Sunday, August 17, 2008

Cop is accidental hero in bizarre QC robbery, shootout

By Jeannette Andrade
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 15:56:00 08/16/2008

MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE) An off-duty policeman became an accidental hero Saturday afternoon in a bizarre turn of events in Quezon City in which he fought off an apparent robbery attempt on him, killing the alleged robber in a shootout that proved equally fatal to himself, and unknowingly saving an Indian trader being robbed nearby by another man who was then lynched by a mob.

The “accidental hero” PO1 Benhur Busu-ay, detailed with the Aviation Security Group at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, died while undergoing treatment at the Far Eastern University Hospital after shooting dead suspect Rustan Lorano, of Zapote, Las Piñas City.

The other suspected robber, Ramiro Reyes, 36, of Tanay, Rizal was allegedly mobbed by Busu-ay’s neighbors and stabbed to death.

But PO2 Joseph Diño of the Quezon City Police District Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit (QCPD-CIDU) said the people who attacked and killed Reyes were not being helpful because they took the man’s .45 caliber pistol. They also took Lorano’s gun.

Diño said that the chain of events started at around 1:30 p.m. on Republican Avenue in Barangay Fairview. PO1 Busu-ay, aboard a motorcycle, had just arrived at his home inside the Burawin Street compound when Lorano approached him.

Unknown to Busu-ay, Lorano’s cohort was at that time robbing Indian trader Sotanam Singh some 50 meters away.

Diño pointed out that Lorano had approached the aviation cop upon noticing a bulky object Busu-ay’s waist and apparently mistaken him for a messenger he and his companion could rob.

Immediately after Busu-ay identified himself as a policeman, Lorano reportedly drew his .45 caliber pistol and shot the cop. He ran away as Busu-ay drew his .9 mm caliber service pistol and fired back.

The sound of gunfire from Lorano and Busu-ay reportedly caused Reyes, who had just allegedly robbed Singh of P2,000, to scamper inside the Sikap Area parallel to Burawin Street to hide.

Despite having taken five bullets in the body, Busu-ay managed to catch up with Lorano and shot the suspect several times in the body, killing him instantly at the entrance to Sikap Area, said Diño.

Neighbors immediately took the badly wounded officer to the FEU hospital for treatment while other bystanders robbed the fallen robber, taking his .45 caliber pistol.

Busu-ay died several minutes after he was wheeled into the FEU hospital. His wounds were mostly in the chest.

Meanwhile, Reyes was cornered in an alley inside Sikap Area by knife-wielding residents who stabbed him to death. The mob also took his .45 caliber pistol but left untouched the P2,000 that had been allegedly stolen from Singh.

Diño said that both men carried identification cards indicating that they are police civilian volunteers and carried laminated business cards from Philippine National Police Director General Avelino Razon.

Diño pointed out that Reyes had a mission order stating he was a military civilian agent issued by the Army 2nd Infantry Division in Tanay, Rizal. The alleged mission order, he said, was signed by a Lt. Lhogan Cliff Acuril.

Diño said they still had to confirm the validity of the identification cards with the organizations marked on them.

He said investigators will also have to determine the identities of the people who attacked Reyes and took the alleged robbers’ guns.

Scene of the Crime Office personnel recovered several spent .9-mm and .45- caliber spent shells as well as Busu-ay’s service pistol from the scene.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Kalinga Cops Killed

Cop, 2 rob suspects slain in shootout
By Reinir Padua
Sunday, August 17, 2008

A policeman was killed when he shot it out with two robbery suspects who also died after the gun battle yesterday afternoon in Fairview, Quezon City.

Police Officer 1 Voltaire Benhur Busway, 26, who was assigned with the Aviation Security Group, died of gunshot wounds in the chest.

Quezon City Police District (QCPD) chief Senior Superintendent Magtanggol Gatdula identified the two slain suspects as Rustan Lorono of Las Piñas and Ramiro Reyes of Tanay, Rizal, who were identified through identification cards found on them.

Though the slain policeman shot it out with the suspects, Superintendent Franklin Moises Mabanag, chief of the QCPD-Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit, said the body of one of the suspects was riddled with stab wounds.

Superintendent Raymundo Equibal, commander of the QCPD-Station 5, said the incident happened near Busway’s house on Republic Avenue in Barangay Greater Fairview.

Busway was getting off his motorcycle at around 1:15 p.m. when he noticed the two suspects frisking Indian national Satnam Singh, a money lender, Equibal told The STAR in an interview.

QCPD-Station 5 desk officer PO1 Jun Cabatan said the two suspects, who were wearing shirts with police markings, posed as policemen to rob Singh of his money.

When Busway saw what was happening, he tried to accost the suspects. One of them shot at Busway, who fired back.

As Busway fell, the two suspects were still able to run 60 to 70 meters away from the crime scene before they eventually fell and died, Equibal said.

Equibal explained this was because the police used his .9mm service firearm to shoot the suspects and this type of bullet takes about two to three minutes to have an effect on the one who was shot.

However, Mabanag suspects some residents “ganged up” on one of the suspects, as shown by the stab wounds in his body. Mabanag said it was still not clear whether the suspect was also shot by Busway.

There were reports that a third suspect, now the subject of a police manhunt, was on a motorcycle and took his slain companion’s .45 caliber pistols and an undetermined amount of cash divested from Singh before escaping towards Commonwealth Avenue.

But Mabanag said it could be that the ones who reportedly ganged up on one of the slain suspects were the ones who took away the firearms.

Neighbors and witnesses brought Busway to the FEU Hospital, where he died while undergoing treatment. Cabatan said Singh was unhurt.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

There is really nothing we can do – DOTC regional director

By Estanislao Albano Jr.

Tabuk City, Kalinga – There is really nothing his office can do with the proliferation of colorum public utility vehicles (PUVs) in Tabuk which have been the subject of numerous complaints, according to Transportation and Communication Regional Director Federico Mandapat.

In a letter to Mayor Camilo Lammawin, Jr., Mandapat said that they want very much to conduct law enforcement operations in the city, they are prevented by lack of manpower at the Land Transportation Office in Tabuk City and likewise in the regional office.

He said that the situation would be different had not former LTO Assistant Secretary Reynaldo Berroya not revoked on August 13, 2007 the deputizing of policemen in the city to do the job.

Saying that this deputized policemen were a great help in the maintenance of order on the road, Mandapat had reiterated an earlier suggestion made by LTO regional operations chief Robert Pocais to the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Tabuk City for that body to pass a resolution requesting Department of Transportation and Communication Secretary Leandro Mendoza to issue anew deputation orders to local policemen.

Berroya had revoked the deputation orders because of reports that such were being used for mulcting activities.

Two PUV groups here have earlier petitioned the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to transfer the processing of papers of PUVs in the province from the Cordillera Administrative Region in Baguio City to the LTFRB-Cagayan in Tuguegarao City.

One of the reasons they cited is the little attention the province is receiving when it comes to the enforcement of traffic laws “contributing to the proliferation of colorum vehicles in the area.”

Kalinga Federation of Jeepney Operators (KFJO) and the Kalinga Transportation and Development Cooperative (KASTRANSDESCO) said that with the nearness of Tuguegarao City to Tabuk City, traffic enforcement would improve.

Cecilio Mangadap, board chairman of the KALTRANSDESCO, had accused the DOTC-CAR of not acting on the June 3, 2008 order of Secretary Mendoza to apprehend colurom PUVs in Kalinga.

3 Kalinga entrepreneurs win micro-business awards

by L. Lopez

Tabuk City, Kalinga (9 August) -- Three entrepreneurs classified under micro-business won regional and national awards, earning prestige to the province in the field of trade and industry.

Noryn Bagano of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) here said Regina Madio of Praj's Gift Shop and Ma. Socorro Saclag of Ayatu's Ethnic Products got the Pundo sa Sipag, Puhunan sa Tiyaga Award, together with 16 other selected awardees nationwide.

Thelma Ng of Bayle's Supermart, joined the prestigious line of Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs in the Cordillera Region for this year's Go Negosyo Caravan staged yearly by the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE) chaired by business icon Jose Ma. A. Concepcion, who is the presidential consultant for entrepreneurship.

Madio and Saclag also received P100,000 cash awards each which will be used as additional working capital to make their business grow and will inspire others to start their own small business.

In the search and evaluation of entries conducted early this year, Madio and Saclag, who were nominated by DTI-Kalinga, participated in the product exhibit at Market! Market! Shopping Complex in Taguig City, which was visited by Senator Manny Villar.

Praj's Gift Shop and Ayatu's Ethnic Products use to figure in trade fairs organized by the DTI here and outside the province.

The Sipag-Tiyaga award is launched by the Nationalista Party in celebration of its 100th Year Anniversary as it contributes to nation building.

Meanwhile, Go Negosyo Awardee Ng displayed an extra-efficient business management skill, as seen in the chain of their business expansion amidst the economic difficulty hitting the country today.

"Managing a business is not at all bed of roses", says Ng who recalls what she terms as "bumps and humps" that they encounter in their daily transactions.

Ng admits that the business regulatory laws advocated by DTI have greatly helped them install a healthy relationship with customers. This was recognized in a regional scale having been conveyed a Certified Establishment-Silver Award (CE Award) in 2007.

But beyond her business management prowess, Ng acknowledges the Lord's hand over their family business, whom she believes is the source of all what they manage today.

Go Negosyo is a campaign advocated by government to build small business communities where the norm and way of life is improving the lives of small Filipinos through entrepreneurship.

Last year, Nancy Busacay of the Bago, Igorot, Tagalog, Ilocano, Cagayano, Kalinga (BITICK) Women's Organization and Natividad Sugguiyao of Chico River Quest, Inc. earned the same award for the province.

Kalinga student lands 2nd top slot in nursing board

by L. Lopez

Tabuk City, Kalinga (9 August) -- Alrin Flores Falgui, 20, who hails from this province and landed top 2 in the Nursing Board Examination given by the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) last June, claims it was always his dream of topping the board examination.

"That dream became my goal and made me study very hard," Aldren, a graduate of Far Eastern University (FEU) Nicanor Foundation recalled.

"To keep me reminded of that goal, I wrote it on a piece of paper and have it pasted on a conspicuous place on the wall of my room, so I could read it every time. Everyday, that piece of paper reminded me to study, study and study," Alrin quipped.

But Alrin admits becoming a topnotcher is no easy thing. The secret he says is setting your goal and focusing on it everyday. It requires time management. With barely two months of review, devotion and focus on what you're doing matters, Alrin claimed.

On top of his academic preparation, Alrin recounted his deep prayers and trust on the Lord.

Alrin advises those preparing to take board examinations to take time and relax saying it is also important to do recreational activities to sustain one's energy and momentum.

A consistent student achiever, Alrin was DBP scholar for his four years in college. He graduated high school at the Tabuk National High School, where he earned various prestigious awards.

He is the eldest child of Engr. Danilo C. Falgui of the Kalinga-Apayao State College (KASC) and Udette Flores Falgui, CPA, Cashier, DBP-Tabuk.

Alrin obtained a rate of 85.80%, the 2nd highest among 64,000 plus examinees. He will join other successful examinees in the oath taking ceremony August 19-20 at the SMX Convention Center, SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. (PIA Kalinga)

NPAs step up terror acts in Kalinga – Army

Tabuk City, Kalinga (9 August) -- Communist terrorists operating in the province have stepped up their illegal activities with the burning of the Globe cellsite at barangay Pakawit in Pinukpuk last July 27, an attempt to destroy another Globe cell site at Dangoy, Lubuagan and the foiled attack on the Mallango detachment in Tinglayan.

This was the report of Lt. Col. Tony Lastimado, Commanding Officer of the 21st Infantry Battalion before members of the Provincial Peace and Order Council last August 6 at Laoagan resort here.

He said the current actions of the New Peoples Army (NPA) manifest their intention to instill fear among the populace, particularly those villages unsupportive of the communists' cause. "The NPAs are bent to counter our presence in far-flung barangays. They want to disrupt our outreach missions and delay government projects in those areas," he said.

The NPA strongholds in barangays Poswoy in Balbalan and Baay in Pinukpuk are taken by the soldiers and they are trying to regain them by sowing fear by their atrocities, Lastimado reported.

He said under the leadership of Col. Remegio De Vera, 501st Brigade Commanding Officer, government forces were able to repulse the enemies on all sides and decimated their strength in the Kalinga-Apayao-Cagayan area of responsibility (AOR) of the brigade.

Aside from combat operations the Army also initiated community services assisting 16 elementary schools during the "brigada eskwela" by doing ground clearing and minor repair on classrooms and other school facilities.

The 21st IB also conducted nine medical missions from May to August and served 2,578 clients on dental, circumcision, medical, and free haircut services.

Under the Kalayaan Sa Barangay program, the battalion in coordination with the 513th Engineering Construction Battalion and the 51st Engineering Brigade, a water system and a school building were completed while three PGMA school buildings and two farm to market road in Sumadel and Pasil are on-going.

Pasil Mayor James Edduba thanked the Philippine Army on their efforts to open the road to the Poblacion of Pasil. (PIA-Kalinga)

Lubuagan, Kalinga to hold 1st Lumin-awa festival on August 18-20

by Lito Dar

Baguio City (9 August) -- In celebration of the centennial founding anniversary of the first civil government of Lubuagan town in Kalinga, the local government unit in cooperation with the Department of Tourism will be holding its first "Lumin-awa" festival on August 18-20.

Lubuagan Mayor James Alunday in a press conference last week explained that the "Lumin-awa", is synonymous to "guminhawa", or to be relieved or relaxed in mind, spirit and health.

The three-day festivity aims to boost the town's economy and development, as he stressed that education, health and tourism are their priority.

The three-day Lumin-awa festival features grand parades, indigenous games/songs/sounds, Agro Industrial Exhibits/fair, stage programme, field presentations and medical/dental mission. The mayor is inviting everybody, local and foreign tourists alike, to witness or discover their rich cultural heritage.

According to Lubuagan municipal tourism officer Luisa Inga, one of the tourist attractions in their town is the "Tiwood" fertility spring. She cited the 30 families within the vicinity of the spring who were blessed with twin children. She also mentioned some testimonies regarding couples with no children who have had their own babies after going to the spring.

Meantime, Engr Paul Masilayan, consultant for special event, revealed that another attraction in Lubuagan is the mysterious Calamayan waterfalls. Mayor Alunday attested that nobody had successfully taken a picture of the said waterfalls except for an American tourist, who bought a pig first and butcher it in the area, before taking a picture.

DOT-CAR Director Pura Molintas assured their support, to what she described as a "grandeur occasion", in terms of promotional support and media coverage. Through the festival, we are promoting the "eco-tourism" of Lubuagan, which she called "home of artisans and great artists". (PIA)

Monday, August 4, 2008

12 projects approved for KALAHI-CIDDS 2nd cycle in Pinukpuk


Pinukpuk, Kalinga (2 August) -- Twelve barangays in this town found new hope to improve the socio-economic conditions of their locality after members of the Barangay Representative Team (BRT) approved their proposal for funding under the Kapitbisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS) program.

Approved proposal according to ranking are two units flood control project of brgy. Ammacian; the four-unit deep well water system proposed by Camalog Barangay; Pinococ Day Care Center; Barangay Health Station of Bayao; Solar Power Electrification of Asibanglan; Village Water System of Aciga; three units multi-purpose pavement (MPP) of Taga; construction of irrigation canal in Wagud, Solar Power Electrification of Limos; two units MPP of Mapaco; Solar Power Electrification of Baay and the construction of a 12 meter concrete footbridge in Allaguia.

During the presentation of proposals, Barangay Ammacian got the highest votes for their two units flood control proposal to redirect the flow of water back to the main stream after it deviated too close to the communities and farm lands during Typhoon Mina resulting to the drowning and death of some people and destruction of properties.

Said project costs around P1.48 million requiring P1.06M fund from KALAHI-CIDDS, P328,150.00 from the Local Government of Pinukpuk, P49,000.00 from the barangay and the rest as share of the community following the counterpart scheme of all KALAHI-CIDDS projects in the country.

The four units of deep-well in barangay Camalog, on the other hand, will be distributed in four puroks not reached by stream water. These will likewise provide water for travelers traversing the area which is just along the provincial road. This proposal costs around P.69M with a counterpart of P438,933.00 from the KALAHI-CIDDS.

Considering the distance of the barangay from health facilities in the municipality and the remoteness of its Puroks, Barangay Bayao opted for a P.95M barangay health station (BHS) to provide first aid treatment, consultation and child and maternal care in the area. It was reported that several people in the area died because they were not provided with immediate medical attention. KALAHI-CIDDS is required P674,783.00 to fund said project.

Meanwhile, having seen the urgency to provide lighting among households the proposals of Barangays Baay, Asibanglan and Limos for solar power electrification were all approved. Said projects cost a total amount of about P2.93M requiring a fund allocation of P2.12M from the KALAHI-CIDDS. These would be providing each household a portable solar powered lamp.

Barangay Aciga, on the other hand, got the nod of the evaluation team after presenting the people's plight of not having clean drinking water in the community which has resulted to unsanitary environment and illness among the populace. Said village water system would require KALAHI-CIDDS P595,928.00 to fund the P825,928.00 project.

Likewise approved were the proposal for a two units multi-purpose pavement (MPP) amounting to P415,000.00 in Barangay Mapaco and three units MPP in Barangay Taga costing P654,000.00. KALAHI-CIDDS will be providing the amount of P292,161.00 and P450,450.00 respectively.

Pinococ, one of the remotest barangays proposed for a day care center since children in the area have no means of availing pre-school services.KALAHI-CIDDS is set to allot P592,932.00 for the P805,932.00 project.

Barangay Wagud needs an irrigation canal to be able to cultivate and utilize a vast area of idle lands for farming and rice production in the barangay. The project requires a funding of P890,000.00 with a total of P567,925.00 KALAHI-CIDSS share.

Barangay Allaguia is aspiring for a more stable and durable footbridge to replace the bamboo makeshift bridge across a river entering their barangay to ensure safety of those passing by especially during the rainy seasons.Said concrete foot bridge would be needing the amount of P265,000.00 with P195,484.00 from the KALAHI-CIDDS.

From the total amount of P9,844,658.00 for said projects, KALAHI-CIDDS will be allocating P6,996,448.41 with the remaining amount of P2,848,209.59 as counterpart of the MLGU of Pinukpuk and the recipient barangays.

KALAHI-CIDDS is one of the comprehensive social services of the Arroyo Administration in fighting poverty funded by the World Bank with counterparts from the government and concerned LGU's and implemented through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). (ggd/PIA-Kalinga)

Kalinga benefits from PGMA food-for-school program

By:ggd/PIA Kalinga

Tabuk, Kalinga (2 August) -- The eight municipalities of the Kalinga are among the several poor towns in the country that benefited from the on-going food for school feeding program under the Accelerated Hunger Mitigation Program of the Arroyo Administration.

In an interview with Provincial Social Worker Gretchen Curameng, around 5,427 day care children were identified as target beneficiaries for this year's program implementation.

These she said include the 357 children from Rizal, 320 from Lubuagan, 360 from Tinglayan, 510 from Tanudan, 396 from Pasil, 530 from Balbalan, 1,704 from Tabuk City and 1,250 from Pinukpuk.

According to Curameng, the school for food program aims to provide day care children the needed nutrition to ensure that sufficient and nutritious food are available for them to cope with the physical and mental challenges of going to school. Each beneficiary are provided with one kilo rice per day for 43 days.

Curameng said it is a welcome development that President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in her recent State of the Nation Address included Kalinga as one of the provinces targeted for the administration's massive school feeding program.

As recalled, the President mentioned that with the revenues generated from the Value Added Tax (VAT), her administration will be launching a massive school feeding program at P10.00 per child every school day in indigent communities and calamity stricken areas including Kalinga, Apayao and Abra in the Cordillera Region. Through these efforts, poor provinces will be alleviated from the list of provinces with high rate of malnutrition the country.

In a related development, Division Feeding Coordinator Julia Bateg of the Department of Education (DepEd), Kalinga said that recipient districts of the second batch of Food-for-School program in the province just received their rice allocations in coordination with the National Food Authority (NFA).

From the 93 targeted schools from the Districts of Balbalan, Tanudan, Northern Pinukpuk, Southern Pinukpuk and Lubuagan, at least 2,742 pupils benefited during the implementation of the second batch.

Recipients of the first batch covered the Districts of Pasil, Rizal and Tinglayan benefiting at least 1,872 pupils in said areas. Each pupil received one kilo rice each for 19 days and noodles feeding for 35 days.

Said program was made possible through Deped in partnership with the NFA, National Nutrition Council and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). (ggd/PIA-Kalinga)

Fertilizer subsidy worth only P180.00 in Tabuk

By Estanislao Albano, Jr.

Tabuk City, Kalinga – With the participating farm input dealers here taking the discounted fertilizer under the government fertilizer subsidy program on credit, the actual worth of the P250.00 fertilizer subsidy coupon being given to farmers is only P180.00.

According to Betty Cawilan of the Casigayan Farm Supply in Dagupan Centro, this city, one of the four farm input outlets in the province accredited by the Department of Agriculture (DA) for the fertilizer subsidy program, she is selling a bag of urea to farmers with coupons at P2,020.00 while to those who have none, only at P1,950.

Cawilan explained that the discrepancy of P70.00 covers the difference in the price of the fertilizer which they have to take on a 30-day credit from the distributors as against the unsubsidized fertilizer which they take in cash in order for them not to lose while implementing the subsidy program.

According to Cawilan, it is necessary for them to take the subsidized fertilizer on credit because the arrangement with the DA is for the payment of the surrendered coupons with complete and properly accomplished documentation at the end of each week.

“Not many farmers understand our situation. They cannot understand that even with the difference of P70.00, their subsidized fertilizer is still cheaper by P180.00 than the unsubsidized fertilizer,” Cawilan said.

Cawilan is asking why the DA does not just give the subsidy to them in cash “so there will be no need for processing and waiting for the payment.”

Told of the reduced value of the government fertilizer subsidy coupon, Provincial Agriculturist Gerardo Jose said that he will have the reports verified.

Jose informed ZZW that some 32,756 coupons worth P8.2M has been released by the DA to Kalinga and that the provincial government is also mulling to add four more P250.00 discount coupons per hectare to the two coupons already being given by the national government.**