Tuesday, May 24, 2005

 

DOUBLE STANDARD

DOUBLE STANDARD
Editorial
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 04

Vice-Mayor William Ablong must have his namesake William Shakespeare in mind when he made the move to ban the holding of Tigbakay during the barangay fiesta celebration.

For what does he get in making such a move but to create a tempest in a teapot?

If he succeeds, all he has done is to churn up a storm in the barangays of a teapot that is Dumaguete.

There is no such tempest or problem in majoriy of the barangays throughout the country for they know that cockfighting is only legal in licensed cockpits.

But the Vice Mayor may be right after all, for he has the support of Mayor Perdices and Governor Arnaiz to boot.

To make their support felt, the mayor and the Governor have gone one step further by promising a P50,000 assistance to a barangay observing its fiesta withour holding any tigbakay.

Can number and stature make it perfectly all right? Hardly. What is to rewarded anyway in complying with a law prohibiting cockfighting outside a licensed cockpit? Nada, unless there is some other special reason to save hurt feelings of vested interests.

This is all a matter of no consequence; all sounds and fury signifying nothing. Unless the Vice Mayor is waging a campaign against gambling as a serious attempt to elevate the lifestyles of our barrio folk to a higher moral ground.

But that is also running the risk of committing a double standard morality by making an immoral act cloaked in morality when done inside a licensed cockpit.

 

VALENCIA GOES INTO TILAPIA, MUSHROOM PRODUCTION

VALENCIA GOES INTO TILAPIA, MUSHROOM PRODUCTION
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 02


Valencia --- The municipality has established its own tilapia hatchery and mushroom laboratory in a move to generate more livelihood opportunities to its mostly agri oriented residents.

The establishment of its tilapia hatchery came after the Bureau of Fisheries & Aquatic Resources in Region 7 donated 2,000 fingerlings of tilapia last month. They also donated P15,000 worth of feeds and a hatchery pond costing P23,000.

Since its establishment last month, a total of 147 Valencianons have availed of its services. Lorencia Viente, tilapia hatchery in charge, said another 12,000 fingerlings are now due for dispersal to interested farmer associations in the municipality.

Valencia Mayor Rodolfo Gonozalez Jr. said that the town is also pushing for the improvement of its mushroom laboratory. “With the rising cost of meat nowadays, the municipality’s mushroom production could best serve as substitute to it as it is high in protein.

Gonzalez is confident both projects will be a good source of livelihood for Valencianos, with both products demand high market prices. Tilapia is sold at P80 per kilo, while mushroom is sold at P120 per kilo. (D. Tilos)

 

NO SIGNIFICANT PRICE INCREASE ON BASIC COMMODITIES – DTI

NO SIGNIFICANT PRICE INCREASE ON BASIC COMMODITIES – DTI
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 02

There has been no significant increase in the prices of basic commodities in the province.

According to Jojo Sumido of the local Department of Trade and Industry, there has been no significant price increase based on DTI’s weekly price monitoring activity conducted every Monday in Dumaguete stores.

Concern has been raised on the possibility of a big hike on prices of basic commodities following the recent fare increase.

Malacanang says the government is working out on ways to lessen the impact of fare increases such as keeping the prices of basic commodities at affordable levels.

The regional wage boards are also undertaking urgent deliberations to come up with wage increase reasonable or both the management and the members.

The transport fare increase will be complemented with wage hikes agreed upon by the regional wage boards in due time.

 

CHED: NORSU CAN NOT OFFER NURSING, MEDICINE

CHED: NORSU CAN NOT OFFER NURSING, MEDICINE
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 03

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has stood pat on its decision to bar the Negros Oriental Sate University form offering its doctor of medicine and bachelor of science in nursing courses when the first semester starts next month.

In a letter addressed to Vice Governor Jose “Petit” Baldado, Regional Director Catherine Castaneda informing the Provincial Board that the CHED is sticking to its earlier position to deny the petition of NORSU to open the two courses.

Castaneda said that denial was due to two existing memorandum oorders their Chair had earlier issued.

Memorandum Order No. 02, series of 2004, enumerates new procedures in the processing of applications to offer courses in medicine and nursing.

Memorandum Order No. 27, series of 2004, deals on the moratorium on the opening of new nursing programs effective May 04, 2004 which covers both public and private higher education institutions including those granted autonomous or deregulated status.

The two memoranda were issued due to the proliferation of medical and nursing schools throughout the country while Philippine Licensure Examinations administered by the Philippine Regulations Commissions indicate the deterioration of the quality of medical and nursing education.

The CHED also said that there was a dearth of qualified faculty, deans as well as teaching hospitals, which are important factors to be considered in the offering of medicine and nursing programs.

The CHED also pointed out that the capabilities of the nursing market have reached the saturation point and that existing schools have to be closely monitored. (ES)

 

BIR CONDUCTS TAX MAPPING OPERATIONS

BIR CONDUCTS TAX MAPPING OPERATIONS
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 02

As a result of its intensified tax mapping operations, the Bureau of Internal Revenues (BIR) has imposed fines on three law offices in Dumaguete City for failure to register.

BIR is conducting an ongoing inspection of all business establishments and professionals in the provinces of Negros Oriental and Siquijor to check if they are complying with administrative requirements.

The said requirements include registration certificate, official receipts and books of accounts, said Jose Senador, officer in charge for BIR’s Taxpayers’ Service Station.

Under the law, the maximum penalty foe failure to register is P12,000.

To date, nine law offices have been inspected, but Senador said more inspections will be conducted throughout the year.

Senador added that they are concentrating on law offices this year, as last year’s focus was on doctors.

BIR officials are set to conduct tax mapping operations on May 17 in the towns of Sibulan and San Jose.

 

BAYAWAN TAPS CAPTAIN SPRING FOR SWIMMING LESSONS

BAYAWAN TAPS CAPTAIN SPRING FOR SWIMMING LESSONS
Metro Post
May 1-7, 2005
Page 02

Bayawan City – The city government here had taped the Captain’s Spring Park Resort for the five Saturday’s swimming and skin diving lessons it had sponsored.

Mayor German Sarana said that the said resort was considered by the local government unit because of its natural swimming lagoon.

The owner, Captain Amorsolo Jordan, the superintendent of the Negros Maritime College Foundation Incorporated in Sibulan said that they are continually updating their facilities.

He said that the resort had catered to retreats from schools and organizations for the past years and it had hosted several family picnics for the purpose.

He said that the management of the resort is closely coordinating with the trainors of the Local government unit to maximize whatever facilities they can offer.

The trainors are Faith Napigkit, James Geconcillo and Arwin Aban.

Mayor Sarana said that they will tap the resort in their next undertaking which will involved the rank and file employees as part of their benefit package program.

 

BAYAWAN ENACTS LAW TO PROTECT WOMEN, CHILDREN

BAYAWAN ENACTS LAW TO PROTECT WOMEN, CHILDREN
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 02

The City of Bayawan has adopted a national law which seeks to protect women and children from domestic violence.

The national law is Republic Act 9262 which is an Act Defining Violence Against Women and their Children providing for protective measures for victims, prescribing penalties therefore and for other purposes.

The ordinance adopting the said national law is authored by Councilor Rowena Cabanban.

Mayor German Saran said that the same will boost the campaign for the protection of women in the city.

Many local government units are now coming up with their respective pro women programs including gender sensitivity and the importance of reproductive health. (ES)

 

AYUNGON CREATES ADVOCACY TEAM FOR

AYUNGON CREATES ADVOCACY TEAM FOR
REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND FAMILY PLANNING
Metro Post
May 22-28, 2005
Page 02

The municipality of Ayungon has created an advocacy team for the promotion of reproductive health and family planning.

Mayor Edsel Enardecido said this was done to fulfill the primary duty of the local government unit to protect and promote the health of its constituents and to eradicate poverty.

The mayor added that local officials in his town are very much aware of the health programs initiated by the national government toward poverty alleviation.

Enardecido was designated by the town council as the advocacy team’s chairperson with Vice Mayor Stephen Opada as his co-chairperson.

The team is mandated to formulate plans and programs, conduct information education campaign in all barangays. (ES)

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

 

ENG’G STUDENT AWARDED LUCENT SCHOLARSHIP

ENG’G STUDENT AWARDED LUCENT SCHOLARSHIP
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 02


An computer engineering first year is one of only two winners from the Philippines in the 1st Lucent Global Science Scholars Program competition.

Camilo Cadapan Jr. of the Silliman University College of Engineering will represent the country in the Global Summit from July 22 to 29 this year in New Jersey. He was also awarded $5,000 cash Friday evening by Ronald J. Post, counselor for Public Affairs of the US Embassy and chair of PAEF.

Along with another Philippine delegate, Cadapan Jr. will be among 50 scholars selected from around 15 countries.

Cadapan was chosen for his impressive academic performance, extra-curricular activites, and leadership qualities. “We know that you will exemplify the same standards of excellence when you represent the Philippines in the 2005 Global Summit,” said Dr. Esmeralda Cunanan, executive director of the Philippine American Educational Foundation.

Camilo Jr. is the son of Engr. Camilo and Myrna Cadapan of Talay.

Silliman was one of only three schools in the country, and the only one in the Visayas, tapped by Lucent as a source of applicants for the Lucent Global Science Scholars Program. The other schools were De La Salle University-Taft for Luzon, and Ateneo de Zamboanga for Mindanao.

 

NORSU, KOREAN UNIVERSITY INK JOINT CYBER STUDIES

NORSU, KOREAN UNIVERSITY INK JOINT CYBER STUDIES
Metro Post
May 08-14, 2005
Page 02

The Negros Oriental State University and Kung Hee Cyber University have signed a memorandum of understanding for a n online studies program for students of the local university to begin starting June this year.

NORSU President Dr. Henry A. Sojor signed the agreement with Dr. Kun-Woo Park, president of the Cyber University, who also signed a similar memorandum with three other presidents of state colleges and universities in the Philippines; the Pangasinan Colleges of Science & Technology, the Polytechnic University of the Philippines in Manila, and the Cagayan de Oro Colleges.

Present at the signing on April 28 in Seoul, south Korea were Philippine Ambassador to South Korea Aladdin Villacorte and Dr. Manuel Punzal, head of the NORSU Board of Trustees and National Academic coordinator of the Global Cooperation Society.

The signing took place a month after Dr. Kun-Woo Park visited NORSU to confirm the online program with the local state university.

The program, Dr. Park said, offers a scholarship to qualified students interested to take up online studies in Korean.

KHCU is the leading cyber information technology university in South Korea, and that only four universities the Philippines have been offered the online studies program linkage.

Dr. Sojor said the initiative was offered to him during his visit for a speaking engagement in one of the universities in South Korea two years ago.

Dr. Sojor, president of the Global Cooperation Society for the Visayas which has a tie-up with KHCU, said the program would be the first international linkage of the institution since it became a state university last year. (ES)

 

4x4 ENTHUSIASTS JOIN 2ND LEG OF NATIONAL COMPETITION IN DUMAGUETE

4x4 ENTHUSIASTS JOIN 2ND LEG OF NATIONAL COMPETITION IN DUMAGUETE
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 01


Some 30 4x4 off-road enthusiasts from all over the country are seeing action today for the second leg of the Delo Sports National 4x4 Series at the Quaimco racetrack in San Antonio, Sibulan, Negros Oriental.

The four-hectare uphill and downhill natural terrain, situated inside a 24-hectare coconut plantation, is proving to be the biggest test to the competitors, led by last year’s Off-Roader of the Year Timtom Gempesaw and first leg winner Albert Monte de Ramos.

Sanctioned by the National Association of Filipino Off-Roaders (NAsFOR), the three-day national 4x4 meet is hosted by the 4x4 Dumaguete Fun Club, headed by its president Joey Varela, and backed by Caltex Delo Sports, a synthetic engine oil desined for gasoline or diesel powered Sports Utility Vehicles and 4x4s.

In a press conference Friday at the Bethel Guest House, NAsFOR president Brian Diaz expressed confidence that the second leg of the series will be another spectacular show of intense off-roading skills and patience of negotiating the various obstacles along the race course, such as the V-canal, mud trap, rock rolling and other terrains.

“The uphill and downhill natural terrain really adds zest to the competition and at the same time, tests the prowess of the participants,” said Diaz of the track designed by Engr. Roel Cadayday.

All eyes will be fixed on the duel between Monte de Ramos of the Cagayan de Oro Off Roaders, and Gemp[esaw of the Davao 4-wheelers.

Monte de Ramos vaulted back into familiar territory as he ruled the 1st stop of the Delo Series 2005 at General Santos City. Gempesaw placed fifth in that leg, but he is not too far as not to be a threat to the crown.

“The good thin is that I’m not too far from the leaders. Anything can still happen. Just one flawless ride in Dumaguete is all I need to get closer to the top,” Gempesaw said.

 

PEDICAB DRIVERS LAUD TUTING

PEDICAB DRIVERS LAUD TUTING
POSITION ON FARE RATE HIKE
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 03


PEDICAB drivers in Dumaguete City have lauded the position taken by Mayor Agustin Perdices to come up with a “compromised formula” on the minimum fare rate increase.

The Mayor earlier opposed the P6 pesos minimum fare based on the “automatic fare rate increase.

The Mayor earlier opposed the P6 pesos minimum fare based on the “automatic fare rate scheme” authored by Councilor Samuel Dicen.

Although the Council had claimed it as valid, it still needed the approval of the Provincial Board to take effect.

The drivers also agreed with the Mayor when he pegged his position of fare rate at P5.00 which they claimed is more realistic and more acceptable to the riding public.

Iglindon Selem, president of the Balugo-Cadawinonan Operators & Drivers’ Association, explained that the Mayor’s move is commendable.

He further explained that while it is true they also have to cope with the daily economic grind, and that a P6 fare would be to their advantage, they would be displaced from work if their regular passengers will now opt tot ride the multicabs which charge relatively lower, their erstwhile rivals and competitors.

Rudy Macahis, a “roving pedicab” driver earns P400 for 12 hours of diving.

Of the amount, P170 is for gasoline, P100 for two kilos of rice and half kilo of galunggong, and P160 for the rental of the unit. Macahis would have has a shortfall of P30 for his rental.

Increasing the fare by P1.00 would allow him tohave a take home pay of about P70.00 daily.

 

LAKES BALINSASAYAO AND DANAO

LAKES BALINSASAYAO AND DANAO
Environment Connection by:
Dr. Angel C. Alcala
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 04

The Twin Lakes Balinsasayao and Danao, and the surrounding tropical rainforest area of more than 8,000 hectares at an altitude of about 1,000 meters, no doubt rank among the most pristine and picturesque natural spots on the island of Negros.

Every citizen of Negros Oriental, and of Negros Island for that mater, should feel proud there is such a place that has survived the onslaught of nature destroyers. Everyone should be vigilant, lest we lose this nature park to those who see money in every tree or in every piece of rock.

A visit to the lakes last weekend showed that many people are now beginning to appreciate the value of the park. I was told that every weekend, scores of nature lovers enjoy the cool forest for hiking, and the clear waters for swimming. The biodiversity component adds to the uniqueness of the area. The environment of the lakes cannot be adequately priced in pesos simply because we are dealing with a resource that contributes to the quality of life of our people.

The provincial government led by Gov. George Arnaiz should get most of the credit for improving the road to the lakes, and constructing forest trails for access to the smaller lake. The Protected Areas Management Board has begun to implement the park rules and regulations.

More needs to be done by the PAMB and the DENR in cooperation witht the provincial government.

1. The waters in the two lakes differ in color: greenish (due to planktonic algae) in the bigger lake, and bluish (because of relative lack of algae) in the smaller lake. This difference is due to eutorphication or nutrient enrichment, and production of algae in the bigger lake as a result of run-off from cleared land surrounding the lake. The remedy is to stop all farming activities in areas surrounding the lake. The remedy is to stop all farming activities in areas surrounding the lake, and to reforest these bare areas. Governor Arnais and I talked to one of those people still farming in the park. He promised to stop enlarging his farm. The next step is to reforest the denuded areas. I urge the PAMB to meet and discuss the reforesting of the cleared areas around both lakes, and other matters including a partnership with the local governments.

2. The areas at the foot and vicinity of Guinsayawan and Guintabon peaks should be considered for reforestation using native or endemic species of trees. These areas have been logged in the past.

3. The are still pockets of abaca farms in the shores of both lakes which should be harvested and removed by the claimants.

4. An information and education campaign should be conducted by the PASU.

5. Endemic wildlife species from areas in Negros that have become extinct should be reintroduced in the area to enhance the tourism value of the park.

6. A limnological study and a bathymetric survey of both lakes should be conducted to update the studies done in the 1980s.

7. Park guides knowledgeable about the geology, hydrology, plant and animal life of the area should be trained to interpret the park.

8. A user fee system should be developed to start a sustainable park system.

9. Studies on the geology with particular emphasis on the geological hazards should be conducted.

 

CHED APPROVES NURSING, BSHM PROGRAMS AT FU

CHED APPROVES NURSING, BSHM PROGRAMS AT FU
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 09

Midwifery program gets ESDA nod

The Commission on Higher Education has formally approved the offering of the four-year courses BS Nursing, and BS Hospitality Management (major in Hotel, Restaurant, & Tourism) as contained in CHED Government Permit numbers 0067 and 0071, respectively.

The granting of the CHED permit for the BSN came after the favorable recommendation made by its Technical Review Committee who visited Foundation in March 28 to review and evaluate the program’s P7 million investment in facilities, equipment, instruction, curriculum, and support services.

Starting June this year, Foundation will also be offering a two-year Midwifery program. The go signal came from the Technical Education & Skills Development Authority.

Enrolment for all programs begin Monday, May 23.

The administration of the college entrance examinations and the Nursing Aptitude Test is going on at the Guidance & Counseling Office, ground floor of the Administration building.

More information can be secured by calling telephones 422-7063 and 422-9167, be e-mailing oslea2003@yahoo.com, or by visiting the website www.FoundationU.com

 

DLR NEGROS ORIENTAL GEARING TOWARDS CHANGE

DLR NEGROS ORIENTAL GEARING TOWARDS CHANGE
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 06

As editor in-chief of DLR’s provincial newsletter TUG-ANI, I had the occasion to interview the provincial land reform officer Stephen M. Leonidas regarding his plans for the province and these are what he said.

“I have beautiful plans for Negros Oriental. In fact, one realization is the launching of the Newsletter. Another one is coming up for this year, and that is, the implementation of the Local Area Network (LAN). LAN is a system where the outgoing and incoming communications can be monitored, and for us to be proactive to the needs of our clients. The advent of LAN would help us erase the public perception that the government institutions are corrupt and are not responsive to the needs of the clients. By monitoring, we can immediately respond and at the same time act on whatever request.

Also, one of the important point I wanted to contribute to the province, is to correct the public perception that DLR people in Negros Oriental are corrupt. In fact, I have challenging the media people to provide us or show us an documentary evidence so that we can impose disciplinary action for those people who are doing overt activities. Recently, I have already re-activated our grievance committee to heed for this call.

Another is to continue with the “Back to Basics Training.” This is a continuous process where we are to update our MAROs, whom I believe are the front lines of this department, of the latest guidelines so that we can effectively implement the program.

We are also planning to conduct a one-day orientation with the PNP Chief of Police and the Deputy Chief of Police to encourage their support and participation.

Regarding support services, we will try to improve our performance by strengthening the effort of the staff. We will try to enhance the implementation specially the foreign assisted projects. Right now, we are implementing the World Bank project through ARCDP. I hope, one infrastructure project would be implemented before end of June.

To sum up, our actions right now is in response to the Secretary’s directive especially in Advocacy. As much as possible, we will try to improve more our publication so that we can effectively inform the public on the departments program. (Aileen Alaban)

 

FINAL EVALUATIN OF GSP COMMUNITY PROJECTS SET ON MAY 17

FINAL EVALUATIN OF GSP COMMUNITY PROJECTS SET ON MAY 17
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 06

A panel of national and regional evaluators for the Chief Girl Scout Medals Scheme Projects will arrive here on May 17, 2005 to conduct the final evaluation of three community projects of the Girl Scouts of the Philippines (GSP) Negros Oriental-Siqujor Council.

According to local GSP Executive Officer Rosario Rosales, three Senior Girl Scouts from Dauin National High School have undertaken community projects focusing on Ecology in Dauin town.

The said senior girl scouts are Daphne Abellon whose project is on Zero Waste Management, Claire Marie Partosa with her project focusing on Highway Beautification and Veronica Aragones with her project on Beautification of a Neglected Area.

The Chief Girl Scout Medal Scheme Award is the highest award a senior or cadet scout can achieve by working on a one-year community project, said local GSP Executive Officer Rosario Rosales.

 

FU COMPUTERIZES ENROLMENT SYSTEM

FU COMPUTERIZES ENROLMENT SYSTEM
Metro Post
May 15-21, 2005
Page 09

A computerized registration system that will only take a few minutes to enroll in particular courses will greet enrollees at Foundation University starting this academic year 2005 to 2006.

The University has also revised the registration system so that it’s fast, accurate, and user-friendly even to those will be logging on to computers for the first time.

“The new system will make enrolment here at FU relatively more convenient, and a stress-free experience,” stressed Eric M. Zerna, systems developer/programmer.

He explained the system is four easy steps:

1. A new/transferee student secures his/her ID number from the Admission Officer;
2. Student pays at the Business & Finance Office a down payment of P1,300 inclusive of a P300 down payment for the uniforms;
3. Student logs on to the Enrolment System using any available computer in the network in campus. Encode your ID number found on the Official Receipt;
4. Student gets a printed class schedule from the printing section at the LG Sinco IT Center.

 

HIGH SPEED INTERNET NOW POSSIBLE OUTSIDE DUMAGUETE

HIGH SPEED INTERNET NOW POSSIBLE OUTSIDE DUMAGUETE
Metro Post
May 08-14, 2005
Page 03

High speed internet might just have been a dream for the town of Valencia, Oriental Negros, had it not been for a new company which has introduced a 10 megabits-per-second wireless internet services for this town and nearby towns outside of Dumaguete City.

IT Outlook, a wireless internet provider, said they hope to provide the same—if not better—service to people who do not have immediate access to the established Internet Service Provides (ISPs).

For a one-time installation fee of P15,000, customers will no longer depend on telephone lines or cable connections to get fast internet access, said Sven Tore Sigvaldsen, one of IT Outlook’s business partners.

“It works! We now have a fast internet access that we hope would allow us to improve the delivery of basic services to our constituents,” said Earl Tale, Valencia municipal administrator. Until this time, the town had relied only on unstable or slower internet services through landlines.

Valencia, a popular eco-tourism destination in the province, is the only town in Negros Oriental which does not have access to the vaunted fiber optic cable network of negros Island.

The government of Oriental Negros has been positioning itself as a host of Information and Communication Technology-based businesses, largely due to this fiber optic network, which puts it at par with German communications technology.

Tale said that while their usage of the internet is currently confined to data gathering from websites of national government offices, they are looking into possibilities where they could put it to better use.

He said they will expand the internet’s potential as soon as Mayor Rodolfo Gonzales Jr. gets back from his trip to the United States.

Jose “Tuting” Uy, the general manager of IT Outlook, said that one unique feature of their product is that they do not require their customers to subscribe for a minimum period. “We give the customer the power to decide whether he or she would want to continue to patronize our services.”

IT Outlook has offices at Montemar Homes in Sibulan, Negros Oriental and at the old ACSAT building along Real Street in Dumaguete City, fronting the Negros Oriental State University.

 

SU GETS CHED NOD FOR SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

SU GETS CHED NOD FOR SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
Metro Post
May 08-14, 2005
Page 02

The Commission on Higher Education has approve the application of Silliman University for a School of Medicine in its Commission en banc meeting April 25.

This development authorizes Silliman to start offering the doctor of medicine program starting June this year.

A first in Oriental Negros, the SU School of medicine is now accepting its first batch of enrollees this May.

More information can be secured from Dr. Christopher Ablan at 422-6002 loc. 450 or at medschool@su..edu.ph

 

PNOC-EDC PROJECT CONTINUES DESPITE CANLAON VOLCANO THREAT

PNOC-EDC PROJECT CONTINUES DESPITE CANLAON VOLCANO THREAT
Metro Post
May 08-14, 2005
Page 03

Philippine National Oil Co. – Energy Development Corp. (PNOC-EDC) President Paul Aquino said the ongoing volcanic activity at Mt. Canlaon will have no effect on their geothermal project in northern Negros.

Aquino told reporters at the Palinpinon Geothermal Power Plant in Valencia, Negros Oriental over the weekend, said PNOC-EDC geologists have determined that the anomalies in Mt. Canlaon will not affect the Northern Negros Geothermal Project (NNGP) in Bago City.

The PNOC-EDC is drilling a geothermal well in Bago, which is expected to be pump in an additional 80 megawatts into the National Power Corp.’s Visayas Grid in 2006. Aquino said the contract for the NNGP was signed last January 31st and the civil and engineering work have already been done.

Some 95,200 residents of Canlaon City in Negros Oriental and residents of 32 Negros Occidental barangays in La Castellana, La Carlota Cit, Bago City, Murcia, San Carlos city, Moises Padilla have been told to get ready to evacuate to safer grounds should Canlaon Volcano explode.

A report from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology & Seismology (Philvolcs), however, said an eruption of the volcano was not imminent and the alert level was pegged at Alert Level 1, the lowest level on a five-level scale.

When an eruption is imminent, alert Level 4 is raised and when an eruption is in progress, the alert level is raised to alert Level 5.

However, the volcano continues to emit ash. Haze from the volcano’s ash emissions resulted in poor air visibility forcing airlines to cancel flights to Dumaguete, Bacolod, and Caticlan in Aklan last Tuesday, Flights were restored Wednesday.

Aquino also bared that the PNOC-EDC will start drilling for another 40 megawatts of steam in the town of Dauin, Oriental Negros, within the year. He said that the project was delayed because of the high expenses involved. “It costs US$1.5 million to drill one hole so we have to be very selective,” he said.

The PNOC had already drilled two holes in Dauin, which turned out to be acidic, or of no value.” All we know is that there is a potential for geothermal energy in Dauin town but we still do not know if we can use it.”

 

AUTOMATIC FARE SCHEME” IN A LIMBO

AUTOMATIC FARE SCHEME” IN A LIMBO
Metro Post
May 15- 21, 2005
Page 02

The Ordinance on the “automatic fare scheme”, claimed by the City Council as valid, is facing rough sailing as its implementation is now being questioned.

The City Council has decided that the matter will be forwarded to the City Legal Office for further study.

Councilor Samuel Dicen, principal author of the ordinance, agreed to the move of his colleagues. The “automatic scheme” ordinance on fare proposes that it should be commensurate to any increase in the prices of petroleum products in the City.

The first to publicly oppose to Dicen’s automatic scheme fare rate proposal was Mayor Augustin Perdices. The Mayor pointed out in a media interview that there’s no such thing as “automatic”. Any increase of fares shall be accordingly regulated, he said.

He said that Dicen ordinance will just “stir confusion” among the drivers and the riding public. (ES)

 

FU, SU HOST TERRA COTTA LECTURES, EXHIBITS, COMPETITION

FU, SU HOST TERRA COTTA LECTURES, EXHIBITS, COMPETITION
Metro Post
May 15 -21, 2005
Page 02

The Dumaguete City Tourism Council, in partnership with Mariyah Gallery, conducted the 1st Dumaguete Open Biennial Terra Cotta Ar Festival over the weekend.

The festival, envisioned as a “contributing factor in uplifting the local community’s awareness of the rich value of terra cotta,” was a fusion of the visual, the literary, and the music/performance arts.

Twenty artists from around the country created masterpieces out of terra cotta, a form of brownish-red clay, at the Luce Auditorium foyer on May 13.

Foundation University hosted the venue for the art exhibits and the lectures/workshops at the LG Sinco IT Center audio-visual rooms. Curator Bobi Valenzuela, and nationally recognized art experts Charlie Co and Leslie de Chavez conducted the lectures.

Included in the exhibit at the FU main campus lobby, and at the Community Center are artworks of the Hugis Art Group and of the aspiring artists who joined the Greyhound Summer Art Program.

The Dula sa Lapuk exhibit of terra cotta art will run at the Mariyah Gallery until May 16.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

 

MEDIA GOVERNANCE, MEDIA IN GOVERNANCE

Media Governance, Media in Governance
(A pooled editorial of concernced newspapers on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day on May 3rd)
May 01-07, 2005
Metro Post - Page 04

For all their arrogance and hubris, the philippine media have shown that they can rise above sensatinalist tendencies in tackling serious problems that threaten to erode the press as an institution of democracy.

The have begun to ask: What really is wrong with us? What can we do about it? How have we performed our role? Are we resonating with our public, or simply pandering to popular tastes?

The celebration of World Press Freedom Day on May 3 with the theme Media and Good Governance serves to affirm the reform efforts of journalists and media organizations, and ro remind them that good governance can flourish when there is good journalism.

The May 3 celebration should therefor be seen in the context of a Philippine media at a crossroads of sorts-- deliberating the true purpose of journalism without compromising the bottom-line.

Increasingly, journalists are recognizing one startling reality: there simply is no detached perch ourtside the current confused conditions from which the media can observe what may transpire, without themselves being party to either further exacerbatinbg the problems, or crafting possible solutions.

A series of island consultation workshops and the national forum on Media in Governance in December last year gave hournalists the opportunity to craft with business, the academe and civil society a media governance framework, together with a set of recommendations embodied in craft document called the Plaridel Declaration.

Likewise, Media Nation 2 in early 2005 provided the venue for identitying to-do's, taking off rom what Media Nation 1 in 2003 had exeamined as the State of Media. Both undertakings involved at one time or another the Phlippine Press Institute, the Kapisanan ng mga BrodKaster sa Pilipinas, media NGOs like the Asian Institute of Journalism & Communication, the Center for Community Journalism & Development, the Center for Media Freedom & Responsibility Center for Investigative Journalism Consortium, and the Women's Feature Service.

Many of these efforts were without much fanfare, but were nontheless concrete steps in paying the way for reforms to take place, and for media to effectively play their role in democracy.

These media issues and problems are not new. A 1977 media and communication workshop identifies aas critical concerns media content, credibility, bias, the lack of feedback mechanism for the public, monopolistic ownership structures, quality of information, prgramming, among others. These are the same ghosts that haunt the Philippine news media today.

To borrow a pharse from Bill Kovach and Tom Resentiel in The Elements of Journalism, "fact was belnding with fiction, news with entertainment, journalism with rumor". And that is only half of the story.

Perhaps it was also for want of heoric journalism with rumor". And that is only half of the story.

Perhaps it was also for want of heroic journalism -- the kind that says journalists and media organizations should engage people as citixens, provide the connection for public discussion to flourish, help citizens solve problems their role and to perchance excoriate the ghosts of the past.

What has been started still has a long distance to travel, and in taking that difficult road, we all have responsibility to open avenues that will allow journalists to examine what they are for, not only what they are against.

Unless all of us, journalists and citizens alike, claim "ownership" of the media, and demand from it the kind of journalism that will help us make the key decisions in governance and public life, we are doomed to resurrect the same media problems that were our bane more than three decades ago.

 

MAAYO SHIPPING INC. LAUNCHES LCT WILCOX

MAAYO SHIPPING INC. LAUNCHES LCT WILCOX
Metro Post
May 01-07, 2005
Page 08

Maayo Shipping Incorporated (MSI) has launched its fifth landing craft, the LCT Wilcox, in a private ceremony last Friday at the MSI port in barangay Tampi, San Jose town.

The commissioning and blessing of the ship was officiated by Bishop John Du.

The LCT Wilcox is named after Wilcox Matiao, one of the sons of the shipping company’s founders Martin and Anita Matiao.

The LCT Wilcox is the biggest ship in the MSI fleet and can accommodate up to seven 10-wheeler trucks and one prime mover with a 40-foot trailer.

The landing crafts of MSI ply 12 round trips daily between Tampi and Bato.

This comes on the heels of the announcement of Supercat that it was temporarily stopping its service to Dumaguete City starting May 2nd.

While saying that business was still good in Dumaguete City, Earl Versoza, Supercat Cebu Branch Manager, said many people prefer to travel to drive to Cebu, which can be done through the MSI facilities.

 

DAUIN WELCOMES PNOC PLAN TO DRILL NEW WELL

DAUIN WELCOMES PNOC PLAN TO DRILL NEW WELL
Metro Post
May 01-07, 2005
Page 02

The town of Dauin has approved the proposal of the Philippine National Oil Company to conduct initial drilling for a new geothermal well in the hinterland barangay of Magsaysay.

Mayor Rodrigo Alanano told newsmen recently that the drilling will cost 1 billion pesos.

The mayor said he welcomes the move of the energy firm. He said this is also beneficial to the town because the company started rehabilitating the roads going to the upland areas.

A site survey was already done by the government firm in the past year together with PNOC president Paul Aquino.

The mayor also said that as to the social acceptability of the program, the local council had endorsed the project and that farmers in the area are amenable to the project after several consultations.

If the project will be completed, PNOC can generate additional 20 megawatts of power.

The mayor said that PNOC committed to provide various forms of assistance for the town, which includes assistance for the farmers and poor folks in the area affected by the project.

Mayor Alanano said that he personally talked to several landowners within the site that will be included in the project.

He then give them talking points on the advantages and thus land owners agreed with the mayor.

Officials, land owners and farmers from barangay Magsaysay were given a tour by the PNOC to barangay Ticala in Valencia town, one of their exploration and drilling sites, for them to see the advantages.

The mayor expects that once the project will be operational, the town will benefit from the royalty fees and other subsidies from the firm.

Meanwhile, Agnes de Jesus, PNOC vice president for external relations, said they still have no definite schedule for the start of the Dauin project. “We are still looking at the technical and economic feasibility of Dauin,” she said in a text message.

De Jesus said the PNOC has reviewed their old data and they believe new exploration methods may be used to make a more accurate geoscientific profile. (Edmund Sestoso)

 

BAYAWAN TAPS CAPTAIN SPRING FOR SWIMMING LESSONS

BAYAWAN TAPS CAPTAIN SPRING FOR SWIMMING LESSONS
Metro Post
May 1-7, 2005
Page 02

Bayawan City – The city government here had taped the Captain’s Spring Park Resort for the five Saturday’s swimming and skin diving lessons it had sponsored.

Mayor German Sarana said that the said resort was considered by the local government unit because of its natural swimming lagoon.

The owner, Captain Amorsolo Jordan, the superintendent of the Negros Maritime College Foundation Incorporated in Sibulan said that they are continually updating their facilities.

He said that the resort had catered to retreats from schools and organizations for the past years and it had hosted several family picnics for the purpose.

He said that the management of the resort is closely coordinating with the trainors of the Local government unit to maximize whatever facilities they can offer.

The trainors are Faith Napigkit, James Geconcillo and Arwin Aban.

Mayor Sarana said that they will tap the resort in their next undertaking which will involved the rank and file employees as part of their benefit package program.

 

ACSAT FAST-TRACKS MT TRAINING

ACSAT FAST-TRACKS MT TRAINING
Metro Post
May 1-7, 2005
Page 02

Due to the high demand for medical transcriptionists in the Philippines, the Asian College of Science and Technology (ACSAT) has adopted a fast-track training, compressing the course, which takes several months, into only two months.

Reneseol Calumpang, the school directress, said that they will be pooling as much as 30 to 40 medical graduates for the fast track training, with classes from 8 a.m. to 5 pm. Monday through Fridays.

Calumpang said free lunch will be provided to the trainees and qualified applicants may be reimbursed their fees once they are absorbed by ACSAT medical transcription partner companies.

Calumpang said their partner medical transcription companies are the Pilipinas Data Contracts Corporation and Sribenet. Soon, ACSAT will also link up with SPI Technologies and MR link.

She said their training will focus more on practice than theory. (Edmund Sestoso)

 

NURSING SCHOOLS WANT TO TRAIN AT NOPH

NURSING SCHOOLS WANT TO TRAIN AT NOPH
Metro Post
Issue and Dates
May 1-7, 2005
Page 02


Two or more Nursing schools from other provinces want their students to be trained at the Negros Oriental Provincial Hospital.

The latest schools to express their intention to Governor George Arnaiz are the Andres Bonifacio College will be detailed and trained at the Talay Treatment and Rehabilitation Center while its surgical nursing students and that of the West Negros College will be at the NOPH.

The Negros Oriental Provincial Hospital is duly authorized by the Department of Health as a teaching and training agency. (ES)

 

NHI ANXIOUS OVER SILLIMAN-JOLLIBEE TIE-UP

NHI ANXIOUS OVER SILLIMAN-JOLLIBEE TIE-UP
Metro Post
My 1-7, 2005
Page 01

The National Historical Institute has expressed concern over a plan of Silliman University to construct a Jollibee fastfood. Drive-through outlet at the portion of the campus along the national highway.

In a letter, NHI Chairperson Ambeth Ocampo reminded SU President Dr. Agustin Pulido of a provision of Presidential Decree 1505 which states that any proposed alterations, modifications, or constructions in a declared historic site or structure should have the written approval of the NHI Chairperson.

The NHI, through Resolution No.7, had declared Silliman University as a historic site in 2002 at the height of the University’s campaign to stop the Philippine Ports Authority from pushing though with a plan to reclaim one hectare of the sea fronting the University to make a way for a fastferry terminal.

The NHI declaration of the University, especially the waterfront, as a historic landmark, had saved the University from losing its unique setting beside the sea.

Ocampo said the NHI is anxious over the planned drive-through outlet because this may affect the overall conservation of the university, “since historic sites not only include the historic structure but also its setting.”

Ocampo said proposed developments inside the University should consider and integrate the conservation of its historic university structure and its setting.

He also asked that the NHI be furnished the plans or designs of the proposed Jollibee building for review and study by the NHI technical staff.

Dr. Pulido, meanwhile, said he will only make a public pronouncement on the matter after he has replied to Ocampo’s letter. “I do not want the NHI Chairman to hear our position from other sources,” Pulido told the Metro Post.

Dr. Quintin S. Doromal, former Silliman president, was all praises for the NHI position. “I’m all for that, and complying with the NHI directive is the least we can do after their declaration saved Silliman from the PPA reclamation project,” Doromal said.

PD 1505 punishes any person who, without written permission from the NHI, destroys, modifies, alters, or repairs the original features of any national landmark with a prison term from one to five years, or a fine from P1,000 to P10,000.

In declaring Silliman University as a historical landmark, the NHI noted Silliman Institute’s role as the first American private university in the country.

It also said that many buildings on campus exemplify Philippine architecture in its various development stages during the American colonial period, and stand out today as notable representatives of vintage American period or pre-war architecture.

 

SUPERCAT STOPS DUMAGUETE-CEBU ROUTE

SUPERCAT STOPS DUMAGUETE-CEBU ROUTE
Metro Post
May 1-7, 2005
Page 01

After serving Dumaguete travelers for almost 10 years, Supercat will take a leave from the route, which commuters hope would not be too long. “We have to say goodbye muna for Dumaguete,” said Earl Versoza, Supercat Cebu branch manager, in a press briefing Tuesday at the Bethel GuestHouse.

Versoza explained that their stopping their Dumaguete voyages is only temporary and will only be until the last few months of this year. “This is something that we don’t want but we are forced to do.”

Supercat recently sold two of their vessels, leaving them with only three, which they will use to focus on their Iloilo-Bacolod, Calapan-Batangas and Cebu-Ormoc routes.

Supercat also serves the lucrative Cebu-Tagbilaran route but Versoza said that with the closure of their Dumaguete trips, Supercat will soon stop the Cebu-Tagbilaran trips.

Passengers taking the Cebu-Tagbilaran trips are increasing. “Tagbilaran is doing good in promoting its tourst spots so that’s bringing in the revenues for us,” Versoza said.

Personnel affected by the move have also been asked to “rest” for a while or were given the option of working with other Aboitiz sister companies, like the Superferry.

While emphasizing that their cash flow for the Cebu-Dumaguete route remained positive, Versoza revealed that the market had declined in the last five years as many passengers prefer to take the “land trip” bringing their cars to Cebu by loading them on board barges in Tampi, San Jose town which connects to Santander town in Cebu.

Passengers also have the option of taking a boat from Tampi to barangay Bato, Santander, where they will take a three-hour bus or V-hire ride to Cebu City. Ceres Liner has also introduced airconditioned bus services which take passengers from Cebu direct to Bayawan City, Negros Oriental, passing through Dumaguete.

The cost of fuel has also added to the Supercat’s woes. “The entire fastcraft industry is suffering from the fuel cost. The price of Diesoline has increased 120 percent since 2002. “If we increase the fare, the alternative modes of transportation become more attractive,” Versoza said.

Dumaguete Mayor Agustin Perdices said the Supercat move may not affect travel between Dumaguete and Cebu because there are several alternatives but it will be the Dumaguete-Tagbilaran passengers who will be more affected. He said a number of tourists who see Tagbilaran first before moving on to Dumaguete and Negros Oriental.

But Perdices said he was delighted to learn that Ocean Jet will resume their service between Cebu-Tagbilaran and Dumaguete starting Monday, May 2nd, the same day the Supercat stops.

Governor Goerge Arnaiz, for his part, sees this as an opportunity to encourage small airlines to try the Cebu-Dumaguete route. Philippine Airlines used to fly between Cebu and Dumaguete before the Supercat started its operations in 1996.

“I have instructed the Negros Oriental Investment Promotion Center to create a team to talk to small airlines to cover the Dumaguete-Cebu, Dumaguete-Bacolod and Dumaguete-Tagbilaran routes,” he said.

Arnaiz, who is chair of the Central Visayas Regional Development Council said they will also discuss this topic when the RDC meets in June in Tagbilaran.

“Meantime, we have to do something about it, also in my capacity as governor. I will also try to talk to the airlines

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