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Balibago News Aug-2009

28 Aug 2009 - Shooting victim dies

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The third victim in Saturday’s shooting incident in front of a restobar and grill along Capitol Boulevard in Barangay Sto. Niño here died Wednesday morning after falling into a comatose for several days.

Jefferson Salonga, 24, son of Melanio Salonga, 49, died after being placed on critical condition since the shooting incident Saturday night.

The elder Salonga was pronounced dead on arrival, while a companion of the victims, Mark John Manalese died on dawn Sunday while undergoing emergency treatment. All victims hailed from Barangay Sto. Niño.

The trio was allegedly shot by Benedicto Pasiguen, allegedly a non-uniformed personnel of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit in Camp OLivas after an altercation in front of Fraulein Restobar.

The suspect’s cohort, identified by police as Alexander Briones, was collared by operatives and is now in the custody of police.

Pasiguen remains at large although reports have it that he has sent feelers for his surrender.

27 Aug 2009 - 5 nabbed in police operations

MABALACAT -- Five persons were apprehended in two separate drug buy-bust operations conducted by elements of the town police in Barangay Dau here on Monday.

The arrested persons were identified Princess Yco Maglang, 20; Sunshine Cortez Paniza, 20; Bianca Cabigting Cortez, 20; Luisa Pution Tolentino, 24; and Christopher Gonzales Ramos, 18.

Mabalacat chief of police Superintendent Elvis Diaz said the five suspects were charged in court for violating several provisions of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.

Among the violations cited were drug pushing, possession, and use.

Diaz said his men conducted the anti-drugs operation at Quezon Drive and North Daang Bakal in the said village upon the request of barangay officials and concerned citizens.

Police officers acted as buyers of illegal drugs which led to the entrapment and eventual arrest of the suspects.

Diaz said they were able to recover the marked money and illegal drugs from the five persons.

25 Aug 2009 - Philip Morris boosts investment in Subic

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT -- Philip Morris Philippines Manufacturing Inc. (PMPMI) is set to increase its investments in this freeport to P 1-billion and boost its warehousing capability four folds sealing the deal for Subic to become its tobacco leaf regional warehouse.

Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) administrator Armand Arreza and PMPMI managing director Christopher Nelson have signed a lease agreement to increase PMMPI's total land area to 49,279 square meters, from the current 9,600-square meter warehouse it has refurbished when it started its Subic operation in 2007.

Once completed, the state-of-the-art warehouse will have a capacity to hold some 24,000 metric tons of tobacco. At present, the P30-million peso refurbished warehouse can only accommodate 6,100 metric tons.

Nelson said the new warehouse will boast of features like humidity control, fire suppression equipment, and air conditioning to handle the imported tobacco leaves from foreign suppliers, which will then be shipped and processed in cigarette manufacturing facilities in the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia.

According to Arreza, the agreement, which extended PMPMI's lease agreement to 50 years, "strengthens Subic Bay Freeport's competitive posture as South East Asia's logistics hub, as envisioned by President (Gloria) Arroyo."

25 Aug 2009 - LGU to regulate stalls along national highway

MABALACAT -- The Municipal Government here will regulate stalls and other encroachments along the McArthur Highway.

Vice Mayor Prospero Lagman said that the local government will step in once the ongoing widening of the national highway here is completed.

He said stall owners along the highway will be advised not to extend their stores up to the road.

"Our traffic division will regulate motorists including the manner of parking in order to prevent traffic congestion especially at the commercial district of Barangay Dau," Lagman said.

The national highway, he added, is being widened by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to ease up traffic in the municipality which is one of the gateways to the Clark Freeport and Diosdado Macapagal International Airport.

25 Aug 2009 - Hunt vs slay suspect on

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The provincial and city police offices have launched a manhunt operation against one of the two suspects in the shooting of three men along Capitol Boulevard in Sto. Niño village here last Saturday night.

Two men were killed while another was seriously wounded in the incident.

Superintendent Benjamin Medina, city chief of police, said they will exert all efforts to capture Benedicto "Boyong" Pasiguen, a non-uniformed personnel of the regional Criminal Investigation Detection Unit (CIDU).

"We will not stop our manhunt operations until Pasiguie is arrested," Medina assured.

Central Luzon police director Leon Nilo Dela Cruz also ordered Pampanga provincial police director Gil Lebin to track down and arrest Pasiguen.

Pasiguen's cohort, identified as Alexander Briones, was apprehended by responding policemen allegedly inside the Pampanga Police Provincial Office (PPO).

Briones was already charged with two counts of murder, frustrated murder and attempted murder.

24 Aug 2009 - City folk to get PhilHealth cards

ANGELES CITY -- Some 8,000 indigent residents from various parts of this city will be given PhilHealth cards starting next week.

City Administrator Mark Allen Sison issued the statement Monday. He also said Mayor Francis "Blueboy" Nepomuceno will lead the distribution.

"PhilHealth cardholders are entitled to hospitalization coverage like room and board, drugs and medicines, laboratory fees, operating room and professional fees for confinements of not less than 24 hours whenever they are confined to an accredited PhilHealth hospitals either government or private hospitals," Sison said.

The 8,000 PhilHealth cards were financed through a P3.4 million budget allotted by Nepomuceno as part of the comprehensive health program of the city.

The distribution of the cards will be facilitated by the city through its City Health Office.

24 Aug 2009 - 1 killed, 2 hurt in shooting

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- A 49-year-old man was killed while two others were seriously wounded when fired upon by two gunmen in front of a beerhouse in Barangay Sto. Nino here Saturday.

Superintendent Benjamin Medina, city police chief, identified the fatality as Melanio Salonga.

Medina said Salonga was rushed to a hospital but declared dead on arrival by attending physicians.

He said Jefferson Salonga, 24, and Mark John Manalese, of unknown age, also of Barangay Sto. Nino, are still in a hospital here for treatment as of press time Sunday.

The two suspects, identified as Bendicto Pasiguin and Alexander Briones, were believed to be under the influence of liquor when they had heated argument with the victims in front of Frauline Beerhouse.

The suspects reportedly fired shots at the victims and then fled towards unknown direction.

However, Medina said responding policemen were able to arrest Briones, who is facing various charges, including homicide and frustrated homicide.

Medina said a manhunt operation has been launched against Pasiguin.

22 Aug 2009 - BI-Clark arrests foreigners

THE Bureau of Immigration (BI)-Clark on orders of Commissioner Marcelino Libanan nabbed a South African and his crew of 13 Georgian nationals aboard a Panamanian vessel anchored in the high seas off the coast of Mariveles, Bataan last Friday for violating immigration laws.

In a report to Libanan, Immigration Area Director Heranio Manalo of BI-Clark said the crew of M/V Captain Ufuk, which entered the Philippines on August 19 had no “seaman’s visas.” The crew of M/V Captain Ufuk was headed by its Captain John Lawrence Burne, a South African.

Initial investigation conducted by the Immigration Office II headed by Manalo reveals that Burne boarded the ship last August 19 in the high seas off the coast of Mariveles and replaced British Bruce Jones as captain of the ship.

Manalo said Burne entered the country on August 15 via the Ninoy Aquino International Airport and was admitted as a tourist only.

Burne said he boarded a hotel vehicle on August 19 and went straight to the Marina Yacht Club at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone, where he took a yacht and proceeded to the high seas. He then boarded M/V Captain Ufuk replacing Jones as captain of the ship.

The British captain left the ship for an unknown destination.

The 2,400-ton Panamanian-registered ship yielded 14 crates of high-powered firearms.

Libanan has ordered a manhunt for the British captain. Jones was also included in the BI’s watchlist to prevent him from leaving the country.

22 Aug 2009 - Lawmakers, guv okay proposed service roads

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The proposed service roads, which would run parallel to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) being advocated by Councilor Alex “Big Brother” Patio, has gotten the approval and support of officials here.

Third district Representative Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales, Fourth District Representative Anna York Bondoc-Sagum, First District Congressman Carmelo “Tarzan” Lazatin, and Governor Eddie Panlilio have expressed support for the project.

Patio, chairman of city council’s committee on ways and means, disclosed the news during the last and final consultative meeting Thursday afternoon with stakeholders, landowners, and real estate brokers who will be affected by the construction of the P500 million, 20-meter wide, seven-kilometer long service roads in the City of San Fernando portion.

A total of 30 kilometers will cover the service roads from San Simon to the Dau Toll of the NLEX.

21 Aug 2009 - Takeover of Rural Bank of Angeles

ANGELES CITY -- The Asia United Bank (AUB) will buy the Rural Bank of Angeles Incorporated (RBAI), which has been at the center of complaints of its depositors here.

This was agreed upon by the managements of the two banks recently.

AUB Branch Manager Jeffrey Pangilinan said the two banks are now finalizing details that may lead to the expected takeover.

“We are still finalizing the details, but we will inform the public once plans are finalized,” he said.

To recall, RBAI depositors have been complaining about the bank’s “failure and inability to service withdrawals.”

20 Aug 2009 - Clark locator lauds Arroyo

CLARK FREEPORT -- An executive of a multi-billion investment project here has cited President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s efforts in creating jobs for Filipinos.

Dennis Wright, president of Peregrine Development International, the site developer for Kuwait Gulf Link (KGL) Company, said he agrees with the President when she said providing jobs for the poor, is the solution to terrorism.

Wright, in an interview with Angelo “Sonny” Lopez, Jr. during his cable Channel 3 program “Aksyon Central Luzon–Special Edition,” commended Arroyo when she spoke before United States officials after terrorists attacked and destroyed the World Trade Center twin towers in 2001.

“If you want to solve world terrorism, you must first solve world poverty. If you want to solve world poverty, you must first create jobs,” Wright quoted President Arroyo’s speech during a visit to the US after the 9/11 tragedy.

“I salute her for her efforts to do that (create jobs),” Wright added.

He frequently visited Mindanao with KGL’s Sheikh Ahmad Dawood Al Salman Al-Sabah and is a member of the Kuwait Ruling and Royal Family and the representative of the State of Kuwait, said the government should consider Mindanao’s potential to boost the country’s economy.

“Mindanao is so untapped with respect to its potential ability to deliver economic strength to the Philippines,” Wright said.

“There’s life in Mindanao,” Wright noted, adding that Sheik Al-Sabah is keen on bringing to Mindanao investors for the establishment of a halal foods manufacturing plant using the area’s cattle supply.

In Clark, Wright said Global Gateway Logistics Center (GGLC), KGL’s multi-billion investment here in Clark, is expected to generate some 70,000 jobs.

19 Aug 2009 - Pinoy lawn bowlers bag medals

ANGELES CITY -- Determination, skill and team works were the winning formula for the Philippine Team who bag numerous medals, including third and fifth over-all, in the ladies and men’s Lawn Bowl Asia Pacific Championship held from August 6 to 16 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Rey Pineda, President of the Philippine Lawn Bowl Association (PLBA), said the 20-member Philippine Team was successful in the tournament, which is considered the third most prestigious lawn bowl tournament in the world.

Pineda said the country’s pride, Rosita Bradborn, won the Gold medal in the women’s single while teammate Maila Witheridge bagged the Gold medal in the Indoor Division or Merdeka category.

Both of them also won bronze medals in the ladies division together with team mates Ronalyn Greenlee and Sonia Bruce.

In the men’s division Ronald Lising, Leo Carreon, Angelo Morales and Christopher Dagpin won silver medals also in the said tournament.

John Knight, head of the delegation and representative of Pineda, said no less than 20 countries, including the Philippines, joined the Asia Pacific Championship held in Malaysia.

Knight said the Philippine Team was very fortunate to go up against the best Lawn Bowl teams in the world like Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Australia, England, United States and others.

He said winning 3rd place (Ladies) and 5th place (Men’s) is truly a remarkable feat, considering that the Philippine Team when head on with the best of the best in the world as far as Lawn Bowl competition is concern.

19 Aug 2009 - Manhunt on for suspect in village killing

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- A massive manhunt for the suspect who entered a house in St. Jude Village here and killed a teenage resident has been launched by this city’s police force.

City police chief Benjamin Medina said the local police here, in coordination with other operatives in the province, are “on the keen lookout” for Jodido Bahajo, 34, and a native of Barangay Dayag-Dayag in Eastern Samar but reportedly residing in the village at Phase 4, Street Benedict Street.

Bahajo is the suspect in the murder of Mark Jerome Bondoc, 16, and the wounding of his brother Mack Gerald, 17, and mother Annalie Sapnu, 46. The victims are neighbors of the suspect.

In his official report, Inspector Rekson Layug, chief of Community Police Assistance Center 2 (Compac 2), said that on August 10, between 3:30 a.m. to 4 a.m.,Bahajo allegedly entered the house of the victims while they asleep.

Investigation revealed the brothers were sleeping in their bedroom when the older Mack Gerald was awakened and saw the shadow of a man who sat beside his brother.

Layug said the suspect stood up and stabbed Mark Jerome in the chest.

Seeing this, he came to his brother’s rescue but was attacked by Bahajo resulting to a scuffle that awoke his mother who was also stabbed by the suspect.

16 Aug 2009 - Spirit of Manila starts international flights at DMIA

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Spirit of Manila Airlines has slated its international flights at the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) here with its new MD-83 aircraft.

Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) President Victor Jose Luciano said the airline acquired aircrafts including MD-83; Boeing 747-300 and 747-400 for its international operation.

“The aircrafts will be arriving sometime between September and November to complete its fleet in time for their operations this December,” Luciano disclosed.

The airline’s MD-83 aircraft arrived at the DMIA last August 1, according to Luciano.last August 1.

The air carrier is expected to fly to Taiwan, Macau, Qatar, Dubai, Baharain, and Kuwait.

This will serve overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) coming from Central and Northern Luzon.

16 Aug 2009 - 1 dead, 3 wounded in Mabalacat riot

MABALACAT -- A young man was killed and three others were seriously wounded in a riot which transpired at Ninabel Subdivision in Barangay Dau here Friday night.

Police identified the fatality as Mark Ryan Gutierrez Baluyut, 21, single, of 5431 Narra Street, Ninabel Subdivision.

Baluyut’s companions who were injured during the incident were identified as Ramon De Leon, 40; Darrel Dizon, 15; and Darrel Castro, 18.

The victims were on a drinking spree when three men arrived in the area and hurled rocks to where the victims were sitting.

This triggered a riot between the two groups which eventually led to a stabbing incident.

All of the victims sustained stab wounds.

15 Aug 2009 - Arroyo inaugurates $30M wellness center in Subic

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT -- Aiming to put the Philippines in the medical tourism map, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo inaugurated the US$30 million, 100-bed tertiary hospital forming the core of the country's first wellness facility.

When fully developed, the 12-hectare facility will include a 500-unit condominium, a sports facility and amenities to rival other medical tourism centers in the region.

14 Aug 2009 - Pinatubo flood deaths called ‘act of nature’

CAPAS -- – The chief of police in Capas, Tarlac, has cleared private agencies, local officials and tour operators of criminal liabilities in the death of three foreign tourists and two Filipinos in floods at the foot of Mt. Pinatubo at the height of Typhoon “Kiko” on August 6.

“The incident is purely an act of nature, unforeseen and unpredictable, therefore no agency or anybody should be blamed or made accountable,” Superintendent Joyce Patrick Sangalang said in an August 11 memorandum that summed up the findings of a police investigation.

“All precautionary measures were taken into consideration by all concerned agencies,” Sangalang added, referring to the registration of the two batches of Korean, French and Belgian tourists – 12 in all – at the visitors’ center of the Pull Travel Destination Corp. (PDC) in Barangay (village) Sta. Juliana and their hiring of guides from there.

Quoting interviews with the survivors, Sangalang said the groups went up when the weather was sunny and rushed down less than hour later when strong rains hit the area.

13 Aug 2009 - American Tourist stabbed last night

ANGELES CITY -- A 30-year-old American tourist was stabbed to death by a vendor in front of the 7-11 convenience store along Fields Avenue in Barangay Balibago here around 3 a.m. Thursday.

Chief Inspector Ronaldo Lorenzo, commander of Police Station 4 here, identified the fatality as Thomas Michael Thorpe, a retired US Navy personnel from New York City who was temporarily staying at a hotel here.

The suspect was identified as Richard David, 23, who repeatedly stabbed the American with a 10-inch butterfly knife in various parts of the body during their fistfight.

Policemen who responded to the commotion were able to arrest David, whom they saw was still holding the knife while the victim was sprawled on the pavement with blood oozing from his stab wounds.

The suspect tried to escape but was apprehended by the policemen.

Investigation showed that the suspect and the victim had an argument and eventually traded punches. At the height of the brawl, David pulled a butterfly knife and stabbed Thorpe on the chest, neck, and left side of the abdomen.

The victim was rushed to the Ospital Ning Angeles but he was pronounced dead on arrival by attending physicians. (Jun A. Malig)"

12 Aug 2009 - Minor stabs mute beggar in front of a cop

MABALACAT -- A homeless mute beggar was stabbed by a minor in the presence of a policeman in front of the Dau Bus Terminal here recently.

Senior Inspector Joven Dela Cruz, head of the Police Community Precinct in Barangay Dau here, identified the victim only as “Pipi,” of legal age, who died while being treated at the Mabalacat District Hospital.

The victim was being mauled by two other beggars -- Cain, 17, and Jude, 14 (not their real names) when Senior Police Officer (SPO) 1 Renato Quiambao saw what was happening. As he was trying to pacify them, Cain stabbed the victim with a barbecue stick.

In his affidavit of arrest, Quiambao said he was conducting beat patrol at the bus terminal when he saw two males mauling a man who was already lying helplessly on the ground.

Quiambao rushed to pacify the suspects when Cain suddenly drew a barbecue stick and stabbed the victim in the back. The policeman arrested the two and confiscated the barbecue stick. The victim was rushed to the hospital but died a few hours later due to “hemorrhagic shock secondary to stabbing.”

Cain was charged with Homicide while Jude was placed under the custody of the Municipal Social Welfare Office here.