Thursday, April 29, 2010

Gibo bullish on getting 1 M votes in Cebu

CARCAR CITY—Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard bearer Gibo Teodoro has expressed confidence here that the Garcia clan and his other allies here will make good on their commitment to work on delivering in his favor come May 10 some one million or 60% of the 1.8 million votes in this vote-rich province.

Buoyed by the overwhelming support that he had received from local leaders and ordinary Cebuanos alike during his two-day Cebu campaign swing, Gibo replied—when asked in a chance interview about Cebu providing the “swing” votes—that “Yung sa Cebu, hindi swing votes (The votes here are not swing votes) but main votes.”

On the possibility of snagging 60 percent of the roughly 1.8 million votes up for grabs in Cebu—as had been committed the day before by Rep. Pablo Garcia of the third congressional district—Gibo said: “Mangyayari. Malakas ang leadership ng One Cebu Party, ni Governor Gwen [Garcia], at sampu ng mga kasamahan niya dito (It will happen because of the strong leadership of One Cebu, of Governor Gwen Garcia and of all her partymates and allies here).”

The governor and congressman are the respective founder-president and secretary-general of Once Cebu, which has, since its founding in 2004, emerged as the most dominant local party in the over 400-year history of the province.

Gibo said his confidence is likewise buoyed by the solid backing he enjoys from other political kingpins in Cebu like Rep. Ramonito “Red” Durano VI, who declared Cebu a “Gibo Country”; Danao City Mayor Ramon “Nito” Durano III, and Lapu-Lapu Mayor Arturo Radaza, both of whom also declared their unflinching support for Gibo.

“Matagal na kaming nagsama ng pamilya nila Congressman at Mayor Durano (Congressman and Mayor Durano, and I go a long way),” he said.

This was Gibo’s answer when asked by reporters to comment on the pronouncement of Rep. Garcia in Toledo City the other day that his family and One Cebu are campaigning hard for Gibo so they could deliver 60 percent of the province’s 1.8 million votes in his favor in next month’s balloting.

Rep. Garcia also told reporters in Toledo City that a new survey commissioned by One Cebu will be out next week and Gibo is expected to be No. 1 in this mock poll.

In 2004, it is believed that President Arroyo defeated her chief poll rival, the late Fernando Poe Jr., partly on the back of the one million votes that her local allies led by the Garcias had delivered to her in that year’s presidential race.

In rallies in Argao and Carcar City, Gov. Garcia called on all Cebuanos to “totally support Gibo so that we’ll have total reconciliation in the country.”

In a two-day swing across the province last Tuesday and Wednesday, more than 100,000 people combined flocked to the different rallies and other engagements of the former defense secretary.

The campaign offensive was capped Wednesday night by the attendance of more than 30,000 people in Mandaue City, who braved rainfall to listen to Gibo talk about the road to change and a better Philippines.

Gov. Garcia, Rep. Garcia and their father, Deputy Speaker Pablo John Garcia led the mammoth crowd in an overwhelming show of support for the former defense secretary that bolstered the Garcias’ claim that this vote-rich province is “Gibo country.”

She noted in her speeches that the decision of their family and of One Cebu to choose Gibo as the local party’s presidential candidate passed through a careful and thorough selection process.

“It was a tough and heavy decision,” she said.

Gov. Garcia noted that they had applied the principles of One Cebu in the decision to support Gibo.

“The principles of One Cebu demands excellence, competence, integrity and good governance. And above all, the principles of One Cebu are founded on a very cohesive bond that binds us all, [which is] unity,” she said. -30-

Roy on radio

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 29, 2010) - Interviewed live over one of General Santos City’s radio stations, Sarangani Reconciliation and Reformation Organization (SARRO) congressional candidate Roy Chiongbian gives his statement about the issues on the ambush attempt on Glan Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap, and the roadside bombing incident in Lun Masla in the town of Malapatan which narrowly put Governor Migs Dominguez’s life at risk.

LTO record

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 29, 2010) – The Certificate of Registration from the Land Transportation Office (LTO) shows that the Toyota Hi-Ace van with plate number MDM-577 was registered under the name of Jinkee Jamora Pacquiao, wife of People’s Champ Movement (PCM) congressional candidate Manny Pacquiao. The vehicle, as reported by police, was used by the suspects believed to ambush Glan incumbent Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap and was seized by the police with high-powered firearm inside it.

Pacman's camp, too defensive - Chiongbian

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 29, 2010) - Sarangani Reconciliation and Reformation Organization (Sarro) congressional candidate Roy Chiongbian, political opponent of boxing champ Manny Pacquiao in the lone district of Sarangani, finally broke his silence about the issues on the ambush attempt on Glan Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap, and the roadside bombing incident in Lun Masla in the town of Malapatan which nearly put Governor Migs Dominguez’s life at risk.

Chiongbian, in an interview on Thursday (April 28), said Pacquiao’s camp is “too defensive” in answering questions regarding the incidents.“We still did not pinpoint who is responsible (in Yap’s ambush try) and behind the Lun Masla roadside bombing but the camp of Mr. Manny Pacquiao is very defensive. They keep on speculating,” Chiongbian said, adding that Sarro is still waiting for the result of police investigations of the two incidents.

However, Manny’s camp is now busy defending their camp. Chiongbian also gave his reaction on People’s Champ Movement’s (PCM) lawyer as counsel of the five apprehended suspects charged of Illegal Possession of Firearms before the Prosecutor’s Office.

The suspects were accused of allegedly trying to ambush Glan incumbent Mayor Yoyong Yap. “If they want to save the van, why they need to get a lawyer from Manila? They let the counsel fly to Gensan just to let him say that it was an “Ambush-Me” scenario,” he said. “And if they want to save the van, why did the lawyer defend the five suspects? Does this mean they have something to cover-up? Do our political opponents have something to hide they do not want people to know?”

He added it is impossible for Mayor Yap to set an ambush for himself using the vehicle of Jinkee Pacquiao, wife of Manny Pacquiao. “Inside the van, police recovered campaign paraphernalia of Manny Pacquiao,” he said. Earlier, PCM lawyer Atty. Orlando Salatandre Jr. stressed that Sarro has no evidence to tag Jinkee Pacquiao as the owner of the van which was seized by the police to have high-powered firearm and which was also used by the suspects.

But it is clear in the one-page document taken from the Land Transportation Office that the Toyota Hi-Ace van, with plate number MDM-577, was registered under the name of Jinkee Jamora Pacquiao with the address of NLSA Road in Lagao, General Santos City where the boxing champ’s residence was located.

Based on the record, the vehicle was registered on July 6, 2009 with engine number 2KD1929032 and chassis number JTFJS02P305008418.

Pacquiao’s camp also pointed out that the same vehicle, now under the custody of the Glan PNP, was a van-for-rent. “The van driver, who was used by the suspects, was also the personal driver of Mrs. Jinkee Pacquiao.

Based on the records of the LTFRB, the vehicle of Jinkee Pacquiao is not a van-for-rent because it has no franchise,” Chiongbian asserted.

Meanwhile, Chiongbian said Pacman’s camp has no basis on saying that Sarro, the police, and the military are one in planning the “Ambush-Me” scenario and the roadside bombing incident in Lun Masla. “According to the Explosives and Ordnance experts, if the 105mm mortar projectile exploded, Gov.Migs’ body could have been broken into pieces and even his companions’.

The killing zone of the improvised explosive device (IED) is at least 50 meters. Gov. Migs is not insane to risk his life just to gain publicity,” Chiongbian said. He pointed out that Sarro does not need “drama” in order to win because they are sure winners. ###

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gibo and Edu

KORONADAL CITY (April 27, 2010) - Gibo Teodoro and running mate Edu Manzano greet residents and supporters during a motorcade in Koronadal City Monday, April 26. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Gibo in Koronadal

KORONADAL CITY (April 27, 2010) – Gibo Teodoro speaks to residents ofKoronadal City Monday, April 26. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATIONOFFICE)

Welcome Gibo

KORONADAL CITY (April 27, 2010) - Gibo Teodoro is welcomed by supporters and residents during his arrival in Koronadal plaza for a political rally. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Gibo in Gensan

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 27, 2010) - Gibo Teodoro speaks to supporters in General Santos City Monday, April 26. (CocoySexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Motorcade

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 27, 2010) - Gibo Teodoro greets residents and motorists during a motorcade in General Santos City Monday, April26. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Pacman's camp defends ambush suspects

Alabel, Sarangani (April 28, 2010) - The legal counsel of People’s Champ Movement (PCM), Manny Pacquiao’s political party, is defending the five suspects apprehended by police who were also tagged in the alleged ambush attempt against Glan incumbent Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap during the inquest proceedings at the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office, Tuesday (April 27).

Atty. Orlando Salatandre Jr., PCM’s legal counsel, attended the inquest proceedings at the Fiscal’s Office to clear Jinkee Pacquiao’s name, who was dragged into the incident as the Toyota Hi-Ace van with plate number MDM-577 used by the suspects, was registered under her name.

The same van was seized by police after high powered firearms with magazines and 48 live ammunitions were found inside the vehicle.

But before the suspects, identified as Freddie Mendez, Jimmy Mier, Ronald Elorde, Renante Bangkas, and Alfredo Macabacyao, were presented before Prosecutor I Kayugenn Mato Kuda Jr., Salantandre was seen briefing the suspects and was even heard of telling them that they should not make any statement regarding the incident. He was also heard telling the suspects to deny that they know each other.

Macabacyao, driver of the van registered under the name of Jinkee Pacquiao, who was earlier interviewed while inside the detention cell, failed to say even a single word during the inquest proceedings. He also denied that he knew the four other suspects.

Macabacyao’s denial was contrary to the statement of Pastor Ombrino Ibon, resident of Barangay Pangyan in Glan who witnessed the arrest of the suspects and the recovery of firearms by police authorities.

Ibon earlier testified that the suspects know each other as he saw them together in the house of his brother, Romeo Ibon. “Gihimong silbing headquarters nila ang balay sa akong igsuon, mohapit na sila diha mokaon, makit-an nako na sila didto maghatud og mga poster. Usahay maghatud na sila og bugas, sud-an, kape, kunsumo nila tungod daghang mga tao ang ginapakaon didto, pulos mamosteray. Kaduha na mi nag-meet ana nila pero wala lang ko makabalo sa ilang mga pangalan, mao g’yud nang mga dagwaya, kana silang lima (They used the house of my brother as their headquarters. They go there to eat, and I saw them there when they delivered posters. Sometimes, they will bring rice, viand, and coffee for their consumption, there are a lot of people in the headquarters and all of them are assigned to install posters. I already met the five of them twice, the same faces I saw, but that time, I still don’t know their names yet),” Ibon said.

Aside from the firearms seized inside the two Toyota Hi-Ace vans, police also recovered several campaign materials such as PCM and Manny Pacquiao’s posters, combat boots, and an Army camouflage uniform.

The responding policeman said the .45 caliber was recovered inside the boots placed at the back portion of the van, while the M16 armalite rifle was recovered inside the seat of the other van. The defense of PCM’s legal counsel in favor of the five accused only means that PCM is doing it because the suspects were hired by them. This fact could not be argued because Macabacyao himself admitted that he was hired by the PCM camp to deliver and install Pacman’s posters in different barangays in Glan together with some people. ###

Ambush suspects

Alabel, Sarangani Province – Four of the five suspects charged of Illegal Possession of Firearms, also accused of trying to ambush Glan incumbent Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap Jr., wait outside the prosecutor’s office to be presented before Prosecutor I Kayugenn Mato Kuda Jr. for inquest proceedings Tuesday, April 27. From left to right are Freddie Mendez, Jimmy Mier, Ricardo Elorde, and Renante Bangkas.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Seized van with firearms registered under Jinkee Pacquiao

ALABEL, Sarangani Province (April 28, 2010) – It was confirmed that the van used by the suspects, who were reportedly accused of planning to ambush Glan incumbent Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap in Barangay Pangyan, Glan on Monday, was registered under the name of Jinkee Pacquiao, wife of Sarangani congressional candidate Manny Pacquiao, of the People’s Champ Movement (PCM).

In a document secured from the Land Transportation Office (LTO), it was stated that the Toyota Hi-Ace van colored gray with plate number MDM-577, with engine number 2KD1929032 and chassis number JTFJS02P305008418, was registered under the name of Jinkee Jamora Pacquiao on July 6, 2009, whose address appeared to be in NLSA Road in Lagao, General Santos City where the boxing champ’s residence was located.

It was in the same vehicle where police recovered the M16 armalite rifle with serial number 121553 with short and long magazines loaded with 48 live ammunitions.

Meanwhile, the five suspects (not four as reported earlier) were already brought to the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office for inquest proceedings on April 27. They were charged of Illegal Possession of Firearms.

The suspects were identified as Jimmy Mier, resident of Zamboanga del Sur; Renante Bangkas, resident of Barangay Lagao, General Santos City; Freddie Mendez and Ronald Elorde, both residents of Barangay Calumpang in the same city, and one Alfredo Macabacyao, of Lagao.

In an interview with Macabacyao, the driver of the van registered under the name of Jinkee Pacquiao, he said he did not know the other suspects and that he just met them the night they were arrested. “Gipara lang ko niya (Mier), naa siya’y dala nga armalite. Gitionan ko niya ug namugos siya nga pasakyon nako siya. Gikan ko sa Margus (Glan) kay naghatod og mga poster (ni Manny Pacquiao), pagbalik nako sa may Tamparan, gipara ko niya (I was flagged down by Mier, he was holding an armalite. He pointed the firearm at me and he forced me to let him board on the van. I was from Margus, I delivered posters of Manny Pacquiao, when I was on my way back, at Sitio Tamparan, he flagged me down),” said Macabacyao who admitted that he was really the driver of the van and he was hired by the PCM camp to install and deliver posters.

On the other hand, Pastor Ombrino Ibon, resident of Barangay Pangyan, asserted that the suspects know each other as he saw them in the house of his brother, Romeo Ibon. “Gihimong silbing headquarters nila ang balay sa akong igsuon, mohapit na sila diha mokaon, makit-an nako na sila didto maghatud og mga poster. Usahay maghatud na sila og bugas, sud-an, kape, kunsumo nila tungod daghang mga tao ang ginapakaon didto, pulos mamosteray. Kaduha na mi nag-meet ana nila pero wala lang ko makabalo sa ilang mga pangalan, mao g’yud nang mga dagwaya, kana silang lima (They used the house of my brother as their headquarters. They go there to eat, and I saw them there when they delivered posters. Sometimes, they will bring rice, viand, and coffee for their consumption, there are a lot of people in the headquarters and all of them are assigned to install posters. I already met the five of them twice, the same faces I saw, but that time, I still don’t know their names yet),” Ibon said.

Atty. Emilio Quianzon, legal counsel of Sarangani Reconciliation and Reformation Organization (Sarro), Mayor Yoyong Yap’s political party, said aside from the charges of Illegal Possession of Firearms, he still cannot determine what other cases could possibly be filed against the five suspects in connection with the alleged ambush attempt to Mayor Yap.

“I am here to observe the inquest proceedings. The incident kaugnay kay Mayor Yap is still under investigation. Depende sa ebidensiya kung ano pang pwedeng ma-file sa mga suspects, pero sa ngayon wala pa tayong access sa evidence ng police, wala pa akong masasabi kung ano pang case ang pwedeng i-file,” Quianzon concluded. ###

Inquest proceedings

Alabel, Sarangani Province – The five suspects charged with Illegal Possession of Firearms were presented to Prosecutor I Kayugenn Mato Kuda Jr. at the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office for inquest proceedings, Tuesday, April 27. From left to right were: Freddie Mendez, Jimmy Mier, Ronald Elorde, Renante Bangkas, and Alfredo Macabacyao.

Pacquiao's van

Alabel Sarangani Province – A member of the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office inspects the Toyota Hi-Ace van with plate number MDM-577, confirmed to be registered under the name of Jinkee Pacquiao. The same vehicle was seized by the authorities with an M16 armalite rifle, magazines, and live ammunitions. It was the vehicle used by some suspects who were accused of allegedly trying to ambush Glan incumbent Mayor “Yoyong” Yap in Barangay Pangyan, Monday.

Gibo calls on authorities to probe deeper into bombing incident

TOLEDO CITY –Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro has called on the authorities to get to the bottom of the bomb attack believed intended for Sarangani Gov. Miguel Dominguez, and take decisive measures to prevent the possible escalation of election hostilities in the area.

“Dapat yan bantayan ng mabuti at sana wag mag-escalate yan (That incident should be closely watched and I hope it won’t escalate,” Gibo told reporters in a chance interview here after the inauguration of the new Toledo Garden City Hall.

The affair was attended by an estimated crowd of over 2,000 people, hundreds of them barangay captains.

“Ang bombing na yan nakakababahala. Si Gov Dominguez nga ang muntik maging mabiktima (That bombing incident is alarming. Gov. Dominguez nearly became a victim), Gibo said.

“I urge the authorities na maging agresibo sa pag imbesitga nyan so that hindi na kumalat (to be aggressive in their investigation so the situation doesn’t spin out of control),” the former defense secretary said.

Gibo said the bombing was apparently politically-motivated, noting that, “you can’t see any motive other than that.”

Also, the Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher said he is convinced Dominguez was the target of that bomb attack because it exploded just as his convoy passed by.

Earlier, former press secretary Mike Toledo condemned the bombing and attempted slay try on another Gibo ally, Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap of Glan, Saranggani province. Yap escaped unhurt in the reported ambush try in Sitio Tamparan, Barangay Pangyan in his town past midnight Sunday.
Toledo, who is now Gibo’s spokesman, said he hoped that the attacks were not the handiwork of sinister groups out to advance their interests in next month’s balloting.

On Monday, immediately after the attacks, Gibo expressed relief that nothing bad happened to his political allies. In his speech at the Mindanao Polytechnic College in General Santos City, he appealed for genuine reconciliation and unity to avoid a violent election.


“Sa pagdaan ng convoy ni Gov. Migz, may sumabog sa tabi ng kotse pero andito pa rin sya sa awa ng Diyos dahil gusto nya makasama tayo.(As Gov. Migz’s convoy passed, there was an explosion near the car but he’s still here by the grace of God and because he wants to be with us). You cannot put a good man down,” Gibo told the crowd. -30-

Certificate of Pledge and Commitment

MALAPATAN, Sarangani (April 27, 2010) – Regional Development Council Chair and Sarangani Governor Migs Dominguez awards the certificate of pledge of commitment to Agustina Mejia, executive secretary the mayor of Ezperanza, Sultan Kudarat Tuesday, April 27. This pledge of commitment is to deliver the assistance from Department of Agriculture for the RDC convergence program for the ten poorest municipalities of the region. This assistance from DA includes fertilizers, trainings, bags of hybrid seeds and farm to market roads. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Ceremonial awarding

MALAPATAN, Sarangani (April 27, 2010) – Regional Development Council (RDC) Chair and Sarangani Governor Migs Dominguez awards the package of programs and projects to Mayor George Sambaga Tuesday, April 27, during the launching of the RDC 12 Poverty Alleviation Convergence project for the ten poorest municipalities in Region 12. The RDC, through the leadership of Gov. Dominguez, tasked the regional KALAHI Convergence group 12 to lead the implementation of the Poverty Alleviation Convergence project envisioned to alleviate the plight of the poorest of the poor of region 12 through the convergence of programs and services, and focused geographic and sectoral targeting beneficiaries. The RKCG 12 technical working group with NEDA 12 identified the ten poorest municipalities of the region based on the data from various sources particularly the national statistical and coordination board. These municipalities are Malapatan and Maasim from Sarangani; T'boli and Lake Sebu from South Cotabato; Ezperanza, Sen. Ninoy Aquino, Bagumbayan, Kalmansig Columbio, and Palimbang from Sultan Kudarat. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Gov. Migs survives roadside bombing in Sarangani

MALAPATAN, Sarangani (April 26, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez survived a bombing attack at noon Monday (April 26) on his way to meet Lakas-Kampi-CMD presidential bet Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro who arrived in General Santos City the same day.

Gov. Dominguez, former national president of Lakas-Kampi-CMD, was coming to General Santos City from Glan town where he investigated the ambush attempt on partymate Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap.

Third-termer Yap is the vice mayoralty candidate of the governor’s party Sarangani Reconciliation and Reformation Organization(Sarro)/Lakas-Kampi-CMD in Glan.

Police said the roadside bombing happened around 11:40 a.m. when Dominguez’s convoy passed alongside Lun Masla Bridge in the town of Malapatan, a few kilometers away from the municipality of Glan.

“I'm OK...I was on my way home to meet up with Teodoro who is arriving in General Santos City. There was a recycled explosive in between my car and the car of my backup security,” Dominguez said.

“’Yong main charge ay hindi pumutok, ganun pa man isang explosion naincident, so nagpatawag tayo ng SOCO (Scene of the Crime Operations) galing sa ating crime laboratory plus our EOD (Explosive OrdnanceDisposal) team natin to conduct post blast investigation,” said Col.Restito Gatera, PNP provincial director. “Blessing in disguise na hindi pumutok ‘yong explosive devise.”

Police said no human casualty was reported. The Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) team recovered one unit Yamaha Crypton motorcycle with plate number MJ9208 color red-black, one Motorola hand held radio as triggering device, and one 105mm projectile as explosive device placed under the seat cover of the motorcycle.

The recovered items, police added, were brought to the Crime Laboratory 12 in General Santos City for laboratory examination.

Police said there could have been a low order detonation that was why the projectile did not explode.

Reports said the attack was allegedly planned by hired bombers paid by political opponents of Gov. Dominguez’s party, but police disclosed that the reports were still to be verified.

“Tinitingnan natin ngayon kung ano ba ito, sino ‘yong responsible ditoat ano ‘yong kanilang motive. Hindi pa natin ma-establish dahilon-going pa naman ang investigation kung sino ba ang behind dito,”Gatera said. (SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

The Chiongbians

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 26, 2010) – Congressional bet Roy Chiongbian listens to her mother, former Sarangani Governor Priscilla Chiongbian, as she arrives at the General Santos City InternationalAirport Monday morning, April 26. At left is Roy’s wife, Malu.(SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Roy Chiongbian welcomes Mommy Priscy

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 26, 2010) – Youngest son Roy Chiongbian welcomes her mother, former Sarangani Governor Priscilla Chiongbian,at the General Santos City International Airport Monday morning, April26. The former governor is widely known as “Mommy Priscy” by her constituents. (SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Arrival of former Governor Priscilla Chiongbian

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 26, 2010) – Former Sarangani Governor Priscilla Chiongbian is ushered by her youngest son and congressional bet Roy Chiongbian as she arrives at the General Santos City International Airport Monday morning, April 26. The former governor is the wife of the late Congressman James Chiongbian who authored the creation of Sarangani Province. (Romina Rabina/ SARANGANI INFORMATIONOFFICE)

Armed men suspected to ambush Mayor Yap nabbed in Sarangani

GLAN, Sarangani (April 26, 2010) – Joint operation of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and elements of the Philippine Army 73rd Infantry Battalion here nabbed four armed suspects who were reportedly accused of attempting to ambush incumbent Mayor Enrique “Yoyong” Yap at Sitio Tamparan, Barangay Pangyan at past midnight today (April 26).

Police initial investigation showed that the suspects were identified as Jimmy Mier, 39, resident of Zamboanga del Sur; Alfredo Macabayao,of legal age, with unknown address; Fredie Mendes; and one Ronald Elorde, both residents of Barangay Calumpang, General Santos City.

Recovered from the suspects were one unit of M16 armalite rifle with serial number 121553, one long and short magazine with 48 live ammunitions which were placed under the seat near the back portion ofthe gray Toyota Hi-Ace van driven by Macabayao and one caliber .45 pistol bearing serial number 90100978 with steel magazine and 18 live ammunitions placed inside a combat boots at the back portion of the white Toyota Hi-Ace van driven by Elorde.

The two vans, with plate number MDM-577(gray van) and RBR-709(whitevan), are now under the custody of Glan PNP.

One of the vehicles has Pacquiao sticker, but was covered with masking tape.Reports said the gray Toyota Hi-Ace van was allegedly owned by Mrs. Jinkee Pacquiao, but Col. Restito Gatera, PNP provincial director,said that the report is still under investigation.

“We are still verifying with the LTO kung sino talaga ang may-ari ngsasakyan,” Gatera said, adding that they are also in the process ofpreparing the necessary documents for the filing of charges againstthe suspects.“We do not know if Mayor Yap will sue the suspects. Sa ngayon, hindi namin tinututukan ang kaso ni Mayor Yap, tinututukan namin yungpagka-recover ng mga armas sa loob ng van for violation of Comelec gunban,” he said.

Mayor Yap, on the other hand, who is in his final term and now vice mayoralty candidate under Sarangani Reconciliation and ReformationOrganization (Sarro)/Lakas-Kampi-CMD, Pacquiao’s political party opponent, said that he was onboard his vehicle when he was waylaid by the suspects’ vehicles. One of them reportedly flagged down his vehicle with an armalite rifle.

Yap’s Toyota Land Cruiser immediately sped off and the mayor called for police backup, thus the suspects’ apprehension.

Gatera said the PNP is planning to beef-up Comelec checkpoints allover the province.“Actually, ang plano namin, two weeks before the conduct of election,we will enhance surprise Comelec checkpoints in Sarangani Province and we plan to mobilize all PNP personnel even our administrative personnel to also conduct surprise checkpoints,’ he said. (SARANGANIINFORMATION OFFICE)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Gibo volunteers




GENERAL SANTOS CITY (April 25, 2010) - Green Team Gensan chapter joins the nationwide "berde 8" event to show support to Gibo Teodoro Friday,April 23. Volunteers distributed leaflets and posters to motorists at Pioneer Avenue. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

17 Mayors in Davao rally behind Gibo

DIGOS CITY—-At least 17 incumbent mayors in Davao del Sur and DavaoOriental are fully backing the presidential bid of Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro until the May 10 balloting, local political kingmakers said.

Rep. Franklin Bautista of the second district of Davao del Sur saidthat they are fully supporting Gibo because of his superior capabilityto lead the country.“ Grabe ang push namin kay Gibo dito sa Davao del Sur (We’re pushingvery hard Gibo in Davao del Sur),” said Bautista.

An estimated 80,000 to 90,000 voters will go for Gibo in the May 10 balloting in Davao del Sur as we have been campaigning hard for him even in the mountains, Bautista said.

Davao del Sur has a voting population of some 140,000, he said.Bautista said that political operators of other presidential bets in this homestretch of the campaign period have been trying to sway him to abandon Gibo, but he rejected them with the conviction that the former defense secretary is the best to become the country’s next leader.

Gibo has been campaigning on a positive mode devoid of mudslinging,and has been pushing his bid mainly on his “Sulong Pilipinas”platform.

Mayor John Harvey Johnson of Don Marcelino town said he is backing Gibo because of his doable programs on how to improve the country.“We believe that of all the candidates, Gibo will make the best out ofthe Philippines because of his platform of governance,” said Johnson.

Johnson said he and his ward leaders are campaigning hard for Gibo in the town’s 15 barangays, targeting to deliver 12,000 votes to the former defense secretary, out of the town’s total voting population of 21,000.“Gibo is very strong in Davao del Sur, majority of the mayors in the province are supporting his bid,” Johnson said.

Mayor Jerry Cawa of Sarangani town, who is seeking his last term unopposed, said his town of around 14,000 voters will deliver majorityof the votes to Gibo.“Our town is very solid for Gibo,” Cawa stressed.“Among all the presidential bets, it’s only Gibo without any issues of corruption. His record in government service is sterling,” the mayor added.

Sarangani, which is an island-town, is about nine hours of boat and land travel to the mainland Davao del Sur, but Cawa said he and several supporters will travel to Malita town where Gibo is slated fora rally today (Saturday).

Aside from Johnson and Cawa, the other mayors in Davao del Sur for Gibo are Antonio Razonable (Padada), Jess Lumanog (Magsaysay) JaimeCaminero (Kiblawan), Arsenio Latasa (Digos City), Benjamin Bautista Jr. (Malita), said Mayor Rudy Mariscal of Sta. Maria town, who is also the president of the mayors’ league in the province.

In Mati City, the capital of Davao Oriental, Mayor Michelle Rabat also rallied behind Gibo, adding the mayors of Lupon and Banaybanay towns are also strongly supporting him.“He’s the most qualified to be the president of our country,” Rabat said.

Mati City, with a voting population of 58,000, will go for Gibo especially the youth and the professionals, she added.

Rep. Thelma Almario of the second district of Davao Oriental, said they expect to deliver some 100,000 votes for Gibo in the province.She praised Gibo for mounting a positive campaign. “He’s not into mudslinging, unlike the other bets.“We believe in Gibo’s competence, integrity and his platform of governance which is what exactly what our country needs,” Almario said.

In Laak, Compostela Valley Mayor Reynaldo Navarro said he is stickingwith Gibo until judgement day on May 10, Sunstar-Davao reported recently.Of the 11 mayors in the province, Navarro is one of the six local government leaders who vowed to support the presidential candidacy of Gibo.He identified the five other mayors as Lito Brillantes of Monkayo,Voltair Rimando of Maco, Hadji Mu¤oz of Mabini, Celso Sarinas of Pantukan, and Macario Humol of Nabunturan.

Earlier, Rep. Antonio “Anton” Lagdameo, Jr. of Davao del Norte, who isrunning unopposed in the second district, assured Gibo anew of all-outsupport until the election day on May 10.“I fully support the continued run of Gibo for the presidency despiteall obstacles being faced [by him],” said Lagdameo, husband of actress Dawn Zulueta. -30-

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Show of force for Gibo in Cebu

CEBU CITY—In a striking show of force for Lakas-Kampi-CMDstandard-bearer Gibo Teodoro, over 250 governors, members of the Houseof Representatives plus congressional and gubernatorial bets alongwith at least 27 incumbent local elective officials and candidates inCebu alone have declared anew their full backing for the formerdefense chief till the May 10 elections.

This developed as Gibo posted back-to-back coups in two online polls in a week’s time after coming out No. 1 yesterday in the mock polls done by the business daily BusinessWorld and, earlier, in a similar survey by the major broadsheet Manila Bulletin.

In Cebu, at least 41 incumbent governors and gubernatorial candidates led by the province’s Gwendolyn Garcia met at the Marco Polo Hotel—the same venue for the previous night’s meeting where 27 local aspirants and incumbent local executives belonging to the Garcia-headed local party One Cebu have committed to campaign hard for the Lakas-Kampi-CMD presidential candidate.

The combined show of electoral strength in this city came as 168 congressional candidates, 71 of them incumbent legislators, likewise met last Monday at the Dusit Hotel in Makati City to reaffirm their unwavering support for Gibo.

Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, president of the Governors for Gibo (G4G)or Team Palabra de Honor, said the Marco Polo meeting in her vote-rich province—amid the reported defections of a few—sent anew the loud and clear signal of Gibo’s formidable local machinery support.“I do believe that as all of us here, that for as long as we hold on together, our very own individual strengths will be consolidated into one unbeatable force that will bring Gibo Teodoro to victory,” Garcia said during the meeting.

At the end of the two-hour meeting, the governors and the candidates signed a document titled “Manifesto of Reaffirmation of Support for presidential Candidate Gilbert “Gibo” C. Teodoro, Jr.” “We, the provincial governors, elected officials of the Philippines and all members of Team “Palabra de Honor, reaffirm our unwavering support to Gibo in order to secure his victory and all the candidates both local and national of the party and its allies in the forthcoming May 10 elections,” they said in the manifesto.

“We remain steadfast in our conviction that Gibo Teodoro is the most qualified among all the presidential candidates to lead the nation towards greater economic prosperity and social progress in the next six years,” they said.

“Thus, we commit to work hard for overwhelming electoral majorities for Gibo in our jurisdictions.” They added in the manifesto that, “Gibo best represents our ideal of competence in public service; intelligence in the service of thepeople, governance that is not dictated by politics, but politics dictated by good governance; integrity that is beyond question; and most importantly, humility that is inspired by the truth that we are all servants of the people.”

Gibo, who joined the governors and candidates halfway through the Marco Polo meeting, thanked the “Team Palabra de Honor” for reaffirming their full support to him.“This is a humbling experience for me, an added responsibility. So that the trust bestowed upon me by the leaders of the provinces will not be lost, I will return the favor by strengthening the LGUs [once elected],” Gibo said.

Gibo said the reaffirmation of support of the governors basically threw out the window the disinformation against him to torpedo his surging campaign.“With these governors' meeting, it once again clears the air for our people to know who have defected and who really support us,” Gibo said.

Among the incumbent governors present during the Marco Polo Hotel meeting were Garcia, Migs Dominguez (Sarangani), Ben Evardone (EasternSamar), Salvacion Zaldivar Perez (Antique), Eustaquio Bersamin (Abra),Nestor Fongwan (Benguet), Floydelia Diasin (Kalinga Apayao), MaximoDalog (Mt. province), Deogracias Victor Savellano (Ilocos Sur), AuroraBella Flor Castillo (Aurora), Enrique Garcia (Bataan), Jose AntonioCarreon (Marinduque), Sally Ante Lee (Sorsogon), Lito Marquez (Aklan),Felipe Hilan Nava (Guimaras), Isidro Zayco (Negros Occidental),Orlando Fua, Jr. (Siquijor), Mila Tan (Samar), Damian Mercado(Southern Leyte), Rolando Yebes (Zamboanga del Norte) and AuroraCerilles (Zamboanga del Sur).

Also there to express anew their full support for Gibo were governors Jurdin Jesus Romualdo (Camiguin), Oscar Moreno (Misamis Oriental),Jesus Sacdalan (North Cotabato), Erlpe John Amante (Agusan del Norte),Vicente Pimentel (Surigao del Sur), Jum Akbar (Basilan), MamintalAdiong, Jr. (Lanao del Sur), Erico Aumentado (Bohol) and MohammadKhalid Dimaporo (Lanao del Norte).

The other Lakas-Kampi-CMD gubernatorial candidates present in the meeting were House Majority Leader Arthur Defensor (Iloilo), MarcelinoAganon (Tarlac), Dennis Lazaro (Laguna), Edgar Chatto (Bohol), CharlieChong (Biliran), Ann Hofer (Zamboanga Sibugay), Herminia Ramiro(Misamis Occidental), Emmylou Talino-Mendoza (North Cotabato), ArthurPingoy (South Cotabato), Adolph Edward Plaza (Agusan del Sur), SolMatugas (Surigao del Norte) and Esmail Mangudadatu.

Dominguez, who is G4G vice president, said that at least three other Mindanao governors are also supportive of Gibo’s presidential bid but were not at the meeting due to previous commitments.

Aurora Gov. Bellaflor Angara Castillo vowed to make Gibo the winner inher province. “Gibo is not only very capable and intelligent, he’salso a sincere person,” she said.

Aklan Gov. Lito Marquez said they’ll work hard to bring at least 130,000 votes to Gibo.

Laguna gubernatorial bet Dennis Lazaro, son of outgoing governor Ning-Ning Lazaro, said that they’ll work hard to deliver at least 200,000 votes to the former defense secretary. “We’ll fight for Giboin Laguna,” he said.

Eastern Samar Gov. Ben Evardone said that Gibo possesses superior qualities over the other presidential candidates. “He is the best person to lead our country to greater heights,” he said.“This striking show of force by national and local elective officials along with congressional and mayoralty bets not only here in Cebu but all over the country is the most resounding proof yet that reports and speculations about mass defections supposedly buffeting the Gibo camp only exist in the minds of black propaganda experts who are desperately trying to sabotage Gibo’s surging candidacy for the benefit of their respective presidential wannabes,” said former press secretary Mike Toledo, who is now Gibo’s spokesman and director of the G1BO 2010 Media Bureau.

This declaration of all-out support in Cebu came a day after some 130Lakas-Kampi-CMD legislators across the country gathered at the Dusit Hotel Nikko in Makati City where they committed to continue supporting the former defense secretary in his journey to Malacañang.

Gibo has emerged No. 1 in yet another online survey barely three weeksto go before the May 10 balloting.Based on BusinessWorld’s poll of its online readers’ preference forthe next president of the Philippines, as of April 19, 2010, Gibopicked up 26.50 percent of the 102,057 votes polled; followed byformer president and Pwersa ng Masa bet, Joseph Estrada (25.77percent); with Nacionalista Party candidate, Sen. Manuel Villar, at third place (19.07 percent); and Liberal Party stalwart, Sen. BenignoAquino III, hanging on at fourth place (18.62 percent).

It was Gibo's third in a week's time to either come out No. 1 or No.2,having topped the online polls done by the major news daily Manila Bulletin and coming in second in the separate survey done by Dutch finance giant ING Bank.

In response to the question of “Who will you vote as the next Philippine President in the May 10 elections next month?” which was posted on Bulletin’s mb.com.ph website, 27,521 or 47% chose Gibo. Aquino settled for a far second, with 15,499 or 27% of the votes cast, followed in third place by former Estrada with 5,543 or 10% ofthe votes.

Just recently, in it’s latest tracking poll, the Cebu-based Campaigns & Image Group (CIG) said next month’s presidential balloting will likely be a toss-up among the three aforementioned candidates, with the eventual winner being the one who can secure a firm headlock on the vote-rich 18-35 age category.

Gibo remained a strong favorite of voters across the 18-28 and 29-39 year-old age brackets, with a 26% Presidential Preference Rating (PPR)among young voters that comprise almost half of the electorate in this year’s May 10 polls, according to the CIG tracking poll.

Gibo came out No. 2, next to Villar, in that tracking poll of CIG.In similar mock elections conducted by broadcast media leader RadioMindanao Network (RMN) through the month of March, Gibo was first place in one city and landed either in the No.2 or No. 3 positions in other parts of Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao.-30-

Monday, April 19, 2010

Welga balik-skwela

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez shows his support to provincial-paid teachers at the opening of the province-wide Balik Eskwela Monday, April 19, under the Quality Education for Sarangani Today (QUEST). (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Sarangani is number one in education

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez emphasizes education as the key to success among Madaris students at the opening ceremony of the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah (Madaris intramurals) Monday, April 19. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Plaque of appreciation

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Atty. Guilil Kanda receives a plaque of appreciation from Governor Migs Dominguez for gracing the opening ceremony of the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah (Madaris intramurals) Monday, April 19, as guest speaker. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Musabaqah torch lighting

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez lights the torch to commence the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah (Madaris intramurals) Monday, April 19, at the provincial gym. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Musabaqah opening parade

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Madaris pupils in their Muslim uniform join the parade as the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah kicks off Monday, April 19. The provincial Madrasahs (Madaris schools) have 3,500 students joining the Musabaqah, the Maguindanao term for Madaris intramurals. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Madaris welcomes Roy Chiongbian

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Businessman and congressional bet Roy Chiongbian is ushered by Madaris volunteers as thousands of Madrasah (Arabic schools) students cheer at the opening ceremony of the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah Monday, April 19. The Chiongbian Group of Companies has been supporting the province’s Madaris education. Roy Chiongbian, the youngest son of Sarangani founders James and Priscilla Chiongbian, promised to take care and protect Sarangani as his younger sibling. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Madaris teachers

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez chats with Madaris teachers attending the opening ceremony of the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah Monday, April 19, at the provincial gym. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Kayang-kaya

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Vice Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon gives an inspirational message of unity among Sarangani’s tri-people at the opening of the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah Monday, April 19, at the provincial gym. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Consultation

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez waves his hand to Mustafa Tinaw from Kinam, Malapatan, who spent more than the number of years prescribed for his case and was not released if not through the province’s Justice on Wheels Program. Bernadette Fortus (right), Malapatan federation president of Pantawid Pampamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), together with a hundred members of the federation, came to thank Governor Dominguez for the province’s 4Ps program. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Balik-skwela

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – School-bound pupils chat with Governor Migs Dominguez at the launching program of the Quality Education for Sarangani Today (QUEST’s) Balik-skwela Monday, April 19. Some 244 provincial-paid teachers attended the program with the theme, “Tara na, balik eskwela ta karong June 14”. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Balik skwela teacher

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez listens to one of the 244 provincial-paid teachers who attended the launching of the Balik-Skwela by the Quality Education for Sarangani Today (QUEST) Monday, April 19, at barangay Alegria. During the day, the teachers conducted home visits to convince parents to send their children back to school. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

2nd Provincial Musabaqah

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 19, 2010) – Madaris students and Azatidz from all over the province numbering to 4,000 pass in front of the Capitol building during the parade as the 2nd Provincial Musabaqah kicks off Monday, April 19. Musabaqah is a Maguindanao term for Madaris intramurals. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Gibo hits DOJ ruling on Ampatuans, vows to rpobe under Teodoro presidency

Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro has joined the families of the 57 victims of the Maguindanao massacre in bewailing the decision of the Department of Justice (DOJ) to drop two prominent members of the Ampatuan clan from the multiple murder and abduction case in connection with the Nov. 23 killings in Maguindanao.

Gibo said that a Teodoro presidency would give top priority to the reinvestigation of this case against over a hundred persons led by former Gov. Andal Ampatuan Sr., his sons Zaldy and Andal Jr. and other members of the Ampatuan clan.

He was reacting to a DOJ resolution dropping Zaldy, the suspended governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), and Akmad Ampatuan Sr., as respondents in this murder case on the ground that these two had presented evidence showing they were neither present when the crime was plotted nor when it was committed last Nov. 23.

“Ano pa bang mas titibay na ebidensya na mahigit 50 ang namatay dun. Ano pa bang titibay dun at si Mayor lang ang may kagagawan nun, maraming testigo (What more solid evidence can you get that more than 50 people were killed there? What additional evidence do you need to conclude that only the mayor was involved, there were many witnesses),” Gibo said in an interview.

Gibo was referring to Andal Jr., the mayor of Datu Unsay, who was tagged by witnesses as the leader of more more than 100 armed men that stopped a convoy along the highway and later on killed all the passengers in a remote patch near that national road.

Among the victims were the wife of Buluan Vice Mayor Datu Esmael Mangudadatu, who was then running for governor against Andal Jr.; three other Mangudadatu relatives; lawyers and some 30 journalists who had joined them.

The Mangudadatu convoy was on its way to the Commision on Elections office to file the vice mayor’s certificate of candidacy as govenor when stopped by Andal Jr.’s group at a checkpoint along the highway.

“Kailangan pag-aralan ko muna ang mga pangyayari, pero nakalulungkot kung ang mga ito ay maabswelto. Sa kabila ng lahat ng pinsala na idinulot nila dito sa ating bansa (I still have to study the resolution, but it is saddening that these people will be exonerated, amid all the damage they have done here in our country),” Gibo said.

Gibo asserted the cases against the Ampatuans should be pursued by the government.

“Ako’y nanalig na malakas ang kaso laban sa mga Ampatuan. Ewan ko lang kung rebelyon or conspiracy dahil sa murder na nangyari. So, dapat pursigihin ang prosecution ng lahat ng kaso laban sa mga Ampatuan. Inimbestigahan yan. Pinagmulan pa ng martial law yan. Dapat pursigihin ng gobyerno yan. (I believe the case against the Ampatuans is strong. I just don’t know if rebellion or conspiracy is the proper case against them for the massacre that happened. So, there’s a need to really pursue the prosecution of all the cases against the Ampatuan. The government should pursue that),” Gibo said.

Former press secretary Mike Toledo, who is Gibo’s campaign spokesman and director of the G1BO 2010 Media Bureau, said that Gibo has put on record that Andal Jr., the primary suspect, should not be exonerated for his alleged role in the Maguindanao massacre.

He recalled that Gibo immediately called last year for the surrender of Andal Jr., the prime suspect in the massacre of over 50 people, to authorities.

Gibo, who was the chairman of the ruling party at the time, immediately had the three Ampatuans—Andal Sr., Andal Jr., and Zaldy Ampatuan–expelled from the party over their alleged involvement in the incident.

Gibo had also flown at once to Maguindanao after the massacre to condole with Vice Mayor Mangudadatu, and had picked him as Lakas-Kampi-CMD candidate for governor. -30

Friday, April 16, 2010

Malungon twins

MALUNGON, Sarangani (April 16, 2010) - From a campaign sortie, Vice Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon visits the three-day old twins of Angelica Toledo at a government health center in barangay Tamban Thursday, April 15,. (Romina Rabina/ SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

GIBO says rivals starting to panic

ILOILO CITY—Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard bearer Gibo Teodoro on Tuesday remained unfazed by the intrigues hurled against him, in fact welcoming it as a sign that the other presidential bids are getting scared of him.

“Ako’s natutuwa sa intriga dahil nagpapakita na ang mga kalaban nanenerbyos nasa akin (I’m pleased with the intrigues against me because it shows that my opponents are getting nervous),” Gibo told reporters here.

I’ll move in and move up, and moving to win. I have a good chance of winning the election because of the support of the local officials,” the former defense secretary added.

The Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher observed that lately, the groundswell of support to his side is becoming overwhelming, especially from volunteers’ groups coming from the different sectors of society like the academe, youth, women, and business, among others.

He called on his tens of thousands of volunteers to refocus their campaign tack—that more than attending rallies for him, they should campaign for him in the different areas more vigorously.

Earlier, the camp of Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro said the string of demolition jobs hurled against him at this crucial stage of the presidential race only proves that his candidacy is now surging and posing a serious threat to his rivals in the May 10 elections.

Former press secretary Mike Toledo, Gibo’s spokesman and director of the G1BO 2010 Media Bureau, noted that while some armchair political analysts have attempted to shut Gibo out of the presidential race, his rivals now appear to be on panic mode in the last 30 days of the campaign as smear jobs against him have surprisingly surfaced lately one after the other.

“For someone who is supposed to be out of the running, it is funny how he has lately been the target of one demolition job after another,” Toledo noted. “It only shows that contrary to what certain self-styled pollsters and political analysts are saying, Gibo’s campaign has been on an upward trajectory and rival camps are getting freaked out to the point of concocting rumors and intrigues in a frantic bid to blunt his campaign surge.”
Toledo noted in a radio interview that some political analysts had based their analyses excluding Gibo from what they erroneously presume to be three-way fight in the presidential race on so-called surveys that fail to factor in Lakas-Kampi-CMD’s built-in advantage: its nationwide reach and grassroots machinery that would swing local support and votes in Gibo’s favor.

These armchair analysts have also overlooked Gibo’s lock on the youth vote, which accounts for 52% of the balloting in this year’s elections, Toledo said.

History has likewise shown that political analysts and surveys have erred several times in predicting the outcomes of presidential elections, Toledo pointed out on radio.

He cited as an example the 1948 US presidential elections when veteran political analysts had mistakenly predicted that Gov. Thomas Dewey would win over Harry S. Truman.

This was the common perception then that even the Chicago Tribune had erroneously bannered Dewey’s supposed victory over Truman, Toledo recalled.

In England, pollsters have failed to predict that Conservative Party’s John Major would win over then Labour leader Neil Kinnock in 1992, Toledo noted.

Even in the Philippines, Toledo noted that the surveys overlooked Fidel Ramos as a major contender in the 1992 presidential race.

In the United States, many failed to predict that Barack Obama would win over more popular nominees in the Democratic Party and eventually, in the presidential elections.

“What we see in Gibo’s campaign sorties is the high level of support for him by the people, especially the youth and also our local government officials,” Toledo said in the vernacular during the radio interview.

He noted that a great majority of about close two million first-time voters alone from the youth sector will vote for Gibo, who they believe deserves to be the country’s next president on the strength of his issues-based campaign, unblemished reputation and impressive track record.

“Eleksyon ito ng pangulo, hindi karera ng kabayo na kailangang pag-usapan sino ang nangunguna, number one, number two, number three, eh hindi po dapat yon, ang pinag-uusapan, ano ang plataporma mo. Ano ang solusyon mo sa mga problema ng ating bayan (This is a presidential election, not a horse race where one talks about which horse is number one, number two or number three. That’s not what we should be talking about, but the candidate’s platforms, and their proposed solutions, if any. to our country’s woes),” Toledo said.

Toledo said Gibo’s rivals “now appear to be in panic mode as the Lakas-Kampi-CMD bet cements his lock on the vote of students and other young voters—who make up a bulk of this year’s electorate—and starts gaining extra momentum from the robust support of local executives and other candidates of Lakas-Kampi-CMD at the onset of the local campaign season.”

Last week, 50 provincial governors banded together under G4G, or Governors for Gibo, to reiterate their support for the presidential bid of the former defense secretary all the way till May 10.

His lawmaker-backers led by congressman Jose Aquino also said that over 100 members of the House of Representatives, most of them first- and second-termers, are supporting his candidacy till Election Day.

The governors led by Gwendolyn Garcia of Cebu, Mix Dominguez of Sarangani and Joey Salceda of Albay backed a manifesto of support during a meeting of the League of Provinces of the Philippines at the Discovery Suites.

Toledo noted earlier, that the latest campaign developments within the ruling party Lakas-Kampi-CMD, particularly the successive demonstrations of support by members of the First Family for Gibo, prove he is and will always remain President Arroyo’s presidential candidate.


Toledo noted that President Arroyo herself made a surprise appearance during last Tuesday’s meeting of the Lakas-Kampi national executive committee to ask party officials to campaign for Gibo, which was followed by demonstrations of support from presidential sons and Representatives Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo in Pampanga and Diosdado Ignacio “Datu” Arroyo in Camarines Sur, and from Rep. Ignacio “Iggy” Arroyo, the brother of First Gentleman Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo, in vote-rich Negros Occidental. -30-

Federating the transport sector

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 15, 2010) – Vice Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon encourages provincial transport to bind together and form a federation as a dynamic business during the 1st Provincial Transport Cooperative Day Thursday, April 15, attended by transport cooperatives province-wide. The provincial Vice Governor’s Office has been supporting the province’s micro-enterprises such as the transport group through business and skills trainings . (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANIINFORMATION OFFICE)

Roy supports provincial transport group

ALABEL, Sarangani (April 15, 2010) – Businessman and congressional candidate Roy Chiongbian encourages the provincial transport group toclose ranks and strengthen their business initiatives to help the province’s tourism efforts at the 1st Provincial Transport Cooperative Day Thursday, April 15, attended by the nine transport cooperatives in the province. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Gibo bats anew for long-term sustainable energy road map to address worsening power woes

CADIZ CITY—Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro on Friday pressedanew for the implementation of a renewable and sustainable energy roadmap asa long-term solution to the deepening power crisis, which has latelybuffeted even Metro Manila.

“Really in the long run, not in the short-run, we really have to implement the renewable and sustainable energy roadmap,” said Gibo on the issue of rotating power interruptions in different parts of the country, includingMetro Manila.

“ I don’t think there’s an immediate solution. If there’s an immediate solution probably it could have been done [that would have prevented the power woes we’re experiencing now],” the former defense secretary told reporters in a chance interview here at the residence of Mayor Salvador Escalante.

In implementing the long-term renewable and sustainable energy road map, Gibo said the southern portion of Negros Occidental should be a prime candidate.“The wind in Southern Negros is really very strong,” the Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher said.

Gibo said the energy problems the country is facing now could have been prevented had something been done before to increase the generating capacity.However, when you increase the generating capacity, it does not necessarily means that power rates will decrease, Gibo said.

On the other hand, power rates may increase because you need additional capital expenditures in the efforts to increase the generating capacity, headded. But even with an increased generating capacity, Gibo said that supply would also eventually fluctuate because of the growing demand, thus the need to really implement the long-term renewable and sustainable energy roadmap inthe country, Gibo said.

Earlier, the Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher said exploring options on energy sustainability could include nuclear power, but he thumbed down the possibility of reopening the moth balled Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) because of its numerous technical flaws and safety risks.

Gibo said, however, that the Philippines could learn from the example of theUnited Arab Emirates, one of the world’s largest oil exporters, which recently inked a $25-billion contract with a Korean electric power company to set up nuclear power plants.

“I don’t see the reason why we should not (explore nuclear power).Filipinos used to run the plants in Korean and Japan, I think. We cancertainly do it here,” Gibo said.

The United States, Japan and France are among the world’s largest users of nuclear power, which is generally considered as a cheaper, more reliable and cleaner alternative to fossil fuels in generating electricity.The International Atomic Energy Agency has reported that as of 2007, there were 439 nuclear power reactors operating in 31 countries.

Former press secretary Mike Toledo, who is now Gibo’s spokesman and director of the G1BO 2010 Media Bureau, said that the Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer’s energy sustainability plan is a telling mark that “Gibo alone among the presidentiables has a concrete and doable platform o fgovernment that has been recognized and appreciated by an increasing numberof voters.”

“Gibo’s campaign is now peaking because more and more Filipinos, most especially students and other young voters, have come to realize that he is indeed the most qualified to lead our country into the next decade on the strength of his concrete program, sterling record and brilliant performance in presidential debates and other public engagements.” -30-

Gibo bats for Eco-Tourism, Mining in Bacolod

SIPALAY CITY—Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro has batted for the development of eco-tourism and mining in the different towns of Negros Occidental.

Overwhelmed by the warm reception of an estimated 5,000 locals from 17 Sipalay City barangays and 13 Hinoba-an City barangays, the former defense secretary vowed to push for these industries once elected president.

“Your cities have great potential in eco-tourism,” he said on Thursday on the first day of a two-day swing in Negros Occidental. “ I will make this province accessible to both domestic and foreign tourists to boost the economic development of this region.”

People packed the Sipalay Gym, where the 1989 bar topnotcher and Harvard-trained lawyer had a dialogue with barangay captains and local officials, all of whom promised to take an active part in his campaign to make him win the May 10 polls.
He likewise revealed plans to boost the mining potential of the province, and push for industrial development.

“The wealth of your city’s mining industry belongs to each one of you,” said the presidential candidate. “Moreover, we will make sure that the opening up of mining here will be environmentally-sound.”

A sustained infrastructure buildup and economic development are two key planks of Gibo’s platform dubbed “Sulong Pilipinas.”

“We must continue the developments done by President Arroyo and the infrastructure projects that would further enhance the economic gains achieved by the Arroyo administration," Gibo said.

A total of 30 barangays, 17 from Sipalay City and 13 from Hinoba-an, led by Sipalay City Acting Mayor Oscar Montilla Jr., and Hinoba-an City Mayor Maria Teresa Locsin-Bilbao, gathered to show their unwavering support for Gibo during his visit to the Sipalay Gym.

“I believe in his ‘galing at talino,’ he has the clearest and most plausible platform compared to other candidates, that’s why I am actively campaigning for him,” said Locsin-Bilbao. “He has the heart to understand what the Filipinos need, especially the poorest of the poor.”

The Hinoba-an mayor added that “my supporters are helping me spread the word that the country can move forward and achieve progress with Gibo as president.”

Sipalay City Councilor Leo Debuyan shared the mayor’s confidence in Gibo. The councillor said that he expects the number of Gibo supporters in his city to continue to rise, especially with the start of the local campaigns.

“Kitang-kita naman ang suporta ng mga Sipalaynon kay Gibo. Siya ang kailangan naming maging pangulo: may sapat na kakayanan at mapagkakatiwalaan [As you can see, the Sipalaynons support Gibo. He is what we need in a president: capable enough and trustworthy],” said Debuyan.

Silapay City has more than 39,000 voters, he said. -30-

Gibo to LGU Execs: Join forces vs. Urban Migration to ease Metro Manila woes

Lakas-Kampi-CMD presidential bet Gibo Teodoro has called on local government unit (LGU) executives to work hand in hand in stopping the migration of people to Metro Manila’s congested cities to arrest urban decay and ease the economic woes of the metropolis.

Speaking during a rally held at the San Agustin Gym, Moonwalk Village in Parañaque City, Gibo said the relocation of people from urban centers to the provinces and the rapid development of the countryside are the challenges that face the national government and the LGUs in a massive reconstruction effort that is needed to prevent a repeat of the widescale flooding triggered by typhoon “Ondoy,” which inundated most of Metro Manila last year.

Gibo said a major component of this reconstruction effort should be the construction of a Parañaque spillway to ensure that the water that comes into the Laguna de Bay through the Manggahan Floodway from over 20 upstream river systems will flow out to prevent perennial flooding.

Estimates done by a reconstruction commission chaired by Finance Secretary Margarito Teves and industrialist Manny Pangilinan has placed the cost of rehabilitating areas damaged by typhoons at P208 billion.

“With reclamation, there are challenges, because the inland portions of the reclaimed areas are prone to flooding, and if we don’t make the new Parañaque spillway wherever that will be, Metro Manila is going to flood, Laguna will continue to flood, because Laguna de Bay, up to now, is not going lower as it should and, depth is only 11 feet now, but still you have submerged areas,” Gibo said.

Gibo was welcomed during his sortie in Parañaque by local chief executives of the city led by Mayor Jun Bernabe, Vice Mayor Gus Tambunting, Rep. Ronald Bernabe and Association of Barangay Captains president Teodoro Virata Jr..

Local government executives, Gibo said, should closely coordinate with and among each other to stop urban migration by ensuring that informal settlers would have stable jobs and livelihood opportunities in the sites where they will be relocated, while spurring economic growth in the countryside to encourage rural folk to stay put in the provinces instead of transferring to crowded urban centers.

“These are challenges that all of us must face. [We need to enhance] local government capacity building, not merely for Parañaque, but for rural areas so that the migration stops,” Gibo said. “Kung hindi po titigil ang migration, grabe ang mangyayari dito lalo na sa Parañaque (If migration does not stop, the situation will worsen, especially here in Parañaque).”
Gibo had pointed out that LGUs can tie up with the private sector to provide sustainable means of livelihood for new settlers in relocation sites.
The Special National Public-Private Reconstruction Commission created by President Arroyo is now drafting an infrastructure rehabilitation plan that would cover the problem of informal settlers, especially those living in endangered areas.

The Commission, which is co-chaired by Teves, Pangilinan and Cebu Archbishop Ricardo Vidal, was created through Executive Order 832 issued by President Arroyo in the aftermath of the devastation wrought by several typhoons that struck the country last year.

This Commission is tasked to “undertake a study of the causes, costs and actions to be taken in the wake of Typhoons Ondoy, Pepeng and Frank, and to seek fresh aid to fund” necessary reconstruction efforts. -30-

Two-Day Negros swing shows Sugarlandia is "Gibo Country"

BACOLOD CITY—Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gibo Teodoro has ended a two-day swing in Negros Occidental on a high spirit as the unexpectedly huge crowd turn-out in multi-city rallies organized by local government leaders and volunteer groups had shorn up his supporters’ claim that this vote-rich Visayan province will be “Gibo country” come May 10.

“My heartfelt thank you to all of you Negrenses. Now what can people say in Manila? We’re sure of victory because you are with us,” said Gibo at the end of rallies from Sipalay City to Bacolod City on Thursday and from San Carlos City to Silay City the day after.

“The groundswell of support here in Negros was simply very much amazing not only because of the help of our local politicians but more so because of the volunteers. It’s pure conviction by the people that Gibo deserves to become the country’s next president,” said former press secretary Mike Toledo, who is now Gibo’s spokesman and head of the G1BO 2010 Media Bureau.

Gibo combed the southern and northern portions of Negros, a province with at least 1.3 million voters, stopping in more than a dozen towns and cities where he was warmly welcomed not only by hugs, kisses, cheers but also fireworks.

Aside from the above-mentioned cities, Gibo led his running-mate Edu Manzano and the ruling party’s senatorial ticket in rallies in other places like Cauayan, Ilog, Himamaylan and Manapla plus the cities of Kabankalan, San Escalante, Cadiz and Victorias.

In this city on Thursday night, the plaza turned into a sea of green, Gibo’s campaign color, as an estimated crowd of more than 10,000 brushed elbows, setting aside their social economic classes.

A dazzling fireworks spectacle made possible by volunteers’ donations kept the crowd’s mouths and eyes wide open in awe.

Police and plaza vendors said this was the largest political rally in recent years in Bacolod City, the capital of Negros Occidental.

Rep. Monico Puentebella, of this city’s lone district, expressed confidence that Gibo would emerge as winner in Bacolod City given his solid foothold among the voters, as shown by the massive crowd turnout at the plaza.

“Gibo has high chances of winning in Bacolod because he is strong among the youth, the academe and the professionals here,” the three-term lawmaker stressed. “If you have the support of these groups, winning is not far here.”

Puentevella, who is on his last term as lone representative of the city but seeking the mayoralty seat, vowed to campaign hard by using the local party machinery in barangay level to ensure Gibo’s victory in this Ilonggo-speaking city.

Also dubbed as the “City of Smiles,” this city has a voting population of at least 252,000.
Puentevella assured that he is sticking with Gibo till the May 10 polls, stressing his loyalty to the ruling party where he is a member for 20 years now.

“Gibo has a brilliant mind among the presidential pack,” Puentevella described the former defense secretary, who is also a Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher.

Rep. Ignacio “Iggy” Arroyo, who is running virtually unopposed in the fifth district of Negros, was all the more bullish over the chances of Gibo in Negros.

“We will make Negros Occidental a ‘Gibo Country,’” the President’s brother-in-law said.
Arroyo reiterated his show of full support to Gibo by sitting beside the former defense secretary at the gymnasium and introducing him to the crowd of about 2,000 as the best person to lead the country.

Arroyo said the local machinery of the ruling Lakas-Kampi-CMD party is now coming into play to pave the way for Gibo’s victory in next month’s balloting.

Early this week, in a meeting of the national executive committee of Lakas-Kampi-CMD, the President gave the marching order for party members to work for the victory of Gibo in May 10 polls.

For his part, Negros Gov. Isidro Zayco, who accompanied Gibo all the way in his Negros sorties, said: “We’ll do our best to make Gibo a winner in Negros.”

Zayco said that 15 to 16 mayors in the province are now solidly behind Gibo in his journey to Malacañang.

Himamaylan Mayor Mencit Bascon vowed to make Gibo the winner in her city with a voting population of some 55,000.

“People in our town believe that he’s qualified to be the president of the Philippines,” said Bascon, who is on her last term but fielding her son Tint as her replacement.

Now running for vice mayor, Bascon said she was awed by the brilliant ideas of Gibo, a Harvard-trained lawyer and 1989 bar topnotcher, on how to make the Philippines a better nation.

Manapla town Mayor Manuel Escalante, president of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines-Negros Occidental, said that Gibo has the solid support of the mayors from the southern and northern portions of the province.

“We believe that he has the sincerity and the capacity to lead the country to further development,” Escalante said in behalf of the incumbent mayors of Lakas-Kampi-CMD.
In Escalante City, the hometown of basketball star James Yap, husband of showbiz celebrity Kris Aquino, his magic is apparently not potent enough to push the bid of his brother-in-law, Sen. Noynoy Aquino.

Mayor Yap said he would campaign for Gibo in his city of at least 53,000 voters because the ruling party standard bearer is a leader worth to be proud of. Escalante City is about 95 kilometers north from this city.

“In fact, I go around campaigning in my locality wearing green,” Yap said.
“Gibo is very intelligent and not a traditional politician,” said Mayor Yap, who disclosed that since the local campaign period, his team has been conducting three to six sorties daily, and never forgetting to include Gibo in these campaigns.

Cebu’s dominant local party, One Cebu, and the influential Garcia clan led by Deputy Speaker Pablo Garcia and his children—Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and Rep, Pablo John Garcia—have thrown their full support for the former defense chief, with the governor proclaiming the province as “Gibo country.”

Zayco and Garcia are two of 50 governors who have thrown their full support behind Gibo all the way till the May 10 polls.

Hinoba-an City Mayor Ma. Teresa Locsin Bilbao said: “I believe in Gibo’s capability and intelligence. He has the clearest and most plausible platform compared to others.”

In Cadiz City, Mayor Salvador Escalante expressed confidence that Gibo would earn the trust of the voters numbering to at least 82,000.

Escalante said he has command votes of over 30,000 voters that would also likely choose Gibo over the other presidential contenders.

“Gibo’s two secret weapons—his apparent lock on the youth vote and the formidable machinery of the ruling party—will ensue his poll victory come May 10,” said Toledo.

Roughly 70 percent of almost 19,000 candidates aspiring for local elective posts in the May balloting belong to Lakas-Kampi-CMD, Toledo said.-30-

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Listening leader

MAASIM, Sarangani (April 8, 2010) - Governor Migs Dominguez listens to a Blaan mother during the launching of the 13 million dollars agro-forestry project in a 7,500 hectares of denuded upland barangays of Maasim Thursday, April 8, in sitio Kiomad, barangay Amsipit. This agro-forestry project will serve both as the carbon sink of the Conal Holdings 200mw power plant and a source of living for the 3,500 farmers mostly Blaan and Tboli residents in the area. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Welcome message

MAASIM, Sarangani (April 8, 2010) - Governor Migs Dominguez delivers his welcome message during the launching of the 13 million dollars agro-forestry project in a 7,500 hectares of denuded upland barangays of Maasim Thursday, April 8, in sitio Kiomad, barangay Amsipit. This agro-forestry project will serve both as the carbon sink of the Conal Holdings 200mw power plant and a source of living for the 3,500 farmers mostly Blaan and Tboli living in the area. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

MOA signing

MAASIM, Sarangani (April 8, 2010) - Tirso Santillan Jr., Conal Holdings Corporation CEO and EVP, signs the memorandum of agreement between Conal Holdings and the local government of Maasim represented by Mayor Jojo Lopez as witnessed by Governor Migs Dominguez (standing) and Datu Tungko Saikol (left, seated) during the launching of the 13 million dollars agro-forestry project in a 7,500 hectares of denuded upland barangays of Maasim Thursday, April 8, in sitio Kiomad, barangay Amsipit. This agro-forestry project will serve both as the carbon sink of the Conal Holdings 200mw power plant and a source of living for the 3,500 farmers mostly Blaan and Tboli living in the area. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Conal Holdings CEO and EVP

MAASIM, Sarangani (April 8, 2010) - Tirso Santillan Jr., Conal Holdings Corporation CEO and EVP, leads the ceremonial tree planting during the launching of the 13 million dollars agro-forestry project in a 7,500 hectares of denuded upland barangays of Maasim Thursday, April 8, in sitio Kiomad, barangay Amsipit. This agro-forestry project will serve both as the carbon sink of the Conal Holdings 200mw power plant and a source of living for the 3,500 farmers mostly Blaan and Tboli residents in the area. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Ceremonial planting

MAASIM, Sarangani (April 8, 2010) - Joseph Nocos, vice president for business development of Conal Holdings Corporation, joins the ceremonial tree planting with other guests during the launching of the 13 million dollars agro-forestry project in a 7,500 hectares of denuded upland barangays of Maasim Thursday, April 8, in sitio Kiomad, barangay Amsipit. This agro-forestry project will serve both as the carbon sink of the Conal Holdings 200mw power plant and a source of living for the 3,500 farmers mostly Blaan and Tboli residents. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Lipad tayo, Maitum

MAITUM, Sarangani (April 6, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez speaks to party supporters and community leaders at the Sarangani Reformation and Reconciliation Organization (SARRO) proclamation rally Monday, April 5. Dominguez led the evacuation and restoration of peace in the communities of Maitum and Maasim towns during disaster and social disturbances in the past with the assistance of former Defense Secretary and presidential candidate Gilbert Teodoro. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Maitum proclamation rally

MAITUM, Sarangani (April 6, 2010) – Governor Migs Dominguez (middle), with congressional bet Roy Chiongbian (6th from right) raises the hands of the municipal slate at the proclamation rally Monday, April 5, of the Sarangani Reformation and Reconciliation Organization (SARRO)/Lakas-Kampi-CMD. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Lumad leaders

MAITUM, Sarangani (April 6, 2010) – Vice Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon shakes hands with lumad leaders who tender their support to the Sarangani Reformation and Reconciliation Organization (SARRO)/Lakas-Kampi-CMD at the party’s proclamation rally Monday, April 5. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Multitude of supporters

GLAN, Sarangani (April 6, 2010) – Thousands of supporters and community leaders gather to listen to congressional candidate Roy Chiongbian of the Sarangani Reformation and Reconciliation Organization (SARRO)/Lakas-Kampi-CMD at the proclamation rally Monday, April 5. (Cocoy Sexcion/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

Monday, April 5, 2010

RP should strengthen foreign ties to ensure economic stability, national security - GIBO

The next administration should focus not only on internal concerns but also on strengthening the Philippines’ ties with other countries to guarantee national security, spur economic growth and protect the welfare of overseas Filipino workers worldwide, Lakas-Kampi-CMD presidential candidate Gibo Teodoro said yesterday.

At the same time, Gibo said Filipinos should speak with one voice before the global community, especially when it comes to fulfilling its international commitments, to protect its reputation overseas and build investor confidence in the domestic economy.

“Filipinos should speak with one voice,” he said in a recent media forum. “There must be no crack. Our reputation as a country that is ready, willing and able to stand up to its commitments made fairly, freely, must be proven because there is a sad question mark on that in the world scene. And that is also one factor why investments, perhaps, have not come.”.

Gibo said Philippine foreign relations was one topic “sorely missed” in the discussions during forums and debates among presidential candidates in this year’s elections, even though it is a key pillar in developing our economy and even in improving the quality of our human capital.

“One of the canons of Philippine diplomacy, Philippine foreign policy, is that we rely on our good and principled relations with other countries for our national security, national economic security, and thirdly, the welfare of Filipinos abroad,” Gibo said.

He said that to develop Filipino skills and brainpower, the country should learn to interact globally and open itself “not merely to investments but to influences worldwide.”

Gibo said that if elected President, he would continue strengthening the Philippines’ ties with its traditional allies such as the United States, Australia and Japan, while developing bilateral and trade relations with the Middle East, the European Community and South America.

The Philippines must also continue to build its partnerships with China, which is a major trade partner and potentially the largest market for Philippine exports, Gibo said.




Moreover, China is also a key element in maintaining economic growth and preserving peace and stability in East Asia, he added.

China, he said, also presents a large market for the country’s tourism sector and is a potential partner in investments on power and energy,

In the first six months of a Teodoro presidency, Gibo said that due to pressing domestic concerns, he would prefer to stay in the country rather than travel overseas, save for attending the upcoming Asean Summit in Vietnam in October and the APEC Summit in in Japan in November. -30-