'No shoot-to-kill order from BCDA: Tension grips John Hay as gov’t sets takeover

>> Sunday, May 27, 2012

BAGUIO CITY -- Tension is gripping lessees of Camp John Hay here after the Bases Conversion and Development Authority unilaterally revoked its lease contract with private developer Camp John Hay Development Corp. a few days ago.

The BCDA has also ordered CJHDevCo to vacate the former American military rest and recreation center and pay its outstanding obligations amounting to P3.077 billion.

The BCDA, while addressing legal issues, is set to take over a 247-hectare portion of the former American rest and recreation base that it had leased to private developer CJHDevCo.

BCDA chief Arnel Casanova said they are ready for a legal war. “I’m ready to face charges, it comes with the job,” he said.

Meanwhile, Alfredo Yñiguez, chief executive officer of CJHDevCo, said they would file charges against Casanova for making “false representations to both the authorities involved and to the press about the real facts on the developments in Camp John Hay.”

This, as the security agency tasked to protect government property in Camp John Hay tagged as “outrageous, alarmist and totally baseless” the statement of the security agency of CJHDevCo that the BCDA has issued a “shoot to kill” order.

Placido Urbanes III, president of the Catalina Security Agency, said there was no such “shoot to kill” order from the BCDA,” as alleged by CJHDevCo’sWarbird Security and Investigation Agency.

“We were hired by the government to help protect personnel, property and facilities in Camp John Hay,” Urbanes said.

Catalina deploys security personnel to protect 625.4 hectares of government property in Camp John Hay, including the 301.9-hectare John Hay Special Economic Zone and the 323.5-hectare forest reservation area.

Tension has risen after the BCDA terminated its contract with CJHDevCo.

An officer of the security agency tapped by CJHDevCo to guard the contested facilities bared an alleged plan of the BCDA and its subsidiary, John Hay Management Corp. to use force in effecting the takeover despite pending legal issues.

Albert Escalderon, chief of Warbird Security Agency, earlier said they have gathered reliable information about the supposed plan of BCDA and JHMC “to forcibly take over the entire leased premises.”

“Our main concern is that your security guards posted within the John Hay premises were ordered to shoot anybody who would stand in the way during the forcible takeover by BCDA and JHMC,” Escalderon said in a letter to PlacidoUrbanes III, general manager of the Catalina Security Agency hired by the government agency.
But Catalina chief said: “In fact, it is CJHDevco and its security agency that are clearly violating regulations. They have violated the anti-squatting law when they put up illegal structures on BCDA’s property.”
“We will take the necessary legal steps to make sure those who issued the irresponsible statement are made accountable for the deception they have been spreading,” Urbanes said.
CJHDevco reportedly started issuing “alarmist” statements after BCDA terminated the contract with CJHDevco. BCDA  has also ordered CJHDevco to vacate John Hay and pay its outstanding obligations amounting to P3.077 billion.
The termination notice states that “CJHDevco has material and incurable breaches, including failure and refusal to pay the annual rent due to government for many years; failure to open an escrow account and deposit 50% of the Common Usage Services Assessment; fraudulent double-sale of a property given as payment to BCDA; violation of fire and safety laws in the Camp John Hay Suites; unlawful squatting of CJHDevco’s security agency; subcontracting of the water operations and distribution without BCDA’s consent; violations on safety, health and environmental regulations; and CJHDevco’s gross misrepresentation of its financial standing.”

Escalderon’s letter to Urbanes informed the latter of the writ of preliminary injunction issued by Judge CletoVillacorta III while reportedly ignoring the fact that the Baguio Regional Trial Court required CJHDevco to post a P736 million bond for the injunction to take effect.

Earlier statements by observers said that CJHDevco’s posting of the bond betray the fact that CJHDevco had money to pay for its obligations to government, that has now ballooned to more than P3 billion. – Alfred Dizon


Internet-based system to arrest criminals set

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – Arrest warrants for wanted persons are now available online.
The Philippine National Police launched the electronic warrant (e-warrant) and electronic rogues (e-rogue) gallery here Wednesday to make it easier for the police to arrest criminals.
“We can now browse or search the names of suspected persons with warrants and we can also download warrants of arrest for that person without going to the courts anywhere in the country,” said Senior Supt. Ramon Purugganan, La Union police director.
“This will link technically, through the computer, the warrants issued by the courts from one town, city, province or region to one another,” Purugganan added.
Senior Supt. Tito Dacpano, head of the regional investigation and detective management division, said the e-warrant and the e-rogue gallery are vital in the preservation of peace and security. 
“It means that if wanted persons are duly accounted, the number of criminals who roam the streets ready to pounce on unwitting and defenseless members of the community is reasonably reduced, thus contributing greatly in the development of peaceful communities,” Dacpano said. 


Abra PAGs identified; guns-for-hire warned

By Maritess B. Beñas

BANGUED, Abra – Police have identified private political armed groups even as Cordillera regional police director Chief Supt. Benjamin Magalog warned their coddlers which reportedly included politicians. saying he was he was determined in his  campaign  to dismantle PAGs  in Abra and  neutralize guns-for-hire here.
In a speech during the recent Bangued town fiesta, he warned the PAGS they have no place in  the province.  “Leave Abra or else, it will be very bloody for you here.”
Magalong had conducted another dialogue-meeting with the league of municipalities in Abra where he presented to the municipal mayors names of the alleged members of PAGs for their scrutiny.
Though the PNP is open to the review and revision of the names of the PAGs listing, Magalong warned them to look after their own men whose names have been included in the list and subject their men to the processes of clearing their names if they are really not PAG members.
Killings allegedly done by PAGs and guns for hire in the province had been aired by religious and cause oriented groups.
Latest was when provincial police director Senior Supt. Alexander Rafael recently led his men in killing five gunmen who were allegedly hired to kill him.
The alleged hired killers had been tailing Rafael's group last May 1, in Lallo, Cagayan.
“This incident should give a clear warning to all the guns-for-hire to stop their trade,” Magalong said. 
Following these, the chief executive here cited the Philippine National Police for giving their best in restoring peace in the province particularly in this capital town.
Mayor Ryan Seares Luna expressed his appreciation to Magalong for his courage in pursuing a peaceful environment in the province.
He also thanked Rafael for his leadership towards  obtaining  peace and order in the locality.
Abra's peace and order situation in recent years has been marred with killings, terror and fear among the Abrenios.
Luna said with the coordination between the PNP and local leaders in Abra, peace is no longer a distant dream in the province.   


Ecija sets power rollback

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija — Electricity consumers in Nueva Ecija can breathe a sigh of relief as the Nueva Ecija 1 Electric Cooperative, Inc. announced that it would implement power charge rollback this month as part of the celebration of the National Electrical Safety Month.
NEECO 1 will cut at least P.20 per kilowatt-hour in the electric bill of consumers in San Isidro, San Antonio, Cabiao, Jaen, and Gapan towns.
The electric cooperative said the price cut was brought about by the reduction of generation charge of the First-Gen Hydro Power Corporation that supplies the energy source in the province.


Court issues TRO vs Lepanto rallyists

By Marionne Marie G. Molintas-Ruiz

MANKAYAN, Benguet --  A 20 day temporary restraining order (TRO)was issued by the Regional Trial Court, Branch 64 of Abatan in Benguet against rallyists of the Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company (LCMC) here for them to stop protest actions against the company. 
The order was directed to Larry Bestoca, Alex Dapiawen, among others and served by Sheriff Jess Anthony Caramto Friday morning at the barricaded area.

The complaint was filed by the LCMC represented by its vice president and resident manager, Magellan G. Bagayao.

 Summons and notices of hearing for the issuance of a TRO was served to the defendants last May 23.

The sheriff’s report stated that, “While the summons and notices were received by the defendants, with the exception of Jerome Campos who was reportedly out of the country, only Alex Dapiawen acknowledged the receipt of the said documents. All the other defendants refused to acknowledge receipt of said processes.”

Seeing the tense situation in the area, the sheriff requested for the assistance and presence of the local police when he goes to serve the TRO.

Sheriff Caramto and the Mankayan Chief of Police William Willie, approached the picketers to explain the order.

However, the picketers reportedly remained defiant and stated that they will stand their ground.

The explanation and serving of the order took several hours. The local police and the sheriff left the area after peacefully serving the notice.

Presiding judge Agapito Laoagan ruled in his order: “Finding that the plaintiff (LCMC) will suffer grave and irreparable injuries, before the matter of preliminary injunction will be heard on notice and pursuant to applicable Rules of Civil Procedure, the defendants and all persons acting in their behalf are ordered to stop and desist from: blocking the roads going to the properties of Lepanto located at sitioMadaymen; to stop and desist from performing acts that would unjustly restrain and/or deprive Lepanto and its employees from exercising their right to fence or enclose the subject properties; and also to stop and desist from converging, camping, picketing and installing any and all forms of barricade (human and otherwise) in roads leading to the properties that tend to block, close or constrict the ingress and egress depriving Lepanto of their right to exercise its ownership and perform its lawful business therein within 20 days from the receipt of the TRO.” 

Meanwhile, a preliminary hearing of the preliminary injunction was set on June 11 at the Abatan RTC.

Following this development, FSE released a statement saying that they will continue to observe and abide by the rule of law. “We do not want anyone physically hurt from these procedures. We are hoping that the picketers would also heed the orders and decisions of the courts.”

 Earlier a 20 day TRO was issued against the FSE by the NCIP and FSE management respected the order voluntarily stopping the drilling prior to the issuance of the TRO from the NCIP.

The FSE project where partners Lepanto (60%) and Gold Fields (40%) is the company conducting the geo technical drilling at sitio Madaymen in Mankayan where a picket has been ongoing for several months now.


Padaca posts bail after Sandigan orders arrest

By Charlie Lagasca

ILAGAN, Isabela - The Sandiganbayan has issued a warrant of arrest for former Isabela governor Grace Padaca who is facing charges of malversation of public funds involving a P25-million contract for a hybrid rice program in 2006.

But Padaca was not arrested after she posted P70,000 bail for her temporary liberty.
“I am in touch with my lawyers on my legal option. The last advice I got was that we will be elevating the matter to the Supreme Court,” Padaca said.
As this developed, former vice governor Ramon Reyes defended Padaca, saying there was nothing irregular in the contract.
“She did not benefit from the amount. It was given to the intended beneficiaries through the foundation so it would be quicker to channel it instead of undergoing the bureaucratic process of biddings,” Reyes said. 
He said a board resolution and receipts also covered the disbursement. “It can all be accounted for,” said Reyes, who was the board’s former presiding officer when the contract with the EDWINLFI, a non-government organization that implemented the program, was signed.
Former Isabela congressman Santiago Respicio filed the case against Padaca, Pine and Soriano in 2007. 
Respicio claimed Padaca had “unjustly favored” EDWINLFI and merely relied on the agreement ratified by the board instead of conducting a public bidding.
The fund was part of the P35-million loan from the Development Bank of the Philippines for the province’s priority hybrid rice program.  

Padaca’s fellow respondents – former provincial legal officer Johnas Lamonera, municipal councilor Servando Soriano, and Economic Development for Western Isabela and Northern Luzon Foundation Inc.  manager Dionisio Pine – have already posted bail.

The Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division earlier said that unless Padaca pays P70,000 in exchange for her temporary liberty, police and other law enforcement officers may arrest her.
The Office of the Ombudsman filed the case against the former Isabela governor for her alleged involvement in the questionable award of the rice program contract to EDWINLFI.

The non-government organization allegedly failed to liquidate some P3.6 million while about P18 million was later listed under loan receivables.

Padaca has denied the charges, saying EDWINLFI was granted the contract after it volunteered to help extend the money to farmers who were the intended beneficiaries.

Padaca said the loan used for the hybrid rice program was legally obtained and aboveboard, adding that even the Commission on Audit had validated that the loan proceeds had been released to the intended beneficiaries, and “had not accrued to the benefit of any public official or private person.”

Padaca said her lawyers were acting on the matter, citing her option to file an appeal with the Supreme Court. 


Sagada folks question windfarm’s effects on environment, IP rights

By Gina Dizon

SAGADA, Mountain Province -- Whether  windmills  shall displace trees, disrupt water systems, and harm  biodiversity  were some of questions posed  during the consultation  on the proposed windfarm  here,  conducted by  the Sagada-Besao Windmill Corporation and Phil Carbon.  
A  proposed  15  megawatt windfarm  costing  $24.8 million per megawatt  was proposed to be built by Phil Carbon along the windy Pilaw  Ridge found  between the boundary of  Sagada and Besao municipalities.
Bangaan resident and elder Angela Yocogan  expressed alarm that  trees will  be displaced where the windmills  shall be  erected.
Found near the proposed windfarm are  springs serving as  sources of water for  the residents of Poblacion ,Sagada and  nearby residents of  Madongo and Bangaan barangays.
Residents asked if windmill turbines measuring 80 feet in height and rotor blades  65  meters in diameter would stunt trees from growing near the rotor blades.
It is not determined  yet how many turbines shall be constructed,  Phil Carbon president Ruth Owen  said.
Provincial Environment and  Natural Resources Office- Mountain Province  Director  Manuel Pogeyed  who hails from Bangaan,  said “local particularities” have to be taken note of by  Phil Carbon in the  proposed construction of  the windfarm.
The environs of  Pilaw  Ridge is site of fishponds, cows and carabaos  pastured to add to  the diverse fauna and flora of  the watershed. 
Whether the windmills  shall  harm  the lives  and  health of the  animals   was  asked by Gwen Longid of the Sagada-based Tangguyub Peoples Center.    
The  Pilaw-Ampakaw Ridge is  path of  birds migrating from other countries during  the  rainy months of  August to  October.  
It was noted that bird paths crossing  windmills were a major concern in other countries where  this pose lethal effects  to  birds’  injury or death  when crossing the windmills. 
Should the Sagada-Besaowindfarm be constructed, it shall be the first  to be  installed in a mountainous area in the Philippines.
Windmills  in Bangui, Ilocos Norte were constructed along  the beach.  
Sagada along with  other Cordillera communities  is located within pine tree-clad  mountainous  areas reaching as high  as  Mt Pulag’s 2,992 meters above  sea level in Benguet. 

Sagada  is bounded by  the Pilaw-Ampakaw  mountain ridge bordering Besao on the west. 
At the  north-west  borders  Abra province and Besao with  the mossy  Sisipitan and  Boasaw watersheds.
The  southern side of the town is bordered by Bauko town  separated by the watershed mountains  of  Polis. 
The  west bordered by  Sabangan municipality has tree-clad  mountains  while the northern part of the municipality is   bordered  by  the capital town of Bontoc separated by a watershed  cradling the  Amlusong river.  
Officials said an environmental  impact assessment   on accordance with the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act  (IPRA) and related laws  is required before  a project shall ensue in any indigenous peoples community.
This shall serve as one of the basis for people to decide on whether or not to give their consent in the building of a project within their community, they said.   
Ruth Owen  said  the environmental study  shall be  done by  Phil Carbon before the end of the year.

The DENR  shall validate the report done by  Phil Carbon,  Pogeyed said.
Patay Poblacion  barangay captain  Billy Baldo said a  barangay  resolution allowed Phil Carbon’s exploration to be done but not the actual operations of  the windfarm.
Further consultations were set on the matter.


Aparri town ready if hit by tsunamis

By Charlie Lagasca

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya – The coastal town of Aparri is ready in case a tsunami triggered by an earthquake hits it

This, as the municipal government has come up with a comprehensive disaster risk reduction and management plan against tsunamis.

Aparri, lying along the South China Sea-Pacific Ocean coast, is one of Cagayan Valley towns most vulnerable to tsunami and flashfloods as it is below sea level. It also has no highland areas where residents could seek refuge.

“We are creating awareness among residents on the need to be prepared for any tsunami, educating them on what to do in case such calamities do happen,” Mayor Ismael Tumaru said.

Under the tsunami preparedness plan, the townsfolk are advised to proceed to Lallo town, several kilometers inland, once a tsunami alert is raised, since it is a safe distance away from the coast.

Tumaru said adjoining Camalaniugan town, in a worst-case scenario, may still be reached by a tsunami or tidal wave, especially after earthquakes as strong as or even stronger than the one that hit northwestern Japan late last year.

A marine-rich town, Aparri, located on the mouth of the Cagayan River, has long been a reference point of the government’s weather bureau in locating typhoons hitting the country, especially Lu


Ifugao town imposes branding of cattle to stop illegal transport

By: Mhars B. Lihgawon

ALFONSO LISTA, Ifugao -- The municipal government here has mandated all cattle owners to brand animals upon reaching the prescribed age for proper distinction and ownership.

The branding is pursuant to an ordinance approved recently by local legislators to regulate illegal transport and selling of cattle within and outside the municipality.
According to the ordinance, cattle should be branded upon reaching one to two years old with a registered owner’s brand  at the office of the municipal treasurer and strictly for personal use only.
Branding of cattle activities should always be done in the presence of representatives from the office of the municipal treasurer for transparency and avoidance of any violations of ordinance.
Meanwhile, the ordinance also set requirements when  selling and transporting cattle within and outside the municipality.
Any person who sells large cattle is required to brand said cattle under his/her name not by the buyer’s name.
Morever, large cattle transported from one place to another within the municipality of Alfonso Lista for commercial purposes and slaughtering, the buyer shall accomplish and process the required documentation with the concerned municipal local government offices only during regular workings days.
No unbranded large cattle shall be transported or allowed to be transported unless the owner presents sufficient and convincing documents including payments of the required fees.
The ordinance further stated that any violation by any individual including local government officials shall penalized of P2,500 or imprisonment of 30 days for the first offense, P2,500 or imprisonment for 60 days – second offense and P2,500 or imprisonment of 90 days or both upon the discretion of the court for the third offense.  


Young man nabbed with P10,000 MJ

BAGUIO CITY a—A drug pusher, who allegedly made Asin Road his turf in the illegal drug business, was arrested with a block, or about  half a kilo, of marijuana in a sting operation around 9:30 p.m. here Tuesday.

A block of dried marijuana, valued at P10,077.75, wrapped in newspaper was confiscated from Arnold M. Orcelino while selling it to an undercover agent of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency – Cordillera Administrative near a computer shop at Km. 3, Purok 1, Asin Road, a meters away from the drug pusher’s residence.

 Orcelino, 20, single, construction worker of Nueva Ecija and resident of Sun Flower St., San Luis Village here has been allegedly regarded by his parents as a delinquent.

Orcelino was reportedly being supplied with illegal drugs by a source in Crystal Cave, Bakakeng Central, here which is near Asin Road.

 A case for illegal drugs was filed Thursday against Orcelino before the Office of the City Prosecutor. 


Police raid Kalinga farm; P24 M marijuana burned

TINGLAYAN, Kalinga – Police raided a farm here and uprooted and burned marijuana worth P24 million pesos May 17 in SitioOlingan, Barangay Luccong.

The operatives were led by Supt. Oliver Enmodias accompanied by barangay officials.

Some120,000 fully grown MJ plants were destroyed on site covering a land area of around 10,000 square meters.  

A dialogue was later held among the populace by Senior Insp. Antonio Yag-ao on the ill-effects of drugs.

Residents urged the government to improve or construct farm to market roads in the area so folks wouldn’t plant marijuana as a source of living.

The said concern has been brought by the regional police office to the attention of the Regional Development Council which envisions to complete the construction of major roads in the Cordillera Region by 2016.

The propagation of  coffee plantations in marijuana producing was also pushed as an alternative source of livelihood.

People in marijuana-producing areas were also urged by government officials to form cooperatives and have these registered with the Cooperative Development Authority so technical skills and assistance from planting to marketing as well as finance shall be provided by the RDC.


P7-B irrigation to benefit 12,000 Ecija, Tarlac tillers

GUIMBA, Nueva Ecija – About 12,000 farmers in Tarlac and Nueva Ecija will benefit from the construction of the P7-billion Casecnan Multipurpose Irrigation and Power Project which is now on its second phase of construction, the National Irrigation Administration said Monday.

NIA Administrator Antonio Nangel said that “with the existing 40,000-hectare (ha) area in Phase I, an additional 20,321 ha will be added, totaling 60,321 hectares.

This will allow farmers in a number of areas in Tarlac and Nueva Ecija to enjoy full irrigation services and help the government in achieving its food sufficiency target.

The multi-billion project will provide full irrigation services to an additional 20,321 hectares in the towns of Anao, Ramos, and Victoria in Tarlac and the municipalities of Guimba, Nampicuan, Talugtug, and Cuyapo and Muñoz Science City in Nueva Ecija as well expand coverage of the existing service areas of the Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation System (UPRIIS) by another 40,000 hectares upon its completion in 2016.

Nangel explained that the facility will also increase rice productivity from the current 390,771 metric tons (MT) per year to the target of 599,066 MT with an increment of 208,295 MT.

The Casecnan will also increase the utilization of the yearly stored water in the Pantabangan, Nueva Ecija reservoir for dry season cropping thus increasing its storage efficiency during the wet season and improving its flood control function.

Its Central Operation and Monitoring System and installation of telemetering devices will improve the monitoring and control of water releases from major diversion dams, along major flow points and in the service areas of Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation System (UPRIIS) including the completed Phase 1 area.

Casecnan project is expected to be completed by the year 2016.


PRC holds outreach services in Luzon

BAGUIO CITY -- The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Baguio Regional Office will hold the Araw/Agew na Propesyonal for its services in different parts of northern and Central Luzon

Regional director Gaius M. Sison Jr. bared this saying services  include application for licensure examinations (Teachers, etc.), registration of license of new exam passers, renewal of professional ID, certificates of good standing, unclaimed ID and Board certificates (filed at PRC Baguio).

For Candon City in Ilocos Sur, it was held on May 25 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in coordination with Mayor Allen. G. Singson.

For Tarlac City, it would be held on May 28 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the SM Mall through Gov. Victor A. Yap.

The PRC, with the provincial government of Pangasinan headed by Gov. Amado T. Espino will also hold services on May 30 at the Sapigao Sports Center in Asingan Town courtesy of Mayor Heidee L. Ganigan-Chua.

Professionals who filed their applications at PRC Baguio and wish to claim their Professional ID and/or Board Certificate in the above-mentioned places may e-mail PRC at  prcbaguio.regulation@gmail.com or text 0921-969-3919 at least 3-4 days before the scheduled date. For available IDs/BCs, visit:www.prcbaguio.blogspot.com.


Pagcor funds Alaminos City's bamboo project

ALAMINOS CITY, Pangasinan -- The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) and the city government here have embarked on a P31-million livelihood project that aims to benefit some 10,000 locals.

Pagcor chairman and chief executive officer CristinoNaguiat said under the project dubbed “Hundred Islands (HI) Engineered Kawayan,” a fully functional bamboo factory will be built to mass-produce high-quality furniture and school armchairs using engineered bamboo as material.

Currently, Alaminos City has a mini-factory housing machines procured from the Mariano Marcos State University for bamboo furniture production.

Alaminos City Mayor Hernani Braganza said through Pagcor’s funding, the city government could further develop the bamboo industry in the Ilocos region, and eventually create new businesses and job opportunities in Pangasinan.

He said nearly 10,000 folk in Alaminos City and nearby towns will directly benefit from the project.
“Pagcor’s assistance will have a domino effect in the city’s economic development program. Bamboo producers, workers and family enterprises will benefit from the project, not only Alaminians but also those living in the nearby towns of the first district of Pangasinan,” Braganza said.

The first district, which includes Alaminos City, is the major supplier of bamboo in the province and Metro Manila.

GesterTolentino, Alaminos City agriculturist and project coordinator for e-Kawayan, said the project will initially supply the armchair requirements of the Department of Education.

“Our goal is to address the 6,000 school chair requirements of the public schools in Alaminos. We hope to supply the other armchair requirements of the rest of Pangasinan in the coming years,” he said.


Mt. Province SP endorses Besao hydro dam project

By Juliet B. Saley

BESAO, Mt. Province -- The Sangguniang Panlalawigan  recently  passed a resolution endorsing the proposal of BIMAKA Renewable Energy Development Corporation, Inc.  to develop, construct and operate a mini-hydro electric project in this municipality.
The  BIMAKA is a company composed of homegrown professionals  who  studied hydro-electric potentials of the western part of this municipality.
A mini-hydro electric project along the Layacan River and its tributaries located in the western part of the municipality specifically in barangays Tamboan, Laylaya and Catengan would boost the province’s power reserves, they said.
The project was endorsed by the three barangays  andBesao  municipal government   through its Sangguniang Bayan.
In their resolution, the SP presided by Vice Gov. Simeon Lacwasan  said one of major development projects of the province is the availability of reasonably priced electricity.
The body added there was need to develop the indigenous renewable energy sources of this province for power generation in order to have an alternative source of affordable and reasonably priced electricity for its inhabitants and to sustain the economic activities and possibly for further industrial development in the province.
In favorably endorsing the proposal of BIMAKA, the SP said the project is  subject to compliance to the Indigenous People’s Right Act, the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2011, as well as the Renewable Energy Act of 2008 and other relevant laws. 


Folk’s attitude worsening garbage in Burnham Park

By Jasmin Kiaso and Kenneth Francisco

BAGUIO CITY -- It is people’s disposition and not the lack of trash cans, signage and lack of street sweepers that is worsening the garbage problem here at Burnham Park.
This was the realization of students taking their master’s degree in social studies at Benguet State University.
These student-professionals posed as “real” street sweepers at the Burnham Park for two Saturdays to prod on why Burnham has garbage problems despite the provision of trash bins and putting of signage such as “no littering” all around the area.
Through close observations and series of in-depth interviews, the students were able to draw this conclusion.
In this two-day activity, the students were able to know how street sweepers are being treated.
One of the students (who conducted this research/activity) related that he experienced what he calls as illustrado syndrome which means the person who just litter or scatter garbage anywhere feels that a helper or janitor will take care of his/her wastes.
One student also said that some vendors and boat owners seem to not care even if their customers litter anywhere. She stated that “maybe for them they do not care as long as they have income and they have customers and buyers.”
Another student said that she encountered a woman who said there are janitors around the Burnham Lake so she doesn’t mind cleaning her own area.
“The problem is with the people (both locals and tourists, who tend to indiscriminately litter despite ordinances and laws made to penalize such acts,” another student said in his reflection after the activity.
They noted that every park goer or even passersby should have the social responsibility and personal accountability of disposing their waste properly.
 They also added that this garbage problem involves political and cultural issues. As related by a gardener and horticulturist in Burnham Park, the conflict of interest and priorities is taking this problem longer.
This activity was in coordination with the City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO) and City Hall of Baguio.

They presented the results of their observation to Baguio officials on May 25.


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