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Reading the 11-point summaries of the GPH-MILF Peace Talks in Kuala Lumpur

When I used to cover Davao City, I have become more familiar with the GPH-MILF peace negotiations. Even if it is only the committees on the cessation of hostilities who meet, they issue a joint statement to some how shed light on the coverage of meeting.

I expected this from the talks in KL but the reports said there was none.This is not a good sign, if we look at it that way.  I think having no joint statement is more sincere an act, than forcing one when there is none.Is it right to have one just to play with symbolism?

Many people expected a lot from the talks. After that “historic” meeting in Japan between President Benigno Aquino III and the MILF’ chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim, the stakes are high on “expediting the peace process”.

As a journalist who covered this from afar, my reading is, are we supposed to mistake “expediting the process” with taking short cuts? Unless we expected the negotiators to be rubbing on a bottle for a genie to make wishes easily his command. Read More…

“Global disorder” at back draft of Bukidnon’s 2009 budget

(NEWS) “The future appears gloom and bleak,” Gov. Jose Ma. R. Zubiri told the provincial board Thursday citing that the debacle of economic difficulties is real and could not be ignored.
 
Zubiri has proposed a P1.06 billion-2009 budget to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan but vowed to keep budgetary controls and prioritization of expenditures amidst the treat of a global recession.
 
He cited that the country is beset with “serious global disorder” foretelling a “downfall in the global capital market that “will not spare the Philippine economy”.
 
“There is an eroding confidence in the US financial market and growing discontent on the so-called American model of capitalistic economic enterprises,” Zubiri said in his introduction. Read More…

EMB to consider Bukidnon’s moratorium on ECC issuance

The Environmental Management Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has agreed to consider Bukidnon’s request for consideration in the approval of environmental compliance certificate (ECC)  for projects based in the province. Read full report here.

Tubil tales

At 2a.m. the city was asleep. The road was deserted.  The early morning breeze engulfed the highway to freezing point.

 

Manong David, wrapped in his thick coat, was chilling and has stammered when I hailed his motorela cab for home. He agreed to a pakyaw rate of P35, a win-win between his P40 offer and my P30 bargain. 

 

Even if he would have offered P50, I would have taken it. That’s definitely better than be left frozen and alone in the middle of Fortich Street early morning.

 

On the way, he talked of that road accident somewhere, then about the MILF, and then about trying to make both ends meet.

 

The casual exchange paused over a topic that seemed a suggestive attempt to make me feel guilty for haggling five pesos less. 

 

He said the oil prices are slowly taking his sanity. He is beginning to lose hope about being able to bounce back and be able to even cross the “boundary”.

 

Crossing the boundary is a need of every driver. He has to cross it to be able to pay rent and earn extra money above it to be able to live.

 

I was able to put out courteous responses. At one point, we were trying to analyze the root cause together, something like “while we are at this, the oil firms are bloating” stuff. Read More…

A city awaits a new public market

Facade of the under construction new Malaybalay City Public Market, subject of debate of the city council as its contractor H.R. Lopez Co., Inc. has sought a nine-month extension following a delay over legal issues

Facade of the under construction new Malaybalay City Public Market, subject of debate of the city council as its contractor H.R. Lopez Co., Inc. has sought a nine-month extension following a delay over legal issues

The city council has scheduled to tackle in its session on September 2 the status of the delayed construction of Malaybalay City’s new public market. Read More…

Water down: Bukidnon eyes tigher rules on water rights

Water is inarguably Bukidnon’s most important agricultural resource.

It is a cause of wonder, however, why the sloppy process of acquiring water permits have escaped the pruning attention of local governments.

There were doubts raised by many over the years on the questionable process of acquiring water rights permits.

But over the years, too, local governments and communities seemed powerless over the matter. Read More…

Living in a Mindanao suburb

“Suburbs are commonly defined as residential areas on the outskirts of a city or large town. Most modern suburbs are commuter towns with many single-family homes. Many suburbs have some degree of political autonomy and most have lower population density than inner city neighborhoods.”

I enjoyed attending a village social gathering last Saturday. It was a fellowship party for a new organization, one that sought to gather the professionals in our suburban village called Kalasungay.

Ours, now a village of at least 1,000 households, is home to Bukidnon’s earliest recorded native settlements. Majority of the residents belong to either the Bukidnon or Higaonon tribes.

There is much pride in me to settle in this village, where I could trace history by recalling the family names of our neighbors. Read More…