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‘Task Force Oro’, CIDG raids ISIS lair in Cagayan de Oro

November 25, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--Elements of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and the ‘Task Force Oro,’ backed by tanks and soldiers, raided the suspected hideout of the alleged ISIS terror group in an outskirt subdivision here early Wednesday morning. The law enforcers seized firearms, ammunitions, hand grenades and ammonium nitrates, used in the making of improvised explosive device, and an “ISIS flag” during a raid on one of the three adjacent houses in Villa Candida, Bulua, Cagayan de Oro Wednesday morning. A military tank secured the entrance of the subdivision along the highway in Bulua as the “Task Force Oro” composed of the military and the police secured all entrances and exits of the subdivision. PLT/Col. Choli Jun P. Caduyac, head of the CIDG in Northern Mindanao, said that the suspects identified as Abdulraman Limpao Ampang and Abdul Jalil Abubakar Saruwang were not around when the law enforcers swooped down on the three residential houses in the subdivision. Caduyac said that the suspects were reportedly members of “Dawla Islameya Lanao,” a terrorist group, allied with the ISIS, an international terrorist group based in the Middle East. The intelligence community is also validating information that the suspects were recruiting members for the “Dawla Islameya Lanao” group in Cagayan de Oro and its neighboring cities were there are Moslem community. He said that the suspects were among the remnants of the Marawi siege associated with the “Maute Terror Group” with standing warrant of arrests and were the object of intensive surveillance since February this year when their presence were spotted in Cagayan De Oro. Caduyac said that there are more than 100 suspects identified with the Maute Terror Group with active warrant of arrests who are scattered in Mindanao and are now an object of manhunt. According to the law enforces, the capability of the suspects to sow terror in Cagayan de Oro City, the port capital of about 800,000 people in Northern Mindanao, cannot be underestimated.

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61 houses destroyed as fire hits slum in Oro

November 4, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--Dozens of families and 165 individuals were homeless in a fire that struck Barangay 36 at dawn Wednesday, a report reaching the Mindanao Daily News said. City Fire Marshall Allan Gabot of the Bureau of fire Protection (BFP) said the incident was reported around 2:31 dawn. Gabot said the fire was even declared to third alarm six minutes after it was reported to the BFP as the fire eats other houses nearby made up of light materials. He said that fire that struck Barangay 36 was the 260th fire incident reported this year. Gabot said there were 437 fire incidents reported from January-Deccember last year. On one hand, Barangay 36 Councilor Ester Maagad said the fire initilly destroyed 61 houses, three were partially damaged. Maagad said 167 persons were affected of whom 37 are children. She said two residents were biten by dogs and are now being treated at the health enters. Maagad said the fire was caused by unattended candle. She said the fire origonated from the house of a certain Teresita Ochigue.

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Biggest Ever SM Mall in Zamboanga Peninsula Opens on November 27

November 4, 2020

Hola Zamboanga! The long wait is over! SM Supermalls is transforming Zamboanga City’s retail landscape as SM City Mindpro, the first SM shopping mall in Western Mindanao, will open its doors to shoppers on November 27! SM Prime Holdings’ 76th Supermall, the seventh in Mindanao, will serve Zamboangueños, as well as residents of the nearby provinces of Zamboanga Peninsula.   Strategically located in a 13,078 square meter site along La Purisima Street and Campaner Street in Barangay Zone III, the four-level shopping mall creates a unique identity along the city’s popular thoroughfare and within a short walk to the well-known Metropolitan Cathedral, Plaza Pershing, Paseo Del Mar and nearby seaport.  What makes SM City Mindpro an exciting new lifestyle destination under the new normal? Safe Malling. The mall will follow strict implementation of minimum health standards using advanced, touch-free technology – creating a seamless shopping experience for all. Ensuring shoppers of safest malling fun experience, SM City Mindpro will implement policies which are aligned to the government’s effort in preventing the spread of COVID-19 such as “No Face Mask, No Face Shield, No Entry”, body temperature check using thermal scanners, disinfectant mats and alcohol in all the mall’s entrances, observance of social distancing, and mall sanitation. Making SM City Mindpro a haven of safe and innovative community space that enforces a high-standard hygiene check, the mall will use Trace Together – an end-to-end contact tracing solution to fight the spread of COVID 19. Mall-goers will be required to participate in Trace Together wherein they must scan the QR code at the mall entrances using their mobile device and declare information like name, city address, mobile number, and health condition status. After complying with the required information, they are now welcome to shop and dine anywhere! Great Shopping + Leisure + Entertainment. With The SM Store and SM Supermarket as its major anchors, SM City Mindpro brings to Zamboanga City a mix of SM mainstays like SM Appliance Center, ACE Hardware, Watsons, Surplus, Miniso, and Sports Central; as well as national and global brands in its 104 food and retail shops. Eating out options include specialty restaurants, and international and local food chains. Dining in the mall is experiential, not only because of the exciting food choices, but also because of its four levels of restaurants, which give diners the opportunity to choose amongst the best. Along with the food tenant partners, SM City Mindpro will introduce new dining experiences using touch-free, cashless payment services.                                                                                                                 The mall will also bring great entertainment to Zamboanga City with its state-of-the-art four cinemas accommodating 414 seating capacity. Homegrown Brands and the City’s Firsts. Visitors of SM City Mindpro will also enjoy the best of Zamboanga City brands like Bay Tal Mal, Turkish Grille Plus, Casa Velyn, South Avenue, Kape Sur, and more. Along with our local brands, shoppers will have a first-hand experience to all our city’s “first” brands including Pancake House, Macao Imperial Tea, Cinnabon, Gong Cha, Hap Chan, Pretzelmaker, Bigby’s, Owndays, Anello, Wristpod, Karimadon, Suarez and Sons, Lay Bare Waxing Salon, and a lot more!  For customers’ convenience, SM City Mindpro has six levels of semi-automated parking system with 481 car slots, 12 PWD slots, 53 motorcycle slots, bike racks, as well as tourist transport terminals. For inquiries and other updates on promos and mall activities, visit @smcitymindpro in Facebook and Instagram.

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Frisking protocols in malls pose health risk

October 14, 2020

Dads hit 'frisking protocols' in malls By RUEL V. PELONE CAGAYAN de Oro City--Two councilors have finally noticed the "frisking protocols" being practiced by some security guards assigned at the entrance of malls in the city. “I’ll bring this matter to the law enforcement cluster of the IATF so that the rules of engagement should be given the appropriate flexibility," said Councilor Romeo V. Calizo during the City Council  regular session Monday in response to the observations of Councilor Lordan G. Suan. Suan said because social distancing cannot be maintained during the routinary security check up, both  customers and guards are at risk of possible virus contamination. "Ang paghikap o’ pagrekisa posibleng magtakod sa virus kay wala may physical distancing ug dili segurado nga ang mahawiran sa gwardiya nga bahin sa gisuot sa kustomer walay nakatapot nga virus," said Suan in a press statement. He added: "Atong hinumduman nga ang pagtakod sa Covid-19 mahimong droplets lang busa angayan nga likayan kini nga pamaagi sa pagsusi sa mga gamit sa mosulod sa mga establisamento." He said: “Obviously enforcement is at a dilemma in this particular scenario because we are going to ask the question which should be given priority, security gikan sa mga kawatan, holdapers or security against the pandemic?" Vice Mayor Raineir Joaquin V. Uy referred the matter to the committee on public order and safety chaired by Councilor Calizo for appropriate action. (With SP/JAOclarit and SP/APDelgra)

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Asia Pacific health leaders to meet on COVID-19 virtually

October 3, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--Health ministers and senior officials from across the region will meet virtually from October 6-9 for the 75th session of the WHO Regional Committee for the Western Pacific, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a press statement. "The Committee is WHO’s governing body for the Region. It meets annually in October, usually face-to-face," it said, adding "This year will be the first time it meets virtually." Topics to be addressed include: COVID-19, vaccine-preventable diseases, and immunization, safe and affordable surgery, and ageing and health The Regional Committee meeting will be attended by: * Regional Director Dr Takeshi Kasai, WHO country representatives and other staff across the Western Pacific * Ministers of health and senior officials representing countries and areas of the Region * Nongovernmental and other partner organizations. During the press conference, Dr Takeshi Kasai, will give remarks and answer questions on COVID-19 and other agenda items to be addressed by the Regional Committee. He will be joined by Dr Babatunde Olowokure, WHO Regional Emergency Director for the Western Pacific. (PR)

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El Salvador City in Misamis Covid funding until December

October 2, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--The component city of El Salvador in Misamis Oriental can still sustain its COVID-19 measures until December while positive cases are still on the rise in Northern Mindanao. Mayor Edgar Lignes said they still have available funds which will be taken from the re-aligned 20 percent development fund. He said the city has P510 million budget for this year, and P540 million for 2021. The mayor said he has allocated P5 million for El Salvador’s Covid-19 response for next year. He added the city government has already spent 95 percent of the P35 million Bayanihan grant from the national government. He said the bulk of the Bayanihan grant and the city’s own funds was spent on food packages given to most of the residents. El Salvador has about 56,000 inhabitants. Lignes said the provincial government of Misamis Oriental also gave El Salvador P1 million in assistance, which was used to construct isolation rooms for Covid-19 suspected cases and patients, as well as in the purchase of rapid test kits and protective personal equipment. For his part, Agripino Estrada Jr., El Salvador vice mayor, said they will approve any proposal for inclusion of Covid-19 response funds in the annual budget for 2021. Estrada added the city council will begin budget deliberation anytime this month. As of Sept. 30, Misamis Oriental has a cumulative 404 confirmed Covid-19 cases, with 206 active, 195 recovered, and three deaths. El Salvador has 20 cases, with 12 active cases, and eight recoveries. Of the 12 patients positive with Covid-19, three are confined at the Northern Mindanao Medical Center, while nine are staying at the city’s isolation facilities since they did not manifest any symptoms. Meanwhile, Lignes said has approved the re-opening of some of the city’s tourist attractions with the basic health protocols still in effect. Recently re-opened is the Divine Mercy Shrine, one of the most visited religious sites in Northern Mindanao. Also considered as an attraction at the Divine Mercy is the 50-foot statue of Jesus Christ. Aside from the religious shrine, Lignes said the city government has also approved the re-opening of beaches, but not swimming pools. Among those back in operation, he said, is the Burias Shoal Marine Sanctuary in Barangay Molugan. “We have limited the number of beach goers who can go to the Burias Shoal. We have Bantay Dagat volunteers who keep watch and ensure that health protocols are followed,” Lignes said. Maj. Patrick Dalangin, El Salvador city police chief, said he has deployed units to patrol tourism sites that have recently opened, especially at the Divine Mercy. We have security measure at the shrine. We have assigned a mobile patrol at the road intersection going to the Divine Mercy, which will also enter the shrine from time to time, so that they can immediately respond to any call for assistance, Dalangin said.

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