Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Alakdan notorious gang leader nabbed in Nueva Ecija

Santa Rosa, Nueva Ecija, Municipal Hall.

SANTA ROSA, Nueva Ecija, August 3, 2011-Senior Superintendent Roberto Aliggayu, provincial police director revealed that the leader of a notorious criminal gang engaged in at least 17 robbery-holdup, gun-for-hire and carnapping activities in this town and adjoining towns in the province, was arrested late Tuesday night by operatives of the local police in the town proper.

The suspect identified as Ponciano Germino, 39, of Barangay Lourdes in this town, who is the leader of the dreaded Alakdan Group, a 17-man band involved in a string of criminal activities in the province in recent months.

Police Superintendent Ricardo Villanueva, chief of the provincial intelligence bureau said that only eight (8) members of the group remained after the others were waylaid in shoot-outs with lawmen in various operations in the province.

Chief Inspector Marcelino Veneracion, Santa Rosa police chief, who led the police team, arrested Germino at around 10:30 pm Tuesday in Barangay Poblacion where he was spotted pushing his motorcycle towards Barangay Cojuangco. Lawmen took from his possession one caliber 45 pistol and one magazine with eight live ammunitions.

Veneracion said that the operation against Germino was carried out after several days of intelligence build-up.

Germino is the leader of the Alakdan group tagged for the robbery-holdup with homicide in connection with the death of one Rolando Batalla who was held-up then killed in Barangay Bayanihan, Gapan City last May 4.

He is also facing a case for robbery-holdup with frustrated homicide for robbing businesswomen Ma. Cecilia Sta. Ana and Juanita Sta. Ana in Barangay Sto. Rosario here last April 13. Taken from the duo were P400,000 worth of cash.

Santa Rosa, Maharlika highway.
Ten hours later – Germino carted a Mio Soul motorcycle from 16-year-old victim John Bryan Canada in Barangay Valenzuela in this town.

A day before, Germino also carnapped a motorcycle owned by one Analyn Enriquez in Barangay Luna also here. 

Germino has standing warrants of arrest in the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Cabanatuan and the Municipal Trial Court in this town.

A bail bond of P180,000 was recommended by Cabanatuan RTC Branch 25 Judge Teresita Cativo for carnapping.

Charges of violations of Republic Act 8294 for illegal possession of firearms have been filed against Geronimo. (Jason de Asis)

Jinggoy bats DOJ and P’Noy to place Mike Arroyo in the immigration watchlist

Sen. Jinggoy Estrada at the senate
blue ribbon committee hearing.
MANILA, August 3, 2011-To ensure former First Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo’s presence at the next hearing of the Senate related to the anomalous purchase of the Philippine National Police (PNP) of three helicopters two years ago, Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Estrada bats the Department of Justice and Malacañang for the urgent watchlist order of him to the Bureau of Immigration.

“I am calling DOJ Secretary Leila de Lima and President Aquino to immediately instruct the immigration to place Mr. Arroyo in its watchlist,” Jinggoy said.

The senators at the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee second hearing agreed to summon Arroyo and her purported accountant, Rowena del Rosario to air their side on the issue scandal after businessman Archibald Legaspi Po, owner of Lion Air Inc. and Asian Spirit, manifested that two (2) of the helicopters bought by the PNP from Manila Aerospace Trading Corporation (Maptra) were actually owned by Arroyo.

The senators established that the choppers were actually owned by Arroyo; thus, the PNP are now in the limbo of controversy after they paid P105 million for the purchase of three brand new helicopters in 2009 but it turned out later that two of them were second hand.

Archibald Legaspi Po at the senate hearing.
Po admitted that in 2004, purchasing five helicopters for the former First Gentleman was mainly for use during the presidential campaign period and for the personal use of the Arroyos and their close allies.

“We have extensive verbal communication with Arroyo as regards the actual purchase, delivery and subsequent disposal of the helicopters,” Po admitted, saying that the expenses for the use and other costs related to the maintenance of the choppers were paid for in cash by Arroyo thru del Rosario. 

“In effect, Mr. Po admitted that he was the frontman of FG for this transaction and clearly established that it was FG who engineered the whole deal related to the PNP’s purchase of the helicopters,” Jinggoy said.

Other resource persons at the senate hearing.
“Po’s confirmation that he subsequently received a call from Arroyo after the controversy broke out and before Po was summoned to testify by the Senate, further proved that Po is intimately connected with the former First Gentleman,” Jinggoy noted. 

“To tie up all the issues together and put a closure on this controversy, it is therefore imperative that Mr. Arroyo’s presence at the next hearing and the subsequent hearings that the Senate will schedule is assured,” the Senator said; thus, there is a pressing need to put them in the watchlist order of the immigration. (Jason de Asis)

CBCP to Santiago: RH bill not the answer in solving poverty

MANILA, August 2, 2011— One need not ask an expert in liberation theology to understand that the reproductive health (RH) bill is not the key in solving poverty in the country, a Catholic Church official said.
Monsignor Juanito Figura, secretary general of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, said that while liberation theology is good, the “social forces of oppression” must first be determined and be taken in the Philippine context.
These “forces”, he said, could refer to the widespread corruption in the government, unequal distribution of land, widening gap between the rich and the poor, worsening criminality, severe incidents of hunger, and human trafficking.
“I cannot see why I would support the RH bill because the good provisions, for the sake of mothers and children, are already stated in the mandates of government agencies,” Figura said.
“The pro-poor provisions are also already with the agencies. There is no need for a new law. What we need is sincere and committed implementation of the already existing laws,” he said.
The CBCP official was reacting to Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s call to the Catholic hierarchy to support the passage of the controversial RH bill.
Santiago, who authored RH bill in the Senate, said that the desire to protect women and children from “unspeakable poverty” is a strong ground for passing the measure.
Invoking liberation theology, she said that it revolves around the theory that the message of Jesus Christ is “above all a call to struggle against the social forces of oppression.”
In Santiago’s first of her three-part co-sponsorship speech on the RH bill, she said that the proposed law is not against Church’s teachings.
“Liberation theology sees Jesus’s message as a call to struggle against the social forces of oppression. The present struggle for an RH Act to protect the health and quality of life of mother and child in the context of unspeakable poverty in the Philippines is part of (this),” she said.
Santiago said the Church must take a clear stand against social injustice and under liberation theology the first step to abolish it is to recognize that “the Church is tied to the unjust system that oppresses the very poor.”
Unfortunately for Santiago, Msgr. Figura could not connect how the RH bill would be able to address these “social forces of oppression”. “I could not see the logic. I am sorry to say that,” he said.
“Is RH bill a valid answer? Is it an answer to give solutions as early as possible or is RH bill just a little part, if that what it is, a little part of a bigger solution such as a sincere crusade against graft and corruption, the sincere commitment to distribute the land to whom they should belong, and sincere decision to stop human trafficking,” Figura added.
Santiago has decided to divide her speech into three parts, starting with the issue of primacy of conscience in Catholic theology mainly because the Catholic Church has emerged as the biggest stumbling block to the passage of the bill which requires government funding for contraceptives. [CBCPNews]


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