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Quezon City News June 2018

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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?


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

PAGASA launches new website

By Susan G. De Leon (PIA-NCR)

QUEZON CITY – The country’s weather agency, Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), launched its new website on June 11, 2018 at the Sequoia Hotel in Quezon City.

PAGASA Administrator, Dr. Vicente Malano, said the new website, www.bagong.pagasa.dost.gov.ph, not only features weather forecast of the day but also for the next five days. Another feature predicts the number of structures or houses that an approaching tropical cyclone might hit. It also provides information as to the volume of rain a particular area might have and which areas are flood-prone.

Aside from these features, the new website also provides climate forecast for farmers which serves as a guide to the ideal cropping season, and for farmers to know when it is safe to sail for fish.

It will also provide impact-based forecasting and warnings that can estimate the number of houses to be affected, number of people to be affected by incoming Tropical Cyclones by using data from the Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards program.

Also included are contour maps that visualizes various near-real time weather information on weather parameters generated from Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) located across the country.

“To view the hazard maps, check the PAGASA website and at the lower right corner, click “Hazard Maps” and choose the hazard you want to check,” Malano explained.

“The site will redirect you to another website. From there, you will be able to see the hazard maps in your area which are also available for viewing in NOAH’s website,” Malano said.

DAR builds houses for farmer-beneficiaries


QUEZON CITY -- The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) is spearheading the construction of affordable housing for agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) under the government’s Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).

DAR Secretary John Castriciones said the farmers and farmworkers housing program of the agency shall be part of President Rodrigo Duterte’s order for a “rebirth” of land reform in the country, as he directed the DAR to launch what he described as a second phase of the program.

Castriciones said that under the second phase of agrarian reform, the ARBs housing program shall be one of the major programmes that would greatly improve the living condition of farmer-beneficiaries in the country.

“Most of our farmers and farm-workers are poor and does not own the house they live in. And even if they own it, most of their houses are dilapidated and needs repair. Why? Because the farmers would rather use their money for farming and family expenses than use it for house repairs,” said Castriciones.

“The ARBs housing program is our comprehensive solution to achieve inclusive growth by uplifting the quality of lives of CARP beneficiaries and their families through this housing project and though livelihood and educational support that we will provide,” Castriciones said.

“As the DAR celebrates CARP’s 30 year-implementation, the ARBs housing program shall serve as the new face of DAR. This program will pursue financial and ecological needs of ARBs, affordable and decent housing and convergence of support from various government agencies,” added Castriciones.

Convergence of support

Undersecretary for Support Services Emily Padilla said the ARBs housing program will be a product compilation of existing programs and projects of relevant government and private sector agencies.

She said the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council’s (HUDCC) Balay Filipino Program along with other key shelter agencies namely: the National Housing Authority (NHA), Pag-IBIG Fund, Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB), Social Housing Finance Corp. (SHFC), Home Guarantee Corp. (HGC) and the National Home Mortgage Finance Corp. (NHMFC) will be the key component for the ARBs housing program of DAR.

“These key shelter agencies will extend their respective programs, activities, and expertise in assisting and tapping subdivision developers in the housing industry to join the DAR’s ARBs housing program. They will also help us in providing guidelines for the farmers’ housing programs such as administration of the farmers’ housing fund and accreditation of housing developers,” said Padilla.

Farmers’ housing plans

According to Padilla, the program will be implemented in two schemes namely, on-site and off-site housing.

Padilla said the on-site housing scheme will cover home improvements of existing houses of ARBs, construction or purchase of a new house for ARBs, and refinancing of an existing housing loan secured by the ARB.

“The farmers’ housing loans will be secured by emancipation patent, certificate of land ownership award (CLOA) and other titles issued to them. Housing loans for house construction or improvement in lands covered by CLOA will be treated as additional loans by Land Bank and other lending institutions,” Padila said.

The off-site housing scheme covers subdivision projects located in the capital or in major urban centers of the province. “Such projects may be chosen by farmers to provide housing for their families, children or relatives so they can be near to schools, medical facilities and market centers for their agri-products,” Padilla explained.

She added that subdivision plans and designs will be in such a way that production facilities such as rice and sugar mills, dryers and warehouses are integrated with places designated for open space such as basketball courts and multi-purpose centers.

Affordable and decent housing

“The housing units are the duplex type with two bedrooms each, covering 37 square meters. Model houses with different designs to choose from will soon be available for farmers to visit in Nueva Vizcaya State University compound and another in San Leonardo Municipal Hall compound in Nueva Ecija,” Padilla said.

“The model houses in Nueva Vizcaya and Nueva Ecija will be on temporary display and will be visited and viewed by ARBs. We want them to see the different designs so they can choose which house design would best suit their family,” said Padilla.

Padilla added that several model houses will also be erected in provinces in Visayas and Mindanao.

She said that the housing development will be supplied by subdivision developers and housing contractors.

“The provision of housing is demand-driven and payment will be based on the farmers’ capacity to pay. The maximum term of housing loan will be at 30 years and amortization payment scheme will be based on cropping/harvest schedule of farmers,” Padila further explained.

Padilla said the model house in the DAR compound will be turned into a showroom where ARB products will be on display.

Quezon City to buy land for houses of informal settlers

By Rio N. Araja

To sustain the Quezon City government’s socialized housing program, the 37-member council has given Mayor Herbert Bautista the green light to acquire 5,245-square meter parcels of private land to house informal settlers.

The council, led by Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte, passed Ordinance No. 2694 to acquire through a negotiated sale of expropriation the parcels of private property in Barangay Bagbag, which are now being occupied by many informal settler families.

“Barangay Bagbag has so many informal settler families that must be provided with a decent and affordable dwelling. Hence, the acquisition of the subject lots for housing projects will be very beneficial to them,” Belmonte said.

Once taken over by the city government, the lots shall be converted by the city’s task force on socialized housing and development of blighted areas to an in-city socialized housing site.

Based on the latest estimate of the city government, there are about 190,000 informal setter families or 950,000 individuals.

Meanwhile, Quezon City is ready for the National Simultaneous Earthquake Drill at 2 pm on Thursday, June 21.

For this drill, the Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office is set to perform rescue drills and evacuation exercises at Child’s World School in Sta. Mesa Heights, Barangay Sto. Domingo.

A special education school for children with special needs was chosen as part of this quarter’s drill by the QCDRRMO to showcase the agency’s programs for inclusivity in disaster preparedness.

The drill aims to test the efficiency and usefulness of the preparedness, response and recovery plans, systems and policies developed in the city’s respective localities.

All the city’s 142 barangays were also given capabilities and training on Urban Search and Rescue and Basic Life Support to immediately respond to the emergency needs of residents. City government employees are expected to participate in the drill at the Quezon City Hall.

Quezon City was named Gawad Kalasag Hall of Famer after winning the Regional Gawad Kalasag Awards three years in a row.

QC passes ordinance offering free clinical laboratory services to poor residents

By Chito Chavez

To erase the stigma of being left out, the Quezon City Council has passed an ordinance that offers free clinical laboratory services to the city’s poor residents.

Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte said Ordinance SP-2686, S-2018 or the “Quezon City Clinical Laboratory Ordinance” is the city government’s response to the lack of access of poor residents to free and quality health services.

“Clinical laboratory services in private clinics and hospitals are usually expensive. So we thought of putting up our own laboratories in our public health centers for our indigents,” Belmonte said.

Belmonte cited that laboratory tests such as urinalysis, hematology and Complete Blood Count (CBC) are important in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease.

She added that job applicants are also required to take such medical tests at their own expense as part of their preemployment medical examination.

The city-operated clinical laboratory services, Belmonte said, “will contribute to maximizing interventions to improve the health and quality of life” of every city resident.

Authored by councilors Julienne Alyson Rae Medalla (5th district) and Diorella Maria Sotto (6th District), Ordinance SP-2686, S-2018 authorizes the city government to appropriate funds for the establishment of clinical laboratories in all community health centers in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Department of Health (DOH) and other national agencies.

The clinical laboratories shall provide the following services: hematology such as CBC, Platelet Count and Hemoglobin. Clinical Microscopy such as urinalysis and fecalysis; Serology and Immunohematology that includes RPR, HbsAg, and HIV test, Clinical Chemistry such as Blood Uric Acid, BUN, and Creatinine and Electrolyte Tests like Chloride, Potassium, Sodium, and Calcium.

Under the Quezon City Health Department (QCHD), each barangay laboratory shall be managed and supervised by a chief medical technologist while technical operations will be overseen by a clinical pathologist.

The laboratory services will be provided for free to city-sponsored indigent residents as certified by the Social Services and Development Department (SSWD) and also to elected barangay officials and workers, Day Care Center teachers, and community health workers.

All teaching and non-teaching personnel of the Department of Education-Schools Division Office Quezon City are also exempted from paying the service fees, according to the ordinance.

On the other hand, a 30 percent discount on laboratory package services will be granted to registered senior citizens, solo parents, and persons with disabilities (PWDs) and 20 percent to permanent City Hall employees and their dependents.

QC okays free anti-pneumonia shots for senior citizens


QUEZON CITY, June 18 -- The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) is celebrating the 30th year of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program’s (CARP) implementation with various activities from June 18-29 at the DAR compound.

CARP is a government initiative that aims to grant landless farmers and farm workers ownership of agricultural lands. It is provided under the law signed by former President Corazon Aquino on June 10, 1988.

With the theme “CARP@30: DARe2 Change,” the DAR will highlight the three decades of land reform implementation as it moves forward to its second phase focusing on distributing idle government lands with intensive programs on providing support services to farmer-beneficiaries.

DAR Secretary John Castriciones said the marching orders of President Rodrigo Duterte is for the government to pursue an “aggressive” land reform program that will help alleviate the life of poor Filipino farmers.

“For the second phase of the agrarian reform program, we are eyeing to cover mainly reservations and lands occupied by state universities and colleges that have been left idle,” Castriciones said.

Castriciones said the celebration of CARP in the DAR central office is simultaneous with DAR regional offices nationwide.

Anniversary activities

To kick-off the 30th CARP anniversary on June 18, the DAR will hold a photo exhibit at the DAR lobby. It will feature a photo narration of the milestones of CARP for 30 years.

The ARBs housing program will be launched on the same day in front of the model house located within the DAR compound. The ARB housing program is one of the major programs of the second phase of agrarian reform implementation under President Rodrigo Duterte. This will be led by Secretary John Castriciones and his distinguished guests.

A mass distribution of land titles to farmer-beneficiaries in Iloilo on June 20 will be led by President Duterte together with DAR Secretary John Castriciones and Governor Arthur Defensor.

A trade fair entitled “Harvesting the Best of 30 Years” will be held on the grounds of DAR on June 18-22. The trade fair will showcase agri-products of agrarian-beneficiaries such as fresh and processed products, processed poultry and meat products, food ingredients and additives, furniture and handicrafts, natural and organic products and a lot more.

Other highlights of the celebration include a short video showing three decades of CARP implementation (June 18), a cultural night where employees and guests indulge in games and talent competitions (June 25-29), and Gawad Parangal (June 28), an afternoon of honouring outstanding employees, farmers and cooperatives that have made achievements and inspired others and the community to do more.

QC cops get new patrol cars, Galils from city gov’t

By JODEE A. AGONCILLO (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

The Quezon City government has donated 25 brand-new patrol cars and 100 Galil rifles assault to the Quezon City Police District in a boost to the local peace and order campaign.

Mayor Herbert Bautista on Thursday formally turned over vehicles cars and firearms to Philippine National Director General Oscar Albayalde and QCPD director Chief Supt. Joselito Esquivel at the district headquarters in Camp Karingal.

Bautista called on the PNP chief to continue instilling discipline among the ranks. In response, Albayalde said the occasion should serve as a reminder for all PNP personnel to perform their duty with integrity and respect.

“I expect all of you to further intensify your anticrime strategies. We will not stop until our fellow countrymen feel safe and secure in roaming the streets of the Metro. Thus, I urge you to give your best shot in performing our sworn mandate,” Albayalde told QCPD members.

In May, the city government also beefed up QCPD’s logistics with a donation of 1,250 Taurus Cal. 40 Model PT840 semiautomatic pistols and three Montero sport utility vehicles.

In 2017, City Hall also gave 50 Toyota Vios units and 150 Yamaha motorcycles to the local police.

DSWD launches payout of UCT grant to social pension beneficiaries


QUEZON CITY -- Some 733 beneficiaries of the Social Pension Program for Indigent Senior Citizens (SPISC) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in the City of San Fernando, Pampanga will receive today their Unconditional Cash Transfer (UCT) grant for the year amounting to P2,400.

This was announced by DSWD Acting Secretary Virginia Orogo as the Department launches today the pilot payout of the UCT grant to its SPISC beneficiaries.

“For our pilot payout activity, we will be providing the UCT grant of our Social Pension beneficiaries in San Fernando City. In Region III, a total of 95,304 SPISC beneficiaries will be receiving their UCT subsidy in the coming weeks,” Sec. Orogo said.

According to the welfare chief, DSWD Field Offices in other regions are already preparing the payroll documents for the provision of the subsidy to social pension beneficiaries in their respective regions.

“The payout activity in the regions will be scheduled as soon as we finish the payroll generation of our beneficiaries and after the Land Bank of the Philippines approves our payroll submissions,” Sec. Orogo added.

Overall, some 3 million seniors are expected to receive their UCT grants.

UCT is the tax subsidy provided for under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law to help the poor cushion the adverse economic impact of the law for three years, starting 2018. For this year, beneficiaries will receive P200 per month or P2,400 for one year. In 2019 and 2020, the subsidy will increase to P300 or P3,600 a year.

Aside from the 3 million social pensioners, UCT beneficiaries also include the 4.4 million household-beneficiaries of the DSWD’s Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) and the 2.6 million poor households listed under the DSWD National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction or Listahanan.

SPISC is the government’s assistance for poor seniors in the amount of P500 per month to help augment their daily subsistence, including their medical needs. Beneficiaries include indigent seniors who are frail, sickly or with a disability; with no regular income or support from family and relatives; and without pension from private or government institutions.

The Department has earlier started providing the UCT grant to its 4Ps beneficiaries. As of June 14, a total of 4,164,036 Pantawid beneficiary accounts have been uploaded with their UCT grants.

“We are currently validating the 2.7 million poor households from the Listahanan database to get the 2.6 million target beneficiaries for UCT. As of June 12, a total of 2,564,561 households or 93.5 percent of the total have been validated, while 2,466,777 million or 89 percent have been encoded,” Sec. Orogo explained.

“We are targeting to finish the registration by July and to conduct the UCT payout for the Listahanan households in August and September,” she ended.

CSC releases school assignments for FOE, POE, and BCLTE on June 24


QUEZON CITY -- The Civil Service Commission (CSC) is all set to simultaneously conduct this year’s Fire Office Examination (FOE), Penology Officer Examination (POE), and Basic Competency on Local Treasury Examination (BCLTE) on June 24, 2018.

School assignments for FOE in Luzon are La Union National High School (San Fernando City, La Union); Cagayan National High School (Tuguegarao City); Pampanga High School (San Fernando, Pampanga); Batangas National High School (Batangas City); Bicol University-CIT, Bicol University-CSSP, Divine Word College, and Divine Word College-HS/GS (Legazpi City), Ramon Magsaysay High School (Cubao) and Don Alejandro Roces S&T High School (Quezon City); and Baguio City National High School (Baguio City).

For Visayas—Iloilo National High School (Iloilo City); University of Cebu-Main Campus (Cebu City); and Leyte Normal University, Eastern Visayas State University, Leyte National High School, Sagkahan National High School (Tacloban City);

For Mindanao—Zamboanga National High School (West) and Don Pablo Lorenzo Memorial High School (Zamboanga City); Capitol University and Misamis Oriental General Comprehensive High School (Cagayan de Oro City); Davao City Special School and Mabini Central Elementary School (Davao City); Cotabato City National High School-Main, Notre Dame Village National High School, Cotabato City Central Pilot School (Cotabato City); and Agusan National High School, Butuan City School of Arts and Trade, Libertad National High School (Butuan City). For locations with multiple school assignments, please contact the respective CSC regional office.

School assignments for POE in Luzon and Visayas are La Union National High School (San Fernando City, La Union); Cagayan State University (Tuguegarao City); Pampanga High School (San Fernando, Pampanga); Batangas National High School (Batangas City); Saint Agnes Academy (Legazpi City); Iloilo National High School (Iloilo City); Cebu Normal University (Cebu City); and Leyte National High School (Tacloban City);

For Mindanao—Zamboanga City High School-main (Zamboanga City); Southern Philippines College (Cagayan de Oro City); Mabini National High School (Davao City); Cotabato City National High School-Rojas (Cotabato City); San Francisco High School (Quezon City); Baguio City National High School (Baguio City); and Libertad National High School (Butuan City).

School assignments for BCLTE are the same with that of POE except for these locations—Bicol University-College of Education (Legazpi City); Liceo de Cagayan University-College (Cagayan de Oro City); Davao City Special National High School (Davao City); Ramon Magsaysay High School (Cubao, Quezon City); and Agusan National High School (Butuan City).

The CSC reminds examinees to bring a valid I.D. (preferably same I.D. card presented during filing of application) and black ball pen/s, arrive before 7:30 a.m., and wear proper attire (no sleeveless shirt, shorts, and slippers), on the day of examination.

For other reminders, please read Examination Advisory No. 13, s. 2018 for FOE, Examination Advisory No. 13, s. 2018 for POE, and Examination Advisory No. 15, s. 2018 for BCLTE, which are posted in the CSC's Facebook Page.

QC mulls to establish 24/7 suicide prevention hotline


MANILA -- Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte is mulling over the establishment of a “24/7 suicide prevention hotline” in the city in the aftermath of the growing number of Filipinos committing suicide, especially youngsters.

Belmonte noted that the suicides of celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and fashion designer Kate Spade in the United States, as well as the many suicide cases in the Philippines, should serve as a reminder to the government to address the sensitive issue of mental health, particularly depression that often leads to suicide.

“We in the Philippines are not spared from this increasing global trend. Perhaps our city can establish a helpline similar to the ones in the US and other countries with growing suicide rates,” she said in a statement Monday.

The city official also expressed her grief over the deaths of Bourdain and Spade.

“Now, I’m sure everyone is convinced depression when unheeded can lead to suicide. It is a public health issue and government needs to step up its efforts,” Belmonte said.

Back in graduate school, Belmonte said that she witnessed the suicide of a fellow student.

“A student jumped from our school building and struck the ground just a few meters from where I was standing. The memory is still very vivid in my mind,” she added.

In 2011, Belmonte linked up with Natasha Goulbourn Foundation (NGF), various government agencies, universities and non-government organizations (NGOs) in marking the World Suicide Prevention Day through various activities in Quezon City.

“At that time Jeannie Goulbourn told us, we were perhaps the only city government that took her advocacy seriously,” Belmonte said.

She was referring to the founder of NGF, an NGO which is dedicated to bringing depression to light through the use of educational lectures, confidential crisis lines and referrals to partner psychologists.

Goulbourn established the NGF in 2007 in memory of her daughter Natasha, who died in Hong Kong on May 25, 2002 from overmedication after a bout of depression.

Citing government data, Belmonte said that at least six individuals commit suicide every day in the country such that in 2016 alone, 2,413 suicide cases were recorded and from 2012 to 2016, there were 237 suicide cases among children aged between 10 and 14.

In its 2017 report, the World Health Organization (WHO) said that the age-standardized suicide rate in the Philippines is 5.8 for male and 1.9 for females per 100,000 people.

According to the WHO fact sheet for 2017, suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29-year-olds, and 78 percent of global suicides occur in low and middle-income countries such as the Philippines.

In 2016, the Department of Health launched “Hopeline” to serve as the national support hotline for depression and suicide prevention nationwide.

Freedom Walk to highlight the rights of Persons with Disabilities


QUEZON CITY, June 13 -- The Alyansa ng may Kapansanang Pinoy and its partners in the disability sector celebrates the Freedom Walk to give persons with disabilities a united voice in pushing for their rights, acceptance, and inclusion in society.

The idea for the Freedom Walk was first conceptualized in early 2011, when a group of leaders in the disability sector, spearheaded by the Alyansa ng may Kapansanang Pinoy (AKAP-Pinoy), met and planned for an Independence Day celebration, to be held in the month of June. The event is dubbed the ‘Freedom Walk’ as a way for the Persons with Disability (PWD) sector to celebrate Philippine Independence Day to showcase its patriotism. “This is also an expression of their desire to be free from shackles of discrimination, inequalities and poverty,” explains Capt. Oscar Taleon, president of AKAP-Pinoy.

The Freedom Walk embraces the theme “Every Rightful Step, All Barriers We Break,” focuses on the progressive realization of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN-CRPD), as well as the adoption of the Incheon Framework to “make the right real” for persons with disabilities.

The 8th year now since it first began, the Freedom Walk has only grown bigger and bigger. AKAP-Pinoy’s record shows there are no less than 1,500 participants joined every year’s Freedom Walk event. It has also given the persons with disabilities a united voice to ask for change from the government and to include more programs for the sector. The Freedom Walk 2018 event will be held on June 16, 2018 in Pasig City.

This event has encouraged the persons with disabilities to be united in advocating for the realization of their rights and the obligation of the government to enable PWDs to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life. We want the government to take measures to ensure PWDs access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications including information and communications technologies and systems.


Aside from a chance to voice their concerns, the Freedom Walk also doubles as a social event for PWDs where they can showcase their talents as well as mingle with each other.

“This event is also a showcase of unity of PWDs with the public and community and aims to draw others in their ‘hiding places’ to join the rest in their journey to an inclusive society,” explains Taleon. The Persons with Disabilities participants are already looking in to spread this celebration to the grassroots level, as well as institutionalizing the Freedom Walk and making it a part of the country’s yearly Independence Day celebrations.

“We want the Freedom Walk to become a ‘name’ to the PWDs, to walk to freedom from all barriers and ‘make their rights real,’” says Taleon. “We want an increased awareness on the general public to rectify their negative attitude towards persons with disabilities and be part of an inclusive society.”

Those taking part in government agencies are the National Council for Disability Affairs (NCDA), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), the Department of Transportation (DOTr)and its attached agencies, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the House of Representatives (HORep) Committee on Social Services, the Department of Health (DOH), the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) PWD Sector, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), and NCR LGUs.

For the non-government organizations, those taking part are the Alyansa ng may Kapansanang Pinoy(AKAP-Pinoy) as the lead agency, the Philippine Federation for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled (PFRD), the Philippine Academy on Rehab Medicine (PARM), the Philippine Association of Citizens with Developmental and Learning Disabilities (PACDLD), the Physicians for Peace (PFP), the Tahanang Walang Hagdanan (TWH), the WOW Leap, the New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP), Life Haven, the Philippine Blind Union (PBU), Resources for the Blind (RBI), the Philippine Federation of the Deaf (PFD), the Hard Of Hearing (HOR) Group, the Cerebral Palsied Ass’n Phils (CPAP)., Soldiers with Disabilities through KKKI & KSKPI, the Autism Society of the Philippines (ASP), the AD/HD Society Phils., and the SM Cares Program on Disability Affairs from the civic oriented group, and the CITI Bank from the business sector.

Katipunan Tree: Mute witness to history

By Severino Samonte (PNA)

MANILA -- A heritage duhat tree renamed “Katipunan Tree” 38 years ago, to perpetuate the memory of the revolutionary organization put up by Gat Andres Bonifacio in July 1892, will serve as a mute witness to the celebration of the 120th anniversary of Philippine Independence in Novaliches, Quezon City on Tuesday.

The commemorative rites will be under the joint auspices of the Knights of Columbus-St. Maximilian Ma. Kolbe Assembly ACN 2993 and Novaliches District Assembly ACN 2360 and Metro Manila College (MMC), formerly the Novaliches Academy, in Barangay Kaligayahan, Novaliches.

Mario Malacad, past grand knight of the K of C-Immaculate Conception Parish in neighboring Barangay San Agustin, Novaliches, said the celebration will include a simple civic parade and program; and floral offerings at the foot of the ancient tree situated at the compound of the MMC.

The guest speaker will be Knights of Columbus Sir Knight Marlon Manaol, according to K of C Faithful Navigator Sir Knight William James Pierce.

The theme of this year’s celebration is “Kalayaan 2018: Pagbabagong Ipinaglaban, Alay sa Masaganang Kinabukasan” (Freedom 2018: Achieving Changes for Tomorrow’s Progress).

The old duhat tree, estimated to be over 180 years old, was renamed Katipunan Tree in April 1980 by the then National Historical Institute and the Tree Preservation Foundation of the Philippines Inc. (TPFPI) in cooperation with the MMC.

Its renaming was designed to preserve the memory of the revolutionary society called KKK or “Kataas-taasang, Kagalang-galangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan” (Highest and Most Venerable Society of the Sons of the Country).

Despite its old age, the duhat tree continues to bear fruits, but these are becoming smaller every year and not as succulent or full of juice as before. Its shade and height also have been reduced as detached old branches and twigs have not been replaced.

Dr. Mamerto Miranda, founder and president of the MMC, said during the marking of the tree in 1980 that the revolutionary heroine Melchora Aquino, better known as Tandang Sora, used to treat the sick and wounded Katipuneros under the shade of the particular duhat tree during the early days of the 1896 Revolution.

Bloomberry sees banner year, to open casino in Quezon City by 2022

By James A. Loyola

Bloomberry Resorts Corporation, owner and operator of the Solaire Resort & Casino and Jeju Sun Hotel & Casino, is planning to start construction of its Quezon City integrated resort next year with the aim of opening it by 2022.

“We are also on track to develop our Quezon City property by early 2022, with construction set to begin in mid-2019. This is part of our strategy to capture the base mass segment in the north,” said Bloomberry Chairman Enrique K. Razon Jr.

In an interview after the firm’s annual stockholders’ meeting, Razon said that the new integrated resort will be using the Solaire brand.

He added that it will be a high-rise development since the land area is much smaller than that of its sprawling property in the Entertainment City.

Meanwhile, Razon said Bloomberry is looking forward to a banner year as tourism will continue to play a significant role in the growth of Philippine integrated resorts.

“Apart from the growing tourism industry, other factors added to our accessibility including improved access provided by the NAIAX Skyway, more available flights from China with the current 32 daily flights, and the relaxing of certain visa requirements,” he said.

He noted that, “in Entertainment City, infrastructure and real estate projects are being constructed at a rapid rate, and this should drive increased foot traffic into Solaire,” he noted. Razon also pointed out that, “growth will likewise be boosted by the rise in middle-class incomes and increasing connectivity across the region.”

Last year, Solaire was the market leader in Entertainment City and it benefited the most from tourism growth.

This, along with improving economic fundamentals, helped Solaire post double digit and all-time high records in VIP volume, mass table drop, EGM coin-in, and non-gaming revenues

Quezon City gives informal settlers P1.2-million to move to Rizal

By Rio N. Araja

The 37-member Quezon City council has given Mayor Herbert Bautista the green light to extend P1.2 million in financial aid to informal settlers affected by road improvement projects.

City Resolution 7386, introduced by District 1 Councilor Alexis Herrera, has authorized the mayor to provide P5,000 in aid to each of 200 informal settler families to be affected by the road development in barangays Sto. Domingo and Manresa.

The aid was given to enable the displaced families to move to a National Housing Authority resettlement site in Morong, Rizal.

The city’s Housing Community Development and Resettlement Department has identified 244 verified informal settler families occupying the rights-of-way.

In another development, City Resolution 7390 has authorized Bautista to purchase 40 computer sets for the use of government and non-government institutions in the city’s District V.

Among the recipients were several homeowners’ associations, police stations, and tricycle operators and drivers’ associations.

MPBL: Better prepared QC Capitals coming with ≠NSD attitude

By Santino Honasan

“Now, we have better preparation, we have a good combination of players, young and experienced players, combined. Kumbaga maganda yung naging jelling nila, ang aga nila mag-jell actually because they’re all professionals.”

Given that they only had a couple of weeks to prepare, the Quezon City Capitals’ quarterfinals run in the 2018 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League Anta Rajah Cup was definitely an impressive feat.

Being one of the last teams to confirm their participation, the Capitals only had two weeks to prepare for the season, and still managed to finish fifth out of ten teams and qualify for the post season.

Now after a full conference of experience and a full training camp, the Capitals are looking to build on from their past success and go even further in the postseason.

QC Capitals head coach Vis Valencia addressing the crowd. @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/yIINy7kOoc
— Santino Honasan🎈 (@honasantino) June 5, 2018

“Ngayon mas maganda yung preparation ng Quezon City Capitals, if you remember last conference, we only had less than two weeks, we had a good start, we were able to make it to the quarterfinals pero nag-short kami ng preparation.” Capitals head coach Vis Valencia told ABS-CBN Sports. “Now, we have better preparation, we have a good combination of players, young and experienced players, combined. Kumbaga maganda yung naging jelling nila, ang aga nila mag-jell actually because they’re all professionals.”

Joining the Capitals for the Datu Cup will be a couple of ex-pros in Jojo Duncil and Magi Sison. Duncil, a former UAAP Champion and UAAP Finals MVP, spent eight years in the PBA while Sison was a former Gilas call-up and played three years in the pros.

DPWH resumes reblocking in QC this weekend


MANILA, June 8 -- Motorists are advised that the Department of Public Works and Highways – National Capital Region (DPWH–NCR) will resume reblocking and repair activities along Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA) and two other roads in Quezon City starting Friday, July 8, 2018 at 11 pm.

DPWH–NCR Director Melvin Navarro said that the affected roads in EDSA include the southbound directions from after Arayat Street, 3rd lane from the sidewalk (Service Road) and from in front of Francesca Tower to after Scout Borromeo, 3rd lane from center island; and at the northbound direction near North Avenue, MRT Station, 2nd lane.

Other roads scheduled for repair include the northbound directions of Batasan Road from Commonwealth Avenue to Katarungan Street, 2nd Lane; and Congressional Avenue from fronting Business Bank to Mindanao Avenue, 3rd lane.

Due to expected traffic slowdown in affected areas, motorists are requested to take possible alternate routes.

Director Navarro said that DPWH-NCR will use one day concrete mix to re-open affected lanes at 5 am on Monday, July 11, 2018.

NIA opens investment for 379 potential hydroelectric power plants


QUEZON CITY -- The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) invites interested parties to invest in hydroelectric power project in the 379 identified potential sites nationwide. It would be the Agency’s contribution in providing resources for renewable energy, as well as in maximizing the utilization of irrigation water by venturing into the development of hydroelectric power plants.

While NIA encouraged this venture, one of the conditions set is that the project should not, in any way, obstruct irrigation water delivery as the primordial service of the Agency. NIA still primarily aims to provide comprehensive development, conservation, and utilization of water resources to attain food self-sufficiency through sustainable irrigation service.

SN Aboitiz Power Group, a hydropower development company, has already proposed a 2,500-sq. m. solar power project in Magat Dam. Being a water-based solar power project, it can also be ideal for marine life as it would provide sanctuary to different species.

Incidentally, among the 379 potential hydroelectric power plants, four of them are already operational. These are the 8.5 MW MARIS Main (South) Canal Hydroelectric Power in Isabela, Rizal Hydropower Plant in Nueva Ecija, Bulanao Mini-Hydropower Plant in Kalinga, and Marbel #1 MHPP in Southern Cotabato. Others are still on-going.

NGCP holds annual nationwide blackout simulation drill

By Jerome Carlo Paunan (NGCP/JCP/PIA-NCR)

QUEZON CITY, June 6 (PIA) --To ensure the reliability of the country’s power grid in the event of any major power disturbance or emergency, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) recently conducted its annual blackout simulation drill for 2018.

NGCP System Operations personnel, along with generation companies and distribution utilities, participated in the table-top presentation and actual blackout recovery drills.

Discussions included the blackout scenarios occurring in different areas of the country, power system blackout restoration guidelines, the importance of time synchronization within the grid, and updates on ancillary services such as black start recovery.

As the country’s transmission operator, one of NGCP’s main functions is to constantly improve power transmission network operations, particularly that of System Operations. Through the annual blackout drills, NGCP will be able to ensure that contingency measures are in place to keep the power grid secure and reliable despite any emergency or grid-wide disturbance.

“This plan cannot be executed and sustained by NGCP alone. It is only by working together, with constant, synchronized coordination between generation, transmission, and distribution, that we can deliver the best services to our customers,” said NGCP President and CEO Anthony Almeda.

NGCP is a Filipino-led, privately owned company in charge of operating, maintaining, and developing the country’s power grid, led by majority shareholders Henry Sy, Jr. and Robert Coyiuto, Jr.

Bloomberry eyes mid-2019 start for QC hotel, casino project

By Leslie Gatpolintan (PNA)

MANILA -- Bloomberry Resorts Corp. expects to develop its planned hotel and casino project in Quezon City next year, its second in the country, as it rides on the local tourism industry's growth.

“We are on track to develop our Quezon City property by early 2022, with construction set to begin in mid-2019. This is part of our strategy to capture the base mass segment in the north,” Bloomberry chairman and chief executive officer Enrique Razon Jr. said during the company’s stockholders’ meeting on Tuesday.

Razon said the planned high-rise hotel and casino project will be smaller than the Solaire Resorts and Casino.

“We are finalizing the design. We have our in-house designers, we have engineering consultants,” he later told reporters.

Razon said he sees tourism will continue to play a significant role in the growth of Philippine integrated resort, along with the rise in middle-class incomes and increasing connectivity across the region.

“Of significance to us in the integrated resort industry was the growth in tourism. Foreign visitation grew 18 percent to seven million largely on the back of improved relations with China,” he noted.

Razon cited data estimating that tourism contributed around USD300 million to the Philippine gaming sector’s mass-market gross gaming revenues in 2017.

National Bookstore opens school for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs

By Katrina Domingo (ABS-CBN News)

MANILA - Angelica Buli is chasing her dreams of becoming a businesswoman in National Bookstore's school foray, hoping to replicate the success of its founder, who is acknowledged as an icon in the retail industry.

Half of a four-story mega outlet was converted to NBS College and outfitted with classrooms and sports facilities for up to 1,000 students in time for the start of the tertiary school year in August.

"Yung may-ari, business ang interest. Ang course niya, business din. So maraming experience na maituturo sa bata," the 18-year-old Buli's mother, Emma, told ABS-CBN News.

She was referring to Socorro Ramos, known to employees and colleagues as "Nanay Coring." Ramos started what would be the country's largest books and school supplies retailer from a small shop in downtown Manila.

NBS College is a short jeepney ride from Quezon City's university block, which includes UP Diliman, Ateneo de Manila and Miriam College

The school is headed by Ramos' grandson, Adrian Ramos, who will also teach business management and ethics, said NBS College vice president for administration June Sebastian.

Another professor is RJ Ledesma, co-founder of the Mercato Centrale food park and Manang's Chicken.

"We value the fact that you need to hear it from someone who has done it. You're hearing straight from someone who has learned it through a very successful family-owned business," said Sebastian.


Businessmen are betting big on education, as Filipinos grow more affluent and with the new system adding 2 more years to basic education.

Ayala Corp unit AC Education in February acquired the National Teacher's College, raising the number of students in its school portfolio to 34,000.

The Ayala Group is also in talks to merge with the Yuchengco Group's iPeople, which operates Mapua University.

Emerging tycoon Dennis Uy last year acquired hospitality school Enderun, expanding his portfolio which includes Phoenix Petroleum, Chelsea Logistics and the local operations of Japanese convenience store chain FamilyMart.

The family of the country's richest man, Henry Sy, has a controlling stake in Manila-based National University and has announced plans to build a P1-billion campus in Calamba, Laguna, south of the capital.

Investing in education helps companies diversify their portfolios, said Reginal Capital managing director Luis Limlingan.

"If the educational sector is profitable and if you are doing a great public service then I think it makes perfect sense to go into this space," Limlingan told ABS-CBN.


NBS School is banking on the success story of Nanay Coring to attract students and mold the next generation of businessmen, said Sebastian.

"The flagship (course) will be entrepreneurship because that is the legacy National Book Store is known for which is the entrepreneurial spirit of the Ramos family," she said.

With such mentoring, Sebastian said NBS College hoped to produce graduates who are "job-ready and reality ready."

National Bookstore spent some P100 million to P200 million to build a library, computer rooms, classrooms, and basketball and volleyball facilities on the third and fourth levels of its building along Quezon Avenue.

"All the new books, all the most difficult books to find, we will get it for them, and they will use it for free," Sebastian said, adding students will also get a 5-percent discount on school supplies.

NBS College targets to have at least 400 enrollees before the academic year begins in August. It will also offer workshops and short courses in journalism, robotics, financial literacy, and personality development among others, she said.

Should the venture succeed, National Bookstore might convert more stores into schools, she said.

"Once we grow, then we will move to other locations," she said.

Quezon City Upgrades Firefighting Capability with Acquisition of Two Unmanned Machines

(Quezon City Government Official Website)

The Quezon City Government has acquired two LUF 60 Unmanned Firefighting Machines, enhancing the city’s firefighting capability.

QCDRRMO and QC Fire Department personnel has started training on how to operate the machines.

The LUF 60 is mobile firefighting supporting machine that can be operated by wireless remote. It can clear the path up to a distance of 300 meters by using a high capacity positive pressure ventilator and a “water beam” fog. The combination of the ventilator and water beam would clear away smoke, heat, toxic gases and reduce the intensity of the fire, thus allowing fire fighters and rescue teams to advance safely. The state of the art control elements ensure easy handling and high precision operation.

luf60 2

The radio-controlled unit has additional back-up manual controls in case of a power supply failure. A crawler track system ensures high mobility and flexibility and enable the machine to go up and down stairways as steep as 30 degrees. It can push or “bulldoze” a normal family car out of the way.

The Mobile Firefighting Supporting Machine LUF 60 offers safe working conditions for fire fighters and rescue-teams.

PDEA unveils PH’s premier drug forensic lab

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan (PNA)

MANILA -- Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Aaron Aquino on Friday led the inauguration of its new Laboratory Service building, touted as the premier drug forensic center in the country, located at the PDEA national headquarters in Quezon City.

Aquino said the three-storey building features upgraded security system in its evidence room, including equipped high-definition closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras and fire suppressing equipment to prevent damage to evidence in case of fire.

“This is part of our continuing capability enhancement program for safekeeping of drug evidence. As the lead agency in the country’s anti-drug campaign, the integrity of PDEA in safekeeping of all pieces of drug evidence is of paramount importance,” Aquino said, adding that air conditioning units, exhaust fans and dehumidifiers were installed for the physical preservation of evidence.

The construction of the new building was made possible through the financial assistance of Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Quezon City 4th District Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. who was the guest of honor and speaker during the inauguration.

Aquino said the PDEA Laboratory Service is the only forensic laboratory in the country that conducts impurity profiling of methamphetamine hydrochloride, popularly known as shabu, which has the capability of determining the linkage that exists between drug samples.

In line with this, a collaborative research with the Advance Device and Materials Testing Laboratory Industrial Technology Development Institute, Department of Science and Technology, entitled “Application of Multivariate Analysis on Methamphetamine Hydrochloride Fingerprints and Kinetic Stability Modelling”, will be conducted to improve its capability in drug profiling.

“As part of its capability enhancement effort, the Laboratory Service has a multi-million analytical equipment of forensic laboratories and additional analytical instruments to be acquired soon,” Aquino said.

Among these is one unit of Liquid Chromatograph with quadruple Time-of Flight- tandem Mass Spectrometry to further enhance its drug impurity profiling of cocaine.

“Necessary training in hands-on operation, proper handling, maintenance, trouble shooting of these pieces of equipment are given priority considering their value and use in laboratory analysis by our chemists,” the PDEA chief added.

To further improve the laboratory service’s profiling capabilities, Aquino said the agency will soon acquire a multi-million analytical equipment of forensic laboratories and additional analytical instruments.

The PDEA Laboratory Service began operating in 2006 with only seven organic chemists.

In an effort to cater to the increasing number of seized dangerous drugs and precursors, PDEA said it was able to establish regional laboratories across the country.

“At present, PDEA has a total of 66 chemists deployed to the regional offices nationwide. Chemists both in national and regional laboratories of PDEA underwent the Basic Forensic Training Course prior to their deployment in their areas of assignment. They are sent to various foreign trainings to be updated on drug analysis. Senior chemists from PDEA national and regional offices attended the Advanced Drug Forensic Chemist Training Course to enhance their knowledge on drug analysis,” said Aquino, the current and fifth chief of the country’s lead anti-drug agency.

The PDEA Laboratory Service consistently obtains 100 percent correct identification of illicit drug substances in its participation in the International Collaborative Exercises (ICE) Program conducted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Vienna, Austria, making it the only forensic laboratory in the country to attain 100 percent accuracy in international proficiency testing.

In addition to the acquisition of new pieces of laboratory equipment, Aquino said he has ordered the laboratory service to develop an online drug inventory system throughout all PDEA regional offices to automate its inventory system through tagging and bar coding of evidence for speedy and accurate documentation and accounting of evidence.

PDEA, through the laboratory service, is responsible for the destruction of dangerous drugs, controlled precursors and essential chemicals (CPECs), laboratory equipment seized and those confiscated by other law enforcement agencies upon the order of the court.

Since 2002, PDEA has burned two tons of dangerous drugs, CPECs, and billions worth of laboratory equipment.

QC imposes quake drills in all buildings

By Anna Felicia Bajo (/KG, GMA News)

Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista has inked an ordinance requiring all establishments in the city to conduct earthquake drills twice a year.

Introduced by Councilor Allan Reyes, City Ordinance No. 2674-2018 or the Mandatory Earthquake Drill Ordinance of Quezon City "mandates all owners and managers of establishments in Quezon City to conduct earthquake drills with their employees, students, tenants, and occupants for at least twice a year."

The said ordinance noted that the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) has identified 13 barangays in Quezon City that are traversed by the West Valley Fault.

“PHIVOLCS has urged that the various locations where the West Valley Fault traverses should be a major basis for the people’s preparedness for earthquakes, as the very destructive ground shaking can cause and poses an immediate threat to people’s lives, buildings and infrastructures, and livelihood," the ordinance read.

According to the ordinance, the first drill should be conducted every March 1 while the second will be held in the third quarter of each year.

Meanwhile, Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Research and Planning Section head Bianca Perez said their office has yet to issue the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the said ordinance.

"May draft na kami (IRR) within the month. However, we may have to also draft and at least consolidate the comments of the members of the Technical Working Group,” Perez said.

The record of the drills, such as the time and date of each exercise, must be kept by the establishment’s person-in-charge and should be reported to the QCDRRMO quarterly.

The Quezon City Fire District (QCFD), meanwhile, was tasked to assist and control the exercises during the drill.

Those establishments and persons-in-charge who will not follow the ordinance will be penalized.

Owners, managers, administrators, operators, school principals, and other accountable officers will be punished with a fine of P1,000 for the first offense, P2,000 for the second offense, and P3,000 for the third and subsequent offenses.

Business entities unable to conduct earthquake drills shall be fined P2,000 for the first offense, P3,000 for the second offense, and a fine of P5,000 and cancellation of business permit for the third and subsequent offenses.

The QCDRRMO will issue citation tickets to establishments that fail to implement the ordinance.

The tickets will include the checklist of violations under the ordinance, fines associated with each violation, and due date of compliance with the obligations imposed by the ticket.