Photos by Arkibong Bayan and by
Amihan Euza (as indicated by the filenames)
September 8, 2012
Reference: Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño, 09209035683
Makabayan Coalition fields
Casiño, vows to raise level of senatorial campaign, Political bigwigs
express support for Casiño
In its 2nd national convention yesterday,
the Makabayan Coalition officially proclaimed party list representative
Teddy Casiño as its sole senatorial bet for 2013 and vowed to spearhead a
progressive and alternative campaign on issues and platforms.
Sen. Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel, former Congresswoman Cynthia Villar, House
Speaker Feliciano "Sonny" Belmonte, Congressman Erin Tañada and countless
mayors, vice mayors and councilors from all over the country graced the
conventions and expressed their support for Casiño's candidacy. Senators
Francis "Chiz" Escudero and Loren Legarda and popular TV host Boy Abunda
sent their video messages also supporting Casiño's senatorial bid.
More than 4,000 people crammed the Polytechnic University of the
Philippines (PUP) gymnasium last night as Casiño, in his 21-minute
acceptance speech, outlined his platform and declared "Bibigyan natin ng
boses ang karaniwang tao sa Senado! Dadalhin natin ang tinig ng makabayang
In his speech, Casiño pointed out his lack of political pedigree. "Hindi
po ako malaking pulitiko. Ni hindi ako galing sa angkan ng mga pulitiko.
Pag binabanggit po ang pangalang Casiño, ang natatandaan ng tao ay yung
Casino rubbing alcohol. O kaya Casino Filipino.
But the progressive solon is also proud of his track record, saying “Sa
katunayan, ipinagmamalaki kong hindi ako trapo. Ang aking pangako, hindi
napapako. Hindi ko ugaling mambobola para lang makakuha ng boto. At lalong
hindi ko ginagamit ang aking pusisyon para magpayaman,”
He also mentioned that of all candidates he was the only non millionaire.
Casiño is on record as the third poorest member of the House.
In a press conference last Thursday, Casiño said the party aims to take
the senatorial campaign to a higher level. “Di uubra ang pagpapacute lang,
pagsayaw o pagkanta. Ang dapat ay mas napag-uusapan ang mga isyu ng
mamamayan, yung malapit sa sikmura at talagang nakakaapekto sa mga
Casiño cited his 3 point platform as "mababang presyo, dagdag na kabuhayan,
mabuting gobyerno, these are the chief thrust of his campaign and plans to
bring in the halls of the Senate. “Sa kongkreto po ang laman ng
platapormang ito ay ang pagbawas sa VAT, paglaban sa deregulasyon ng
industriya ng langis at ang pagsusulong sa programang ‘Buy Pinoy, Build
Pinoy’ para mas lumago ang ekonomiya at trabaho sa bansa, syempre patuloy
din tayong magbabantay laban sa korapsyon at katiwalian,” Casiño ended. #
Elections have come and gone. But the people’s aspirations remain
unrealized: we are still a country of deep poverty and exploitation. We
remain victims of a rotten system lorded over by exploitative local and
foreign elites. But there is hope; it is in us, the people. It is in our
unity and collective action. It is in our strength and determination to
overcome obstacles. It is the hope that unites us in Makabayang Koalisyon
ng Mamamayan. We are a coalition with a definitive vision for change. A
coalition that advances the aspirations, triumphs, and potential of the
people’s parties. A coalition that promotes nationalism, democracy, and
the rights and welfare of the people at all times.
HIGHLIGHTS OF OUR PLATFORM
• Power to the people We advocate empowering the people
as key in changing governance and society. We will fight foreign and elite
control until we can establish a government that is truly representative
of the people.
• Fight for good governance We will fight for an honest and excellent
public service that is accountable to the people. We will prosecute
corrupt officials and put an end to cheating, stealing and lying in the
• Develop a pro-Filipino economy We will develop a
pro-Filipino and pro-people economy, We will terminate unjust impositions
by the US, IMF, WB, and WTO. We will pursue a program for genuine agrarian
reform and cooperativization, modernization of agriculture, and
• Lift the majority of the people from poverty We will
prioritize giving adequate work and decent wages to the workers, free land
and subsidy to the farmers, provide food security, as well as greter
access to social services such as education, health, housing, utilities
and other needs.
• Protect the environment We will protect the forests,
seas, and bodies of water against massive exploitation and destruction
especially by large commercial interests. We will address the problem of
climate change and develop the use of clean and renewable energy.
• Build fair foreign relations We will build new
foreign relations based on respect for national sovereignty and mutual
benefit. We will abrogate unequal agreements with the US, Japan and other
nations. We will protect the rights and welfare of Filipino migrants
• Defend democratic and human rights We will defend
human rights. We will put a stop to the political repression of activists,
journalists and critics of government and prosecute the perpetrators. We
will uphold the right to self-determination of the BangsaMoro and
• Promote nationalist and progressive culture We will
promote patriotic, pro-people, pro-environment, scientific, and
progressive education and culture. We will advance a national language and
enrich our diverse cultures. We will renounce colonial, corrupt, and
• Uphold women’s rights and gender equality We will
fight for gender equality and rights of women in all levels of governance
and livelihood in society. We will fight all forms of exploitation,
discrimination and violence against women, gays and lesbians.
• Advance the peace process We will advance the peace
negotiations and the implementation of agreements between the government
and the National Democratic Front and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
We will seek for all sides to decisively address and resolve the root
causes of armed conflict.
If gov't can't control oil prices,
it should just cut VAT to spare public from price shocks
With oil companies announcing a big time oil
price hike for this week, party list representative Teddy Casiño (Bayan
Muna) today called on the government to mitigate the price shock by
reducing the value added tax on oil from 12% to 6%.
"Even if the industry is deregulated, the government can do something to
mitigate prices by reducing the taxes on oil, specifically the VAT, just
like they do in other countries that have lower VAT rates for
basic.utilities and products," said Casiño.
He called the oil companies "cruel" because people in Luzon are still
recovering from the other week's massive flood "and all oil companies are
thinking of is how to jack up their profits."
The lawmaker called on Malacañang and the House leadership to immediately
approve measures removing or reducing the value added tax (VAT) on oil in
order to prevent government from collecting windfall VAT revenues.
"The P3 planned increase by oil companies plus the preceding increases in
the price of oil supposedly due to higher oil prices abroad will result in
unfair and immoral windfall VAT revenues unless we remove or reduce the
tax," said Casiño.
Windfall VAT is the additional revenues collected by government from
unplanned increases in the prices of goods and services subject to VAT.
Casiño said the VAT windfall is "an added misery to Filipinos already
subject to artificially high prices of power and oil."
The latest increase will be P3.20 per liter of gasoline and P2.80 per
liter of diesel. This will bring diesel prices to P44.30.
“Ang lupit naman talaga ng Big 3, maski kadaraan lang ng delubyo e
magtataas na naman sila ng singil samantalang kakataas lang naman din nila.
Kung gusto nilang makatulong sa mamamayan e, wag na silang magtaas sa
buwang ito at wag naman din itong bawiin sa susunod na buwan. Ang dating
kasi e parang may utang pa tayo sa mga kumpanya ng langis na di sila agad
nagtaas pero binabawi naman din nila ito at sobrang taas pa. Parang inuto
at pinasakay lang tayo na mabait sila, tapos kakana din pala ng mas malaki
pang pagtaas” said Casiño.
“I am also calling on Malacanang and the House leadership to approve House
Bill 6416 which aims to cut VAT rates by half in the prices of oil, power
and water,” he added
“Kapag naaprubahan agad ang bill na ito e ni hindi na dapat mangyari ang
napipintong pagtaas,” Casiño said.
Casiño's bill aims to reduce VAT to 6 percent for electricity, water
services, and oil and petroleum products, in order to provide immediate
relief to consumers and the domestic economy. The 50 percent reduction of
the VAT rate will bring down prices of oil products by as much three (3)
pesos per liter, electricity rates by at least 38 centavos per kilowatt
hour (kWh) for lifeline electricity users and at least 50 pesos in the
bills of residential water users. # # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Sun, 08/19/2012 - 06:15
Casiño calls for immediate release
of PAGASA workers’ benefits
Following protests by the employees of the state weather bureau, Bayan
Muna Partylist Rep. Teddy Casiño today called for the immediate release of
the Magna Carta benefits of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and
Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) workers and other government
“We need to recognize the heroic efforts of our weather bureau workers,
not just through words but through concrete actions. They should be given
their rightful and lawful benefits,” said Casiño.
“PAGASA workers have the right to protest. The law entitles them to
receive hazard pay, longevity, laundry and subsistence allowances. Denial
or delays in the release of such benefits is unjust and a disservice to
the people whom they serve” Casiño said.
Republic Act 8439 or the Magna Carta for Scientists, Engineers,
Researchers and Other Science and Technology Personnel in the Government
approved in 1997 provides for the benefits of said government employees,
to be funded through the General Appropriations Act. But Department of
Science and Technology (DOST) Administrative Order No 002 series of 2007
charges hazard pay to "appropriations and/or savings of the agency."
Casiño said that PAGASA workers' predicament is not an isolated case,
citing the protests of public health workers nationwide over unpaid hazard
pay since January this year, pending the approval of the Department of
Budget and Management for the use of agency savings. Even though exposed
to all kinds of hazards in hospitals and communities in their course of
duty, health workers are denied of the P2,000-P8,000 per month hazard pay
mandated by RA 7305 or the Magna Carta of Public Health Workers.
“Our government workers in PAGASA and public hospitals should not bear the
brunt of so-called 'rationalization' of the government benefits system
being done by the DBM,” said Casiño.
“We cannot just tell our public servants to wait and suffer some more,
especially in the face of calamities in addition to the increasing prices
of oil, utilities and basic commodities. If we expect them to provide
hourly weather updates or timely and life-saving medical service, the
government give them humane compensation. Otherwise we will be pushing
more of our brightest workers out of government service and out of the
country,” Casiño said.# # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Fri, 08/17/2012 - 09:59
One million solar roofs a solution
to chronic power rate hikes
At the Philippine Solar Summit, party list Rep. Teddy Casiño said House
Bill 5405 or the proposed One Million Solar Roofs Act would stop the
incessant power rate hikes in the country.
He made the statement as the Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) announced
another increase in its generation charge by 28 centavos per kilowatt hour
this month. This is on top of the previous hikes on the price of
electricity due to higher generation costs, universal charges and currency
exchange rate adjustments.
Casiño said that Congress should fast track the bill which provides
incentives and financing facilities to ordinary electricity consumers like
residences, offices and small to medium business establishments who want
to put up their own solar power systems.
The bill allows homeowners and entrepreneurs to take out loans from
Pag-Ibig, GSIS, SSS and other financial institutions to purchase solar
panels and pay the amount from the ensuing savings in their electricity
“With the putting up of more solar power roofs, power demand from
traditional sources would drop and thus would most likely push rates
down,” he added.
"Our bill also allows these solar powered households and small firms to
feed in their unused power to the grid during peak midday hours at a cost
cheaper than existing diesel peaking plants. In the National Capital
Region (NCR), some peaking plants sell at as high as P30/kWh while solar
can come in at half that price," Casiño revealed.
He said the amount sold by the solar power producer can be offset from
their monthly electricity bills via the net metering mechanism as proposed
in the bill.
"In this way, we hit three birds with one stone - we build additional
supply of power; liberate ourselves from expensive, dirty and imported
fossil fuels; and develop the local renewable energy industry. It is
really the way to go," he said.
According to the lawmaker, “Government should think out of the box and go
beyond the big developer mentality in dealing with the power crisis. Solar
power technology now allows electricity consumers to be producers
“Solar technology can be an immediate and sustainable way to deal with the
country’s energy problems, especially with the abundance of solar energy
throughout the country and the modular nature of solar energy systems,”
said the progressive solon.
“Besides the country being second in Southeast Asia in terms of
irradiation and insolation, we already have the foundation to become a
renewable energy leader in the region owing to the strong semi-conductor
industry and the manpower base serving in the manufacturing and service
sectors, especially the installers sub-sector,” he added.
“With government harnessing the solar resources of the country and
providing for incentives for massive deployment of solar energy systems,
the prospects of attaining energy independence from oil companies and
significantly lowering electricity prices in the medium-term are
realizable,” ended Casiño. # # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Fri, 08/17/2012 - 09:24
Longer PWD voter’s registration
Party list Rep. Teddy Casiño today said that while it is a good move that
the Commission on Election (COMELEC) has set a specific day for the
registration of persons with disabilities (PWD), more time should be
allotted to ensure as much participation as possible.
“We appeal to the COMELEC to give more than one day for PWDs to register,
taking into consideration their physical limitations. It would be better
if the special registration for PWDs would be held for one week," he said.
Casiño also lauded the COMELEC for creating special polling precincts for
PWDs. "It is good that COMELEC did not wait for our proposed law on this
and took the initiative to create such special polling precincts for the
2013 elections. During the last elections, news programs showed footages
of senior citizens leaving polling centers instead of climbing two flights
of stairs to reach their assigned voting precinct and we do not want this
to happen again both for senior citizens and PWDs,” said the progressive
Rep. Casiño is the primary author of House Bill 4048 or Polling Center
Accessibility Act of 2011 which was already approved on third reading by
the House of Representatives (as House Bill 5509).
“We are also appealing to the Senate to pass the counterpart bill so that
PWDs, senior citizens and expectant mothers will instead be assigned to
special voting rooms on Election Day. Their ballots will be collected on
basis of their actual assigned precincts and will later be forwarded to
the corresponding precincts,” Casiño. # # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Tue, 07/31/2012 - 06:09
Casiño: PCSO plunder case vs Gloria
stronger than electoral sabotage
At the hearing of the PCSO plunder case against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo at
the Sandiganbayan First Division, Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño said the
use of the intelligence fund was allegedly hidden in the regular
accounting procedures of the PCSO and is stronger than the electoral
"Unlike the electoral sabotage case, may documentary at testimonial
evidence ito," Casiño said.
“Isang taong inimbestigahan ng Ombudsman ito. Siguro naman matibay-tibay
ito," he added.
Casiño, who is a complainant in the case, said one of the strongest pieces
of evidence they have is the memorandum signed with initials of Arroyo
allowing the conversion from operational to intelligence fund.
He said former PCSO General Manager Rosario Uriarte also admitted during a
Senate inquiry that she was authorized by the former President to
undertake the conversion of funds. # # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Thu, 07/26/2012 - 06:47
On the eve of his SONA - Makabayan
bloc calls on Noynoy to assert Ph sovereignty vs US and China
The Makabayan partylist bloc in Congress called on Pres. Benigno Aquino
III to break from the US’ scheme of globalization, anti-China sabre-rattling
and war policy on the eve of his State of the Nation Address SONA).
“Pres. Aquino should veer away from US tutelage and earnestly pursue our
national sovereign interest particualrly on our issues regarding the
Panatag shoal and the Spratlys. We should not allow the United States into
the conflict because it may further escalate.This matter is best settled
between China and the Philippines through diplomatic means and using the
international conventions. We do not need another bully like the US in our
backyard," said Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casiño, the head of the bloc in
“Aside from bringing this to the International Tribunal of the Law of the
Sea (ITLOS), the Philippine government, including Congress, should also
assert the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China
Sea which was signed in 2002 by members of the Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the People’s Republic of China aimed at easing
tensions in the region and serving as a foundation for future
negotiations. Efforts should also be exerted to further develop this code
and stop what China is doing now and we do not need the US for that,” he
As for his part Anakpawis partylist Rep. Rafael V. Mariano, pointed out
that aside from US meddling in the Philippine- China stand off Noynoy
should also reverse the Philippine adherance on US globalization because
it is one of the main reasons for the poverty of majority of our
population escpecially the peasants. The most blatant push now of
globalization advocates is centered on Charter change, which will allow
100% foreign ownership of land and businesses in the country.
“Instead of following US dictates, Noynoy should work for genuine agrarian
reform and ensure the speedy distribution of land particulalry that of
Hacienda Luisita. Support services must also be ensured for farmers,” said
the peasant leader.
On the other hand ACT Teachers partylist Rep. Antonio Tinio said said that
Pres. Aquino should be very wary of the US government’s shift of its focus
to Asia this decade because this means that it would be more aggressive in
asserting its dominance in the Pacific area. This may mean more US covert
operations in the country and more human rights violations
Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Luzviminda Ilagan said that there had been
numerous documented cases of such US operations like in 2002 when a US
soldier Reggie Lane was identified by an international fact-finding
mission as the one who shot Buyong-Buyong Isnijal, an unarmed civilian
resident of Basilan, in the course of a military operation, violating
belabored Terms of Reference for Balikatan 02-1--and the Constitution as
well--that imposed on U.S. forces to avoid offensive actions against
Filipinos. Also in an article dated July 6, the New York Times reported
that in 2006, US drones sent a "barrage of Hellfire missiles" that hit a
suspected military camp in the jungles of southern Philippines.
“While this incident took place under the previous administration, the
Aquino administration employs the same lack of transparency, double speak,
and deception in order to conceal the true nature of the US military
presence in the country,” added Ilagan.
“As it is Pres. Aquino should stop being a US lackey and instead serve the
interest of the Filipino people because as always we will be watching,”
concluded Kabataan Partylist Rep. Raymond Palatino. #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Sun, 07/22/2012 - 04:22
Casiño to oil companies: Oil price
rollback is still not enough - But if downward trend is maintained and
fixed, a fare rollback may be in order
Partylist Rep. Teddy Casiño today said that recent oil price rollbacks are
still not enough considering that as of March 2012, the price of diesel is
overpriced by as much as P7.86 per liter and gasoline by P16.18 per liter.
Citing data from a recent study by the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, Casiño
said since the oil industry was deregulated in 1999, the upward movement
of local oil prices were quick and often exceeded the movements in global
oil prices and foreign exchange. In contrast, the downward movement was
slow and often small in proportion to the decrease in global oil prices
and foreign exchange.
“Even if fuel prices in the country have been going down since April it is
still not enough. Diesel rolled back 9 times or a total of P6.55 per
liter. Gasoline prices likewise have gone down 9 times or a total of P5.45
per liter. Kulang pa din talaga at dapat e mamaintain na ang downward
trend ng presyo ng langis, pero with deregulation malabong mangyari yun,”
"Ganun pa din kasi e, mabilis at sobra kung tumaas, mabagal at kulang pag
bumaba. As for a fare rollback we have to see if this can be maintained
and fixed to prices below P40 so that drivers and commuters would have a
fair deal," Casiño described the movement of local oil prices.
“We can ensure that prices stay down in the short term though by cutting
the value added tax (VAT) on oil and for the long run of course is the
deregulation of the oil industry,” he added.
Casiño revealed last month that the oil industry is under a scheme of
multiple overpricing, from January 1999 to March 2012, local oil companies
have been able to accumulate an overprice of as much as P7.86 per liter
for diesel and P16.18 for gasoline. With the latest roll back now oil
companies should still roll back at least P1.31 on diesel prices and
P10.73 in regular gasoline prices. “In other words, bitin pa din ang mga
roll back na ito,” he said.
The study was based on the monthly movement of Dubai crude and foreign
exchange (forex) rate based on a rule of thumb used by one major oil firm
that pegged the movement of local prices at around P1/ liter for every
dollar change per barrel of oil and around P.30/liter per peso change in
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Submitted by makabayan national on Mon, 06/11/2012 - 03:02
Trend of power rate increases
alarming - Unjust P1 per kWh hike in VECO electricity bills is bad for
business and residential consumers
Bayan Muna Congressman Teddy Casiño said
that the trend of power rate increases is a cause for alarm and added that
the impact of the unjust P1.00 per kilowatt hour (kWh) increase to hit
power consumers in Metro Cebu should not have been accepted since the
vagaries of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) is a complex
scheme that can be manipulated by selfish interests.
Casiño made the statement as the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) passed
on to consumers a 54 centavo increase for the month and there is a threat
of rotating brown outs in Luzon. “The country has yet to recover from the
Mindanao power crisis and the power rates in the southern island are still
exorbitant and now almost every power grid in the nation is pushing for an
increase. This is a very alarming trend considering that world oil and
coal prices are going down since January. Why are our electricity rates
going up? World oil prices are US$80 per barrel and the average selling
price of Indonesian coal (which Philippine coal fired plants use) will
drop to US$78.80 per ton this year,”
“Yet again we should be wary that this trend might be deliberately aimed
at manipulating Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) prices. We are
calling on regulators, especially the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC),
to keep their eyes wide open and put their ears on the ground and watch
out for signs of price manipulation,” he added.
“I understand that the Visayan Electric Company (Veco) as a distribution
utility is merely passing on to consumers the 85-centavo per kWh increase
in the generation charge due to higher costs of power bought at the
Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) and the power price adjustments
implemented by Napocor to recover so-called fuel, purchased power and
foreign exchange costs. But why should we accept this price hike when it
will bring negative impact to both residential consumers and businesses,
especially small and medium enterprises that need cheaper power to
survive?” said Casiño, who also chairs the House Committee on Small
Business and Entrepreneurship Development that attends to policy making
for micro-, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country.
Casiño was in Cebu recently to join the Suroy Suroy sa Sugbu and the Obra
Negosyo Eskwela Countryside Enterprise Business Upliftment (ONE CEBU)
Awards for best MSME business plans.
“The higher Napocor rates charged to VECO is also unjust. Why do Cebuano
residential and business consumers have to suffer due to the generation
rate adjustment mechanism (GRAM) of P0.4847/kWh for the next 10-and-a-half
years and the incremental currency exchange rate adjustment (ICERA) of
P0.1213 for the next five years? Getting power from Napocor and the WESM
with unjust and possibly manipulated prices is not good for business and
employment in Cebu or any other part of the country. And the Energy
Regulatory Commission (ERC) just approves every petition for a rate hike
even if it will have dire results to millions of people,” Casiño said.
Veco is the country’s second largest private electric utility, with a
franchise area covering the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Naga and Talisay and
the municipalities of Consolacion, Liloan, Minglanilla and San Fernando
that have a combined population of 1.73 million. It is managed by the
Aboitiz and Garcia families of Cebu.
Veco gets 9.21% of its power supply from WESM, where 2012 prices doubled
to P9.9578/kWh in May from P4.8450/kWh in April. Veco gets the rest of its
power supply from Napocor (29%), Cebu Energy Development Corp. (32.49%),
Green Core Geothermal Inc. (25.14%) and Cebu Private Power Corp. (4.12%).
“The national government should take strides to lower power rates in Cebu.
It can start by repealing the wrong national government policy that
permits these price hikes to happen. It is high time for Congress to
repeal the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (Republic Act 9136)
as it has not brought down power costs,” Casiño ended. # # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Mon, 06/25/2012 - 02:28
Makabayan Coalition mourns Maita’s
The Makabayan Coalition mourns the sudden demise, due to heart attack
Thursday afternoon, of its founding co-chairperson, Maita Gomez, and pays
tribute to her long service in our people's struggle for freedom, justice
Makabayan is a political coalition of eight Philippine progressive
parties: Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Kabataan, COURAGE, Migrante, ACT
Teachers and Katribu.
"We in Makabayan are proud and honoured that she gladly accepted her
nomination to co-chair the coalition in 2009, and she consistently and
most capably performer her duties until her unexpected demise.” said Satur
C.Ocampo, Makabayan president.
Ocampo added, that "Maita never failed to speak out on the issues being
discussed and her points were always well taken – reflective of her
intellectual acumen and wisdom, built up from a multifaceted life and deep
involvement in our people’s struggle.”
Makabayan was only the latest of many organizations to which Maita lent
her unstinting support and leading participation, Ocampo pointed out,
"after distinguishing herself as a selfless and dedicated
fighter-organizer among the masses in the countryside in the armed
underground movement during the Marcos dictatorship." She suffered arrest
and detention for that, but managed to escape from military detention, he
"Maita has etched her indelible mark in our people's struggle, yet she
retained her humility throughout and, yes, her peculiar sense of humor,"
Her wake is at the Funeraria Paz in Manila Memorial park in Paranaque.# #
Casiño calls for government all out
support for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises as solution to brain drain
At the celebration of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development
Week at the Megatrade Hall 2 & 3 in Megamall, Party list Rep. Teddy Casiño
called on the Aquino administration for all out support for MSMEs, saying
that this is what the country needs to lower unemployment rate and jump
start the economy.
Casiño, who chairs the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship
Development in the House, was the special guest of honor during the
opening of the exhibit titled 'Eats more Fun in the Philippines' Medium
and Small Enterprise Development Week which will run from July 12 to 15.
"We can stem the brain drain if we are able to provide enough jobs and
livelihoods in the local economy.
Though there is still no substitute for comprehensive industrialization
coupled with genuine agrarian reform for the development of our economy,
increased government support for MSMEs will be a good start,” said the
According to a Bureau of Labor and Employment Statistics (BLES) report,
the number of S&T workers who opted for overseas jobs rose from 9,877 in
1998 to 24,502 in 2009.
For the economy and the business climate to improve in the country, Casiño
said e country should start on the needs of our own local entrepreneurs.
"The following steps are definitely in order: 1. Reduce the cost of
electricity and oil by initially removing or reducing the VAT and in the
long term by bringing back regulation and government support; 2. Reduce
the stringent requirements, fees and processes for putting up and
sustaining a business or company; 3. Allow small firms to reap the
benefits of historically low credit interest rates by rationalizing our
credit systems; 4. Come up with a national strategy to consolidate micro
and small firms in order to link them up with medium and large scale
enterprises."“It will teach our countrymen to rely on our own strength,
ingenuity and resources instead of going abroad to work and add to the
increasing incidence of brain drain,” he added.
The MSME sector is comprised of more than 750,000 firms, accounting for
99.6% of total establishments and contributing 61.2% of total employment
in the country. While as of the moment most MSMEs are into the production
of consumer goods, mostly food and retail services, government support can
lead to diversity, as well as eventual growth and expansion. Casiño said a
healthy MSME sector is crucial in boosting the country towards national
industrialization.“# # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Thu, 07/12/2012 - 07:42
Casiño calls for revamp of DOE and PNOC
Amid increasing power rates and impending oil price hikes Party list Rep.
Teddy Casiño today called for the revamp of the Department of Energy, the
Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC), Power Sector Assets and
Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) and other agencies directly involved
in the power and energy industry. Casiño said the power shortages in
Mindanao, the looming energy crisis in Luzon and the recurrent increase in
the prices of petroleum products are glaring proofs that the executives of
these agencies have failed miserably in their jobs.
“Most of these executives lack the knowledge and experience in handling
energy matters while some are serving as stooges of the big players in the
energy industry,” said the progressive solon.
Casiño particularly cited DOE Secretary Jose Almendras, who was a top
executive of Ayala and Aboitiz companies and DOE Undersecretary Jose Layug
who was a legal counsel of Chevron before they joined the government
“How can you expect Sec. Almendras to strictly supervise and regulate the
oil companies and the suppliers of power and energy whose interest they
used to manage and promote?” the lawmaker added.
He also said that Pres. Aquino should not have appointed Sec. Almendras in
an energy sector related office and that both officials should have
declined their appointments to avoid possible conflict of interest.
PNOC President Antonio Cailao was also singled out by Casiño as among
those who should be replaced for questionable actuations including his
favorable treatment of Shell and Chevron in the Malampaya venture. PNOC
Pres. Cailao proposed the extension of the Malampaya contract by another
13 years and even supported the US1$ Billion expense for building two new
oil well heads.
Bayan Muna has persistently been advocating thoroughgoing reforms in the
power and energy sector and had filed bills to repeal the EPIRA law and
the Oil Deregulation Law. It has criticized government actions in the
energy sector that led to mounting debts and very high electricity rates
that have become unaffordable to the consumers. It has also been critical
of the highly disadvantageous Malampaya Contract which grants big foreign
oil firms billions of dollars in profit to the detriment of the Filipino
“We tried to give these officials the benefit of the doubt when they were
appointed but it seems that they have the interests of the Big 3 and power
companies at heart instead of the welfare of consumers,” ended Casiño. # #
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Submitted by makabayan national on Sun, 07/08/2012 - 07:49