Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Ilocos Times January 27-February 2, 2014


From Gregorian chant to rap

IN this life we cannot help but be versatile. St. Paul himself expressed it so well when he said that we have to be “all things to all men.”

“To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews,” he said. “To those under the law I became as one under the law—though not being myself under the law—that I might win those under the law.

“To those outside the law I became as one outside the law—not being without law toward God but under the law of Christ—that I might win those outside the law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak.” (1 Cor 9,20-22)

Of course, we have to remind ourselves also, as St. Paul himself had also reminded us, that though “all things are lawful…not all things are helpful.” (1 Cor 8,12) There’s always a need for discernment and prudence.

This is a doctrine worth keeping in mind, its relevant attitude and skill properly and consistently cultivated and developed. That’s because nowadays we cannot help but contend with a growing variety and complexity of people, issues and situations.

Most pronounced these days are the generational and cultural differences, the old and the new, the traditional and the modern. There are also differences brought about by our professional, economic, social and political status, and our many personal preferences in styles and outlook. We have to learn how to handle this condition.

Even in our spiritual life, we cannot help but have a great variety of spiritualties, brought about by the different Spirit-given charisms to cope with the different situations of our life.

All of these, though, are meant to enrich the one same Church, the People of God that comprise the mystical Body of Christ. They are not meant to tear the Church apart, dividing and isolating people from each other. Our differences and the variety of things are supposed to build and enrich the whole Church and each one of us.

And so, we just have to learn to be open to all possibilities while maintaining the core essence of things, which hopefully everyone will recognize to be none other than to have faith in God and his doctrine, to have hope in his promises, and to fill ourselves with the love of God that enables us to love everyone, including our enemies.

This consideration has led me to cultivate the need to be versatile without getting lost along the way. In the area of reading and praying the psalms, for example, I was thinking that while traditionally they are set in Gregorian or even in more ancient tones, they can also be set in modern ways, even in what is now known as the rap.

Recently, a very young nephew of mine uploaded in YouTube a song about the earthquake in Bohol, with a very good Christian message, but rendered in rap. I must say I was moved, not so much because it was done by my nephew, but more because the Christian message can be delivered in rap. There was no irreverence at all.

There’s a certain beauty to it, with a beat that is most appealing to the young of today. It sounds cool and it’s hip. It’s fast-paced, short of emotion but it drips with the reverse appeal of the sangfroid, the I-don’t-care and challenging kind of stance that mysteriously is captivating.

At the moment, most rap is done with inane, naughty and even immoral compositions. But that’s precisely the point. We can turn it into something good and useful if it is humanized and Christianized. There’s nothing in it that can take away its rich Christian potential.

Obviously, it has its limitations and dangers, as anything done to excess and out of place will always have. But these limitations and dangers do not detract from its becoming a good way to pray.

I must say that while I pray my Breviary mostly in plain meditative tone, I also try to do it with the Gregorian chant in my mind. I also tried it in other settings, like soul, jazz and R&B, depending on the mood and the circumstances at the moment, and always with good effects.

I am trying it now with rap as the background, and I must say that it also has bracing effects. I cannot deny that I also feel energized by it as I get to see things with a certain clarity due to its crispy rhythm, and I seem to feel lighter, as if cleared of some baggage.

LC's One-Stop Shop

SMOOTH BIZ PERMIT RENEWAL. As the yearly tradition, the Laoag City government has set-up a one-stop-shop for business owners to facilitate their renewal of business permits. The one-stop-shop houses all offices needed by business owners so they no longer need to shuttle back-and forth to different locations. The business permit renewal ends on January 20, 2014. (Doms dela Cruz)

Umuna a Bonsai Academy ditoy Pilipinas, nalukatan babaen iti panagkammayet ti gobierno probinsial ken MMSU

Pormalen a nalukatan ti Bonsai School iti Mariano Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) a nagpagsursuruan dagiti estudiante a mayat nga  agpatanor iti mula a bonsai.

Ti pannakalukat iti Bonsai School ket naigiddan iti maika-36 a Foundation Anniversary ti MMSU a nangablaawan metten ni Gobernador Imee Marcos kadagiti mangimatmaton iti nasao nga unibersidad.

Dimmar-ay iti nasao nga okasion ni Professor Amy Liang, Presidente ti Asia-Pacific Bonsai Friendship Federation ken dagiti kakaduana  manipud idiay Taiwan.

Dinayaw ken immunan a nagyamanan ni Gobernador Imee Marcos dagiti Taiwanese masters nga umuna a mangiyadal kadagiti maseknan a mangisursuro iti MMSU no kasano ti napintas ken epektibo pay a panagpadakkel iti bonsai ditoy Pilipinas.

Mamati ti gobernador a dakkel ti maitulong dagitoy gapu ta nayon pay a pamastrekan dagiti umili gapu ta nangina dagiti mula a bonsai no mailako iti local a mercado ken uray idiay ballasiw taaw.

Kabayatanna, namnamaen met  ni Dr. Miriam Pascua, Presidente ti MMSU nga iti katengngaan daytoy a bulan ti Enero iti panagawatdan kadagiti estudiante a mayat nga ag-training ken agsursuro  iti napintas a panagmula iti bonsai.

Nupay kasta, kunana a limitado pay laeng iti bilang dagiti awatenda nga estudiante agingga iti 30 nga agsursuro iti uneg ti innem a bulan.

Imbunannag ni Pascua a nangipaay iti grupo dagiti Tawainese  dagiti mausar a materiales nga agbalor iti  100 a ribu a pisos ken  cash donation a 10,000 dollars para iti Bonsai School.

Naan-anay met a supurta iti ipapaay ti gobierno probinsial babaen ken ni Gob. Imee iti nasao a pagadalan kangrunaanna iti panagsursuro iti napintas a panagmula iti bonsai. (PGIN-CMO)

What’s in a name? Take 2

A British Broadcasting Corporation reporter and a business executive from England have written, nine years apart, witty features on unique Filipino names that we take for granted but stun foreigners.

“On my first day in Manila, I…was served by a smiling coffee shop girl who wore a name badge:  BumBum,” Kate McGeown of BBC recalls. “I did a double-take. But if it’s is a joke the whole country seems to be in.”

Matthew Sutherland agreed in an Observer feature “The secretary I inherited on arrival had an unusual name: Leck-Leck.” Filipinos, he discovered, were fond of “repeating names.” They include: Lenlen or Ning-ning.

“Names are refined by using the ‘squared’ symbol as in Len2 or Mai2,” Sutherland wrote. “How boring to come from the UK, full of people named John Smith. How wonderful to come to a country where imagination rules.”

The head of the Catholic Church here then was named Jaime Cardinal Sin. “Welcome to the house of Sin,” he’d greet guests. “Where else in the world could that have happened but in the Philippines!”

Everyone here has a nickname: Babes, Lovely, Precious; Honey Boy, Bing, and Dong. Even the former chief of the National Police, and now Rehabilitation czar Panfilo Lacson has a doorbell name: “Ping.”

“There are millions of them,” gasped Sutherland. Such names are frequently used in doorbell combinations like: Dingdong; and Bingbing. Others graduate into “repeating names” like: Len-Len, Let-Let; Mai-mai or Petpet. 

“How wonderful to come from a country where imagination and exoticism rule,” Sutherland says. “How boring to come from a country, like the U.K., full of people like John Smith.” 

“The President’s full Christian name is Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino,” McGeown weighed in. “(These) names are Spanish, Hebrew and Chinese. His nickname, Noynoy, is the only part that is truly Filipino.”

Former president Joseph Estrada is commonly known as “Erap.” When spelt backwards, Erap becomes “Pare.” That means mate in Aussie or buddy in Tagalog.

“No one questions the integrity of Joker Arroyo, one of the country's most respected senators (who has since retired),” McGeown wrote. “That is his real first name. Apparently he got it because of his father's fondness for playing cards. Joker's brother is called Jack.

Sutherland points to another category: the “randomly-inserted letter “H” names. “It results in creations like: Lhenn, Ghemma, Jhimmy or Jhun (Jhun2?). I think it is designed to give a touch of class to an otherwise only averagely weird name.”

Then, we have the tendency to cluster names for children, like Jun, Joy, Joyce, Luzviminda splices Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. And Jejomar, of course, is not only the vice-president; the name melds Jesus, Joseph and Mary. “They look great painted on the trunk of the cab you hail.”

Why those unique names?" McGeown asked Filipino friends. Soon a heated debate began. “They agreed that, to outsiders at least, it all might sound a bit strange.” The Philippines is a melting pot of different cultures.

The Spanish, in an 1849 decree, mandated everyone had to have a surname. That resulted in tens of thousands of newly christened Marias and Joses.

So even today, most surnames are Spanish. “With the Americans came names like Butch, Buffy and Junior—and the propensity to shorten everything if at all possible.

The large Filipino-Chinese community here is caught up in this national name game.  “Their surnames are often a form of Anglicised Chinese. But the Philippine penchant for fun shines through.”

Tsinoys apply imagination and humor in the naming process. Sutherland’s favorites include: Bach Johann Sebastian, Edgar Allan Pe, and Van Go.

When they become U.S. citizens, some Filipinos opt to “Americanize” their names. What happens then?

Side-splitting mayhem, says a tongue-in-cheek Internet feature. Gregorio Talahib, for example, becomes who else? George Bush! That’s who. Tomas Cruz is recycled as Tom Cruise, while Remigio Batungbacal becomes Remington Steel. But Maria Pascua prefers Mary Christmas. 

The Internet feature is captioned: “Filipino Names = U.S. Citizens.” It asserts the pre-September 11 Immigration and Naturalization Service “released the list of names of Filipinos, who changed their names, when they became naturalized U.S. citizens.”

The U.S. too, is full of John Smiths. But that does not deter the mint-new Pinoy Americans. Thus, Juanito Lakarin took the name of Johnny Walker, while Esteban Magtaka picked Stevie Wonder. Leon Mangubat flicked through the sports pages and chose Tiger Woods. Victoria Malihim preferred to be literal; she picked Victoria Secret

 “Pinoy is what Filipinos call each other, a term of endearment,” author Gilda Cordero Fernando writes. “You’re Pinoy from Pilipino just like you’re tisoy from mestizo or chinoy from chino.

“It’s a nickname just as Minoy is from Maximo, Tinay from Florentina and Kikay from Francisca. But now they’re Maxi and Ben and Tintin and Cheska.”

So, no one raises an eyebrow that Boxer Manny Paquiao named his two girls Queen Elizabeth and Princess. Ay, lintik!

The Ilocos Times January 20-26, 2014

 IT 57.14

Monday, January 27, 2014

Batac lines up projects for 2014

By Dominic B. dela Cruz
Staff Reporter

Batac City—Mayor Jeffrey Jubal Nalupta announced that the farm-to-market road projects he began in 2013 will continue in the new year.

He stressed that the city government will continue to prioritize barangay projects as he said he does not want the city’s rural barangays to be left behind in terms of development and improvement.

Nalupta said he considers his farm-to-market road projects as one of his major accomplishments last year and as such he wants to continue it this year.

He also mentioned that he wants both urban and rural barangays to be developed in all aspects.

To achieve this, he said the best strategy is to hasten development in the rural barangays. To make sure that their primary roads are paved but he pointed out that he is not in favor or re-gravelling as this is just a waste of money.

Since 2007, Nalupta has already told barangays that the city’s vision is to improve farm-to-market roads of all rural barangays, which he hopes to complete when his term ends in 2016.

Meanwhile, Nalupta also saw the completion of the multi-million Nagbacalan Small Water Impounding Project as another major accomplishment for 2013.

He said that this will be one of his legacy projects as it is the biggest single project in his term as mayor. The project was worth more than P50 million.

The impounding project serves hundreds of hectares of farm land and the mayor is hopeful it would be fully functional once he leaves his office.

Nalupta is also looking to complete the second floor of the Batac Public Market this year. The finishing however is scheduled for next year.

As for future projects, Nalupta pegged as priority projects for this year are: the proposed Sumader Small Water Impounding Project which has a projection cost of P60 million; the ground breaking of the City Hall expansion year; the acquisition of more lots to be developed into institutional or government projects because as of this time, the city government has ran out of vacant lots they own and Nalupta wants to prepare whoever would take over from him once his prescribed three terms end.

Nalupta expounded that the city government still has no designated place yet for a low cost housing that should be about 5 to 10 hectares. A city-owned sports complex is also in the works as well as the possible transfer of the existing basketball court at the Imelda Cultural Center when Ilocos Norte Gov. Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos pushes through with her plan to rehabilitate City Hall’s southern portion.

Nalupta also took pride in the fact that Batac does not have any loan as all projects are being funded from their own coffers. He stressed that they are willing to wait to complete a project even it becomes a phase-by-phase basis.

Reacting to this, Batac Vice Mayor Ronald Allan M. Nalupta vowed that the Sangguniang Panlungsod will always support the mayor, especially for the betterment of the city.

The vice mayor hopes they would pass better ordinances and resolutions that would foster smoother relations between Batac officials and their constituents.

Gangannaet a negosiante, interesado nga umay agpuunan ditoy probinsia

Kinumpirmaran ni Ilocos Norte Gobernador Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos nga adda ti maysa manen nga Amerikano nga investor ti simmangpet ditoy Ilocos Norte itay nabiit.

Kuna ti gobernador nga iti mismo a sand dunes ti kitkitaen iti nasao nga investor a mabalin a pangibukbukan  iti puunan na.

Naragsakan ti gobernador gapu ta naidumduma daytoy nga investor a namnamaen a makatulong ditoy probinsia gapu ta isuna pay ti kimmita kadagiti dadduma nga investors.

Naammuan a pursigido ti American investor a mang-develop wenno mapadur-as  iti sand dunes.

Daytoy ket gapu iti mabalin a naidumduma a naimatangan na a kinapintas ti lugar no idilig na kadagiti sabsabali a lugar a nagtutrungan na.

Gapu iti daytoy, inbatad  ti gobernador a  napintas daytoy a pangrugian ti Ilocos Norte iti itatapog  ti tawen 2014 para iti agtultuloy a panagdur-as ti turismo iti probinsia. (PGIN-CMO)

Herbert Kohler Jr. gleefully accepts the gift of Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee R. Marcos, the traditional hat called “kattukong”. The hat is a sign of nobility and was historically worn by village and farmer leaders in Ilocos Norte. Kohler, president and chairman of the Kohler Company, best known for its plumbing products, together with his family dined at the Malacañang of the North in Paoay on January 4, 2014 upon the invitation of the governor. Kohler flew directly from Australia to Ilocos Norte to explore investment opportunities here. (Alaric A. Yanos)

Philippines first bonsai school opens in Batac University

FIRST BONSAI SCHOOL IN PH. Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos (fourth from right), with Prof. Amy Liang (fourth from left), President of the Asia-Pacific Bonsai Friendship Federation, MMSU Pres. Dr. Miriam Pascua (third from right), and members of the Philippine Bonsai Society, cut the ribbon signifying the opening of the Bonsai School in Batac City January on 6. The school was established by MMSU in cooperation with the Provincial Government. (PGIN-CMO)

By Leilanie G. Adriano
Staff Reporter

Batac City—Ilocanos love for plants go beyond planting agricultural crops in sprawling farm lots and backyard gardening. This time, they are now ready to ascend to the next level and learn the art and science of bonsai making.

To make this possible, the country’s first bonsai school formally opened on January 6 at the Mariano Marcos State University here with not more than 30 expected enrolees to land a promising career as bonsai technicians here and abroad, after graduating from this basically hands-on and short term bonsai course in less than six months.

Attended by bonsai masters from Taiwan and the Philippines, Professor Amy Liang, president of the Asia-Pacific Bonsai Friendship Federation said she and several bonsai lecturers from Taiwan are willing to share their expertise and teach basic art of Bonsai making or the so-called art of growing miniature  trees or shrubs in containers that resembles an aged tree.

Not known to many, the bonsai industry in the Philippines like in Ilocos Norte promises a huge potential in the export market.

Like Rizaldy Bitagon, president of the Ilocos Norte Bonsai Association with at least 16 active members said the province is gifted with lots of materials for bonsai and a good source of livelihood for plant lovers.

“Growing bonsai is delicate and it requires extra patience and hard labor. For you to become successful, you must be a plant lover. As it gets older, it becomes more beautiful,” said Bitagon citing a hunter from Pasuquin town who was able to send his children to college because of collecting and selling materials for bonsai.

But knowing the art of bonsai is simply not enough, MMSU Pres. Dr. Miriam Pascua said, expressing the need for a bonsai school to cater to the global demand for bonsai technicians worldwide particularly in Asia, Europe and the United States.

“It’s not just knowing the art, we should teach them the science of bonsai making such as physiology, anatomy and morphology of these species as each species is different from the other and needs a specific treatment. For now, we have our horticulture students to compose the first batch. This will also be open to out-of-school youth or anybody who is a plant lover,” Pascua said who is also a plant biology expert.

To keep pace with the global market, Pascua has cited the need for continuous research and development as the biggest challenge of bonsai making is how to rear a miniature plant in the shortest possible time but may look like an aged tree.

“We foresee there’s a great demand for it. Offices need a therapeutic way of de-stressing. Dish garden is becoming popular like in call centers. There is also a demand abroad similar to pet lovers. So, we try to balance it with plant lovers,” she added.

According to Pascua, the bonsai school is expected to start classes in mid-January with the support of the Philippine Bonsai Society, Ilocos Norte Bonsai Association and the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte through the Office of the Provincial Agriculture and in cooperation with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

As the collection and selling of rare and endangered plant species like bantigue is now prohibited, hobbyists are now shifting to forest trees as bonsai materials such as damortis, kamatsile, tamarind, guava, bugnay and bougainvillea among others.

For her part, Ilocos Norte Governor Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos said the bonsai school is a great addition to horticulture. She however cautioned any further damage to the environment is totally unacceptable hence the need to plant and reproduce more species with the application of right technology.

World-renowned bonsai artist Prof. Amy Liang (second from right) points out to Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos the aesthetic features of the bonsai exhibited outside the newly opened Bonsai School in Batac City January 6. The school was established by the state university in cooperation with the Provincial Government. (PGIN-CMO)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Charity is not optional

CHARITY is, of course, a necessity for us. It is what makes us who and what we are in our fullness. It is the essence of our humanity, since we are the image and likeness of God, and God is love, “Deus caritas est.”

In fact, Christ commanded us to be charitable. When asked what the greatest commandment was, he simply said, to love God with all our might and to love our neighbor as ourselves.

Charity is not something optional for us, to be lived only from time to time, depending on favorable circumstances. We have to live it all the time and to extend it to all, friend or foe, at home and in the fields and offices, in schools and in sports, in business and in politics.

Especially politics, since that is where we usually find ourselves to leave charity behind. In the aftermath of the calamities we just had, for example, rabidly partisan politics rears its ugly head, and charity is simply shredded to pieces.

It’s true that we unavoidably have different views and opinions about issues dear to our life as a nation. But these variety and differences are good, since they would only enrich our appreciation of things.

Yet it does not mean that to push our particular position, we have to abandon charity. It’s precisely in this kind of situation when we have to be most charitable, and when living it, in spite of its inconveniences, becomes more meritorious to us.

Sad to say, this fanatical partisan politics is what we are seeing these days, especially in the social networks. All kinds of insults, bashing, mudslinging, ad hominems are thrown around. All kinds of fallacies, even those that are so obvious that the commonest of common sense could effortlessly detect, are presented.

Mere opinions are now presented as dogmas, one’s favored politician is pictured as a true saint incapable of committing any mistake while his hated politician is the devil incarnate himself, simply incapable of doing anything good.

The canine devotion on the one hand and the raging hatred on the other can be so overwhelming and blinding that they are extended to families, allies and supporters of the politicians. Distinctions are forgotten and the generalizations become dominant. There’s flattery on the one hand, and carpet bombing on the other.

In discussing issues, many times the division between what is essential and what is incidental is all but forgotten. The conscious effort to relate issues to the common good is neglected. What rules is one’s personal interest or advantage, which at best only has a relative and supporting value.

And we are not talking about uneducated and illiterate men who are doing this. We are talking about professionals, with brilliant bio-data and all that, who are falling into this kind of madness. It makes us wonder what kind of education they have been receiving.

It is clear that we have a big crisis insofar as charity is concerned. And since charity is the mother of all the virtues and the perfection of our humanity, any crisis directly involving it is a crisis of the first magnitude.

And the simple reason for this sad phenomenon is because God is not at all taken seriously in politics. In this field of human affairs, God is often considered as irrelevant, a persona non grata, unwelcome.

Many consider Christ’s teachings and even the whole gamut of faith as not having any relation to politics. Politics is regarded as no-man’s land, where everyone is absolutely free to do anything according to his own terms. With such mindset, politics becomes exempt to the requirements of morality that is always ruled by charity.

We need to correct this irregularity before it becomes a formidable and most painful crisis. Let’s practice charity and refinement in our exchanges of opinions. Let’s get a better and firmer grip on what would really comprise our common good.

We also need to have good control over our emotions, passions and temper. Reason has to lead the way, reason enlightened by faith, seasoned by hope and expressed in charity.

And let’s remember that common good is not just a collection of earthly and material goods to be enjoyed by us. It always starts and ends with charity. Without charity, we cannot speak of common good.

It’s charity that insures that everyone is treated justly and fairly, though never uniformly. Some enjoy certain privileges that the other don’t have, but these privileges should be used for the good of all, and not just for sheer personal convenience.

Philippine NGO gets USAID, NetHope grant to evaluate mobile banking platform

CABANATUAN CITY, Nueva Ecija - The Alalay sa Kaunlaran Inc. (ASKI), a non-government organization specializing in microfinance was chosen as one of the organizations to receive a grant from US Agency for International Development (USAID) and NetHope on the Electronic and Mobile Payment Implementation and Evaluation Grants Program.

ASKI is the only organization in Southeast Asia to receive and implement the said project. Other recipients were Concern Worldwide in Malawi and Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) in Tanzania.

The initiative from USAID and NetHope is aimed at supporting the leading development organizations committed to testing electronic payments, compare and document the costs, challenges and benefits of using cash versus electronic payments.

A grant of $42,000 is awarded by USAID and NetHope to the selected organizations to demonstrate the potential uses of electronic payments in relief and development programs, provide insights into procedures for making this transition and encourage the adoption of electronic payments by other implementing partners.

ASKI will use the grant to evaluate mobile banking platform implemented in partnership with BPI Globe BanKo, the Philippine’s first mobile phone-based, microfinance-focused bank.

In 2012, ASKI and BanKo entered into an agreement to introduce mobile banking platform in its micro-agri loans for rice farmers. The provision of agricultural loans was pilot-tested with rice farmers receiving a crop management recommendation from Rice Crop Manager to increase their rice yield and profit.

The Rice Crop Manager is a web-based tool developed by International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), in partnership with the Department of Agriculture, to provide rice farmers with a fertilizer recommendation precisely matching the nutrient needs of the crop.

ASKI will document the continued expansion of its transition of loan disbursements from check (a cash-based platform) to mobile, cash-less platform not only for the farmers but also to other micro-entrepreneurs.

“Since the implementation of the program, there has been no comparative study conducted to look into the benefits of going from cash-based to cashless transactions,” said Rolando B. Victoria, ASKI executive director.

“We will document the key lessons learned, challenges faced and processes applied in shifting from cash to electronic payment in the Philippine perspective specifically in the experience of ASKI. We hope to share with the other organizations across the globe our experiences on this innovation,” Victoria added.

Meanwhile, Frank Schott, interim president and executive director of NetHope, said that they received and reviewed a wide range of proposals showing innovative uses for transitioning cash to electronic payments across a variety of markets.

“Whether organizations are transitioning their payment streams for internal operational expenses like staff per diems or local suppliers, or for program clients in health, agriculture or microfinance, it’s an important first step towards promoting financial inclusion. We are delighted to support these organizations in their commitment towards this goal,” Schott said.

NetHope, Inc., is a consortium of 41 leading international humanitarian organizations founded in 2001. It is a new-generation collaboration of the international community’s leading non-governmental organizations (NGOs), representing over USD40 billion of emergency relief, human development and conservation programs in more than 180 countries. For more information you can visit their website at http://www.nethope.org

Meanwhile, USAID is the principal U.S. federal government agency primarily responsible for administering civilian foreign aid, providing economic, development and humanitarian assistance around the world in support of the foreign policy goals of the United States. For more information visit: www.usaid.gov.

Arsobispo a taga Ilocos Norte, nagbalin a cardinal

Ni Bernard Ver

Dakkel iti pammadayaw a nagun-od saan laeng iti ili a Sarrat nu diket iti sibubukel a probinsya ti Ilocos Norte.

Napili kas umun-una nga Ilocano cardinal iti intero amiananen a Luzon  kalpasan a nangipaulog ni Pope Francis ti pammilin kenni Most Rev. Orlando Beltran Quevedo , OMI, tubo ti Sarrat, Ilocos Norte ken Archbishop iti Cotabato ket nagbalin itan a kas cardinal iti Roman Catholic Church.

Mapasamak iti pormal a pannakaiyawat iti nasao nga akkem kenkuana baben iti eminent ranking a maangay iti Consistory sadiay Vatican intuno Pebrero 22 ita a tawen, 2014. “Te Deum Laudamus” ti ikkis daguiti papadi wenu kayat na saw-en We praise Thee, O God, wenu dayaw ti maipaay kenni Apo Dios.

Ni Cotabato Archbishop Quevedo ket karaman kadaguiti 16  a kabbaro a cardinal segun kenni Pope Francis idi laeng Enero 12, 2014 para iti 12 a pagilian iti lima a continento.

Daguiti sumaganad iti makipagpasset iti College of Cardinals sadiay Consistory intuno Pebrero:

Pietro Parolin, Titular Archbishop of Acquapendente, Secretary of State; Lorenzo Baldisseri, Titular Archbishop of Diocleziana, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops; Gerhard Ludwig Műller, Archbishop-Bishop emeritus of Regensburg, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith; Beniamino Stella, Titular Archbishop of Midila, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy; Gualtiero Bassetti, Archbishop of Perugia-Città della Pieve (Italy); Leopoldo José Brenes Solórzano, Archbishop of Managua (Nicaragua); Ricardo Ezzati Andrello, S.D.B., Archbishop of Santiago del Cile (Chile); Jean-Pierre Kutwa, Archbishop of Abidjan (Ivory Coast); Gérald Cyprien Lacroix, Archbishop of Québec (Canada); Chibly Langlois, Bishop of Les Cayes (Haïti); Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster (Great Britain); Philippe Nakellentuba Ouédraogo, Archbishop of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso); Mario Aurelio Poli, Archbishop of Buenos Aires (Argentina); Orlando B. Quevedo, O.M.I., Archbishop of Cotabato (Philippines); Orani João Tempesta, O.Cist., Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil); Andrew Yeom Soo jung, Archbishop of Seoul (Korea); Loris Francesco Capovilla, Titular Archbishop of Mesembria; Kelvin Edward Felix, Archbishop emeritus of Castries; Fernando Sebastián Aguilar, C.M.F., Archbishop emeritus of Pamplona.

Maikadua a Int’l Regatta, sagsaganaan manen ti probinsia

Naituding a maisayangkat  inton Enero 31 agingga iti Pebrero 2 iti daytoy a tawen ti Regatta International iti mismo a Paoay Lake a daytoy ton ti maikadua a tawen a pannakaisayangkatna ditoy probinsia.

Ti Regatta ket maysa a water sports a panaggaod ti bilog no sadinno nga aglalaban dagiti makisalip iti mismo a Paoay Lake.

Kuna ni Ilocos Norte Gobernador Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos nga addan to met dagiti agsangpet a contingents manipud idiay Hongkong ken dadduma pay a kaparanget a pagilian.

Nupay kasta, kuna ti gobernador a basbassit a Regatta ti maisayangkat iti daytoy a tawen gapu ta awan iti tiempo ken maibilang laeng daytoy a “Winter Regatta.”

Iti laksid daytoy, inbatad ti gobernador nga adu pay laeng dagiti ag-interes iti Paoay Lake a pakaisayangkatan dagiti nagduduma a water sports.

Kunana nga adda payen dagiti temporario a nangbukel iti Club House-da a kas iti Rowing Club House.

Gapu iti daytoy, kuna ti gobernador nga itultuloy met ti probinsia ti mangitandudu kadagiti sabsabali pay a water sports kas iti dragon boat racing, wind surfing iti dan-aw ken dadduma pay. (PGIN-CMO)

EGS, agkasapulan ti 100 nga empleado agingga nga agtapos daytoy a bulan

Sangagasut amin ti kasapulan iti maysa a kompania ti call center nga Expert Global Solutions (EGS) nga adda iti agdama ditoy probinsia a mangal-ala kadagiti empleado da.

Segun ken ni (Public Employment Services Office) PESO manager Nicole Rudio iti kapitolio probinsial, sangagasut pay a tao ti kasapulan ti nasao a kompania agingga nga agtapos daytoy a bulan ti Enero.

Iti agdama, madama pay laeng ti hiring ken interview kadagiti aplikante nga interesado a sumrek ken agbalin a call center agent iti mismo nga Ilocos Norte Provincial Library wenno I –hub ti probinsia.

Impasingked ni Rudio nga itugot laeng ti resume ken dadduma pay a kasapulan iti panagapply ti trabaho tapno alisto iti idadalan ti proseso.

Ti suweldo wenno ganaren iti binulan ket nangatngato ngem P12,000, malaksid pay dagiti dadduma a benepisio nga awaten dagitoy.

Ti panangigagaed iti PESO ti kapitolio probinsial a maiserrek ti pagtrabahuan dagiti  nakadap-aw ken nagturpos  iti kolehio  ket gapu pay laeng iti tarigagay  ken programa  ni Gobernador Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos a maisapulan amin iti panggedan dagiti  umilli. (PGIN-CMO)

The Ilocos Times January 13-19, 2014

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Trade and Investment, sentro ti kampania ti Prov’l Tourism Office ita a 2014

Impasingked ni Gobernador Ma. Imelda “Imee” R. Marcos a masapul pay laeng ti naan-anay a pannakaitandudu iti benneg ti trade ken panagpuunan ditoy probinsia.

Kuna ti gobernador nga adu met latta dagiti umay agnegosio ken rumrumuar ti Ilocos Norte kadagiti advertisements babaen kadagiti nasinged a papagayam.

Inadmitir-na a nupay kurang iti pundo ti probinsia para ti advertisements itay napan a tawen, saan pay laeng a paudi iti Ilocos Norte gapu ti agtultuloy a panagadu dagiti agsangpet a local ken gangannaet a turista ken investors nga umay mangipundar kadagiti bukodda a puunan.

Mainag iti daytoy, inlawlawag ni Marcos nga ad-adda nga itanduduna iti biang ti trade and investments ngem iti turismo.

Mamati iti ina ti probinsia a ti turismo ket maysa laeng a  dana dagiti umay bumisita   iti probinsia ngem ti nasken ket maimatangan ken mapaneknekanda a ti Ilocos Norte ket napintas a lugar a pangipundaran iti negosio. (PGIN-CMO)

Legarda: Filipino communities must learn, share lessons from Yolanda

Amid the ongoing recovery efforts in areas affected by Typhoon Yolanda, Senator Loren Legarda urged the survivors to learn from the lessons brought by the disaster and share the same to others to be able to build back better communities and ensure resilient recovery.

In her recent meeting with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Legarda, UN Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation, stressed that communities anticipated and prepared for Yolanda, but the strength of the typhoon and the devastation it caused showed that much more needs to be done.

“Filipinos are a resilient people. Communities, headed by the local government heads, had taken precautionary measures to avert a disaster, but Yolanda showed more of the underlying risks in our communities. Some local government units have early warning systems, but what we must ensure is that all LGUs must put in place such system,” she explained.

The senator said that the Philippines is ahead of other countries in terms of being DRR-literate especially with the help of two landmark laws—the Philippine Climate Change Act and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act—both recognized as among the best in the world. These policies, however, still need to be fully operational.

“Some local government units are making good use of these laws. A good example is former Mayor Al Arquillano of San Franciso, Camotes Island, a UN Sasakawa Awardee. He evacuated residents of a highly vulnerable island ahead of time before Yolanda made landfall, resulting in zero casualties. Other LGUs should be likewise proactive. We cannot achieve full resiliency with piecemeal efforts, with only few communities working towards resilience,” she pointed out.

“We are greatly thankful for the support of the international community, led by the UN. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has expressed solidarity with the Filipino people and has called on donor nations to keep their commitment and strengthen their support to the rehabilitation efforts in the affected areas. As a sign of our deep gratitude, it is fitting and is to our best interest that we work hard towards preventing disasters and strengthening resilience,” said Legarda.

“Let us make good use of the lessons we have learned from Yolanda and share this experience with other nations as we hope for a fruitful outcome of two important global events--the UN Climate Summit in 2014 and the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in 2015,” she concluded.

LC steps up Pamulinawen Festival preparations

By Dominic B. dela Cruz
Staff Reporter

MEMBERS of the Pamulinawen Festival 2014 committee are in the thick of preparations for the annual fiesta celebration set to open of February 1.

Committee member Mylene Pascual said the Civic-Military Parade, the traditional opening parade of the yearly event, is all set.

Pascual said the parade assembly time will be at 1 pm and would start at exactly 2 pm. The parade route starts at the P. Gomez St. and Gen Segundo Ave. intersection and would wound up at the Rizal St. side of the Laoag City Commercial Center.

All City Hall employees as well as those from the national agencies serving in the city, schools and civic groups were requested to join.

In connection with this, the chairman of the committee on parade Dr. Francis Dacuycuy said that there should be some innovations to be made like a better presentation to make it more interesting, livelier and more colorful.

Dacuycuy suggested that all the participants should come up with a more presentable and more interesting participation in the civic military parade for whatever manner or innovations they could think of. Prizes will be at stake, he added. 

Pascual also announced that her office is now in the process of distributing letters for the Outstanding Laoagueños as she encouraged everybody to submit nominations for any field.

She also said that the screening committee for the search for the cleanest, greenest and most productive barangay, best performing barangay peace and order council, including the incorporation of the most child-friendly barangay, has started culminating for the first and second rounds of evaluation.

The awarding is tentatively set on February 4 or 13 during the Miss ABC or the City Government Night. This is a yearly competition for all the barangays to maintain their cleanliness, peace and order and to become a more child-friendly barangay.

Relative to this, Laoag Mayor Chevylle V. Fariñas announced that this year’s fiesta theme would be “Steadfast”.

The mayor added that the committee is still in the finalization stage for the possible guest speakers for the different nightly affairs though, all activities have now been set.

She also said that cash advances for the city fiesta will not be allowed as per advised by the Commission on Audit instead, they should submit all the fiesta-connected budget proposals on or before January 15 as per advise of the local finance committee.

The regular Baratillo Sale and the Carnival will be located below the Gilbert Bridge.

Hipolito Salva, the over-all coordinator for the Search for Miss ABC said the final screening were already conducted and there 15 official candidates chosen with the briefing soon to follow.

The Miss ABC pageant is set on February 4 which will feature Ilocos Norte Governor Ma. Imelda “” R. Imee Marcos as crowning guest as well as guest of honor and speaker.

City agriculturist Oscar Recta, the person in-charge of the Agro Fair set on February 2-14 already sent letters to participants. The Calesa Parade is scheduled on February 8 and the Dulang Festival on February 7.

The Agricultural Sector Night will be held on February 12; simultaneous with this will be the City Agriculture and Fishery Council Night and the highlight will be the crowning for the Mr. & Mrs. Agriculture. The suggested crowning guest and speaker is Senator Cynthia Villar.

Lilian Abijero, the over-all fiesta coordinator said that they are trying their best to complete the list for possible guest speakers for the different affairs and that she that it would be completed soon.

Abijero said that the theme “Steadfast” is very simple but very meaningful as it interprets the “Walang Iwanan” motto that calls for the continued sustenance and nurturing of the relationship with the city’s partners in development and to build Laoag City as a metropolis in the future.

Abijero said that three balikbayan groups have already confirmed their participation for the coronation of their respective queens: these are Kalayaan Philippines International on February 5; Laoag City Circle of Hawaii on February 8 and the Sirmata Dialysis Fund Corporation Foundation on February 9.  

The United Laoagueños of Hawaii and the Ilocos Nortenians of America will not be attending this year’s fiesta because their schedule is every other year.

Ms. Fariñas also welcomed the participation of the United Filipino Chamber of Commerce based in Honolulu, Hawaii to be assisted by Consul General Joel Torres and their president, and they will be in the city from February 9 to 18.

Abijero hopes that Senator Juan Ponce Enrile will now make it in this year’s fiesta as one of the special guests as he donated P15 million for the city hospital’s improvement.

Other invited special guests include the US Ambassador to Philippines Philip Goldberg, Senator Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., and DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson. Child movie stars are also expected to come over and grace the fiesta celebration.