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MAY 2016

APRIL 2016

MARCH 2016



2 carnap ring members fall in Bulacan sting

CAMP GENERAL ALEJO S SANTOS, Bulacan, May 18 (PNA) -- Police arrested two alleged members of a notorious carnap gang operating in Central Luzon and recovered two carnapped vehicles, two hand guns, ammunition and a bladed weapon during a joint police operation in Barangay Lambakin, San Miguel town Tuesday morning.

Senior Supt. Romeo Caramat, acting provincial director of Bulacan PNP, identified the arrested suspects as Jaime Dumias, 28, married, auto mechanic, a resident of Barangay Pulong Malaki, San Isidro, Nueva Ecija; and a certain Tomasito, 25, single, helper, residing in Barangay Sta. Lucia, San Miguel, Bulacan.

Based on the report of Supt. Joel Estaris, officer-in-charge of San Miguel Municipal Police Station (MPS), joint elements of San Miguel MPS and Gapan City Police Station (CPS), together with the Highway Patrol teams of Bulacan and Nueva Ecija, arrested the two suspects in a hot pursuit operation after they took and carted away a white taxi Toyota Vios with plate no. ASA 6527, marked Kurt Jericson Transport, registered and operated by Rodolfo Dela Minez, 34, married, taxi operator, resident of Tadeo St., RTC Compound, Karuhatan, Valenzuela City.

Caramat said that the taxi was driven by Ronel Rufo, 40, married, driver, resident of No. 92 Heroes St., DM Compound, Caloocan City.

Investigation disclosed that subject vehicle was forcibly taken at gunpoint from Rufo at around 10:00 a.m. Tuesday while in the vicinity of Barangay Sto. Cristo Norte, Gapan City, Nueva Ecija.

The driver immediately reported the incident to Gapan City Police Station who coordinated with San Miguel MPS and informed the Provincial Highway Patrol Team of Bulacan and Nueva Ecija Provincial Police Office about the incident that led to the joint police operation.

Recovered from the suspects’ possession were one white taxi Toyota Vios with plate no. ASA 6527 (carnapped vehicle); two caliber .38 revolvers; 10 rounds of ammunition for caliber .38 and one dagger knife.

The arrested suspects and recovered pieces of evidence were turned-over to Gapan CPS for further investigation and filing of appropriate criminal cases. (PNA) 

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PDEA-3 nabs drug dealer in Bulacan

CITY of SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, May 16 (PNA) -- Agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Central Luzon arrested Sunday a drug dealer in a buy bust operation conducted in Meycauayan City, Bulacan and seized some PHP170,000 worth of shabu.

PDEA 3 Director Gladys Rosales identified the suspect as Jeffrey Jimenez, 32, a resident of Barangay Bangkal, Meycauayan City.

Rosales said the suspect was apprehended after he handed over to a poseur buyer a sachet containing shabu in the entrapment operation.

The arrest of Jimenez yielded 50 grams of shabu with an estimated street value of PHP170,000.

The agents also recovered the marked money used in the operation.

The suspect is now detained at PDEA 3 Jail Facilty in Camp Olivas in this province. (PNA) 

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Php 353-M worth of shabu seized in Bulacan drug bust -PDEA - By Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan

MANILA, May 16 (PNA) – Combined operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) seized an about Php 353- million worth of methamphetamine hydrocloride , or "shabu," during an anti-drug operation in Bulacan, PDEA official said on Monday.

PDEA Director General Undersecretary Arturo G. Cacdac, Jr. said that the operation took place along Bypass Road, Barangay Sta. Clara, Sta. Maria, Bulacan around 9:30 a.m. on Sunday as the joint operatives of PDEA Special Enforcement Service (PDEA-SES) under the direct supervision of Director Ismael Fajardo, Jr. and the PNP Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (PNP-AIDG), arrested Leonardo Pedrosa, 39, a resident of Matang Tubig, Guyang Lote, Sta. Maria, Bulacan; Christian Ultra, 22; and Marlon Cervantes y Esta, 20; both residents of Parola, Tondo, Manila, after they conspired in selling two kilos of suspected shabu to a poseur-buyer.

He said suspects also yielded a black Toyota Vios with plate number AAK-1628 where an additional 10 kilos of suspected shabu were found inside the back compartment.

The driver of the vehicle, Jaime Halili, 28, tried to escape on foot and ran towards a house in Ignacio Subdivision, Sta. Maria, Bulacan where he was subdued. Arrested inside were Frans Espaldon, 20; Glynel Base, 18; and Junvi Ivory Base, 29, who were caught in the act of drying shabu. Confiscated inside the house were more or less 58.7 kilograms of the illegal drug.

The total weight of seized drug is 70.7 kilograms with an estimated market value of Php 353.3 million.

Cases for violation of Section 5 (Sale of Dangerous Drugs) and Section 11 (Possession of Dangerous Drugs), Article II of Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, are now being prepared for filing in court against Pedrosa, Ultra and Cervantes, while Halili, Espaldon and the Bases will be charged for violation of Section 11 of the anti-drug law. (PNA) 

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Former CA Justice Jose dela Rama passes away

BOCAUE, Bulacan, May 12 (PNA) -- Lawyers and students of Law at the Bulacan State University mourn the passing of former Court of Appeals (CA) Justice Jose dela Rama who died last Monday. He was 90.

Dela Rama was a trial lawyer and eventually became a trial court judge and later moved up to become a justice of the Court of Appeals.

Lawyer Julius Victor Degala, who studied law at the Bulacan State University when Dela Rama was the dean of the College of Law, said that even at an old age, Dela Rama was still sharp in the field of legal jurisprudence.

"Deeply passionate about his love for country, he would always fight for the rights of the Filipinos and spearhead groundbreaking movements such as the use of Filipino language in courts. He will be surely missed,” Degala said.

Dela Rama is survived by his wife Dolores Ignacio and their children Rebecca, Josefina, Cynthia, Jose Jr. and Ruth as well as his 12 grandchildren and a great granddaughter.

He is the father of lawyer Jose “Peng” dela Rama Jr., governor of the Integrated Bar of the Philipibnes-Central Luzon chapter.

His body lies in state at the Mary the Queen Memorial Homes located along the bypass road in Sta. Maria, Bulacan.

Interment will be on May 15, 2016 in the family estate at the Garden of Peace, NIA road, Barangay Bagumbayan, this town. (PNA) 

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Bulacan incumbent gubernatorial and vice gov sweep the poll race with landslide wins

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, May 11 (PNA) -- Bulakenyos gave the tandem of Gov. Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado and Vice Gov. Daniel Fernando an overwhelming victory over their closest rivals in last Monday's elections.

Alvarado, who will be serving the people of Bulacan for his third term as top provincial executive, garnered a total votes of 659,024 while his rival Josie dela Cruz got  380,665.

Fernando, on the other hand, swept the race for vice governorship with an overwhelming 894,575 votes against the 297,560 votes of Phillip Salvador.

Both Alvarado and Fernando thanked their province mates for the trust and confidence and vowed to further boost the programs that will rev up anew the engines of growth in the province.

"The election is just one day. We should again unite and help each other in a continuous effort to develop our noble province and let us further uplift the status of life of every Bulakenyo," Alvarado, who is also the chairman of the Regional Development council, said shortly after he and Fernando were proclaimed as the winning governor and vice governor, respectively, by the Provincial Board of Canvassers at the Pavilion of the Hiyas Convention Center here, Tuesday night.

Except for the winner in the congressional race in the lone district of San Jose del Monte City, all winning congressmen in the province’s four legislative districts have also been proclaimed.

In the first district of Bulacan, young candidate Jose Antonio R. Sy-Alvarado, son of Gov. Alvarado, garnered 159,715 votes as against his rival Michael Fermin, who got 114,413 votes.

In the second district, Apol Pancho got 265,764 votes against the 11,548 of his rival Jaime Villfuerte.

The race in the third congressional district saw former Rep. Korna Silverio made a comeback by beating long time political rival Joselito Mendoza. Silverio garnered a total votes of 119,016 while Mendoza got 109,670 votes.

In the fourth district, reelectionist Rep. Lynabelle Villarica made a landslide victory with 216,962 votes over Joan Alarilla, who got 40,043 votes. (PNA) 

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Bulacan Gov. Alvarado and Vice Gov. Daniel Fernando headed for landslide victory

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, May 10 (PNA) -— With only the votes from the towns of Bocaue and San Ildefonso and the City of San Jose del Monte still unaccounted as of 12 noon Tuesday, the “dynamic duo" tandem of Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado and Vice Governor Daniel Fernando are pulling away and headed for a landslide win over the pair of gubernatorial bet Josie dela Cruz and her running mate Philip Salvador.

Partial and unofficial returns showed that Alvarado and Fernando, both candidates of the Liberal Party, are leading by more than 300,000 votes that could no longer be surpassed as of 12 noon.

Their lawyers have requested the Provincial Board of Canvassers headed by Bulacan provincial election supervisor Lawyer Lydia V. Florentino-Pangilinan, chairman; Lawyer Renato C. Samonte, vice chairman and Director Romeo Alip, member; that because of the lead of the two provincial officials are mathemathically impossible to overcome, they should be proclaimed as soon as possible.

Pangilinan said that their request is noted but since returns from the towns of Bocaue and San Ildefonso and the City of San Jose del Monte are not yet ready for transmission, they suspended the canvassing and reset it to continue at 2 p.m. Tuesday.

Likewise, the lawyer of re-electionist Congressman Gavini “Apol” Pancho of the 2nd legislative district of Bulacan also requested that their client be proclaimed after getting a total of 268,651 votes in the district’s six municipalities.

They claimed that the total votes from Bocaue cannot hampered the overwhelming victory of Pancho.

In the first district of Bulacan, Jose Antonio “Kuya Jonathan” R. Sy-Alvarado, the Liberal Party’s candidate for congressman, clobbered his rival outgoing provincial senior board member Michael Fermin and is expected to be proclaimed anytime Tuesday.

Sy-Alvarado, a son of Gov. Alvarado, garnered a total of 157,828 votes while Fermin got 118,663 votes in the first district towns of Calumpit, Hagonoy, Paombong Pulilan, Bulakan and the City of Malolos.

Samonte said that with only the votes from Bocaue, San Ildefonso and San Jose del Monte still being waited for transmission to the Provincial Board of Canvasser, the winning provincial officials could be proclaimed anytime Tuesday evening. (PNA) 

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4 cops, 4 other cohorts arrested in Bulacan for gun ban violations

CAMP GENERAL ALEJO S. SANTOS, Bulacan, PNA--Four cops and four other civilians were arrested as firearms and ammunitions were seized in Barangay Kalawakan, Dona Remedios Trinidad (DRT) town, this province Friday morning.

Officer-In-Charge (OIC) of Bulacan PNP Sr. Supt. Romeo Caramat Jr., identified the arrested suspects as SPO4 Gerald J. Ruiz, 39; PO3 Arnaiz Gan Aguilar, 38; PO2 Emanuel B Carlos, 34 ; PO1 John Kirby DL Merle, 29 ; all from Bulacan Police Provincial Office (PPO).

The four arrested civilians, on the other hand, were Rogelio Lopez, 50, resident of Barangay Kalawakan, DRT; Ronald Piadozo, resident of Sapang Bulac, DRT; Tom C. Otrera, 65, press member, resident of Amparo Village, Caloocan and Mercy Ann Arañego 36, press member, resident of Tondo, Manila.

Sr. Insp. Isagani Santos, Chief of Police (COP) of Dona Remedios Trinidad MPS, said that they received a report from DRT Mayor Ronnie Flores informing that two suspicious vehicles were allegedly boarded with armed men.

Upon arrival of the responding policemen at the said area, they saw incumbent DRT Vice Mayor Hilario Cruz and one of the members of the armed group having a conversation.

Thereafter, Vice Mayor Cruz and his unidentified supporters turned over the apprehended armed group to the responding policemen.

One of the armed group identified himself as a police officer assigned in Bulacan PPO and voluntarily submitted themselves for investigation.

Confiscated from the suspects were one M16AI rifle with SN RP129609; one M16AI rifle SN 72488283; one Norinco  M16 SN   0013-17-09-CN; 12)magazines for M16; one Armscor 45 with SN 1411920; one COLT 45 with SN 110088; and four magazines of cal. 45 loaded with  23 ammunitions, 313 ammunitions for M16; and two vehicles.

Verification from Firearms and Explosives Office FEO, Camp Crame and LTO, Quezon City respectively are now being prepared to determine the real registered owner of said firearms and vehicles.

Appropriate criminal complaints were filed against the suspects before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutors, Malolos City. (PNA) 

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Central Luzon cops vows to be apolitical in May elections

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, May 3 (PNA) -- Officials and personnel of the Police Regional Office-3 (PRO-3) have vowed not to engage in any partisan activity this coming May 9 elections.

Chief Supt. Rudy Lacadin, PRO-3 regional director, led the signing and oathtaking of non-partisanship during the Monday flag raising ceremony held at the PRO-3 Parade Ground here.

Lacadin said all police units in Central Luzon also signed the oath in their respective stations to show that they would not participate in any election-related activities or campaign for candidates and political parties.

"The entire Central Luzon police force is apolitical, professional and nonpartisan. We focus on our mission to ensure that this national exercise on May 9 will be secured and fair," he said.

The signing and oathtaking of non-partisanship was also participated in by lawyer Emmanuel Ignacio, Assistant Regional Election Director in Central Luzon; Brig. Gen. David Diciano, Assistant Division Commander, 7th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army and other PRO-3 officers.

Meanwhile, Ignacio said that preparations for the local and national elections are now ongoing.

He said that the 8,048 vote counting machines (VCMs) for Central Luzon are now in four identified hubs in Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, and Pampanga and to be delivered in all municipalities and cities in the region on Tuesday.

The delivery of ballots, he said will be completed by Thursday, and a simultaneous final testing and sealing of the VCMs is likewise scheduled on the same day.

Meanwhile, a total of 5,488 police personnel were deployed in 2,825 polling centers in the region to ensure safe and fair elections.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will also deploy some 611 military troops to assist the police in the region. (PNA) 

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More support pours for Poe with one week left before May 9 polls - By Jelly F. Musico

MANILA, May 1 (PNA) – With one left before the May 9 elections, support for presidential aspirant-Senator Grace Poe continues to pour from the ranks of politicians to showbiz personalities, to civil society groups, business leaders and ordinary folks.

“Pinagbuksan tayo ng pinto sa bawat bahay na kinatok, binigyan ng mainit na pagsalubong sa bawat bayan na dinayo. Salamat sa inyong tiwala at suporta,” she said in a campaign sortie in Marikina City.

Poe said people from all walks of life come to her and pledge their vote to preserve the country and reject a destructive leader.

“Nakakagulat at nakakataba ng puso ang patuloy na pagdami ng mga kababayan nating gustong tumulong. We will finish this fight to the end and will hand victory to the Filipino people,” she said.

Multi-awarded singer and composer Ogie Alcasid was the latest in the roster of supporters to add star power to Poe's bid for the presidency. He vowed to campaign for her among his colleagues in the music industry.

Alcasid, president of the Organisasyon ng Pilipinong Mang-aawit (OPM), serenaded the crowd of around 25,000 during the 5th National Fireworks Festival at the Marikina Riverbanks Center Ampitheater with his original composition titled Gobyerno na may Puso, a song dedicated to Poe.

The senator was welcomed by former Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Bayani Fernando, who is running for a congressional post, and his wife, former Marikina City Mayor Marides Fernando. The Fernandos are also backing Poe.

Earlier, local executives from the Bicol region, led by Albay Governor Joey Salceda, have joined the campaign for Poe, pledging to deliver votes for her.

Poe also gained new allies from the province of Zambales after several Liberal party candidates for mayor and provincial board members shifted loyalty to her.

In Nueva Vizcaya, the senator is being backed by House Deputy Speaker Carlos Padilla, wife Governor Ruth Padilla and Vice Governor Lambert Galima and his slate.

Women leaders are also making their voices heard for Poe with the recent launch of “Kababaihan para kay Grace Poe” in Quezon City. The group counts among its members former Senator Leticia Ramos-Shahani, former Senator Santanina Rasul, lawyer Katrina Legarda, Sister Mary John Mananzan, film director Bibeth Orteza, leaders of various women's groups, and students, among others.

As a daughter of well-respected artists Fernando Poe Jr. and Susan Roces, Poe’s hordes of supporters would not be without the big names in the entertainment industry like Dingdong Dantes, Coco Martin, and Vic Sotto and Pauleen Luna-Sotto.

Beyond words of encouragement, Martin has joined some of Poe’s sorties to personally urge the people to vote for her.

In a statement, Alcasid said, "Saksi ako sa sinseridad ni Grace na magsilbi sa taumbayan. Siya ay may takot sa Diyos at may paninindigan.”

It was the first time that Alcasid joined Poe's campaign sortie. Two weeks ago, he resigned as member of the government's EDSA People Power Commission.

During the event in Marikina, he rallied the audience to vote for Poe, saying she is the candidate who has a heart for the children and the youth.

In her speech, Poe vowed to put focus on programs that would ensure the youth's welfare, such as the free lunch program, which she said she wants expanded to cover more students, including those in day care centers.

Taking note of the tragedy that struck the city when "Ondoy" came in 2009, she said that a comprehensive flood control program should be in place to give the Marikina residents peace of mind that they would not be inundated anew when heavy rains come.

Poe also expressed her desire to revitalize the city's shoe industry not only to provide the residents a source of income, but to showcase the Filipino's ingenious craft.

"Sisiguraduhin ko na masigla ang ating ekonomiya para maraming magbukas na trabaho dito sa ating bansa," she said.

Poe also reiterated her commitment to curb the labor contractualization scheme, which does not give security to the employment tenure of workers.

"Ang kailangan sa ating pamilya ay permanenteng trabaho na may sapat na kita. Kasi paano tayo makakapagplano na bumili ng motor, paano tayo makakapagplano na bumili ng bahay na matitirhan ng ating pamilya kung wala tayong kasiguruhan sa ating trabaho?" she said.

Poe was invited as guest in the grand finals of the fireworks festival. The finalists were from Batangas, Valenzuela City and Bulacan. The event coincided with the 16th anniversary celebration of the Riverbanks Center.

After Alcasid belted out the Gobyerno na may Puso song, the sky brightened with the fireworks display of the competition participants. (PNA)

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PRO2 nets 11 drug pusher in Tuguegarao City

CAMP MARCELO A. ADDURU, Tuguegarao City, April 28 (PNA) -- The Police Regional Office 2 (PRO2) arrested 11 suspected drug traffickers, including four minors, as they implemented a search warrant against a suspected drug pusher in Apple Street, Barangay Pengue Ruyu in Tuguegarao City Wednesday.

PRO2 public information officer Chevalier Iringan today said the Tuguegarao City Police Station (TCPS) intelligence operatives together with SWAT PPSC implemented Search Warrant No. 01-2016 against Ace Antonio y Soriano, 27, single, mechanic and a resident of Apple Street, Pengue Ruyu, Tuguegarao City which resulted in the arrest of 10 other persons seen on the act of having pot session inside the suspect'ss house.

Police identified the arrested suspects as: Alan Aguilar y Gatdula, 35, of Liwan, Norte, Enrile, Cagayan; Nestor Tupas y Rico, 28, of Salvador Street, Zone 5, San Jose Baggao, Cagayan; Jefferson Danao y Sekopito, 18, of 143 Maharlika Highway, Leonarda, Tuguegarao City; Marjorie Chan y Gepila, 21, of 51 Burgos Street, Centro 7, Tuguegarao City; Sheila Mae Cobo y Cenas, 20, of 36 Bulacan Street, Quezon City, presently staying at Zone 7, Buntun, Tuguegarao City; Janet Calebag y Manuel, 18, old of 53 A Pengue Ruyu, Tuguegarao City and four minors, all students in Tuguegarao City.

Recovered from the suspects were five pieces of heat sealed transparent plastic sachet containing white crystalline substance believed to be shabu, eight pieces empty transparent plastic sachet containing residue believed to be shabu and 32 pieces tooter placed inside a plastic lunch box.

Also confiscated were firearms and items: one unit Caliber .22 Riffle; one Caliber .45 described as Para Ordance with Serial no. 486237; one dismantled Caliber .38 with serial no. 3394; one dismantled Caliber .38 Derringer F.I.E. and two dismantled/dilapidated motorcycles and spare parts.

Recovered items were inventoried and firearms were submitted to the Regional Crime Laboratory Office for Ballistics Examination while the suspects were administered drug test examination and put under custody of Tuguegarao City Police Station. The suspect-minors will be properly turned over to CSWD for proper disposition. (PNA) 

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Bulacan a Hall of Famer in Agri-Pinoy Rice Achievers Award

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, April 22 (PNA) -- The province of Bulacan has elevated as Hall of Famer in the Agri-Pinoy Rice Achievers Award of the Department of Agriculture (DA), for its invaluable contribution to the national rice sufficiency.

For three consecutive years or from 2012 to 2014, Bulacan has maintained a production yield above the national level despite the problems in irrigation and calamity occurrences experienced by the province.

"It is a great honor for Bulacan to be recognized as a Hall of Famer in Agri-Pinoy. The award is a clear manifestation that we are committed in supporting the agricultural endeavors of the DA in providing sufficient and safe farm produce to the rest of the nation,” Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado said.

Aside from the plaque of recognition, Bulacan also received Php1 million worth of project intended for the province's rice productivity enhancement.

The province was also lauded for its appropriate interventions and support to the farmers including the conduct of Palay Check Farmers’ Field School, provision of small-scale irrigation support (STW/OSP), provision of farm machineries and post-harvest facilities, access to financing (SIKAT SAKA Program) coupled with the provision of inputs like organic fertilizer and locally funded seed subsidy.

According to Provincial Agricultural Office, the innovations on the promotion of production technologies through School-on-Air program aired over Radyo Bulacan, the conduct of “Usapang Palay” using a mobile techno-van, and capability building support to AEWs also helped the province in heeding the government’s call in increasing yield that contributes to the attainment of the nation’s thrust of food sufficiency.

Other “Hall of Famer” provinces include Pangasinan, Ilocos Norte, Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela, Occidental Mindoro and Davao Del Sur.

The Agri-Pinoy Rice Achievers Award is an annual event organized by the DA National Rice Program in recognition to the outstanding and significant contributions of the local government units, irrigators association, agricultural extension workers and local farm technicians to the Philippine rice industry. (PNA) 

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MRT-7 breaks ground; set to be operational by 2020 - By Azer N. Parrocha

MANILA, April 20 (PNA) -- Construction of the long-awaited Metro Rail Transit Line 7 (MRT-7) finally kicked off on Wednesday morning with a groundbreaking ceremony at the Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City.

The Php69.30-billion project includes the development of a 23-kilometer railway system with 14 stations from North Avenue, Quezon City to San Jose del Monte City, Bulacan, passing through Commonwealth Avenue and Quirino Highway in Novaliches.

It is expected to initially accommodate 350,000 daily passengers and shorten travel time from the current 3.5 hours on the road to one hour once completed and operational by its target date in April 2020.

Ultimately, about 800,000 passengers per day — mostly residents from Novaliches, Quezon City and Caloocan City, Bulacan, and neighboring areas in the north are expected to benefit from a faster commute with the completion of the project.

The project also covers the development of an integrated transportation system, which includes the said railway system, a 22-km highway from the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) Bocaue interchange, and an intermodal transport terminal (ITT) adjacent to the San Jose del Monte Station.

This way, commuters can take public utility vehicles (PUVs) or private cars and use the new highway from NLEX, alight at the ITT, and board the MRT-7 going to North Avenue, Quezon City.

President Benigno S. Aquino III led the groundbreaking ceremony, together with Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Secretary Joseph Emilio A. Abaya.

Also present was the president of San Miguel Corporation (SMC), the parent company of contractor Universal LRT Corporation (ULC), Ramon Ang.

Abaya welcomed the latest development, noting that the project is not only meant to provide better transport but also decongest traffic in Metro Manila and nearby areas in the north.

“The long-awaited MRT-7 will serve commuters who ply the heavily-congested Commonwealth Avenue area for work and school on a daily basis,” Abaya said.

“The new railway system will not only significantly lessen travel time along this corridor, but also help decongest traffic in Caloocan and NLEX,” he added. (PNA) 

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Former Bulacan town vice mayor killed

PANDI, Bulacan, April 19 (PNA) — Police are investigating whether the Monday evening ambush-killing of a former vice mayor here is politically related or not.

Police said that former Vice Mayor Roberto Rivera, 61, resident of Barangay Bunsuran, was driving his white Nissan pick-up truck and heading home from his piggery farm in Barangay Manatal here when he was shot several times at point-blank range at around 6 p.m.

Sketchy reports said that a lone suspect shot Rivera three times in the head and once in the body.

The victim was brought to the Rogaciano District Hospital in nearby Sta. Maria town but was declared dead-on-arrival by doctors.

Chief Inspector Victor Bernabe, town police chief, said investigators gathered from some witnesses that the suspect boarded a tricycle before transferring to a blue car after shooting the former vice mayor.

“We are following leads that will help us establish the identity of the killer. We still cannot say if the incident is politically related since the victim is not running for any position in the coming elections,” he said.

Relatives of Rivera told police that the victim had received death threats but ignored them.

Rivera was a known staunch supporter of mayoral candidate Celestino Marquez of the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan Party, who is running against reelectionist Mayor Enrico Roque in the May 9 polls.

Rivera served as vice mayor of Pandi from 1992 to 1998.

He started a farm business which he was personally managing while at the same time supporting the candidacy of mayoral candidate Marquez. (PNA) 
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Villegas leaves to voters Duterte's comments on rape victim - By Ferdinand G. Patinio

MANILA, April 18 (PNA) -- A high-ranking official of the Catholic Church is letting the public, particularly the voters to decide if they will vote for presidential candidate Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who is facing another controversy regarding his comment on the case of rape victim which happened in his city in 1989.

Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) Archbishop Socrates Villegas said that it was up for the people if they wanted to support the presidential bid of the local chief executive.

“Judge for yourself if this is the right choice,” he said in his Twitter account, @frsocvillegas.

The Lingayen-Dagupan prelate noted that he was keeping his personal opinion on the issue to himself.

“I will keep my personal judgment to myself,” he added.

On the other hand, vice presidential candidate Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. said that the comment made by Duterte is inappropriate.

“Nagulat kami. It seems unfortunate and I can only describe it as inappropriate. Biktima ‘yung tao ‘tapos dinagdagan pa natin,” he said in an interview in Bulacan, where he accompanied his tandem, Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, who was the speaker of the commencement exercises at the Bulacan State University in Malolos City on Tuesday.

Marcos noted that the mayor took the joke too far because the life of a victim of a crime was involved.

“He took a step too far. Kawawa naman yung biktima. Let’s be sensitive to someone who has already suffered as a victim of a crime,” the independent vice presidential said in a separate interview at the Manila Polo Club in Makati City during a luncheon hosted by former Court of Appeals Justice Manuel Lazaro.

Duterte has made the headlines again over his comment on the rape of an Australian woman missionary, which happened several years ago. (PNA) 

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Pena commends Makati cops for arrest of suspected robber, killer-rapist of taxi passengers

MANILA, April 18 (PNA) -- Acting Makati City Mayor Kid Peña lauded the Makati police for the swift arrest last Thursday of Nitro Ison alias “Ricky Ramos”, the suspect tagged in a series of robbery/hold-up, rape and homicide cases in various parts of Metro Manila that started last January.

“I congratulate the Makati police force, headed by Police Sr. Supt. Ernesto Barlam, for the speedy arrest and detention of the suspect who has been positively identified by some of the victims. By doing their job well, they have taken a very dangerous criminal off the streets and paved the way for justice to be served to all his victims and their families,” Peña said.

The mayor said he was very pleased with the outcome of the diligent efforts of the city police force, as his administration does not tolerate impunity. “We shall apply the full force of the law on anyone who commits a crime in our city, especially when the safety and well-being of our residents, transient workers and visitors are at stake,” he vowed.

“Despite the busy campaign period, we still give top priority to keeping the city safe and secure for our constituents and other stakeholders,” Peña added.

In a report to the mayor, Barlam said that Ison, 24 years old, single and a resident of Mandaluyong City, was arrested on April 14, 2016 at San Miguel, Bulacan, and was immediately brought to Camp Crame for further investigation.

Barlam said based on initial investigation, the suspect had been imprisoned in Manila for robbery. He said it was last January that Ison started his modus of posing as a passenger then forcibly taking a taxicab from the driver. He then used the cab to prey on female passengers, whom he allegedly robbed at gunpoint and even raped. One of three victims from Mandaluyong City reported being raped by Ison. The authorities also noted that the incidents happened on the 19th of every month.

Barlam said the suspect has also been linked to the murder of the widow of the late Dominic “Papadom” Gamboa of the Tropical Depression Band.

Amparo Santa Romana-Gamboa, widow of Papadom, was found dead early morning of Feb. 10 by a scavenger at a dump site at Kalayaan Avenue corner Bisaya Street in Barangay Guadalupe Nuevo. The victim, a call center transcriber, was known to usually take a cab going to and from her office in Makati.

Chief Inspector Shirley Bao, head of the Makati police investigation branch, said an abandoned taxi near the area, a Toyota Vios with license number UVY 402, was found with traces of blood, particularly on the passenger seat, seat belt and handbreak. This led authorities to suspect the vehicle’s role in the perpetration of the said crime, which was confirmed when the blood matched that of the victim’s.

Ison was subsequently linked to the Gamboa case after taxi driver Avelino Moran identified him as the passenger who stole his cab on Feb. 8 as they passed through C-5 Extension, Merville, Pasay. (PNA) 

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PDEA-3 nets notorious drug dealer

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga, April 18 (PNA) -- Agents of the Central Luzon Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA 3) arrested Sunday a know drug dealer and seized some 200 grams of "shabu" or methamphetamine hydrochloride worth almost a million pesos in a buy bust operation in Quezon City.

PDEA 3 Regional Director Gladys Rosales identified the suspect as Victor Guilani, 42, and resident of Litex, Commonwealth, Quezon City.

Rosales said Guilani is a notorious drug pusher who is responsible for the bulk distribution of shabu in Bulacan and Pampanga.

“PDEA agents were able to negotiate for the purchase of 200 grams of shabu for Php 300,000 from Guilani and first agreed to meet in Apalit, Pampanga then in Malolos, Bulacan and eventually in Matandang Balara, Quezon City where he was collared after handing over the illegal substance to a PDEA agent who acted as poseur buyer,” Rosales added.

The apprehension of the suspect resulted in confiscation of four medium sized plastic sachets containing 200 grams of shabu with an estimated street value of Php940,000 and the marked money used in the operation.

The suspect is now detained at the PDEA 3 Jail Facility in Camp Olivas, City of San Fernando, this province. (PNA) 

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President Aquino returns to Bulacan, asks people to support continuity of govt projects

MEYCAUAYAN, Bulacan, April 16 (PNA) -- President Aquino returned to Bulacan on Friday and met the local leaders and community there insisting the need for the continuity of the programs that he initiated in the province.

He reported about the PPP projects in Bulacan, saying his administration poured a huge amount of money for the province in the past several years.

The government and the private sector have so far spent Php 116.94 billion for the province's PPP projects, he said in a speech at the Meycauayan College on Friday.

One of these projects include MRT 7, in which the groundbreaking will be held soon. The project will shorten travel time from Quezon City to San Jose del Monte, Bulacan, bringing great relief for commuters.

The President also reported that C-6, which was originally planned to start from Taguig to Quezon City will be extended up to Meycauayan, Bulacan to ease traffic congestion.

As to the budget coming from the national government, from 2005 to 2010, the previous administration spent Php 5 billion for infrastructure.

Under the present administration, from 2011 to 2016, the government's budget for infrastructure reached Php 19.04 billion, according to the President.

There is also continuous dredging of the Labangan Channel in Hagonoy as well as the Marilao-Meycauayan-Obando River, he said.

Next year, the bridge in the Plaridel Bypass Road, will be finished once JICA made a confirmation on the project. This is part of the 107,000 lineal meters of bridges and 18,000 kilometers of roads constructed under the present government.

For irrigation system, the government allocated Php 1.38 billion while a separate Php 115.86 million went to the province's post-harvest machineries and equipment.

For health facilities and enhancement program, the government spent Php 181.43 million. The President also said that 2.47 million Bulakenos are enjoying PhilHealth benefits and they are part of the 93 million Filipinos covered by PhilHealth.

In the education sector, he said his administration has so far built 6,758 classrooms in Bulacan.

For job generation, he said TESDA's TWSP program produced 37,000 scholars who recently graduated. Current job placement is at 72 percent under the TWSP program, much higher than the 28.5 percent during the previous administration.

The Aquino government also made major strides in social welfare and security. In 2010, there were more than 5,000 households under the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

Now, the President said there are 68,348 households enjoying benefits from 4Ps. They are part of the 4.6 million households benefitting from the program.

The President asked Bulakenos to choose the right leaders this coming May election in order for the present programs to continue.

Choosing administration candidates will ensure that those programs could benefit more Bulakenos, he said. (PNA)

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Cayetano receives public apology from ALDUB prayer warriors during rally

SAN PEDRO CITY, Laguna, April 16 (PNA) -- Vice Presidential contender Senator Alan Peter Cayetano received a public apology on Friday evening from the Alliance for Duterte and Bongbong (ALDUB) prayer warriors and civil society as among the Duterte camp’s sponsors of the campaign rally at the San Pedro City’s La Marea subdivision here.

Bishop Jessie Ramos, national director of the Hope Church and leader of the prayer warriors and faith-based group apologized to Cayetano before a mammoth crowd that their “ALDUB” group’s vice presidential preference is Senator Bongbong Marcos.

For his part, presidential contender Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte acknowledged the ALDUB as his strong supporters and even raised Cayetano’s hand during the rally.

Bishop Ramos issued the statement to shun any pretense and appeased ALDUB supporters of the situation that Cayetano happened to be there.

He told Cayetano that he supported the political career of the legislator’s father then Senator Renato “Compañero” Cayetano in the past.

The religious leader also led the pray-over en masse for the Duterte team national bets and local aspirants and supporters after the campaign speeches.

Cayetano arrived Friday evening in San Pedro City, Laguna with presidential running mate Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte from their tandem’s political sortie in Mindoro on Friday.

The senator thanked the crowd who waited for almost five hours and praised their excitement and clamor for reform and change.

He criticized the snail-paced internet services of telecommunications firms despite huge gross earnings amounting to Php 300 billion and estimated net income of Php 50 billion per year for calls and texts.

Cayetano also pointed to realities of government’s lack on health and medical facilities why people from Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Bulacan go to the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) in Manila where it has complete medical facilities and expert doctors.

The senator proposed to prioritize the use of government funds to also address basic services such as health care, education and agriculture instead of focusing budget allocations for telecommunications due to politically-motivated monetary considerations.

Cayetano said his presidential running mate Duterte made it clear they would not accept any political campaign contributions from the wealthy businessmen who had businesses with government.

He said “in the government we have a choice of either serving the interest of the people or the interest of the few rich” because opting to serve the vested and business interest of the wealth few means abandoning the interest and general welfare of people.

Cayetano assured the Duterte camp would never give up on the Filipino people in their fight against corruption, criminality and illegal drugs.

The solon expounded that the exercise of political will requires a strong leadership to enjoin collective efforts even to the grassroots to enforce compliance and implementation of a policy and adherence to the rule of law.

He added that their campaign platform for reform and change includes the concerted plans of stakeholders and an “order of battle” to eradicate crime, illegal drugs and corruption for safe, secured and peaceful communities.(PNA) 

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PNP nabs suspected robber, killer-rapist of taxi passengers - By Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan

MANILA, April 15 (PNA) – The Philippine National Police (PNP) arrested the suspect in the series of robberies with rape among female passengers of a stolen taxi in metropolis, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Chief Police Director Joel Pagdilao said on Friday.

Pagdilao identified the suspect as Nitro Ison, alias "Ricky Ramos", 24, resident of Blk-41 Zone-7 Welferville Cmpd., Brgy., Addition Hills, Mandaluyong City.

Ison was nabbed in Brgy. Santa Lucia, San Miguel, Bulacan on Thursday afternoon by virtue of Alias Warrant of Arrest issued by Hon. Presiding Judge Alma Crispina B. Collado-Lacorte of Manila RTC Branch 21, for Robbery with Unnecessary Violence and Warrant of Arrest issued by Hon. Judge Ronald B. Moreno RTC Branch 147, Makati for Robbery.

Pagdilao called on other victims to come forward and identify him as the same person who robbed or assaulted them, and to file formal complaints aswell.

Ison faces seven cases in Makati, including the killing of the widow of Filipino musician Dominic Gamboa, also known as Papa Dom of reggae band Tropical Depression, who was found dead at a garbage dump in Makati City last Feb. 10.

Police said Maria Amparo was found dead with a gunshot wound on the head under heaps of trash at Kalayaan Avenue corner Bisaya Street, barangay Guadalupe Nuevo and was only identified by family members.

The 24-year old suspect was linked in a series of carnapping, robbery, homicide and rape in the cities of Mandaluyong, Quezon City, Makati and Manila.

The suspect is now detained at the Makati City lock-up jail. (PNA) 

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Bulacan State University holds gubernatorial candidates forum 2016

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, April 3 (PNA) -- The Bulacan State University (BSU) hosted on Saturday a forum for candidates in the gubernatorial race in this province.

The forum, organized by the graduate school of BSU, presented questions to the three gubernatorial candidates -- incumbent Gov. Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado (Liberal Party), Josefina dela Cruz (Nationalist Peoples Coalition) and Roderick Tiongson (United Nationalist Alliance) -- anchored on health, education, poverty alleviation, agriculture, peace and order, tourism, employment opportunities, land conversion and infrastructure projects.

The candidates were given ample time to present their answers, plans and programs on the issues.

In the peace and order situation, Alvarado said that the police and other peacekeeping forces are doing their best to combat crime and other problems by having a peaceful atmosphere conducive to investments while, at the same time, creating an atmosphere not conducive to lawless elements.

Both Dela Cruz and Tiongson, on the other hand, said that the “high crime rate” should be properly addressed.

On progress and development Dela Cruz centered on entrepreneurship and providing right courses for students.

Tiongson, for his part, emphasized the creation of more farm-to-market roads and boosting of tourism programs.

Alvarado said that while his rivals are proposing such “dreams,” his administration has already set into motion various development programs that are now spurring growth and progress provincewide and at the same time, generating employment and jobs for the people of Bulacan as well.

“We are no longer living in dreams, the people of Bulacan are now enjoying the reality of it. Promises are different to what is real happening. Our constituents have started to feel now the continuing progress and development in our province,” Alvarado said.

The panelists also asked the three candidates on how they will improve services at the provincial hospital (now Bulacan Medical Center) which dela Cruz said should focus on bringing in more doctors and specialists while Tiongson proposed the bringing of anti-rabies vaccines and other medicines to the barangay level.

Alvarado, for his part, explained that the Bulacan Medical Center is now being transformed into a modern hospital which can equal the services of modern private hospitals.

At present, he said patients are now being treated in an air-conditioned emergency room and maternity wards.

He also said that the BMC has now a modern laboratory facility. He added that the number of dialysis machines has increased from 10 to 40 units and the intensive care unit is also being upgraded.

To emphasize the present situation in the province, Alvarado said that “our leaders should not make promises we cannot keep, but we must keep the promises we already made.”

The forum ended with the three candidates shaking and holding hands in a show of a united stand for a clean and orderly election. (PNA) 

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Bulacan top provincial execs get 2016 Golden Globe Filipino Achiever awards

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, April 1 (PNA) -- A prestigious award-giving body has bestowed to Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado a golden “Medal of Distinction” for being one of 2016 outstanding Filipino achievers in the field of public service.

Alvarado together with Vice Governor Daniel Fernando were among the recipient of this year’s Golden Globe Annual Awards for Filipino Achievers.

Director Ramon Juanito Balunes, chairman of the award’s research committee, said that the Golden Globe Annual Awards for Outstanding Filipino Achiever (Medal of Distinction) is conferred to individuals that have noteworthy achievements.

“Our researchers have taken on the daunting task of seeking out the shining stars, the hidden treasures and the diamonds in the rough, and bring them to the pedestal of fame that they deserve. They have conducted research, performed polls and tested services to determine who among the exceptional pool of nominees stand out and are worthy of the seal and endorsement of the Golden Globe Awards for Filipino Achievers," Balunes said.

”This recognition highlights every individual’s milestones of success and victory worthy of commendation and high regard,” he added.

Balunes said that Alvarado, who has been leading the people of Bulacan by completing his term as a municipal mayor of Hagonoy, then as congressman of the province’s first legislative district, a one term vice governor before serving his province as governor (for six years) anchored on his now famous battle cry-slogan “Lalawigan Ko’y Ikaw, Lingkod Mo’y Ako”— was chosen as one of this year’s awardees for being a “man of the people” leading his province to the greater heights of excellence through good governance.

The award giving body also recognized the visions of the Bulacan governor, who was also appointed by President Benigno S. Aquino III as chairman of the Regional Development Council in Central Luzon, for pursuing the game-changing concept of public-private partnership with the implementation of the Bulacan Program for Rapid Industrialization and Development (Bulacan-PRIDE). (PNA) 

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Bicol cops nab 10 wanted men

LEGAZPI CITY, March 30 (PNA) -- Different units of the Philippine National Police Bicol regional office arrested 10 wanted persons within this week, the office’s spokesperson said Wednesday.

Senior Insp. Malu Calubaquib, Police Regional Office 5 spokesperson, identified those apprehended as Abelardo O. Magdamit, Teofisto Rosales, Jozel Y. Suriaga, Randy P. Pajares, Raul P. Zamudio, Cornelio P. Austral, Vincent B. Saar, Jayson V. Bercero, Robert N. Oberos and Rene C. Claridad.

Magdamit was caught in Barangay Sta. Cruz, Ligao City at about 9:10 a.m. Monday by elements of Ligao City Police Station (CPS) led by PO3 Errol Escopete by virtue of a warrant of arrest (WOA) issued by Blancaflor V. Joven-Salgado, presiding judge of MCTC, Ligao City for attempted homicide.

Also on Monday, San Pascual MPS (Masbate) personnel led by PO2 Gerald R. Rosales served a WOA against Rosales on order of Judge Teofilo B. Tambago of Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 46, Masbate City, for violation of Sections 11 and 12 of Article 2 of RA 9165 with a bail of PHP200,000.

Operatives of the Baleno MPS led by PO3 Noli D. Manlapas cornered Suriaga in Baleno, Masbate with a WOA signed by Judge Igmedio Emilio F. Camposano of MCTC, Aroroy-Baleno for theft.

PO1 Joel Vergara of Paracale MPS arrested Pajares for robbery inside the Camarines Norte Provincial Jail in Daet, Camarines Norte on order of Judge Dara SJ Mallorca Torres of MTC Paracale, Camarines Norte.

Members of Mercedes MPS led by PO2 Mardi A Gonzales handcuffed Zamudio in Mercedes, Camarines Norte armed with a WOA from Judge Victoria C. Dino-Reyes MTC Mercedes, Camarines Norte for attempted homicide.

Austral did not resist arrest at his residence in Barangay Itangon, Bula, Camarines Sur when served a WOA for murder penned by Judge Marvel C. Clavicilla of RTC Branch 33, Pili, Camarines Sur.

Saar was caught in the act by PO3 Dennis A. Altez, duty officer of Naga City PS Intelligence Branch Office, while climbing the wall of the comfort room of the office at Barangay Sta. Cruz after forcibly destroying the ceiling made of plywood.

He was charged with attempted rape.

Uson MPS (Masbate) members led by Insp. Arnel N. Buncaras nabbed Bercero by virtue of a WOA for theft issued by Rolando G. Sandigan, presiding judge of MTCC, Masbate City.

Magarao MPS officers apprehended Oberos at his residence in Magarao, Camarines Sur on order of Judge Rosita L. Lalwani, presiding judge of RTC Branch 28, Naga City.

Claridad was captured by joint elements of Tigaon MPS (Camarines Sur) led by PO3 Wilmor B. Lontoc and Ocampo MPS led by PO3 Jay C. Papin on order of Judge Francisco P. Felizmenio, presiding judge, RTC Branch 19, Malolos City, Bulacan for robbery with PHP100,000 bail recommended.(PNA) 

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3 faith healers 'crucified' in Bulacan town 
By Emil G. Gamos

PAOMBONG, Bulacan, March 25 (PNA) -- Under the scorching heat of the noon-day sun, male actors playing the role of Roman centurions brutally whipped a faith healer who fell into the ground face-down before he was dragged up to carry a wooden cross towards a man-made Golgotha besides a Catholic chapel in Barangay Kapitangan here as the old bloody Lenten tradition continues in this province.

The faith healer, Michael Katigbak, is among the most popular penitents being awaited by thousands of spectators in his reenactment of the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ.

This was also the sixth consecutive time that Katigbak was nailed to a wooden cross.

Two other faith healers were also nailed to crosses in the farming village of Kapitangan where thousands of devotees, local and foreign tourists, flocked every Holy Week to witness the centuries old bloody Lenten ritual.

After Katigbak, female faith healer Precy Valencia was equally dragged by “Roman centurions” to the crucifixion site where she stayed nailed on the cross for at least five minutes.

Before fulfilling her Holy Week vow, Valencia told local newsmen that she always received messages from heaven instructing her to follow the passion of the Lord Jesus Christ.

When asked what is the Lord’s message this Good Friday, Valencia said it is only for herself and the people who would seek her help to cure their sickness.

Another faith healer JonJon Tanael, was also “crucified” for the third consecutive time to fulfill his Holy Week vow.

Retired centurion Wilfredo Caparas, recalled that he started playing the role of a Roman centurion when he was 18 years old.

Now 80 years old, Caparas still joined the Lenten ritual in their villages by taking part in the praying for the faith healers who will be nailed to the cross.

“We have nailed to the cross more penitents and three of them were "crucified" for 15 times," Caparas said.

He was referring to faith healers Lucy Reyes, Amparo “Mother Amparing” Santos and Buboy Dionisio who completed their vows by getting nailed to the cross for 15 consecutive years.

Amid the multitude of crowds, the observance of Holy Week in Barangay Kapitangan was very peaceful and orderly, according to Chief Inspector Leo Estorque, the town police chief.

Estorque said the crowd began arriving Wednesday night to witness the bathing in oil of the centuries old and venerated wooden cross (also known as Sta. Cruz) and the image of the crucified Christ.

Old folks believes that the blessed oil can heal ailments.

Estorque said that the bloody Lenten rites began late Thursday afternoon where scores of bare-back flagellants whipped their bloodied backs with stringed bamboo sticks.

He said that this continues as early as 7 a.m. on Good Friday as the bloodied flagellants made their way to the Catholic chapel and made the station of the cross by lying spread-eagle while being brutally whipped.

He said that the provincial government headed by Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado has deployed ambulances with paramedics while his son Jose Antonio “Kuya Jonathan” Sy-Alvarado set up a first aid station to assist the crowds as well as the penitents.

Liz Mungcal, head of the provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office said public assistance centers were also set up in other crowd drawing areas like the Grotto in San Jose del Monte City, the Divine Mercy Shrine in Marilao and the Banal na Bundok in San Miguel.

She said emergency response teams were also deployed in strategic areas to assists motorists and tourists. (PNA) 

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Bulacan sets up ‘Lakbay Alalay’ to assist travelers this Holy Week

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, March 23 (PNA) -- The provincial government, through the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO), has set up round-the-clock travel assistance to guide the motorists and travelers passing or heading to the province this Holy Week.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado said that Semana Santa Lakbay Alalay (SUMVAC) 2016 is all set wherein Bulacan Rescue Team as well as its partner agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are now activated to give immediate response in times emergency.

He said that assistance booth and first aid station will be set up in the two pilgrimage sites such as Barangay Kapitangan, Paombong on March 24 to 25; Divine Mercy National Shrine in Marilao on March 23 to 25 and in front of the Provincial Capitol from March 21 to 28.

Meanwhile, PDRRMO head Felicisima Mungcal reminded residents to implement safety measures, especially those leaving their houses this Lenten season and during summer vacation.

She also said that the public should immediately call the Bulacan Rescue hotline number 791-0566 or 117 which is the emergency hotline of the Department of Interior and Local Government in case an emergency arises. (PNA) 

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Three most wanted persons in Bulacan fell

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, March 17 (PNA) -- Police arrested Wednesday three most wanted persons in Bulacan through the intensified "Lambat Sibat" operations.

Senior Supt. Timoteo Pacleb, officer-in-charge of the Bulacan PNP, identified the arrested persons as Teopisto Cielo, no. 3 most wanted person, of Balagtas; Reynaldo Lizarondo, no. 9, of Hagonoy; and Rolando De Luna, no. 10, of Hagonoy.

Cielo was arrested by joint elements of Balagtas Municipal Police Station (MPS), Provincial Special Operation Group (PSOG) and Regional Intelligence Unit 3 (RIU) by virtue of warrant of arrest issued by Judge Virgilita Castillo, of RTC Branch 12, Malolos City, Bulacan.

He is presently under the custody of Balagtas PNP.

Lizarondo and De Luna, on the other hand, were arrested by virtue of the alias warrant of arrest issued by presiding judge Gregorio Sampaga of RTC Branch 78, Malolos City.

They were detained at Hagonoy lock-up cells for proper disposition. (PNA) 

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Bulacan intensifies anti-rabies drive

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, March 11 (PNA) -- The provincial government of Bulacan, in partnership with the Department of Health (DOH) and Department of Agriculture (DA), is conducting a province-wide program against rabies starting this March until April of this year.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado said the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) is doing a weekly mass vaccination and veterinary medical missions in each municipality wherein there will be free castration, free consultation, free deworming and free treatment not only for dogs but for other domestic pets as well.

The mass vaccination for animals started in the City of San Jose Del Monte last March 1 and in Plaridel from March 8-10, March 11 in Calumpit, March 14 in Balagtas and March 15-18 in Hagonoy.

The schedule of vaccination will resume after Holy Week, from April 5-8 in Pandi, April 12-15, in Guiguinto, April 19-22 in Baliwag and from April 26-29 in Santa Maria.

“Last year, we garnered the most number of vaccinated dogs here in Region III which is 216,474, that is more than 70 percent of the total dog population which is the regular target of every province or municipality,” Dr. Voltaire Basinang, head of the PVO, said.

Basinang also said that the province has dog pounds in the towns of Guiguinto, Santa Maria, and cities of San Jose Del Monte, Meycauayan and Malolos that are actively searching for rabies cases.

“Among all the provinces in the Philippines, we in Bulacan are the only ones who are actively searching for rabies cases. It is our province, therefore, it is our responsibility to eradicate these cases. No excuses. I am not making any promises but I think we are on the right track,” Basinang said.

He also clarified that despite having high number of animal bites on record, Bulacan has lower cases of human transmitted rabies and is continuously decreasing.

Rose May Fernando, rabies coordinator of the Provincial Public Health Office, said that there were 14 mortality cases in 2012; 13 deaths in 2013; 11 in 2014 and five in 2015.

Last year, the province gave complete anti-rabies dose to 19,676 Bulakenyos.

”We are reminding all Bulakenyo pet owners to have their pets vaccinated against rabies and be responsible pet owners,” Basinang concluded. (PNA) 

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Two PNP generals make 'sentimental journey' to Bulacan - By Emil G. Gamos

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan, March 9 (PNA) -- Two police generals went down memory lane when they made a “sentimental journey” to the places where they were assigned shortly after graduating from the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) many years ago.

Chief Supt. Richard A. Albano, regional director of Police Regional Office 4, and PNP-Civil Security Group director Elmer Soria, were teary eyed after their former operatives saluted them during their comeback visit to this camp Tuesday afternoon.

“It feels good to be back home,” said Albano, who together with some media friends and retired policemen who served under him when he was still the chief of the intelligence branch of the Bulacan Police Provincial Office under then police colonel Noe A. Wong (now a retired police general), traced back his days as a young police officer.

Albano asked new police officers if they have experienced ghostly encounters at the quarters of the police officers inside this camp, to which they replied “positive, sir”.

The bemedalled regional director of PRO 4 also saluted his former men and thanked them including retired SP04 Teodulo Tangson, who was marked for liquidation by the Sparrow Unit of the New People’s Army during the height of the insurgency war in Central Luzon.

“We were obliged to live in a safehouse to protect him (Tangson). Eventually we were able to neutralize that group,” he said.

He also gave young police recruits some tips on becoming good police officers by remembering “KSA” which means “knowledge, skills, and attitude.”

Albano, who also served as police chief of Marilao, Calumpit and Meycauayan City, was also instrumental in the successful operations of the crack police mobile group of the 170th PNP Company known as “Ruses de Guerre” which was then headed by the innovative Senior Inspector Leon Nilo dela Cruz, now a retired PNP general.

Albano, who was then the executive officer of the 170th PNP Company, has led several operations which led to the neutralization of dreaded criminal gangs and notorious armed drug dealers operating in Central Bulacan.

With three police cars named “Pursuit”, “Tomahawk” and Interceptor” at his disposal, Albano under the supervision of Captain Dela Cruz, conducted a series of police operations which also resulted in the busting of highway robbery gangs responsible for bus hold-ups along the North Luzon Expressway.

His colorful exploits at the 170th PNP Company was equally followed and continued by Soria, who also served as executive officer under then Chief Inspector now retired PNP General Roberto Rongavilla.

“It feels good to see your former colleagues and friends. Gen. Albano and I cannot help but feel emotional about this. We grew up here," Soria said.

He said another police general, Chief Supt. Ronald Estilles, was also part of the “sentimental journey” but was not available for interview.

Bulacan PNP Press Corps president Orlan L. Mauricio of Manila Standard and Metro News Bulacan, who chronicled the colorful exploits of the police generals when he was still desk editor of People’s Tonight, said Albano, Soria and Estilles honed their abilities as seasoned lawmen in Bulacan and have figured with many armed skirmishes with insurgents and heavily armed-criminal gangs.

“They became good police officers because of their exemplary stint in Bulacan," he said. (PNA) 

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Dope dealer killed in shootout with Bulacan cops

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan, March 9 (PNA)-- A notorious drug pusher was killed in a shootout with police anti-drug operatives during a buy-bust operation in Barangay San Juan, San Miguel town Monday night.

Senior Supt. Timoteo G. Pacleb, officer-in-charge of the Bulacan Police provincial Office, identified the slain dope dealer as Jake Pangyarihan alias “Badjeck”, 23, married, and a resident of said barangay.

Pacleb said that Pangyarihan was listed as the No. 4 drug priority target of the San Miguel Police Station and has been long been under surveillance prior to the drug sting operation that led to the armed encounter.

He said that personnel of San Miguel Municipal Police Station, in coordination with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) 3, conducted an anti-illegal drug operation in the community.

He said that the shootout ensued after Pangyarihan tried to escape after selling one sachet of white crystalline substance suspected as methamphetamine hydrochloride otherwise known as “shabu” to a poseur buyer in exchange of PHP500 and fired towards the operatives, prompting the police to return fire that triggered an exchange of gunfire, resulting to the death of the suspect .

No casualty was reported on the police operatives’ side.

Scene of the Crime Operative (SOCO) recovered the pieces of evidence, namely two heat sealed transparent plastic sachet with suspected shabu; one improvised pistol (sumpak) loaded with one 12GA cartridge; two 12 GA cartridge; three caliber 9mm fired cartridge; one improvised aluminum foil toother; and one improvised aluminum foil strip with residue.

The suspect's cadaver was brought Cathedral Funeral Homes in Barangay Camias, San Miguel, Bulacan for autopsy while the recovered pieces of evidence were brought to Bulacan Crime Laboratory Office for custody and appropriate examination. (PNA) 

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PDEA-3 seizes Php60-M marijuana; arrests 3 persons in Pampanga

CAMP OLIVAS,Pampanga, March 5 (PNA) --Operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-3 (PDEA 3) on Saturday confiscated 60 kilos of marijuana worth Php60 million and arrested three persons in a drug sting in the City of San Fernando, Pampanga.

PDEA 3 Regional Director Gladys Rosales identified the arrested as Menalao Flores, 40; Israel Flores, 32; and Carlu Quiambao, 37; all residents of Baliuag, Bulacan.

Rosales said the agents initially were able to strike a deal with the suspects for 10 kilos of marijuana and met along Macarthur Highway in Barangay San Agustin, City of San Fernando.

The agents, she said discovered another bundle of marijuana stalks from the suspects during the operation.

"The sting yielded 43 bricks of marijuana, one bundle of marijuana and the recovery of the marked money used in the operation," Rosales said, adding that the anti drug bust was the largest marijuana haul in Pampanga.

Meanwhile, PDEA Director General Arturo Cacdac Jr. commended the PDEA 3 for the arrest of the high value targets and another successful high impact operation.

The suspects are now detained at PDEA Jail Facility inside this camp. (PNA) 

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Hundreds of Bulacan students to get summer jobs thru SPES

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, March 4 (PNA) -- A total of 164 students in this province will get summer jobs through this year’s Special Program for Employment of Students (SPES) of the provincial government of Bulacan and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado said the program which will start in April up to May aims to help underprivileged but deserving students pay their education by providing additional income through SPES every summer vacation.

”The provincial government wants to help the youths prepare for their future by providing jobs during summer season,” the governor said.

The SPES beneficiaries will receive a salary of which 60 percent will come from their employer while the remaining 40 percent will be shouldered by the DOLE.

Kristine Plamenco, a student of Bachelor of Arts in Communication at Baliwag University, said the program helped her a lot in pursuing her college education.

”Through SPES, I was able to help my parents in paying my school expenses. At the same time, I’ve learned a lot,” Plamenco said, who is a SPES beneficiary for the past two years.

The SPES is being implemented by the Provincial Youth, Sports, Employment and Development Office - Bulacan Provincial Public Employment Service Office (PESO) wherein deserving students are given opportunities to work in public and private agencies. (PNA) 

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Bulacan's top fugitive, 3 others fall in series of police sting

CAMP GEN ALEJO S. SANTOS, Bulacan, March 3 (PNA) -- Bulacan police arrested Wednesday the no. 1 most wanted person, along with three other priority targets during a series of manhunt operations in this province.

Bulacan police officer-in-charge Senior Supt. Timoteo G. Pacleb identified the arrested top fugitive as Jayson Cruz, a resident of Villa Prescila Subdivision, Barangay Cut Cot, Pulilan Bulacan.

Pacleb said Cruz was arrested by personnel of Bulacan Provincial Intelligence Branch by virtue of a warrant of arrest for violation of Republic Act 6539 (carnapping) issued by Judge Teodora Gonzales of Regional Trial Court, Branch 14, City of Malolos, Bulacan with a recommended bail bond of PHP180,000.

Cruz is also suspected to be involved in the series of motorcycle theft in Pulilan town and other nearby areas.

Likewise, police arrested Amando Sinson, and Leonardo Melo, who are no. 3 and no. 4 Lambat Sibat priority targets, respectively, in Pulilan town.

Pacleb also said that the San Miguel PNP under chief of police Supt. Joel Estaris reported the arrest of no. 4 most wanted of Malolos City identified as Wilfredo Miranda, a resident of Baluarte, Gapan City Nueva Ecija. (PNA) 

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1 killed, five others arrested in a drug buy-bust operation in Bulacan

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, March 2 (PNA)-- A drug dealer was killed while five others were arrested on Wednesday morning in a drug buy bust operation in San Miguel, Bulacan.

In a report reaching this camp, killed was Ferdinand Sanguyo Jr. alias Camote.

Investigation showed that Sanguyo tried to escape after selling a plastic sachet containing shabu to a poseur buyer and fired at the authorities prompting the policemen to fire back that resulted in his death.

Meanwhile, those arrested were identified as Gerald Peñaflor and Roselyn Peñaflor, both residents of Tunsuya, Malabon City; John Oliver Gonzales, a resident of Barangay Partida; Dennis Salvador, a resident of Barangay Sta. Ines and Ryan Sanguyo, a resident of Barangay Camias, all of San Miguel, Bulacan.

Confiscated from the suspects were six plastic sachets of suspected methamphetamine hydrochloride, also known as shabu; one caliber .38 revolver with ammunition, and assorted drug paraphernalia. (PNA) 

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Two notorious dope dealers fall in Bulacan sting

CAMP GEN. ALEJO S SANTOS, Bulacan, March 2 (PNA) -- Police anti-narcotics operatives have put an end to the nefarious drug trade of two notorious dope dealers in separate operations in the towns of Norzagaray and San Miguel, this province Tuesday afternoon.

Senior Supt. Timoteo G. Pacleb, officer-in-charge of the Bulacan Police Provincial Office, identified the arrested suspects as Francis Agustin, resident of Barangay Minuyan, Norzagaray and Junrey Cerdenia alias “Junrey Muyco”, water supply delivery boy and resident of Barangay San Jose, San Miguel.

Pacleb said Agustin is listed as No. 4 illegal drugs priority target of the Norzagaray Police Station while Cerdenia is listed as No. 5 priority target of the San Miguel Police Station.

According to the report of Norzagaray PNP, Agustin was arrested in Barangay Minuyan at around 3 p.m. Tuesday by virtue of warrant of arrest dated March 1, 2016 signed and issued by Judge Efren B. Tienzo of Regional Trial Court (RTC), Third Judicial Region Branch 18.

Cerdenia, on the other hand, was arrested in Barangay San Jose at around 11 a.m. Tuesday by virtue of warrant of arrest issued by Judge Virgilita B. Castillo, RTC Branch 12, Malolos City. (PNA)

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Murder raps filed vs. Malolos RTC judge's killers

MANILA, March 2 (PNA) -- The alleged perpetrators in the 2015 killing of a Malolos City Regional Trial Court (RTC) judge have been charged with murder before the Malolos City RTC in Bulacan.

In a progress report to Supreme Court (SC) Chief Justice Maria Lourdes P. Aranal Sereno released on Wednesday, the Office of the Court Administrator (OCA) disclosed that an information for murder has already been filed against the suspects in the death of Malolos RTC Branch 84 Judge Wilfredo T. Nieves, who was gunned down on Nov. 11, 2015.

Charged with murder were Jay Deogrades Joson with aliases "Jepoy" and "Jefferson," and Raymond Dominguez.

However, the complaint against Arnel Janoras was dismissed because Janoras was already dead, while the complaint against the other respondents, including two "John Does," was dismissed for lack of probable cause.

Based on the report to the OCA by Senior Supt. Ferdinand O. Divina, Director of the Bulacan Police Provincial Office, it was learned that as of Feb. 1, 2016, the case was already raffled to the Malolos RTC Branch 82 and that a warrant of arrest is to follow.

"Rest assured that the Bulacan Police will continue to monitor and coordinate for progress and best result of the murder case filed against the suspects," Divina said in his letter to the OCA.

Dominguez, who was convicted of carnapping by Judge Nieves in 2012, is currently detained at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City.

He was included in the charge sheet after it was established, based on the deceased Janoras' statement, that he had instructed Deogrades Joson to kill Nieves.

The statement of Janoras that Deogrades Joson is a friend of Dominguez was bolstered by the fact that based on the list of visitors of NBP, the former visited Dominguez as a friend.

Nieves was the 25th judge slain while in the service since 1999. (PNA) 

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27 nabbed in anti-cybersex raid in Cabanatuan City 
By Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan

MANILA, March 2 (PNA) -- The Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG) on Tuesday arrested 27 persons involved in cybersex activities and 'sextortion' in an operation in Cabanatuan City, PNP-ACG Director Senior Superintendent Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar said.

Eleazar said the suspects were arrested inside the office of TLS Synergy Group, an online marketing firm in Cabanatuan City.

“We have reason to believe that the suspects’ activities could lead to 'sextortion' after we discovered that the company was engaged in the maintenance, control and operation of lascivious exhibition of sexual organs or sexual activities in front of web cameras for a fee”, said the PNP-ACG director.

The raid led by the Chief of Regional Anti-Cybercrime Office 3, Police Chief Inspector Ronelio O Manaog, came in the wake of an alarm raised by the PNP-ACG over the presence of foreign and domestic cybercrime operators involved in cyber pornography, cybersex dens, illegal gambling, credit card fraud and identity theft.

Eleazar said they raided the office of principal suspect Florendo Holgado, armed with a search warrant for violation of Section 4(c)1 of Republic Act 10175 issued by Judge Richard A. Paradeza of Olongapo City Regional Trial Court Branch 72.

The police operation took place at No. 31 Melencio Extension in Kapitan Pepe Subdivision, Barangay San Jose Sur, Cabanatuan City at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday.

However, Holgado was not around during the raid.

The arrested suspects include seven women who were caught in the act of engaging, chatting, and showing recorded videos of females doing simulated sex.

The suspects are now being held at the PNP-ACG headquarters in Camp Crame. They are set to face raps for violation of Section 4(c)1 (Cybersex) of Republic Act 10175, otherwise known as Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, and Article 201 of the Revised Penal Code or Immoral Doctrine, Obscene Publications and Exhibitions and Indecent Shows.

The PNP-ACG chief said the operatives seized 30 computers, 31 cellphones, 3 printers, 2 monitors, 2 telephone sets, a router, several raffle coupons, and other pieces of documentary evidence during the raid.

According to Eleazar, they discovered that the 27 persons were hired by Holgado to work for him as Chat Sales Agents/Online Marketing Agents or ‘Chat Operators’ who have been trained for simulated sex videos.

“They are looking for possible victims on various dating sites, social media sites, blogs sites and porn sites that can be easily accessed through the internet,” he said.

PNP-ACG investigators discovered that the ‘Chat Operators’ are engaged in advertising obscene pornographic sites (through, and and online chatting (using Yahoo, Facebook, MSN, and Skype).

Records show that in 2014, PNP-ACG agents arrested 58 suspects involved in cybersex activities in Bulacan, many parts of Bicol, Laguna and Metro Manila. Eleazar said that the mode of operation of the 58 suspects arrested in 2014 were very similar to that of the TLS Synergy Group in Cabanatuan City, thus triggering the PNP-ACG investigation of the online marketing scheme of the Nueva Ecija-based company.

Eleazar said that they are conducting a thorough investigation to determine the actual involvement of the company in ‘sextortion’ activities.

“We are digging deeper into their possible ‘sextortion’ activities since we found photographs, videos, and messages between the victims and the suspects in many of the digital evidence we had seized,” he said.

Eleazar warned the public anew to be wary of the modus operandi of ‘sextortion’ syndicates operating in the country. He said that in most cases, the ‘chatter’ or suspect will encourage his/her target to take part in a video chat through Skype.

The ‘chatter’ will then show a simulated video of a naked woman and entice the victim to go naked on camera. As soon as the victim agrees, the ‘chatter’ will then record the live video on his/her computer and will later blackmail the victim by threatening to send the recorded video to his Facebook friends once he fails to heed the chatter’s monetary demands.

Eleazar said that the PNP-ACG is currently conducting more police operations against cybersex, sextortion activities, and any violations committed by, through and with the use of information and communications technologies in the country.

The raid was conducted two days after the PNP-ACG crushed a Manila-based cybercrime syndicate composed of five men engaging in sex and other obscene acts in front of webcams being viewed online by their clients, majority of them foreigners involved in pedophilia and other sexual perversions.

Eleazar said that the suspects were receiving payments for their services through different money remittance services such as Western Union, Palawan Express, Cebuana Lhuiller, Smart Money Master Card, Globe Beep Master Card and other payment systems, such as Payoneer Prepaid Master Card. (PNA) 

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Police probes murder attempt vs Bulacan gov’s son

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 29 (PNA) -- Police is investigating the alleged murder attempt against the son of Gov. Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado whose Toyota Fortuner vehicle was reportedly tailed and intentionally bumped head-on at high speed by a car being driven by policeman in front of Northfields Subdivision along MacArthur highway in Barangay Longos here past midnight Saturday.

Police report said that Jose Antonio “Jonathan” R. Sy-Alvarado, who is also a candidate for congressman in the first congressional district of Bulacan, sustained injuries in the head and different parts of his body.

He is still confined and undergoing treatment at a hospital in Manila.

The young Alvarado was sitting at the passenger seat and was on his way home to Calumpit when his driver noticed a car swerving on the opposite side of the highway while heading towards Malolos City.

According to witnesses, the vehicle of Sy-Alvarado has already stopped in front of the gate of Northfields Subdivision to avoid the incoming car.

However, witnesses said its driver seemed to have intention of crashing the Toyota Fortuner of Sy-Alvarado because it has already stopped.

Police identified the suspect as policeman Marlon Calderon assigned the Bulacan Police Provincial Office in Camp Gen. Alejo Santos.

The victim’s family is set to file a case of attempted murder aside from reckless imprudence resulting to multiple injuries and damage to property.

Sy-Alvarado, a magna cum laude graduate of the San Beda College (Master in Business Administration), is leading the congressional race in the province’ first district due to his various outreach programs and livelihood projects. (PNA) 

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President Aquino asks Bulakenyos to support Roxas-Robredo tandem, other LP bets

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 24 (PNA) -- Proudly telling Bulakenyos that he has deep roots in this historic capital city, President Benigno S. Aquino III called on Tuesday Bulakenyos to rally behind Liberal Party (LP) presidential candidate Mar Roxas and running mate Leni Robledo together with their senatorial slate and provincial candidates led by reelectionists Gov. Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado and Vice Gov. Daniel Fernando in order for the “Daang Matuwid” leadership to push through with continuity.

The Chief Executive, who arrived on board the presidential chopper at the jampacked Bulacan Sports Complex here, said that he believes that the people of Bulacan will support the candidacy of the LP top bets because of their fervor for good governance and the progress now being enjoyed in the province due to the “Daang Matuwid” policy of his administration.

“Ako po ay naniniwala na susuportahan ng mga Boss kong Bulakenyo ang ating mga pambato (Roxas-Robledo) para ituloy ang tuwid na daan at lalo pa itong palawigin,“ the President told a cheering crowd.

He said that the ancestral house of the Cojuangcos is near the historic Barasoain Church as he calls on his fellow Malolenyos and the people of Bulacan to rally behind the LP candidates.

Alvarado also made a clarion call to his province mates to support the candidates being endorsed by President Aquino.

Alvarado said the country needs a good captain that can steer the nation towards unity and progress.

Roxas and Robledo, who earlier made campaign sorties in San Miguel and Plaridel, thanked the President for his strong support as well as the people of Bulacan for their warm welcome. (PNA) 

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Bulacan to host PRISAA 2016 regional meet

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 17 (PNA) -- After the successful hosting of the recently-concluded Central Luzon Regional Athletic Association (CLRAA) meet, this province will also be the venue of this year’s Private Schools Athletics Association (PRISAA) regional meet that will kick off on Thursday at the La Consolacion University Philippines (LCUP) Kalinangan Gymnasium in this city.

More than 40 secondary and tertiary schools in Central Luzon will compete in different sports categories, namely athletics, baseball, basketball, badminton, boxing, chess, lawn tennis, sepak takraw, gymnastics, track and field, golf, table tennis, taekwondo, swimming, football, judo, cycling and volleyball.

PRISAA aims to continuously discover the best young athletes who will compete in various competitions in the country and even around the world.

Meanwhile, the provincial government of Bulacan headed by Governor Wilhemino M. Sy-Alvarado ensures the safety as well as peace and order around the vicinity where the competitions will be held.

”We already coordinated with the Bulacan police and Bulacan Rescue so that we are ready and prepare at all times. We expect that this sports meet will become successful,” the governor said.

The sports competitions will be held in various locations, including LCUP, Bulacan Sports Complex, Robinsons Place Malolos and City Walk Sports Center.

The winners will represent the region in the upcoming PRISAA National Collegiate Games in April 2016.

PRISAA started in 1953 through the initiative of the then Director of the Bureau of Private Schools Dr. Manuel Carreon, who encouraged the private schools all over the Philippines to join the PRISAA for the purpose of promoting sports competitions. (PNA) 

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Bulacan police cited for quick resolve on murder case

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, Feb. 15 (PNA) -- The Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) on Monday awarded the Bulacan Provincial Police Office with PHP1-million bounty for the quick resolution on the slaying of Judge Wilfredo Nieves, then presiding judge of Bulacan Regional Trial Court Branch 84 .

The awarding of bounty was held during the regular flag raising ceremony at the Police Regional Office-3 (PRO-3) here.

Nieves was shot dead along MacArthur Highway in Barangay Tikay, Malolos City, Bulacan last November 11, 2015.

Bulacan police headed by Senior Supt. Ferdinand Divina solved the cases in less than two weeks following the arrest of the primary suspect Arnel Janoras, who was later killed while trying to escape en route to San Jose Del Monte City, also in Bulacan, for inquest proceedings.

Police Chief Supt. Rudy Lacadin, PRO-3 director, expressed his gratitude to the RPOC for its unrelenting support to PNP-PRO3.

He said that the accomplishment only proves that PRO-3 is indeed quick in resolving cases and arresting lawless elements.

“The entire Central Luzon police force is keeping on its toes to ensure that our communities are safe. We continue to implement our pro-active measures through SOP Lambat Sibat especially now that we are in the election period to guarantee the attainment of a secure and fair elections this May,” Lacadin said. (PNA) 

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2016 Central Luzon Regional Athletic Association kicks off in Bulacan

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 8 (PNA) -- Thousands of athletes started competing for regional sports supremacy as the 2016 Central Luzon Regional Athletic Association (CLRAA) meet unfolded at the sprawling Bulacan Sports Complex in Barangay Sta. Isabel here and other parts of the province.

Department of Education (DepEd) Regional Director Malcolm Garma formally opened the annual sporting event Sunday afternoon which was attended by spectators and delegates from the different provinces of Central Luzon.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado and Vice Governor Daniel Fernando welcomed the athletes in 18 schools divisions in the region.

Alvarado said the hosting of the 2016 edition of the CLRAA is a prelude to possible hosting of the national games or Palarong Pambansa.

He said that Bulacan is now ready to host such event with the biggest open stadium at Ciudad de Victoria, as the possible venue which is located side-by-side with the Philippine Arena in Bocaue town.

Alvarado, who is also the chairman of the Regional Development Council (RDC) in Central Luzon said that the annual sporting event is not only the breeding ground of the nation’s future sports heroes but also sharpens the mind and body of the youths.

“With strong minds and strong body, our youths will also have discipline and know the wonders of teamwork as they trek new hopes towards a strong nation with a nationalist mind set,” Alvarado said.

Senator Teofisto “TJ” Guingona III, who graced the occasion as the guest of honor and speaker, encouraged the young athletes to inculcate in themselves trust and friendship.

The game proper started today, February 8 and end on the 12th at the 15 assigned playing venues which include Balagtas Central School, Balagtas Gym, Boying’s Billiard Hall, Bulacan Sports Complex, Bulacan Capitol Gymnasium, Bulacan State University Activity Center, Calumpit Central School, City Walk, CMIS Sto. Rosario, Guiguinto Municipal Athletic and Cultural Center, Hiyas ng Bulacan Convention Center, Marcelo H. Del Pilar National High School Gym, Norzagaray Central School, Philippine Sports Stadium and Richwell College in Plaridel.

Events include archery, arnis, athletics, badminton, baseball, basketball, boxing, chess, football, gymnastics, sepak takraw, softball, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, volleyball, and special Olympics such as billiard, futsal and sepak takraw-girls shall be demonstration sports.

The 18 participating schools divisions, on the other hand, include Angeles City; Aurora Balanga City, Bataan; Bulacan; Cabanatuan City; Gapan City; Mabalacat City; Malolos City, Science City of Munoz, Nueva Ecija; Olongapo City; City of San Fernando, Pampanga; San Jose City, Tarlac City, Tarlac, and Zambales. (PNA) 

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Bulacan cites as blood champ in Central Luzon’s 1st blood program implementers awards

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 4 (PNA) -- For providing lifeline to needy patients, Bulacan and its hardworking leaders received new “feather in its cap.”

Its best practices and exemplary innovations on the implementation of blood programs have placed Bulacan as one of the most outstanding provinces in Central Luzon that continuously encourages blood donation as way of life for every qualified healthy Filipino during the 1st Recognition for Outstanding Blood Program Implementers and Stakeholders held on Thursday at Holiday Inn, Clark Freeport, Pampanga.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado personally received the awards in different categories, including the recognition for Home of Galloners with 125 registered blood galloners, Province With Most Number of Mobile Blood Donation, and even recognized as the Most Supportive and Active Governor for his dedicated efforts in supporting the blood services program implementation for his constituents.

“We are always been supportive to the objectives of the Department of Health (DOH) in ensuring that everyone has access to safe and adequate blood all the time. It is a great honor for the province to be recognized and we will continue to serve quality health care and services,” the governor said.

Alvarado said that the province was also recognized as one of the Lead Blood Services Facility in Region 3 and for almost 12 years operations of the blood programs in Bulacan, all efforts have gained momentum in advocacy for blood donor recruitment and mobile blood donations.

”These are few of the achievements of the province of Bulacan. Thus, I would like to thank all our partners in providing excellent services to our constituents,” Alvarado said.

Prior to this, DOH 3 Regional Voluntary Blood Service Program Council said that Bulacan has always been active in supporting the blood donation program that promotes voluntary blood donation to provide sufficient supply of safe blood and to regulate blood banks.

Bulacan as the Home of Sandugo awardees, was also commended for its effective distribution of blood and blood products to hospitals and other health facilities, its functions to cover advocacy, quality assurance program, monitoring rational and efficient use of blood products, financial management and regional blood program coordination.

The first ever awarding aims to recognize the efforts of all stakeholders, donor and galloners from provincial, municipal and barangay level in their untiring dedication to support the blood programs initiated by the DOH. (PNA) 

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President Aquino declares February 3 a special holiday in Bulacan and the City of Cabanatuan

MANILA, Feb. 2 (PNA) -- President Benigno S. Aquino III has declared February 3 (Wednesday) a special non-working day in the province of Bulacan and the city of Cabanatuan in Nueva Ecija province.

President Aquino issued Proclamation No. 1204, which declares February 3 a special holiday in Bulacan to celebrate the birth anniversary of Blas Ople.

“Blas F. Ople, who served as Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Senate President and Secretary of Labor, devoted decades of his life to selfless and dedicated service to our country and our people,” the proclamation stated, adding that the “son of Bulacan is a model citizen and public officer to the Filipino people, especially to the Bulakenyos”.

President Aquino also issued Proclamation No. 1205 declaring February 3 a special non-working day in Cabanatuan City in commemoration of its 66th Foundation Anniversary.

“It is but fitting and proper that the people of the City of Cabanatuan, be given full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion with appropriate ceremonies,” the proclamation stated.

The proclamations were signed last January 28. (PNA) 

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Bulacan to commemorate 89th birth anniversary of Ka Blas Ople

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 1 (PNA)-- Bulakenyos will commemorate on Wednesday the 89th birth anniversary of Ka Blas Ople, one of the most outstanding sons of the province.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy Alvarado will lead the commemoration with the theme, “Ka Blas, Huwaran ka sa isip, sa salita at sa gawa” at the Gusaling Gat Blas F. Ople in the city.

Alvarado said the Provincial Government of Bulacan through the Provincial History, Arts, Culture and Tourism Office (PHACTO) has prepared a short program to rekindle Ka Blas’ selfless, dedicated and sincere service to the country.

Expected to grace the event are Ople’s children, Susan “Toots” Ople and board member Felix Ople, family members, officials and employees of the provincial government and National Historical Commission of The Philippines Bulacan-Zambales head Alex Balagtas, among others.

His daughter Susan will lead the unveiling of Ka Blas’ bust while his son, board member Felix Ople will represent the Ople family and give a brief message during the program.

The celebration also includes the opening of exhibit of the Hagonoy Art Group, a presentation of Ople’s heroic legacy and leadership.

Bulakenyos consider Ople as their inspiration because of his outstanding leadership and public service not just in Bulacan but in the whole country.

Ople was recognized as “Father of Overseas Employment" and the author of the Philippine Labor Code for the protection of workers' rights.

He also served as Senate President, Foreign Affairs Secretary and Labor and Employment Minister.

He became the first Filipino president of the International Labor Organization in 1975.

Meanwhile, in accordance with Proclamation No. 948, Feb. 3 was declared as a special (non working day) in the province of Bulacan to celebrate the birth anniversary of Ople.

Ople was born in Hagonoy, Bulacan on February 3, 1927.(PNA) 

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PDEA-3 nets son of incumbent officials in Bulacan

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, Feb. 1 (PNA) -- Agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-3 (PDEA-3) arrested Sunday in a buy-bust operation the son of the incumbent public officials in Pandi, Bulacan.

PDEA-3 director Gladys Rosales identified the suspect as Christopher Bryan Sebastian 34, and a resident of Bagong Barrio Pandi, Bulacan.

Rosales said that Sebastian is the son of the incumbent barangay captain and city councilor of Pandi, which reportedly made him untouchable in the locality.

The PDEA official said that the suspect tried to elude arrest and even used a dump truck as a getaway vehicle.

”A gunfight then ensued between the suspect and the authorities,” she said.

Sebastian sustained a gunshot wound.

Rosales said the operation netted seven plastic sachet containing shabu weighing 57 grams with an estimated street value of PHP250,000 and recovered the marked money. (PNA) 

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Malolos lone district bill now in Senate, residents jubilant

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Feb. 1 (PNA)--Bulacan First District Rep. Ma. Victoria R. Sy-Alvarado has announced that House Bill 6338, “an Act separating the city of Malolos from the First Legislative District of Bulacan to constitute the lone legislative district of the City of Malolos,” was already approved in Congress.

Sy-Alvarado, who is the author of the said measure, also said that the HB 6338 was already approved for transmittal to the Senate.

She said the House of Representatives has also given advance information to the Office of Senate President Franklin Drilon for calendaring it as official business in the Senate.

“Finally after long delays, the dream of the people of Malolos to be represented in Congress is now advancing to the Senate and might soon become a reality,” Sy-Alvarado said.

Residents recalled that no less than President Benigno Aquino III and former Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Manuel Roxas II vouched for and defended the conversion of Malolos into a lone congressional district when they were still senators of the 14th Congress.

Upon learning that the bill is now scheduled for approval in the Senate, residents of this historic capital city are now rejoicing because their dream of being represented in Congress will soon materialize.

The people of Malolos as well as village officials are now calling on the Senate Committee on Local Government chaired by Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., to hasten the passage of the bill saying that it is about time that the national government give due recognition to the important role of this now booming metropolis in the nation’s history.

“Senator Bongbong Marcos will play a key role in the realization of the dreams of the people of Malolos because he is also a Bulakenyo, being a grandson of Dona Remedios Trinidad, the mother of former First Lady and now Rep. Imelda Trinidad Romualdez Marcos,” said former Barangay Tikay village chief Alejandro “Jhun” Joson Jr.

Joson added that the passage of the bill will be a legacy of Senator Marcos because the historic capital city of Malolos is fast becoming a highly urbanized city thus, it is high time that it becomes a lone congressional district to further boost progress development.

“It is about time that Malolos be given its proper recognition as a lone district, especially on account of its great contribution to Philippine independence and democracy,” Joson said.

In a related development, Rep. Sy-Alvarado also announced that that House Bill 5156 or "An act declaring January 23 of every year a special working holiday in the entire country to commemorate the declaration of the First Philippine Republic” has already been approved in the Lower House and is now in Senate also under the committee being chaired by Sen. Marcos.

Sy-Alvarado said that it is also high time to recognize the national significance of the First Philippine Republic because it was on this date the Philippines was recognized as an independent nation by the international community.

“It was on that very day, January 23, 1899, when our people and country, was recognized by the international community as a free republic and until now continues to gain the respect and admiration of foreign dignitaries, world leaders and even the Pope,” she said.

January 23 is currently special non-working holiday in Bulacan.

It would be a national holiday equal to June 12 commemoration of Philippine Independence Day if HB 5156 gets approved,

The lady solon also explained that January 23 is a priceless gift to the Filipino people, a date that brought democracy in the country and made Malolos the cradle of Democracy in Asia and Africa.

“What happened in this historic capital city 117 years ago is like a shinning comet that continues to serve as beacon of change that will always remind and hopefully unite all Filipinos of their proud heritage as free and independent people of the world,” she added. (PNA) 

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AWOL cop, 8 others nabbed in Bulacan dope sting

CAMP GEN ALEJO S SANTOS, Bulacan, Jan. 28 (PNA) -- Nine persons, including an AWOL (absent without leave) cop, were arrested during an anti-drug sting on Thursday at Ma. Soccorro Subdivision, Marilao town.

Senior Supt. Ferdinand O. Divina, Bulacan police director, identified the arrested suspects as Victor de Guzman alias “Tata Vic,” PO1 Franco Nero Sagudang, 33, an AWOL member of Regional Public Safety Battalion (RPSB), Police Regional Office 3, Richard Aguado, 30, all residents of Ma. Socorro Subdivision, Barangay Abangan Note, Marilao, Bulacan; Allana Coronel, 50, a resident of Sarmiento Homes, Abangan Norte, Marilao, Bulacan; Alex Mahistrado, 34, a resident of Barangay Guyong, Sta. Maria, Bulacan; Christopher Lumangyao, 43, Dennis De Castro, 48, both live-in residents of Ma. Socorro Subdivision, Barangay Abangan Note, Marilao, Bulacan; Jethro Bentor, 42, live-in, resident of Lolomboy, Bocaue, Bulacan; and Ma. Louralliene Caringal, 24, a resident of Villa Grande Subdivision, Lambakin, Marilao, Bulacan.

Divina said that prior to the arrest of the suspects, a telephone call from a concerned citizen was received by elements of Marilao Municipal Police Station (MPS) informing that a certain “Tata Vic”” is rampantly selling illegal drugs known as “shabu” at his residence in Ma. Socorro Subdivision, Barangay Abangan Norte.

Upon receipt of this information, Divina said that operatives of Marilao MPS conducted surveillance operation at the place and after confirming the same, elements of Marilao police immediately coordinated with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in PRO3 Camp Olivas, City of San Fernando, Pampanga, which eventually issued a Control No. 10004- 012016-0391 for the conduct of operation.

Subsequently after a short briefing, the operatives of Marilao Police went to the reported place to conduct buy-bust operation.

Divina said that PO1 Nico Riño, who acted as poseur buyer together with the confidential asset, went to the house of “Tata Vic” which was being used for their illegal drugs transaction.

When the operatives arrived, they approached suspect “Tata Vic” and his cohort Mahistrado, who were then waiting in front of their house and informed of their intention.

Tata Vic” yielded a plastic sachet containing suspected shabu and handed over it to the poseur buyer, in exchange for two pieces of PHP100 as marked money.

However, before the members of the operating team could give the pre-arranged signal to the other operatives in the area, the two suspects sensed the presence of the operating team and hurriedly fled towards their house.

A brief chase ensued wherein the members of the operating team were able to apprehend the suspects inside the house.

The operating team also saw the other suspects, AWOL PO1 Franco Nero Sagudang and six others, in the act of sniffing illegal drugs inside the house of Tata Vic.

Confiscated from the possession of suspect “Tata Vic” were one heat sealed small size plastic pack containing suspected “shabu”; one piece heat sealed medium size plastic sachet containing suspected shabu and the marked money.

Likewise, elements of Marilao MPS also confiscated suspected shabu from Mahistrado's possession.

On the other hand, recovered and confiscated from the possession of PO1 Sagudang and six other suspects were some drug paraphernalia.

The arrested suspects, together with the confiscated pieces of evidence, were brought to the Bulacan Crime Laboratory Office in Malolos City, Bulacan for drug test and laboratory examination.

Meanwhile, verification with the Regional Public Safety Battalion 3 based at Camp Olivas, City of San Fernando, Pampanga revealed that PO1 Sagudang has pending criminal and administrative cases for serious neglect of duty for his AWOL and grave misconduct, resulting from his criminal case of malversation of government property.

Criminal complaint for violation of Section 5 in relation to section 26, sections 6, 7, 11, 12, 13 and 14, Art. II of R.A. 9165 (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs of 2002) is now being prepared for filling against the nine arrested suspects before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor. (PNA) 

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Bulakenyos hopeful that January 23 will soon be a special nationwide holiday

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Jan. 28 (PNA) -- Bulakenyos, particularly residents of this historic capital city, are now pinning their hopes on Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., for the materialization of their dreams to make January 23 of every year as a “special working holiday” in the entire country because of its significance in the nation’s history.

Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado said Wednesday that House Bill 5156 or "An Act declaring January 23 of every year a special working holiday in the entire country to commemorate the declaration of the First Philippine Republic” filed by Bulacan 1st District Rep. Ma. Victoria R. Sy Alvarado has already been approved in the Lower House and is now in Senate under the committee chaired by Sen. Marcos.

Alvarado said that Bulakenyos are optimistic that the bill will be passed because the senator has deep roots in Bulacan as his grandmother Dona Remedios Trinidad, mother of the senator's mother Rep. Imelda Romualdez Marcos, is a native of Baliwag, Bulacan.

Alvarado said that it is high time to recognize the national significance of the First Philippine Republic because it was on this date that the Philippines was recognized as an independent nation by the international community.

“It was on that very day, January 23, 1899 when our people and country was recognized by the international community as a free republic and until now continues to gain the respect and admiration of foreign dignitaries, world leaders and even the Pope,” Alvarado said.

January 23 is currently special non-working holiday in Bulacan. It would be a national holiday equal to the June 12 commemoration of Philippine Independence Day if HB 5156 gets approved, the governor who, together with Chief Justice Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno, has also been pushing for the passage of the said measure.

Alvarado also explained that January 23 is a priceless gift to the Filipino people, a date that brought democracy in the country and made Malolos the cradle of democracy in Asia and Africa.

“What happened in this historic capital city 117 years ago is like a shinning comet that continues to serve as beacon of change that will always remind and hopefully unite all Filipinos of their proud heritage as free and independent people of the world,” Alvarado added.

Former Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General Joel Villanueva also said it is about time that the rich and highly important date in Philippine history be given its due recognition.

In the measure’s explanatory note, Rep. Sy-Alvarado said that while June 12, 1898 marks the date when the country achieved independence from Spain, it was on January 23, 1899 that the first Philippine Republic came into being “as the sovereign choice of the Filipino people.”

“It is a conscious choice to reject dictatorial and revolutionary government and establish for all the future Filipino generations the groundwork for democracy,” she said.

The lawmaker said the creation of the first Philippine Republic, the first in Asia, should be a source of pride for Filipinos as this represents “our strong democratic and republican ideals as a nation.

Alvarado said that Bulakenyos has high hopes on Marcos because the senator fully well knows its importance and its value especially to the youths and the next generations. (PNA) 

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First PHL Republic continues to shine like a 'comet of change' —Bulacan governor

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Jan. 24 (PNA) -- Gov. Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado described on Saturday the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic in this historic capital city 117 years ago like a "shining comet that continues to serve as beacon of change."

Alvarado said that the events that transpired at Barasoain Church on Jan. 23, 1899 were equal to the proclamation of Philippine Independence in Kawit ,Cavite on June 12, 1898 because the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic gave credence and legality to the historic moments at the balcony of the mansion of then revolutionary leader Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, making him the president of the 1st Philippine Republic, to the eyes of the international community.

The governor said that Barasoain Church will always be the showcase of the great spirit and love for freedom of the Filipino race.

“We should always look back at the significance of Jan. 23, 1899 and be proud that our forebears had established a government of their own in the middle of a war against two of the most powerful empires in the world — Spain and the United States of America,” Alvarado said.

Alvarado said that Filipino revolutionaries and the Bulakenyos have proven that they can stand up and fight for their rights as sovereign people.

“Our freedom fighters have shown to the world what the Filipino race can do against tremendous odds and achieve their goals,” he added.

Alvarado, together with Vice Gov. Daniel Fernando, City Mayor Christian Natividad, and Bulacan police director Senior Supt. Ferdinand O. Divina earlier joined the guest of honor, former Secretary Joel Villanueva of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) in paying tribute to the lifesize statue of Gen. Aguinaldo where they offered flowers and a 21-gun salute before the singing of the national anthem during the commemoration of the 117th anniversary of the First Philippine Republic.

This year's celebration carried the theme "Diwa ng Republika Filipino, Batayan ng Mabuting Pamamahala."

Villanueva, in his speech, said he felt somewhat creepy when he set foot at the patio of Barasoain Church as he imagined the day when the people of Malolos were rejoicing the birth of a new republic.

“It’s a nostalgic feeling. It is important to remind the youths of their proud heritage so that the embers of patriotism will burn inside their hearts," he said.

Villanueva, a native of Bocaue town, said that it is time to pursue a historic revolution as he echoed the call of Governor Alvarado to make Jan. 23 of every year a special Philippine holiday just like June 12 or Philippine Independence Day.

“January 23 is very significant to the lives of the Filipinos who now enjoy living as free citizens of the world,” he said.

On Jan. 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was inaugurated amidst colorful ceremonies at the Barasoain Church, Malolos, Bulacan Province.

This was also the first republic in Asia.

Aguinaldo took his oath of office as President of the Republic at the Barasoain Church. (PNA) 

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Bulakenyos to commemorate the 117th First Philippine Republic anniversary

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Jan.22 (PNA)--Bulakenyos will once again relive the heroic deeds of the eight provinces that fought for the country’s independence in the 117th anniversary of the First Philippine Republic on Saturday at the historical church of Barasoain in this city.

With the theme, “Diwa ng Republika Filipina, Batayan ng Mabuting Pamamahala," the celebration will lead by Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvardo with former Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Secretary Emmanuel “Joel” Villanueva as guest of honor.

The event aims to uplift the awareness of the younger generation about the heroic moments in the Philippine history and to highlight the importance of the first republic in guiding the government today.

The program will start at 8 a.m. through a flag raising ceremony and wreath- laying activity at Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’s monument.

Local officials, senior citizens, students, teachers, non-government organizations, and other sectors in Bulacan are expected to participate in the celebration as well as the representatives from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.

Alvarado said that everyone especially the Bulakenyo youth should not forget the sacrifices and wisdom of our revolutionary forefathers that awaken the Filipinos’ aspiration to become free.

”Let us make January 23 every year as a reminder to everyone that we are nation of heroes and this is the reasons why we have democracy and one republic and why we have EDSA and why we are going through the straight path,”Alvarado said.

The First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was the first republic in Asia.

It was inaugurated on January 23, 1899 at the Barasoain Church in this city where Aguinaldo took his oath of office as President of the Philippine Republic. (PNA) 

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18th 'Halamanan Festival' in Bulacan kicks off Saturday

GUIGUINTO, Bulacan, Jan. 21 (PNA) -- Spectacular and colorful fireworks will illuminate the night skies in synch with festive music as the annual “Halamanan Festival” culminates on Saturday at the back of the municipal gym here.

Now on its 18th straight year, the “Halamanan Festival” has become a crowd gathering affair and one of the most awaited festivals in the province in the mold of the Panagbenga Festival in Baguio, the Sinulog Festival of Cebu, the Dinagyang Festival of Iloilo, the Masskara Festival of Bacolod, among others.

Mayor Ambrocio C. Cruz said that the festival showcases the wonders of Guiguinto and its native products, cultural heritage and its famous and lucrative industry—ornamental gardens and landscaping.

“Every year, more and more people were coming here to join with the celebration of the “Halamanan Festival” where we all together presented the excellence and beauty of our culture, including the native products of Guiguinto,” Cruz said.

The mayor said that this year’s celebration will have a very exciting climax as popular bands blends with mainstream Bulacan bands in the “Rakrakan sa Halamanan” where spectacular fireworks will “dance” in the night sky in sync with festive tunes and rock music.

The “Rakrakan sa Halamanan” will also feature a beer plaza where the world-renowned San Miguel Beer will be sold.

Cruz said the musical fireworks show is a joint collaboration of the municipal government of Guiguinto, the Rotary Club of Guiguinto-Suburbs headed by Rtn. Ernie Gatmaitan and the San Miguel Brewery, which is also celebrating its 125th years of making the best beers in the world. (PNA) 

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Two notorious drug gang members killed in firefight with Bulacan cop

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan, Jan. 17 (PNA) -- Two armed members of a notorious drug gang who were out to liquidate a police officer known for his hard stance against dope dealers were killed in a firefight with their target lawman in Sitio Tabtab, Barangay Poblacion, Norzagaray, Bulacan on Saturday afternoon.

Senior Supt. Ferdinand Divina, Bulacan police director, said the identities of the slain suspects were still being verified as of press time.

He identified the police officer as PO3 Jonathan V. De Belen, of legal age, married and intelligence operative of the Municipal Anti-Drug Special Operations Task Force (MAIDSOTF) of the Norzagaray Municipal Police Station.

Divina said that De Belen was inside his rented apartment when he heard his dog barking.

He said the policeman went outside to verify what was happening and saw two men suspiciously entering the vicinity of his apartment. Once confronted, the duo drew their firearms and thereafter, a gun battle ensued between De Belen and the two armed men, resulting to the death of the intruders.

Further investigation revealed that prior to the incident, De Belen had been continuously receiving death threats from drug groups relative to the previous successful anti-drug operations of the Norzagaray Police Station and also death threat from a certain Domingo Cabangon, alias “Ambo,” a former New People's Army (NPA) member against whom De Belen was tasked to serve a warrant of arrest for the crime of homicide.

Recovered from the possession of suspect No. 1 were one caliber .45 Colt Mac 4 pistol with one magazine loaded with five live bullets; four plastic sachets of suspected marijuana and one bag containing suspected marijuana.

Seized from suspect No. 2 were one caliber .38 snub-nosed revolver loaded with three pieces of live ammunition; two empty cartridges for caliber .38; one small plastic container with two plastic sachets containing white crystalline substance of suspected shabu; one plastic sachet containing blue crystalline substance and one wallet containing community tax certificate in the name of Joel Garcia.

A Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) team from the Bulacan PNP Crime Laboratory also recovered from the crime scene 12 pieces of empty cartridge for caliber 9mm and seven pieces of empty cartridge for caliber .45.

Divina said a follow-up investigation is being undertaken by the Norzagaray Police for the true identities the two slain suspects. (PNA) 

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PDEA nets 3 big-time drug dealers in Bulacan

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, Jan. 13 (PNA) -- Agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-3 (PDEA-3) arrested Tuesday three big-time drug dealers and seized shabu worth PHP400,000 in an entrapment operation in the City of San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan.

PDEA-3 Regional Director Gladys Rosales identified the suspects as Al Lopez, 32; Danny Diaz, 47; and Jorel Flores, 35; all of Sapang Palay, City of San Jose Del Monte.

Rosales said the three suspects were arrested after handling 100 grams of shabu with a street value of PHP400,000 to a agent poseur buyer in the parking lot of Tito Renz Restaurant located in Barangay Minuyan, City of San Jose Del Monte.

She also said that the seized items were contained in a plastic ice bag and the marked money used in the operation was recovered.

The suspects are now detained at PDEA Jail Facility in this camp.

They will be charged for violation of Section 5 (selling of dangerous drugs) in relation to section 26 paragraph B (conspiracy) of Article II of RA 9165, she added. (PNA) 

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Vigilance of village dad led to the arrest of 2 burglars

MARILAO, Bulacan, Jan. 13 (PNA) -- The vigilance of a village councilor has led to the arrest of two burglars, one of them armed with a handgun, during a joint operation of village watchmen and local policemen in Barangay Saog here Tuesday.

Bulacan police director Senior Supt. Ferdinand O. Divina identified the arrested suspects as Ferdinand Policarpio, 25, a resident of S. De Vera St. Barangay Pandayan, Meycauayan City, Bulacan, and Bravery de Juan, 20, native of Baguio City and residing at No. 19 St. Fortune 5 Malinta, Valenzuela City.

Divina said that prior to the apprehension of the suspects at around 1:20 a.m. Tuesday, barangay councilor Troy Gallardo of Saog, Marilao, Bulacan saw two suspicious male persons who entered the premises of his house at No. 020 Angeles St. Barangay Saog, Marilao.

Upon observing the suspicious moves of the two suspects, Gallardo immediately informed the barangay tanods of Saog and asked the assistance of Marilao Municipal Police Station who promptly responded that resulted to the arrest of the two suspects.

Confiscated from the suspects during the body search were one .22 caliber magnum revolver with two rounds of live ammunition, and a fan knife.

Divina said that the vigilance of concerned citizens is a big boost to the ongoing campaign of the Philippine National Police against loose firearms which is in line with the implementation of the total gun ban under the Omnibus Election Code.

Complaints for violations of Omnibus Election Code and RA 10592 is now being prepared for filling against the two arrested suspects before the Office of the Provincial Prosecutors Office, City of Malolos, Bulacan. (PNA) 

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Bulacan police, Comelec brace for start of election period

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan, Jan. 9 (PNA) --Manuever platoons of the Provincial Public Safety Company (PPSC) as well as Philippine Army troopers and local police units were given final debriefing on the security plans and implementation of the total gun ban in preparation for the start of the election period on Sunday.

Bulacan police director Sr. Supt. Ferdinand O. Divina disclosed that maneuver platoons of the PPSC will augment local police units in the establishment of checkpoints in key areas of the province starting 12 midnight on Jan. 10.

“They are now well prepared and ready for deployment as part of Complan: Safe 2016," Divina said.

The Regional Joint Security Coordinating Center (RJSCC) meeting held last week was presided by Commission on Elections (Comelec) Regional Election Director Temie. Lambino.

It was participated by the senior field commanders from 7th Infantry Division, Police Regional Office 3 Command Group and Provincial/City police directors and provincial election supervisors of Central Luzon.

“Its aim is to have unified efforts among members of the security forces hand-in-hand with counterparts in other government agencies so that the forthcoming elections will be secured and fair,” Divina said.

Pursuant to Comelec Resolution No. 9571, the PNP and AFP are deputized to assist Comelec in its security preparations for the elections.

Divina further explained that the Regional Joint Security Coordinating Center (RJSCC) is a composite organization in the region responsible in the coordinated and systematic utilization of all resources dedicated in the successful conduct of election, implementation of the ban on the bearing, carrying or transporting of firearms and the employment and deployment of security personnel in the region.

“Provincial JSCCs are likewise organized in the provinces headed by provincial election supervisors,” he added.

Lacadin, for his part, called on the citizens as well as candidates to help ensure the conduct of a clean, honest and orderly elections.

He said that with the security preparations and pro-active measures that PRO3 and the AFP have been undertaking, the goal for a safe and fair election will be attained.(PNA) 

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PDEA-3 nabs notorious lady drug pusher in Bulacan

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga, Jan. 5 (PNA)-- Agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency Central Luzon (PDEA-3) arrested Monday a notorious lady drug pusher in a buy-bust operation in San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan.

PDEA-3 regional director Gladys Rosales identified the suspect as Sharry Bartolome, 19, of Minuyan Proper, San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan.

Rosales said PDEA agents were able to negotiate for the sale of 50 grams of shabu worth PHP150,000 with the suspect and agreed to meet in front of an hardware at Kalye Demonyo Road 2 in Minuyan Proper.

“Bartolome has been a drug runner since she was nine years old that is why she knew the drug business so well,” Rosales added.

The arrest of Bartolome yielded one plastic sachet containing shabu weighing 53 grams with an estimated street value of PHP243,800.

Bartolome is now detained at the PDEA Jail Facility in Camp Olivas, San Fernando City, Pampanga.

A charge for violation of Section 5 (selling of dangerous drugs) Article II of RA 9165 is being readied for filing in court against the suspect. (PNA) 

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Solon says strict enforcement, tougher laws, will curb firecracker-related injuries - By Sammy F. Martin

MANILA. Jan. 5 (PNA) -- Strict enforcement of the existing laws against illegal firecrackers by the Philippine National Police (PNP) will be useless if law enforcers will not move to crack down on manufacturers of illegal firecrackers, Valenzuela City Rep. Win Gatchalian said on Tuesday.

“The PNP and other law enforcement agencies should strictly enforce the existing laws against illegal firecrackers since enforcement is what is lacking. And this is the reason why manufacturers of illegal firecrackers continue to ply their trade during the holiday season,” said Gatchalian, who is pushing for the imposition of tougher regulations on firework products that are being sold all over the country during the Christmas season.

Gatchalian said banning all types of firecrackers as what Health Secretary Janette L. Garin has been saying will be of no use if the PNP and other law enforcers will not strictly enforce the pertinent provisions of Republic Act No. 7183 or the law that governs the fireworks industry.

Under R.A. 7183, firecrackers that have explosives content of more than 0.2 grams are considered illegal and should not be sold in the market. There are at least seven illegal firecrackers as their explosive content is beyond what the law provides for and these include Piccolo, Pop Pop, Goodbye Philippines or Crying Bading, Yolanda or Goodbye Napoles, Pla-Pla, Giant Kuwitis and Watusi because of their toxic contents.

Among the legitimate firecrackers that can be used during the New Year revelry are the Baby Rocket, Bawang, El Diablo, Judas Belt, Paper Caps, Pulling of Strings, Sky Rocket or kwitis and the small "trianggulo."

Pyrotechnic devices that can be used include Butterfly, Fountain, Jumbo Regular, Luces, Mabuhay, Roman Candle, Sparklers, Trompillo, Whistle Devices and Pailaw.

Gatchalian pointed out that television reporters were able to interview manufacturers of illegal firecrackers like Goodbye Philippines and Super Pla-Pla in Bocaue, Bulacan which showed that the Bulacan police provincial office had been remiss in enforcing the law against these life-threatening firecrackers.

“I cannot understand why TV reporters can locate illegal manufacturers and interview them while Bulacan policemen remain blind and if ever they confiscate illegal firecrackers, no arrests were made which further emboldens the manufacturers,” Gatchalian said.

Based on 2014 PNP data, only 68 manufacturers, 285 dealers, and 2,551 retailers of firecrackers are licensed by the PNP-Firearms and Explosive Office based in Camp Crame.

In his House Bill No. 4434, Gatchalian expressed hope that amending certain provisions in Republic Act No. 7183 would ensure a healthier environment for Filipinos, especially children who are most vulnerable to firecracker-related injuries.

"We endure the pollutants and countless injuries caused by the use of firecrackers, especially every New Year’s eve. Until when should we endure this cycle of peril to our health and environment?" asked Gatchalian in his bill's explanatory note.

In 2014, the Department of Health recorded 860 cases of firecracker-related injuries in the country. As of morning of Dec. 31, 2015, a total of 185 firework-related injuries were reported in the country, 133 of which were caused by piccolo and four were cases of indiscriminate firing.

Dubbing his bill as "Firecracker Regulation Act of 2014," Gatchalian highlighted the need for the government to do more about fireworks that are also considered as hazards to public safety.

Gatchalian, a member of the House Committee on Trade and Industry, wants local government units (LGUs) to designate pyrotechnic zones in their own locality to avoid fire and injuries.

"These amendments do not entirely do away with time-honored merry-making but enforces to provide stricter regulations in an effort to protect our people," he said.

His bill provides a maximum of PhP5,000 as limit for a single purchase of any firecracker or pyrotechnic device, excluding those with permit from PNP-FEO.

The bill would also prohibit selling fireworks to any person below 18 years old while requiring children who would use firecrackers to be under the strict supervision of their guardians.

Those who will fail to secure their dealer’s permit through legal means would be penalized with a fine ranging from PhP100,000 to PhP500,000 or an imprisonment ranging from six months to three years.

Dealers found guilty of selling fireworks to minors would be imposed with a fine of PhP100,000 and would have their permit revoked.

Meanwhile, parents found guilty of instigating firework deals of their children would be imposed with a fine of PhP10,000. (PNA)

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INC sets four Guinness World Records

MANILA, Jan. 1 (PNA) -- The Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) was granted four Guinness World Records during its New Year’s revelry on Friday, Jan. 1, 2016.

In a statement, the influential sect said it was awarded for the largest paying audience for a movie premiere (for the Felix Manalo movie); the most number of sparklers lit in relay; the most number of sparklers lit simultaneously; and the largest fireworks display.

The announcement for the first record was given in the evening of Dec. 31 while the three other recognitions were given early morning of Jan. 1 by Christina Conlon, official adjudicator of Guinness World Records.

The fireworks display lasted an hour from Thursday midnight to 1 a.m. Friday.

Last October, the INC also set two Guinness World Records – Largest Attendance for a Film Screening and Largest Attendance for a Film Premiere at the premiere showing of the Felix Manalo movie, with more than 43,000 people in attendance at the 55,000-seater Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.

According to Edwil Zabala, INC spokesperson, some 2,000 participants took part in the lighting sparklers event.

On the other hand, he said that employees of the fireworks company, which he did not mention, were in charge of the firing.

Incidentally, the Philippine Arena holds two world records of its own — World’s Largest Indoor Arena and World’s Largest Mixed-Used Indoor Theater. (PNA) 

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At least 50 injured from use of firecrackers in Bulacan

MALOLOS CITY, Bulacan, Jan. 1 (PNA) -- It’s a wet welcome for 2016 in many parts of the province but it was nevertheless noisy and colorful as the rains did not dampen the spirits of revelers in Bulacan, known as the capital of the fireworks industry in the country.

But when the smokes cleared following the lighting of firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices, at least 50 persons were brought to different government hospitals for treatment of injuries.

Dr. Protacio Badjao, director of the Bulacan Medical Center, said 15 persons were treated in the said hospital due to firecracker-related injuries, the youngest of which is a 7-year-old boy and the oldest a 52-year old man.

The young victim was identified as Gabriel Sotto, 7, resident of Barangay Sta. Rita, Guiguinto.

He was injured when the Roman Candle he was holding exploded and injured his left hand. He was declared out of danger after getting treatment.

The 52-year old victim was identified as Elmer Barreto of Barangay Sipat, Plaridel town.

He sustained abrasion on his body after a powerful firecracker known as dynamite exploded near him.

Doctors said he is now out of danger and recuperating.

Forty-eight other firecracker-related victims were admitted to the different hospitals in the province.

Meanwhile, Lea de Guzman Alipide, president of the Philippine Pyrotechnics Manufacturers and Dealers Association Inc., (PPMDAI) said most of this year’s revelers preferred to use the branded and quality types of fireworks.

She said that those who were injured were caused by the banned types of firecracker like piccolo, dynamite, bawang and other over-sized firecrackers.

“We have time and again appealed to the public not to use these banned types because they are not only illegal but highly dangerous as well when there are plenty of quality types of fireworks that are safe and spectacular,” Alipide said.(PNA) 

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