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Quezon City News February 2014

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Quezon City - Archived News

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The Founder Manuel Quezon
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Wars of ancient history were about territory, power, family or lover's quarrel, politics and sometimes religion.

But we are in the Modern era and supposedly more educated and enlightened .

Think about this. Don't just brush off these questions.

  • Why is RELIGION still involved in WARS? Isn't religion supposed to be about PEACE?
  • Ask yourself; What religion is always involved in wars and consistently causing WARS, yet insists that it's a religion of peace?


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

QC wants to give village traffic aides more powers

By Jeannette I. Andrade (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines—A proposed ordinance that will give broader powers to barangay (village) tanod (watchmen) tasked as traffic enforcers in their respective areas, including the authority to confiscate drivers’ licenses and issue ordinance violation receipts (OVRs), is under review by the Quezon City council.

The draft measure has been referred for further study to the council’s committees on barangay affairs; public order and security and illegal drugs; and laws, rules and internal government. It has just been passed on first reading.

Councilors Jose Visaya and Rogelio Juan, authors of the “Barangay Traffic Enforcement Ordinance,” proposed that officials of each of the city’s 142 barangays be required to designate at least two of their barangay public safety officers (BPSOs) as traffic enforcers.

Before their deployment, however, the chosen BPSOs will be required to undergo seminars and a training program under the city government’s Department of Public Order and Safety.

They will then be deputized as enforcers and authorized to issue OVRs for the implementation of traffic rules and regulations within their respective barangays.

The two councilors said the move was necessary as Quezon City was becoming the country’s fastest-growing locality in terms of economy and population.

“This has led to atrocious traffic congestion and, if not addressed properly, may cause a disruption in the financial expansion of the community,” they added.

The councilors, however, warned that the barangay chair and council members would be held accountable for any abuses or illegal activities committed by their deputized BPSO traffic enforcers.

Brighter Future Survival Kits distributed to pregnant women in QC

By Leilani S. Junio [(PNA), SCS/LSJ]

MANILA, Feb. 27 (PNA) – A number of pregnant women from District II of Quezon City received on Thursday "brighter future survival kits" as tools to shield them against possible threat of maternal and infant deaths.

According to Dr. Antonieta Inumerable, QC health officer, the survival kits were provided in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and Johnson and Johnson (Philippines) Inc. in support of the QC government’s fight against maternal and infant mortality.

“The survival kits distribution will help a lot the recipient pregnant women in enjoying safe delivery while ensuring also the protection of their newborn babies from infection as they give birth,” Dr. Inumerable said.

Inumerable explained that the kits will serve as motivation for the pregnant women to help in encouraging other pregnant women like them to undergo regular check-up in health centers and give birth in QC’s lying-in clinics instead of giving birth at home through the traditional “hilot” practitioners.

“Regular check-up will ensure that they receive the ferrous sulfate supplements or vitamins, vaccine against tetanus toxoid, dental check-up, syphilis screening and other tests to ensure they and their babies will be in safe condition when they give birth,” she added.

According to Dr. Mariella Castillo, a health specialist from UNICEF, part of the aim of the survival kits turnover is to educate also the pregnant mothers on their greater chance of survival if they give birth in lying-in clinics and promote also breast-feeding which is good both for the mother and the baby.

Castillo said that each survival kit contains tools and medicines needed by the mother and the newborn baby like gauze, sterile glove, umbilical cord clamp, vitamin K, ampule injectable for baby, eye antimicrobial ointment, also for the baby, and oxytocin ampule for the mother.

Other baby’s needs like towels, blanket and bonnet and baby booklet where the records about the baby and the vaccines that he/she should receive are also included in the kit.

The survival kits will be given to mothers when they give birth at the lying-in clinic as they present the certificates given to them by Johnson and Johnson (Philippines) and UNICEF.

A total of 50 selected pregnant women initially received the certificates in the turnover ceremony held at the Batasan Super Health Center and Lying-in Clinic of Barangay Batasan Hills, District II, QC.

A total of 500 survival kits are scheduled to be given to other pregnant women as an awareness campaign to help in reducing maternal and child deaths among the disadvantaged groups of pregnant women in the said district.

QC District II has been chosen as the initial recipient of the kits to help the city government in its campaign to reduce maternal and child deaths because of the big population of pregnant women in the area.

In 2011, a total of 71 maternal and infant deaths were recorded in QC. In 2013, at least 13 of the 68 maternal and newborn deaths were recorded in District 2.

Batasan Hills Barangay Captain Jojo Abad said he was happy that his constituents were chosen to be the initial recipients of the survival kits and expressed hope that launching of the program, more pregnant women will be educated in the importance of giving birth in lying-in clinics and be discouraged from giving birth at home.

AFP expands dental service


QUEZON CITY, 26 February (PIA) – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) through its dental service will expand its oral health awareness among soldiers.

In the recent 7th AFP Dental Service Health Fair held in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, acting chief of the AFP Dental Service Colonel Valeriano G. Tiama said that they are refocusing and prioritizing the service’s efforts to curb the prevalence of tooth decay.

“Imagine if we achieved zero tooth decay among our troops, we can save resources and focus more on the real mandate of the armed forces,” Tiama said.

Personnel from the dental service will conduct lectures and information drives, emphasizing the importance of oral health among the soldiers.

Likewise, Deputy Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Virgilio O. Domingo said that it is imperative that the AFP provide dental care services to make its personnel highly competent and motivated.

The event is in line with the celebration of the 10th National Dental Health Month this February. The theme for this year’s celebration is “Ngiping Pinagtibay, Ngiting Walang Humpay Para sa Kinabukasa’y Maginhawang Tunay.”

The AFP Dental Service was created on June 16, 1954 through Republic Act No. 1128 or an “Act to provide more efficient dental care for the personnel of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.”

Its mission is to assist the AFP Chief of Staff in the formulation of policies, and in the planning, coordination and supervision of all matters pertaining to the AFP Dental Service.

At present, the AFP Dental Service is manned by 214 military dentists.

People Power celebrations in QC, Cebu City today

By Dennis Carcamo (philstar.com)

MANILA, Philippines - While President Benigno Aquino III and other government officials opted to celebrate the 28th anniversary of Edsa People Power 1 in Cebu City, others like former President Fidel Ramos and Vice President Jejomar Binay decided to commemorate the historic event at the People Power Monument in Quezon City.

Led by Binay, the Quezon City officials and personnel and EDSA veterans , including former vice president Teofisto Guingona, businessman Jose Concepcion and Pastor Boy Saycon attended the wreath laying rite at monument.

Meanwhile, at the Cebu Provincial Capitol grounds, the traditional "Salubungan" was staged with actor Dingdong Dantes and members of the Armed Forces of Philippines meeting up with the group of Senator Bam Aquino and several students and other civilians.

The original Salubungan along Edsa was done by the group of then Defense minister Juan Ponce Enrile and former military general Fidel Ramos and the group of former Senator Butch Aquino, the uncle of President Aquino.

Philippine Orchid Society to conduct 68th Annual Orchid Show at QMC on Feb. 28-March 10


MANILA, Feb. 24 (PNA) -- The Philippine Orchid Society will hold its 68th Annual Orchid & Garden Show from Feb. 28 to March 10, 2014 at the Quezon Memorial Circle flower garden area along Elliptical Road, Diliman, Quezon City.

To highlight the 11-day show, there will be orchids exhibit, ornamental and orchid competition, and freestyle orchid showpiece competition.

In the freestyle orchid showpiece competition, an entry fee of Php100 will be collected from each participant.

The competition is open to all members and invited guests who are proficient in flower arrangement and have the necessary skills to join a flower arranging competition.

Flower arrangement must have orchid flowers as its main focus. Its size should not be less than one foot tall and not more than three feet tall and three feet wide. All materials will be provided by the competitor.

Deadline of submission of entries will be on Feb. 26, 2014 at 9 p.m. Entry forms can be secured from the POS secretariat at the show site.

The organizers said there will also be a commercial section where plant lovers can buy their favorite orchids, ornamental and bonsai plants, fruit-bearing tree seedlings, as well as garden supplies such as fertilizers and others.

As an added attraction to the viewing public, the POS has invited the Philippine Bantam Fancier’s Association to hold their first "Bantam Chicken Show" during the orchid show on March 8 and 9.

There will also be daily free lectures with different topics to be conducted at 3 p.m.

Among the topics lined up for the lectures are the following:

Feb. 28 - Hybridization with Philippine Vanda Species in Florida, USA by Martin Motes.

March 1 - Terrarium: Gardening Inside Glass Cases by Serapion Metilla.

March 2 - Cattleya Culture by Hernando Perez.

March 3 - Flower Arrangement for All Occasions by Anna Ruth Conde.

March 4 - Having Fun in Growing Orchid Species by Jun Golamco.

March 5 - Vertical Gardening by Rommel Cañas.

March 6 - Philippine Trees for Ecological Balance by Imee Sarmiento.

March 7 - Wonderful World of Succulents, Focus on Dyckia and Sensevieria by Lino Rom.

For other information, the public may inquire at 09178485468 or visit their facebook account at philippine orchid society.

QC gov’t conducts feasibility study on widening of Gen. Luis road

By Leilani S. Junio [(PNA), CTB/LSJ]

MANILA, Feb 23 (PNA) --The Quezon City government said over the weekend that widening of roads, like the Gen. Luis in Novaliches, should also require widening of sidewalks to make the city’s road environmentally sound.

QC mayor Herbert M. Bautista gave these suggestions during a DPWH public consultation at QC Hall for a feasibility study for the improvement and widening of the Gen. Luis Road from Quirino Highway in Quezon City to MacArthur Highway in Valenzuela City.

During the consultation, Councilor Jose Visaya of District 5 told the facilitators that recently a team from the DPWH visited Barangay Novaliches Proper and informed Barangay Chairperson Asuncion Visaya, the councilor’s wife, regarding plans for the construction of a Y-shape viaduct or flyover in the barangay.

Councilor Visaya said that the proposal consist of viaduct project that will start from the Novaliches Church and extend to Savemore Supermarket at Gen. Luis, with a branch going to Gulod.

Visaya urged the team of Engineer Joselito P. Losaria, a resettlement specialist, to conduct further consultations with the barangays and other concerned parties in the project area that will be affected by the project.

Having served as barangay captain of Novaliches Proper for three terms, Visaya is very familiar with the traffic problems in the area.

Engr. Losaria and his team agreed to visit Novaliches Proper on February 28 for a dialogue with barangay officials.

Councilor Visaya also invited barangay officials from Nagkaisang Nayon and nearby communities to participate in the dialogue.

District 2 Councilor Precious Hipolito, who was also at the public consultation at QC Hall, urged the DPWH team to see to it that all property owners to be affected by the Gen Luis project should be compensated once the project progresses.

The Gen. Luis Road is one of Quezon city’s vital links to the cities of Valenzuela and Bulacan.

The average daily traffic on Gen. Luis consists of more than 12,600 vehicles plus about 21,500 motorcycles and tricycles, resulting in the slowing down of commerce and the movement of goods and delivery of basic services in the area.

QC approves new street lighting project

By Leilani S. Junio (PNA), CTB/LSJ

MANILA, Feb. 22 (PNA)--The Quezon City Council announced over the weekend that it has passed a resolution authorizing Mayor Herbert M. Bautista to enter into a contract for the purchase of Light Emitting Diode (LED) and control panel system for efficient street lighting system in Quezon City.

Under the said resolution, mayor Bautista and the city government were directed to be responsible in making the streets in the city well-lighted.

The resolution calls for the upgrading of the street light system from the existing High Pressure Sodium Light (HPS) system to the new Light Emitting Diode (LED) to make it more energy efficient.

with this resolution, the Office of the City Mayor has requested budget for the purchase of two clusters of LED street lights.

Under the Cluster 1, about 730 sets of LED Luminaire amounting to Php19,710,000 and a control panel system costing Php 1,500,000 were ordered to be purchased while for Cluster 2, about 219 sets of LED Luminaire costing Php 5,91,000 were also ordered to be purchased at the soonest time possible.

BIR Quezon City holds regional tax campaign kickoff


QUEZON CITY, Feb 21 -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Revenue Region (RR) No. 7, Quezon City staged its regional tax campaign kickoff program for 2014 at the Trinoma Activity Center, North EDSA, Quezon City on February 17, 2014.

Attended by an estimated crowd of close to 1,000 participants from Quezon City, Pasig City, Marikina City, Mandaluyong City, Novaliches, San Juan and Cainta-Taytay, the gathering was graced by Commissioner Kim S. Jacinto-Henares, Rep. Jose Christopher “Kit” Belmonte (representing Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte, Jr.), Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista and heads of different government, business, civic, professional, media and academic organizations.

Adding glitz and glamour to the activity were guest artists Noel Cabangon, Kris Lawrence, Gloc 9, Yum Concepcion, Sherrie V., Showtime Girls, Jonalyn Viray, Nikki Valdez and Kim Idol, including PBA players LA Tenorio, Arwind Santos and Gary David.

Commissioner Henares in her speech said that the yearly tax campaign kickoff is likened to a bell that sounds off the start of the filing season. She quipped, “April 15 is about to come and taxpayers are advised to start collating their documents, declare everything and pay taxes right. This is likewise the time for everyone to come together and see how work can be done together to collect the right taxes and provide the required services.“ She also asked taxpayers to file/pay early before April 15 to avoid any inconvenience and to see to it that their taxes are spent properly.

Speaker Sonny Belmonte speaking through Rep. Kit Belmonte stressed the need for everyone to acknowledge their roles in nation-building by paying the right taxes. He added that a better Philippines can be built by increasing taxpayer compliance and collection growth rate. He called on everyone to support the RFP (Register, File and Pay) advocacy of the BIR.

Regional Director Jonas DP. Amora echoed the sentiments of Commissioner Henares and Speaker Belmonte. He thanked the taxpayers noting that his region breached the P100 billion revenue collection in 2013, a first in the region’s history. He pleaded with taxpayers to continually support the efforts of his revenue team to collect P121 billion for 2014 adding that they have identified priority programs to be implemented this year. Among others, the priority programs of the region are Escrow Account Turnover, EFPS-CBR 24 hour Reconciliation, Oplan Professionals, Oplan Kandado and RATE for Delinquent Accounts.

In line with Commissioner Henares’ advocacy of nation-building, this year’s tax campaign theme and logo of “I LOVE THE PHILIPPINES, I PAY MY TAXES RIGHT. IT’S AS EASY AS RFP (REGISTER FILE PAY)” was unveiled by Regional Director Amora and Assistant Director Jethro M. Sabariaga in the presence of Deputy Commissioners Celia C. King, Estela V. Sales and Lilia C. Guillermo and Revenue District Officers Aldo B. Esmeña, Edgar B. Tolentino, Florante R. Aninag, Rosemarie R. Ragasa, Corazon M. Montes, Socorro R. Lafuente, Josephine S. Virtucio, Emilia C. Combes, Olivia T. Amanse and Joseph M. Catapia. The rationale of the theme and logo was explained by Client Support Service Assistant Commissioner Lucita G. Rodriguez.

As a token of the region’s appreciation for the support given by its partners, plaques of recognition were awarded to PICPA Eastern Metro Manila Chapter President Prudencio F. Tatunay, Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista, Land Registration Authority Administrator Eulalio C. Diaz III, Philippine National Police, San Juan City Mayor Guia G. Gomez, ALIW Broadcasting Corp., Pasig City Mayor Maribel A. Eusebio and Councilor Christian De Guzman Sia, PICPA Southern Tagalog Region Junior Regional Director Rolando S. Leyble, TMAP President Rina-Lorena Manuel, Mr. Taxman Gerardo Flores and TRINOMA.

Towards the end, a ceremonial filing of Income Tax Returns for 2013 was made by taxpayers from different district offices led by MACLIN Electronics, Inc., Union Global Marketing Corp., and MAGNAVISION, Inc.

Among other attendees were BIR IMF Resident Adviser Rick Fisher, Assistant Commissioners Gealdina E. Reyes, Leonor S. Villalon-Rogers, Pablo M. Bastes, Jr., and Ma. Rosario Charo E. Curiba, HREA Marilou L. del Rosario, Regional Director Nestor S. Valeroso, Public Information and Education Division Chief Reymarie T. de la Cruz, and other revenue regional officials.

Assistant Director Sabariaga made the curtain call by talking about taxation and payment of taxes in its economic sense. Anchors for the kickoff program were Elmer F. Carolino, Lorna SB. Cruz and Ruthlane A. Velarde.

PNP opens more job opportunities for civilian employees until June


QUEZON CITY, 20 February (PIA) – The Philippine National Police (PNP) is opening more job opportunities for non-uniformed personnel (NUP) or civilian employees.

This after Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas ordered the PNP to fast track the hiring of civilian employees in the organization to boost the number of policemen fighting crimes in the streets.

“The PNP is continuously receiving applicants. We will give chance to those who have the ability to be public servants,” Roxas said.

He added that the hiring of new personnel is part of the reforms of the Aquino administration and hopes that the additional personnel will further strengthen the ability of the PNP in its fight against criminality.

Some 7,439 NUPs are needed by June this year. According to the PNP, 4,457 of which will replace uniformed personnel equipped with police skills and training but are doing office works, in various police stations across the country.

Sec. Roxas, concurrent chairman of the National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM), is confident that with the hiring of more civilians, the PNP will be able to free more policemen from office duty, hence increasing the number of uniformed policemen patrolling the streets.

As minimum requirement, applicants should have completed two years studies in college or high school graduate with relevant vocational or trade course that fits the job requirement. Experience or training is preferred, but not a requirement for hiring.

Remunerations for the highest item, COMPO 2 (Salary Grade 9), include P16,051 monthly base pay; P2,000 monthly PERA; P2,351 monthly for GSIS, PAG-IBIG and PhilHealth; P5,000 uniform and clothing allowance for one year; and 13th Month Pay/Bonus of P21,051.

For the lowest item, CEO 1 (Salary Grade 4), remunerations include P11,181 monthly base pay; P2,000 monthly PERA; P1,879 monthly for GSIS, PAG-IBIG and PhilHealth; P5,000 uniform and clothing allowance for one year; and 13th Month Pay/Bonus of P16,180.

Meanwhile, Roxas advised interested applicants to inquire and apply for the vacant positions at the PNP Regional, Provincial or City and Municipal Police stations near their area.

Shoppers’ paradise in Quezon City

By Mae Gianina C. Pascual

Is there a better mall than one which connects shoppers from their mode of transportation to its stores? In the busy district of Cubao, Quezon City, Farmers Plaza straddles two major public modes of transportation--MRT and LRT2. This shoppers’ paradise caters not only to regular mall goers but also to commuters who may be looking for quick buys like school and office supplies or a quick snack. With over 150 one-of-a-kind retail outlets, Farmers Plaza remains one of the city’s favorite shopping hubs.

Last January 29, Araneta Center’s Farmers Plaza held a grand relaunch. There are brand new escalators at the main atrium and a refurbished facade. The shopping experience is now made easier with a wider variety of stores from food to special interest shops and services. Soon to open are gadget shops, DIY stores, Korean optical boutiques and many others

One of the stores which had just opened is Tonkatsu Taka, an authentic Japanese restaurant located at the 2nd level of Farmers Plaza. The new restaurant has a wide array of authentic Japanese dishes which are budget-friendly.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony was led by Quezon City vice mayor Joy Belmonte and the reigning Binibinang Pilipinas queens, including Miss Universe 2013 3rd runner up Ariella Arida and Miss Supranational 2013 Mutya Johanna Datul.

DepEd celebrates National Intellectual Disability Week


QUEZON CITY, Feb 18 -- In celebration of the 2014 National Intellectual Disability Week, a two-day learning day camp has been organized through the joint efforts of the Department of Education (DepEd) Bureau of Elementary Education Special Education (SPED) Division, the Quezon City Government (QCG), Philippine Association for the Retarded (PAR), Jaycees Capitol, Inc. (JCI), Manila Water (MW), and the Metropolitan Water and Sewerage System (MWSS).

The goal of the camp is to provide students with intellectual disabilities a fun alternative to classroom instruction.

Pursuant to the DepEd Memorandum No. 8 s. 2014, conduct of the same activity in all regions is recommended. All public and private schools, especially those with SPED programs, should undertake activities in line with this year’s theme, “Evolving Capacity with Family and Community Participation.”

From February 14-20, suggested school activities include holding cultural shows, sports fests and art exhibits, advocacy campaigns and open dialogues with parents, service providers and stakeholders on the theme of the celebration. Discussing the best teaching practices to improve inclusion of children with intellectual disabilities in the school and the community is also strongly encouraged.

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro affirms the Department’s commitment to provide equal educational opportunities to every member of the marginalized sector, “to every learner—including learners with intellectual disability—we promise free, quality, and complete access to education. No sector in our society will be left behind; we are continuously pushing forward for everyone’s right to self-sufficiency and a better future.”

It is also advised that all activities to be conducted during the week-long celebration should not disrupt regular classes nor compromise the supervision of the learners with intellectual disability.

NKTI launches ‘Green Ribbon Campaign’

By Leilani S. Junio [(PNA), CTB/LSJ]

MANILA, Feb. 17 (PNA)--The National Kidney Transplant Institute (NKTI) on Monday launched a “Green Ribbon Campaign” as its kidney disease and organ transplantation awareness advocacy drive on its 31st founding anniversary celebration.

Dr. Ricardo Jose Quintos said the green ribbon campaign is also an awareness campaign being conducted internationally and adopted by Americans, Europeans and other Asian countries.

“As the green color suggests, it symbolizes life and or re-birth, thus giving new hope of life for the recipients of the kidney from donors,” Quintos said.

He added that the advocacy seeks to spread awareness that kidney organ saves lives.

In its initial launching, the employees and doctors from NKTI wore green t-shirts with a green ribbon pinned to them or tied in their arms.

To gain further awareness, they will re-launch it simultaneously on February 28 in six different sites in the country-- San Fernando, La Union; Tuguegarao, Naga, Davao, Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City and Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) campuses.

“There will be a national registry for those who will sign up as organ donors. We want to establish a world record of having the most number of people signing up as organ donors,” said Dr. Antonio Paraiso, program manager.

He added that in the said registration they hope to register organ donors of at least 10,450 people in eight hours.

It also targets to create awareness that lifestyle changes should also be done to have a healthy functioning kidney.

He said the green ribbon campaign aims to get the commitment of the donors to help a kidney patient regain life in case they (donor) die due to accident.

Based on NKTI records, in 2004 there were about 4,000 kidney patients undergoing dialysis treatment.

For the yearend 2013, it increased to about 23,000.

DSWD makes adoption process easier (Feature)

By Leilani S. Junio [(PNA), CTB/LSJ]

MANILA, Feb. 16 (PNA)-- As part of the adoption consciousness week celebration from Feb. 15 to 23, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has reactivated its ‘Help Desks’ in selected malls in Metro Manila to make adoption process easier.

The DSWD believes that through the adoption desks, they can provide more information about adoption to interested individuals and families who may become potential adoptive parents.

At SM Fairview in Novaliches, Quezon City, social workers from DSWD Field Offices and accredited child placing agencies such as Norfil Foundation Inc. and Kaisahang Buhay Foundation manned an adoption desk since Saturday (Feb. 15) near the entrance of the mall and accepted inquiries about adoption- both for local adoption and abroad or through Inter-Country Adoption Board.

The inquiry desk is scheduled to be operational from Feb. 15 to 16 and Feb. 22-23 (Saturdays and Sundays only).

In the said desk, those who have questions regarding legal adoption, basic steps to adopt, requirements and documents needed and the cost of adoption can look for answers and perhaps pave the way for giving an abandoned child with a parent and family that will give him/her a bright future.

According to Marylou A. Estorninos, social worker II, from DSWD-NCR and one of those deployed in the help desk, adoption is a socio-legal process of giving a permanent family to a child whose parents have voluntarily or involuntarily given up their parental rights.

Estorninos said that basically, it is not really hard to adopt as the process now is easier and people should be more aware of the beauty of adopting.

However, she said that also important is that the couple should have a common decision before engaging in legal adoption as there are administrative and judicial phases in the process to follow.

She said that under the administrative phase, the process usually takes a period of one year.

In this stage, the Prospective Adoptive Parent/s (PAP/s) will be required to attend a forum or seminar to help them get acquainted about the adoption process.

It is followed by filing of application for adoption including submission of basic requirements at the DSWD Field Office/Licensed Foster Care Agencies or child placing agencies.

The applicant then will be subject for assessment through home visits where a study report will be generated by the social workers.

It is followed by a matching of child to the PAP/s and then the child will be placed in their custody (physical transfer) but will be supervised by social workers for a period of six months to check the condition of the child.

“The supervision is being done to ensure that the placement is suitable for the child and there are no hazards to the child’s growth and development,” she explained.

After that period an affidavit of consent for adoption will then be issued.

The judicial phase on the other hand involves filing of petition for adoption and attending of hearing petitions in court and waiting issuance of Decree of Adoption or Entry of Judgment which usually takes some years due to court schedule.

She emphasized that the services of DSWD for adoption is free.

However, the applicant needs to spend in securing the documents and requirements for the adoption and also in hiring the services of lawyer such as acceptance fee, court appearance, among others in the process.

At present, the DSWD had coordinated with some pool of lawyers who promised to charge only minimal fees to help ease-up the burden cost of legal adoption process to help encourage more adoptive parents.

“Legal adoption gives the child the same rights and duties like the biological child of the adoptive parents like the right to use their surname or be their legal or compulsory heir to their properties,” she added.

“The presence of a child in the family, gives bundle of joy, and creates room for bonding on the part of the adoptive parents while giving the child a chance to enjoy a happy family with a loving, caring and protective parents,” the social worker said.

Other adoption desks were also put-up in other malls like SM and Ayala malls like SM North EDSA, SM Manila,SM Sta. Mesa, Megamall, SM Bicutan, SM Marikina, South Mall, Market Market and Greenbelt.

QC gov't registers big increase in business tax collections


MANILA, Feb. 15 (PNA) -- The Quezon City Treasurer’s Office reported over the weekend that the city government's business tax collections reached P2,783,482,509.06 as of Feb. 10, 2014.

According to QCTO head Edgar Villanueva, the amount reflected an increase of P328,921,782.22 compared with the same period last year which was recorded at P2,454,560,726.84.

“The steady rise in business tax collections is perhaps made possible due to the four easy steps that the Bautista administration has implemented for business applications and renewals for 2014,” he explained.

However, in the same report, it was noted that there was a P97,322,835.23 decrease in real property tax collections from Jan. 2 to Feb. 10 this year.

The real property tax collections amounted to P573,278,941.96 for the period under review compared with P670,601,777.19 during the same period last year.

Villanueva said it can be attributed to the delay in posting of payments in the newly-devised G-cash system.

G-Cash system is an electronic transaction through mobile phones, now being implemented by the city government for real property tax payments.

Also, idle land tax collections reached a total of P18,428,941.91, lower by P247,727.90 compared to the year-ago period.

A total of P26,612,180.00 had been collected by the city government for socialized housing tax.

It may be recalled that a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) was issued last week by the Supreme Court for QC's socialized housing tax and garbage tax collections.

The QCTO said the amount already collected may be refunded in form of rebates for next year once the SC finally decides that the two measures are illegal.

Dozen police couples tie knot on Valentine's Day


MANILA, Feb. 14 (PNA) -- Twelve policemen exchanged marriage vows with their respective brides during mass wedding rites Friday (Feb. 14) at St. Joseph Chapel, Camp Crame, Quezon City.

Solemnized by The Most Reverend Bernardino C. Cortez, the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Manila, the mass wedding ceremony was organized by the PNP Chaplain Service (CHS) under Senior Superintendent Deody O. Barret, Director of PNP-CHS.

The said ceremony including the reception were provided by the Principal Sponsors -- Chief, PNP Police Director General Alan La Madrid Purisima and the PNP Command Group.

Police Senior Superintendent Romulo A. Esteban and Mrs. Yolanda A. Esteban from the Directorate for Personnel Records Management of Police Regional Office 5 (DPRM–PRO 5), who are celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary was the most senior pair among other 11 couples.

Each couple received cash gifts from the PNP leadership.

According to PDIR Garbo, the mass wedding rites is an annual event hosted by the PNP Chaplain Service to allow police personnel the opportunity to legitimize relationship with their partners consistent with the standards of morality, decency espoused by the PNP that emphasizes high regard for family life and value of marital fidelity and sanctity of marriage.

Similar mass wedding rites were also held in different Police Regional Offices and Units in line with the advocacy of the Chief PNP of giving priority to good and healthy family relations.

Interactive learning, thanks to a 'smart' classroom

By Michael Josh Villanueva (Rappler.com)

MANILA, Philippines — I haven’t been in any classrooms lately, but if they are anything like the recently unveiled Samsung Smart Classroom at the Philippine Science High School (PSHS) Main Campus in Quezon City, then I’d like to take some of my meetings to school.

The tech giant and the country’s most prestigious high school joined forces late last year to develop the high-tech classroom.

The project took over 10 months to design and conceptualize, and takes into consideration not only the techie details but also function and adaptability of the space.

The classroom can accommodate 30 students at a time. Students are each given Windows based tablets to use while in class. The tablets are wirelessly hooked up to the teacher’s computer so he can, for example, declare a pop quiz and immediately send the questionnaire over to the tablets.

During the class demonstration at the launch of the Smart Classroom on Monday, February 10, a teacher gave students a time limit and tracked in real time the digital test papers being submitted. Once all results were in, he then took a look at how the class did per test item, and what percentage of the students correctly answered each question - with visualizations reminiscent of an elections covergae on TV.

Instead of a blackboard, a touch-enabled large-format display (LFD) sits in front of the classroom. The high-tech whiteboard can project the professor’s lecture or an interactive computer program that can be used for exercises.

At the back of the class, five 55-inch Smart TVs are mounted in a row. You can hook up USB drives to any or all of these Smart TVs and play a movie or a presentation, or even mirror the contents of your smartphone or tablet. If those displays are not enough on the side of the classroom is a video wall made up of three 75-inch LFDs mounted vertically.

The PSHS administration hopes that the Smart Classroom will help bridge the gap between traditional teaching methods and technology proficient students.

DOST confers YES Awards to 447 international math and science competition winners


MANILA, Feb. 12 (PNA) -- The Department of Science and Technology –Science and Education Institute (DOST-SEI) recognized Wednesday some 447 elementary and high school students for winning gold, silver and bronze medals in various international competitions held last year.

The students were conferred the Youth Excellence in Science (YES) Award, an institutional award of the DOST for exemplary achievement of the youth in the fields of science and mathematics in the form of a medal of distinction.

The YES medal signifies the DOST’s high regard for excellence and competitiveness through the distinguished achievements of young Filipinos in international science and mathematics competitions.

In his address during the awarding ceremony held at the University of the Philippines’ National Institute of Science and Mathematics Education Development (UP-NISMED) in Diliman, Quezon City, DOST Secretary Mario Montejo lauded the batch as the number of YES awardees have reached over 400 for the first time in the recognition program’s history.

“Each of those medals is a testament to how hard you worked to bring the country honor,” Montejo told the awardees.

Montejo encouraged the awardees to continue on their pursuit of excellence and utilize their talents in creating S&T based solutions to address pressing national concerns.

“You are all capable to work on breakthroughs through research and development and your creative minds will surely produce innovative technologies that can help boost our industries and the economy,” he said.

“Being talented is one thing but using that talent for the benefit of people is a more noble approach of using the talents all of you have. Join us in the Philippine science community and help propel the Philippines towards a better future,” he added.

Meanwhile, Undersecretary for S&T Services and DOST-SEI Director Prof. Fortunato dela Pena urged the students to sustain their “thirst of excellence” and reaffirmed the department’s commitment to develop the potential of students through its scholarship.

“Let us prove to the world that we are achievers beyond competitions,” de la Pena remarked.

The awardees came from 126 schools nationwide of which 277 students from 53 schools in the National Capital Region (NCR) were awarded YES Medals.

The winners from the other regions will be awarded by respective DOST regional directors in a fitting ceremony.

DENR, NSWMC recognize successful solid waste management programs

By Aerol B. Patena & Sharmaine Anne Samson [(PNA), SCS/ABP/SHARMAINE ANNE SAMSON–OJT]

MANILA, Feb. 11 (PNA) -- The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the National Solid Waste Management Commission (NSWMC) recognized individuals and organizations for their best practices in solid waste management during an awarding ceremony held Tuesday at the DENR Central Office on Visayas Ave., Quezon City.

The event was among the highlights of the 13th anniversary celebration of Republic Act No. 9003, otherwise known as The Ecological and Solid Waste Management Act of 2001.

The award seeks to honor local government units (LGUs), commercial establishments, government agencies and partner organizations in implementing successful and effective ecological solid waste management programs.

Ecological solid waste management refers to the systematic administration of activities which provide for segregation at source, segregated transportation, storage, transfer, processing, treatment, and disposal of solid waste and all other waste management activities which do not harm the environment.

Plaques of recognition for outstanding service were conferred on former NSWC Executive Director Emelita Aguinaldo for exemplary public service in managing solid waste management (SWM) programs and Dr. Mitodio Falayfay for being a pioneer advocate of ecological solid waste management.

A total of 34 certificates were conferred by the DENR and the NSWMC during the event.

The solid waste management offices of local government units in the National Capital Region (NCR) were acknowledged for their support in the implementation of ESWM programs for homeowners' associations of subdivisions and condominiums.

The LGUs of Victoria and Moncada, Tarlac; San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan, and Maria Aurora in Aurora Province were cited for their best practices on segregation at source, segregated waste collection, establishment of material recovery facilities and environmental friendly disposal of wastes which resulted to a significant improvement in public awareness on solid waste management.

Greenhills Shopping Center, Tiendesitas, and the Riverbanks Center were commended for their innovative approaches on ESWM.

Partner organizations ICTSI Foundation Inc., Mordelez International/Global Visions Events and Marketing Network Inc., Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP), Philippine Plastics Industry Association (PPIA), Polysterine Packaging Council of the Philippines (PPCP), and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority were lauded for their cooperation on the ESWM initiatives of the DENR.

Lorenzo Ubalde (Galing Pook Foundation), Roy Catalino Merto (MMDA), Rolex Reyes (Department of Interior and Local Government-National Capital Region), Dr. Jocelyn Marcial (Department of Education-NCR), Dr. Julio Baggayan (DepEd- NCR) and Principal Rodolfo Modelo of Commonwealth Elementary School in Quezon City were recognized for their implementation of the National Ecosavers Program.

The National Ecosavers Program is a joint initiative of the DepEd, DENR and the MMDA which seeks to urge students to minimize and segregate waste by collecting and delivering recyclables in exchange for cash or school supplies.

Meanwhile, Solid Waste Management Officer Maria Magdalene Fulgencio of the Department of Public Services in Manila, in an interview with the Philippines News Agency, said that the LGU has been active in conducting information campaign to bring awareness of its constituents in waste segregation and proper waste disposal.

Teams from the city government are regularly deployed in barangays to conduct information and education drive for local residents on SWM.

“We always urge our constituents to recycle wastes such as plastic cups, sachets and styrofoams as this can be converted into tables and chairs for our public schools. Also, we teach them how to segregate wastes into biodegradable and degradable,” Fulgencio stated.

Inspectors from the city government’s environmental office conduct monitoring twice a week to ensure environmental compliance of the barangays.

Fulgencio said the Manila LGU intends to renew the implementation of its executive order that will establish an anti-littering campaign in the city and form a task force that will enforce the provisions of the Solid Waste Management Act and file cases against its violators.

The LGUs in NCR have also coordinated with the MMDA, barangays and DENR to set up a program entitled Barangay Power which seeks to recognize the cleanest and greenest barangays in Metro Manila through their best practices on solid waste management.

QC to host 'Camp Pag-Ibig' on Feb. 16 at Balara Filtration Plant


MANILA, Feb. 10 (PNA) -- The Quezon City government on Monday said it is set to conduct the annual "Camp Pag-ibig" on Feb. 16 at the Balara Filtration Plant in QC which is expected to have at least 2,000 participants.

According to Mayor Herbert M. Bautista, the annual day camp is being hosted by the city government since Feb. 14, 1979 with the aim of spreading the gift of love to children with special needs.

The mayor said that for this year, he directed the city treasurer to allocate P450,000 as support fund for the various programs and activities lined up for the whole day outdoor camp.

He added that the funding will be used for the purchase of necessary equipment and facilities that will address the educational and rehabilitative needs of the participating children.

He stressed that among the top priorities are the purchase of Braille and embossed facilities, hearing aids and screen readers for the children with special needs.

“It is in line with the reaffirmation of my administration’s continuing commitment to provide children with special needs access to quality education and services,” Bautista said.

At the same time, the mayor said three provinces -- two from Luzon and one from the Visayas -- have already adopted QC’s Camp Pag-Ibig to help children with specials needs to integrate and socialize in the mainstream of society.

These three provinces are La Union in Region 1, Zambales in Region 3 and Iloilo in Region 6.

The traditional outdoor camp activity theme for this year is “Pagpapataas sa Antas ng Kakayahan, Kasama ang Pamilya at Komunidad.”

Among the activities that will be conducted together with other multi-sectoral groups are reading sessions, product exhibits, bazaars, parent’s forum, handwashing activities, arts and crafts, nature lore, musical and talent presentations.

The event is also expected to be graced by some movie and television performers to entertain the participants.

"Camp Pag-ibig" was initially launched in 1976 by the Philippine Association for the Intellectually Disabled (Phil–AID) under the leadership of then president Dr. Erlinda Lolarga.

It is supported by the Jaycee International QC Capitol Inc. and the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) through its concessionaire, Manila Water Co. Inc.

QC allows barangay execs to destroy illegal structures

(Third Anne Peralta/Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)

THE Quezon City government has given barangay chairmen the authority to evict all persons constructing any illegal structure in public or private lands following last month's violent demolition of shanties in Sitio San Roque, Barangay Bagong Pag-asa.

Under Ordinance 2247 passed by the City Council, the barangay chairmen are mandated to coordinate with Task Force COPRISS (Control, Prevention and Removal of Illegal Structures and Squatting), which was created to monitor and curtail illegal occupation of lands.

"Utilized and abandoned real properties in the barangay, whether of public or private ownership shall be used and occupied properly either by government or by legitimate unprivileged Quezon City residents in the barangays and should not be used for business and personal gain," said the ordinance's author Councilor Ranulfo Ludovica.

The ordinance provides that summary eviction and demolition shall be executed without the need of a court order, provided that the construction must be ongoing and that all persons taking part in the summary eviction must wear proper identification.

The eviction or demolition may be executed only during regular office hours from Mondays to Fridays, during good weather and that no heavy equipment shall be used for the dismantling except for structures that are permanent.

Construction materials from demolished structures shall be confiscated in favor of the barangays should the owner fails to claim the materials within three days after the demolition.

Violators of the ordinance shall be advised to undertake voluntarily demolition of the subject structure and the remove all valuable things inside its premises within three days from the receipt of the notice.

Meanwhile, rights group Karapatan said it will file complaints at the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council on the forced eviction, torture and rights violations committed by authorities against San Roque residents.

Karapatan said a 65-year-old male, Resty Torres, died of asthma attack after inhaling tear gas while a pregnant woman, Mary Rose Reyes, had a miscarriage after crawling her way out of the area filled with tear gas.

A certain Ricky Ho was listening to the program held by people's organizations during the barricade when members of the Special Weapons and Tactics (Swat) team caught and forced him to admit he was among those who threw stones at the police.

"A gun was pointed at him. He was pulled out from the crowd; his head was covered by an empty paint bucket as he was led to police mobile. Members of SWAT hit his body and the bucket on his head with truncheon," said Karapatan, adding the bucket was only removed when they reached the Office of the Ombudsman, and in the presence of media covering the demolition.

Ho was also allegedly kicked by a police officer in the back and his head was hit with a record book during his interrogation at Camp Karingal.

Overall, groups that documented the rights violations such as Kadamay and Karapatan counted 617 evicted individuals, 309 suffocated by tear gas and 44 injured/wounded during demolition/dispersal.

Aside from Ho, the groups said four of the 11 individuals arrested and detained were physically tortured by their arresting officers.

The violations were allegedly perpetrated by the Quezon City police headed by Police Superintendent Pedro Sanchez, Swat and other members of demolition teams including the Task Force COPRISS.

QC eyes adopting two more towns in Leyte ravaged by ‘Yolanda’

By Leilani S. Junio [(PNA), CTB/LSJ]

MANILA, Feb 8 (PNA)--The Quezon City government said it is currently studying the adoption of two more municipalities in typhoon-ravaged province of Leyte whose residents were affected by 'Yolanda'.

According to QC mayor Herbert M. Bautista, the city government is eyeing this time to provide assistance to the municipalities of Matag-ob and Albuera.

Bautista said that an assessment of the present situation in Matag-ob and Albuera is now underway to determine the assistance that the QC government will extend to the people and local governments of said municipalities.

Bautista revealed that the adoption of Matag-ob and Albuera was requested by Congresswoman Lucy Torres-Gomez and QC vice mayor Joy Belmonte-Alimurung.

Matag-ob is a fourth class municipality with 17,089 residents spread in 21 barangays, according to the 2010 census.

Albuera, on the other hand, is a third class municipality with 17 barangays and has a population of 40,553, based on the 2010 census.

It may be recalled that during the height of the concerted efforts in helping the Yolanda ravaged areas to recover, the city government had decided to adopt the municipalities of Palompon, Sta. Fe and Tolosa.

Upon the directives of the mayor and approval of the city council of QC, materials and equipment as well as funds for rebuilding infrastructure such as school buildings, health centers, public markets and municipal halls were donated to said three municipalities to help them recover.

The city government handed over the construction materials, medical aid, generator and ELSAROC (Earthquake, landslide and rescue operation course) tools during QC's humanitarian mission to the three municipalities onDecember 16-21, 2013.

The mayor added that the QC Liga ng mga Barangay had also done their share of initiatives by helping the city government adopt the three municipalities of Palompon, Sta. Fe and Tolosa.

He reiterated that the initial assistance by the city last December, particularly for the three municipalities will not only be short term.

“We intend to help and assist the three adopted municipalities for long term because we know that rehabilitating and rebuilding their communities will not be an easy task that entails a lot of work and planning aside from budget,” he explained.

He disclosed that the QC government is extending the needed assistance, emphasizing that they understand the situation of said three municipalities, which cannot generate enough revenue to facilitate their recovery alone and faster.

The mayor also disclosed that livelihood assistance to the three municipalities is now under study, including proposals for livelihood funding.

He assured that once the livelihood assistance study is completed, a QC team will again be sent to Leyte to distribute livelihood assistance there.

Tzu Chi Foundation gives out P1.2 B in assistance to typhoon Yolanda survivors

By Jomie Jean O. Apostol (JJOA-PIACentral)

QUEZON CITY, Feb 7 -- The Tzu Chi Foundation Philippines has spent over P1.2 billion in assistance to survivors of typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) which devastated the Visayas region in November last year.

In a press conference held Friday at their headquarters in Quezon City, Tzu Chi Chief Executive Officer Alfredo Li said their Cash-For-Work Program started as early as November 13 in Tacloban, five days after Yolanda hit.

Some 300,000 cash vouchers were given out to all who availed themselves of the program, with each voucher equivalent to P500 in cash. The program lasted for 19 days.

Meanwhile, Tzu Chi released P900 million for their Cash-For-Relief Program, with P8,000 given to a family with two to three family members, P12,000 for families with three to four members and P15,000 for families with five members and up.

These funds came from solicitations and donations from Tzu Chi chapters and offices in 46 countries around the world.

Li said they are now in the medium-term implementation of their rehabilitation efforts in affected areas where they are building temporary housing and prefabricated classrooms. For the long-term, they plan to build permanent houses and classrooms. All these is done in close coordination with the government.

A temporary classroom measures 78 square meters and could last for 5 years, Li said, same as the temporary housing.

Tzu Chi also distributed 68,000 thermal blankets-made from recycled (Polyethylene terephthalate) PET bottles- and served 400,000 meals to the survivors in the provinces of Tacloban and Leyte.

Peggy Sy, a Tzu Chi commissioner, said the meals are composed primarily from instant rice, an invention from Tzu Chi Taiwan, the foundation’s main office.

To be able to eat the instant rice, you only need to add room temperature water to the grains and wait for 15 minutes.

Sy said the instant rice is particularly helpful in disasters, where instant food is in high demand, since there’s no need to cook it.

Another invention by Tzu Chi Taiwan is the multi-function foldable plastic platform, which can function as a chair and can be transformed into a bed. A platform is three feet long, and weighs 15 kilos. It can carry a maximum of 150 kilograms.

Li said they plan to ship out 4,000 of these platforms to Tacloban and Palo, Leyte soon.

Tzu Chi also provided medical consultations and treatments to the typhoon survivors, along with free medicines and medical supplies.

The Taiwan Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation Philippines is a non-profit organization which focuses on the field of charity, medicine, education, environmental protection and promotion of humanistic values and community volunteerism.

VP Binay assures decent housing, livelihood opportunities for informal settlers on Agham Road

By Sammy F. Martin [(PNA)CTB/SFM]

MANILA, Feb. 6 (PNA) -- Vice President Jejomar Binay on Thursday assured informal settlers from San Roque, Agham Road, Quezon City that the government will provide decent and affordable housing as well as livelihood opportunities in relocation sites.

Binay said that the National Housing Authority (NHA) had already relocated 196 out of the 285 families who availed of the government’s relocation program.

“It has always been our priority to give homes to the homeless and we make sure that we have livelihood programs in our relocation sites. Those who are being relocated from Agham road should expect the same,” he said in a statement.

Binay also said the informal settlers and the Quezon City government already had several dialogues over the past two years that were witnessed by representatives from the Cnommission on Human Rights (CHR).

During the dialogues, Binay said that the QC government and the NHA agreed to shoulder the P31,000 financial assistance given to the relocated informal settlers.

He pointed out that each informal settler family is eligible to receive a 40 square meter house and lot package that will be paid for by the ISFs at P200.00 a month for 30 years with an additional six percent interest added every five years.

SC asked to stop QC trash fee, housing tax

By Jeannette I. Andrade (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

A property owner has asked the Supreme Court to stop the Quezon City government from collecting socialized housing taxes and garbage fees from residents, describing these as unnecessary impositions for basic services which the local government is required to provide.

In the petition filed in the high tribunal on January 17, Jose Ferrer Jr.—a resident of Kamias Road in Quezon City—said he also wanted to put a halt to the city government’s penchant for imposing fees “to pay for essential services that could be covered by its [tax collection], revenues from property, business taxes and internal revenue allotment (IRA) share.”

“If respondents are not prevented and restrained by this honorable court, [they may impose] taxes for other basic essential government services … in the future,” he added.

Named as respondents were Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista, the city council, city treasurer and city assessor.

In his petition for a temporary restraining order, Ferrer asked the high court to declare as illegal and unconstitutional the two ordinances which allowed the city government to impose a socialized housing tax and garbage fee on residents.

He questioned the constitutionality and legality of the 2011 ordinance which imposed a 0.5 percent annual realty tax on property worth over P100,000.

According to the city government, the money would be used to implement socialized housing projects for informal settlers as mandated by the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992.

Ferrer, however, called the ordinance a “class legislation” that favored informal settlers over “law-abiding real property owners who pay income and realty taxes.”

“[It] is tantamount to a penalty imposed on real property owners for the failure of the Quezon City officials to perform their duty to enforce the laws to secure and protect real property from informal settlers… [It also makes it the burden] of the real property owners … to provide funding for the housing of informal settlers which is a duty of the city government,” he pointed out.

On the other hand, the recently-approved garbage fee amounts to “double taxation” because collecting trash is a primary function and duty of the city government that is funded by the various taxes it imposes on residents and its IRA share, Ferrer added.

Bautista approved on December 26 the ordinance imposing a yearly garbage fee ranging from P100 to P500 on all domestic households in the city.

“The revenue collection of the Quezon City government [was] boasted to be P13.69 billion in 2012; a small portion thereof could be spent for garbage collection and other essential services,” Ferrer said.

Ferrer pointed out that when he paid his realty tax on January 7, it already included the P100 garbage fee despite the fact that the ordinance authorizing its collection had yet to be published in a newspaper as required by the law.

In December, Bautista also approved a 10 percent increase in business taxes to generate an additional P1 billion for the construction of 500 to 600 classrooms for Grades 7 and 8 students.

Both ordinances, for the garbage fee and 10 percent tax hike, were authored by Councilor Victor Ferrer Jr. (not related to the petitioner).

Ateneo student is new PH Sudoku champ

By Jerry E. Esplanada (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines—Alvin Ian Chan, a 19-year-old BS Applied Mathematics student at Ateneo de Manila University in Quezon City is the country’s new Sudoku champion, one of the contest’s organizers announced Tuesday.

Dr. Simon Chua, president of the non-governmental organization Mathematics Trainers’ Guild-Philippines, which co-sponsored the annual competition with SM Malls, said Chan topped the finals of the Grandmaster Division of the 2014 Philippine Sudoku Super Challenge that was held on Sunday at the SM North Edsa mall.

Chan, a mainstay of the Philippine math team, placed second in last year’s edition of the contest.

Last year’s PSSC champion, Kaye Janelle Yao, a senior high school student at the Grace Christian College, also in Quezon City, placed second in this year’s competition, according to Chua.

Ralph Joshua Sarrosa, a BS Applied Math student at the University of the Philippines in Miag-ao, Iloilo, placed third in a repeat of his finish last year.

Apart from trophies, Chan, Yao and Sarrosa won cash prizes of P60,000, P40,000 and P20,000, respectively.

In the competition’s Whiz Kid Division, Jonathan Conrad Yu of the Philippine Christian Gospel School in Cebu City placed first. The 12-year-old Grade 6 student won P20,000 and a trophy.

Raymund Carlo Masbano of St. John’s Institute in Bacolod City and Kirsten Dominique Chan of Bayanihan Institute in Tarlac City took second and third places. They took home trophies and P10,000 and P5,000, respectively.

In the Wizard Division, Natalia Beatrice Dy, 13, also from St. John’s Institute, emerged champion. She was followed by Errol John Suarez of Aquinas University in Legazpi City and Gerrick Spencer Limsiy of Grace Christian College

They won P50,000, P30,000 and P20,000, respectively, apart from trophies.

A total of 176 contestants, all winners of the PSSC regional contests held in SM malls nationwide and which saw over 5,000 participants, competed in the finals, according to Chua.

This year’s PSSC winners will represent the country in various international Sudoku contests in Singapore and Thailand, among other places.

QC dominates Batang Pinoy

By Olmin Leyba (The Philippine Star)

BACOLOD CITY , Philippines – Athletes from Quezon City emerged as the most bemedalled delegation in the just-concluded Batang Pinoy National Finals in different venues here.

Quezon City bets collected 29 gold medals on various fronts, along with 22 silvers and 19 bronzes, to top the medal table among 128 local government units that fielded bets to the multi-event competition for 15-and-under athletes.

Swimming became a gold mine for QC as its tankers harvested 14 mints, 11 silvers and 11 bronzes in the pool, bannered by triple gold medalists Philip Joaquin Santos, Joshua Taleon, Kirsten Chloe Daos and Raissa Gavino.

It also reigned on the mat, winning eight diadems plus six silvers and six bronzes in wrestling.

Finishing behind QC in the overall medal tally were Baguio City with 22-18-10, host province Negros Occidental (19-11-14), Cebu (16-19-19), and Iloilo (13-0-4).

Like Quezon City, Baguio made a killing in swimming, with seven-gold winner Jenkins Lorenzo Labao providing the anchor. Baguio’s tankers turned in a hot 10-5-2 effort in the pool.

Negros struck hard in athletics led by five-time winner Alexis Soqueno, treble titlist Mark John Balajeboco to lay the foundation for its strong showing.

Rounding out the top 10 were Laguna (12-7-6), weightlifting power Zamboanga City (11-13-18), host city Bacolod (8-14-29), Manila (8-4-4) and Pangasinan (7-19-20).

Leyte Sports Academy-Smart, a team of Yolanda survivors, collected 5-2-2, making their mark in track and field, fuelled by Karen Janario’s five-mint, record-breaking performance.

Meanwhile, training in the US under the Sports Visitors Program of the US State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) and the US Embassy to Phl awaits the top performers in the Batang Pinoy’s 3-on-3 basketball hostilities.

The organizing Philippine Sports Commission and Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas have taken notice of the performances of the participants and came up with a shortlist of 10 boys and 10 girls, who are up for stint at the Basketball Sports Visitor Program from Mar. 11-24 in Washington DC and another city.

Nominated were cagebelles Valeri Mae Mamaril, Trixie Alison Mamaril and Princess No-or Sison of Pangasinan, Mary Melle Dorliat of Cebu, Lea Ann Villegas of Bataan, Mariel Campasa and Fiona Mikee Gonato of Sta. Rosa, Antonielle Kaye Berduque and Riza Mariz Cenabre of Bacolod and Claire Danes Buhain of Zamboanga.

The boys’ nominees were Jhoen Jeric Corpuz, Edward Algire of Sta. Rosa, Kurt Amores of Cebu, Loms Vincent Marinas and Mark Lester Castillo of Pangasinan, Miguel Ives Corteza, Samjosef Belangel and Errol Pastor of Bacolod, John Carl Luciano of Zamboanga and Czar Ian Cachero of Passi, Iloilo.

Palace expresses relief over QC demolition’s peaceful ending


MANILA, Feb 2 (PNA) -- Malacanang on Sunday expressed relief over what began as a violent demolition of shanties in Agham Road, Quezon City which later ended peacefully.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said on state-run dzRB Radyo ng Bayan that although informal settlers refused to leave their homes at first, some of them eventually gave in.

“It ended well in the sense that the day after, they dismantled their own houses (themselves),” Valte said in Filipino.

“Initially there was a confrontation but they (informal settlers) calmed down and took it upon themselves to cooperate,” she added.

The demolition of shanties began last Jan 27, and turned violent when illegal settlers tried as much as possible to prevent the demolition team from entering their community by throwing on them bottles, rocks and the like.

Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) anti-riot team were prompted to use tear gasto push them away.

A resettlement site in Bocaue, Bulacan is being prepared by the National Housing Authority (NHA) but according to reports, not all have willingly accepted to move out despite being offered financial assistance.

QC gov’t to help qualified informal settlers move to affordable relocation sites


MANILA, Feb. 1 (PNA) -- The Quezon City government said over the weekend that qualified informal settler families (ISFs) whose shanties along Agham Road in Sitio San Roque, Barangay Bagong Pag-asa were demolished recently could avail themselves of houses in decent relocation sites.

“In coordination with the National Housing Authority (NHA) and Ayala Land Inc. (ALI), the QC government will help these families acquire affordable and decent homes in relocation sites in San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan,” said Tadeo Palma, secretary to QC Mayor Herbert M. Bautista.

Palma noted that during the negotiations prior to the demolition of the shanties earlier this week, the NHA and the QC government, together with representatives of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), informed the informal settlers about the resettlement sites intended for them.

“The house is affordable. They can pay it for only P200 a month. The QC government has also agreed to shoulder the amount of P5,000 from the P31,000 financial assistance provided for them as they transfer to the said relocation sites,” Palma told the Philippines News Agency in an interview.

He disclosed that at present, NHA is speeding up the processes in determining who among the Agham Road ISFs will be entitled for relocation and financial assistance.

Palma explained that the property that the informal settlers occupied has been tagged for development as part of the QC Central Business District, a private-public partnership with Ayala Land Inc.

Meanwhile, Palma has lauded the 700 policemen from the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) and the 400 personnel of Task Force COPRISS (Control and Prevention of All Structures and Squatting) for a job well-done.

He also said he has directed QC Hall teams to conduct clearing of debris from the demolished shanties to prevent traffic obstruction along Agham Road.