Camille Prats balik-teleserye after 5 years, netizens abangers na: ‘It’s time to rise again!’

INAABANGAN na ng maraming fans ang pagbabalik-telebisyon ng dating child star na si Camille Prats! Matapos kasi ang limang taon ay muling bibida sa isang teleserye si Camille. Tampok siya sa bagong afternoon prime series ng GMA na may titulong “Arabella.” Sa isang Instagram post ay ibinandera ng aktres ang ilang behind-the-scenes ng teleserye. Sabi […] The post Camille Prats balik-teleserye after 5 years, netizens abangers na: ‘It’s time to rise again!’ appeared first on Bandera......»»

Category: lifestyleSource: abscbn abscbnJan 26th, 2023

Jennica Garcia finally gets noticed as an actor of caliber

Jean Garcia’s words proved prophetic when she told her daughter Jennica, “Pagbutihin mo, 32-33 [years old] ako nung time na yun. Nagtatrabaho ako sa Japan, in-oferran ako ng ABS-CBN at nabigyan ako ng ‘Pangako Sa Yo’…Pag-igihan mo mabuti kasi baka maging pareho ang tadhana nating dalawa.” This is an anecdote Jennica tells host Jhai Ho on his ABS-CBN web show Trend Hotspot.   History did in fact repeat itself. It is Jennica Garcia’s star-making turn as Lala Millado in the recently concluded buzzy series “Dirty Linen” that is perhaps the teleserye’s biggest surprise, if only because the other actors involved in it all have reputations that preceded them, so it wasn’t exactly a revelation that they did well.    There are those who always thought she was great, even from her GMA days as a teen lead. OG Jennica fans on Twitter invoke they liked her from back in 2009, when she starred in  “Adik sa ‘Yo”, a romcom series with Dennis Trillo.  Adept at comedy even then, she is  able to put a twist in the traditional romantic female lead by playing her a little unhinged which made for a hilarious foil to a straightlaced Trillo.      In the initial press conference of “Dirty Linen” in January before the show aired, Jennica went viral for her candor that she had asked Dreamscape boss Deo Endrinal for a role on her mother’s advice, “Sir Deo is a trusted friend of mine, you can go to him.” She had contemplated being an OFW as she hadn’t had an acting job in seven months, and she was a single mom with two daughters to support, having separated from actor Alwyn Uytingco two years prior.    The pressure she put on herself had been tremendous. “Ang goal ko pag umere yung Netflix, mai-isip ng mga boss ko, tama dapat sya nga si Lala,” she said. The universal praise Jennica has gotten from viewers for the complexity, nuance and the unexpected comedic and whiplash tragic turns she has imbued her character means she has more than succeeded in that particular goal.     There is a particular clamor by netizens to see her in a K-drama adaptation, where female leads are known for their particular agility in comedy and drama. Jennica is certainly up for it and she has spoken of that particular genre as a dream. Wrote several X/Twitter users: She’s the nepo baby we needed. She earned her place.   The post Jennica Garcia finally gets noticed as an actor of caliber appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 27th, 2023

Alessandra, Empoy balik-tambalan after 6 years, netizens abangers na: ‘Ay gusto ko ‘to…from Japan to Paris!’

MATAPOS ang anim na taon, muling magtatambal sa isang bagong pelikula ang aktres na si Alessandra De Rossi at komedyante na si Empoy! Kung noong una ay sa Japan ginawa ang kanilang romantic comedy film, aba, ngayon naman ay sa tinaguriang “City of Love” – ang Paris. Ang kanilang bagong proyekto ay pinamagatang “Walang Kaparis” […] The post Alessandra, Empoy balik-tambalan after 6 years, netizens abangers na: ‘Ay gusto ko ‘to…from Japan to Paris!’ appeared first on Bandera......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsMar 5th, 2023

Camille 8 years nang sinasakyan ang ‘toyo’ ng asawa; 2 anak ni Mike certified ‘daddy’s gurl’

  KILIG na kilig at super aliw ang mga netizens sa birthday message ni Camille Prats para sa asawang si VJ Yambao. Ramdam na ramdam daw kasi nila ang sobrang pagmamahal ng Kapuso TV host-actress sa kanyang mister nang mabasa nila ang birthday greeting nito sa Instagram. “Sana all” ang nagkakaisang komento ng kanyang IG […] The post Camille 8 years nang sinasakyan ang ‘toyo’ ng asawa; 2 anak ni Mike certified ‘daddy’s gurl’ appeared first on Bandera......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsAug 4th, 2020

10 things that make Alyssa Valdez phenomenal

Alyssa Valdez has arguably made the biggest impact in Philippine volleyball.   Her skills, passion and charisma endeared her to volleyball supporters, purists or casual fans, from all walks of life. She brings energy and leadership to every team that she’s joined. Valdez draws a huge crowd every time she plays. Valdez is the poster girl of the sport that for years struggled to draw mainstream attention in a nation which considers basketball as its biggest sporting event. The 27-year old pride of San Juan, Batangas is the face of local volleyball. So on her birthday today, let’s look at some of the things that makes the Phenom really phenomenal.   Two-time UAAP women’s champion Valdez is Ateneo de Manila University’s undisputed Queen Eagle. Talks about the Lady Eagles’ breakthrough championship will not be complete without the mention of her name. After two years of bridesmaid finishes, Ateneo bagged its first-ever UAAP title in 2014 after beating the thrice-to-beat De La Salle University in four games in the Finals despite leading a young band of Lady Eagles playing under the new system of Thai coach Tai Bundit. The following year, Ateneo, with Valdez at the helm, retained its crown in a tournament-sweeping fashion.      Three-time UAAP Most Valuable Player Her skills during her collegiate career stood out among her peers. Valdez’s effort was rewarded with three Most Valuable Player awards in Season 76, Season 77 and in her last playing year in Season 78 in 2016. She also pocketed the Season 76 Finals MVP award.   Young phenom Valdez didn’t build her reputation overnight. It was her hard work and effort that brought her where she is right now. She was still a diamond in the rough when she was recruited by University of Sto. Tomas in a regional meet. But the Espana-based squad polished Valdez into a real gem of a player. Valdez, backed by a powerful lineup that featured the likes of Kim Fajardo and Jaja Santiago, won three straight UAAP girls’ titles and in the process collected three season MVPs. She was also named UAAP high school athlete of the year twice.        National team mainstay With her talents, dedication and good work ethics, Valdez has been a mainstay with the national team. Her first tour of duty was in 2008 when she represented the country in the Asian Youth Championship held in Pasig City. She joined the PHI Team in the 2014 FIVB Southeast Asian Zone qualifier in Vietnam. In 2015, she donned the tricolors for the Asian U-23 Championship and on the same year saw action in the country’s return in the Southeast Asian Games in Singapore after a decade of absence. Since then Valdez participated in the 2017 Kuala Lumpur and 2019 Manila SEA Games. She also took part in the 2017 Asian Senior Women’s Championship and the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games.     2015 SEA Games flagbearer Valdez also carries the honor as being the first-ever volleyball player to become the PHI flag-bearer in the SEA Games. She marched holding the national color in front of Team Philippines during the traditional parade of nations inside the OCBC Arena in the 2015 Singapore SEA Games.   Accomplished commercial league star She has been collecting commercial league titles since high school starting from the Shakey’s Girls Volleyball League. Valdez was also successful in the different conferences of the defunct V-League, racking up championships and individual accolades. In the Premier Volleyball League, she powered Creamline to three titles including a sweep of the Season 2 Reinforced and Open Conferences in 2018. She won three conference MVP awards.      Import abroad International leagues took notice of Valdez’s talents and charm so it’s not surprising that she landed offers to play abroad. Valdez played as an import in Thailand for 3BB Nakornnont from 2016 to 2017. After her stint in Thailand, Valdez flew to Taiwan to play for Attack Line.   Host, Actress, TV personality Valdez is a regular fixture in different sports shows in ABS-CBN S+A. She’s a host, courtside reporter and a game analyst.   Valdez also had a few showbiz stints. She appeared in some Kapamilya teleserye including a cameo in ‘And I Love You So’ in 2016 alongside Julia Barretto and Miles Ocampo and in the movie ‘My Letters to Happy’ with by TJ Trinidad and Glaiza De Castro.    Aside from her TV and movie career, Valdez is also one of the most recognizable athlete product endorsers.   Social media influencer She is also one of the most popular Filipino athlete on social media. As of posting, Valdez has 1.9 million Twitter followers, 1.3 million followers on Instagram and her YouTube channel has more than 76,000 subscribers.   Featured in the Olympics Channel website While the likes of Sisi Rondina, Jaja Santiago and Bryan Bagunas were featured in the FIVB website, Valdez’s impact on Philippine Volleyball was highlighted in a feature article in no less than the Olympic Channel website. The article touched about her humble beginnings to her meteoric rise and why she is regarded as the nation’s brightest star in the sport. These are just some of the things take make Valdez a true pride of our nation in the sport Happy birthday, Alyssa!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 29th, 2020

It’s imperative to rise in the Life Sciences and Global Innovation Index

Increasing and improving the quality of life sciences innovation in the country is mission-critical if we want our people to thrive and achieve a successful way of life. However, the life sciences, which include pharmaceuticals and medical technologies, is a complex sector heavily dependent on large capital due to the intensity of the research needed and the cost of development. The entire process, from research to commercialization, could take more than a decade, if not decades. Moreover, manufacturers are exposed to high risks, such as if field trials do not yield favorable results or if a product fails to meet regulatory standards. How then can we boost innovation outputs in this high risk and capital intensive sector? This was the question hanging over everyone’s head at the Asian Regional Conference in Support of Accelerated Life Sciences Innovation which IPOPHL and the World Intellectual Property Organization held earlier this September. In the Philippines, what we want is to sustain the momentum as patenting in life sciences has been growing over the years. Our data show that patent filings in the pharmaceutical sector have been growing by over 4 percent annually since 2020. Success in boosting life sciences innovation, as shown by the experiences of various countries, depends on robust incentives for research and development, a strong and balanced patent system and an effective rule of law. Another important factor is the establishment of trust among crucial players in the life sciences value chain, allowing them to collaborate and co-create. In fact, it was collaboration that paved the way for the world’s new and brave story of survival and recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. In his opening remarks, Alejandro Campaña, senior director at WIPO’s IP for Innovators Department, highlighted collaboration as making possible the development and launch of vaccines in one and a half years, a far cry from the average 10 to 15 years. This was supported by WIPO’s patent applications data in which almost a quarter named more than one inventor as the patent holder.   Rising in the GII In the Philippines, collaboration takes center stage in our innovation efforts with the creation of the National Innovation Council, created by the Philippine Innovation Act of 2019. The 25-member NIC, which IPOPHL is a member of, aims to transform Philippine innovation with more and better quality outputs. It also aims to elevate the country’s ranking in the Global Innovation Index from 59th to the top third of economies. The 16th edition of WIPO’s GII will be released on Wednesday, 27 September, during a hybrid event from 13:30 to 15:30 p.m. CEST (Geneva time). Centered on a very timely theme, “Innovation in the face of uncertainty,” the report will be discussed in greater detail in a panel discussion which will also talk about the way forward for global innovation. Aside from driving innovation in an imperative sector like the life sciences, the Philippines has been relentless in making the country’s overall innovation ecosystem more vibrant and productive. Our efforts must be reflected and justified in this next GII report where we hope to see the Philippines rise up and soar.   The post It’s imperative to rise in the Life Sciences and Global Innovation Index appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 25th, 2023

REVIEW: ‘HAMILTON’ — Astonishing stagecraft

“Hamilton,” Lin-Manuel Miranda’s rap musical about the eponymous Founding Father, has finally landed in Manila — the first stop of a new international tour that replicates the exact production currently running on Broadway and London’s West End. This is, in other words, essentially the same production that’s won every major theater award conceivable in the West, and whose live stage recording released on Disney+ three years ago was a global success among Covid-captive home viewers. You wouldn’t immediately know all that, however, just from watching this production: Even as it brims with dazzling theatricality and refreshing erudition, it also feels surprisingly small, rid of its status as a phenomenon, pared down to human size. It’s a show that’s almost oblivious to its own celebrity, even as entrance applause (erupting to diminishing returns) dotted the first 15 minutes of its 21 September gala performance at The Theatre at Solaire. Instead, it knows when to build up to the big musical moments, which are few and far between, and does so organically and therefore quite satisfyingly. The logical progression of the narrative and individual character drama — the musical’s unassailable structural precision — are rendered very clear; put bluntly, it is a storytelling apologist’s wettest dream. Never mind that the musical itself — evidently a product of modern-day liberalism, the politics of the American Dream made manifest through the eyes of 21st-century immigrants — is by now indivisible from the very valid criticisms it has received from many corners of American scholarly thought. For the uninitiated, Hamilton tells through rap the rise of the Founding Fathers, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, as they built America in the latter half of the 18th century. Admittedly, given what we know now and what we’ve been through since the musical premiered in New York in 2015, it feels weird, to say the least, to be watching a show that hero-worships to varying degrees the likes of Washington, Jefferson and Hamilton — all products of and complicit to the sins of their time. Moreover, the way the musical intentionally casts non-white actors to play these historically white figures (and slavers) can, depending on how one looks at it, come across as a stroke of meta subversion or “revisionist and insulting nonsense,” to quote one critic.   Unique brilliance Again — all valid criticisms, which some have suggested are actually part of the musical’s unique brilliance. Watching the musical (through this particular production) in Manila, however, you entertain those thoughts mainly in retrospect. Inside the theater, it’s all those aforementioned merits — and more! — that surround you: a show that’s so technically precise in ways that highlight the material’s inventiveness, a feast of astonishing stagecraft, a display of just how good musical theater can get when given vast resources. [caption id="attachment_187901" align="aligncenter" width="1148"] DeAundre’ Woods as Aaron Burr. | photograph courtesy of IG/dre_woods[/caption] Despite the title, the crux of this production is DeAundre’ Woods’ Aaron Burr (Hamilton’s archrival, if you will). It’s a performance for which the phrase “no notes” seems to have been coined. Whenever Woods disappears from the stage, you look for him. But, more importantly, the genius of Woods’ performance is in how it becomes the anchor through which the musical itself can be better understood: as a story of wanting and longing, a warning against the folly of ambition, a morality tale run parallel to the uncertainty and messiness of nation-building. When Woods sings (and brings down the house with) Burr’s first big solo “Wait for It,” you instantly comprehend the song — and, for that matter, the musical. Arguably, Burr is the central and meatiest role here. Next to Woods’ interpretation, however, the smallness and silliness inherent to the story Hamilton tells become all the more coherent. You grasp how Hamilton and his posse were essentially just kids bumbling their way through a revolution. It’s all very grand on paper, but it’s also a journey chockfull of pettiness and foolishness — and on that stage, a history lesson that revels in its occasionally juvenile, highly accessible nature. [caption id="attachment_187903" align="aligncenter" width="1432"] JASON Arrow as Alexander Hamilton. | photograph courtesy of ig/jason arrow[/caption] Three other male performances stand out in the process: Jason Arrow’s Hamilton, who convincingly pulls off the title character’s transformation from “young, scrappy, and hungry” to world-weary; Darnell Abraham’s Washington giving gospel-preacher-showdown realness; and Brent Hill’s King George literally putting the “mad” to delectably comic effect in his interpretation of the famed mad king. [caption id="attachment_187906" align="aligncenter" width="1512"] DARNELL Abraham as George Washington. | photographs courtesy of ig/darnell abraham[/caption]   [caption id="attachment_187900" align="aligncenter" width="1348"] BRENT Hill as King George. | photographs courtesy of ig/darnell abraham[/caption]   Dreamcasting Elsewhere, this is a production that’s supplied with all the right parts — but, on a local stage as technologically impressive as the Theatre at Solaire (the best acoustics in Metro Manila, hands down), it also invites “dreamcasting” — permitting you to imagine in real time how certain Filipino theater performers cast in certain roles would, without a doubt, totally slay those parts. No matter: As it is, this Hamilton is one that lives up to the hype surrounding its supposed brilliance — while simultaneously earning that reputation before a live audience night after night. Among others spots of pure artistry, it has a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it onstage costume change involving the terrific ensemble early in Act I, a historical battle conjured through frenzied dance, and entire scene changes and moments evoked simply through the deliberate arrangement of performers’ bodies (that climactic bullet scene, anyone?). In lieu of an arduous and expensive trip to New York or London, this production more than does the job. Hamilton runs at the Theatre at Solaire, Pasay City, until 26 November. The post REVIEW: ‘HAMILTON’ — Astonishing stagecraft appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 23rd, 2023

Chinese youths trade city-living for ceramics

China's "Porcelain Capital" Jingdezhen is attracting droves of young people drawn to the city of artisans in search of an escape from the urban rat race among its ceramics workshops. The picturesque eastern city home to China's best-known porcelain has seen an influx of young professionals seeking to learn an ancient art taught there for more than a thousand years. Times are tough for young people in China, with youth unemployment at record highs, sluggish economic growth and, for many, the opportunities their parents' generation enjoyed are simply not attainable. But in Jingdezhen they find something different: low rent, a slower pace of life and a proximity to nature in a city of just 1.6 million inhabitants, very small by Chinese standards. From her one-bedroom apartment on the seventh floor, He Yun, a 28-year-old illustrator, enjoys a panoramic view of the surrounding green hills for just 500 yuan ($68) a month. She arrived in Jingdezhen in June after being laid off and found a place where she didn't feel "any pressure". "I came because on social media everyone was saying that it was a great place for craft fans, like me, and that there was a scent of freedom," she said. "When I lost my job, I stayed at home and got depressed. But once I arrived here, I found that it's super easy to make friends." "No more need to set the alarm in the morning," she smiled. "I have zero pressure now!" - 'Looking for meaning' - A typical day for He starts with a laid-back breakfast, before heading to a workshop to make her ceramic candle holders and necklaces, which are then fired in one of the city's many kilns. "At the end of the afternoon, we go to the surrounding villages and swim in the streams to relax," she said. "I put my work on Xiaohongshu" -- a Chinese app similar to Instagram -- "where people contact me to buy. But we mainly sell at the market," she said. Between trendy cafes, boutiques and stands offer glasses, bowls, cups, teapots, plates, necklaces or earrings. Chen Jia, 24 with dyed red hair, makes feminist pendants in the shape of sanitary napkins. A music graduate who arrived in June, her first jobs as a piano teacher and in a milk tea shop and cafe weren't to her liking. "I am looking for meaning in my life," she said. "Many young people today no longer want to clock in at work at a fixed time." China's transformative economic rise was built on the backs of a growing middle class, who were promised they could enjoy the trappings of prosperity and give their children a better life if they worked hard enough. But the country's millennials and Gen Z have faced altogether different prospects: youth unemployment has reached a record level, exceeding 20 percent according to official figures, and pay is low. It's in that context that the "tangping" counterculture has thrived. Literally meaning "lying flat", it's come to represent a general rejection of society's expectations, giving up a great career and money to concentrate on a simple life and pleasures. And Jingdezhen has become a haven for those seeking just that. At the Dashu pottery school, around 20 students work with clay on their pottery wheels or chat as they sip iced lattes. Training costs 4,500 yuan a month ($617), a very affordable price. "Many young people cannot find work" explained the 39-year-old director who calls herself Anna. "They come here to reduce their anxiety." "Ceramics are very accessible. In two weeks, they can produce simple works and sell them at markets." - 'New life' - One of them, Guo Yiyang, 27, resigned in March from a well-paid job as a computer programmer. After working overtime for years, he said he wanted to "take a breather". "In big cities... you just work. You don't have your own life," he said, adding he "never again" sees himself working that way. "The desire for another way of life" is also what motivated Xiao Fei, 27, a former interior designer who resigned and came to Jingdezhen in June. "I didn't have time for myself," she said. "I came home tired and I didn't want to talk to others." "I feel happier, more free and I meet people who have the same ideals." According to Chinese media, 30,000 young urbanites lived in Jingdezhen in 2022. Few stay long-term but Xiao already knows that she doesn't want to go back. "After tasting this new life, I don't want to go back to an office job at all." ehl-oho/je/mtp/sn/pbt © Agence France-Presse The post Chinese youths trade city-living for ceramics appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsSep 19th, 2023

U.S. auto workers stage historic strike

About 12,700 workers from one factory each of the three biggest automakers in the United States walked off their job Friday in a historic strike. The strikers marked the walkout outside a Detroit-area Ford plant with rowdy honking and cheers at the arrival of the United Auto Workers’ union leader Shawn Fain “Tonight, for the first time in our history, we will strike all three of the Big Three at once,” Fain said in a webcast shortly before the 14 September deadline to sign a new contract with General Motors, Ford and Stellantis. Fain said he had hoped to avoid a strike, but blamed the companies for waiting too long to begin serious negotiations. “We’re going to be out here until we get our share of economic justice,” the union president said. “And it doesn’t matter how long it takes.” Fain said the union would strike at a GM factory in Wentzville, Missouri; a Stellantis facility in Toledo, Ohio; and a Ford plant in Wayne, Michigan, but only the final assembly and paint operations. The 12,700 who walked out represent only a fraction of the 150,000 auto workers represented by UAW. The union demands include a 40-percent hike in wages, which Fain has said is needed to match rises in CEO pay. Other sticking points include raising pay and benefits for junior employees to match the level of more seasoned workers, who currently make a top rate of around $32 an hour. Many hourly workers say the auto giants must produce significantly better packages to make up for meager wages and benefit cuts after the 2008 financial crisis, when both GM and Chrysler, now part of Stellantis, underwent bankruptcy reorganizations. All three companies have been highly profitable in recent years. On Thursday, GM upped its offer, lifting a proposed wage increase to 20 percent. The company had previously proposed an 18 percent rise, according to the UAW. Stellantis said it was “extremely disappointed by the UAW leadership’s refusal to engage in a responsible manner to reach a fair agreement in the best interest of our employees, their families and our customers.” The post U.S. auto workers stage historic strike appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 15th, 2023

BBM: Our calm, kind, gentle President

The most challenging thing is to write an essay about the country’s President who is celebrating his birthday. I should probably go back to the years when he was the “crush ng bayan.” From London, he would come home for vacation and would be met at the airport by his doting parents, with his mother kissing him on the forehead. He was very fashionable, from his haircut to his clothes and, well, he was the epitome of “cuteness” as cute could be. He did not sport long hippie hair but had bangs and his lips were well-pronounced. His mom took pride in his looks. “Kamukha ko (he looks like me),” she would say. Bongbong grew into the Oxford student who would come home and occasionally appear on television. I recall in 1973, he and his friends danced the latest craze on live television. He was, by then, oozing with appeal, his shy and boyish smile adding to the enigma that comes with being the president’s son. Many years later, I saw him when he and his sister Irene graced the opening of a project in Isabela. I am trying to remember if it was for natural gas or the largest dam in Asia. But he was there on the stage set up at the Cauayan airport, looking fresh and friendly, although he was smiling at everyone and no one in particular. I stood alone, away from the other welcomers, and somehow got him to look at me. I looked at him like I was telling him I know you or we know each other, and he stared back, smiling too, looking like he was wondering if he might have seen me before somewhere. It was one of my tricks. [caption id="attachment_183135" align="aligncenter" width="525"] The President has a long way to go, but that’s no reason for him to relax and wait for things to happen. | Photograph courtesy of BBM FB[/caption] Much would be said of the young gentleman, of his not being who he was supposed to be because he had died somewhere. Also, that he had killed someone who had called his father a dictator. Bongbong Marcos, for better or worse, was the fodder for both favorable and malicious talk. He became governor of Ilocos Norte in the mid-1980s when he took over from his aunt, Elizabeth Keon. At the same time, he wore the military uniform of the officer rank bestowed on him by his father, the President. Moving fast forward, Bongbong Marcos became a congressman and a senator, ran for vice president, and lost. Sometime after he caught Covid-19. After he had lost the vice-presidential contest and was protesting its result, he appeared on Daily Tribune’s online show, Spotlight. I remember only a little, not because he or his remarks were forgettable, but I blame my old age for not remembering. But I recall a pleasant interview, for he was relaxed and calm, and while he seemed occupied by his electoral protest, he was at the same time accepting of it. It was the Marcoses’ turn to be cheated, people said. The next presidential election had him and Leni Robredo, along with others, slugging it out. And while everyone had taken to microphones to condemn and attack him and his father, martial law and the dictatorship, he remained silent. He chose not to participate in the debates, leaving it to his supporters and fans to fight back for him. One UP professor who may have been unbiased took a liking to him, like an older woman in love for the first time, gushing over the assets of a fine, young, sexy gentleman. But that was not unexpected. Bongbong Marcos, after all, was the “crush ng bayan” from the time he was a teenager. Today, he is the President of the Philippines. I was talking with one youthful matron who possesses both beauty and wisdom and whose family was best known to be in the opposition against the Marcoses. She said that when President Rodrigo Duterte began his term, she gave him a chance to prove himself because he had been elected. As her gauge for the success of a presidency had much to do with how the stock market fared, she was disappointed because stocks dived very low to the depths. She gave RRD a failing mark. When BBM became President, she also gave him a “chance.” She told me, “I have yet to see what will happen next because he has just finished his first year, and it is too early to know how well or evil he has done. The people elected him, he is now the President, so let’s give him a chance.” The woman’s statement, I believe, more or less sums up the general feeling of the Filipino people. Here is one President perceived to be good and kind, and one who is not to be feared compared to his father or even his daring and feisty elder sister. One would hear, “Matatakot kayo pag si Imee ang presidente (You would be afraid if Imee were president),” which is people’s way of saying what they feel and think about the Marcos siblings. So, we have a kind President who has had to deal with all kinds of issues and problems: Typhoons, the pandemic, and now the rice shortage. I have always been a BBM fan (after all, he was “crush ng bayan” in our youth), and even if he had not become a statesman in the tradition of many of our top legislators, one thinks of him as a pleasant guy who plays it cool and is lovable. Now comes a wife who is perceived to be running the show. All because, like it or not, she has the educational credentials; she proved herself in the Big Apple; and as her husband himself would tell one and all, she has excellent organizational abilities. She ran the campaign, many would assume, although she much preferred to keep to the sidelines. Like it or not, Liza Marcos, the First Lady, is a potent mover in this administration. Her many worthy projects in the creative industry, health care, education, and environment, along with her brand of diplomatic maneuvering using Filipiniana fashion as a vehicle for international friendship, bode well for this administration. We got two leaders for one vote, and we are better off as a nation. To the President’s credit, he recognizes the role his wife plays in his administration, and that speaks of a man secure in his position as the head of his family. Regarding cronyism, BBM has his friends in the business sector, top men and women, titans and tycoons, czars and magnates, who accompany him on his travels abroad. One of them described their roles as similar to those of club guest relations officers — entertaining guests and clients. We are told that they talk with their counterparts on the international scene, wherever the presidential itinerary takes them. Hence, the public does not see the usual kind of cronies who are there for what they could take. These friends want to help because if this administration succeeds and the economy improves, the Filipino people, including the business sector, will live better lives. The greatest challenge to BBM, everyone perceives, is the conflict with China over the West Philippine Sea. In this regard, BBM has proved to be wise, circumspect and decisive. He has the backing of the international community and his people. We hope he will pass the test, because if he passes it we are all together the victors. BBM deserves our prayers and hopes for the best of his administration. If he succeeds, and we hope he does, we will rise as a people. The President has a long way to go, but that’s no reason for him to relax and wait for things to happen. There are some things that people feel he should handle with steel gloves, akin to his father’s style, and that is up for him to decide. A kind and gentle President may be all we need to make this nation great again, and there’s Bongbong Marcos to take on the role and fulfill the promise of a happy, progressive, and peaceful country and people. BBM is not only the best-looking President, but the kindest and, of late, the most eloquent, as he is proving himself to be. He is also the coolest. The post BBM: Our calm, kind, gentle President appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 12th, 2023

Pause or hike? ECB rate decision on a knife edge

The European Central Bank is walking a tightrope between still-high inflation and a darkening eurozone outlook as it decides whether to lift interest rates again or finally pause its historic hiking cycle. Whether to raise borrowing costs for a 10th straight time when they meet Thursday is shaping up to be rate-setters trickiest decision since the tightening campaign began. The central bank for the 20 countries that use the euro has already lifted rates by 4.25 percentage points since July last year to combat runaway consumer prices. But the Frankfurt institution now finds itself in a "difficult spot," HSBC said in a note, as officials struggle to digest competing data. On one hand prospects for the single currency area are looking bleaker, particularly due to a poor performance in its biggest economy, Germany, which sank into a recession over the winter and is struggling to climb out of it. Latest data showed eurozone second-quarter growth reached just 0.1 percent, lower than previously estimated, while a recent survey pointed to the economy contracting at its fastest rate in three years as a manufacturing slowdown spread to services. The weak data has fuelled calls for the ECB to pause the aggressive hiking cycle for fear it could deepen a downturn, and President Christine Lagarde finally opened the door to doing so at the bank's last meeting in July. Eye-watering inflation  But consumer prices, which began surging after Russia's invasion of Ukraine due to galloping energy costs, continue to rise strongly. This would support arguments for another hike to borrowing costs, with the aim of further depressing demand and slowing inflation. Consumer price rises came in unchanged at 5.3 percent in August, way above the ECB's two percent target, although closely-watched core inflation -- excluding volatile energy and food prices -- eased a little. While inflation has slowed since last year as energy costs fall, officials are now worried that other factors, particularly wage increases in a tight labor market, are keeping it elevated. The data makes for a "very complicated mixed bag," said ING economist Carsten Brzeski. "We expect a very heated debate with a close outcome." Brzeski said he expected the 26-member governing council to opt for one final increase, which would take the closely-watched deposit rate to a record high. Other analysts, however, are betting on a pause on Thursday, although they also think the ECB might then impose one final hike at a later meeting. This would be similar to what the US Federal Reserve has done -- taking a break in June before resuming lifting rates again in July. The Fed and the Bank of England are due to hold their next meetings the week after the ECB. Hawks versus doves ECB officials have insisted their decision will depend on incoming data, which has put the focus on updated forecasts the central bank is also due to release on Thursday. In the run-up to the meeting, they have mostly been cagey about what will happen, a contrast to other recent meetings where the decision was usually well-telegraphed in advance. And mixed signals have emerged in recent days. Governing council member Peter Kazimir called for another 25-basis-point hike, with the Slovak central bank chief writing in an op-ed it is "better to be safe than sorry". But another member, Italian central bank boss Ignazio Visco, disagreed with those who think it is better to overdo it, rather than undershoot, while ECB chief economist Philip Lane welcomed signs inflation was easing in some areas. Analysts stressed it was far from clear whether the "hawks", backers of further tightening, or "doves" -- proponents of a pause -- would prevail on Thursday. But if they do choose to lift rates, it will likely be "the final hike in this cycle, with the ECB on hold until at least mid-2024," said Frederik Ducrozet, chief economist at Pictet Wealth Management. The post Pause or hike? ECB rate decision on a knife edge appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 11th, 2023

Cloud aids banks scale up operations

One of the world’s leading open platforms for composable banking, Temenos, underlined that cloud applications can help banking institutions efficiently scale up operations. Temenos serves 3000 banks from the largest to challengers and community banks in 150-plus countries by helping them build new banking services and state-of-the-art customer experiences. Temenos Banking Cloud, the company’s SaaS offering, is used by over 700 clients across more than 30 jurisdictions. During Temenos Cloud Forum 2023 forum for bank professionals in the Philippines, graced by representatives from the leading banks in the country, Temenos Financial Services Partner for Ernst and Young, Anurag Mishra, discussed “Banking Transformation” explaining that the cloud could help banks to efficiently scale their operations and design customer experiences which are more engaging. “One of the most important shifts that is happening is on the customer side. Banking is going to transition while customers are demanding ‘hyper-personalization’ and that requires new technologies. Today is the best time to shift from a technology perspective because the number of options to deliver on customer experience is huge and the cloud can solve specific problems,” according to Mishra in his presentation. On the other hand, Temenos Business Solution Lead for ASEAN, Rishi Sarin, explained the changing landscape and the challenges in the banking industry. “In a recent report published by Accenture “The ultimate guide to banking in the Cloud 2022,” 94 percent of banking respondents said that about 50 percent of all their banking business and technologies will migrate to the cloud in the next three years, while cloud adoption increased 2x in 2022 compared to 2021. There are currently huge investments by Cloud providers in the market so when we offer it as a service, it’s not only the reliability that comes in, but we can also provide security, stability and resilience,” Sarin said. He reiterated that the traditional set-up in which banks usually manufacture and distribute their own products, is changing fast as end-customers are demanding financial services at the point of need and it doesn’t necessarily matter to them who is providing those services. This fundamental shift is giving rise to new business models like embedded finance or Banking-as-a-Service. Temenos Principal Solution Consultant for Digital Banking Solutions for Asia-Pacific, Bala Carcharla, highlighted the three stages of “Lifestyle Banking.” The post Cloud aids banks scale up operations appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 9th, 2023

Sky Garden’s Ryu, Hiro and Iwa break into music SCENE

There are now two full-blooded Japanese young men bidding for adulation from the multitude of Pinoys as members of a band signed up recently by AltG, a sub-unit of GMA Music. The boyband is known as Sky Garden. The two are Hiro and Iwa, who have been living here for more than a year now upon the invitation of the band’s founder Ryu (pronounced as Rio), who is a Pinoy-Japanese brought up in Japan, finished college there and worked for a few years at Toyota in Japan. Ryu’s mother is from Isabela. When the pandemic unsettled the world, he decided to move to the Philippines where he easily landed a work-from-home job. He also landed a scholarship for a one-year course at the Ateneo de Manila University. Ryu, Hiro and Iwa (for easier recall they use their very short nicknames as their showbiz names) are very close friends from Nagoya, Japan. They have another friend -- but he took his own life sometime after he lost his job due to the economic constraints and contractions brought by the pandemic virus. Ryu was already in the Philippines when he learned about the tragedy. As casually and as briefly as he could at the launch of Sky Garden in Quezon City, Ryu revealed that he got very worried Hiro might fall into depression, too, since the latter eventually lost his job, too, and so did Iwa. Ryu convinced Hiro and Iwa to join him in the Philippines and he would take care of them until the pandemic subsides, and new jobs and financial opportunities open in the Land of the Rising Sun. To make it easy for the two guys to come to the Philippines, Ryu told them he would buy plane tickets for them. The boyish Ryu, who seems to be a well-disciplined young man who graduated cum laude in college, soon managed to raise money for the plane fares. Happily, their parents were willing to support them for a few months in the Philippines, hoping they’ll find their financial bearings on a short stretch of time. They got here just early last year. Ryu admitted that his parents, too, we’re partially supporting him which is why he is able to rent a pad in Metro Manila where all three of them stay together.   Getting ‘Filipinized’ Hiro and Iwa have college degrees, too, which equipped them with enough English vocabulary to get by in the Philippines. They also find it easy to pick up a foreign language, such as Tagalog. Warm and extroverted, they do not hesitate to break into a conversation with anyone in a mixture of Tagalog and English. Or it could be that Ryu is a very good language teacher. Hiro and Iwa have picked more than enough Tagalog words to enable them to do hilarious contents for their vlog of jokes and how-tos. The two had been vlogging individually in Japan but were easily persuaded by the voluble Ryu into forming themselves into a trio of clownish characters who can also sing and dance and act and do covers of K-pop, P-pop and Japanese pop, of course. Iwa and Hiro even ventured into the streets singing to passers-by with Hiro strumming his guitar. They once found their way in Murphy in Cubao, Quezon City, sang to some kids hanging out on the street one of whom happened to be celebrating his birthday. Iwa offered to buy a cake for the boy on condition that he would take them home to their parents, and let them eat with the family -- including partaking of food that Iwa himself would buy ingredients for and cook in the family pans and stove. “Iwa has very passable cooking skills,” blurted Ryu at the presscon. The middle-class family accepted them. They ate, danced, sang and caroused with the family, including the middle-aged father of the birthday boy. Sky Garden has amassed 17 million views in less than a year for their vlogs, one of which was a gag about “first circumcision.” They also have a series of gags comparing Japanese antics with those of the Pinoys. They are at home playing an assortment of Japanese and Pinoy characters in a variety of situations. Even their covers of hit pops are well-followed to the tune of hundred thousands of views. At the presscon, they easily broke into snippets of the Voltes 5 theme and SB19’s “Gento.” They are completely un-shy in sharing themselves to the people. They seem serious at becoming “Filipinized” Japanese.   Jap-Pinoy talent on the rise Their success at entertaining themselves and people prompted Ryu to offer Sky Garden to GMA Music to become a talent group of the company. He sent them email offers since he had figures to show from the video-sharing apps. He also sent the company videos of the three of them performing rock compositions of Hiro with Tagalog lyrics mainly put together by Ryu whose mastery of Tagalog is amazing. He could really pass for a Pinoy who just happens to look like a Japanese. “I’ve been vacationing in the Philippines every school break since my childhood years.That’s how I slowly grew a tongue for Tagalog with no Japanese twang,” confided Ryu. The boys were signed up by AltG just last July, although long before that they have acted as guests in the Vic Sotto-Maine Mendoza sitcom on GMA 7, Papa’s Gurl, and on Family Feud. They’ve also found a manager, Ruby Gomez, who has been a talent supplier for the Kapuso network and for ABS-CBN for some years. Their first single, “Kokoa,” was launched in all the video-sharing apps on 1 September. The boys have vlogged that the song ranked 10th on iTunes 100 on the day it premiered. They’re praying that when the music video for Kokoa is launched on 8 September, it will do well, too. The forthcoming music video may show in fleeting seconds the well-toned upper torso of Ryu and Hiro who do gym workouts. Their chest and abs may peek from unstrapped kimonos which the boys love to wear to signal to people their being Japanese. Iwa has gone a little chubby although pics of them on their FB and Instagram accounts show that Iwa looked the handsomest of them when he had less poundage. AltG will surely find exposure for Sky Garden in their weekly musical-variety All Out Sunday and in the network’s new talent competition shows one of which is hosted by the network’s hottest star for some time now, Dingdong Dantes. We recently intoned in this corner that a wave of Jap-Pinoy talents is upon the entertainment industry. The Sky Garden is one more manifestation of that wave. Sky and garden are iconic images in classic Japanese paintings. Those are images in our subconsciousness over centuries. Ryu, Hiro and Iwa surely know how to connect to the world at large. The post Sky Garden’s Ryu, Hiro and Iwa break into music SCENE appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 6th, 2023

Chipmaker Arm aims for $52-B valuation in NY listing

British chip maker Arm, owned by Japan's SoftBank, will target a valuation of up to $52 billion when it lists on the New York Stock Exchange later this month, the company said Tuesday. The company is looking to raise between $4.5 and $5.2 billion in its initial public offering (IPO), it announced in a filing, which would make it one of the largest tech IPOs in recent years. Arm is a world leader in designing chips that are used in smartphones across the world and aims to be a major player in artificial intelligence. Arm's IPO comes on the heels of a surge in the share price of chipmakers like Nvidia amid a boom in interest in companies building the hardware needed for AI to flourish in the wake of the successful launch of the chatbot ChatGPT. Rare tech IPO Arm's IPO is being closely watched by the financial markets, with large tech IPOs something of a rarity in recent months, as rising interest rates have pushed traders to take less risky financial decisions. In 2022, the number of IPOs worldwide fell by more than 60 percent year-on-year, while the value of these deals dropped by 45 percent. Under these conditions, Arm's deal would be one of the largest IPOs in the tech sector since Alibaba's Wall Street IPO in 2014, which raised $25 billion at the time. The valuation target announced by Arm on Tuesday is much lower than SoftBank's earlier estimate of more than $60 billion. However, it is still considerably more than the approximately $32 billion Softbank paid for Arm back in 2016. Majority shareholder The document filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission said more than 95 million shares would initially be offered on the Nasdaq exchange at a price of between $47 and $51 per share. The number of shares listed could rise up to 102.5 million in case of strong demand. All of the shares being sold are existing shares owned by Softbank, and all of the money from the IPO would go to the Japanese company. Softbank will continue to own around 90 percent of the company after the listing. Tech giants including Nvidia, Apple, Samsung Electronics, and Intel are interested in investing in Arm once the company is listed, according to numerous press reports. Arm will remain headquartered in the British city of Cambridge and may consider a second listing on the London Stock Exchange, where it was previously listed before its takeover by Softbank in 2016. Founded in 1990, the British company has some 6,000 employees in Europe, Asia, and the United States. Its sales for 2022 were stable at $2.7 billion. Its processors "provided cutting-edge computing for over 99 percent of the world's smartphones" the company said in 2022, estimating that "around 70 percent of the world's population uses products" based on its technology. Arm's parent company SoftBank has experienced numerous difficulties in recent years. Its most high-profile failure came with the dramatic collapse of the American shared office giant WeWork. Once valued at $47 billion, WeWork saw its valuation plummet amid investor concerns over its corporate governance under its controversial chief executive Adam Neumann. The post Chipmaker Arm aims for $52-B valuation in NY listing appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 5th, 2023

Is prior demand necessary?

Time and again, I have emphasized the importance of strict adherence to procedural rules. Again, no matter how meritorious your case is, if you do not follow procedure, it can be dismissed on a mere technicality. That will be a crushing defeat; a knockout punch in the very first round. Your time, resources, and effort, all go down the drain. All for nothing. Specifically, I talk about sending a demand to your obstinate lessee before filing an ejectment suit. Section 2, Rule 70 of the Rules of Court expressly mandates that the ejectment suit “shall be commenced only after demand to pay or comply with the conditions of the lease and to vacate is made upon the lessees, or by serving written notice of such demand upon the person found on the premises, or by posting such notice on the premises of no person be found thereon, and the lessee fails to comply therewith after 15 days in the case of land or five days in the case of buildings.” Failure to comply, even if the lessor has all the right to dispossess the lessee, will result in the dismissal. Such is what happened in Velia J. Cruz v. Spouses Maximo and Susan Christensen (G.R. 205539 promulgated 4 October 2017). Petitioner Velia Cruz inherited property from her mother. Respondent Spouses Maximo and Susan Christensen already leased said property from her mother during her lifetime. Ms. Cruz, upon her mother’s passing, thus became the spouses’ lessor. In time, lessees failed repeatedly to pay rent. Thus, Ms. Cruz was constrained to demand that the lessees vacate the property and pay all unpaid rentals. The parties met at the barangay for conciliation. No settlement was inked. Three years later, Ms. Cruz finally sent a demand letter to vacate the property and pay the rental arrears. There being a refusal still by the lessees, Ms. Cruz was constrained to file an ejectment suit. At the trial court, Ms. Christensen admitted the lease but made an issue out of the demand letter. She denied having received it and claimed she did not know whose signature appeared on the letter, allegedly receiving it on her behalf. The court, on account of this ground, dismissed the case. It opined that since it was not established who received the demand letter, it could not be said that the lessee received it. Thus, a failure to comply with the demand requirement. Upon dismissal, Ms. Cruz wasted no time appealing to the next level of court. The Regional Trial Court on appeal, gave her the nod. It gave due course to her appeal and required the lessee to vacate the premises and pay the unpaid rentals. Respondent spouses’ turn to go up. The Court of Appeals reversed the Regional Trial Court and reinstated the dismissal by the trial court. Thus, Ms. Cruz had no other recourse but to go up to the final bulwark of justice. Among the issues raised was the sufficiency of the demand; or if such is necessary in the first place. In ruling in favor of petitioner Cruz, the Supreme Court declared, “[T]he property in this case is owned by petitioner. Respondents had a month-to-month lease with the petitioner’s predecessor-in-interest. Petitioner contends that no prior demand was necessary in this case since her Complaint was premised on the expiration of respondent’s lease, not on the failure to pay rent due or to comply with the conditions of the lease. “The jurisdictional requirement of prior demand is unnecessary if the action is premised on the termination of the lease due to expiration of the terms of the contract. The complaint must be brought on the allegation that the lease has expired and the lessor demanded the lessee to vacate, not on the allegation that the lessee failed to pay rents. The cause of action which would give rise to an ejectment case would be the expiration of the lease. Thus, the requirement under Rule 70, Section 2 of a prior ‘demand to pay or comply with the conditions of the lease and to vacate’ would be unnecessary. xxx xxx “However, the respondents’ Answer to the Complaint is telling. Respondents admit that they only had a month-to-month lease since 1969. They contend that they had been continuously paying their monthly rent until sometime in 2002 when the petitioner refused to receive it. Thus, as early as 2002, the petitioner, as the lessor, already refused to renew respondents’ month-to-month verbal lease. Therefore, the respondent’s lease had already long expired before the petitioner sent her demand letters. “Respondents cannot feign ignorance of petitioner’s demand to vacate since the matter was brought to barangay conciliation proceedings in 2005. The barangay certification issued on 11 August 2005, shows that no compromise was reached between the parties.” “Therefore, the respondents’ insistence on the non-receipt of the demand letter is misplaced. Their verbal lease over the property had already expired sometime in 2002. xxx xxx The demand letter would have been unnecessary since respondents’ continued refusal to vacate despite the expiration of their verbal lease was sufficient ground to bring the action.” Clear as day. Another good distinction learned. If the ground is the expiration of the lease, no demand is needed. In case you as a landlord, are in a like situation, you know that no demand before the institution will not be a fatal infirmity. Sources: Section 2, Rule 70, Rules of Court Velia J. Cruz v. Spouses Maximo and Susan Christensen as cited above The post Is prior demand necessary? appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 3rd, 2023

Bringing tourism and hospitality to a green future

A dynamic power couple has been creating waves in the Philippines’ hotel industry with their innovative approach to sustainable tourism. [caption id="attachment_175626" align="aligncenter" width="1284"] Don Ramon and Alessandra Bagatsing’s family.[/caption]   Don Ramon and Alessandra Bagatsing, the creative minds behind the pioneering green service hotel company, Eco Hotel, are redefining sustainable travel adventures. Their journey began in the world of real estate, but it was Alessandra’s desire for a passion project that led to the inception of something truly remarkable. Alessandra, chief executive officer of the CA Hernandez Development Group, the holding company for and Eco Hotels, shared, “Originally, we were both in real estate, but I wanted something that was different. A passion project where I could put my creative talent and real estate development skills together.” This fusion of inventiveness and commercial savvy gave rise to the idea for Eco Hotel, a sustainable company that values the environment, society and the communities it serves. Eco Hotel, founded in 2015, was born out of Alessandra’s commitment to ecotourism and environmental preservation. She and her husband, Don Ramon, a professor of Economics and Finance at De La Salle University and founder of Sampaloc Holding Corporation, joined forces to create a noteworthy project. Alessandra’s advocacy for sustainable growth, purposeful profit and community development found harmony with Don’s spatial intelligence and keen grasp of business and financial affairs. Their first hotel, The Cabins by Eco Hotel in Tagaytay, was designed to be more than just an accommodation. It was a testament to their vision of responsible tourism. “We saw the potential of tourism in the Philippines,” Don Ramon explained. “We believe tourism is a sunrise industry, especially with the growing population of Millennials and Gen Z who love to explore.” Their strategy also made an impact on the local community by involving them in the hotel’s operations and sourcing supplies from nearby businesses. Alessandra’s resourcefulness and creative ingenuity were evident in the hotel’s unique design. From repurposed wine bottles transformed into light fixtures to furniture crafted from unconventional materials, the Eco Hotel concept celebrated sustainability on every level. The dedication extended to architectural features, such as rainwater catchment and solar power, all contributing to the overall ethos of an Eco Hotel. Over time, the Eco Hotel brand expanded and opened more branches, including, which caters to young travelers seeking affordable accommodations. The couple also saw the potential growth of the countryside. “Manila is already a contained space,” he said. “The future is the countryside. We have no choice but to develop it.” Their strategic approach involved securing properties aligned with the government’s infrastructure plans. While their professional collaboration thrived, their personal connection remained the bedrock of their success. “She’s always right. What’s hers is hers and what’s mine is hers,” quipped Don Ramon. Their ability to overcome obstacles while relying on one another and their team showed how well they worked together. They were all dedicated to improving the community where they operate. Looking ahead, the couple envisioned an even brighter future for Eco Hotel, with plans to expand their presence while continuing to focus on sustainability and community engagement. They highlighted the growth of their food and beverage selections, stating, “In the next three to five years, we’ll probably have 10 restaurants and maybe 30 hotels and around 20 commercial buildings.” The Surf Kamp Caliraya Lake, the Containers Tagaytay, the Cabins Tagaytay, the Villas Mataasnakahoy Batangas and the Suites El Nido are all under the Eco Hotel banner. El Nido, Puerto Princesa and Cloud9 Siargao all have Pops District commercial pedestrian streets nearby. Their journey, much like their hotels, is about more than just a destination; it’s about creating a sustainable legacy and a better green future for all. The post Bringing tourism and hospitality to a green future appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 25th, 2023

Hawaii fire death toll hits 55, expected to rise

A terrifying wildfire that left a historic Hawaiian town in charred ruins has killed at least 55 people, authorities said Thursday, making it one of the deadliest disasters in the US state's history. Brushfires on the west coast of Hawaii's Maui island -- fueled by high winds from a nearby hurricane -- broke out Tuesday and rapidly engulfed the seaside town of Lahaina. The flames moved so quickly that many were caught off-guard, trapped in the streets or jumping into the ocean in a desperate bid to escape. "It really looks like somebody came along and just bombed the whole town. It's completely devastated," said Canadian Brandon Wilson, who had traveled to Hawaii with his wife to celebrate their 25th anniversary, but was at the airport trying to get them a flight out. "It was really hard to see," he said, teary-eyed. "You feel so bad for people. They lost their homes, their lives, their livelihoods." The fires follow other extreme weather events in North America this summer, with record-breaking wildfires still burning across Canada and a major heat wave baking the US southwest. Europe and parts of Asia have also endured soaring temperatures, with major fires and floods wreaking havoc. "What we've seen today has been catastrophic... likely the largest natural disaster in Hawaii state history," Governor Josh Green said. "In 1960 we had 61 fatalities when a large wave came through Big Island," he said earlier in the day, referring to a tragedy that struck a year after Hawaii became the 50th US state. "This time, it's very likely that our death totals will significantly exceed that." Maui County officials said just after 9:00 pm Thursday (0700 GMT Friday) that fatalities stood at 55, and firefighters were still battling the blaze in the town that served as the Hawaiian kingdom's capital in the early 19th century. Pictures taken by an AFP photographer who flew over Lahaina showed it had been reduced to blackened, smoking ruins. The burned skeletons of trees still stand, rising above the ashes of the buildings to which they once offered shelter. Green said 80 percent of the town was gone. "Buildings that we've all enjoyed and celebrated together for decades, for generations, are completely destroyed," he said. Thousands have been left homeless and Green said a massive operation was swinging into action to find accommodation. "We are going to need to house thousands of people," he told a press conference. "That will mean reaching out to all of our hotels and those in the community to ask people to rent extra rooms at their property." President Joe Biden on Thursday declared the fires a "major disaster" and unblocked federal aid for relief efforts, with rebuilding expected to take years. 'Bodies in the water' US Coast Guard commander Aja Kirksey told CNN around 100 people were believed to have jumped into the water in a desperate effort to flee the fast-moving flames as they tore through Lahaina. Kirksey said helicopter pilots struggled to see because of dense smoke, but that a Coast Guard vessel had been able to rescue more than 50 people from the water. "It was a really rapidly developing scene and pretty harrowing for the victims that had to jump into the water," she added. For resident Kekoa Lansford, the horror was far from over. "We still get dead bodies in the water floating and on the seawall," Lansford told CBS. "We have been pulling people out... We're trying to save people's lives, and I feel like we are not getting the help we need." Green said around 1,700 buildings were believed to have been affected by the blaze. "With lives lost and properties decimated, we are grieving with each other during this inconsolable time," Maui Mayor Richard Bissen said. "In the days ahead, we will be stronger as a... community," he added, "as we rebuild with resilience and aloha." Evacuations Thousands of people have already been evacuated from Maui, with 1,400 people waiting at the main airport in Kahului overnight, hoping to get out. Maui County has asked visitors to leave "as soon as possible," and organized buses to move evacuees from shelters to the airport. The island hosts around a third of all the visitors who holiday in the state, and their dollars are vital for the local economy. At the airport in Kahului, Lorraina Peterson said she had been stuck for days without food or power, and was now looking at a lengthy wait for a flight. "I don't know if we'll be able to get a hotel room, or we'll have to sleep here on the floor," she said. With a hurricane passing to the south of Hawaii, high winds fueled flames that consumed dry vegetation. Thomas Smith, a professor with the London School of Economics, said that while wildfires are not uncommon in Hawaii, the blazes this year "are burning a greater area than usual, and the fire behavior is extreme, with fast spread rates and large flames." As global temperatures rise over time, heat waves are projected to become more frequent, with increased dryness due to changing rainfall patterns creating ideal conditions for bush or forest fires. The post Hawaii fire death toll hits 55, expected to rise appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 11th, 2023

Hawaii fire death toll expected to rise ‘very significantly’: governor

The death toll from a terrifying wildfire that razed a historic Hawaiian town is expected to rise "very significantly", the state's governor said Thursday, with 36 people already known to have perished. Brushfires on the west coast of Hawaii's Maui island -- fueled by high winds from a nearby hurricane -- broke out Tuesday and rapidly engulfed the seaside town of Lahaina. The flames moved so quickly that many were caught off-guard, trapped in the streets or jumping into the ocean in a desperate bid to escape. Governor Josh Green said Thursday the latest confirmed death toll of 36 would dramatically increase. "That number is going to go up very significantly," Green told CNN. "In 1960 we had 61 fatalities when a large wave came through Big Island. This time, it's very likely that our death totals will significantly exceed that." An official update was expected later Thursday, but Green said the numbers would "go into the 40s today at the least." Lahaina on Thursday lay in charred, smoking ruins, with Green saying 80 percent of the town was gone. "There is no doubt everyone would describe this as though a bomb hit Lahaina," he said. "It looks like total devastation; buildings that we've all enjoyed and celebrated together for decades, for generations, are completely destroyed." President Joe Biden on Thursday declared the fires a "major disaster" and unblocked federal aid for relief efforts, as residents said they needed more help in a recovery that could take years. Bodies  US Coast Guard commander Aja Kirksey told CNN around 100 people were believed to have jumped into the water in a desperate effort to flee the fast-moving flames as they tore through Lahaina. Kirksey said helicopter pilots struggled to see because of the dense smoke pouring from the huge fire, but that a Coast Guard vessel had been able to rescue more than 50 people from the water. "It was a really rapidly developing scene and pretty harrowing for the victims that had to jump into the water," she added. For resident Kekoa Lansford, the horror was far from over. "We still get dead bodies in the water floating and on the seawall," Lansford told CBS. "We have been pulling people out... We're trying to save people's lives, and I feel like we are not getting the help we need." Aerial photographs of Lahaina, which served as the Hawaiian kingdom's capital in the early 19th century, showed entire blocks reduced to cinders. Green said around 1,700 buildings were now believed to have been affected by the blaze. "With lives lost and properties decimated, we are grieving with each other during this inconsolable time," Maui Mayor Richard Bissen said. "In the days ahead, we will be stronger as a... community," he added, "as we rebuild with resilience and aloha." Evacuations  Thousands of people have already been evacuated from Maui, with 1,400 people waiting at the main airport in Kahului overnight, hoping to get out. Maui county has asked visitors to leave "as soon as possible," and has organized buses to move evacuees from shelters to the airport. The island hosts around a third of all the visitors who holiday in the state, and their dollars are vital for the local economy. Fires have also broken out on Hawaii's Big Island, but officials said they were under control on Thursday. The state's tourism chief Jimmy Tokioka acknowledged the tragedy but reiterated that the "rest of Hawaii is open." With a hurricane passing to the south of Hawaii, high winds and dry vegetation fueled the flames. Thomas Smith, a professor with the London School of Economics, said that while wildfires are not uncommon in Hawaii, the blazes this year "are burning a greater area than usual, and the fire behavior is extreme, with fast spread rates and large flames." The Hawaii fires follow other extreme weather events this summer in North America, with record-breaking wildfires still burning across Canada and a major heat wave baking the US southwest. Europe and parts of Asia have also endured soaring temperatures, with major fires and floods wreaking havoc. As global temperatures rise over time, heat waves are projected to become more frequent, with increased dryness due to changing rainfall patterns creating ideal conditions for bush or forest fires. The post Hawaii fire death toll expected to rise ‘very significantly’: governor appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 11th, 2023

Bong Go asks for accomplishment report of DPWH’s flood control projects

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go stressed on August 9, Wednesday, the need for accountability, strategic prioritization, and long-term solutions to address recurring problems in flood-prone areas during a Committee on Public Works hearing on the country's flood control master plan and outstanding projects. “Yun lang po sir ang tatlong hiningi ko: (1) accomplishment report, (2) copy of master plan at (3) prioritization dito sa mga flood control projects ninyo po na dapat po’y makinabang yung mga lugar na dapat makinabang – yung mga flood prone areas,” he asked during the hearing. Go asked DPWH for an accomplishment report detailing the flood control initiatives undertaken during former president Rodrigo Duterte's term. He also requested a copy of the master plan outlining both current and upcoming projects. The senator said the budget allocated for flood control continues to increase from P82 billion in 2019, 80.7 billion in 2020, 90.9 billion in 2021, 127.4 billion in 2022, 182 billion in 2023, and now with a proposed budget of P215.6 billion for 2024, not including foreign assisted projects and those funded by the private sector. “Ibig sabihin, tumataas po ‘yung budget ninyo for flood control. Pero ‘di pa rin po nabibigyan ng solusyon ang problema sa pagbaha,” he stated, indicating a broader concern about the strategy and effectiveness of flood control projects in the country. The senator also expressed confusion and concern over the prioritization of some flood control projects, questioning why some areas with little or no population receive flood control measures while highly populated areas still suffer from recurring floods. “Despite having flood control projects initiated or requested by legislators and local officials, ang expertise ay nasa DPWH. Kayo dapat ang magsabi kung ano ang tama at mali, kung saan ba dapat ilagay ang flood control, slope protection at iba pang proyekto, at kayo ang dapat nakakaalam paano masolusyunan ang paulit-ulit na pagbaha sa bansa,” Go stressed. In response, DPWH Secretary Manuel Bonoan said there is a need to protect the environment and production areas but agreed that populated areas should be prioritized. Go said “yung nakikita ko minsan, maraming mga flood control, eh, may bundok namang nagpo-protection sa kanila.” “Eh, dito sa mga patag na lugar — halimbawa itong Bulacan — halos walang bundok ito. Walang nagpo-protect sa kanila sa mga umaagos na malalakas na tubig mula sa taas ng bundok. Eh, ‘yun pa ang kulang-kulang sa flood control. Maybe just check your prioritization plans,” added Go. The senator's call for action originated not only from a practical perspective but also from a compassionate stance. He acknowledged the difficulties faced by the citizens affected by flooding and said "ang hirap mabahaan, parang back to zero na naman po sila," underscoring the challenges of recovery. “Para po silang nasunugan, kaya lang pinagkaiba, makalabas pa rin sila, pero mahirap, sira yung gamit, basa dito, sasakyan, basa yung mga telebisyon nila, parang nag-umpisa po muli sila,” added Go. Go recalled how, during the time of former president Duterte, the administration had insisted on an equitable distribution of the budget for all regions, whether for flood control or any infrastructure. “Talagang gusto niya, hinayaan niya po ang departamentong mag-determine kung saan ‘yung priority niya talaga at nangangailangan,” said Go. “Pakiusap ko lang po sa inyo, full support naman po ako sa inyong opisina, ever since noon pa. Ayusin lang po ‘yung prioritization at ‘wag pong mapabayaan itong mga lugar na flood prone po talaga,” he added. Meanwhile, Go also highlighted the need to address compensation for right-of-way claims, especially for those who are less wealthy and struggle to have their claims recognized. “In relation to DPWH projects… gusto ko lang po malaman, itong prioritization ng pagbabayad ng right-of-way… kase ‘yung mayayaman, balewala sa kanila ‘yun. May mga may hawak ng titulo, halos namamatay na lang na hindi na-claim. Mga isang kahig, isang tuka, nasa bundok, natatamaan ‘yung kalye nila, ‘yung hindi binabayaran,” said Go. “Ano po ba ang prioritization rito sa right-of-way? Lalo na ‘yung mga maliliit. ‘Yun ang napansin ko. Pabalik-balik na, years hindi pa nababayaran,” he added. Bonoan acknowledged the importance of prioritizing all acquired properties and explained the challenges in budgeting for right-of-way compensations. He revealed that the allocated budget for these compensations has been very minimal over the past three years, with only a fraction of the requested amount being granted. Go’s demands for transparency and prioritization in flood control projects were made considering recent flooding incidents across Luzon due to heavy rains brought by tropical cyclones Egay and Falcon as well as the Southwest Monsoon or Habagat. His teams have been going around these areas to provide relief to affected communities particularly in Cagayan, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Pangasinan, La Union, Zambales, Pampanga, and Bulacan. “Ang suliraning ito ay nagpapakita lamang ng kahalagahan ng masusing pag-aaral at aksyon upang maisaayos ang flood control strategies sa ating bansa. Sa likod ng mga hamong ito, patuloy tayo sa paghahanap ng mga karampatang solusyon para sa matagal nang problemang ito,” he said. #### The post Bong Go asks for accomplishment report of DPWH’s flood control projects appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 10th, 2023

US firms to dip fingers into MIF

An in-depth study by the Asian Central Journal or ACJ dated 20 July 2023 reveals that the Department of Finance forged a $1-million contract with a US PR firm, Weber Shandwick Philippines or WSP, that was signed in early January 2023, according to WSP sources. The ACJ study asks why the Maharlika Investment Fund or MIF bill was signed at the precise time Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri was in the US. “On 21 June, Senate President Zubiri reportedly signed an ‘enrolled’ copy of the MIF. Jose Manuel Romualdez, the Philippine ambassador to the US, was present for the signing. Ambassador Romualdez has long held the positions of chairman and CEO at WSP.” The ACJ study reports that, “The US was designated as the top campaign market in the PR strategy to draw US investment” and that “the MIF might be used by the US as a means of financial pressure on the (Philippines).” In other words, US funds for the MIF may be used as bait for the US to get major MIF projects in the future. The study says the WSP PR strategy aims (1) “to decrease misconceptions about the MIF, particularly those pertaining to abuse and corruption” (downplaying corruption helps fuel it); (2) “to raise awareness of it as an instrument for economic development” (sanctifying corruption as ‘economic development’); and (3) “MIF management and investment may be subject to US intervention. DBM Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman stated on 19 April that several US corporate organizations and investors are eager to assist us in structuring the MIF.” This dangerous move towards achieving US corporate funds for the MIF will easily increase corruption tenfold, with the participation of US corporations. This was the strategy of US oil firms in Nigeria in partnership with a corrupt government to siphon the oil for the West. The US corporations turned a blind eye to the corruption. The strategy triggered the growth of terrorists in the    Muslim-dominated deep north which did benefit from the “development” received by the Christian-dominated south. The ACJ report, citing the MIF, warns, “There looms a grave concern: the specter of corruption.” It cites two cases. “Norway’s sovereign wealth fund lost $174 billion (about P8.7 trillion) in the first half of 2022, while (the Singapore-based) Temasek Holdings, which is primarily regarded as a sovereign wealth fund, has seen a net loss of S$7.3 billion throughout the nearly 50 years since its founding.” If less corrupt-prone affluent nations like Norway and Singapore are unable to contain corruption in sovereign wealth funds, what more a Third World nation like the Philippines, which is noted for rampant unstoppable corruption? In its 2020-2022 survey, the Philippines ranked no. 116 out of 180 nations (the higher the ranking, the more corrupt) in the Corruption Perceptions Index published by Transparency International. Norway ranked No. 4 and Singapore No. 5 as least corrupt. (Source: Wikipedia). The MIF Act provides that a Maharlika Investment Corporation or MIC will be established to manage the MIF fund. The ACJ study is concerned that the MIC board of directors will consist of presidential appointees “based on favor rather than talent… in a nation where nepotism is rife.” (Ambassador Romualdez is the second cousin of Marcos Jr. It’s all in the family.) This will induce a “lack of transparency in regulation and a high risk of financial embezzlement.” The ACJ study argues that “the MIF could be a weapon for politicians to steal from the public coffers,” citing the case of Angola. In 2018, Jose Filomeno dos Santos,  ex-sovereign fund chairman and son of ex-President Jose Eduardo dos Santos, was charged with the theft of $1.5 billion. In 2015, the Wall Street Journal reported that Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak transferred about $700 million from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund to his personal account. The ACJ study reports that Goldman Sachs Group Inc. raised $6.5 billion in five years. In an investigation after the 1MDB scandal broke out, Goldman Sachs admitted stealing $1 billion from 1MDB “to bribe officials in Malaysia and other nations, including (payments) for the extravagant lifestyles of Malaysian officials and purchasing luxury yachts and hotels for them.” Goldman Sachs pocketed $4.6 billion in bribes and kickbacks. Ex-Goldman Sachs banker Roger Ng was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his role in the massive 1MDB heist. It will be easy for creative Filipino politicians to improve on this type of ‘Financial Terrorism’ with the help of equally corrupt Western corporations. They must be drooling in excitement. This evil partnership of government and multinationals is the biggest hindrance to the true development of Third World countries. Even as the MIF heist is yet to happen, the solons are cooking up a more sinister storm, the Overseas Filipino Workers Sovereign Wealth Fund, tapping the biggest dollar earner of the country. This is “stealing” the hard-earned money of our workers. The OFWs may rise in protest. *** The post US firms to dip fingers into MIF appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 4th, 2023

At least 11 killed, 13 missing in Beijing rainstorms

At least 11 people were killed and 13 were missing after heavy rains lashed Beijing, state media said Tuesday, in downpours that have submerged roads and deluged neighborhoods with mud. Storm Doksuri, a former super typhoon, swept northwards over China after hitting southern Fujian province on Friday, following its battering of the Philippines. Heavy rains began pummeling the capital and surrounding areas on Saturday, with nearly the average rainfall for the entire month of July dumped on Beijing in just 40 hours. Swaths of suburban Beijing remain badly hit by the rains -- some of the city's heaviest in years. On the banks of the Beijing river, one of the worst affected areas, AFP reporters saw muddy debris strewn across the road. One man told AFP he had not seen flooding this bad since July 2012, when 79 people were killed and tens of thousands evacuated. "This time it's much bigger than that," he said, declining to give his name. "It's a natural disaster, there's nothing you can do," a 20-year-old man surnamed Qi waiting for a taxi with his grandmother outside a hospital told AFP. "(We) still have to work hard and rebuild." On Tuesday, state broadcaster CCTV reported that the rains had killed at least 11 people, two of whom were workers "killed on duty during rescue and relief". Thirteen people were missing, but another 14 had been found safe, the broadcaster said. President Xi Jinping on Tuesday called for "every effort" to rescue those "lost or trapped" by the rains. More than 100,000 people deemed at risk across the city have been evacuated, according to state-owned Global Times newspaper. Authorities have allocated 110 million yuan ($15.4 million) for disaster relief work in Beijing and surrounding provinces, CCTV said. 'Endure what we can' On Tuesday, around a dozen emergency vehicles, including trucks with water tanks and bulldozers, were spotted on the road between Shijingshan and Mentougou districts. Parts of the road were still closed off and workers in bright orange raincoats were using shovels to clear it. Florist Wang Yongkun, 62, had piled sandbags around the door of his shop, but the floor inside was still coated in mud. He said in 15 years working there he had never experienced anything like the last few days. "We started cleaning up in the afternoon yesterday... and woke up again at seven today to continue," he said. "You just have to deal with it... We will endure what we can." Around 150,000 households in Mentougou were without running water, the local Communist Party newspaper Beijing Daily said, with 45 water tankers dispatched to offer emergency supplies. Cars swept away Further south in Fangshan district, the Dashi River had overflowed, with trees along the riverbank partially submerged, and some sections of the road cordoned off. Roads were caked in mud, foliage and various debris, including an upturned armchair. AFP reporters saw collapsed bridges at two locations, with locals saying the damage had happened during the rains. Earlier social media videos tagged in Fangshan had shown multiple cars being swept along roads turned into fast-flowing streams. Live images from broadcaster CCTV on Tuesday morning showed a row of buses half submerged in floodwater. In the parking lot of a high-rise apartment complex, cars were piled on top of each other, alarms still sounding, while people lined up with buckets and other containers to collect fresh water. Chaotic scenes Local media on Monday published footage of chaotic scenes aboard high-speed rail trains stranded on tracks for as long as 30 hours, with passengers complaining that they had run out of food and water. Authorities "must properly relocate affected people, work quickly to repair damaged transportation, communication, and electricity infrastructure, and restore the order of normal production and life as soon as possible", Xi said on Tuesday. The capital activated a flood control reservoir on Monday for the first time since it was built in 1998, the Beijing Daily said. Parts of neighboring Hebei province remain under red alert for rainstorms, with authorities warning of potential flash floods and landslides. In Handan, Hebei province, rescuers lifted by crane reached a man trapped on his car in floodwaters, lifting him to safety before the car was flipped and washed away by the current. China has been experiencing extreme weather and posting record temperatures this summer, events that scientists say are being exacerbated by climate change. The country is already preparing for the arrival of another typhoon -- Khanun, the sixth such storm of the year -- as it nears China's east coast. The post At least 11 killed, 13 missing in Beijing rainstorms appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 1st, 2023