Extended work probation proposal

>> Thursday, October 31, 2019


The House of Representatives has proposed to extend the maximum probationary period for employment.
House Bill (HB) 4802, filed by Probinsyano Ako party-list Rep. Jose “Bonito” Singson Jr., seeks to amend the Labor Code to extend the maximum prescribed period of probationary employment from six months to 24 months.
In filing the bill, Singson argued the current prescribed probationary period “limits the right of the employer to secure quality employees.”
“Considering the advent of technological advances in various industries, the probationary employees must undergo a series of developmental training and assessment to ascertain their ability to do the job,” he said.
“In every stage of the development, the probationary employee must satisfy a set of standards to qualify. These processes demand more time, which in a lot of cases take more than six months,” Singson added.
He said the longer probationary period would give workers “a better chance to improve their performance, meet their targets and learn new skills that will allow them to meet the required standards set by the employer. This measure will also provide an opportunity for the probationary employees to have continuous employment for more than six months, which will enable them to qualify for some of the mandatory benefits under existing laws.”
Some Senators however aired on media they did not agree. Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said, “I will oppose its passage. If the House passes it, consider it DoA (dead on arrival) in the Senate.”
Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd said “It practically goes against the move to remove contractualization. It needs a considerable amount of study.”
The Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) has also condemned the proposal, describing it as a means for employers to avoid recent moves to limit, if not entirely eliminate, labor contractualization.
Singson’s bill may have good intentions, according to some senators who said it may create more problems than it solves.
The six-month limit on probationary employment is already largely unnecessary, legislators said, although some jobs do require a longer acclimatization period for employees and employers. Some said a 90-day probation period is considered sufficient and is practiced by majority of Philippine employers.
Even though the arguments for and against HB 4802 focus on employees, extending the probationary period limit to two years may present problems for employers who do not intend to use it as a means of avoiding regularizing workers.
A probationary period adds extra processing to an employee’s records in any event; under a 90-day regime, some requirements can be delayed until the term expires, but some could not be if the probationary period is extended to two years.
Those against the proposal said in seeking to extend the probationary period, the proposed law removes it from labor relations. It is no wonder some legislators are pushing more study on the matter.


Splitting IAS from PNP/ ‘Militarizing’ school campuses

Alfred P. Dizon

BAGUIO CITY--- The resolution of the Regional Advisory Council (RAC) of the Internal Affairs Service in the Cordillera Administrative Region (IAS-CAR) seeking separation of the unit from the Philippine National Police (PNP) is a step in the right direction.
In a press conference on Wednesday afternoon, lawyer Alan Antonio Mazo, chairman of the IAS-CAR RAC, said the call for the separation of the IAS from the PNP is timely considering the recent developments involving police officers, particularly the so-called "ninja cops."
A PNA report said the resolution “expressing support to the independence of the Internal Affairs Service and House Bill 3056.” Was signed by all 10 members on Oct. 23.
According to Mazo, “This should be nationwide reform on the disciplinary aspect of the policemen.”
He said the separation of the IAS is also gaining support from the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), the Senate, among other sectors.
House Bill 3056 was filed by PBA Party-list Rep. Jericho Nograles which seeks the transfer of the IAS under the Dept. of the Interior and Local Government.
IAS is currently under the Philippine National Police (PNP). The RAC resolution noted that the current setup defeats the purpose for which the IAS was created.
Republic Act 8551 amended the Republic Act 6975 for purposes of reforms and reorganizations of the PNP, including the creation of the IAS.
Mazo said once separated, the IAS will no longer depend on the PNP for its financial requirement to exist.
He said the IAS will fully serve as the monitoring body of the character and behavior of police officers and to fully operate as the investigating and adjudicatory body on all administrative offenses committed by PNP personnel, becoming a more effective part of its disciplinary mechanism.
RAC members said this system is the same in other countries like the United States where the IAS is able to perform its function without the “threat” and “management” of the police organization that it monitors and investigates. 
The government wants a review of an old memorandum of agreement between the Dept. of National Defense and state universities and colleges that bars the presence of Armed Forces of the Philippines and Philippine National Police personnel inside school campuses.
Dept. of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año said that in line with the government’s “whole-of-nation-approach” in eliminating local armed conflict as stated in Executive Order 70, which created the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict, police presence in schools and universities can be increased to deter the recruitment program of leftist groups.
Last week, Sen. Ronald “Bato” de la Rosa said he will push a law that will remove the constraints against the conduct of education and information drive inside campuses using police and soldiers amid the aggressive recruitment of members of the communist movement.
According to Ano, “this fight is not only in red areas or in the provinces, but also in white areas — in cities, in our schools, factories. These are their target.”
He said the department will also conduct dialogues and increase its engagements with school authorities and the students “to raise awareness on the modus operandi of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).”
 “We’re not saying that student organizations are bad, but many of them have been infiltrated by communist groups,” he added.
According to Año, there are 500 to 1000 youths indoctrinated by the CPP-NPA every year and they either become members of the NPA or return to their respective schools as militant student leaders.
“They are using their alleged nationalism to teach children to kill and take up arms against the government,” he said.
“What happens now is that so many schools are deeply infiltrated by the CPP-NPA through their front organizations. Now, the rebels have corresponding member organizations in schools that we should be vigilant in guarding against,” he said.
He added it is unfortunate that Republic Act 1700 or the Anti-Subversion Act was repealed.
In the meantime, he said, the PNP has already initiated the filing of cases against front organizations identified through a recent Senate hearing and in the government’s own intelligence and investigations.
The DILG chief considers youth recruitment by leftist groups part of the communist groups’ elaborate campaign to overthrow the democratic government of the Philippines through armed struggle.
According to Ano, such activities are prevalent in urban centers where they actively recruit new members and extort revolutionary taxes from legitimate businessmen to fund their armed rebellion in the “red areas,” where they kill police officers and soldiers, government representatives, and anyone who opposes them.
“It’s part of their DNA to do these recruitments and unfortunately, they are able to brainwash our youth. That’s why let us work together so that no Filipino will again be persuaded to abandon their families,” Año said.
Local government units should exercise good governance to regain the people’s trust in government, according to Año.
But despite the pronouncements of Ano, some sectors are opposing the presence of police or military forces in school campuses. They are saying this is an intrusion on academic freedom wherein education should make the student think and evaluate situations like the armed conflict between the government and forces opposed to it like the CPP-NPA without undue interference from police or military forces right inside school campuses.  


The Gift of Healing

Jun Malazo

“Hey Pastor…Do you have the power of healing?”  I was recently asked this question after visiting someone.  The topic of miraculous divine healing has been an issue that many well- meaning people do not have a clear understanding of and in turn are being deceived.  There are many so-called “faith healers” today that mislead people to believing that whatever physical ailment they have will be healed if they just have enough faith. 
We often see advertisements for a “Healing Crusade” in our town.  Sadly, many attend these meetings with high hopes that God will heal their physical ailments but in turn come away empty.  Faith healers and those that advocate them make merchandise of peoples’ desperate situations.  They will sell items that they say contain miracle healing powers (oils, napkins, etc.).  Because of their desperation, people fall into the deception only to walk away disappointed. 
Those who advocate the practice of faith healing do so for many reasons.  One of the core reasons is often because of some misinterpreted Scriptural passages in the Bible that lead to a confusion of the miracles sign gifts practiced by the apostles in the early church.  One question that must be considered is this:  Are the miracles sign gifts of the early New Testament Church supposed to be practiced today?  In order to fully give an adequate answer to this question, we must first understand spiritual gifts given to the New Testament Church and how this applies today.  Notice what the Apostle says in Romans 12:1-8:
"For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness"  (Romans 12:3-8, KJV).
According to the verses above, every believer and member of a local church is gifted in one or more areas to compliment the body of Christ—the church.  The list starts with prophecy which is basically proclaiming the truth.  The list goes on to ministering, teaching, exhorting, giving, ruling, and mercy.  To stay on topic I will not expound on each one of these gifts.  However, suffice it to say, that none of these gifts involve any supernatural ability of the gift of healing.
There is yet another set of gifts given to us in 1 Corinthians 12 where Paul expounds on the gifts of healing, miracles, tongues, and interpretation of tongues, etc.  We call these gifts sign or revelatory gifts.  There is no doubt that the gift of healing was present during the early New Testament era.  However, looking at the bigger picture of the background of 1 Corinthians and looking at its context as a whole will prove that sign gifts ceased at the end of the apostolic age. 
A careful observation of 1 Corinthians would reveal a reoccurring theme that the Apostle Paul was trying to emphasize.  There is always an exhortation of unity specially in the context of the church as a body of believers.  This is because one of the issues that Paul was dealing with was the issue of disunity within the church.  The whole idea of 1 Corinthians 12 is that, as the body has many parts and functions unique within the parts and must work as a whole, a church also must operate in unity in order to function properly.  No part is greater than the other.  And if one part neglects its function the entire body is affected. 
The church in Corinth was overemphasizing the sign gifts so much that they were neglecting a more important aspect of church which is unity in love and truth.  This is not to say that sign gifts given during the apostolic era were not important at all.  The sign gifts were all part of God’s overall plan to give the apostles authority as they preached the gospel.
The very next chapter in 1 Corinthians reveals to us that the sign gifts will end. 
"Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away"  (1 Corinthians 13:8-10, KJV).
The Apostle says that there will be a cessation of the sign gifts.  When will this be?  He says, “But when that which is perfect is come….”  Paul was speaking of the completed Word of God—the Bible.  During the time of Paul’s writing to the Corinthian Church the Bible was not yet put together as a whole.  The Bible is the compete revelation of God to mankind.  Through its pages we see the Person and Work of Jesus Christ as it authenticates His deity and His Messiahship.
What about the healings recorded in the Bible?  The miracles of Jesus Christ recorded in all the gospels were unique.  It is important to remember the very central reason why these miracles were recorded in the Bible.  Christ’s miracles authenticated that He was the Messiah.  His miracles were never meant for us to imitate.  Notice what the Apostle John said about the miracles of Christ:
"And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name"  (John 20:30-31, KJV).
Likewise, the Apostles’ miracles were not to set a pattern for believers to follow.  Rather, the miracles were for the sign of their apostleship (2 Corinthians 12:12).  If the gift of healing was meant for every believer, then the sign of apostleship would be of no effect.  If believers in general could have performed sign miracles, even in the first century, the brethren at Joppa would not have called for Peter to come and raise Dorcas from the dead (Acts 9:36-42). Peter’s miracle that day was the “sign of an apostle.”
“Does God have the power to heal today?”  The answer to that question is a resounding absolutely yes!  As mentioned earlier, God is the Master of healing.  Jesus is referred to as the Great Physician.  However, it is important to know that God heals according to His own will and timing.  Faith healers make it seem that divine healing can be on demand.  The fact of the matter is that there are many instances in the Bible that godly people did not receive healing through divine intervention.
After Paul’s writing to the Corinthians we see many evidences of believers who suffered physical ailments and yet were not healed with the gift of healing.  They prayed and asked God for healing, but it wasn’t God will to miraculously heal them in the same manner that Jesus and the Apostles healed people. 
Timothy was not healed supernaturally.  The Apostle Paul did not perform a healing miracle, but instead, advised him to consider a remedy to take care of an ongoing condition (1 Timothy 5:23).  Paul himself learned that it is not always God’s will to heal.  In 2 Corinthians 12:10, he said, "Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”  Paul learned a valuable lesson that sometimes God doesn’t remove the pain.  This is because the pain often comes with a valuable lesson.  Instead of immediate healing, God gave Paul the grace to endure the pain as he wrote, “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me"  (2 Corinthians 12:9, KJV).
“Only God has the power of healing,” was my response to the question above.  The God of the Bible is the God of miracles.  The Bible is filled with God’s display of His power to heal those that are blind, lame and even to raise the dead back to life. 
Divine healing has always been and will always be in accordance to God’s will and timing.  We can ask and pray for healing, but we must be surrendered to whatever God’s will is for our lives.  We must remember that God has a purpose for our lives. 
Sometimes the physical ailments are His way of drawing us closer to Him.  Whatever God does in our lives, it is for our good and it is always for His glory and honor.


A more thoughtful clean-up

March L. Fianza

Prior to the serious clean-up of roads and sidewalks by Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año when he issued  MC 121-2019, Mayor Benjamin Magalong had already shut down 37 bars and nightspots in Baguio for violating the zoning law, peace and order regulations, for falsely registering as another form of businesses or for breaking sanitation laws.
The DILG memorandum circular to clear roadways was issued after the President announced it in his 4th State of the Nation Address last July 22. Meanwhile, Mayor Magalong was also one of those LGU executives who cracked down illegal gambling even before President Duterte ordered the same.
The implementation of MC 121-2019 is not only for national highways and major thoroughfares but all other roads including barangay roads. By the time the order reached its 60-day deadline, a total of 6,899 roads nationwide have been cleared of obstructions.
Of the 1,245 of the cities and municipalities in the country, only 97 were found to be non-compliant. Sec. Año said, these LGUs will be issued show-cause orders (SCO) and will be given five days from receipt thereof to explain their non-compliance.
“Otherwise the DILG will have no recourse but to submit their names to the President and file the necessary complaints with the Office of the Ombudsman,” Sec. Año told reporters.
Ano’s statement appears to be a serious and fair warning. But, I cannot easily accept that he meant what he said. With so many violations committed by LGU heads ranging from involvement in drug cases, illegal gambling to other matters, I doubt if any LGU head will go to prison for not clearing roads. Cross our fingers.  
What is admirable in the recent DILG action however, is when Sec. Año said his office will issue a new memorandum circular to LGUs informing them of the continuation of the road clearing program and the quarterly validation. Exactly, having a continuing program is being on the right path.
As for Mayor Magalong, Baguio people should appreciate him for standing firm on his decision to keep the bars closed until such time that the owners follow the law. It is normal for an LGU executive to see to it that closure orders are enforced on business establishments without the required permits.
In his first few weeks in office, the mayor padlocked eateries, sari-sari stores selling cigarettes, restaurants and bars for violations of business rules and city ordinances.
But while all the talk of clean-ups, closure orders and road clearing ring in the air, I hardly hear city officials talk about cleaning its own ranks of misfits in public service, or weeding its offices of workers who do more disservice to the public.
One certain section is where job order personnel were assigned for the purpose of checking on the “peacefulness, orderliness, safeness and cleanliness” of sidewalks in the market.
Contrary to their assigned tasks and as what has been reported in the news, these personnel who dangerously wield little powers have been out of bounds.
The latest I heard was that some of these personnel brushed with members of the media who were covering city hall news. On socmed, particularly on Facebook and Messenger accounts, members of the media in Baguio said these city hall personnel are “power tripping”.
I learned that the rift started when the “peace, order and safety” personnel tried to keep at bay the media, particularly photojournalists who were prevented from covering an event and performing their jobs.
In the past, I heard stories of these “peace, order and safety” city hall job order personnel who were allegedly involved in mauling a market vendor sometime in 2012, causing his eventual death.
This case was silenced. The suspects in the mauling incident that led to the eventual death of the market vendor may have come to terms with the latter’s family, but this case is worth re-investigating by Mayor Magalong.
Just recently, a taho vendor in the vicinity of the Botanical Park was rudely accosted by four “peace, order and safety” city hall job order personnel. I was told that one of the four was involved in the market vendor’s mauling in 2012.
At present, such city hall job order personnel have no legal administrative orders or ordinances that can back up their existence and status of appointments.
By the way, I remember that a dozen of these city hall job order personnel were involved in illegally seizing by force the Asin Hot Springs in Nangalisan, Tuba away from its manager-owners.
The city, as per records of the municipal and provincial assessors of Tuba and Benguet, respectively, does not own any property in Nangalisan, Tuba, Benguet.
Talking about cleaning up, following the law and implementing closure orders on establishments that do not have business permits; closing Asin Hot Springs voluntarily is a more thoughtful way of abiding by the rules.
The city has no business permit to operate in Asin and does not pay any single centavo to Tuba. What applies in Baguio should also apply in Tuba and other places. It has to voluntarily close.
By the way, Mayor Sal-ongan and the municipal council of Tuba cannot just sit by and watch. A law is being violated right under their noses.


Baguio gears up for peak tourist season

Aileen P. Refuerzo

BAGUIO CITY – The city is gearing up for its peak tourist season – Christmastime or the last two months of the year when tourist arrival in the city normally spikes up.
City Tourism Operations Office Aloysius Mapalo said that records from their office showed that the “last months of the year draw the most number of tourists, at least 20 percent of the year’s total tourist arrivals.”
“Particularly, December is the month of the year that attracts the most tourists, usually 30 percent more than the average monthly tourist arrivals,” he said adding that in December, 2018, the city had 190,500 tourists excluding those who visited in just a day and those who stayed in alternative accommodation houses. 
Previous data from the City Tourism and Special Events Office also proved that Christmastime and not Panagbenga or Holy Week break had been the city’s peak tourist season particularly from 2015 to 2017 where the city posted the highest number of tourist arrivals covering local, foreign and balikbayan visitors in December.
Mapalo said the city expects to attract more tourists this year for the next two months, as Baguio packages new exciting events, activities and experiences.
“This coming November (16 to 24) is the Creative City month in Baguio, to be highlighted with the 2019 Ibagiw Creative City Festival, an enhancement of last year’s offering, the ENTAcool Festival, thus more creative and enriched activities this year, in partnership with the private organization of local artists, the Baguio Arts and Creatives Collective, Inc. or BACCI,” Mapalo said.
The event will primarily feature the “Made in Baguio” Competition in Crafts and Folk Art topbilled by local artisans and craftsmen showcasing innovation in the form of a competition for traditional Baguio crafts such as weaving, basketry, woodcarving and metalcraft and the “Re-imagining Baguio” which is a series of local artists’ portraits, stories of, impressions on, visions or aspirations for Baguio through art installations, murals and short film to be mounted in different venues around the city.
Other activities of Ibagiw are the “Creative Marketplace” at Dominican Heritage Hill, that will showcase the city’s creative industry sector’s crafts and folk art pieces for sale; the "Culture Bearers of Baguio" photo exhibit featuring portraits by local photographers of selected Baguio artists, artisans and cultural workers; the “Jamming on a G-string,” a fashion show set against a background of live performances by local musical artists; and pockets of private and community-led creative and art activities and galleries and an international conference on ASEAN crafts and folk art.
Coming on the heels of the festival will be the city’s Christmas offering now dubbed “An Enchanting Baguio Christmas” which Mapalo said is “a one-of-its-kind yuletide experience in the country planned to be a unique and alluring attraction during the merriest season of the year, this time in partnership with the Baguio Tourism Council, a private organization composing of tourism stakeholders of the city.”  
The yuletide offering will open on Nov. 24 with the performance of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra at the Rose Garden and the lighting of the Burnham Lake ala “Swan Lake”.  
“The centerpiece feature of this Christmas offering is the ‘Baguio Christmas Fair,’ a replication of the famous Christmas Markets around Europe which will showcase 20 specially-designed chalets clustered in four areas of the Rose Garden in Burnham Park with Christmas goodies and items for selling and display,” Mapalo said. 
On Dec. 1, the city will light up its city-wide decors including the Christmas garden tree made of live plants on top of Session Road and the lighted Christmas Belen at the Malcolm Square -- with a program, a concert, the most-awaited lantern parade by the Saint Louis University and a grand fireworks display. 
A series of events is lined up to charm visitors and locals: Christmas light shows and concerts every Saturdays at Malcolm Square; Christmas story-telling every Sundays at the Rose Garden; the University of Baguio Christmas Cantata on Dec 6 at the Rose Garden; anticipated “Simbang Gabi”, followed by a Christmas soup kitchen offering from December 16 to 24 at the Rose Garden; the Philippine Military Academy and Ballet Baguio’s special rendition of the Christmas Nutcracker on Session Road to Malcolm Square on December 22; a Christmas Woodstock Musicfest on Session Road on December 29 and the New Year Countdown Concert and Fireworks at the Melvin Jones Grandstand on December 31.
This early, Mapalo issued reminders to visitors who intend to join Baguio’s Christmas merrymaking: “For everyone’s convenience and in promoting responsible tourism, it is important to know that we have an anti- littering and anti-smoking laws, so please be responsible of your own trash and help us nurture and protect the environment always. Secondly, enjoy Baguio at its best by walking. So please leave your private vehicles, use public transport and simply walk around. This will also help ease out traffic congestion. Lastly, support local by buying local products and going to local establishments, and respect local culture by learning and understanding more about the rich heritage, history and the culture of the peoples of the city and the Cordillera.”
“With all those in mind, visitors will not only be enchanted during these last quarter of the year but will definitely bring home memories and unique stories to cherish and to come back for.” – Aileen P. Refuerzo


Heritage, ecology, fashion, furniture at Manila FAME

Gina Dizon

(Especially invited by Soledad Valencia of Binnadang Ethnic Handicrafts of Baguio to Sagada Inabe which I chair, I’m delighted to share this story.)
PASAY CITY -- To all entrepreneurs doing crafts and arts, it’s an inspiration to get to join Manila Fame annually held at the World Trade Center in Pasay. Manila FAME is a national bi-annual exhibit showcasing varied products done by artisans from Bataan to Basilan organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), an attached agency of CITEM.    
Buyers from international and national markets come to attend the event and get to see potential products for their trade displayed last October 17-19. Manila Fame attracts local and international retailers and manufacturers, wholesalers, trading firms, architects interior designers, exporters, business support organizations, and designers.
Product categories are those of furniture and furnishings, home accents, gift items, festive season décor, fashion accessories and wearables, handwoven and converted items, interior and  architectural components, visual arts, health and  wellness and gourmet gifts.
From its website, Manila Fame is a “celebration of exquisite and world-renowned craftsmanship in product design, mastery over sustainable materials, and unique quality that catapulted the careers of Filipino product designers to the global scene.”
“The archives of Manila Fame exhibitors are brimming with talents and ideas—a goldmine of inspiration formed under the tectonic influence of Manila FAME’s stewardship. To commemorate over 30 years of cultural inheritance, the trade show unleashes the most iconic and forward-looking pieces from its collection and infuse them with the vision of the new—creating an exciting amalgamation that honors a legacy of design excellence.”
This year’s event is its highlight on environmental consciousness and heritage.
Products are made of ecologically sound materials as rattan, abaca, vines, bamboo, cotton, shells; pine needles, driftwood, and natural plant dyes. And this includes recycled paper, recycled plastics, wasted woven cloth rather than wasting or burning these are  recycled into something useful as bags and more bags.
Done by artisans and artists from the different places of the country, consciously- made creations ranged from bags to baskets, shirts, jackets, poncho, scarves, shawls, cushion covers, shoes, sandals, hats, soap, chandeliers, wall decors, frames, blankets, to visual arts like using sand and using a ketchup dispenser.
Creations of bar stools made of recycled cloth, recycled bags made of newspapers, bags and more baskets made of rattan vines, newspapers, and shells ae especially mesmerizing..
What is in fashion now is making the environment livable and reducing the effects of  global  warming. Enough of plastics and nylon and lead and synthetic  and cutting down trees. Bags and fashion and linen and furniture makes use of saving trees and nourishing the  forests and making clean rivers and an environment for clean air to breathe in.  
Wears such as ponchos, shirts, are especially made from woven materials making use of cotton. Cotton is getting to be in as the fabric is made from plant and not the synthetic petroleum-based polyester made from a carbon-intensive non-renewable resource.
Women  entrepreneurs were especially  featured. Mostly women are entrepreneurs doing weaving and related crafts.  . 
Among some of the products displayed, ManIla FAME featured the Great Women (GWEN)  Project - the Gender Responsive Economic Actions for the Transformation of Women (GREAT Women) Project 2 which aims to assist women micro enterprises  improve their competitiveness and sustainability by providing focused interventions to improve their business management, product development and innovation competencies. The GWEN project is specially a program of the Philippine Commission on Women in partnership with DTI, Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the Department of Agriculture (DA). The GWEN Project sponsored its enrolees' booths through DTI.
Some booths were especially sponsored by DTI and so by Local Government Units. Especially noticed the province of Iocos Sur and the Province of Basilan that sponsored the booths of their respective  entrepreneurs’ products.
Other booths like those of Region 10 and Davao were especially sponsored by their regional DTI. Booths of Katagowan Weaving and Binnadang ethnic Handicrafts of the Cordilleras were also specially supported by DTI.  
Which is good as sponsored registration fees help women entrepreneurs on travelling all the way from their provinces to Manila with all the expenses that one incurs in coming to the big city.
Heritage is the foundation and weaving is the way.
Woven products are made by adept hands of local women folk and indigenous peoples from the Igorots of the Cordillera- Bontoc of Mt Province, Ifugaos, Kalingas, Itnegs- to the traditional ‘abel’ among the Ilocanos of the Ilocos to the Iraya-Mangyans of Mindoro to the Yakans of Basilan, Mindanao.
From fabric apparel and home decors find weaving as the way to doing these. Bags and baskets are woven. And so with shirts and jackets accented with woven cloth. Blankets and linen sheets are woven. And so with furniture and home decors as chairs, tables, lamps and chandeliers.    
Weaving is a traditional livelihood especially from tribal communities with basket weaving made by men and products made of thread by women. Basketry is a beauty of sorts.
Basketry through weaving makes its way on bags, baskets, tables, chairs, chandeliers and lamps.
Displayed woven products from the Cordillera is especially made by Nards Enterprises, Leila’s loom weaving, Katagowan weaving, Shechem arts and crafts and Abra Indigo Cooperative of the Cordillera.
Narda’s Enterprises especially makes use of cotton and natural plant dyes. And so with Abra Indigo Cooperative has fine plant dyed weaves. 
Weaving is also found in bags made by Everything is Pine based in Baguio City. Its base material which are pine needles are used to make products as bags, pot holders and fruit trays.
use of abaca, rattan, bamboo and vines available from the forest. So this sends a message not to burn forests.
Weaving is also done to make chairs and bar stools out of used clothes. 
Woven cloth is made as accent on shirts, blouses and jackets, and a main material on sandals and shoes. This specially mentions PoiPoi, Coco and Tres, and WC of Manila where they incorporate woven cloth in their shirt and jacket creations. So with Baguio’s Abek Home and Culture making use of woven cloth and embroidery in her cotton shirts. 
Specially to mention Creative Definitions making use of woven material on their shoes.
Even recycled waste is woven into bags, fruit trays and baskets especially being made by Cordillera’s Binnadang ethnic handicrafts. Recycled chairs and cushions is especially made by indigenous local folks from Cebu popularized by Cebu Crafts. Cebu Crafts also make chandeliers and bar tables from drift wood. The owner of Cebu Crafts said they support the livelihood of locals.
Manila Fame also featured crafts made the Artisans Village in Manila that introduced local micro, small and medium enterprises and their crafts to the global market with the help of the DTI Regional Offices and LGUs in partnership with the Design Center of the Philippines.
Recycled shoes made from foil and named Lalapatos are made by Maco Custudio from Marikina.
Manila Fame’s eco-lifestyle section also introduced a special setting highlighted the country’s green and eco-sustainable sectors including those on furniture and home, fashion, gifts, and beauty and wellness.
The Design Commune is a curated exhibition space showcased products from Manila FAME’s merchandise development program.
Other products are painting and visual art organized by Dave’s Art Gallery and other art making use of local material such as sand.
Manila FAME in its website ‘promotes the Philippines as a reliable sourcing destination for high-quality and design-oriented home, fashion, holiday, architectural and interior products. It supports local small- and medium-scale enterprises and artisan communities by working with local designers to create new product collections and providing a professionally managed platform to present export products to the global market.”
Planning Officer of CITEM Diana Roldan specially said it is important that an exhibitor is ready with a catalogue of one’s products and a calling card one can readily give the potential buyer. Buyers also ask how many volumes of a product one can produce in a month. It is important to show that you are a serious businessperson, Roldan said.
CITEM’s mission says “we are committed to develop, nurture and promote globally competitive small and medium enterprises through an integrated approach to export promotions in partnership with private and government organizations”.



5 thieves loot P733,000 cash,valuables in subdivision house

BAGUIO CITY – Five still unidentified thieves stole valuables and cash worth P733,000 at a subdivision house here around 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.
A police report said the  heist happened at Block 22, Lot 45 Phase 1, Pine wood subdivision, Santa Lucia, Barangay Asin on complaint of  Ruth B. Garlit, business woman.
The male suspects   wearing bonnets, black upper garments, camouflage pants with short lugging pistols reportedly stole  the following: assorted jewelries worth P600,000.00; two wrist watches worth P40,000.00; Oppo cellphone worth  P18,000, Samsung cellphone J5 worth P9, 000.00, Samsung J2 cellphone J2 worth P4,000, laptop worth P27,000, P35,000 cash including Cal. 38 revolver and hand-held radio of security guard Jayson Budiongan.
After looting the items, the suspects drove the car of the victim as getaway car then left the vbhicle near the main gate of the subdivision and fled to unknown direction.

 Man captured in Sagada for estafa

SAGADA, Mountain Province – A man was arrested in this tourist town Tuesday for estafa. Nabbed at Barangay Patay was Manuel Amdengan after warrant was issued against him by Rodrigo F. Pascua Jr., Judge of 14th MTCT, Ramon-San Isidro, Isabela. The judge set P5,000 bail for Amdengan’s temporary liberty.

 Man nabbed in Abra for usurpation of authority

LAGAYAN, Abra – A man was arrested here Wednesday for usurpation of authority. Nabbed at Barangay Pulot was Ruben R. Sindon after warrant was issued agaisnt him by Judge Rodrigo C. Valdez Jr. of MCTC, La Paz Abra.
The judge set bail of P10,000 for Sindon’s temporary liberty.

 Man apprehended in Apayao for theft

STA. MARCELA, Apayao – A man was nabbed here Wednesday at Barangay Sipy for theft. Police arrested Alexander R. Oloraza by virtue of warrant issued by Judge Francisco Donato of RTC Branch 23, Ballesteros, Cagayan.
The judge set bail of P30,000 for Oloraza’s temporary liberty.

Faking of document lands man in jail

BAGUIO CITY – A certain Edward C. Roman was arrested here Wednesday at No. 33 Maria Basa, Pacdal for theft.
This, after Judge Rolando S. Tungol of MTC, Orani-Samal, Bataan issued warrant against the suspect while setting P12,000 for his temporary liberty.

Man hunted for shooting gardener

ITOGON, Benguet – Police are still searching for a man who shot a gardener in many parts of his body on Oct. 20.
A police report said the incident happened around 3:30 p.m. when police to the shooting incident here at Danglay, Ampucao.
          The victim was identified as Fortunato Domingo Inwa here of Pasiday, Ampucao.
           The suspect was identified as Fidel Magno. The victim was brought to Baguio General Hospital for medication.

Woman held for theft in Tabuk

TABUK CITY, Kalinga – A woman was arrested here Oct. 20, at Lucog, Balani for theft. The suspect was identified as May Ann C. Gumpal. Judge Jerson E. Angog of RTC Branch 25, Bulanao, Tabuk City earlier issued warrant agasint her while setting bail of P72,000 for her temporary liberty.

Young woman nabbed for stealing cell phone

BAGUIO CITY – A young woman was arrested here for allegedly stealing the cellphone of another here Tuesday around 7:04 a.m. at the intersection of Assumption and Harrison Roads. The victim was identified as Irine Merino Jeciel, 35, married, of No. P-9 Dontogan, Green Valley, Baguio City while the suspect was named as Alexandra Tuobusa Domingo, 18, single, of No. 2M Tacay Road, Quezon Hill.
 Investigation disclosed the suspect followed the victim and opened the pocket of the victim’s back pack then took the victim’s cell phone described as Huawei 8x worth P14, 000.
The victim sensed what was happening so she shouted for help.
Concerned citizens held the suspect and brought her to Precinct 3, PS 7. The victim’s cellphone was recovered from the suspect.
 The case was brought to the attention of inquest prosecutor Nimia Peralta who directed her incarceration at the Baguio City Jail.

Man caught, charged for operating ball mill

ITOGON, Benguet – A man was reportedly caught here Tuesday while operating a ball mill at his residence and charged for violation of Republic Act 9462 (Mining Act of the Philippines). 
Nabbed at First Gate, Ucab was Daniel Malitah Bumilac, 53. The following were confiscated from the suspect: electric motor, fan belt and two kilos of ore.

 Man held for theft in La Trinidad

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – A man was apprehended and incarcerated here Tuesday for theft. Nabbed along km 5 was Ceasar Pagian Lordios after warrant of arrest was issued against him by by Ivan Kim B. Morales, Judge of RTC, La Trinidad, Benguet.

Estafa lands woman in Tuba town jail

TUBA, Benguet – For estafa, a woman was arrested here Tuesday at Taloy Sur. Nabbed was Elsa Paus Pacyado after warrant was issued against him by Leody M. Opolinto, Judge of MTCC Branch 3, Baguio City.
The judge set bail of P80, 000 for Pacyado’s temporary liberty.

 Incentives set for best Benguet PNP stations

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet- - The Police Provincial Office will  give incentives to municipal police offices with laudable performance each month.
PPO officer-in-charge Police Col. Elmer E. Ragay devised a tool to recognize the performance of the 13 municipal police stations in the province and to keep them motivated through giving of incentives.
                This is through keeping of a monthly scorecard of respective MPS to gauge their performance in meeting the targets of decreasing the crime volume within their area of responsibility
Lt. Col. Tess B. Sarmiento, Deputy for Police Operations, said the monthly scorecard is based on the conduct of intensified police operations against unscrupulous and wanted persons, illegal drugs, illegal gambling, Presidential Decree 705 or the Forestry Law, loose firearms and other accomplishments.
                The awards is  categorized into two-the Gilas 1 category compose of the  MPS of La Trinidad, Tuba, Itogon, Buguias and Mankayan while Gilas 2 category    covering the  MPS of Bakun, Bokod, Kabayan, Kapangan, Kibungan, Sablan, and Tublay.
                The winner for the most number of accomplishments will  receive  incentives    awarded every first week of the month, added Sarmiento.
The PPO will monitor weekly operations of chiefs of police using software to ensure their operational readiness in intensifying the conduct of enhanced management of police operations as preventive measure in the occurrence of crimes, she further added.
                The PPO is also set to be on alert and standby for deployment for any eventuality especially during disasters and significant activities or incidences through rapid augmentation.
                The intensification of the conduct of OPLAN Bakal for business establishments will also be carried out by implementing curfew hours in aid of municipal ordinances which helps in curbing crimes, said Sarmiento.  
                The PPO will also sustain engagements with the stakeholders for their full support in the implementation of neighborhood watch as crime prevention and reduction strategy. (JDP/SCA-PIA CAR, Benguet)

Central Luzon cop chief assumes post

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga — The new head of the Central Luzon police assumed his post Tuesday.
Brig. Gen. Leonardo Cesneros took over the post vacated by Brig. Gen. Napoleon Coronel who was appointed head of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.
Prior to his appointment, Cesneros, a member of the PNP Academy’s Class of 1986, was the second in command at the Central Luzon police.
Meanwhile, the newly assigned director of the Cagayan Valley police, Brig. Gen. Angelito Casimiro is expected to take over the post to be vacated by Brig. Gen. Jose Mario Espino this week.             


Baguio PNP head pushes changes in towing law

By Jordan G. Habbiling

BAGUIO CITY – Col. Allen Rae F. Co, city police director urged the city government to amend Ordinance 78-2018 or “Towing Ordinance of Baguio City.”
In his letter, Co said certain provisions of the ordinance needed to be amended “in order to address current problems, issues, and needs which their office is currently encountering.”
The letter was forwarded to the Sangguniang Panlungsod ng Baguio for action. 
The city director commented on “City Towing Task Force” saying there is no actual task force established; rather, in actual practice, it is the City Engineering Office that removes obstructing vehicles along roads in the absence of a towing company.
He suggested the use of the term “Authorized City Government Office” which will aptly refer either to the CEO or any office authorized to undertake the towing. 
The CEO, however, recently clarified that a City Towing Force does exist or performing functions.
Also, the addition of “motorcycle” in the definition of terms was suggested implicating that any two-wheeled vehicle will be towed when parked along public roads impeding the flow of traffic or causing traffic hazards.
Co proposed the inclusion of towing fees for erring motorcycle owners worth P500 for the first four kilometer with an additional charge of P50. 00 for each succeeding kilometer. 
Section 4 of the ordinance (authority to remove and impound) mentions “City Parking Management Office” as one of the authorized offices to remove an obstructing vehicle from the road.
The BCPO suggested the creation of a City Traffic and Transportation Management Office (CTTMO).
According to Co, the name of such office (CTTMO) is more appropriate as it is broader and more general in scope encompassing traffic and transportation, parking, and other related matters. 
Section 18 of the ordinance states “Towing without the presence of a police officer or duly deputized enforcer shall be considered carnapping.”
Co wanted the phrase “duly deputized enforcer” removed to ensure  prevention of any possible carnapping incident by exclusively authorizing police officers who are educated and trained in dealing with criminal acts including carnapping.
Another proposed amendment was the inclusion of a 5-minute waiting time for the vehicle owner to remove his vehicle from where it is parked. Under the amendment, any unattended illegally parked vehicle will be towed if the owner fails to appear after five minutes of waiting by the towing personnel.


Baguio public schools recipients of toilet facilities

BAGUIO CITY – Some 10 public elementary public schools here  will be recipients to  toilet blocks, handwash facilities and water tanks  that will be donated and constructed  by the Rotary Club of Baguio Highlands in partnership with Shin-yangsan Rotary Club of Republic of Korea
This was formally   launched Friday with signing of  agreement by RCBH  charter president Tom Panis and Baguio school division superintendent Marie Carolyn B Verano.
The P4 million project is aimed at helping students in maintaining personal hygiene in public schools.
The Baguio Schools Division will select final list of schools among the 18 assessed by the Rotary Club of Baguio Highlands.


Cop wounded, Kalinga soldier dead in Mt Prov NPA-AFP clash

>> Tuesday, October 29, 2019

BESAO, Mountain Province – A soldier died while a policeman was wounded when New People’s Army guerillas attacked government forces here Thursday around 2 p.m. at the boundary of this town and Sagada.     

Slain was Cpl. Felimon Anilom Naganag of Calanan and Tabuk City, Kalinga who was assigned at the Special Forces Regiment and Airforce of the Philippine Army.
Naganag perished due to two gunshots which hit his head and back.
According to one of his comrades, Naganag was heard saying, “Adda tamak (I’m hit)” then silence.
Naganag was declared dead on arrival by Dr. Yolanda Calicdan at Besao District Hospital around 8 p.m. Thursday.
Patrolman Hebron B. Awisan of the Philippine National Police tied to rescue Naganag but he was shot on his left arm.
He was attended to by medical staff at the BDH and was declared under a stable condition by Dr. Calicdan.
Awisan was transferred to another hospital Friday morning. This, while the body of Naganag was airlifted to Tabuk City around 12 noon on Friday.
Besao residents said gunfire was heard coming from Naltit then Batikalang, below Angasan (Ampacao mountain), pasture lands and forest areas of Suquib, this municipality.
The encounter between the NPA guerillas and government troopers started around 2 p.m. Thursday.
Around 4 p.m., army soldiers reported accosted 10 farmers at Mt. Ampacao and barred them from going to their fields. 
Earsplitting gun shots were heard at barangays Suquib, Besao East and Besao West, residents said.
Municipal officials which included MLGOO’s Ray Fiar-od, Fire Marshall Ireneo Agcapen and BFP personnel were reportedly on their way back to Kin-iway from Ambagiw when they were informed of the incident.
The group attended the barangay assembly of Ambagiw. Upon reaching the municipal hall, Vice Mayor June Lopsoten, Fiar-od and MDRRMO engineer Mildred Piluden activated the DRRM Operations Center.
Mayor Johnson Bantog II was out of town due to official functions. Initial information that reached the group was the presence of a wounded army soldiers
The municipal ambulance ferrying personnel from the Besao BFP Station was immediately dispatched to Suquib accompanied by military forces.
According to residents of Suquib, they heard gunshots emanating from Naltit at around 2.15 p.m. By 4 p.m., Barangay Captain Frederick Andogan activated the BDRRM operations center.
The barangay chairman with two other barangay officials accompanied by military personnel who arrived from the PHQ to provide reinforcement stationed themselves at Lamagan, Suquib to wait for the arrival of the soldier who was earlier reported as wounded in action. They were later joined by the personnel from the Besao BFP Station.
Due to the armed conflict between the forces of the 81st IB and members of the NPArmy on the mountain top of Sitio Dandanac, Tamboan on July 14-15, 2018, the Municipal Peace and Order Council of this municipality passed Resolution No. 02 s. 2018 banning presence and illegal activities of “lawless elements in Besao.”
                At around 3 p.m. Friday, a loud explosion erupted at Pak-o, a farmland area of Besao East.


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