Visayas newsbits for January 19, 2014
Tagbilaran City, Bohol (PIA) – President Benigno Aquino III has appointed Boholano Atty. Virgilio Mendez, as new National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) director. One of the NBI Code of Conduct and Manual of Operations’authors, Mendez was previously NBI Deputy Director for Regional Operations Services (NBI-DDROS). He was born March 5, 1952 to a farmer and a public school teacher Bayongan, San Miguel town, Bohol. He studied law at Tagbilaran’s Divine Word College and earned his degree in 1976, passing the bar with a grade of 81.55 percent the same year. Mendez’s commendations included those for the arrest of suspects in high-profile cases like the Kristelle “Kae” Davantes murder case and fatal shooting of former Lingayen Vice Mayor Ramon Arcinue and his wife in 2013. He was also responsible for the solution of the Rizal Day, 2000 LRT train bombing in Manila.
BORONGAN CITY, Eastern Samar (PIA) – The Philippine Information Agency (PIA), along with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) will lead in a Communications Cluster which will harmonize information needs and activities of international humanitarian organizations and governments working in typhoon Yolanda-hit areas in Eastern Samar in Region VIII. This, after UNOCHA’s Haimish Weatherly recently raised a concern about a “missing link” between and amongst the international non-government organizations (INGOs), government and the public, particularly typhoon victims. “It is important that information needs of the humanitarian groups and victims’ concern are supported, thus the need for a group to unify all these information and communication concerns,” he said. Earlier, the United Nations Food and Population Agency (UNFPA) tapped PIA in the translation into the Waray dialect some broadcast materials with themes on Women and Children’s Protection and Gender-Based Violence (WCP/GBV). INGOs in the province include the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNFPA, PLAN International, Good Neighbors, Christian Aid, World Food, Arche Nova, Doctors without Borders, UN Commission on Human Rights and others.
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte (PIA) – Catbalogan City continues to give relief to typhoon Yolanda-affected residents here, with the city government recently delivering 3,3760 packs of non-food items to the people of three towns here. In Alang-Alang, 200 relief packs were distributed in Barangay Blumentritt and 300 relief packs at Barangay San Roque. In Palo town, 900 relief packs were distributed in Barangay Libertad and some 767 relief packs in Barangay San Joaquin. In San Jose, some 1,595 relief packs were distributed through Barangay Chairman Lodovico Ortiga.
KALIBO, Aklan PIA) – The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Revenue District No. 71 in Kalibo, Aklan, has collected a record P1.078 billion in taxes in 2013, exceeding 2012’s P948 million collection, said Revenue District Officer Eralen de Aro as the district’s intensive tax collection report for 2013 closed late last week. The record collection, De Aro said, registered a growth rate of 13.75 percent. Making the district in Aklan number three in Panay Island. “I salute Aklanon taxpayers who religiously pay taxes. Despite Typhoon Yolanda that hit Aklan in November, 2013, the district was still able to collect a total of P107,974,928.75 in December 2013,” De Aro said.
DUMAGUETE CITY, Negros Oriental (PIA) – As stormy weather with moderate to heavy rains continues here, the Dumaguete City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) is assessing an evacuation site as a precautionary measure against possible flooding. CDRRMC head Engr. Jose Chiu said a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) is being prepared for a site at the TB Pavilion in Brgy. Talay which he described as “ideal and safe against flooding as it is 300 feet above sea level.” The Pavilion, on a five-hectare land formerly used as a hospital for tuberculosis patients, can accommodate from 5,000 to 6,000 families or 25,000 to 30,000 individuals.