todays top stories

Inter-agency task force eyed against colorum taxi

January 16, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--The city government of Cagayan de Oro and the Land Transportation, Franchising and Regulatory Board in Region 10 (LTFRB-10) will soon go after those colorum taxi units in the city. Land Transportation, Franchising and Regulatory Board in Region 10 (LTFRB-10) Regional Director Aminoden Guro met with Councilor Teodulfo Lao, vice chairman of the committee on traffic, and Councilor Romeo Calizo, chair of the City Council committee on public order and safety, to discuss the creation of task force that will run after colorum taxi units. Guro said that the inter-agency task force against colorum taxi will commence with its operation as soon as its members have undergone the needed workshop and training. On one hand, Lao thanked the LTFRB under Guro for acting on the numerous complaints against the proliferation of colorum taxi units. He said the members of the task force are now in the process of undergoing workshop and training on how to effectively identify a "colorum" taxi. "It will be an active and long-term inter-agency task force," Lao, who is also the chairman of the City Council committe on public utility, said as he hinted that the City Council will enact an ordinance that will institutionalize the task force.

READ MORE
Backbase debuts ‘Backbase-as-a-Service’ to help banks innovate at scale, remove infrastructure hurdles

January 15, 2020

DIGITAL banking software provider, Backbase, has today announced the launch of its next generation Backbase-as-a-Service. This managed cloud platform service covers Backbase’s entire portfolio of banking products, helping banks to innovate with speed whilst reducing their costly operational hurdles. At present, banks face a twofold threat; both from more technologically capable neo-bank competitors and, more recently, from the expansion of big tech into banking. In this new digital environment, agility and fast time to market is key. In Asia Pacific, the heterogeneity of financial inclusion is particularly striking between countries and ranges from those that are at the cutting edge of financial technology to others that are aiming to provide access to basic financial services, according to findings from the International Monetary Fund. While some countries in the Asia Pacific region are leaders in fintech, on average the region lags behind others in several key areas such as electronic payments and mobile money. Particularly in Southeast Asia, where approximately 470 million people do not have bank accounts, according to consultancy KPMG. Coupled with the region’s boom in the digital economy, and the burgeoning growth in electronic payments and digital banking industry, banks can leverage these trends to provide access to their products for a wider audience. To support banks in keeping pace, Backbase-as-a-Service provides financial institutions with the technological infrastructure to develop and release new services to their customers more swiftly. With less time dedicated to set-up, updates and security, banks can focus more on and allocating more resources on new features that enhance the overall experience for customers. Lowering time to market, while eliminating upfront capital investments on hardware and maintenance of aging technology, Backbase-as-a-Service becomes the ideal innovation partner. As banks grow, they can increase or decrease computing capacity as needed as Backbase-as-a-Service is based on usage-based spending. This allows for higher business flexibility and faster response to market shifts. Commenting on the launch Jouk Pleiter, CEO, said: “Backbase is committed to being the leading innovation partner for global banks and credit unions. We believe the move to cloud is an unstoppable one, and one which every financial institution needs to embrace. Our clients want the freedom to innovate and maintain their competitive edge so launching Backbase-as-a-Service is the logical step for us. It is our duty to maximise their ROI when it comes to becoming digital first and meeting the digital demands of their customers. Cloud is an exceptional tool for taking that leap.” Thomas Fuss, VP Technology, added: “The improved service will significantly benefit banks both in terms of reducing overhead on IT and delivering superior digital banking experiences Financial Inclusion in Asia-Pacific Report, International Monetary Fund, 2019 to their clients. It’s another step forward in helping clients unlock their digital potential. Undertaking the transition to the Backbase cloud means our clients are always tapping into the latest innovations and features that our platform offers. Cloud adoption has been relatively slow in banking so we’re proud to provide clients with a state of the art managed service which is always available, always secure and always packed with the latest of innovation.” Along with the business value of innovating at scale and reducing IT overhead, the newly announced Backbase-as-a-Service will offer banks: • Managed Software & Hardware Updates • 99.9%+ Uptime • Shared or Dedicated Backbase Environment • Multiple Sandbox Environments • Database Backups & Redundancy • Scalable Infrastructure • End-to-End Encryption • Regulatory Compliance The platform is immediately available worldwide. For more information, please visit the Backbase press room. (Press Release)

READ MORE
Netizens gang up on Rufus over ABS CBN franchise

January 15, 2020

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - Netizens and solid President Duterte supporters ganged up on 2nd District Rep. Rufus Rodriguez after MDN published a banner headline reporting the congressman's bill filed in Congress, urging the Lower House to start conducting hearings for the renewal of television giant Abs Cbn. They have accused Rep Rodriguez of representing Abs Cbn allegedly in exchange for "grease money." But after MDN posted said news item on January 13, 2020, irate netizens suspected to be solid Duterte suppoters ganged up on this city's 2nd district congressman. Among those who has openly criticized Rodriguez was former hotel manager Jerome dela Fuente, saying Rep Rufus should instead focus on filing bills that would benefit the people of Cagayan de Oro. Dela Fuente said the city representative should instead help in getting more funding for Laguindingan International Airport which has more problems of upgrade, as the airport has always been the topics of bad impressions from travelers and businessmen because of its very poor performance. "Comparing the airport to that of Davao is very far - plus it is classified as an international airport just like Cebu, Clark, even Manila," de la Fuente said.      Bong Gayramara, Jr also said "Thier network connections rooted from the lower house to the senate in exchange to campaign ads during elections. Renewal of their franchise doesn't do good to our economy. No to renewal." WHY RUFUS WANTS HEARINGS STARTED ASAP? Rep Rodriguez authored the bill which seeks for the renewal of the TV network franchise, along with nine other bills with the same content. “Congress should always uphold the Constitutional mandate under [Section] 4, [Article] 3 to ensure freedom of the press. I request the hearings to be conducted upon the resumption of session on Jan. 20,” Rodriguez told reporters. Rodriguez explained that he would want to start tackling the renewal of ABS CBN franchise since Congress is also set to adjourn in March. If hearings are not started yet, the giant TV networks application for renewal of franchise is loomed. Congress has only 24 sessions left from January to March 11, it was learned. Rodriguez added: “All authors and stakeholders, especially ABS-CBN, must be heard. Then the committee will have to decide to renew or not to renew.”  “But it is not proper not to act on my bill and the other bills. ABS-CBN is the Philippines’ largest media conglomerate in terms of revenue, operating income, net income, assets, equity, market capitalization and number of employees,” he pointed out. The Cagayan de Oro solon said in his HB 5705 explanatory note that the said TV network has a big and amazing corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs, most especially in helping Filipinos under threat of lives and properties because of typhoon and other calamities like earthquakes.  The TV network has been in the forefront in conducting relief operations, construction of many schools all over the country, among other activities. “The late Gina Lopez initiated the Bantay Bata 163, the Bantay Kalikasan and the Kapit Bisig para sa Ilog Pasig Project,” Rodriguez added. President Duterte has repeatedly threatened to deny the renewal of franchise of Abs Cbn as he got mad on the TV network, to whom he accused of failing to air his ad campaign during the last presidential elections which he won a wide margin against rival politicians. 

READ MORE
NGCP interconnection projects aimed at One Grid Philippines

January 15, 2020

POWER transmission operator NGCP continues to embark on major interconnection projects to realize the vision of building One Grid Philippines. With over 7,600 islands in the Philippine archipelago, energizing and connecting major islands to the grid was a challenge that confronted NGCP when it took over from government. Equipped with vision of a fully interconnected and integrated power grid, and access to state-of-the-art technology, NGCP is well on its way towards this goal. Among the first interconnection projects completed by NGCP is the PhP 6.1 billion Cebu-Negros-Panay Stage 1 submarine cable component which increases the transfer capacity of the existing corridor. A second phase of this project is an additional submarine cable for N-1 contingency which will enable the transmission grid to withstand a major system disturbance with minimal disruption to the system between Negros and Panay islands. Several interconnection projects are currently in the works, like the PhP 47.8 billion Stages 2 and 3 of the Cebu-Negros-Panay Interconnection Project which will establish a 230kV backbone to accommodate the transmission of excess power from Panay and Negros towards the rest of Visayas. To address the growing demand in Boracay Island and provide additional capacity to support the ongoing developments, pre-construction activities are now underway for the PhP 8.5 billion Nabas-Caticlan-Boracay transmission line project. The PhP 2.4 billion Panay-Guimaras 138kV transmission line is also in the pre-construction stage. To maintain the continuous transmission of power towards the major load centers in Mandaue and Mactan during N-1 condition, the PhP 1.9 billion Cebu-Lapu Lapu 230kV transmission line project is currently being undertaken, with survey and right-of-way activities ongoing. Another major interconnection is the PhP 19.8 billion Cebu-Bohol 230kV Interconnection Project, which, upon completion, will address overloading issues and enable sharing of power between the two islands, especially the growing demand in Bohol and will eventually form part of the Leyte-Bohol 230kV loop system. To support the government’s vision to have a unified Philippine grid, construction is ongoing for the PhP 51.7 billion Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project, slated for completion in December 2020. Other future interconnection projects of NGCP include the Batangas-Mindoro Interconnection Project, Laray-Cordova 230kV Transmission Line project, Bataan-Cavite Interconnection Project, Bataan-Pasay Interconnection Project, and the Palawan-Mindoro Interconnection Project “The only way to forward this vision of a fully interconnected and integrated transmission system is to keep investing in the transmission grid. These projects will greatly benefit the country, energizing the entire archipelago even up to the farthest islands. This will also prepare the entire Philippine grid for the integration to the proposed ASEAN Power Grid, promoting power sharing and optimization of generation capacity within the region,” NGCP stated. NGCP is a Filipino-led, privately owned company in charge of operating, maintaining, and developing the country’s power grid, led by majority shareholders Henry Sy Jr. and Robert Coyiuto Jr. (Press Release)

READ MORE
LTFRB-10 ready to facilitate dialogue between transport groups

January 15, 2020

CAGAYAN de Oro City--The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in Northern Mindanao said it is ready to facilitate a dialogue between the Oro Transport Service Cooperative (Orotsco) and some disgruntled group of individuals as the government rolled out the modernized public utility vehicles (PUVs) in the city Sunday. LTFRB Regional Director Allan Guro said his office is open for a meeting between Orotsco and those individuals who disrupted its operations. Samuel Abello, Orotsco general manager, said some individuals allegedly harassed one of its staff members in Barangay Puerto as its PUV passed through it. He did not elaborate. However, Abello said the coop was not affected by the reported harassment but at the same time they are also open to discussion with those who opposed the public utility vehicle modernization program (PUVMP). "We are now in the process of identifying those responsible for disrupting our operation," he said. Meanwhile, Guro said he is willing to meet with both parties to sort out their differences peacefully. Guro said any complaint that is lodged to their office must undergo due process, although Orotsco may file appropriate charges if they want to. Abello said they would appreciate a meeting so those who are still pessimistic about the PUVMP can be enlightened. They should realize that they are not only opposing Orotsco but a nationwide government program, the PUVMP, the Orotsco officer said. Abello said they want jeepney drivers and operators to visit the LTFRB-10 office so they will know the goal of the PUVMP. Despite Orotsco’s willingness for a sit-down, Abello said they will not also hesitate to file criminal charges against those who disrupted their operation, if they will do it again.

READ MORE
Filipina domestic helper in Kuwait not only tortured but also sexually abused, says NBI autopsy report

January 15, 2020

MANILA, Philippines - A total deployment ban is now imposed by the Philippine Government to Kuwait after an autopsy report revealed that the Filipina maid, Jeanelyn Villavende, was not only tortured but also sexually abused. The recommendation was made yesterday by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III who got mad at the Kuwaiti employers of Villavende, for not only turturing the Filipina domestic helper but also molesting her.  Secretary Bello got the information from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) who conducted autopsy of the remains of the victim. It was learned that the governing body of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) has signed a resolution  to immediately effect a deployment ban to Kuwait. The autopsy report made by NBI also said that there were indications of healed old wounds from Jeanelyn's body, which also revealed the victim was battered several weeks prior to her untimely demise. SHATTERED DREAMS.  The dreams of a Filipina domestic helper, Jeanelyn Villavende, vanish as she went home in the Philippines inside a coffin. NBI autopsy report says Jeanelyn is not only tortured but she is also molested by her employer. - Photo credit to owner. Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra told reporters Jeanelyn was also sexually abused, citing autopsy report submitted by the National Bureau of Investigation. Guevarra told reporters “Sexual abuse and prior infliction of physical injury have been established.” It can be recalled that Jeanelyn Villavende, a Filipina domestic helper in Kuwait died on December 28, 2019, reportedly into the hands of her employer who was already arrested by Kuwaiti authorities.  Secretary Bello said he doubted the credibility of the death certificate made by Kuwaiti forensic doctors in Kuwait saying Villavende died of "physical injuries."   In view of the "false autopsy report," the labor secretary said he would recommend to POEA for a permanent deployment ban in Kuwait. He also also promised to the immediate families of the Filipina maid to deliver justice for Villavende as soon as possible. In February 2018, Joanna Denafelis, also a Filipina domestic helper in Kuwait has also died. She was also maltreated by her employers.   Meanwhile, Nasser Mustafa, Philippine Labor Attache to Kuwait said he is fully supporting the permanent deployment ban of Filipino workers in Kuwait, following the series of violations made by Kuwaiti employers in the Gulf state. Mustafa told reporters "Ang mensahe ko sa mga kakabayan natin sa Kuwait ay mahinahon sila dahil itong ginagawa ng ating gobyerno through DOLE (Department of Labor and Employment) ay para sa kabutihan ng lahat. Di ito ginawa para tanggalan sila ng mga trabaho." 

READ MORE

Subscribe Now!

Receive email updates from Mindanao Daily News.