COVID-19 Crisis: ECQ in Metro Manila to be extended beyond August 20?

The Manila Bulletin reported yesterday that Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Benhur Abalos confirmed that he and the National Capital Region (NCR) mayors will meet very soon to talk about the possible extension of the ongoing enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) which itself was announced to last until August 20, 2021. Meanwhile, a GMA Network news report states that the Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) expressed that a lockdown is not the remedy and that the reopening of the economy is necessary.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report regarding Abalos and the Metro Manila mayors. Some parts in boldface…

Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Benhur Abalos said he and the mayors of the National Capital Region (NCR) will discuss the possible extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) period in the metropolis this coming week.

Abalos made this revelation in an interview over DZBB radio on Sunday, Aug. 15.

“Martes or Miyerkules mag-uusap po kami, marami kang babalansehin diyan (We will talk either Tuesday or Wednesday, you have to balance a lot of things there),” said Abalos, who is the concurrent chair of the Metro Manila Council (MMC).

He said the factors that need to be considered in such talks are the number of those who will have no work as a result of the possible ECQ extension, the hospitalization rate for coroanvirus disease (COVID-19) cases, and the number of vaccinated persons in Metro Manila.

“Kasi kung mag-i-ECQ ka, ayuda nanaman yan eh (Another round of ECQ means another round of cash aid),” he pointed out.

Abalos reiterated in the interview that the mayor-members of MMC have yet to come to an agreement on whether or not to extend the imposition of ECQ, contrary to a news report over the weekend.

“Hindi pa po nag-uusap tungkol doon, pag-uusapan pa lang po (We haven’t talked about that yet, but we will),” he noted.

The report quoted MMC chair, Parañaque City Mayor Edwin Olivarez as saying that the local chief executives have agreed during a meeting to extend the ECQ up to Aug. 30. Abalos has denied this, saying that Olivarez was just misquoted.

In addition, Abalos and the Metro Manila mayors should be aware of the presence of the Lambda variant in the Philippines. For sure that will be discussed in their meeting.

Now, we focus on the economic side with this excerpt from the GMA news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP) on Saturday said reopening of the economy is necessary to prevent further economic damage and job losses, along with continued rollout of COVID-19 vaccines and adherence to health protocols.

“It’s time we learn that lockdown is not the remedy,” ECOP president Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr. said in a statement.

“Let’s compromise, we have to think that the economy is more important and we have to live with COVID-19,” he said.

Ortiz-Luis made the statement amid speculations of possible extension of the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila after August 20.

Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez earlier said that the possibility of extending the ECQ in Metro Manila for another three weeks is not yet on the table, and talks of a five-week ECQ are mere rumors and disinformation.

Citing government estimates, Ortiz-Luis said lockdowns cost the economy P150 billion a week, or P300 billion for the two-week ECQ.

Further, he pointed out that the estimated lockdown losses are on top of business closures that lead to unemployment.

“It would have been much productive and useful to channel even a fifth of these losses to strengthen our healthcare system to address the cases and for prevention measures,” the ECOP chief said.

Ortiz-Luis, likewise, noted that the number of deaths related to the coronavirus is small compared to those who die due to other diseases, and even suicide and hunger.

He said there is thus a need to intensify monitoring of severe cases as a large majority of COVID-19 infections are asymptomatic.

“Let us not be fixated on the numbers. Instead, let us intensify and fast-track our vaccination.

“Let us not forget practicing health protocols and comply with quarantine classifications. Continue adding hospital rooms, facilities, COVID-19 centers…,” he said.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Do you think that the MMDA and the Metro Manila mayors will recommend an extension of the ECQ knowing that such a move will require another round of releasing cash aid/ayuda? Do you think the ECOP is correct with the economic damage estimates of P150 billion per week of lockdown?

Within your city of residence, are you satisfied with the way that your local government and its partners are organizing the registration, set-ups and COVID-19 vaccination operations?

Did you hear the recent news about a fully vaccinated patient (two doses in Mandaluyong City) who somehow got a third shot of COVID-19 vaccine in another city?

Still within your city, how many people do you personally know lost their jobs because of the most recent ECQ? Are there any business owners you know who had no choice but to scale down operations or shut down entirely all because of the ECQ?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

Business tycoon Ramon S. Ang will give P22 million in incentives to Olympic medalists

There is no doubt that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games was historic for the Philippines thanks to Hidilyn Diaz, Nesthy Petecio, Carlo Paalam and Eumir Marcial who won four medals combined, including the Olympic gold (in women’s weightlifting).

In addition to the established law that guaranteed that the Olympic medalists will receive millions of pesos worth of incentives from the national government, San Miguel Corporation (SMC) president Ramon S. Ang will give over P20 million more in incentives to them according to a recent report by the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the PNA article. Some parts in boldface…

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) president Ramon S. Ang will give Tokyo Olympics medalists, led by the country’s very first gold medal winner Hidilyn Diaz, a total of PHP22 million in incentives for accomplishing the Philippines’ best Olympic performance to date, in 97 years of competing in the foremost international competition.

Ang’s “personal gift” or incentive to the winning athletes, as earlier announced by the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) prior to the Summer Games, will consist of PHP10 million for weightlifter Diaz, PHP5 million each for boxers Carlo Paalam and Nesthy Petecio for winning silver medals, and PHP2 million for boxer Eumir Marcial’s bronze finish.

“As a longtime partner and supporter of Philippine sports, I’m so happy for our athletes. All their hard work paid off. They’ve opened the eyes of so many Filipinos sports patrons, fans, and aspiring athletes that indeed, we Filipinos can compete and win against the best in the world in the Olympics. This is just the beginning. We have the momentum. We can only get stronger in the succeeding Olympics,” Ang said in a news release on Monday.

“I’m especially grateful to Hidilyn, whom we’ve supported for several years now, for giving honor to the country by winning our very first Olympic gold medal. We can build on these successes to develop stronger sports programs and produce more Olympic winners like Hidilyn, Carlo, Nesthy, and Eumir,” he added.

Ang also said the Olympic athletes, as well as their coaches and teams, gave the Philippines more than just medals.

“The message of this Olympic campaign for us Filipinos is clear. We are resilient in the face of challenges and we do not back down from adversity. This pandemic is perhaps one of the greatest challenges in our lifetime. Thank you Hidilyn, Carlo, Nesthy, and Eumir for giving us hope and inspiration during this critical time. You showed us that nothing is impossible,” Ang said.

Ang added that as the Olympics showcased the outstanding athletic feats that fully-trained athletes are capable of, it also serves as a reminder that people are not limited, and that Filipinos should endeavor to keep fit and healthy in the face of Covid-19 pandemic.

“Aside from following health protocols to stop the transmission of the virus and getting vaccinated, we should also do our best to make sure we are mentally and physically fit and healthy during this crisis. I believe that will help us a lot in coping with the stresses of this time,” Ang said.

Before the pandemic, SMC consistently supported the country’s participation and hosting of international competitions, including the staging of 2019 Southeast Asian Games.

Wow! The deep generosity of Ramon S. Ang is undeniable and he is absolutely right that great achievers who competed in very tough competitions should be rewarded handsomely. While Republic Act Number 10699 (RA10699) guarantees that the national government will release incentives for national athletes who won medals in specific competitions, private sector-provided incentives are undeniably helpful and very welcome. Thank our Heavenly Father for all the success achieved and the blessings that manifested! Thank the Lord also for the tremendous Olympic success the Philippines achieved!

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Are you very happy for everything that our nation’s four Olympic medalists achieved for the Filipino people at the Tokyo Olympics? Are you delighted to learn that the Olympic medalists as well as all the other Philippine Team members who did not win medals at the Tokyo Olympics will be rewarded accordingly?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

COVID-19 Crisis: Almost 100,000 residents receive financial aid (ayuda) in Las Piñas City

If you are a qualified recipient of financial aid from the national government that is being distributed by the local government units (LGUs) in relation to the recent ECQ (enhanced community quarantine), were you able to receive the money?

In relation to this, there is an update about the financial aid being distributed by the City Government of Las Piñas to its constituents.

The Manila Bulletin reported the other day – with Mayor Imelda Aguilar as their source – that almost one hundred thousand city residents have received the financial aid ranging from P1,000 to P4,000. To be more specific, the official count was reported at 98,648 people of Las Piñas who received the money. To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Manila Bulletin’s report…

Aguilar said the city government recorded a total of 124,435 beneficiaries listed and approved by the Department of Social Welfare and Development-National Capital Region (DSWD-NCR). Most of them were affected by the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ).

The mayor said the city government received a total of P501 million from the national government intended for the beneficiaries of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) and Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

The city government has already handed out about 65.62% of the P501-million allocation to the beneficiaries in 20 distribution points, according to Aguilar.

She said they still have a total of P172,224,000 that will be distributed to the remaining qualified beneficiaries.

As of this writing, the City Government is moving closer to achieving 100% distribution of the national government funds. The city sure has lots of distribution points set at twenty, which apparently reflects the number of barangays in their jurisdiction.

If anyone of you reading this is a certified resident of Las Piñas City and if you have received (or are still trying to receive) the so-called ayuda, you might want to share to me your experience or observations about the distribution by contacting me directly online.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City Government to include qualified families in villages, subdivisions affected by ECQ to ‘ayuda’ distribution

Following the distribution of emergency subsidy to families from priority groups who were affected by the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), the City Government of Muntinlupa announced that it will include qualified beneficiaries from local subdivisions and villages for the financial assistance program.

The Muntinlupa Social Service Department has distributed the emergency subsidy to initial beneficiaries who were members of the Social Amelioration Program, Waitlisted Individuals (SAP), and Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) as prescribed by the Joint Memorandum Circular of DSWD, DILG, and DND to be the priority groups for the financial assistance.

Muntinlupa Public Information Officer Tez Navarro said that after the pay-out for priority groups, qualified residents who were not included in the previous list of beneficiaries, even those living or renting in villages and subdivisions, can apply for the emergency subsidy.

She clarifies that other city residents who are not beneficiaries of SAP, those who are SAP waitlisted, and 4Ps can receive the financial assistance given that they qualify the requirements from the JMC.

Navarro noted that individuals who were directly affected by the recent imposition of the ECQ need to coordinate with their respective barangays and homeowners’ associations (HOAs) to fill-up a Client Information Sheet (CIS) and submit necessary documents. The submission of CIS to the barangays was set from April 19 to 22, 2021.

The allocated budget for Muntinlupa City is P442,191,000 which covers 80% of the local population as projected by National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

The City Government has established a Grievance and Appeals Committee (GAC) to resolve issues and concerns from the beneficiaries. As of April 19, Muntinlupa GAC has responded to 809 inquiries sent via email and resolved 83 phone call inquiries.

Recently, Muntinlupa has requested an extension for the distribution of emergency subsidy to the DILG. Initially, local government units (LGUs) are enjoined to conduct the distribution of the emergency subsidy within 15 calendar days from release of Notice of Cash Allocation if the assistance is done in cash and within 30 days if assistance is given in kind.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi signed an executive order for the distribution of emergency subsidy in cash amounting to P1,000 per individual with a maximum amount of P4,000 per family to target beneficiaries.

The local exec noted that the assistance will be in cash as the local government is continuously providing food packs to city residents. Muntinlupa LGU has distributed 72,900 food boxes to city residents from January 2021 to April 2021.

+++++

The above information was provided by the City Government of Muntinlupa for the purpose of public information and transparency. Some parts were edited for this website.

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Las Piñas City Government released P154.4 million in cash aid payout so far (according to Manila Bulletin)

Hey readers! You heard about the local government units (LGUs) doing what they can to release to their respective constituents the cash assistance provided by the national government in relation to the ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) that happened in recent times?

Recently the City Government of Las Piñas was reported by the Manila Bulletin to be doing its job. To be clear, distribution is not the only thing that the LGU should do but also avoid the temptations of using the politician’s name, photo or image in the said distribution. The fund is popularly referred to as ayuda.

Going back to Las Piñas City, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin report. Key details in bold…

The Las Piñas City government completed a 30.82 percent payout to a total of 126,000 qualified beneficiaries of the P1,000 up to P4,000 financial assistance coming from the national government.

Mayor Imelda Aguilar said the city government received P501 million from the national government for distribution to beneficiaries listed under the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) and approved by the Department of Social Welfare and Development Office-National Capital Region (DSWD-NCR).

Aguilar also said the other beneficiaries were those from the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

Based on the financial assistance report provided by the city government, it has already released a total of 154,402,000 to about 44,043 beneficiaries coming from 20 barangays in the city affected by the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ).

The mayor said the city government still has P346,598,000 for distribution

Aguilar said the payout of the financial assistance is being held simultaneously in 20 distribution sites at the covered court of each barangay.

To put things in perspective, P154,402,000 (note: did you notice the lack of a Peso indicator in Manila Bulletin’s report above?) out of the grand total of P501,000,000 (this figure based on the above details) is equivalent to 30.82%. The City Government still has a long way to go before all the national government-provided funds have fully been released. For her part, Mayor Imelda Aguilar said (in the Manila Bulletin report) that her administration expects to finish the payout of the funds before the deadline given to each LGU. For insight, watch this news video.

If anyone of you reading this is a certified resident of Las Piñas City and if you have received (or are still trying to receive) the so-called ayuda, you might want to share to me your experience or observations about the distribution by contacting me directly online.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

My Observations: Century Club of Tahanan’s Bingo Socials Attract Lots of Participants

Between one hundred eighty to two hundred people participated in the Bingo Socials fund-raising event of the Century Club of Tahanan which was held on October 12 at the covered court in Tahanan Village, Barangay BF Homes, Parañaque City. The numbers were confirmed to me by Century Club’s president Florencia Umali who spearheaded the organizing of the games.

I personally looked around and took pictures for this article you are reading. Fortunately for me, I arrived just before City Councilor Tess de Asis delivered a short speech to the participants and the spectators. De Asis, who is best known in the City Government for her enduring legacy on local education and is now serving her third and final term, contributed to the prizes.

20191012_184339.jpg
A raffle prize winner posing for a picture with Century Club president Florencia Umali and City Councilor Tess de Asis.

Apart from the councilor, Umali confirmed to me that Mayor Edwin Olivarez, Vice Mayor Rico Golez and Barangay BF Homes chairman Paolo Marquez respectively donated to the cash prizes of the event. Congresswoman Joy Tambunting donate a mobile phone while City Councilors Wahoo Sotto, Giovanni Esplana, Bong Benzon, Jackie Bustamante-Mendoza, Binky Favis and Jean Yllana donated in kind resulting multiple prizes for winners.

Meanwhile, the Tahanan Homeowners Association (THA) and Martin Guzman of Village Cafe gave gift certificates to the event.

The participants were greeted personally by Councilors Sotto, Benzon and Congressman Eric Olivarez when they respectively visited the event. Olivarez even performed a dance to amuse the participants.

20191012_185115.jpg
A view from one side…

20191012_184305.jpg
…and from another side.

Umali told me that her club not only managed to raise some funds but also witnessed the happiness the participants had playing the bingo games and the smiles on the faces of very fortunate individuals who won cash prizes or raffle prizes. She added that the Bingo Socials proved to be effective in helping members of the local community get to know the new homeowners and, at the same time, promote camaraderie between them.

Ultimately the Bingo Socials brought the residents together which fit in nicely with Tahanan Village’s legacy of being one of the most neighbor-friendly villages not only in Barangay BF Homes but in South Metro Manila as a whole. The fact that several public officials of the city contributed to the prizes and made guest appearances showed that Century Club is a highly credible private club of senior citizens to them. Just a few months ago, no less than Office of Senior Citizen Affairs of Parañaque (OSCA-PQUE) officer-in-charge Dante Pacheco attended Century Club’s general meeting and made notable announcements.

Congratulations to Century Club for an event nicely pulled off!

 

 

 

 

Bingo Socials in Tahanan Village set for October 12

Hi everyone! It’s me again with another Barangay BF Homes community and South Metro Manila update for you all.

If you like playing bingo games and want to win a prize or two, then Tahanan Village in Parañaque City is your next destination as the Bingo Socials will be held there on October 12 at 5PM. The precise venue is the covered court of the village which is just a short walk away from the clubhouse of the Tahanan Homeowners Association (THA).

FB_IMG_1569973386686.jpg
This is what a ticket of the Bingo Socials of CCTI looks like. (photo published with permission)

Organized by the Century Club of Tahanan, Inc. (CCTI), the Bingo Socials is a fund-raising event that will support the club’s upcoming projects.

According to Century Club of Tahanan, Inc. president Florencia Umali, tickets are currently available and still for sale. Tickets are priced at P50 each while the block-out tickets are sold at P100 each.

“We have ten games and two block-out (blackout) for the grand prize,” she said. Umali stressed that details about the prizes will be announced soon as they are still finalizing them.

For those of you who are living outside of Tahanan Village, here is the good news – non-residents (visitors) are welcome to enter the village, buy tickets and play in the Bingo Socials. If you are a non-resident driving a vehicle that does not have a Tahanan Village sticker, you just have to tell the village gate guard you will play in the bingo, then leave your ID card so that you can enter.

If you have inquiries or you intend to buy tickets and play in the bingo, contact CCTI president Florencia Umali now at mobile phone number 0920-9046732.

For the newcomers reading this, Century Club of Tahanan, Inc. is a private club of senior citizens who live inside Tahanan Village. The club is recognized by the the Office of Senior Citizens Affairs of Parañaque City (OSCA-Parañaque).

New deadline for business permit renewal in Muntinlupa is now January 31, 2019

wanny

This is for those who have businesses operating in the City of Muntinlupa. The Business Permit and Licensing Office of Muntinlupa (BPLO-Muntinlupa) announced today that it has officially extended this year’s deadline for renewing business permits from January 20, 2019 to January 31, 2019.

BPLO-Muntinlupa wants business owners reading this to skip the habit of doing registration close to the deadline and instead pay the dues early so that penalties will be avoided. The place to visit for renewing your business permits is at the Muntinlupa Sports Complex in Barangay Tunasan with the schedule of Monday to Friday, 8AM to 5PM.

For your convenience, a “One-Stop Shop” arrangement in the Business Permit Renewal Hub has been installed in the venue. The requirements from Barangay Halls and Regulatory Offices can be processed in the location of the Renewal as representatives of said agencies will be rendering services simultaneously.

For the renewal, taxpayers can use debit cards to pay. There are also mobile ATMs (automatic teller machines) from BDO (Banco de Oro) and Landbank complete with a CCTV (Closed Circuit Television System) placed across the venue. Business owners registering in the renewal may also access the internet through a free wi-fi connection provided by Globe Telecom and Smart.

Free rides? They are being provided for you by means of shuttle services and the pick-up points are located at Muntinlupa City Hall Quadrangle in Putatan and Muntinlupa City Public Market in Alabang.

The list of requirements is available for viewing at the Muntinlupa BPLO Facebook page. For inquiries, call the department’s hotline at 851-BPLO (2756) or 821-3266 now.

Thanks for reading and good luck with your business pursuits. The City of Muntinlupa has been honored for being a very business-friendly city.