Aquino declares November 23 a special non-working day in Angono, Rizal in celebration of 'Higantes Festival'
President Benigno S. Aquino III has declared November 23, which falls on a Friday, as a special (non-working) day in the municipality of Angono in the province of Rizal, in celebration of the "Higantes Festival."
The Chief Executive issued the declaration through Proclamation No. 503 signed by Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. on Nov. 15 to give the people of Angono the full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion with appropriate ceremonies.
"Higantes Festival" is celebrated every November 23 in Angono in honor of the municipality's patron saint San Clemente. The image of San Clemente, the patron saint of fishermen, is carried by male devotees during a procession alongside the so-called higantes.
The higantes are made of paper mache, usually 10 to 12 feet in height and four to five feet in diameter, and paraded in the town of Angono. PND (js)
Gov’t. allots P11-M for President’s participation in 21st ASEAN Summit in Cambodia
The government has earmarked around P11 million for President Benigno S. Aquino III’s attendance to the 21st ASEAN Summit and Related Summits, which will be held in the Kingdom of Cambodia from November 18 to 20, Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said on Saturday.
The Chief Executive left Saturday night for Phnom Penh to participate in the regional conference, accompanied by a 53-member delegation that includes Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, PCOO Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr., and Socio-Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan.
“President Aquino’s participation in the regional meeting reinforces our firm commitment to promote cooperation, not only in terms of economic development, but also in maintaining peace in the region and protecting and enhancing human rights,” Ochoa said.
The estimated cost of the presidential trip covers the delegation’s chartered flight to Cambodia, accommodation, transportation, food, and equipment and telecommunications requirements, among others.
With the theme “ASEAN: One Community, One Destiny,” the Leaders’ Summit is expected to finalize the preparation for an ASEAN community by 2015, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
According to the DFA, the President will have a series of meetings with his counterparts from ASEAN and leaders of the East Asian Partners (EAS) to further advance regional integration and cooperation in the dynamic East Asia.
At the leaders' meeting, the President is expected to express the country's position on maritime security and cooperation in the West Philippine Sea, human rights and protection of migrants workers, among others.
The DFA also said Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen will formally open the Summit on November 18 with the official launching of the ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation (AIPR) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which establishes an ASEAN-led process for engaging the regional bloc's dialogue partners.
The DFA said the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration (AHRD), which is envisioned as the ASEAN's articulation of its human rights principles that would serve as the guiding document for activities aimed at promoting and enhancing regional cooperation on human rights, is also up for signing during the regional conference in Cambodia.
Aquino government firms up operational guidelines to ensure peaceful and orderly 2013 mid-term elections
The Aquino government started firming up operational guidelines to ensure a peaceful and orderly mid-term elections next year, a Palace official said on Saturday.
In an interview aired over government-run station dzRB Radyo ng Bayan on Saturday, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte issued the statement following reports that the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has already identified the 15 "high-risk" provinces for 2013 polls.
Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas said the 15 "high-risk" provinces for 2013 polls are Abra, Pangasinan, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Cagayan, Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, Batangas, Cavite, Masbate, Samar, Misamis Occidental, Maguindano, Lanao del Sur, and Basilan.
The government has already activated the Task Force SAFE-2013 or Secure and Fair Elections to ensure a peaceful and orderly mid-term elections in 2013, according to Valte.
The Philippine National Police started firming up operational guidelines or the Letter of Instruction (LOI) to guide the newly-activated Task Force SAFE-2013 in implementing its mandate to help ensure a peaceful and orderly elections.
The campaign against private armed groups and loose firearms is part of the mandate of the newly-activated Task Force SAFE-2013.
Another mandate of the task force is identifying the high-risk areas for the 2013 polls, Valte noted. PND (js)
President Aquino leaves for Cambodia Saturday to attend 21st ASEAN Summit
President Benigno S. Aquino III left Manila on Saturday to attend the 21st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit that will be held in Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia from November 18 to 20.
The President, who was seen off by Vice President Jejomar Binay and members of the Cabinet that included Public Work Secretary Rogelio Singson, Health Secretary Enrique Ona, Environment Secretary Ramon Paje, Transportation Secretary Jun Abaya, Budget Secrertary Florencio Abad, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda, Higher Education Chair Patricia Licuanan and Metro Manila Development Authority Chair Francis Tolentino, boarded a chartered Philippine Airlines flight PR001 at 7 p.m.
He was accompanied by a 53-member delegation that consisted of Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, Socio-Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, and Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr.
In his departure speech delivered before boarding, the President underscored the importance of the summit, saying this was one of the rare times when leaders from different countries came together under one roof to discuss regional and global issues such as maritime security and strengthening relations with member countries.
“Iilan lamang po ito sa bibihirang pagkakataon kung saan magbubuklod sa iisang bubong ang mga pinuno ng maraming bansa. Sa pakiki-panayam sa iba’t ibang bayan, hindi lamang mga isyu sa rehiyon ang mabibigyan natin ng kaukulang pansin, kundi maging ang mga usaping may implikasyon sa buong mundo,” the President said.
He said he would take the opportunity to discuss with his counterparts issues concerning security, piracy and ensuring peace and stability in the seas surrounding ASEAN.
“Pagkakataon ito upang maiparating ang ating posisyon sa mahahalagang usapin, at marinig ang mungkahi ng ibang bayan tungo sa malawakang kaunlaran—sa bansa, sa rehiyon, at sa buong mundo. Ipapabatid natin ang halaga ng seguridad, pagsisiguro ng kalayaan sa paglalayag, paglaban sa pamimirata, at pagpapanatili ng kapayapaan at estabilidad sa mga dagat ng Timog-Silangang Asya,” the President said.
At the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC), the President said a healthy exchange of information and experience on how to further strengthen the ASEAN Economic Community would be undertaken.
“Habang patuloy nating pinapaaliwalas ang kondisyon ng pamumuhay sa Pilipinas, hindi natin kakaligtaan ang ating tungkulin bilang bahagi ng isang mas malawak na komunidad sa Timog-Silangang Asya. Sa pakikipag-bayanihan sa mga karatigbayan, tiwala tayong mahahanap ang tamang solusyon sa mga suliraning kinakaharap ng ating bansa, at patuloy pang maisusulong ang kolektibo nating hangad para sa kaunlaran ng lahat,” the President said.
“Sa huli po, sa iisang diwa pa rin nakasandig ang biyaheng ito: ang muli’t muling maipakilala ang bagong Pilipinas sa buong mundo—mas aktibo, mas progresibo, at mas handang humarap sa mga hamon ng panahon. Hatid ito ng tapat at mabuting paglilingkod; hatid ito ng sama-samang pagpili ng mga Pilipino na isulong ang makabuluhang pagbabago,” he added. PND (rck)
President Aquino arrives in Cambodia to attend the 21st ASEAN Summit
PHNOM PENH, Cambodia) President Benigno S. Aquino III arrived here on Saturday night to join fellow leaders for the 21st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits.
The Philippine Airlines Flight PR 001 carrying the President and his delegation touched down at Phnom Penh International Airport at 8:40 pm.
Among those who welcomed the President upon his arrival were Cambodian Minister of Education Im Sothy, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Director of Protocol Prak Nguon Hong, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario and Philippine Ambassador to Cambodia Noe Wong.
President Aquino’s 53-member delegation include Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, Socio-Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, and Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr.
The President is expected to attend a series of meetings with his counterparts from ASEAN and leaders of the East Asian Partners to further advance regional integration and cooperation in the dynamic East Asia.
He will also push the country’s position on maritime security and cooperation in the West Philippine Sea, human rights and protection of migrant workers, among others.
The President, together with his fellow ASEAN leaders are also meeting their dialogue partners such as the leaders of the US, Russia, China, India, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea.
The government said it allocated P11 million for the President’s attendance to the 21st ASEAN Summit and Related Summits, which will be held from November 18 to 20.
“ASEAN: One Community, One Destiny,” is this year’s summit theme. PND (as)