NPA bomb expert nabbed in Bukidnon

admin   •   August 4, 2017   •   8016

The police and military arrested a suspected bomb expert of the New People’s Army (NPA) in the town of Quezon, Bukidnon.

This, after the encounter of the members of the 403rd Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army and Quezon Police Station with the rebels.

The suspects were identified as Ruel Calolot, the alleged bomb expert, and a certain Ramil Cololot.

Confiscated from the suspects were 19 improvised explosive devices; a small version of rocket propelled grenade; a caliber 40 gun; ammunitions for an AK-47 rifle; bomb paraphernalia; and two laptops containing the alleged plan of the NPA to attack Northern Mindanao. — UNTV News & Rescue

 

Reported deaths due to Odette climb to 326, 58 missing – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   December 24, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The number of reported deaths due to Typhoon Odette has reached 326, the latest data from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) showed.

In its report released on Friday, a total of 58 people were reported missing, while 661 others were injured due to the onslaught of Odette in many areas in the Visayas and Mindanao.

A total of 3,380,167 persons or 870,334 families from 5,508 barangays in 11 regions were affected by the calamity, it added.

Affected regions include MIMAROPA, Bicol, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga, Northern Mindanao, Davao, Soccsksargen, CARAGA, and Bangsamoro.

Electricity has been restored in 149 out of 273 cities and municipalities that experienced power outages following the storm, the NDRRMC said.

Three cities and municipalities are still without access to water while 371 areas are still experiencing communication problems.

The NDRRMC noted that Odette damaged a total of 348,642 houses, around P3.9 billion worth of infrastructures, and more than P2 billion worth of crops, livestock, and fisheries.

A total of 126 ports were reported non-operational or had suspended trips. Of which, 72 ports resumed operations in CALABARZON, MIMAROPA, Region 5, Region 7, Region 9, Region 10, the NDRRMC said.

At least 1,353 passengers, 697 rolling cargoes, and 4 vessels were stranded.

A total of 343 cities/municipalities were declared under a state of calamity, the NDRRMC said.

China sends 20,000 relief packs to Odette-hit areas

Robie de Guzman   •   December 21, 2021

The government of China is sending food packages for those affected by Typhoon Odette in Visayas and Mindanao areas, its Embassy in Manila said Tuesday.

In a statement, the Chinese Embassy said relief packages worth P8 million pesos are on its way to areas devastated by the typhoon.

These areas include Cebu, Leyte, Negros Occidental, Bohol, Cagayan de Oro City, Surigao City, and Negros Oriental.

Each package contains five kilograms of rice, 10 canned food and 10 noodles pack, it added.

“Our hearts go out to all the Filipino families who were devastated by Typhoon Odette which has caused massive casualties as well as property loss,” the statement read.

“China will do its utmost to continue its firm support to the disaster relief efforts of the Philippine government and the Filipino people. We wish all those affected could overcome the difficulties and rebuild their homes at an early date.” It added.

In addition to food packages, China also sent 4.725 million kilograms of rice to typhoon-hit areas.

The embassy said about 1.5 million kilograms were allocated for Cebu, while the 3.225 million kilograms in Manila will be transported to other areas.

“We thank the Philippine government, in particular the Department of Social Welfare and Development for their great efforts in urgently distributing these rice to those Filipino families in need,” it said.

Typhoon Odette left many casualties and a trail of destruction when it battered many parts of the Visayas and Mindanao last week.

Local authorities fear the death toll could still go up in the coming days as verification process continues.

LGUs urge Senate to revert NTF-ELCAC budget to original amount

Maris Federez   •   November 22, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines — Several governors and mayors expressed dismay over the Senate’s decision to slash the budget of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) that is supposed to be allotted to the government’s anti-insurgency program.

The Senate Committee on Finance cut the budget of the NTF-ELCAC from Php28-billion to only Php4-billion.

Bohol Governor Arthur Yap said he finds questionable the Senate panel’s statement that the NTF-ELCAC’s fund only duplicates that of programs being funded by local government units.

Yap insisted that the NTF-ELCAC programs in the remote areas, particularly the Barangay Development Program, are proven effective.

“Hindi po maintindihan ‘yong statement na duplication. Mayroon bang government agency na into infrastructure at development na bumababa sa barangay na together with mayors, provincial governor with Philippine Army and PNP together with local officials consulting with the people?” Yap said.

Yap added that the farm-to-market road projects of the NTF ELCAC made it possible for the government to reach those in the remote areas, halting the recruitment activities of the New Peoples Army (NPA).

Davao Oriental Governor Nelson Dayanghirang, meanwhile, said that if the task force’s budget on the development of barangays is cut, its anti-insurgency projects will be delayed.

This, he fears, will pave the way for the return of the NPA in their area.

Ako naman po ay nakikiusap na huwag naman ninyong ipagdamot ang kapayapaan para sa bansang Pilipinas. Huwag naman nating ipagdamot ang mga pangangailangan na matagal nang minimithi ng ating mga kababayan na maangkin nila,” Dayanghirang said.

Eastern Samar Governor Ben Evardone, in the meantime, stated that lawmakers must not only focus their attention on COVID-19 response but also on insurgency which has long been the country’s major problem.

“Pero kung ‘yong pondo ay tatapyasin talaga at ilipat sa COVID para nga hindi sila maging masama sa tao […] Itong pandemic ng insurgency ay matagal na kasya COVID, sa totoo lang. More than 50 years we have been battling this major problem,” Evardone said. /mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Dante Amento)

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