Monday, December 14, 2015

NGCP denies hand on power outage in Oro

CAGAYAN de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno congratulates the winners 
of the ‘Search for Outstanding Indigenous People Leaders.
CAGAYAN de Oro City (GOLDEN JOURNAL/BEN BALCE) - The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) on Friday denied any knowledge of the “rotating brownouts” in this trading hub of Northern Mindanao.

Local businessmen and residents in Cagayan De Oro City have complained of the three-to-four hours of rotating power outage imposed by the local power energy distributor Cagayan De Oro Power and Light Company (CEPALCO) here.

CEPALCO officials explained that the power allocated for distribution to electricity subscribers here was less than the daily allocation of 150 megawatts.

The NGCP, a private company tasked to transmit power and electricity to various power distributors in Mindanao, has denied any knowledge of allocated power to the local power distributors.

Beth Ladaga of the NGCP’s Corporate Affairs in Mindanao, said that the NGCP is not privy to the amount of power allocated to the local power distributors.

“The NGCP only transmits the power allocated to the power distributors in Mindanao. We have no knowledge how much power is allocated, although we know that the allocation varies on a daily basis,” Ladaga said.

She said that the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) and the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) determine the amount of power allocations to the power distributors, which is transmitted through the power grid maintained by the NGCP. 

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4ID destroys 186 loose firearms in Cag de Oro

CAGAYAN de Oro City (Golden Journal / 12/14/15) - The Army’s 4th Infantry Division (4ID) “demilitarized” 186 firearms during a ceremony here Monday morning last week.

4ID commander Maj. Gen. Oscar Lactao led the destruction of the loose firearms witnessed by local officials.

Members of the Army’s general staff also joined the destruction of the firearms, most of them assault rifles.

The military used iron cutters to cut the firearms and render them unserviceable.

Lactao said that the military here conducts the “demilitarization” of firearms twice a year. 

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Share a toy at SM

SM shoppers can play Santa to less fortunate 
kids by donating old or new toys at the Share 
a Toy booth at the SM Store and Toy Kingdom 
in SM City Cagayan de Oro and in all SM Malls 
nationwide until December 31, 2015.  When they 
buy new toys to give, they get P50 off coupon 
on a minimum P500 single-receipt purchase 
on regular-priced toys.
CAGAYAN de Oro City (Golden Journal / 12/14/15) - SM once again invites its shoppers to play Santa and share the joys of Christmas with less fortunate children in its Share a Toy campaign.

A joint project of The SM Store and Toy Kingdom in partnership with SM Foundation and the Department of Social Welfare and Development – the Share a Toy campaign continuously promotes involvement among society in spreading the spirit of Christmas by simply giving toys, old or new to kids in less fortunate communities and accredited organizations.

Shoppers do their share by visiting Share a Toy booth at The SM Store and Toy Kingdom in SM City Cagayan de Oro and in all SM Malls nationwide where shoppers can donate old or new toys until December 31, 2015.

SM and Toy Kingdom are likewise sharing the joys of Christmas with big-hearted shoppers. 

Every time they buy toys to donate from SM and Toy Kingdom, every P500 single receipt purchase on regular priced toys entitles one to a P50 off coupon valid untilJanuary 31, 2016. 

Maximum of ten (10) coupons will be given per transaction.

Share a Toy and make a child happy this Christmas at SM!

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Monday, December 07, 2015

LTO-10 posts 10.09% hike in revenue: Ulep

NORTHERN Mindanao Land Transportation Office regional 
director Hilarion Ulep strikes a pose as he shows to the 
public the motorcycle units seized by the LTO-10 enforcers.
CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - The Land Transportation Office Region 10 (LTO-10) posted a collection revenue of P565.04 million in the third quarter of the year, up 10.09 percent from the figure posted during the same period last year, officials said Friday.

LTO-10 regional director Hilarion Ulep said the agency was also able to surpass its first semester revenue target by more than P36 million. The amount collected for the first semester of 2015 is P369,735,686.63.
“It’s higher by 10.88% compared to P333,443,313.70 in the same period last year,” said Ulep.

Based on the LTO’s accomplishment report, the sources of revenue are the Motor Vehicle User’s Charge (MVUC), vehicle registration penalties and license fees.

Ulep said that almost all the districts increased their first semester revenues from last year with the Cagayan de Oro District Office (CDODO) posting the highest collection of P135.2 million as of 3rd quarter this year.

“Even though CDO district office decreases 6.45% at the 3rd quarter, still an 18.88% increased at the first semester this year,” said Ulep.

He added the region’s new registration unit also collected P81,300,013.34 more than P50 million after the 3rd Quarter this year.

While, district offices of Iligan and Malaybalay collected P62.6 million and P49.8 respectively for the 3rd Quarter this year.

Ulep said the agency’s strong revenue indicates that the agency has been efficiently carrying out the tasks mandated by the government.

Ulep said, “the revenue collection will go back to the public in the form of better service and projects from the LTO.”

The other DO/EO’s collected the following amounts: Maramag, P40.1 million; E-Patrol X, P39.25 million; Ozamis City, P26.20;  CDO LC, P21.67 million; Oroquieta City, P20.72  million; and Regional Office, P20.14.

Others are Gingoog City, P16.18 million; Tubod, Lanao del Norte, P12.81 million; DLRC Cagayan, P10.25; Camiguin, P9.62 million; Valencia M.U, P9.57 million and Tangub City, P9.11 million.

Acenas says Oro remains a peaceful city, safe for tourists

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Vice Mayor Ceasar Ian Acenas
CAGAYAN de Oro City (Golden Journal) Cagayan De Oro City, the premier capital of Northern Mindanao, remains one of the safest places for tourists in the country, Vice Mayor Ceasar Ian Acenas said on Wednesday.

Acenas issued the statement to dispel insinuations by some candidates of “Mr. and Miss PanContinental International Global Beauty Pageant” that Cagayan De Oro City is not a safe place for foreigners.

Pageant candidate Nicole Harding of New Zealand said in published reports that she was warned that “Cagayan de Oro is worse than Afghanistan.”

“Harding’s statements were aired by local and foreign media and if not corrected will adversely affect the efforts of the city government to lure more investors and foreign visitors here,” Acenas said.

He said everyone should know that Cagayan de Oro has always been and is still a very peaceful place.

"In fact, Cagayan De Oro City remains a favorite convention and tourist destination, nothing has changed and that the statement of Harding was unfounded. We also have many foreign residents and guests who are happily living in our city,” Acenas said.

He called on concerned government agencies to look into the pageant mess and to find ways to ensure that the incident would not happen again.

“All those who are visiting the city should have the best experience as I believe that is what we, Kagay-anons, want to give them,” he said. (BB with PNA)

BFAR says illegal fishing remains a problem in Misor

MISAMIS Oriental (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - Illegal fishing remains a problem for the undermanned personnel of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in Northern Mindanao, a fisheries official said Friday.

Visa Tan Dimeren, BFAR regional director, said that there are three hot spot areas for illegal fishing in Misamis Oriental while
illegal fishing remains unabated in two coastal villages in Cagayan De Oro.

Bambi lights up Capitol Park for Christmas. 
Christmas is now in the air at Vicente de Lara Park at 
the Misamis Oriental Provincial Capitol in Cagayan de 
Oro City after the formal switching on of the Christmas lights 
of different colors last Friday by Misamis Oriental governor 
Yevgeny Vincente Emano together with other 
provincial government officials. (Photos by BEN BALCE)
Dimeren identified the coastal towns Manticao, Initao and Lugait in Misamis Oriental’s western district, while the villages of Bayabas and Bonbon, in Cagayan De Oro’s northern coast as “hot spot” of illegal fishing.

She said there were reports about “encroachment of fishing boats” and dynamite fishing in the coastal towns while dynamite fishing is prevalent in Cagayan De Oro City’s coastal areas.

Dimeren said that with only 50 personnel assigned at the Maritime Police in Northern Mindanao, law enforcers find it difficult to check the illegal fishing activities in the region.

The BFAR official, however, hopes that illegal fishing in Northern Mindanao would be minimized following the formation of a task force comprising the Maritime police, Philippine Coast Guard, and Philippine National Police along with the media to monitor illegal fishing in the region.

She said that the formation of the task force is mandated under Republic Act No. RA 10654, which imposes stiffer penalties against those caught engaging in illegal fishing. (With PNA)

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Bangsa Moro Party declares support for Governor SAKUR M. TAN as ARMM Regional Director

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Monday, November 30, 2015

Bangsa Moro Party launches crusade

Moro Party take-offs crusade. OFFICIALS of the Bangsa Moro 
Party (BMP) pose during a press conference held at Klub 
Filipino, Greenhills, San Juan on November 26, 2015. 
From left to right: Atty. J Ricardo H. Moreño,  Director for 
Media Services; Judge Casan-Ali Limbona,  Vice-Chairman 
for National and Internal Affairs; Datu Mengka M. Alim,  
Chairman for Region ll; Sultan Punduma Sani , Vice chairman 
for political affairs; Sultan Firdausi I.Y. Abbas, Ph.D., 
Chairman Executive Council; Atty. Ombra T. Jainal, 
Executive  Vice- Chairman; Assemblyman Ali Montaha Babao 
Vice-Chairman for International Affairs; Abdullah Nur Benito, 
Vice-Chairman for Security and Special Services and 
Atty. Dalidig A. Sumndad, Vice-Chairman for Legal Affairs. 
(Photo supplied) 
MANILA, Philippines (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - The Bangsa Moro Party (BMP) has launched its crusade to vigilantly and vigorously participate in the coming Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao elections pursuant to Resolution No. 1337 passed by the BMP's Executive Council on Nov. 20, 2015.

The BMP was established in 1985 by the Conference of the Bangsa Moro Islamic Organization’s (CBMIO), composed of fifty-eight (58) Moro Organizations as the political arm of the Bangsa Moro revolutionary struggle of which the Chairman of the Bangsa Moro Party Executive Council, Sultan Firdausi I. Y. Abbas, Ph.D. was the CBMIO Secretary-General.

The BMP looks at the 2016 polls as the opportunity for the Bangsa Moro to freely choose the leaders they can trust and depend on, according to Abbas. 

“This elections unlike the previous ones which were actually selections and not elections will be held simultaneously with the national elections. The incumbent president is outgoing and the administration will have to concentrate on the candidacy of senator Mar Roxas who is tailing in the surveys. Today, malacañang’s tentacles will not be as formidable as in the past. Its machinery to rig the ARMM elections will not be as strong and overwhelming. Their candidate has to fend for himself. Man to man our candidate is far stronger.” Executive Vice –Chairman Atty. Ombra T. Jainal who hails from Sulu said.

The Resolution points out that, “The ARMM governors since President Corazon Aquino have failed to institutionalized the aspiration, sentiments and goals of the Bangsa Moro for a progressive economic future, and protect and develop their cultural and patrimonial heritage;

The leaders of the ARMM through the years have failed to implement the provisions of the organic acts 6734 and 9054;

Those who assumed office of ARMM regional governor miserably failed to deliver the basic needs to the people, protect their health, their livelihood and their security, and have been consistently puppets of Malacañang;

The BMP in its program of government believe that the ARMM must be dignified, honorable and honest and can be realized if these virtues become mandatory in the character of the men and women who exercise authority, especially and primarily the regional governor.

“The time has come to now install a man with integrity, competence and courage as regional governor,” said Abbas who is also the Sultan of Lanao del Sur.

Integrity to command the respect of his peers and those in Manila; Competence to be able to draw up a program and a paradigm to usher in peace and development in the region; courage to say no to those who intrude into the business of the ARMM for their own interests and no to the powers that be who want to stifle and control the autonomous government.”

Based on the Resolution 1337, the party declared its support for Vice Governor Sakur M. Tan of Sulu as the Regional ARMM Governor.

Sultan Abbas stated that the traits necessary for efficient, competent and successful leadership in the ARMM are succinctly in the character of Vice-Governor Sakur M. Tan- a man who will not kow-tow to Malacañang, who will stand strong and firm on his principles and will not betray the trust of the Bangsa Moro.

The BMP Executive Council in it declaration of support acknowledged that through the years Governor Tan  has struggled and fought to have his place under the sun, to protect and help his people and raise his area to a satisfactory economic level despite the turmoil, stood brave and unyielding to terrorist demands and surviving an explosion triggered by terrorists.

Sulu through the decades has always been difficult to govern and administer but Governor Tan succeeded for he has in his heart the welfare of all his constituents and listens to all who come to him for as he says “Everyone has something to say, some idea to contribute and it is a duty to listen not just as governor, but as a Muslim.”

The Chairman of the Executive Council also pointed out that the MNLF wings of Nurullagi Misuari and Mayor Mus Sema of Cotabato City are united in their political pursuit to make the ARMM truly autonomous and the instrument to develop the moro areas and raise the level of the economic and social conditions of the Bangsa Moro under the BMP banner and  there are even MILF officers who are with the BMP because the ARMM elections is a separate issue from the BBL.

The other executive officers other than Sultan Abbas and Atty. Jainal, who was former Solicitor-General of the ARMM are: Atty. Omar S. Sema, Secretary General, scion of the Sema Clan of  Cotabato City,  Sultan Punduma Sani, Vice-Chairman for Political Affairs , the Incumbent Vice-Chairman of the Moro National Liberation Front-MNLF, Sultan of Guimba, Lanao del Sur, Lt. General in the Bangsa Moro Army, member of the Top 90, and former Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, ARMM, Atty. Dalidig A. Sumndad, Vice-Chairman for Legal Affairs, Former President of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines Marawi City Chapter and Deputy General Counsel, Assemblyman Datu Ali Montaha Babao, Vice-Chairman for International Affairs, Incumbent Floor Leader of the Bangsa Moro National Parliament MNLF, former Assemblyman of the Southern Philippines Council for Peace and Development, SPCPD,  Judge Casan-Ali Limbona, Vice-Chairman for National and Internal Affairs, Former Judge, Shairah District Court, Abdullah Nur Benito, Vice-Chairman for Security and Special Services, former member of the MNLF Central Committee and  Johaira R. Conding, Vice-Chairperson for Women Affairs, of the Rashid, Dimaporo and Conding Clans of the Lanao Provinces and Marawi City.

The regional chairmen are Dr. Naguib A. Munder, Asnawi Sinsuat Limbona, Datu Mengka M. Alim, Abdulkadir M. Yahya, Jr., Habib Andang Hashim, Abdelnasser Hadjiula and Ali Montaha M. Babao, Jr., Regions I to Vll respectively.

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1 hurt as rebels attack tribal village in Bukidnon

Lt. Col. Lennon G. BABILONIA
CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - A villager was wounded as armed men believed to be members of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) assaulted a tribal village in Cabanglasan, Bukidnon, the military reported Wednesday last week.

Capt. Norman Tagros, spokesperson of the Army’s 8th Infantry Battalion based here, identified the wounded as Angelo "Loyloy" Yanggahon, a member of the Umayamnon tribe, who sustained a gunshot wound in his right arm.

Tagros said that Yanggahon has been undergoing treatment in the Bukidnon Provincial Hospital in Malaybalay City. The victim is now in stable condition, Tagros said.

He said that the NPA rebels believed to belong to the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee fired their guns indiscriminately toward the tribal village of Miaray, in Mandahican, Cabanglasan, Bukidnon Monday evening.

Tagros said that the terrified Lumads of the Umayamnon tribe fled toward the outskirts of the tribal village as the tribe’s cultural guards known “Baganis” could do nothing but witnessed the unfolding terror.

Tagros said that the local authorities are still determining the number of evacuees who have fled to the town proper as the military mounted a combat operation in the area.

In a statement, Lt. Col. Lennon G. Babilonia, commanding officer of the army’s 8IB, accused the NPA rebels of atrocities committed against the tribal communities in the borders of Bukidnon and Agusan Del Sur.

He said that the military is investigating into the motive of the NPA in attacking the tribal communities in Northern Mindanao.

“We assure our people, especially our Lumad brothers, that the military will bring the perpetrators of these atrocities to justice while continuing the service to secure the tribal communities,” Babilonia said. (With PNA)

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NGCP says power supply in Mindanao remains bleak

THE National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) admitted that
the grid operator failed to resolve right-of-way issues due to landowner’s 

excessive demand of payment. NGCP even said transmission lines become 
non-operational because some landowners are preventing the NGCP from 
properly maintaining the power lines, then Mindanao will continue to be 
plagued by power interruptions in the future. (BB)
CAGAYAN De Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - Until the power transmission lines are secured, the entry of new power players would not improve the energy situation in Mindanao, a firm tasked to transmit power in Mindanao.

Beth Ladaga, who heads the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) Regional Corporate and Public Affairs said that the energy situation will not improve if there are no transmission lines to deliver the new capacity to the distribution utilities and household consumers.

Ladaga was referring to various transmission lines that crossed along farm lots in Lanao Del Sur that have remained vulnerable due to trees planted by landowners who want payment at exorbitant rates.

She cited the case of a certain Balao Pundag who has planted 1,500 trees along the right of way of the NGCP’s transmission lines that threatens the Agus 2 – Kibawe 138kV line.

Ladaga said the NGCP has been negotiating with Pundag for the past 16 months in the hope the maintenance crew could enter the lot area and clear the trees that poses danger to the power transmission lines.

The NGCP has expressed the willingness to pay PHP77,750 for the 1,500 trees in its prevailing market and assessed value. However, Pundag wants a PHP478,650 payment for the trees, the NGCP said.

Ladaga said the NGCP has to stick to a standard valuation of property, which is based on verifiable sources such as the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and government financial institutions.

“It is sad to think that for years, both the government and private sectors have been working together to invite power stakeholders to build new sources of energy in Mindanao in order to address the island’s power deficiency,” she said.

She that the NGCP has been working to ensure that the facilities necessary to connect these plants to the grid are already in place by the time these power plants are ready to operate.

However, if our transmission lines become non-operational because some landowners are preventing the NGCP from properly maintaining the power lines, then Mindanao will continue to be plagued by power interruptions in the future, Ladaga said.(With PNA) 

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Monday, November 23, 2015

Installed Oro mayor steps down, Oca regained seat

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CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) – THE installed City Mayor here on Thursday last week stepped down after the Court of Appeals (CA) counted the reckoning of the effectivity of the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to the day it was filed in court.

The CA’s 22nd Division, based in Cagayan De Oro City on Wednesday granted the petition of City Mayor Oscar Moreno to start the reckoning of the TRO on the day it was filed in court rather than on the day the CA issued a resolution granting him the 60-day TRO.

The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has served the notice of dismissal of Mayor Moreno on Nov. 12, 2015 and Vice Mayor Caesar Ian Acenas was sworn in as the City Mayor in accordance with the law of succession.

City Councilor Lourdes Darimbang, the first City Councilor, was also sworn in as the City Vice Mayor. The following day, the City Council, chaired by Darimbang held an emergency session and passed a resolution recognizing Acenas as the new City Mayor.

Moreno’s lawyer obtained a restraining order from the CA here in the afternoon on Nov. 13, 2015 after the “emergency session” and a day after Acenas was installed as the new City Mayor. Acenas contested the TRO as moot and academic because the Ombudsman’s order was already served.

The CA gave the DILG, the complainant five days to respond to the CA’s resolution. In their response, Moreno argued that the reckoning of the TRO should start at the time the petition for the issuance of the TRO on the day it was filed in court.

The CA granted the petition of Moreno on Wednesday (Nov. 18, 2015), which also uphold the opinion of the DILG that Moreno is still the Mayor to be recognized pending the resolution of Moreno’s motion for reconsideration with the Ombudsman.

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales has approved the dismissal of Moreno on October 6, 2015 with Grave Misconduct for entering into a settlement agreement with Ajinomoto Philippines without prior authorization from the Sangguniang Panlungsod in violation of R.A.No. 7160 (The Local Government Code).

The order of dismissal also penalized Moreno and City Treasurer Glenn Banez with perpetual disqualification to hold public office and forfeiture of all retirement benefits.

Under the Ajinomoto agreement, the firm has paid only P300,000 business tax out of the P2.9 million business tax that the firm was supposed to pay to the city government.

In his Motion for Reconsideration, Moreno argued that the Ombudsman order was not final and executory until his motion is acted upon by the anti-graft court. (With report from PNA)

DILG recognizes Moreno as mayor

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CAGAYAN de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno

CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Wednesday issued a statement “recognizing” Oscar Moreno as “still” the City Mayor of Cagayan De Oro City.

In a letter addressed to City Mayor Oscar Moreno, dated Nov. 17, 2015, DILG Undersecretary Austere Panadero, said that since the dismissal order is not yet final and executory pending the resolution of the Motion for Reconsideration by the Office of the Ombudsman, the DILG still recognizes Oscar Moreno as the City Mayor of Cagayan De Oro City.

Panadero said that the resolution of the Court of Appeals (CA) specifically enjoined all “department, its officers and agents and all persons acting under them, from enforcing, implementing, and effecting the decision dated August 2015 of the Office of the Ombudsman.”

In a press conference Wednesday at the DILG regional office, Nilo Castanares, the DILG regional director, said that the two-page letter was addressed to Oscar Moreno copy furnished the DILG regional office here.

He said that he tried to serve to furnish the letter to Vice Mayor Caesar Ian Acenas last night, but Acenas did not sign it.

Castanares said that the DILG issued the clarification in response to queries made by the Bureau of Local Government and Finance (BLGF) on who should be recognized as Cagayan De Oro City Mayor.

“The DILG wants to emphasize that there could be only City Mayor in order to resolve the “standoff” and unhamper the basic services that the people need,” Castanares said.

Lawyer Severando Arana, of the DILG’s legal department, said that the actions of Vice Mayor Caesar Ian Acenas following the letter of the DILG Undersecretary could be questioned as to its legal implication.

The DILG served the dismissal order against City Mayor Oscar Moreno Thursday last week on the orders of the Office of Ombudsman, which paved the way to the assumption of Vice Mayor Acenas as the City Mayor.

Panadero’s letter, however, did not recall the installation of Vice Mayor Ceasar Ian Acenas but stated that only the DILG ‘recognizes Oscar Moreno as the City Mayor of Cagayan De Oro City.”

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales has approved the dismissal of Moreno on October 6, 2015 with Grave Misconduct for entering into a settlement agreement with Ajinomoto Philippines without prior authorization from the Sangguniang Panlungsod in violation of R.A.No. 7160 (The Local Government Code).

The order of dismissal also penalized Moreno and City Treasurer Glenn Banez with perpetual disqualification to hold public office and forfeiture of all retirement benefits.

Under the Ajinomoto agreement, the firm has paid only P300,000 business tax out of the P2.9 million business tax that the firm was supposed to pay to the city government. (with PNA)

Dahino: Business groups to hire licensed security guards

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CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE/Golden Journal) - A local official, on Wednesday, batted for establishments' compliance with an ordinance that requires the hiring of security guards to discourage commission of criminal activities.

City Councilor Edna Dahino, chair of the city council committee on trade and commerce, said that City Ordinance No. 12841-2014 mandates all high-risk business establishments to hire or engage the services of duly license security guards.

“While everybody’s excited and preparing about celebrating the Christmas season, all money couriers, those that cater to remittances, money changer shops, and others should consider the security of their businesses,” Dahino said.

Dahino said that everybody must be on guard because in a condition where people are living in squalid poverty, the lure of money is so strong.

“It is our duty to keep the would-be-criminals at bay not because of being tempted to commit a crime, but instilling the fear in the minds of committing a crime is the most important,” she said.

Dahino also urged the local village officials to help in the fight against all forms of criminality because the local police force needs everybody’s assistance to maintain peace and order.

Aside from banks, high risk business establishments include lending institutions, pawnshops, money changer shops, internet cafes, gasoline stations, lotto outlets, money couriers, and remittance centers, convenient stores, grocery stores, restaurants, and shopping malls, Dahino said.

She said that the local police has now also included schools as among places or establishments that are prone or susceptible to incidence of robbery and theft. 

Monday, November 16, 2015

Bizwoman indicted for 3 cases filed by ex-hubby

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* President of homeowners group also charged for connivance

CAGAYAN de Oro City (BEN BALCE / Golden Journal) - A businesswoman was indicted for two counts of child abuse, qualified trespass to dwelling and grave coercion after the City Prosecutor’s Office found probable cause on the cases filed against her by her former husband.

The court has already issued a warrant of arrest against Merlyn Jane M. Mindoro who is still at large as of press time.

The court sets a bail of P80,000 for each count of child abuse and P12,000 each for qualified trespass to dwelling and grave coercion.

The court also issued a warrant of arrest against Alberto Yu, president of the Xavier Estate Homeowners Association (XEHAI), for grave coercion.

Yu has already posted bail and arraignment of his case is set on December 8, 2015.

The indictment stemmed from the cases filed by Mindoro’s former husband, Basil Mahadali, whom she married in accordance with Islamic law in 2009 and divorced in 2013.

While still married, Mindoro and Mahadali bought a house at Xavier Estates under their names.
After their divorce, Mahadali allowed his first wife, Rowena Y. Mahadali, and their children Sherwina, Sherna and two minors aged eight and 16 to live at the house in Xavier Estates.

Mahadali, through his legal counsel Atty. Firdausi I.Y. Abbas, filed criminal complaints against Mindoro, Yu, Major Daniel L. Precioso Jr., Alvic Gallamaso, Edwin Masin, Bacol, W.P. and SPO3 Lito M. Baculio for child abuse, grave coercion, qualified trespass to dwelling, slander by deed and malicious mischief.

Precioso is the subdivision’s head of security while Gallamaso, Masin and Bacol are the subdivision’s security guards.

The complaints for malicious mischief and slander by deed were referred to the Barangay Lupon for resolution.

After subsequent investigation, Assistant City Prosecutor Allan M. Radaza said he found probable cause to indict Mindoro for qualified trespass to dwelling, grave coercion and child abuse, and Yu for grave coercion.

Mahadali alleged that on October 7, 2014 at around 4:00pm, Mindoro, accompanied by the subdivision’s guard, intruded into their house located at 0423 Langka St. inside Xavier Estates in Cagayan de Oro City.

He alleged that Mindoro shouted at them and told them to leave the premises, saying she is the rightful owner of the house and is the one paying the bills.

Rowena reportedly requested her to leave but Mindoro merely ignored her.

Mindoro left and later came back at around 8:00pm with SPO3 Lito Baculio from the SM Police Substation.

Mahadali alleged that Mindoro destroyed the house’s main door.

The next day, Mahadali said their children were prevented from entering the subdivision by the security guards, reportedly upon the orders of Yu. 

Mahadali also alleged that on October 14, 2014, his 16-year-old son said he felt humiliated after Mindoro allegedly pointed an accusing finger at him while inside a mall.

Mindoro and Yu denied all the accusations hurled against them.

In his resolution, Radaza pointed out that the house is owned by Mahadali and Mindoro but both conceded to allow Rowena and the children to stay in the house.

“Merlyn, being part-owner of the house, could have retained her right to possess the property to the exclusion of Rowena and his family if only she immediately dissented to their occupancy. By reason of Basil’s authorization and Merlyn’s acquiescence, Rowena, therefore, enjoys the legal right to possess the house. When Merlyn arrived and entered the subject property on October 7, 2015 in order to wrest it from Rowena’s lawful possession, Merlyn committed unlawful trespass to dwelling. The offense committed by Merlyn is Qualified Trespass to Dwelling pursuant to Article 280 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC),” Radaza said.

He said it is “concededly true” that “Basil gave his permission for Rowena and his family to stay in the house, to Merlyn’s consternation.”

Radaza pointed out that Mindoro has equal right to choose who should occupy the house. However, her “acquiescence” of Rowena’s occupancy prevents her to evict them extra-judicially.

“Given that she cannot evict them without court order, then she cannot preclude them from entering the house without proper authority also,” he said.

Radaza also said grave coercion was committed by Mindoro, Yu, Precioso, Gallamaso, Masin and Bacol when they prevented the children from entering the subdivision.

“The facts indicate that all the elements of grave coercion are present. Merlyn, Yu, Maj. Precioso and the security guards prevented Rowena and her family from entering the house without lawful authority,” Radaza ruled.

He added that Yu cannot “hunker behind the move-in form to protect him from indictment.”

“If Merlyn has no right, neither has Yu to extra-judicially evict Rowena and her family. He therefore does not definitely possess the right to bar their entry. The collusion between Merlyn and Yu in the commission of this offense is glaringly exposed,” he said.

The City Prosecutor’s Office absolved Precioso and the security guards, citing they were “merely acting under orders of Yu.”

However, Radaza emphasized that the non-indictment of the guards does not mean that the element of threat or intimidation is absent.

Meanwhile, Radaza said Mindoro should be indicted for two separate counts of child abuse for “committing emotional cruelty” on the children when she intruded the house and for “pointing fingers” at the 16-year-old son while inside a mall.

“On the part of their children, who reasonably lacked complete awareness of what is going on. Merlyn’s outburst hurt them emotionally. The presence of the security guards and that of SPO3 Baculio, the fear of being ejected from the house was real enough. Such emotional hurt authored by Merlyn to immediately evict them without lawful authority is a concrete illustration of emotional cruelty,” he said.

Radaza said Mindoro committed emotional maltreatment when she pointed fingers on the 16-year-old son while inside a mall and in the presence of several mall goers.

It was Mindoro who first filed a civil case for child abuse against Mahadali, Rowena and their children Sherwina and Sherna, including their two minor children.

The case is still pending before Branch 19 under Judge Evelyn G. Nery where the case was transferred from Branch 22 under Presiding Judge Richard D. Mordeno.

Mordeno on February 6, 2015 granted the Motion to Inhibit filed by the respondents’ counsels Abbas and Associates through lawyer J. Ricardo H. Moreno.

Through her legal counsel Atty. Evangeline Tadlas-Carrasco, Mindoro alleged that after their divorce, Mahadali harassed her and continued to harass her. She later applied for a Temporary Protection Order but was denied by Mordeno.

NGCP seeks army help to secure transmission towers

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CAGAYAN de Oro City (Golden Journal) - Officials of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) are seeking the assistance of the military to secure dozens of transmission towers in Mindanao.

Elizabeth Ladaga, NGCP’s corporate communication head, said on Thursday that unidentified culprits tried to topple down another transmission tower in Patani, Marawi City, in Lanao Del Sur last Tuesday.

According to Ladaga, the incident caused power interruptions in some parts of Mindanao, which was restored in the afternoon of Nov. 9, after NGCP implemented temporary measures to transmit power produced by Agus 1 and Agus 2 hydropower plants to the rest of Mindanao.

She said that the incident took place eight days after three NGCP towers were filled with explosives in the same area.

While the explosion did not topple the tower, the damaged it sustained caused it to lean, putting the transmission facility in a more critical condition, Ladaga said.

She said that the NGCP has issued a public appeal to help monitor the safety of the towers so that transmission services remain uninterrupted.

Sometimes the restoration of transmission services to affected areas were likewise hampered by uncooperative landowners who are preventing NGCP from conducting much needed vegetation clearing activity, she said.

The NGCP has also repeatedly appealed to the government and the Philippine Army for assistance in resolving the escalation of security problem and right-of-way issues in Mindanao.

Ladaga said that elements of the Philippine Armed Forces are currently assisting NGCP in entering the properties of the uncooperative landowners to expedite restoration. (BB with PNA)

Marcos BBL version is worse

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(This is the 3rd and last instalment of Sultan Firdausi I. V. Abbas’ opposition to  the “amended” Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) by the Senate Committee of Senator Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.)

     Sultan of Lanao

Philippine Citizenship

The last sentence of Article ll, Sec. 4 of the Marcos version reads:

“This provision shall not in any way derogate from the provisions of Article lV of the 1987 Philippine Constituion.”

MUSLIM Bar Association of the Philippines, Inc. (MUSBARAP) 
President Sultan Firdausi I.Y. Abbas (center) was the guest 
speaker at Pimentel Institute for Leadership and Governance’s 
round table discussion on August 29, last year. Associated on 
his right is Dean Ederson Tapia, College of Governance and 
Public Policy, University of Makati and former senate president 
Aquilino Pimentel Jr. (Supplied Photo)
Article lV of the 1987 constitution is a reproduction of the 1935 and 1973 constitutions on Philippine Citizenship.  Article IV, Section 1 of the 1987 Philippine constitution provides “Those who are citizens of the Philippines at the time of the adoption of this constitution.” This provision is based on the 1973 constitution which provides under Article lll, Section “1) thereof: “Those who are citizens of the Philippines at the time of the adoption of this constitution.”  This provision is likewise  based on the 1935 constitution which provides under Article IV, Section 1) thereof: “Those who are citizens of the Philippine Islands at the time of the adoption of this constitution.”

The Bangsa Moro is considered to fall under Section 1 of the Article on Philippine C. the constitutionalist Jose N. Nolledo, who was a member of the Presidential Constitutional Commission in 1986 and a delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention  pointed out three classes  of  Filipino citizens falling under Section 1– those who are citizens at the time of the adoption of the 1935 constitution:  1. Spanish subjects born in Spain who resided in the Philippines and were residents at the time of the adoption of the 1935 constitution. 2. Spanish subjects born in the Philippines and were residents thereof at the time of the adoption of the 1935 constitution. 3.Spanish subjects by naturalization who were residents of  the Philippines at the time of the adoption of the 1935 constitution.

Moros were never Spanish subjects. They cannot even become Spanish subjects or nationals by naturalization under Spanish law because they were Muslims. The Philippine Naturalization law which is based on Spanish and Christian law also disqualifies a Muslim from being naturalized as a Filipino citizen because one of the grounds for disqualification is Belief in Polygamy, thus a Muslim, even if he is not married, but because he believes in polygamy which his religion allows, is disqualified. This is very clear in CA No. 473, a very pernicious law which to this day is enforced: “Section 4 – Who are disqualified- The following cannot be naturalized as Philippine citizens:

c) Polygamists or believers  in the practice of polygamy.”

Militant Moro student organizations in the mid-sixties rejected this provision and declared that pursuant to the constitutional provision on citizenship, the Moros are not Filipino Citizens because they were never conquered and never subjects of the Spanish crown.

The fault of Senator Marcos is he was concerned primarily with the alleged constitutional infirmities but his version suffers the same defect.  Immediately one sees this  in the preamble of his version “… ABOLISHING THE AUTONOMOUS REGION IN MUSLIM MINDANAO”. Article X, LOCAL GOVERNMENTS, sections 1 and 15 thereof very clearly provides that : Section 1. …There shall be autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and the Cordilleras as hereinafter provided.” “Section 15. There shall be created autonomous regions in Muslim Mindanao and in the Cordilleras ….” The autonomous region in Muslim Mindanao is a constitutional mandate and cannot be abolished by a mere congressional fiat. It can be re-organized, re-constituted, reformed, re-established etc., but not abolished.  Furthermore many of the alleged unconstitutional economic provisions are in R.A. 9054.

Marcos failed to grasp the real import and goal of enacting a law for the south and the Bangsa Moro. It is to usher in peace. Peace can be achieved only if there is mutual respect for each other’s culture, traditions, political dogmas and religions as well as equal protection for the pursuit, practice and enjoyment of these rights for as long as laws  are not transgressed; economic contentment which means economic opportunity in the areas, efficient basic services and just administration of the laws. But before all these, there must be acknowledgment of the historicity of the Bangsa Moro and their inalienable right to their patrimony. When the bases-historic and legal for these are negated, then there will be resentment and protest.

To sum it up, what Marcos did was much ado over nothing.

Bangsa Moro Constitutional Convention

Neither the MNLF nor the MILF can solve the problem in the south. The fate of the Bangsa Moro is not even in their combined hands. They are not even .1% of the roughly 16 to 18 million Moros and their arms combined is not even 5% of the arms of the Bangsa Moro. Furthermore, they have failed to prove their competence and ability to lead. The MNLF controlled the ARMM for five years which was a dismal failure. The MILF in a short span of time exposed their ignorance of Islam and the historicity of the Bangsa Moro and their propensity to control the new political entity pursuant to the very law they propose and the appointment of Mohagher Igbal’s nephew as COMELEC Commissioner.

The Moro people yearn for peace and live normal lives. The fiery cry for secession has been tempered by the acceptance of autonomy long ago but unfortunately autonomy has been as elusive as independence. The government must adopt concrete measures to avert the resurgence of radicalism of the Moro youth which if infused with the zealous and fanatical jihadism now engulfing the middle east and aggressively gaining adherents the world over, will be a phenomenal force terribly impossible to pacify and difficult to overcome.

Congress should now pass a law calling for a Bangsa Moro constitutional convention wherein all the Moro sectors shall be guaranteed appointed representatives and together with freely elected delegates duly reflect in this fundamental law the historicity, identity, aspirations, sentiments, hopes and dreams of the Bangsa Moro. Only when all the stakeholders have the right to be represented and participate in the enactment of the fundamental law for the Bangsa Moro can the viable and correct approach in solving the age-old Mindanao problem really commence.

(The writer is the President of the Muslim Bar Association of the Philippines, Inc., Chairman of the Bangsa Moro Party and Chairman of the United Filipino Movement .)