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Mindanao newsbits for March 9, 2014

Cotabato Mishap

Kidapawan City – Datu Muslimin Sema, chairman of the Executive Council of 15 of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), was injured when a 10-wheeler truck hit his convoy while they were on their way to Cotabato City yesterday. But Sema’s nephew, Bon-bon Ampatuan, was killed, while two of his escorts identified as Nhordz Dimasangkay and Samad Datil sustained injuries in various parts of their bodies. Inspector Dion Odiz, chief of the Datu Angkan Ampatuan municipal police office, said the truck first hit a Toyota Fortuner, which then hit a Toyota Grandia where Sema and his nephew were on-board. Sema’s nephew, who was seated next to the driver, died on the spot. While Sema, according to Odiz, was seated at the middle. (Malu Cadelina Manar)

 

Plane Crash

DAVAO CITY – A light plane on a spraying operation at a banana plantation of the Lapandav Corporation crashed near a residential area in Tagum City, Davao del Norte, on Friday, authorities reported. The pilot, identified as Helson Rivera, survived, sustaining only a fracture in his arm, the Tagum police said. No residents in the area were reported hurt during the incident. According to the authorities, the plane with tail number RP-3024, and owned by the Mactan Aviation, crashed around 7:18 a.m. at a vacant lot in Purok Macopa, Visayan Village. Authorities are maintaining security at the crash site while an investigation is ongoing. (Alexander Lopez)

 

Warrant Lifting

COTABATO CITY – Local officials lauded the lifting of the controversial arrest warrants against some Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) leaders charged with criminal offenses for being hostile to former Maguindanao Governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. The lifting of the warrants was authorized by Judge George Jabido of the Regional Trial Court Branch 13. Among those that benefited was Ustadz Wahid Tundok, chief of the MILF’s 118th Base Command, who was arrested last February 23 here, and detained by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group. He said his release showed the improvement of security coordination between the government and the MILF. This is to preserve the cordiality of the group’s peace talks with government. (Ali Macabalang)

 

Security Measure

ZAMBOANGA CITY –The city government distributed 70 hand-held radio sets to the 14 villages here that are vulnerable to rebel attacks. City Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco said this move promotes security by improving the communication and mobility of the village officials. Recipients of the radio sets include the villages of Labuan, Patalon, Sinubong, Pamucutan, La Paz, and Limpapa in the east coast, and the island villages of Landang Laum, Landang Gua, Tumalutab, Tigtabon, Pangapuyan, Pasilmanta, Manalipa, and Busay. Climaco said she is optimistic that the village officials will be more proactive in handling security problems by relaying verified information to the authorities as fast as possible. (Nonoy Lacson)

 

Civil Registry

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – A law to reform the country’s civil registration system by bringing it up to international standards on birth registration was pushed by Misamis Oriental Representative Juliette Uy. House Bill (HB) 3753 or “An Act Providing for a More Responsive Civil Registration System and for Other Purposes,” aims to enable the Philippine Statistics Authority (formerly the National Statistics Office) and frontline government civil registration workers so that citizens can get their birth certificates for free for the first copy. The bill also seeks to help widen public access to birth, marriage, and death certificates at the municipal and city levels. (Camcer Ordoñez Imam)