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Balibago News Jan-2015

31 Jan 2015 - Velasco: No more waste in Sasmuan riverbanks

PAMPANGA -- "No more illegal dumpsite in Sasmuan. No more garbage in riverbanks."

So said Sasmuan Mayor Nardo Velasco on Friday as he led the clearing operations and closure of the illegal dumpsite ordered removed and cleaned by Governor Lilia Pineda when she made an inspection on the dredging operations of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) along the Sasmuan River.

31 Jan 2015 - Santiago hails hero, folk for ‘social mission’

PAMPANGA -- "In every nook and cranny of our city are common folk, volunteers and group who take on a social mission just like what our local hero Pedro Abad Santos did during his time."

Thus said City of San Fernando Mayor Edwin Santiago as he paid tribute to Abad Santos and Fernandinos during the 139th birth anniversary commemoration of the socialist hero at Heroes Park on Saturday morning.

31 Jan 2015 - Grander Caragan festival eyed

MABALACAT CITY -- The City Government here is eyeing a grander Caragan Festival 2015 set on February 16 to 20.

Highlights of the festival include the street dancing, which will be participated by students along the three-kilometer stretch from Xevera to Poblacion; a regional trade fair all throughout the five-day festival; and the search for Haring Caragan (Mr. Mabalacat) slated on February 17.

31 Jan 2015 - Anakpawis: Hold Aquino responsible for SAF deaths

ANGELES CITY -- The militant Anakpawis Partylist is holding President Aquino responsible for the death of 44 policemen belonging to the Philippine National Police – Special Action Force (PNP-SAF) who were killed in a clash with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) last Sunday.

In a statement sent to Sun.Star Pampanga Saturday, the group said the President should be blamed instead of the Moro people and for doubting the peace process with the MILF.

31 Jan 2015 - Abuses in 16th century Pampanga tackled in lecture series

ANGELES CITY -- The Katipunan da reng Talasaliksik at Talaturung Kapampangan (Katatagan) tackled in a lecture series the abuses committed against 16th century Kapampangans and how early Spanish missionaries tried to champion the rights of Kapampangans.

Katatagan hosted the Fourth Ambula Brown Bag Lecture on the topic "The Manila Synod of 1582 and the Corruption and Abuses in the 16th-Century Pampanga" which was delivered by Ian Christopher Alfonso of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines at the Angeles City Library recently.

31 Jan 2015 - HAU announces Founders Day awardees

ANGELES CITY -- Holy Angel University has announced the recipients of this year’s Founders Day awards.

The awardees are Ambeth R. Ocampo, popular historian, book author, lecturer, and associate professor of the Ateneo de Manila University, recipient of the Juan D. Nepomuceno Cultural Award (Research and Scholarship category); Andy P. Alviz, musician, writer, choreographer and founder of ArtiSta. Rita, ImaArti and Teatru Kapampangan, recipient of the Juan. D. Nepomuceno Cultural Award (Arts category); Felicidad Tan Sy, co-founder and trustee of SM Foundation, Inc., whose advocacies include education, health and community development, recipient of the Laus Deo Semper Award for outstanding community service; Florina F. Castillo, first lay principal of the St. Scholastica’s College grade school department, recipient of the Order of St. Michael the Archangel given to Catholic lay educators; Ferdinand D. Lapuz, independent film producer and advocate of quality Filipino films, recipient of the Order of St. Gabriel the Archangel, given to outstanding HAU alumni; and Merle Villanueva Morgan, former Personnel Officer of Holy Angel University, recipient of the Order of St. Raphael the Archangel, given to former HAU employees for exemplary record of service.

31 Jan 2015 - Macabebe mayor, historians: Declare brave youth a hero

MACABEBE -- Mayor Annette Flores-Balgan and local historians are aggressively pushing for the inclusion of a native hero on the list of national heroes.

For the past four years since 2010, Balgan, Macabebe Tourism Officer Tourism Catherine Flores, historians and residents have organized various activities to honor "the brave youth from Macabebe." He is also called "Bambalito" or "Tarik Soliman."

31 Jan 2015 - Guiao: Clark economic engine of Pampanga

MAGALANG -- Pampanga Representative Joseller "Yeng" Guiao has described Clark International Airport (CRK) as the economic engine of the province.

For 2015, the province's first district got a total appropriation of P2-billion from the national budget, Guiao said.

30 Jan 2015 - Capitol to hold special recruitment Saturday

PAMPANGA -- More than 700 jobs abroad are up for grabs in the special recruitment activity to be held at the Provincial Public Employment Services Office (Peso), Capitol Building.

Luningning Vergara, provincial public employment services officer, said the Provincial Government partnered with PhilStar International Services Corporation, which is in need of 519 carpenters, 180 cement masons, 44 electricians, 32 plumbers, 9 HVAC technicians, and nine equipment mechanics.

30 Jan 2015 - PRO-3 to give SAF men heroes’ welcome

PAMPANGA -- A heroes' welcome will be given to the three fallen PNP-Special Action Force (SAF) who are from the provinces of Aurora, Bataan and Bulacan when they arrive here.

Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, Officer-In Charge of Police Regional Office-3 (PRO-3), said as soon the slain SAF commandos arrive in their respective hometowns, funeral honors, vigil guards and other interment services will be accorded them.

29 Jan 2015 - Tire pyrolysis plant closed

PAMPANGA -- Sto Tomas Mayor Joselito Naguit of this town clarified on Thursday that no steel smelting plant is being constructed here and that the polluting tire pyrolisis facility in Barangay San Matias has not been issued a new permit to operate after its closure by the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources last year.

"Let me assure stakeholders and environment protection advocates that there is no steel smelting plant being constructed here in Sto. Tomas. So far, no application for the construction or establishment of one has been filed before the municipal government," he said.

29 Jan 2015 - 3 slain SAF commandos Central Luzon natives

PAMPANGA -- Three of the 44 Special Action Force (SAF) commandos who were killed during an encounter with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Mamasapano, Maguindanao last Sunday are from Central Luzon.

The three SAF members were identified as Police Officer (PO) 3 Junrel Kibete, a resident of San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan; PO2 Nicky Nacino, a resident of San Luis, Aurora; and PO3 John Lloyd Sumbilla of Morong, Bataan.

29 Jan 2015 - Villagers oppose abattoir construction

MABALACAT CITY -- Some residents of Barangay Santa Maria here are opposing the plan of the Mabalacat Public Market Vendors Association (MPMVA) to build a slaughterhouse in their village.

During a hearing at the city council on Wednesday, the villagers claimed that the proponents failed to seek the approval of the majority of the people living in the area.

29 Jan 2015 - Artists to hail national arts month with exhibit

ANGELES CITY -- Artists here will be celebrating the National Arts Month this February with a campus exhibit dubbed "The Casampatan: Beauty at its Peak" at the Holy Angel University Student Center.

The exhibit will run from February 16 to 28 and is open for free. The exhibit targets to showcase among young students the different styles and artworks of Kapampangan artists in the hope of encouraging the younger generation to go into the arts.

29 Jan 2015 - Capitol to Sasmuan execs: Remove illegal fishponds, informal settlers

PAMPANGA -- The Provincial Government through Vice Governor Dennis "Delta" Pineda ordered the local officials of Sasmuan town to remove all illegal fishponds and structures of the informal settlers situated along the river in five days only.

The order is in line with the Supreme Court mandamus enjoining all concerned agencies and local government units to effect the clearing of water ways going to Manila Bay.

29 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan reminds senior citizens: ‘You’re all automatic PhilHealth members’

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan yesterday issued a reminder to all senior citizens that they are all automatic members of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and as such are entitled to all benefits of the government's medicare program.

"Republic Act No. 10645 was signed into law by President Benigno Aquino III on November 5, 2014. This law amended Republic Act No. 7432 or the Senior Citizens Act and mandated that all Filipinos, 60 years old and above who are not PhilHealth beneficiaries or members shall receive automatic membership in the program," Pamintuan said.

29 Jan 2015 - Angeles vice mayor: ‘People want change’

ANGELES CITY – "People want change. They want me to run for city mayor."

Thus said Vice Mayor Ma. Vicenta "Vicky" Vega-Cabigting when asked about the comments of people whom she consulted on her possible candidacy for mayor in 2016.

28 Jan 2015 - New ‘urban authority’ mulled

MABALACAT CITY -- Pampanga Representative Joseller “Yeng” Guiao said recently that works are underway for the creation of the Metropolitan Clark Urban Development and Planning Authority which will address congestion and other problems the region will encounter in the coming years.

“We are fully aware and very well understand that the private sector in North and Central Luzon, like PamCham [Pampanga Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc.] has been strongly advocating for the decongestion of Metro Manila due to very logical reasons. And we would like to support that with the creation of the Metropolitan Clark Urban Development and Planning Authority as we see the advocacy already snowballing,” Guiao said.

28 Jan 2015 - Ombudsman: Good governance key to inclusive growth

CLARK FREEPORT -- “Stamping out the forces of corruption is as imperative as granting the people of the Asia-Pacific region the full measure of the blessings of a robust economy."

Thus said Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales on Monday as she addressed members of the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Working Group (ACTWG) of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) which she chairs, adding that good governance leads economies closer to inclusive growth among others.

28 Jan 2015 - Regulate plastic bags – Lazatin

ANGELES CITY -- A neophyte councilor has filed a proposed ordinance aimed at regulating the use of plastic bags within the city.

He said this is aimed “to protect and advance the rights of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology by minimizing the proliferation of plastic waste through regulation of the use of plastic bags.”

28 Jan 2015 - San Fernando vice mayor recognized for good governance

PAMPANGA -- Vice Mayor Jimmy Lazatin was among the 10 recipients of The Outstanding Alumni of the Assumption Awards (TOAAA ) at the University of the Assumption (UA) held over the weekend.

Lazatin was awarded under the category of outstanding alumni in public service. The UA, in its official website, said that the award gives recognition to alumni who are involved in various initiatives to alleviate poverty and ignorance.

28 Jan 2015 - Councilor calls for support of Porac feeding program

PAMPANGA -- Councilor Mark Valencia donated goods for the feeding program being spearheaded by the Porac East and West Districts of the Department of Education here as he called for sectoral support for the feeding program in line with the national nutrition program this year.

The Porac councilor said that well-nourished children can perform better in school and their academics if they are provided with proper nutrition. Valencia donated food items for the schools' various feeding programs this month.

28 Jan 2015 - NGCP opens power training center

PAMPANGA -- The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) headed by its president Henry Sy, Jr. inaugurated on Wednesday the first ever power training center as well as the newly built North Luzon District 6 Command Center and the newly upgraded secondary equipment of Mexico Substation here.

The facility will be used as NGCP’s main training center for substation engineers and operators, Maintenance and Testing Division (MTD) engineers and technicians, and will also be a center for NGCP’s cadetship program. It will similarly cater to the training needs of NGCP’s customers and universities, serve as district command center and a venue for various meeting and video conferencing.

27 Jan 2015 - Pampanga bishop visits Sun.Star looking for Apec ‘condom’

PAMPANGA -- San Fernando Archbishop Emeritus Paciano Aniceto visited the Sun.Star Pampanga office Tuesday afternoon looking for a "condom report" related to the ongoing Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit at Clark Freeport.

The still feisty prelate and staunch pro-life advocate, who strongly went against the Reproductive Health Bill, for half an hour browsed through the files of Sun.Star Pampanga, admiring the reports on the papal visit.

27 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan: Street kids rescue not for Apec

ANGELES CITY -- The City Government here has denied reports that it has been rounding up street children because of the ongoing Asia Pacific Economic Conference (Apec) meeting inside the Clark Freeport.

Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan described the report as "wrong and malicious."

27 Jan 2015 - Alviera Industrial Park to boost local economy

PAMPANGA -- With the ground breaking ceremony Monday of the Alviera Industrial Park - Ayala Land's first master planned estate in Central Luzon in partnership with Leonio Land Holdings – it is expected that this will jumpstart the economic activities here and will generate as much as 5,000 new jobs soon as it begins its first phase of development.

Governor Lilia Pineda said Pampanga is lucky and happy that Ayala Land Incorporated and Leonio Land Holdings chose to invest here in Porac.

27 Jan 2015 - ‘Win-win solution’ over Lubao land dispute sought

PAMPANGA -- Governor Lilia Pineda urged both parties in the land dispute in Barangay San Francisco, this town, to come up with a win-win solution in resolving the case now being appealed at the office of Agrarian Reform Secretary Virgilio Delos Reyes and subject of the motion for reconsideration before the Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board (DARAB) in Central Luzon.

The governor, in a separate dialogue with William Co, original owner of the 44-hectare agricultural land in Barangay San Francisco and the farmer-beneficiaries of Certificate of Land Ownership Awards (CLOA) of the same land awarded through the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) asked them to resolve the case through a win-win solution.

27 Jan 2015 - NGO, partners to give free coconut seedlings to farmers

PAMPANGA -- The Kapampangan Development Foundation (KDF), in partnership with the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) Region III, is giving free coconut seedlings for Pampanga and Central Luzon farmers who are willing to intercrop.

This as KDF, a non-government civic service group, is now set to plant an additional one million coconut trees in Central Luzon as supplement to its earlier initiative of planting one million fruit trees in various provinces of the region using certified seeds.

27 Jan 2015 - PCL head calls for full development of Clark airport

ANGELES CITY -- A top official of the Philippine Councilors League (PCL) Central Luzon Chapter has called on the national government to implement the full development of Clark International Airport (CRK).

Angeles City Councilor Maricel “Marang” Morales issued the statement in support of the clamor of businessmen and local leaders urging the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) to convert CRK into a premier gateway.

27 Jan 2015 - Girl, 7, survives mishap

PAMPANGA -- A 47-year-old man and his live-in partner died while a seven-year-old girl miraculously survived when the car they were riding accidentally collided to an armored van along MacArthur Highway in Barangay Telabastagan, City of San Fernando, Pampanga, Sunday.

Superintendent Rechie Duldulao, City of San Fernando police chief, identified the victims as Jaime Manalang, 47, a resident of Barangay Mining, Angeles City, his live-in partner Cristina Nulud, 47, a resident of Dona Belen Subdivision, Angeles City.

26 Jan 2015 - Apec SOM-1 starts

CLARK FREEPORT – Senior officials from the 21 members-economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) on Monday kicked off the First Senior Officials’ meeting (SOM-1) at the Clark and Subic Freeport Zones to discuss several cooperation mechanisms on a wide range of areas in the region.

Department of Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Charles Jose said the SOM-1, which serves as the first comprehensive Senior Officials’ Meeting for this year, will be composed of more than 30 working groups and committee-level meetings, which will run from January 26 to February 7.

26 Jan 2015 - Guiao eyes inquiry on sale of Paskuhan

PAMPANGA -- First District Representative Joseller "Yeng" Guiao disclosed over the weekend that he is looking into the possibility of calling for a probe on the reported sale of Paskuhan Village here.

Recent reports noted that the 9,3 hectare Christmas Village theme park --later renamed to Hilaga -- was sold to SM Development Corporation (SMDC) by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority or Tieza for P939 million as part of its “asset privatization thrust."

26 Jan 2015 - Angeles police implement traffic re-routing for Apec meetings

ANGELES CITY -- The Angeles City Police Office (ACPO) has released information on road closures and re-routing in different parts of the city as part of the traffic management preparations for the ongoing Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) First Senior Officials’ meeting (SOM-1) at Clark Freeport.

The City Government of Angeles is presently implementing a traffic re-routing plan to ease the flow of traffic within the vicinity of the Don Juico Avenue.

26 Jan 2015 - New city roundabout inaugurated

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan and Clark Development Corporation (CDC) president Arthur Tugade recently led the inauguration of the newly constructed five-lane roundabout (rotunda) in Barangay Balibago, this city.

According to the mayor, the Bayanihan Park Rotunda has proven itself as an effective measure to improve the traffic condition in this congested area, especially to motorists, public commuters and pedestrians alike.

26 Jan 2015 - DepEd exec lauds knights for promoting patriotism

ANGELES CITY -- The new head of the Department of Education (DepEd) schools division here has lauded the Order of the Knights of Rizal (OKOR) for instilling patriotism among students at public schools in this city.

In his speech, DepEd Division of Angeles City head Dr. Nicolas Capulong said the OKOR are helping the government promote patriotism among students and young people by putting busts of national hero Dr. Jose Rizal at public high schools and elementary campuses here. He joined OKOR officials and members led by KGOR Supreme Exchequer Reynaldo "Rey" Malig and KCR Central Luzon Commander Fr. Andronico “Sonny” Pahed during the recent unveiling of the 11th Rizal bust at the Pulungbulu elementary school here.

25 Jan 2015 - Pampanga health care lauded

PAMPANGA -- Officials of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) lauded the Provincial Government of Pampanga, headed by Governor Lilia Pineda, for being the best and model partner in healthcare throughout Central Luzon during a convergence meeting in this town recently.

PhilHealth Branch Manager Henry Almanon noted of the Capitol's allotment of P32,409,600 for its 13,504 indigent hospital-sponsored members in 2014 alone under the Point of Care (POC) program.

25 Jan 2015 - Security tightened at Clark, Subic

CLARK FREEPORT -- The security level inside the Clark Freeport and Subic, Zambales has been boosted as delegates from different countries who are participating in the Asian Pacific Economic Council (APEC) First Senior Officials’ Meeting started to arrive.

Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, officer-in-charge of Police Regional Office-3 (PRO3), said that hundreds of policemen were deployed to hotels and other areas to secure the delegates.

25 Jan 2015 - ‘Fight for free college,’ Cayetano tells Kapampangan students

PAMPANGA -- Senator Alan Peter Cayetano has urged Kapampangan students to fight for free college education.

The senator issued the statement during a meeting with tricycle drivers in this municipality over the weekend.

25 Jan 2015 - KDF eye surgery program still on

PAMPANGA -- The Kapampangan Development Foundation (KDF) announced Sunday that it is still entertaining patients who would like to avail of its free cataract and pterygium surgery programs at the KDF - Jesus A Datu Medical Center ( JADMC ) here.

In line with this, the KDF and the Rotary Club of Mabalacat in partnership with the Municipal Government of Mabalacat held an eye screening last January 23 for possible patients. Cataract and pterygium patients will be operated on for free at the JADMC located in Barangay San Vicente in Bacolor town.

25 Jan 2015 - PDEA seize P1-M worth of shabu

ANGELES CITY -- At least P1 million worth of suspected shabu were confiscated during a buy-bust operation conducted by agents of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA3) at Barangay Pulong Maragul, Angeles City and SM City Annex, North Edsa Quezon City, Friday.

In the first operation, PDEA3 director Jeoffrey Tacio said Emerson Galapon, 32, of Tarlac City; and Tristan Acousta, 32, of Barangay Cutcut 1st, Capas, Tarlac, were arrested in Don Bonfication Subdivision, Pulong Maragul, Angeles City.

24 Jan 2015 - Guv to officials: ‘Clear Sasmuan River’

PAMPANGA -- Governor Lilia Pineda, in continuous compliance to the Supreme Court's Mandamus in clearing all waterways to support the protection and clean up campaign of the Manila Bay, ordered local officials here to assist the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) in ridding and demolishing illegal structures in Sasmuan River near Manila Bay.

The governor inspected Friday the ongoing dredging and clearing operations along the Sasmuan River utilizing equipment of the DPWH.

24 Jan 2015 - Burial assistance for seniors pushed

ANGELES CITY -- A neophyte councilor, Carmelo Lazatin Jr., has filed a measure granting burial assistance to senior citizens here.

Proposed Ordinance No. PO-816-01-15 otherwise known as “Senior Citizen’s Burial Assistance Ordinance of Angeles City,” aims to ensure a dignified burial to the elderly of Angeles City, regardless of their economic status.

24 Jan 2015 - CLIARC exhibits mushroom production program

PAMPANGA -- The Central Luzon Integrated Agricultural Research Center (CLIARC) of the Regional Field Office III of the Department of Agriculture (DA) showcased their Community-Based Mushroom Production Project during the 85th founding anniversary of the department in Malate, Manila.

The event is part of the forums and exhibits, which showcased different technologies, services and products that highlight the continuously developing technology of today’s agriculture hosted by the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI).

24 Jan 2015 - Arrest warrants out vs mother-daughter bankers

A mother and her daughter who were former bank officers charged with large-scale estafa continue to elude justice.

Charged by the Department of Justice (DOJ) with 19 counts of large-scale estafa under Presidential Decree No. 1689 and 19 counts of creation of fictitious loans in violation of Section 21 (f)(5) of Republic Act 3591 or the amended Charter of the PDIC before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Guagua, Pampanga, Branch 51 were Sylvia de Castro and daughter Mary Jane Acol, former Assistant Manager and Corporate Secretary and shareholder, respectively, of the closed Rural Bank of Sta. Rita (Pampanga). The cases were based on a complaint by the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC), Liquidator of RB Sta. Rita, after the conduct of preliminary investigation.

23 Jan 2015 - Angeles police launch first tourism units

ANGELES CITY -- Local and foreign tourists will now be guaranteed of a safer visit to the city's top tourist destinations as 40 policemen of the Angeles City Police Office (ACPO) will be doing double-duty of securing and promoting renowned tourist spots here.

The ACPO has joined forces with the Department of Tourism Region 3 (DOT-3) in launching the first ever tourism police unit (TPU) in Central Luzon.

23 Jan 2015 - All systems go for Apec

CLARK FREEPORT -- It's all systems go for the of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Senior Officials Meeting (Apec-SOM) inside this Freeport from January 26 to February 7 this year.

The Clark Development Corporation (CDC) said that hotels and the convention areas to be used during the meetings are now ready, including the hotels that many of the delegates will be staying during duration of the summit.

23 Jan 2015 - Angeles official wants amnesty for delinquent RPT

ANGELES CITY -- Councilor Bryan Matthew Nepomuceno submitted recently a proposed ordinance before the City Council granting amnesty on interest of delinquent real property taxes for Angeles City.

Nepomuceno, a member of the committee on Finance and Appropriations, and Ways and Means, said that the measure is intended to aid the city government in its efforts to collect unrealized revenues from unpaid real property taxes. This revenue measure will increase the City’s ability to implement meaningful projects and deliver social services.

23 Jan 2015 - Apec extends media accreditation

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) has extended up to January 30, Friday, the deadline for online registration for foreign and local media who would like to cover the First Senior Officials Meeting (SOM1) and Related Meetings here.

"All media representatives wishing to cover SOM1 should register online at The information provided should be accurate and complete," Apec said in a statement.

22 Jan 2015 - Apec meeting takes on Cebu action plan

CLARK FREEPORT -- Senior finance officials from the 21-member economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) on Wednesday commenced a two-day meeting at Holiday Inn in this Freeport to talk about the country’s proposed roadmap for greater economic cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.

The meeting also marked the start of the hosting and chairing responsibilities of the Philippines, which presented the "Cebu Action Plan" as part of its contribution as this year's head of the organization.

22 Jan 2015 - Businessman: Build railways in CRK catchment area

CLARK FREEPORT -- Businessman Rene Romero has urged the National Government to construct a railway system to connect Clark International Airport (CRK) to Northern parts of Luzon, which are considered the airport's catchment areas.

Passengers from Northern Luzon will have easy access to the airport if an efficient and reliable means of transportation like a train is established, said Romero.

22 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan to get ‘Ani ng Dangal’ award

PAMPANGA -- Kapampangan maverick photographer Ruston Banal is set to receive the prestigious "Ani ng Dangal" award from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) for his achievements in the field of photography and contribution to the visual arts.

NCCA head Felipe de Leon, in a January 13 letter, said that Banal will be presented the recognition, along with other awardees at the National Museum on February 12.

22 Jan 2015 - Angeles exec wants financial, burial assistance for gov’t employees

ANGELES CITY -- Councilor Carmelo "Pogi" Lazatin, Jr. is pushing for the granting of financial aid for hospitalization and burial assistance to city government employees.

Lazatin filed last December 19 an ordinance that seeks to provide these benefits to local government workers.

22 Jan 2015 - Village official, cohort nabbed for drugs

PAMPANGA -- A barangay kagawad and his cohort were apprehended by agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA3) and Mabalacat City police in a buy-bust operation conducted in Barangay San Francisco, Mabalacat City, Pampanga, Monday.

Jeoffrey Tacio, PDEA3 regional director, identified the suspects as Allan Garcia, 53, a barangay kagawad of Dolores and his cohort, Ernie Flake alias Flakes, 52, both of Mabalacat City.

22 Jan 2015 - Guagua gets P2.3-M worth of rescue equipment

PAMPANGA -- The Municipal Government of Guagua purchased some P2,396,814 worth of life-saving equipment for flood-prone and vulnerable residents through the Bottom-up Budgeting (BuB) program, a statement from the Municipal Government said.

The statement said that a partial delivery was received by Mayor Dante Torres, and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) officer Magdalena Yonzon, at the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO), with its head Aldwin Mallari also present.

21 Jan 2015 - Aetas get educational kits from Clark Water

CLARK FREEPORT -- Some 800 Aeta students from communities in Clark Freeport recently received educational kits from Clark Water, and its partners, Ayala Multi-Purpose Cooperative (AMPC) and Clark Development Corporation.

Students from Sitio Monicayo, Sapang Bato, Kalapi, San Martin, Calumpang, and Burog were gathered during the celebration of the AMP's anniversary where educational kits with school supplies, water bottles, t-shirt, raincoat, slippers, and flashlight were distributed.

21 Jan 2015 - Angeles council honors Kapampangan indie film for recent awards

ANGELES CITY -- The Angeles City Council led by Vice Mayor Vicky Vega- Cabigting approved Resolution No. 7103 honoring the achievements of Kapampangan independent film "Magkakabaung" for awards it recently received.

The resolution congratulated the team of Ferninand Lapuz, Romnick Sarmenta and Dennis Evangelista of "Ing Magkakabaung" for winning international awards like the Third Hanoi Film Festival for Best Asian Film and for Best Actor for Allen Dizon in the 40th Metro Manila Film Festival New Wave Best Picture.

21 Jan 2015 - Swedish national found dead in an apartment

MABALACT CITY -- A Swedish national was found dead inside his rented apartment at Dau Homesite, Barangay Dau, Mabalacat City, Pampanga, Monday.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono Jr., Pampanga police provincial director, identified the fatality as Benny Avergaard, 78, a Swedish billeted at Abedoza Apartment in Dau Homesite.

21 Jan 2015 - Guv opens P26-M worth of facilities in Arayat

PAMPANGA -- Governor Lilia Pineda together with Mayor Emmanuel "Bon" Alejandrino and the Sangguniang Bayan headed by Vice-Mayor Ramon Changcoco formally inaugurated on Tuesday local government facilities and equipment plus the barangay service vehicles here with a total amount of P26,350,000.

The governor was also joined by Third District Board Member Rosve Henson whom he acknowledged as one of the most industrious and reliable members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan.

21 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan approves monthly pay raise for day care workers

ANGELES CITY -- In a bid to reinforce and improve early childhood rearing, Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan recently approved the increase in salaries of 72 daycare workers assigned in all 33 barangays of the city.

This year, daycare workers in the city will receive an additional P1,000 every month.

21 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan Facebook group to host social service program

PAMPANGA -- One of the biggest Facebook community group for Kapampangans will host a social service mission on March 29 at the Munting Tahanan ng Nazareth in Mabalacat town.

The group said that the mission is the sixth of its kind organized by the group and has been participated in by Kapampangans and expatriates from all over the world.

21 Jan 2015 - 3 missing persons discovered buried in Mexico rice field

PAMPANGA -- Three persons who have been missing since January 16 were discovered buried along a rice field Calucan Pritil Boulevard in Barangay San Antonio, Mexico town, Tuesday.

Superintendent Ricardo Pangan, chief of police of Mexico, identified the victims as Pacita Villena-Limpin, 59, Patrick Limpin, 30, and Christian Paul Limpin, 25, all residents of Barangay Parian, Mexico town.

21 Jan 2015 - 3,740 cops, soldiers to secure Apec meet

A total of 3,740 policemen and soldiers will be deployed to secure the upcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit at Clark Freeport.

The Police Regional Office (PRO-3) said it will deploy 1,800 personnel to assist the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in ensuring peace and order during the first Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM1) of the Apec Summit scheduled from January 26 to February 7.

21 Jan 2015 - NCMB tells CDC: Grant Mimosa workers’ perks

CLARK FREEPORT -- The National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB) of the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) has issued a notice in favor of the Association of Clark Mimosa Employees (Acme), which is claiming some P82,088,387.03 for its members’ benefits.

In a Notice to Arbitrate dated January 9, 2015, Accredited Voluntary Arbitrator Josephus Jimenez endorsed to Central Luzon Executive Labor Arbiter Mariano Bactin a Writ of Execution dated April 29, 2014 issued by the NCMB in favor of the Mimosa employees.

21 Jan 2015 - Taxman collects P20.7-B in 2014

PAMPANGA -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Revenue Region 4 has collected a whooping P20,780,934, 177.33 in revenues from January to December last year marking it one of the strongest collections of the revenue office to date.

Revenue Region 4 (RR-4) OIC Regional Director Conrado Lee said that the collection is only short of 0.95 percent of the collection target of P20,980,010,000. Despite of this, RR-4 remains as among the top performing revenue offices.

21 Jan 2015 - CA upholds charges vs Clark BI officers

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Court of Appeals has upheld the administrative charges filed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) against six Bureau of Immigration (BI) officers involved in the facilitation of illegal transactions at the Clark International Airport (CRK).

Associate Justice Noel Tiham of the CA Sixth Division stated in a 12-page order that Justice Secretary Leila de Lima has the power to discipline immigration personnel found guilty of several irregularities.

21 Jan 2015 - Paskuhan Village sold

PAMPANGA -- The Philippine Christmas Village, popularly known as Paskuhan Village located along the prime Jose Abad Santos Avenue in this city, has reportedly been sold to SM Development Corporation (SMDC) for P939-million.

Sources said that the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) allegedly sold the 9.3 hectare Paskuhan Village, now known as Hilaga (North), as part of its Asset Privatization Program upon the behest of its board headed by Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez.

21 Jan 2015 - Mexico gets P6.7-M backhoe, service vehicles

PAMPANGA -- Governor Lilia Pineda led yesterday the turnover of a P6.7 million backhoe and distribution of 40 service vehicles for this town's different barangays.

Governor Pineda was joined by Mayor Roy Manalastas as the new vehicles were presented to the barangay captains of the town. Mexico is the last of the towns to receive service vehicles for their barangays. The distribution is part of the 400 brand new service vehicles purchased by the Capitol worth P216-million.

21 Jan 2015 - PRO3 all set for Apec

PAMPANGA -- The Police Regional Office-3 (PRO3) disclosed Tuesday that it is all set for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit which will be held here.

The first event is the First Senior Officers Meeting to be followed by the Special Senior Finance Officials Meeting and First Senior Officials' Meeting and Related Meetings on January 26 to February 7, 2015.

21 Jan 2015 - Armed men gun down 2 in Apalit

PAMPANGA -- Two persons were gunned down by four armed men riding on board motorcycles along Barangay Cansinala, Apalit, Pampanga, Tuesday.

Superintendent Samuel Sevilla, chief of police of Apalit, said that Caroline Arceo, 35, and Henry Dalusung, 50, both residents of the said barangay were on board a motorcycle when fired upon by the suspects.

21 Jan 2015 - Quarry truck thief arrested

PAMPANGA -- A suspect was recently arrested in a raid conducted by the operatives of the Porac Municipal Police Station (MPS) at Purok 5 Pabalan, Barangay Manibaug, this town around 3 p.m.

Police Superintendent Neil Miro identified the suspect as Francis Garcia, who was reported to be an employee and driver of complainant and Isuzu truck owner Michael Dela Cruz.

19 Jan 2015 - Government urged to focus on inclusive growth

PAMPANGA -- Businessman Rene Romero is calling on the national government to focus on inclusive growth and spend more investments in the regions to further boost the economy forward.

Romero said that this is a necessary step so that people from all sectors may be able to appreciate and feel the economic achievements under the Aquino administration.

19 Jan 2015 - 2 more business conglomerates lured by Porac

CLARK FREEPORT -- Two of the country’s giant corporate conglomerates are in serious negotiations to acquire large tracts of lands for development into residential and business hubs in Porac, Pampanga, it was disclosed by two-term Porac Mayor Carling Dela Cruz.

“If and when these developments materialize, this could hasten the municipality’s transformation into a bustling metropolis in Central Luzon within a decade,” he told members and guest of the Capampangan in Media, Inc. (CAMI) in last Friday’s regular weekly media forum at the Bale Balita (House of News) inside the Clark Freeport operated by the Clark Development Corporation (CDC).

19 Jan 2015 - Lady drug pusher nabbed in San Fernando

PAMPANGA -- A suspected lady drug pusher was apprehended during a buy-bust operation in Barangay San Jose, City of San Fernando last Sunday.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono, Jr., Pampanga police provincial director, said that members of the Provincial Public Safety Company led by Superintendent Bernardo Perez conducted the operation at the said barangay after a civilian informant reported the illegal drug trade activity at the area.

19 Jan 2015 - Arayat national park guard shot dead

PAMPANGA - A security guard detailed at the Arayat National park in Barangay San Juan Baño, Arayat town was gunned down by Motorcycle Riding Criminals over the weekend.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono, Jr., Pampanga police provincial director, said that Eddie Sagum, 49, a resident of Barangay San Juan Baño was at the entrance gate of the park when shot by the suspects.

19 Jan 2015 - 1,336 patients ‘blessed’

PAMPANGA -- Some 1,336 persons with disabilities (PWDs) and dialysis and cancer patients who were treated to a live streaming of the papal mass at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila on Sunday collectively said they felt “blessed” as they listened to the homily of Pope Francis during a gathering at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center here.

Governor Lilia Pineda and the Provincial Board initiated and organized the gathering of 873 PWDs and 463 dialysis, cancer and other indigent patients for them to get the message of compassion, healing and hope advocated by Pope Francis.

18 Jan 2015 - Bizman: Clark, Lipa airports will decongest NAIA

ANGELES CITY -- The Pinoy Gumising Ka Movement (PGKM) has reiterated its call to develop airports in Clark and Lipa City and scrap the plan to build another international airport at Sangley Point in Cavite as pushed by Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya.

PGKM chairman Ruperto “Perto” Cruz said over the weekend that an airport in Sangley Point will require the shutting down of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila because of their proximity in terms of air distance.

18 Jan 2015 - Gonzales: Congress seat his only option in 2016

PAMPANGA -- Former third district representative Aurelio Gonzales Jr. said over the weekend that if he runs in 2016, he will be looking at regaining his congressional seat as his only option.

“There had been rumors here and there saying that I would run for other positions other than congressman and I would like to clarify that any position other than being a congressman is not part of my plan,” Gonzales said.

18 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan artist to help enshrine new Palo icon

PAMPANGA -- Presidential Merit Awardee for Ecclesiastical Art Willy Layug is now in Tacloban to help in the enshrinement plans and repair the Marian icon of the Our Lady of Palo, one of the centerpiece images during Pope Francis' mass in Tacloban.

The image is said to have inspired part of the Pontiff's impromptu homily when he celebrated the mass.

18 Jan 2015 - 50 kids rescued from Balibago streets

ANGELES CITY -- Authorities here rescued Sunday some 50 children from the streets of an entertainment district in Barangay Balibago.

Balibago chairman Rodelio “Tony” Mamac said the kids are reportedly being used by crime syndicates on robbery, mendicancy, drugs, and other illegal activities.

18 Jan 2015 - Macabebe founding anniversary 'historically correct'

PAMPANGA -- Macabebe is known for its brave soldiers during the Spanish colonization, celebrated on Saturday its 440th founding anniversary and Mayor Annette Flores-Balgan described the celebration as “historically correct and significant.”

It was the first time in many decades the townsfolk and their past and present officials celebrated the “correct” founding anniversary of Macabebe.

18 Jan 2015 - Workers ask for P16,000 minimum monthly wage

MABALACAT CITY -- Government employees belonging to the All Workers’ Unity, under the Confederation for Unity, Recognition and Advancement of Government Employees (Courage), is pushing for the National Minimum Wage of P16,000 monthly for both public and private sectors.

Courage National President Ferdinand Gaite and League of Local Government Units Employees (League) president Erwin Naluza disclosed this during a recent dialogue here with local employees associations in Pampanga and Angeles City.

17 Jan 2015 - Kapampangans meet Pope

PAMPANGA -- Tony Santiago is a 54-year-old community leader from Sapang Uwak, Porac, Pampanga, a village that has served as the home of many indigenous peoples in the province.

"I never expected that I will be able to hear from the Pope but I am glad that I got selected to attend the event. I will always look back to this as the best moment of my life," said a teary-eyed Santiago.

17 Jan 2015 - Pope gets Kapampangan made image of Immaculate Concepcion

PAMPANGA -- Pope Francis received yesterday the Marian image of "Our Lady of the Immaculate Concepcion" inside the Palo Cathedral where the wood from the broken rafters after being ravaged by Typhoon Yolanda were used in making the image.

Palo Archbishop John Du presented the gift to Pope Francis with sculptor Willy Layug who was asked to make the image for the Pope.

17 Jan 2015 - Parishes to celebrate local Sinulog

PAMPANGA -- Parishes from all over Pampanga will join the whole country in celebrating the Feast of the Sto. Niño as it coincides with the papal visit of Pope Francis.

Parishes here are inviting their parishioners to reflect on the event, even those who would opt to attend Pope Francis’ closing mass in Manila. One of the most famous feasts in the country is the Sinulog Festival held annually in Cebu during the third week of January. The feast is meant to honor the historical statue of Sto. Nino de Cebu -- the relic given by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan to the wife of Rajah Humabon. It is also considered to be one of the oldest religious images in the Philippines.

17 Jan 2015 - Blood Bank station in all district hospitals eyed

PAMPANGA -- In line with the mission of Governor Lilia Pineda of providing safe, sufficient and sustainable blood for every Kapampangan, the Provincial Blood Services and Advocacy Council (PBSAC) is eyeing the establishment of blood stations in all district hospitals in Pampanga..

First District Board Member Crisostomo Garbo, president of PBSAC, said the district hospitals' blood station is in response to the Provincial Government's mission of providing excellent health care services to Kapampangans.

17 Jan 2015 - Road widening along old Dau-Clark link set

MABALACAT CITY -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is set to implement a road-widening project along an access road that links the MacArthur Highway in Barangay Dau here and the Cabcom area inside the Clark Freeport.

This was learned from Barangay Dau Chairman Oscar Aurelio who said that DPWH officials in the province already coordinated the schedule of the construction, which will start on the first week of February this year.

17 Jan 2015 - Central Luzon police all set for Apec summit

PAMPANGA -- With just about two weeks before the holding of the First Senior Officials' Meeting (SOM) and Related Meetings (SOM-1) relative to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit 2015, the Central Luzon police is already geared up to ensure the security and safety of all the participants at Clark Freeport, Pampanga.

SOM is the main policy-making body within Apec and at least 1,700 delegates composed of 1,600 foreign delegates and 100 local delegates are expected to attend the gathering.

17 Jan 2015 - 85 parents of ex-child laborers get Dole kits

PAMPANGA -- Some 85 parents of former child laborers were recent recipients of Dole-Kabuhayan Starter Kits, the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) Regional Office 3, said on Friday.

Dole Regional Director Ana Dione reported to Labor Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz that the starter-kit livelihood assistance is Dole Bulacan Field Office’s Child Labor-Free Barangay Campaign kick-off activity this year.

17 Jan 2015 - PDEA nabs 4 suspected big time shabu pushers

PAMPANGA -- Four suspected big-time drug pushers were apprehended by members of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA3) in a buy-bust operation in Barangay San Miguel na Munti, Talavera, Nueva Ecija, recently.

PDEA3 Director Jeoffrey Tacio identified the arrested suspects as Marily Espejo, 33, Noraina Hadji-Amen, 28, Emilio Agustin, 49, and Nasser Masorong, 32, all residents of Cabanatuan City.

17 Jan 2015 - RC Mabalacat past president elected ROTI chairperson

MABALACAT CITY -- A past president of the Rotary Club of Mabalacat was elected chairperson of the Rotarians on the Internet (ROTI), an official fellowship of the Rotary International.

Gloria “Glo” Nethercutt will assume the International ROTI Chair for 2015-17 on July 1.

16 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan, Cabigting trade barbs

ANGELES CITY – "I don’t want to be thrown into a fight. Let it wait."

Thus said Mayor Edgardo "EdPam" Pamintuan to journalists on Friday during his press conference when asked about the recent Facebook posts of Vice- Mayor Vicky Vega-Cabigting on the removal of her three workers stationed at the Ospital Ning Angeles (ONA).

16 Jan 2015 - 10 Regional songwriting finalists announced

PAMPANGA -- Some 10 finalists made it to the "LiKhALIKASAN: Likhang Awit para sa Kalikasan" Regional Songwriting Competition of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Philippine Information Agency (PIA).

PIA Regional Director William Beltran said the contest seeks to instill awareness on positive behaviors and perspectives as resiliency safeguards against the effects of climate change; promote environmental awareness, protection and preservation; and recognize people empowerment and involvement towards measures leading to preserving the well-being of the environment as act of protecting not just it but more so protecting people's lives.

16 Jan 2015 - San Fernando to lift moratorium on pedicabs

PAMPANGA -- The City Government here will soon lift the moratorium it set for pedicabs and tri-wheelers after a full review and evaluation to be conducted by local transport officials.

On Friday, Mayor Edwin Santiago disclosed that he has instructed city officials to evaluate the number of pedicabs registered with the city government, as well as unregistered tri-wheelers to determine if the moratorium covering them can already be lifted, following the request of some sectors to regulate the proliferation of the local transport means where the drivers and their passengers are exposed to dangers and pose risk to other motorists particularly when they are plying highways and major city thoroughfares.

16 Jan 2015 - Casino exec arrested for ‘bounced’ check

MABALACAT CITY -- A manager of a casino was arrested for estafa in his residence in Barangay San Joaquin, Mabalacat City, Wednesday.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono Jr., Pampanga Police provincial director, identified the suspect as Lyndon Canlas, 29, manager of Casablanca Casino at Hotel Stotsenberg, Clark Freeport and a resident of the said barangay.

15 Jan 2015 - Clark Freeport set to be a Wi-Fi zone

CLARK FREEPORT ZONE -- This Freeport will soon be a Wi-Fi zone.

Roberto Tagamolila, Clark Development Corporation (CDC) assistant vice president for information technology, said the Wi-Fi project is one of the agency's long term goals to equip Clark with wireless technology.

15 Jan 2015 - Central Luzon governors enjoin cops to secure Apec delegates

CLARK FREEPORT -- Central Luzon governors who are members of the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) enjoined all police officers in Region III to secure the safety of the delegates to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit which will be held here from January 21 to February 7, this year.

The Central Luzon governors expressed their heartfelt gratitude to the national government in bringing the Apec summit in this Freeport zone.

15 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan producer to hold ‘film festival for a cause’

ANGELES CITY -- Award-winning Kapampangan film producer Ferdinand Lapuz will hold a film festival for a cause to financially assist the scholars of his alma mater Holy Angel University (HAU) here.

The festival will showcase the most recent films of Lapuz on March 11 to 13 at the HAU Theatre. Directors and co-producers of "Dementia," "Ekstra," "Barber's Tales," and "Bwakaw" have all given their approval to lend their films for the scholarship project.

15 Jan 2015 - Police nab 3 suspected drug pushers

PAMPANGA -- Three suspected drug pushers were collared by police in separate buy-bust operations in the municipalities of Masantol and Guagua.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono Jr., Pampanga police provincial director, identified those arrested as Andy Amurao, 34, a resident of Barangay Bebe Matua and Christopher Roque, 39, a resident of Barangay Sto. Nino, both of Masantol town; and Michael Magtoto, 27, a resident of Barangay San Rafael, Guagua town.

15 Jan 2015 - Miss Mabalacat City 2015 coronation set on January 30

MABALACAT CITY -- The region's most awaited beauty pageant, Miss Mabalacat City, which will feature a Broadway-inspired musical production, is set January 30 at Xevera, Tabun.

Dionisio "Jun" Magbalot, Miss Mabalacat City 2005 chair, said the musical numbers are excerpts from Hairspray, Miss Saigon, Cats, Mary Poppins, Grease and other Broadway hits.

15 Jan 2015 - SM Clark holds special movie screening for deaf, blind

CLARK FREEPORT -- The management of SM City Clark has arranged a special movie screening for deaf and blind school children the other day.

Some 150 kids from the Angeles City Special Education (Sped) Center enjoyed watching or hearing "The Life of Pi," which was shown with special narration for blind people.

15 Jan 2015 - San Fernando now accepting applications for 2015 SPES

PAMPANGA -- The City Government of San Fernando is now accepting applications for the Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES) for 2015.

SPES is an annual summer employment program that invites students to immerse themselves in government as well as hone their sense of leadership and public service.

14 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan to Angeles voters: ‘Validate registration’

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan has called on registered voters of Angeles City to have their registration with the Commission on Election (Comelec) validated by undergoing the biometrics process.

"I call on all our fellow Angeleños, whose names are in the list, to troop to the Comelec and undertake the biometrics evaluation. Ensure that you can exercise your constitutional right to vote on May 2016 and beyond," Pamintuan said.

14 Jan 2015 - Guv tells new cops: ‘Be heroes of the people’

PAMPANGA -- Governor Lilia Pineda urged 835 new graduates of the Public Safety Field Training Program (PSFTP) of the Regional Training Center (RTC) 3 "Kapanalig" Class 2013-01 to become people's heroes.

Pineda, who was guest speaker during the graduation ceremony of Kapanalig Class 2013-01, said that as new police officers, they are bound to make their lives more meaningful through dedicated public service whose main goal is to protect and serve the people.

14 Jan 2015 - Pope to get memento of Yolanda disaster

PAMPANGA -- When Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) battered Tacloban, it destroyed the roofing of the Palo Cathedral and reduced the structure's sturdy rafters into chunks of wooden debris.

A piece of the wooden debris was sent to Betis, Guagua and was worked by the hands of master sculptor Willy Layug who have turned the piece of wood into a small religious icon -- Tacloban's simple gift to Pope Francis and a reminder of the recent Yolanda disaster.

14 Jan 2015 - Hi-tech command center to beef up Clark security

CLARK FREEPORT -- A new command center with advanced technology shall beef up the security inside and within the perimeters of Clark Freeport during its hosting of the first Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) of the 2015 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit from January 26 to February 7.

Constructed in November last year, the one floor building in front of the Public Safety Department (PSD) of Clark Development Corporation (CDC) is equipped with 38 cameras, nine TV wall monitors, eight computers, radios, and telephones.

14 Jan 2015 - Man nabbed for illegal drugs in Guagua

PAMPANGA -- A man included in the anti-illegal drugs watch list of the Philippine National Police (PNP) was arrested in a drug buy-bust operation on Tuesday in Barangay San Rafael here.

Superintendent Angelito Esteban, chief of Guagua police, said the arrest was part of their efforts to stop the proliferation of illegal drugs in the province.

14 Jan 2015 - Rehab of Clark tourism areas complete before APEC meet

CLARK FREEPORT -- Clark Development Corporation (CDC) president Arthur Tugade said that the rehabilitation and beautification of tourism-related projects inside the Freeport are nearing completion.

Tugade said this during a recent media briefing at the Convention Center of Widus Hotel and Casino.

13 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan-made icons for papal visit ready

PAMPANGA -- Guagua-scultor Willy Layug has finished the icons that will be used for the papal masses of Pope Francis during his visit to the Philippines this week.

The images, commisioned by the Archdioceses of Palo and Manila, are expected to be shipped today, January 14, to their respective venues.

13 Jan 2015 - New firetrucks raised CRK rating to Category 10

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Clark International Airport (CRK) is now rated Category 10 after the acquisition of P115 million two units Rosenbauer Firetrucks capable of handling emergency disasters at the 2,267 hectare Clark Civil Aviation Complex.

At the same time, Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) president and CEO Atty. Emigdio Tanhuatco III led on January 12, 2015, the blessings of the firetrucks and a newly installed P92 million two-finger Passenger Boarding Bridge at Clark International Airport.

13 Jan 2015 - P817M earmarked for Mabalacat 2015 budget

MABALACAT CITY -- The City Government here has allocated P818 million budget for Fiscal Year 2015 in a bid to further improve delivery of basic services that would elevate the city as the "Makati of the North."

Mabalacat City Mayor Morales said the increase in budget of the city will strictly fund programs and provide assistance to the people of the city that would fortify its bid to become the next "Makati North of Manila."

13 Jan 2015 - WMRI donates pacemakers to ONA

CLARK FREEPORT -- A US-based charitable institution that is headed by a Filipino is donating multi-million peso cardiac pacemakers to indigent patients of Ospital Ning Angeles (ONA) and nearby towns.

George Samson, president and CEO of World Medical Relief Inc., said during Talk Widus Kapihan by the Pampanga Press Club (PPC) that the Detroit-based organization is in collaboration with the University of Michigan for the pacemaker project that will benefit poor Angelenos and the people of Pampanga in general.

13 Jan 2015 - CDC takes over 3.2-hectare leased property

CLARK FREEPORT -- The state-owned Clark Development Corporation (CDC) has secured a leased property covering some 3.2 hectares land that has been idle since 2011.

CDC's seizure of the property last January 12 was anchored on Holywood Park Development Corporation’s (HPDC) "persistent non-compliances" with their commitments under the agreement signed three years ago, despite reconsideration and concessions extended to them.

13 Jan 2015 - Pampanga cops mark 21st PNP Ethics Day

PAMPANGA -- The Provincial Police Office (PPO) celebrated the 21st Philippine National Police (PNP) Ethics Day during the traditional Monday flag raising ceremony in coordination with the other police headquarters nationwide.

This year's theme was dubbed "PNP leading the right path towards credible and noble service."

13 Jan 2015 - Barangay chairmen deny supporting Lapid's bid for Angeles mayor

ANGELES CITY -- Five barangay chairmen of Angeles City denied news reports that they are supporting the mayoralty bid of movie actor and former Pampanga governor Lito Lapid, saying that they were invited to attend a Christmas gathering but were surprised to see Lapid and former Rep. Carmelo Lazatin in attendance.

In a joint statement, barangay chairmen Reynaldo Malig of Barangay Salapungan, Marino Banola of Barangay Sta. Teresita, Eduardo Badong of Barangay Ninoy Aquino, Angelito Caparas of Barangay Sto. Domingo, and Harry Roque of Barangay San Jose, said that they were upset with the news reports stating that they are supporting Lapid's candidacy.

12 Jan 2015 - Parishes gear up for Pope Francis

PAMPANGA -- Various parishes in Pampanga are now preparing for the arrival of Pope Francis this weekend with laity groups mounting information drives on social media and events to help Roman Catholics prepare for the spiritual encounter.

Parishes in Santa Rita, Guagua, Porac, Magalang and Arayat have included short programs after parish masses during the papal visit. Pope Francis will arrive in Manila on January 15 for a five-day visit in the country. Several events are lined up for him in Manila and in Tacloban in Leyte.

12 Jan 2015 - Police arrest suspected killer of Bataan reporter

PAMPANGA -- Police have filed a murder case before the Prosecutor's Office in Balanga City against the suspected killer of Abante reporter, Nerlita "Nelie" Ledesma.

Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, officer-in-charge of the Police Regional Office-3, said the Bataan Police Provincial Office filed on Monday appropriate charges against the arrested suspect identified as Inocencio Bendo, alias Bandio, 39, a resident of Samal, Bataan.

12 Jan 2015 - Kapampangan made-icon to become part of Tacloban's low cost altar

PAMPANGA -- The image of the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title of Our Lady of Hope made by Presidential Merit Awardee for Ecclesiastical Art Willy Layug will become part of the low cost altar for the Papal Mass of Pope Francis when he visits Tacloban late this week.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) in a statement said that committee decided against an elaborate altar table design because after the papal visit, the said altar will be used in the church located in the lower grounds of the Gonzaga House in Barangay Arado, Palo, Leyte.

12 Jan 2015 - PRO-3 to deploy 3,000 police for papal visit

PAMPANGA -- The Police Regional Office (PRO-3) in Central Luzon will deploy 3,000 personnel to assist the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) in ensuring peace and order during the visit of Pope Francis in the country this week.

Police Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, officer-in-charge of PRO-3, said the 3,000 cops will supplement the 25,000 policemen and 12,000 soldiers that the PNP and AFP will deploy to Metro Manila and Tacloban City and Palo town in Leyte as part of the massive security preparations for the papal visit.

12 Jan 2015 - South Korean firm to pour P65.5-M on hotel project in Clark

CLARK FREEPORT -- Clark Development Corporation (CDC) has signed an agreement recently with South Korean firm W Min Jun Corporation to pour P65.5 million for the improvement of its tourism-related project inside this Freeport.

The agreement was signed between CDC president Arthur Tugade and WMJC president Lee Chang Hwan in a simple ceremony held recently here.

11 Jan 2015 - American, Pinay partner found dead

ANGELES CITY -- American national Robin Potter, 66, and his live-in partner were found dead inside their apartment in Barangay Pulung Maragul last Saturday.

Police said the victims were hogtied and stabbed and had allegedly been dead for about a week before their remains were discovered.

11 Jan 2015 - P1.2-B Clark budget terminal pushed

ANGELES CITY -- Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) president and CEO Atty. Emigdio Tanjuatco III said over the weekend that he is lobbying for the immediate construction of the P1.2-billion Low Cost Carrier Passenger Terminal Building (LCC-PTB) at the Clark International Airport (CIA).

Tanjuatco said he asked National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) Director General Arsenio Balisacan during their meeting last January 5 to approve the plan for the LCC-PTB paving the way for the bidding of the terminal “at least by March this year.”

11 Jan 2015 - LGUs urged to monitor plants emitting pollution

PAMPANGA -- The Department of Environment and Natural Resources- Environment and Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) over the weekend reiterated its call to officials of local government units to monitor plants emitting pollution.

Earlier, the DENR-EMB had asked local government officials not to issue permits to plants found non-compliant to environmental laws.

11 Jan 2015 - Angeles village aspires for model MRF

ANGELES CITY -- A village here is aspiring to be a model area in terms of waste management following the establishment of its material recovery facility (MRF) which accommodates at least eight barangays in the city.

Malabanias Chairman Reynaldo Gueco said that they are maintaining one-hectare waste segregation facility, situated along the Abacan River, which is now being eyed as model MRF.

11 Jan 2015 - Abante reporter slay suspect interrogated

PAMPANGA -- The suspect in the killing of Abante reporter Nerlie Ledesma was placed under the custody of the Bataan police.

Senior Superintendent Rodel Sermonia, Bataan Police Provincial director, said the suspected killer of Ledesma could not be divulged pending for further investigation.

11 Jan 2015 - Pampanga parishes, laity preparing for papal visit

PAMPANGA -- Various parishes in Pampanga are now preparing for the arrival of Pope Francis this week with laity groups mounting information drives on social media and events to help Roman Catholics prepare for the spiritual encounter.

Parishes in Sanata Rita, Guagua, Porac, Magalang and Arayat have included short programs after parish masses during the Papal Visit. Pope Francis will arrive in Manila on January 15 for a five-day visit to the Philippines. Several events are lined up for him in Manila and in Tacloban in Leyte.

11 Jan 2015 - Parish hosts Sto. Niño exhibit

PAMPANGA -- Dozens of images representing the child Jesus will be on exhibit at the Museo Ning Santa Rita de Cascia this week in honor of the feast of the Sto. Niño and the visit of Pope Francis.

Glenn Canlas, focal person for the event, said that the exhibit will feature popular representations of the Santo Nino. The exhibit, he said, is a reminder to every Catholic of the how Christ once humbled himself.

11 Jan 2015 - Regulation of pedicabs urged

PAMPANGA -- Concerned citizens and motorists here are urging the city government to look into the possibility of regulating the proliferation of pedicabs or triwheelers operating and plying major thoroughfares in San Fernando as are exposed to accidents and pose risks to other vehicles.

Data obtained from the city’s transport section show that there are more than 1,500 pedicabs operating in the city, with many of them unregistered with city hall.

11 Jan 2015 - RP Energy improves Castillejos traffic, security capacities

SUBIC BAY -- In an effort to contribute to the security and well-being of surrounding communities, the Redondo Peninsula Energy, Inc. (RP Energy) recently turned over brand new safety vests, LED flashlights and hand reflectors to the Castillejos town in the province of Zambales for the use of its 25-man traffic force.

RP Energy head Victor Persius Chan said the donation is part of RP Energy’s “Kasanggamo!” corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative, which aims to assist in the peace and order situation of the surrounding communities.

11 Jan 2015 - Magnitude 6.0 earthquake jolts Luzon

SUBIC BAY -- A magnitude 5.7 earthquake rocked Luzon at Sunday morning, which was later on raised to 6.0 at 3:31 am.

The quake’s epicenter was in located 13 kilometers southeast of San Antonio, Zambales with a depth of 85 kilometers said the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs).

10 Jan 2015 - San Fernando eyes schemes to ease JASA traffic

PAMPANGA -- The City Government here is looking at four traffic schemes, which will be implemented first quarter of this year to ease heavy traffic along east Jose Abad Santos Avenue, particularly the area starting from Paskuhan Village all the way to stretch fronting two giant malls.

Over the weekend, Mayor Edwin Santiago said traffic build-up caused by buses exiting from the regional transport hub has been addressed.

10 Jan 2015 - Marang throws support to Cayetano’s 2016 bid

ANGELES CITY -- Councilor Maricel Morales has vowed to support Senator Allan Peter Cayetano if he will pursue his plan to seek the presidency in 2016.

Morales issued the statement during the launching of the senator's Presyo, Trabaho, Kita and Kaayusan (PTK) in Barangay Santo Domingo here on Thursday.

10 Jan 2015 - Angeles second highest in HIV cases

ANGELES CITY -- Angeles City ranks second in terms of the increase in the number of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) infection diagnoses, said the AIDS-Free Philippines (AFP) based on the recent study of Human Life International.

AFP national director and Human Life International president Dr. Rene Josef Bullecer revealed that the number of people infected with HIV/AIDS in the Philippines grew at an average of 87 percent from 2008 to November 2014.

10 Jan 2015 - Cop wants reporter’s killer alive

PAMPANGA -- "I want the gunman of Ledesma alive" said Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, officer-in-charge of Police Regional Office-3 (PRO3), during a press conference on Friday.

Santos said he wants the suspect alive so that they would know who is behind the killing of Nerlita "Nerlie" Ledesma, 48, reporter of Abante newspaper and resident of Tagnai Subdivision, Barangay Tuyo, Balanga City.

10 Jan 2015 - Lawmaker underscores importance of SMEs

ANGELES CITY -- Senator Allan Peter Cayetano has underscored the importance of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to a developing country like the Philippines.

The lawmaker disclosed this during his recent visit in Barangay Santo Domingo here where he donated seed capital to a tricycle drivers association under his Presyo, Trabaho, Kita at Kaayusan (PTK) livelihood assistance program.

10 Jan 2015 - Angeles council set to honor Kapampangan indie film

ANGELES CITY -- The Angeles City Council is set to honor award-winning Kapampangan independent film "Magkakabaung" which recently reaped awards at the recent Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF).

Vice Mayor Vicky Vega Cabigting said the film deserves to be given due honor for advancing the cause of independent films with Kapampangan themes.

10 Jan 2015 - Convergys gives school uniforms to Aetas

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Convergys Community Action Network (CAN) in Clark Freeport recently gave 560 sets of school uniforms to Aeta school children from Camachile Elementary School and Nabuclod Elementary School in Floridablanca, Pampanga.

The effort was achieved through combined employee donations, supplemental fund from the Convergys CAN Program, and client support.

9 Jan 2015 - Pamintuan on Apec summit: Peace, traffic top priorities

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan underscored the importance of maintaining peace and order as well as efficient traffic management for the duration of the upcoming Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit (APEC) 2015 Preliminary Meetings, set to run from January 18 to February 7.

Pamintuan led a meeting at the Mayor's Office Conference Room, Thursday, with local stakeholders and government officials for the city's preparation for the upcoming events.

9 Jan 2015 - PGKM: Scrap Sangley airport plan

MABALACAT CITY -- Scrap Sangley Point airport plan and develop Clark International Airport (CRK) and Lipa airport.

This was the call of businessman Ruperto Cruz, owner of the Grand Palazzo Royale and Royal Golf and Country Club and leader of the Pinoy Gumising Ka Movement (PGKM), which has been advocating for the immediate and full development of Clark airport.

9 Jan 2015 - CDC inks deal with Widus hotel on additional 3.2-hectare area

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Clark Development Corporation (CDC) has signed a lease agreement with Widus International Leisure Inc., owner, developer, and operator of Widus Hotel and Casino on Wednesday for an additional 3.2 hectares of property located adjacent to their current project.

Signed by CDC president Arthur Tugade and Widus president Daesik Han, the hotel's property is now around 7.9 hectares.

9 Jan 2015 - Binay: Japan eyes more Pinoy nurses, caregivers

MABALACAT CITY -- Vice President Jejomar Binay welcomed Japan's pledge to increase the number of Filipino nurses and caregivers allowed to work in Japan.

Binay was informed of Japan's plan to ease the process for healthcare workers to be employed in the country during the courtesy call of Japanese Ambassador Kazuhide Ishikawa recently.

9 Jan 2015 - Maersk Line makes maiden voyage to Subic

SUBIC BAY -- Maersk Line, listed among the largest container shipping companies in the world, brought to this premier Philippine free port the first good news for 2015, as it marked its maiden direct voyage from Singapore to Subic.

According to Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) Chairman Roberto Garcia, Maersk’s MV Stadt Dresden arrived in the Port of Subic directly from Singapore at around 12:30 in the morning of January 3.

9 Jan 2015 - PDEA-3 seizes P1.5-M worth of ecstasy

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) 3 confiscated P1.5 million worth of ecstasy during an anti-narcotic interdiction operation at the Philpost Central Office in Paranaque City, Thursday.

Jeoffrey Tacio, PDEA-3 director, said the seizure was the result of the joint operation of his office and other concerned government agencies.

9 Jan 2015 - Folks start the year by helping indigents

PAMPANGA -- Employees of a reputable hotel in Tarlac City recently started 2015 by putting up funds coming from their Christmas bonus last year to help two marginalized families here.

The hotel staff, who requested not to be named, first picked Romy Toledo, 50, a native of Bacolod, Negros Occidental, who lives alone in a makeshift shelter in the city. The staff said he is a "mangangalakal" who earns about P60 pesos a day. He has lived in Tarlac since his teens and never got the chance to go back home.

8 Jan 2015 - Mabalacat mayor lodges libel suit vs accuser

MABALACAT CITY -- Mayor Marino Morales has finally lodged a P20-million libel suit against businesswoman Pyra Lucas, mother of the slain teenager who was gunned down along MacArthur Highway in Barangay Mabiga November last year.

Morales, accompanied by his legal counsel, filed the complaint at the Regional Trial Court Fiscal’s Office in the City of San Fernando on Thursday morning.

8 Jan 2015 - P7.2B budget terminal to rise in Clark airport

CLARK FREEPORT -- Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) president Emigdio Tanjuatco III has assured the public that the corporation and the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) are pushing for the development of the Clark International Airport (CRK) in Pampanga.

Tanjuatco issued the statement to allay perceptions that the government is neglecting the Clark airport.

8 Jan 2015 - Businessman asks DOTC chief to ‘resign’

ANGELES CITY -- A businessman here has called Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya to “resign” following disclosing government plan to pursue the development of a new international airport in Sangley Point, Cavite province.

Ruperto Cruz, owner of the Grand Palazzo Royale and Royal Garden Golf and Country Club, said the government will spend a huge amount of money to construct a new airport.

8 Jan 2015 - CDC’s cash flow for 2014 reaches P2.27-B

CLARK FREEPORT -- The cash flow of Clark Development Corporation (CDC) in 2014 has increased by more than P1-billion since CDC president Arthur P. Tugade assumed office in December 2012.

This was disclosed by Tugade during the first flag raising ceremonies on Monday where he said that CDC has a cash flow of P2.27 billion at the end of 2014.

8 Jan 2015 - Driver hurt in 2-truck collision in Lubao

PAMPANGA -- A truck driver was injured after his vehicle collided with another trailer truck in a portion of Jose Abad Santos Avenue (JASA) in this town on Wednesday morning.

According to the Lubao police, the trailer truck was parked along Barangay San Nicholas II when another truck hit it from behind around 5:30 a.m.

8 Jan 2015 - 4 hurt as truck crashes into houses in San Fernando village

PAMPANGA -- At least four people were reported injured after a truck crashed into two houses in Barangay San Isidro here Wednesday night.

Initial police reports said the accident happened around 9:00 p.m. when the truck evaded another vehicle before hitting the residential area.

7 Jan 2015 - Pampanga trader hits DOTC for Sangley airport plan

CLARK FREEPORT -- A businessman here has called Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya to resign after disclosing government plan to pursue the development of a new international airport in Sangley Point, Cavite province.

Ruperto Cruz, owner of the Grand Palazzo Royale and Royal Garden Golf and Country Club, said the government will spend a huge amount of money to construct a new airport.

7 Jan 2015 - Rodriguez backs MRT, LRT fare hikes

PAMPANGA -- Third district Representative Oscar Rodriguez is heading the Central Luzon bloc which supports the government's plan to raise the fares of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) 1 and 2, and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) 3.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. cited Rodriguez as among the House members who want an increase in train fares despite strong opposition from passengers and commuters.

7 Jan 2015 - San Fernando steps up anti-plastic drive

PAMPANGA -- The City Environment and Natural Resources Office (Cenro) here has decided to step up its efforts against the use of plastic bags.

Since the start of this year, the Cenro implemented the daily observance of the "Plastic Regulation Day," which was previously done every Friday.

7 Jan 2015 - Capilion breaks ground for Clark Green Frontier

CLARK FREEPORT -- Singapore-based Capilion Corporation Pte. Ltd. recently held its groundbreaking ceremony for Clark Green Frontier together with key officials of the Clark Development Corporation (CDC).

This marks the initial phase of an estimated P7-billion project situated on a strategically located three-hectare lot.

7 Jan 2015 - Puregold wants to open 2 more stores in Mabalacat

MABALACAT CITY -- Puregold Price Club Inc., which has over 230 stores in the country, is interested in opening two outlets at Pampanga's newest city, Mayor Marino "Boking" Morales said Tuesday.

Morales said Puregold led by retail tycoon Lucio Co is "very much interested" in establishing a three-storey store at the Mabalacat Public Market in Barangay San Francisco. The market is a few meters away from the Mabalacat Gate of the Clark Freeport Zone, where thousands enter and exit daily and most of whom are part of the more than 74,000 Clark workers. The city hosts more than 7,000 registered businesses.

6 Jan 2015 - Guiao confident CRK will be international gateway

CLARK FREEPORT -- Pampanga first district Representative Joseller "Yeng" Guiao expressed confidence on the fate of the Clark International Airport (CRK) saying nothing can stop its transformation into an international gateway.

Guiao issued the statement in the wake of a pronouncement by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) that it is pursuing the development of a new international airport at Sangley Point in Cavite province.

6 Jan 2015 - Transport fare in Clark cut P0.50

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Clark Development Corporation (CDC) announced the P0.50 cut in transport fare on all routes inside this Freeport, except Route 5 or the Industrial Estate 5 (IE5) area.

The new provisional reduced transport fare, which stemmed from the series of oil prices cut since last year, was approved by the CDC, Clark Investors and Locators Association (CILA) and Clark Transport Federation (CTF).

6 Jan 2015 - DPWH OKs construction of CLLex

PAMPANGA -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has approved the construction of the Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEx).

The proposed four-lane CLLEx project is expected to connect the Luisita Interchange of the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) and San Jose City in Nueva Ecija.

6 Jan 2015 - Dole-3 big winner at Praise awards

PAMPANGA -- The Department of Labor and Employment Regional Office No.III (DOLE-3) was the big winner in the Dole Programs on Awards and Incentives for Service Excellence or Dole-Praise.

The Dole-Praise awarding took place at the recently concluded Dole Year-End Planning Assessment (YEPA) at the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC) in Quezon City.

6 Jan 2015 - San Fernando gears up for zero waste month

PAMPANGA -- This capital city's local government through its Environment and Natural Resources Office has lined up activities in celebration of Zero Waste Month this January.

Mayor Edwin Santiago, Vice-Mayor Jimmy Lazatin, together with city department heads unveiled a calendar of events made from recyclable materials during Monday's flag raising ceremonies. Joining him were councilors Nelson Lingat, Noel Tulabut, Harvey Quiwa, BJ Lagman, and representatives from Mother Earth Foundation.

6 Jan 2015 - BIR to improve e-services for taxpayers

PAMPANGA -- Taxpayers are expected to enjoy faster, more reliable, and more convenient services and tax collection system this year, according to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in Pampanga.

Vicente Gamad Jr., Assistant Revenue District Officer, said the government agency is set to develop its electronic services (e-Services) as part of its commitment to improve the tax return data capture and storage.

6 Jan 2015 - Aquino hit for Sangley airport plan

ANGELES CITY -- A leader of the National Transformation Council and Guardians Brotherhood International Unified Command (Guardians) assailed the Aquino administration for pursuing the development of a new international airport in Sangley Point, Cavite.

Alfonso "Sonny" Dobles, head of the NTC in Central Luzon, said the government only needs to expand and develop Clark International Airport (CRK) as the country’s premier gateway.

6 Jan 2015 - Parish museum to host pilgrims this Holy Week

PAMPANGA -- Santa Rita Parish Museum is now being promoted as a pilgrimage destination as the facility is set to host tourists and pilgrims who will be visiting the old Santa Rita de Cascia Parish church here this April during the observance of Holy Week.

Museum Curator Romy Dizon said that they have lined up programs and other religious destinations in the town to help pilgrims who will be visiting in April. He added that the facility would like to help Roman Catholic pilgrims and tourists make their Holy Week visits more spiritual and meaningful.

6 Jan 2015 - Charters for Clark, 2 other international airports up

CLARK FREEPORT -- The prospects are bright for the passage this year of proposed bills that seek to grant separate charters for the international airports in Clark, Aklan and Davao, said Pampanga First District Representative Joseller "Yeng" Guiao.

He could not, however, say with confidence if the President would sign the legislations once they get enacted into laws considering the infirm position of the Chief Executive on the matter, particularly in the case of the Clark International Airport (CIA), in the last five years of his Administration.

6 Jan 2015 - Cops commended for anti-drug campaign

PAMPANGA -- Two chiefs of police were recently commended for their successful joint anti-illegal drug operations last December.

Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono Jr., Pampanga police provincial director, commended Superintendents Jhoanna Rosales, chief of police of Floridablanca and Jean Fajardo, chief of police of Lubao.

5 Jan 2015 - Archdiocese issues circular vs ‘priest’

PAMPANGA -- The Archdiocese of San Fernando has issued a circular to its clergy, religious orders and laity clarifying the status of a certain Fr. Mark Robinson Bunag who claims to be a priest of Apostolic and Catholic Church of the East, after the it had received reports that the latter has been celebrating masses at homes and chapels in Pampanga.

Archbishop Florentino Lavarias issued circular No. 48 dated November 29, 2014, stating that "Bunag is not a validly ordained priest of the Roman Catholic Church."

5 Jan 2015 - Guiao supports SBP bid to host FIBA 2019

PAMPANGA -- First District Representative Joseller "Yeng" Guiao has expressed support to the bid of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to host the FIBA World Championship Games In 2019.

Guiao recently filed House Resolution 1781 "supporting the bid of the SBP for the Philippines to host the FIBA World Championship Games in 2019 and enjoining the government to extend its full assistance and support for the successful hosting and conduct of this prestigious tournament."

5 Jan 2015 - CDC gears up for APEC-SOM meet in Clark

CLARK FREEPORT -- Clark Development Corporation (CDC) is now in full gear in preparation for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting to be held inside this Freeport this month.

During the first flag raising ceremonies Monday, CDC president Arthur Tugade said that the APEC requirements are being met, especially the convention hall and hotel rooms which will house the delegates that will arrive during the APEC Senior Officials and Ministers (SOM) meeting here.

5 Jan 2015 - NHA awards 750 housing units to police personnel

PAMPANGA -- A total of 750 housing units were awarded by the National Housing Authority-Region 3 (NHA-3) to Police Regional Office 3 (PRO3) personnel on January 5, which coincided with the Monday flag raising ceremony here.

The awarding of the housing units is in line with Administrative Order No. 9 dated April 2011 where P4.2 billion was allotted for the housing of police and military personnel.

4 Jan 2015 - Hot air balloon fests set

CLARK FREEPORT -- The Department of Tourism (DOT) in Central Luzon has announced the schedule of two separate hot air balloon festivals in Clark and Lubao town this year.

DOT Central Luzon Director Ronnie Tiotuico said the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta is set on February 12 to 15 here.

4 Jan 2015 - Hundreds of Catholic faithful to watch Pope Francis musicale

Bishops and a throng of Catholic faithful would be among hundreds of expected spectators of the "I Love Pope Francis: The Musical".

The production of the all-Kapampangan group Teatru Kapampangan will be staged at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) in Pasay City on January 17 in time for the Papal Visit of Pope Francis from January 15 to 19.

3 Jan 2015 - CIAC head clears report on Sangley airport plan

CLARK FREEPORT -- Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) president Emigdio "Dino" Tanjuatco has clarified that the national government, particularly the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC), has started a study on the proposed airport at Sangley Point in Cavite.

Tanjuatco issued the statement following a news report quoting DOTC Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya that the government plans to start the development of new international airport in Cavite province within the last 18 months of President Aquino.

3 Jan 2015 - Priest builds houses of God to renew faith

PAMPANGA -- Fr. Jess G. Manabat of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish here is regarded as the "builder priest" of Pampanga.

Devout Roman Catholics disclosed that Manabat had built a church, parish hall and convent at the Mawaque Resettlement Center (MRC) in Mabalacat City when he was assigned in the area for about four years beginning 1998.

3 Jan 2015 - House to honor ‘Magkakabaung’

PAMPANGA -- The House of Representatives is set to honor the Kapampangan film "Magkakabaung," (The Coffin Maker) which won the Best Asian Film Award at the Third Hanoi International Film Festival in Vietnam last November 27.

“Magkakabaung,” was produced by film writer and director Jason Paul Laxamana entirely in the Kapampangan language and shot, and tells the story of a casket factory worker, played by actor Allen Dizon, who brought up his eight-year-old daughter alone after his wife left him, and then accidentally caused the death of the girl by administering the wrong medicine.

3 Jan 2015 - NLEx, SCTEx implement advance toll collection system

PAMPANGA -- The North Luzon Expressway (NLEx) and Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) has implemented an advance toll collection system last January 2 and will last until January 5 to avert the pile up of heavy volumes of vehicles going back to Metro Manila after the holidays.

Tollways Management Corporation (TMC) Media Relations Officer Francisco Dagohoy said the system will be implemented at the SCTEx toll plazas of Concepcion and San Miguel in Tarlac for vehicles bound for Mabalacat City going to NLEx.

3 Jan 2015 - ‘I Love Pope Francis’ goes to CCP stage on January 17

PAMPANGA -- "I Love Pope Francis" the musical will be staged at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) in Pasay City on January 17.

This was disclosed Saturday by the musical's director Andy Alviz who said that the musical will be staged at the CCP for about 1,000 Filipino and Asian bishops who will join in welcoming Pope Francis in his Philippine visit.

2 Jan 2015 - Sculptor to present gift to Pope Francis

PAMPANGA -- The family of Kapampangan sculptor Willy Layug will present a gift to Pope Francis when the leader of the Catholic Church celebrates Holy Mass at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila on January 18.

Layug, including his five grandchildren, are expected to present to the Pope a two-foot high image of the Sto. Niño carrying a lamb made of Philippine cedar.

2 Jan 2015 - Central Luzon firecracker cases down 50%

PAMPANGA -- A total of 237 fireworks-related injuries were reported in Central Luzon from December 21, 2014 to January 1, 2015 which is 50 percent lower than the same period in 2013 where there were 477 registered cases, the Department of Health Central Luzon (DOH-3) here said.

The DOH-3 in its latest Fireworks-related Injury Surveillance as of January 1 said that the victims ranged from one to 67 years old. About 208 or 88 percent were males with most of the cases were from Tarlac and Pampanga.

2 Jan 2015 - Brighter future seen for car trade

PAMPANGA -- Businessman Levy P. Laus, Pampanga’s pioneer dealer of top car brands, said that the total sales of vehicles increased by at least 30 percent last year compared to 2013.

In a recent interview, Laus said that “2014 was a good year for business in the country, “notably in North and Central Luzon” where most of his car dealerships are based.

2 Jan 2015 - Clark leisure park ready for 2015 APEC

CLARK FREEPORT –- Fontana Leisure Parks, the center point of the 2015 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit here, is ready for the international convention.

Executives of the largest leisure park in Central Luzon assured that they are now prepared for the influx of visitors during meeting.

2 Jan 2015 - Sasmuan starts 2015 with festive dance ritual

PAMPANGA -- This town’s old ritual dance festival, which traces its roots to Kapampangan pre-hispanic faith, will officially end the Yuletide Season here and usher a fresh start for the New Year.

The five-day dance ritual is in honor of the town's patron saint and the Feast of the Epiphany.

2 Jan 2015 - Cops’ firearms unsealed

PAMPANGA -- The simultaneous inspection and removal of the taped muzzles of Philippine National Police (PNP) personnel was conducted at the Police Regional Office-3 (PRO3) parade grounds here Friday morning.

Chief Superintendent Ronald Santos, Officer-In-Charge of PRO3, led the unsealing of firearms of PRO3 personnel.

2 Jan 2015 - 2 Balibago ordinances ‘deemed approved’

ANGELES CITY -- The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has stated that the two ordinances of Barangay Balibago, which were subjected for review by the Sangguniang Panlungsod here, are “deemed approved.”

Barangay Ordinances Number 6 and 7 Series of 2014 were transmitted to the city council for review on October 22, according to Balibago Chairman Rodelio “Tony” Mamac.

2 Jan 2015 - 7 hit by stray bullets

PAMPANGA -- Seven persons from Central Luzon were hit by stray bullets during the celebration of New Year’s eve, police said Friday.

The victims were identified as Maria Liberty Andoque and Misael Eguin, both of Barangay Minuyan, San Jose del Monte City, Bulacan; Benjamin Alipio, 28, of Barangay Paltao, Pulilan, Bulacan; Marvelyn Valdez, 32, of Barangay Graceville, San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan; Charish Amela Habaybay, 16 and a certain Rogie Vizcara, both of San Jose Del Monte City and Victor Juano, 34, a resident of Northville 14 Resettlement, Barangay Calulut, City of San Fernando, Pampanga