Sunday, 16 December 2012

PIA News Dispatch - Friday, December 14, 2012

Aquino vows to heighten government’s disaster preparedness

 The government will intensify its efforts to remove vulnerable populations in harm’s way whenever there are incoming typhoons to avoid a repeat of the devastation of Typhoon Pablo in Mindanao, President Benigno S. Aquino III said on Friday.

 During the change of command ceremonies at the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Friday, the President asked the support of Coast Guard personnel in carrying out the government preparations to mitigate the impact of weather disturbances to the general population.

 Preemptive measures should be in place whenever there are incoming typhoons to avoid lost of lives and tremendous damage to properties, he said during his speech. This is the duty of the PCG and every government personnel, and they will be successful in assisting their fellow Filipinos as long as they have the will to lend a helping hand, the President said.

 “Kung hindi man natin napigilan ito, nakaposisyon na dapat tayo para gamutin ang sugat niya, at iparamdam sa kaniyang hindi siya nag-iisa at pasan-pasan natin siya mula sa pagbangon, hanggang maghilom ang sugat niya, hanggang sa matuto uli siyang humakbang nang mabilis at maitulak sa kaunlaran ang buhay niya,” the President said

 “Kung kailangan nating doblehin ang ating mga babala; kung kailangan nating triplehin ang ating mga paghahanda; kung kailangan natin silang ilikas isang linggo bago pa man sumalanta ang malakas na ulan at pagbaha, gagawin natin lahat ito dahil tungkulin nating tiyakin na mailayo sa kapahamakan ang ating mga kababayan sa abot po ng ating makakaya,” he added.

 The President said he was appalled by the devastation in New Bataan, Compostela Valley, and Boston, Davao Oriental, during his visit there last week.

 The President led the change of command of the PCG Friday challenging the new commandant to continue the good works of his predecessor.

 Rear Admiral Rodolfo Isorena assumed office on Friday as the new commandant of the PCG replacing Vice Admiral Edmund Tan. PND (as)

Aquino leads Philippine Coast Guard change of command
President Benigno S. Aquino led Friday the change of command of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) challenging the new commandant to continue the positive thrusts of his predecessor.

 Rear Admiral Rodolfo Isorena assumed on Friday as the new commandant of the PCG replacing Vice Admiral Edmund Tan.

 The turn-over of command rites marks the beginning of a new page in the history of Philippine Coast Guard, the President said in his speech during the event at the PCG’s headquarters at Port Area, Manila.

 “Kay Rear Admiral Isorena: Huwag mong sasayangin ang mga repormang ipinunla ng iyong mga sinundan. Suklian mo ng tapat na paglilingkod ang tiwalang kaloob sa iyo, hindi lang ng Tanod Baybayin ng Pilipinas, kundi ng sambayanan,” he said.

 “Lagi mo sanang tatandaan na ang iyong pagkakatalaga ay hindi pribilehiyo, kundi isang tungkuling may kaakibat na responsibilidad. Nakasalalay sa lakas ng iyong bawat tauhan ang kabuuang lakas ng Coast Guard. Dapat mo silang alagaan; dapat mong pakinggan ang kanilang mga problema,”

 The Chief Executive said that Isorena should treat every PCG personnel as a member of the PCG family, noting that their “boss,” the Filipino, expect to fulfill his duties effectively.

 The President also expressed his gratitude to Vice Admiral Tan, that despite his 11-month stint in the PCG, he has accomplished a lot. Tan performed well even during challenging situations to protect the country’s territory, fight crime and ensure the safety of people at sea, the President said.

 He also thanked the entire PCG for performing its duties. The President praised the PCG for its successful operations during the Philippine-China standoff in Bajo de Masinloc.

 “Sa kabila ng mga banta’t panganib, napanatili ng Coast Guard, hindi lamang ang seguridad at kaayusan sa ating teritoryong pandagat; naipaabot din ninyo sa ibang mga bansa na hangga’t nasa katwiran tayo, handang ipaglaban ng Pilipino ang tunay na pag-aari ng Pilipino,” he said.

 The PCG has effectively pushed the government’s campaign against human trafficking, illicit drugs and arms trade as well as transnational crimes, he said.

 Since January 2012, the PCG conducted 230 maritime law enforcement and security operations that resulted to the arrest of 237 individuals. It also intercepted 65 sea vessels being used for illegal activities. In addition, the PCG also confiscated more than P233 million of smuggled goods, the chief executive said.

 To make the PCG more effective in doing its job, the President said the NEDA board approved last month P8.8 billion allocation for the purchase of 10 units of 40-meter Multi-role Response Vessels.

 “Inaasan po na mas aangat ang antas ng serbisyo ng mga Tanod Baybayin; mas dadami ang mailalayo sa mga sakuna’t peligro; at sa dulo nito, mas panalo at mas ligtas ang sambayanang Pilipino,” he said.

 The new PCG commandant is a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy, coming from the Sandigan Class of 1982. A native of Virac, Catanduanes, Isorena was commissioned as ensign in the Philippine Navy in 1982 and was assigned at the PCG in 1993.

 He also studied here and aboard while at the PCG. He has degrees and trainings in Sweden, the US, Japan, and Denmark.

 Among the awards and citations he received while in the PCG include the Coast Guard Legion of Honors, Distinguished Service Medals, Outstanding Achievement Medal, and Gawad Kaunlaran Medals.

 Joining the President during Friday’s event were Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya and Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. PND (as)

President Aquino declares December 18 special non-working day in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan in celebration of its 13th Charter Day
President Benigno S. Aquino III has declared December 18, which falls on Tuesday, as a special (non-working) day in the city of Tuguegarao in Cagayan province in celebration of its 13th Charter Day.

 The Chief Executive issued the declaration through Proclamation No. 524 signed by Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. on December 13 to give the people of Tuguegarao the full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion with appropriate ceremonies.

 Tuguegarao became a city by virtue of Republic Act No. 8755 issued on November 4, 1999. The cityhood status of Tuguegarao was affirmed in a plebiscite held on December 18, 1999. PND (js)

President Aquino directs Interior and Local Government Secretary Roxas to build a strong case against jueteng operators and coddlers
President Benigno S. Aquino III has directed Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II to build a strong case against jueteng operators and coddlers and ensure the safety of the witnesses who will testify on jueteng operations, a Palace official said on Friday.

 "The resolve of government to eradicate illegal gambling operations is unwavering," Presidential Spokeperson Edwin Lacierda said in a statement issued on Friday.

 The Chief Executive directed Secretary Roxas to ensure the safety of witnesses who will testify regarding the jueteng operations and the alleged involvement of Pangasinan Governor Amado Espino Jr. in the operations, Lacierda noted.

 "Secretary Roxas has ordered the reshuffling of police personnel in Pangasinan to determine culpability, if any, and to guarantee that there will be no whitewash in the investigation," Lacierda said.

 "We are determined to pursue this case to its logical end under the rule of law and should serve as a warning to syndicates and coddlers of illegal gambling operations to stop or be stopped," Lacierda added.

 Secretary Roxas said on Friday that two officials, Bugallon, Pangasinan Mayor Rodrigo Orduna and Barangay captain Fernando "Boy Bata" Alimagno, linked Espino to jueteng, saying they helped the governor in running the illegal numbers game in the province. Both officials had earlier filed a plunder case against the governor at the office of the Ombudsman. PND (js)