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Quezon City News June 2013

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Quezon City - Archived News

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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?

WHY??

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

PNP celebrates PCR month on Monday, invites ordinary person as guest speaker

(PNA), DSP/CLTC

MANILA, June 30 (PNA) -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Monday marks the 18th Police Community Relations (PCR) Month as they will invite an ordinary person as guest speaker to be held at PNP Headquarter in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

According to Director Lina Sarmiento, head of the PNP Directorate for Police Community Relations (DPCR), they will invite Emma Flores Enriquez Hara, ordinary president of neighborhood association to make a small community peaceful by trusting the peace and order-related programs of the police.

Hara is the president of Bayside Neighborhood Association, Inc. (BANAI) in Taguig City.

"Because of the dedicated commitment in advancing the police force’s programs and projects in Lower Bicutan, she was chosen to be the guest of honor and speaker in the event," Sarmiento said adding the highlight of PCR Month is the role of ordinary persons in making the programs and projects of the PNP.

Sarmiento will grace the awarding ceremony for policemen who made difference in winning the hearts and minds of the public in the last 12 months.

"There will also be a turn-over of equipment that will be used for live-streaming and studio equipment for the on-line news website of the Philippine National Police," said Sarmiento.

"Aside from Camp Crame, a simultaneous kick-off ceremony will be held at different Police Regional Offices nationwide to coincide with the traditional Monday Flag Raising Ceremony," she added.

With the theme, “Serbisyong Makatotohanan at Matatag na Ugnayan ng Pambansang Pulisya at Mamamayan Tungo sa Tuwid na Daan”, Sarmiento said several activities are lined-up for the month-long celebration to be undertaken by the Police Regional Offices and other lower PNP offices.

Other activities for the whole month celebration are Video Story Contest (July 3), COPWALK… PNP on the Ramp (July 4), Counter Radicalization Seminar: Redefining the Role of Islamic Leaders in the Jihad for Lasting Peace (July 4), Slogan Making Contest (July 4), Comics and Caricature Making Contest (July 4), Drug Abuse Prevention and Education Symposium (July 9), Passport Processing (July 13), Visitation of Women’s Correctional (July 16), Social Media Specialist/Officer Seminar-Workshop (July 17-18), Career Orientation Seminar for High School Students (July 17), and Message Development Workshop for Street Children and Juvenile Delinquents (July 18).

Presidential Proclamation No. 764 declares the month of July of every year as PCR month. The proclamation aims to “develop closer interaction between the community and the police in handling peace and order problems; likewise enhancing police image in order to gain support from the community”.

Sarmiento also said that it will be Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Mar Roxas who will lead the ceremony.

Aside from Roxas, other high dignitaries who are expected to join the celebration are PNP Chief Police Director General Alan Purisima; Atty. Washington Javier, President of Public Safety Mutual Benefit Fund, Incorporated (PSMBFI); and Ambassador Cardozo M. Luna, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Armed Forces and Police Savings & Loan Association, Incorporated (AFPSLAI).

DPWH conducting road reblocking in 7 major roads in Metro Manila this weekend -- MMDA

By Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan [(PNA), LAM/CLTC]

MANILA, June 29 (PNA) -- The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is advising motorists that the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is undertaking repair and improvement works along seven major roads in four cities of Metro Manila this weekend.

In a phone interview, MMDA Assistant General Manager for Operations Atty. Emerson Carlos said that the DPWH has scheduled concrete reblocking projects and road repairs in the cities of Mandaluyong, Quezon, Pasay, and Caloocan.

Carlos said the reblocking started Friday evening and will end at 5:00 a.m. on Monday (July 1).

The reblocking in Mandaluyong City includes EDSA corner Reliance to Libertad Streets (northbound); in Caloocan City at EDSA corner A. de Jesus U-Turn Slot to J. Mariano St. (southbound, lane 3) and EDSA corner G. De Jesus St. and Malvar St. (northbound); in Pasay City at EDSA corner Malibay Bridge to C. Jose St. (northbound, fifth lane); and in Quezon City at EDSA corner Seminary Road to Rena Road (northbound, fifth lane), EDSA corner Kaingin Road to Dario Bridge 1 (southbound, third lane) and along Commonwealth Avenue from North Susana to Luzon Avenue (southbound, third lane).

Carlos also advised motorists to use alternate routes as heavy traffic is expected at these areas.

DPWH said the repairs are in addition to the ongoing repairs and re-blocking works along various thoroughfares that the department is currently undertaking.

PNP joins fight against torture

By Jimmyley I. Guzman (PNP-PIO/RJB/JEG/PIA-NCR)

QUEZON CITY, June 28 (PIA) -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) joined in the celebration of the United Nations International Day in support of torture victims.

With this year’s theme “Make Philippines a Torture Free Zone,” the PNP together with the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) participated in the annual advocacy run tagged as “Basta Run Against Torture! (BRAT VII)” which started from the Bantayog ng mga Bayani in Quezon Avenue to the grounds of CHR main office in Commonwealth Avenue Thursday, June 27.

The advocacy run was then followed by a commitment signing to respect and protect the freedom and rights through monitoring and reporting torture cases in the country.

Likewise, the event was highlighted with the launching of the publication “Review of the Effectiveness of the Implementation of the Anti-Torture Law.”

Now on its 7th year, BRAT reaffirms the enthusiasm of member agencies and stakeholders to prevent torture, raise the awareness among law enforcers and community about RA No. 9745, and monitor and report any torture-related cases for immediate action.

RA No. 9745 otherwise known as the Anti-Torture Law of 2009 is an act penalizing torture and other cruel and inhumane actions, and value the dignity of every human person and guaranteeing full respect for human rights, to ensure that the human rights of all persons, including suspects, detainees and prisoners are respected at all times.

Meanwhile, the PNP’s Human Rights Affairs Office (HRAO) serves as the organization’s core office in implementing human rights development programs and policies that must be observed by each and every police officer.

1st Filipino foot artist works his way through animation studio

By Azer Parrocha [(PNA), HBC/ANP]

MANILA, June 27 (PNA) -- He may have been born without arms.

But in turn, he was still gifted with the ability to create sequence images and animate them using another body part that comes in twos — his feet.

At 29, Charles Rodriquez, who has been working as an animator at Take One Animation Studious, Quezon City, for almost a year now continues to train with the help of the studio’s manager, Eric Tansingco.

In fact, it was Tansingco himself who came up with the idea of hiring Persons with Disabilities in the 11-year-old studio known for its 2D animation services for traditional both Japanese (Anime) and Western animation.

Anime shows like Onepiece, DragonballZ and Mari & Gali are only among the studio’s most successful projects. Aside from that, it has also does in-between works for TOEI Animation Philippines, the only subsidiary company outside Japan.

Tansingco, in an interview, said that the idea of helping PWDs came to him upon having coffee with friends from the National Council on Disability Affairs.

Seeing their efforts to do something for the greater good, he thought he could do something similar to lend them a hand.

“I just put myself in their shoes, thinking: What if I had that disability?” he said, explaining how he thought about the difficulty they had in finding a job.

It was then when he thought that if there were PWDs that had the capacity to work despite their minor setback, it was only fit that they be given an opportunity to work.

With support coming from the NCDA which recommended selected colleges that catered to PWDs, Tansingco was able to provide them jobs.

Of course, Tansingco is only one of the many advocates willing to lend a hand in providing a venue for PWDs to obtain jobs best suited for them.

Many other companies, particularly those that specialize in encoding, design, programming, animation, web designs, system analyzing and the like also have jobs available and even join annual job fairs strictly for PWDs.

No longer unfair

NCDA Technical Cooperation Division Chief, Nelia De Jesus, meanwhile said that it was a dream-come-true for PWDs to have jobs fairs like this available for them.

“No longer will they think that job fairs will be ‘unfair’,” she said.

“We really want them to showcase their talent and inspire others that anything is possible.”

“We want to take out all the discriminating factors that hinder a PWD from applying for a job,” she added.

“Of course we do make sure they are qualified before they are hired and not just taken in because of compassion.”

After a PWD applies for a job, he or she is immediately put to an on-the-spot trial test to see if they meet the company’s qualifications and requirements.

“Charles here went through a seven-month period of training,” Tansingco said.

“An average art grad even has to go through the same process.”

He said that although it was difficult to get PWDs come up with output equal to the output an average person would produce,

Tansingco remained patient with Charles and his fellow employed PWDs as he pledged on his word.

Animators do not have a fixed schedule, he said but work for them sometimes reaches to about 18 hours in each three days of the week.

He said that albeit difficult, he would make it a point to hire 80 percent PWDs to work for the studio and a fair 20 percent average people to work with them as well.

Aside from PWDs, Tansingco said that he also hopes that sometime in the future, he would like to extend helping out those in rural areas and out-of-school youth obtain jobs.

“We have 250 jobs available and we are on the lookout for trainees,” he said, stressing that all the advantages were available for anyone as long as they strived hard enough.

Charles, being one of the few, if not the only foot animator in the country or in the world, earns as much as about P 4,000 weekly for his output and with that, he can’t complain.

QC continues efforts to relocate families in "danger zones"

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

MANILA, June 26 (PNA) --A massive efforts on relocating the families of informal settlers residing in waterways considered as “danger zones” in Quezon City is on-going.

The assurance was given by Eduardo P. Giolagon, division head of the housing community development and resettlement department (HCDRD) of QC.

“Prior to the announcement of DILG to relocate the informal settlers families, the QC government has already relocated some to Montalban, Rizal as a preparation, and also, to ensure their safety and protection during flooding in the onset of the rainy season,” Giolagon explained.

Giolagon cited that city’s informal settlers are expected to be relocated until the end of the month of July in coordination with several government agencies working together for their relocation.

He said that barangay leaders are being ordered through letters to identify the informal settler families and convince them to vacate the waterways immediately to facilitate the relocation efforts.

He also said that the city is also extending its service by providing trucking services for free to aid their faster displacement.

“Most of them will be relocated in National Housing Authority (NHA) resettlement sites in Bulacan particularly in Bocaue and Gaya-Gaya which have complete water and electrical facilities for them,” he added.

He added also that they had coordinated with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to assure some informal settlers families who are beneficiaries of DSWD’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4P’s) will not be delisted and can continue to engage into livelihood programs as source of potential income.

“To allay their fear, we assure them that whatever they are receiving as beneficiaries of 4’Ps will still be extended to them by DSWD even if they transferred residency because no one can delist them if they are following the conditionalities set by the said agency,” he explained.

“As part of the relocation plan, the QC government will also extend assistance to the receiving LGUs of the QC’s waterways informal settlers aside from the P18,000.00 subsidy allocated by the national government for every family of informal settlers that will be displace,” he said.

About 55 percent of the ISFs identified by NHA are located in Quezon City and Manila.

Based on the data gathered by the NHA from local government units in 2011, 31,275 ISFs comprising 30 percent of families are living in danger zones in Quezon City, while 26,029 families or 25 percent are in Manila.

QC gov’t sets road safety seminar for drivers, pedestrians on Friday

(PNA), PDS/LSJ

MANILA, June 25 (PNA) -- The Quezon City Government will conduct a road safety seminar on Friday to educate drivers and pedestrians on the safety procedures needed to avoid accidents and to ensure a hazard free journey for everyone.

The seminar will be conducted through the city's department of public order and safety (DPOS)from 8:00 a.m. to noon at the QC Hall main lobby.

The seminar titled, "Lakbay Gabay: Disiplina at Kortesiya para sa Ligtas na Pagbiyahe” will focus on discipline, fundamental training, defensive driving and common mistakes committed by drivers.

The program will be spearheaded by the Inner Media Advertising Services is expected to promote socialresponsibility among road users who are prone to accidents while driving.

The city government is optimistic that this will help decrease the number of road accidents that usually happen due to drivers’ lack of fundamental training and discipline while in control of the wheel.

Other partner agencies for this seminar program are the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), Automobile Association of the Philippines (AAP) and the Philippine Global Road Safety Partnership (PGRSP).

Based on the record of the Department of Health (DOH), accidents, including road traffic crashes, rank four among the leading causes of deaths in the Philippines and may become the leading cause of mortality in the year 2020 - more than those caused by diseases like HIV/AIDS, diabetes or cancer.

Most traffic road mishap is known to be taking the lives of more young people who enjoy motorcycle rides without proper education on traffic rules and riding regulations.

NKTI and QC health department conduct blood letting

(PNA), HBC/LSJ

MANILA, June 24 (PNA) –- As part of the celebration of the “National Kidney Month,” the National Kidney and Transplant Institute has partnered with the Quezon City Health Department for a mass blood donation at the QC hall lobby Monday.

The blood letting was organized to create awareness about the importance of donating blood and at the sametime remind the public of the need to take care of their kidney’s under the theme ”Malusog na Bato, ‘Yan ang Gusto Ko,”.

“It is a way to encourage blood donors to be aware of how they can help other sick people and be an instrumentto prolong the life of some patients in dire need of blood with the blood that they will unselfishly donate,” said Yeza Valdez, medtech from NKTI.

Valdez said the blood donation is an initiative formed between NKTI and QC government before.

Under the agreement, the blood donors listed in the master list of blood donors, can avail themselves of free blood donation for them or their family members if they will be hospitalized and will be possibly needing blood transfusion.

Yeza said about 40 to 50 persons are expected to donate in the blood letting which started from 8:00 am and would end at 4:00 p.m.

Many blood donors who are just walk-in clients of QC city hall and students take advantage of the chance of blood lettings lightheartedly.

“It is better to give than to receive,” said Christelle, a 17-year old physical therapy student.

According to her she is considering blood donation more as a “blessing” because by donating her blood sheis giving a part of her that somehow can make a difference to anyone’s lives.

“Whenever I donate blood, I consider that as a sacrifice also, with a prayer, that with such sacrifice, I and my loved ones will not need to undergo the process of needing blood one day, or if ever that such need willarise there will also be good samaritans who will unselfishly give their blood too,” she added.

“I have seen how hard it is for many patients in the hospitals needing blood,” said Arnel T. Laneza, a former nurse.

He said “it feels good” to be a donor.

“It is also a way to determine how healthy we are and find out if we are not carriers of certain diseases, like Hepatitis, Sexually-Transmitted Diseases because the blood that are donated are being check and examine in a laboratory too,” Laneza added.

About 450 cc of blood is donated by every donor who are ask to fill out a donor’s form prior to their donation of blood for record purposes.

The donors are advised to take enough liquid or juices, have enough rest and refrain from carrying heavy loads or driving after donating blood.

The donors will be notified by a letter in case that they laboratory results revealed that their blood is contaminated or infected with diseases.

QC holds on coop management and governance on Tuesday

(PNA), DSP/LSJ

MANILA, June 23 (PNA) --The Quezon City government will hold its monthly cooperative day for June on Tuesday, (June 25, 2013) from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon at 3rd floor of Bulwagan Amoranto in the QC Hall main building.

The forum titled “Coop Management and Governance,” will ahve speakers the National Confederation of Cooperatives.

All elected and appointed officers of cooperatives and leaders from other organized groups are expected to attend the event to promote the importance of cooperatives in the enterprising industry within the city.

There will also be a Gender Perspective on Coop Governance topic to be discussed by Ms. Salome Ganibe, executive director of Asian women in cooperative development forum to highlight and tackle the role of women in cooperative movements.

QC gives informal settlers 2 months to transfer to relocation sites

(PNA), LAM/PR/LSJ/JSD

MANILA, June 22 (PNA) -- The Quezon City government is giving informal settlers in disaster-prone areas two months to voluntary vacate their dwellings and relocate or face demolition.

The Quezon City government, on orders of Mayor Herbert M. Bautista, hosted on Friday (June 21) a consultative meeting with representatives of the city’s flood-prone barangays and government agencies involved in flood control and relocation of informal settler families (ISFs) from waterways.

The meeting was called with the objective of adopting plans and strategies that will ensure the safety and protection of QC-based ISFs, especially during the rainy season, in compliance with the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) pronouncement of “zero casualty” along Metro Manila's waterways.

QC officials, led by acting Mayor Joy Belmonte and secretary to the mayor Tadeo M. Palma, presented during the meeting an outline of what has been accomplished so far by the city government in its effort to provide a more permanent solution to the problem of informal settlements in QC.

During the meeting, barangay officials of flood-prone communities were encouraged to conduct dialogues with the affected families in their respective localities to seek their cooperation in the relocation program.

Also present during the meeting were representatives of the DILG, National Housing Authority (NHA), Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor (PCUP), Commission on Human Rights (CHR), and Social Housing Finance Corporation (SHFC).

Prior to the DILG pronouncement, there was already a continuing effort by the QC government to relocate informal settler families whose dwellings encroach on the three-meter easement of QC waterways.

Notices were sent to informal settler families occupying waterway easements to voluntary vacate their dwelling structures or else the city will be forced to demolish their homes.

According to urban poor affairs office head Ramon Asprer, the city government is giving the affected families at least two months to voluntary vacate their dwellings.

The city has identified informal settler families living near the San Juan and Tullahan rivers as priorities in its relocation program. According to a report, San Juan River is home to about 2,800 informal settler families.

The urban poor affairs office reported that the city has already relocated some 3,894 informal settler families to the NHA relocation sites at Southville in Rodriguez, Rizal and Towerville, in San Jose de Monte, Bulacan.

Since 2009, QC also relocated some 4,550 informal settler families occupying other danger areas, including various infrastructure projects and government properties.

QC holds Mega Job Fair

(PNA), FFC/LSJ

MANILA, June 21 (PNA) -- More than 1,500 applicants trooped to the Mega Job Fair of the Quezon City government through its Public Employment Service Office (PESO) and in cooperation with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) held at the Quezon City Hall covered path walk on Friday.

About 50 companies, consisting of 10 overseas and 40 local employers, participated during the Mega Job Fair.

“This job fair brings together the employers and employees in a single venue. In this way, the applicants save money, time and effort in applying because they do not need to spend much money for transportation whenever they travel in search for jobs suited for them,” said Carlo Abella, Quezon City PESO manager.

According to Abella, the QC government has always committed itself in working-out solutions to elevate the poor sector from the cycles of poverty by initiating efforts in helping the residents acquire decent jobs as source of income.

“We believe that it is also a way for them (the poor) to be equipped with skills and trainings as well as the fresh graduates who are looking for job vacancies to acquire decent jobs, local and abroad, that can be their tool to improve their life’s condition,” he added.

On the part of employers, he said it is also advantageous because it hasten their search for applicants as they can interview on the spot the potential applicants they are looking for and hire them afterwards.

Among the participating employers include SM supermarket, Ace Hardware, Max restaurant, Sykes, Destiny Cable, Family Mart, National Bookstore, Lead Resources Management Corporation, and Eye Quest Int’l. Manpower Services, Inc.

“It is good that there are job fairs being conducted like this, because it is easier for applicants like us to try our luck, send our resume to every possible employers present in the venue, and if luck is really on our side, we can be immediately hired in the spot too,” said Mylene, 23-year-old applicant from Brgy. Pinyahan, QC.

Many of the applicants acquired their skills from the free four-months trainings under the “NegoTech Center” project of QC Mayor Herbert M. Bautista for its residents.

Aside from the mega job fair, the QC PESO has also scheduled job-fair in selected barangays of the city.

If there are no big scheduled job fairs, the QC PESO accommodates four employers a day in its office to screen applicants.

As one of its services, PESO personnel also provide applicants tips and advice on correct grooming, attire, attitudes and background of the jobs they are applying.


DOH to allocate an initial P30-M for DOST’s dengue-carrying mosquito traps

By Azer N. Parrocha [(PNA), DSP/ANP]

MANILA, June 20 (PNA) -- An initial amount of P30 million will be earmarked by the Department of Health (DOH) for a special kind of trap that can track down dengue-carrying mosquito prevalence and as well as reduce it.

This tool, constructed by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is called the OL-Trap which means Ovicidal/larvicidal Trap.

It is designed to eradicate eggs and larva of dengue-carrying mosquitoes using merely a black container, a 1”x6.5” ft. lawinit paddle, 250 ML of water and the secret to making the whole thing work: OL pellets.

During the launch of the OL-Trap in Kamuning Elementary School in Quezon City on Thursday, DOH and DOST secretaries, Enrique Ona and Mario Montejo went classroom to classroom to teach grade 5 students the steps to preparing the OL-Trap.

Sec. Ona explained that because mosquitoes usually thrived and laid eggs in stagnant water, dark areas and damp rough surfaces, the black container was necessary to attract them.

On the other hand, the lawinit paddle, Sec. Montejo said, was where these mosquitoes would lay their eggs. When wet, it emitted a certain kind of smell that was inviting to mosquitoes.

“The OL pellets are made of organic materials. These are what kill the mosquitoes,” Montejo said. “[It’s] vector reduction in vulnerable places, where school is one.”

“Barangay captains, mayors, governors eventually will know the extent if it (dengue prevalence) is an impending epidemic or if it is increasing or decreasing,” Ona said.

Ona also added that since dengue-carrying mosquitoes were present in the morning, the time children where usually in school, that was what made them most prone to dengue.

Aside from that, Ona also said that children are most prone to dengue because their resistance is weaker. Mosquitoes were also attracted to their sweat.

“These pellets are replaced every week,” Ona explained. “The eggs or larva left on the paddle can simply be removed by a used toothbrush and then disposed.”

After giving schoolchildren demos, both secretaries placed posters with steps to the OL-Trap setup as well as comic books that would raise their awareness on the risk of dengue and ways to prevent it, among which, is using the OL-Trap.

OL Traps will be placed in more than half a million public schools (about two in each classroom) nationwide in the following months but there have already been traps set in National Capital Region (NCR), Cebu and Davao.

The DOH and DOST said that this can also be availed by private schools and ordinary citizen. Other developing countries like Pakistan and Nepal have already shown interest in purchasing the trap, according to the DOST.

It will soon be available in leading drug stores and perhaps even in convenience stores and later also in sari-sari stores for only P25. For those that would want to improvise and would only want to purchase the pellets, one sachet costs P2.5.

Medical Forum on new choices for cancer treatment and kidney rehabilitation

(PNA), FFC/PR/UTB

MANILA, June 19 (PNA) -- The Complete Wellness Center in collaboration with Modern Cancer Hospital Guangzhou will host a medical forum on the latest cancer cures and alternative medical treatment for kidney diseases on June 22, 2013 (Saturday) from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Occupational Health and Safety Center, Agham Road, Diliman, Quezon City.

The main speaker will be Dr. Peng Xiao Chi, expert Oncologist and Head of the Oncology Department of the Modern Cancer Hospital Guangzhou. He will discuss “minimal invasive targeted therapy: new choices for cancer treatment.”

Dr. Samuel Dizon, expert-practitioner of integrative medicine based in George Dewey Medical Center in Subic will talk on the collaboration of conventional and alternative medicine and alternative medical treatments. Dr. Dizon is widely known for successful treatment of cancer and for reversing effects of cancer, diabetes, heart, kidney and liver diseases.

Admission to the forum is free to the public.

MMDA chief urges DPWH to fast-track drainage upgrade projects

(PNA),HBC/CLTC

MANILA, June 18 (PNA) -- To reduce Metro Manila's flood woes during the rainy season, Metro Manila Development Authority chair Francis Tolentino has urged the Department of Public Works and Highways to fast-track its drainage upgrade projects.

He made this statement after noting that the DPWH has 70 ongoing drainage upgrade projects that include 26 in Manila, 16 in Quezon City, two on EDSA and several others in Makati, Pasay and CAMANAVA area.

Tolentino added completion of these projects will greatly aid flood reduction efforts in Metro Manila.

He also said that only way to alleviate the perennial flood woes of the Metropolis rest on the DPWH's flood control master plan which is expected to be completed in 22 years time.

"The master plan is not an overnight solution. It is a long range plan. I heard it is going to be over by 2035,” he added.

Tolentino said once the DPWH completes the master plan, it would be turned over to the MMDA for maintenance.

According to him, the master plan will include eastern portions of Metro Manila including areas in Rizal and Bulacan.

QC ready to address rainy season health-related problems

(PNA), LDV/QC-PR-LSJ

MANILA, June 17 (PNA) -- The Quezon City government is ready for the rainy days this year and the threatening health-related problems that goes with it.

QC mayor Herbert M. Bautista made the assurance as he announced that the city is ready to protect residents against threats of diseases of the rainy season, most especially dengue.

“I believe that the health of the people should be on top of everything,” Bautista said, noting he always prioritize health care from his “Day One” as chief executive of the city, leading him to be in the frontline of dengue awareness campaigns.

Aside from dengue, the city is also constantly monitoring and preparing for the attack of other diseases that come along with the rainy season such as respiratory track infections, food-borne diseases, water-borne diseases, influenza, leptospirosis and skin diseases, usually fungal infection.

Bautista cited that as part of preparation to ensure that the occurrence of dengue cases will be prevented and mitigated, the city initiated various activities to ensure the effective combat against it.

Among the activities being undertaken are door-to-door campaigns on dengue awareness, intensified school campaigns in communities with dengue cases, distribution of anti-dengue campaign materials in different barangays and districts and chemical spraying.

In line with this, he also ordered intensive orientation of health personnel and the community on health risk reduction, organization of emergency response team and their corresponding area of assignments, identified flood-prone barangays and management of evacuation centers.

The city with over two million residents, tied up also with private sectors like UP College of Public Health, Yngentech and also Quezon City Health Department to strengthen the campaign against dengue as part of the effort to provide health service.

He expressed optimism that through all the activities and programs, dengue cases in the city will lessen this year.

‘We donate blood to stay healthy,’ say QC residents

By Azer N. Parrocha [(PNA), CTB/ANP]

MANILA, June 15 (PNA) -- Blood donation not only saves other people’s lives, it saves your own.

It is scientifically proven that when a person donates blood, the body will produce new red blood cells to make up for its loss. This process makes the blood healthier.

This, according to Ruffa Alvarez, an apheresis nurse (a nurse that transfuses blood) from the Philippine Red Cross, Quezon City Chapter.

In the recent World Blood Donor Day, donors from Quezon City flocked to the Quezon City Hall pathway to get their blood screened.

A little known fact is that when a person gets his or her blood screened, it also serves as a personal health check because potential diseases can already be detected in the blood itself, Alvarez said.

Janice Rodaje, a 30-year-old housewife donated blood for the second time during the event. The first time was back in 2010. She was accompanied by her husband, Alvin, 36, who also donated blood but for the first time.

“I donate blood because aside from the fact that it will help other people who need it, it is also a way of cleansing our bloodstream,” Mrs. Rodaje said, explaining how she learned about this fact from television.

She was calm and visibly glad about the fact that she was donating blood again. If the circumstances allowed it, she said that she wanted to donate after every three months or four times a year, which is the limit allowed for bloodletting.

On the other hand, her husband, Mr. Rodaje, who was a tricycle driver, admitted that he was indeed nervous about donating blood but figured it was something he had always wanted to do but never got the chance to.

The Rodaje couple, who will also invite their friends to donate blood, said that their secret to keeping their blood healthy was observing a strict fish and vegetable diet.

Also among the donors was P01 Melena Sarmiento, 27, of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Regional Public Safety Batallion (RPSB).

It was her second time to donate blood since 2011 and she said it was a tradition for the PNP to participate in bloodletting events like this to show that they too, are one in the World Blood Donor Day celebration.

Save the victims, help stop human trafficking – DSWD

(PNA), LAM/LSJ

MANILA, June 15 (PNA) -- “Help us to bring the message to all that the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is here to help and save victims of human trafficking.”

This was the appeal of DSWD Secretary Corazon J. Soliman on Friday evening during the airing of its cinema plug titled “Iligtas Mo Ako” in the block-off screening of the Man of Steel movie at Trinoma cinema in Quezon City.

“The deception, illegal transfer, and abuse of Filipinos simply looking for better opportunities in the city and abroad are realities that we cannot ignore. We have to find more ways to combat and prevent it from recurring,” Soliman said in her speech.

Soliman appealed to the viewing public to help the department spread the campaign by telling and informing everyone in their respective communities about the campaign of DSWD to stop the continuing threat that can victimized any innocent Filipinos especially those who are victims of dire poverty.

“We, (DSWD) appeal to everyone to tell your neighbours, friends and the people in your community to report any victims of human trafficking syndicates, or any syndicates performing the wicked act that destroys the lives of vulnerable victims who just want to escape from dire poverty,” Soliman d as she ask for public’s participation by being vigilant and united against human traffickers.

“The human trafficking syndicates offer enticing opportunities to most of the victims. What is so saddening is the fact that the helpless victims were easily enticed by these heartless humans who are usually Filipinos too, Soliman explained.

The students, parents, teachers, workers, members of non-governmental organizations, and other Local Government Units (LGUs) who enjoyed watching the movie and were curious about the plug that features two modes of trafficking namely, sexual and labor trafficking, earned various reactions.

Some commend the efforts of DSWD in the 30-second plug conveying the message of human trafficking victims calling for rescue or help to save them from the “hell” where they “fall and drown” into after believing to the false hope and promises of human traffickers with the music background “Iligtas mo ako” and showing DSWD coming to rescue them.

“The plug somehow urge me to act and do my share to report to DSWD Hotline No. (02) 9319141 or Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) Action Line 1343. I know the feeling of “hell” that they (victims) are going to because I know a relative of mine who was also victimized and suffered in the hands of human traffickers many years ago,” Evelyn from Caloocan City said.

Cristina, a parent said, “It is good that there are campaigns against human trafficking like these so the public can be aware, watchful and be united to fight it. “

Cristina suggested however, that DSWD should have a more vivid and concise representation of how human traffickers approach the victims through narration to make it easier to understand.

“It is better if the plug was presented in a narrative way and at the same time explicitly showing how they (victims) were entice so the clear signs of dangers of human trafficking can be easily identified to make the victim or people around them like their relatives, friends and neighbours notice, act, prevent and report to the authorities,” Carlito, an employee from Quezon City said.

“Maybe it will also be effective if the plug was also aired as commercial in television and be endorsed by popular celebrities supporting the drive against human trafficking,” Cecille, a teacher in QC said.

Based on the DSWD 2012 report, there were 1,376 individual-victims of various kinds of trafficking nationwide.

These victims are being provided with adequate recovery and reintegration services under the DSWD’s Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked persons (RRPT) especially those who undergone trauma to help them pick up and manage their life once more after the tragedy by engaging them in livelihood programs and social and stress debriefing and counsellings

Republic Act 10364 or expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act was enacted last year and amended Republic Act 9208 or the “Anti-Human Trafficking in Persons Act.

Under RA 10354, identities and circumstances of human trafficking offenders are allowed to be disclosed.

In a report by IACAT, about 1,519 human trafficking cases were filed in 2011 and 100 convictions were rendered in 2012.

Colleges, universities suspend classes due to heavy rain, flooding

(RJB/MAPA/PIA-NCR)

MANILA, Philippines - Several colleges and universities in Manila and Quezon City suspended afternoon classes on Thursday due to heavy rain and flooding.

Classes have been suspended in:

Adamson University
University of Santo Tomas
University of the Philippines in Manila
Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila
San Beda College
College of Saint Benilde
De La Salle University
Philippine Women University
Far Eastern University
San Sebastian College
Sta. Isabel College
St. Paul College in Manila and Quezon City
St. Scholastica's College
University of the East-Manila

Classes in all public elementary and high schools have also been suspended by the local government of Manila.

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority has issued flood alerts in Manila, particularly in Espana and Taft avenues.

Weather bureau PAGASA said in its thunderstorm advisory issued at 3:35 p.m., a thunderstorm is affecting a large part of Metro Manila and and Cavite province.

These areas include Mandaluyong City, Makati City, Paranaque City, Las Pinas City, Muntinlupa, Quezon City, Pasay City, Manila City and the Camanava area; Dasmarinas in Cavite province. Nation ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

The weather bureau said heavy rains will continue to hit these areas within two hours or until after 5 p.m.

Regional Selection Committee gets ready to evaluate GK nominees

(RJB/MAPA/PIA-NCR)

QUEZON CITY, June 11 (PIA) -- The Gawad Kalasag Regional Selection Committee of the National Capital Region (RSC-NCR) is now evaluating nominees for the 2013 Regional Gawad Kalasag.

The award is given to Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Councils (LDRRMC) and Civil Society Organizations (CSO) who excelled on disaster risk reduction and management and humanitarian assistance during calamities.

DILG-NCR Director Renato Brion said the final checklist and assessment tool coming from the national level committee were distributed to the members to evaluate the nominees through point system and member agencies of the RSC were divided to evaluate each category.

"There will be a corresponding checklist for each category namely provincial, city, municipal, and barangay Disaster Risk Reduction and Management, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), volunteer organizations, Government Emergency Response Management (GEMs), hospital, Gawad Kalasag for Heroic Act Category, and Special Recognition Award," Brion said.

"TheRSC also looks forward in sending an entry for the first time in School category," Brion added.

“The top 3 regional nominees that will garner a high score will advance to the national level,” Brion said.

Brion said that the RSC is doing its best to complete the entries from the NCR to submit them in time for the Gawad Kalasag national level.

The official members of the evaluation committee are the regional offices of the Department of Interior and Local Government – NCR (DILG) as the Chairperson of the committee, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) as the Co-Chair, Office of Civil Defense (OCD) as the Vice-Chair, Department of Health Centers for Health Development (DOH), Department of Education (DepEd), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Science and Technology (DOST-), Philippine Information Agency – (PIA), Philippine Red Cross (PRC), PRC National Headquarters (PRC-NHQ), and Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP).

Gawad Kalasag (KAlamidad at Sakuna LAbanan SAriling Galing ang Kaligtasan) award was initiated in 1998, was given annualy for outstanding contribution in the fields of disaster risk reduction and management and humanitarian action.

It is the principal mechanism by which the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council advances awareness of the best practices on disaster risk reduction and management and also humanitarian response and assistance.

DENR to destroy P420-M worth of seized elephant tusks

(PNA), PDS/DENR-PR/PJN

QUEZON CITY, June 9 (PNA) -- The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is set to destroy about five tons of confiscated elephant tusks estimated to worth US$ 10 million or roughly P420 million in support of global effort to end the illegal trade of wildlife species.

DENR Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje said the seized ivory tusks will be crushed by a road roller and burned in the presence of foreign experts and anti-ivory trade advocates on June 21 at the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center in Quezon City.

“Our decision to destroy these ivory tusks that entered the country illegally is to show to the whole world that the Philippines will not tolerate illegal wildlife trade,” Paje said.

The destruction of the ivory tusks is one of the highlights of the national celebration of June as Environment Month.

In 1989, the Geneva-based Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES), to which the Philippines is a signatory, banned the buying and selling of ivory to combat a massive illegal trade that caused dramatic declines in elephant populations throughout most of Africa in the 1970s and 1980s.

Elephants are listed in Appendix 1 of CITES, which means they are highly endangered, and are banned from international trade. CITES said the high demand for ivory found in elephant tusks drives the killing of the animal, especially in Africa.

CITES is an international agreement adopted in March 1973 to regulate worldwide commercial trade in wild animal and plant species. It earlier reported that the current black market price for ivory is US$ 2,000 per kilogram.

In 1997, the Conference of Parties of CITES has included the Philippines as one of nine countries of priority of concerns as regard to illegal ivory trade, particularly its role as a trade route and transit country for elephant tusks.

The other eight are Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa, which are considered as major sources of ivory in illicit trade; China and Thailand as destinations of illegal ivory; and Hong Kong, Malaysia and Vietnam as trade routes and transit countries.

The DENR’s Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) has been designated as the country’s CITES Management Authority pursuant to Republic Act No. 9247, or the Wildlife Resource Conservation and Protection Act.

Those who are expected to witness the destruction of confiscated elephant tusks are representatives from the CITES Secretariat, the Nairobi-based Lusaka Agreement Task Force led by its chairman Bonaventure Ebayi, the National Geographic Africa, and member-countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Top executives from the Department of Justice and law enforcement agencies such as the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Bureau of Customs (BOC), National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA), and the Philippine National Police (PNP) were also invited to attend the event.

Secretary Paje will keynote the event, with messages from the representatives of the Lusaka Agreement Task Force and CITES Secretariat. Lawyer Bryan Christy, an investigative journalist of National Geographic, on the hand, will give a presentation titled, “Battle for Elephant: the Global Ivory Trade.”

Filipino inventors showcase products in Quezon City shop

(MST Business)

Filipino inventors have formed a cooperative and set up a showroom in Quezon City to put on display their best inventions and introduce them in the market.

Francisco Pagayon, president of the Filipino Inventors’ Society, says the group established the Filipino Inventors’ Society Producer Cooperative to serve as the business arm of the organization.

FISPC then set up a showroom at the ground floor of Delta Building at the corner of West Avenue and Quezon Avenue to put on public display many useful local inventions in a show of Filipino ingenuity and entrepreneurship.

The showroom houses various innovative products that are designed for fuel and energy conservation, environmental protection, water purification, alternative medicine, personal care and recreation.

It showcases the Filipino genius as it contains inventions on police patrol weaponry, car care, home protection, agriculture, food and health supplement, and many others that could not be found elsewhere, says Pagayon.

Among these inventions are solar-powered postharvest facilities and converters, anti-car napping computerized security system, Anos firetrucks for narrow streets in major cities, fire blanket, water-fueled flashlights, green engine oil products, anti-fungal soap, organic medicine and other organic products.

Pagayon says the showroom is in response to the lack of government support and official indifference to the plight of many inventors, who have been frustrated by their inability to find a niche in the local market and obtain commercial success for their inventions.

An inventor himself, Pagayon has mass produced the multipurpose Probaton truncheon for Filipino police personnel and village watchmen.

He says the inventors grouped themselves together amid the lack of state support and indifference to Filipino inventors.

“While inventors in other countries are held in awe and respect by their governments to obtain state support and patronage, Filipino inventors have to live with the frustration for the lack of support,” Pagayon says.

“They hardly enjoy state subsidy, tax or credit incentives, and patronage for their invention products,” he says.

Pagayon and other inventors then opted to find ways to alleviate the plight of many inventors. His answer: entrepreneurship.

FIS, established on Oct. 14, 1943, is the oldest non-government group of Filipino inventors, researchers, technologists, scientists, industrial designers and engineers.

The group aims to generate, produce and market indigenous inventions and technologies to help attain economic progress and industrial prosperity for the country.

QC prohibits discrimination against HIV-infected workers

(PNA), HBC/QC-PAISO-PR/LSJ

MANILA, June 8 (PNA) -- Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista has signed an ordinance that prohibits all forms of discrimination against persons suspected of having, or found positively infected with, HIV in workplaces.

Under the newly-approved measure, the city government may revoke the business permit and license that it has issued to an employer or business entity found guilty of committing discriminatory acts or policies against these persons.

Discrimination refers to any act that may degrade human dignity. It also refers to unequal treatment given, whether in the form of policy, decision, action or sanction, to an employee or applicant perceived or confirmed to be infected with HIV.

The ordinance, principally authored by Councilor Ivy Lim-Lagman, also prohibits employers from requiring compulsory HIV testing of job applicants or its current employees who are suspected of having HIV infection.

It also stated the city’s public employment service office and the QC tripartite peace council shall provide the necessary assistance to any individual who experienced discrimination in QC-based workplaces.

All QC-based government and private offices are required to integrate HIV/AIDS education in all human development programs designed for employees and employers.

QC joins nation in commemorating independence day

(PNA), DSP/LSJ

MANILA, June 7 (PNA) -- The Quezon City government will join the entire nation in simultaneous celebration of the National Independence Day on Wednesday June 12, 2013 through a flag raising ceremony at 7:30 in the morning at QC Hall Plaza.

The flag raising is a yearly festivities being observed in the city with great delight and will be led by QC mayor Herbert M. Bautista, QC vice mayor Joy Belmonte and city councilors and other city officials.

For this year commemoration, the city adapts also the theme: “Kalayaan 2013: Ambagan Tungo sa Malawakang Kaunlaran” (Independence Day 2013: Pitching in Towards Inclusive Growth).

Balintawak ang Pugad Lawin, both parts of QC, are hallowed grounds of the 1896 revolution which only signifies that it is a home of courageous freedom fighters ready to offer their lives to the motherland.

It is also a mute witness in the struggle for freedom in the 1896 revolution participated in by Melchora Aquino, popularly known as “Tandang Sora” and Andres Bonifacio, father and founder of Katipunan.

It is also in QC where the historical and hundred years old Duhat tree or ‘Katipunan Tree’ is located which historical records revealed to be the place where ‘Tandang Sora’ nurse the wounded revolutionary members of Katipunan.

The said Duhat tree is named as “Katipunan Tree” by the National Historical Institute. It can be found inside the school of Metro Manila College (MMC) in Barangay Kaligayahan, Novaliches, QC.

Many establishments like SM malls situated in QC display Philippine flags in their outlets as a way of expressing patriotism and salute to the independence day of the Philippine republic.

Manila Water completes P44M rehabilitation of water and sewer lines in Quezon City

(PNA), DSP/JS/PR/UTB

MANILA, June 6 (PNA) -- Ayala-led Manila Water has completed the rehabilitation of its sewer and water lines along P. Tuazon Blvd., Quezon City.

The roadwork was done in cooperation with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) under the Joint Road Rehabilitation Project undertaken by both agencies. The DPWH rehabilitated the drainage network in the same area.

The first portion of the 44-million-peso project was the rehabilitation of a kilometre-long sewer line from Kalantiaw to P. Burgos streets in Project 4, Quezon City. The rehabilitation is set to improve sewerage services to 159 customers.

The other part of the project was the water line rehabilitation from 15th to 20th Avenues, still along P. Tuazon Blvd.

The rehabilitation entailed the replacement of the old 400mm ductile iron pipes with bigger-capacity 500mm steel pipes spanning a total of 375 meters in length to improve the delivery of water services to around 850 households in the area.

“We at Manila Water have decided to fast-track these projects to work hand-in-hand with the DPWH to avoid extending the inconvenience the roadwork will bring to the residents in the area as well as to the motorists and public utility vehicles regularly plying the route,” shared Manila Water’s OIC Group Director for Project Delivery Estelita Orodio.

In its effort to foster cooperation with major government agencies involved, Manila Water likewise invited officers of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and DPWH to visit the work site while the rehabilitation was underway.

MMDA’s Traffic Engineering Chief Noemi Recio together with DPWH Quezon City 2nd District Engineer Ramon Devanadera and other DPWH officials witnessed how Manila Water managed the traffic situation while road works were ongoing.

“We ensured that all road works along P. Tuazon, which is the major route for schools in the area, were finished before school reopens this year. We wanted to help bring not just the best water and waste water services to our customers but also convenience while on the road after or even while Manila Water does rehabilitation and expansion projects along the cities’ thoroughfares,” added Orodio.

MetroPac seals purchase of QC hospital

By Jenniffer B. Austria

Metro Pacific Investments Corp. said Tuesday it completed a 51-percent acquisition of De Los Santos Medical Center Inc., a tertiary school and hospital in Quezon City.

Metro Pacific said in a disclosure to the stock exchange the investment would pave the way for the hospital’s P250-million redevelopment plan.

The acquisition, the seventh in Metro Pacific’s growing portfolio, would raise the group’s capacity to 1,944 beds, making it the largest in the Philippines.

Founded in 1973 by the late Dr. Jose De Los Santos Sr., considered the father of Philippine orthopedics, the hospital is a level 3 teaching and training institution along E. Rodriguez Sr. Blvd. in Quezon City, with capacity of 150 beds.

Megaclinic, a 2,000-square-meter ambulatory and diagnostic center in SM Megamall, is one of its affiliates.

Among the projects to be implemented in the hospital are the renovation of the 39-year-old main building that will increase and improve patients’ rooms, upgrading of operating rooms and diagnostic centers and the acquisition of new medical equipment.

The expansion plan also includes the provision of a medical arts building to house the increasing number of accredited doctors.

STI Education System Holdings Inc., which beneficially owns a 20-percent stake in the hospital, would be diluted to 5 percent following the completion of the deal.

Metro Pacific earlier said it planned to acquire two hospitals this year. It is interested in purchasing the 200-bed Central Luzon Doctors Hospital in Tarlac City.

The hospital group earlier allotted P3.5 billion in capital expenditures this year, primarily to finance new acquisitions and an increase in stakes in existing hospitals under its network.

Improvised rain water filtration in an elementary school in QC, inspiring young students

(PNA), DSP/LSJ

MANILA, June 4 (PNA) -- As the 9,300 elementary students of Commonwealth Elementary School in District II Quezon City troops the school on its opening day on Monday, love of nature, recycling and improvised water filtration of rainwater were being instilled in their young minds too.

This was pointed out by Rodolfo B. Modelo, Principal IV of the Commonwealth Elementary School.

“Aside from encouraging the young pupils in realizing the importance of planting vegetables and medicinal plants, we also make use of our improvised water filtration system of rainwater in watering them (plants),” said Modelo.

He added that instead of using Maynilad water in cleaning comfort room, cleaning windows, doors and others, they are utilizing the rainwater filtered by the improvised water filtration system.

“The filtration system was developed by the Edukasyong Pangkabuhayan at Pangkaunlaran (EPP) group of teachers a few years back as a model to the student on how to conserve natural resources and convert them to other useful ways instead of wasting them,” Modelo explained.

The filtration system was made-up of recycled plastic bottles, charcoal with pebbles and stones. The charcoal is use to filter the bad odor, the pebbles and stones filter the dirt and other substances to purify the water that were being put then into big containers or drums which are then being use in the water consumption for watering the plants and cleaning purposes.

“We believe that as the young students see the efforts in converting the reusable resources available in the environment, we are planting in them the love of nature and the value of innovation and creativity that can be a great help for them in becoming future great contributors of our country in the economic development,” said Modelo.

He added that in his observation, the discipline, that the school is implementing on waste segregation are being easily followed as the young students are realizing the value of conserving the natural environment and its gifts to mankind while studying.

Enrico, a grade three student said that he is planning to duplicate the water filtration in their home too once he grew up so that he can help his parents in watering some of their plants without using Maynilad water.

“It had opened-up my mind that there are many ways in wisely utilizing the natural available resources around us into beneficial uses,” Enrico said.

Students flock to MLQES

By Joann Santiago [(PNA), FPV/JS]

MANILA, June 3 (PNA) – - About 6,550 students are expected to attend the school year 2013-14 at the Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School in District 2, Quezon City.

MLQES Principal Marivic D. Panganiban said the current number of enrolled students are more than the 5,900 students who were listed during the early enrolment required by the Department of Education (DepEd) last March.

“We expect about 300 transferees from private schools and the provinces this year,” she told PNA in an interview.

Asked if the about 300 transferees are the normal volume annually, Panganiban said no but said that she expects this number this year given the annual influx of students from the private schools, in particular.

The students who were able to attend the morning flag ceremony is more than half the expected students in the morning session, or the classes that start from 6 am and ends by 12 noon.

Panganiban said they require students to be in school by 5:45 am in time for the flag ceremony.

“We always start the flag ceremony in time,” she said.

Relatively, two policemen are currently stationed in the school premises in line with the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) program to increase visibility and ensure safety of the students.

DepEd expects about 20.8 million public school students for this school year.

QC conducts riverways clean-up operations

(PNA), PDS/QC-PR/LSJ

MANILA, June 2 (PNA) -- The Quezon City (QC) government has ordered a massive clean-up operations along its major water channels in time for the opening of classes and to prepare for the rainy season.

The clean-up drive was initially launched at Kalamiong creek, a major water tributary that traverses barangays Commonwealth, Payatas and Bagong Silangan going to San Mateo/Marikina River.

It also involves removal of garbage as well as growing water plants and bushes on the creeks.

A six foot-high retaining wall and grouted riprap along Kalamiong creek to protect low-lying communities in the area from flooding when it swells or overflows was constructed through the funds and resources of the local government.

The construction of the said retaining wall is expected to finished within the month of June by the QC Task Force on waterways.

Aside from Kalamiong creek, there is also an ongoing construction of retaining walls along the stretch of the Tullahan River, which runs through Fairview, Sauyo, Sta. Monica, Sta. Lucia, San Bartolome and Nagkaisang Nayon.

Other waterways covered by the city's flood control program are the Pasong Tamo creek, Culiat creek, San Francisco river, San Juan river and Marikina river.

Meanwhile, QC mayor Herbert M. Bautista has ordered the city's Task Force on Waterways to revisit the infrastructure contracts of those ripraps and retaining walls constructed in the city, especially those that have collapsed or crumbled, to ensure that the performance bond/retention fee (warranty) covers the repair of the same.

Mayor Bautista also gave instructions to contractors to use debris from demolition jobs to stuff ripraps/retaining walls to prevent water from seeping in and ensure the sturdiness of the structure.

"Instead of dumping these debris, we can still put these unwanted construction materials into good use," the Bautista said.

Aside from the non-structural flood-mitigating efforts and engineering interventions, the Quezon City government is closely coordinating with other government agencies for the relocation of informal settler families residing along or on top of the easement of QC waterways, in compliance with the Supreme Court mandamus to clear all waterways.

QC's riverways and special cleaning operations have been recognized by the National Research Institute for Earth Sciences and Disaster Prevention of Kobe, Japan for the comprehensive practices for megacities.

Fire authorities check Quezon City schools before classes begin

(VVP, GMA News)

On the last weekday before the start of the school year, the Bureau of Fire Protection inspected schools in Quezon City to check their preparedness to deal with fires.

The BFP checked facilities in the schools such as fire extinguishers, fire exits and contingency plans, radio dzBB's Allan Gatus reported.

Among the schools inspected as of Friday morning were the Ramon Magsaysay High School, Claret School, and P. Burgos Elementary School.

So far, the BFP indicated it was satisfied with the schools it had inspected.

The BFP also plans to check the facilities and plans in dormitories.

On Monday, students in the elementary and high school levels are expected to troop to schools to start School Year 2013-2014.