23 August 2015

APEC News Release

President Aquino attends El Shaddai leader Bro. Mike Velarde’s birthday
President Benigno Aquino III on early Sunday morning attended the birthday of El Shaddai leader Bro. Mike Velarde at Amvel Business Park, Parañaque City.

“Una sa lahat po, nandito po tayo para malugod na batiin ng happy birthday si Bro. Mike Velarde, na nagdiwang ng kanyang ika-76 na kaarawan nitong Huwebes,” said President Aquino in his speech.

He also praised Bro. Mike for leading a million of El Shaddai members for more that 30 years.

“Itinataguyod niya ang matibay na pananampalataya sa Diyos, at ang pagsagawa ng El Shaddai ng mga serbisyong panlipunan para sa ating mga kapatid na kapus-palad. Sa mga gaya nga po ni Bro. Mike, lalong lumalakas ang loob nating ituloy ang pagtahak sa Daang Matuwid; na kasama nating nananalangin, nagbibigay ng pag-asa sa mamamayan, at nananawagang laging gawin ang tama’t makatuwiran. Tiwala po tayong patuloy siyang magsisilbing huwaran ng paglilingkod sa Diyos at sambayanan,” he added.

The Chief Executive also took the opportunity to thank El Shaddai members for supporting him since he run as Senator. He also said that he wanted them to continue what the administration has started in the past five years.

“Sa susunod na taon, muli pong haharap sa sangandaan ang sambayanan. Nawa’y maging gabay tayo ng ating kapwa sa pagpili ng mga karapat-dapat na pinuno. Nananalig akong hindi tayo lilihis sa maganda nating nasimulan tungo sa pagkamit ng ating mga inaasam,” he said.

Also present during the celebration were Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas III, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Congressman Irwin Tieng, Velarde’s wife Sister Belen Velarde and children: Rene, Sellina and Michael. PND (ag)

Cebu provincial government releases traffic rerouting plan for APEC 2015 meetings
The Cebu provincial government released a traffic rerouting plan for the APEC 2015 meetings in Cebu to be held starting August 22 until September 12.

According to the Cebu rerouting plan, no public utility jeepneys (PUJs) will be allowed to traverse along Juan Luna Avenue, from Serging Osmeña Avenue to Archbishop Reyes Avenue.

PUJs from the North except Mandaue PUJs, from Cebu North Road should turn left to Logarta Street, to Urot Street, then left turn to Cabahug Street. After that they should turn right to S. Osmeña Avenue, right turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, right turn to J.C. Veyra Street, then left turn to access road going to White Gold Terminal.

From White Gold Terminal, PUJs should follow the access road, turn right to J.C. Veyra Street, left turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, left turn to S. Osmeña Avenue, proceed to Ouano Avenue, left turn to the access road beside SM Hypermart, right turn to Logarta Street, then to their point of origin.

For the PUJ Route No. 03Q, from Ayala Terminal vehicles should follow Luzon Avenue, to Samar Loop, turn right to Mactan Road, turn right to M.J. Cuenco Avenue, left turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, left turn to J.C. Veyra Street, left turn to Road North 7 (road to Conching Restaurant), left turn to A. Soriano Street, right turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, then right turn to Access Road (back of CIC), then to Ayala.

For those plying Route No. 06H, from Ayala Terminal vehecles should follow Mindanao Avenue, right turn to Samar Loop, left turn to Mactan Road, right turn to M.J. Cuenco Avenue, left turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, left turn to J.C. Veyra Street, left turn to road to Conching Restaurant, left turn to A. Soriano Street, right turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, right turn to Access Road (back of CIC), then to Ayala.

For Route Nos. 04L and 04M, from Ayala Terminal they should follow Luzon Avenue, right turn to Samar Loop, left turn to Mactan Road, right turn to M.J. Cuenco Avenue, left turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, left turn to J.C. Veyra Street, left turn to road to Conching Restaurant, left turn to A. Soriano Street, right turn to Gen. Maxilom Avenue, right turn Gorordo Avenue, then to their destination.

For 03L PUJs, from Cabantan Street, they should turn right to Archbishop Reyes Avenue, take a U-turn under the flyover, then go back to Archbishop Reyes Avenue, then turn left to Mindanao Avenue.

For those coming from Mandaue and Mabolo that traverse along M.J. Cuenco Avenue they should go straight to M.J. CuencoAvenue.
PUJs from the South bound for SM and North Bus Terminal shall pass along S. Osmeña Avenue or A. Soriano Avenue, then to their destination.

Mabolo PUJs bound for Panagdait shall take only M.J. Cuenco Avenue, then turn left to F. Gochan Street or Tres Borces Street.

PUJs from the South bound for the SM Terminal (loading/unloading bays), while passing along S. Osmeña Avenue or Benedicto Street, they should proceed to J.L. Briones Street, then take a U-turn at the end of the median island, then turn back to their origin.

PUJ Route Nos. 17B, 17C, 17D, 04B and 04C, from downtown to Gorordo JY, should proceed to Camp Lapu-lapu, then to Apas.

From Apas Lahug, they should go to IT Park then to Del Mar Street, right turn to Gov. Cuenco Avenue, passing TESDA flyover to Archbishop Reyes Avenue, (for 17B, 17D & 04B) right turn Gorordo Avenue, left turn N. Escario Street, (for 17C & 04C) left turn Gorordo Avenue right turn Gen. Maxilom Avenue, and then to their destination.

The Cebu government also said no trucks will be allowed along the APEC ceremonial route.

From Serging Osmeña Ave. (Cebu City boundary– Mahiga bridge), trucks should turn right to Juan Luna Ave, go straight to Salinas Drive, turn right to Veterans Drive, then to Marco Polo Hotel. PND (as)

APEC hosting means more economic benefits for the Philippines, says official
The country’s hosting of this year’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit would mean a lot of economic benefits for the Philippines in the long term, the head of the APEC 2015 National Organizing Council said in an Minterview.

Director General Marciano A. Paynor, Jr. told China Central Television that in the past 10 to 15 years, the Philippines’ trade with APEC’s member economies has grown by 8 percent annually.

An 8 percent growth is a very, very solid case why the Philippines must continue to be part of the APEC, according to Paynor.

The total population of the APEC’s 21 member economies is more than 40 percent of the total global population, making the trade bloc a significant driver in regional growth.

He noted that as the country prepared to host this year’s summit, it has launched a number of infrastructure projects, although some of them are not APEC-related.

Overall, the projects are part of the government’s plan, with or without the APEC, he said, noting that any construction work in any country is a form of pump-priming the economy.

The people, however, must be patient because construction work creates such inconveniences as traffic congestion, Paynor explained, adding that once construction is completed, the people could enjoy a better transport system, roads, and bridges like other economies within the APEC.

The Philippines, in hosting the 2015 APEC Summit, has scattered the initial APEC meetings in different provinces of the country to expose them to investors and tourists who want to put money or travel to the Philippines, Paynor said.

In the case of Cebu, which hosts this month’s APEC meetings, it could gain a lot of benefits for its business and tourism sectors.

The Cebu provincial government, in partnership with a local telecommunications company, has released the updated travel app Cebu Guide for the delegates attending the APEC meetings in the province.

With the release of the app, the delegates can have access to a handy guide about Cebu’s top attractions and latest activities.

The guide lists island attractions such as heritage structures like ancient houses and centuries-old stone churches, white sand beaches and island-hopping destinations, a wide range of land and water activities, the best accommodations, food to try, as well as emergency numbers.
Cebu is hosting the APEC 2015 Third Senior Officials’ Meeting and Related Meetings (SOM 3) from Aug. 22 to Sept. 6

The APEC Summit, one of the world’s most important gathering of key decision-makers from across the globe, focuses on inclusive growth.

This year’s APEC is the first gathering to be held in the Philippines in nearly two decades. The Philippines first hosted the APEC Summit in 1996 during the administration of then president Fidel V. Ramos. PND (as)

Supreme Court ruling on two frat boys shows Anti-Hazing Law has ‘teeth’—Palace
The Supreme Court verdict upholding the conviction of two fraternity members charged in the death of a University of the Philippines Los Baños student in 2006 shows that Republic Act (RA) 8049 or the Anti-Hazing Law is working, Malacañang said Sunday.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte welcomed the high court’s decision with hopes that it would serve as an effective deterrent against hazing and other related violence.

“If there is any hope for this conviction, it is that it will have an effect on others; meaning, na makita po nila na mayroong batas na gumagana pagdating po dito sa ating Anti-Hazing Law at dapat ma-deter po sila na hindi labagin itong batas na ito,” Valte said over Radyo ng Bayan.

“It’s one thing to have a law that is passed that criminalizes a certain act; it’s another to see that the law is actually in effect and it actually works and that it produces convictions,” she added.

The case involved Alpha Phi Omega fraternity members Dandy Dungo and Gregorio Sibal, Jr., primary suspects in the brutal hazing of 21-year old agriculture economics student Marlon Villanueva in 2006.

The Laguna Regional Trial Court Branch 36 found the two guilty of the crime in 2011. Their conviction was affirmed by the Court of Appeals in 2013 and later on upheld by the Supreme Court in its recent decision.

Dungo and Sibal were sentenced to life imprisonment of a minimum 20 years and a day to 40 years, making it the first ever conviction made by the courts under RA 8049.

“Hopefully, maka-contribute po itong conviction na ito sa pagbaba ng mga ganitong pangyayari, lalo kabataan po usually ang na-i-involve sa ganyan,” Valte said. PND (hdc)

Concerns of OFWs regarding handling of balikbayan boxes by Customs will reach President Aquino, says Palace official
Malacañang assured overseas Filipino workers (OFW) Sunday that their issues regarding the Bureau of Customs’ (BOC) handling of their balikbayan boxes would be brought to the attention of President Benigno S. Aquino III.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said they have gathered all feedback they received from OFWs through various communication channels on the new BOC rules and are currently assessing them.

“Marami na ho tayong mga nakuhang open letter, marami na po tayong nakuhang mga Facebook messages, mga email at binubuo po naming lahat ito at sinisigurado po naming makakarating ito sa Pangulong Aquino,” Valte told Radyo ng Bayan.

Among the concerns raised by the OFWs in their complaints is the impression that the BOC might be infringing on their tax and duty free privileges.

Valte took note of this, saying the BOC should really look into it, as she expressed understanding on where these particular sentiments of OFWs are coming from.

“Naiintindihan po natin ang damdamin ng mga nagpadala po sa atin ng feedback, dahil alam niyo na ang nilalaman ng mga balikbayan b po na ito ay matagal pong iniipon. Tuwing sumusuweldo po sila ay nagtatabi nang kaunti para makabili po nang kaunting maipapadala dito sa mga kamag-anak sa Pilipinas,” Valte said.

“Kaya naiintindihan po natin ang damdamin ng ating mga kababayan at kailangan makarating din naman po sa Customs ‘yung nagiging epekto ng kanilang regulasyon,” she added.

Valte earlier said the BOC’s new process in handling balikbayan boxes serves merely as a deterrent to potential smuggling cases and is not meant to single out OFWs.

“Hindi po tina-target ang ating mga OFWs. Ang atas lang naman po sa BOC ay siguraduhing malinis at mabilis ang proseso… The process will not cause any hold up in the release of the balikbayan boxes and that the property inside should be respected as well,” she said in an interview Saturday.

Valte, nonetheless, thanked OFWs for their feedback and encouraged them to keep them coming as they continue to work with BOC to address their concerns.

“Ituloy lang po natin ang ating pagpapadala ng feedback para malaman din po ng Customs at sinisigurado ko po sa inyo, ako po, personal ko pong ginagarantiya sa inyo na makakarating po ito kay Pangulong Aquino,” she said. PND (hdc)