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Saturday, 19 December 2015 14:20

Sound Snipings

BY Jimmy Cabato


While it is elating to notice evident AFP moves to run after lawless elements in the south, it is saddening to hear that government troopers continue to suffer casualties themselves.

Sadder still is the reported killing of a company commander, with the rank of captain, who was among the three soldier-casualties during an operation at Barangay Macalang, Albarka, Basilan.

The encounter, however, resulted in the killing of 15 Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) guerrillas and the wounding of seven other militants.

Operations started Monday and was still in progress Wednesday, with government forces overrunning a major Abu Sayyaf base in the area.

Major Filemon Tan, Western Mindanao Command spokesperson made the confirmation.

For the moment, he did not reveal the identity of the fallen officer and two fatalities pending notification of their next-of-kin.

Government troopers wounded in the operation numbered 13.

All government casualties, as well as the wounded, will be given medals and commendations, Tan added.

And the Abu Sayyaf casualty figures, Tan stressed, are based on intelligence reports.

Military operations that the Western Mindanao Command spokesperson termed as focused would continue with other units relieving exhausted formations.

Units involved in the offensive include troopers from the 104th Infantry Brigade, 3rd Scout Ranger Battalion, 4th Special Forces Battalion, Marine Special Operations Group, and 12th Light Armor Cavalry.

The offensives are aimed at reducing presence of lawless elements in the area. (DZT)

* * * *

The opening of KCC Mall de Zamboanga, acknowledged as the biggest investment ever made in the city is truly exhibiting significant and positive impact on the city’s economy, particularly because of its substantial contribution to job generation.

KCC lists a total of 8,809 workers, 75% of which are locals.

Adding to the KCC workforce, its tenants have also hired over 2,000 workers, of which 90% are also Zamboangueños.

And KCC, considered as it as the biggest and largest mall in Mindanao is not yet in full operation. Meaning, once in full swing, hundreds or even thousands more will be gainfully employed..

Not only that, folks, KCC prices are noticeably way below what are traded in other stores, to include our public markets.

With that trend, it is but expected that the rivalry displayed by KCC will definitely offer an atmosphere of competition, warranting others to also drop their prices.

* * * *

RFM Corporation is indeed showing meritorious concern on the quality of their products and on consumer satisfaction.

On Tuesday, the firm, in reaction to news reports of food poisoning alluded to one of its products, Selecta Moo, as the alleged source, issued an explanatory statement on the matter, in response thereof.

It said, the RFM Quality Assurance (QA) Department immediately communicated with the concerned consumer to verify the issue. The Quality team then secured the code of the Selecta Moo 245ml consumed, and that it was coded as 14Jan16 1809 2GFP.

Soon after, RMF QA immediately conducted a review of its product quality and checked the product sample with the same code which they keep in their factory for ready reference.

All quality tests, they declared, showed that the reference product in the RFM QA storage is normal and has passed their strict quality standards.

It then hinted that the product may have been damaged thru mishandling in its delivery or on its stacking.

In a move to safeguard its reputation, as well as to ensure consumer satisfaction, the RFM Sales Team coordinated with the management of the concerned convenience store to inspect all Selecta products and to pull-out possibly damaged ones.

The statement further bared, RFM Corporation ensures adherence to all quality control procedures at all times to meet RFM’s high quality standards.

RFM started its the food and beverage industry in 1958.

* * * *

This one here is truly a confusing story. Is Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte now a shoo-in candidate for president or is he still on the hook. The story reads, “Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte has won the first round of his legal battle for a slot in next year’s presidential elections as the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Thursday accepted his certificate of candidacy (COC) as a substitute candidate of PDP-Laban.

It went on, “Round 2, however, is set to unfold on Friday morning when the Comelec’s First Division tackles a disqualification case against the tough-talking mayor.” (TMT)

This then followed, “The disqualification case has been submitted for resolution last Tuesday after the petitioner, broadcaster Ruben Castor, failed to appear before the Comelec for preliminary conference and marking of evidence in preparation for oral arguments the following day.”

By that last line, about the Castor disqualification case to have been submitted for resolution, plus Comelec’s acceptance of Duterte as a candidate, it would readily mean, Duterte is in.

But no. Down the bottom of the article, these were written, “Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista said the commissioners during an en banc session voted 6-1 clearing Duterte as a substitute for Diño, the PDP-Laban’s originally registered candidate for President.

“This means he is now on our list of candidates,” Bautista said. “It is an administrative move on the part of the Comelec en banc.”

The en banc resolution said “the Comelec resolves to acknowledge and accept the certificate of candidacy” of Duterte, as part of the poll body’s ministerial function.

“Accepting his substitution is administrative in nature. We looked at the form. But even the form has an issue but we decided, 6-1, to accept the COC administratively, but is subject to a pending disqualification case,” Bautista explained in Filipino. (With reports lifted from TMT)

With such tenor of disclosures, more questions arise than answers are given.

One such question is, could it be that the Bautista disclosures came before the disqualification case was set for resolution when Castor failed to appear during the hearing?

If so, it may be safe to say that, - accepted as Duterte’s candidacy is - even if only ministerial, it stays as there is no valid petition questioning it anymore.

And why term the Friday hearing as yet “round 2”, when the matter is already up for resolution, the petitioner did not appear during the earlier schedule hearing.

This bears tight watch. This corner seems to be on the edge of his seat.

* * * *

While chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal and his Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) want the Bangsamoro measure passed now, Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said it is highly unlikely for Congress to pass the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) during the term of President Benigno Aquino 3rd because of time constraints.

Sessions will resume on January 18 for a three-week session, Marcos said, after which lawmakers will again take a long recess to give way to the 2016 elections.

He added, while Congress has three weeks to deliberate on the bill in January, he doubts if the House of Representatives will be able to muster a quorum.

* * * *

In spite of the brouhaha it has attracted among the public, legislators, including the local and international media, the “tanim-bala” scandal is far from over.

Over the weekend and on, the Philippine National Police Aviation Security Group (Avsegroup) had invited three persons reportedly found to be carrying bullets in their bags.

Among those being questioned is 74-year old Araceli D. Fortunata. One is a niece of Former Senator Kit Tatad, Rosanna, 31. All three were departing passengers of a Philippine Airlines flight.


All three were departing passengers of a Philippine Airlines flight. They were all released after being taken to the Pasay City Prosecutors’ Office, and allowed to board their flights on the same day that they were intercepted.