Thursday, December 4, 2014

Rookie cop, suspected drug pusher killed in Ecija shootout

SAN ISIDRO, Nueva Ecija – A rookie policeman and a suspected drug pusher cum gun-for-hire were killed following a shootout here yesterday morning, police said.

Senior Superintendent Crizaldo Nieves, provincial police director, identified the fatalities as Police Officer 3 Jacinto Gregorio Jr. and suspected drug pusher Bernardo Magno, alias Boy of Barangay Calaba here.

Both Gregorio and Magno died from multiple gunshot wounds.

Nieves said the shootout erupted at around 6 am yesterday when joint operatives of the intelligence division of the Nueva Ecija Provincial Police Office (NEPPO) and the provincial public safety company (PPSC) led by police Superintendent Ricardo Villanueva swooped down on Magno’s house, armed with a search warrant for violations of Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act.

  While serving the search warrant, Villanueva’s team negotiated with Magno to surrender to prevent bloodshed as he was inside his house with his wife Chona, armed with long firearms.

But while trying to negotiate, a firefight ensued, which left Gregorio dead in a pool of blood. Magno was heavily wounded in an ensuing exchange of gunfire and was rushed to a hospital in Gapan City where he was pronounced dead-on-arrival.

Magno’s wife was unhurt.

Recovered from the encounter scene were one M-14 Armalite rifle, one M-16 Armalite rifle, one 12-gauge shotgun, one caliber 45 pistol and assorted live ammunitions, spent shells and illegal drugs.

Nieves said the operation was in line with the directive of Region 3 police director, Chief Superintendent Raul Petrasanta to all seven provincial directors in Central Luzon and the city station commanders to map out stricter security measures through the conduct of patrol operations and the serving of search warrants. (Manny Galvez)

Legarda to LGUs in Ruby Path: Relay Info to Citizens

MANILA-Senator Loren Legarda today called on all local government units  (LGUs) in the forecasted path of Typhoon Ruby to ensure that information about the storm is relayed to citizens so that everyone is prepared.

Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, said it is crucial for LGUs, including barangay officials, to conduct information dissemination campaign on the strength of the typhoon and its effects including expected storm surges, and the community evacuation plan.

“Every barangay should gather their citizens or have roaming officials to inform citizens of the effects of the coming typhoon and the preparedness measures that every family should undertake. Are we expecting a storm surge? Then, we should warn our communities of the expected height of the waves and how far inland the flooding would reach. This would help us ensure that people are evacuated in safe places that would not be reached by the storm surge,” she said.

The Senator also reminded government agencies to carry out their respective duties in preparing for the typhoon.

“We should all be on heightened alert now as the storm has entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility. We remind LGUs to ensure that all canals and drainage systems are cleaned up and no families are living in high-risk areas, release frequently updated advisories and ensure that areas expected to be affected are prepared--activate all forms of early warning systems, set up evacuation centers, evacuate families living in landslide-prone and flood-prone areas,” said Legarda.

She added that LGUs should implement forced evacuation when called for.  Shelters for evacuees should be well designed, built strong, and prepared ahead of time with emergency supplies of food, water, medicine, shelter, and toiletries, while government agencies are ready to augment the basic needs of evacuees.

Moreover, local disaster risk reduction and management officers should be alert. Quick communication, particularly real-time updates, is also vital in ensuring effective disaster response with first responders and search and rescue teams ready for dispatch anytime.

Palayan turns 49, Malacañang declares Dec. 5 special non-working day in NE capital

PALAYAN CITY, Nueva Ecija–All roads lead to this provincial capital today as local officials, led by neophyte lady Mayor Adrianne Mae J. Cuevas observe this city’s 49th anniversary celebrations.

          President Aquino, through Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr., issued last November 14 Presidential Proclamation 916 declaring December 5, 2014 a special non-working day throughout the city to enable the people to celebrate and participate in the event.

          The executive committee for this year’s anniversary rites launched the kick-off ceremony last December 1 with an ecumenical service followed by the launch of a service caravan involving medical and dental mission, birth registration and other social services and the barangay and awards night at the Nueva Ecija Convention Center.

          Last year, the anniversary was held in simple rites as the city was one of those hardest hit by “Santi” in October, damaging P300 million worth of crops.

This year’s anniversary rites come on the heels of a major facelift undertaken by the fledgling Cuevas administration which implemented drastic political and administrative reforms, starting with the renovation of the city hall.

        Cuevas said the city, apart from being the seat of the provincial government, also would like to claim for it a rightful place as an agro-industrial center in the province. Presently, Cuevas has been inviting a number of investors to set up businesses in the city in line with her administration’s vision to turn it into an investors’ haven.

          This city was created as the new capital of Nueva Ecija on June 19,1965 by virtue of Republic Act 4475 signed by then-President Diosdado Macapagal. It first rose to prominence when it hosted the National Jamboree of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines in 1969 at its campsite, attended by thousands of scouts from Asia-Pacific countries. 

          The campsite is considered the BSP’s largest regional campsite where the Josefa Llanes Escoda national training center is also housed.

          The city also hosts the headquarters of the Army’s 7th Infantry Division at the Fort Magsaysay Military Reservation, considered one of the largest military training camps not only in the country but also in southeast Asia. (Manny Galvez)

6 international economics experts due for roundtable discussion on ASEAN integration

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija–Six economic experts from the international and domestic scene, including economic professors from Australia, Germany and Singapore, will grace the roundtable discussion on the upcoming Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) economic integration today.

The economic experts include Dr. Jayant Menon, lead economist of the Office for Regional Economic Integration of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Dr. Bob Gregory, professor emeritus of the Research School of Economics at the Australian National University, Dr. John Dosch, chair of international politics at the University of Rostock in Germany, Dr. Pushpanathan Sundram, managing director of EAS Strategic Advice-Asia and senior fellow at the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

          Entitled “ASEAN Integration: Challenges and Changes in the Coming Decade,” the roundtable forum, the first such forum initiated by a private sector-led think tank, is hosted by the Angara Centre for Law and Economics (ACLE) and co-convener Metrobank Foundation. It will open at 8 am today at the Hotel Intercontinental in Makati City and end at 4:30 pm.

Dr. Emerlinda Roman, chair of the ACLE board and former president of the University of the Philippines, said the event will give an update on the region’s progress in creating the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and pertinent issues affecting the country.

Roman said the integration is the most pressing economic issue of the day. “We will have been integrated into the AEC by the end of next year and we need to know if we are prepared as an economy for the changes and the increased competition this entails. And if we are not, we need to know the right steps to take to do so,” she said.

          “What does this mean to our banks, our businesses, our BPO industry and our farmers? “This is why we’re taking the brightest minds from around the world and connecting them to the relevant people here.”

Socio-economic planning Secretary and National Economic and Development Authority director-general Arsenio Balisan will deliver the keynote speech in the event which presentations will kick off with “The ASEAN Economic Community: State of Implementation and Implications for the Philippines” by Dosch.

          Menon will present the topic “Will ASEAN realize its community?”, while Gregory will discuss “Relevant and Sensible Policies for Responding to the China Boom.”

          Sundram will discuss “Public-Private Partnership and the Institutional Development of ASEAN” while Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla will in turn discuss the pressing issue of preparing the Philippine banking system for economic integration.

          Also expected to grace the event are Philippine Stock Exchange President and CEO Hans Sicat, and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Assistant Secretary for Industry Development and Trade Policy Perry Rodolfo, who will serve as reactors at the roundtable.

          The ACLE is the country’s first private-sector law, regulation, and economic policy think-tank, where the country’s best intellectuals will work in tandem with global economic and legal experts to design constructive policy reforms and institutions for Philippine development. (Manny Galvez)


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