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Two intrusive points to start SS today. First, tough luck stuck again some bit, it being 6 minutes to 2 pm, sending almost a full long bond-sized items of toiled written pieces to God knows where- pffft… SS just went out for lunch and upon return to workplace the almost done piece is gone, being told that electricity unceremoniously flickered off. Have to start all over. Nut for loss of time with some last-minute preparations to undertake, our article today will necessarily have to  be sliced somehow.

Second, SS, depending on schedule, may again go missing sometime. SS is taking wife Lily and daughter Aimie for a vacation that may take about a week starting tomorrow. And on the three days thereafter, schedule may surely be hectic. Taking into the consideration all angles, this could very well be my gift to wife and kid coming from savings earned after some 25 years in government service - 2 as a policeman in Basilan, then a city, 4 as barangay captain of Baliwasan and 19 in the city council. After all those years, this travel will be the first for Aimie and the second for wife, who along with 3 kids, except Aimie had gone to the States in the past. Aimie then was yet unborn.

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Zamboanga City, after all, has 20 barangays that are drug free. 20 out of 98 is a fair number. Given the enormity of the drug problem in the city, iy is indeed something to crow about.

City Police Office spokesman  Chief Insp Edwin Duco made the announcement, explaining, a set of parameters divided into three phases: the pre-operational, operational and post operational stages, were used as measure.

Duco identified the villages as:  Under Police Station 1 - Taguiti and Tigbalabag, 2 - Lubigan and Panubigan; 3 - Lamisahan and Tolosa; 4 - Pangapuyan and Lanzones; 5 - Lumbangan and Lumayang; 7 - Dulian and Capisan; 8 - Sinunuc and Malagutay, 9- Baluno and Pamucutan, 10- Limpapa and Patalon, 11- Zone 1 and 2.

Sinuinuc, in? P/Chief Insp Hingming Lajaali must be doing a yeoman’s job in his area. In  recent days, raids and arrests have been reported there, although intermittently, we must add.

And also, all police stations here have at least two drug-free barangays except Police Station 6.

Duco said that the drug free barangays were identified based on a quota of at least two villages the PNP hierarchy gave.

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Department of Health Secretary Dr. Paulyn Jean Ubial conformed to the request of Congressman Celso Lobregat to revert back to Labuan Public Hospital the amount of forty-five million pesos which was earlier proposed by DOH9 to be re-aligned for the establishment of a new hospital facility inside Zamboanga City Special Economic Zone in San Ramon.

During her recent visit in Zamboanga City to inaugurate some DOH-initiated projects, Secretary Ubial met Congressman Lobregat in a one on one meeting and discussed the fate and issues confronting Labuan Public Hospital which landed in the news abounding with controversies and even thrown to a broadened dialogue in the Sangguniang Panlungsod for some uncertainties and opposition of barangay officials and constituents of the barangays of Patalon, Labuan and Limpapa.

It is for this reason why Lobregat came to the rescue and expressed his strong opposition in the downgrading of the 33-year old public hospital.

In a press briefing, Lobregat told newsmen that in the presence of DOH Regional Director Dr. Aristedes Tan, ZCMC Director Dr. Romeo Ong and Labuan hospital administrator Dr. Roy Valdez, he revealed to Sec. Ubial the plans of re-aligning the huge amount of budget intended for the completion of some facilities in the aforementioned hospital towards the proposed new hospital inside ecozone, wherein Lobregat categorically expressed his strong opposition on the said plan if in case the said funding for the purpose will be re-aligned.

Because of Congressman Lobregat’s manifestation, Secretary Ubial then agreed to adhere with Lobregat’s proposal and sought the assistance of the solon in monitoring the developments of the Labuan hospital expansion projects.

It was then that the good secretary, upon consultation with the DOH officials here agreed also to the possible extension of Labuan Public Hospital to ecozone using the 2018 budget and not the present one.

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While they may have lost their loved ones, but Good Samaritans - top businessmen all - have enlivened their lives. The families of the fallen government troops in Marawi City have received at least P1.25 million each in donation from the group.

President Duterte has announced that one of the businessmen donated P1 million to each of the fallen troops’ family but has asked not to be identified.

Duterte, in his remarks at the turnover ceremony of the financial aid, praised the anonymous donor’s generosity and magnanimity, adding the person will certainly go to heaven.

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While they may have lost their loved ones, Good Samaritans - big businessman, plus one exceptionally gracious - have somehow lit up their spirit. All families of the fallen Marawi soldiers each received P1.250 million each. Pres. said, a Good Samaritan, choosing to be unnamed, gave a hefty P1 million to each family. The remaining P250,000 each came from rich businessmen belonging to the Go Negosyo Kapatid for Marawi.

Around 250 families representing the 101 fallen soldiers and policemen gathered in Malacanang for the turnover ceremony of the financial aid from the Go Negosyo group. Hotel and travel accommodations were shouldered by the businessmen.

The President extended his condolences to the families, saying the Philippines will be “forever grateful” for the heroism and sacrifices of the fallen troops.

Presidential adviser on entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion said the financial assistance to the grieving families was aimed to honor their fallen loved ones and show solidarity with their grief.

“Through this occasion, we want to honor these courageous souls by showing that their fellow countrymen – from the government to the business sector – have not forgotten about their ultimate sacrifice and their loved ones who miss them dearly,” Concepcion said.

The same Go Negosyo Kapatid network pooled resources to extend support for soldiers battling militants in Marawi City. More than 5,000 care packages, including food and water, have also been distributed to the displaced families in the area.

The heroes among the Go Negosyo businessmen were Tessie Sy-Coson of SM Group, Josephine Yap of Filinvest, Jaime Zobel de Ayala of Ayala Corporation, Manny Pangilinan of PLDT/Smart Foundation, Alfred Ty of Metrobank Foundation, Jean Henri Lhuillier of Cebuana Lhuillier, Mildred Vitangcol of St. Peter’s Chapel, Alice Eduardo of Sta. Elena Corporation, Federico Lopez of First Philippine Holdings, Michael Tan of Asia Brewery and Philippine Airlines, Tony Tan Caktiong of Jollibee Foods Corporation, Injap Sia of Double Dragon Properties, Joey Concepcion of RFM Corporation, Jojo Concepcion of Concepcion Industries, William Belo of Wilcon Depot, Dennis Uy of Chelsea Logistics, Santi Araneta of LBC, and Sabin Aboitiz of Aboitiz Corporation.

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Could be the reason for the continued rebellion of the New People’s Army (NPA)? Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Tuesday revealed that the communist New People’s Army (NPA) is able to rake in P1.2 billion each year in its extortion activities in Eastern Mindanao alone.

Lorenzana made the revelation at the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) General Membership Meeting in Makati Shangri-la which he attended together with Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa.

Lorenzana said it strikes at the heart of doing business in Mindanao especially those in Eastern Mindanao affected by the extortion activities committed by communist rebels.

Eastern Mindanao comprises Agusan del Norte and Sur, Surigao del Norte and Sur, Davao, Compostela Valley, and South Cotabato.

Our piece today does not again appear that brief, but admittedly languidly pounded on, as much part of it were simply lifts from the pages of digital news.

“Til then, folks. SS may still see print tomorrow, for flight time is in the afternoon. Bye for now Until next time around.

God bless all.! (By Jimmy Cabato)

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