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

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Major News Stories for Dec. 23, 2010

Major News Stories for Dec. 23, 2010
Major News Stories for Dec. 23, 2010



Palace: Aquino's holiday ruling has no negative impact on tourism

Malacañang on Wednesday said President Benigno Simeon Aquino III's ruling on holidays in 2011 will have no negative impact on domestic tourism.

Cabbies who turn down passengers face fines

by cebuweb

THE Land Transportation Office (LTO) 7 has deployed more law enforcers and members of Task Force Alpha in the vicinity of malls, terminals and piers to conduct “Oplan Esnabero” against drivers who take advantage of their passengers during the Christmas holidays.

LTO 7 Director Raul Aguilos asked the public to report to his office any erring drivers so they can be punished.

Holiday rush at terminal Special police unit deployed

by By Niña G. Sumacot and Ria Mae Y. Booc/JPM

Starting yesterday, the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO) deployed a team from the Special Reaction Unit (SRU) to the Cebu South Bus Terminal, which is jam-packed during Holiday seasons.

Over 5T seniors may get P4T from City Hall

by cebuweb

AT LEAST 5,000 senior citizens in Cebu City can push through with some last-minute shopping for Christmas, as they will receive this week P4,000 each from City Hall.

Dodong Casinillo, head of Cebu City’s Office of Senior Citizens’ Affairs (OSCA), said seniors who applied for financial assistance from City Hall from January to April this year will benefit from the cash aid, to be distributed at the Plaza Sugbo starting 1 p.m. tomorrow.

‘Don’t fire ‘em’

by cebuweb

AN OFFICIAL of the Department of Health (DOH) yesterday warned the public against firing guns during Christmas and New Year celebrations, noting that three to five cases involving stray bullets during the holidays are recorded yearly.

At the South Road Properties (SRP), the only place in Cebu City where it is legal to sell and buy firecrackers, vendors are starting to panic that they would not be able to get back their investment. The vendors are complaining about the lack of lights and their location, which is not readily visible to the public.

Bulsita families to spend Christmas homeless

by cebuweb

IN LESS than 20 minutes, three houses were destroyed while two others were damaged by a fire that struck the interior portion of Lower Villa Bulsita in Barangay Bulacao, Cebu City late yesterday afternoon.

The fire left homeless a total of nine families because several families shared the houses, said SFO2 Victoriano Mercado.

Cebu mayor hopes to settle land swap issue

by dr_tangarorang

CEBU CITY – If given the chance, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said he wants to talk to Governor Gwendolyn Garcia, one-on-one, about the fate of residents living on Province-owned lots in the city.

No other personalities need to be involved, he said. It will just be a dialogue between two local chief executives.

Capitol files complaint against coop over Kalunasan building

by cebuweb

THE Cebu Provincial Government has filed a complaint against a cooperative for constructing a building on a lot owned by the province.

Filed on Tuesday before the Municipal Trial Court in Cities, the complaint came three months after the Regional Trial Court (RTC) ordered Capitol to stop demolishing the building the Langub Kalunasan Multi-purpose Cooperative erected on Lot 1411, a 9,213-square meter property in Barangay Kalunasan, Cebu City.

Typhoid outbreak "under control"

by By Mellanie C. Rosales/JPM

The Department of Health 7 (DOH) has reported a decrease in the number of admitted patients with typhoid fever in the municipality of Alegria, but has not lifted yet its declaration of outbreak.

DOH 7 Director Dr. Susana Madarieta said a team stayed in Alegria to conduct a house-to-house campaign and provide some antibiotics and intravenous (IV) fluids.

Madarieta said there were some 750 typhoid cases in the municipality since the start of the outbreak. But as of yesterday, the number of consultation per day was decreasing.

Dr. Christina Giango of the Integrated Provincial Health Office (Ipho) said there were only four admissions yesterday compared to the previous days, wherein the number of patients reached up to 40 per day.

Giango said the case is now under control but they are still monitoring the place and that they are not putting their guard down.

“Usually ang force anang typhoid kay mga two weeks, unya og ma-treated na mawala ra after two weeks and could even last up to one month na madugay ang iya force that is why we are still expecting nga naa pa gihapun mga fever cases didto although they are being treated na,” Madarieta said.

The local government unit plans to rehabilitate the water system in Alegria. But until the government gives a signal that the water is now safe to use, Madarieta said people must boil their water or chlorinate them, or drink from bottled water.

The reports in the number of casualties varied. The chief of the Malabuyoc District Hospital reported that there were only 30 patients left and that there were four casualties, but Giango said she received only two reports of typhoid-related deaths. They have yet to confirm another death yesterday in a mountainous part of Alegria.

Group to sue Gwen over power plant controversy

by By Ryan Christopher J. Sorote/JMO

The Cebu Alliance for Governance on Health and the Environment (CAGHE), a newly formed alliance of doctors, lawyers, and religious leaders will be filing a case against Governor Gwendolyn Garcia in relation to the controversial Balili coal-fired power plant.

Missing sea watchman Suspect in Cordova case to surrender

by By Jose P. Sollano

One of the suspects in the recent attack against a Cordova marine watchman wants to surrender, Mayor Adelino Sitoy revealed yesterday.

Pooc bry. captain to ask suspects in disappearance of marine watcher

by cebuweb

A TALISAY barangay official has offered to convince illegal fishermen tagged responsible for the disappearance of a Cordova Bantay Dagat operative to surrender.

“Dako sila respeto sa ako, ug akong gihangyo (ang ilang parente) na kinsa nakasala atong tagaan ug insaktong justisya (They respect me. I pleaded to their relatives that they should face justice),” Pooc Barangay Captain Dorotheo “Dory” Emit told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday.

Seven people charged for theft

by By Mylen P. Manto/FPL

Seven people were charged in court for allegedly stealing the bag of the fiancé of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia’s nephew.

Lo Oliver Garcia, 32, on behalf of his fiancé Analou Reyes filed the case for theft against Roel Aliviado, Philip Medel Jr., Ronald Asegurado, Ricardo Aguanta, Jonie Tan, Laurence Esmoni and Ariel Alcoriza all residents of Poblacion Asturias.

Pj-Glenn Tandem One Cebu bares 2013 candidates

by By Gregg M. Rubio/FPL

The One Cebu Party of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has already announced this early, its gubernatorial and vice-gubernatorial candidates for the 2013 elections.

Cebu province’s local administration party will be fielding 3rd District Rep. Pablo John “PJ” Garcia and businessman Glenn Soco for governor and vice governor, respectively.

CDU graduate tops dentistry board exam

by By /FPL

A graduate of the Cebu Doctors University Hospital landed in the top 10 in the recent Dentist Licensure Examination given by the Board of Dentistry in Manila this month, according to the results released by the Professional Regulation Commission yesterday.

Joanna Bless Tago Yap scored 83.18-percent and shared on the sixth spot with Andrianne Ang Gomez of the University of the Philippines- Manila. Yap is the lone graduate from Cebu who landed in the top 10.

PRC: 251 new dentists


MANILA, Philippines - The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) announced Wednesday that 251 out of 787 passed the Dentist Licensure Examination.

The successful examinees who garnered the ten (10) highest places are the following:



















































3 of 'Morong 43' assail NPA

by By David Dizon,

MANILA, Philippines - Three members of the "Morong 43" on Wednesday said President Benigno Aquino III made a mistake when he decided to release the 43 people who were arrested in Morong, Rizal last February on suspicion that they were New People's Army (NPA) rebels.

Govt integration program awaits 5 'Morong 43' members

Five members of the so-called Morong 43 who admitted that they were communist rebels will undergo a social integration course to help them start a new life after leaving the armed insurgency.

Civic-military work is Aquino's new tack vs rebels

by By Manny Mogato, Reuters

MANILA - President Benigno Aquino unveiled on Tuesday the Philippine military's new counter-insurgency plan focusing on measures to cut poverty to defeat Maoist and Muslim rebels.

NPA violated bilateral holiday ceasefire, says AFP spokesman

The New People’s Army (NPA) had allegedly violated the bilateral holiday ceasefire with the military after a group of rebels reportedly fired at a militiaman in Negros Oriental, a spokesman from the Armed Forces of the Philippines said Wednesday.

Sandigan issues gag order over ex-AFP comptroller’s case

The Sandiganbayan issued a gag order Wednesday to all parties concerned in connection with the compromise agreement regarding the criminal case of former General Carlos Garcia who pleaded guilty to a lesser offense of direct bribery instead of plunder.

Sandiganbayan defers promulgation on Garcia case

UPDATED 2:20 p.m. - The Sandiganbayan on Wednesday postponed the scheduled announcement of its decision on the P300-million plunder case against former military comptroller Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia.

‘Criticisms vs Garcia plea bargain agreement baseless’

Assistant Ombudsman Jose de Jesus Jr, in a press conference together with other prosecutors of the Office of the Ombudsman involved in the plunder case against former military comptroller and retired Maj. Gen. Carlos Garcia, slammed as baseless the criticisms hurled against the plea bargain agreement now pending with the Sandiganbayan.De Jesus said, however, that a new order was issued on Wednesday by the Sandiganbayan.

Morale of troops unaffected by Garcia’s plea bargain

The plea bargain made by former Comptroller (ret) Brigadier General Carlos Garcia will not affect the morale of troops, an Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesman said Wednesday.

Gringo: Spare Garcia from trial by publicity

Senator Gregorio Honasan urged the public to refrain from criticizing his former classmate, former General Carlos Garcia over his plea bargain agreement with the Ombudsman for his plunder case.

Trillanes ready to mediate with Aquino, AFP for junior officers

After being detained for more than seven years, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV is ready to act as a mediator between the junior officers and the military leadership, including their commander-in-chief, President Benigno Simeon Aquino III.

No apologies from Trillanes to Arroyo

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV insisted on Wednesday that he will not apologize to anyone, especially not to Pampanga Rep. and former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, whose administration he attempted to overthrow at least twice.

No advice from Trillanes on Lacson's case

Now that he is in the custody of the Senate, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Wednesday deferred from giving any advice to fugitive Senator Panfilo Lacson on whether he should surface or not.

Trillanes eyes 2nd term to make up for lost time

Saying he needs to make up for lost time, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV is keen on running for a second term in the Senate in 2013.

MILF blames PH gov’t for delay in restart of talks

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front said Wednesday the government's slow action and demand to name a new third-party facilitator were the main reasons the peace talks have not resumed.

2 Malaysian nationals left free by kidnappers?

Inabandona ng mga hinihinalang Abu Sayyaf ang dalawang Malaysian nationals na dinukot nila noong Pebrero. Kuwento ng mga biktima, iniwan sila ng mga bandido dahil hindi sila makapagbayad ng ransom.

Realign Truth commission P83M budget—Speaker

President Benigno Aquino III may have P83 million more at his disposal if the Truth Commission is finally declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

Chinese envoy: HK probe won't prosecute witnesses

by By Sheryll Mundo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA, Philippines - Chinese Ambassador Liu Jianchao on Wednesday clarified the request of the Hong Kong police for 136 witnesses to appear before the Coroner's court is merely to determine the cause of death of 8 Hong Kong tourists in August 23 hostage crisis in Manila.

WikiLeaks: US describes PHL diplomat as determined but naive

The United States (US) has described the Philippines' top diplomat to the United Nations (UN) as a determined leader but "naive," said a classified cable message released by online whistle-blower WikiLeaks.  The cable was describing Philippine Permanent Representative to the UN, Libran Cabactulan, who was elected president of the 2010 Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference (RevCon) from May 3 to 28 this year at the UN headquarters in New York.

DOTC eyes GPS for passenger buses


MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Transportation and Communications is looking into adopting the use of global positioning (GPS) to monitor bus passengers.

Aquino's Christmas message: Put others before one's self


MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III on Wednesday reminded Filipinos about the true meaning of Christmas, which is to put others ahead of one's self.

Gov't saves P18.8-B due to stronger peso, lower interest


MANILA, Philippines - Lower borrowing costs and stronger peso allowed the government to realize savings of up to P18.8 billion in the first 11 months of the year.

$1: 44.205

$1: 44.205 (P44.30)

Euro 1: 58.1342

Supreme Court asked to remit P10.1-B to treasury

The cash-strapped national government is trying to recover from the Supreme Court at least P10.1 billion representing unremitted trust receipts and other collections from litigants and other private individuals for 2008 and 2009.

PhilHealth’s reserves reach P100B

The government is looking at expanding the beneficiary base and benefits of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation considering that the agency's reserve funds have exceeded the level required by law.

Thailand ends state of emergency in Bangkok

BANGKOK - Thailand's government withdrew armed soldiers from skytrain stops in Bangkok and other key sites Wednesday as it lifted an eight-month-old state of emergency imposed when protesters overran the capital, sparking deadly violence.

South Korea readies major military drill near tense border

by by Park Chan-Kyong, Agence France-Presse

SEOUL, South Korea - South Korea prepared Wednesday for a major live-fire drill involving fighter jets and tanks near the tense North Korean border, as Seoul and Washington reacted warily to overtures from Pyongyang.

Thai military to collect bodies of Malaysia crash victims


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Thailand's air force Wednesday sent two military cargo planes to collect the bodies of the 25 Thai victims of Malaysia's worst ever bus crash, embassy officials said.

China says Vatican criticism 'imprudent and ungrounded'

China on Wednesday rejected as "imprudent and ungrounded" the Vatican's criticism of a high-level meeting of its official Catholic Church, which is not recognised by the pope, state media said.

US moving to end ban on gays in military

by By Missy Ryan, Reuters

WASHINGTON DC - The Pentagon is drafting new rules that will allow gays and lesbians to serve openly for the first time, but it could be many months before a move that some top officers warn may endanger troops will finally take effect.

Mosley to give Pacquiao 'little more trouble' than Margarito


MANILA, Philippines – Boxing trainer Freddie Roach wants his ward Manny Pacquiao to undergo 6 weeks of training for the Shane Mosley fight next year.

Filipina wins bronze in Asian Chess Challenge


MANILA, Philippines – Woman Fide Master Rulp Ylem Jose bagged a bronze medal in the just concluded 2010 Grand Asian Chess Championship in University of Malaya Second College in Kuala, Lumpur, Malaysia on Tuesday.

Llamados survive Bolts to enter PBA semis for 5th straight time

Derby Ace's bid to become the first back-to-back All-Filipino champion in the last 25 years just got an added shot in the arm. This after the Llamados survived the Meralco Bolts, 92-88, to boost their title retention bid.

Kings dump Aces, force KO game on Christmas Day

Barangay Ginebra's never-say-die spirit is at it again. The Kings sent their PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals series with the Alaska Aces to a deciding Game Three after scoring a runaway 94-76 win Wednesday night at the Araneta Coliseum.

James doesn't like playing on Christmas (AP)

Phil Jackson and LeBron James agree: Christmas Day games are not the ideal holiday gift. A day after the Lakers' coach reiterated his longtime stance against NBA games on Dec. 25, James and other members of the Miami Heat said they also wish they could be with their families on Christmas. Instead, the Lakers and Heat will spend the holiday together, playing in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon.

NBA: Boykins shines as Bucks shock Lakers

Earl Boykins scored a season-high 22 points Tuesday as under-manned Milwaukee shocked the Los Angeles Lakers 98-79 to halt the two-time defending NBA champions' winning streak at five games.

Nowitzki surpasses Bird on all-time scoring list


MANILA, Philippines -- The Dallas Mavericks' franchise player Dirk Nowitzki has surpassed Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird on the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) all-time scoring list.

Jake Cuenca willing to portray Hubert Webb


MANILA, Philippines – If Hubert Webb’s life will be turned into a major motion picture, actor Jake Cuenca is willing to take on the role of the lead character.

MTRCB chief calls on public not to boycott Dolphy's film


MANILA, Philippines - The chairman of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB), Grace Poe-Llamanzares, appealed to the public not to boycott the Metro Manila Film Festival entry of King of Comedy Dolphy.

ABS-CBN extends airing of 'Alyna'


MANILA, Philippines –Good news to all fans of television series “Alyna.” The show's lead star, Shaina Magdayao, announced on "The Buzz" that the hit afternoon series will be extended until February of next year.

Regine Velasquez, Ogie Alcasid tie the knot


MANILA, Philippines - After three years of being together, singers Ogie Alcasid and Regine Velasquez tied the knot on Wednesday afternoon at Terrazas de Punta Fuego beach resort in Nasugbu, Batangas.

PNoy robot can speak 4 languages


MANILA, Philippines - The 3'5"-foot robot, inspired by President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III, aims to make the country more attractive to tourists.

Japan bio-scientists produce 'singing mouse'

by by Miwa Suzuki, Agence France-Presse

TOKYO - Japanese scientists said Tuesday they had produced a mouse that tweets like a bird in a genetically engineered "evolution" which they hope will shed light on the origins of human language.

'World's first' glasses-free 3D TV hits stores in Japan

Toshiba on Wednesday launched in Japan what it calls the world's first television that allows viewers to see 3D images without the need to wear special glasses, amid intensifying competition in the market.

"Wikileaks" enters the English language

by Reuters

LOS ANGELES - It happened to Xerox and more recently to Google, and now "wikileaks" has joined the list of proper names that are common enough to enter the English language as their own word.

China bars English words in all publications

by Agence France-Presse

BEIJING - Chinese newspapers, books and websites will no longer be allowed to use English words and phrases, the country's publishing body has announced, saying the "purity" of the Chinese language is in peril.

"Avatar" the most pirated film of 2010

by Reuters

NEW YORK – Drumroll please ... "Avatar" is the most pirated film of the year, according to data released by a file-sharing blog.

World's richest lottery spreads Christmas cheer in Spain

MADRID—Spain's annual Christmas lottery, which has the world's largest total payout, gave out €2.32 billion in prizes Wednesday to hundreds of lucky winners across the country, which has Europe's highest jobless rate.






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