Monthly Archives: January 2014

Jollibee, Mang Inasal founders file P1.16 B IPO


The founders of Jollibee and Mang Inasal are taking their property partnership public, reported the ABS-CBNnews. Here’s the complete report ( Properties, which is owned by Jollibee chairman Tony Tan Caktiong and Mang Inasal founder Edgar “Injap” Sia II, has filed its application for a P1.16 billion initial public offering (IPO) with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

That would be one-fourth of DoubleDragon, giving the company a total value of P4.5 billion.
“We are all excited because this is my first listing, and the second listing of the Tan family. The last listing of the Tan family was 21 years ago, when they listed Jollibee at P9 per share,” said Sia, who is chairman of DoubleDragon.
Tan Caktiong and Sia became partners after Jollibee bought Mang Inasal in 2010.
For its IPO, DoubleDragon is offering for subscription up to 579.73 million primary offer shares, up to P2 per share.
DoubleDragon said it will use the money for its residential, commercial and mixed-use real estate developments.
The bulk of the proceeds will go to its flagship project, CityMall, which is envisioned to be a chain of community malls around the country.
A CityMall will have a floor area of approximately 5,000-10,000 square meters, and located mostly in Visayas and Mindanao. It will have a food court (which will feature Jollibee, Mang Inasal, Chowking, Highlandas Coffee, Red Ribbon and Greenwich), retail shops and a supermarket.
Double Dragon said it aims to roll out 100 City Mall community malls by 2020.
The first City Mall is expected to be located in Roxas City, where Double Dragon has recently acquired a 12,654 square meter commercial land in Arnaldo Boulevard.
Aside from the community mall chain, Double Dragon is also planning to complete three office towers in the next six years in business districts in Metro Manila. The office buildings will be leased out to corporate and BPO tenants.
In 2013, Double Dragon posted a P170.48 million consolidated net income before tax, 29% higher than the P132.03 million in 2012. The company’s net income after tax in 2013 stood at P126.63 million, 37% higher than the P92.48 million in 2012.

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Posted by on January 31, 2014 in Uncategorized


Landfills would have protected Calajunan from toxic gas horror

“The environment is everything that isn’t me.” ALBERT EINSTEIN

By Alex P. Vidal

The fire at the Calajunan dumpsite in Mandurriao district, now on its fifth day, has become an environmental fiasco after experts confirmed that aside from thick smog that descended the villages, toxic gases such as carbon monoxide were generated from the burning trash thus endangering the health of more than 10,000 residents in some 900 households in the area. The poisonous fumes have also affected nearby towns.
Classes have already been suspended in the following schools: Yusay Elementary School, Sto. Nino Elementary School, Arevalo Elementary, Severo Abeto Elementary School, and Ramon Avancena High School.
The blaze that spread to about 1.5 hectares of the 23-hectare dump since Monday noon could spread further if not contained immediately, according to Bureau of Fire Protection chief, Supt. Jerry Candido.
The cause of fire was not immediately known but firefighters were working double time to control the conflagration as of press time to prevent more harm on environment and health of residents.


Although it’s too premature to conclude if it was intentional or not, the damage inflicted on the people’s health and environment was already in horrific degree, to say the least.
Since it was a dumpsite, the catastrophe would have been prevented had provisions on the development of sanitary landfill sites in the Republic Act 9003 or Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, was developed and operated as a final disposal site for solid and residual wastes.
The law does not allow open dump sites as final disposal sites.
If an open dump site is existing within the city or municipality, the law says, the plan shall make provisions for its closure or eventual phase out within the period specified under the framework and pursuant to the provisions.


“As an alternative, sanitary landfill sites shall be developed and operated as a final disposal site for solid and, eventually, residual wastes of a municipality or city or a cluster of municipality and/or cities. Sanitary landfills shall be designed and operated in accordance with the guidelines set under Secs. 40 and 41 of this Act,” says the law.
Republic Act 9003 is “An Act providing for an Ecological Solid Waste Management Program, creating the necessary institutional mechanisms and incentives, declaring certain acts prohibited and providing penalties, appropriating funds therefor, and for other purposes.”
It was enacted into law on January 26, 2001.
The law has plans to identify existing and proposed disposal sites and waste management facilities in the city or municipality or in other areas.
The plan shall also specify the strategies for the efficient disposal of waste through existing disposal facilities and the identification of prospective sites for future use.


The law states that “the selection and development of disposal sites shall be made on the basis of internationally accepted standards and on the guidelines set in Sec. 41 and 42 of the Act.”
It further states that “strategies shall be included to improve existing sites to reduce adverse impact on health and the environment, and to extent life span and capacity. The plan shall clearly define projections for future disposal site requirements and the estimated cost for these efforts.”
In its general provisions, it declared a state policy to adopt a systematic, comprehensive and ecological solid waste management program “to ensure the protection of the public health and environment and utilize environmentally-sound methods that maximize the utilization of valuable resources and encourage resource conservation and recovery,” among other declaration of policies.

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Posted by on January 30, 2014 in Uncategorized


Probe abuses against OFWs, child porno, not mauling of comedian

“You can’t move so fast that you try to change the mores faster than people can accept it. That doesn’t mean you do nothing, but it means that you do the things that need to be done according to priority.” ELEANOR ROOSEVELT


By Alex P. Vidal

We became a laughing stock in the world in 2009 when we wasted taxpayers’ money and time in the senate hearing that tackled the case of the lover of a famous female cosmetics surgeon and several showbiz girls and models which became known as the “Hayden Kho video sex scandal.”
Aside from being romantically linked to the celebrity lady surgeon, nothing can be said to justify the misuse of public funds for the senate inquiry involving Kho, a private medical practitioner; henceforth, there was no logical reason why taxpayers money should be wasted.
A sex scandal involving a private person and his conquests who were all adults was far from being a national concern. It’s mind-boggling how the sex ruckus was allowed to be tackled in the august halls over other urgent national issues while most people couldn’t make both ends meet and were wallowing in abject poverty and lack of opportunities.


The issue did not threaten national security; it did not involve the welfare of the nation; it was not about classroom, water and rice shortage, massive graft and corruption, economic and political stability, health and environmental problems. Yet, the sex scandal inquiry authored by Sen. Bong Revilla pushed through. This explains the kind of mentality and quality of senators we elected.
And now, there is a possibility that the senate hearing zarzuela will be repeated again. Senator Jinggoy Estrada, Revilla’s former showbiz colleague and co-accused in a plunder case filed by the Office of the Ombudsman in relation to the multi-billion pesos “pork barrel” scam, is poised to calling for a senate inquiry regarding the mauling incident that involved his comedian “best friend” Vhong Navarro.
Aside from being Estrada’s “best friend” and a known sitcom mainstay and noontime TV show host, Navarro has no significant contribution or involvement in government or public service for that matter that will justify why his mauling should be given importance over other more pressing national issues.


In a nation where public servants are easily elected into office based on popularity and name-recall, it isn’t far-fetched for the now famous Navarro to join his former showbiz ilk in government via electoral process once he decides to enter politics given our defective electoral system.
But the real cacophony is not only about scoundrels joining the government, but the excessive and blatant misuse of public funds and government time for useless and unproductive public hearings both in the lower and upper chambers of the House which are only always used in aid of pogi points for grandstanding politicians.
These unnecessary senate and congressional inquiries, which are myopic priorities, also send a wrong signal to the young generation. Intelligent citizens hooked on social media have become sophisticated and incandescent; and are now the force to reckon with in molding public opinion.
Our elected officials should now zero in on the plight of our OFWs in Malaysia and other countries in the Middle East who are being abused, harassed and murdered. Foreign and local pedophiles have forged an alliance to perpetuate child pornography via internet as recently reported. Graft and corruption, rice smuggling, arrival of powerful drug cartels in the country, oil spill, power and gas hike, among other critical issues.

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Posted by on January 28, 2014 in Uncategorized


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Are buildings in Iloilo’s Chinatown fire hazards?


By Alex P. Vidal

As elementary pupil at the Iloilo Central Commercial High School (now Hua Siong College) in the 70s, I witnessed how families of my Filipino-Chinese classmates suffered when their business establishments, which also served as their residences, were gobbled up by fires in downtown, City Proper.

Some of the biggest fires that razed antic buildings built way back during the Spanish and Japanese period happened in the 70s and 80s. In the early 80s, I witnessed how a female occupant was trapped to death in the upper floor of the burning Sambo Bazaar on J.M. Basa St. Firemen and rescue teams watched in horror as the victim tried in vain to remove the grills on the window until she was burned alive.
Some Filipino-Chinese families have businesses–groceries, shoes, kitchen products, toys, ready to wear items, hardware, among other goods–in the heart of Calle Real for more than 100 years now. Everything that the Ilonggo shoppers needed, Calle Real stores provided. Even original cinemas were located mostly in Calle Real. The emergence of big malls slowed down shopping activities in the area. Moviegoers have also shied away and are now patronizing the more modern and sophisticated theaters in big malls.


The fire that gutted several business establishments on Iznart St. last Friday night (January 24) was in the area called “triangle” where some of the oldest stores in the Chinatown were located.
Some of my Filipino-Chinese classmates and friends who own stores in that area admitted they were constantly on alert and always ready to pack up in case of fire. “Faulty electrical wiring” was always blamed to be the cause of fires in this area.
Some of the recently refurbished buildings are fire hazards and actually need total repair and should have been abandoned a long time ago.


During the time of Mayor Mansueto Malabor, the city council passed an ordinance sponsored by Councilor Jose Junio Jacela and now Rep. Jerry Trenas to preserve buildings that are 80 years old.
Meaning that these old buildings can not be condemned and will only be rehabilitated to preserve their historical values.
It’s time for the Bureau of Fire Protection to make a thorough check of all buildings–old and new–in the Chinatown area to ensure that they are not fire hazards and their occupants comply with the building code.

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Posted by on January 26, 2014 in Uncategorized


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‘We thought Tonyol was dead; we had no money’


By Alex P. Vidal

Poverty drove the family of Rodulfo “Tonyol” Caasi Jr., 27, to release him from hospital and bring him to the funeral parlor thinking he was already dead.
“We had no money to sustain his hospital bills and our daily expenses,” lamented his mother, Elizabeth, 51. “We had no one to turn to and we were very much confused at that time.”
Elizabeth and daughter, Lilibeth, 30, thought Caasi, who had been in state of camatose, was dead — or had no more chance to survive. They convinced doctors at the West Visayas State University Medical Center (WVSUMC) in Jaro, Iloilo City to remove him  from life support system and brought the body to Sumagpao Funeral Homes in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo last January 6.



Caasi was about to be embalmed at the Sumagpao Funeral Homes in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo when funeral owner, Angel Sumagpao, heard him gasping for his breath.
He was rushed to the Western Visayas Medical Center (WVMC) in Mandurriao, Iloilo City and is now breathing through a respiratory apparatus.

“Now that he is alive, we want him back in our house to be with us permanently,” requested Elizabeth, 51. “I was the happiest person when I learned that Tonyol was alive. I thank God for giving him back to us.”

Caasi’s family lives in Brgy. Taloc Baybay, Bago City, Negros Occidental. Elizabeth’s husband, Caasi Sr., is a fisherman. Caasi Jr., single, is the third in nine children.



A delivery boy of Jollibee, Caasi lost consciousness when his motorcycle bumped a road construction stockpile on his way back to Iloilo City from Pototan, Iloilo. He incurred wounds at the back of the head.
“He is the only bread winner in the family,” Elizabeth sobbed. Lilibeth, also single, said her income as sewer in Cavite, Metro Manila, is not enough to sustain their expenses. She left her job since December to attend to Caasi.
Elizabeth brought her two other daughters, Evelyn, 21; and Clarizza, 13, to help her watch Caasi in the hospital.


“We desperately need help,” teary-eyed Elizabeth appealed. “The respirator alone costs us P600 a day. We have no enough money for our daily foods and other expenses. We have nobody to turn to because we are strangers here.”
Caasi can open only his right eye. Lilibeth said she believed her brother could understand and hear everything they said even if he could not talk as his mouth and nose are attached to a machine.
Caasi is under the care of Dr. Melinda Pechayco.


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Posted by on January 24, 2014 in Uncategorized


Mauricio Sulaiman, right man to succeed Don Jose as WBC president

“Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes.” PETER DRUCKER


Mauricio Sulaiman and Alex P. Vidal in  Mexico City


By Alex P. Vidal

I exhort all my friends and colleagues in the world boxing fraternity to support Mauricio Sulaiman as the next president of the World Boxing Council (WBC). I am making a personal endorsement of Mauricio, knowing him as a truly competent, dedicated and sincere person both as a boxing leader and son of the late and highly-regarded Don Jose Sulaiman Chagnon.
Most of us know that Don Jose had tremendous trust and confidence on his son, who, as secretary general, is actually his right hand in running the affairs of the biggest professional boxing organization in the world with headquarters in Mexico City. If Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s Don Quixote had Sancho Panza, Don Jose had Mauricio.
Like King Philip II of Macedon, who wanted his son, Alexander the Great, to succeed him in his throne, Don Pepe had seen the potentials of Mauricio to lead the WBC in the future ever since Mauricio officially joined the WBC family in 1992 as public relations director.


“With Mauricio around, I can see the renaissance of the WBC in this millennium,” Don Jose said during a one-on-one exclusive interview with this writer in Mexico City in 2008. “His heart is in boxing and he gets along very well with everyone involved in this sport.”
Joseph Patrick “Joe” Kennedy Sr. saw his dreams dashed to pieces when his favorite son, Joseph Jr., was killed in a naval airplane crash in 1944, but was rewarded by God when his other son, John Fitzgerald or JFK, became president of the United States in 1961.
Don Jose’s dream was not only to ensure that the WBC will continue to expand and reach out with promoters and boxers in the four corners of the globe, but to see to it that the WBC is safe and sound under the able leadership of Mauricio even if on some occasions, he expressed reservations of his son taking over the helm of the organization as he did not want Mauricio to be victimized by intrigues and attacks mostly from American press.


The elder Sulaiman had protested the “hurtful” and “humiliating” attacks he suffered from writers mostly in the United States over the way he managed the ruled the organization.
Don Jose had lamented that during his 36 years as WBC president, he’s been “the victim of tremendous of public scrutiny by boxing and sports media outlets who based their reports on innuendo and insufficient data,” he told writer Richard Powell.
Don Jose, however, remarked in the same interview: “Mauricio, my son, is the one who decided to help me in the WBC and without his efforts and his work, it would not be possible for me to do what we are doing now. Mauricio would do a fantastic job (as president). Better than me!”
Like his father, Mauricio treats people in boxing like his extended family. He deals with them equally and does not discriminate them whether they are Asians, Africans, Europeans, Latinos or Americans.


Mauricio also remembers faces wherever he goes and lends his time to chat with them even for a few minutes. When he spotted me during the WBO welterweight tussle between Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Angel Cotto at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in 2011, he stopped and gave me some boxing memorabilia for souvenir. He was there to represent the WBC which awarded Pacquiao diamond belt.
In all the boxing promotions, conventions and other related activities that we attended, Mauricio was a regular acquaintance, accompanying Don Jose and helping push the wheelchair of the immortal WBC chieftain.
When Texas-based Dr. Allan Recto and I went to visit Don Jose in Mexico City in July 2008, Mauricio was our gracious host; he awarded this writer with a WBC silver medal in the WBC headquarters. Despite their not-so-pleasant experiences with the press, Sulaiman father and son have high regards for journalists.
We expect the WBC Board of Governors and all the prominent personalities — promoters, boxers, managers, trainers, writers — to throw their strong support behind Mauricio Sulaiman as the next WBC president.

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Posted by on January 21, 2014 in Uncategorized


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Foreign docs impressed by Pinoys’ resilience


“In order to succeed, people need a sense of self-efficacy, to struggle together with resilience to meet the inevitable obstacles and inequities of life.” ALBERT BANDURA



By Alex P. Vidal

Despite the devastation of typhoon and the horror they went through, they still managed to smile.
This was how Dr. Hamira Welye of Nigeria described victims of super-typhoon Yolanda he met while in the Philippines since November 10, 2013 as a medical missionary.
Welye and Dr. Vera Siesjo of Sweden are medical workers representing Zuellig Family Foundation. They witnessed the joint relief operations for typhoon victims conducted by ABS-CBN Iloilo and Iloilo Cyber Cockers Club, Inc. in Dao, Capiz last January 16.
Welye, medical doctor at Jos University Teaching Hospital in Nigeria, has gone to other cities and provinces in the country since arriving in Manila from Sydney, Australia.


He witnessed how typhoon victims suffered especially in the first two weeks when they were conducting their medical mission. Welye described Filipinos in general as “brave, friendly and always smiling.”
He and Siesjo, of School of Public Health–University of Sydney, Faculty of Medicine, conducted a medical mission in Ivisan and Dao towns last November 19.
Siesjo, International Project Coordinator at Afa-Press, Project Coordinator Mental Health at HIGA Eva Peron de San Matin Education: University of Sydney, Universidad de Palermo, said they also conducted leadership training program among mayors and midwives aside from medical mission.
She revealed that the leadership training program included five different modules where the trainees are taught how to incorporate health system in their programs.


Siesjo confirmed that the Foundation’s Institute for Health and Policy Studies works in building the capacity of health leaders so they can, in turn, establish and sustain equitable health programs and services that will greatly benefit the poor, as stated in the Zuellig Family Foundation website.
“The capability-building program recognizes the important role that leadership plays in establishing and replicating best practices in local health systems,” added the Foundation.
“As an essential part of the Foundation’s agenda for action, various training and mentorship programs equip health leaders and professionals with the necessary tools to strategically address health inequities.”


It explained that “one of the key steps to strengthen local health systems is to assist in the development of the inter-governmental and inter-sectoral collaborations of different stakeholders in healthcare at the local level.”
It added: “The focus is on strengthening the primary health capacities of rural health units and partners to ensure cooperation and responsibility. Local health system reforms cannot be implemented unless there is broad participation among the different stakeholders. Major actors as well as appropriate leadership training interventions in the local health system must be identified. Shared agreements among the different players at the local level are necessary to implement innovative programs which should, in turn, result in better health outcomes for the poor.”


Meanwhile, Dao municipal health officer, Dr. Mary Humbelyn-Horneja confirmed that Zuellig Family Foundation has been assisting Dao in the health training and leadership governance.
“They have been here since last year and aside from training programs that they are giving they also provided us medicines and other supplies during their medical mission,” Humbelyn-Horneja said.
Six people died in Dao during the typhoon Yolanda, according to the municipal health officer.

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Posted by on January 19, 2014 in Uncategorized