine Program (Champ).

Under Champ, a qualified beneficiary can avail himself of up to P25,000 in hospitalization, P5,000 worth of medicines and another P5,000 for laboratory work.

Gabuya said he learned that Champ was only created by an executive order, prompting him to come up with his proposal.

In July 2010, Mayor Michael Rama penned Executive Order 10-01 to create Champ.

Through the proposed ordinance, an annual allocation from the City’s general funds will be required for the effective implementation of the program.

The proposed measure was referred to the committee on laws for review.

P17.5M e-trading system launched

By Gregg M. Rubio/NSA (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala led yesterday the launching of the Dalaguete Agri-Pinoy Trading Center (DAPTC), the first modern trading system in Central Visayas.

Alcala switched on the electronic trading system, in which farmers could know the actual buying prices of commodities in Mantalongon, Dalaguete as well as those from Carbon Market in Cebu City.

He also visited the pick-up points (PuPs) established in production areas where farmers will do the sorting, packing and weighing of vegetables.

With the P17.5 million worth of facility in Dalaguete, the vegetable basket in Central Visayas, Alcala encouraged traders not to buy products from farmers in the barangay level at a very low price.

Dalaguete Mayor Ronald Allan Cesante said in five years time, the farmers association and cooperatives would be the ones to manage the facility.

Cebu second district Representative Wilfredo Caminero assured of the government’s support such as the improvement and opening of farm-to-market roads to give easy access to farmers not only in the mountain barangays of Dalaguete, but also of the neighboring municipalities, to the DAPTC.

Governor HilarioDavide III also believed the facility could greatly help uplift the quality of life of the farmers.

To benefit the estimated 5,000 farmers, the project components include PuPs as packing center, free hauling service from PuP to DAPTC, and refrigerated van for transport to institutional buyers.

Majority of Dalaguete vegetables pass through the trading center and then sold outside the municipality.

About 94 percent of the vegetables from the trading center brought outside Dalaguete are sold at Carbon Market in Cebu City, either in wholesale or retail basis, while six percent are brought outside Cebu province, specifically to Bacolod City, Dumaguete City, and Tacloban City, among others.

Council wants cell sites in Brgy Apas removed

By Jean Marvette A. Demecillo / JMO (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - The Cebu City Council has revoked the permits of telecom companies in Barangay Apas and ordered them to remove their cell sites from the barangay within two months.

The council’s decision came after residents of the barangay blamed the death of 19 cancer patients on the radiation emitted by the cell sites.

“I therefore move to revoke the special permits granted to Globe and SunCellular communications of their cell sites towers in Sitio Calvary Hills, Apas and to remove the said cell sites towers within two months,” said City Councilor Sisinio Andales.

At least 100 members of the Calvary Hills Apas Residents Organization (CHARO) trooped to the session hall yesterday to hear the decision.

Apas Barangay Captain Rami Ayuman said he is glad that the council listened to the residents’ plea.

“Lipay ta sa decision sa Council. Wala ta mag-expect kay katong mga previous nga mga sessions, ni anchor sila kun unsay basis. Karon, nakita nila and na-convince sila nga duna gyud probable cause ang revoking. Nalipay ta nga i-revoke na gyud nila,” he said.

“Follow up kun kanus-a ipa-revoke. I don’t know ang city government ba ang mu-dismantle. Dagko ni nga companies. Chances are, basig mo-file ni og case or naay injunction,” he added.

The permit was granted in 2000 to the telcos upon the recommendation of the City Zoning Board.

Ayuman said there is basis to transfer the cell sites immediately on the grounds of death due to cancer, lack of public consultation, and lack of consent from barangay homeowners.

Dr. Agnet Peralta of the Department of Health said earlier that radio frequency waves received and transmitted by cell site towers don’t cause cancer.

Peralta said “the radiation coming from cell sites are classified as non-ionizing radiation and doesn’t cause cancer.”

In an emailed statement, Globe Chief Legal Counsel Froilan Castelo said, “The misconception that cell sites can cause cancer is largely urban myth. As a matter of fact, even of Department of Health has stated that there are no clinical studies to prove that exposure to radio frequency emission causes cancer; this is because radio frequency emissions from cell sites are categorized as non-ionizing and will not impact human cells or organs,” he said.

Castelo said international agencies like the World Health Organization have indicated that the level of radio frequency exposure from cell sites are so low and does not affect human health.

“We shall continue to cooperate with the city government to ensure that this issue be accorded due process so that decisions arrived at will be beneficial to all parties involved,” he added.

Meanwhile, Porponio Lapa, Jr., president of the homeowners organization, said, “We are more relieved of the mental anguish ba and we will probably sleep soundly and peacefully at least within our area.”

Christina Baldomar, 44, one of the residents who were diagnosed with breast cancer, was elated after hearing the Council’s decision.

“Two years nag fight ana. Siyempre nalipay kay naa nay pasalig from the council. Na-diagnose ko’g breast cancer stage 3B and usa sa reason ang sa radiation. Last year na diagnose, and walay laing reason akong nakita asa makuha akong sakit kay walay history akong family,” she said.

For his part, Mayor Michael Rama said he wants the matter to be looked into further.

“Wala pa naabot nako. That has to be looked into. Basin unya they are just jumping too quickly. Have they ever thought on expert’s pronouncements? Basin og it will be a political matter again,” he said.

Rama also said the City Council has no jurisdiction to revoke the permits.

“They cannot issue a permit. Moingon gani ka og issue og permit, asa man mangayo og business permit? Sa executive gihapon…When you talk about revocation, it does not belong to the City Council kay permit to operate, sa Mayor, apil nana sa proseso,” he pointed out.

He said he will meet with the concerned organization, barangay officials, and the stakeholders on the matter.

Operation Smile returns to Cebu

By Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon / JMO (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - An estimated 150 children with cleft lips, cleft palate and other facial deformities will undergo free reconstructive surgery during the five-day medical mission of Operation Smile Cebu Mission at the Adventist Hospital (formerly Miller Hospital) in Cebu City from June 15 to 20.

The Operation Smile Cebu Mission is part of the huge cleft surgery mission of Operation Smile, which covers five areas, including Bacolod City, Davao City, Manila and Bacolod, Pampanga.

In a statement, Operation Smile said oral cleft is one of the country's leading congenital defects, afflicting one in every 500 newborns or a total of 5,000 Filipinos every year. Of the estimated 140,000 born with the defect between 1982 and 2014, around 100,000 are still awaiting surgery.

"The highly debilitating deformity disfigures the afflicted and impairs their normal speech. If they are not treated early, they are likely to lose their self-worth and become recluses and outcasts," the statement reads.

The mission in Cebu, which is now on its 17th year, will be undertaken in cooperation with the Mariquita Salimbangon-Yeung Charitable Foundation Inc. (MSYCFI).

Ramona Aliño, executive director of the MSYCFI said they target to operate on at least 150 children.

"We will try our best effort to have all of these children undergo surgery. Our target is 150 children but it could go more," Aliño said.

Screening for the Cebu mission will be on June 14, 2015 at the Adventist Hospital.

One surgery would last at least 45 minutes. When carried out at a private clinic, the surgery would cost P60,000.

The MSYCFI has been hosting the Cebu Mission since 1998, which has treated a total of 3,601 cleft children or 13 percent of the total number of patients treated in the entire country.

"This mission will continue until these kinds of deformities are eradicated," said Mariquita Salimbangon-Yeung, the foundation's chairperson.

Operation Smile was founded in 1982 by William P. Magee and his wife, Kathleen S. Magee. It has 5,400 highly trained, experienced and credentialed medical and non-medical volunteers from 80 countries doing missions in over 60 countries.

A mission team is comprised of plastic surgeons, anesthesiologists, pediatric intensivists, pediatricians, dentists, nurses, speech pathologists, child life specialists, biomedical technicians, medical records specialists and patient imaging technicians.

"All are volunteers who take a leave of absence from their employment or private practice for more than a week to do pro-bono work," the statement reads further.

Cardinal Vidal marks 30th year as cardinal


CEBU CITY, May 26 (PNA) -- Cebu Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal celebrated his 30th anniversary Monday as cardinal by officiating a mass in his home at Sto. Niño Village, Barangay Banilad, Cebu City.

Vidal, 84, expressed his gratitude, especially to the Lord for his good health.

“I thank God that I’m strong enough, to be able to say a Mass, to stand, to walk, and be able think yet straight, in spite of my age of 84,” Vidal said.

Vidal became a cardinal in 1985 and retired as Cebu archbishop in October 2010.

Two months after his retirement, the Senate honored Vidal through a resolution commending him for his service to the people.

“It is resolved by the Senate, to honor Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, Archbishop of Cebu, for his service to the people of Cebu, providing spiritual leadership and inspiration, helping the community avert or survive several crises and conflicts, often acting as a peacekeeper and giving the voice of moderation amid clashing views and interests in local and national issues,” the resolution read.

Vidal’s successful intervention in military coups, labor disputes and other conflicts earned him the title of “The Peacekeeper,” said then Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile during the approval of the resolution.

Cebu City to release PHP400M aid to villages


CEBU CITY, May 25 (PNA) -- The Cebu City government is set to release its financial assistance of PHP5 million to each of the city's 80 barangays.

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said the city has set aside P400 million for the first tranche of aid for the barangays to fund their projects this year.

The city has set aside PHP800 million this year as aid to the barangays under the PHP13.4-billion annual budget.

“This will be an early December for the barangays. So the City Government is acting like it’s having Christmas in the coming months. Santa Claus is coming to the barangays,” Rama said.

But the barangay have to comply with some requirements, he said.

The barangays need to submit their Barangay Development Plan (BDP), said Cebu City Treasurer Diwa Cuevas.

They should also pass a resolution asking for the release, as well as a letter-request to the mayor.

They should also have no unliquidated financial assistance.

Rama also recently said the city will implement a PHP600-million “concreting storm” in the 31 mountain villages.

“My marching order is that no barangays will be treated inferior. All should be treated in the same manner. All have to be given. No anger, no vindictiveness, no rancor,” he said.

Cebu City cops, barangay tanods undergo disaster response training

By Joel Locsin / JDS (GMA News)

Police and barangay tanods in Cebu City have undergone disaster training to make sure they are ready to respond to any emergency or situation.

The training was organized by the non-government organization Rescue Assistance Peacekeeping Intelligence Detail, GMA Cebu's Nikko Sereno reported.

Among the skills highlighted in the training were rappelling from the third floor of the police station.

Station 2 OIC Chief Inspector Davide Señor said this training will help police determine what to do in case of emergencies in buildings.

He added the training will also benefit the tanods as force multipliers for the police.

"Ang mga personnel natin at dalawang tanod sa bawa't barangay ang kasali sa training para at least backgrounder sa kanila paano mag-serve," RAPID Visayas executive director Rafael Enriquez added.

For his part, Señor said civic organizations must play a role in Philippine disaster risk management.

"(I)t’s all of us, it needs the communities (to work) hand in hand," he said.

Stakeholders sign pact to save city waterways

By May B. Miasco (The Freeman) /RHM

CEBU, Philippines - Aiming to restore the waterways of Cebu City, stakeholders yesterday converged to formulate concrete actions and signed a joint resolution that laid down specific strategic steps to manage the city’s rivers and other waterway systems.

The third “Sustainable Cities Dialogues,” spearheaded by the Movement for a Livable Cebu, was meant to unite and integrate efforts to save Cebu’s rivers and waterways.

The “Saving Our Rivers” meeting involved the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc., Mega Cebu, Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc., and Rotary- Fuente, among others.

“For private sector and civil society organizations to help local government units and waterways development council in implementing action plans to clean and clear the city’s rivers with definite score card for reporting,” said Joseph Michael Espina, Dean of the University of San Carlos College of Architecture and Fine Arts, in reading the second action plan in the joint resolution.

Espina, who is also an MLC member, said civil society should work for the creation of Waterways Development Council, which would be patterned after Mabilog’s Iloilo model.

The third action plan of the joint resolution is for local government units to implement and enforce the Anti-littering and Anti-garbage Dumping Lane, in consonance with Republic Act 9003, and also to implement a “Do-Day” activity every weekend in the barangay level.

MLC lead convenor Marc Canton said the discussion brought in representative of government agencies, local government units, business sector, and private and civic society organizations to help formulate structures and come up with a result-oriented action plan.

Jesse Baring, an engineer, dwelt on “The Effects of Urbanisation of Cebu’s Rivers and Estuaries” through a video presentation on the present state of the city’s major waterways, which are mostly clogged with trash, among others.

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Mabilog, on the other hand, drew a loud applause after his talk on how the Iloilo River was restored from being a huge septic tank to a habitable river.

He advised three basic principles to pursue in pushing for change: unity among leaders, public partisan, academe, civic society and other organizations, creation of strategic plans to avoid unnecessary costs and thrust of a political will.

“We should have the political will on what is morally right and not on what is politically correct,” Mabilog said.

Mini dams eyed for 31 Cebu upland villages

By Razel V. Cuizon, Justin K. Vestil, Oscar C. Pineda

HEEDING farmers’ appeal, the Cebu City Government will install mini dams in all 31 mountain barangays to solve the water shortage problem there.

The water catchments will cost the City P10 million.

Addressing the effects of El Niño became a more urgent concern on Thursday as Cebu felt its hottest day so far this year, and local weather officials fear that it will get worse.

Requests from local government units (LGUs) in the province included rice subsidy for affected farmers and discounted electricity rates for operators of water systems. A mayor in northern Cebu also proposed cloud seeding to increase rainfall.

35.3 degrees

At 2:30 p.m. Thursday, May 21, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) in Mactan recorded a temperature of 35.3 degrees Celsius.

It surpassed the 34.5 degrees Celsius temperature recorded last May 10.

Al Quiblat, Pagasa Mactan chief weather specialist, said that Thursday’s hottest temperature is beyond the normal range of 26 to 33 degrees Celsius during the summer months.

But Thursday’s temperature is still far from the highest temperature in Cebu, at 37 degrees Celsius in May 2010.

Quiblat said, though, that with an ongoing heat wave in Cebu, the temperate could be higher in the coming weeks.

He urged the public to prepare for the effects of an even hotter temperature, including conserving water.

Water summit

At the first Water Summit held in Barangay Taptap yesterday, Cebu City Agriculturist Joelito Baclayon announced the construction of water catchment facilities before some 100 farmers who were present.

The water impounding structures will hold water coming from different sources like springs and rain, which can be used by farmers during the dry season, Baclayon said.

It can also prevent flooding in areas surrounding the facility.

Water stored in the catchment will be used for agriculture, particularly to water the farms.

“The farmers raised their concerns during the summit and there is a shortage of water for agriculture use in the mountain areas,” he said.


A total of 166 water catchment facilities will be built starting next month.

Each of the 31 barangays will have six water catchment facilities, which will occupy at least 100 square meters of land in different sitios.

The barangay officials were asked to locate the springs in their area where they can get water.

Baclayon said that during the day, residents can get water from the catchment facility, which will be directly connected to a spring. Storage of additional supply of water will be done at night.

The P10 million that will be used for the project will be taken from the approved 2014 budget of the City Agriculture Department (CAD) for spring development, said Baclayon.

He hopes that all water catchment facilities will be installed by July.

Baclayon said they already requested the City’s bids and awards committee to prioritize the bidding of the project because of the concerns on the water supply shortage in the upland areas.


Mayor Michael Rama, for his part, said the National Government should help the City in finding solutions to the water problem.

“The President is aware of the situation as early as 2010, but how come we haven’t been given funds to address the problem?” he said.

Rama said the City should have a third dam, considering that the Buhisan Dam and Jaclupan weir dry up at times.

“Constructing a dam would cost billions and we need help,” he said.

The installation of water catchment facilities is just among the suggestions that came up during the summit organized by the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CCDRRMC).

Councilor Dave Tumulak said the summit aims to get input from the farmers on how the City can address the water problem after the upland villages were placed under a state of calamity.

Tumulak, who also presides over the CCDRRMC, said that a comprehensive plan on how to address the water concerns will be drafted after the summit.

Help for towns

At the Capitol, Gov. Hilario Davide III welcomed the request for assistance of the mayors of Daanbantayan and Medellin, whose residents are bearing the effects of the dry spell.

“As much as we can, we will help these towns suffering from below normal rainfall,” Davide said, reiterating what he said during their Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) meeting last May 19.

Daanbantayan Mayor Augusto Corro is requesting the Province for 100 bags of rice for farmers who have nothing or very little to harvest.


For his part, Medellin Mayor Ricardo Ramirez asked the Province to request the Cebu Electric Company (Cebeco) to give discounted rates to entities operating water systems.

Residents of Medellin’s 19 barangays get their water supply from a cooperative-run water system and an LGU-operated water system, which uses electric pumps to extract water and distribute it to the households.

He said that before the dry spell, their LGU’s water pump is only open a few hours a day. Now, it is switched off for only a few hours a day.

The PDRRMC has passed a resolution urging the Provincial Board (PB) to place Cebu province under a state of calamity.

This will authorize Capitol to use its P121-million disaster risk reduction management (DRRM) fund.

Board members will tackle this during their session on Monday.

Ramirez is also hoping that the Province will study the feasibility of cloud seeding as a way of addressing the effects of El Niño.

Cloud seeding is a method of artificially producing rain by spraying salt on cumulus clouds.

Special prayer

In response to the calamity, the Archdiocese of Cebu plans to issue a special prayer.

Msgr. Joseph Tan, Cebu Archdiocesan media liaison officer, said that Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma plans to release an “Oratio Imperata” against the ongoing dry spell just after the Feast of the Pentecost this Sunday.

The Archdiocese of Cebu announced this following requests from the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) to help them mitigate the effects of the dry spell.

“The Church is concerned also with the general water situation of our city and province. She will be more than happy to rally everyone to pray for God’s intervention to our legitimate needs. Prayer also guides our responsible actions towards stewardship over the earth’s resources for the future of this planet,” Tan added.

9 grads from Cebu schools top 2 board exams

By Justin K. Vestil With DSM/RCT

NINE graduates from Cebu City schools are among the top performers in two recent licensure examinations given this month.

Seven graduates Chemical Engineering and Accountancy graduates from the University of San Carlos (USC) landed in the top 10; of the seven, two placed second. Two graduates from the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R) also made it to the top 10 in the licensure examinations for certified public accountants (CPAs).

Those who come from Cebu schools who made it to the top 10 of the CPA licensure exams are:

2nd - Shaun Anthony Tiu Go (USC, 91.29%) 3rd - Jaecelle Margrett Go Dy (USC, 90.86%) 4th - Jamaica Juanir Marjadas (USC, 90%) 9th - John Lester Juarez Lastimosa (USJ-R, 88.71%) 10th - Odessa Marie Onding Allera (USC, 88.43%) Rieland Joromo Cuevas (USC, 88.43%) Bridjet Aniñon Diaz (USJ-R, 88.43%)

In the Chemical Engineering licensure exams, Aljon Mayol Alivio and Jastle Jeb Go Rodrigo, both from USC, were the only graduates from Cebu schools to make it to the top 8.

Alivio ranked second while Rodrigo placed sixth.


Alivio had an overall rating of 83.00 percent, while Rodrigo had a rating of 80.60 percent.

Alivio told Sun.Star Cebu he always dreamed of topping the exams.

The son of an electrician and a housewife, Alivio, 22, is the youngest of three siblings living in Consolacion, Cebu.

To prepare for the exams, Alivio enrolled in a review center for seven months.

But it was never all studies for Alivio. During his spare time, he played Clash of Clans, a smartphone game; played badminton; watched movies; and traveled.

Alivio said self-discipline helped him balance study and play.

“During the review, you own your time. It’s up to you what to make of it,” he said.


Ramelito Agapay, chairman of the USC’s chemical engineering department, said the university plans to reward Alivio and Rodrigo with new laptops and medals for their accomplishment.

USC garnered an overall rating of 91.67 percent in the board exam. Around 11 of its first-time takers passed the exams.

Alivio’s advice to future chemical engineers is to study, persevere and to have faith in God.

“Know your learning style. Develop your study habits. If you feel like giving up, rest if you must, but never quit,” he said.

City sets aside P600M for upland brgy. roads

By Princess Dawn H. Felicitas

THE Cebu City Hall will implement a P600-million road concreting project in 30 upland barangays.

Dubbed by Cebu City Hall as a “concreting storm,” the project aims to improve 50 to 60 kilometers of road starting July this year.

Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW) Chief Jose Marie Poblete said that the project is in line with Mayor Michael Rama's thrust to connect all the main roads in upland villages.

The upland portions of Barangays Guadalupe, Kalunasan and Talamban will benefit from the project. It will cover roads in the mountain barangays of Kalunasan, Cambinocot, Guba, Paril, Lusaran, Mabini Agsungot, Pulangbato, Sirao, Bonbon, Buot Taup, Pamutan, Sapangdaku, Toong, Sinsin, Buhisan, Sudlon I, Sudlon II, Tagbao, Tabunan, Pung-ol Sibugay, Babag, Taptap, Budlaan, San Jose, Binaliw and Adlaon.

In an interview yesterday, Poblete said that based on their plans, the City will be spending at least P10 to P12 million for every kilometer of road that will be concreted. The amount includes the establishment of a road side ditch.

Funding strong

The concreting project will be funded under the P13.4 billion annual budget of the City for this year.

Poblete said that the approved budget contracts will be endorsed to the City's Bids and Awards Committee within the week. He said that he hopes that the project will be bid out next month so that it will be awarded to a contractor by July.

He said that City Hall wants the projects to start soon because the barangay officials have been asking about it.

Poblete said that there is no longer a need for the projects to go through the City Council since they are not funded by lump sum appropriations.

He added that the areas that will be concreted have already been specified under the annual budget.

Rama yesterday said in his news conference that if it were up to him, he would set aside more funds for road projects.

“It will be a real storm of infrastructure,” he said.

Cebu City mayor vows to improve traffic before APEC Summit


CEBU CITY, May 19 (PNA) -- Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama has vowed to improve the traffic situation in the city before the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit unfolds later this year.

But Rama said he needs the support of the APEC 2015 National Organizing Council (APEC-NOC) by authorizing him to convene regional officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the Cebu provincial government.

Rama said he raised the matter with the APEC-NOC when they visited him last Friday.

The delegation, which was headed by APEC-NOC Director General Marciano Paynor Jr., raised to the mayor the city’s traffic situation.

“We will improve the traffic in three months time if we will be one in addressing it. I can guarantee. Put this people on board, make me take the lead and I will give them the political will because this is about the city,” he said.

Rama said he needs the DPWH so road widening, road flaring and recovery of sidewalks will be immediately implemented.

He said the DPWH has the equipment and contacts with the contractors.

He also said the DENR will have to fast-track the issuance of earth-balling permits, among others, while the provincial government will have to allow setbacks in some of its properties in the city so road flaring will be carried out.

These include the province’s properties in Salinas Drive in Barangay Lahug and Barangay Banilad.

Rama said he also wants the involvement of the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

“APEC is the responsibility of the national and local government units. These agencies have to be put together. There will definitely be traffic problems if we will not put our acts together,” he said.

Rama said the city cannot solely initiate the conduct of meetings with the concerned stakeholders.

“It can’t be the city alone. If we call the DENR, they avoid us. If we call the DPWH, nothing,” he said.

Cebu City village gears up for 4th Mangga festivasl on May 24


CEBU CITY, May 18 (PNA) -- Barangay Kalunasan in Cebu City is gearing for its 4th Mangga (mango) festival during its 73rd founding anniversary on May 24, 2015.

The Mangga Festival will cap the week-long celebration of the barangay’s founding anniversary.

First launched in 2012, the Mangga Festival aims to promote the barangay's mango products.

Barangay Kalunasan councilman Marvin Leyson, chairman of the committee on entertainment and tourism, said the council has also added more activities in this year's celebration.

Among them are the "Queen of Kalunasan" which will be participated by the LGBT community; a photo contest which will be open for photographers even the non-residents; a puppeteers and higantes competition; and Party Land sa Kalunasan, which will be done in the evening of the festival.

The traditional street dancing, followed by the ritual showdown, will highlight the culmination of the anniversary.

It will be participated by the nine contingents exclusively from the clustered sitios of the said barangay.

The barangay allocated PHP500,000 for the entire celebration, of which PHP350,000 came from the Cebu City government.

Public schools up for a facelift today

By Razel V. Cuizon , Justin K. Vestil

HEADS of the different public schools in Cebu City are expected to deliver their state of the school address (SOSA) during the simultaneous launching of the Brigada Eskwela today.

Department of Education (DepEd) Cebu City Division Assistant Superintendent Danilo Godelosao said they required the principals to deliver a report during the SOSA, particularly on updates on what happened during the Brigada Eskwela last year.

“We asked them to do it first thing in the morning to update the stakeholders, especially the donors on what happened to their help,” he said.

The school’s concerns and the help they need for this year will also be discussed so the stakeholders would know what to donate.

Godelosao said the SOSA is one way of promoting transparency.

Early in the morning today, DepEd vehicles will be on the road to announce the holding of Brigada Eskwela in all public schools.

“Mag-rekorida mi aron maka-encourage ta sa uban to help their respective schools kay we really need volunteers,” Godelosao said.

Meanwhile, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Central Visayas donated almost 200,000 board feet of forest products to different agencies.

Around 187,000 board feet of various forest products were formally turned over to the Department of Education, Philippine National Police and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) earlier this month.

The donated forest products will be used for the repair and construction of public school buildings, markets, furniture and boats, among others.

Dr. Isabelo Montejo, DENR 7 executive director, said that a large portion of the donation will be turned over to public schools in the region.

Following the turnover, the DepEd reported that the donated forest products will be used to construct new arm chairs, tables and cabinets and for the repair of school buildings.

The forest products include those that were confiscated by DENR and were already declared free from liens and encumbrances.

DENR Secretary Ramon Paje has ordered national and regional offices to exhaust all means to speed up the adjudication procedures for illegally sourced and transported forest products in line with the present direction to donate them to DepEd and other agencies.

Paje also instructed DENR personnel nationwide, especially those manning city and provincial offices, to make a regular inventory of seized forest products.

An inventory of seized forest products can help determine if there are any that are due for donation.

Cebu developer to market furnished condos

By Eddie O. Barrita [(PNA), RMA/RCK/EB/SSC]

CEBU CITY, May 16 (PNA) -- Officials of a Cebu-based developer are eyeing to capture the market for ready-for-occupancy condominium units in Cebu City’s urban districts.

Farrah Mayol, AboitizLand Inc marketing manager, said there was a significant market, including overseas Filipino workers, who were more likely to be attracted to fully furnished condominium units than bare ones.

“There is a demand for fully-furnished units,” Mayol said.

AboitizLand has committed to build 638 fully-furnished studio units for its mixed-use project and its first condominium development, The Persimmon, in Barangay Mabolo, Cebu City.

About 70 percent of the total number of studio units has already been sold, both to OFWs and locals, end-users and investors alike, said AboitizLand marketing officer Jay de los Reyes.

Inside the 24 and 26-square-meter studio units in The Persimmon, there is an air conditioner, a smart LED TV, a queen-sized bed, a couch, refrigerator, electric stove, range hood, kitchen base cabinet and countertop, a banquet dining set, overhead cabinet and shelf, and wardrobe cabinets.

Each unit adopts space-saving features to fit the furniture and appliances. For example, the queen-sized bed can be converted into a couch.

“Condo living’s challenge is space, so aside from offering fully-furnished units, we also have to adopt space-saving features,” de los Reyes said.

AboitizLand tapped the Cebu-based Maia Franco Group for The Persimmon Studios.

The smallest studio unit at The Persimmon has an area of 18 square meters but these units were already sold out, according to Mayol.

The Persimmon Studios is scheduled for completion in May 2016, with turnover in September 2016. One studio unit is priced at P2.7 million.

Mayor Rama pushes for world-class markets

By Odessa O. Leyson /ATO (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - As part of its preparation for the Association of South East Asian Nation integration, the Cebu City government carried out yesterday the “Bisita Merkado” to determine the developments needed in the city’s markets.

The Bisita Merkado intends to look into the current status of all private, public, barangay, and city markets and finds a way to make them world class.

The Bisita Merkado, led by Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama, has already visited the Pardo Public Market, Pasil Fish Port (Phase 2), as well as the markets of Inayawan, Basak Bontores, Tabada Mambaling, Punta Princesa, Tisa, Labangon, and Banawa.

After his visit to the markets, Rama said that they have identified initial developments that need to be implemented.

“Like sa among nakit-an didto sa Poblacion Pardo up to Taboan, we already have a paradigm shift nga buhatonon,” Rama said.

Rama said he plans to convert the Taboan Public Market in the evening into a park and a food court. He also wants to add an information desk that would distribute to tourists brochures containing information on other markets in the city. Freeman ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch:

Rama also said that to have markets with world class standards, the city government will impose strict sanitation regulations as part of the developmental plan.

“We will be very strict in sanitation, of course, in market developmental plan, kay og dili nato makit-an gud ang ending ana kuyos, dili gani nimo tabangan ang barangay,” Rama said.

Rama also wants the markets and streets well-lit like those in Barcelona, Spain.

In line with this, the United Multi-Sectoral Cebu City Coordinating Council was created. It composed of stall owners, establishment owners, street traders, market authority and the barangay.

Rama plans to put up a general fund for every barangay-operated market to be included in the 2016 budget preparation.

P50M more for trash fees

By Razel V. Cuizon

AFTER it was stalled, the additional P50 million funds intended for the City’s garbage disposal fees was finally approved by the City Council.

The amount was charged to the P162-million calamity fund of the City for 2011, 2012 and 2014 that remains unspent.

In last Wednesday’s regular session, the legislative body approved Councilor Nendell Abella’s resolution appropriating more funds for the landfill tipping fee following the submission and approval of a revised Annual Investment Plan (AIP).

Aside from the City Council, the revised AIP was also approved by the City Development Council (CDC).

During the previous discussion, Councilor Margarita Osmeña, chairperson of the committee on budget and finance, said that for the P50 million to be charged to the unexpended balance of the calamity fund, a revised AIP must be submitted first.


For every ton of garbage dumped at the private landfill in Consolacion, the City has pay P700 tipping fee.

Everyday, the Department of Public Services (DPS) collects an average of 200 tons of garbage.

The City also pays P1,500 for the 260 tons of garbage collected daily, including a P700 tipping fee, by a private hauler.

This year, the City has an approved P51-million budget for garbage disposal fees, but this covered the expenses until last April 30.

But even with the approval, the Council still wants the DPS to submit the remaining requirements that they asked.

These include the names of private garbage haulers, their contracts with the City Government and the gross tonnage that they can collect.

Upon submission, the DPS may use the additional fund for the payment of tipping fee.


With the development, Mayor Michael Rama said he is grateful to the Council for their “sensitivity” to the matter.

“We have to thank them because I don’t have to exercise my police power and now I’m seeing them complimenting and collaborating,” he said.

Asked on the conditions set by the Council along with the approval of additional funds, Rama said, concerned office must be compliant because garbage collection is a priority.

“What’s important is to collect the garbage and bring the garbage (to the dump site), if they have better haulers, let them come in, I need their help that’s why the mayor is not greedy in terms of wanting to solve the problem,” he added.

City lauds police intel over accomplishments vs drugs

By Odessa O. Leyson (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - The Police Coordinating and Advisory Council (PCAC) has commended the intelligence branch of the Cebu City Police Office for the series of successful operations against illegal drug trade.

Vice Mayor Edgardo Labella, who chairs PCAC, said the accomplishments of the City Intelligence Branch will soon be acknowledged formally.

“Yes of course, I will confirm it to other members that we are inclined to the recommendation, especially based on the statistics of the prosecutor’s office,” said Labella.

From January to April alone of this year, CIB has reportedly confiscated at least 10 million worth of illegal drugs.

Based on the inquest report covering January 2, 2015 to April 30, 2015, the Cebu City Prosecutors Office tallied 251 cases of illegal drug possession, 145 cases of possessions of drug paraphernalia, and 72 cases of illegal drug sale.

The report was signed by assistant city prosecutor Van Russel Inopiquez.

Labella, however, said even with these accomplishments of the police, some of the cases are dismissed in court due to technicalities.

“Mao na nga kadaghanan g’yud sa mga kaso sa violation sa illegal drug na-dismiss due to technicalities. Kay kung wala ning tulo ka-personalities sa inventory nga i-submit didto sa husgado, ma-dismiss ang kaso,” he said.

Labella, who is also a lawyer, was referring to the media, representative from the Department of Justice, and elected barangay officials, not only barangay secretary and treasurer.

With this, Labella said there is a “compelling” need to amend Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

“Nga dili cumulative. Meaning, usa lang ani: media, sa barangay, Department of Justice, pwede na ang prosecution sa kaso. Dili kinahanglang tulo g’yud,” he said.

Clinic by the sea

By Janessa Costillas, Aeryka Jurienne Dimaclid (CNU Communication Interns)

IN Cebu City, the sports commission takes in Badjaos, gives them swim wear, swim caps, goggles, snacks, access to the pool at the Cebu City Sports Center and a good coach and they get themselves a summer swimming program.

The Badjaos are lucky, they have the Cebu City Sports Commission. In Talisay City, indigent kids who live by the sea still consider themselves lucky because they have a passionate coach in Alfie Fernandez.

They do not have the support of any sports commission, as Coach Alfie carries the burden of having a free swim clinic for indigent Talisay kids with the help of well-meaning friends.

At least 20 kids are taken in by Fernandez, a coach and scuba instructor, who teaches them the rudiments of swimming.

“It all started with having a stack of second-hand goggles, which were donated by Loy Rafols, a former top swimmer and his family. I have hoarded them in my office and early this summer, I was looking at them and realized, I should use these,” said Fernandez.

Having a home and an office by the seaside in Poblacion, Talisay, Fernandez sees neighborhood kids playing in the sea, which is basically his backyard. And that was when he decided to train them.

“Most of these are children of young single moms. We have some who are left to relatives. We have a special child. At first I trained some of the neighbors’ kids and then they told their friends about it until we had more than 20 swimmers,” said Fernandez.

Sea butterflies

And barely a month into their training, the kids can now do the butterfly stroke like your regular Palarong Pambansa campaigner. But unlike the Palaro swimmers, these kids are doing it against currents and strong waves and with salty water in their eyes.

Because unlike the Cebu City swimmers, they do not have a fancy pool, so they use what geography and Mother Nature provide them: the sea.

“This makes their training a hard one because they have to go against these elements, which they will not encounter in the pool,” said Fernandez.

Not all of them have swimwear, so they wear their underwear. They do not have their own goggles, so Fernandez lends them goggles. He only has 13 for 22 children, so sometimes, he lets them use dive masks so that their eyes wouldn’t get hurt by the sea water.

These kids also do not have enough nourishment, so Fernandez uses money from his own pocket or donations from his dive group, the Sea Knights, to give them snacks so they can train twice a day—once in the morning and once in the afternoon.

Fernandez said that he has seen the dedication of the kids as they all try to go to practice twice a day despite not having the amenities that other kids enjoy in their swimming lessons.

On Sundays, Fernandez brings the kids to church as well.

Fernandez said that he has been asking friends for donations. Rafols, whose family owns the Marocca pool in Talisay, has given them Thursday afternoons to use the pool for training.

More goggles

But the group still needs more swimming goggles, kick boards, pull boards, and most importantly, vitamins. Fernandez can only provide them with vegetables, dried fish and sometimes bread, whenever he can, just to sustain a day’s training.

Fernandez’s purposes are clear: he wants to make athletes out of them and make them love the sea so much they would devote their lives to protect it.

“We could have Palarong Pambansa gold medal winners out of this group, or maybe a triathlete or long distance swimmer. If one or two of them will become a varsity swimmer and get free education, I will be very happy. They could be lifeguards or scuba instructors too,” he said.

“But in the long run, I hope they would be future sea stewards like me,” said Fernandez, who is a board member of the Sea Knights, a group of divers who make it their goal to protect coastal resources.

Fernandez also said he hopes to enter the kids in a competition for novice swimmers next month.

“I can’t afford to send them all. The registration is quite expensive. But if someone would sponsor one kid, then the kids will finally get the feel of a real competition and put what they have learned from our practices to use,” he said.

Cebu City asks owner of 32 buildings to retrofit for quake readiness


CEBU CITY, May 11 (PNA) -- The Cebu City government has asked owners of 32 old buildings in the city to retrofit their structures which were erected prior to the enactment of the building code.

Earlier, the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CCDRRMC) conducted a three-week simulation last March of a magnitude 7 earthquake emanating from the Barangay Malubog, Cebu City fault.

The simulation was made following the CCDRRMC training in Iriga City, Camarines Sur conducted by the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (DOST-Phivolcs).

Cebu City Councilor David Tumulak, CCDRRMC chief, said they requested all building administrators, building structural engineers to retrofit buildings erected before 1992 or before the enactment of the building code.

Tumulak said the request is part of the city’s disaster preparedness efforts.

Tumulak said an intensity 7 earthquake would be felt strongly by these old buildings if it emanates from Malubog and would affect 11,000 to 50,000 individuals if it would occur on a weekday.

But he said the number of affected individuals would depend largely on the intensity of the earthquake, density and type of building and the length of the street.

Tumulak said they want to avoid a repeat of what happened in Nepal.

Tumulak said the DOST-Phivolcs shared to them during their training a Rapid Earthquake Damage Assessment System software that generates seismic hazard and risk maps after a potentially-damaging quake.

Museu Sugbo to undergo PHP10M restoration after quake damage


CEBU CITY, May 10 (PNA) -- The Museu Sugbo, the former “Carcel de Cebu” (provincial jail), will soon undergo a PHP10-million restoration after it sustained damage in the 7.2 magnitude earthquake on Oct. 15, 2013.

Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III said he and other provincial officials have signed a memorandum of agreement on the restoration project with National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) executive director Ludovico Badoy.

Davide said the restoration will start shortly after the bidding.

The 150-year-old structure, which used to be a provincial jail, was constructed in 1869.

Its interior and perimeter walls were damaged due to the 2013 earthquake that hit Cebu and Bohol and was subsequently closed to the public.

Under the MOA, the restoration will be in accordance with international and national conservation standards.

The entire process, which will take four to five months, will be shouldered by NHCP.

The NHCP is also set to fund the restoration of other historical structures in Cebu like centuries-old belfry of the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño and Fort San Pedro that were also affected by the quake.

806 in Cebu break cancer screening record

By Razel V. Cuizon

A RECORD number of women showed up in Cebu City yesterday for the sake of their health, and may have ended up setting a world record along the way.

A total of 806 women received free cervical cancer testing in a three-hour event held by the Philippine Obstetrical and Gynecological Society (POGS) 7, the Cebu City Health Department and the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation (RAFI), along with volunteers.

Women from the different barangays went to the Cebu City Central School for the cancer screening.

The record—for the most number of women tested for cervical cancer in one setting—still needs to be confirmed by the Guinness Book of World Records. But the participants in Cebu outnumbered the 741 women tested in India, which holds the title. Guinness sent a representative to witness the activity.

Dr. Helen Amorin of POGS 7 said the activity’s organizers aimed to promote cervical awareness among women and encourage them to have themselves checked before it’s too late.

“We want them to know that even with limited resources, they can still submit themselves to the screening,” she told Sun.Star Cebu.

Instead of using a pap smear for screening, Amorin explained that they used the acetic acid wash procedure yesterday.

Cervical cancer is strongly linked to sexual activity and is most probably caused by the transmission of the human papilloma virus (HPV). Risk factors include having multiple sexual partners, early initiation to sexual intercourse (starting to be sexually active at 15 or 16), history of sexually transmitted diseases, smoking, absence of pap smear screenings, use of oral contraceptive pills, and HPV infection.

An HPV vaccine is already available for cervical cancer prevention.

At present, Amorin said, cervical cancer is the second leading type of cancer among women, next to breast cancer. Half of the patients are 35 to 55 years old.

In the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City alone, Amorin said, an estimated 60 new cases of cervical cancer are recorded yearly.

Cebu City gets good funds mgmt award

By Jean Marvette A. Demecillo

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City has won the Department of Interior and Local Government’s Good Financial Housekeeping, formerly the Seal of Good Housekeeping, award for 2014.

Last March 30, the DILG issued a certification upon the city government’s request city “for the sole purpose of accessing funds from program windows of the department such as BUB and PAMANA.”

The last time the city secured the seal was in 2011 but it is now eyeing at making a P120 million loan to construct a new building for the Cebu City Medical Center. The amount is equivalent to 10 percent of the estimated cost of at least P1.2 billion and up to P1.5 billion.

“This is to certify that the City of Cebu is a passer of the Good |Financial Housekeeping (formerly the Seal of Good Housekeeping) for CY 2014 after the assessment period,” read the certification signed by by DILG Undersecretary Austere Panadero.

The Bureau of Local Government has also issued a certification that Cebu City is compliant of the “full disclosure policy” after checking the LGU’s database.

Mayor Michael Rama received the certification from the Bureau of Local Government, DILG central office last April 10.

He said the seal “speaks for itself” since its issuance to validate the city’s financial health.

He said the document proved that the city government is in the “pink of financial health.”

Rama, however, said the intention of having a “good financial housekeeping” award is not for the city to avail the loan.

“Even without the good housekeeping (certification), we will really pursue (the loan) because we want that not for requirement (to avail the loan) but because banking always make an exception (if you have the certification),” he said.

UP Cebu's institutional video bags int'l award

By Davinci S. Maru

CEBUANOS have proven once again they are a creative force to be reckoned with.

The institutional video of the University of the Philippines (UP) - Cebu, inspired from the Cebuano delicacy puso or hanging rice, was recognized as the most creative corporate institution video in the 5th QS-Maple Professional Leaders in Education Conference and Exhibit 2015 in Doha, Qatar.

Prof. Gregg Lloren, the video's creative director, accepted the award during the ceremony held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Doha last May 5, UP-Cebu posted on its website.

QS-Maple is an international body of academic professionals that aims to contribute to building world-class universities for Middle Eastern and North African communities through the exchange of best practice and global partnership.

The institutional video showed a mother's struggle to provide excellent education to her son and one's responsibility of giving back to the community. It featured the making of puso, which is boiled rice packed in weaved coconut fronds.

UP-Cebu Dean Liza Corro served as the video's executive producer.

The production team is composed of Jiji Borlaza as line producer; Sun.Star Cebu editor and columnist Januar Yap, Shane Carreon and Lilia Tio as writers; Ruel Antepuesto as cinematographer; Palmy Tudtud as art director; Tiffany Tan and Gretchen Chaves for marketing and branding. Prof. Ligaya Rabago played the role of the mother in the video, while some members of the faculty and of UP-Cebu UPSTAGE theater group served as the other characters.

World’s largest floating bookstore starts to serve Cebuanos


CEBU CITY, May 6 (PNA) -- The M/V Logos Hope, the world’s largest floating bookstore, started serving Cebuanos Wednesday.

M/V Logos Hope, which arrived in Cebu Tuesday morning, was docked at the Malacañang sa Sugbo berth in Cebu City’s Pier 1 until May 29.

The vessel, operated by German charity group Good Books for All (GBA), carries some 5,000 titles at affordable prices.

The books cover a range of subjects, including science, sports, hobbies, cookery, arts, medicine, languages and philosophy.

The vessel also sells children’s books, academic texts, dictionaries, atlases and more.

Marina da Luz, GBA’s project coordinator, said visitors may also interact with the 400 crew members who come from 60 countries.

While inside the vessel, visitors can enjoy a short movie and interactive displays.

They can also have a snack at the International Cafe.

The vessel is open from Tuesday to Saturday at 10 a.m. and closes at 9:30 p.m. On Sunday, it is open from 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Entrance ticket is P20 per person. Children under 13 years old and senior citizens are free of charge.

Children, though, must be accompanied by an adult and ID may be required.

During its last visit to Cebu in 2012, Logos Hope attracted 115,000 visitors.

After Cebu, the vessel will proceed to Subic Bay and La Union.

M/V Logos Hope has welcomed over 44 million visitors up the gangways in over 150 countries and territories around the world since 1970.

Cebu City may reopen closed sanitary landfill, exec says


CEBU CITY, May 5 (PNA) -- The Cebu City government might have to open again the 17-year-old Inayawan Sanitary Landfill if the city council fails to approve the PHP50-million additional budget for the garbage service fee or tipping fee.

Former city councilor Eduardo “Edu” Rama, head of the “Gubat sa Basura” (War on Garbage) program, said another option is to appeal to the service provider or private hauler to extend the billing of payment because of the continued non-passage of the budget for its payment.

Rama said they are considering either reopening the landfill or beg for payment extension following the council’s decision to suspend approval of the supplemental budget for garbage fees pending the submission of a revised annual investment plan and availability of sources of funds under the local disaster fund.

He said the city only has Php2.6 million left in its budget for tipping fee, which is enough to pay for the tipping fee for at least one week.

“This would have been avoided if from the beginning the council approved Php120 million for garbage service fees,” he said.

Rama said reopening the Inayawan facility would lessen the expenses on tipping fees because the city would no longer be commissioning a private hauler to dispose the city’s garbage at a disposal facility in the northern Cebu town of Consolacion.

The city pays Php1,500 per ton of garbage, broken down into Php700 per ton as service fee and Php800 to the private hauler as payment for manpower, gasoline consumption, and other expenses.

But Rama said Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama may not agree to his proposal for the reopening of the Inayawan landfill.

The city closed the landfill last January 15 because it already exceeded its supposed seven-year life span, which a study showed resulted to the “alarming” presence of toxic substances at the landfill.

Program helps youths hone technical skills

By Aileen Garcia-Yap (cebudailynews)

JobStart expanded to Cebu, 5 more areas

Two hundred high school graduates in Cebu City will benefit from a government program to help the youth develop technical and life skills vital to success.

The JobStart Philippines program is being expanded to cover Cebu City and at least five more areas. A forum attended by President Benigno S.C. Aquino III was held on May 1 to launch the program in Cebu.

Labor Secretary Rosalinda D. Baldoz said the program will also be rolled out in Davao City, Tagum City, Bohol, Mandaluyong City and Pasay City. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has signed agreements with the local governments in these areas.

“Soon, we’ll be signing a MOA (memorandum of agreement) with Valenzuela City and Bulacan City,” said Kelly Bird, Asian Development Bank (ADB) director for public management in Southeast Asia.

JobStart is a joint project of DOLE, ADB and Canadian International Development Authority (CIDA).

Under this program, the government partners with employers that offer six-month internships at reduced cost to high school graduates. An intern gets a stipend equivalent to 75 percent of the minimum wage.

Youths, aged 18 to 24, undergo life skills training and career guidance before they are referred to employers. They then undergo a three-month technical/vocational training as determined by their employers before their on-the-job training for another three months. Employers get a training fee of up to P9,000 per internship.

“The beneficiaries will have the career guidance and life skills training for eight days. It includes modules on personal branding, financial literacy, health and well-being, job hunting skills and interpersonal skills,” Baldoz said.


The program was piloted in Quezon City, San Fernando in Pampanga, Taguig City and General Trias in Cavite.

“The Jobstart Philippines started last year and has benefited 1,453 out-of-school youth. Two hundred of them are already working in our partner companies in the four pilot areas,” Baldoz said in the forum.

President Aquino arrived to tour several booths at the exhibit area for half an hour before going to his next appointment at the University of Cebu Medical Center (UCMed).

Bird said the Canadian government allocated $4 million for the project.

As early as November last year, he said they were already seeing positive outcome from the program.

“We conducted a midterm assessment of the project and found out that the employer and the beneficiaries both think the program is very effective. Most of the companies end up absorbing them as regular employees,” he said.

There were 80 partner companies in the pilot areas. The firms are engaged in services, manufacturing, outsourcing, hospitality and medical sectors.

He said they aim to add 14 local government partners this year. DOLE wants to expand the program to 10 to 20 more areas a year.

Baldoz said the program is in line with the administration’s thrust to invest in the country’s human resources and lower the unemployment and underemployment rates in the country.

“While in the past, the highest appropriation of budget goes to military spending and payment of our debts, the administration has shifted its focus to health, education and social services to ensure that we have a population that is job-ready, employable and competitive,” Baldoz said.

DOLE regional director Exequiel Sarcauga said JobStart is a very effective tool to match skills and industry requirements.It also helps alleviate poverty by providing jobs to out-of-school youths.

Other programs of DOLE include the Special Program for Employment of Students which now has a budget of almost half a billion, the Government Internship Program for those who want to start a career in the government, and Training for Work Scholarship of TESDA or the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority and Assist WELL (Welfare, Employment, Livelihood and Legal Assistance) for overseas Filipinos who want to come home and work here.

Mobile water supply for Cebu City’s upland sites

By Nestle L. Semilla

Residents of Cebu city’s mountain barangays who go down to the city center to get water now have some relief.

The Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) started rolling out its mobile filtration system in sitio Biasong, barangay Bonbon last April 30.

MCWD general manager Ernie Delco said the system uses water from the river in Bonbon to supply residents.

It can produce up to 20 cubic meters of water per hour.

“Due to the low water supply at the Jaclupan dam, residents need water more than ever,” Delco said.

He said the water is fit for drinking as they use a filtration system donated by the Japanese firm Nihon Dengyo.

He said residents of mountain barangays can avail of the water from their system from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. using their truck or containers provided they disinfect these trucks properly.

“We will really help the best way we can. We won’t neglect our responsibility to them,” Delco said.

The state weather bureau Pagasa said the El Niño dry spell could last until September this year.

Pollution control staff to be oriented on waste transport permits

By May B. Miasco/JMO (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - Representatives from Cebu City’s health care facility and the regional environmental bureau will convene pollution control officers of hospitals, clinics and other health facilities in Metro Cebu to orient them of the new system in getting a permit that would enable the Pollution Abatement Systems Specialists, Inc. (PASSI) to transport the wastes from the facilities.

The permit will be issued by the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7.

Although PASSI has been authorized to collect and transport the wastes, a number of medical establishments have yet to get the permit from DENR to enable PASSI to resume catering to them.

Only six of 140 medical establishments have acquired a permit to transport.

On April 27, the DENR central office granted PASSI a treatment, storage and disposal (TSD) permit and a transporter permit.

PASSI President Engineer Julito Pogoy said they will assist the medical establishments in fulfilling the requirements from their end.

“We have invited them to be involved during the training so that we can facilitate everyone’s concern. If we would just disregard this situation, there would be no time for them to register and comply and know the proper procedures,” he said yesterday.

Requirements for the permit to transport include the online registration for the hazardous waste generation form and the completion of the quarterly self monitoring report (SMR).

Pogoy said PCOs of medical establishments need to be informed of the newly-designed system for registration, which is online, as well as the quarterly SMR that needs to be accomplished based on the prescribed format of EMB.

“They (PCOs) need to register again for the new system, which just took effect this year,” he said further.

PASSI, one of the health care facilities in the city, is also engaged in health care waste and septage treatment, environment management systems, pollution control systems and solid, liquid, gaseous management services, material recovery facility and black soil production.

Cebu City gets award from DOLE

By Odessa O. Leyson (The Freeman)

CEBU, Philippines - The Department of Labor and Employment-7 has awarded the Cebu City government’s Department of Manpower Development and Placement as best Public Employment Service Office for 2014 under the highly urbanized city category in Central Visayas.

The award, given during the Regional PESO Managers’ Congress on April 23, was based on the quality and effective services rendered by the DMDP.

Maria Suzanne Ardosa, chief of DMDP, said the award was part of Mayor Michael Rama’s endeavor to help the poor in the city. Last year, the DMDP also received the same award.

The city is also vying for the Best PESO in the National Level this year.

On April 25, the city held a local job fair participated by more than 30 companies and agencies. During the event, hundreds of job vacancies were made available.

As part of the city’s Labor Day celebration today, the DMDP will hold an overseas job fair at the Cebu City Sports Center.

Applicants are advised to bring their updated resume, employment certifications (for previously employed), high school diploma (for high school graduates), and transcript of records (for college graduate).

The DMDP, created on July 7, 1994 by virtue of City Ordinance 1523, provides employment opportunities through training program, job fair and other services to city residents and those from nearby places.