Mayor Isko eyes serving ‘newly improved’ Nutribun to public schoolchildren next year

Marje Pelayo   •   October 17, 2019   •   1290

Manila Mayor Isko Domagoso

MANILA, Philippines – Mayor Isko Domagoso let elementary students in Rosauro Almario Elementary School (RAES) have the first taste of what he calls ‘newly improved’ Nutribun.

Domagoso is planning to revive the supplementary feeding program for public elementary school children that was first launched in the 70s under the late President Ferdinand Marcos.

“Disente. Naka-plastic. Maayos.  Iyong alam mong pinag-isipan, pinag-planuhan (It comes in plastic packaging. You’ll know it’s carefully designed and planned),” Domagoso said as he described the packaging of the bread.

“Medyo malambot na iyon. Pansinin mo. Hindi na makababasag ng panga. Noong araw kasi ang tigas niya. Lumalaban iyon na parang tsinelas (It’s softer now. Take a look. It’s no longer hard or rubbery),” he added.

The supplementary feeding program was launched between 1968 and 1970 in cooperation with the United States under the USAID Food for Peace program aimed at alleviating childhood malnutrition in the Philippines.

The program ended in 1997.

Nutribun, along with other food items, was served to public school children across the country for free.

On Wednesday, the local government of Manila together with the Philippine Society of Bakery (PSB) distributed nutrition-packed Nutribun coinciding with the World Bread Day.

(It has flour, soy, milk, butter and Vitamin C as well as Niacin, Riboflavin, and Vitamin A),” explained Jonathan Cabiles, PSB vice president, of the nutritional content of the bread.

According to Imelda Tubao, RAES’ school nurse, among the more than 8,000 school children in RAES, 446 are what they call “severely wasted” or described by UNICEF as ‘dangerously thin.’

Meanwhile, a total of 825 are considered ‘wasted’ or slightly undernourished. Most of their students come from poor families.

So far, the local government of Manila has selected students who are regular recipient of free breakfast.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DWSD), meanwhile, has also been serving free lunch and free snacks to selected schools in Manila which needed nutritional assistance.

According to Tubao, the re-introduction of the nutribun program will definitely improve the students’ learning habits.

“Iyong brain niya umaandar kasi kailangan busog ang tiyan (The students’ brain will improve its function because the stomach is full),” she said.

“Attentive na siya sa pakikinig sa guro. Maiintindihan na niya yung lesson ni teacher at dagdag noon, hindi na siya a-absent (Students will be more attentive to understand the teachers’ lessons. Likewise, it will prevent them from skipping school),” she added.

Aside from its nutritional benefits, Mayor Isko said he decided to revive the Nutribun program because it means not just the bread but memories of his childhood.

“I’m a product of public education system. We were so excited to go to school simply because of this nutribun and Klim,” he said.

“Kapag humilata ka sa bahay tatamad tamad ka, nganga. Kapag sumokpa ka sa eskwelahan may tinapay ka tapos may Klim (If you’re lazy staying home, you’ll get nothing. But if you go to school, you’ll get bread and milk),” the Mayor added.

Mayor Isko targets to kick start the Nutribun supplementary food program by next year and will be implemented in all public schools across the city of Manila. – MNP (with reports from Bernard Dadis)

Manila declares tax amnesty

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 23, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Manila local government on Thursday (September 23) announced a tax amnesty from October through December.

Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso signed Ordinance No. 8773 granting amnesty on all delinquent business taxes, real property taxes, regulatory fees and other service charges.

The mayor said the ordinance was signed as “the current pandemic has brought about unexpected socio-economic challenges to the country.” He said that the pandemic situation makes it difficult for taxpayers to settle their obligations.

“As a result, many businesses have remained closed, further causing the loss of jobs and opportunities. Amidst the health and safety challenges is the struggle to keep one’s livelihood afloat,” he said.

Under the ordinance, Domagoso said tax amnesty shall be granted to the following:

1. Persons who own, operate or are engaged in any business enterprise within the City of Manila

2. Persons who own or administer real property declared for the first time subject to back taxes

3. Persons who own or administer any delinquent real property with or without notices of collection

4. Persons who have violated traffic and parking rules imposed under the Manila Traffic Code and the No Contact Apprehension Program

5. Persons who have pending local tax cases before any judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative body concerning local business taxes, fees and charges or real property taxes

The general tax amnesty program, Domagoso said, shall take effect on October 1, 2021 until December 29, 2021 only. AAC

Isko Moreno, Willie Ong officially launch tandem for 2022 polls

Robie de Guzman   •   September 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso on Wednesday formally announced his presidential bid for the 2022 national elections.

Domagoso made the announcement in front of his supporters in Tondo, Manila.

“Kaya buong kababaang-loob inihahayag ko sa inyo mga kababayan ko: Sa darating na Mayo, tanggapin nyo po ang aking aplikasyon bilang Pangulo ng Pilipinas,” he said during his speech.

He also introduced Dr. Willie Ong as his running mate in the upcoming polls.

Mayor Isko was a former actor who grew in the slums of Tondo while Ong is a cardiologist and an internist who has over 16 million Facebook followers.

Ong ran for senator in 2019. He placed 18th overall but he garnered the second highest number of overseas votes for senator.

Moreno will face Senators Panfilo “Ping” Lacson and Manny Pacquiao, who both recently declared their intentions to join the presidential race. Ong will be against President Rodrigo Duterte and Senate President Vicente Sotto III in the vice presidential race.

The official filing of candidacy will start in October.

Intramuros, other tourism sites in Manila to reopen on September 16

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat on Wednesday (September 15) announced the reopening of Rizal Park and three sites in Intramuros; namely Fort Santiago, Baluarte de San Diego, and Plaza San Luis under limited capacity and shortened operating hours on September 16.

In a statement, the DOT said that Rizal Park will be open from 5:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. with a maximum capacity of 500 visitors at any given time.

Fort Santiago will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. from Monday to Friday, and from 9:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays with a maximum capacity of 150 visitors at any given time.

Meanwhile, Baluarte de San Diego will be operating daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and will accommodate a maximum of 80 people at a time.

On the other hand, Plaza San Luis is free for those who want to visit but only from 8:00 am to 9:00 pm daily.

The tourism department, meanwhile, reiterates only those within the age of 18 to below 65 shall be allowed in both Rizal Park and the Intramuros sites.

“We continuously urge our tourists to strictly adhere to the health and safety protocols to sustain the resumption of tourism in the country,” Puyat said.

Meanwhile, the DOT said that to encourage more National Capital Region (NCR) residents to get their COVID-19 jabs, the DOT through the Intramuros Administration will set up an express lane for fully-vaccinated individuals who wish to visit Fort Santiago and Baluarte San Diego. AAC

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