Mayor Isko threatens closure of malls, establishments selling stolen mobile phones

Marje Pelayo   •   September 16, 2019   •   184

Stolen smart phones being sold at some commercial establishments in Manila

MANILA, Philippines – Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso has warned malls and commercial establishments across the city not to sell stolen cellular phones.

This, after about 148 units of alleged stolen phones were confiscated by the Manila Police District – Special Mayor’s Reaction Team at two known malls in the city.

The Mayor presented before the media on Monday (September 16) five suspects who were arrested in the act of buying and selling alleged second hand but stolen cellphones.

Domagoso said such an act is a violation of Presidential Decree No. 1612 or the Anti-Fencing Law.

“Tigilan ninyo na ang pagtitinda ng mga nakaw na bagay (Stop selling stolen items),” he warned.

“Huwag ninyong sasabihin sa amin na hindi ninyo alam (Don’t tell us that you are not aware of it),” he added.

The official has given the management of Tutuban Center Mall and Isetann Recto Mall three days to check on stall owners and seek legal permits for the used items they are selling.

Otherwise, they will be asked to close down, Domagoso warned.

Earlier, the management of Tutuban Center Mall immediately heeded to Domagoso’s order.

He also calls on consumers to stop patronizing stolen items.

He said theft is one of the common problems among minors, such as the case of a teen who was nabbed for snatching cellphones and is now under the custody of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Manila office.

“Ayaw kong may iiyak na namang nanay, may iiyak na namang tatay, dahil nasaksak ‘yung anak niya, namatay ‘yung anak niya dahil inagawan ng cellphone (I don’t want to hear another mother or father grieving for their child who died because someone snatched their cellphone),” the Mayor noted.

The Manila Police has launched a manhunt for alias “Bebeng” who is said to be the receiver or seller of the snatched mobile phones.

Meanwhile, Domagoso has ordered the city’s Business Permits and Licensing Office to inspect all malls across Manila to determine and report those who sell snatched mobile phones. – MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

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

Marje Pelayo   •   October 17, 2019

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 gov’t orders closure of Isetann Mall

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 9, 2019

The Manila government has ordered the closure of Isetann Mall along Recto Avenue on Wednesday (October 9) due to violations of city ordinances and misrepresenting applications for permits.

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso himself served the closure order to the mall’s management.

The Manila Mayor said Isetann Mall was operating as a lessor “without the necessary business permit.”

He also added that the said mall has a questionable number of employees.

“Under its valid business permit, there is a declared area of 1,000 square meters with 10 employees personnel,” according to Moreno.

He also added that there are four operational cinemas in Isetann Mall but only one cinema has a business permit which is valid until the end of 2019.

The mall’s operator, Trans-Orient Management Services was performing the property management functions and services but “has no valid and existing business permit.”

“Sinabihan na namin sa kanila, magko-cooperate sila sa siyudad ng Maynila. Mukhang nasanay sila sa dating administrasyon na para bang walang gobyerno (We already told them to cooperate with the City of Manila. It seemed like they are still used to the previous administration as if there is no existing government),” he said.

According to the Assistant Administrator of Isetann Mall Recto Mercy Jacinto, the mall management accepted the closure order from the local government; however, they were not expecting to have violations when it comes to business permits.

“Ang pagkakaalam namin is mayroon naman kaming business permit (What we know is we have a business permit),” she said.

Moreno said Isetann Mall may reopen once it complies with the requirements mandated by the local government. —AAC

Manila to ban sale of secondhand cellphones

Marje Pelayo   •   October 8, 2019

Seized second-hand cellphones

MANILA, Philippines – Mayor Isko Domagoso on Monday (October 7) announced that he is banning the sale of secondhand mobile phones across the city.

Domagoso said his decision followed a series of cellphone thefts, with the stolen phones ending up in mall stalls in the city.

When mixed with brand new items, authorities “cannot distinguish what are legitimate and what are illegally acquired phones” thus, the mayor’s decision to completely ban the sale of secondhand cellphones.

Just recently, a dashcam video footage of two men breaking into a truck’s driver seat while in the middle of traffic along Road 10 in Tondo, Manila had gone viral on social media.

One of the men hopped on the driver’s seat and forcibly took the driver’s cellphone.

One of the suspects, identified as Christopher Dumapi alias ‘Topher’, was arrested.

Authorities said Dumapi has an outstanding warrant of arrest for theft.

Domagoso called on Dumapi’s cohorts to surrender rather than resist arrest.

Mas gugustuhin kong buhay sila at harapin na lang nila ‘yung ginawa nilang kawalang-hiyaan (I prefer to have them alive and face the consequences of their crimes),” he said.

Dumapi confessed that he is part of the scheme and that he is a drug user.

Aside from the incident involving Dumapi, Domagoso also mentioned another reported incident of cellphone theft in Morayta which victimized a college student.

The mayor revealed that the student’s cellphone was tracked down to a cellphone stall inside a mall in Recto, which was also a target of previous raids for rampant sale of stolen gadgets.

“Alam mo ang sabi sa kanya noong mall? ‘Huwag ka nang mag-complain kasi naibalik naman na ang cellphone mo (You know what the mall manager told the student? ‘Don’t complain anymore. You have your cellphone back anyway),” Domagoso said of the incident.

“Imbis na ipasara iyong umuupa sa kanya dahil may direktiba na ang siyudad ng Maynila, hindi (Instead of ordering the closure of the errant stall owner for violating existing directive from the city government, the mall owner did nothing),” he added.

Mayor Domagoso said the city government is currently drafting the ordinance and is expecting its immediate passage. — MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

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