The latest news stories from the major news organizations in Cebu and Manila in the Philippines, the US and other countries.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

September 28, 2009 Major News Stories

73 dead, more than 300,000 displaced by Ondoy

(UPDATE 2) At least 73 persons were killed and nearly 70,000 families were displaced by massive flooding after tropical storm Ondoy (international name: Ketsana) dumped the heaviest rainfall on Metro Manila in more than four decades, officials said Sunday.

73 killed, almost 340,000 affected by 'Ondoy,' - NDCC

(UPDATE 4 as of 9:30 p.m.) At least 73 people died, 23 went missing, and close to 340,000 people were affected after tropical storm "Ondoy" (international name: Ketsana) battered areas across Luzon, according to the National Disaster Coordinating Council as of 6 p.m., Sunday. This does not yet include the 36 deaths in Brgy. Silangan in Quezon City, reported by the Parish Pastoral Council.

Over 100 killed and almost 340,000 affected by 'Ondoy'

(UPDATE 6, Sept. 28, 1:30 a.m.) At least 73 people died, 23 went missing, and close to 340,000 people were affected after storm "Ondoy" battered Luzon over the weekend, according to the government. In Brgy. Silangan in Quezon City, the Parish Pastoral Council reported that 36 other people died, while in Provident Village in Marikina, bodies found climbed to 15.

Soldier, four militiamen die in Laguna rescue

A member of the 16th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army and four members of the Citizens' Armed Forces Geographical Unit (Cafgu) drowned in a sudden surge of flood water while conducting rescue operations in Famy, Laguna at the height of typhoon Ondoy Saturday.

Ondoy dumped more rains than Katrina

"Katrina" was no match to "Ondoy. "The 15th weather disturbance that hit the Philippines in 2009 dumped a total of 455 millimeters of rain in Quezon City alone in 24 hours, compared to the 250 millimeters of rain that Hurricane Katrina brought to New Orleans in Louisiana in the United States in 2005.

No classes in Metro, Southern Tagalog areas

(UPDATE 5) Classes at all levels in Metro Manila and the provinces of Rizal, Batangas, and Laguna have been suspended until Tuesday, September 29, due to the floods brought about by typhoon Ondoy, officials said Sunday.

No work in Congress Monday

Work and session in the House of Representative have been suspended on Monday, September 28, Speaker Prospero Nograles has announced.

No court hearings in typhoon-hit areas

The Supreme Court has canceled court hearings scheduled for Monday in Pasig and Marikina in Metro Manila, in southern Tagalog, and in the Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, and Palawan) region, deputy court administrator and tribunal spokesman Jose Midas Marquez said.

US embassy closed Monday due to floods

The United States embassy here will be closed Monday due to floods, US Ambassador Kristie Kenney said in her facebook status update Sunday afternoon.

Delayed rescue angers Marikina residents

Marnie Lintag and her husband spent close to six hours Sunday craning their necks toward the window of their riverside home in Marikina City and standing precariously on a table with floodwater up to their shoulders.

Even MMDA chief could not rescue stranded daughter

Even the powerful chairman of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) could not send help to his only child, who was stranded on Saturday, due to floodwaters that ravaged their factory in Rizal province.

Flood victims turn to media for quick help

1,576 messages inundated ABS-CBN mobile phone Saturday night HUNGRY, shivering, and stranded for hours atop their houses roofs as Ondoy dumped record-breaking rains in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, Filipinos and their families turned to media hotlines for immediate help, as relief and disaster agencies scrambled on their operations with limited logistics. 

At least 6,000 people in MM rescued by AFP, PNP

MANILA – More than 6,000 people who were affected by floods brought about by tropical storm Ondoy (international code name Ketsana) have been rescued in Metro Manila by the military and police.

Arroyo visits wake of Pampanga victims

President Macapagal-Arroyo on Sunday visited the wake of the 12 residents who were killed after a landslide triggered by strong rains spawned by tropical storm "Ondoy" on Saturday hit a village at the foothills of Mt. Arayat here.

Red Cross rubber boats rescue people on roofs

The Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) dispatched before dawn on Sunday several rescue teams to the flooded Marikina City and Providence Village in Cainta, where residents have been forced onto their roofs.

Solons seek disaster fund from 2010 budget

An ally of the Arroyo administration in Congress said on Sunday the House would seek a realignment of the 2010 budget to provide funds for disaster relief, after seeing the weaknesses of government response when floodwaters overran many parts of Metro Manila on Saturday.

PAGASA upgrade sought after Ondoy hit

No less than an alter-ego of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo expressed the sentiment of many Filipinos: that the government should upgrade its weather equipment to avoid another catastrophe that Tropical Storm "Ondoy" had brought to the country's capital and other parts of Luzon.

New radars to upgrade PAGASA forecasts

ZAMBOANGA CITY — The Department of Science and Technology is speeding up its Doppler radar installation program to upgrade the forecasting capabilities of the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).

RP seeks typhoon aid, battles to avoid backlash

by By Manny Mogato, Reuters
MANILA - The Philippines appealed for international aid to help tens of thousands marooned by flashfloods, and apologized for the delays in rescue efforts to avoid potential political fallout from the crisis. 

DSWD: 'Ondoy' victims also need beddings, towels

Aside from food, water, and clothing, Social Welfare and Development Secretary Esperanza I. Cabral said the vctims of tropical storm Ondoy also need beddings, towels, towels, and items for personal hygiene.  

ABS-CBN telethon raises over P8M for 'Ondoy' victims

MANILA – ABS-CBN telethon has raised at least P8 million in cash pledges and more than P20-million worth of goods for the victims of tropical storm Ondoy (international code name Ketsana).

Ship owners offer to ferry relief goods for free

The Philippine Inter-Island Shipowners Association has offered the free shipment of relief goods to Metro Manila and other typhoon-hit areas in Metro Manila, its chairman Daniel Lacson Jr. announced on Sunday.

Solons asked to give 'pork' to Ondoy victims

A militant nationwide alliance of fishermen urged lawmakers on Sunday to donate portions of their pork barrel to victims of typhoon Ondoy.

US donates $50,000 to flood victims

The United States embassy has donated $50,000 for the flood victims caused by incessant rains of typhoon Ondoy.

China donates $10,000 for Ondoy victims

China on Sunday donated $10,000 (about half a million pesos) for the victims of typhoon Ondoy.

Unicef donates P8-M in kind to Ondoy victims

 The United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef) donated a total of P8-million worth of food and non-food items for distribution to the flood affected areas, according to the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC).

Waters from river, sea swells subside in Zambo City

by By Dyborrhae Jewel M. Reyes,ABS-CBN Zamboanga
ZAMBOANGA CITY - The City Disaster Coordinating Center (CDCC) in Zamboanga City reported Sunday that most of the residents who evacuated due to river and sea swells have gone back to their homes already starting dawn.  

Rains and floods reported in Central Mindanao and Zamboanga Peninsula

DAVAO CITY — Ondoy's impact in Mindanao over the weekend was comparatively mild, bringing cloudy skies and intermittent rains resulting in disruptions in cultural activities in Iligan, floods in Maguindanao and Zamboanga City, as well as delays or suspension of airline flights from southern Mindanao to Manila. The weather in most parts of the island, including this city, however, was generally fine.

Cebu's rescue teams ready to help

THE Cebu City Government expressed willingness to assist the victims of flooding in Manila, like it did for places struck by typhoon Frank last year.

Cebu opposition launches Panaghiusa

Politicians opposed to Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia got together yesterday to launch what they call as the "solid opposition bloc" – Panaghiusa.

Sonny not supporting Georgia's bid for mayor

Former Senator John "Sonny" Osmeña said yesterday he will not support his cousin Georgia Osmeña in the latter's plans to run for mayor of Cebu City.

Tommy says he is not impressed by Noynoy

Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña said he is not impressed with presidential aspirant Sen. Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino but may feel comfortable with Sen. Manuel Roxas now by his side.

Pabling 'ambushed' in PB talk, PJ says

REP. Pablo John Garcia (Cebu Province, 3rd district) called it an "ambush" when Vice Gov. Gregorio Sanchez invited Rep. Pablo Garcia to a special session, just to publicly disagree with him.

Group to bring Naga coal ash issue to international meeting

The controversial purchase of the Balili property and the proposed coal-fired power plant in Naga City will soon be among the topics in foreign discussions as it will be included in the coming climate meetings that will be held in Bangkok, Thailand.

Contractors ready to do studies on BRT

Both international and local studies for the establishment of a Bus Rapid Transit System in Cebu City are now completely negotiated.  City Planning and Development Coordinating Office head Nigel Paul Villarete said studies to be conducted by World Bank and the Department of Transportation and Communication for the BRT in Cebu have been awarded to their respective contractors.

No disruptions in RP outsourcing - BPAP

Outsourcing companies continue to operate over the weekend despite heavy rains and floods of caused by Typhoon 'Ondoy,' according to a top official of the Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP).

Marcos allies prosper after his death

Twenty years after dictator Ferdinand Marcos died, some of his former allies remain the richest men in the Philippines while those who have sought to bring them to justice are angry and frustrated.

Supreme Court exempts HMOs from documentary stamp tax

The Supreme Court (SC) has exempted health maintenance organizations (HMO) from payment of documentary stamp tax (DST), classifying these as non-insurance firms.

NCAA cancels games on Monday

The National Collegiate Athletic Association suspended seniors and juniors basketball games scheduled Monday (September 28) due to bad weather caused by tropical storm Ondoy.

Former PBA chairman Tony Chua drowns in Ondoy's floodwaters

MANILA – Antonio "Tony" Chua, the former chairman of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) and team manager of the Barako Bull, drowned at the height of Typhoon Ondoy's wrath in his Cainta residence on Saturday evening.

Bitoon stuns top seed, moves up to second

MANILA - GM-candidate Richard Bitoon posted the first major upset win in the storm-hit fourth President Arroyo Cup International Chess Championship, beating top seed GM Mikhael Mchedlishvili of Georgia at the Duty Free Fiesta Mall in Parañaque Sunday.

Pacquiao dedicates Cotto fight to Nazario

MANILA -- Manny Pacquiao declared Sunday that he would do everything he can to fulfil the dying wish of late boxing manager Rod Nazario: win the WBO welterweight title from reigning champion Miguel Cotto.

Klitschko retains WBC title with Arreola victory

by Reuters
LOS ANGELES – Vitali Klitschko retained his WBC heavyweight title with a 10th round TKO over previously undefeated challenger Cristobal Arreola Saturday.

Hollywood stars seek help for 'Ondoy' victims

MANILA –Hollywood stars called on their fellow Americans to help the victims of tropical storm Ondoy (international codename Ketsana) in the Philippines as they expressed their sympathies to the thousands of affected Filipinos.

Kris Aquino to star in a new teleserye

by By Julie Bonifacio,
MANILA - Sa press conference ni Kris Aquino para sa kanyang newest product endorsement ay ikinwento niya na nagsara na sila ng usapan sa nakabili ng bahay niya sa Valle Verde II.

Pagasa lifts all Storm Signals in RP; more rains to follow as 'Ondoy' exits

While it moved farther away from the Philippine territory Sunday, tropical storm "Ondoy" (Ketsana) will still bring rains over parts of Luzon, state weather forecasters said.

Stephen Leacock  - "I detest life-insurance agents: they always argue that I shall some day die, which is not so."

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