Fuels of Hope

Anthony Chua

The recent price hikes in petroleum prices have greatly affected world economies. From economic powerhouses such as the United States and Japan to the world’s poorest nations, every country has a story to tell about the staggering effects of oil prices. No sector in the economies of the world is spared from the increasing value of the “black gold.”

With the fast depleting world supply of oil, particularly in the Middle East, the world’s economy can face tremendous collapse if we can’t find worthy and viable alternatives.

Fortunately for mankind, technologies have been discovered, invented and innovated to offset the plunging supply of oil. Harnessing renewable energy sources such as the use of solar cells, water and wind turbines among others are on the rise. Researches done on the processing of fuels from plants, known as biofuels, are also stepped up to compensate the depletion of oil.

For us Filipinos, we have auspiciously made notable breakthroughs in this field. We are one with the rest of the world in extracting fuel from jathropa, tuba-tuba in Filipino, which was previously used by Filipino herbolarios to cure muscle sprains and bone fractures. Moreover Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay has just recently launched a handful of e-jeepneys that will serve commuters in the nation’s financial district. These public vehicles are powered by batteries that can be charged by conventional electrical outlets found in most Filipino homes.

Doomsday prophets may predict an impending world economic breakdown caused by political, economic and sundry factors. Yet the knack for discovering new technologies, ingenuity, and innovativeness is very much alive, being harnessed and still improving. Humans’ God-given gifts that are used for the mankind’s welfare are far from being extinguished. And, thank God, Filipinos are favorite recipients of His abundant endowment of knowledge, skills, and wisdom.


Aggressive measures

Anthony Chua

She envisioned a peaceful Mindanao. Yet at present what Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is seeing are acts of terrorism being committed in North Cotabato, Lanao del Norte and Sarangani provinces. The ruthless attacks, led by two Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) commanders, Ombra Kato and Abdulla Macapaar alias Commander Bravo, has killed and injured many; displaced thousands; and terrorized millions.

The aggression of the rogue commanders apparently started after being disappointed by the suspension of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on ancestral domain signing of the government panel. The Supreme Court (SC) issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) halting the official signing of the MOA between the government panel and MILF on August 4 in Kuala Lumpur. On the belief that the initialing of the MOA by the negotiators on both the government and MILF panel is already a “done deal,” the two aggressive MILF commanders deemed the SC’s TRO as Arroyo’s betrayal to the peace talks and declared what Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff General Alexander Yano dubbed “a virtual declaration of war.”

Now that a couple of MILF mavericks, whom the group’s top officers are refusing to surrender to the government, are on a rampage in Mindanao, it is but expected that Arroyo would “defend every inch of Philippine territory.”

An aggression of one that has been retaliated by another means war. And as what is always happening in wars, the sad thing is millions of peace loving Filipinos, whether Christians or Muslims, are suffering from these atrocities.

No one in his sane mind wants to wage war. Yet humans succumb to aggression when their rights and desires have been taken away from them by others or by circumstances. In the case of MILF, their struggle for ancestral domain in several parts of Mindanao has long been deprived from them by the Philippine government. A solution, the shift towards federalism proposed by Sen. Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel Jr. via resolution and by Rep. Rufus Rodriguez via House bill, had been up for grabs until it has been attempted to be “hijacked” by Arroyo in her bid to seal a lasting peace to Mindanao and, according to her critics, to extend her term.

Now that majority of legislators have withdrawn their support for federalism through Charter change and MOA on ancestral domain suspended, what else would Arroyo plan to do? Given her worsening approval ratings, as evidenced by the growing suspicions of extending her term by virtually all sectors of the Philippine society, and her desperation to cling (for life if possible) to Malacanang, the sanctuary that gives her immunity from lawsuits; it is but expected of her to use aggressive measures to stay in power as Chief Executive.

Whether she’ll do it by force (such as declaration of Martial Law) or whatever is still remains to be seen. But we are still hopeful she’ll have the Filipina’s hiya and delicadeza in her to follow the footprints of the former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, who, despite his influence and might, was forced to resign because of pressures for impeachment and plunging popularity.

IFJ, Naalarma sa media killings sa Pilipinas

Rey Tamayo, Jr.

Kinundena at nanawagan ang International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) sa pamahalaan ng Pilipinas upang kalampagin ang rehimeng Arroyo dahil sa patuloy na paglobo ng bilang ng mga mamamahayag, peryodista at brodkaster na pinatay sa kasalukuyang administrasyon.

Nababahala ang IFJ sa kalagayan ng mga media practitioners sa bansa dahil sa sunod-sunod na pamamaslang sa mga mamamahayag at ang motibo ay may kaugnayan sa kanilang trabaho.

“Journalists and journalists’ leaders in the Philippines have shown great courage and determination in fighting for press freedom despite the danger and hostility they confront in the course of doing their jobs,” pahayag ng IFJ Asia-Pacific.

Sa pinakahuling ulat na inilabas ng National Union of Journalist of the Philippines (NUJP), limang mamamahayag na ang pinatay sa taong ito kung saan ang pinaka-huling biktima ay ang dalawang brodkaster ng Radio Mindanao Network (RMN) sa magkakahiwalay na lugar.

Matatandaang pinagbabaril si Dennis Cuesta ng hindi pa nakikilalang mga suspek sa General Santos City, South Cotabato noong Agosto 10, 2008. Matapos ang halos limang araw na pamamalagi sa ospital ng Saint Elizabeth Hospital, pinawian ng buhay ang biktima. Si Cuesta ay isang komentarista at program director ng dxMD-Radio Mindanao Network (RMN) sa General Santos City.

Buwan din ng Agosto ng pagbabarilin hanggang sa mapatay ang isa pang brodkaster ng RMN na si Martin Roxas sa Roxas City,Capiz. Si Roxas ay isang anchorman ng dyVR- Radio Mindanao Network (RMN) at host ng Targetanay sa Udto, isang noontime program sa nasabing istasyon at auditor NUJP Capiz chapter.

Tinambangan at pinatay din ang isang news correspondent ng Regional Bulletin at radio host ng programang “Harana” (Serenade) ng dzAT-AM sa Lucena City na si Bert Sison sa Sariaya, Quezon noong buwan ng Hunyo.

Samantala, brutal na pinaslang ang main tv host ng programang D’Xman ng UNTV 37 na si Marcos Mataro sa San Simon Exit sa Pampanga noong buwan ng April. Sinasabing si Mataro ay dating ministro ng Iglesia ni Cristo na lumipat sa Ang Dating Daan at aktibong nagsisiwalat sa telebisyon ng mga diumano’y katiwalian sa pinanggalingan nitong samahan.

April, 7 2008, pinaulanan ng bala si provincial publisher Benefredo Acabal ng riding in tandem sa Pasig City. Si Acabal ay publisher at kolumnista ng pahayagang Pilipino Newsmen sa Cavite at dating news writer sa ibang pahayagan tulad ng Toro, Saksi at Puntos.

Sa kabuoang datos ng NUJP, umaabot na sa 97 na mga mamamahayag ang pinaslang matapos ang panunungkulan ni dating pangulong Ferdinand Marcos noong Martial Law.

Magugunitang 17 na mamamahayag ang napatay noong panahon ni dating pangulong Corazon Aquino, 15 mamamahayag naman sa panahon ni dating pangulong Fidel Ramos, 5 naman kay dating pangulong Joseph Estrada at 60 mamamahayag sa ilalim ni pangulong Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, ang may pinakamaraming media practitioners na pinatay sa kasaysayan ng Pilipinas.

NUJP National Congress

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines will be holding its sixth National Congress from August 23-24, at the CBCP Retreat House in Tagaytay City.

Around 80 delegates from NUJP chapters nationwide are expected to attend the congress to elect a new set of officers and chart the course, for the next two years, of the country’s largest organization of journalists.

As one of the foremost advocates of press freedom and journalists’ welfare, the NUJP has also lined up speakers to talk on some of the most urgent concerns for Filipino media practitioners: libel, access to information, safety and economic rights of journalists. There will also be a panel discussion on what journalists should know when covering elections, among them political finance, monitoring and prosecution of election fraud cases and the pros and cons of poll automation.

Keynoting the opening of the congress is Ms. Editha Burgos, widow of the late press freedom icon, Joe Burgos, and mother of missing activist Jonas.

NUJP is the Philippine affiliate of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), which represents over 600,000 journalists and media workers worldwide. NUJP was established in 1986 by the late Antonio Ma. Nieva and has consistently and vigorously protested against the killings of journalists in the Philippines.

Rowena Paraan
Secretary-General, NUJP

IFJ Joins National Mourning for Journalists in the Philippines

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today pledges its solidarity to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), an IFJ affiliate, and all journalists in the Philippines as they mark a National Day of Mourning for Media in recognition of fallen colleagues.

Alongside the Freedom Fund for Filipino Journalists and Radio Mindanao Network and other media organisations, NUJP representatives wore black in a nationally coordinated action across the country.

Short ceremonies paying tribute to killed journalists were held in metropolitan Manila as well as Baguio, Olongapo, Pampanga, Sorsogon, Iloilo, Capiz, Zamboanga, Davao, Quezon, Bukidnon, Kidapawan, Ozamiz, General Santos and Jolo.

The murders of two Radio Mindanao Network (RMN) journalists earlier this month contributed to a newly sombre outlook for the safety and protection of the media in the Philippines, following a period of optimism when violence against the media appeared to decrease and the Philippines courts began to take action to investigate the killings of journalists.

Five journalists in the Philippines have lost their lives in the course of their work since the beginning of 2008.

“Journalists and journalists’ leaders in the Philippines have shown great courage and determination in fighting for press freedom despite the danger and hostility they confront in the course of doing their jobs,” IFJ Asia-Pacific said.

“The IFJ stands with our colleagues in the Philippines in sending a message to all perpetrators of violence against Filipino media workers that we will maintain our commitment as guardians of the public interest and the independent voice of the people.”

In mourning all journalists killed while conducting their work, the IFJ is also saddened to learn of the shooting death of Ronaldo Julia, a former journalist for DZGE radio and the Weekly Informer, in Camarines Sur province on August 16, whose murder is reportedly unrelated to his media work.

The IFJ extends its deep sympathy to the family, friends and colleagues of all journalists killed in the Philippines.

For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 600,000 in 122 countries worldwide

Ika-34 na Kumbensiyon ng Unyon ng mga Manunulat sa Pilipinas


Inaasahan namin kayo sa ika-34 na Kumbensiyon ng Unyon ng mga Manunulat sa Pilipinas sa G.S.I.S. Museum of Art sa Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex, malapit sa kanto ng Roxas Boulevard at Buendia Avenue sa Maynila.

Panauhing pandangal natin para talakayin ang paksang Trading Words, Tracing Worlds ay si Bang Hyun-seok na isang mahusay na nobelista mulang Timog Korea na magsasaita sa 10 n.u.
Makaraang mananghalian magkakaroon tayo ng pulong ukol sa Writers Welfare Act at iba pang bagay ng
1 n.u. sa susundan ng pagkakaloob ng Gawad Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas na lahat ay tatanggap ng tropeong nililok ni Manuel Baldemor.
Kalakip nito ang programa sa buong maghapon ng ating pagkikitang muli.
Nawa, makadaupang-palad namin kayo sa bukod-tanging panahon at pagkakataong ito.


UMPIL National Convention 2008
Trading Words, Tracing Worlds
30 August (8:00am – 5:00pm)
GSIS Museum , CCP Complex, Manila
8:00 Registration
9:00 National Anthem
Mike M. Coroza
Welcome Remarks
Ryan V.Palad, GSIS Museum Curator
9:15 Chairman’s Report
Vim D. Nadera, UMPIL Chair
9:30 Introduction of the Guest Speaker
Karina Africa Bolasco
9:45 Keynote Speech
Bang Hyun-seok, South Korea

11:00 Open Forum
12:00 LUNCH
1:00 UMPIL Committee Meetings
3:00 Pananalig sa Panitik
Teo T. Antonio
3:15 Natatanging Bilang
Neil de Mesa
Alegria Ferrer
George Yang
3:30 Gawad Pambansang sa Alagad ni Balagtas 2008

Ruperta VR. Asuncion
(Iluko poetry)

Edgardo B. Maranan
(Filipino/English poetry)

James Teng Choon Na
(Chinese poetry)

Armando Y. Lao
(Filipino screenplay)

Delfin L. Tolentino
(English essay)

Gawad Paz Marquez Benitez
Prof. Ligaya Tiamson Rubin

Gawad Pedro Bucaneg
The Arejola Foundation for Social Responsibility, Inc.

Dr. Mario I. Miclat at Dr. Ruby G. Alcantara
Guro ng Palatuntunan

Second issue of only refereed journal on journalism released

THE second issue of the Philippine Journalism Review (PJR), the only refereed journal in Asia devoted to journalism concerns and issues, is now available, the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) has announced.

Now an annual, the Philippine Journalism Review, or PJR, used to be a press monitoring publication in magazine format. That function has been taken over by the monthly PJR Reports, which CMFR also publishes. The first issue of the reformatted PJR appeared in 2007 and was launched during the awarding ceremonies of the Jaime V. Ongpin Awards for Excellence in Journalism that year.

The 2008 issue of PJR has a paper by St. Scholastica’s College journalism professor Ma. Aurora Lolita L. Lomibao on the beat system (“Revisiting the Beat System”), Philippine Daily Inquirer reporter DJ Yap’s “Literary Journalism in the Philippines from the 1950s to the 1980s,” and Philippine Social Science Council Technical Services and Information head Joanne B. Agbisit’s “Media-Policy Interaction in the Passage of the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995.”

GMA 7 researcher Ederic Eder also reviewed an online publication (“Global Voices Online”), while University of the Philippines journalism professor Danilo A. Arao interviewed “barefoot journalism” advocate Ben Domingo (“Understanding Barefoot Journalism). A commentary by Johanna Camille Sisante on the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s error-correction box (“The Inquirer Box of Errors”) completes the 2008 issue contents.

University of the Philippines journalism professor and CMFR Deputy Director Luis V. Teodoro edits PJR, assisted by Prof. Danilo A. Arao, who is its managing editor. The PJR Board of Advisers is composed of academics from the Ateneo de Manila, the University of Santo Tomas, the University of the Philippines, St. Scholastica’s College, the Asian Institute of Journalism and Communication and the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

PJR copies may be ordered from the CMFR (840-0889; 894-1314, 894-1326) and the Office of Research and Publication of the UP College of Mass Communication (981-8500 local 2668).