Tomas accuses Mayor Rama of bankrupting Cebu City; De los Reyes claims Rep. Gullas influencing students to enlist as Talisay voters: Cebu News Digest July 6, 2015

Politics is heating up in Cebu with elections less than a year away. In today’s news, former mayor Tomas Osmeña accused Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama of wasting government funds while Talisay City Mayor Johnny de los Reyes claimed 1st District Rep. Gerald Anthony Gullas asked students of the University of Visayas, which his family owns, to register in Talisay City. He described it as “hakot” or busing potential voters.

Here are the top stories in Cebu today, July 6, 2015

Mayor Rama wasting government funds, says Tomas

Former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña took to his Facebook page yesterday to criticize erstwhile ally and political rival Mayor Michael Rama as having wasted government funds and causing the city to lose potential revenues by selling outright SRP lots.

SRP Tomas Osmeña, Michael Rama
SOUTH ROAD PROPERTIES. An aerial shot of the SRP that former mayor Tomas Osmeña posted along with his criticism of how Mayor Michael Rama has handled the project and the city’s finances. (Photo taken from Osmeña’s Facebook page)
Osmeña, who conceptualized the SRP project, said that when he stepped down, he left behind P2.4 billion in City Hall.

“Apan unsa may gihimo ni Rama? Wa magdugay, gihurot niya ang pundo nga akong gibilin. Diin man padung ang kwarta? Bisan giunsa pagpugong sa mga konsehal aron dili mausik ang pundo, gigasto niya ang dakung bahin niini sa daghang mga dili-importanteng butang.” — former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña in his Facebook post. (What did Rama do? He spent everything. Where did the money go? No matter how much the councilors tried to stop him from wasting funds, Rama spend a huge part of the money on unimportant things.)

“Sa pagbaligya sa SRP, parehas ra’g giputol-putol ni Rama ang punoan sa mangga nga atong gitanom. Karon hinoong tuiga ug sa mosunod nga 2 ka tuig, duna pa siya’y mapaabot nga halin sa SRP. Apan mag-unsa naman pod siya inig kahurot ini? Mamaligya nasab og yuta sa SRP hangtod wa nay mahabilin ini alang sa atong kaugmaon?” — Tomas Osmeña (In selling the SRP lots, Rama is liking cutting off the mango trees we planted. This year and in the next 2 years, he still has revenues coming from the sale of the SRP lots. But what can we do when these are spent? Do we sell more SRP lots until none are left?


Talisay mayor accuses congressman Gullas of influencing UV students to sign up as Talisay voters

Talisay City Mayor Johnny de los Reyes has accused 1st District Rep. Gerald Anthony Gullas of influencing students of the University of the Visayas, which is owned by the Gullas family, to sign up as Talisay voters.

De los Reyes, told Sun.Star Cebu, that they were surprised by the groups of students signing up at the City Election Office. He said that many of the students could not identify their barangays. He described this as “hakot” or busing in voters.

Gullas denied the allegation, which he described as offensive, and said the students merely sought his office’s help. Gullas manages UV’s basketball team and serves as assistant vice president for finance and administration.

“We have legal procedures to follow if he feels he has been offended by some UV students who would want to exercise their right of suffrage. To me, to forestall, at the least, or deny these students their political rights is offensive, if not irrational.” — Rep. Gerald Anthony Gullas as quoted, by Sun.Star Cebu.


Weekend road accidents kill 4 persons, injure 5 in Cebu

Four people were killed in separate road accidents over the weekend in Toledo City and Argao and Dumanjug towns. A merchandise delivery truck fell into a river in Poog, Toledo City at past 11 a.m. Sunday, killing driver Oscar Layson and assistant Reymart Cañeza. The traffic investigator said the van’s brakes might have malfunctioned when Layson was traversing a curve.


Tragic homecoming in Pilar as survivors, dead arrive

Survivors of the Kim Nirvana-B sinking returned yesterday to Pilar, Camotes, their intended destination when the boat sank in bad weather on July 2. Coffins containing 45 bodies in white caskets were brought to the town by the BRP Batangas of the Philippine Coast Guard.

Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Baltazar Tribunalo Jr. told Sun.Star Cebu that 36 of the caskets remained in Pilar while 7 were taken to Tudela and one each to Poro and San Francisco.

Nirvana sinking
TRAGIC HOMECOMING. Workers bring to port one of the 45 caskets containing bodies of those who perished in the sinking last July 2. (Photo by Ryan Sorote of AksyonBisaya TV5)
The death toll in the accident is now at 61, with the retrieval Saturday night of 2 more bodies.


Other Cebu headlines:

» 3 Korean divers missing

Three Koreans were reported missing yesterday while diving in Mactan Island. The divers were identified as instructor Baek Seung Kyoon, 34, Heo Seung Yung, 45, and Kim Eun, 31. Rescuers had to stop operations at 6 p.m. because of the bad weather, Cebu Daily News reported.

» Sun.Star Cebu: Kidnapped 3-year-old found in Kamagayan

» Strong waves in Talisay destroy houses; residents flee

Read stories in Sun.Star Cebu, The Freeman, and Cebu Daily News.

» Sun.Star Cebu: Mayor Rama promises to resolve 93-1 lots issue before his term ends next year

Cebu Business Headlines

Sun.Star Cebu: With smallest insurance market in Asean5, Philippines ‘has room to grow’ for insurance

The Freeman: Brokerage warns real estate buyers against spurious developers

Sun.Star Cebu: Asean access opens huge market for gifts, decor and houseware sector


Cebu News Digest: April 22, 2015: Police identify man caught scratching cars on video, Cab driver returns P254T

Police already know the identity of a man caught on security camera scratching cars parked in South Central Square, Lawaan, Talisay City. An officer said the man has psychological problems.

Meanwhile, a cab driver returned P254,208 to a passenger who left the money in his taxi.

After the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 lifted the cease-and-desist order (CDO) it issued against DPWH for the removal of 79 trees from the street last year, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) 7 can now proceed with its road works on Sergio Osmeña St.

Are you planning to buy a house unit or thinking of investing in one?

Check out Astele, which is among the newest property developments of top developer Primary Homes in Lapu-Lapu City. Astele is a vibrant community nestled in the coastal area of the island, close to top beach vacation getaways. It makes use of natural lines and Asian contemporary elements that give it a tasteful and minimalist feel. (Read more about the project here.)

Here are the top stories for today, April 22, 2015:

Police identify man caught scratching cars on video

Police have identified the man caught on video scratching cars last April 18 at the parking lot of Robinsons Supermarket in South Central Square, Barangay Lawaan, Talisay City. They, however, refused to name him until a complaint is filed.

Talisay City Police Chief Supt. Germano Mallari said that two years ago, the man also scratched and dented a car that was parked in the same parking lot. A complaint was filed against him but this was settled when his parents paid for the damage.

Mallari told Sun.Star Cebu the man has a psychological problem.

Robinsons Supermarket Lawaan 3 manager Danilo Lim said they have now intensified security inside and outside their establishment.

Land Transportation Office Director Arnel Tancinco, meanwhile, advised car owners to avoid parking their cars anywhere and to avoid bringing their cars if the occasion doesn’t call for it.

Honest driver returns P254,208 left in cab

Valerio Boybanting, a father of five and a grandfather of 11, found a jacket containing dollars and a passport of a Korean national in his taxi last Tuesday.

He asked Ken Taxi, the company he works for, for help in returning the money to the owner. He turned to Marico Castañares, Ken Taxi’s manager, for help.

“Ayaw pagpakaon og kinawat para sa imong pamilya kay bati kaayo na (Don’t feed your family with something you stole because that’s bad).” –Taxi driver Valerio Boybanting (quoting his father)

The Consulate of the Republic of Korea in Cebu was grateful for the honesty of the taxi driver who received P8,000 as reward. He used it to build a comfort room and treat his family to an outing.

Road work can now be continued

DPWH was able to provide 7,900 seedlings of assorted tree species DENR. The coffee, narra, cacao and mango seedlings are stored at Camp Marina in Barangay Capitol Site.

This prompted acting Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (Cenro) Chief Raul Pasoc ordered the lifting of the CDO.

Even with the lifting of the CDO, Dr. Eddie Llamedo, DENR 7 spokesperson, said that DPWH must still comply with certain conditions, which includes ensuring that 85 percent of the seedlings they planted will survive.

They will start planting within 15.8 hectares of forestland in the barangays in Cebu City belonging to the Central Cebu Protected Landscape after the El Niño is over.

Other top Cebu News stories:

Sun.Star Cebu: Hospitals, medical facilities told: Manage own medical wastes

Cebu Daily News: Settlers ask: Where do we go after Friday deadline?

The Freeman: Sidewalk restoration project ‘Keeping vendors off street needs planning’

Cebu Business headlines:

Sun.Star Cebu: Chamber upgrades ‘Suroy’

Sun.Star Cebu: New deal designates M. Lhuillier as third-party collectors for Veco

The Freeman: Indian BPO firm opens second facility in Cebu


Cebu News Digest: April 10, 2015: Alleged police extortion in Minglanilla, Talisay; PB requests gov’t agencies to prioritize hiring teachers affected by K to 12

Some policemen allegedly flag down trucks carrying vegetables from Dalaguete and collect a “tong” of P200 from the drivers in exchange for road passage.

Meanwhile, the Cebu Provincial Board is requesting concerned government agencies to prioritize and facilitate the employment of teachers and non-teaching staff who will be ‘displaced’ during the implementation of the K to 12 program.

Are you planning to buy a house unit or thinking of investing in one?

Check out Astele, which is among the newest property developments of top developer Primary Homes in Lapu-Lapu City. Astele is a vibrant community nestled in the coastal area of the island, close to top beach vacation getaways. It makes use of natural lines and Asian contemporary elements that give it a tasteful and minimalist feel. (Read more about the project here.)

Here are the top stories for today, April 10, 2015:

P200 per truck for ‘road passage’

According to barangay captains from Dalaguete town, especially those who operate hauling trucks, alleged that some policemen threaten to issue their drivers a citation ticket when they deliver vegetables to Carbon Market in Cebu City.

Cebu vegetable market
Truckers carrying vegetables from Dalaguete complain about alleged extortion in Talisay and Minglanilla. (Creative Commons photo by Storm Crypt)

The policemen collect P200 from every truck driver about thrice a week. If drivers do not pay up, the cops slap them with some violations, such as overloading with a penalty of P1,500, confiscate their driver’s license, and issue them with a temporary operator’s permit that is valid for 72 hours.

At least 10 trucks get victimized each day.

The truck drivers and truck boys are forced to use their meal money to pay.

The police chiefs of Talisay City and Minglanilla challenged the concerned barangay chiefs to formalize their complaints and identify the policemen involved.

Prioritization of ‘displaced’ educators urged

PB is concerned with teachers of first year college and non-teaching staff having no work due to the fact that there will be no incoming first year college students for the next two years.

According to its resolution, “The only solution to this upcoming problem is to give them priority in the hiring of new teachers for Grade 11 and Grade 12 and it is only the DepEd and the Dole that can help them land in such jobs, so there is a need for commitment on the part of both Departments for such undertaking.”

The K to 12 program provides one year in the kindergarten level, six years in elementary and six years in the secondary level, which include four years of junior high school and two years of senior high school education.

Other top Cebu News stories:

Cebu Daily News: SM bus network to operate in Metro Cebu ahead of BRT
Sun.Star Cebu: Carcar has 3T ha. for devt.
The Freeman: HIV infection feared: Men pricking random people with syringe alarms netizens

Cebu Business headlines:

The Freeman: Asia’s top cabinet maker opens showroom in Cebu
The Freeman: DOT launches ESL tour program
The Freeman: Bank deposits in CV up 17% in Dec 2014