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Davao City to give P5 M aid for Lawin rehab

The Davao City government will be giving out aid amounting to P5 million to six provinces affected by Super Typhoon Lawin, which hit the country last week. The city council authorized Mayor Sara Duterte to release the amount from the city’s disaster fund. Assistance will be given to the provinces of Cagayan, Ilocos Norte, La Union, Apayao, Mountain Province and Kalinga. Cagayan will be receiving the largest share of the donation, amounting to P1.8 million, while Kalinga will be receiving P1.6 million. Ilocos Norte will be given P900,000, while the Mountain Province will be given P350,000. La Union will receive P200,000 in aid, with Apayao to receive P150,000.

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7 Malvar jail escapees recaptured

By Lyka Manalo Seven prisoners who bolted their cell in Malvar, Batangas were recaptured as police continue the hunt for the remaining five fugitives. Provincial Police Information Officer Inspector Hazel Luma-ang said the seven escapees were arrested in Mataas na Kahoy and Tanauan City in Batangas while others were cornered in Tiaong and Pagbilao in Quezon province. Luma-ang identified the arrested as El King Leonida, Melvin Ona, Arvie Villegas, Freddie Santos, Artemio Castillo Jr., John Raniel Castillo and Morris Rap Publico. Six of the inmates are charged with violation of RA 9165 (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act) while Santos faces murder. Malvar’s chief of police, Senior Inspector Albert Fabregas, and three policemen were relieved from their post right after the jailbreak. Report said the 12 prisoners have managed to escape by sawing off the steel bar of …

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SOCCSKSARGEN to launch ‘Festival of First Peoples’

KORONADAL CITY -- SOCCSKSARGEN's regional tourism office has invited local and foreign tourists to take part in the "Tau SOX: Festival of First Peoples" that begins Wednesday. The festival will feature the cultures of the SOCCSKSARGEN region, which consists of the provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, North Cotabato and Sarangani, and the cities of Cotabato, Kidapawan, Koronadal, Tacurong and Gen. Santos. Explaining the festival's name, director of the regional tourism office, Nelly Dillera, said “Tau SOX” simply means people of "SOX" or the SOCCSKSARGEN region. "Tau", Dillera said, was lifted from the Nusantau (Tau) Hypothesis that states that there have been TAU or people traveling to the NUS or south even in pre-historic times. The Nusantau Hypothesis says that “Nus” is an Austronesian root word which means “south” and “tao” or “tau” refers …

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P30 million for Iloilo hospital upgrade

Iloilo City — The P30-million fund for the improvement of the Iloilo Provincial Hospital has been released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM). Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. said the budget includes the construction of a new ward for indigent patients. Defensor said the P30-million is part of the P101.3-million fund allotted by Department of Health (DOH) for Western Visayas under its Health Facilities Enhancement Program (HFEP). Defensor said the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will find the private contractor for the project. The DOH is also funding the upgrading of health facilities in Aklan, Capiz, Guimaras, and Negros Occidental provinces.

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3 village officials in complaint

Iloilo City — Three barangay officials of Monica-Blumentritt in Iloilo City are facing a complaint of obstruction of justice for allegedly being uncooperative in the arrest of another village official believed to be involved in the illegal drug trade. Charged before the Office of the Ombudsman Visayas are Barangay Captain Keith Espinosa, and barangay councilors Arturo Atinado and Amadeo Atinado. The complaints were filed by Superintendent Ramir Gallardo, team leader of Regional Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operation Task Group of Police Regional Office (PRO-6). Gallardo said the three officials refused to sign a certification as witnesses to the October 2 police raid during which illegal drugs were seized from Jesus Espinosa Jr., a village councilor and husband of the barangay captain. Espinosa escaped during the raid but eventually surrendered days later. He is said to be …

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Cebu next Abu Sayyaf target?

Cebu City – Police and government officials in Cebu have received information that at least six members of the Abu Sayyaf extremist group arrived in Cebu last Saturday. Supt. Julian Entoma, head of the Regional Intelligence Division of the police regional office, said the six men, headed by a Kumander Messiah, came from Dipolog, where they took a boat to Dumaguete before proceeding to Cebu. Entoma said the group could be in Cebu to sow terror or kidnap prominent personalities here. Sensing that the police has learned of their presence, some of the men have already left Cebu, Entoma said. “Based on our monitoring they came here to kidnap prominent personalities although they are also likely targeting malls and other commercial establishments,” he said. Entoma did not say where exactly in Cebu the remaining Abu …

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School-based dengue immunization set

Cebu City – The Department of Health (DOH) said the regionwide school-based dengue immunization program in Central Visayas will be launched at the end of this year or early next year. This means Central Visayas will no longer have to wait for the completion of the first dengue vaccination in three pilot areas in Luzon. Dr. Shelbay Blanco, DOH 7 Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit cluster head, said the details of the plan are still with the DOH head office. In June the DOH included Central Visayas in the proposed school-based immunization program following a rise in the number of dengue cases in the region. As a result, the regional DOH has placed Central Visayas on high dengue alert, laying out programs not only to control the mosquito population but also to curb the …

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MILF, AFP engage in ‘shootout’

Camp Siongco, Maguindanao – It was one shootout that the protagonists were only too happy to be engaged in. Combatants of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) were joined by soldiers from the Army’s Sixth Infantry Division (6ID) Sunday in a “Shoot for Peace” in a friendly shootfest that took their erstwhile bloody encounters in the battlefields to the confines of a shooting range. “The event is a peace-building version of bloody shootouts among soldiers and combatants of the MILF and MNLF in previous years. It’s an innovation conceived by the new 6ID leadership to intensify confidence-building among the three groups,” Lt. Col. Markton Abo, 6ID spokesman, said. The MILF sent to the “Shoot for Peace” event a contingent consisting of members of its coordinating committee for cessation of hostilities (CCCH), which is …

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ARMM health workers complete USAID program

By  Antonio L. Colina IV Davao City – Thirty-eight leaders from the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) have completed a two-year United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-supported Health Leadership and Governance Program (HLGP) that sought to improve quality, affordability, access, availability of health care to the Moro people in this region. In a statement released by the US Embassy in the Philippines, the graduates from 18 different municipalities in ARMM were expected to develop the delivery of health care services, improve the number of midwives and facility-based deliveries, and increase the number of Philhealth-accredited facilities and 24-hour reproductive health units. “Three mayors from the municipalities of Tandubas (Tawi-Tawi), Akbar (Basilan) and Sultan Mastura (Maguindanao), and one Municipal Health Officer from Masiu (Lanao del Sur), all alumni of the program, shared moving …

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Backflow keeps 55 villages in CL under floodwater

Calumpit, Bulacan/City Of San Fernando, Pampanga — Despite sunny weather, backflow of floods in Nueva Ecija and Pampanga during supertyphoon “Lawin” last week has now submerged 21 low-lying barangays (villages) in Calumpit, Bulacan and 34 more in the towns of Macabebe, San Luis, San Simon, and Apalit in Pampanga. It was supposed to be a smiling sunny day in Calumpit yesterday, but as residents stepped out of their homes they found themselves wading through flood with a height of 2 feet – and in some areas even four feet. Car owners had to move their vehicles to high ground. The Calumpit-Hagonoy Road was impassable to light vehicles in the area of San Jose, Purok 1. A natural catch basin in Central Luzon, Calumpit began to take in water from Nueva Ecija and Pampanga …

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