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Long-serving Philippine Weightlifting Association (PWA) Vice President and Committee Head for Technical Operations, Councilor Bong Atilano is reported mired in controversy now due to allegations of misrepresentation and corruption.

This came to fore following the ouster of Atilano as Philippine Weightlifting Association (PWA) team leader after several years of being prominently linked with the sport.

Atilano is known to be a mentor of weightlifting icon Hidilyn Diaz and has accompanied her and the Zamboanga weightlifting team to several local and international competitions.

Francisco Mortera, a former Mr. Philippine titlist replaced Atilano, and will be travelling with the Philippine Weightlifting team to a competition in South Korea this month.

All these stories, Atilano downplayed, saying “No big deal,” the role is not held permanently by one person, explaining he was not able to attend meetings for several months because he was busy in Zamboanga attending to his responsibilities as a councilor. As such, he expected to be removed from his position as the Technical Committee Head.

He however said that he cannot be relieved from his position as PWA Vice President because removal requires a vote of 3/4 of all members of the association.

Despite the justifications, however, Atilano’s absence on the weightlifting circuit gave rise to speculations of Misrepresentation reportedly committed by the councilor in his capacity as PWA Vice President. And in an interview, Mortera himself claimed that Atilano was removed from his position in the PWA for said supposed rumor.

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The death of top Abu Sayyaf leader, Isnilon Hapilon seems not to have caused fear to this armed band. Suspected members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) has beheaded a former village official in Basilan province, the police reported on Monday, October 23.

Senior Superintendent Nickson Muksan, Basilan police director, identified the victim as Hadji Najer Bohong, 58, the former village chief Mahatalang, Sumisip municipality.

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Dist. 2 Rep. Manuel Jose Dalipe has called on the National Housing Authority (NHA) to conduct a probe on the reported sale of houses built under the Zamboanga City Roadmap to Recovery and Reconstruction (Z3R) in the city. And the City Government itself has so far recorded eight cases of attempts to sell houses built through the Z3R.

Dalipe noted the Z3R houses were built by the NHA for the victims of the 2013 Zamboanga siege. It is a low-cost housing project with the condition the beneficiaries cannot sell the housing units.

Yahya Abdusalam, Z3R focal person, said the houses that were reportedly placed on sale are within the Vale Vista housing project in the village of Kasanyangan. The occupants of the houses, howver, have denied that they are selling their housing units when Abdusalam and his personnel conducted an on-site investigation. He said the certificate of award will automatically be canceled if proven the Z3R housing beneficiary is selling his or her housing unit. He said they will be also disqualified perpetually to benefit in any of the government housing program.

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This one starts young, but on a sour note. A grade 8 student was reported to have rapes a 9-year-old girl. was reportedly raped in Sitio Marangan, Limaong last Saturday.

It was the mother of the victim who reported the incident to the Vitali Police Station.

The rape suspect is now the subject of a Police manhunt operation.

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?What we wrote here yesterday has turned true. “Government authorities have said today is the last day of the Marawi firefight. That indeed is credible, for reportedly, the Maute Group has no more civilian hostages on hand and the battle has gone down to just one building where only about 30 remaining terrorists are holding out.

The report today. The five-month battle against Islamic State (IS) supporters in Marawi City has ended, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana annolunced Monday.

The Philippine flag was finally raised at the Marawi City Hall for the first time since the siege started last May 23.

Lorenzana said there were no more militants, known locally as coming from the Maute Group, providing resistance following an intense final battle that led to the capture of a two-story building where pro-Islamic State group militants made their final stand after which 42 bodies were discovered.

“Those are the last group of stragglers of Mautes and they were caught in one building and so there was a firefight so they were finished,” he said

Last Tuesday, Duterte travelled to Marawi and had declared the city had been “liberated,” shortly after Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon, the designated “emir” in Southeast Asia of the Islamic State, was shot dead there.

But the continued fighting raised questions over whether the city was indeed free of the militants.

That was the very stand SS has been taking after the Duterte declaration. And now before SS completely believes the firefight is effectively over, authorities should first prove that the reported seven Malaysian straggler-fighters were part of the 47 corpses discovered after the last reported fight in the lone building. Remember, there has been no mention of them at all.

Meanwhile, US Defense Secretary James Mattis on Monday praised the Philippines for its successes in battling Islamic State supporters, as he began an Asian trip aimed at reaffirming American support for regional allies.

Mattis echoed President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement last week that Filipino forces had liberated the southern city of Marawi, after five months of bitter urban fighting that had claimed more than 1,000 lives, even though battles have continued.

“One of the first things I’m going to do when I get there is commend the Philippine military for liberating Marawi from the terrorists,” Mattis told reporters on the flight to the Philippines, according to an official transcript.

“It was a very tough fight as you know in southern Mindanao [the local region]. And I think the Philippine military sends a very strong message to the terrorists.”

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Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, the outspoken daughter of President Rodrigo Duterte, has debunked rumors she aiming for the senate in 2019.

Mayor Duterte made the clarification when she led Monday’s launch of the “Tapang at Malasakit Alliance (TAMA),” the umbrella group of Duterte supporters aimed at fighting destabilization efforts, including what the group describes as “destructive politicking.”

No, I am not running (for a national position). I am running for the first congressional district of Davao City. There’s no possibility (for a national campaign) at this time,” she told reporters.

The President’s daughter, however, did not close the doors for a national position in the future.

“If ever (that) I will indeed decide to run for a national post, I won’t announce it at this time. It’s

too early, she said.

Bung..! The cat is out of the bag. She may run.

President Duterte, whose term expires in June 2022, earlier said that he wanted Sara to succeed him as President because his daughter is strong and not a bigot, and knows the law very well.

But he later said it was a joke, after reportedly getting flaks from oppositionists. (By Jimmy Cabato)




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