PIA News Service - Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010

Conflict Analysis and DNH workshop set in Siargao

Surigao del Norte (November 11) – A Conflict Analysis and Do No Harm (CA/DNH) workshop for the training staff of Surigao del Norte NGO Coalition for Development, Inc. (SUNGCOD) and the members of the SUNGCOD Board of Trustees will be conducted at Gen. Luna, Siargao Island on Nov. 11-13, 2010.

SUNGCOD Executive Director Greggo Uriarte said the 3-day activity is part of the Partnership Strategic and Operational Plan jointly implemented with the German Development Agency (DED) aimed at equipping the trainors/training staff of the various member NGOs in CA/DNH Approaches and Tools.

“This is also part of the Capability Building Program of SUNGCOD for its member NGOs,” Uriarte added.

Uriarte said that he intends to initially form a Trainors Pool from among the participants after the activity. (PIA-Surigao del Norte)


“Good Air Quality” ADB rating of Metro-Manila, testimony to public - private partnership for environmental protection

Senator Loren Legarda said the “good air quality” rating which the city of Manila received during the pilot test of the Clean Air Scorecard of the Asian Development Bank and the Clean Air Initiatives For Asian Cities during the three day Better Air Quality Conference in Singapore may be an indication that the efforts being undertaken by the agencies of government hand in hand with private sector participation in combating air pollution is seeing fruition.

 “This is welcome good news. It translates to improved health conditions for the residents of Manila, particularly the marginalized sector who are most exposed to pollution.”  

The other cities with “good” clean air score aside from Manila are Bangkok, Hanoi, Jakarta and Jinan.

The Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change cited that a few months ago the quality of air in Metro-Manila had been classified as deteriorating amid reports that the Land Transportation Office, under the Department of Transportation and Communication, has been remiss in its duties in conducting emission testing of buses as there are allegations that buses are not physically subjected to the tests but merely pay a certain amount in exchange for the issuance of the vehicle registration.

“Earlier, the DENR issued a warning that 80% of the pollution in the country is caused by vehicles, especially public utility vehicles like buses, jeepneys, and tricycles, so I filed Resolution No. 138 which calls for an inquiry on the alleged selective emission testing of vehicles in the country.”

“Cleaning our air must be a consistent and continuous collaboration of efforts. Everyone is responsible, “Legarda concluded. (Office of Senator Loren Legarda/PIA-Caraga)
.
.
RH bill advocates to Bishops: Don’t Go Low, Be Respectable, and Be Constructive  
.
Amid renewed word war on the controversial reproductive health bill, main authors of various reproductive health bills filed in the House of Representatives jointly called on some bishops to refrain from twisting the bill and to speak the truth on the measure.

In a press conference held today, Rep. Edcel Lagman, principal author of House Bill 96; Reps. Luz Ilagan and Emmi de Jesus of Gabriela Party List, authors of HB 3387; Rep. Arlene “Kaka” Bag-Ao of Akbayan Party List, author of HB 513; Rep. Jose Ma. Zubiri co-author of HB 96; and Rep. Antonio Tinio of Alliance for Concerned Teachers (ACT) Party List, co-author of HB 3387, laments the recent attacks thrown at them by some bishops.  
.
According to Ramon San Pascual, Executive Director of the Philippine Legislators’ Committee on Population and Development Foundation, Inc. (PLCPD), it is totally unfair for a religious leader to label RH bill authors and supporters as “people with lost morality” and “with consciences that are not well formed.” Attacking the members of Congress merely shows oppositionists’ lack of substance and further flames up hostility between certain church leaders and the general public. 

San Pascual asked, “if the authors are indeed people with lost morality, what does that make of the 83% the Filipino people, who, by survey results, are clamoring for reproductive health education and services from the Government?”

He stressed, “ill health among women, high maternal mortality, and immorality of mass poverty – these are the central issues that RH bill authors would like to resolve by their determined efforts to pass this important piece of legislation. These are also the issues that opponents of RH bill continue to muddle by throwing threats and lies meant for public consumption.”

In conclusion, San Pascual challenged those who have objections to the RH bill to be constructive and participate as decent members of society in bill deliberation in both chambers of Congress. “Act out your being spiritual leaders, stop bullying people. In the name of fairness, please allow lawmakers to deliberate on the RH bill and vote on it.” (Nitz Dalde & Vigie Benosa-Llorin/PIA-Caraga)