Saturday, 8 October 2011

PIA News Dispatch - Saturday, October 8, 2011

Aquino calls for awareness of neurology

President Benigno S. Aquino III has declared the second week of November of each year as Neurology Week to help attain a sustained and dedicated commitment among the various sectors of society towards improving the awareness of neurological disorders.

Proclamation No. 263 was signed on September 30, 2011 by Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. with the aim to increase awareness and understanding of neurological illnesses to enable the citizenry to take active roles in the prevention of such diseases.

The President noted that the Philippine Neurological Association (PNA) is the lead organization concerned with the delivery of neurological care, education and research for the promotion of health and well-being of Filipinos.

"A commemoration of Neurology Week will benefit various communities which are in need of neurological care from simultaneous outreach programs to be undertaken nationwide which will provide neurological services, and conduct scientific activities and other advocacy programs," President Aquino said.

He enjoined the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Education (DepEd), PNA and the different non-government sectors and training institutions to effectively collaborate to ensure a beneficial and productive commemoration of the event. (PCOO)


Palace says relentless fight against human trafficking will continue

Malacanang said the government will intensify its fight against human trafficking particularly after US Ambassador to the Philippines Harry Thomas Jr. issued an apology over his comments saying 40 percent of foreign tourists come to the Philippines for “sex tourism.”

In a radio interview over state-run dzRB Radyo ng Bayan, Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said that as far as the Palace is concerned the issue on Thomas’ sex tourism comment is closed.

“Kausap ko kasi si Secretary Albert del Rosario ngayon so we were informed that the Ambassador already issued through a text message his regret over the statement that he made. So we consider the issue a close case, but our fight against human trafficking continues,” Lacierda said when asked by reporters about Thomas’ apology.

“Patuloy po ang ating pag-prosecute sa mga taong taking advantage of our people and our young ones,” he added.

Lacierda said that it’s clear that the statements of Thomas aren’t back by proper statistics that’s why he apologized to Secretary del Rosario and the Philippine government.

In his recent statements Thomas said that 40 percent of foreign men who travel to the Philippines do so for “sexual tourism” prompting the Philippine government to question the Ambassador’s motives.

Some Filipino legislators also asked Thomas to clarify his statements and explain where he got his figures.

Some quarters also expressed their concern saying the ambassador’s words could be used to justify an intensified “safe sex” campaign at a time when Filipinos were in the midst of an intense debate over the controversial Reproductive Health Bill currently being considered in the legislature. (PCOO)


Government prepared to handle flooding, asks LGUs to be vigilant

Malacanang assured the public on Saturday that the government is on top of the situation as a new typhoon forms in the eastern Visayas, advising local officials to follow appropriate protocols set by the government.

In an interview over government-run dzRB Radyo ng Bayan, Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda likewise asked local officials to remain vigilant for possible flooding brought about by heavy rains.

“Two things po, the NDRRMC again is on top of the situation. Kaka-interview lang po kay Gen. Benito Ramos. Ang aming pakiusap lang sa mga local officials to be more vigilant--make sure that the protocols are observed,” he said.

“Ang pangalawa po, to ensure na iyong mga maaapektuhan po noong baka sakaling pag-release ng tubig sa Ipo Dam--to convince the residents na sila ay maaapektuhan ng paglabas ng tubig ay magsilikas na,” he added.

At the same time Lacierda clarified some concerns regarding the release of assistance to flood victims, particularly after it was reported that some people have falsely represented the victims to get donations.

“May mga hoax na lumalabas, may mga nag-i-scam to take advantage of the situation, and the DSWD (Department of Social Welfare and Development) and all the agencies are aware kung may scam pong ganyan. We are also vigilant with respect to that,” he said.

Lacierda also said that the DSWD and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) are the fronliners in terms of giving assistance to the victims, and legitimate victims could ask help from them.

Sa pagtulong in terms of relief, DSWD is always there. Do not hesitate to ask from them,” he said. (PCOO)