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20th February 2017
DPWH to build coastal bypass road in Maasin City
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on February 20, 2017, 3:41 pm

MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte – This city will get an alternative link to the commercial district – a 4.71-kilometer coastal bypass road with reclamation component meant to ease traffic woes and expand the city’s development.

The planned road, which will cost P1.5 billion, will get an initial budget of P50 million this year, said Ma. Margarita C. Junia, chief of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Southern Leyte district engineering office.

The proposed road, one of the key infrastructure projects in Eastern Visayas, will connect the city’s commercial center in Lib-og village to nearby populated village of Mambajao. It will traverse coastal areas of Abgao, Tunga-Tunga, and Combado villages.

The preliminary release, strongly lobbied by Rep. Roger Mercado for inclusion in the 2017 appropriations, will be used for the preparation of feasibility study for multi-year implementation, initial road construction, and some slope protection.

“The main roads leading to the city center are already congested even if those roads are restricted to one lane,” she said, referring in particular to R. Kangleon and Tomas Oppus Streets. “We cannot expand to the other side of the city since it’s mountainous.”

Maasin, a fourth class city and capital of Southern Leyte province, has a land area of 211.70 square kilometers with a population of 85,560. The city’s terrain is characterized by relatively flat lands along the coastal plains where population areas lay, and becomes rugged and mountainous towards the interior.

DPWH Southern Leyte planning section chief Vincent Sy said the proposed budget for the project in 2018 is P200 million. “Releases in the next years will mainly depend on the outcome of feasibility study, which will be completed within the first half of the year,” Sy added. The project is in compliance to Secretary Mark Villar’s directive to decongest traffic through construction of by-pass roads in populated areas. (PR)


9th January 2017
Farmer killed in Southern Leyte buy-bust; police claim shoot-out
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on January 9, 2017, 2:31 pm

By: Jani Arnaiz - Correspondent / @janiarnaizINQ

Inquirer Visayas / 07:03 PM January 06, 2017

MAASIN CITY—A 55-year-old farmer was shot dead on Friday in what the police claimed was a shoot-out following a buy-bust operation in an interior village of Ichon, Macrohon town, in Southern Leyte.

Felimon Labolabo was hit in the right forehead and right arm and died on the spot.

The buy-bust operation stemmed from a two-week surveillance operation on Labolabo who was allegedly a drug peddler.

Senior Insp. J-Rale C. Paalisbo, team leader of the Regional Anti-Illegal Drug Special Operation Group (RAIDSOG), said an undercover agent met with Labolabo near the latter’s farm in Sitio Santolan, Barangay Ichon, past 9 a.m. supposedly to buy “shabu” from the farmer.

The suspect drew his .38-cal. pistol when he sensed that he was dealing with a policeman, but the farmer was shot first.

Recovered from the crime scene were the gun and four sachets of suspected shabu.

It took four hours to retrieve the body since the crime scene was a secluded and hilly area.

Labolabo’s 18-year-old daughter, Tifanny, fainted after seeing her father’s body.

She said they had told her father to stop peddling drugs after he surrendered to the police during Oplan Tokhang, a campaign that required the police to knock on the houses of known drug peddlers and users and ask them to stop their illegal activities.


15th December 2016
5 die in Leyte road mishap
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on December 15, 2016, 4:01 pm

By Elvie Roman Roa

ORMOC CITY, Leyte, Dec. 14, (PNA) – A collision between two passenger vans owned by father and son from Palompon, Leyte left at least five passengers dead along national highway of A. Tumamak village, Villaba town in Leyte, the town police said.

A police report stated, that the van E.R. Jr., a Toyota Hi Ace owned by Ephraim Requitillo, Jr. bound to Palompon town from Ormoc City failed to control the steering wheel due to slippery road and bumped to Gee Rhaim, of opposite route. 

The vehicle glided and ran crisscross before it finally head going to the lane of the other vehicle.  The head-on collision caused severe damage to both vehicles but the five passengers including the driver of Gee Rhaim, also a Toyota Hi Ace van, sustained only minor injuries.

Three of E.R. Jr.’s seven passengers reportedly died on the spot including the driver Boy Salvador while another casualty was declared dead on arrival at the community hospital. Other injured commuters were rushed to Ormoc City hospital where one was pronounced dead.

Gee Rhaim driver Themestocles Hortelano who had minor injuries said he stopped upon noticing that E.R. Jr. was unstable while approaching. 

“I stopped when I saw the van moving unstable after it glided while stirring down near our direction”, the driver said.

The vehicle bound to Palompon was severely damaged that caused deaths and major injuries to its passengers while Gee Rhaim’s right front was also heavily damaged..

The Requitillo family immediately showed up and provided the needs of the victims.

 

 
 

Barangay excluded in granting of PEI
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on December 15, 2016, 3:38 pm

4th update

By Jani Arnaiz

MAASIN CITY – The Productivity Enhancement Incentive or PEI given to LGUs and other government institution during Christmas as additional benefits is here for the taking but not for Barangay workers.

The Barangay LGU, the so called front liner in giving government service to the people, is not included in the PEI at least in the city thru the courtesy of City Budget Officer Essie Garvez.

“Hugno ang tanan,” said a village chair when Garvez announced during the Liga ng mga Barangay Christmas party.

According to Garvez, said the barangay captain, Barangay was not specifically mentioned in the Budget circular granting the PEI to LGUs.

"So is the city or the province are not specifically mentioned because the Circular only states all LGU heads. If  her logic says that Barangay is not among the beneficiary of the PEI, then only the military or the PNP would benefit from the PEI since they were specifically mentioned."

The Budget Circular No. 2016 – 8, issued on December 12, by Budget Sec. Benjamin Diokno addressed “TO All Heads of Departments, Bureaus, and Agencies of the National Government, Including State Universities and Colleges (SUCs), and Government-Owned or -Controlled Corporations (GOCCs); Heads of Local Government Units (LGUs); and All Others Concerned.”

“Payment of the PEI shall be made not earlier than December 15, 2016,” states the Budget Circular.

But the barangay chairmen who attended their Christmas party on December 15 said “Garvez would have none of it for the Barangay LGUs.”

Christmas this year would be bleak this year just like the other year, said a Barangay Captain.

According to Tagnipa Kagawad Along Lutero, President of the Barangay Kagawad League of Maasin City, there are three composition of LGU, that is the Province, the City or Municipality and the Barangays.

Officially local government in the Philippines, often called local government units or LGUs, are divided into three levels – provinces and independent cities; component cities and municipalities; and barangays.

Provincial Budget Officer Joey Duarte said, barangay officials elected or appointed are entitled to PEI.

The Reporter tried to contact Garvez but to no avail.

Jade Nombrado, a Kagawad in one of the barangays of Macrohon town said they availed of PEI.

 

 

 


6th December 2016
Southwest Ferries to ply Liloan/Benit to Surigao city
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on December 6, 2016, 2:12 pm

By JANI ARNAIZ

MAASIN CITY – A brand new state-of-the-art roll-on roll-off vessel will ply the Liloan/Benit-Surigao City route and vice-versa by April of next year, says Jose Jericho Padua, managing director of Southwest Ferries incorporated.

According to Padua, the ship, MV SF Stella de Mar (Star of the Seas) is set to be delivered on March 2017 by Kegoya Dock Co. Ltd.,one of the biggest ship builders of Japan.

“By that time, hopefully, we will have our maiden voyage,” he said during luncheon with local media group.

Although they manage the Starlite Ferries which is plying the lucrative route of Bantangas-Mindoro-Caticlan, they choose Surigao City-Liloan/Benit ferry terminals for their initial venture into cargo-passenger vessel to serve inter-island transport requirements in the Philippines.

“We made a thorough feasibility study in these ports and we found out it has heavy cargo traffic,” Padua pointed out.

He added that their vessel can navigate even on typhoon signal number 2 since it is made based on the Philippine weather condition. “Of course with the approval of the Philippine Coast Guard.”

It is also a reefer type vessel which can navigate in shallow waters.

He said that cargo forwarders will be assured of safety handling of their rolling cargoes since it has a modern feature in lashing. “And modesty aside, we have accommodation for drivers for proper rest while on sea travel.”

It has a capacity of more than 900 passengers (business class 114, economy 843 and drivers 20) in its air-conditioned accommodation and can hold a total number of 17 buses and 4 trucks.  Travel time would only take 2 hours and a half more or less.

LGU partnership

To address the crewing requirements of their fleet (local and international)the Southwest Maritime Group of Companies, the mother company of Southwest Ferries, innovate the College of Maritime Leadership to develop character, competence, confidence of their crews.

Padua offered “This is where we would like to partner with Local Government Units (LGUs) to consider our scholarship program for mariners where we offer free tuition fees or study now pay later scheme for miscellaneous fees with guaranteed shipboard training and guaranteed employment in Southfield’s fleet of vessels, another subsidiary of Southwest Group.”

Earlier Padua and members of the Southwest Ferries core committee, Ms. May Cabasi and Nikki R. Santos made a courtesy call to Gov. Damian Mercado at the provincial Capitol.

Board Member Abelardo Almario, who accompanied the team, was thankful with the entry of Southwest Ferries for the benefit of the province tourism program.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


1st December 2016
Teenage prime suspect in rape case arrested in Taguig Metro Manila
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on December 1, 2016, 7:01 pm

By Jani Arnaiz

December 1, 2016

MAASIN CITY – Police authorities have confirmed the arrest of seventeen year old prime suspect of a rape of a 15 year old student in Barangay Nasaug this city.

Police said he was arrested in Taguig, Metro Manila.

The heinous crime was committed sometime in July 2015 in Barangay Nasaug this city.

The victim was reportedly waylaid by three suspects who were drinking in a hut in Barangay Nasaug (all minors) when she passed by them on her way home in nearby Barangay Canturing.

She went missing until her body was found already in decomposing state half naked buried in shallow grave along Canturing river bank just a few meters from her house.

According to the police authorities the suspect will be presented to the media upon their arrival from Manila.

 


20th November 2016
Airing of Miss U Pageant in Philippines gets time slot
Posted by Yel Cobile, IT Admin & Correspondent on November 20, 2016, 5:40 pm

(By Azer Parrocha (philstar.com) | )

 

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Philippines News Agency) —The Philippines' hosting of the next prestigious Miss Universe pageant on Jan. 30, 2017 will be aired live on all TV networks at around 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., a tourism official said.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Undersecretary for Media Affairs Kat De Castro made this confirmation in a press conference in Davao City on Saturday urging those interested in seeing the pageant in the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena to “come early.” 

De Castro said that an inter-agency task force composed of the DOT, the Philippine National Police (PNP), the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Department of Finance (DOF) was also formed to make sure the staging of the pageant runs smoothly.

READ MORE OF THIS NEWS...

A Peek at Imelda Marcos' Wild Shopping Spree Splurges
Posted by Yel Cobile, IT Admin & Correspondent on November 20, 2016, 5:02 pm

(By Jacqueline Arias, Inquirer.net via preen | 20 Nov 2016)

A Peek at Imelda Marcos' Wild Shopping Spree Splurges If you still don’t believe that the Marcoses owe us a fortune, Imelda Marcos’ shopping list serves as a brief reminder.

Titled “5 Shopping Sprees So Wild, They Made History,” The Cut shows how extravagant the former first lady was.  The article first notes that Imelda “left her collection of 3,000 shoes when they fled the country in 1986.”

It also goes into detail of her wild sprees in New York where she spent $2 million in jewelry and buying a $3.5 million Michelangelo painting in Rome.  For some reason, she also spent $2,000 for chewing gum in San Francisco and asked a plane to make a U-turn back to Rome so she can buy cheese.  Seriously, did she really need all this stuff? Not to mention that she spent $10.3 million to renovate the entire town of Sarrat, Ilocos Norte for the wedding of her daughter Imee.

And yes, if you’re going to do the math, the government would’ve built two major airports and can feed the hungry for generations with the ill-gotten wealth she embezzled from the Filipino people.
 


18th November 2016
7 years after Ampatuan Massacre:Case delays blight any hope for justice
Posted by Jani Arnaiz, Chief Editor on November 18, 2016, 11:57 am

November 23, 2016 marks the seventh year since 58 people were mercilessly killed atop the hills of Sitio Masalay, Ampatuan, Maguindanao. Of the 58 victims, 32 were journalists who covered the filing of candidacy for provincial governor of then Buluan town vice mayor Esmael Mangudadatu, pitting him against the wishes of local strongman Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr. that his son and namesake, then Datu Unsay town mayor Andal Jr., be left unchallenged for the post.

On Wednesday, some 2,557 days will have passed since the grisly incident, and government has failed to secure acourt conviction for a single perpetrator of the crime. Against the backdrop of a protracted legal battle, families of themassacre victims wait with increasingly dashed hopes that they will see a satisfactory closure of the case within their lifetimes.

Such a sorry state of the cause for justice fuels the situation of impunity in the country whereby the state is seemingly helpless at staving off the continuing phenomenon of journalists being harassed and killed.

READ MORE OF THIS NEWS...

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5 die in Leyte road mishap, December 15, 2016, 4:01 pm

Barangay excluded in granting of PEI, December 15, 2016, 3:38 pm

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