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This here is a very practical opinion on the currently implemented traffic experiment in the city.

The traffic scheme being conducted may help but will not resolve the existing traffic congestion in Zamboanga city.

So said 1st Dist. Cong. Celso Lobregat, at the same disclosing claimed wrong decisions now Mayor Beng Climaco-Salazar made, “Now we realize that we really need a parking building.  It was already planned and it could have helped the traffic problem in the city proper,” Lobregat said during an interview over RMN.

“Funds were made available for this purpose because we are (were) already anticipating the worsening traffic problem in the city…” Lobregat said.

Instead of implementing the project, Climaco- Salazar constructed the local police headquarters in the area, citing security concerns.

Lobregat has expressed his strong disapproval to the construction of the police headquarters in subject area, citing that a police station is only 250 meters away from City Hall, and go to the Central Police Station have to labor finding themselves vacant spaces elsewhere to park because there is no available space along the station, Lobregat said.

If only the city had pursued the parking building project, that could have more or less eased the traffic situation in the city and could have provided parking for all types of vehicles in the city proper, at the same time, generating income, concluded Lobregat.

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Rising above its major supervisory function, the Central Police Station under Sr. Supt. Luisito Magnaye, adds five more drug suspects to its arrest list,following three separate blitzkiek drug buy-bust operations conducted in barangay Camino Nuevo last Sunday.

Arrested were Arjay Espiga y Anducal, 22; Chotrelyn Malonzo y Maro, 24; Mary Joy Sali y Paez, 39; Rodel Sali y Maribojoc; and Rizza Joy Arcillas y Javier.

Espiga and Malonzo were arrested in Tambucho, Canelar at around 3pm. Later that night, the team was able to arrest Mary Joy and Rodel Sali. And in less than two hours later, the team nabbed Arcillas.

The raids yielded prohibited drugs, accompanying drug paraphernalia and marked money.

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Issues about the management of the electric cooperative caused two bidders for the Investment Management Contract (IMC) of the Zamboanga Electric Cooperative (ZAMCELCO) to dissuade from submitting their bids, prompting the Bids and Awards Committee to declare a “Failure of Bidding.”

Zamcelco Board President Omar Sahi said that the two interested bidders for the IMC were Meralco and Aboitiz company’s Davao Light.

Upon consultation with representatives of the National Electrification Administration (NEA,) Zamcelco officials, then managed to persuade the bidders to reconsider their decision, and they were requested to submit their concerns for clarification at least two weeks before the holy week.

Sahi did not divulge the issues the bidders wanted threshed out.

Sources however said that one of the issues they wanted threshed out is, as to who will occupy the position of General Manager, which Eng. Edgardo Ancheta now holds.

And this is the 3rd time, the bidding for the IMC was postponed.

Zamcelco General Manager Engr Edgardo Ancheta said the purchase of a Generator set is one of the issues raised by bidders in previous meetings, but added, Zamcelco had already decided to purchase and pay for the loan of the 16-megawatt Generator Set.

Ancheta said that payment for the loan on the generator set will be taken from the share of Zamcelco during the duration of the IMC’s implementation.

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The Philippines and China have agreed to set up a mechanism on how to “properly handle” maritime disputes, with representatives from both countries meeting in May to craft a bilateral scheme, Malacañang said on Tuesday.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua and President Rodrigo Duterte discussed the issue during a meeting in Davao City on Monday.

“Through this bilateral mechanism, mutual trust and maritime cooperation will be forged and misunderstandings will be avoided,” he added.

Duterte is set to visit China again in May for the “One Belt, One Road” summit upon the invitation of President Xi Jinping. Duterte first visited China in October last year.

The Department of Foreign Affairs said that China will host a meeting in May with members of the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to discuss the completion of a framework on the Code of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, which mandates self-restraint and non-militarization in the contested waters.

And four Asean members – Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines, and Vietnam – are claiming parts of the SCS, while China and Taiwan are claiming most of its features.

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Vice Pres. Leni Robredo “bites.” She has accepted the dinner date with President Duterte. “Bites”, we say because she goes up against the worries of her allies, saying she sees the Duterte invite as a gesture of “extending a hand” of reconciliation.

No date for dinner has yet been set.

Recall, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV had said that the President’s invitation is a trap meant to disarm and politically neutralize her at this time that Duterte is facing the biggest political storm yet of his term as president, adding “Be careful believing President Duterte. He is two-faced. This is all staged. You shouldn’t be fooled because we can see through him.”

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Top Rank chief Bob Arum is giving Manny Pacquiao 48 hours to make a decision whether he is going to fight or not on July 2 in Brisbane, Australia.

While Arum is in constant touch with Pacquiao, through the fighting senator’s Canadian adviser Mike Koncz, the 85-year-old Hall of Fame promoter is anxious whether his proposal will come into fruition.

“They have to make a decision by Wednesday (Thursday in Manila),” said Arum from Los Angeles yesterday.

Arum is proposing that Pacquiao defend his World Boxing Organization welterweight crown against undefeated Jeff Horn at the 52,500-seat Suncorp Stadium.

With the working date just a little over three months away, Arum wants Pacquiao to make his move, stressing that the Australian government can’t afford to wait as it already has the money on the table.

Arum didn’t say exactly how much is being dangled. Efforts to stage the Pacquiao-Horn showdown was scuttled a few months ago when Koncz explored the possibility of bringing the 38-year-old Filipino star to the United Arab Emirates to meet former sparring partner Amir Khan of England.

Koncz went the extra mile in making it happen after being assured a whopping $38-million by UAE businessmen, flying to the UAE to meet up with sponsors. But in the end the deal botched.

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The Supreme Court (SC) dismissed yesterday the disbarment complaint filed against Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales, citing lack of merit,.

In a unanimous resolution, the SC ruled that the Ombudsman may be removed from office only by impeachment, and cannot be charged with disbarment during her incumbency.

The complaint was filed by defeated senatorial candidate Antonious Beda B. Belgica who claimed that Morales violated the lawyer’s oath and the Code of Professional Responsibility when she dismissed the criminal and administrative charges against former President Benigno S. Aquino III in connection with the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) without giving any reason.

Belgica claimed that Morales lacked integrity and was biased in the dismissal of the complaint against Aquino who appointed her Ombudsman.

He said he was not seeking the disbarment of Morales during her incumbency and pleaded that in the event that the complaint is resolved, the imposition of the penalty of disbarment should be deferred until the expiration of her term.

But the SC said “his complaint seeks to charge the Ombudsman with violations of the Code of Professional Responsibility and ultimately seeks her disbarment.”

It noted that “Belgica’s logic - that the Ombudsman may be charged with disbarment during her incumbency but the penalty may only be imposed after her term ends - is faulty and clearly contravenes the established principle that the Ombudsman cannot be charged with disbarment during her incumbency. (By Jimmy Cabato)

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