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

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

December 30, 2010 Major News Stories

December 30, 2010 Major News Stories
December 30, 2010 Major News Stories



DoH lists items to deal with New Year revelry mishaps

from Breaking News

Egg whites, iced water and ear plugs. No, they are not new firecracker brands but rather a few vital things one must have on hand in case of emergencies that may arise during New Year merry-making.

In urging the public to shun the use of all sorts of firecrackers to greet 2011, the Department of Health has likewise issued first aid tips for burns, amputation and poisoning caused by firecrackers.

If children start vomiting after handling firecrackers, parents must immediately suspect poisoning, said Dr. Eric Tayag, chief of the DOH’s National Epidemiology Center.

At least five egg whites—beaten or not—must be fed to a child and 10 egg whites to an adult who may have ingested toxic substances from the firecrackers, said Tayag.

The victim must be rushed to the hospital for treatment, Tayag stressed, noting that firecracker ingestion causes an erratic heartbeat and a sharp drop in blood glucose and calcium levels.

"Remember that egg whites are not an antidote... this is just to coat the gastrointestinal tract to prevent the firecracker's toxic substances from damaging it, which is the most frequent cause of death," Tayag told reporters in an interview Tuesday.

The health agency has so far logged five incidents of poisoning, mostly due to piccolo—a small and cheap firecracker lit like a matchstick. It may contain yellow phosphorous, the same poison found in "watusi."

In its surveillance report that began December 21, the DOH said one fatality has occurred out of the five cases it monitored.

For first-degree burns, victims must hold the hand or affected area under cool running water, pat it dry and put gauze over the wound before rushing to the hospital for treatment. Immersing hand or wound in iced water will be helpful in case of second-degree burns, according to Tayag.

Pressure must be placed on the wound and the arm must be elevated to ease the bleeding.

But he also said it was important to wipe off traces of phosphorous in the hand or the affected area before immersing it in water as "it does more harm than good."

The victim must immediately seek a doctor's help as traces of gun powder, paper and other particles must be extracted from the open wound to prevent tetanus.

When fingers or other parts of the body have been severed due to the firecrackers, Tayag said the amputated part must be submerged in water with ice to keep the nerves alive. Doctors could reattach it if its nerves have not been badly damaged and if help is sought immediately, he added.

Opening of windows to invite good luck the New Year brings may be a common practice but health officials said it was better to keep them shut to protect one's lungs from the air pollution generated by fireworks.

"It's not only luck that will come in but also the smoke and dust that will irritate one's respiratory tract," warned Tayag.

It is also prudent to use ear plugs during the New Year revelry to protect one's hearing.

"One must use ear plugs especially if he is close to the area where firecrackers are being exploded because if you are closer than a few meters to it, it can cause some degree of deafness," said the health official.

Rama insists to keep seized pyro from Osmeña's friend

by By Rene U. Borromeo/FPL

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama insisted on the legality of the seizure of about P3 million worth of pyrotechnic devices from a stall in SM City Cebu.

Rama stood firm that the seized items could not be released to the owner even if he is a friend of the city officials. The owner, Bryan Lim, who is a close friend of South District Rep. Tomas Osmeña pleaded for the release of the goods seized from him for violation of the city ordinance that prohibits the sale of firecrackers outside the designated area.

BOC asked: What happened to those balikbayan boxes?

from by

MANILA, Philippines - The Office of the Ombudsman on Wednesday called the attention of the Bureau of Customs after receiving complaints on the delays in the release of “balikbayan boxes” intended for the Christmas holidays.

New Year hope very high

from by By Ana Mae G. Roa, BusinessWorld

MANILA, Philippines - More Filipinos are hopeful of the coming New Year, the Social Weather Stations (SWS) said, with their number near a record high hit eight years ago.

Rice production in region falls

by cebuweb

DUE to the crop sector’s poor performance, the agriculture sector in Central Visayas suffered a 14.9-percent production loss during the first half of the year, the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) 7 reported.

In its recently released Regional Economic Situationer (RES), the agency noted that while the regional economy’s growth “accelerated” during the first six

months, with exports and tourist arrivals increasing at a faster rate, the agriculture sector remained “lethargic.”

Bigger Devotee City for Sinulog

by laureenjean

CEBU CITY -- Aside from increasing the number of container vans to accommodate more pilgrims, Cebu City's Devotee City will also provide an Internet connection to guests.

2011 declared ‘Year of Grace’ for pilgrimage site in Liloan

by cebuweb

THE Archdiocese of Cebu has declared a Year of Grace for the San Roque Parish in Barangay Yati, Liloan, Cebu, granting special blessings to any Catholic who visits the church next year.

Cebu Archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal yesterday signed the declaration for 2011 to be the Year of Grace for the parish. The same declaration granted the parish’s request to be a place of pilgrimage for the same period.

Cebu Provincial Government raises budgets for district hospitals

by cebuweb

NEXT year, all district hospitals in Cebu Province will have a bigger budget to work with.

Although the Carcar Provincial Hospital is not yet fully operational and still needs to meet some requirements of the Department of Health, its budget is P48.4 million larger than this year’s outlay.

Capitol asks court: Stop city mayor’s appointment of MCWD directors

by cebuweb

THE Office of the Governor has asked the court to stop Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama from pursuing his plan to appoint new board members of the Metro Cebu Water District (MCWD).

Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, through the Provincial Legal Office, filed a motion last Dec. 22 seeking a permanent mandatory and prohibitory injunction.

School asks court to stop CH from collecting taxes

by cebuweb

VELEZ College, the institution that runs the Velez Hospital, does not want to pay taxes to the Cebu City Government.

In a petition for review, the school asked the Regional Trial Court (RTC) to annul the P20-million tax assessment City Hall has been trying to collect from it.

Police identify cohorts of suspect, place them under surveillance

by cebuweb

WITH the arrest of drug suspect Maria Theresa Gimenez, police will shift their focus on her alleged accomplices in the illegal drug trade.

Police have already identified them and have placed them under surveillance, said Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) Director Melvin Ramon Buenafe in a news conference.

The CCPO, though, is still verifying a report that a group of traders has been supplying the drugs to Maria Theresa and her group.

Buenafe, however, declined to discuss their operation further, saying it is an intelligence matter.

Cebu town mayor refuses paraffin test

by laureenjean

CEBU CITY -- Medellin Mayor Ricardo Ramirez declined Wednesday to undergo a paraffin test in connection with the investigation into the death of a municipal employee, the police said.

Medellin Police Station Chief Bonifacio Arriesgado said the mayor was sure he would test positive because he test-fired a new licensed gun at 5 p.m. last Monday, December 27.

Mayor Ramirez, in a report over GMA 7, also denied rumors he was responsible for the death of Edelberto Abao, a municipal employee, saying he considered the man part of his family.

Medellin mayor probed over slay

Medellin Mayor Ricardo Ramirez is under investigation after the police considered him a suspect in the killing of a municipal employee Monday evening.

Palace still mum on next Comelec chair

from GMA

Malacañang on Wednesday remained tight-lipped on the replacement of Jose Melo, whose resignation as Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman will take effect on January 31 next year.

Palace to SC: Actions speak louder than words

from by

MANILA, Philippines - Using the oft-repeated phrase, Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said it remains to be seen if the Supreme Court is indeed not singling out the Aquino administration in its decisions.

Jessica Alfaro not banned from witness protection program

from GMA

(Updated 5:16 p.m.) Jessica Alfaro, the "star witness" in the 1991 Vizconde massacre case but whose credibility was questioned by the Supreme Court, could still seek protection from the government through the Witness Protection Program (WPP), Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said Wednesday.

Feliciano member mocks guilty plea rule on amnesty

from GMA

A former coup plotter who was also member of the commission that looked into the July 2003 Oakwood mutiny on Wednesday branded as "ridiculous" the requirement for alleged mutineers to admit guilt before they could apply for amnesty.

Palace hoping for case vs Garcia

from Breaking News

Malacañang on Wednesday indicated that the Sandiganbayan should consider the strength of the evidence against retired Major General Carlos Garcia before ruling on his plea bargain deal with the Ombudsman special prosecutors.

Solon urges Aquino to free political prisoners ahead of peace talks

from Breaking News

Following the release of the Morong 43 health workers, the government should consider freeing political prisoners in the country as an act of goodwill ahead of the resumption of the peace negotiations with the National Democratic Front (NDF), a lawmaker said Wednesday.

CPP standing by large-scale mining ban

from GMA

Amid the government's plan to discuss the issue in the upcoming peace talks, the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) on Wednesday stood pat on its policy of banning large-scale mining and logging firms, saying that these operations threaten the environment.

Fight vs illegal logging, graft a 'top priority' - DENR chief

from GMA

Environment chief Ramon Paje said Wednesday that fighting illegal logging and corruption within his agency's ranks remains as his "top priority."

Solon wants stiffer penalties for crimes vs senior citizens

from GMA

Senator Ramon Bong Revilla Jr. has filed a bill directing the Department of Justice (DOJ) to review crimes committed against senior citizens and recommend the imposition of stiffer penalties on persons convicted of such crimes.

DFA confirms 7 Pinoys onboard seized German vessel

from by

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Wednesday confirmed that 7 Filipino seafarers were onboard a German-owned cargo vessel that was seized by Somali pirates on December 27 in waters off Oman.

Nationwide consultations on internet connections sought

from GMA

Militant consumer group TXTPower has demanded that the National Telecommunications Commission conduct wider public discussions on broadband Internet policies in the Philippines.

Philippines to borrow P114B from local lenders

from GMA

(Updated 6:37 p.m) For the first quarter of 2011, the Philippine government plans to issue P114 billion worth of debt papers to local lenders as part of its borrowing program, the Bureau of the Treasury said Wednesday.

Aquino wants early submission of 2012 budget proposal

from by

MANILA, Philippines - After passing next year's national budget on schedule, the Aquino administration also wants an early submission of the budget for 2012.

11 Vietnam sailors missing after ship sinks

from Breaking News

Eleven Vietnamese sailors were missing in the South China Sea after their cargo ship sank during high winds, a rescue official said Wednesday.

Belgian activist priest admits sexual abuse

from GMA

BRUSSELS - A Belgian priest and prominent Third World development activist has admitted he sexually abused a minor 40 years ago, the director of the development aid organization he founded said Wednesday.

The case of 85-year-old Francois Houtart came to light after the priest's supporters started a campaign to nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Suicide bombers hit Iraqi police HQ, kill chief

from GMA

BAGHDAD - Suicide bombers attacked Iraq's federal police headquarters in Mosul on Wednesday, leveling the building and killing the top police commander, a prominent figure who had escaped several past assassination attempts, officials said.

Agustin hopes to end SMB's All-Filipino title drought

from GMA

For San Miguel rookie coach Ato Agustin, winning a title in his first full season as the Beermen's mentor would just be a bonus, since he wants to end the team's decade-long title drought in the All-Filipino Conference.

Spurs cruise past Lakers 97-82

from - Breaking News

The San Antonio Spurs prevailed in a clash of the NBA leaders against the defending champions, beating the reeling Los Angeles Lakers 97-82 on Tuesday.

Wade's season-high 40 get Heat by Knicks (AP)

No blowout this time for the Miami Heat. They can beat the Knicks with a grind-it-out finish, too. Dwyane Wade scored 15 of his season-high 40 points in the fourth quarter, LeBron James and Chris Bosh each finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and the Heat held off a late comeback to beat New York 106-98 on Tuesday night, Miami's 15th win in its last 16 games overall and its seventh straight.

Celtics get back on track, defeat Pacers (AP)

The Boston Celtics played like a championship-caliber team for the final 12 minutes on Tuesday, and that was enough against the up-and-coming Indiana Pacers. Indiana led for all but a few minutes in the first three quarters, but Boston outscored the Pacers 29-16 in the fourth while holding them to 26 percent shooting for a 95-83 victory.

Revillame's civil case to be heard in another court

from - Breaking News by By Reinir Padua

Willie Revillame’s civil case against TV network ABS-CBN will now be heard by another court. The case has been raffled to the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 217 under Presiding Judge Santiago Arenas. The re-raffle was held on Tuesday afternoon.

OMB chair vows zero piracy for 2010 MMFF entries

from by

MANILA, Philippines- Ronnie Ricketts, chairman of the Optical Media Board (OMB), vowed a zero film piracy for this year’s Metro Manila Film Festival entries.




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