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Bishop heads anti-gambling war

BAGUIO CITY — If Baguio-Benguet Vicariate Bishop Carlito Cenzon is to be asked, he has no more advise to give the officials and leaders of the City of Baguio who signed and supported the endorsement of electronic bingo (e-bingo) operations in the city. However, he is very sure that he will not vote for them this coming elections for they are destroying the image of one of the country’s major tourist destinations and a character city.

Envt’l network scores Ilocos Sur mining board

VIGAN CITY, Ilocos Sur — “Band-aid solution” was how the Ilocos Network for the Environment (Defend Ilocos) described the strategy of the Ilocos Sur Provincial Mining Regulatory Board (PMRB) to legalize the small-scale mining operation (SSM) in Brgy. Patiacan, Quirino, Ilocos Sur. The group scored the officials for “lack of proper assessment and grasp of the issue”.

Congress dismays families for one-sided hearing on human rights violations

QUEZON CITY — The relatives of Human Right Violations victims in Northern Luzon were dismayed at the “insensitivity” of the House of Representatives’ Committee on Human Rights to their “urgent and immediate concerns for justice” during an omnibus hearing here on house resolutions tackling human rights issues on May 26.

Ilocos youth slam tuition hike in 13 schools

VIGAN CITY, Ilocos Sur — Youth organizations in Ilocos condemned the Aquino government for its inaction on the increasing cost of education. According to the National Union of Students in the Philippines-Ilocos, (NUSP) in Region I alone, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) approved the increase of school fees in thirteen schools. Tuition fees (TF) increased by an average of P29 per unit in thirteen schools while other school fee (OSF) hikes averaged P466 in nine schools.

Lawmaker warns of classroom shortage on school opening

QUEZON CITY — A shortage of 67,849 classrooms awaits 20 million students nationwide when the new school year opens on Monday, a militant solon revealed on May 27, with the Department of Education (DepEd) bogged down in issues and delays in the implementation of the government’s School Building Program (SBP).

Groups file class suit against K12

BAGUIO CITY — “Uphold the supremacy of the constitution and strike K12 as unconstitutional,” states the petition filed before the Supreme Court by groups of concerned teachers, university union leaders, university students, taxpayers, parents and minors through representation of their parents, on May 28.

IPs push for recognition in BBL

BAGUIO CITY — While the government is pushing for the passage of the Bangsa Moro Basic Law (BBL) in Congress in a media briefing here on Friday, indigenous groups urged members of Congress to hear their proposals, which would be included in the law, as these are manifestations of their aspirations to their right to self-determination.

Dad seeks FPIC for renewal of Lepanto MPSA

BAGUIO CITY — Mankayan Mayor Materno Luspian said a free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) process should be conducted for the Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company’s bid to renew its Mineral Production Sharing Agreement (MPSA)-001 that expired last March.

Suspect in Bontoc boy’s killing surrenders

BAGUIO CITY — Concerted efforts of Mountain Province and Kalinga elders and officials resulted to the surrender of the suspect in the killing of a 13 year old boy in Bontoc.

IPs support struggle vs Jalaur Dam

TAPAZ, Capiz — After a successful exchange program, 83 indigenous peoples from different indigenous groups and communities around the country forged unity to support the Tumandok in opposing the multibillion Jalaur dam project in Calinog, Iloilo.

Solon urges passing of Student Discipline and Teacher Protection Act

QUEZON CITY — With 21 million students soon to flood into public schools nationwide, ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio L. Tinio urged government to institutionalize support measures to equip teachers and school personnel in student discipline and classroom management. The lawmaker called for the speedy enactment of a Student Discipline and Teacher Protection Act, contained in his House Bill 5735.

Abra youth condole with families of suicide victims

BAGUIO CITY — Anakbayan-Abra expresses its heartfelt condolences to the family of Jhoemary Azaula, an incoming senior computer science student of Eulogio Amang Rodriguez institute of science and technology, and to the family of Nilna Habibun, an incoming Sophomore college student from Zamboanga Sibugay who both committed suicide for not being able to enroll due to the increased costs of education.

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Editorial: Gambling is gambling

A simple definition for the word gambling is making anything involving risk or hazardous uncertainty a game of chance for betting or for high stakes. Our dear Bishop laments that the fault of its beginnings may be found in the history of the Catholic Church, but he never said it is right; instead he condemns it as Jesus had and as the Bible teachings know it is. “For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows,” (1Timothy 6:10, KJV).

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Dakami Ti Umili: Keeping our neighborhood and communities safe

I am alarmed on the increasing cases of killings in the City. In a span of two weeks, at least two people were brutally killed in Baguio City. Geraldine Pugong Dumayahon, a 39-year-old from Kiangan, Ifugao and a resident of Purok 3 in Gibraltar, Baguio City was shot in broad daylight inside a passenger jeep. This week, Ariston Inyoh, a student from Banaue, Ifugao was killed in their house in Irisan. According to the police, he was stabbed at least nineteen times. Before these were similar shocking incidents of killings in the City. Is this the new Baguio? Are we not safe anymore on the streets and even in our houses?

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From Under This Hat: Parks are beyond the commerce of men

If the honorables in city hall truly respect the Law or even just comprehended what a historical monument or a heritage site means, not any one of them would have entertained that proposal to build a “multi-level parking structure” in the football ground area of the Burnham Park. They would have irreverently turned down even the mere thought of it like it was a desecration of sacred grounds where the ili’s spirit guardians rest.

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Ilocandia Rumblings: Reclaiming the land

Cramped in an 18-seater van, the Ilocos delegates to the Quirino Pastoral Mission for Solidarity excitedly traversed the Cervantes-Quirino road. After almost five hours of driving from Candon City, we arrived at Brgy. Legleg, Quirino, the municipality’s poblacion for a brief meeting with Mayor Clifford Patil-ao. We were there to brief the mayor about the activity and request for relevant documents from the Sangguniang Bayan. The encounter with Mayor Patil-ao was frank and candid especially on the matter of mining in his municipality. After almost an hour, we bid him farewell and went to meet the other delegates from the United Church of Christ in the Philippines and Save Mankayan Movement.

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Statements: Stop the threats, harassments vs activists, advocates and communities in Ifugao

The Cordillera Peoples Alliance (CPA) is deeply concerned over the continuing threats and harassment of its local chapter in Ifugao by suspected agents of the State and mercenaries of big energy projects. The Ifugao Peasant Movement (IPM), its members and officers are targets of death threats and political vilification in social media groups of Ifugaos by few individuals hiding under fictitious names. In April this year, at least five staff members of the IPM and community leaders received a brown envelope containing a photo of an Ifugao cloth usually used to wrap a dead person. The words “GRAY MAY, JUNE GLOOM, NO-SKY JULY” were printed above the picture. IPM reported the incident to the Philippine National Police in Lagawe, Ifugao and still awaits for any substantial development (of police action) of the case.

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Weekly Reflections: Tongues of fire

In our Christian liturgical tradition, we are now in the season of Pentecost. For the Jewish people, Pentecost is a thanksgiving or harvest festival. It is about fifty days after the Passover. Sometimes it is called Festival of Weeks, because there are least seven weeks before the fields of barley are ripe for harvest.

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Youthspeak: Keep off the park!

Mainit na usapin ngayon ang plano na i-convert ang Melvin Jones Park para maging isang parking lot. Mungkahi ito ni Mayor Mauricio Domogan ng Baguio City sa gitna ng samu’t saring problemang hinaharap ng mamamayan ng Baguio—matinding trapik, kulang na suplay ng tubig, kabi-kabilang binabakbak na kalsada, patuloy na pagkasira ng kalikasan, hanggang demolisyon sa mga kabuhayan at kabahayan ng mga tagalunsod. Pagsira sa isang parke para gawing parking lot ang naiisip na gawin ni Mayor na tila baga ito ang solusyon sa napakalaking problema ng Baguio. Kahit pa nga ba mangahulugan ito ng pagsira sa isang ‘heritage site’ at gawing isang pribadong pasilidad.

Lawyers find K12 unconstitutional

BAGUIO CITY — Debuting new breed of people’s lawyer Howard Chan from University of Baguio with his mentors from the National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) Baguio-Benguet chapter presented key points to University union leaders, professors and students on the unconstitutionality of the newly signed K-12 law as they prepare to file a petition for a review of the law.

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Ilocos Sur unity vs mining heightens

BAGUIO CITY — In the fight against destructive mining and heightened militarization, people from affected communities in Ilocos Sur with the Church and lay workers forged their unities in a four-day solidarity mission.

Town council backs request for Benguet Corp’s suspension

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet — The municipal council of Itogon, Benguet passed a resolution supporting Mayor Victorio Palangdan’s request for the suspension of mine operations of the Benguet Corporation’s Acupan contract Mining Project (BC-ACMP).