Comelec rethinks manual poll count Sec. Agra now back to fighting ...

Comelec rethinks manual poll count Sec. Agra now back to fighting ...

Comelec rethinks manual poll count Sec. Agra now back to fighting ...


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APRIL 27, 2010<br />


VOL. 111 NO. 194<br />

Villar ‘one big liar’ – Erap<br />

Enrile: Some<br />

PSE officers<br />

protecting<br />

NP candidate<br />


FORMER President Joseph “Erap”<br />

Estrada on Monday called his rival for<br />

the presidency, Sen. Manuel “Manny”<br />

Villar Jr. of the Nacionalista Party (NP),<br />

“one big liar” for “covering up” his alleged<br />

shady deals with the Philippine S<strong>to</strong>ck<br />

Exchange (PSE) involving the Villarcontrolled<br />

Vista Land and Lifescape (VLL).<br />

Estrada considered Villar’s “biggest<br />

lie” his denial of charges that he pressured<br />

PSE board members <strong>to</strong> lift the<br />

lock-up rule on s<strong>to</strong>cks of VLL in 2007<br />

when the NP standard-bearer was still<br />

Senate president.<br />

“The incontrovertible fact is that<br />

Mr. Villar did [pressure the board<br />

members] and the s<strong>to</strong>ck exchange<br />

gave in <strong>to</strong> his request,” Estrada said<br />

during a press conference at the headquarters<br />

of the Pwersa ng Masang<br />

Pilipino (PMP).<br />

He maintained that Villar showed<br />

➤ErapA2<br />

■ Nanay Curing,<br />

the mother of<br />

Sen. Manuel<br />

“Manny” Villar Jr.,<br />

appeals <strong>to</strong> critics<br />

<strong>to</strong> s<strong>to</strong>p spreading<br />

lies about her son<br />

from her<br />

residence in Las<br />

Piñas City on<br />

Monday.<br />

PHOTO BY<br />


Noynoy pads lead<br />

over Villar in survey<br />


WITH two weeks <strong>to</strong> go before election day, Sen. Benigno<br />

“Noynoy” Aquino 3rd has opened up a double-digit lead against<br />

closest rival, Sen. Manuel “Manny” Villar Jr., according <strong>to</strong> the<br />

latest survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS).<br />

The survey, commissioned by BusinessWorld and conducted<br />

from April 16 <strong>to</strong> 19, 2010, gave Aquino 38 percent, for a 12-<br />

percent lead over Villar’s 26 percent. Six percent of the 2,400<br />

respondents were undecided.<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong> <strong>rethinks</strong><br />

<strong>manual</strong> <strong>poll</strong> <strong>count</strong><br />

➤SurveyA2<br />




WITH only 14 days <strong>to</strong> go before the May 2010<br />

elections, the National Telecommunications<br />

Commission (NTC) assured that there is no<br />

Lakas members leaving Gibo pseudo supporters<br />


Humans must<br />

avoid contact<br />

with aliens<br />

■ Stephen<br />

Hawking<br />

LONDON: Aliens<br />

may exist but<br />

mankind should<br />

avoid contact<br />

with them as the<br />

consequences<br />

could be devastating,<br />

British<br />

scientist Stephen<br />

Hawking warned Sunday (Monday<br />

in Manila).<br />

“If aliens visit us, the outcome<br />

would be much as when Columbus<br />

➤AliensA2<br />

way <strong>to</strong> hack results of this year’s <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

“There’s no way <strong>to</strong> hack [the results] because<br />

it is a private network [that is behind<br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry’s first au<strong>to</strong>mated elections]. The<br />

network is encrypted,” Edgardo Cabarios,<br />

DAVAO CITY: A word war between Lakas-Kampi<br />

Christian Muslim Democrats (CMD) standard-bearer<br />

Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro and<br />

House Speaker Prospero “Boy” Nograles Jr.<br />

continued and chances of the two patching<br />

things up seemed remote.<br />

NTC direc<strong>to</strong>r of common carrier and authorization<br />

department, said on Monday.<br />

Cabarios added that even telecommunication<br />

companies, or telcos, have no k<strong>now</strong>ledge<br />

Nograles fanned the flame on Monday by<br />

saying that members of the ruling party,<br />

Lakas-Kampi CMD, would soon leave<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>. <strong>Agra</strong> <strong>now</strong> <strong>back</strong> <strong>to</strong> <strong>fighting</strong> mood<br />


WITHOUT a trace of his earlier admission<br />

that he was a cry baby, acting<br />

Justice <strong>Sec</strong>retary Alber<strong>to</strong> <strong>Agra</strong><br />

was in a <strong>fighting</strong> mood on Monday.<br />

He vowed that he would not succumb<br />

<strong>to</strong> political pressure and critical<br />

public opinion that called for his<br />

resignation in connection with his<br />

controversial resolution that absolved<br />

Acting DOJ chief cheated in law school<br />




IT’S not every day that you see<br />

➤FightingA6<br />

subordinates publicly criticizing their<br />

boss, which is what acting Justice<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>retary Alber<strong>to</strong> <strong>Agra</strong> is experiencing<br />

as government prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs assail his<br />

recent decision <strong>to</strong> absolve two<br />

➤NTCA2<br />

➤SupportersA6<br />

■ Two men help<br />

each other in<br />

posting election<br />

materials in Del Pan<br />

Street in Tondo,<br />

Manila, with barely<br />

14 days before the<br />

May 10 <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

PHOTO BY<br />


■ Acting Justice<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>retary<br />

Alber<strong>to</strong> <strong>Agra</strong><br />

during Monday’s<br />

flag-raising at<br />

the Department<br />

of Justice in<br />

Manila on<br />

Monday.<br />

PHOTO BY<br />


members of the Ampatuan clan over<br />

the grisly killings last November<br />

in Maguindanao.<br />

By all indications, <strong>Agra</strong> is not least<br />

➤CheatedA6<br />

THE Commission on Elections (<strong>Comelec</strong>) on Monday said that<br />

it needs more time <strong>to</strong> decide on whether it would conduct a<br />

parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> for the <strong>count</strong>ry’s first au<strong>to</strong>mated elections<br />

on May 10.<br />

It was reacting <strong>to</strong> a proposal from the elite Makati Business<br />

Club (MBC) for such <strong>count</strong>, whose implementation it said<br />

might be harder than it looked.<br />

James Jimenez, <strong>Comelec</strong> spokesman, referred concerned<br />

groups and citizens pushing for the <strong>manual</strong> tally <strong>to</strong> logistical<br />

E-mail: icdemain@yahoo.com<br />


➤ManualA2<br />

THERE’S a YouTube video going around that’s sure <strong>to</strong> catch<br />

attention because it features Sir Ben Kingsley. The respected ac<strong>to</strong>r<br />

plays a bank direc<strong>to</strong>r who’s held up in a carpark by a gang of<br />

hoods. Under threat of being mugged or worse, he coughs up<br />

money for a cause—the Robin Hood Tax campaign.<br />

The novel tax is the brainchild of celebrity-leaders who want <strong>to</strong><br />

turn “the crisis in the banks in<strong>to</strong> an opportunity for good in the<br />

world.” They propose that governments levy a tiny tax (0.005<br />

percent <strong>to</strong> start off) on the financial transactions of banks, hedge<br />

funds and other finance institutions. (Financial transactions<br />

conducted by individuals will be exempt.) When levied on the<br />

billions of dollars moving daily round the global finance system, it<br />

could raise hundreds of billions of dollars annually. The money would<br />

then be used for vital investments in healthcare and education, and<br />

<strong>to</strong> aid the fight against global poverty and climate change.<br />

Sir Ben is the latest <strong>to</strong> join the band of global celebrities who are<br />

supporting the Robin Hood Tax. The activists include business<br />

bigwigs George Soros and Warren Buffet; economists Jeffrey Sachs<br />

and Joseph Stiglitz; ethicist Peter Singer; and ac<strong>to</strong>rs Bill Nighy, Emma<br />

Thompson and Sienna Miller. UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown,<br />

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas<br />

Sarkozy have also batted for a tax on financial transactions.<br />

Why are banks in the crosshairs of these modern-day Robin<br />

Hoods? Because the world has suffered a major recession due <strong>to</strong><br />

the irresponsible acts of banks and financial institutions. The<br />

Robin Hood Tax will be a form of payment for the pain they caused,<br />

and a reminder for them not <strong>to</strong> do it again.<br />

REACH US AT:<br />

E-mail: newsboy1@manilatimes.net<br />

Tel. Nos.: 524-56-64 <strong>to</strong> 67<br />

Address: 371 A. Bonifacio Drive,<br />

Port Area, Manila 1018

A<br />

2<br />

news<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

54 percent of au<strong>to</strong>mated machines deployed<br />


WITH less than two weeks left<br />

before election day, the number<br />

of Precinct Count Optical Scan<br />

(PCOS) machines deployed nationwide<br />

has reached 41,817, a high-ranking official<br />

of the Commission on Elections (<strong>Comelec</strong>)<br />

said on Monday<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong> Commissioner Gregorio<br />

Larrazabal said that the figure ac<strong>count</strong>s<br />

for some 54 percent of the<br />

<strong>to</strong>tal election machines that must be<br />

deployed around the <strong>count</strong>ry for the<br />

first au<strong>to</strong>mated elections in the Philippine<br />

his<strong>to</strong>ry.<br />

“Delivery started in Visayas<br />

and Mindanao because they are<br />

farther. We will ship <strong>to</strong> Luzon<br />

during the few days before the<br />

elections,” Larrazabal said during<br />

a press conference.<br />

A report from the <strong>Comelec</strong><br />

showed that there are about<br />

35,279 PCOS machines deployed<br />

in hubs around Visayas and<br />

Mindanao while there are about<br />

6,538 in Luzon.<br />

The highest concentration of election<br />

machines is in Tacloban City,<br />

which ac<strong>count</strong>s for some 5,110<br />

PCOS units delivered by land.<br />

Most of the provinces received the<br />

PCOS units by sea through courier<br />

companies Ace Logistics for<br />

Mindanao and Argo Forwarders for<br />

Visayas. For Luzon, the <strong>poll</strong> body<br />

will make use of the services of<br />

Germalin Enterprises.<br />

Earlier, Aboitiz subsidiary 2Go<br />

Shipping Corp. <strong>back</strong>ed out from their<br />

deal with the joint venture of<br />

Smartmatic and Total Information<br />

Management (TIM) <strong>to</strong> ship the PCOS<br />

machines, ballots, ballots boxes and<br />

other election paraphernalia <strong>to</strong> different<br />

parts of the <strong>count</strong>ry.<br />

Big role for Smartmatic-TIM<br />

Smartmatic-TIM won the P7.2-billion<br />

<strong>poll</strong> au<strong>to</strong>mation project last<br />

year <strong>to</strong> supply some 82,200 PCOS<br />

machines. The joint venture was<br />

also tapped for the printing of the<br />

official ballots at the National Printing<br />

Office (NPO) in Quezon City<br />

and for the manufacturing of the<br />

ballot boxes.<br />

The Barbados-based firm is also<br />

the one responsible for the shipment<br />

of PCOS machines and other<br />

election paraphernalia <strong>to</strong> provinces<br />

nationwide.<br />

Based on the <strong>Comelec</strong> report, the<br />

following locations in the Visayas<br />

have received the PCOS machines:<br />

2,050 in Bacolod City; 3,208 in<br />

Iloilo City; 1,148 in Roxas City;<br />

3,063 in Cebu City; 1,327 in<br />

Tagbiliran City and 1,171 in<br />

Dumaguete City.<br />

For Mindanao, the breakdown is as<br />

follows: 1,738 in Zamboanga City;<br />

954 in Dipolog City; 4,218 in Cagayan<br />

de Oro City; 1,991 in Ozamis City;<br />

3,431 in Davao City; 1,750 in<br />

Cotaba<strong>to</strong> City; 1,975 in General<br />

San<strong>to</strong>s City; and 2,145 in Butuan City.<br />

In Luzon, the distribution<br />

breakdown is: 862 in Ilocos Sur;<br />

722 in La Union; 219 in Mountain<br />

Province; 30 in Batanes; 724 in<br />

Masbate; 289 in Romblon; 846 in<br />

Palawan, 1,093 in Legazpi City;<br />

and 343 in Catanduanes.<br />

Larrazabal said that some of the<br />

pre-printed official ballots are being<br />

shipped <strong>to</strong> different provinces<br />

like Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat,<br />

Agusan del Sur, Agusan del<br />

Norte, Zamboanga Sibugay, Bukidnon,<br />

Lanao del Sur, Palawan<br />

and Masbate.<br />

The NPO on Friday finished<br />

printing more than 50 million ballots<br />

for the May 10 <strong>poll</strong>s, two days<br />

before the self-imposed April 25<br />

deadline set by the <strong>poll</strong> body and<br />

Smartmatic-TIM.<br />

With another miles<strong>to</strong>ne put in<br />

place, <strong>Comelec</strong> Chairman Jose Melo<br />

said that it’s just a matter of time<br />

that successful au<strong>to</strong>mated elections<br />

will be staged in the <strong>count</strong>ry.<br />

The PCOS machines, which are<br />

s<strong>to</strong>red in a warehouse in Cabuyao,<br />

Laguna, will first be housed in provincial<br />

and city hubs before being<br />

delivered <strong>to</strong> <strong>poll</strong>ing precincts at least<br />

two days before election day.<br />

Larrazabal said that some<br />

PCOS units are s<strong>to</strong>red in the city<br />

treasurer’s office and in provincial<br />

offices “in areas where there are<br />

security concerns.”<br />

He added though that it would<br />

be easier for <strong>Comelec</strong> field officials<br />

<strong>to</strong> audit the PCOS machines<br />

if they can be delivered <strong>to</strong> regional<br />

hubs first before being deployed <strong>to</strong><br />

the <strong>poll</strong>ing centers.<br />

■ SURVEY FROM A1<br />

Noynoy pads lead<br />

Its margin of error was plus or<br />

minus 2 percent.<br />

The April survey showed a gain<br />

of one point for Aquino and a loss<br />

of two points for Villar compared<br />

<strong>to</strong> the previous SWS survey. That<br />

survey, conducted March 28 <strong>to</strong> 30<br />

and commissioned by House Minority<br />

Leader Ronaldo Zamora,<br />

gave Aquino, 37 percent and Villar,<br />

27 percent.<br />

Aquino’s running mate, Sen.<br />

Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd also continued<br />

<strong>to</strong> hold a substantial lead over<br />

his closest opponent at 39 percent.<br />

Mayor Jejomar Binay of Makati City<br />

(Metro Manila) over<strong>to</strong>ok Sen. Loren<br />

Legarda for second place, posting a<br />

25-percent rating compared <strong>to</strong><br />

Legarda’s 24 percent.<br />

In the latest survey, former President<br />

Joseph “Erap” Estrada remained at third<br />

with 17 percent, despite going down by<br />

two points compared <strong>to</strong> his previous rating.<br />

Administration candidate and<br />

■ NTC FROM A1<br />

NO WAY TO<br />



of the security code of the network.<br />

The election results will be transmitted<br />

<strong>to</strong> the central server of the<br />

Commission on Elections (<strong>Comelec</strong>),<br />

municipal canvasser, the<br />

server of the dominant minority<br />

party and that of the dominant majority<br />

party, citizens’ arm and the<br />

Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng<br />

Pilipinas.<br />

The NTC official, however, said<br />

that there is a possibility of delay in<br />

transmitting the data because of error<br />

in Internet connection.<br />

“But it [delay would only last for]<br />

minutes,” Cabarios added.<br />

Earlier, the telcos said that they<br />

would be using mobile GPRS and<br />

Digital <strong>Sec</strong>urity Line (DSL) <strong>to</strong> transport<br />

the election results from the<br />

Precinct Count Optical Scan (PC-<br />

OS) machines.<br />

Representatives of <strong>Comelec</strong> and<br />

the joint venture of Smartmatic and<br />

Total Information Management<br />

(TIM), along with Philippine Long<br />

Distance Telephone Co., Smart Communications<br />

Inc., Globe Telecom, We<br />

are I.T. Philippines Inc. and Digital<br />

Telecommunications (Digitel), earlier<br />

signed a deal <strong>to</strong> ensure accuracy<br />

in the <strong>count</strong>ing and transmitting of<br />

the votes.<br />

The agreement, under which the<br />

telcos will relay the results of the elections<br />

<strong>to</strong> the data and canvassing<br />

centers nationwide, is part of the<br />

P7.2-billion <strong>poll</strong> au<strong>to</strong>mation contract<br />

between Smartmatic and<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong>.<br />

Also earlier, Smartmatic said that<br />

70 percent of the <strong>count</strong>ry has a working<br />

mobile satellite.<br />

For areas with weak signals, it<br />

would be providing mobile satellite<br />

antennas, the Broadband Global Area<br />

Networks or BGANs.<br />

The lap<strong>to</strong>p-sized BGANs are easier<br />

<strong>to</strong> use than normal satellites, which<br />

are bulky and heavy, because they can<br />

be lugged around.<br />

Smartmatic-TIM, the <strong>poll</strong> body’s<br />

supplier of some 82,200 PCOS machines,<br />

said that it is set <strong>to</strong> deploy<br />

5,600 BGANs and 680 Very Small<br />

Aperture Terminals in 30 percent of<br />

the areas with unreliable signals.<br />

The PCOS machine is a paperbased<br />

voting system, wherein the<br />

marked ballot is fed in<strong>to</strong> a scanning<br />

machine that records and electronically<br />

tallies the votes. The results<br />

would then be au<strong>to</strong>matically transmitted.<br />

A PCOS machine covers<br />

about 1,000 voters.<br />

Smartmatic-TIM said that it has<br />

bought from the telcos some<br />

70,000 SIM cards that will be used<br />

for the elections.<br />

former Defense <strong>Sec</strong>retary Gilbert “Gibo”<br />

Teodoro gained three more points <strong>to</strong><br />

increase his rating <strong>to</strong> 9 percent<br />

Sen. Richard “Dick” Gordon and<br />

evangelist Eduardo “Brother Eddie”<br />

Villanueva each got 2 percent, good<br />

for fifth place.<br />

The other candidates had voter<br />

preference ratings of less than one<br />

percent each. They were Sen. Maria<br />

Consuelo “Jamby” Madrigal, Jesus<br />

Nicanor “Nick” Perlas and John<br />

Carlos “JC” de los Reyes.<br />

Aquino was the frontrunner in all<br />

geographical areas and socioeconomic<br />

classes in the latest SWS survey.<br />

He had 37 percent in the Balance<br />

of Luzon, 33 in Mindanao, 35 percent<br />

in Metro Manila and 46 in the<br />

Visayas. Villar had 25 percent in the<br />

rest of Luzon, 31 percent in<br />

Mindanao, 18 percent in Metro Manila<br />

and 25 percent in the Visayas<br />

Estrada lost points in all geographical<br />

areas—one point in both<br />

■ MANUAL FROM A1<br />

the Balance of Luzon (17 percent)<br />

and the Visayas (7 percent); and two<br />

points in Metro Manila (25 percent),<br />

and four in Mindanao (22 percent).<br />

Teodoro’s ratings improved in all<br />

areas—by five points in Metro Manila<br />

(10 percent), another four points each<br />

in the Balance of Luzon (9 percent) and<br />

the Visayas (11 percent) and a point in<br />

Mindanao (8 percent).<br />

In terms of socioeconomic classes,<br />

Aquino had 53 percent for a gain of<br />

eight points while Villar gained five<br />

with his 22 percent from the class<br />

ABC. Teodoro lost one (11 percent)<br />

and Estrada’s rating dropped by five<br />

(6 percent).<br />

Among the class D or masa<br />

(masses) class, Aquino’s rating remained<br />

unchanged (38 percent),<br />

Teodoro gained four (10 percent),<br />

while Villar (25 percent) and Estrada<br />

(16 percent) lost two points each.<br />

Among class E respondents,<br />

Estrada and Teodoro gained two<br />

points each (23 percent and 6 percent,<br />

respectively) while Aquino lost<br />

one (32 percent), and Villar’s rating<br />

remained unchanged (31 percent).<br />

In another survey conducted by<br />

Manual election <strong>count</strong><br />

■ ALIENS FROM A1<br />

and administrative fac<strong>to</strong>rs that the<br />

MBC proposal entails.<br />

“It’s not a simple matter of just<br />

saying, ‘we want <strong>to</strong> do this and, therefore,<br />

<strong>to</strong>morrow it will be done,’”<br />

Jimenez said.<br />

“Hindi i<strong>to</strong> simpleng bagay lamang.<br />

Sino ba naman ang may ayaw ng<br />

karagdagang seguridad? Sino ba naman<br />

ang may ayaw ng karagdagang validation<br />

dun sa resulta? Ngunit ang problema<br />

ay ang parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> ay isang<br />

masalimuot na activity na kailangan ng<br />

maraming elemen<strong>to</strong> na magtutugma para<br />

siya gumana ng maayos [The <strong>manual</strong><br />

<strong>count</strong> is not a simple matter. Who<br />

would reject tightened security for the<br />

votes? Who does not want additional<br />

validation of the results? The problem<br />

is that the parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> is a<br />

labyrinthine activity that requires<br />

many elements for it <strong>to</strong> work effectively],”<br />

he added.<br />

A fac<strong>to</strong>r that the <strong>Comelec</strong> has <strong>to</strong><br />

look in<strong>to</strong>, Jimenez said, is how the<br />

parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> would impact<br />

on other activities of the <strong>poll</strong> body<br />

for the Philippines’ first nationwide<br />

au<strong>to</strong>mated <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

The MBC proposed that members of<br />

the Board of Election Inspec<strong>to</strong>rs (BEIs)<br />

<strong>manual</strong>ly <strong>count</strong> the votes for the positions<br />

of president, vice president and any<br />

of these three local elective positions—<br />

governor, congressman or mayor.<br />

The parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> was<br />

proposed by the Information Technology<br />

(IT) community, which cited<br />

the Precinct Count Optical Scan<br />

(PCOS) machines having lost the<br />

necessary security measures such as<br />

digital signature and ultraviolet<br />

markings.<br />

“Even if it takes one hour or three<br />

more hours and some tens of millions<br />

of pesos, it [conduct of parallel<br />

<strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong>] is a step well worth<br />

taking because credibility is extremely<br />

important in these elections,”<br />

MBC Chairman Ramon del<br />

Rosario said.<br />

If the difference between the results<br />

of the <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> and the<br />

<strong>count</strong> by Precinct Count Optical Scan<br />

(PCOS) machines is 1 percent or less,<br />

the BEI can immediately transmit the<br />

results. But if the difference is more<br />

than 1 percent, then, the proposal is<br />

<strong>to</strong> request full <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> for all<br />

the elective positions.<br />

MBC Executive Direc<strong>to</strong>r Alber<strong>to</strong><br />

Lim said that the <strong>to</strong>lerance level of<br />

the errors is 1 per 20,000 ballots.<br />

In time and motion studies conducted<br />

by the business club, there<br />

will be three additional hours for<br />

conducting the parallel <strong>manual</strong><br />

<strong>count</strong>. If there are discrepancies in the<br />

ballots in a precinct, a full <strong>manual</strong><br />

<strong>count</strong> for that precinct will be conducted,<br />

giving an additional two days<br />

for the canvassing of votes.<br />

Financial aspect<br />

Lim said that they are not against the<br />

au<strong>to</strong>mated elections in May, they just<br />

want assurance that the PCOS machines<br />

will be accurate.<br />

The additional step for a parallel<br />

<strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> will cost an additional<br />

P500 million, much of which will be<br />

allocated for the extra hours put in<br />

by the BEIs.<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong> officials said that the financial<br />

aspect is not the main consideration<br />

since there are other fac<strong>to</strong>rs<br />

that the <strong>poll</strong> body must consider.<br />

The Philippine Bar Association<br />

said that it agrees with the MBC proposal<br />

for the parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong><br />

not just for three positions but five.<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong> Commissioner Gregorio<br />

Larrazabal said that the commission en<br />

banc would make a decision on the<br />

MBC proposal in the “next few days.”<br />

What a consumer group simply<br />

wants is for the <strong>Comelec</strong> <strong>to</strong> clarify<br />

whether the conduct of a parallel<br />

Manila Standard Today, the Aquino-<br />

Roxas tandem continued <strong>to</strong> dominate<br />

the pre-election <strong>poll</strong>s as both<br />

pulled in double-digit leads over<br />

their closest rivals.<br />

Aquino had 38 percent for a 15-<br />

percent lead over Villar’s 23 percent,<br />

while Roxas had 41 percent, Binay, 26<br />

percent and Legarda, 10 percent.<br />

LP campaign manager Florencio<br />

“Butch” Abad said that the results<br />

showed that Aquino’s message of<br />

good governance and vow <strong>to</strong> end the<br />

culture of impunity and corruption<br />

resonate above all else.<br />

“Voters also repose in Noynoy the<br />

trustworthiness and credibility <strong>to</strong> effectively<br />

deal with the deepening<br />

problem of corruption,” he added<br />

Aquino’s spokesman Edwin<br />

Lacierda said that the results of the<br />

two surveys showed that Villar had<br />

“failed <strong>to</strong> address the issues surrounding<br />

him.”<br />

“We hope that we will be able <strong>to</strong><br />

convince more people in the<br />

upcoming surveys with our good<br />

news of anti-corruption and delivery<br />

of basic services,” he added.<br />


<strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> is feasible.<br />

The <strong>poll</strong> body on Sunday reportedly<br />

said that “it was <strong>to</strong>o late <strong>to</strong> resort<br />

<strong>to</strong> a parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong>” but<br />

on Monday also reportedly said that<br />

“it had not ruled out the same.”<br />

“This is certainly confusing and it<br />

not only erodes the public’s confidence<br />

in the au<strong>to</strong>mated elections but<br />

also highlights <strong>Comelec</strong>’s lack of<br />

transparency with regard <strong>to</strong> its state<br />

of preparedness,” Raul Concepcion,<br />

Consumer and Oil Price Watch<br />

(COPW) chairman, said in a statement<br />

also on Monday.<br />

“This latest flip-flopping only reinforces<br />

COPW’s doubts that the au<strong>to</strong>mated<br />

elections will work,”<br />

Concepcion added.<br />

He said that the <strong>Comelec</strong> should<br />

immediately finish distributing some<br />

50 million ballots <strong>to</strong> the 77,000 clustered<br />

precincts and mailing sample<br />

ballots with precinct assignments<br />

that would guide voters.<br />

Concepcion added that the <strong>poll</strong><br />

body should assure the public that<br />

the 82,000 PCOS machines would<br />

work during the elections.<br />

During a radio interview also on<br />

Monday, Malacañang deputy spokesman<br />

Gary Olivar said that the parallel<br />

<strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong>, if allowed by the<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong>, will be useless since the law<br />

mandates that it is the results of the<br />

au<strong>to</strong>mated <strong>poll</strong>s that must be followed.<br />

“A parallel <strong>manual</strong> <strong>count</strong> will not<br />

help the stability of the elections. The<br />

au<strong>to</strong>mation of the coming elections<br />

is there precisely <strong>to</strong> address all the<br />

problems in a <strong>manual</strong> system,”<br />

Olivar added.<br />

Instead of criticizing the <strong>Comelec</strong><br />

in the conduct of the au<strong>to</strong>mated<br />

<strong>poll</strong>s, according <strong>to</strong> him, the public<br />

should support the <strong>poll</strong> body.<br />

“We have <strong>to</strong> make up our mind.<br />

Once we decide [on au<strong>to</strong>mation],<br />

let’s go ahead with it. Let’s support<br />

the <strong>Comelec</strong>,” he said.<br />





Humans must avoid contact with aliens<br />

landed in America, which didn’t turn<br />

out well for the Native Americans,”<br />

said the astrophysicist in a new<br />

television series, according <strong>to</strong> British<br />

media reports.<br />

The program depicts an imagined<br />

universe featuring alien life forms in<br />

huge spaceships on the hunt for<br />

resources after draining their own<br />

planet dry.<br />

“Such advanced aliens would<br />

perhaps become nomads, looking <strong>to</strong><br />

conquer and colonize whatever<br />

planets they can reach,”<br />

warned Hawking.<br />

The doomsday scenario is suggested<br />

in the series “In<strong>to</strong> the Universe with<br />

Stephen Hawking” on the Discovery<br />

Channel, which began airing in the<br />

United States on Sunday.<br />

On the probability of alien life<br />

existing, he said: “ To my mathematical<br />

brain, the numbers alone<br />

make thinking about aliens<br />

perfectly rational.”<br />

“The real challenge is <strong>to</strong> work out<br />

what aliens might actually be like.”<br />

Glowing squid-like creatures,<br />

herds of herbivores that can hang<br />

on<strong>to</strong> a cliff face and bright yellow<br />

preda<strong>to</strong>rs that kill their prey with<br />

stinging tails are among the<br />

creatures that stalk the scientist’s<br />

fantastical cosmos.<br />

Mankind has already made a<br />

number of attempts <strong>to</strong> contact<br />

extraterrestrial civilizations.<br />

In 2008, American space agency<br />

NASA beamed the Beatles song “Across<br />

the Universe” in<strong>to</strong> deep space <strong>to</strong> send<br />

a message of peace <strong>to</strong> any alien that<br />

happens <strong>to</strong> be in the region of<br />

Polaris—also k<strong>now</strong>n as the North<br />

Star—in 2439.<br />

But the his<strong>to</strong>ry of humanity’s<br />

efforts <strong>to</strong> contact aliens stretches <strong>back</strong><br />

some years.<br />

The US probes Pioneer 10 and 11<br />

were launched in 1972 and 1973<br />

bearing plaques of a naked man and<br />

woman, and symbols seeking <strong>to</strong><br />

convey the positions of the Earth and<br />

the Sun.<br />

Voyager 1 and 2, launched in 1977,<br />

each carry a gold-plated copper<br />

phonogram disk with recordings of<br />

sounds and images on Earth. AFP<br />

■ ERAP FROM A1<br />

Villar ‘one big liar’ – Erap<br />

»In The Manila Times<br />

up “unannounced” at a meeting of<br />

the PSE board when it was discussing<br />

the VLL s<strong>to</strong>cks issue. Senate President<br />

Juan Ponce Enrile echoed at the same<br />

press conference Estrada’s charge that<br />

Villar was a “liar.”<br />

“He is a big liar but a poor one at<br />

that,” said Enrile, who is running for<br />

reelection under Estrada’s ticket.<br />

Enrile claimed that Villar “pressured”<br />

the PSE members through a<br />

veiled threat. He said that during the<br />

meeting, Villar accused the direc<strong>to</strong>rs,<br />

who are mostly s<strong>to</strong>ckbrokers, that<br />

they themselves were violating the<br />

legal limitation on their shareholders<br />

in the exchange. In June 2007, the<br />

PSE exempted 29.28 percent of VLL<br />

shares from the lock-up provision<br />

and allowed the firm <strong>to</strong> sell shares<br />

in a second public offering.<br />

Estrada said that Villar lied when<br />

he did not disclose in his 2007 and<br />

2008 Statement of Assets and Liabilities<br />

and Net Worth (SALN) the<br />

P5-billion <strong>to</strong> P8-billion profit he<br />

and his wife allegedly made from<br />

the sale of their Vista Land stake.<br />

This apparent windfall, the former<br />

president said, was not shown in the<br />

SALN that Villar and his wife, Rep.<br />

Cynthia Villar, jointly filed.<br />

Villar’s lawyer, Nalen Rosero-<br />

Galang, said that Villar’s accusers were<br />

“recycling lies <strong>to</strong> save face” after both<br />

PSE and <strong>Sec</strong>urities and Exchange<br />

Commission said they did not change<br />

or bend any rules <strong>to</strong> allow the public<br />

listing of shares of VLL.<br />

Galang added that proceeds of the<br />

sale of the VLL shares are reflected in<br />

the books of the selling companies,<br />

“which explains why it is not reflected<br />

in the SALN of Sen. Villar.”<br />

She said that the PSE board did<br />

not grant the requested release from<br />

escrow despite Villar’s appearance<br />

before the board.<br />

“This shows that the PSE board was<br />

not influenced, much less pressured<br />

by Sen. Villar’s appearance before<br />

them. The PSE board allowed the release<br />

from escrow of the shares of one<br />

corporation because the board concluded<br />

that those shares were not subject<br />

<strong>to</strong> the lock-up requirement. Contrary<br />

<strong>to</strong> the allegations of Mr. Estrada,<br />

no waiver was granted by the PSE<br />

board,” Galang added.<br />

She cited a formal statement from<br />

the PSE that the VLL transaction was<br />

above board.<br />

“The PSE board earlier approved the<br />

public offering of Vista Land and in a<br />

subsequent meeting in 2007 clarified<br />

that the lock-up rule would not apply<br />

<strong>to</strong> the sale by existing shareholders<br />

owning less than 10 percent of the outstanding<br />

capital s<strong>to</strong>ck of the company<br />

at the time of the offering,” PSE Chairman<br />

Hans Sicat said in a statement.<br />

Galang hinted that Estrada has an<br />

ax <strong>to</strong> grind against Villar who, as<br />

then Speaker of the House of Representatives,<br />

was mainly responsible<br />

for his impeachment and Senate<br />

trial that eventually resulted in his<br />

overthrow in a military and police<strong>back</strong>ed<br />

civilian uprising in 2001.<br />

Enrile, however, was unimpressed<br />

by the PSE clearance of Villar. He<br />

said that the PSE board had executed<br />

“a very craftily and cleverly<br />

done cover-up” when it said that the<br />

Villar-owned Vista Land complied<br />

with existing rules and requirements<br />

for listing and public offering.<br />

“Shame on you and your ilk who sit<br />

at the board of the PSE,” Enrile added.<br />

He charged that some members<br />

of the board might have benefited<br />

from the allegedly irregular share<br />

sale so they are protecting Villar.<br />

PSE intimidated<br />

Enrile said those PSE board members<br />

were intimidated because they<br />

also had the problem of violating<br />

the bourse’s rule of having only a<br />

few s<strong>to</strong>ckbrokers on the board.<br />

He challenged the board <strong>to</strong> declare<br />

as fake the minutes of a June<br />

2007 PSE board meeting that he<br />

used as basis for his accusations.<br />

“I dare the PSE board <strong>to</strong> say that the<br />

copies of the minutes of their meetings<br />

I am holding are fake and if so produce<br />

before the public [its] own version of<br />

the minutes so that they [public] can<br />

judge who is telling the truth and who<br />

[is] covering up,” Enrile said.<br />

Villar earlier dismissed the accusations<br />

as black propaganda that he<br />

used his influence <strong>to</strong> manipulate the<br />

s<strong>to</strong>ck market and secure special treatment<br />

for his companies. He and his<br />

lawyer challenged Estrada and Enrile<br />

<strong>to</strong> sue him and let the courts decide if<br />

he committed any crime or not.<br />

Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino<br />

3rd, the candidate for president of<br />

the Liberal Party (LP), also did not<br />

escape the ire of Pwersa ng Masang<br />

Pilipino (PMP).<br />

The LP supposedly had also received<br />

reports of Villar’s alleged undue<br />

influence on PSE board members<br />

but did not reveal them because they<br />

wanted <strong>to</strong> verify the reports first.<br />

Lawyer JV Bautista, PMP sena<strong>to</strong>rial<br />

candidate, said at the same press<br />

conference that Aquino did not<br />

seem <strong>to</strong> have moral courage.<br />

“He knew about this all along, but<br />

he reportedly lacked proof. He wants<br />

someone else <strong>to</strong> do the work for him.<br />

He needs <strong>to</strong> find moral courage <strong>to</strong> stand<br />

up and fight,” Bautista added.<br />



April 27, 1987<br />

Jealous husband stabs wife<br />

A JEEPNEY driver stricken by jealousy stabbed and wounded his estranged wife<br />

while she was about <strong>to</strong> enter a Protestant chapel near Taft Avenue in the company<br />

of another man. The woman, Alfonsa Villareal, 32, was then about <strong>to</strong> enter the<br />

Bethel Temple with Teody Antipalo, her present live-in partner. She suffered a deep<br />

knife wound in the <strong>back</strong> of her right hand and was treated at the Philippine General<br />

Hospital. The knife wielder was Wilfredo Vasquez, 34, of Malabon.<br />

April 27, 1946<br />

Two men killed; slayers hunted<br />

MARIANO ESTRELLA SANTIAGO, 23 in charge of the Hacienda Zapanta, in<br />

Novaliches, Rizal, was shot and killed by unk<strong>now</strong>n men who ambushed him on<br />

barrio Pulong Malalim. Diong Javier, former boxer, was shot and killed early<br />

morning while walking on Velasquez Street, Tondo, near the tenement houses<br />

by seven men who were in a jeep.<br />

April 27, 1905<br />

Chief constabulary <strong>back</strong> from Samar<br />

BRIGADIER General Henry Allen, chief constabulary, returned from Samar on<br />

the coastguard cutter Leyte. While he refuses <strong>to</strong> make any definite statement<br />

concerning the matter, it is generally believed that General Allen will not<br />

return <strong>to</strong> Samar, but that the pacification of the turbulent southern island will<br />

be left in the hands of Gov. George Curry.

Land distribution issue<br />

hounds Mr. Palengke<br />

RODRIGUEZ, Rizal: The 1,030 tenants of<br />

Hacienda Araneta in Mascap, a village<br />

in Montalban, Rizal, called on<br />

Sen. Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd <strong>to</strong><br />

urge his mother, Judy Araneta Roxas,<br />

<strong>to</strong> drop opposition <strong>to</strong> the distribution<br />

of the land placed under <strong>Agra</strong>rian<br />

Reform program 38 years ago.<br />

Felipe Jalago, spokesman for the<br />

farmer-beneficiaries of Hacienda<br />

Araneta, <strong>to</strong>ld a press conference that<br />

the group has challenged Roxas <strong>to</strong><br />

<strong>back</strong> his claim of being a champion<br />

of the masses and farmers.<br />

Jalago said most of the farmers<br />

have remitted <strong>to</strong> the Land Bank the<br />

full payment for the land that was<br />

granted <strong>to</strong> them in 1972 under<br />

Presidential Decree 27, which provides<br />

for au<strong>to</strong>matic transfer of the<br />

land <strong>to</strong> the farmers.<br />

Moreover, the farmers have been<br />

paying land taxes since that time.<br />

“We already hold certificates of full<br />

payment and certificates of land tax<br />

payments,” Jalago said.<br />

He added the land could not be<br />

distributed <strong>to</strong> them because the<br />

Aranetas had petitioned for the conversion<br />

of the land in<strong>to</strong> commercialresidential<br />

area, which was denied by<br />

then <strong>Agra</strong>rian Reform secretary and<br />

<strong>now</strong> Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago.<br />

Instead, Santiago ordered the immediate<br />

placement of 7.5 hectares of<br />

the Hacienda Araneta under <strong>Agra</strong>rian<br />

Reform. She later expanded the land<br />

reform coverage <strong>to</strong> 1,266 hectares with<br />

a <strong>to</strong>tal offered price of P3.3 million.<br />

The Aranetas raised the issue <strong>to</strong><br />

nation<br />

inbrief<br />

■ CIVIL Service Commission<br />

Chairman Francisco Duque Jr.<br />

and Health <strong>Sec</strong>retary Esperanza Cabral are<br />

<strong>now</strong> off the hook following the dismissal<br />

of the case against them by the Office of<br />

the Ombudsman for failure of the<br />

complainants <strong>to</strong> substantiate their<br />

allegations of irregularities in the<br />

distribution of medicines. The three-page<br />

ruling of the anti-graft body, approved<br />

by Ombudsman Maria Merceditas<br />

Navarro Gutierrez, junked the case<br />

against the two officials on recommendation<br />

of investiga<strong>to</strong>r-on-case<br />

Maria Laarni Pellesco and OIC-Team<br />

Leader Janice Baltazar. JOMAR CANLAS<br />

■ MAYOR Jun Bernabe of<br />

Parañaque has announced the job<br />

fairs that will be held in different<br />

branches of the SM Supermarket, SM City<br />

Sucat and D.M. Consunji. Positions for<br />

college graduates and undergraduates<br />

will be available including clerk-cashiers,<br />

sales clerks, utility and s<strong>to</strong>ck clerks, office<br />

assistants, inven<strong>to</strong>ry assistants and gift<br />

wrapping staff at SM, while skilled<br />

technical, office and supervisory positions<br />

are available at the D.M. Consunji Inc.<br />

Applicants must submit their resume and<br />

supporting papers <strong>to</strong> PESO-PLRMO at the<br />

Simplicio Cruz Compound in Barangay<br />

San Isidro (beside Uniwide Sucat). The<br />

deadlines for submission of applications<br />

and pre-employment requirements is on<br />

April 28 for SM-Sucat open positions and<br />

April 29 for D.M. Consunji Inc.<br />


■ TOMOCHIKA UYAMA, Minister for<br />

Economic Affairs of the Embassy<br />

of Japan in the Philippines, disclosed that<br />

the 92 Filipinos under the Japan-<br />

Philippines Economic Partnership<br />

Agreement who failed the recent 99th<br />

Japan National Nursing Exam the<br />

examinees still have two chances <strong>to</strong> pass<br />

the exam. For this purpose, the Japanese<br />

government may grant extensions of their<br />

temporary stay. The lone Filipino passer,<br />

Ever Gammed Lalin, has been assigned <strong>to</strong><br />

work at the Ashikaga Red Cross Hospital<br />

in Tochigi Prefecture located in the<br />

Kan<strong>to</strong> Region. LLANESCA T. PANTI<br />

Dear PAO,<br />

I am 32 years old and a Filipino<br />

citizen. My French husband<br />

and were married in the Philippines<br />

in February 2005. I <strong>now</strong> live<br />

in France as a permanent resident.<br />

My husband wants <strong>to</strong> adopt<br />

my illegitimate son who is in<br />

Bicol under the care of my<br />

mother. My son is using my<br />

maiden name, but at the <strong>back</strong> of<br />

his birth certificate, his biological<br />

father signed his ack<strong>now</strong>ledgment<br />

of paternity. My son’s father<br />

is willing <strong>to</strong> give his consent <strong>to</strong><br />

the adoption. Is it possible <strong>to</strong> file<br />

an adoption there in the Philippines<br />

even if we are here in France?<br />

Is it RA 8552 (Domestic Adoption)<br />

or RA 8043 (Inter-Country Adoption)<br />

that is applicable <strong>to</strong> our case?<br />

Where are we going <strong>to</strong> file the Petition<br />

for Adoption since we are<br />

residing in France? What are the<br />

requirements?<br />

Richelle<br />

the Court of Appeals and, later, <strong>to</strong><br />

the Supreme Court, where the case<br />

has languished for years.<br />

“We appeal <strong>to</strong> you [Roxas], your<br />

mother and the Aranetas not <strong>to</strong> pursue<br />

the case anymore so that we can<br />

<strong>now</strong> truly own the land,” said Jalago,<br />

noting that the sena<strong>to</strong>r depicts himself<br />

as the defender of the poor and<br />

the oppressed. “You can remove our<br />

apprehension for the future.”<br />

Families of the farmers trooped<br />

<strong>to</strong> the Roxas family home in the<br />

Araneta Center, Cubao, Quezon<br />

City, before proceeding <strong>to</strong> the Department<br />

of Agarian Reform and the<br />

Supreme Court and <strong>to</strong> see Sen.<br />

Loren Legarda <strong>to</strong> ask for their help<br />

in getting the land.<br />

The farmers who have been going<br />

<strong>to</strong> radio stations <strong>to</strong> air their plight<br />

include Estelamarie Quimzon,<br />

Rosanna Masagnay, Lita Mariano,<br />

Zenaida Soriano and Felipe Halago.<br />

Earlier, protesting farmers in the<br />

sprawling hacienda owned by the family<br />

of Liberal Party presidential bet Sen.<br />

Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino 3rd called<br />

on the High Court <strong>to</strong> act on their claims<br />

<strong>to</strong> the 6,453-hectare sugar plantation.<br />

Members of the , Alyansa ng mga<br />

Manggagawang Bukid sa Hasyenda<br />

Luisita, United Luisita Workers Union<br />

(ULWU) and Alyansa ng mga<br />

Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luzon<br />

asked the High Tribunal <strong>to</strong> lift its<br />

four-year temporary restraining order<br />

against the distribution of the<br />

plantation <strong>to</strong> 10,000 farmerbeneficiaries.FRANCIS<br />


news<br />

Adopting an illegitimate child<br />

A<br />

3<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

Lawmaker slams Defense’s<br />

‘midnight shopping’ spree<br />

DOH vaccination program<br />


The Department of Health has put in place a vaccination program for its workers at the DOH-<br />

NCR office in Mandaluyong City in a bid <strong>to</strong> lead the fight against HIV-AIDS virus in the<br />

Philippines. More than 200 DOH employees were vaccinated on the first day of the program.<br />

GENERAL SANTOS CITY: Police and military<br />

troops in nearby Sarangani<br />

nabbed early Monday morning four<br />

armed men on board two vehicles,<br />

one of which was reportedly owned<br />

by Jinkee Pacquiao, wife of boxing<br />

icon and congressional aspirant<br />

Manny Pacquiao.<br />

The men were allegedly hunting<br />

down the municipal mayor of the<br />

vote-rich coastal <strong>to</strong>wn of Glan.<br />

Pacquiao, reportedly the frontrunner<br />

for the congressional seat in<br />

Sarangani, has dismissed the report<br />

as a ploy by his political opponents<br />

<strong>to</strong> tarnish his image before Sarangans.<br />

Media releases from the provincial<br />

information office of Sarangani said<br />

the local police and elements of the<br />

Army’s 73rd Infantry Battalion nabbed<br />

the suspects following information<br />

that they were out <strong>to</strong> ambush incumbent<br />

Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap in<br />

Sitio Tamparan, Barangay Pangya.<br />

Sr. Supt. Resti<strong>to</strong> Gatera, Sarangani<br />

police provincial direc<strong>to</strong>r, identified<br />

Dear Richelle,<br />

The law applicable <strong>to</strong> your case is<br />

Republic Act 8552, or the Domestic<br />

Adoption Act of 1998. As <strong>to</strong> your<br />

query whether it is possible <strong>to</strong> file an<br />

adoption here in the Philippines even<br />

if you and your French husband are<br />

in France, the law requires that in addition<br />

<strong>to</strong> the minimum requirements<br />

provided by <strong>Sec</strong>tion 7(a) of the Domestic<br />

Adoption Law, your husband<br />


THERE may not be anything illegal<br />

in the plan of the Department of<br />

National Defense <strong>to</strong> buy modern<br />

equipment for the Armed Forces of the<br />

Philippines, but the timing is off and bad<br />

for the soldiers’ morale, Nacionalista Party<br />

(NP) sena<strong>to</strong>rial candidate Ramon “Mon-<br />

Mon” Mitra said on Monday.<br />

Mitra, a bemedalled Marine officer<br />

and graduate of the Philippine<br />

Military Academy, said the<br />

controversy generated by the plan<br />

of Defense <strong>Sec</strong>retary Norber<strong>to</strong><br />

Gonzalez <strong>to</strong> modernize the Army<br />

is harming the confidence of the<br />

soldiers in the field.<br />

“The DND secretary may think<br />

that we Filipinos are k<strong>now</strong>n <strong>to</strong> be<br />

good in the ‘last-two-minute’ decisions,<br />

but I am sure he k<strong>now</strong>s <strong>to</strong>o<br />

the suspects as Jimmy Mier, 39, a resident<br />

of Zamboanga del Sur; Alfredo<br />

Macabayao of unk<strong>now</strong>n address,<br />

Fredie Mendez and Ronald Elorde,<br />

both of Barangay Calumpang, General<br />

San<strong>to</strong>s City.<br />

Police recovered from the suspects’<br />

vehicles one unit of M-16 armalite<br />

with live ammunitions, one .45-<br />

caliber pis<strong>to</strong>l bearing serial number<br />

90100978 with steel magazine and 18<br />

live ammunitions placed. The guns<br />

were found inside a pair of combat<br />

boots at the <strong>back</strong> portion of the white<br />

Toyota Hi-Ace van driven by Elorde.<br />

Yap said he was onboard his vehicle<br />

when he was waylaid by the<br />

group, but he managed <strong>to</strong> escape<br />

and called for police <strong>back</strong>-up.<br />

Pacquiao said he had been expecting<br />

such scenarios following the result<br />

of the recent survey that showed<br />

he was leading his opponent Roy<br />

Chiongbian by 30 <strong>to</strong> 70 percent.<br />

“Everybody k<strong>now</strong>s that I am a<br />

God-fearing person. They also k<strong>now</strong><br />

must come <strong>to</strong> the Philippines and establish<br />

his residence here in the Philippines<br />

for at least three (3) continuous<br />

years prior <strong>to</strong> the filing of the application<br />

for adoption and should<br />

maintain such residence until the<br />

adoption decree is entered.<br />

Furthermore, it is also required by<br />

law that France, the <strong>count</strong>ry of your<br />

husband, has diplomatic relations with<br />

the Republic of the Philippines and that<br />

you husband has been certified by his<br />

diplomatic or consular office or any<br />

appropriate government agency that he<br />

has the legal capacity <strong>to</strong> adopt in his<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry, and that his government allows<br />

the adoptee (your illegitimate son) <strong>to</strong><br />

enter his <strong>count</strong>ry as his adopted son<br />

(<strong>Sec</strong>tion 7[b], Domestic Adoption Act).<br />

The court may dispense of residency<br />

requirement and certification<br />

of an alien’s qualification <strong>to</strong> adopt in<br />

his <strong>count</strong>ry if your son were a legitimate<br />

child. But since the law allows<br />

an illegitimate child <strong>to</strong> be adopted by<br />

a qualified adopter <strong>to</strong> improve the<br />

child’s status <strong>to</strong> that of legitimacy<br />

that in the military ‘last-twominute’<br />

preparations are not appreciated<br />

in the ranks,” Mitra said.<br />

He questioned the “midnight<br />

shopping” as the Armed Forces modernization<br />

program has long been<br />

delayed anyway. The stalled program<br />

started during the administration of<br />

President Fidel V. Ramos, kicked off<br />

by the privatization of a large portion<br />

of Fort Bonifacio.<br />

“It’s two more weeks [before<br />

Sarangani police link PacMan <strong>to</strong> suspected assassins<br />

who are those who kept on claiming<br />

Sarangani as their political terri<strong>to</strong>ry,”<br />

Pacquiao said in Filipino<br />

during a press briefing at his mansion<br />

in General San<strong>to</strong>s City.<br />

Meanwhile, Michael Abas, Commission<br />

on Elections direc<strong>to</strong>r for Central<br />

Mindanao, said he is waiting the<br />

formal complaint from barangay officials<br />

of Malabod, a k<strong>now</strong>n Pacquiao<br />

political bailiwick in the mountainous<br />

part of Malungon <strong>to</strong>wn, who were<br />

reportedly “harassed” at early dawn<br />

by soldiers of the 73rd Infantry Battalion<br />

last week.<br />

Reports stressed soldiers loaded<br />

on an Army truck came as an advance<br />

security group <strong>to</strong> Sarro officials<br />

who were <strong>to</strong> hold a political<br />

rally at about 10 a.m. in the area.<br />

Col. Rainer Cruz, in a media interview,<br />

said he would investigate<br />

the reported incident and press appropriate<br />

action against any soldier<br />

who would be found guilty of harassing<br />

civilians. ISAGANI P. PALMA<br />

(<strong>Sec</strong>tion 8[c], Domestic Adoption<br />

Act), you may adopt your illegitimate<br />

son in order for your son <strong>to</strong> be raised<br />

<strong>to</strong> the status of a legitimate child. But<br />

still you have <strong>to</strong> come <strong>to</strong> the Philippines<br />

and file the Petition for Adoption<br />

with the Family Court of the<br />

province or city where you reside.<br />

After a decree of adoption is issued<br />

in your petition, then your husband<br />

may file a petition <strong>to</strong> adopt your <strong>now</strong><br />

legitimate son without the need of<br />

establishing his residence in the Philippines<br />

and without submitting the<br />

required certification from his consulate.<br />

However, he must still come<br />

<strong>to</strong> the Philippines <strong>to</strong> file the petition<br />

and <strong>to</strong> attend hearing of the case.<br />

We hope that we were able <strong>to</strong> enlighten<br />

you on the matter.<br />

Edi<strong>to</strong>r’s note: Dear PAO is a daily column<br />

of the Public At<strong>to</strong>rney’s Office.<br />

Questions for Chief Acosta may be sent<br />

<strong>to</strong> dearpao@manilatimes.net or via text<br />

message (key in: Times dearpao and send <strong>to</strong> 2299).<br />

elections] and we will have a new<br />

commander-in-chief [in June], the<br />

soldiers can wait especially that<br />

they already have enough worries<br />

on their plates,” Mitra said, referring<br />

<strong>to</strong> rumors of failure of elections<br />

and the heightened security<br />

needed in critical areas.<br />

He said that instead of “rushing”<br />

<strong>to</strong> buy military equipment,<br />

the Defense department should<br />

focus on ensuring that the military<br />

has “solid and fool-proof” strategies<br />

<strong>to</strong> maintain safety, peace and<br />

order for the elections.<br />

No media interview<br />

for Querubin<br />

Meanwhile, the NP said on Monday<br />

that Marine Col. Ariel<br />

Querubin was being deprived of<br />

his fundamental right <strong>to</strong> free<br />

speech and access <strong>to</strong> media when<br />

the Armed Forces denied the request<br />

of GMA 7 <strong>to</strong> interview him<br />

at this detention cell.<br />

“It seems that Ampatuan is in a<br />

THE Commission on Elections<br />

(<strong>Comelec</strong>) on Monday junked the<br />

petition <strong>to</strong> disqualify former Senate<br />

President Franklin Drilon from<br />

running in the 2010 sena<strong>to</strong>rial race,<br />

citing lack of merit.<br />

In a nine-page resolution, the <strong>poll</strong><br />

body first division moved <strong>to</strong> dismiss<br />

the disqualification case since there<br />

is no doubt on the eligibility of<br />

Drilon’s candidacy for the Senate.<br />

“It has been shown that Drilon<br />

had a hiatus of three years since his<br />

second consecutive term as sena<strong>to</strong>r.<br />

Consequently, there can be no<br />

doubt as <strong>to</strong> his eligibility <strong>to</strong> run for<br />

a senate seat in the 2010 national<br />

elections,” the resolution said.<br />

Drilon served as sena<strong>to</strong>r from 1995<br />

<strong>to</strong> 2001 and again from 2001 <strong>to</strong> 2007.<br />

Earlier, Vladimir Alarique<br />

Cabigao filed a petition <strong>to</strong> cancel<br />

the certificate of candidacy of<br />

Drilon, saying that the former senate<br />

president has already served two<br />

consecutive terms as sena<strong>to</strong>r and<br />

cannot be allowed <strong>to</strong> run for another<br />

since he has only been absent<br />

from the senate floor for three years.<br />

Under <strong>Sec</strong>tion 4 Article 6 of Constitution,<br />

“the term of office of the<br />

sena<strong>to</strong>rs shall be six years,” and<br />

therefore means that Drilon’s threeyear<br />

hiatus cannot be <strong>count</strong>ed as<br />

one term, the resolution said.<br />

The <strong>poll</strong> body first division, which<br />

is headed by <strong>Comelec</strong> Commissioner<br />

Rene Sarmien<strong>to</strong>, however, moved <strong>to</strong><br />

dismiss the case in the merit of Father<br />

Joaquin Bernas’ argument.<br />

“Does the limitation on number<br />

of elections mean that a sena<strong>to</strong>r who<br />

has served two consecutive terms<br />

must wait for six years before he can<br />

run again for the senate? The answer<br />

given <strong>to</strong> this question was that a<br />

sena<strong>to</strong>r could run again three years<br />

after the expiration of his second<br />

term,” Bernas, one of the framers of<br />

the Philippine Constitution, said.<br />

Disqualification move<br />

against Vilma<br />

Meanwhile, concerned citizens and<br />

lawyers trooped <strong>to</strong> <strong>Comelec</strong> on Monday<br />

<strong>to</strong> file a disqualification case<br />

against incumbent Gov. Vilma San<strong>to</strong>s<br />

Rec<strong>to</strong> of Batangas for allegedly violating<br />

pertinent election laws on<br />

better position despite the crimes<br />

he supposedly committed because<br />

he is allowed <strong>to</strong> accommodate media<br />

interviews and was able <strong>to</strong><br />

hold a press conference,” the NP<br />

said in a statement.<br />

The Armed Forces of the Philippines,<br />

in its letter of regret, cited<br />

the prohibition of the military<br />

against engaging in any partisan<br />

political activity. The NP said the<br />

Armed Forces seemed <strong>to</strong> be following<br />

a double standard because it<br />

allowed another sena<strong>to</strong>rial candidate,<br />

obviously referring <strong>to</strong> Gen.<br />

Danny Lim of the Liberal Party, <strong>to</strong><br />

hold TV, radio and print interviews<br />

in his detention facility. Both<br />

Querubin and Lim are facing the<br />

same court martial case for alleged<br />

involvement in the 2006 Marine<br />

standoff.<br />

“As a candidate of a democratic<br />

society, Col. Querubin has every<br />

right <strong>to</strong> be heard by the elec<strong>to</strong>rate<br />

on his views, plans and platforms<br />

for the <strong>count</strong>ry,” NP said.<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong> junks disqualification<br />

case vs. Drilon; Vilma scored<br />

THE Philippine National Police<br />

(PNP) can no longer accommodate<br />

inmates, has sought the court intervention<br />

for the transfer of “Morong<br />

38” <strong>to</strong> the Rizal Provincial Jail because<br />

the agency’s cus<strong>to</strong>dial center could no<br />

longer accommodate more inmates.<br />

PNP spokesman Chief Supt.<br />

Leonardo Espina said the PNP could<br />

accommodate the group since doing<br />

so would place them under subhuman<br />

conditions.<br />

Espina said the PNP headquarters<br />

support service has sent a request <strong>to</strong><br />

the Supreme Court administra<strong>to</strong>r <strong>to</strong><br />

order the lower courts <strong>to</strong> s<strong>to</strong>p issuing<br />

commitment orders at the PNP<br />

cus<strong>to</strong>dial center.<br />

In its five-page omnibus motion<br />

filed before the Branch 78 of the<br />

Regional Trail Court of Morong,<br />

Rizal, the PNP further said the Rizal<br />

Provincial Jail is much nearer <strong>to</strong> the<br />

court than Camp Crame.<br />

poster size and common poster areas.<br />

Lawyers Ferdinand Topacio, Gilbert<br />

Macatangay and Arth Jhun<br />

Marasigan said that the actressturned-politician<br />

has violated “existing<br />

laws and rules regulating the<br />

use of election materials, particularly<br />

on the proper sizes and places<br />

of posting [campaign posters].”<br />

In the complaint, the lawyers said<br />

that Governor Rec<strong>to</strong> has erected billboards<br />

and posters—that go beyond<br />

the allowed poster size of two by 3<br />

feet and 3 by 8 feet—around the province<br />

of Batangas that are not included<br />

under the common poster areas.<br />

They said that the billboards and<br />

posters, thinly disguised <strong>to</strong> circumvent<br />

the law, falls under the definition<br />

of “election propaganda” and<br />

“political advertisements.”<br />

Under Republic Act 9006, or the Fair<br />

Elections Act, election propaganda is<br />

defined as “any matter broadcast, published,<br />

printer or exhibited, which is<br />

intended <strong>to</strong> draw the attention of the<br />

public . . . <strong>to</strong> promote, directly or indirectly,<br />

the election of a particular candidate<br />

<strong>to</strong> a public office.”<br />

Topacio, counsel for former Gov.<br />

Armand Sanchez, who is running<br />

against San<strong>to</strong>s Rec<strong>to</strong> for the guberna<strong>to</strong>rial<br />

position in the province, said that<br />

the violations showed the “true character”<br />

of the actress-turned-politician.<br />

Sanchez ran in the 2007 guberna<strong>to</strong>rial<br />

race in the province but lost<br />

<strong>to</strong> San<strong>to</strong>s Rec<strong>to</strong>.<br />

The lawyer admitted, however, that<br />

the filing of the complaint against the<br />

former movie star and wife of Liberal<br />

Party sena<strong>to</strong>rial candidate Ralph Rec<strong>to</strong><br />

is also political in nature.<br />

Topacio added that there might<br />

be more complaints that will be<br />

filed against San<strong>to</strong>s Rec<strong>to</strong> in the<br />

coming days since there are more<br />

evidences that concerned citizens in<br />

Batangas are currently compiling.<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>tion 264 of the Omnibus Election<br />

Code states that any candidate<br />

found <strong>to</strong> be violating the election law<br />

shall be punishable with imprisonment<br />

of not less than one year but not<br />

more than six years. It also said that<br />

the candidate shall face disqualification<br />

<strong>to</strong> hold public office and may be<br />

stripped of the right <strong>to</strong> suffrage.<br />


PNP recommends detention<br />

of Morong 38 in Rizal jail<br />

The PNP said in its motion: “Given<br />

the number of the accused, more or<br />

less 100 PNP personnel and 20 PNP<br />

vehicles will be detailed and dispatched<br />

<strong>to</strong> secure the accused anytime<br />

their appearance is required by the<br />

court. As insinuated above, the cus<strong>to</strong>dy<br />

and security of detention prisoners<br />

fall within the jurisdiction of the<br />

BJMP [Bureau of Jail Management<br />

and Penology] and not the PNP.”<br />

Authorities of the PNP said that<br />

groups sympathetic <strong>to</strong> the Morong<br />

38 are expected <strong>to</strong> hold protest actions<br />

outside the camp as happened<br />

on April 9 and 12, which resulted<br />

in a traffic jam along the Boni<br />

Serrano gate of Camp Crame.<br />

To date, the PNP said it has eight female<br />

detainees and 84 male detainees.<br />

Espina said the PNP has also<br />

made efforts <strong>to</strong> transfer several detainees<br />

<strong>to</strong> the BJMP and other detention<br />

facilities. SAMMY MARTIN

A 4<br />

opinion<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />


April 27, 2010<br />

Edi<strong>to</strong>rials<br />

Blocking North Harbor<br />

modernization<br />

SINCE the Philippines became an independent <strong>count</strong>ry,<br />

Manila’s North Harbor (MNH) has been the most pitiful<br />

domestic and international harbor in the world. There<br />

the cargo ships and passenger ferries from the various provincial<br />

ports dock and dislodge their tens of thousands of passengers<br />

every day. There also are discharged the commercial,<br />

agricultural and industrial cargo that are brought in also from<br />

the provinces <strong>to</strong> be carried by trucks either <strong>to</strong> the warehouses<br />

serving the wholesale and retail markets of Metro Manila or <strong>to</strong><br />

be carried farther <strong>to</strong> points north and south on Luzon island.<br />

Lawlessness and gangsterism are characteristics Manila<br />

North Harbor. The movement of people and goods there is so<br />

antiquated. For decades there have been calls for MNH <strong>to</strong> be<br />

modernized and made equal <strong>to</strong> other spic and span, logistically<br />

effective and pleasant port areas in the world.<br />

Finally, just two weeks ago, good news came. A financially and<br />

managerially capable joint venture, the Manila North Harbor<br />

Port Inc. (MNHPI), that had won the government contract <strong>to</strong><br />

manage the MNH’s piers and equip them, install there, state of<br />

the art port facilities, terminals and other necessary infrastructures,<br />

was <strong>to</strong> actually take over the MNH.<br />

MNHPI is a joint venture of Michael Romero’s Harbour<br />

Centre Port Terminal Inc. and M. V. Pangilinan’s Metro Pacific<br />

Investments Corp.<br />

Unfortunately, however, stevedoring groups k<strong>now</strong>n <strong>to</strong> have<br />

been responsible for the shady reputation of MNH have made<br />

trouble, protesting the good news of MNHPI’s arrival and<br />

plans <strong>to</strong> make Manila’s port area and piers a happier, more<br />

efficient and respectable place.<br />

Happily, MNHPI, dealing with the more responsible stevedoring<br />

teams, succeeded in assuring everyone that there would be no<br />

layoffs, contrary <strong>to</strong> the negative propaganda of the troublemakers.<br />

So peace came <strong>to</strong> prevail in that part of the project.<br />

Alas, the shipping companies have followed suit.<br />

The Philippine Liner and Shipping Association of the Philippines<br />

(PLSA) has accused MNHPI of not keeping its promise <strong>to</strong><br />

provide appropriate cargo-handling equipment for ships at the<br />

pier. It claims that their ships cannot unload cargoes fast and as a<br />

result have <strong>to</strong> wait in line for days before they can disgorge their<br />

cargoes, therefore they lose money. This has been the situation in<br />

the Manila North Harbor since time immemorial.<br />

MNHPI’s side of the s<strong>to</strong>ry is this: The shippers refuse <strong>to</strong><br />

remove their cargo from the piers and place these in warehouses,<br />

which will of course require payment for s<strong>to</strong>rage time<br />

and space. The presence of the piles and piles of cargo in the<br />

piers block the trucks hauling shipments away and these<br />

causes the mess and the delays.<br />

As far as the promised modernization Manila North Harbor<br />

goes, the MNHPI avers that it delivered some 159 pieces of<br />

heavy and medium-sized equipment improve and speed up<br />

service. The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) rigorously<br />

moni<strong>to</strong>red the arrival of the equipment. The deliveries were<br />

made by MNHPI even before the joint venture was formally<br />

allowed <strong>to</strong> take over the MNH on April 12.<br />

Why are the ship owners<br />

raising obstacles?<br />

THE ship owners, through PLSA, are <strong>now</strong> complaining<br />

that the many equipment delivered are below the<br />

standards set by the Philippine Port Authority. However,<br />

the fact is that the government’s Port Authority, which was the<br />

lone opera<strong>to</strong>r of MNH before the contract with MNHPI<br />

became effective and the port was actually handover of MNH<br />

<strong>to</strong> the joint venture, set the standards and specifications of the<br />

equipment <strong>to</strong> be set up at MNH. And the turnover of the port<br />

<strong>to</strong> MNHPI was in fact delayed because the PPA had <strong>to</strong> make<br />

sure that the equipment for cargo handling and other port<br />

services conformed <strong>to</strong> the specifications.<br />

The PLSA must admit that the sorry state of the Manila North<br />

Harbor, which was already in need of upgrading even before<br />

World War II, is partly also the result of the ship owners’ failure<br />

<strong>to</strong> do its part in the port’s modernization. The government is<br />

not the only party <strong>to</strong> blame for the unpleasant experience<br />

passengers have <strong>to</strong> endure in the North Harbor. But the shipping<br />

line owners decided just <strong>to</strong> depend on the government,<br />

instead of behaving like proper businessmen who should have<br />

contributed <strong>to</strong> the improvement of their business location.<br />

The PLSA is also complaining about the rigid security<br />

measures that have been established in the port. They should<br />

instead praise MNHPI for instituting these measures. In a very<br />

short time, strict security introduced by MNHPI has made<br />

MNH less like a haven for underworld characters, including<br />

pickpockets, robbers of unsuspecting arriving passengers’<br />

belongings, and other criminals.<br />

Why are the shipping line owners blocking MNHPI’s plans<br />

and efforts <strong>to</strong> make the North Harbor a world class and<br />

properly managed port facility? Some see the answer as power<br />

and control. Ship owners until the advent of MNHPI have<br />

dominated the dominated the port and how laws, rules and<br />

regulations are not implemented. They can overload their<br />

ships with cargo and passengers, flout the essential safety<br />

measures, such as having the correct number of lifeboats and<br />

lifejackets, and keep their ships always in good repair. They<br />

make lots of money disobeying the basic laws and rules –<br />

which is why disasters happen.<br />

One of the things the MNHPI has started <strong>to</strong> do is try <strong>to</strong> save<br />

lives and property by enforcing the law.<br />

The Manila Times<br />

DANTE F. M. ANG 2ND, Executive Edi<strong>to</strong>r (ON LEAVE)<br />

FRED DE LA ROSA, Chairman Edi<strong>to</strong>rial Board<br />

RENE Q. BAS, Edi<strong>to</strong>r in Chief<br />

ROMY P. MARIÑAS, News Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

NINI P.YARTE, National Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

ARNOLD S. TENORIO, Business Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

ROMANO C. JORGE, Lifestyle Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

CONRAD M. CARIÑO, Sports Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

DANTE F. M. ANG 2ND,<br />

BRIAN M. AFUANG, Art Direc<strong>to</strong>r<br />

RENE H. DILAN, Pho<strong>to</strong> Edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

<br />

President and CEO (ON LEAVE)<br />

VOLUME 111<br />

NUMBER 195<br />

Telephone All Departments. 524-5665 <strong>to</strong> 67 Telefax 528-1729; Subscription: 524-5664 Local 222<br />

URL http://www.manilatimes.net • e-mail newsboy1@manilatimes.net<br />

Letters <strong>to</strong> the edi<strong>to</strong>r<br />

THE MANILA TIMES is published daily at 371 A. Bonifacio Drive, Port Area, Manila 1018<br />

Contractualization bad for workers and for business<br />



LAST Monday, The Manila<br />

Times published a news s<strong>to</strong>ry<br />

where Nacionalista Party sena<strong>to</strong>rial<br />

candidate Susan “Toots” Ople<br />

urged the Bangko Sentral ng<br />

Pilipinas (BSP) <strong>to</strong> recall its Memorandum<br />

Circular 268, which allows<br />

banks <strong>to</strong> freely subcontract out in<br />

bulk jobs normally performed by<br />

their regular employees.<br />

“When permanent bank staff<br />

positions are demolished<br />

wholesale, regular employees<br />

and their families not only lose<br />

their source of livelihood, the<br />

labor unions that protect those<br />

[workers] left behind also get<br />

smashed or diminished considerably,”<br />

Ople said.<br />

“Banks used <strong>to</strong> provide some<br />

of the most durable jobs in the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry, with many personnel<br />

looking forward <strong>to</strong> stable employment<br />

until they grow old<br />

and retire. This is no longer the<br />

case <strong>now</strong>. Regular bank workers<br />

feel threatened by the BSP circular,”<br />

she added.<br />

The BSP circular allows the<br />

subcontracting <strong>to</strong> independent<br />

service providers of eight banking<br />

operations or divisions:<br />

credit investigation and appraisal,<br />

credit cards, information<br />

technology, clearing, security,<br />

messengerial, tax management<br />

and financial ac<strong>count</strong>ing.<br />

“This is basically labor-only<br />

subcontracting, where the contrac<strong>to</strong>r<br />

merely recruits, supplies<br />

or places workers <strong>to</strong> perform a<br />

job, work or service for the<br />

principal, in this case the<br />

bank,” Ople said.<br />

Labor only subcontracting is<br />

illegal. The Department of Labor<br />

and Employment reiterated this<br />

in Department Order 18-02, Series<br />

of 2002.<br />

And no less than the National<br />

Labor Relations Commission,<br />

the Court of Appeals<br />

and the Supreme Court affirmed<br />

its illegality in the case<br />

of Joel Taripe in 2008.<br />

Article 280 of the Labor Code<br />

provides two exemptions for<br />

fixed-term contracts: 1) When<br />

the term of employment has<br />

been fixed for a specific project<br />

or undertaking, the completion<br />

or termination of which has<br />

been determined at the time the<br />

worker was hired; and 2) when<br />

the work or service <strong>to</strong> be performed<br />

is seasonal and the employment<br />

is only for the duration<br />

of the season.<br />

The Supreme Court upholding<br />

the NLRC and the CA’s decision<br />

favoring Taripe said that<br />

while Article 280 does not proscribe<br />

or prohibit an employment<br />

contract with a fixed period, “it<br />

does not necessarily follow that<br />

where the duties of the employee<br />

consist of activities usually necessary<br />

or desirable in the usual<br />

business of the employer, the parties<br />

are forbidden from agreeing<br />

on a period of time for the performance<br />

of such activities.”<br />

The SC said further: “What<br />

Article 280 of the Labor Code,<br />

as amended seeks <strong>to</strong> prevent is<br />

the practice of some unscrupulous<br />

and cove<strong>to</strong>us employers<br />

who wish <strong>to</strong> circumvent the law<br />

that protects lowly workers<br />





from capricious dismissal from<br />

their employment . . .”<br />

Also, the lack of job security<br />

because of rampant contractualization<br />

has led <strong>to</strong> a much-noticed<br />

deterioration of services.<br />

Workers have been taking<br />

these contractual jobs out of<br />

desperation. The jobs are offered<br />

on a ‘take it or leave it’<br />

basis. If they don’t take the job,<br />

there are others in line, more<br />

desperate. And so they do, believing<br />

any job is better than no<br />

job at all. It’s the same principle<br />

used by those companies<br />

who could well afford <strong>to</strong> pay the<br />

minimum wage and other mandated<br />

benefits but don’t. If you<br />

don’t like what we’re doing then<br />

go somewhere else, they say.<br />

What these companies fail <strong>to</strong><br />

realize is contractualization negatively<br />

affects their services in the<br />

long run. It loses them cus<strong>to</strong>mers<br />

and profits.<br />

How much motivation is there<br />

for workers <strong>to</strong> do their jobs well<br />

if after five months they would be<br />

out of work anyway? In some<br />

cases, the unscrupulous workers<br />

would even try <strong>to</strong> take advantage<br />

of their short tenure with a certain<br />

company <strong>to</strong> earn as much as<br />

they can illegally.<br />

Nowadays, for instance, cable<br />

companies are losing a lot of<br />

profits because of cable pilferage,<br />

those “colorum” cable connections.<br />

Do they realize that a lot<br />

of those who offer these illegal<br />

connections are their own contractual<br />

workers? These workers,<br />

k<strong>now</strong>ing they’d be jobless in five<br />

months, offer <strong>to</strong> provide these<br />

colorum cable services, as part of<br />

their “extra-income.” They don’t<br />

feel any loyalty <strong>to</strong> the company,<br />

and they even justify what they’re<br />

doing as pay<strong>back</strong> for not being<br />

given security of tenure.<br />

In many service-oriented industries<br />

like restaurants and hotels,<br />

services have suffered because<br />

owners and management<br />

thought they could cut costs by<br />

resorting <strong>to</strong> contractualization.<br />

Have you noticed how many of<br />

those first class hotels you once<br />

frequented do not offer first class<br />

service anymore? The same goes<br />

for those favorite restaurants. You<br />

can blame contractualization for<br />

that as well.<br />

Even some nurses in hospitals<br />

in the <strong>count</strong>ry are <strong>now</strong> hired on<br />

a contractual basis. And yet we<br />

complain about the exodus of<br />

our medical professionals <strong>to</strong> better-paying<br />

jobs abroad.<br />

In telecommunication companies<br />

what were once regular<br />

jobs like installing lines, repair<br />

services, maintenance work are<br />

contracted out <strong>now</strong>adays. Crews<br />

are paid usually on piecemeal or<br />

on a per job basis. These crews<br />

have no rights, they are paid<br />

less, they have no benefits, they<br />

get less training or none at all.<br />

They are not organic <strong>to</strong> the companies<br />

they serve and could lose<br />

their jobs anytime. Again, how<br />

can you expect them <strong>to</strong> provide<br />

quality service?<br />

As Ople noted, those engaged<br />

by subcontrac<strong>to</strong>rs end up<br />

mistreated as mere temporary<br />

or part-time workers, and deprived<br />

of statu<strong>to</strong>ry wages and<br />

benefits, including manda<strong>to</strong>ry<br />

social security and health insurance<br />

coverage.<br />

Ultimately though, both workers<br />

and the companies suffer.<br />

Contractualization, as it turns<br />

out, is not just bad for the workers.<br />

It’s bad for business as well.<br />

ernestboyherrera@yahoo.com<br />

Jocjoc could end the Roxas supremacy in Capiz<br />

THE province of Capiz caught<br />

election fever months before<br />

most other provinces. Posters and<br />

billboards carrying names of political<br />

neophytes and incumbents<br />

alike were posted everywhere in<br />

the province—and one would<br />

learn that Jocelyn “Jocjoc”<br />

Bolante and former Police Direc<strong>to</strong>r<br />

Bobby Lastimoso, like Sen.<br />

Mar Roxas, are sons of Capiz, and<br />

vying for elective posts.<br />

With a few weeks left before<br />

the elections, the <strong>to</strong>ne has sharpened.<br />

Candidates and supporters<br />

of the Liberal Party—the party of<br />

Sen. Mar Roxas and considered<br />

the ruling party in Capiz—are<br />

<strong>now</strong> resorting <strong>to</strong> below-the-belt<br />

attacks on their opponents. This<br />

is the first time that the opposition<br />

(<strong>to</strong> the Roxas supremacy) is<br />

serious, one local medial practitioner<br />

<strong>to</strong>ld me. And the Liberal<br />

Party doesn’t k<strong>now</strong> how <strong>to</strong> manage<br />

it. A peace covenant between<br />

the candidates has been violated<br />

with libelous tags such as “thief”<br />

thrown at barangay officials identified<br />

with the opposition. Fortunately,<br />

however, attacks remain<br />

verbal and not physical.<br />

Capiz City, here we come, candidates<br />

of the Ugyon Kita party<br />

voice out cheerfully. Unofficial<br />

reports have it that Mr. Bolante<br />

and his Ugyon Kita party are leading.<br />

If they win, Roxas City might<br />

revert <strong>back</strong> <strong>to</strong> its original name—<br />

Capiz. Why the popularity of Mr.<br />

Bolante—wasn’t he tagged as the<br />

man behind the infamous fertilizer<br />

scam? Local observers claim<br />

that the national media was biased<br />

and unfair <strong>to</strong> Mr. Bolante.<br />

And in Capiz, many are delighted<br />

<strong>to</strong> see someone challenge<br />

the supremacy of the Roxases.<br />

The failure of Capiz <strong>to</strong> progress<br />

is blamed on the Roxases who<br />

despite fame and fortune have<br />

done little for their native province,<br />

or so Roxas critics allege.<br />

They say that the Roxases prefer<br />

mediocre local politicians <strong>to</strong> prevent<br />

more talented people from<br />

rising and eventually becoming<br />

threats. Maybe this is the reason<br />

why no local politician was willing<br />

<strong>to</strong> take on Mrs. Jane Castro,<br />

the wife of incumbent Capiz <strong>Sec</strong>ond<br />

District Congressman<br />

Fredenil Castro. It <strong>to</strong>ok a retired<br />

police direc<strong>to</strong>r general <strong>to</strong> challenge<br />

Mrs. Castro.<br />

Congressman Castro, I was<br />

<strong>to</strong>ld, has taken good care of his<br />

district and the mayors in the district.<br />

So they are with him, and<br />

he is with Jocelyn Bolante.<br />

A vic<strong>to</strong>ry <strong>to</strong> the opposition in<br />

Capiz will of course be an embarrassment<br />

<strong>to</strong> Sen. Roxas even<br />

if he is elected vice president.<br />

Sen. Roxas has everything <strong>to</strong><br />

gain from making an extra effort<br />

<strong>to</strong> be the vice president for the<br />

province <strong>to</strong> which his family<br />

owes its political power, an effort<br />

<strong>to</strong> be loved and respected,<br />

not just feared and envied.<br />

Roxas City’s tiny airport is<br />

undergoing renovation and this<br />

is good news. However, the x-<br />

ray machine remains defective<br />

after all these months. Did it<br />

ever work? The <strong>manual</strong> inspection<br />

conducted, while improved,<br />

doesn’t look sufficiently<br />

thorough if purpose is<br />

<strong>to</strong> prevent bringing of bombs<br />

in check-in luggage.<br />

The new Iloilo airport in Santa<br />

Barbara is of a different standard<br />

though the taxi service from and<br />

<strong>to</strong> the airport isn’t visi<strong>to</strong>rfriendly.<br />

Upon arrival, one has<br />

the choice of taking a rent-a-car<br />

service or a metered taxi. I chose<br />

the metered taxi only <strong>to</strong> find out<br />

that a uniform rate of P400 is<br />

charged. So much for the meter.<br />

The same rate is applied by all<br />

taxis on going <strong>to</strong> the airport from<br />

Iloilo City, I was <strong>to</strong>ld when I<br />

<strong>to</strong>ok at taxi from the hotel in the<br />

city. The meter, however, showed<br />

P200. No wonder that my<br />

favorite coffee shop at the airport<br />

closed down—after paying P400<br />

in taxi fare and P200 terminal<br />

fee, there is little left for a snack.<br />

Iloilo’s landscape is brown and<br />

dry, the sad effects of the dry spell.<br />

The only thing that seems <strong>to</strong> be<br />

sprouting are campaign posters.<br />

Life in the province, where majority<br />

of people depend on agriculture,<br />

gets harder when the climate<br />

isn’t cooperating. The outcome<br />

of the elections won’t bring<br />

rains or make the crops grow, but<br />

hopefully it will bring <strong>to</strong> office<br />

people whose response <strong>to</strong> these<br />

calamities will help ease the economic<br />

impact of future calamities.<br />

Extreme weather conditions<br />

have become the norm rather<br />

than the exception, and government—local<br />

and national—must<br />

incorporate this new reality in<strong>to</strong><br />

its policies and planning. The<br />

election fever will soon be over,<br />

but the cycle of life continues.<br />


opinion<br />

A 5<br />

The Manila Times<br />


April 27, 2010<br />

An au<strong>to</strong> boom is coming<br />

DOMESTIC car manufacturers<br />

are raising their sales targets.<br />

Originally, the industry projected<br />

sales of just 137,000 units, an<br />

increase of a sluggish 3.4 percent<br />

over the 132,444 units sold in<br />

2009. They see a boom coming.<br />

In the first quarter, sales<br />

zoomed <strong>to</strong> 38,709 units, a hefty<br />

35.5-percent increase from<br />

28,563 in January <strong>to</strong> March<br />

2008. In March alone, sales rose<br />

33.8 percent <strong>to</strong> 14,373 units<br />

from March in 2008. Between<br />

February 2009 and March 2009,<br />

the increase was 14.3 percent,<br />

which if annualized or multiplied<br />

by 12 (months) translates<br />

in<strong>to</strong> a 171.6-percent gain.<br />

The 35.5 percent year-on-year<br />

quarterly increase of 35.5 percent<br />

if divided by three months shows<br />

an average increase of 11.8 percent<br />

per month.<br />

Therefore, the trend seems <strong>to</strong><br />

indicate a minimum increase of<br />

12 percent and a maximum of<br />

up <strong>to</strong> 172 percent. This means<br />

au<strong>to</strong> sales could chalk up <strong>to</strong><br />

148,337 units (up 12 percent<br />

from 132,444 units in 2009) or<br />

more than double (a 100-percent<br />

increase) <strong>to</strong> go past 265,000<br />

units this year. With these indica<strong>to</strong>rs,<br />

a 50-percent jump in sales<br />

<strong>to</strong> about 200,000 units doesn’t<br />

seem very aggressive.<br />

The highest industry sales were<br />

in 1996 when 160,499 units were<br />

sold. Very likely, that record will<br />

be exceeded for the first time in<br />

14 years this year. That assumes a<br />

growth rate of 21 percent, which<br />

seems highly achievable. In fact,<br />

Mitsubishi Mo<strong>to</strong>rs, the second<br />

biggest seller, <strong>now</strong> projects a sales<br />

growth of 20 percent over 2009.<br />

Ever conservative, Toyota sees an<br />

increase of 10 percent.<br />

“The strong first quarter result<br />

augurs well for the whole au<strong>to</strong><br />

industry,” says Campi President<br />

Elizabeth Lee. “We will have <strong>to</strong><br />

revise our original forecast upwards<br />

given the first quarter<br />

trend. We are looking forward <strong>to</strong><br />

continued strong sales in the<br />

coming months compared <strong>to</strong> the<br />

same period last year.”<br />

She adds: “2010 is looking <strong>to</strong><br />




be a pretty good year for au<strong>to</strong>. It<br />

is an exciting year most especially<br />

for buyers with many new models<br />

<strong>to</strong> be introduced within the<br />

year as well as the upcoming and<br />

much awaited Campi Philippine<br />

International Mo<strong>to</strong>rshow <strong>to</strong> be<br />

held on August 19 <strong>to</strong> 22 this year.<br />

Why the boom?<br />

First, the economy is taking off.<br />

After a paltry 0.9-percent growth<br />

in 2009, the economy is poised<br />

<strong>to</strong> score a tripling in growth rate<br />

<strong>to</strong> more than 3.6 percent, or even<br />

4 percent. The momentum is not<br />

likely <strong>to</strong> be disturbed even with a<br />

new president. The Manila-based<br />

Asian Development Bank assumes<br />

a smooth transition with<br />

the presidential and legislative<br />

elections and that the new government<br />

will pursue a credible<br />

economic and fiscal programs.<br />

That can only mean good news.<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>ond, people have money.<br />

“I have a lot of friends. They<br />

have money but don’t k<strong>now</strong><br />

where <strong>to</strong> put it,” relates Ramon<br />

Ang, the president and COO of<br />

San Miguel Corp. (SMC). This<br />

finding prompted him <strong>to</strong> prod<br />

SMC <strong>to</strong> issue a P38.8-billion<br />

float, which was oversubscribed,<br />

and Petron Corp. <strong>to</strong> make a P10-<br />

billion (up from the original P5<br />

billion) preferred share offering,<br />

which again, was oversubscribed.<br />

“My bankers <strong>to</strong>ld me it<br />

could not be done—a huge bond<br />

float and a large preferred share<br />

offering,” Ang smiles.<br />

Third, remittances remain<br />

strong. They will amount <strong>to</strong><br />

$18.3 billion this year. The<br />

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)<br />

expects a 6-percent increase in<br />

remittances this year. Remittances,<br />

in turn, will underpin a<br />

strong private consumption over<br />

the next two years, says ADB,<br />

along with a firmer labor market<br />

and stronger consumer confidence.<br />

OFW remittances will hit<br />

$18.3 billion this year, up 6 percent.<br />

About half of the $18 billion<br />

will be saved; 7 percent is<br />

spent on vehicles.<br />

According <strong>to</strong> BSP, of the 534<br />

OFW households it surveyed, they<br />

allotted 50.4 percent of remittances<br />

<strong>to</strong> savings in the first quarter<br />

2010, up from 44.8 percent in<br />

Q4 2009. This means idle money,<br />

equivalent <strong>to</strong> $9.15 billion, or<br />

P441.5 billion (at P45 <strong>to</strong> $1).<br />

About 30 percent of remittances<br />

were spent last year on consumer<br />

durables (like appliances) and 6.7<br />

percent on vehicles. Now, 6.7 percent<br />

is equivalent <strong>to</strong> a whopping<br />

$1.22 billion, or P55 billion.<br />

“OFWs are a big contribu<strong>to</strong>r,”<br />

says Danny Isla, the president<br />

of Lexus Manila and vp of<br />

Toyota Mo<strong>to</strong>r Philippines,<br />

“they pump-prime the economy<br />

and their spending habits<br />

generate the boom.”<br />

Fourth, the lingering effects of<br />

last year’s Ondoy devastation have<br />

spilled in<strong>to</strong> bigger au<strong>to</strong> demand.<br />

An industry leader estimates up<br />

<strong>to</strong> 100,000 units need <strong>to</strong> be replaced.<br />

“Many old units still have<br />

<strong>to</strong> be rectified,” says Toyota’s Isla.<br />

Fifth, nearly all the au<strong>to</strong> companies<br />

are conducting aggressive<br />

sales promotion with new car<br />

models and zero-interest financing.<br />

“Even the luxury brands are<br />

offering zero financing,” notes<br />

Isla. Finally, business and consumer<br />

confidence are at their twoyear<br />

high. There is an overall<br />

sense of buoyancy.<br />

Campi’s Lee says au<strong>to</strong> sales<br />

for this year will be driven by<br />

election spending, fleet deliveries<br />

<strong>to</strong> national and local government<br />

agencies and higher remittances<br />

from overseas Filipino<br />

workers. She also cites stronger<br />

growth of entrepreneurial trend,<br />

business expansion, and strong<br />

and aggressive financing environment<br />

as important fac<strong>to</strong>rs<br />

boosting vehicle sales.<br />

biznewsasia@gmaill.com<br />

Local <strong>poll</strong>s more exciting and unpredictable<br />

ALTHOUGH the attention of<br />

the media and most observers<br />

in the May 10 balloting would<br />

be focused on national politics, I<br />

am more interested in some<br />

hotly-contested local posts.<br />

For example, in Manila, the culture<br />

and politics capital of the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry, will Mayor Alfredo Lim<br />

keep his post or will former Mayor<br />

Li<strong>to</strong> Atienza make a come<strong>back</strong>?<br />

In the 2007 elections, Lim had<br />

Atienza’s son, Ali, for his opponent<br />

after the elder Atienza completed<br />

his three terms. Ali, who was politically<br />

still wet behind the ears,<br />

never had a Chinaman’s chance<br />

against the more grizzled Lim.<br />

But Atienza himself beat Lim<br />

in the 2004 elections.<br />

Now Atienza, who was once<br />

Lim’s vice mayor, has vowed <strong>to</strong><br />

regain the mayoralty post. Although<br />

there is a third candidate,<br />

former PNP chief Avelino Razon,<br />

the real contest is between Lim<br />

and Atienza. Can Atienza s<strong>to</strong>p<br />

Lim’s bid for a second term?<br />

Nograles vs. Duterte<br />

In Davao City, the big question is<br />

whether Speaker Prospero Nograles<br />

would win in the mayoralty race<br />

against Sara Duterte, the incumbent<br />

vice mayor and lawyer-daughter of<br />

Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.<br />

Mayor Duterte is winding up<br />

his third term so he is running as<br />

his daughter’s vice mayor.<br />

Nograles, who is ineligible <strong>to</strong><br />

run for his congressional seat after<br />

having served three terms, has<br />

denied that he has a rift with<br />

Duterte. But he complained that<br />

Duterte has refused <strong>to</strong> accept the<br />

MEN & EVENTS<br />


OF COURSE”<br />


fact that he is the Speaker and still<br />

calls him “Congressman.”<br />

“But if I win as mayor and he<br />

wins as vice mayor, he would<br />

have <strong>to</strong> call me ‘Sir’,” Nograles<br />

said in a TV interview.<br />

Nograles ran and lost <strong>to</strong> the<br />

elder Duterte in his mayoralty<br />

bid in 1998. He was able <strong>to</strong> regain<br />

his old congressional seat in<br />

2001, and has held the post for<br />

three consecutive terms.<br />

Duterte is confident that<br />

Nograles will suffer the same fate<br />

that he had in l998.<br />

After May 10, will Duterte be<br />

forced <strong>to</strong> call Nograles “Sir” or<br />

will the latter just fade in<strong>to</strong> political<br />

oblivion?<br />

The Osmeñas of Cebu<br />

In Cebu, the political battle is a<br />

spillover from the long-standing<br />

family feud among the Osmeñas,<br />

thus making it more exciting.<br />

Cousins Sergio “Serge” Osmeña<br />

3rd and Emilio “Li<strong>to</strong>”<br />

Osmeña are both running for<br />

sena<strong>to</strong>r. The Commission on<br />

Elections at first delisted Li<strong>to</strong><br />

Osmeña but later reinstated his<br />

name in the ballot.<br />

This is definitely going <strong>to</strong> cost<br />

former Sena<strong>to</strong>r Serge some votes<br />


since Li<strong>to</strong>’s name will be ahead<br />

in the ballot. Li<strong>to</strong> was Cebu governor<br />

from 1988 <strong>to</strong> 1992 and a<br />

presidential candidate in l998.<br />

Li<strong>to</strong>’s brother, former Sena<strong>to</strong>r<br />

John “Sonny” Osmeña, is running<br />

for mayor of Cebu City<br />

against cousin Georgia, the estranged<br />

sister of Serge and Mayor<br />

Tommy Osmeña.<br />

Tommy, who has completed<br />

his three term limit, is running<br />

for congressman in Cebu City’s<br />

south district. He is not supporting<br />

his sister Georgia nor his<br />

cousin Sonny but Vice Mayor<br />

Michael Rama.<br />

Marcos-Romualdez clan<br />

It would also be interesting <strong>to</strong><br />

k<strong>now</strong> if Ferdinand “Bongbong”<br />

Marcos will make it <strong>to</strong> the Senate.<br />

If he wins, then he would be<br />

retracing the political odyssey of<br />

his father, Ferdinand Marcos.<br />

Like Bongbong, the late strongman<br />

was congressman of Ilocos<br />

Norte before he ran for the Senate<br />

and later for president.<br />

To keep its stronghold in the<br />

province, the matriarch of the<br />

Marcos-Romualdez political clan,<br />

Imelda Romualdez-Marcos, is running<br />

for the post vacated by<br />

Bongbong while her other daughter,<br />

Imee, also a former congresswoman,<br />

is running for governor<br />

against her cousin, the incumbent<br />

governor, Michael Keon.<br />

In Tacloban City, former<br />

mayor Alfredo “Bejo” Romualdez,<br />

Imelda’s brother, <strong>now</strong> in his mid-<br />

70s, is running as vice mayor of<br />

his son, incumbent Tacloban<br />

Mayor Alfred Romualdez.<br />

The elder Romualdez said<br />

that their family was consolidating<br />

its forces <strong>to</strong> help the candidacy<br />

of Bongbong.<br />

Mayor Romualdez’s wife, Tacloban<br />

City Councilor and former ac<strong>to</strong>r<br />

Cristina Romualdez, and his<br />

cousin, Leyte first district Rep.<br />

Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, a<br />

son of former Leyte Gov. Benjamin<br />

“Kokoy” Romualdez, are<br />

also running for reelection.<br />

Jocjoc as Capiz governor<br />

But the biggest news after the<br />

May 10 elections would be if<br />

Jocelyn “Jocjoc” Bolante, the alleged<br />

architect of the P728-million<br />

fertilizer scam, would win<br />

as Capiz governor. Capiz is the<br />

home province of LP vice presidential<br />

bet Mar Roxas.<br />

Bolante is facing plunder<br />

charges at the Ombudsman but<br />

up <strong>to</strong> <strong>now</strong>, the charges have not<br />

been filed with the Sandiganbayan.<br />

Technically there is still<br />

no impediment <strong>to</strong> his running<br />

for public office.<br />

Bolante is running under his<br />

Ugyon Kita Capiz party, which is<br />

affiliated with the Nacionalista<br />

Party, against incumbent Gov.<br />

Vic<strong>to</strong>r Tanco of the Liberal Party.<br />

Reports said that some local leaders<br />

have junked Tanco and are<br />

<strong>now</strong> supporting Bolante.<br />

What if Bolante wins?<br />

“Then the Philippines deserves<br />

<strong>to</strong> be in the Guinness Book of<br />

World Records,” quipped Noynoy<br />

Aquino during his campaign sorties<br />

in Capiz.<br />

opinion@manilatimes.net<br />

Espiritu: Villar and Vista Land should be praised<br />

IN their latest attempt <strong>to</strong> bring<br />

down Sen. Manuel Villar Jr, the<br />

tag team of former President<br />

Joseph Estrada and Senate President<br />

Juan Ponce Enrile claimed<br />

that the Nacionalista Party standard-bearer<br />

pressured the Philippine<br />

S<strong>to</strong>ck Exchange (PSE) <strong>to</strong> bend<br />

its rules during the initial public<br />

offering of his Vista Land Inc in<br />

2007 so that he could raise money<br />

for his presidential campaign.<br />

This, apparently, is a bald-faced lie.<br />

No less than the PSE and the <strong>Sec</strong>urities<br />

and Exchange Commission<br />

(SEC) have cleared Villar of any malfeasance.<br />

In response <strong>to</strong> the Estrada/<br />

Enrile allegations, the PSE said that<br />

Vista Land had properly complied<br />

with its listing and public offering requirements.<br />

The SEC also confirmed<br />

the PSE’s statement and stressed that<br />

there was nothing irregular about<br />

Vista Land’s public offering in<br />

2007. Villar has dared Estrada and<br />

Enrile <strong>to</strong> produce documents showing<br />

his purported wrongdoing and<br />

charge him in court.<br />

It’s obvious that the objective of<br />

the “Estrile” partnership is <strong>to</strong> hurl<br />

as much mud, factual or otherwise,<br />

at Villar and subject him <strong>to</strong> trial<br />

by publicity. Aiding them in this<br />

unscrupulous endeavour are blatantly<br />

partisan media outlets like<br />

The Philippine Daily Inquirer and<br />

the ABS-CBN television network.<br />

Why is “Estrile” bent on destroying<br />

Villar? Estrada and Enrile view<br />

Villar as the main obstacle <strong>to</strong><br />

Estrada’s reclaiming the presidency,<br />

which he lost when he was unceremoniously<br />

ousted from Malacañang<br />

in 2001. Estrada is currently in<br />

third place in the surveys, behind Liberal<br />

Party bet Sen Noynoy Aquino<br />

and Villar. Sources say that Estrada<br />

and Enrile have an original copy of<br />

the Bos<strong>to</strong>n psychiatric report, care of<br />

Ernes<strong>to</strong> Maceda (who was very close<br />

<strong>to</strong> the Aquino family during their<br />

exile in the US), that shows that<br />

Aquino received treatment for mental<br />

illness. If “Estrile” succeeds in<br />

bringing down Villar, the duo will<br />

train their guns on Aquino and unleash<br />

the damaging report.<br />

❋ ❋ ❋<br />

I had a good chat with former<br />

Ambassador <strong>to</strong> the UK Edgardo<br />

Espiritu, one of the most respected<br />

financial experts in the <strong>count</strong>ry,<br />

about the Vista Land controversy. He<br />

echoed the PSE and SEC statements,<br />

clearing Villar and the company of<br />

any misconduct. “I don’t understand<br />

why they are being criticized,” he<br />

said. “They should even be praised.”<br />

Espiritu, who also served as finance<br />

secretary, president of the<br />

Philippine National Bank and<br />

Metrobank, and chairman of the<br />

Asian Development Bank board of<br />

governors, said that the Vista Land<br />

IPO was the first of its magnitude<br />

that was initiated by a Filipino<br />

(Villar) and hailed as a success by<br />

the international finance community.<br />

“Vista Land was a model <strong>to</strong><br />

attract foreign capital,” he maintained.<br />

In fact, over 85 percent of<br />

the shares were taken by foreign<br />

inves<strong>to</strong>rs, not by OFWs as Estrada<br />

and Enrile wrongly claimed.<br />

“The Vista Land IPO was a venture<br />

that I was very proud of,”<br />

Espiritu said. During his stint as<br />

envoy <strong>to</strong> the Court of Saint James,<br />

officers of Vista Land travelled <strong>to</strong><br />

London and other major financial<br />

capitals <strong>to</strong> explain the deal <strong>to</strong> international<br />

institutional inves<strong>to</strong>rs.<br />

Espiritu stressed that strict due diligence<br />

was carried out on the Vista<br />

Land IPO by these groups. “They<br />

wouldn’t have bought in<strong>to</strong> it if<br />

they didn’t believe in Vista Land.”<br />

Espiritu laments that Estrada and<br />

Enrile did the nation a great disservice<br />

by dragging the Vista Land IPO<br />

in<strong>to</strong> the current cross-party mudslinging.<br />

Their untruthful allegations<br />

against Villar, the company,<br />

and the PSE could erode foreign inves<strong>to</strong>r<br />

confidence in the economy<br />

and the <strong>count</strong>ry’s financial institutions.<br />

“After their tirade, which foreign<br />

inves<strong>to</strong>r will still believe in the<br />

Philippines?” Espiritu asked woefully.<br />

“This is self-destructive.”<br />

❋ ❋ ❋<br />

Estrada and Enrile are, in fact,<br />

tainted sources. Always on the<br />

wrong side of his<strong>to</strong>ry, Enrile was<br />

Marcos’ martial law administra<strong>to</strong>r,<br />

in charge of the <strong>count</strong>ry’s security<br />

apparatus, which carried<br />

out some of the most reprehensible<br />

human rights violations. He<br />

even faked his own ambush so<br />

that Marcos could justify the imposition<br />

of martial law.<br />

Estrada, for his part, has the gall<br />

<strong>to</strong> accuse Villar of manipulating the<br />

PSE’s rules, when he has not yet<br />

cleared himself of his complicity in<br />

the BW Resources Scam. “Vista<br />

Land is completely different from<br />

BW,” Espiritu pointed out. “While<br />

Vista Land was <strong>to</strong>tally above board,<br />

BW was an outright rigging and manipulation<br />

of the s<strong>to</strong>ckmarket and<br />

many people lost their life savings.”<br />

At that time, Espiritu was Estrada’s<br />

finance secretary and was approached<br />

by officers of the PSE who<br />

asked for his help, fearing the collapse<br />

of the s<strong>to</strong>ck market due <strong>to</strong><br />

over P2-billion past-due transactions<br />

as a result of the scam. Shortly<br />

after, Espiritu resigned and later testified<br />

at Estrada’s impeachment<br />

trial at the Senate.<br />

What is the best proof that Villar<br />

and the Vista Land IPO were transparent<br />

and fair? Simple, Espiritu<br />

says. “Are any of Vista Land’s foreign<br />

inves<strong>to</strong>rs complaining?”<br />

neighborsnbn@gmail.com<br />

»analysis<br />

Thailand’s pro-establishment<br />

Yellows call for martial law<br />



BANGKOK: Thailand’s pro-establishment<br />

Yellow Shirts called<br />

Monday for the imposition of<br />

martial law <strong>to</strong> end mass antigovernment<br />

protests by the rival<br />

Red Shirts, warning they may<br />

take action themselves.<br />

The Reds were on alert for a<br />

crackdown by the security forces<br />

on their fortified camp in the<br />

heart of Bangkok, where tensions<br />

remained high after a grenade<br />

attack late Sunday on the<br />

house of a former premier injured<br />

11 people.<br />

Twenty-six people have died<br />

and almost 1,000 have been<br />

injured in the capital this<br />

month in Thailand’s bloodiest<br />

civil violence in almost two<br />

decades, despite a state of<br />

emergency in Bangkok and<br />

surrounding areas.<br />

The Yellows, formally k<strong>now</strong>n as<br />

the People’s Alliance for Democracy<br />

(PAD), have said they will<br />

take action <strong>to</strong> “protect the <strong>count</strong>ry”<br />

if authorities do not deal with<br />

the thousands of anti-government<br />

Red Shirt protesters.<br />

A one-week deadline set by the<br />

Yellows for an end <strong>to</strong> the crippling<br />

protests expired with no end in<br />

sight and the movement called on<br />

its supporters <strong>to</strong> begin their own<br />

peaceful demonstrations.<br />

“The prime minister k<strong>now</strong>s<br />

well that in this situation military<br />

measures are needed because it<br />

was hard <strong>to</strong> resolve it through<br />

politics,” said Suriyasai Katasila,<br />

spokesman for the Yellows’ New<br />

Politics Party.<br />

“There should be an announcement<br />

of martial law,” he<br />

said. “If the situation does not<br />

improve, PAD will consider intensifying<br />

its measures.”<br />

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva<br />

has rejected an offer by the Reds,<br />

who mostly support former premier<br />

Thaksin Shinawatra, <strong>to</strong> disperse<br />

if elections are held in three<br />

months’ time—softening earlier<br />

demands for snap <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

Appearing on national television<br />

Sunday alongside his army<br />

chief, Abhisit vowed <strong>to</strong> retake the<br />

sprawling protest site that has<br />

paralyzed Bangkok’s main retail<br />

district, but gave no indication of<br />

when a crackdown might come.<br />

Thailand is largely split between<br />

the mainly rural poor and<br />

urban working class Reds, and<br />

Global view<br />

the Yellows who staged their<br />

own street protests that heralded<br />

a 2006 coup ousting their<br />

enemy Thaksin.<br />

Yellow protesters in 2008<br />

blockaded Bangkok’s two main<br />

airports, before a controversial<br />

court verdict removed Thaksin’s<br />

allies and allowed a parliamentary<br />

vote that brought in the current<br />

government.<br />

The Yellows had remained<br />

largely silent since the Reds began<br />

mass rallies in mid-March<br />

demanding immediate elections,<br />

but there are <strong>now</strong> growing<br />

fears of clashes between the<br />

rival groups.<br />

The anti-government movement<br />

remained as defiant after<br />

another night passed with no<br />

sign of a crackdown on their<br />

base, which has been fortified<br />

with barricades made from piles<br />

of truck tyres and sharpened<br />

bamboo poles.<br />

“If Abhisit fails <strong>to</strong> crack down<br />

on us, he will have <strong>to</strong> leave office,”<br />

said one of the Reds’ leaders,<br />

Nattawut Saikuar.<br />

If he succeeds in breaking up<br />

the protests, the Reds will rally<br />

across the <strong>count</strong>ry and prepare<br />

for a return <strong>to</strong> the capital, he said.<br />

Many of the anti-government<br />

protesters have begun shedding<br />

their trademark red clothing and<br />

wearing other colors <strong>to</strong> make<br />

themselves harder <strong>to</strong> identify.<br />

The red-clad movement has<br />

also blocked the path of hundreds<br />

of police officers headed<br />

for the capital <strong>to</strong> reinforce security<br />

forces.<br />

When troops tried <strong>to</strong> sweep the<br />

Reds out of Bangkok’s his<strong>to</strong>ric<br />

area on April 10 they suffered a<br />

humiliating retreat in the face of<br />

bloody street <strong>fighting</strong> that left 25<br />

dead and hundreds injured.<br />

The military has warned protesters<br />

they will face live weapons<br />

fire in any new clashes.<br />

Ramping up the pressure on<br />

Abhisit, the Election Commission<br />

earlier this month called<br />

for his ruling Democrat Party <strong>to</strong><br />

be abolished over allegations of<br />

an illegal political donation in<br />

2005 and misuse of a commission<br />

grant.<br />

The first <strong>count</strong> will be forwarded<br />

<strong>to</strong> the At<strong>to</strong>rney General,<br />

who has 30 days <strong>to</strong> consider it. The<br />

election body has until the end of<br />

Monday <strong>to</strong> forward the second<br />

case of alleged grant misuse directly<br />

<strong>to</strong> the constitutional court.

A<br />

6<br />

news<br />

The ˜Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

One dead, thousands homeless in QC slum fire<br />

ONE person died and thousands<br />

were left homeless when a fire<br />

<strong>to</strong>re through a shanty <strong>to</strong>wn in the<br />

Philippine capital, authorities said on Monday.<br />

Sunday’s blaze, likely started by<br />

a faulty power line, raged for more<br />

than seven hours and destroyed<br />

hundreds of homes in a depressingly<br />

familiar scene for the crowded<br />

city, where fires regularly engulf<br />

densely populated slums.<br />

Obet Madarang, an aide <strong>to</strong> the<br />


<strong>Agra</strong> cheated in law school<br />

aggravated by the criticisms. On Monday<br />

at the flag ceremony of Justice department<br />

personnel, he declared: “I stand by that<br />

decision and the process I went through<br />

<strong>to</strong> arrive at it . . . I bow neither <strong>to</strong> political<br />

dictates nor <strong>to</strong> public opinion.”<br />

He admitted <strong>to</strong> being a crybaby but said<br />

won’t quit his post. “’Di po ako magbibitiw<br />

sa aking posisyon, Wala akong balak atrasan<br />

ang mga hamon sa aking opisina . . . .matibay<br />

si Al <strong>Agra</strong> kahit iyakin [I will not resign from<br />

my position and I have no intention <strong>to</strong> <strong>back</strong><br />

off from the challenges of my office. Al <strong>Agra</strong><br />

is durable even if he cries],” <strong>Agra</strong> added.<br />

But then this isn’t the first time <strong>Agra</strong> has<br />

had <strong>to</strong> endure the ire of his fellow men of<br />

justice, and closest buddies in law school.<br />

Two decades ago, one of his professors<br />

at the Ateneo de Manila Law School also<br />

got infuriated after discovering that <strong>Agra</strong><br />

and six of his friends had exactly the same<br />

wrong answers in an exam—down <strong>to</strong> the<br />

decimal points. To their teacher, that was<br />

hint enough that the students had cheated.<br />

“It was a scandal at the time,” said an<br />

Ateneo staffer privy <strong>to</strong> the incident but who<br />

declined <strong>to</strong> be named. “There were about<br />

100 students who <strong>to</strong>ok the exam. <strong>Agra</strong> and<br />

his classmates were accused of cheating by<br />

their professor who had them investigated.”<br />

The case reached the dean’s office and<br />

went all the way up <strong>to</strong> the office of the<br />

university president, said the staffer.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> won’t reply<br />

Over the last five days, the PCIJ had tried <strong>to</strong><br />

get <strong>Agra</strong>’s side of the issue. On Thursday he<br />

<strong>to</strong>ld the PCIJ over the phone that he prefers<br />

a face-<strong>to</strong>-face interview early this week.<br />

On Friday, via a text message, the PCIJ<br />

requested him <strong>to</strong> fix the date, time and<br />

venue of the interview. The PCIJ called<br />

again. <strong>Agra</strong> said he had changed his mind<br />

about the face-<strong>to</strong>-face interview and would<br />

<strong>now</strong> prefer <strong>to</strong> answer questions via email,<br />

with a promise <strong>to</strong> send his reply by Sunday.<br />

The PCIJ sent a reminder text on Monday,<br />

and <strong>Agra</strong> texted <strong>back</strong>, “will e-mail later<br />

<strong>to</strong>day.” At the close of office hours 5 p.m.<br />

Monday, <strong>Agra</strong> had not done so.<br />

Two other Ateneo personnel interviewed<br />

separately by PCIJ corroborate the<br />

staffer’s s<strong>to</strong>ry. They also say it was the final<br />

exam in the Law of Wills and Succession<br />

subject under then professor Avelino<br />

Sebastian Jr.<br />

Sebastian, who has retired from teaching<br />

at the Ateneo, in a recent phone interview<br />

with the PCIJ neither confirmed nor<br />

denied that <strong>Agra</strong> was among those he had<br />

found cheating in his class.<br />

Nonetheless, according <strong>to</strong> one of the<br />

Ateneo personnel, the incident happened<br />

in 1988 when <strong>Agra</strong> was on his third year in<br />

law school. As a result, <strong>Agra</strong> had <strong>to</strong> retake<br />

the class, which meant he could not graduate<br />

with the rest of his batch. Originally<br />

belonging <strong>to</strong> Batch ’89, he graduated in<br />

1990 and passed the bar the following year.<br />

But <strong>Agra</strong> would redeem himself from his<br />

rather unpleasant academic past, establishing<br />

himself early in his career as a defender<br />

of the defenseless. Unfortunately, said his<br />

present critics, he later moved <strong>to</strong> the other<br />

side of the fence and became a defender of<br />

a highly unpopular but impeachmentproof<br />

president, Gloria Arroyo.<br />

In the late 1980s, though, the then<br />

young lawyer was earning praise from activists<br />

for, among other things, helping<br />

found and later heading the non-government<br />

organization Saligan ng Alternatibong<br />

Lingap Panlegal (Saligan).<br />

Saligan is an Ateneo-based alternative<br />

lawyers’ group catering <strong>to</strong> the needs of the<br />

poor and marginalized sec<strong>to</strong>rs of society.<br />

A do-gooder<br />

“He was respected as one of the founders<br />

of Saligan,” said lawyer Marlon Manuel<br />

who had worked with <strong>Agra</strong> as a law student-intern<br />

and later replaced the latter as<br />

Saligan’s executive direc<strong>to</strong>r after 1994. “He<br />

was very committed in his work. As an alternative<br />

lawyer, he worked for social justice<br />

and human rights. Everybody in our<br />

group looked up <strong>to</strong> him.”<br />

Efficient s’ya talaga [He is very efficient],”<br />

said Saligan lawyer Raissa Jajurie, who began<br />

working with <strong>Agra</strong> when she was still a<br />

law student in 1989. “While driving his car<br />

he would have a notepad with him, jotting<br />

down things that he didn’t want <strong>to</strong> forget.<br />

Kumbaga sa karpintero [Like a carpenter], he<br />

was the one who built the house.”<br />

Jajurie added: “He jumpstarted the operations<br />

of the organization. I would like <strong>to</strong> think<br />

that he was sincere in founding Saligan.”<br />

Former education secretary and Liberal<br />

Party (LP) general campaign manager<br />

Florencio “Butch” Abad.” who is also<br />

among Saligan’s founders, described the<br />

young <strong>Agra</strong> as “one of the idealistic lawyers<br />

that we had.”<br />

“He worked pro bono for poor people<br />

who could not afford legal expenses for<br />

their cases,” said Abad.<br />

But while labor law was one of <strong>Agra</strong>’s<br />

early interests, he would branch out <strong>to</strong><br />

local governance and election laws. These<br />

led him <strong>to</strong> dealing with influential politicians<br />

who sought lawyers specializing in<br />

these legal fields. Eventually, <strong>Agra</strong> would<br />

wind up doing what his colleagues in alternative<br />

lawyering would consider highly<br />

objectionable.<br />

During the Estrada administration, <strong>Agra</strong><br />

got involved in local governance work and<br />

had then Mayor Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada of<br />

San Juan City, who was also national president<br />

of the League of Municipalities of the<br />

Philippines, as his client.<br />

In 2004, <strong>Agra</strong> became the election lawyer<br />

of the K-4 coalition made up of the<br />

then ruling party Lakas-Christian Muslim<br />

Democrats, Liberal Party, Nationalist People’s<br />

Coalition and the Nacionalista Party.<br />

The coalition pushed for the presidential<br />

candidacy of Gloria Arroyo, who by then<br />

had occupied Malacañang for three years.<br />

Many doubted President Arroyo’s 2004<br />

<strong>poll</strong> vic<strong>to</strong>ry because of lingering allegations<br />

of widespread fraud as a result of the<br />

highly publicized “Hello, Garci” wiretapping<br />

scandal in 2005.<br />

Switched <strong>to</strong> Gloria side<br />

Subsequent events would finally bring<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> <strong>to</strong> President Arroyo’s turf.<br />

Following then LP president Franklin<br />

Drilon’s 2005 call for President Arroyo <strong>to</strong><br />

resign over allegations of massive cheating<br />

in the 2004 <strong>poll</strong>s, a faction of the party led<br />

by Mrs. Arroyo’s ally, Li<strong>to</strong> Atienza, broke<br />

away from Drilon’s group and elected<br />

Atienza as the faction’s new president.<br />

The Drilon and Atienza factions became<br />

locked up in a legal battle that began at<br />

the Commission on Elections (<strong>Comelec</strong>)<br />

and ended up at the Supreme Court. In<br />

mayor of Quezon City where the fire<br />

occurred, said one person was confirmed<br />

<strong>to</strong> have died, while four others<br />

were injured.<br />

He said 2,600 families, equating<br />

<strong>to</strong> about 15,000 people, had lost<br />

their homes at Tatalon and were<br />

<strong>now</strong> in desperate need of relief assistance<br />

in sprawling Metro Manila’s<br />

most populous city.<br />

“We have enough food but we are<br />

lacking drinking water and portable<br />

<strong>to</strong>ilets,” Madarang <strong>to</strong>ld Agence<br />

France-Presse as a huge line of people<br />

queued up for assistance close <strong>to</strong><br />

the charred remains of their houses.<br />

One woman who lost her home,<br />

May Llegue, 28, said survivors appreciated<br />

the food but were worried<br />

about many other necessities that<br />

the government had yet <strong>to</strong> provide.<br />

“We are happy with the food. But<br />

NOTE: This NTP was supposed <strong>to</strong> be published last<br />

Saturday, April 24, 2010 and was not published due <strong>to</strong> an<br />

error by The Manila Times.<br />

March 2006, <strong>Agra</strong> agreed <strong>to</strong> become the<br />

legal counsel of Drilon’s group. Yet after a<br />

few days, <strong>Agra</strong> withdrew from the case<br />

without explaining his decision, according<br />

<strong>to</strong> Drilon’s camp.<br />

“I remember [<strong>Agra</strong>] telling us that he<br />

had decided <strong>to</strong> help us dahil prinsipyo na<br />

ang pinag-uusapan di<strong>to</strong> [because we are talking<br />

about principle here],” said LP Direc<strong>to</strong>r<br />

General Jose Luis Martin “Chi<strong>to</strong>”<br />

Gascon. “We filed the case at the <strong>Comelec</strong><br />

on March 3, Friday, then he withdrew<br />

Monday. GMA [Gloria Macapagal Arroyo]<br />

got <strong>to</strong> him over the weekend.”<br />

While <strong>Agra</strong> supposedly kept mum about<br />

his reasons for leaving Drilon’s group,<br />

some of those privy <strong>to</strong> what had happened<br />

believe his decision had something <strong>to</strong> do<br />

with his then 14-year-old daughter, who<br />

at the time was already a globetrotting<br />

champion tennis player.<br />

“He [<strong>Agra</strong>] is a family man,” a politician<br />

said. “His life revolves around his<br />

daughter. I think he was afraid that his<br />

daughter who was then getting some support<br />

or scholarship from the government<br />

would be affected if [he did not] withdraw<br />

from defending Drilon’s LP.”<br />

Another politician seconds this and said:<br />

“He really wanted his daughter <strong>to</strong> excel. He<br />

was afraid that his daughter might lose support<br />

if he goes against the government.”<br />

Tennis fanatic, <strong>to</strong>o<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> is a k<strong>now</strong>n tennis fanatic who fully<br />

supports his daughter’s dream of becoming<br />

a world-class athlete.<br />

“We look at this as a family project<br />

which requires a commitment from each<br />

and every one of us. We talk regularly, and<br />

assess [my daughter’s] progress on a regular<br />

basis,” <strong>Agra</strong> <strong>to</strong>ld writer Stephanie<br />

Coyiu<strong>to</strong> of The Philippine Star in August<br />

2006, when asked about how he was supporting<br />

his daughter’s tennis career.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> is president of the Futures Tennis<br />

Scholarship Foundation Inc. that was established<br />

in June 2001, documents obtained<br />

by the PCIJ from the <strong>Sec</strong>urities and<br />

Exchange Commission showed.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong>’s wife, Evangeline, is the foundation’s<br />

treasurer. The other officers and trustees<br />

are Liza Go; Luisi<strong>to</strong> Hipoli<strong>to</strong>;<br />

Vic<strong>to</strong>riano Naluz Jr.; Domingo Feliciano;<br />

and Remegio Flores.<br />

The foundation holds office at the Medical<br />

Plaza in San Miguel Avenue, Pasig City.<br />

In its 2001 <strong>to</strong> 2003 progress report, the<br />

foundation said its goal is “<strong>to</strong> promote the<br />

development of the sport of tennis by providing<br />

assistance and support <strong>to</strong> its beneficiaries<br />

particularly outstanding junior<br />

tennis players.”<br />

It also “provides assistance <strong>to</strong> underprivileged,<br />

deserving and promising tennis<br />

players as well as extend support <strong>to</strong><br />

coaches and tennis professionals” and<br />

“undertakes programs and projects for<br />

grassroots development and formation of<br />

players for international competition.”<br />

The foundation’s financial statements<br />

showed that from 2002 <strong>to</strong> 2006, its “cash<br />

donation and contribution income”<br />

amounted <strong>to</strong> P5.88 million, including<br />

P1.141 million in 2002; P1.444 million<br />

in 2003; P2.111 million in 2004; P690,000<br />

in 2005; and P489,250 in 2006.<br />

Donors galore<br />

Among the corporate donors listed in the<br />

foundation’s 2001 <strong>to</strong> 2003 progress report<br />

were the government-controlled Philippine<br />

Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor);<br />

the International Container Terminal Services<br />

Inc. (ICTSI) of President Arroyo ally<br />

Enrique Razon Jr.; the Philippine<br />

Long Distance Telephone<br />

Co.; Smart Communications;<br />

and San<br />

Miguel Corp.<br />

The foundation has<br />

launched “special projects<br />

and entered in<strong>to</strong> partnership<br />

arrangements with<br />

corporate sponsors,” according<br />

<strong>to</strong> the organization’s<br />

progress report.<br />

Among these was a<br />

Memorandum of Agreement<br />

with Mandaluyong<br />

City that provided the<br />

foundation with funds<br />

“sourced from the Philippine<br />

Development Assistance<br />

Fund earmarked by<br />

the Office of Sena<strong>to</strong>r<br />

Francis Pangilinan.”<br />

In July 2006, <strong>Agra</strong>’s<br />

daughter won the International<br />

Junior Champ prize<br />

in the Girls Double Event<br />

Tennis Competition in<br />

Egypt. The following month,<br />

she paid President Arroyo a<br />

courtesy call in Malacañang.<br />

what we need is bedding because<br />

there are many children who have<br />

no place <strong>to</strong> sleep. And we need<br />

medical assistance for the elderly,”<br />

she said.<br />

Madarang said illegal power lines<br />

that slum dwellers typically set up<br />

were the likely cause of the fire.<br />

“A lot of people are illegally tapping<br />

the power lines. That was also<br />

believed <strong>to</strong> have been the cause of the<br />

last fire here six years ago,” he said.<br />

Nearly four million people in<br />

Metro Manila, about 35 percent of<br />

By then, <strong>Agra</strong> was serving<br />

as President Arroyo’s lawyer<br />

during the impeachment<br />

proceedings at the House of<br />

Representatives. In the same<br />

the city’s population, live in slums,<br />

according <strong>to</strong> the United Nations.<br />

Fires often rip through them, but the<br />

resilient slum dwellers are k<strong>now</strong>n <strong>to</strong><br />

rebuild their homes and lives nearly<br />

as quickly as they are destroyed.<br />

On Monday, vegetable dealer<br />

Melinda Resti, 49, had already reopened<br />

her s<strong>to</strong>re even though the rest<br />

of her building had been consumed<br />

by the blaze.<br />

“The whole second floor and the<br />

<strong>back</strong> of the s<strong>to</strong>re were lost. We barely<br />

have a roof. But the s<strong>to</strong>refront wasn’t<br />

year, <strong>Agra</strong> also s<strong>to</strong>od as legal counsel of Sigaw<br />

ng Bayan, a group identified with the administration<br />

that led the call for Charter change<br />

(Cha-cha) through a people’s initiative and<br />

<strong>to</strong>ok their petition <strong>to</strong> the Supreme Court.<br />

Manuel, then among the lawyers opposing<br />

Cha-cha, recalled that during the oral<br />

argument at the Supreme Court, he found<br />

his group and <strong>Agra</strong> on opposite sides.<br />

“I remember Butch [Abad] jokingly telling<br />

Al before the hearing at the Supreme<br />

Court that he should sit with us and not<br />

at the opposite side,” said Manuel.<br />

Conflict of interest<br />

In March 2007, President Arroyo appointed<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> as head of the Office of the Government<br />

Corporate Counsel, and then later as<br />

chief regula<strong>to</strong>r of the Metropolitan Waterworks<br />

and Sewerage System, a post that he<br />

relinquished in June 2008 because of allegations<br />

of conflict of interest.<br />

Since 1993, <strong>Agra</strong> has served as a professor<br />

at the Ateneo Law School handling classes on<br />

the 1991 Local Government Code, Law on<br />

Public/Government Corporations, Administrative<br />

Law, and Law on Public Officers.<br />

In January 2010, <strong>Agra</strong> assumed the post<br />

of Solici<strong>to</strong>r General and became concurrent<br />

acting Justice secretary in March.<br />

Sitting on an interim basis in the eightman<br />

Judicial and Bar Council (JBC), <strong>Agra</strong><br />

was the body’s only member who did not<br />

support its opposition <strong>to</strong> the Supreme<br />

Court’s ruling that allows President Arroyo<br />

<strong>to</strong> appoint a new chief justice despite the<br />

ban on midnight appointments during her<br />

final three months in office.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> even filed a separate comment that<br />

asked the High Court <strong>to</strong> fill up all vacancies<br />

in the Judiciary during her final<br />

months in Malacañang.<br />

Only this month, Manuel’s Alternative Lawyers<br />

Group, a coalition of 17 alternative lawyers’<br />

organizations and which <strong>Agra</strong> also helped<br />

organize, sought the acting Justice secretary’s<br />

inhibition from the JBC’s deliberations on the<br />

nominees for the next chief justice.<br />

Manuel said that <strong>Agra</strong>’s participation<br />

would compromise the JBC’s independence<br />

because as Solici<strong>to</strong>r General, <strong>Agra</strong> has<br />

also consistently defended the government’s<br />

position on President Arroyo’s authority<br />

<strong>to</strong> appoint a new chief justice.<br />

Also, this month, <strong>Agra</strong> issued a resolution<br />

exonerating suspended Gov.<br />

Zaldy Ampatuan of the Au<strong>to</strong>nomous<br />

Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM)<br />

and Mayor Akmad Ampatuan Sr. of<br />

Mamasapano, Maguindanao of their involvement<br />

in the November 23 massacre<br />

of 57 people in Maguindanao.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong>’s resolution triggered protests not<br />

only among families of the victims of the<br />

Maguindanao massacre, but also among<br />

state prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs who are <strong>now</strong> asking their<br />

superior <strong>to</strong> “revisit” his resolution.<br />

“Otherwise, we dishonor the primary<br />

reason for which our institution exists and<br />

its very name: the Department of Justice,”<br />

said Chief State Prosecu<strong>to</strong>r Claro Arellano.<br />

Disappointed friends<br />

Meanwhile, his former Saligan colleagues<br />

can’t help but get disappointed<br />

with the acts and pronouncements of<br />

someone who was once their men<strong>to</strong>r.<br />

“I don’t have any ideas about what had<br />

happened <strong>to</strong> him,” said Manuel. “He used<br />

<strong>to</strong> be one of us.”<br />

“I feel sad and perplexed,” said Jajurie.<br />

“Four months na lang siya sa posisyon niya,<br />

di naman siya magtutuloy beyond June 2010<br />

[He will only be at his post for four<br />

months; he won’t be there beyond June<br />

2010]. Why did he have <strong>to</strong> do that?”<br />

Yet those who see <strong>Agra</strong> as being a “fall<br />

guy” of sorts in his decision <strong>to</strong> exonerate<br />

two of the Ampatuans in the massacre discern<br />

a similarity with the role he ended up<br />

playing in the law school exam scandal.<br />

While all seven friends were accused of<br />

cheating, it was only <strong>Agra</strong> who bore the<br />

brunt of the group’s supposed wrongdoing.<br />

“Sa <strong>to</strong><strong>to</strong>o lang, nakakaawa si <strong>Agra</strong> [The<br />

truth is, <strong>Agra</strong> was pitiful],” said one of the<br />

Ateneo personnel interviewed by PCIJ. “All<br />

of them cheated but it was only <strong>Agra</strong> who<br />

admitted the wrongdoing. Because he had<br />

no influence at the time, he became the<br />

sacrificial lamb.”<br />

The Ateneo insider said that most, if not<br />

all, of <strong>Agra</strong>’s six friends who were absolved<br />

of cheating, had money or influence or<br />

both, which got them off the hook. One<br />

was even a sena<strong>to</strong>r’s son.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong>, himself from a relatively well-off<br />

family, actually didn’t voluntarily admit that<br />

he was guilty of cheating, said the insider.<br />

“There were just two of them left who were<br />

then still being investigated,” re<strong>count</strong>ed the<br />

Ateneo staffer. “There [had <strong>to</strong>] be someone<br />

penalized [for the cheating] or else the<br />

school’s disciplinary system would collapse<br />

or it would look like it was the professor who<br />

accused them who was the real problem.”<br />

“Thus the two were <strong>to</strong>ld that one of<br />

them must admit <strong>to</strong> cheating or both of<br />

them will fail,” said the staffer. “It was only<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> who admitted <strong>to</strong> cheating, thus he<br />

flunked the subject.”<br />

burned,” she said.<br />

Nearby, Mila Balanza, 53, kept a<br />

sharp watch over the remains of her<br />

food s<strong>to</strong>re, saying she feared some<br />

people would take advantage of the<br />

fire <strong>to</strong> take over her space.<br />

“I hardly have anything left. Even<br />

the few items in my s<strong>to</strong>re were<br />

looted,” she said.<br />

“But I will not leave, no matter<br />

what happens. I will be <strong>back</strong>. I already<br />

bought some cheap lumber so<br />

I can quickly start the rebuilding.”<br />

AFP<br />


In <strong>fighting</strong> mood<br />

two members of the influential Amptuan clan of their<br />

criminal liabilities in the Maguindanao mass murder.<br />

Speaking before officials and employees of the Department<br />

of Justice after flag-raising, <strong>Agra</strong> announced<br />

that he neither would inhibit himself from the review<br />

of his controversial resolution nor create a panel of<br />

prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> review it as he earlier announced.<br />

Instead, he said that he would exercise his prerogative<br />

as Justice chief <strong>to</strong> review the case and would<br />

come up with a final ruling this week on a motion<br />

for reconsideration (MR) that had been filed by<br />

counsels of the families of the Maguindanao massacre’s<br />

57 victims.<br />

“It is my intention <strong>to</strong> release the resolution of<br />

the MR this week. Political timing, as has been suggested,<br />

plays no part in my strict schedule. Those<br />

who k<strong>now</strong> me k<strong>now</strong> that delay is not my style,”<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> added.<br />

He said that he would consult prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs involved<br />

and take their opinions and observations<br />

under advisement, and give their recommendations<br />

utmost weight and consideration.<br />

Support for <strong>Agra</strong><br />

Most of those who attended the morning program<br />

wore white as an expression of continued support<br />

for <strong>Agra</strong>, also the concurrent Solici<strong>to</strong>r General.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong>, who was unaware of his subordinates’ move<br />

<strong>to</strong> surprise him by coming out in full force during<br />

the flag-raising, thanked them for standing by him.<br />

“Di po ako magbibitiw sa aking posisyon, Wala akong<br />

balak atrasan ang mga hamon sa aking opisina . . .<br />

matibay si Al <strong>Agra</strong> kahit iyakin [I will not resign from<br />

my position and I have no intention <strong>to</strong> <strong>back</strong> off<br />

from the challenges of my office. Al <strong>Agra</strong> is durable<br />

even if he cries],” he said.<br />

Pending this week’s release of a new resolution<br />

addressing the motion for reconsideration of the<br />

aggrieved parties, <strong>Agra</strong> added, he would no longer<br />

make any public pronouncement and would instead<br />

devote his time <strong>to</strong> consulting the concerned<br />

prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs on the motion, and dealing with other<br />

pending cases at the Justice department.<br />

He disclosed that when he was appointed acting<br />

Justice secretary more than a month ago, there were<br />

some 9,000 pending cases, a number of them dating<br />

<strong>back</strong> <strong>to</strong> the 1990s.<br />

<strong>Agra</strong> said that he wants <strong>to</strong> cut this <strong>back</strong>log by<br />

half by the time he steps aside as Justice chief when<br />

the Arroyo administration ends on June 30.<br />

On April 16, <strong>Agra</strong> issued a resolution directing<br />

government prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> go ahead on the multiple-murder<br />

case against the Ampatuans—led by<br />

former Gov. Andal Ampatuan Jr. of Maguindanao<br />

and his son, Mayor Andal Jr. of Datu Unsay—for<br />

the November 23, 2009 massacre.<br />

But the same resolution ordered the prosecu<strong>to</strong>r<br />

of Maguindanao <strong>to</strong> remove from the charge sheet<br />

the names of Zaldy Ampatuan and his cousin,<br />

Akmad Ampatuan Sr.<br />


Lakas members<br />

Teodoro because they feel that he has a very slim chance<br />

of winning the race <strong>to</strong> Malacañang on May 10.<br />

He made the statement a day after attending a<br />

political rally organized by his supporters here during<br />

which Teodoro in a speech described Mayor<br />

Rodrigo Duterte and Vice Mayor Inday Sarah<br />

Duterte-Zimmerman as good leaders. The Dutertes<br />

are political rivals of Nograles.<br />

According <strong>to</strong> the lawmaker, Teodoro’s support for<br />

Duterte means nothing where Davao politics or the<br />

next month’s balloting is concerned.<br />

Teodoro’s campaign spokesman Mike Toledo<br />

said that the recognition of Teodoro of the<br />

Dutertes during the rally should not be taken as a<br />

form of endorsement.<br />

On defections from Lakas-Kampi CMD, Toledo<br />

said that it would be better for those who do not<br />

believe in the vision of the administration party<br />

<strong>to</strong> leave.<br />

Teodoro, he added, would rather have a solid<br />

base of supporters than “pseudo supporters.”<br />

The word war started when Nograles threatened<br />

<strong>to</strong> bolt the administration party a few weeks ago.<br />

The House Speaker remained a member of the<br />

ruling coalition but allegedly was supporting<br />

Nacionalista Party (NP) standard-bearer Sen.<br />

Manuel “Manny” Villar Jr.<br />

Meanwhile, Toledo blasted a supposedly steppedup<br />

demolition drive against Teodoro with only<br />

more than two weeks away before the <strong>count</strong>ry’s next<br />

leader is chosen.<br />

Part of the drive, he said, was that a vote-rigging<br />

operation would deliver <strong>to</strong> the administration bet<br />

some 10 million votes on May 10.<br />

Another was that the Precinct Count Optical<br />

Scan (PCOS) machines for use in next month’s<br />

voting have been pre-programmed also in<br />

Teodoro’s favor.<br />

“While our first reaction was <strong>to</strong> laugh them [allegations]<br />

off, we are <strong>now</strong> concerned that some<br />

groups could be peddling such wild tales <strong>to</strong><br />

shrewdly condition the mind of the public about<br />

the supposedly large-scale elec<strong>to</strong>ral fraud <strong>to</strong> justify<br />

their respective candidates’ imminent loss <strong>to</strong> Gibo<br />

in the presidential race,” Toledo said.

Architect<br />

takes Cabinet<br />

post as SCAD<br />

chairman<br />

MEXICO, Pampanga: President Gloria<br />

Arroyo has appointed architect<br />

Nes<strong>to</strong>r Mangio as Cabinet secretary<br />

of the reorganized Subic-Clark Alliance<br />

for Development (SCAD).<br />

Executive Order (EO) 876, signed on<br />

March 10, 2010, President Arroyo designated<br />

Mangio, the former chairman<br />

of the Clark International Airport Corp.<br />

(CIAC), <strong>to</strong> the new post. SCAD chairman,<br />

former Vice Mayor Edgardo<br />

Pamintuan is running for Angeles City<br />

mayor against Blue Boy Nepomuceno.<br />

CIAC operates and manages the<br />

Diosdado Macapagal International Airport<br />

(DMIA), which was envisioned by<br />

President Arroyo as the <strong>count</strong>ry’s premier<br />

international gateway.<br />

The SCAD chairman was appointed<br />

by the president from among the members<br />

of the board composed of chairmen<br />

or administra<strong>to</strong>rs of various government-owned<br />

and controlled corporations—the<br />

Bases Conversion and<br />

Development Council (BCDA), Subic<br />

Bay Metropolitan Authority, Clark Development<br />

Corp. (CDC), Philippine<br />

Northrail Corp. and CIAC.<br />

The name of the body was also<br />

changed from the former Subic-Clark<br />

Alliance for Development Council.<br />

EO 876 amended EO 504, which<br />

created Subic-Clark Area Development<br />

Council and defined its powers<br />

and authority, and the most recent EO<br />

733, which reorganized the SCADC.<br />

As chairman of CIAC, Mangio has<br />

been instrumental in various development<br />

projects implemented by at<br />

the DMIA that has made the airport<br />

a preferred international gateway in<br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry.<br />

Mangio has served as National<br />

President of the United Architects of<br />

the Philippines from 1994 <strong>to</strong> 1996.<br />

As an architect and urban and environmental<br />

planner, he has designed<br />

several projects and completed numerous<br />

residential, commercial, institutional<br />

and developments in Manila,<br />

Pampanga, Baguio, the Visayas,<br />

Mindanao and abroad. His expertise<br />

as an architect and urban planner was<br />

tapped by the government when he<br />

was appointed and had served as Direc<strong>to</strong>r<br />

of the BCDA and CDC from<br />

1995 <strong>to</strong> 1998 prior <strong>to</strong> his appointment<br />

as CIAC chairman.<br />

As a businessman, he runs and<br />

manages his own companies as president<br />

and chairman of the board of<br />

the following companies: NS Mangio<br />

Construction and Development<br />

Corp.; NS Mangio and Associates;<br />

Central Country Estate Inc.; The<br />

Lakeshore Marketing, Corp.; Hotel<br />

Gracelane Corp.; and Nobleman<br />

Properties Inc.<br />


The Manila Times<br />

theregions<br />


A 7<br />

April 27, 2010<br />

No power failure on May 10 – Lagdameo<br />


DAVAO CITY: Rep. An<strong>to</strong>n Lagdameo<br />

of Davao del Norte, expressed<br />

optimism that the power crisis<br />

currently being experienced in Mindanao<br />

would soon be over and that power<br />

interruption will not hound the first<br />

au<strong>to</strong>mated <strong>poll</strong>s on May 10.<br />

Lagdameo said power supply in<br />

the island is slowly returning <strong>back</strong><br />

<strong>to</strong> normal because of the power genera<strong>to</strong>rs<br />

put up private power firms<br />

Slay try suspect in Cagayan falls<br />

POLICE in Cagayan Valley believed<br />

that they had solved the recent<br />

slay try of a politician after<br />

they were able <strong>to</strong> pounced on the<br />

suspect, reports reaching Camp<br />

Crame Monday said.<br />

In his report <strong>to</strong> Philippine National<br />

Police Chief Dir. Gen. Jesus<br />

Verzosa, Cagayan Valley Regional<br />

Direc<strong>to</strong>r Chief Supt. Rober<strong>to</strong><br />

Damian identified the suspect as<br />

Medicines for barangay<br />

Dwight Doca, who was surprised in<br />

his residence at Lanna Village,<br />

Solana by Cagayan police’s provincial<br />

intelligence section.<br />

Armed with arrest warrant issued<br />

by Judge Marcelino Wagas of the<br />

Branch 25 of the Regional Trial<br />

Court of Tabuk, Kalinga, Doca did<br />

not make a fight and turn himself<br />

peacefully <strong>to</strong> the authorities.<br />

Recovered by arresting officers in<br />

and also the occasional rainfall that<br />

started filling up rivers which would<br />

help hydroelectric plants <strong>to</strong> resume<br />

normal operations.<br />

“I don’t think we have <strong>to</strong> worry<br />

there would be any brownout on<br />

election day. Power producers<br />

here in Mindanao have assured<br />

us they are working overtime <strong>to</strong><br />

ensure there would be no<br />

brownout on election day.”<br />

Lagdameo added.<br />

The lawmaker also noted that<br />

the power outages being experienced<br />

in some parts of Mindanao<br />

President Gloria Arroyo turns over assorted medicines for the Botica ng Barangay <strong>to</strong><br />

Barangay Chairman An<strong>to</strong>nio Baliling of Fatima, during the launching of "Vaccine Against<br />

A(H1N1) for the Health Workers” at the Municipality of Kalawit, Zamboanga<br />

del Norte on Monday. Looking on are Gov. Rolando Yebes and <strong>Sec</strong>retary Esperanza<br />

Cabral of the Department of Health.<br />

his possession were a .45-caliber pis<strong>to</strong>l<br />

and several live bullets.<br />

Damian said Roca was implicated<br />

in the April 21 foiled ambush<br />

against Edgar Palatao, who is running<br />

for councilor in Solana.<br />

The suspect is undergoing intense<br />

questioning of his alleged involvement<br />

in the slay try against Palattao<br />

and <strong>now</strong> in the cus<strong>to</strong>dy of the<br />

Cagayan police. SAMMY MARTIN<br />

in the past few days is mainly because<br />

of maintenance work being<br />

done on one of the power plants<br />

in Cagayan de Oro City.<br />

Aside from a 24-hour moni<strong>to</strong>ring<br />

of the powerplants, Lagdameo said<br />

power producers are also doing regular<br />

maintenance work <strong>to</strong> their plants<br />

in order for them <strong>to</strong> run all the plants<br />

at full capacity on election day.<br />

Lagdameo, husband of actress<br />

Dawn Zulueta and a stalwart of<br />

the Lakas-Kampi Christian Muslim<br />

Democrats, is one of the 17 local<br />

officials in Davao that vowed <strong>to</strong><br />

support former Defense <strong>Sec</strong>retary<br />

Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro Jr.’s presidential<br />

bid.<br />

In an earlier interview the<br />

lawmaker promised <strong>to</strong> work<br />

hard <strong>to</strong> ensure the vic<strong>to</strong>ry of<br />

Teodoro citing volunteerism<br />

that is <strong>now</strong> hugely <strong>back</strong>ing their<br />

standard-bearer.<br />

“I fully support the continued<br />

run of Gibo for the presidency<br />

despite all obstacles being faced<br />

[by him],” said Lagdameo who is<br />

running unopposed in the city’s<br />

second district.<br />

Unidentified kidnappers<br />

free Zamboanga trader<br />

ZAMBOANGA CITY: Kidnappers have freed a<br />

Filipino trader after two weeks in captivity<br />

in the southern Philippines.<br />

The victim, Nena Toremocha, was<br />

released over the weekend in Lanao<br />

del Norte province where her family<br />

fetched her.<br />

No group claimed responsibility<br />

for the kidnapping.<br />

Police confirmed the release,<br />

but security officials would not say<br />

if ransom was paid <strong>to</strong> the kidnappers,<br />

who were believed <strong>to</strong> be<br />

rogue members of the Moro Islamic<br />

Liberation Front, the <strong>count</strong>ry’s<br />

largest Muslim rebel group<br />

<strong>fighting</strong> for independence in the<br />

restive region of Mindanao.<br />

The 62-year old seaweed trader was<br />

kidnapped April 12 by gunmen in the<br />

<strong>to</strong>wn of Olutanga in Zamboanga<br />

Sibugay province. AL JACINTO<br />

‘Tuyo’ recipes showcased<br />

in drying contest in Bataan<br />

BALANGA, City, Bataan: Fried dried fish or<br />

tuyo with soft fried eggs and <strong>to</strong>ma<strong>to</strong>es<br />

may be good enough for breakfast for<br />

some but how about trying other recipes<br />

and you may have some surprises<br />

for your taste buds.<br />

Ordinary housewives in fishing villages<br />

in the City of Balanga on Monday<br />

showcased five of their recipes with<br />

tuyo as main ingredient during the<br />

tuyo cooking and drying/laying contests<br />

at the Plaza Mayor de Balanga.<br />

These were Tuyo Bataan/Bicol Express,<br />

Tuyo Omelette, Tuyo Kaldereta,<br />

Sweet and Sour Spicy Tuyo and Tuyo<br />

Con Chile Express. “Masarap,” said<br />

many who tried the recipes. Can you<br />

imagine tuyo as palaman sa tinapay?<br />

[sandwhich filling]<br />

“Balanga tuyo is famous in<br />

Bataan, in the <strong>count</strong>ry and in some<br />

parts of the world because its delicious<br />

and different from others that<br />

we should be proud of,” said Mayor<br />

Joet Garcia before the contests.<br />

The mayor and his wife, Isabel, enjoyed<br />

tasting the different tuyo recipes.<br />

The provincial office of the Department<br />

of Trade and Industry led by Provincial<br />

Direc<strong>to</strong>r Yay Lasam has included<br />

dried fish under the One Town<br />

One Product program of government.<br />

Sweet and sour spicy tuyo bagged<br />

the first price of P5,000 plus certificate<br />

of recognition, followed by<br />

Tuyo Con Chile Express and Tuyo<br />

Bataan Express with P3,000 and<br />

P2,000 cash price, respectively.<br />

Kilos and kilos of fresh tunsoy in<br />

banyeras were laid for drying on elevated<br />

bamboo platforms along the<br />

major streets of Balanga adjacent <strong>to</strong><br />

the Saint Joseph Cathedral, the<br />

Plaza mayor de Balanga, the city hall<br />

and commercial district.<br />


‘Peacekeepers’ in hot pursuit<br />

of armed groups in Masbate<br />

LEGAZPI CITY: The newly deployed members of the<br />

former United Nations (UN) peacekeepers who<br />

are <strong>now</strong> augmented <strong>to</strong> the Special Task Force (STF)<br />

Masbate is <strong>now</strong> massively pursuing over the partisan<br />

armed group employed by various politicians<br />

in Masbate.<br />

The Philippine Army in Bicol led by Maj. Gen.<br />

Ruper<strong>to</strong> Pabustan, commanding general of the<br />

Army’s Ninth Infantry Division deployed a week<br />

ago some 250 army soldiers formerly members<br />

of the 10th UN peacekeepers in Haiti <strong>to</strong> help out<br />

the Task Force Masbate <strong>to</strong> chase the political<br />

armed groups terrorizing the hapless community<br />

in the far-flung areas of “Marlboro <strong>count</strong>ry” in<br />

the Philippines.<br />

Army Major Harold Cabunoc, regional information<br />

officer of the Army’s regional command<br />

<strong>to</strong>ld The Manila Times that a week after the deployment<br />

of former UN peacekeepers they’re able<br />

<strong>to</strong> seized four suspected members of the partisan<br />

armed group (PAG) in Barangay Naocondiot,<br />

Placer Masbate.<br />

The former UN peacekeepers are among the<br />

combined elements of the STF Masbate which<br />

was sent <strong>to</strong> check and run after the reported presence<br />

of gun-<strong>to</strong>ting gunmen in the <strong>count</strong>ryside.<br />

Cabunoc identified the arrested persons as follows:<br />

Ronald Santianes, Dennis Salvador, Ardi<strong>to</strong><br />

Gailan and Sonny Espinosa. They are currently<br />

detained in Masbate Provincial Police Office as<br />

criminal cases are filed against them.<br />

The STF Masbate has confiscated 10 high-powered<br />

firearms and 77 low-powered firearms from<br />

98 arrested PAG members as of <strong>to</strong>day. The suspects<br />

surrendered upon seeing that they were surrounded<br />

by heavily armed soldiers. One caliber<br />

.357 Smith and Wesson Revolver and copies of<br />

official ballots for the upcoming elections were<br />

recovered from the suspects.<br />

The task force was augmented with additional<br />

forces after the deployment of a 250-men strong battalion<br />

of former UN peacekeepers on April 16.<br />

The newly deployed soldiers are already assigned<br />

<strong>to</strong> the different municipalities in the island<br />

province of Masbate where election-related<br />

violent incidents had been taking place even before<br />

the campaign period and getting intense as<br />

election draws near.<br />

The Commission on Election (<strong>Comelec</strong>) in<br />

Bicol placed the island province of Masbate as<br />

consistent election “hotspot” since time immemorial<br />

as partisan politics remain unresolved as<br />

bigtime political players employed and maintained<br />

its goons.<br />

As this developed, the Special Task Force<br />

Masbate is strongly guarding the 724 Precinct<br />

Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines that arrived<br />

at the Masbate City from the <strong>Comelec</strong>.<br />

Lawyer Zacarias Zaragoza, regional direc<strong>to</strong>r of<br />

<strong>Comelec</strong>-Bicol, said during the <strong>Comelec</strong> Joint<br />

Consultative Conference that over 4,000 PCOS<br />

machines are <strong>now</strong> ready for distribution in clustered<br />

precincts voting center in various <strong>to</strong>wns and<br />

cities throughout the six provinces of Bicol.<br />

Zaragoza said the PCOS machines would be<br />

ready for testing on May 8 and 9 respectively <strong>to</strong><br />

ensure that no failure of the machine operation<br />

would happen during the May 10 elections.<br />

He asked the Department of Education <strong>to</strong><br />

make available all public school classrooms for<br />

the PCOS machine testing on the scheduled date.<br />

The police and military were also directed<br />

<strong>to</strong> closely coordinate with the local <strong>Comelec</strong><br />

and the Board of Election Inspec<strong>to</strong>rs concerning<br />

the guarding of the machines and the security<br />

aspects during the testing course and<br />

the actual election procedures during the May<br />

10 elections. RHAYDZ B. BARCIA<br />

Blast hits Sarangani governor’s convoy<br />

ZAMBOANGA CITY: An improvised bomb exploded<br />

Monday at a convoy carrying a provincial governor<br />

in the southern Philippines.<br />

The bomb exploded between the car of Gov.<br />

Miguel Rene Dominguez of Sarangani and his<br />

aides while traveling <strong>to</strong> the <strong>to</strong>wn of Glan on his<br />

way <strong>to</strong> meet former Defense <strong>Sec</strong>retary Gilbert<br />

Teodoro Jr. who is <strong>now</strong> running in next month’s<br />

presidential <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

It was unclear who planted the bomb, but<br />

Dominguez said he was not hurt in the explosion.<br />

“I am okay,” he said.<br />

The blast occurred hours after security forces<br />

arrested four people for carrying illegal weapons<br />

in the <strong>to</strong>wn, whose Mayor Enrique Yap was<br />

the target of an assassination attempt.<br />

The four men—Jimmy Mier, Alfredo<br />

Macabayao, Fredie Mendes and Ronald Elorde—<br />

were arrested after they flagged down Yap’s vehicle.<br />

The mayor sped off after seeing the armed<br />

men and sought police help.<br />

Police and military seized an M16 rifle and a<br />

.45-caliber pis<strong>to</strong>l from the men who were in two<br />

vans during a chase. It was unk<strong>now</strong>n whether<br />

the four suspects are followers of rival candidates<br />

or not. AL JACINTO


ROME: Italy’s love affair with the Fed Cup continued on<br />

Sunday (Monday in Manila) as the reigning champions<br />

booked a place in the final against the United States after a<br />

5-0 whitewash against the Czech Republic. Needing only the<br />

first rubber of the day, <strong>to</strong>p seeded Italian Flavia Pennetta<br />

scored the decisive point with a 7-6 (7/3), 6-2 win over Petra<br />

Kvi<strong>to</strong>va <strong>to</strong> book a fourth final in the last five years. AFP<br />

Lifter Llena<br />

<strong>to</strong> compete<br />

in Mongolia<br />

PROMISING lifter Patricia Llena will<br />

compete against some of the<br />

region’s best in the Asian<br />

Powerlifting Championships slated<br />

from May 1 <strong>to</strong> 6 at the Central<br />

Palace of Art and Culture in<br />

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.<br />

The <strong>to</strong>urnament serves as Llena’s<br />

build up for the 2010 Youth<br />

Olympics in August in Singapore.<br />

“It’s a good chance <strong>to</strong> scout<br />

possible rivals in the Youth Olympics.<br />

It’s also a good venue <strong>to</strong><br />

improve my skills as best lifters from<br />

all over Asia are expected <strong>to</strong><br />

participate,” said Llena.<br />

The 16-year-old Llena was officially<br />

named as the <strong>count</strong>ry’s representative<br />

in the Youth Olympics following her<br />

three-bronze medal finish in the<br />

recently concluded Asian Youth and<br />

Junior Weightlifting Championship in<br />

Tashkent, Uzbekistan.<br />

Llena, a San An<strong>to</strong>nio, Nueva Ecija<br />

native, placed third in the snatch (80<br />

kilograms), clean and jerk (101<br />

kilograms) and <strong>to</strong>tal (181 kilograms)<br />

of the girls’ 63-kilogram class.<br />

Last year, Llena <strong>to</strong>pped the World<br />

Sub-Junior and Junior Powerlifting<br />

Championships in Sao Paulo, Brazil<br />

with three gold medals. She<br />

defeated three-time world champion<br />

Talybova Yana of Russia.<br />

Llena also finish in 10th spot in<br />

the 2009 World Youth and Junior<br />

Weightlifting Championship held in<br />

Chang Mai, Thailand.<br />

Besides Llena, other entries of the<br />

Philippines in the Youth Olympics are<br />

tennis player Francis Casey Alcantara<br />

and the boys’ national youth threeon-three<br />

basketball squad.<br />

Alcantara and the basketball<br />

team were given wild card entries<br />

by their respective international<br />

federations. Youth Olympics<br />

hopefuls Banjo Borja, Jessie Khing<br />

Lacuna, Jasmine Al-Khaldi, Dorothy<br />

Hong and Jose Gonzales are still<br />

awaiting confirmation from the<br />

International Swimming Federation.<br />


A<br />

sports<br />


SOFIA, Bulgaria: India’s defending champion Viswanathan<br />

Anand on Sunday (Monday in Manila) won the second game<br />

8<br />

in his 12-game duel for the world chess title against<br />

Bulgarian challenger Veselin Topalov, <strong>to</strong> level the scores at<br />

1-1. The Indian grandmaster, who played white, beat<br />

Topalov on the 43rd move of the game. Topalov had won<br />

The ˜Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

the first game of the series on Saturday. AFP<br />

Puyat captures US junior golf title<br />


FILIPINO Marcel Puyat blasted<br />

a two-under par 70 <strong>to</strong> come <strong>back</strong><br />

from five strokes down and beat<br />

David Lee and Will Zala<strong>to</strong>ris <strong>to</strong> capture the<br />

American Junior Golf Association-Under<br />

Armour/Hunter Mahan Championship<br />

boys’ crown over the weekend.<br />

The 17-year-old Puyat at the TPC<br />

Craig Ranch course in McKinney,<br />

Texas delivered three birdies in the final<br />

round <strong>to</strong> banish his lone bogey<br />

mishap on No. 11 for that 70 and a<br />

54-hole <strong>to</strong>tal of 216 <strong>to</strong> snare the title.<br />

Entering the final in joint fourth<br />

with four others, including Zala<strong>to</strong>ris<br />

from Texas, five shots behind Lee,<br />

Puyat stayed focused and used a strategy<br />

<strong>to</strong> score his breakthrough vic<strong>to</strong>ry.<br />

“My game plan was <strong>to</strong> make pars on<br />

the <strong>to</strong>ugh holes and be aggressive on the<br />

easy holes,” said Puyat, who is being eyed<br />

by coaches of University of California,<br />

Los Angeles, Duke University and<br />

Stanford University. “I knew all I had <strong>to</strong><br />

do was stick <strong>to</strong> that plan <strong>to</strong> win.”<br />

The Texas native Lee lost his <strong>to</strong>uch<br />

and skied <strong>to</strong> a five-over 77, dropping<br />

<strong>to</strong> third with a 218 in a tie with Lee<br />

McCoy (68) of Florida and Al<br />

McInerney (74) of Nevada.<br />

Zala<strong>to</strong>ris made two birdies against<br />

two bogeys <strong>to</strong> make the turn at<br />

36, dropping just one shot <strong>back</strong><br />

Wade’s amazing effort keeps Heat in NBA playoffs<br />

MIAMI: Dwyane Wade scored a career<br />

playoff high 46 points <strong>to</strong> spark<br />

the Miami Heat past Bos<strong>to</strong>n 101-<br />

92 on Sunday (Monday in Manila),<br />

denying the Celtics a sweep<br />

of their Eastern Conference firstround<br />

NBA playoff series.<br />

Playing what could have been<br />

his final game for the Heat,<br />

Wade rallied Miami from a 77-<br />

71 deficit entering the fourth<br />

quarter after Bos<strong>to</strong>n had erased<br />

an early 18-point lead for the<br />

hosts and extended the best-ofseven<br />

series.<br />

The Celtics will try again <strong>to</strong> finish<br />

off the Heat in Game 5 on<br />

Tuesday in Bos<strong>to</strong>n.<br />

Wade plans <strong>to</strong> opt out of his<br />

contract with the Heat and test the<br />

free agent market, although the superstar<br />

guard has said he would<br />

like <strong>to</strong> stay in Miami.<br />

If Sunday was his final home<br />

game in a Heat uniform, Wade<br />

made certain it was that would<br />

long be remembered, outscoring<br />

the entire Bos<strong>to</strong>n squad 19-15 in<br />

the fourth quarter.<br />

Ateneo, Lyceum square off for <strong>to</strong>p post in V-League<br />

UNBEATEN squads Ateneo de Manila<br />

University and Lyceum College<br />

clash against each other for<br />

the <strong>to</strong>p post in Group B on the way<br />

<strong>to</strong> the quarterfinal round of seventh<br />

Shakey’s V-League women’s<br />

volleyball on Tuesday at The Arena<br />

in San Juan City.<br />

The winner between Ateneo and<br />

Lyceum in their 4 p.m. match will<br />

The Celtics had won all three<br />

regular-season meetings with Miami<br />

and led the series 3-0 and appeared<br />

set <strong>to</strong> finish off the Heat<br />

when Wade answered.<br />

Wade hit <strong>back</strong>-<strong>to</strong>-<strong>back</strong> threepointers<br />

<strong>to</strong> put Miami ahead 79-78<br />

and added another <strong>to</strong> cap a 12-2 run<br />

that gave the Heat an 85-80 edge.<br />

In Chicago, James scored 37<br />

points, grabbed 12 rebounds and<br />

passes out 11 assists <strong>to</strong> spark the<br />

Cleveland Cavaliers against the<br />

Bulls 121-98, giving the NBA regular<br />

season champions a 3-1 edge<br />

in their Eastern Conference<br />

playoff matchup.<br />

The fifth career “triple double”<br />

for James led a blowout performance<br />

by the Cavaliers, who had 24<br />

points from Antawn Jamison and<br />

19 from Mo Williams.<br />

The Bulls were led by 21 points<br />

each from Derrick Rose and<br />

Joakim Noah, but were unable <strong>to</strong><br />

keep the pace with Cleveland in<br />

the second quarter and unable <strong>to</strong><br />

rally in the second half.<br />

The Cavaliers host Chicago in<br />

remain unbeaten in three games.<br />

The final elimination day on Thursday<br />

is Ateneo tangles with Adamson<br />

and Lyceum battles University of<br />

San Jose-Recole<strong>to</strong>s.<br />

Defending champion University<br />

of San<strong>to</strong> Tomas tries <strong>to</strong> rebound<br />

from its loss <strong>to</strong> San Sebastian, when<br />

it takes on University of Saint La<br />

Salle-Bacolod at 2 p.m. for the No.<br />

Game 5 Tuesday needing<br />

only one more vic<strong>to</strong>ry<br />

<strong>to</strong> advance as<br />

James focuses on winning<br />

an NBA title.<br />

Meanwhile, George<br />

Hill scored a game-high 29<br />

points and the San An<strong>to</strong>nio Spurs<br />

pushed the second-seeded Dallas<br />

Mavericks <strong>to</strong> the brink of elimination<br />

from the NBA playoffs<br />

with a 92-89 vic<strong>to</strong>ry.<br />

Argentine star guard Manu<br />

Ginobili scored 17 points<br />

for the Spurs despite playing<br />

with a nasal fracture<br />

and Richard Jefferson<br />

added 15 as San An<strong>to</strong>nio<br />

seized a 3-1 edge in the<br />

first-round Western Conference<br />

best-of-seven series.<br />

In other Western Conference<br />

playoff game, Carlos<br />

Boozer scored 31 points and<br />

grabbed 12 rebounds <strong>to</strong> lead<br />

Utah past Denver 117-106,<br />

giving the Jazz a 3-1 lead over<br />

the Nuggets in their firstround<br />

series.<br />

AFP<br />

2 slot in Group A.<br />

The <strong>to</strong>p four teams in each<br />

group after the single round elimination<br />

will advance <strong>to</strong> the quarters<br />

where they will again be divided<br />

in<strong>to</strong> two with the Nos. 1 and 3<br />

teams making up the first group<br />

and the Nos. 2 and 4 squads composing<br />

the other side.<br />

The Tigresses are fancied against<br />

the Lady Stingers, who are also in<strong>to</strong><br />

the quarters with an even 1-1 card.<br />

Focus will be on the Thai imports<br />

of both teams with Ateneo’s Sontaya<br />

Keawbundit, who unloaded 26<br />

spikes in two games, going up<br />

against Lyceum’s Porntip Santrong,<br />

who had been more prolific with a<br />

26-kill average after two games.<br />


off Puyat, who birdied No. 7.<br />

Puyat, one of the US-based golfing<br />

scholars of ICTSI, birdied No.<br />

16 <strong>to</strong> surge ahead by three and held<br />

on <strong>to</strong> a one-stroke win as Zala<strong>to</strong>ris<br />

came charging home with two birdies<br />

in the last three holes for a 71<br />

and a 217 for second.<br />

Puyat, who opened with a 72 for<br />

joint sixth then moved up <strong>to</strong> a share<br />

of fourth despite fumbling with a<br />

two-over 74, said his hard work has<br />

finally paid off with the win.<br />

Nadera eyes<br />

lead in Asian<br />

chess games<br />

FILIPINO International Master<br />

(IM) Barlo Nadera is still in contention<br />

along with solo leader<br />

Grandmaster (GM) Wesley So in<br />

the 9th Asian Individual Chess<br />

Championships being held at the<br />

the Subic Exhibition and Convention<br />

Center.<br />

Nadera posted an upset win over<br />

GM Saleh Salem of United Arab<br />

Emirates <strong>to</strong> improve his score <strong>to</strong><br />

3.5 points and vaulted in<strong>to</strong> a tie<br />

for seventh <strong>to</strong> 19th places after the<br />

fifth round.<br />

The 55th seed Nadera is a full<br />

point behind So and half a point<br />

behind second placers GM Gopal<br />

Narayana Geetha of India and GMs<br />

Yu Yangyi, Ding Liren, Ni Jua and Li<br />

Chao of China.<br />

Nadera will face GM Ehsan<br />

Gahemmagham of Iran in the sixth<br />

round of the <strong>to</strong>urnament organized<br />

by the National Chess Federation of<br />

the Philippines.<br />

“I still have four rounds <strong>to</strong> catch<br />

up with <strong>to</strong>urnament leaders. I just<br />

stay composed and relaxed <strong>to</strong><br />

come up with vic<strong>to</strong>ry like this<br />

one,” said Nadera.<br />

GM John Paul Gomez defeated<br />

IM Kirl Kuderinov of Kazakhstan.<br />

So <strong>to</strong>ok the solo lead by trouncing<br />

GM Susan<strong>to</strong> Megaran<strong>to</strong> of Indonesia.<br />

The Filipino chess wizard <strong>now</strong> has 4.5<br />

points on four wins and one draw.<br />


Lariba grabs 3 crowns in METTA Cup<br />

RISING young star Ian Lariba captured three<br />

crowns while Indonesia snared most of the<br />

titles in the last day of second Metropolitan<br />

Table Tennis Association (METTA) National<br />

Invitational Cup over the weekend at the<br />

Ninoy Aquino Stadium.<br />

The 15-year-old Lariba, a member of the<br />

Philippine team since 2007, gained the girls’<br />

15-and-under singles plum, girls’ 17-andunder<br />

singles crown and the women’s open<br />

singles title in the event organized by METTA<br />

President Ting Ledesma.<br />

“My coach <strong>to</strong>ld me <strong>to</strong> play with a lot of<br />

heart besides training,” said Lariba.<br />

Indonesia <strong>to</strong>ok four titles in the <strong>to</strong>urnament<br />

supported by Annona Corp., Mae Gas<br />

Refilling Plant and Marketing, Sonia Trading<br />

and Topcoms/Star Sports Korea.<br />

Lariba outclassed Jaezl Ingeniero, 3-0, for the<br />

girls’ 15 singles crown, while she easily disposed<br />

off Rose Fadol of Bacolod, 3-0, for the girls’ 17<br />

title and beat former national player Sendrina<br />

Balatbat, 3-1, for the women’s open crown.<br />

Indonesian Anang Apriyan<strong>to</strong> won the boys’<br />

12 singles crown against Francis Garganian<br />

of Bacolod, 3-0; Bima Negara <strong>to</strong>ok the boys’<br />

15 singles title against fellow Apriyan<strong>to</strong>, 3-1;<br />

sportsinbrief<br />

■ NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana: American Jason Bohn<br />

snapped a five-year win drought Sunday<br />

(Monday in Manila), making birdies on three of the last<br />

four holes <strong>to</strong> complete a wire-<strong>to</strong>-wire vic<strong>to</strong>ry at the US<br />

PGA Zurich Classic. Bohn, who turned 37 on Saturday,<br />

fired a bogey-less final-round five-under par 67 <strong>to</strong><br />

finish 72 holes on 18-under par 270, defeating<br />

<strong>count</strong>ryman Jeff Over<strong>to</strong>n by two strokes for his first<br />

triumph since the 2005 B.C. Open.<br />

AFP<br />

■ ROME: Roger Federer admitted he was shocked<br />

his old rival and four-time French Open champion<br />

Rafael Nadal had been written off as a spent force. World<br />

No. 1 Federer, who will renew his rivalry with the Spaniard<br />

at the Rome Masters this week, likened the criticism aimed<br />

at Nadal <strong>to</strong> the experience he went through a year ago. AFP<br />

■ UNIVERSITY of the East (UE) scored with<br />

a 22-25, 25-20, 25-15, 25-22 vic<strong>to</strong>ry against<br />

University of Cordilleras (UC) on Monday in the<br />

opening round of 2010 National Inter-Collegiate<br />

Volleyball Championship at the UC gym in La Trinidad<br />

and Syaiful Lakoro won over Negara, 3-0, for<br />

the boys’ 17 crown.<br />

Yon Mardiyono won against fellow Indonesian<br />

Dian Jacobs, 3-0, for the men’s singles<br />

open of the <strong>to</strong>urnament sanctioned by the<br />

Table Tennis Association of the Philippines.<br />

LOPTTA of Bacolod City swept all matches<br />

<strong>to</strong> beat host METTA, 3-0, for the men’s nonrank<br />

title of the event, whose awarding<br />

ceremony was attended by Philippine Sports<br />

Commission Chairman Harry Angping and<br />

Mayor Alfredo Lim of Manila.<br />

In other results, Via Bonzon of Huaching<br />

beat Samantha Ingeniero of P. Gomez, 3-2, for<br />

the girls’ 12-and-under crown, Johanne<br />

Remaneses defeated Nico Cruz of San Beda,<br />

3-2, for the men’s non-rank crown.<br />

College of Saint Benilde’s Cecille Niemo<br />

crushed Mabeth Compendio of G 5000, 3-0,<br />

for the women’s non-rank crown in the<br />

<strong>to</strong>urnament participated by at least 400<br />

table tennis players all over the <strong>count</strong>ry.<br />

Other champions were Nes<strong>to</strong>r Ferre of<br />

Table Tennis Association of North District (50<br />

above men’s singles); Bill Yap of Hua Ching<br />

(Platinum) and Lauro Crisos<strong>to</strong>mo of METTA<br />

(40 above men’s singles). JOSEF T. RAMOS<br />

Benguet. UE take its first win in the annual <strong>to</strong>urnament<br />

organized by the Philippine Volleyball Federation,<br />

headed by President Pedro Mendoza. Saint Louie<br />

University (SLU) beat University of Baguio, 3-0, for the<br />

other women’s result. In the men’s side, UE won over<br />

SLU, 3-0, and UC defeated Emilio Aguinaldo College,<br />

3-0, for first win. JOSEF T. RAMOS<br />

■ PROFESSOR Robert Mil<strong>to</strong> Calo of the Technological<br />

University of the Philippines (TUP)<br />

was elected president of the Federation of School Sports<br />

Association of the Philippines (FESSAP) recently for the year<br />

2010 held at TUP Audi<strong>to</strong>rium in Manila. Calo who replaced Dr.<br />

Godofredo Gallega, also serves as president of the Philippine<br />

Inter-School Colleges Universities Athletic Association, one of<br />

the hundred league-organizations affiliated with the FESSAP.<br />

■ ABOUT 300 racers <strong>to</strong>ok part in the first leg of<br />

the Powerade Philippine Duathlon Open 2010<br />

held recently at the Filinvest Corporate City, Alabang, with<br />

the national duathlete champions August Benedic<strong>to</strong> and<br />

Monica Torres <strong>to</strong>pped the elite class. Tarlac City’s August<br />

Benedic<strong>to</strong> finished first in the Men’s Division clocking in<br />

at 1:20:20 while World’s No. 5 Monica Torres <strong>to</strong>pped the<br />

Women’s Division with a time of 1:37:52.


Inflation<br />

The percentage increase in the price level per year.<br />

Source: Bureau of Micro, Small and<br />

Medium Enterprise Development-<br />

Department of Trade and Industry<br />

business<br />

business@manilatimes.net<br />

B<br />

1<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

Galleon-NAV-00.6871-04/26/2010<br />

BSP maintains upward bias<br />

in April inflation forecast<br />


THE Philippine central bank on<br />

Monday said its inflation forecast for<br />

March would hold for April as well.<br />

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas<br />

(BSP) said this month’s average price<br />

increase would fall within a higher<br />

range of 3.9 percent <strong>to</strong> 4.8 percent,<br />

similar <strong>to</strong> its forecast for last month.<br />

BSP Governor Amando Tetangco<br />

Jr. said the fac<strong>to</strong>rs behind the forecast<br />

are higher oil prices and electricity<br />

rates.<br />

He said lower rice prices and the<br />

slight appreciation of the peso likely<br />

tempered inflation this month.<br />

“Overall, based on the current assessment<br />

of inflation risks, including<br />

the likely trend in oil and non-oil<br />

commodity prices, this estimate<br />

would allow inflation <strong>to</strong> settle within<br />

the 2010 target range,” Tetangco said.<br />

The April forecast is still within the<br />

BSP’s full-year target of 3.5 percent <strong>to</strong><br />

5.5 percent. For next year, it set an inflation<br />

target of 3 percent <strong>to</strong> 5 percent.<br />

Last week, the policy-making<br />

Monetary Board kept its key interest<br />

rates steady, but raised its inflation<br />

forecast for this year and 2011<br />

amid higher fuel prices and expectations<br />

of an increase in transport<br />

»INFLATION (in percent)<br />

5<br />

3<br />

4.4<br />

3.9 <strong>to</strong> 4.8<br />

1<br />

0<br />

March<br />

actual<br />

April<br />

forecast<br />

fares and wages.<br />

BSP Assistant Governor Cyd<br />

Tuano-Amador had said monetary<br />

authorities revised their baseline<br />

inflation forecast <strong>to</strong> 5.1 percent this<br />

year from an earlier estimate of 4.64<br />

percent. The 2011 forecast also was<br />

increased <strong>to</strong> 3.7 percent from 3.45<br />

percent previously.<br />

Amador said the upward revision<br />

was based on the assumption that<br />

there will be increases in oil prices,<br />

wages and transport fares—50<br />

centavos for jeepney fares and P10 for<br />

taxi flag-down rates—next month.<br />

She said the BSP based the assumed<br />

wage increases on the his<strong>to</strong>rical<br />

level of adjustment of an average<br />

P25 per day, which translates <strong>to</strong><br />

a 6-percent increase.<br />

Assuming there will be no adjustments<br />

in wages, transport fares and<br />

oil prices, baseline inflation will be<br />

lower at 4.4 percent this year, still<br />

higher than the earlier forecast.<br />

For next year, the baseline figure<br />

was set at 3.2 percent, assuming no<br />

increases in wages, transport fares<br />

and oil prices.<br />

Power grid opera<strong>to</strong>r <strong>to</strong> accelerate Mindanao capex<br />



THE opera<strong>to</strong>r of the Philippines’ power<br />

transmission monopoly said it would<br />

ramp up its capital expenditures in<br />

Mindanao this year <strong>to</strong> address the region’s<br />

electricity supply shortfall.<br />

In a press briefing, Roque Corpuz,<br />

National Grid Corporation of the<br />

Philippines (NGCP) president, said<br />

it may need around P10 billion for<br />

this year’s capex.<br />

A significant portion of the amount<br />

would likely go <strong>to</strong> the completion of<br />

the Mindanao “loop,” he said.<br />

These include the Maramag-<br />

Bunawan Transmission Project, Abaga-<br />

Kirahon Transmission Project and the<br />

Kirahon-Maramag transmission line.<br />

These projects aim <strong>to</strong> put up a<br />

<strong>back</strong>bone transmission system from<br />

Northern Mindanao, where most of<br />

the region’s hydro plants are located,<br />

<strong>to</strong> Southern Mindanao,<br />

which hosts most of its industrial<br />

and commercial cus<strong>to</strong>mers.<br />

The absence of a direct link between<br />

the two regions is responsible<br />

for the transmission line constraints<br />

that crimped electricity supply<br />

in Southern Mindanao.<br />

NGCP is the consortium that won last<br />

year’s bid for the 25-year concession <strong>to</strong><br />

operate and manage the power grid.<br />

The consortium is composed of State<br />

Grid of China Corp., which has a 40<br />

percent stake; Monte Oro Grid Resources<br />

Corp., with 30 percent; and<br />

Calaca High Power Corp., with the remaining<br />

30 percent.<br />

NGCP said it has been implementing<br />

numerous repairs and upgrade of<br />

the power grid since assuming control<br />

from state-run National Transmission<br />

Corp. (TransCo).<br />

While most of the grid’s assets<br />

were supposed <strong>to</strong> last for 30 years,<br />

they had been deteriorating, if not<br />

had bogged down after only 10 years<br />

under TransCo.<br />

Under the <strong>count</strong>ry’s Transmission<br />

Development Plan, the concessionaire<br />

will have <strong>to</strong> pour in some<br />

$850 million for capital expenditures<br />

over the period 2006 <strong>to</strong> 2010.<br />

■ The peso<br />

closed at<br />

44.23 against<br />

US dollar on<br />

Monday,<br />

stronger<br />

than Friday’s<br />

44.33 finish.<br />

Peso, s<strong>to</strong>cks rise amid<br />

improving risk appetite<br />

IMPROVING risk appetite following<br />

Greece’s request for a financial<br />

bailout buoyed the peso and Philippine<br />

share prices on Monday.<br />

At the Philippine Dealing System,<br />

the local unit closed at 44.23<br />

against the green<strong>back</strong> from last Friday’s<br />

44.33 finish.<br />

One trader said the peso also<br />

got a lift from the Bangko Sentral<br />

ng Pilipinas announcement that<br />

remittances will grow by 8 percent<br />

and not 6 percent as forecast<br />

earlier.<br />

The peso opened at 44.31 and<br />

traded <strong>to</strong> a high of 44.315 and a low<br />

of 44.15. Total trading volume<br />

reached $771.350 from last week’s<br />

$603.15 million.<br />

Traders said they see the peso at<br />

a range of 44.00 and 44.30 within<br />

the week.<br />

At the Philippine S<strong>to</strong>ck Exchange,<br />

share prices resumed their<br />

rise on Monday after Wall Street<br />

recorded its longest string of gains<br />

in six years.<br />

The local composite index rose<br />

by 1.48 percent or 48.14 points <strong>to</strong><br />

3,292.59, less than eight points shy<br />

■ The composite<br />

index increased<br />

48.14 points <strong>to</strong><br />

3,292.59, while<br />

the all-shares<br />

index up by<br />

25.20 points <strong>to</strong><br />

2,043.12.<br />

of the 3,300 psychological level,<br />

while the broader all-shares index<br />

advanced by 1.25 percent or 25.20<br />

points <strong>to</strong> 2,043.12.<br />

Advancers beat decliners 68 <strong>to</strong><br />

32, while 63 s<strong>to</strong>cks were unchanged.<br />

A <strong>to</strong>tal of 949.72 billion<br />

s<strong>to</strong>cks worth P3.59 billion<br />

were traded.<br />

“Right <strong>now</strong>, we’re still caught<br />

in the optimism in the overseas<br />

market and what we’re seeing<br />

<strong>now</strong> is still part of the consolidation<br />

in the s<strong>to</strong>ck market,” said<br />

Astro del Castillo of First Grade<br />

Holdings Inc.<br />

Del Castillo said that as the May<br />

presidential elections draw nearer,<br />

the market is expected <strong>to</strong> move<br />

“sideways.” As of <strong>now</strong>, economicrelated<br />

developments have more<br />

influence on inves<strong>to</strong>rs than <strong>poll</strong>-related<br />

news, he said.<br />

The Dow Jones Industrial Average<br />

gained 0.63 percent or 69.99<br />

points <strong>to</strong> 11,204.28 after a strong<br />

report on new home sales made up<br />

for mixed corporate earnings news.<br />



»US UNVEILS NEW $100<br />

■ Brian Doherty (right), Economic<br />

Counselor of the US Embassy, points<br />

<strong>to</strong> the 3D security ribbon, one of the<br />

unique features of the new $100 bill.<br />

The US Embassy in Manila and the US<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>ret Service unveiled the new<br />

design for the note, which has<br />

<strong>count</strong>erfeit-deterrent security<br />

features. These new notes will be<br />

issued on February 10, 2011, but<br />

the 6.5-billion old design $100s in<br />

circulation will remain legal tender,<br />

officials said. LAILANY P. GOMEZ<br />

Cus<strong>to</strong>ms<br />

sees April<br />

collections<br />

above goal<br />



THE Bureau of Cus<strong>to</strong>ms said it<br />

would exceed its self-imposed<br />

collection target for April despite a<br />

cash shortfall on the last week of<br />

the month.<br />

Cus<strong>to</strong>ms Commissioner Napoleon<br />

Morales said Cus<strong>to</strong>ms maintains a<br />

cash target of P13.267 billion for the<br />

period April 1 <strong>to</strong> 22.<br />

The agency’s actual cash<br />

collection for the period s<strong>to</strong>od at<br />

only P12.531 billion, or P739 million<br />

short of the goal.<br />

Morales said the agency however<br />

expects P3.8 billion in non-cash tax<br />

expenditure fund (TEF), bringing the<br />

bureau closer if not surpassing its<br />

full-month target of P22.690 billion.<br />

The Department of Budget and<br />

Management allocates an annual<br />

budget for the TEF, which is used <strong>to</strong><br />

help state-run corporations pay<br />

duties and taxes <strong>to</strong> Cus<strong>to</strong>ms and the<br />

Bureau of Internal Revenue. Tax<br />

subsidies given <strong>to</strong> a state corporation<br />

are usually deducted from its budget<br />

for the succeeding year.<br />

“We are definitely going <strong>to</strong> meet<br />

and exceed our [collection] target for<br />

the month of April, which was<br />

perceived <strong>to</strong> be more challenging<br />

compared with the same period last<br />

year,” Morales said.<br />

For this year, Cus<strong>to</strong>ms is tasked<br />

<strong>to</strong> collect P275.7 billion, higher<br />

than last year’s actual tax take of<br />

P220.3 billion.<br />

Travel agencies claim losses on EU ban<br />


THE ban imposed by the European<br />

Union (EU) on Philippine carriers is<br />

hurting local travel agencies, according<br />

<strong>to</strong> an industry group.<br />

Maria Paz Alber<strong>to</strong>, Philippine Travel<br />

Agencies Association president, said<br />

they estimate losses running <strong>to</strong> about a<br />

tenth of potential revenues because of<br />

the ban, which led <strong>to</strong> a decline in bookings<br />

for travel <strong>to</strong> the Philippines.<br />

“The ban on local airlines by European<br />

authorities is another major<br />

blow <strong>to</strong> the operations of travel agencies,<br />

who are also currently battling<br />

online promos by airlines and hotels,”<br />

Alber<strong>to</strong> said in a statement.<br />

“Although no Philippine carrier flies<br />

directly <strong>to</strong> Europe, the blacklisting [resulted<br />

in] the issuance of negative travel<br />

advisories on the Philippines and the<br />

non-issuance of travel insurance for<br />

those going <strong>to</strong> the <strong>count</strong>ry,” she said.<br />

“It also meant that inter-island<br />

<strong>to</strong>urs, which are a normal part of the<br />

package being offered by travel agencies<br />

with inbound services, were also<br />

cancelled by <strong>to</strong>urists coming from<br />

Europe as they involve the use of<br />

domestic airlines,” she added.<br />

“The issuance of the blacklisting<br />

happened at a time when [local travel<br />

agencies] were starting <strong>to</strong> receive<br />

strong demand from European markets,”<br />

Alber<strong>to</strong> said. “We have been<br />

getting a lot of inquiries and bookings<br />

from Germany, France and Russia.<br />

Europe is such a big market that<br />

we are only <strong>now</strong> slowly penetrating.”<br />

Alber<strong>to</strong> called on President Arroyo<br />

<strong>to</strong> do something <strong>to</strong> lift the EU ban.<br />

Marketing <strong>to</strong> the base of the pyramid<br />

IN late June 2006, Fernando Zobel<br />

of the Ayala group of companies addressed<br />

some 50 deans and officials<br />

of graduate schools of business in Asia<br />

and the Pacific at the annual conference<br />

of the Pacific Asia Consortium<br />

for International Business and Economics<br />

Research (PACIBER) at the<br />

Mactan Shangri-la in Cebu.<br />

In his speech, which the deans<br />

found fascinating, Zobel spoke about<br />

how the Ayala group had made it part<br />

of its mission <strong>to</strong> serve both the economically<br />

dynamic and the poor profitably<br />

and honorably. The latter segment<br />

of the economy is called the base<br />

of the pyramid (BOP) or the bot<strong>to</strong>m<br />

of the pyramid, although the former<br />

is the more politically correct term.<br />

Zobel cited the example of prepaid cell<br />

phone cards that are sold in sari-sari s<strong>to</strong>res<br />

and retailed further at lower denominations,<br />

very much like selling shampoo<br />

in sachets or selling cigarettes by the stick<br />

and not by the pack. He also cited Manila<br />

Water, which supplies water even <strong>to</strong><br />

the marginalized sec<strong>to</strong>rs of society.<br />

In 2002, when the BOP still s<strong>to</strong>od<br />

for the bot<strong>to</strong>m of the pyramid, C.K.<br />

Pralahad and Allen Hammond coauthored<br />

a paper in the prestigious<br />

Harvard Business Review (HBR) entitled<br />

“Serving the World’s Poor Profitably.”<br />

The paper urged the multinational<br />

companies (MNC’s) <strong>to</strong> be at the forefront<br />

of social development initiatives<br />

not as an act of charity but as a matter<br />




of self-interest.<br />

The paper started with the basic<br />

proposition that by stimulating commerce<br />

and development at the bot<strong>to</strong>m<br />

(base) of the economic pyramid,<br />

multinationals could radically improve<br />

the lives of billions of people<br />

and help create a more stable, less<br />

dangerous world. In short, <strong>to</strong> create<br />

a healthy world economy is <strong>to</strong> ensure<br />

world peace. Pralahad and Hammond<br />

then proceeded <strong>to</strong> argue the<br />

business case for entering the world’s<br />

poorest markets.<br />

Pralahad and Hammond explained<br />

that business rarely invests in selling<br />

<strong>to</strong> the poor because of outdated assumptions<br />

about the developing<br />

world. While it is true that, in developing<br />

<strong>count</strong>ies, individual incomes<br />

may be low and thus purchasing<br />

power is limited, the aggregate buying<br />

power of poor communities is actually<br />

quite large, representing a substantial<br />

market in many <strong>count</strong>ries for<br />

what some might consider luxury<br />

goods like satellite television and<br />

phone services. Prices and margins<br />

are often much higher in poor<br />

neighborhoods than in their middle<br />

class <strong>count</strong>erparts. And new technologies<br />

are already steadily reducing<br />

the effects of corruption, illiteracy,<br />

inadequate infrastructure and<br />

other such barriers, according <strong>to</strong><br />

Pralahad and Hammond.<br />

The two scholars have other gems<br />

of thought on how the BOP can be<br />

served. In the end, they have one precious<br />

insight. Certainly, succeeding in<br />

such markets requires MNC’s (and<br />

other enterprises) <strong>to</strong> think creatively.<br />

The biggest change, though, has <strong>to</strong><br />

come from executives themselves. Unless<br />

business leaders confront their<br />

own perceptions—particularly about<br />

the value of high-volume, low-margin<br />

businesses—companies are unlikely<br />

<strong>to</strong> master the challenges or reap the<br />

rewards of those developing markets.<br />

Let me add a word of caution, however.<br />

All these initiatives have <strong>to</strong> result<br />

in improving the condition of<br />

mankind; otherwise they may create<br />

more of the injustice and lopsidedness<br />

we are trying <strong>to</strong> eradicate.<br />

DR. PHILIP ELLA JUICO is a senior professional<br />

lecturer at De La Salle University’s<br />

Ramon V. del Rosario Sr. Graduate<br />

School of Business. He teaches Sustainable<br />

Business in the doc<strong>to</strong>ral program and<br />

Corporate Social Responsibility and Human<br />

Rights in the masteral program.<br />

Roll-on, roll-off system cuts<br />

travel time, costs – ADB<br />



THE roll-on, roll-off (Ro-Ro) system<br />

has significantly cut the transport<br />

costs, as well as travel time in the<br />

Philippines, an Asian Development<br />

Bank (ADB) study revealed.<br />

The Manila-based lender said the<br />

transport costs were reduced by 10<br />

percent <strong>to</strong> 60 percent mainly<br />

because the cargo handling charges<br />

and wharfage fees were eliminated.<br />

ADB said more <strong>to</strong>urists are using<br />

Ro-Ro because of its affordability.<br />

Compared with other modes of<br />

transport such as air and traditional<br />

shipping, Ro-Ro is a competitive<br />

means of transporting passengers,<br />

the ADB said.<br />

For example, <strong>to</strong>urism receipts in<br />

Boracay from 2003 <strong>to</strong> 2006 rose by<br />

more than 50 percent. In Iloilo and<br />

in Dapitan, receipts rose 30 percent<br />

and 200 percent, respectively.<br />

“It should be noted that this rise<br />

in <strong>to</strong>urist arrivals can be attributed<br />

<strong>to</strong> the availability of both Ro-Ro and<br />

air transport services,” the ADB said.<br />

In 2003, the government issued a<br />

policy <strong>to</strong> promote Ro-Ro, a system<br />

designed <strong>to</strong> carry rolling s<strong>to</strong>ck cargo<br />

that does not require cranes for<br />

loading or unloading.<br />

The Strong Republic Nautical<br />

Highway is one of President Arroyo’s<br />

priority programs <strong>to</strong> ensure fast and<br />

economical movement of goods and<br />

people, and <strong>to</strong> boost domestic<br />

<strong>to</strong>urism and trade. The government<br />

wants a Ro-Ro port system <strong>to</strong> link<br />

all the <strong>count</strong>ry’s islands.<br />

Earlier, the Philippine Ports<br />

Authority (PPA) said the government<br />

will expand the <strong>count</strong>ry’s Ro-<br />

Ro ports by installing 74 modular<br />

ports nationwide <strong>to</strong> link the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry’s provinces.<br />

The project, dubbed as Greater<br />

Maritime Access (GMA) Ports, will<br />

be funded by an P11-billion loan<br />

from BNP Paribas.<br />

This project would use prefabricated<br />

steel ports composed of five<br />

interdependent modular parts,<br />

such as pier or causeway connecting<br />

<strong>to</strong> shore, mooring platform,<br />

<strong>manual</strong> ramp dolphin, and<br />

passenger terminal with solar<br />

power utilities.

B<br />

2<br />

business<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

San Miguel exercises option<br />

<strong>to</strong> acquire control of Petron<br />



SAN Miguel Corp. (SMC) said it<br />

has exercised its option <strong>to</strong> acquire<br />

control over the Philippines’ biggest<br />

oil refiner and retailer.<br />

“We already bought 51 percent”<br />

of Petron Corp., Ramon Ang, SMC<br />

president, <strong>to</strong>ld reporters during a<br />

teleconference on Monday.<br />

The teleconference follows an<br />

SMC disclosure <strong>to</strong> the Philippine<br />

S<strong>to</strong>ck Exchange (PSE), stating that<br />

the conglomerate’s management was<br />

authorized <strong>to</strong> exercise an option <strong>to</strong><br />

acquire 40 percent of the outstanding<br />

common shares of Sea Refinery<br />

Corp. no later than April 30.<br />

Sea Refinery owns 50.1 percent<br />



Bagong Calzada, Pateros, Metro Manila<br />



As of December 31, 2009<br />

ASSETS<br />

AMOUNT<br />

Cash and Cash Equivalents P 34,098,103<br />

Receivables 48,414,281<br />

Investments in Trust Funds 55,106,059<br />

Inven<strong>to</strong>ries 1,126,796<br />

Property and Equipment 12,914,955<br />

Investment Property 32,805,350<br />

Net Pension Asset 62,900<br />

Other Assets 1,507,124<br />

P 186,035,568<br />


Pre-need reserves P 52,858,143<br />

Other reserves 1,324,404<br />

Estimated liabilities 33,851,023<br />

Ac<strong>count</strong>s and other payables 11,614,528<br />

Income Tax payable 883,424<br />

Deferred tax liability 8,088,665<br />

108,620,187<br />

Equity<br />

Capital s<strong>to</strong>ck 30,000,000<br />

Revaluation increment 25,405,112<br />

Revaluation reserve for available-for-sale<br />

financial assets 1,538,594<br />

Retained earnings 41,857,862<br />

Treasury s<strong>to</strong>ck (21,386,187)<br />

77,415,381<br />

P 186,035,568<br />


(Memorial Life Plan)<br />



As of December 31, 2009<br />

ASSETS<br />

Cash in banks P 3,921,861<br />

AFS financial assets at market<br />

Government securities 48,858,535<br />

Private Bonds 1,499,129<br />

Accrued interest receivable 897,319<br />

55,176,844<br />


Accrued expenses and other liabilities 70,785<br />

P 55,106,059<br />

EQUITY<br />

Fund balance at beginning of year P 40,697,084<br />

Additional contributions during the year -<br />

Fund balance at end of year 40,697,084<br />

Accumulated trust fund income<br />

at beginning of year 37,991,503<br />

Net income for the year 3,012,822<br />

Accumulated trust fund income at end of year 41,004,325<br />

Accumulated withdrawals at beginning of year (28,185,685)<br />

Withdrawals during the year (607,656)<br />

Accumulated withdrawals at end of year (28,793,341)<br />

Revaluation reserve for AFS financial assets<br />

at beginning of year 2,128,930<br />

Net changes in fair value of AFS financial<br />

assets during the year 69,061<br />

Revaluation reserve for AFS financial<br />

assets at end of year 2,197,991<br />

P 55,106,059<br />




of the above-mentioned corporation, certify that the above<br />

statement of condition <strong>to</strong>gether with the trust fund balance sheet<br />

has been audited by its external audi<strong>to</strong>rs, SyCip, Gorres, Velayo<br />

& Co. (SGV & Co.).<br />


President – CEO<br />

Treasurer<br />

SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN <strong>to</strong> before me this April 23, 2010<br />

at Pateros, Metro Manila, affiants exhibiting <strong>to</strong> me their Community<br />

Tax Certificate Nos. 19972323 and 19967515, both issued at<br />

Pateros, Metro Manila on January 23, 2010 and January 4,<br />

2010 respectively.<br />


Notary Public<br />

Doc. No. 148 Until December 31, 2010<br />

Book No. 031 P.T.R. No. 6141153<br />

Page No. 001 Date: Oc<strong>to</strong>ber 11, 2009<br />

Series of 2010<br />

Place: Pateros, Metro Manila<br />

TIN: 113-413-624<br />

of the outstanding common<br />

shares of Petron.<br />

Ang said the Ashmore Group,<br />

which owns Sea Refinery, will retain<br />

a 40 percent stake in Petron.<br />

In its disclosure, SMC said it will<br />

also issue a tender offer for the<br />

common shares of Petron held by<br />

the public at an offer price of<br />

P6.85 apiece.<br />

The option <strong>to</strong> acquire up <strong>to</strong> 100<br />

percent of Sea Refinery is contained<br />

in an agreement dated December<br />

Benguet secures fresh capital<br />

Galvanizers pledge <strong>to</strong> hold off<br />

increase in steel product prices<br />

Planning agency clears privatization of Manila North Harbor<br />

THE National Economic and Development<br />

Authority (NEDA) on Monday said<br />

that the contract for the development and<br />

operation of the Manila North Harbor underwent<br />

a “proper” bidding.<br />

“The contract is properly bid out,”<br />

Augus<strong>to</strong> San<strong>to</strong>s, NEDA direc<strong>to</strong>r general<br />

and socioeconomic planning secretary,<br />

<strong>to</strong>ld reporters.<br />

State-run Philippine Ports Authority<br />

(PPA) awarded Manila North Harbour<br />

Port Inc. (MNHPI) a 25-year contract <strong>to</strong><br />

modernize the Manila North Harbor. PPA<br />

is assured of P6.8 billion in revenues from<br />

the contract.<br />

24, 2008 between SMC and Sea Refinery<br />

Holdings BV, a unit of the<br />

London-based Ashmore group represented<br />

by former Philippine Trade<br />

Minister Rober<strong>to</strong> Ongpin.<br />

The <strong>Sec</strong>urities Regulation Code on<br />

manda<strong>to</strong>ry tender offers states that,<br />

“any person or group of persons acting<br />

in concert who intends <strong>to</strong> acquire<br />

35 percent or more of equity shares in<br />

a public company shall disclose such<br />

intention and contemporaneously<br />

make a tender offer for the percent<br />

sought <strong>to</strong> all holders of such class.”<br />

“What we are doing right <strong>now</strong> is<br />

<strong>to</strong> have our tender offer in compliance<br />

with the PSE ruling. This exercise<br />

will enable us <strong>to</strong> buy all [Petron]<br />

shares [held by] the public, which is<br />

nine percent. We are <strong>now</strong> readying<br />

all documents. Once completed, we<br />

will end up with [a] 60 percent<br />

[stake] in Petron if we will be able <strong>to</strong><br />

buy all the nine percent of the shares<br />

[held by] the public,” Ang said.<br />

The Ashmore Group owns 90.6<br />

percent of Petron after buying the<br />

government’s 40-percent interest<br />

for P25.6 billion in 2008. The year<br />

before, the Ashmore Group had<br />

acquired a 40-percent stake in<br />

Petron from Saudi Arabia’s<br />

Aramco Overseas Co. Following<br />

its acquisition of a majority in<br />

Petron, the Ashmore Group made<br />

a tender offer, which allowed the<br />

UK firm <strong>to</strong> secure a further 10.1<br />

percent from other holders of the<br />

oil refiner’s s<strong>to</strong>ck.<br />

SMC paid the Ashmore Group<br />

about $10 million for the option <strong>to</strong><br />

gain control over Petron.<br />

SMC has been looking <strong>to</strong> invest<br />

outside its core businesses of beverages,<br />

dairy products and food<br />

processing.<br />

Ayala Land, El Nido opera<strong>to</strong>r <strong>to</strong> form joint venture<br />

AYALA Land Inc. (ALI) said it will<br />

undertake a joint venture with the<br />

opera<strong>to</strong>r of the world-class El Nido<br />

Resorts in Northern Palawan for<br />

the development of more ecofriendly<br />

and responsible <strong>to</strong>urism<br />

destinations in the area.<br />

In a disclosure <strong>to</strong> the Philippine<br />

S<strong>to</strong>ck Exchange, ALI said it would<br />

take a 60-percent interest in the<br />

partnership with Asian Conservation<br />

Co. (ACC).<br />

Incorporated in 2001 <strong>to</strong> finance<br />

biodiversity conservation, ACC<br />

through subsidiaries under the<br />

UNION Bank of the Philippines’<br />

profit climbed by half in the first<br />

three months this year mainly because<br />

of higher interest income and<br />

trading gains.<br />

In a disclosure at the Philippine<br />

S<strong>to</strong>cks Exchange, Union Bank said<br />

its first quarter profit went up 51.3<br />

percent <strong>to</strong> P855.17 million from<br />

Ten Knots Group, owns and operates<br />

the El Nido Resorts in<br />

Lagen and Miniloc Islands. The<br />

resort won the Wild Asia Responsible<br />

Tourism Award in 2009 and<br />

was one of the 15 Favorite Green<br />

Hotels recognized by Travel + Leisure<br />

magazine in 2007.<br />

“We are excited <strong>to</strong> have ACC as<br />

our new partner, with their unique<br />

experience in managing island resort<br />

properties and their strong adherence<br />

<strong>to</strong> a quadruple bot<strong>to</strong>m line<br />

approach in preserving the environment<br />

around their resort proper-<br />

P565.18 million in the same threemonth<br />

period a year ago.<br />

The bank’s net interest income<br />

rose 19.02 percent <strong>to</strong> P1.72 billion<br />

from P1.44 billion last year.<br />

The lender’s other sources of income<br />

reached P833.74 million,<br />

P467.55 million of which came<br />

from miscellaneous income, and<br />

Gains from loans, trading lift Union Bank’s 1Q profit<br />

P152.45 million from fee-based<br />

earnings.<br />

Net trading gains surged 55 percent<br />

<strong>to</strong> P213.73 million from<br />

P137.55 million the prior year.<br />

Total deposits at end-March<br />

dipped from P194.5 billion a year<br />

ago <strong>to</strong> P186.8 billion this year while<br />

capital funds rose 4 percent <strong>to</strong><br />

MINING firm Benguet Corp. (BC) has received<br />

a fresh shot in the arm with the capital infusion<br />

from new inves<strong>to</strong>rs.<br />

In a disclosure <strong>to</strong> the Philippine S<strong>to</strong>ck<br />

Exchange, BC said that RYM Business Management<br />

Corp. (RBMC) paid the mining<br />

firm P150 million for an initial share subscription.<br />

RBMC acquired 6,617,640 class A common<br />

shares and 4,411,770 class B common shares of BC.<br />

The share subscription is part of the agreement<br />

both parties signed on April 7. Under the accord,<br />

RBMC will purchase 14.6-million class A common<br />

shares at P12 each and 9.7-million class B<br />

shares at P16 apiece.<br />

The balance worth P180 million will be<br />

GALVANIZERS have committed <strong>to</strong> maintain prices of<br />

galvanized iron (GI) roofing sheets as they await<br />

the tariff relief that the government may extend <strong>to</strong><br />

keep prices of these products low.<br />

Earlier, local galvanizers mulled over<br />

jacking up prices by 5 percent <strong>to</strong> 10 percent<br />

because of the increase in raw material costs<br />

in the global market.<br />

Three of the world’s largest mining firms—<br />

BHP Billi<strong>to</strong>n Ltd., Cia Vale do Rio Doce and Rio<br />

Tin<strong>to</strong> Coal Australia—have quoted higher<br />

iron ore prices, which sent the prices of steel<br />

materials such as billets, cold rolled coils<br />

(CRC), hot rolled coils (HRC), slabs and wire<br />

rods <strong>to</strong> jump by $100 <strong>to</strong> $150 per metric <strong>to</strong>n.<br />

ties,” An<strong>to</strong>nino Aquino, ALI president<br />

and chief executive officer, said.<br />

“We are pleased <strong>to</strong> have ALI as<br />

our strategic partner, given their<br />

strong corporate philosophy on<br />

sustainability and their proven<br />

track record of building worldclass<br />

real estate projects,” said<br />

Vicente Perez, ACC chairman.<br />

Last year, the Ayala group began<br />

adopting a new philosophy and<br />

vowed <strong>to</strong> pursue a “triple bot<strong>to</strong>m<br />

line” approach in its business operations.<br />

The “triple bot<strong>to</strong>m line” refers<br />

<strong>to</strong> the economic, social and environmental<br />

impact of the company.<br />

Last November, Ayala Corp.<br />

became the first conglomerate <strong>to</strong><br />

release a sustainability report,<br />

which will assess the group’s impact<br />

on the community and the<br />

environment.<br />

Two months later, state-run<br />

Laguna Lake Development Authority<br />

served a fine against Manila<br />

Water Co. Inc., an Ayala affiliate,<br />

for discharging wastewater<br />

<strong>to</strong> the lake. The utility is contesting<br />

the penalty.<br />


P32.47 billion from last year’s<br />

P31.28 million.<br />

Union Bank has set aside more<br />

than 37 percent, or P106.73 million<br />

in impairment losses.<br />

Operating expenses increased at<br />

a slower pace, at less than 1 percent<br />

<strong>to</strong> P1.44 billion from last year’s<br />

P1.43 million. LAILANY P. GOMEZ<br />

paid for within 180 days from the date of<br />

the deal’s signing.<br />

BC earlier said that the private placement<br />

would allow the company <strong>to</strong> pursue its projects.<br />

These include the development of the Bala<strong>to</strong>c<br />

Tailings Project, Acupan Contract Mining Project<br />

and other priority projects in Benguet province.<br />

The projects involve the extraction of residual<br />

and reserve gold.<br />

Bala<strong>to</strong>c, in particular, is projected <strong>to</strong> churn<br />

out 3,000 <strong>to</strong>ns of gold per day. This could<br />

rise <strong>to</strong> 5,000 <strong>to</strong>ns per day within the first<br />

three years. The Acupan gold mine has been<br />

closed since 1992 because of low metal<br />

prices <strong>back</strong> then.<br />


The Cabinet-level Tariff and Related Matters<br />

Committee is conducting a review on duties<br />

imposed on steel.<br />

But Senior Trade Undersecretary Thomas<br />

Aquino <strong>to</strong>ld reporters last week that<br />

galvanizers should come up with a single<br />

position. The Filipino Galvanizers Institute<br />

Inc. has been asking for the removal of the<br />

seven-percent duty on CRC and HRC imports,<br />

while another group composed of six<br />

companies called on the government <strong>to</strong><br />

impose safeguards on finished products.<br />

“Galvanizers must have one consistent<br />

position when they talk <strong>to</strong> the government,”<br />

Aquino said.<br />


MNHPI is 60-percent owned by Michael<br />

Romero’s Harbour Centre and 40 percent<br />

by Metro Pacific Investment Corp., which<br />

is led by Manuel Pangilinan.<br />

The Philippine Liners Shipping Association<br />

(PLSA) had claimed the contract was<br />

approved without undergoing a screening<br />

process at NEDA and a complete bidding<br />

process, pursuant <strong>to</strong> the Bidding Law or<br />

Republic Act. 9184 and the Build-Operate-Transfer<br />

Law or RA 6957 as amended<br />

by RA 7718.<br />

Earlier, the PLSA asked the Supreme<br />

Court <strong>to</strong> nullify the contract and impose<br />

a temporary restraining order, status quo<br />

SMDC net income surges<br />

on brisk sales of condos<br />

THE housing arm of the SM Group<br />

announced on Monday that its net income<br />

for the first quarter rose by more<br />

than half, Sbuoyed by the strong sales<br />

of its residential units.<br />

In a statement, SM Development<br />

Corp. (SMDC) said its earnings rose by<br />

51 percent <strong>to</strong> P632 million from P419<br />

million a year ago.<br />

Consolidated revenues went up by<br />

48 percent <strong>to</strong> P2 billion with sales from<br />

real estate operations hitting P1.9 billion,<br />

or 45 percent higher than last<br />

year’s P1.3 billion.<br />

During the three-month period,<br />

SMDC pre-sold 3,547 residential units<br />

worth P7 billion, up by 288 percent<br />

year-on-year, on the <strong>back</strong> of the strong<br />

take-up of projects like the Sun Residences<br />

in Welcome Ro<strong>to</strong>nda in Manila,<br />

Jazz Residences in Makati and the Light<br />

Residences near Pioneer Street in<br />

Mandaluyong City.<br />

SMDC has lined up four additional<br />

projects worth P4 billion <strong>to</strong> P8 billion<br />

under the SM Residences brand this year.<br />

The company is confident that the<br />

affordability of its housing projects<br />

would allow it <strong>to</strong> sustain this kind of<br />

profit growth in the medium term.<br />

“We’ll try for a 30 <strong>to</strong> 50 percent<br />

growth for the next five-years,” Henry<br />

Sy Jr., SMDC chairman, said on the<br />

sidelines of the firm’s annual s<strong>to</strong>ckholder’s<br />

meeting.<br />

Sy said they will <strong>now</strong> tap in<strong>to</strong> an<br />

“unserved” segment of the market by<br />

launching a new residential brand<br />

called “My Place,” which would offer<br />

housing units at P1 million and below.<br />

“We believe this product will be another<br />

successful entry <strong>to</strong>wards alleviating<br />

the housing demand in the Philippines,”<br />

he said.<br />

According <strong>to</strong> the executive, My<br />

Place aims <strong>to</strong> attract the “yuppies,”<br />

call center agents, professionals moving<br />

out of their parents’ homes, and<br />

inves<strong>to</strong>rs who could rent the units<br />

out <strong>to</strong> students.<br />

A 20-s<strong>to</strong>rey My Place <strong>to</strong>wer will rise<br />

in a one-hectare lot in Panay Avenue,<br />

Quezon City this year, while four<br />

more projects in Metro Manila under<br />

the brand will be built by next year.<br />

Sy said SMDC would earn a<br />

“slightly lower” profit margin from My<br />

Place compared with its other brands.<br />

He said that the price of housing units<br />

cannot keep up with construction<br />

materials, thus the company has <strong>to</strong> be<br />

“creative” by employing “value engineering”<br />

in constructing My Place.<br />

In the past few months, the price of<br />

steel products in the <strong>count</strong>ry has<br />

soared, prompting the government <strong>to</strong><br />

set a suggested retail price on billets,<br />

wire mills and cold rolled coils.<br />

But Jose Sio, the SM Group’s chief<br />

finance officer, said the company<br />

“locked in” its steel requirements<br />

since last year.<br />

“That’s the advantage of being liquid,”<br />

he said.<br />

To grab these kinds of opportunities,<br />

SMDC will hoard enough cash<br />

at a level the company is most comfortable<br />

with “while money is<br />

cheap”, Sio added.<br />

Roger Cabunag, SDMC president,<br />

said the real estate firm will sell P5-<br />

billion <strong>to</strong> P10-billion worth of three-,<br />

five- or seven-year bonds next month.<br />


<strong>Sec</strong>ondary airports open<br />

<strong>to</strong> Asean carriers by June<br />

THE Philippines expects <strong>to</strong> open by<br />

June all secondary airports <strong>to</strong> flag-carriers<br />

of other member-<strong>count</strong>ries of the<br />

Association of Southeast Asian Nations<br />

(Asean), an official of the Civil<br />

Aeronautics Board (CAB) said.<br />

“We are hoping <strong>to</strong> agree before<br />

June, which is the target signing of the<br />

Multilateral Agreement for the Full<br />

Liberalization of Passenger Air Services<br />

(MAFLPAS) and its implementing<br />

pro<strong>to</strong>cols,” Porvenir Porciuncula,<br />

CAB deputy executive direc<strong>to</strong>r, said.<br />

Porciuncula had said that the<br />

agreement supports the Philippine<br />

policy <strong>to</strong> develop airports outside<br />

Manila, particularly Clark and others<br />

such as Cebu, Davao, Laoag and<br />

General San<strong>to</strong>s.<br />

These airports outside Manila are<br />

expected <strong>to</strong> attract flights connecting<br />

with Asean cities.<br />

THE Philippines’ bank insurer said<br />

the International Monetary Fund<br />

(IMF) is supporting its proposed removal<br />

of the 90-day rehabilitation<br />

window and the establishment of a<br />

bridge bank authority.<br />

According <strong>to</strong> state-run Philippine<br />

Deposit Insurance Corp.<br />

(PDIC), these proposals would<br />

work in tandem with IMF’s recommendations<br />

removing the constraints<br />

in regulation and strengthening<br />

the current prompt and corrective<br />

action (PCA) on banks.<br />

The IMF is partial <strong>to</strong> a conserva<strong>to</strong>r/receiver<br />

taking full control when<br />

restructuring a bank without shareholder<br />

approval, PDIC said.<br />

The rehabilitation period during<br />

receivership should be eliminated<br />

while the law that provides for a bridge<br />

bank resolution mechanism should be<br />

amended, the IMF further said.<br />

PDIC President Jose Nograles said the<br />

IMF’s statement was timely in ushering<br />

a second wave of legislative banking reforms<br />

after the passage of the amended<br />

deposit insurance law last year.<br />

He said that bank rehabilitation<br />

should take place during the PCA period,<br />

when the bank is still in operation,<br />

and not after closure. Under the<br />

present system, a bank that is found<br />

<strong>to</strong> be in the early stages of distress and<br />

non-compliance with standard conditions<br />

and ratings is placed under PCA.<br />

“If signed, there will be direct<br />

flights for <strong>to</strong>urists. There will be flexible<br />

and better packages for <strong>to</strong>urists,”<br />

Porciuncula said.<br />

The CAB official said this is separate<br />

from the Multilateral Agreement<br />

on Air Services (MAS), which allows<br />

unlimited capacity or frequencies between<br />

capital cities in Asean.<br />

For unlimited flights among capital<br />

cities in Asean, Porciuncula said<br />

the Philippines is not yet ready because<br />

of the limitations of runways in<br />

local airports.<br />

Porciuncula said the constraints<br />

would be the infrastructure, technical<br />

support and the readiness of the local<br />

airlines.<br />

He said the government would<br />

consult the stakeholders before the<br />

ratification of the agreement.<br />


State insurer says IMF<br />

<strong>back</strong>s quick bank closure<br />

When all options for rehabilitation<br />

have failed, the Monetary Board then<br />

orders the closure of the bank and<br />

places it under the receivership of PDIC.<br />

But under existing regulations,<br />

PDIC may still accept rehabilitation<br />

proposals during the 90-day receivership<br />

period. Most of the proposals<br />

come from previous owners and s<strong>to</strong>ckholders<br />

of the closed banks.<br />

In case of third-party inves<strong>to</strong>rs, the<br />

concurrence of the bank’s shareholders<br />

is still required.<br />

Eliminating the manda<strong>to</strong>ry rehabilitation<br />

option after bank closure could<br />

allow the PDIC <strong>to</strong> quickly undertake<br />

any of the three modes of liquidation:<br />

the purchase of assets and assumption<br />

of liabilities, the establishment of a<br />

bridge bank, and the outright sale of<br />

the closed bank’s assets for liquidation.<br />

Nograles said the Congress’ bicameral<br />

conference committee supported<br />

the bridge bank proposal,<br />

and suggested its inclusion in the<br />

amendments <strong>to</strong> the Bangko Sentral<br />

ng Pilipinas Charter or the General<br />

Banking Act.<br />

A bridge bank refers <strong>to</strong> a temporary<br />

bank set up and operated <strong>to</strong> acquire<br />

assets and assume liabilities of a failed<br />

lender and facilitate its resolution. The<br />

bridge bank will be authorized <strong>to</strong> purchase<br />

assets, assume deposits, and<br />

other liabilities and perform banking<br />

functions.<br />


ante order or any equitable relief.<br />

San<strong>to</strong>s said the 5 percent concession fee<br />

that the shipping companies are contesting<br />

is part of the contract, and requires no NEDA<br />

approval. “It only requires PPA board approval<br />

and it has been approved,” he said.<br />

The Department of Trade and Industry<br />

had warned that the additional fee<br />

would have an “economic impact <strong>to</strong> shippers,<br />

consumers and the general public.”<br />

MNHPI will spend P14.5-billion for the<br />

construction of a modern passenger terminal<br />

and other facilities, acquisition of<br />

heavy equipment, dredging operations<br />

and acquisition of other equally important<br />

equipment such as modern computers<br />

<strong>to</strong> ensure the smooth flow of cargo<br />

and passengers.<br />

The North Harbor Terminal 1 will service<br />

roll-on roll-off container and passenger<br />

ships.<br />

Terminal 2 will service container and<br />

passenger ships, while Terminal 3 will be<br />

earmarked for conventional, non-containerized,<br />

bulk/break-bulk ships and passenger<br />

vessels.<br />

The North Harbor, which is part of the<br />

Port of Manila, is the <strong>count</strong>ry’s largest and<br />

busiest port, serving domestic cargo and<br />

passenger traffic. DARWIN G. AMOJELAR

mo<strong>to</strong>ring<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

Ford completes Focus lineup in Philippines with launch of new sedan variants<br />

FORD Group Phils. (FGP) announced it<br />

has completed its lineup of Ford Focus<br />

models as it introduced last week two<br />

new sedan variants; the TDCi with a sixspeed<br />

PowerShift au<strong>to</strong>matic transmission<br />

and the 1.8-liter Trend, which also<br />

has an au<strong>to</strong>matic gearbox.<br />

FGP asserted that the PowerShift<br />

“delivers the fuel efficiency and<br />

dynamics of a <strong>manual</strong> gearbox with the<br />

driving ease and full comfort of a<br />

premium au<strong>to</strong>matic transmission.” The<br />

system uses the latest electronically<br />

controlled dual-clutch technology <strong>to</strong><br />

change gears which, when compared <strong>to</strong><br />

traditional au<strong>to</strong>matic four-speed<br />

transmissions, can also help reduce fuel<br />

consumption by up <strong>to</strong> 9 percent,<br />

according <strong>to</strong> the company.<br />

A dual-clutch system consists of two<br />

transmissions with its own independent<br />

clutch units where one carries the oddnumber<br />

gears (first, third and fifth) while<br />

the other the even-number gears (two,<br />

four and six). Gear changes are coordinated<br />

between both clutches as they<br />

engage and disengage for a seamless<br />

delivery of <strong>to</strong>rque <strong>to</strong> the wheels, FGP said.<br />

“Ford’s PowerShift represents a true<br />

competitive advantage for Ford and is<br />

one of the current technologies that set<br />

a new world standard for efficiency and<br />

drive quality,” said FGP Vice President<br />

for Sales and Marketing Steven Tan.<br />

What it brings <strong>to</strong> our Focus lineup is<br />

ride that’s as smooth as it gets.”<br />

The Focus lineup starts with the 1.8L<br />

Style sedan (P779,000). Next are the 1.8L<br />

driven/HONDA JAZZ 1.3S<br />

Trend models which either have a fivespeed<br />

<strong>manual</strong> transmission (P799,000;<br />

sedan only) or au<strong>to</strong>matic transmission<br />

(P869,000; the new sedan and hatch<strong>back</strong>).<br />

Then there are the 2.0-liter models—the<br />

Ghia sedan and Sport hatch<strong>back</strong><br />

(P999,000). On <strong>to</strong>p of the range are the<br />

TDCi and PowerShift-equipped Sport hatch<br />

and new sedan models (P1.189 million).<br />

Also announced at the introduction of<br />

the two latest Focus sedan models was<br />

the second run of the Ford Focus Coast-<strong>to</strong>-<br />

Coast Challenge, where three new teams<br />

will drive from Sorsogon, Bicol <strong>to</strong><br />

Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte on just one tankfull<br />

of gas on Focus cars. The participants,<br />

which include JP Tuason and Mike Tuason<br />

of the Tuason Racing School, will drive the<br />

new TDCi sedans from May 4 <strong>to</strong> 7.<br />


The Honda Jazz, in 1.3S guise, gives up some<br />

oomph but retains all the other virtues that<br />

have made the nameplate hugely popular<br />


THINK nothing of that “Thinking out<br />

of the box” cliché. It’s the stuff inside<br />

the box that matter, and the idea<br />

holds especially true when referring <strong>to</strong><br />

popular econoboxes like the Honda Jazz.<br />

Exactly what stuff are these?<br />

For starters, space. Lots of it.<br />

Despite diminutive exterior<br />

measurements the Jazz packs an<br />

amazing amount of acreage<br />

inside. And this allows for<br />

genuine seating for five averagesized<br />

adults and generous room<br />

for cargo behind the rear seat.<br />

Add the capability <strong>to</strong> rearrange<br />

the furniture <strong>to</strong> fit more cargo—<br />

plus the dimensions inherent in<br />

a hatch<strong>back</strong> mold—and the Jazz<br />

mutates from a subcompact car<br />

in<strong>to</strong> a small van. If one wants<br />

more cargo room, then it’s an<br />

SUV or a pickup he should buy.<br />

Although in the Jazz’s case,<br />

that last mentioned pronoun<br />

should be “she.” That’s because,<br />

well, just look at the exterior<br />

styling of the Jazz’s box. An<br />

evolution of the original Jazz’s<br />

small-van proportions, the<br />

second-generation car grew a<br />

swooping roofline and a rakish<br />

hood and sleek body lines that<br />

all made the present Jazz<br />

definitively fashionista, its small<br />

van-like origins still apparent but<br />

less pronounced. The car, despite<br />

having stronger angular lines<br />

■ Former<br />

Isuzu Phils.<br />

President<br />

Keiji Takeda<br />

(left) formally<br />

turns over the<br />

company’s <strong>to</strong>p<br />

position <strong>to</strong><br />

Ryoji<br />

Yamazaki<br />

through a<br />

symbolic<br />

plaque.<br />

that made it less pudgy, became<br />

more womanly urbane, its<br />

sleekness similar <strong>to</strong> that of<br />

dainty sandals rather than that of<br />

all-conditions mesh-uppers<br />

sneakers (and the footwear<br />

analogy is apt <strong>to</strong>o, considering a<br />

hatch<strong>back</strong>’s shoe-like shape). So<br />

where the first one was genderambiguous,<br />

the present Jazz’s<br />

box emits a decidedly more<br />

feminine vibe.<br />

Especially in 1.3S trim and its<br />

au<strong>to</strong>matic gearbox.<br />

Because while the <strong>to</strong>p-model<br />

1.5V AT wears essentially the<br />

same sheet metal (but buffed up<br />

with sundry body claddings and<br />

bolder bumpers), it’s saved from<br />

chick-car status by virtue of<br />

horsepower. The 1.3S simply<br />

can’t lay claim <strong>to</strong> same.<br />

The car’s 1.3-liter engine, which<br />

has 16 valves and Honda’s i-VTEC<br />

system but only has a single cam,<br />

needs <strong>to</strong> huff and puff <strong>to</strong><br />

6,000rpm <strong>to</strong> produce slightly less<br />

than 100 horsepower. With 127<br />

New<strong>to</strong>n-meters of <strong>to</strong>rque (available<br />

at 4,800rpm) though, driving<br />

through city traffic isn’t much of a<br />

problem, provided that all you ask<br />

for is a car capable of jostling for<br />

position in s<strong>to</strong>p-and-go grinds. At<br />

higher speeds, the Jazz’s engine<br />

simply loses steam and requires a<br />

heavy foot on the gas pedal so the<br />

car could keep up with faster<br />

traffic—which then hurts fuel<br />

economy. (Honda wisely<br />

equipped the car with a meter that<br />

computes fuel consumption in<br />


HONDA Cars Phils. Inc. (HCPI) has named Honda Cars Manila as the 2009<br />

Dealer of the Year. The award was announced during the company’s recent<br />

dealer convention.<br />

HCPI said that Honda Cars Manila excelled in sales, service, parts supply,<br />

cus<strong>to</strong>mer relations management and finance operations.<br />

“We are very proud in delivering world-class products and services <strong>to</strong><br />

the market,” said Honda Cars Manila General Manager Jojo Aliganga.<br />

“Winning the highest recognition in dealership operations further<br />

challenges us in providing better contribution in the year ahead.”<br />

Honda Cars Manila is part of the Yuchengco Group of Companies under<br />

the House of Investments. It started operating in 1997.<br />

ISUZU Phils. Corp. (IPC) has<br />

announced the appointment of<br />

Ryoji Yamazaki as its new president.<br />

Yamazaki officially assumed<br />

the post on April 1. He replaces<br />

Keiji Takeda, who is moving <strong>to</strong><br />

Isuzu Mo<strong>to</strong>rs Ltd. (IML) <strong>to</strong> serve as<br />

associate division executive of the<br />

international division in charge of<br />

Asean, China and Taiwan.<br />

Takeda was IPC president for<br />

three years.<br />

IPC said that the 55-year-old<br />

B<br />

3<br />

real time.) Good thing the Jazz’s<br />

five-speed au<strong>to</strong> gearbox shifts<br />

smoothly as it does need <strong>to</strong> row<br />

through the gears quite often in<br />

heavy-foot conditions.<br />

Its suspension—MacPhersons<br />

and <strong>to</strong>rsion beams fore and aft,<br />

respectively—allows the Jazz <strong>to</strong><br />

soak up most of Metro Manila’s<br />

lunar-surface asphalt relatively<br />

well. Compared <strong>to</strong> Toyota and<br />

Mazda subcompacts in its class<br />

and price range, the Jazz lags in<br />

shielding its occupants from<br />

road imperfections, letting a bit<br />

more noise and harshness <strong>to</strong><br />

enter the cabin, but still the car’s<br />

ride is refined and comfortable<br />

enough. This is even more<br />

apparent in the 1.3S model,<br />

which has higher tire sidewalls as<br />

a result of the car’s smaller 15-<br />

inch alloys (the 1.5-liter variant<br />

rolls on 16-inchers).<br />

Where the Jazz—whatever<br />

variant—trumps its competi<strong>to</strong>rs is<br />

in braking, having ABS, Electronic<br />

Brake-force Distribution and<br />

assist on all four discs, as opposed<br />

<strong>to</strong> the disc/drum combos<br />

of comparable subcompacts.<br />

And the result of such a setup,<br />

as any gearhead would attest <strong>to</strong>,<br />

is more forceful and predictable<br />

s<strong>to</strong>pping prowess.<br />

All these techno-babble only<br />

leads us <strong>to</strong> the Jazz’s strengths,<br />

which are class-leading interior<br />

space that’s cleverly packaged, a<br />

respectable amount of convenience<br />

features (multimedia<br />

player, s<strong>to</strong>rage bins, tilt/telescoping<br />

steering wheel) and a refined<br />

engine and transmission. In 1.3S<br />

AT guise, the Jazz isn’t particularly<br />

quick, but all the other<br />

good stuff that its bigger 1.5-liter<br />

kin have are present, resulting in<br />

a car that’s superb in virtually<br />

every aspect of city-driving<br />

chores. True, the 1.3S AT doesn’t<br />

come cheap at P782,000 (and<br />

the 1.5-liter model costs P60,000<br />

more), but value-for-the-buck is<br />

the deal here, especially considering<br />

that the used Jazz cars hold<br />

its price well over the years.<br />

And those are what made this<br />

econobox so popular.<br />

Yamazaki’s previous position was<br />

general manager of IML’s international<br />

department that oversees<br />

Africa, Europe and Oceania. He<br />

graduated from the Keio University<br />

in Tokyo and started his career by<br />

joining IML in 1978, initially<br />

working at the company’s shipping<br />

and delivery section. Yamazaki was<br />

next assigned <strong>to</strong> the international<br />

sales division, where he was in<br />

charge of the Philippine market.<br />

He then oversaw the markets of<br />

f.y.i<br />




TOYOTA Mo<strong>to</strong>r Phils. announced it is conducting a “special service<br />

campaign <strong>to</strong> address the problem concerning the Vehicle Stability Control<br />

(VSC) program in certain Land Cruiser Prado models,” which are those with<br />

18-inch wheels and equipped with the Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System<br />

(KDSS) and VSC. The company said the “activation of the VSC may not be<br />

sufficient in certain circumstances,” citing the setting of the program. TMP<br />

elaborated that “in circumstances in which advanced driving skills are<br />

required, such as when a driver of the involved vehicle sharply turns the<br />

steering wheel in high-speed conditions, or when the driver negotiates a<br />

curve at excessive speeds, the vehicle could slide sideways.”<br />

TMP said it would update the VSC so that “the risk of the vehicle sliding,<br />

even <strong>to</strong> the point that it is almost sideways, will be reduced.”<br />

TMP said it has started contacting Land Cruiser Prado owners and would<br />

perform home-service repairs for free. It added that no other Toyota or<br />

Lexus models are affected by the recall.<br />

For more information, call 819-2912.<br />


Isuzu Phils. appoints new company president<br />

BMW Welt has become<br />

one of the most<br />

popular <strong>to</strong>urist<br />

attractions in Munich,<br />

Germany, with around<br />

five million people<br />

having visited it since it<br />

opened in Oc<strong>to</strong>ber 2007, according <strong>to</strong> Asian Carmakers Corp. (ACC),<br />

the exclusive distribu<strong>to</strong>r of BMW vehicles in the Philippines. ACC<br />

cited that the Welt’s unique features, like its striking double-cone<br />

and flying cloud roof, identify it as belonging <strong>to</strong> “a new generation<br />

of communication buildings for the 21st century.”<br />

The Welt complex, consisting of a museum and manufacturing plant,<br />

provides a “fascinating diversity of themes in one place and creates a<br />

brand experience that is unique throughout the world,” ACC said.<br />

For more information, log on <strong>to</strong> www.bmw-welt.com or e-mail<br />

information@bmw.com.ph.<br />


SEAOIL announced that more stations will be carrying its premium<br />

gasoline, Extreme 97, citing that increased sales has bolstered the company<br />

<strong>to</strong> expand operations in North and South Luzon.<br />

“We have seen a 59-percent increase in sales since we launched the<br />

product in 35 Metro Manila stations, 18 percent of which is from sales of<br />

Extreme 97,” said Seaoil President and Chief Operating Officer Glenn Yu. He<br />

added that the introduction of Extreme 97 in Luzon further strengthened<br />

Seaoil’s steadily increasing position in the domestic gasoline market.<br />

Seaoil named the stations offering Extreme 97 in North Luzon, and these<br />

are in Baliuag and Paombong in Bulacan and Guagua, Magalang, Mexico, San<br />

Luis and San Matias in Pampanga. In South Luzon, the stations are in San<strong>to</strong><br />

Tomas, Batangas; Kawit and Silang in Cavite; Biñan, Calamba and Santa Rosa<br />

in Laguna; and Lalig and Tiaong in Quezon. The company said it would sell<br />

Extreme 97 in Visayas and Mindanao in the coming months.<br />

Seaoil said Extreme 97 has the highest octane level among gasoline<br />

products available in the local market <strong>to</strong>day. The company explained that a<br />

higher octane level translates <strong>to</strong> increased horsepower and better burning<br />

characteristics for the engine.<br />

Yu said Seaoil has invested P10 million in the research and development<br />

of Extreme 97, which includes extensive product testing over two years.<br />

The product’s formulation was tested <strong>to</strong> perform under extreme conditions<br />

in the 2007 and 2008 Philippine Touring Car Championship.<br />


THE <strong>count</strong>ry’s Earth Day celebrations started with an early morning,<br />

<strong>poll</strong>ution-free mo<strong>to</strong>rcade of Electric Vehicles (EVs), the Electric Vehicle<br />

Association of the Philippines (eVAP) said, adding that the activity carried<br />

the theme “EV, Bicycles and Miss Earth: Making Waves in the Metro.”<br />

eVAP said that the mo<strong>to</strong>rcade of electric-powered jeepneys, tricycles,<br />

mo<strong>to</strong>rcycles and bikes, along with Miss Earth pageant contestants, on April<br />

22 <strong>to</strong>ok off from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources<br />

(DENR) offices and passed through East Avenue and EDSA on the way <strong>to</strong><br />

the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. Leading the mo<strong>to</strong>rcade was Environment<br />

<strong>Sec</strong>retary Horacio Ramos.<br />

Yvonne Castro, president of eJeepney Transport Corp., the opera<strong>to</strong>r of the<br />

Makati Green Routes, bared that this was the second year that the smokeand<br />

noise-free mo<strong>to</strong>rcade was held.<br />

The mo<strong>to</strong>rcade and the other Earth Day activities were organized by the<br />

Miss Earth Foundation, DENR, eJeepney Transport Corp. eVAP.<br />

■ Ford Focus TDCi Ghia<br />

Korea, Taiwan and India, before<br />

taking on Isuzu’s joint venture<br />

project in China in 1990.<br />

In 1991, Yamazaki was promoted<br />

<strong>to</strong> manager and handled Isuzu’s<br />

China business. In 1994, he was<br />

named the group leader of Isuzu’s<br />

China operation, and in 1997, he<br />

<strong>to</strong>ok charge of Africa and Oceania.<br />

Since then, he has supervised various<br />

markets in Asia and the Middle East.<br />

“I have seen the amazing<br />

progress of the Philippine au<strong>to</strong>motive<br />

industry in spite of global<br />

economic difficulties,” Takeda said.<br />

“I would like <strong>to</strong> believe that I was<br />

able <strong>to</strong> steer IPC in the right<br />

direction during that critical time.”<br />

For his part, Yamazaki said: “I was<br />

once tasked <strong>to</strong> oversee the Philippine<br />

market, so I have always had a soft<br />

spot for this <strong>count</strong>ry. I believe that<br />

my vast experience in supervising<br />

Isuzu’s operations in various<br />

international markets will go a long<br />

way in enabling me <strong>to</strong> lead IPC <strong>to</strong><br />

new heights. I ack<strong>now</strong>ledge the<br />

impressive achievements that my<br />

predecessor has accomplished.”

B<br />

4<br />

mo<strong>to</strong>ring<br />

Edi<strong>to</strong>r: Brian Afuang • mo<strong>to</strong>ring@manilatimes.net<br />

The ˜Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />


BASED on its sedan sibling, the Excel, the Hyundai<br />

Scoupe built from 1990 until 1995 was a two-door<br />

coupe that never really had any sporting trait, what<br />

with a lethargic (even for the era) Mitsubishi-sourced<br />

81-horsepower 1.5-liter engine. The genius of the<br />

model, however,<br />

was its truly<br />

inspired name.<br />

UP NEXT<br />

Hyundai<br />

■ The Hyundai Next Generation<br />

models (from left) Starex Grand<br />

Limousine, Santa Fe, Tucson,<br />

Genesis Coupe and Sonata in<br />

front of the Bellarocca Resort,<br />

which sits on an island off<br />

Marinduque. PHOTO BY BRIAN AFUANG<br />


IN choosing an off-the-beaten-path but utterly<br />

lovely destination for its recent road trip event,<br />

Hyundai not-so-subtly delivered the message<br />

that its vehicles are perfect alternatives that car<br />

buyers should get <strong>to</strong> k<strong>now</strong>. Clearly, the Next<br />

Generation Hyundais have arrived, and they’re<br />

poised <strong>to</strong> challenge the established marques.<br />

Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (HARI),<br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry’s exclusive distribu<strong>to</strong>r of the<br />

brand, last week gathered 14 new<br />

Hyundai models and, with about half a<br />

dozen more Hyundais, arranged a long<br />

train of Korean au<strong>to</strong>mobilia <strong>to</strong> a drive that<br />

<strong>to</strong>ok off from Alabang, then traversed<br />

parts of Laguna, Batangas and Quezon.<br />

From there, a ferry vessel <strong>to</strong>ok the<br />

vehicles, journalists covering the mo<strong>to</strong>ring<br />

beat, HARI people and a support staff <strong>to</strong><br />

the island of Marinduque, on which<br />

divine—and at places, serpentine—roads<br />

the group did serious driving time in the<br />

course of three days. All done <strong>to</strong> showcase<br />

the Next Generation Hyundais.<br />

Actually, HARI said the Next Generation<br />

theme refers <strong>to</strong> a series of “road adventure<br />

campaigns” that feature Hyundai cars and<br />

SUVs in the “roads leading <strong>to</strong> the different<br />

islands in the Philippine archipelago.”<br />

Through the campaign, the company said<br />

it hopes <strong>to</strong> encourage Filipinos <strong>to</strong> preserve<br />

Philippine culture and heritage by way of<br />

discovering new places while aboard<br />

Hyundai vehicles. In the process, the<br />

company said it also aims <strong>to</strong> help<br />

promote local <strong>to</strong>urism.<br />

Marinduque memories<br />

From the Dalahican port in Lucena,<br />

Quezon, Marinduque is reached by Roll-<br />

on/Roll-off ferry, which in the Hyundai<br />

event landed at Balanacan port, only a<br />

few kilometers from the provincial<br />

capital of Boac.<br />

To a first-time visi<strong>to</strong>r, Boac immediately<br />

comes across as a place caught in a time<br />

warp whose streets are lined with stately<br />

homes of Spanish-Filipino mix. In the <strong>to</strong>wn<br />

plaza, pine trees are unexpected foliage and<br />

the capital’s centerpiece is the majestic Boac<br />

Cathedral that rises over the <strong>to</strong>wn.<br />

Marinduque holds more surprises. Take<br />

the coastal roads going south <strong>to</strong> the <strong>to</strong>wns<br />

of Gasan and Buenavista and piquant<br />

scenes of fishermen’s bancas and fishing<br />

nets dot the land/seascape. Round<br />

Marinduque from the other side and the<br />

<strong>to</strong>wn of Santa Cruz is reached by driving<br />

across a canvas painted with coconut trees.<br />

The winding roads leading <strong>to</strong> Torrijos<br />

snake through Marinduque’s inland <strong>to</strong>wns<br />

and a spectacular view of Mount Malindig<br />

is afforded <strong>to</strong> fortunate travelers on this<br />

part of the island.<br />

A major attraction of Marinduque is the<br />

Bellarocca Resort, which sits off the large<br />

island. A secluded, upscale place,<br />

Bellarocca has a Las Vegas theme hotel<br />

vibe about it as it projects a Greek island<br />

illusion from across the shoreline.<br />

But what certainly stitches<br />

Marinduque’s <strong>to</strong>wns <strong>to</strong>gether is its<br />

bares its Next Generation<br />

vehicles in a drive <strong>to</strong> Marinduque<br />

network of roads that, because of the<br />

isolation of the island, are almost<br />

deserted. Which ensures great driving over<br />

coconut tree-lined straights in the<br />

flatlands <strong>to</strong> delightful twisties in the<br />

mountains <strong>to</strong> rally-like stages in some<br />

unpaved portions.<br />

Hyundai experience<br />

The setting, therefore, was perfect for<br />

sampling the new Hyundai models, which<br />

in the event’s case, was led by one of the<br />

carmaker’s <strong>to</strong>p sellers; the all-new Tucson.<br />

Powered by 2.0-liter or 2.4-liter gasoline<br />

engines, as well as a 2.0-liter diesel-burning<br />

unit, the Tucson packs amazing value<br />

within its strikingly bold bodywork. Such<br />

virtues were proven further during<br />

Hyundai’s road trip as stints with the<br />

model were welcome, the vehicles being<br />

passably comfortable in long hauls and<br />

come fitted with enough convenience<br />

features <strong>to</strong> entertain its occupants. The<br />

diesel variant, however, emerged as the<br />

crowd favorite, and credit here goes <strong>to</strong> its<br />

ample <strong>to</strong>rque (392 New<strong>to</strong>n-meters at a low<br />

1,800 <strong>to</strong> 2,500rpm sweet spot) that makes<br />

passing and sprinting quite enjoyable.<br />

The Tucson’s big brother, the newly<br />

face-lifted Santa Fe, was also included in<br />

the event and served as a more refined<br />

and luxurious alternative <strong>to</strong> the younger<br />

Tucsons. Being larger, the Santa Fe has a<br />

longer wheelbase, which means a comfier<br />

ride with less fore and aft pitching on<br />

highways. Also available in 2.4-liter gas<br />

engines and a 2.2-liter diesel (plus a<br />

class-leading six-speed au<strong>to</strong>matic<br />

gearbox), the Santa Fe is a slightly pricier<br />

Hyundai SUV wearing conventional<br />

styling that isn’t as polarizing as that<br />

found on the Tucson.<br />

Adding its own brand of luxo-driving<br />

fac<strong>to</strong>r was the lone Starex van, which was<br />

decked in full “Grand Limousine” duds.<br />

This Starex rendition packs shiny bling<br />

wheels, a roof extension, a huge TV set and<br />

various gizmos and furniture that wouldn’t<br />

look out of place in a luxury condo.<br />

While some i30 hatch<strong>back</strong>s and an<br />

Accent subcompact were at the road trip,<br />

HARI deemed that the event participants<br />

drive only its most dazzling cars, which<br />

turned out <strong>to</strong> be the soon-<strong>to</strong>-debut Sonata<br />

midsize luxury sedan and the tunerfavorite<br />

Genesis Coupe.<br />

As draw luck would have it, I got first<br />

dibs on the Sonata, which means I drove it<br />

from Alabang all the way <strong>to</strong> the port going<br />

<strong>to</strong> Bellarocca. The Sonata—with its <strong>to</strong>tally<br />

premium items like leather everything,<br />

multimedia player, metallic pieces, paddle<br />

shifter for the six-speed au<strong>to</strong>matic transmission<br />

and a panoramic moonroof that<br />

spans the entire <strong>to</strong>p of the car—is a<br />

sybaritic treat that rivals those models sold<br />

by haughty European marques. On the<br />

200-kilometer drive, the Sonata’s posh and<br />

power were impressive, and HARI’s<br />

intention <strong>to</strong> target market leaders like the<br />

Toyota Camry or Honda Accord with its<br />

own premium midsize sedan bet doesn’t<br />

seem preposterous at all if one only gets<br />

the chance <strong>to</strong> k<strong>now</strong> this car.<br />

As a contrast <strong>to</strong> the cushy Sonata, the<br />

Genesis Coupe for its part reminded its<br />

fortunate drivers (myself included) what<br />

makes the act of driving such a pleasurable<br />

activity. The car’s taut suspension,<br />

rear-wheel drive, neutral handling, oh-socommunicative<br />

steering, respectable<br />

power output and awesome looks all<br />

conspire <strong>to</strong> deliver an experience that<br />

would put it among the <strong>to</strong>p spots of any<br />

enthusiast’s or au<strong>to</strong>motive writer’s list of<br />

best car-centric experiences. On the right<br />

roads (like Marinduque’s) and in a right<br />

car (like the Genesis Coupe), traveling<br />

becomes both a means and an end.<br />

What comes next can only be good things.<br />

»au<strong>to</strong>world<br />



SEOUL: Hyundai Mo<strong>to</strong>r bared last week<br />

its net profit jumped nearly five-fold in<br />

the first quarter of this year on the<br />

<strong>back</strong> of strong sales abroad. Net profit<br />

for the three months <strong>to</strong> March 31<br />

jumped <strong>to</strong> a record $1 billion,<br />

compared with just over $200 million a<br />

year ago, Korea’s <strong>to</strong>p carmaker said.<br />

Hyundai said it had steadily<br />

expanded its global market share,<br />

helped by strong performances in China<br />

and India. Its <strong>to</strong>tal car sales at home and<br />

abroad s<strong>to</strong>od at 840,258 units, up 29.9<br />

percent from the same period last year.<br />



TOKYO: Crisis-hit carmaker Toyota said<br />

yesterday that its global sales surged<br />

26.3 percent year-on-year in March,<br />

despite millions of safety recalls<br />

worldwide, as the industry rebounds<br />

from the economic slump.<br />

Other Japanese manufacturers such as<br />

Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi and Mazda also<br />

reported sales and production rises for<br />

the month, partly helped by a low basis of<br />

comparison with last year when the<br />

industry was hit by the financial crisis.<br />

“The March figures showed gradual<br />

recovery in the Japanese au<strong>to</strong> industry<br />

in general,” said Tatsuya Mizuno, an<br />

au<strong>to</strong> analyst at Mizuno Credit Advisory.<br />

“The upward trend is likely <strong>to</strong> continue<br />

for the rest of the year as brighter signs<br />

of a global economic recovery are<br />

benefiting the au<strong>to</strong> industry.”<br />

The Toyota group, which includes<br />

brands Daihatsu and Hino trucks, said<br />

it sold 876,126 vehicles in March, up<br />

from 693,759 a year earlier, company<br />

spokesman Paul Nolasco said. Toyota<br />

also said global production jumped<br />

82.2 percent in March <strong>to</strong> 860,534<br />

units compared with a year ago, when<br />

the industry scaled <strong>back</strong> <strong>to</strong> cope with<br />

evaporating demand.<br />

Mizuno warned that despite signs of<br />

recovery Toyota is surrounded by “a lot<br />

of uncertainty, and the negative impact<br />

of its recalls is likely <strong>to</strong> linger.” The<br />

company is looking <strong>to</strong> res<strong>to</strong>re its<br />

battered reputation after recalling<br />

around 10 million vehicles worldwide.<br />


MEGACITY CAR BY 2013<br />

FRANKFURT: BMW bared last week it<br />

intends <strong>to</strong> launch its first all-electric<br />

urban vehicle in 2013, two years earlier<br />

than planned. Called Megacity, the car<br />

“will be an emission-free city vehicle<br />

for metropolitan areas around the<br />

world,” BMW said.<br />

The move is seen as a response <strong>to</strong> its<br />

competi<strong>to</strong>rs. Daimler is poised <strong>to</strong> launch<br />

this year an electric version of its mini<br />

Smart car as well as a version of its<br />

Mercedes A Class. For its part, Volkswagen,<br />

Europe’s biggest carmaker, expects <strong>to</strong><br />

launch its electric car in 2013 also.<br />

German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s<br />

government aims <strong>to</strong> have one million<br />

electric cars on the road by 2020. AFP<br />

Expunging the stigma<br />

WE’D be missing the point if we<br />

assumed that the purpose behind<br />

the recent Hyundai Next Generation<br />

Media Test Drive event was so the Korean<br />

car brand could haughtily show off the<br />

spoils of its newfound prominence in the<br />

Philippine au<strong>to</strong>motive market. Sure, the<br />

destination—the Bellarocca Island Resort<br />

in Marinduque—is reportedly so expensive<br />

you’d only sponsor a two-night stay<br />

there if you wanted <strong>to</strong> impress (no, make<br />

that blow away) your guests.<br />

Make no mistake about it: The choice of<br />

the venue was as calculated as the release of<br />

fine mist from Hyundai’s new electronic<br />

variable geometry turbo-diesel engines. If<br />

the carmaker’s media guests were keen,<br />

they would make the subtle connection.<br />

Bellarocca, like Hyundai, is a gleaming<br />

paradigm of a vic<strong>to</strong>rious transformation.<br />

In the early ’90s, the island that<br />

Bellarocca is sitting on right <strong>now</strong>, was<br />

famous for a different kind of <strong>to</strong>urism.<br />

Called Elefante Island, the property was<br />

then managed by a group of Japanese<br />

businessmen who allegedly had ties with<br />

the Yakuza. Back then, the island earned<br />

for itself a reputation for being a haven for<br />

sexually adventurous foreigners. Local<br />

residents around the island recall seeing<br />

exquisite women being ferried <strong>to</strong> the<br />

island on a regular basis—supposedly for<br />

the hedonistic consumption of the<br />

island’s high-spending patrons.<br />

The fetid no<strong>to</strong>riety of<br />

Elefante Island reeked so<br />

strongly that anyone who lived<br />

in Marinduque knew about its<br />

nefarious activities. “Yes, the<br />

VERNON<br />

B. SARNE<br />

island’s reputation was really<br />

tainted,” admits Fred Malvar,<br />

the captain of Barangay<br />

Malusak in Boac, some 50<br />

kilometers from Bellarocca. “We even<br />

heard ac<strong>count</strong>s of bestiality going on there,<br />

in which a woman would be made <strong>to</strong><br />

copulate with a dog, just so the guests<br />

could be entertained.”<br />

Today, the island is home <strong>to</strong> the<br />

immaculate-white, Greek-inspired villas of<br />

Bellarocca. The local government of<br />

Marinduque certainly did well in reclaiming<br />

the glory of this fine patch of real<br />

state. Even fire-and-brims<strong>to</strong>ne-spewing<br />

moralists would gladly pay a handsome<br />

amount <strong>to</strong> spend a weekend there.<br />

Quite a coincidence, because in the<br />

’90s, <strong>to</strong>o, Hyundai was famous for a<br />

different kind of car-making. Back then,<br />

the most decent vehicle Filipinos got from<br />

the company was the Galloper, essentially<br />

a rebadged model of the first-generation<br />

Mitsubishi Pajero. Hyundai was so<br />

clueless about car manufacture that it<br />

needed <strong>to</strong> beg an established Japanese<br />

carmaker for mechanical hand-me-downs.<br />

The Hyundai brand was so lowly you’d get<br />

laughed at if you even so much as<br />

considered driving one of<br />

its cars.<br />

Of course, we all k<strong>now</strong><br />

what has happened since<br />

then.<br />

Hyundai—mastering the<br />

art of assembling value-formoney,<br />

reliable and<br />

HARDTOP fashionably styled cars—has<br />

worked its way <strong>to</strong> becoming the fourthlargest<br />

carmaker in the world, next only <strong>to</strong><br />

Toyota, General Mo<strong>to</strong>rs and Volkswagen. In<br />

the Philippines—where the Starex van used<br />

<strong>to</strong> be synonymous with “dirt-cheap”—<br />

Hyundai’s metamorphosis is even more<br />

dramatic, outselling traditionally wellk<strong>now</strong>n<br />

brands like Nissan and Isuzu in a<br />

market that places Japanese makes on<br />

pedestals. And in the first quarter of this<br />

year, Hyundai sold a <strong>to</strong>tal of 4,572 units <strong>to</strong><br />

seize the third overall spot from another<br />

pride of Japan, Honda, which managed <strong>to</strong><br />

move just 4,500 cars after nearly two<br />

■ Hyundai used Marinduque—famous for<br />

the Moriones Festival—as a symbolic <strong>back</strong>drop for its new vehicles. PHOTO BY VERNON SARNE<br />

decades of dominating the local market<br />

with such popular models as the Civic, the<br />

CR-V and the City.<br />

Next in Hyundai’s sights are Mitsubishi<br />

and Toyota. It seems improbable <strong>now</strong>, but<br />

with segment-busting next-generation<br />

vehicles in its pipeline, Hyundai might<br />

just pull it off in the next couple of years.<br />

The Tucson has already killed the CR-V.<br />

The Santa Fe is so luxurious it offers a sixspeed<br />

au<strong>to</strong>matic transmission and a<br />

<strong>to</strong>uch-screen multi-info screen. The Starex<br />

has so improved its quality that Hyundai<br />

has the audacity <strong>to</strong> affix the words<br />

“Grand” and “Limousine” <strong>to</strong> its name. The<br />

Sonata is <strong>now</strong> looking like a serious (and<br />

attractive) challenger <strong>to</strong> the Camry. And<br />

the Genesis Coupe is so desirable even<br />

Porsche owners <strong>now</strong> think of parking one<br />

in their once-snooty garages.<br />

The most pointed symbolism here is that<br />

Bellarocca—<strong>now</strong> a wholesome lifestyle<br />

resort you wouldn’t mind taking your<br />

family <strong>to</strong>—rose from the infamy of the<br />

Japanese-owned Elefante Island. Hyundai,<br />

on the other hand, systematically slew one<br />

Japanese rival at a time <strong>to</strong> become the<br />

world-class car company that it is <strong>to</strong>day.<br />

Both Bellarocca and Hyundai have freed<br />

themselves from the stigma of their past.<br />

Both <strong>now</strong> get flocks of adoring clients and<br />

loyal admirers. Both have silenced their<br />

detrac<strong>to</strong>rs. It would be a pity if my<br />

colleagues didn’t see the connection.

Waiting<br />

is better than<br />

nothing<br />

IT’S becoming all <strong>to</strong>o familiar. Similar<br />

<strong>to</strong> how fans’ hopes were crushed<br />

when it was announced that The Killers<br />

were<br />

canceling the<br />

Asian leg of<br />

their <strong>to</strong>ur,<br />

blues-pop<br />

artist John<br />

Mayer’s<br />

impending<br />

visit <strong>to</strong> the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry hit an<br />

unexpected<br />

snag last week, resulting in the concert<br />

being rescheduled from May 16 <strong>to</strong><br />

Oc<strong>to</strong>ber 1.<br />

The official statement from Fearless<br />

Productions and Channel [V] did not<br />

give a specific reason for the rescheduled<br />

date, but said refunds would be<br />

offered for those who already bought<br />

tickets for the show.<br />

There have been mixed reactions <strong>to</strong><br />

the rescheduling from fans. The<br />

anticipation has been built up so much<br />

it’s more than upsetting <strong>to</strong> hold off the<br />

show for another five months. Then<br />

again, those who have yet <strong>to</strong> score<br />



tickets because of lack of funds don’t<br />

mind the postponement; there’s more<br />

time <strong>to</strong> source funds and purchase<br />

quality seats for Mayer’s first visit <strong>to</strong><br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry.<br />

Either way, the important thing is the<br />

concert is still on. We’re still on Mayer’s<br />

calendar. There has been much speculation<br />

(in cyberspace most especially) on<br />

the reasons for the sudden date change,<br />

but in this case, a postponement is<br />

better than a cancellation.<br />

Before then, concert geeks can<br />

content themselves with a slew of<br />

international acts set <strong>to</strong> visit the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry. Original American Idol Kelly<br />

Clarkson brings her act <strong>to</strong> the<br />

Araneta Coliseum May 1, followed by<br />

Tears for Fears the next day, May 2.<br />

Alison Iraheta, of American Idol<br />

➤Nothing C2<br />

lifestyle<br />

The Manila Times<br />


April 27, 2010<br />

■ Aia de Leon of Imago, Lou Bonevie and Hannah Romawac of Session Road in an all-star jam<br />



times they are a-changin’,” sang Bob<br />

Dylan once. True enough, helping out<br />

“THE<br />

and rocking out <strong>now</strong> come hand in hand.<br />

Earth Day Jam, held at the Tomas Mora<strong>to</strong> strip on<br />

April 23, was proof positive. Notable bands such as<br />

Urbandub, Chicosci, Session Road, Callalily, Up<br />

dharma Down, Imago, Kjwan, Bloomfields and many<br />

more came <strong>to</strong>gether for a night for one great cause: <strong>to</strong><br />

s<strong>to</strong>p climate change.<br />

“Earth Day Jam is an indication of<br />

various artists getting <strong>to</strong>gether <strong>to</strong> show<br />

that they care for the environment and<br />

they are one with the world in celebrating<br />

earth day,” said Lou Bonevie, overall head<br />

of Earth Day Jam. The non-profit event has<br />

been running for ten years with an aim <strong>to</strong><br />

raise awareness among the people through<br />

mainstream means such as making pop<br />

artists perform.<br />

Session Road drummer Chavi<br />

Romawac said his band has “always been<br />

part of this event. We believe in the cause<br />

and we believe that we should take care<br />

of the environment.”<br />

Also, Miggy Chavez, main vocals for<br />

C<br />

1<br />

ChicoSci and a second-time performer of<br />

Earth Day Jam, <strong>to</strong>ok part in the concert <strong>to</strong><br />

raise awareness. “We have <strong>to</strong> take responsibility<br />

for what we have been doing <strong>to</strong> our<br />

planet, and I guess it’s just our way of making<br />

people aware that there is a problem—<br />

awareness and ac<strong>count</strong>ability” he said.<br />

Also present at the concert was<br />

Urbandub’s lead vocals and guitarist<br />

Gabby Alipe. “Everybody k<strong>now</strong>s that we<br />

have a lot of problems <strong>now</strong> especially<br />

climate change and stuff like that. Of<br />

course, we are the type of band that wants<br />

<strong>to</strong> do our part of spreading awareness <strong>to</strong><br />

make the world a better place <strong>to</strong> live in<br />

every way, even in the little things.”<br />

Short AVPs and question and answer<br />

portions regarding the environment were<br />

shown <strong>to</strong> the crowd while the bands were<br />

preparing for their sets. Before the bands’<br />

performances, they informed audiences of<br />

what was happening in the world and the<br />

effects of climate change on people round<br />

the world. They constantly reminded the<br />

ADD<br />

TO YOUR<br />


LIST AT<br />

crowd <strong>to</strong> pick up pieces of trash and never<br />

<strong>to</strong> forget <strong>to</strong> throw their garbage in the<br />

respective areas.<br />

Onlooker Mark Ococo, who travelled all<br />

the way from Bulacan <strong>to</strong> attend the concert,<br />

said, “the bands were successful in trying <strong>to</strong><br />

reach out <strong>to</strong> the audience the message of<br />

helping the environment.” Charm Mabeza,<br />

who have come <strong>to</strong> k<strong>now</strong> Earth Day Jam<br />

through Internet and advertisements, also<br />

had the same thoughts. According <strong>to</strong> her,<br />

“The bands were successful in getting across<br />

their message on climate change.” Similarly,<br />

Maan del Carmen, one of the VIP guests of<br />

the concert, said, “I think they helped a lot<br />

because when we were upfront, the people<br />

were actually super chaotic. But then I think<br />

they listened <strong>to</strong> the messages in between the<br />

bands.” Then again, one onlooker named<br />

Gail Marasigan had different thoughts<br />

about the concert dissented, saying,<br />

“Perhaps the concert wasn’t a <strong>to</strong>tal success<br />

because the crowds still focused on the<br />

bands, not the message.”<br />

While one may think that those bands<br />

are just the typical “rock stars” whose life<br />

only revolve around music, booze and<br />

possibly drugs without nary a care about<br />

what is happening <strong>to</strong> the world, there is<br />

actually more <strong>to</strong> them than meets the eye.<br />

These big shot artists are doing their parts<br />

in trying <strong>to</strong> s<strong>to</strong>p climate change.<br />

Chavez said, “Simple things like<br />

throwing the trash where you are supposed<br />

<strong>to</strong> throw it. Tapos around the house<br />

like, not letting the water run, turning off<br />

the lights without using it. Bawas lang ng<br />

konti yung aircon, so ayun.”<br />

Alipe also said, “Me, I recycle because I<br />

don’t, as much as possible, try not <strong>to</strong> use<br />

plastic or throw away plastic material or<br />

stuff like that. If it’s a brown a paper bag<br />

or if it’s a recycled bag, that’s okay.”<br />

Bonevie remains true <strong>to</strong> her cause by<br />

producing shows such as Earth Day Jam.<br />

“I’m creating videos, doing songs in my<br />

new album, I have two songs ‘People<br />

Don’t Care’ and ‘Mother Earth is Hurting.’<br />

Hopefully it can be played on the radio.<br />

I’m trying my best <strong>to</strong> save energy by<br />

closing all electricity or if possible not <strong>to</strong><br />

use the aircon and unplug unused<br />

appliances—really lessen the energy we<br />

use” she said.<br />

Also, the crowd composed mainly of<br />

hardcore punk rockers, attended the event<br />

not purely for fun but also in trying <strong>to</strong><br />

take part in an event with a great cause.<br />

Charm Mabeza said, “I don’t throw my<br />

trash just anywhere. I just pocket them if I<br />

don’t see any trashcans.”<br />

Also a part of the audience was Larry<br />

Alilio who thought that 6 Cycle Mind<br />

were the most successful in trying <strong>to</strong> relay<br />

<strong>to</strong> message of s<strong>to</strong>pping climate change. He<br />

said “I separate biodegradable and<br />

nonbiodegradable garbage.”<br />

Already, times are changing.<br />

American hip-hop dance summer<br />

camp for Philippine youth<br />

■ Lenaya “Tweetie” Straker<br />

US Embassy Manila has invited Cultural Envoy<br />

Lenaya “Tweetie” Straker, an MTV Host and Alvin<br />

Ailey Dance Theater Instruc<strong>to</strong>r, <strong>to</strong> share her skills<br />

and techniques with the Philippine art community,<br />

in collaboration with the Cultural Center of<br />

the Philippines, Ballet Philippines and Station<br />

Square East Corp.<br />

On April 25, 1 p.m. at the Cultural Center of<br />

the Philippines in Manila, Straker will hold a<br />

master class with company members of Ballet<br />

Philippines, <strong>to</strong> be observed by guests from other<br />

dance companies.<br />

On April 30, 10 a.m. <strong>to</strong> 12 p.m. at the<br />

National Arts Center, Mount Makiling, Los<br />

Baños, Laguna, Straker will be conducting a<br />

workshop with students.<br />

On May 5 <strong>to</strong> 7 p.m., there will be a performance<br />

night at the Activity Center of Market!<br />

Market!, Taguig City with Straker.<br />

This summer camp is designed <strong>to</strong> promote<br />

mutual understanding between young people<br />

throughout the Philippines within the context of<br />

modern-urban dance and via first-hand instruction<br />

from an American artist. The participants will use<br />

dance as an art form <strong>to</strong> foster dialogue about art<br />

and other forms of human interactions as <strong>to</strong>ols in<br />

conflict resolution and in building leadership skills<br />

and bridges across and within cultures.<br />

■ The Dawn<br />

Rock the vote<br />

ARE you getting confused with all this election<br />

brouhaha? Are you suffering from election<br />

campaign overload? Do you look in the mirror<br />

and say, “how can I make a difference out<br />

there in the election battlefield and still have a<br />

little bit of fun?”<br />

Watch Rock for Change, a concert for the young<br />

and young at heart who believe that these coming<br />

elections is not so much about who we vote for, but<br />

rather, how committed we are ensuring that<br />

everyone gets involved in this important event that<br />

could change the course of our his<strong>to</strong>ry. It will be<br />

held at SM Mall of Asia Penthouse on Labor Day,<br />

May 1. Gates will open at 5 p.m.<br />

Those who will rock <strong>to</strong> the tune of progress<br />

are Rico Blanco, Sandwich, Urbandub, The<br />

Dawn, Imago, Markus Highway, Paraluman, Line<br />

Divide and many more.<br />

Rock for Change has a simple message: “Don’t<br />

be indifferent because every vote makes a<br />

difference. Be vigilant. Guard the sanctity of the<br />

ballot. And vote according <strong>to</strong> your conscience.”<br />

It’s an all-out rock concert screaming for the<br />

right <strong>to</strong> vote, a night where many Filipinos shall<br />

hear an echoing shout—a deafening call<br />

reminding everyone that voting is a duty of<br />

every citizen because in the end, each one of us<br />

can be an agent of change. Positive change.<br />

Consistent <strong>to</strong> the theme of change, there will<br />

be a talk before the show by Jamie Wilson of<br />

RockEd. Also, the show Ako ang Simula of ABS-<br />

CBN will be covering the event. Myx is the<br />

official music channel for the concert.<br />

For more information on the event, check out its<br />

Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/<br />

home.php?#!/event.php?eid=111069232248203<br />

Party for the first time at SM Mall of Asia’s newest<br />

concert area—The Penthouse! Limited tickets<br />

available at all TicketNet Outlets.<br />

Ticket Price is at P300.00. Call Ticketnet Hotline:<br />

911-5555 for more information.

lifestyle<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

Getting ‘weak’ for SWV<br />

ANYONE who enjoyed the music of the 1990s<br />

will remember the familiar line, “I get so<br />

weak in the knees/I can hardly speak/I lose<br />

all control and something takes over me . . ./I can’t<br />

explain why your loving makes me weak.”<br />

The passionate and distinct vocals of<br />

Cheryl “Coko” Gamble-Clemons, Leanne<br />

“Lelee” Lyons and Tamara “Taj” Johnson-<br />

George—k<strong>now</strong>n <strong>to</strong> millions by their<br />

collective name of SWV, or Sisters With<br />

Voices—is an unforgettable soundtrack <strong>to</strong><br />

anyone who grew up listening <strong>to</strong> the<br />

smooth RnB strains of the 1990s. “Weak,” in<br />

particular, was the ballad that rocketed SWV<br />

<strong>to</strong> international superstardom, peaking at<br />

No. 1 for two weeks on the Billboard Hot<br />

100 and the Billboard RnB charts.<br />

SWV’s trademark harmonies and<br />

smooth, RnB vibe will be heard at the SM<br />

Mall of Asia as part of the mega-concert<br />

The Then and Now Massive Music Festival<br />

on May 15. Joining SWV are other chart<strong>to</strong>pping<br />

artists of the 1990s, including<br />

P.M. Dawn (“Set Adrift On Memory<br />

Bliss”), Frankie J (“Obsession”), Diana<br />

King (“Shy Guy”), Baby Bash (“Suga<br />

■ The Philippine Madrigal Singers<br />


C<br />

2<br />

Suga”) and other surprise performers.<br />

Then and Now starts at 8 p.m. at the Mall<br />

of Asia Concert Grounds.<br />

In addition <strong>to</strong> “Weak,” SWV logged in<br />

several other Top 10 singles off its debut<br />

CD, It’s About Time, which eventually sold<br />

more than three million copies, and was<br />

certified triple platinum. Debut single<br />

“Right Here” peaked at <strong>to</strong>p 16 on the<br />

Billboard RnB charts; it was later remixed<br />

after the success of “Weak,” sampling<br />

Michael Jackson’s “Human Nature,” and<br />

peaking at No. 1 on the RnB chart and at<br />

<strong>to</strong>p 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.<br />

Sophomore single, “I’m So In<strong>to</strong> You,”<br />

peaked at <strong>to</strong>p 2 on the RnB charts at No. 6<br />

on the Billboard Hot 100. Two other<br />

singles, “Down<strong>to</strong>wn” and “Always On My<br />

Mind,” were also Top 10 hits on the RnB<br />

charts. SWV logged in several other Top 10<br />

hits on the RnB and Hot 100 charts,<br />

The 2010 Madz et al Jazz Festival<br />

IN celebration of music’s sheer uplifting and<br />

emotive power, the Philippine Madrigal<br />

Singers have worked with choirs from all<br />

walks of life with the Madz Et Al network<br />

since 1981. This year, the Madz recognize the<br />

smooth and moving flow of jazz music and<br />

how it expresses the ups and downs of our<br />

lives with Choral Rhythms: The 2010 Madz Et<br />

Al Jazz Festival, a musical gathering in the<br />

proud Madz Et Al tradition of spotlighting<br />

among the most hardworking and talented<br />

upcoming choral groups.<br />

The festival runs from May 2 <strong>to</strong> May 8<br />

at the Philamlife Theater, UN Avenue<br />

Manila, beginning at 7 p.m. each evening<br />

and featuring various choirs from all over<br />

the Philippines.<br />

Each year the Madz Et Al festivals take us on<br />

a choral journey through beautiful music and<br />

beautiful energy, and this year’s looks <strong>to</strong> be no<br />

different. The Madz Et Al Festival is being<br />

presented <strong>to</strong> us by the Philippine Madrigal<br />

Singers in cooperation with the Philippine<br />

American Life and General Insurance Co. and<br />

the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.<br />

For tickets, call Pearl Reyes at 0917-<br />

8442674 or any of the participating choir’s<br />

representatives.<br />

■ Cheryl “Coko” Gamble-Clemons, Leanne “Lelee” Lyons and Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George<br />

including “Anything” (1994), “You’re the<br />

One” (1996).<br />

The success of the ladies of SWV<br />

extends <strong>to</strong> more than just pop and RnB<br />

music. Gamble-Clemmons, for instance,<br />

released a solo RnB CD, Hot Coko, which<br />

yielded the Top 40 RnB hit, “Sunshine”;<br />

she would go on <strong>to</strong> release a gospel CD,<br />

Grateful, that would debut on Billboard’s<br />

»horoscope<br />


TODAY’S birthday (4/27/10). You find yourself<br />

wanting the affection of others. Gain it by<br />

adapting <strong>to</strong> situations before others even realize<br />

the need. Your sympathetic support goes a long<br />

way <strong>to</strong>ward reaping their cooperation when the<br />

chips are down. Give love <strong>to</strong> amplify it.<br />

To get the advantage, check the day’s rating: 10 is<br />

the easiest day, 0 the most challenging.<br />

Aries (March 21-April 19) — Today is a 6 —<br />

When you open your mouth, be sure that something<br />

nice comes out. The challenge is <strong>to</strong> be pleasant even<br />

while working on a serious problem.<br />

Taurus (April 20-May 20) — Today is a 7 —<br />

Everything you’ve worked for comes <strong>to</strong>gether and<br />

hits the mark precisely. You receive karmic benefit,<br />

and your self-esteem grows.<br />

Gemini (May 21-June 21) — Today is a 6 — Duty<br />

forces you <strong>to</strong> deal with emotionally painful matters.<br />

Choose your words carefully <strong>to</strong> soften the impact.<br />

Everyone feels better when it’s out in the open.<br />

Cancer (June 22-July 22) — Today is a 7 —<br />

Take care of essential business with your partner<br />

first. Then allow time in seclusion <strong>to</strong> recharge your<br />

batteries. Enjoy the evening out.<br />

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22) — Today is a 6 — You<br />

become more aware of circumstances that affect<br />

> Sudoku BY MICHAEL MEPHAM<br />

Level: Moderate<br />

Complete the grid so each row, column and 3-by-3 box (in<br />

bold borders) contains every digit 1 <strong>to</strong> 9. For strategies on<br />

how <strong>to</strong> solve Sudoku, visit www.sudoku.org.uk.<br />

Top Independent Albums chart. Johnson-<br />

George, on the other hand, would achieve<br />

mainstream stardom as a contestant on<br />

CBS’ wildly successful television show,<br />

Survivor. She finished fourth on the<br />

Survivor: Tocantins season.<br />

Tickets are available at all TicketNet and<br />

TicketWorld outlets. For details, visit http://<br />

thenand<strong>now</strong>concert.com.<br />

Tears For Fears live in Manila<br />

THE concert everyone has been waiting is<br />

nearly here. May 2, 2010 marks the first<br />

time Tears For Tears performs at the<br />

Araneta Coliseum.<br />

Chart <strong>to</strong>ppers Tears For Tears, an<br />

English pop rock duo formed in early<br />

1980s by Roland Orzabal and Curt<br />

Smith, is one of the biggest and bestloved<br />

bands during the MTV and post-<br />

MTV age. Recently, they staged one of<br />

the most unexpected reunions in pop<br />

music his<strong>to</strong>ry. Tears For Tears were the<br />

rulers of the 1980s airwaves. They still<br />

reign in the hearts of multitudes who<br />

have long been waiting <strong>to</strong> watch them<br />

live! They continue <strong>to</strong> sell out shows<br />

throughout the world and maintain<br />

their status as one of the pop music’s<br />

more productive musical collaborations<br />

having sold more than 22 million<br />

albums worldwide.<br />

For ticket inquiries, call Ticketnet at 911-<br />

5555. You can also log on <strong>to</strong><br />

www.ticketnet.com.ph<br />

■ Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith<br />

education or work. Subtle undercurrents will cause far<br />

more stress if you ignore the implications. Find balance.<br />

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) — Today is a 6 —<br />

You’ve put in the hours. Now you reap the benefit of<br />

all that effort. Frame your public announcement <strong>to</strong><br />

take advantage of prevailing sentiments.<br />

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22) — Today is a 7 — You<br />

feel logically challenged. Talk <strong>to</strong> a female or seek<br />

information on the Internet, then apply the results <strong>to</strong><br />

your immediate situation. It works out.<br />

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) — Today is a 5 —<br />

You understand that change is necessary. Explaining<br />

this presents a major challenge. Try logic first, and<br />

reserve the right <strong>to</strong> use force.<br />

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) — Today is a 6<br />

— Your challenge is <strong>to</strong> adapt <strong>to</strong> both the circumstances<br />

and your partner’s insistent desires. Lower<br />

your expectations or delay a decision.<br />

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) — Today is a 6 —<br />

When life gives you lemons, don’t just make<br />

lemonade; make it the best ever tasted. Only you<br />

k<strong>now</strong> what it <strong>to</strong>ok <strong>to</strong> get this done.<br />

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) — Today is a 5 —<br />

Travel or educational deadlines cause you some<br />

concern, as obstacles block your path. A female can<br />

help focus your ideas and get them organized.<br />

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — Today is a 6 —<br />

Tell everyone early on that you want extra effort<br />

before lunch so you can take off early. You’ll make it<br />

<strong>to</strong> the event on time with their help.<br />


Solution <strong>to</strong> <strong>to</strong>day’s puzzle will be<br />

published <strong>to</strong>morrow.<br />

Just do it<br />

LIKE the rest of us, you <strong>to</strong>o are searching<br />

for happiness. Everybody wants <strong>to</strong><br />

be happy, but what is it that will make<br />

you happy?<br />

Are you sure you k<strong>now</strong>? That may<br />

sound <strong>to</strong> you like a silly question, but<br />

remember that many people are unhappy<br />

precisely because they do not really k<strong>now</strong><br />

what it is they<br />

want in life. I<br />

have worked<br />

with many<br />

unhappy people<br />

who, when<br />


asked what is it<br />

that would make<br />

you happy,<br />

could not come<br />

up with a credible answer.<br />

I use the word “credible” because<br />

their answers are so general (“I just<br />

want <strong>to</strong> be happy”, or “I want <strong>to</strong> be<br />

PEOPLE<br />

loved or “I don’t want <strong>to</strong> be poor”) that<br />

they amount <strong>to</strong> nothing, <strong>to</strong> not k<strong>now</strong>ing<br />

what they want.<br />

It isn’t surprising then that they are<br />

unhappy. If you want <strong>to</strong> be happy you<br />

have <strong>to</strong> k<strong>now</strong> what it is that will make you<br />

happy and then go for it.<br />

Stephen Covey says it this way: “Happiness<br />

can be defined, at least in part, as the<br />

fruit of the desire and the ability <strong>to</strong><br />

sacrifice what we want <strong>now</strong> for what we<br />

want eventually.”<br />

In short, formulate a goal that<br />

you believe will give you satisfaction<br />

(happiness) and then pay the<br />

price by sacrificing and working<br />

<strong>to</strong>wards the goal. Eventually, your<br />

hard work and sacrifices will pay off<br />

and you will experience the happiness<br />

you sought.<br />

You cannot expect <strong>to</strong> wander around in<br />

circles, like a chicken without a head, and<br />

hope <strong>to</strong> bump in<strong>to</strong> happiness somewhere<br />

in the process. That would be like playing<br />

the lottery and expecting <strong>to</strong> win the<br />

jackpot. Won’t happen.<br />

But then, there are people who want<br />

<strong>to</strong> believe just that. They want <strong>to</strong> be<br />

happy while doing nothing <strong>to</strong> make it<br />

happen. It’s what is called magical<br />

thinking. One of my clients who was<br />

in<strong>to</strong> magical thinking put in this way, “It<br />

is because I think it is”. Needless <strong>to</strong> say<br />

that she was one very unhappy woman.<br />

If you want <strong>to</strong> be happy, don’t be<br />

like that. Don’t expect happiness <strong>to</strong><br />

come running <strong>to</strong> you. You have <strong>to</strong><br />

make up your mind about what you<br />

want (<strong>to</strong> be a doc<strong>to</strong>r, a nurse a<br />

whatever) and then be prepared <strong>to</strong><br />

pay the price for your happiness.<br />

Remember that the happiest people<br />

are those who worked the hardest <strong>to</strong><br />

overcome the greatest challenges and<br />

gain the deepest satisfaction. The harder<br />

the struggle, the greater the vic<strong>to</strong>ry.<br />

So make up your mind about what<br />

you want. Then, go for it. Believe. And<br />

just do it.<br />

If you have questions about drug rehab<br />

call my office at 820-6107 or 825-1771 or<br />

e-mail me at goldenvalues_school.com.ph<br />

or write me at P.O. Box 2099 MCPO,<br />

Makati City 1260.<br />


Waiting is<br />

better than<br />

nothing<br />

Season 8 will be in Manila May 3 <strong>to</strong> 5<br />

for a series of mall shows. Indie pop<br />

superstars Club 8 is also dropping by<br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry, May 14 in Manila and May<br />

15 in Cebu, thanks <strong>to</strong> the efforts of<br />

Lilystars Records. And the Then and Now<br />

concert bring <strong>to</strong>gether acts from, well,<br />

then and <strong>now</strong>, including Jojo, SWV,<br />

Frankie J, Diana King, PM Dawn, TQ<br />

and All-4-One for a one night only<br />

show May 15 at the SM Mall of Asia<br />

concert grounds.<br />

❋ ❋ ❋<br />

Twelve years since they burst for the<br />

from the imagination of Blur front man<br />

Damon Albarn and illustra<strong>to</strong>r Jamie<br />

Hewlett, virtual band Gorillaz just keeps<br />

churning out sounds that would put real<br />

life bands <strong>to</strong> shame. On their third fulllength<br />

studio release, the luscious,<br />

multi-layered Plastic Beach, the car<strong>to</strong>on<br />

band aims for a more pop-oriented<br />

approach <strong>to</strong> their trademark rhythms.<br />

Enlisting the services of collabora<strong>to</strong>rs,<br />

including Snoop Dogg, Mos Def, Bobby<br />

Womack and Lou Reed, the entire album<br />

is a sonic trip that works inside a car on<br />

a long meandering road trip as much as<br />

it does on the club floor. Clearly the<br />

musical well hasn’t dried up for Albarn;<br />

on the contrary, while there are themes<br />

of unhampered consumerism and<br />

environmental degradation, the organic<br />

and club-friendly beats they use make<br />

this perhaps their most commercially<br />

accessible release yet. It’s a rousing<br />

success for Murdoc, Russel, 2D and<br />

Noodle, and one of the first truly<br />

noteworthy releases of the year.<br />

E-mail pjcana@gmail.com

ClassifiedAds<br />

The Manila Times TUESDAY April 27, 2010<br />

C<br />

3<br />



Notice is hereby given that the ARTICLES OF MERGER and PLAN OF MERGER<br />

of SANOFI PASTEUR, INC., as the surviving corporation, and WINTHROP<br />

PHARMACEUTICALS PHILIPPINES, INC., as the absorbed corporation,<br />

have been approved in meetings duly called for the purpose, by majority<br />

of the respective Boards of Direc<strong>to</strong>rs and by at least two-thirds (2/3) of<br />

the respective outstanding capital s<strong>to</strong>cks of SANOFI PASTEUR, INC. and<br />


Notice is likewise hereby given that said Articles of Merger and Plan<br />

of Merger between SANOFI PASTEUR, INC. and WINTHROP<br />

PHARMACEUTICALS PHILIPPINES, INC. will be filed with the <strong>Sec</strong>urities<br />

and Exchange Commission.<br />

This shall serve as notice <strong>to</strong> all parties concerned of the legal effects of<br />

the Plan of Merger between SANOFI PASTEUR, INC. and WINTHROP<br />

PHARMACEUTICALS PHILIPPINES, INC. including the cessation of the<br />

separate existence of the absorbed corporation.<br />


Assistant Corporate <strong>Sec</strong>retary<br />



MT – Apr. 27, 2010<br />

Republic of the Philippines<br />

Department of Public Works and Highways<br />


V. Sot<strong>to</strong> Street Cebu City<br />

April 22, 2010<br />


The Cebu City District Engineering Office, through its Bids and Awards Committee (BAC),<br />

invites contrac<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> apply for eligibility and, if found eligible, <strong>to</strong> bid for the following contract:<br />

Item I – RBH<br />

1. Contract ID : 10HH0035<br />

Contract Name : Construction of Flyover at M.J. Cuenco Avenue and Gen. Maxilom<br />

Avenue<br />

Contract Location : Cebu City<br />

Description : Reinforced Concrete Works and Bored Piles<br />

Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC): Php 48,250,000.00<br />

Contract Duration : 150 calendar days<br />

The BAC will conduct this public bidding in accordance with the revised RA 9184 and its<br />

Implementing Rules and Regulations Part A.<br />

To be eligible <strong>to</strong> bid for this contract, a contrac<strong>to</strong>r must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) with<br />

Current Cebu City Mayor’s Permit, Certificate of Registration with PhilGEPS and an<br />

approved Activation of BIR Electronic Filing and Payment System (EFPS) and must<br />

meet the following major criteria: (a) prior registration with the DPWH, (b) Filipino citizen or<br />

75% Filipino owned partnership/corporation with PCAB license applicable <strong>to</strong> the type and<br />

cost of this contract, (c) completion of a similar contract costing at least 50% of ABC, and (d)<br />

Net Financing Contracting Capacity at least equal <strong>to</strong> ABC, or credit line commitment/cash deposit<br />

certificate for at least 10% of ABC. The DPWH will use non-discretionary pass/fail criteria in<br />

the eligibility check, preliminary evaluation of bids, evaluation of bids, post qualification, and<br />

award.<br />

The interested bidders for the Contract ID No. 10HH0035 must own a boring machine and a 75<br />

<strong>to</strong>n Crane.<br />

Unregistered contrac<strong>to</strong>rs, however, may submit their LOIs simultaneously with their applications<br />

for registration, <strong>to</strong> the Cebu City District Engineering Office before the deadline set below the<br />

receipt of LOIs. The DPWH Central BAC-TWG will first process the contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s applications for<br />

registration and issue the Contrac<strong>to</strong>rs Certificate of Registration (CRC) before processing their<br />

LOIs. The DPWH Central BAC-TWG will process only those with complete registration requirements.<br />

The significant times and deadlines of procurement activities are shown below:<br />

1. Issuance of Bidding Documents Deadline: April 26 <strong>to</strong> May 6, 2010<br />

2. Pre-Bid Conference Date & Time: April 30, 2010<br />

3. Deadline of LOI from Prospective Bidders Date: May 6, 2010, 10:00 A.M.<br />

4. Receipt of Bids Deadline: May 18, 2010, 8:00 <strong>to</strong> 10:00 AM<br />

5. Opening of Bids Date & Time: May 18, 2010, 10:00 AM<br />

6. Venue of Activities Conference Hall, Cebu City District Engineering<br />

Office, V. Sot<strong>to</strong> St., Brgy. Tinago, Cebu City<br />

Prospective bidders may download the Registration and LOI Forms from the DPWH website<br />

www.dpwh.gov.ph. The BAC will issue hard copies of LOI Forms at Cebu City District Engineering<br />

Office, upon payment of non-refundable fee of Php2,500.00. Prospective bidders that will download<br />

the LOI forms shall pay the same amount upon submission of their LOIs. Prospective bidders<br />

shall submit their accomplished LOIs and obtain the results of the eligibility check at the same<br />

address.<br />

Prospective bidders may also download the Bidding Documents (BDs), if available, from the DPWH<br />

website. The BAC will also issue hard copies of the BDs at the same address <strong>to</strong> eligible bidders<br />

upon payment of a non-refundable fee of Php30,000.00. Eligible bidders that will download the<br />

BDs from the DPWH website shall pay the same fees upon the submission of their bids.<br />

The Cebu City District Engineering Office reserves the right <strong>to</strong> accept or reject any bid and <strong>to</strong> annul<br />

the bidding process anytime before Contract award, without incurring any liability <strong>to</strong> the affected<br />

bidders.<br />

Approved by:<br />


MT – Apr. 27, 2010<br />

BAC Chairman<br />

Republic of the Philippines<br />


Region VI – Western Visayas<br />



Fort San Pedro Road, Iloilo City<br />

Tel. Nos. 337-83-87; 337-32-63<br />


The Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) of the DPWH-Iloilo City District Engineering Office,<br />

through the General Appropriation Act of 2010, invites contrac<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> apply <strong>to</strong> bid for the<br />

aforementioned projects:<br />

Contract ID No. : 10GJ0009<br />

Name of Contract : Rehab./Repair/Improvement of Molo Boulevard-Calumpang<br />

Arevalo Road<br />

Location : Iloilo City<br />

Brief Description : Roads-Rehabilitation-Asphalt<br />

Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC): P17,370,000.00<br />

Contract Duration : 60 CD<br />

The BAC will conduct the procurement process in accordance with the Revised IRR of RA<br />

9184. Bids received in excess of the ABC shall be au<strong>to</strong>matically rejected at the opening of bid.<br />

To bid for this contract, a contrac<strong>to</strong>r must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI), purchase bid<br />

documents and must meet the following major criteria: (a) prior registration with the DPWH,<br />

(b) Filipino citizen or 75 Filipino-owned partnership, corporation, cooperative or joint venture,<br />

(c) with PCAB license applicable <strong>to</strong> the type and cost of this contract, (d) Completion of a<br />

similar contract costing at least 50% of ABC within a period of 10 years, and (e) Net Financial<br />

Contracting Capacity at least equal <strong>to</strong> ABC, or credit line commitment at least equal <strong>to</strong> 10% of<br />

ABC. The BAC will use non-discretionary pass/fail criteria in the eligibility check and preliminary<br />

examination of bids.<br />

Unregistered contrac<strong>to</strong>rs, however, shall submit their applications for registration <strong>to</strong> the<br />

DPWH-POCW Central Office before the deadline for the receipt of LOI. The DPWH-POCW Central<br />

Office will only process contrac<strong>to</strong>rs’ applications for registration with complete requirements<br />

and issue the Contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s Certificate of Registration (CRC). Registration Forms may be downloaded<br />

at the DPWH website www.dpwh.gov.ph.<br />

The significant times and deadlines of procurement activities are shown below:<br />

1. Issuance of Bidding Documents April 12-May 3, 2010<br />

2. Pre-Bid Conference April 19, 2010 @ 10:00 A.M.<br />

3. Deadline Receipt of LOI from April 26, 2010<br />

Prospective Bidders<br />

4. Receipt of Bids May 3, 2010 until 2:00 P.M only at<br />

the Office of BAC, DPWH-ICDEO<br />

5. Opening of Bids May 3, 2010 until 2:30 P.M at<br />

the Office of BAC, DPWH-ICDEO<br />

The BAC will issue hard copies of Bidding Documents (BDs) at DPWH-ILOILO CITY DISTRICT<br />

ENGINEERING OFFICE, upon payment of a non-refundable fee Ten Thousand Pesos<br />

(P10,000.00). Prospective bidders that will download the BDs from the DPWH website<br />

shall pay the said fees on or before the submission of their bids documents. Bids must<br />

accompanied by a Bid <strong>Sec</strong>urity, in the amount and acceptable form, as stated in <strong>Sec</strong>tion<br />

27.2 of the Revised IRR.<br />

Prospective bidders shall submit their duly accomplished forms as specified in the BD’s in<br />

two (2) separate sealed bid envelopes <strong>to</strong> the BAC Chairman. The first envelope shall contain<br />

the technical component of the bid, which shall include a copy of the CRC. The second envelope<br />

shall contain the financial component of the bid. Contract will be awarded <strong>to</strong> the lowest Calculated<br />

Responsive Bid as determined in the bid evaluation and post-qualification.<br />

TheDPWH-ILOILO CITY DISTRICT ENGINEERING OFFICE reserves the right <strong>to</strong> accept or reject<br />

any or all bid and <strong>to</strong> annul the bidding process anytime before Contract award, without incurring<br />

any liability <strong>to</strong> the affected bidders.<br />

Approved by:<br />

(SGD.) RUBY P. LAGOC<br />

BAC Chairman<br />

MT – Apr. 27, 2010<br />

Republic of the Philippines<br />

Department of Public Works and Highways<br />


Isabela 2 nd District Engineering Office<br />

Roxas, Isabela<br />


The Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) of the DPWH-Isabela 2 nd District Engineering Office, Roxas,<br />

Isabela, through the Fund-101-FY 2009 & 2010 and Fund-151 CY 2010, invites contrac<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> bid<br />

for the aforementioned projects:<br />

* Contract ID: 010BF0106<br />

Contract Name: Concreting of Road<br />

Contract Location: Matusalem, Roxas, Isabela<br />

Scope of Work: RCP-Roads-New Construction-PCCP<br />

Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC): Php6,755,000.00<br />

Contract Duration: 120 Calendar Days<br />

Cost of LOI Forms: Php700.00<br />

Cost of Bid Documents: Php14,000.00<br />

* Contract ID: 010BF0107<br />

Contract Name: Concreting of Road<br />

Contract Location: Roxas, Isabela<br />

Scope of Work: RCP-Roads-New Construction-PCCP<br />

Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC): Php9,650,000.00<br />

Contract Duration: 150 Calendar Days<br />

Cost of LOI Forms: Php1,000.00<br />

Cost of Bid Documents: Php20,000.00<br />

* Contract ID: 010BF0110<br />

Contract Name: Rehabilitation/Reconstruction/Upgrading of Gamu-Roxas Road<br />

Contract Location: Roxas <strong>Sec</strong>tion, Roxas, Isabela<br />

Scope of Work: RCP-Roads-New Construction-PCCP<br />

Approved Budget for the Contract (ABC): Php9,650,000.00<br />

Contract Duration: 150 Calendar Days<br />

Cost of LOI Forms: Php1,000.00<br />

Cost of Bid Documents: Php20,000.00<br />

The BAC will conduct the procurement process in accordance with Revised IRR of R.A. 9184. Bids<br />

received in excess of the ABC shall be au<strong>to</strong>matically rejected at the opening of bid.<br />

To bid for this contract, a contrac<strong>to</strong>r must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI), purchase bid documents<br />

and must meet the following major criteria: (a) prior registration with DPWH, (b) Filipino citizen or<br />

75% Filipino-owned partnership, corporation, cooperative, or joint venture, (c) with PCAB license<br />

applicable <strong>to</strong> the type and cost of this contract, (d) completion of a similar contract costing at least<br />

50% of ABC within a period of 10 years, and (e) Net Financial Contracting Capacity at least equal <strong>to</strong><br />

ABC, or credit line commitment for at least 10% of ABC. The BAC will use non-discretionary pass/fail<br />

criteria in the eligibility check and preliminary examination of bids.<br />

Unregistered contrac<strong>to</strong>rs, however, shall submit their applications for registration <strong>to</strong> the DPWH-<br />

POCW Central Office before the deadline for the receipt of LOI. The DPWH POCW-Central Office will<br />

only process contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s applications for registration, with complete requirements, and issue the<br />

Contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s Certificate of Registration (CRC). Registration Forms may be downloaded at the DPWH<br />

website www.dpwh.gov.ph.<br />

The significant times and deadlines of procurement activities are shown below:<br />

1. Issuance of Bidding Documents April 23-May 13, 2010<br />

2. Pre-Bid Conference April 30, 2010<br />

3. Deadline of Receipt of LOIs from Prospective Bidders 2:00 PM, April 29, 2010<br />

4. Receipt of Bids 10:00 AM, May 13, 2010<br />

5. Opening of Bids 10:30 A.M., May 13, 2010<br />

The BAC will issue hard copies of Bidding Documents (BDs) at Isabela 2 nd District Engineering<br />

Office, Roxas, Isabela, upon payment of a non-refundable fee as stated above. Prospective bidders<br />

may also download the BDs from the DPWH website, if available. Prospective Bidders that will download<br />

the BDs from the DPWH website shall pay the said fees upon the submission of their bid documents.<br />

The Pre-Bid Conference shall be open <strong>to</strong> only <strong>to</strong> interested parties who have purchased the BDs.<br />

Bids must be accompanied by a Bid <strong>Sec</strong>urity, in the amount and acceptable form, as stated in <strong>Sec</strong>tion<br />

27.2 of the Revised IRR.<br />

Prospective bidders shall submit their duly accomplished forms as specified in the BD’s in two<br />

(2) separate sealed bid envelopes <strong>to</strong> the BAC Chairman. The first envelope shall contain the technical<br />

component of the bid, which shall include a copy of the CRC. The second envelope shall contain the<br />

financial component of the bid. Contract will be awarded <strong>to</strong> the Lowest Calculated Responsive Bid<br />

(LCRB) as determined in the bid evaluation and post-qualification.<br />

The Isabela 2 nd District Engineering Office, Roxas, Isabela reserves the right <strong>to</strong> accept or reject<br />

any bid and <strong>to</strong> annul the bidding process anytime before contract award, without incurring any<br />

liability <strong>to</strong> the affected bidders.<br />

Approved by:<br />

Noted:<br />


District Engineer<br />


OIC-Assistant District Engineer<br />

BAC Chairman<br />

DPWH-Isabela 2 nd District Eng’g. District<br />

Roxas, Isabela<br />

Tel. No. (078)642-8139<br />

MT – Apr. 27, 2010<br />


Commission on Information &<br />

Communications Technology<br />




Quezon City<br />

BMC Case No. 2010-100<br />




Applicant.<br />

x——————————x<br />


Applicant, DXRA-RMC (RIZAL<br />


Broadcasting Corporation, a<br />

Filipino corporation duly organized<br />

and existing under Philippine laws<br />

and a grantee of a Congressional<br />

Franchise by virtue of RA. No. 8159,<br />

requests in the above-entitled case<br />

for the issuance of a Certificate of<br />

Public Convenience <strong>to</strong> install,<br />

operate and maintain a commercial<br />

FM radio broadcasting station<br />

in Iligan City, province of Lanao<br />

del Norte.<br />

Applicant further request for a<br />

Provisional Authority pending<br />

final determination of the<br />

application.<br />

This petition will be heard by<br />

this Commission on May 19, 2010<br />

at 8:30 AM at its Offices, National<br />

Telecommunications Commission,<br />

BIR Road, East Triangle, Diliman,<br />

Quezon City at which hearing<br />

petitioner shall present its evidence.<br />

At least (15) days prior <strong>to</strong> the<br />

date of hearing, petitioner shall<br />

publish this Notice of Hearing once<br />

in one (1) Metro Manila edited daily<br />

newspaper of general circulation in<br />

the Philippines and serve by<br />

registered mail or personal delivery<br />

copies of the petition and the Notice<br />

of Hearing <strong>to</strong> all affected parties<br />

as appearing in the attached list.<br />

Parties opposed <strong>to</strong> the granting<br />

of the petition must file their<br />

written opposition on or before the<br />

date of hearing furnishing a copy<br />

of the same <strong>to</strong> the petitioner and<br />

appear at the hearing with such<br />

evidence as may be proper in the<br />

premises. Failure on the part of any<br />

affected party <strong>to</strong> file his opposition<br />

on time and <strong>to</strong> appear at the hearing<br />

will be construed as a waiver of his<br />

right <strong>to</strong> be heard, the Commission<br />

will proceed <strong>to</strong> hear and decide the<br />

application on its merits.<br />


A. CORDOBA, Commissioner,<br />

National Telecommunications<br />

Commission, this 19 th day of April<br />

2010.<br />


Officer-in-Charge<br />

Commission <strong>Sec</strong>retariat<br />

MT – April 27, 2010<br />

To advertise at<br />

The Manila<br />

Times,<br />

email us at<br />

advertising@<br />

manilatimes.net<br />

or call 524-5664<br />

<strong>to</strong> 67<br />

Republic of the Philippines<br />


Regional Office XI<br />

General San<strong>to</strong>s City<br />

SMDP NFA RXI-2010-D-07<br />



The NATIONAL FOOD AUTHORITY (NFA) Regional Office XI, General San<strong>to</strong>s City is hereby inviting all interested NFA licensed grains businessmen/establishments <strong>to</strong> submit<br />

sealed offers for the SMDP of NFA Imported Rice 2009 arrivals, as follows:<br />


(bags of 50 kg)<br />

per kg<br />

15% brokens VCCW91 NFA General San<strong>to</strong>s City 1 124,982 P 23.50<br />

more or less<br />

The sale shall be on as is, where is no selection and no segregation basis. Maximum of 10% of the <strong>to</strong>tal volume for SMDP shall be allocated <strong>to</strong> Small Retailers/ FOs. Qualified<br />

offerors shall post a bond equivalent <strong>to</strong> 10% of the <strong>to</strong>tal amount offered in the form of cashier’s or manager’s check payable <strong>to</strong> NFA, issued by a reputable commercial bank.<br />

The SMDP activities shall be conducted on the following schedules:<br />


Submission of 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. April 30, 2010 Every Monday and Friday thereafter<br />

eligibility documents<br />

until subject s<strong>to</strong>cks will be exhausted.<br />

3rd Floor, NFA Bldg., J. Ca<strong>to</strong>lico Ave.,<br />

3rd Floor, NFA Bldg., J. Ca<strong>to</strong>lico Ave.,<br />

Lagao, Gen. San<strong>to</strong>s City<br />

Lagao, Gen. San<strong>to</strong>s City<br />

Pre-SMDP Conference 2:01 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. -do- -do-<br />

SMDP Proper 3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. -do- -do-<br />

The bid forms including the other provisions stipulated in the terms and conditions shall be available at the Operations <strong>Sec</strong>tion, 2nd Floor, NFA Regional Office XI, J.<br />

Ca<strong>to</strong>lico Avenue, Lagao, General San<strong>to</strong>s City c/o Ms HAZEL G. SOLIS, upon payment of non- refundable SMDP fee of P1,000.00 for Small Ret/FOs and P5,000 for<br />

Wholesalers/Traders.<br />

All interested offerors shall submit <strong>to</strong> the NFA Regional SMDP Committee at the above time and venue, the following eligibility documents:<br />

1. Certified pho<strong>to</strong>copy of CY 2010 NFA License Certificate or approved application for NFA License and Official Receipt evidencing payment of license fee. For authentication<br />

purposes, submit original copy of 2010 NFA license certificate or approved application for NFA license and official receipt.<br />

2. For representative, a duly notarized authorization from the principal bidder/and or NFA License holder (owner/chairman) that the person is authorized <strong>to</strong> represent<br />

the establishment <strong>to</strong> the SMDP and all pertinent activities there<strong>to</strong>.<br />

NFA Region XI encourages all interested offerors <strong>to</strong> conduct ocular inspection of the subject s<strong>to</strong>cks prior <strong>to</strong> the pre-qualification schedule.<br />

For further information, you may inquire at the NFA Regional Office XI General San<strong>to</strong>s City thru Telephone Nos. (083) 554-5242/552-4284 or from the Office of the Provincial<br />

Manager of NFA General San<strong>to</strong>s City - (083) 5526137.<br />




Regional Manager II<br />

MT - Apr. 27, 28 & 29, 2010<br />

Republic of the Philippines<br />

Department of Public Works and Highways<br />

Region I<br />

Pangasinan 3rd District Engineering Office<br />


Tumana, Rosales, Pangasinan<br />

Date:April 21, 2010<br />


The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Pangasinan 3 rd District Engineering Office, Tumana, Rosales, Pangasinan through its<br />

Bids and Awards Committee (BAC), invites contrac<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong> apply <strong>to</strong> bid for the following contract:<br />



10AI0098 Repair/Res<strong>to</strong>ration of Damaged Asphalt S<strong>to</strong>. Tomas, Pang. Asphalt Overlay P19,300,000.00 35 C.D.<br />

Pavement along Carmen Jctn.-<br />

Bayambang Road, S<strong>to</strong>. Tomas <strong>Sec</strong>tion<br />

Procurement will be conducted through open competitive bidding procedures in accordance with R.A. 9184 and its Revised Implementing<br />

Rules and Regulations.<br />

To bid for this contract, a contrac<strong>to</strong>r must submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) and must meet the following major criteria: (a) prior registration<br />

with the DPWH, (b) Filipino citizen or 75% Filipino-owned partnership/corporation with PCAB license applicable <strong>to</strong> the type and cost of this<br />

contract, (c) completion of a similar contract costing at least 50% of ABC, and (d) Net Financial Contracting Capacity at least equal <strong>to</strong> ABC, or<br />

credit line commitment/cash deposit certificate for at least equal <strong>to</strong> 10% of ABC. The BAC will use non-discretionary pass/fail criteria in the<br />

eligibility check and preliminary examination of bids.<br />

Unregistered contrac<strong>to</strong>rs, however, shall submit their applications for registration <strong>to</strong> the DPWH-3 rd Pangasinan Engineering District, Tumana,<br />

Rosales, Pangasinan before the deadline for the receipts of LOI. The DPWH-POCW Central Office will only process the contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s applications for<br />

registration with complete requirements, and issue the Contrac<strong>to</strong>r’s Certificate of Registration (CRC). Registration Forms may be downloaded at<br />

the DPWH website www.dpwh.gov.ph.<br />

The significant times and deadlines of procurement activities are shown below:<br />



1 Publication/Posting of Invitation <strong>to</strong> Bid April 21 <strong>to</strong> 27, 2010<br />

2. Receipt of LOIs from Prospective Bidders April 21 <strong>to</strong> May 6, 2010 until 3:00 P.M.<br />

3. Issuance of Bidding Documents April 21 <strong>to</strong> May 12, 2010 before 9:00 A.M.<br />

4. Pre-Bid Conference April 28, 2010 – 10:00 A.M.<br />

5. Receipts and Opening of Bids May 12, 2010 – 10:00 A.M.<br />

The BAC will also issue hard copies of LOI Forms at DPWH-3 rd Pangasinan Engineering District, Tumana, Rosales, Pangasinan, upon<br />

payment of a non-refundable fee of THIRTY THOUSAND PESOS ONLY (P30,000.00). Prospective bidders that will download the BDs from the<br />

DPWH Website shall pay the same amount on or before the submission of their Bid Documents. Bids must be accompanied by a bid security, in<br />

the amount and acceptable form, as stated in <strong>Sec</strong>tion 27.2 of the Revised IRR.<br />

Prospective bidders shall submit their duly accomplished forms as specified in the BD’s in two (2) separate sealed bid envelopes <strong>to</strong> the BAC<br />

Chairman. The first envelope shall contain the technical component of the bid, which shall include the eligibility requirements. The second<br />

envelope shall contain financial component of the bid. Contract will be awarded <strong>to</strong> the Lowest Calculated Responsive Bid as determined in the<br />

bid evaluation and their post-qualification.<br />

The DPWH, Pangasinan 3 rd District Engineering Office, Tumana, Rosales, Pangasinan reserves the right <strong>to</strong> accept or reject any bid and <strong>to</strong> annul<br />

the bidding process anytime before Contract award, without incurring any liability <strong>to</strong> the affected bidders.<br />


BY:<br />



0BAC – Chairman<br />

Head, BAC-<strong>Sec</strong>retariat<br />

MT – April 21 & 27, 2010<br />

Mother of Divine Providence School<br />

The Mother of Divine Providence School is a Catholic School run<br />

by the Congregation of the Angelic Sisters of St. Paul, that provides<br />

basic education <strong>to</strong> boys and girls from middle-income families<br />

in Marikina and adjacent communities.<br />


(Pre-school, Science, Filipino, Math and<br />

Physical Education)<br />

Requirements:<br />

· LET Passer<br />

· Has at least 1 year teaching experience<br />

· Not more than 35 years old<br />

· Practicing Catholic<br />

· Has good communication skills<br />

Interested applicants may send their resume <strong>to</strong>:<br />

mdpschool@yahoo.com<br />

Jan Steel Import & export Inc<br />


Requirements:<br />

· Candidate must possess at least a Bachelor’s/College Degree ,<br />

Finance/Ac<strong>count</strong>ancy/Banking, Commerce, Business Studies/<br />

Administration/Management or equivalent.<br />

· At least 3 year(s) of working experience in the related field is<br />

required for this position.<br />

· Preferably 1-4 Yrs Experienced Employees specializing in Finance<br />

- General/Cost Ac<strong>count</strong>ing or equivalent.<br />





· Perform various ac<strong>count</strong>ing tasks including preparation of Balance<br />

sheetÿ and P&L ac<strong>count</strong>s.<br />


Requirements:<br />

· Must have at least two years minimum experience in Selling/<br />

Marketing<br />

· With previous experience in Can Manufacturing / Processing<br />

machines, <strong>back</strong>ground in selling of Steel products is an advantage<br />

· Major responsibility is <strong>to</strong> develop & establish new clients and<br />

market<br />

Interested applicants may email their resume <strong>to</strong>:<br />

ash_1224@yahoo.com<br />

Wide-Aero School Of Aviation<br />



WASA offer competitive compensation package <strong>to</strong> our academic<br />

staff,<br />

The following are the qualifications of our Instruc<strong>to</strong>rs:<br />


· Graduate of any aviation-related course such as BS Aeronautical<br />

Engineering, BS Aircraft Technology or BS Aircraft Maintenance<br />

Technology.<br />

· Ground Instruc<strong>to</strong>r License preferably in airframe and power<br />

plant rating<br />

· Airframe and power plant license.<br />

Avionics Technology<br />

· Graduate of any aviation-related course such as BS Aeronautical<br />

Engineering, BS Avionics Technology.<br />

· Ground Instruc<strong>to</strong>r License preferably in Electronics and<br />

Instrument rating<br />

· Aircraft Specialist License.<br />


· Graduate of any aviation-related course such as BS Aeronautical<br />

Engineering, BS Airline Tourism or BS Airline Business Administration<br />

· With Teaching Experience<br />

Wide-Aero School of Aviation:<br />

Please see Courses Offered<br />

• 2 years Aircraft Maintenance Technology (ladderized <strong>to</strong> BSAMT)<br />

• 2 years Avionics Technology (laddirized <strong>to</strong> BSAVT)<br />

• 2 years Airline Operation and Servicing (ladderized <strong>to</strong> BSAOS)<br />

Short Course<br />

• 4 Months Aircraft Structural Mechanic repair<br />

Those who are interested applicants may<br />

send their CV <strong>to</strong>:<br />

1020 A1 Sunrise, MIA Road Tambo Parañaque City<br />

(02) 855-7727<br />

Wide_aero@yahoo.com<br />

www.wideaeroaviation.org<br />

Sumulong College of Arts and Sciences<br />

We are <strong>now</strong> accepting applicants for the following vacant positions:<br />

Full-time Faculty<br />





- All teaching positions require a Master’s Degree and preferably<br />

with at least 2 years teaching experience and/or relevant industry<br />

experience<br />

Support Services<br />


Qualifications:<br />

- Graduate of AB/BS Psychology, Behavioral Science or any related<br />

field<br />

- With MA in Guidance and Counseling<br />

- Earned Doc<strong>to</strong>rate preferred; with at least five years experience<br />

at the level of Dean or Asst. Dean with focus on Student Affairs<br />

Administration<br />


Qualifications:<br />

- A degree holder in Computer Science, Information Technology<br />

and/or Computer Engineering<br />

- With at least 2 years related experience<br />

- Must be proficient in hardware and software applications<br />

- K<strong>now</strong>ledgeable in PC Troubleshooting and also programming<br />


Qualifications:<br />

- Bachelor’s Degree or specialization in any of the following<br />

disciplines: Human Resource Management or Personnel<br />

Management, International Relations, Industrial Psychology,<br />

Behavioral<br />

- With experience in vocational guidance, counseling and job<br />

placement<br />

- With excellent contact in Industry and would be responsible<br />

for the placement of the College graduates<br />


Qualifications:<br />

- Bachelor’s Degree in any of the following: Marketing, Public Relations,<br />

Communications, Advertising, Business Administration or a related<br />

field<br />

- With at least 2 years Proven Sales/Marketing experience and an<br />

ability <strong>to</strong> sell services <strong>to</strong> a range of public and private clients<br />

- With pleasing personality<br />

Interested applicants may apply in person or you may send<br />

your application in word format at psyche_kian@yahoo.com<br />

Please indicate position in the subject line<br />

M.L. Quezon Extension, Antipolo City<br />

Tel: 697-0017 / 696-5415


PARIS: French President Nicolas Sarkozy sets off <strong>to</strong> China on Wednesday for a visit<br />

intended <strong>to</strong> set the seal on a reconciliation, two years after he offended Beijing<br />

with comments on Tibet. The state visit, Sarkozy’s second <strong>to</strong> China, will have a<br />

C<br />

4<br />

The Manila Times<br />

world<br />


April 27, 2010<br />


WASHINGTON, D.C.:The US Central Intelligence Agency has started<br />

using smaller missiles in its hunt for al-Qaeda and other Islamic<br />

militant leaders in Pakistan in hopes of minimizing civilian casualties,<br />

The Washing<strong>to</strong>n Post reported Monday. AFP<br />

political rather than a commercial focus and will include talks on possible new<br />

sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program, the French presidency said. AFP<br />

Brazil, Iran <strong>to</strong> discuss nuclear program<br />

TEHRAN: Brazilian Foreign Minister<br />

Celso Amorim arrived in Tehran<br />

Monday for a two-day visit during<br />

which he would discuss Iran’s nuclear<br />

program with senior officials, Fars news<br />

agency reported.<br />

BANGKOK: Leaders of Thailand’s pro-establishment<br />

“Yellow Shirts” huddled Monday<br />

<strong>to</strong> plot their next move against rival<br />

“Red Shirts” who are bracing for a crackdown<br />

on their Bangkok protest base.<br />

The Yellows have warned they will<br />

take action <strong>to</strong> “protect the <strong>count</strong>ry”<br />

if authorities do not deal with the<br />

anti-government Reds who are defying<br />

a state of emergency with their<br />

mass rally in the heart of the capital.<br />

A one-week deadline set by the Yellows<br />

for an end <strong>to</strong> the crippling protests<br />

expired with no end in sight <strong>to</strong><br />

the tense standoff, which has twice<br />

descended in<strong>to</strong> bloodshed this<br />

month, leaving 26 people dead and<br />

hundreds injured.<br />

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has<br />

rejected an offer by the Reds, who<br />

mostly support former premier Thaksin<br />

Shinawatra, <strong>to</strong> disperse if elections are<br />

held in three months’ time—softening<br />

earlier demands for snap <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s opposition on<br />

Monday slammed the ruling coalition over<br />

their weekend by-election vic<strong>to</strong>ry, accusing<br />

them of using “racism, bribery and brute<br />

force” <strong>to</strong> win the vote.<br />

The Barisan National (BN) re<strong>to</strong>ok a<br />

seat in central Selangor state with a<br />

majority of over 1,700, two years after<br />

losing it <strong>to</strong> the opposition in disastrous<br />

national <strong>poll</strong>s.<br />

The win gave the BN a much-needed<br />

boost after it lost seven out of the last<br />

nine by-elections <strong>to</strong> the opposition<br />

Pakatan Rakyat (PR) alliance, and<br />

Premier Najib Razak hailed the vic<strong>to</strong>ry as<br />

an endorsement of his plans for reform.<br />

But opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim,<br />

who is on trial for sodomy, said Najib had<br />

bought off the elec<strong>to</strong>rate with promises<br />

of new schools and cash payments for<br />

The visit comes as world powers<br />

push for a new set of United Nations<br />

sanctions against Tehran for pursuing<br />

its controversial nuclear program.<br />

Brazil is one of the 15 UN <strong>Sec</strong>urity<br />

Council members and has not<br />

indicated whether it would vote for<br />

or against a sanctions resolution<br />

targeting the Islamic republic.<br />

Amorim will also prepare the<br />

Thailand’s ‘Yellow Shirts’<br />

mull next move against Reds<br />

Appearing on national television<br />

Sunday alongside his army chief,<br />

Abhisit vowed <strong>to</strong> retake the sprawling<br />

protest site that has paralyzed<br />

Bangkok’s main retail district, but<br />

gave no indication of when a crackdown<br />

might come.<br />

Thailand is largely split between<br />

the mainly rural poor and urban<br />

working class Reds, and the Yellows<br />

who staged their own street protests<br />

that heralded a 2006 coup ousting<br />

their enemy Thaksin.<br />

Yellow protesters in 2008 blockaded<br />

Bangkok’s two main airports,<br />

before a controversial court verdict<br />

removed Thaksin’s allies and allowed<br />

a parliamentary vote that brought in<br />

the current government.<br />

The Yellows had remained largely silent<br />

since the Reds began mass rallies in<br />

mid-March demanding immediate elections,<br />

but there are <strong>now</strong> growing fears of<br />

clashes between the rival groups. AFP<br />

Malaysia opposition slams<br />

ruling coalition by <strong>poll</strong> win<br />

settlers in the constituency.<br />

“Over 100 million ringgit [$32 million]<br />

was spent by BN <strong>to</strong> win a thin majority in<br />

Hulu Selangor, that amounts <strong>to</strong> 65,000<br />

ringgit per person,” Anwar said in a<br />

statement on Monday.<br />

Najib denied buying votes <strong>to</strong> win<br />

the by-election.<br />

After the by-election result was<br />

announced on Sunday, Najib said the win<br />

gave the BN “strong impetus” <strong>to</strong> push<br />

ahead with reforms.<br />

Najib, who came <strong>to</strong> power a year ago,<br />

unveiled plans last month for reforms<br />

aimed at spurring growth, closing the<br />

wealth gap between ethnic groups and<br />

reaching out <strong>to</strong> minorities aggrieved by<br />

the “bumiputra” affirmative action<br />

program, which favors the <strong>count</strong>ry’s<br />

Muslim Malay majority. AFP<br />

ground for next month’s visit <strong>to</strong> Iran<br />

by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula<br />

da Silva, Iranian foreign ministry<br />

spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast<br />

was quoted as saying by Fars.<br />

Fars said Amorim will meet Iran’s<br />

chief nuclear negotia<strong>to</strong>r Saeed Jalili and<br />

his Iranian <strong>count</strong>erpart Manouchehr<br />

Mottaki during his stay in Tehran. He<br />

is also expected <strong>to</strong> meet Iranian President<br />

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.<br />

“International issues will be discussed<br />

[with Amorim] and one of<br />

them is related <strong>to</strong> our <strong>count</strong>ry’s nuclear<br />

activities,” Mehmanparast said.<br />

SEOUL: Seoul is investigating whether<br />

a demoted North Korean general has<br />

won <strong>back</strong> his former rank as a reward<br />

for the sinking of a South Korean warship,<br />

an official said Monday.<br />

North Korean TV footage and a<br />

still pho<strong>to</strong> released over the weekend<br />

showed Kim Myong-Guk wearing<br />

a uniform with four stars on<br />

the collar.<br />

Kim, who heads the general staff’s<br />

operations bureau, had been demoted<br />

<strong>to</strong> a three-star general in January,<br />

earlier pho<strong>to</strong>s showed.<br />

“We are trying <strong>to</strong> check what’s behind<br />

his promotion,” a Seoul intelligence<br />

official <strong>to</strong>ld Agence France-<br />

Presse on condition of anonymity.<br />

“We are trying <strong>to</strong> see if the promotion<br />

was related <strong>to</strong> the sinking of the<br />

Cheonan but have reached no conclusions<br />

yet.”<br />

There was speculation that Kim<br />

had lost a star <strong>to</strong> take responsibility<br />

for a naval clash near the inter-Korean<br />

border last November which left<br />

a North Korean patrol boat in flames.<br />

On March 26 a explosion sank the<br />

Cheonan, a 1,200-<strong>to</strong>n South Korean<br />

corvette, near the <strong>count</strong>ries’ border<br />

with the loss of 46 lives.<br />

Seoul officials suspect a <strong>to</strong>rpedo attack—possibly<br />

in revenge for the November<br />

clash. They have not so far publicly<br />

blamed Pyongyang pending a fullscale<br />

multinational investigation.<br />

The general—sporting his four<br />

stars—was shown briefing the<br />

North’s leader Kim Jong-Il in front of<br />

Iran will “discuss its right <strong>to</strong> exploit<br />

this advanced science within<br />

the framework of the IAEA [International<br />

A<strong>to</strong>mic Energy Agency].”<br />

World powers accuse Iran of<br />

masking a weapons drive under the<br />

guise of what Iran says is a purely<br />

civilian a<strong>to</strong>mic program.<br />

Washing<strong>to</strong>n is leading efforts <strong>to</strong><br />

press a fourth round of UN sanctions<br />

against Iran, stepping up its<br />

efforts after a nuclear fuel deal<br />

drafted by the IAEA for a Tehran<br />

research reac<strong>to</strong>r hit a deadlock.<br />

Mehmanparast said the fuel deal<br />

will also be discussed with the visiting<br />

foreign minister.<br />

Amorim on Sunday refused <strong>to</strong><br />

say whether Brazil would vote<br />

against a UN resolution imposing<br />

sanctions against Iran, but added<br />

he did not believe Tehran was<br />

close <strong>to</strong> building a nuclear bomb.<br />

For a sanctions measure <strong>to</strong> pass,<br />

nine of the 15 members of the <strong>Sec</strong>urity<br />

Council—of which Brazil is<br />

a temporary member—would have<br />

<strong>to</strong> vote in favor, as long as none of<br />

the five permanent members employ<br />

their ve<strong>to</strong>.<br />

Seoul probes N. Korea general’s promotion<br />

LONDON: The first commercial<br />

flight between Baghdad and London<br />

in 20 years has <strong>to</strong>uched down<br />

at the British capital’s Gatwick airport<br />

after being delayed by the<br />

Iceland volcano ash cloud, the<br />

airport said.<br />

Flight IA237 landed at 11:08<br />

p.m. (6:08 a.m. Manila time)<br />

Sunday (Monday in Manila) after<br />

coming via Malmoe in Sweden<br />

on the 10-hour trip, according<br />

<strong>to</strong> arrival information on the<br />

airport’s website.<br />

■ A combo pho<strong>to</strong> of pictures released by North Korea’s official Korean Central<br />

News Agency (KCNA) on Monday (left) and on January 17 (right) shows Kim<br />

Myong-Guk, head of the general staff’s operations bureau, who got demoted<br />

<strong>to</strong> a three-star general and regained his former four-star rank. AFP PHOTO<br />

a camouflaged military base at an undisclosed<br />

location.<br />

JoongAng Ilbo newspaper said Kim<br />

was not among those named in a<br />

mass promotion of generals <strong>to</strong> mark<br />

this month’s birth anniversary of the<br />

North’s founder Kim Il-Sung.<br />

“We’re trying <strong>to</strong> determine<br />

whether Kim’s promotion was related<br />

<strong>to</strong> the Cheonan sinking.”<br />

South Korea Sunday began five days<br />

of national mourning for the victims,<br />

with public shrines set up in Seoul and<br />

other cities. A pho<strong>to</strong> exhibition<br />

opened in Seoul in their memory.<br />

President Lee Myung-Bak, accompanied<br />

by senior government officials,<br />

on Monday joined a stream of<br />

mourners <strong>to</strong> pay homage at an altar<br />

outside City Hall.<br />

Suspicion has increasingly fallen<br />

on North Korea despite its denial<br />

of involvement.<br />

Defense Minister Kim Tae-Young<br />

said Sunday a <strong>to</strong>rpedo attack—creating<br />

a bubble jet which <strong>to</strong>re the ship<br />

apart—was among the most likely<br />

causes of the sinking.<br />

AFP<br />

First Baghdad-London flight in 20 years arrives<br />

After the flight departed Iraq, the<br />

<strong>count</strong>ry’s civil aviation direc<strong>to</strong>r<br />

Adnan Blebil <strong>to</strong>ld AFP: “I am<br />

happy. But if Western companies<br />

had been more cooperative, we<br />

could have started [flights <strong>to</strong> the<br />

West] several years earlier.”<br />

There were 30 foreign and Iraqi<br />

passengers on board the flight, including<br />

Transport Minister Amer<br />

Abduljabbar Ismail and Iraqi Airways<br />

chief Kifah Hassan.<br />

“There will be two flights a week<br />

<strong>now</strong>. They will fly via Malmoe on<br />

the way out but the return flight<br />

will be direct,” Blebil said.<br />

The first flight since sanctions<br />

imposed by the UN after Saddam<br />

Hussein’s 1990 invasion of Kuwait<br />

came in<strong>to</strong> effect had been scheduled<br />

<strong>to</strong> depart on April 16.<br />

But Iceland’s Eyjafjoell volcano<br />

erupted two days earlier, spewing<br />

out ash that forced air traffic authorities<br />

<strong>to</strong> cancel thousands of<br />

flights across Europe.<br />

Much of Europe’s airspace only<br />

reopened last week. AFP<br />

Brazil has repeatedly defended<br />

Iran’s nuclear program, saying the<br />

Islamic republic has the right <strong>to</strong><br />

peaceful nuclear energy.<br />

It has given little credence <strong>to</strong> US<br />

arguments that Iran was trying <strong>to</strong><br />

secretly develop a nuclear arsenal.<br />

On Sunday he said in an press<br />

interview that “I don’t see Iran being<br />

close <strong>to</strong> making a bomb.”<br />

He also said: “Call us naive, but<br />

I think those who believe in everything<br />

the US intelligence service<br />

says are much more naive. Look at<br />

the case of Iraq.”<br />

AFP<br />

Thousands<br />

<strong>to</strong> oppose<br />

immigration<br />

law in Arizona<br />

LOS ANGELES: Thousands of people<br />

marched peacefully in Phoenix, Arizona,<br />

Sunday <strong>to</strong> express their opposition<br />

<strong>to</strong> a controversial immigration<br />

law signed by the state governor.<br />

Television images showed the<br />

protesters converging on the State<br />

Capi<strong>to</strong>l, where they held a rally <strong>to</strong><br />

denounce the legislation.<br />

The law, signed by Arizona’s Republican<br />

Governor Jan Brewer on<br />

Friday, allows police <strong>to</strong> question<br />

and detain anyone in the southwestern<br />

border state they believe<br />

may be an illegal immigrant, even<br />

if they are not suspected of committing<br />

another crime.<br />

It would also require anyone in<br />

the state suspected of being an illegal<br />

immigrant <strong>to</strong> show a document<br />

proving their legal status, like a<br />

“green card” permanent residency<br />

document or a passport.<br />

Opponents of the law say that if<br />

police demand papers from someone<br />

they suspect of being an illegal<br />

immigrant, and they turn out <strong>to</strong> be<br />

a US citizen, their constitutional<br />

rights will have been infringed.<br />

US Democratic Congressman<br />

Luis Gutierrez urged the demonstra<strong>to</strong>rs<br />

<strong>to</strong> keep up pressure on politicians,<br />

reminding them that the<br />

controversial law would not take<br />

effect for 90 days.<br />

Demonstra<strong>to</strong>r Jose Acosta <strong>to</strong>ld<br />

CNN television he was concerned<br />

about the new law.<br />

Civil rights leader Al Sharp<strong>to</strong>n<br />

said it was people’s moral obligation<br />

<strong>to</strong> stand against this profiling<br />

in Arizona.<br />

Sharp<strong>to</strong>n said protesters would<br />

bring people from around the <strong>count</strong>ry<br />

<strong>to</strong> Arizona who will walk down<br />

the streets with no identity cards and<br />

submit themselves <strong>to</strong> arrest. AFP<br />

worldinbrief<br />

■ TOKYO: More than two thirds of Japanese<br />

voters disapprove of beleaguered Prime<br />

Minister Yukio Ha<strong>to</strong>yama, an opinion <strong>poll</strong> showed on<br />

Monday, as he struggles <strong>to</strong> resolve a tricky row over a<br />

US airbase.<br />

AFP<br />

■ SEOUL: South Korea’s president called<br />

Monday for a thorough probe in<strong>to</strong> claims by a<br />

businessman that he had offered dozens of state<br />

prosecu<strong>to</strong>rs cash and sex with prostitutes in return<br />

for favors. AFP<br />

■ BAGHDAD: Al-Qaeda in Iraq is struggling <strong>to</strong><br />

recruit volunteers for suicide bombings and<br />

other attacks, the US army said on Sunday (Monday<br />

in Manila), hours after the jihadist network<br />

confirmed the deaths of its <strong>to</strong>p commanders. AFP<br />

■ RAMALLAH, West Bank: US President Barack<br />

Obama has invited Palestinian leader Mahmud<br />

Abbas <strong>to</strong> Washing<strong>to</strong>n in May in a fresh bid <strong>to</strong><br />

relaunch Middle East peace talks, a Palestinian<br />

official said on Sunday (Monday in Manila). AFP<br />

■ BECKLEY, West Virginia: US President Barack<br />

Obama on Sunday (Monday in Manila) paid<br />

tribute <strong>to</strong> 29 men killed in the worst US mine<br />

accident in decades, and pledged “<strong>to</strong> do what we<br />

must do” <strong>to</strong> ensure mine safety.<br />

AFP<br />

■ BEIJING: The head of the World Health<br />

Organization (WHO) arrived in North Korea<br />

Monday on a scheduled visit <strong>to</strong> the impoverished<br />

communist state, China’s official media reported. AFP<br />

■ BEIJING: The quake in China’s remote<br />

northwest has left more than 8,000 monks<br />

homeless after damaging nearly 90 monasteries,<br />

state media said Monday, as the focus of relief work<br />

moved on<strong>to</strong> resettling survivors.<br />

AFP<br />

■ NEW DELHI: Indian Prime Minister<br />

Manmohan Singh and Afghan President Hamid<br />

Karzai met in New Delhi on Monday <strong>to</strong> discuss a<br />

relationship seen as key <strong>to</strong> regional stability. AFP<br />

■ KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian police Monday<br />

said they have detained 75 Sri Lankan migrants<br />

who refused <strong>to</strong> get off a fishing trawler, after three<br />

days of talks <strong>to</strong> persuade them <strong>to</strong> leave the vessel<br />

broke down.<br />

AFP<br />

■ BISHKEK, Kyrgyztan: Russia has extradited a<br />

former Kyrgyz minister who vanished amid the<br />

unrest that swept the former authorities from power,<br />

the <strong>count</strong>ry’s interim government said Monday. AFP<br />

■ RIYADH: A senior member of Saudi Arabia’s<br />

Islamic religious police who riled conservatives by<br />

<strong>back</strong>ing gender mixing and prayers outside the mosque<br />

appeared <strong>to</strong> still have his job Monday, a day after the<br />

organization announced he had been removed. AFP<br />

■ LONDON: Britain’s embassy in Sana’a is shut<br />

and its citizens are being advised <strong>to</strong> “keep a low<br />

profile” after its ambassador <strong>to</strong> Yemen avoided injury<br />

in a bombing, the Foreign Office said Monday. AFP<br />

■ THIMPU, Bhutan: The prime ministers of India<br />

and Pakistan will hold talks at a conference in<br />

Bhutan this week, officials in New Delhi said Monday,<br />

as the rival nations inch <strong>to</strong>wards resuming their<br />

peace dialogue.<br />

AFP<br />

■ WELLINGTON: The Pacific island nation of<br />

Nauru faced a possible political stalemate after a<br />

weekend election returned exactly the same lawmakers<br />

<strong>to</strong> parliament, official results showed Monday. AFP<br />

■ MIRANSHAH, Pakistan: At least four Islamist<br />

militants were killed Monday when missiles from<br />

a US drone aircraft struck a suspected insurgent hideout<br />

in Pakistan’s northwest tribal belt, officials said. AFP<br />

■ JAKARTA: Indonesia is taking steps in<br />

increasing number and quality of doc<strong>to</strong>rs <strong>to</strong><br />

improve health service for public as the <strong>count</strong>ry’s<br />

ratio of doc<strong>to</strong>rs and patients is far behind ideal, a<br />

vice minister said here on Monday. XINHUA

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