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Wednesday, 1st April 2015
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‘BIGGEST LOSERS’

Small businesses vulnerable to wage hike

By: Louine Hope Conserva

THE newly-approved P11.50 wage increase in the region could lead to closure of small businesses, a top official of the Iloilo Business Club said.

IBC Executive Director Lea Lara said that the salary increase is giving undue pressure, especially on the operations of small businesses.

“Here in the city we are more into retail businesses. They are concentrated on services and consumer goods. So they really suffer especially that the competition is fierce,” said Lara.

Lara said that last year, they have received information that some retailers have opted to close following the wage increase.

“Their compliance will really suffer. Those who employ more workers, their benefits will also be affected,” she added.

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Biron denies meeting with political nemeses

By: Louine Hope Conserva

FORMER 4th district congressman Ferjenel Biron shot down reports that he met with members of the Tupas clan to talk politics in the city and province of Iloilo.

Talks have been swirling that Biron sat down recently with former Iloilo governor Niel Tupas Sr., his son Iloilo City Councilor Nielex Tupas and former Iloilo City congressman Raphael “Paeng” Lopez-Vito.

But Biron quickly dismissed the report.

“No meeting happened. I was even wondering where that information came from but let me assure you that we didn’t meet,” Biron said in an interview with Bombo Radyo-Iloilo.

Biron said he does not have any reason to meet with the Tupases and Lopez-Vito.

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Molo parish offers ‘Shroud’ to devotees

By: Reina Tacardon and Paolo Arnaldo

THE faithful can find a special way of reflecting on the passion and death of Jesus Christ at the St. Anne Parish Church in Molo, Iloilo City.

Rev. Fr. Espiridion R. Celis Jr., Molo parish priest, said they introduced the icon of the Holy Shroud of Turin for the first time in Iloilo City to provide a more meaningful and profound way of observing the Holy Week.

The Shroud is believed to be the burial cloth which was used to wrap Jesus Christ’s remains. Imprinted on the linen cloth are the face and body of the Christ.

Fr. Celis said the icon was donated by an unnamed donor “with a magnanimous heart” from Iloilo.

“Adopt the wound that was caused by your sin. Kiss it... so that, it will not hurt.”  Fr. Celis said as to the significance of the shroud.

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It can be traced back to the juicy position of the Secretary of Labor during the time of former Pres. Corazon Aquino. It could have been for King Arthur but then Executive Secretary Drilon gave it to Ruben Torres. Now you know what that means!

But in politics there are no permanent friends or enemies only permanent interest. Thus, I predict the eventual reconciliation of the two Ilonggos before the upcoming 2013 election. This is not good, however, for Niel Tupas Sr. who had long planned his return to the Kingdom by the River as governor.

The entry of Defensor with the Liberal Party could be good for Sen. Drilon. This may also be an assurance of his solid political leadership among kingpins and warlords of the province. What about its consequences? I just hope this beautiful dream is not a nightmare for others.

Once Gov. Defensor decides to join the Liberal Party, for sure, as a precondition, he is entitled to seek reelection. Because of the equity of the incumbent, this would surely deprive the elder Tupas his dream of a comeback and rule once again the Kingdom by the River in 2013.

This is a dream comes true for King Oca of the First District if the Defensor-Garin tandem remains unbroken until 2013. King Oca knew that he lagged behind King Niel in the competition for expansion of political empires in the province.

The Tupas family has control of the Fifth District and their patriarch has gained a foothold in the Fourth. This was proven in the last election when Niel Sr. ran for congressman against Cong. Ferj Biron. But the parameter of King Oca’s turf is only confined in the First District of Iloilo.

Without Tupas’s interference, the unbroken Defensor-Garin tandem in 2013 elections would ensure the warlord from the First District that in the event King Arthur resigns in 2016, a member of the Garin family could eventually become ruler of the Kingdom by the River.

This is not good for King Niel Sr. But peace must stay that Sen. Drilon must offer an appointive but enticing position the King will accept. If not, another option is to run for Congress in the Fourth District against Mayor Hernan Biron Sr. or son Biron Jr..

There is a growing public belief that the planned transfer of Gov. Defensor to the Liberal Party is the handiwork of King Oca. He is probably alarmed by the expanding empire of King Niel in the province and fears its affect on his foothold in the nearby municipalities of his turf. In fact, Lex Tupas, the youngest Tupas son, has already invaded the city as member of the city council.

No wonder if all the Garins will join the fray in 2013 to stay in tune for 2016. King Oca may field his wife or daughter-in-law for vice governor and/or board member vice versa. His vice governor son Richard may settle for mayor of Guimbal and his daughter Sharon, mayor of the town will run for Congress.

If the transfer of Defensor to the Liberal Party pushes through, King Niel has no choice but to abide with the ruling on “equity of the incumbent.” The Tupases are now “in sequenter” - not in the proper order of succession. King Niel may run for Congress in the Fourth District, but is the prize at stake in that war more worthy than the Capitol battles he has been fighting?

Here’s something for coffee habituates. A neophyte politician wants to challenge Cong. “Boboy” Syjuco but failed to get the nod of Sen. Drilon who prefers Mayor Kadz of Pavia, Iloilo. So he went straight to the temple of gods at the northern part of the island for blessing. A bright boy indeed, good luck Jojo!

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Tinieblas

April 01, 2015 01:12 AM

By: Modesto P. Sao-noy

I APOLOGIZE for shifting the subject of this column. I promised yesterday to continue with the contract between Energreen and CENECO which I hoped to put to a temporary close. In an effort to keep the momentum I overlooked that this is the last day of work and issue. On Holy Week we contemplate on our state as sinners in need of repentance and atonement to gain God’s forgiveness. Anyway we shall continue on Monday with Energreen and CENECO when the world wakes up to a new day and new challenges. Read more...

Illegal drugs, not prostitution, is No. 1 problem in schools

April 01, 2015 01:10 AM

By: Alex P. Vidal

“Addiction isn’t about substance—you aren’t addicted to the substance. You are addicted to the alteration of mood that the substance brings.” – Susan Cheever

SAD to say, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has failed to stop the proliferation of illegal drugs in many campuses.

Classes have closed but not a single drug pusher that catered to university and college students was apprehended. Read more...

Dimas and Gestas of today

April 01, 2015 01:08 AM

By Ranie Z. Jangayo

IT SEEMS that the two thieves named Dimas and Gestas who were also crucified with Jesus Christ are still with us today.

Dimas and Gestas are not actually named in the Bible. However, an apocryphal book by Nicodemus, which Bible scholars date to the 4th century AD on the Biblical timeline, names the repentant or good thief as Dysmas or Dimas and the one who mocked Jesus as Gestas. Read more...

Lee Kuan Yew and a system that works

April 01, 2015 01:06 AM

By: Lucell Larawan

THE legacy of former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew has undeniably transformed Singapore, bereft of natural resources, from a struggling small island into one of the world’s most prosperous countries.

His message could have been misread by authoritarian leaders like President Paul Kagame of Rwanda who is seeking to change the constitution to extend his term. Read more...

Go IPEd (The Indigenous Peoples Education)

April 01, 2015 01:04 AM

By: Elena P. Gonzaga

Regional IPEd Focal Person

WESTERN Visayas has a significant number of indigenous peoples learners mapped by the Schools Divisions IPEd Focal Persons.

One of the features of the K to 12 Basic Education is culture-responsive and culture-sensitive, integrative and contextualized, relevant and responsive.  Read more...

Is the pope a Christian?

April 01, 2015 01:02 AM

By:Garry Willis

AT A RECENT I talk I gave about Pope Francis, a man asked me, “Why do more non-Catholics like the pope than Catholics do?”

He was wrong,  A Pew poll two months ago found that 90 percent of Catholics like what the pope is doing—and the number is even higher (95 percent) among the most observant, Mass attending Catholics. The percentage of non-Catholics who view the pope favorably does not get above the 70s. Read more...

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