Local news for
Tacloban, Leyte, Philippines
Definitive Source of News and Information about the Tacloban region.
Dec 24, 2007
Magnitude 3.3 quake rocks Leyte
A magnitude-3.3 quake rocked four towns in Leyte province early Monday morning, but the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said no damage or aftershock was expected.
Radio dzBB reported that Phivolcs director Renato Solidum Jr said the quake was recorded at magnitude 3.3 at 8:40 a.m., and as traced 53 km off Ormoc City.
Solidum said the quake, which originated from the Philippine Fault Zone, was felt at Intensity III in Abuyog and Dulag towns, and Intensity II in Pulo and Tanauan towns.
Abuyog is a second-class town with a population of 53,837 people in 10,620 households. Dulag is a fourth-class town with a population of 38,897 people in 7,657 households.
Palo is a third-class town with a population of 47,982 people in 9,272 households. Tanauan is a third-class town with a population of 45,056 people in 9,224 households.
Earlier, the United States Geological Service (USGS) reported that a magnitude-4.9 quake was recorded off General Santos City before midnight Sunday.
In a report on its website (www.usgs.gov), it said the quake was recorded at 11:47 p.m., with the epicenter 230 km south of General Santos City, or 1,260 km south-southeast of Manila.
But the USGS said the quake was considered to be in the Indonesia region, with the epicenter also located 285 km north of Manado, Sulawesi, Indonesia or 2,340 km east-northeast of Jakarta.
No damage or aftershock was immediately recorded.
Dec 15, 2007
All set for skimboarding competition in Tanauan, Leyte
Philippine Information Agency
Tacloban City (December 15) -- All is set for the 4th National Skimboarding Open Competition at the Skimboarding Capital, Tanauan, Leyte, which is being sponsored by the local govt of Tanauan, the Provincial Government of Leyte thru Governor Carlos Jericho Petilla and Victoria's Skimboard, Mayor Roque A. Tiu informed.
Mayor Tiu said that the Open Competition is scheduled to be held on December 27-30 at the Bantay Dagat Area, in Barangay Sto. Nino in Tanauan. He clarified that the holding of the Competition in December is an experimental undertaking because it is believed that there are better waves in December and so the skimriders will enjoy the competition better.
It would be recalled that the previous Skimboarding Competition were conducted on Easter Sunday, Mayor Tiu said when there are many beachcombers visiting the shores of Tanauan.
Mayor Tiu said that the participants for this season's competition, are being limited to 150 to make the competition easier to manage.
Mayor Tiu added that skimriders from Luzon have signified their intention to join the competition. In fact, several of them e-mailed PIA 8 after reading the news in the PIA website and they were referred to the LGU by PIA.
This is a welcome development, Mayor Tiu said, because in the past, the local participants were all from the Visayas and Mindanao areas.
Foreign participants in this year's competition, include a young boy from Sweden who will be coming to the Philippines together with his entire family. Other foreign participants are the skimriders from Hongkong.
Mayor Tiu said that several foreign participants are having problems with their bookings because of the peak season but he is still hoping that they will still make it to the Competition.
Mayor Tiu added that the 4th National Skimboarding Competition will formally start on December 27 but the nightly activities at the Site will start on December 20 as the local government decided to hold the annual Kaadlawan Festival there.
Mayor Tiu said that the National Skimboarding Competition is the town's contribution to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's thrust of making the Central Philippines Super Region as the Tourism Capital of the Philippines.
The public is invited to participate or witness the event which is becoming a tourist-attracting activity in the Region.
The 4th National Skimboarding Open Competition will be supervised by the Philippine Skim Association, the Tanauan SPAWN and the Tanauan PASAKA Jaycees.
Dec 04, 2007
Ma, 2 kids hacked to death
Inquirer.net - Philippines
TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines — A mother, her eight-year-old son and her 15-year-old nephew were found hacked to death on Saturday afternoon inside their house in Capoocan town, Leyte, a police official said Monday.
Capoocan police chief Inspector George Agero identified the victims as Bibiana Lloren, 49, son John Joshua and nephew Raffy Nedruda, all residents of Barangay (village) Balucano, one kilometer from Capoocan town proper. Capoocan is 60 kilometers from Tacloban City.
Lloren's husband works in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Agero said that based on their initial investigation, the incident took place on Friday evening but was reported to them at 2 p.m. Saturday by neighbors.
He said the crime was discovered when one of the neighbors went to the house of the victims on Saturday.
Lloren and her son were found inside their bedroom located on the second floor of their house, while Nedruda was found in the living room.
"And based on our initial investigation, they were all hacked to death using a bolo based on the wounds that the victims sustained. The mother had wounds on her neck and chest, while the two children sustained wounds on their chest and back," Agero said in a telephone interview.
He said they have yet to establish the motive and the identities of the perpetrators.
Based on the way the crime was committed, Agero said at least two persons could have carried out the killing of the three victims.
"Initially, we have learned from the neighbors that two units of cell phones owned by the victims are missing. But we are also considering other possible angles of this gruesome incident," Agero said.
Nov 29, 2007
Lighted giant Christmas tree adds attraction in Tacloban
By Marivic Alcober
Philippine Information Agency
Tacloban City (29 November) -- As part of the celebration of the Christmas holidays, the City Government of Tacloban spearheaded by City Mayor Alfred Romualdez led the ceremonial lighting of the giant Christmas tree at the Plaza Rizal on the eve of 28 November 2007. Mayor Romualdez was assisted by First Lady and Councilor Cristina G. Romualdez and Leyte Vice-Governor Mimiette Bagulaya.
In his welcome address, Mayor Romualdez expressed that the 53-feet giant Christmas tree, covered by some 2,000 multi-colored star designed parols would not only serve as an added attraction in Tacloban but unity among the Taclobanons.
For her part, Councilor Romualdez expressed joy that said giant Christmas tree, which was placed at the center of the plaza and designed by Engr. Grace Garces has finally been lighted.
To add color and to the affair, "Santa Claus" gave away gifts, to the delight of the children who were going out of their way just to be able to get near him and have a closer look at him.
The joyous event was witnessed not only by the city officials, but likewise, by hundreds of Taclobanons from all walks of life.
Nov 24, 2007
Tacloban revives traffic lights project
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte -- The city government is set to revive the traffic signal lights project that was cancelled four years ago due to allegations of overpricing.
Mayor Alfred Romualdez said the city government needs to install traffic signal lights because of the worsening traffic situation at major intersections.
"We will revive it. But we will make sure everything will be in order," he said.
Former Mayor Alfredo "Bejo" Romualdez, the incumbent mayor's father, cancelled the traffic signal lights project in 2003 due to allegations that it was overpriced.
While the project was originally proposed by the former mayor, the transaction materialized when then Vice Mayor Edwin Chua sat as acting mayor. The older Romualdez went on leave for six months at that time to undergo and recuperate from a heart by-pass operation.
The city government procured four traffic lights worth P32 million but local auditors later discovered that they were overpriced by P12 million. Each unit was said to just cost P5 million.
The traffic signal lights were supposed to light the intersections of Veteranos-Rizal-Avenue, Veteranos-Real, Salazar-Justice Romualdez, and Real-Independencia streets, all major streets of the city.
The project, however, was eventually cancelled due to the controversy it generated and upon the recommendation of the Commission on Audit and the City Legal Office.
Mayor Alfred Romualdez said that the original contractor, Rocha Construction Inc., might still be asked to handle the job.
He said he does not see any need to have a new bidding on this project provided, however, that it would reflect the real cost of the traffic lights.
"I am open to a compromise," the mayor said.
The mayor said the city would be able to able to save on manpower costs by installing traffic lights and it would no longer need to hire new traffic enforcers.
Also, he said, "We cannot expect our traffic police or enforcers to be in the streets on a 24-hour basis. But with the traffic signal lights, smooth flow of traffic can still be realized."
Nov 23, 2007
Tacloban college band tops Soundskool contest
By Neil Ray Ramos
Manila Standard Today, Philippines
The coolest search for the best collegiate band in the land, this year’s edition of Nescafé Soundskool, ended with a loud bang recently with Lazy Suzan, the pride of Asian Development Foundation College in Tacloban City, bagging the top plum, following the feat of Hilera and Effinboiche, winners of the second and first editions of the competition respectively, among those who entered the merry world of show business via the contest.
It was a close, tough fight to say the least, with each of the 13 finalists [down from 65 entries] doing their best to earn the crowd and the judge’s nod.
The finalists included [from Luzon] University of Baguio’s Even, Union Christian College’s Zoom Zoom Lunacy, and University of the Cordilleras’ Jam Disposition; [the Visayas] Asian Development Foundation College’s Youth Rebellion and Lazy Susan and Eastern Visayas State University’s Karasahill522; [Mindanao] STI College Davao’s Peaches, St. Vincent College-Dipolog’s Blue Ozone and Capitol University-Cagayan de Oro’s Novelista Pasta.
Rounding up the finalists were Ateneo de Manila’s Hymn of Siren, Asia Pacific College’s Hotsi Patootsi, San Sebastian College’s SOTC, and University of Asia & the Pacific’s Ernville.
In the end Lazy Susan won [in our opinion] based on the band’s simple, clean and precise execution as with their original material.
Of course, you’ll get to hear more of it soon, as Lazy Susan earned for themselves a contract from EMI as well as P250,000 in cash as part of their win.
Nescafé will also award P150,000 worth of full band set-up to their school.
Lazy Susan band members Philip Pagaduan—vocals/guitar, Diancarlo Mendoza (bomai)—guitar, Jonathan Costelo—bass/vocals, Feddy Orpeza—drums really whooped it up when they were announced winners.
Still, the biggest victors were the audience especially as the finals proved a big-time concert cum awards night that was as enjoyable as it was successful.
The treat was seeing and hearing the competing bands perform with the country’s top bands, such as Callalily, Mojofly, Moonstar 88, Imago, Urbandub, Coffebreak Island, Sugarfree, Sponge Cola, Hale, Pedicab, Rivermaya, Sandwich, and Itchyworms.
With tickets selling for only P50, the venue [the Philsports arena, which many still refer to as ULTRA] was packed to the rafters, with thousands of young music fanatics supporting their own favorite finalist as they screamed their lungs out during the performance and left them with hoar after each performance.
Among the most applauded performers were the more “in” ones including Callalily, whose singer drove the, largely teen crowd wild with his antics.
Another was the scorching performance of Bamboo and the crazy ramblings of Parokya ni Edgar.
Obviously inspired, a young kid exclaimed loudly for everyone within earshot to hear: “Next year sasali na kami para tilian din ako!”
We couldn’t wait.
Jun 09, 2007
Robinson's to build shopping complex in Tacloban
By Joey A. Gabieta
Inquirer.net - Philippines
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte -- The Gokongwei group plans to start construction of its Robinson's shopping mall project here in the third quarter this year, according to a city official.
Aside from the shopping mall project, the company also plans to build a hotel on a four-hectare lot at the Marasbaras district, four kilometers from the city proper, city administrator Jimmy Yaokasin told the Inquirer in a recent interview.
Yaokasin said the investment for the shopping mall and hotel would reach around P2 billion.
"That is the single biggest investment yet for the city. And we are happy with them coming into the city as this is only a proof that our economy is growing," the city administrator said.
The construction of the mall and hotel will start in October and will be completed in 14 months.
"That means, by 2008, Tacloban City will have an additional shopping mall," Yaokasin said.
Tacloban's only shopping complex at present is the Gaisano mall located downtown.
Yaokasin said that it took about a year before the Gokongwei group decided to go ahead with its shopping mall project in Tacloban City, which has a population of around 200,000. Tacloban is also the regional capital of Eastern Visayas, with over four million population.
Yaokasin said local traders should not worry about the entry of the Manila-based developer.
"The economic pie in the city and in the region, for that matter, is still big. People from other provinces in the region will no longer go to Cebu to shop but will just do their thing here," he said.
Yaokasin said that the presence of the new mall will serve as a magnet for other investors and manufactures.
The investment will also mean jobs for the people of the city and nearby areas, Yaokasin said.
The site of the future Robinson's Mall is currently used by bus companies that ply the Luzon-Mindanao routes. It is also about a kilometer away from the city's Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport where the Gokongwei-owned Cebu Pacific has three daily flights.
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