PH receives add’l 1M Moderna vax doses from Germany

A total of 1,062,100 doses of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine donated by the German government through the COVAX Facility arrived Sunday afternoon. Later, another 535,300 doses will be delivered at about 10:15 p.m., also via Singapore Airlines, to complete 1,597,400 donated doses while private-sector procured 663,400 doses of AstraZeneca jabs will arrive at 7:30 p.m. “We have another example today how important vaccination is and I think the Philippines is on a very good way on its vaccination program and Germany is very happy to support the Philippines for the…

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DOH logs 203 new Covid-19 cases, lowest since May 2020

The Department of Health (DOH) on Sunday logged 203 new Covid-19 cases, the country’s lowest single-day infection since May 2020 due to the failure of 41 laboratories to submit data. The DOH said the figure pushed the total case tally to 2,837,577. “The low case report is due to the suspension of the operations four laboratories on Dec. 17, 2021 and failure to submit data from 41 laboratories to the Covid-19 Document Repository System (CDRS) because of Typhoon Odette,” the DOH said. Based on data in the last 14 days,…

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Duterte to visit more typhoon-ravaged areas

President Rodrigo Duterte is “determined” to visit more areas ravaged by Typhoon Odette, a Palace official said on Sunday. On Saturday, Duterte conducted an aerial inspection of some of the areas hit by Typhoon Odette covering Siargao, Surigao City, Dinagat Islands, and Maasin City in Southern Leyte. Asked if Duterte will push through with his visit in other areas, acting presidential spokesperson Secretary Karlo Nograles did not give a definite answer but noted that the President is keen on pushing through with his plan. “I’m still verifying ano iyong details…

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Grenade-wielding drug suspect killed in N. Ecija buy-bust

A suspected drug pusher, who allegedly also yielded a handgun and hand grenade, was killed in an exchange of fire with anti-narcotics operatives in Barangay Sapang Kawayan here at around 4 a.m. on Sunday. A police report identified the suspect as Denmark Flora, a resident of Barangay Poblacion West, this city. Investigation showed that a buy-bust operation was conducted against Flora by the police anti-drug enforcement unit led by chief Lt. Col. Marlon Cudal, in coordination with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA). “The suspect sensed that he transacted with…

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DOH opposes anti-health vape regulation bill

The Department of Health (DOH) strongly opposes the blatant disregard of public health in the recently approved Senate Bill 2239 (Vaporized Nicotine and Non-Nicotine Regulation Act) that seeks to further expand access to vaporized nicotine and non-nicotine products. The bill is retrogressive and contains several provisions that contradict public health goals and international standards and undermines the country’s progress in tobacco control, according to a DOH news release on Sunday. Nineteen senators on Thursday approved the bill seeking to regulate the importation, manufacture, sale, packaging, distribution, use, and communication of…

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France-donated Covid-19 vax to PH nears 3.5M doses

Nearly 3.5 million doses of different Covid-19 vaccine brands have so far been donated by the French government to the Philippines through the COVAX Facility. This, after National Task Force (NTF) Against Covid-19 special adviser Dr. Teodoro Herbosa welcomed the arrival of additional 811,890 doses of Pfizer vaccine from France at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 in Pasay City on Saturday night. “In behalf of the Filipino people, our vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., we’d like to thank Ambassador Michèle Boccoz and the French people for…

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More than 10K new Omicron cases confirmed in UK

Britain on Saturday reported more than 10,000 new Omicron coronavirus variant cases as the new variant-related death toll rose to seven. The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) confirmed an additional 10,059 cases of the new variant, three times as many as Friday and taking the total number detected to 24,968. The country registered 90,418 coronavirus cases in the latest 24-hour period, the second time cases have been higher than 90,000, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 11,279,428, according to official figures released Saturday. The country…

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‘Odette’ damages 5 PNP facilities; over 200 cops affected

Five facilities of the Philippine National Police (PNP) were damaged by Typhoon Odette while 210 personnel were listed among the victims. Based on reports from the PNP Command Center on Sunday, the five facilities are located in Eastern Visayas and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) while PNP conducted 41 rescue and relief operations and rescued 563 distressed persons. PNP chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos said various units continue to provide assistance and security in 7,201 evacuation centers where 2,432 families comprised of 100,353 individuals have sought temporary shelter.…

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PH, Israel drafting MOU on defense cooperation

The country is looking at Israel as a partner in boosting its response to terrorism and improving the capability of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). Negotiation is ongoing for a “broad-ranging” Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Defense Cooperation, which shall serve as the primary framework of Israel and the Philippines on military ties, Philippine Ambassador to Israel Macairog Alberto told Israeli social media personality Hananya Naftali in a recent interview. As of this posting, the two nations are working on the agreement’s draft. “We consider Israel as one…

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National ID info safely stored in PhilSys Registry

All registered information in the Philippine Identification System are secured with the PhilSys Registry. The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), in a recent post, assured all details and records updates by PhilSys-registered individuals are safeguarded. Based on Republic Act 11055 or the PhilSys Act, “the information in the PhilSys Registry shall be classified in a manner that allows safeguards for data privacy and security, access controls, and change management.” In case the Philippine Identification (PhilID) card or national ID is lost or damaged, it cannot be replicated and used by others…

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Days of FB scammers numbered: DOLE

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Sunday assailed anew the brains behind the devious use of a fake Facebook (FB) account for their personal gains and to dupe victims using the name of Secretary Silvestre Bello III. For months, unscrupulous elements have been using the bogus FB account “Silvestre H. Bello III” to fool unsuspecting victims but the DOLE chief said the long arm of the law will soon catch up with them. The National Bureau of Investigation is zeroing in on a number of suspects and could…

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DENR gives Christmas cheers to indigent PCMC patients

In line with its ComPassion Project and continuing stakeholder partnership, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) recently conducted a gift-giving activity for the indigent patients of the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC). The DENR ComPassion Project was launched on May 11, 2020, as a community outreach initiative that initially aimed to support the government’s fight against COVID-19 and ensure the welfare and protection of DENR employees. “The ComPassion Project now goes beyond its initial cause to help those affected by the pandemic. We want the project to also…

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DA readies P852-M fund for typhoon-hit agri sector

The Department of Agriculture (DA) will assist farmers and fisherfolk in areas affected by Typhoon Odette using PHP852.47 standby funds. The budget includes PHP500 million Quick Response Fund for the rehabilitation of affected areas; PHP148-million worth of rice seeds; PHP57.6-million worth of corn seeds; PHP44.6-million worth of assorted vegetables; and PHP100 million under the Survival and Recovery Assistance Program of the Agricultural Credit Policy Council. The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources will also provide PHP164 million worth of fingerlings and assistance while PHP625,150 worth of drugs and biologics will…

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Go extends add’l aid to latest batch of BP2 beneficiaries

Senator Christopher “Bong” Go personally met with the latest batch of beneficiaries of the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa (BP2) program before returning to their respective hometowns in Zamboanga del Norte. In strict compliance with the health protocols against Covid 19, Go and his team conducted the aid distribution for a total of 70 individuals, composed of 19 principal beneficiaries and 51 family members, at the BP2 Depot in Quezon City on Dec. 16. Go and his staff distributed meals, food packs, vitamins and masks, as well as new cellular phones…

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Despite leaders acquittal, grim fate of Inopacan victims remains

An official of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) on Sunday said despite the acquittal of 15 of 40 communist leaders and members, the grim fate suffered by Inopacan massacre victims in the evil hands of Jose Maria Sison and his co-defendants remains. Secretary Hermogenes Esperon, Jr., vice-chairperson of NTF-ELCAC, expressed disappointment to the decision of the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) to acquit 15 Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army – National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) leaders for their role in the…

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Families affected by ‘Odette’ climb to 181.5K: NDRRMC

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) on Sunday said 181,500 families residing in 2,209 barangays were affected by the onslaught of Typhoon Odette (international name Rai). In its 10 a.m. update, the NDRRMC said these barangays are located in Mimaropa, Regions 5 (Bicol), 6 (Western Visayas), 8 (Eastern Visayas), 10 (Northern Mindanao), 11 (Davao), 12 (Soccsksargen), 13 (Caraga), and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). It said 2,861 evacuation centers are now aiding 107,816 families or 427,903 individuals with the remainder being sheltered by relatives…

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Sara sends disaster responders, relief goods to Bohol

The city government here has sent over a hundred disaster responders to conduct relief and rescue operations in Bohol province, which was badly hit by Typhoon Odette last Thursday. A Facebook post of the City Government of Davao showed Mayor Sara Z. Duterte on Sunday leading the send-off ceremony for the delegation comprising 106 Dabawenyos. The team headed to the municipality of Ubay in Bohol is composed of rescue and medical teams from the City Health Office, Davao City Central 911’s Emergency Medical Services, Urban Search and Rescue, Fire Auxiliary…

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Prov’l gov’t halts pebble picking in Ilocos Norte coastal town

The province of Ilocos Norte is bent on temporarily suspending pebble picking in the coastal village of Caruan in Pasuquin, Ilocos Norte to ensure that not only a few benefits from it. With a recurring problem on illegal pebble picking in the area, Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc has announced that pebble pickers are given a month or until Jan. 21 next year to sell their remaining stockpile and stop operation for the meantime. On Saturday, provincial administrator Yvette Convento-Leynes said the Provincial Quarry Office has been conducting an inventory of…

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Marawi siege-displaced teens, adults avail of free circumcision

When Norania Bangcola, a solo parent, heard of a free circumcision program in this city, she and her 12-year-old son traveled almost 25 kilometers to avail of the service. The mother and child were among those residents here who were displaced by the 2017 terrorist attack that devastated this city. The boy, Abdul Basit, is now studying in a “toril” — a Muslim facility where orphans and children of poor families study for free — in Lumbayanague town in Lanao del Sur, where their family was initially transferred in the…

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DA promotes trichoderma in lieu of inorganic fertilizers

The Provincial Agriculture Office here and the Department of Agriculture (DA) are finding ways to lessen the impact of the rising prices of inorganic fertilizers on rice farmers. Farmers are feeling the surge in prices of commercial urea fertilizers that now cost PHP2,525 per bag, or a more than 100 percent increase from PHP1,200 during the planting season between June and October 2021. Provincial agriculturist Johanna Dizon said lack of supply is the major cause of the surge. “According to the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority, walang dating na abono, nagkakaipitan…

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Taguig LGU employee reportedly among Pasig robbery suspects

The Taguig local government has ordered a full-blown investigation into Saturday’s home robbery in Pasig after reports that one of the eight suspects is a capitol employee. Four Taguig City cops and a civilian were arrested, two escaped, and one was found dead in Makati City. Staff Sgt. Jayson Bartolome, Cpl. Merick Desoloc, Cpl. Christian Jerome Reyes, and Pat. Kirk Joshua Almojera are already under restrictive custody. They entered a house in Barangay Kapitolyo and reportedly carted away PHP30 million from a Japanese national and his Filipina partner past midnight.…

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Duterte orders mobilization of gov’t assets for ‘Odette’ victims

Malacañang on Sunday said President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the use of all government assets to expedite the delivery of relief and rehabilitation efforts in areas hit by Typhoon Odette. “Ang utos nga ni Pangulo (The President’s directive) is use all government resources to ensure that all goods are delivered as soon as possible especially sa (in the) province ng (of) Surigao del Norte at sa (and in) Dinagat Islands,” acting presidential spokesperson Secretary Karlo said in an interview over DZBB. Nograles said Duterte designated Department of Social Welfare and…

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Significance of 1986 snap election recalled

Younger Filipino voters, particularly those born during the 1972-1981 martial law years and beyond, may be interested to know that around this time in December 1985, the political camps of then President Ferdinand E. Marcos and the opposition parties were busy preparing for the snap presidential and vice presidential election set on Feb. 7, 1986. The result of that special election can be considered as the most controversial and confusing among the previous polls held since the birth of the Philippine Commonwealth government in November 1935. Marcos, who was then…

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4 Taguig cops under restrictive custody over alleged robbery

Four Taguig City cops are under restrictive custody after their alleged participation in the robbery of a Japanese national and his Filipina partner in Pasig City on Saturday. Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos on Sunday ordered the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) to hold under custody Staff Sgt. Jayson Bartolome, Cpl. Merick Desoloc, Cpl. Christian Jerome Reyes, and Pat. Kirk Joshua Almojera. The four, assigned at the Taguig City Police Station, were among eight suspects who allegedly staged a robbery in Barangay Kapitolyo at about 12:10…

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