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Thursday, 24th July 2014
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DBM: DAP funds subsidized LGUs

By: F. Allan L. Angelo and Louine Hope Conserva

LOCAL government units in Western Visayas received subsidies from the national government via the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), according to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM-6).

It is also possible that DAP funds may have been used during the 2013 election season in the form of assistance to indigents, pupils and students.

Citing their own data, DBM-6 Regional Director Alfonso Bedonia said some of the DAP releases were intended as financial subsidies to priority programs and projects of the LGUs.

“Most of the provinces (in Western Visayas) have DAP releases. These are used to augment their existing programs for scholarship, hospitalization of indigent patients and other health services,” Bedonia said.

Bedonia said they cannot yet ascertain the specific nature of the projects in Western Visayas which were funded by DAP. They are also tracing the exact years that the DAP funds were released to the LGUs.

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DPWH to meet contractors on lack of warning devices

By: F. Allan L. Angelo and Wenceslao E. Mateo Jr.

THE Iloilo City District Engineering Office (ICDEO) of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will meet contractors of road projects in the city following complaints of construction areas that lack early warning devices (EWDs).

Engr. Rodney Gustilo, ICDEO chief, said he always reminded the contractors to use proper EWDs to avoid accidents involving pedestrians and motorists, especially at night.

Ideal EWDs include blinkers and enclosures that are visible to drivers and pedestrians. The contracts of government infrastructure projects stipulate that funds must be allocated for the installation of warning devices.

But the most common warning implements used by contractors are yellow tapes and bamboo contraptions with a sign.

Gustilo said the usual excuse offered by contractors is that residents steal their EWDs, thus they resort to makeshift warning signs.

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Casino shakedown continues

By: Louine Hope Conserva

MORE questions are being raised against the operation of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp.’s (PAGCOR) casino in Iloilo City despite having secured a temporary business permit.

Iloilo City Councilor Lyndon Acap, committee on games and amusement chairman, said they might issue a Resolution of No Objection (RONO) to the casino operating out of Amigo Terrace Hotel if it complies with all the requirements.

The Iloilo City Business Permits and Licensing Office (BPLO) recently issued a temporary business permit to the PAGCOR casino.

But Councilor Plaridel Nava said the council cannot issue the RONO to PAGCOR for violating the city’s zoning ordinance.

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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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Reality check 1

July 24, 2014 03:04 AM

By: F. Allan L. Angelo

ON MONDAY, July 28, the country (or whoever is interested) will be glued once again to the State of the Nation Address (SONA) of their number one public servant, President Benigno Aquino III. Read more...

Carabao stories

July 24, 2014 02:50 AM

By: Modesto Sa-onoy

There’s an old popular story of a man who was brought before the judge accused of stealing a carabao. He pleaded innocence explaining that he Read more...

Constitutional Crisis? Did it not start with the SC Ruling?

July 24, 2014 02:47 AM

By: Melinda Quintos De Jesus

CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS would be the outcome, some say, of President Aquino’s decision to file a motion for reconsideration of the High Court’s ruling on DAP. Read more...

Coral reefs: going, going, gone?

July 24, 2014 02:39 AM

By: Henrylito D. Tacio

THE Coral Triangle Initiative, founded in 2009, is composed of six countries, namely: Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Timor Liste.  Covering 5.7 kilometers of oceans and coast, it is considered the Read more...

No politician will declare war vs sidewalk vendors

July 24, 2014 02:30 AM

By: Alex P. Vidal

“Illegality will never solve the problem of political lawlessness.” Emanuel Celler Read more...

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