Cebu City’s Congressman Raul del Mar passes away at 79

Marje Pelayo   •   November 17, 2020   •   692

MANILA, Philippines — Both houses of Congress expressed their deep condolences for the passing of Cebu City North District Representative Raul del Mar on Monday evening (November 16).

His death was confirmed in a statement of the Cebu Citizens-Press Council (CCPC).

The 79-year-old lawmaker died in a hospital in Manila.

The Senate on Tuesday (November 17) adopted a resolution expressing the Upper Chambers’ deepest condolences to Del Mar’s family.

Meanwhile, House Speaker Allan Velasco noted the late Congressman’s dedication to his duty even while in the hospital.

“While in the hospital, Representative del Mar still proved his passion and commitment to public service, attending virtual plenary sessions and public hearings of the House of Representatives in order to fulfill his duties and mandate as a lawmaker. Never a day in his job was he absent,” said Velasco.

“His contributions to Congress and the nation cannot be overstated, having served a total of nine terms as congressman since 1987. He was a mentor to me and many others. He would have been a deputy speaker under my term. 

Del Mar, who authored ‘Cebu Press Freedom Day law’ and the expanded Sotto Law.

He was born in Cebu City on March 20, 1941.

16 cadavers stored in abandoned building in Cebu City

Marje Pelayo   •   August 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — A total of 16 cadavers in a state of decomposition were discovered inside an abandoned building in Cebu City.

Most of the bodies were stored inside freezers while some were left lying on the floor.

The local government has ordered an investigation into the incident.

According to Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak, the cadavers were temporarily placed there after funeral homes refused to process them due to the overwhelming number of bodies being brought to their establishment.

Tumulak said, the building is formerly known as St. Bernard Funeral Homes.

According to reports, there are allegedly three funeral homes that are dumping cadavers in the building oftentimes during late night or at dawn to avoid being seen.

Residents nearby are also complaining about the pungent smell coming from the said building.

The official said they will check on the death certificates to verify reports that at least three of the bodies had died from COVID-19.


IATF bars NCR Plus, cities of Cebu, Davao from entering Region 6

Robie de Guzman   •   April 5, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) has temporarily suspended inbound passenger travel to Western Visayas (Region 6) for people coming from the areas of NCR Plus, Cebu City, and Davao City, Malacañang said on Monday.

In a virtual press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the suspension of inbound passenger travel will last until April 10.

Roque said IATF’s decision is in response to the request of local officials in Region 6 amid the surge in cases in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

Western Visayas is composed of the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental. World-famous Boracay Island is also located in Western Visayas.

Local government units in Region 6 last week separately issued executive orders closing off provincial borders, as well as for the imposition of curfew and liquor ban in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna – collectively called as NCR Plus – were initially placed under enhanced community quarantine (EQC) from March 29 to April 4 to restrict the public’s mobility and curb the rise in coronavirus cases.

It was later extended to April 11 by the national government.

Davao City has been placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) while Cebu City is under modified GCQ for the month of April.

The Philippines has so far recorded 795,051 infections with 646,100 recoveries and 13,425 deaths.

DOH records 1,734 new cases; warns that surge in cases could lead to virus mutation

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 11, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Health (DOH) reported 1,734 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases on February 11.

Based on the latest bulletin the total number of cases in the country reached 543,282 with 31,478 active cases. The number of daily recoveries reached 423 with 500,335 total recoveries, and 68 deaths recorded, totaling to 11,469 deaths.

Fifty-two cases that were previously tagged as recovered are now reclassified as deaths after final validation. Twelve duplicates were also removed from the total case count.

Meanwhile, DOH-Epidemiology Bureau Medical Specialist IV Dr. Alethea De Guzman reiterated there is a need to increase the response in areas with surges of COVID-19 cases. This is to prevent possible mutation of the virus.

Kaya iyong mahalagang step natin para mapigilan, para ma- lessen iyong chance natin na magkaroon ng mga mutation at para magkaroon ng mga bagong varant (So the important steps to prevent and lessen chances for a mutation and possible new variant) is to really push our numbers to as low, to as minimum number as possible. To decrease the chance of new variants even a variant coming from the Philippines” she said.

Experts are currently monitoring the rising COVID-19 cases in Cebu City.

The health department reminds the public to follow health and safety protocols especially amid the threat of variants of the COVID-19 virus. -AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)


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