Today, hundreds of people went to the Satellite Registration processing organized by the Commission on Elections – Parañaque City office (COMELEC-PQUE) at Robinsons Townville (part of Pergola Mall) service of the residents of Barangay BF Homes who want to register themselves as voters as well as local voters who want to adjust their statuses.
To put things in perspective, no less than Barangay BF Homes chairman Paolo Marquez confirmed to me that, indeed, the whole day process was requested by him and members of the Barangay Council which the COMELEC-PQUE agreed to. It is important to keep in mind that Barangay BF Homes is still the largest barangay in the city in terms of voters and it is easily the hot spot for mayoral and vice-mayoral candidates to campaign in when it comes to local elections. Barangay BF Homes is part of the city’s 2nd district.
In the morning, there already was a line of people before 8AM just outside the Elsie Gatches entry into Robinsons Supermarket BF Homes. Once opened, they entered and went up to the 2nd floor for the registration. The process was done in five steps: verification of valid IDs, recording/releasing of forms, interview for precinct assignment, capturing of biometrics and the thumb marking process (with the release of claim stub).
The way the situation is right now here in the Philippines, the next national and local elections won’t be held until May 2022. When it comes to the next Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan, the next election is currently set for May 2020 although there is an ongoing effort in Congress to have it postponed to May 2023 (a response to President Rodrigo Duterte’s request during his 2019 State of the Nation Address).
Going back to the Satellite Registration for Barangay BF Homes, COMELEC-PQUE personnel confirmed to me that they will only accept up to five hundred people who apply to get registered formally as voters or, in the case of voters, have their statuses adjusted (including status reactivation for voters who failed to vote in successive elections).
As I noticed today, there were several teenagers who lined up to get registered. This was because the COMELEC-PQUE opened voter registration to youth aged 15 to 17-years-old, plus the Sangguniang Kabataan of Barangay BF Homes (BFSK) invited youth from around the community to take advantage of the free service. This was confirmed to me by no less than BFSK chairperson Mariel Angela Tumang. I saw Tumang as well as BFSK Kagawads Irene Juanico and Stephanie Sebullen plus other barangay personnel help out. Free coffee was provided by the office of Parañaque City Councilor Wahoo Sotto.
There were a few curious shoppers who passed by and asked me what was going on. After I answered the question, they decided to try to get registered.
For more South Metro Manila and BF Homes developments, come back here soon.
In response to a certain city government’s claim that it has joined other cities on being 100% compliant with the national government order to clear roads of obstructions, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)stated on September 13 that no local government unit (LGU) yet has been declared as fully compliant.
“We have not made any determination on which LGUs are fully compliant because the assessment of all LGUs will come after the 60-day deadline which will be on September 29, 2019,” DILG spokesperson and Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said in a statement.
Malaya made the clarification in response to the claim made by the City Government of Makati that it has joined the cities of Marikina, Malabon, Navotas, Pasay, San Juan, Valenzuela and the municipality of Pateros, which earlier reports said are 100-percent compliant with the campaign to clear roads of obstructions, ahead of the 60-day deadline imposed by the DILG.
Citing the department’s Memorandum Circular No. 121-2019, Undersecretary Malaya said full compliance with the order is not based on road clearing operations alone.
Malaya specified that in order for an LGU to be declared as fully compliant, it should enact or revisit ordinances that are related to road clearing, the banning of illegal construction, preparing an inventory of roads within their jurisdiction, implementing displacement strategies and the like.
He added that compliance reports on the matter submitted by LGUs to the DILG regional offices and its Bureau of Local Government Supervision (BLGS) are still subject to validation.
Speaking of validation with regards to South Metro Manila, the City Government of Las Piñas claimed on its September 13, 2019 Facebook page post that the DILG “has validated the 100% completion of the clearing operations weeks ahead of the scheduled deadline on September 29,” in relation to DILG Undersecretary RJ Echiverri’s very recent visit and inspection of the result of the local clearing operation which involved the presence of Mayor Imelda “Mel” Aguilar and other city officials.
Excerpt from the City Government of Las Piñas Facebook page post:
The ocular inspection validated the report of Mayor Mel Aguilar and the city government’s Task Force Kaayusan. DILG has validated the 100% completion of the clearing operations weeks ahead of the scheduled deadline on September 29.
Undersecretary Echiverri gave positive comments about the result of the clearing operations in Las Piñas.
Now if only the DILG itself will react to the Facebook claim of the City Government of Las Piñas.
Today the City Government announced that Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary RJ Echiverri visited the city, met officials (led by Mayor Imelda “Mel” Aguilar), inspected the primary and secondary roads where the clearing operations were done. He was accompanied by the Mayor and some other local officials.
According to the City Government, Undersecretary Echiverri gave positive comments about the result of the clearing operation done locally by Task Force Kaayusan and that the DILG validated it.
Part of the team that accompanied Mayor Aguilar, Vice Mayor April Aguilar-Nery (daughter of the mayor), and Undersecretary Echiverri during the inspection were Ms. Mary Anne Planas, Mr. Walsur Espinosa, Engr. Rose Bantog, Mr. Jose Gonzales, Dr. August Basangan, Engr. Cezar Perillo, Mr. Wifredo Gaerlan, Mr. Reynaldo Balagulan, Atty. Glenda Lucena and former city councilors Mark Santos and Henry Medina.
Anyone among you readers from Las Piñas City? Were you able to see the above officials inspecting the cleared areas of the city?
Please feel free to reply in the comments section below.
July 25 of every year will mark the observation of National Campus Press Freedom Dayin all educational institutions.
This is the result of Republic Act Number 11440 (National Campus Press Freedom Day Act) that was signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte on August 28 and it was only yesterday (September 10) that a copy of the document (which includes signatures of Senate President Tito Sotto and then Speaker of the House Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo) was released to the media.
“It is hereby declared the policy of the State to promote, protect, and safeguard the constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of expression, speech, and of the press,” the law read.
“As part of media, the campus press is an important institution in promoting and protecting the freedom of the press and the freedom of expression. As a testament to its remarkable contribution in the continued advancement of these freedoms, the State shall, as a matter of policy, promote the observance of July 25 of every year as ‘National Campus Press Freedom Day’,” it added.
Under RA 11440, educational institutions are mandated to provide full support and assistance to the preparation of the annual program of activities and events to be conducted by students in observance of National Campus Press Freedom Day.
It remains to be seen, however, if the campus press (specifically the news publishing divisions) of academic institutions nationwide would warmly embrace RA 11440.
Another thing to point out is whether or not National Campus Press Freedom Day will add anything at all on inspiring student writers to learn better and improve their craft before graduating and searching for writing-related jobs.
On face value, the campus press is supposed to help students develop their skills in writing news, features and opinions, as well as verifying the facts. Such orientation is supposed to help these future professional writers find the right companies (that offer writing posts) for jobs from the national-level press right down to the local communities.
If you – the reader – are one of those aspiring to work professionally as writers in the near future, be aware that there are some local community publications around that prefer to publish propaganda (self-serving and promotional in nature) instead of practicing real journalism. The good news here is that there are lots of writing-related jobs offered by companies (including those founded by foreign investors) here in the Philippines that focus more on marketing, SEO (search engine optimization), client-specific documentation and other types of writing jobs that are different from journalism and propaganda.
You really want to work as a professional writer with a competitive salary and attractive benefits? Search for jobs in the corporate sector and the national-level media outlets.
In today’s world of social media and widespread wireless access to the Internet (with multiple Wi-Fi spots present nationwide combined with more Filipinos acquiring smartphones), accessing news online is gradually becoming the more preferred way for people looking for news. Going back to National Campus Press Freedom Day, we will find out soon enough if it will help improve the standards of students aspiring to be writers and news searchers.
The City Government of Las Piñas announced on September 4 that it has accomplished 100% completion of road clearing operations well ahead of the September 29 deadline that was set for all local government units which received orders to clear the roads and sidewalks of obstructions.
Mayor Imelda T. Aguilar has directed the city’s Task Force Kaayusan and officials in the city’s twenty barangays to continue monitoring the cleared and demolished areas, even after the deadline at the end of September, to ensure that no new obstructions or illegal structures would block the roadways and pedestrian lanes
“We have finished clearing the major roads of any obstruction including illegally parked vehicles and vendors, even during the first month operation, although we did not immediately announced it since we have been doing this before the President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive,” Mayor Aguilar said.
The mayor personally supervised the voluntary demolition of Police Community Precinct (PCP) in Barangay Talon IV which was partly occupying the sidewalk during the initial week of the clearing operation.
Several service utilities have also been warned and directed to hasten all their excavation works which contribute to sidewalk obstruction.
Mayor Aguilar added that the city’s clearing operation was a continuing campaign in line with the effort of the city to address the traffic gridlock along Alabang-Zapote Road which is the only main thoroughfare of Las Piñas.
“We have also written several homeowners in private villages and subdivisions along the Friendship Route, the city’s alternate route, to voluntarily remove illegally parked vehicles and plant boxes along the sidewalks so pedestrians can use them,” she added.
Previously, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) issued an order to local government units to clear roads of obstruction. On August 1, Mayor Aguilar met with the heads of the barangays and warned them of extreme consequence if they fail to clear their respective areas of obstruction and illegal structures.
Recently the City of Las Piñas made waves in the national news. This was because Mayor Imelda “Mel” Aguilar issued a warning to the leaders of twenty barangays of extreme consequence if they fail to clear the respective areas of obstructions and structures that are illegal.
During a meeting held on August 1, the mayor met with the barangay chairpersons from the city’s two districts and laid down the City Government’s plan action to rid all roads and sidewalks of illegal vendors, illegally parked vehicles and overlapping structures, including those unfinished excavations by various service utilities.
“You will be accountable to me if you fail to implement the rules that endanger the lives of our fellow Las Piñero,” Mayor Aguilar told the barangay leaders.
Along with the other Metro Manila city mayors, Mayor Aguilar committed to the 60-day period given by Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año to clear the metro roads of obstructions.
But prior to the DILG directive, the mayor already convened Task Force Kaayusan last month which immediately conducted clearing operations in the city to address concerns on traffic and road hazards. The task force is composed of the Estate Management and Development Office (EMDO), City Engineering Office, the local Philippine National Police, the Business Permit and Licensing Office (BPLO), and spearheaded by the Mayor’s Office.
“These obstructions must be permanently rid from our main road, which is the Alabang-Zapote Road, as well as the inner roads must likewise be cleared of any obstacles. Let us give back the sidewalks to the pedestrians and the roads to motorists,” the mayor said.
She also requested the City Council, through Vice Mayor April Aguilar-Nery (the mayor’s daughter), to review the existing ordinances on obstruction and public order and safety.
The Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines’ Members Networking Night
Let me share to you all that I had a grand time meeting with varied business people and professionals. On the evening of July 29 at Manila Elks Club in Makati City, I attended the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines Members Networking Night organized by the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines. The result was a lot of enlightenment on my part and satisfaction now that I have brand new connections with many professionals.
I also had a grand experience learning about the strengthening ties between the Philippines and Israel. Since a miracle happened to me last year, I moved forward personally, socially and professionally. Along the way, I gained tremendous interest on Israel which I hope to visit someday.
As a nation, Israel is highly significant. It is one of the most innovative nations in the whole world as confirmed by a recent study. In addition to establishing ties with other professionals, my passion for Israel was a key factor behind my participation in the Networking Night event.
During the event, there was a program with a nice presentation to the members and the guests. Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines President Sagiv Massad warmly welcomed us with his remarks followed by a short speech delivered by Ms. Yulia Rachinsky-Spivakov who is the Deputy Chief of Mission from the Embassy of Israel.
The Deputy Chief of Mission confirmed that bilateral ties between the Philippines and Israel are indeed getting stronger.
“The job that Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines has been doing is very much appreciated by the embassy. It is a great contribution to our bilateral relations,” said Deputy Chief of Mission Yulia Rachinsky-Spivakov. “I am very pleased to mention that we have very positive developments in the relations between Israel and the Philippines recently.”
While emphasizing the positive developments, she mentioned President Rodrigo Duterte’s official visit to Israel in 2018 which is a milestone as it marked the first time a Philippine President visited the country. Duterte had a big delegation with him to Israel and a lot of agreements were signed. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Duterte.
The Deputy Chief of Mission mentioned that one of the signed agreements was related to the employment of caregivers and that fees on them would be reduced. Already there are 35,000 Filipino caregivers working in Israel who contributed a lot to the local society. The other agreement mentioned was about the employment of Filipino workers in the tourism industry of Israel. As a nation, Israel has a population of nine million and attracts four million tourists yearly. The Philippines was the first nation approached by Israel for its tourism needs.
After the update about Philippines-Israel relations, networking followed and it was during this time I met with varied professionals and business executives. We introduced ourselves, exchanged business cards and talked business. Along the way, I learned a lot from the professionals I met whose expertise include marketing, logistics, tax law, travel, sales, the airline industry, business solution development, events organizing, fruit processing, career development, real estate, etc.
As the event went on, some prizes were raffled off to very lucky winners (including myself).
By the end of the Networking Night, I went home very enlightened, delighted and satisfied. There is nothing like making a whole lot of connections with varied professionals in just a few hours’ time. In the world of business, having connections is essential and they can add a lot to your business performance as well as its development.
Lastly, I should say that during my previous career as a community newspaper reporter, I attended and reported about the activities of the Parañaque City chapter of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce & Industry (PCCI). Privately I also attended some conferences that attracted varied industry professionals. The Chamber’s Networking Night is the most significant corporate event I attended yet. Now that I’m working in industry and attended this memorable July 29 event, I certainly will watch out for the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines’ next event and eventually learn more about Israel and its ties with the Philippines.
What is the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines?
You must be wondering – what exactly is the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines and how significant are they? Let me explain.
The Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines was established with a purpose to foster, enable, facilitate and ensure the success of its members’ businesses while promoting business-to-business networking between Israel and the Philippines. The Chamber aims to collaborate with Philippine government officials, agencies and bureaus, as well as business and community leaders in dealing with important and critical issues affecting business and industries in both countries, while contributing to their civic, social and economic development.
With regards to the benefits of being a member of the Chamber, the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines represents and further the interests of each member. Through General Membership meetings, Business Forums and other events, Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines members receive assistance in promoting their companies and individual interests, keeping them abreast and ahead of business trends both in the country and in Israel.
The Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines has a well established network with varied foreign and local chambers. They have ties with the Philippine Chamber of Commerce & Industry (PCCI), other industry group-focused trade and business organizations as well. The Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines constantly strives to be the premiere comprehensive resource and vehicle for the achievement of a strong and meaningful bilateral trade relationship between Israel and the Philippines that would be mutually beneficial to both countries.
The Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines is currently open for local businesses who wish to join them as a member.
If you wish to learn more about the Israel Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, visit their website at ICCP.ph and follow their official Facebook page.