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Woman keeps partner's decaying body in Oro

September 6, 2019

CAGAYAN de Oro City--A woman kept the decomposing body of her live-in partner for days in keeping with his partner’s promised that he would get well soon. Village officials found the decomposing body of a certain Romeo Bagtong, 50, who was presumed to be dead for the last four days since Monday. Local officials and neighbors, who barged into the house, found the live-in partner Melita Alembo, 38, in between sobs, beside the victim’s body while picking up lice on her hair. Melita told the police investigators that her live-in partner suffered a “cram” and told her that he would be well in five minutes. “I decided not to report the incident because he told me that he will recover soon. I did not also know what to do,” Alembo said. A certain Grace, the closest neighbor, told police that she heard suspicious moaning sounds in the house of the couple Monday. After that Melita was seen coming out of the house to wash clothes. Since Monday, the victim has not come out of the house, the neighbor said. “I told my son to peep on the house to find out what happened. It was dark in the house that my son saw nothing,” she said. Grace said that they never heard that the couple had a quarrel since they lived at the relocation site. The police are now conducting an investigation to determine the cause of the death of the victim while holding Melita, the live-in partner, in custody. -0-

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Broadcasters in Caraga to plant thousands of trees

September 3, 2019

SAN Francisco, Agusan del Sur--Local broadcasters will make good anew what they preached on the airwaves to preserve and protect the environment with the massive planting of trees in the open areas of the mountains on September 7. This year’s edition of Oplan Broadcastreeing , a nationwide simultaneous tree growing  activity initiated by Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP), will draw around 2,600 people from all walks of life in Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur. Max Tutor, Chair of KBP Agusan del Sur-Surigao del Sur Chapter, said at least four areas in the neighbouring provinces have been identified for the activity where participants will plant the tree seedlings mostly of different indigenous species. The areas for the tree planting activities are in Mt. Magdiwata in San Francisco town and the mountainous village of Calaitan in Bayugan City, Barangay Patong in San Miguel, Surigao del Sur and in Bislig City where they already held it in August 25. Philsaga Mining Corporation will provide some 1,000 seedlings of indigenous species incluing Narra, Yakal and Lauan  with  laborers and transportation while the San Francisco Water District will identify the site and committed for the clearing and land preparation in the Mt. Magdiwata area. The Community Environment and Natural Resources Office nin Bunawan town will also provide some 300 seedlings of mixed Gmelina specie. Some 800 people will join in San Francisco, 600 people in Bayugan City , about 500 in Tandag City while 700 joined in Bislig City. The local government units will support in transporting the tree planters towards the sites especially students in different collegiate private schools are expected to participate. San Francisco Mayor Solomon Rufila will deliver an environmental message in a short program before they will proceed to the site in Mt Magdiwata. To energize the participants, an early morning zumba exercise will be held in front of the town hall.

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Scam victims could no longer get money back

August 29, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO, Agusan del Sur--- Thousands of residents of this province who were defrauded by billions of pesos can no longer expect the return of their money from the owner of the investment scam who is now in hiding. A leader of FRX Rice Trading based in Prosperidad town has revealed the operator, Dimber Celis, has already squandered the money intended for “payout” to thousands of investors that she no longer  has the financial capacity to return the investments. Mark Clinton Chavez, the FRX leader who is also one of the five board of directors of FRX Rice Trading registered at the Securities and Exchange Commission, has disclosed in an exclusive interview that Celis has been on a lavish spending spree buying cars and properties before the fallout of the investment scam on June 24. “She bought many properties in other places. But what I only knew were the two new Toyota Fortuner SUVs, a beach resort in Buenavista town and the house in tBahbah poblacion in Prosperidad town ,” Chavez said. The money scam which has lured thousands of victims in this province and other neighboring areas because of its 70 to 80 percent weekly return of investment abruptly stopped its operation after the crackdown by the police’s Criminal Investigations and  Detection Group (CIDG). Last June 24, CIDG operatives confiscated P23 million from Celis’ safe house in Nasipit town in Agusan del Sur after a car chase from Talacogon town of this province where the payouts were expected to be held. The money, log books and documents were recovered from the alleged safehouse of FRX Rice Trading at around 7:30 p.m. Prior to the raid on the safehouse, a pickup owned by the trading firm collided with a motorcycle driven by a barangay official along the highway in Buenavista town. “It turned out the pickup was heading toward the safehouse to pick up the money... We suspected the owner or owners of the money are planning to escape,” Lt. Col. Cholijun Caduyac, police (CIDG-Caraga chief, said.  Celis managed to escape in another vehicle. She is facing charges for syndicated estafa and violation of Republic Act 8799 or the Securities Regulation Code.  Hundreds of leaders of the investment scheme were waiting for Celis to distribute the payouts patiently waiting for hours outside the town hall but to no avail as they learned the Forex owner hurriedly left with the convoy of cars sensing the CIDG lawmen were already there to conduct the raid. The CIDG said the raid was in line with President Duterte’s order to close companies tagged in investment scams. Chavez has already sensed danger two days earlier during the gathering at the Almont Resort Hotel in Butuan City when she left unnoticed upon learning that only five leaders have brought in pay-ins which is not enough to supplement the boxful of cash she brought for the payouts. “I believed she was making a scenario to escape from her obligations to the leaders since she don’t have enough cash and was expecting millions of pesos from pay ins to defray the money shortage and continue operations,” Chavez confided. Celis has assured close to 500 investment leaders that the payout will resume on June 24 after two weeks break at the extravagant birthday and baptismal party she and her child celebrated at LMX Convention Center in Butuan City on June 19. Chavez who attended the party as a godfather of Celis’ daughter revealed she spent at least P2 million for the event aside from the cash rewards of P5000 for each game winner and the giveaways of expensive perfumes. At the peak of FRX operations in the middle of May up to June 10, pay-ins received by each leader from investors could reach as much as P50 million a day. Chavez admitted the accumulated cash he received from pay ins had reached more than a billion pesos since he joined in May 15.

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Ateneo de Zamboanga mourns death of alumna in Bukidnon

August 27, 2019

ZAMBOANGA CITY - (Mindanao News digital, August 26) - The management and studentry of Ateneo de Zamboanga University (ADZU) mourned the untimely demise of their alumna, who died in a far-flung municipality in Bukidnon Province, police authorities reported. The 24-year-old Genifer Buckly, a volunteer  community teacher for Jesuit Volunteer Philippines (JVP) died of multiple stab wounds while her companion, Anne Kathleen Gatdula was also wounded but her stab wounds were not fatal and she was rushed to the hospital and cheated death. Police investigation disclosed that on August 23, 2019, while on their quarters, both Gatdula and Buckly caught in the act an unidentified theft while stealing their belongings, so they shouted at the suspect. Overwhelmed by the sudden commotion, the suspect immediately grabbed his knife and stab them multiple times and fled to unknown directions. ADZU President Fr. Karel San Juan said in a statement, "Buckly's tragic death is painful. We pray for the JVP and ADZU communities who grieve her passing. We pray for justice.” Fr. San Juan also celebrated Buckly’s life of service: “Your life, your joyful love and service console and inspire us. You gave your life to your family, friends, students, and to many others. Your generous spirit will forever stay in our hearts.” Buckly graduated at Ateneo de Zamboanga University in 2015 with a degree in Bachelor of Science major in Filipino.

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Solon's new measure to abolish imprisonment for the crime of libel

August 24, 2019

Lawmaker bats for higher fines for libel A LAWMAKER from Cagayan de Oro City is proposing to abolish the penalty of imprisonment for libel cases. Instead, Rep. Rufus Rodriguez (2nd District, Cagayan de Oro City), through House Bill 1835, proposed to impose a higher fine to discourage, if not totally deter the commission of the crime of libel. The measure seeks to amend for the purpose Articles 355, 357,and 360 of Act No. 3815, as amended, otherwise known as the Revised Penal Code. As defined under Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code, libel is “a public and malicious imputation of a crime, or of a vice or defect, real or imaginary, or any act, omission, condition, status, or circumstance tending to cause the dishonor, discredit or contempt of a natural or juridical person, or to blacken the memory of one who is already dead.” Rodriguez said the present law provides the penalty of imprisonment ranging from arresto mayor or one month and one day to six months, and prision correctional or six months and one day to six years and fine ranging from P200 to P6,000. He said that while the penalty of fine must be sustained, for no crime should go unpunished, imposing a penalty of imprisonment will work more to discourage members of the media to perform their duties with zeal and vigilance. “Instead of looking deeply into issues that have a potential of affecting public interest and general welfare, the penalty of imprisonment has paved the way for members of media to approach their mandates with doubts and hesitation” Rodriguez said. “We cannot have that in a country where democracy is primarily infringed on the freedom of speech and expression, and where media is considered the Fourth Estate," said Rodriguez, Chairman of the House Committee on Constitutional Amendments. The proposed amendment to Article 355 of the Revised Penal Code provides for the imposition of a fine of P10,000 to P30,000, in addition to the civil action which may be brought by the offended party, on any person who commits libel by means of writing or similar means. It further states that “the provisions of Article 90 and 91 to the contrary notwithstanding, the crime of libel and the corresponding said penalty imposed shall be prescribed in six months counted from the date of the first publication, airing or exhibition of the libelous material”. Article 357 of the same law is amended to read as follows: “The penalty of a fine ranging from P5,000 to P15,000 shall be imposed upon any person who threatens another to publish a libel concerning him or the parents, spouse, child, or other members of the family of the latter, or upon anyone who shall offer to prevent the publication of such libel for a compensation or money consideration." Meanwhile, the proposed amendment to Article 357 of the Revised Penal Code states that “the penalty of a fine from P10,000 to P30,000 shall be imposed upon any reporter, editor, or manager of a newspaper, daily or magazine, who shall publish facts connected with the private life of another and offensive to the honor, virtue, and reputation of said person, even though said publication be made in said connection with or under the pretext that it is necessary in the narration of any judicial or administrative proceedings wherein such facts have been mentioned." Article 360 of the said law is likewise proposed amended to make the author of the printed article or any person who shall cause the exhibition of the theatrical or cinematographic exhibit containing defamatory words liable for the same. The amendment also declares that the author or the editor of a book or pamphlet, or the editor or business manager of a daily newspaper, magazine or serial publication shall be responsible for the defamation contained therein to the same extent as if he were the author thereof, provided said defamatory article passed through said publisher, editor or business manager for editing and required the latter’s approval for publication. /Ma. Victoria Palomar / News and Documentation Section-Press and Public Affairs Bureau / House of Representatives of the Philippines

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Cebu's top comedian "Teban" dies of cardiac arrest

August 22, 2019

CEBU CITY (Visayas News digital, August 22) - A veteran comedian-turned politician in the Visayas, most popularly known as "Teban Escudero," died of cardiac arrest on August 21, 2019. Julian Daan in real life was 74. "Teban's name became a byword among the ordinary people in Visayas and Mindanao during a longer-staying radio drama aired over DYHP Cebu City and simulcast all over Mindanao, popularly known as 'Esteban Escudero' with his long time comic duo Goliat - Allan Nacorda in real life. The radio drama series became a hit early in the morning as it tells the daily grind of life among Filipinos coupled with the comic antic of both comedians. Teban and Goliath show became popular as both Julian and Allan regularly visited many barangay during fiestas and Christmas as per invitations of politicians all over Visayas and Mindanao. Prior to his death, Teban or Julian Daan was a three-term duly elected board member Cebu Province before he was also elected as City Councilor of Talisay City, Cebu Province in 2016. He ran for his second term in the last midterm elections and he also won the same position as City Councilor until his last breath. Teban is indeed an icon in the Visayan radio drama and his comic antic would remain in the hearts of the millions of fans in Visayas and Mindanao.

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