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PHILIPPINES: QC hailed as top Manila Bay ‘clean up’ performer

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#Quezon City – January 1, 2019 – Philippines – Quezon City has been tagged as the Most Compliant LGU for 2018 in the implementation of the Supreme Court continuing mandamus for the clean-up and preservation of Manila Bay.

It garnered a score of 95.53 percent based on the Regional Inter-Agency Team Assessment conducted in recent months.  The team, composed of representatives from national government agencies involved in the Manila Bay Clean up, Rehabilitation and Preservation Program (MBCRPP) visited the 17 LGUs and reviewed their performance in the outcome indicators in the four clusters set under the Supreme Court mandamus.

Quezon City was followed by Muntinlupa (91.63%), Valenzuela (91.30%), Makati (88.42%), Pasig (87.67%), Las Piñas (86.20%), and Parañaque (86.00%); the seven has been recognized as the highly compliant LGUs for the MBCRP.

Top performers in the four clusters were also recognized. Las Piñas was cited for its accomplishments in the Informal Settler Families (ISF) cluster; Pasig City for the Solid Waste Management (SWM) cluster; Muntinlupa on Information, Education, and Communication campaign and other institutional arrangement (IEC) cluster; and Quezon City for the Liquid Waste Management (LWM) cluster. Makati was also cited as the Most Improved LGU.

All NCR LGUs were able to pass the assessment for 2018. Caloocan, Malabon, Mandaluyong, Marikina, Navotas, Pasay, San Juan, Taguig were also cited for their efforts in rehabilitating Manila Bay and its tributaries.

OIC Regional Director Juan Jovian E. Ingeniero, OIC Assistant Regional Director Gloria C. Aguhar and DILG Central Office Bureau of Local Government Supervision Director Atty. Odilon L. Pasaraba handed the awards to the key officials from the 17 LGUs.  DILG-NCR Field Offices were also given recognition for their steadfast performance in achieving the region’s goals for the MBCRP.

During the ceremony, it was reported that all the LGUs have passed their respective no littering ordinances, while 94 percent have approved Solid Waste Management Plans.  Eighty-two percent (82%) of the LGUs also have approved Local Shelter Plans, while 58 percent have approved Relocation and Resettlement Action Plans.

For 2019, MBCRP will conduct the following activity expected to further strengthen the program’s implementation: National Inter-Agency Committee Validation of LGU Compliance to MBCRP, National Environmental Compliance Audit Validation which will cover performance year 2018, the Manila Bay Database System (MBDS) Data Harmonization and GIS Training of NCR-LGUs, Seminar-Workshop on the Updating of NCR-LGUs’ Ten Year Solid Waste Management Plan and 2019 Assessment of LGU Compliance to the MBCRP.

(PIA-NCR)

 

By Jerome Carlo R. Paunan

Release: Philippines Department of Public Information

Photo by DILG-NCR)

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Health

Worst COVID case count for China, Supply Chain interrupted and protests erupt over ZERO COVID strategy

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By Dana Malcolm
Staff Writer

 

#China, November 25, 2022 – Mainland China is experiencing record levels of Covid-19 even as the government struggles to enforce some of the strictest Covid-19 protocols in the world.  Upwards of 31 thousand cases were recorded on Wednesday, the highest ever according to the National Health Commission of the PRC.  Mainland China does not include Hong Kong or Taiwan.

An inspection of China’s COVID infections from March 2021 straight to February 2022 would look like an almost completely flat line.  There were no major recorded spikes over the 12 month period and case counts hovered largely under 2000 cases per day.  It took the swift spreading omicron to break that streak sending cases as high as 29 thousand in April.  Now this winter outbreak shot past those numbers.

With less than 6,000 deaths the country has been one of the most successful in the world at keeping its citizens alive but many disagree with the strict and often long lasting lockdowns.

Several cities including Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou have tightened COVID restrictions as cases surge.

Violent protests erupted last week in Guangzhou after the city was locked down over less than two thousand Covid-19 cases.  This week protests at an Iphone factory in Zhengzhou erupted once more this time over a pay dispute.

So far officials have not bowed to pressure to lighten the protocols and the economy is suffering, stocks fell steeply on Wednesday.

Supply chain issues have started to rear their heads once more as Apple is already warning that there will be delays in deliveries of their newest Iphone thanks to the Zhengzhou dispute.

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Finance

After Thanksgiving, its Black Friday & Cyber Monday shopping which this year should see $158 Billion in spending

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

November 25, 2022 – Every year, after a day Thanksgiving holiday,  shops in the US both on line and on the corner slash their prices and residents flock to sites and malls to snatch up all the savings.  This year is no different and though the tradition originated in America, it has spread across the hemisphere with Caribbean businesses picking up the trend as well.

In addition to savings from local store owners, with the advent of online shopping, US marketed Black Friday  deals aren’t just limited to their home countries.  Residents across the Caribbean will be able to shore up on everyday goods, electronics, and Christmas presents offered from major retailers including Amazon, Best Buy, Target and many others.

Some deals presented themselves earlier that Thursday and will last until 12 pm Friday.  But if you miss the sales don’t worry Cyber Monday, the biggest shopping day of the year is coming up just two days after.

Started back in 2005, it was founded by the National Retail Federation for online-only sales and deals to combat the long lines and crowds of Black Friday and dethroned the traditional Friday as the largest shopping event. If you want the in store experience, Friday is your chance but for those who shop online the two are hardly distinguishable.

Experts at business insider say tech deals are better on Cyber Monday but only slightly so if you’re worried about something selling out, it might be best to pick it up on Friday.

It is also worth noting that over the years, even the Saturday in between has taken shape to promote smaller stores.  This shopping day is dubbed: Small Business Saturday and it ensure that the mom and pop or boutique-styled stores are not forgotten in the spending frenzy.

It is estimated that Americans will do 50 per cent of their shopping this holiday weekend; spending some $158 Billion.

Happy shopping!

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Caribbean News

Former Haitian Prime Minister demands apology from Canada 

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#Haiti, November 25, 2022 – Following accusations of financing gangs and criminal activity in Haiti, former Prime Minister, Laurent Lamothe has requested an apology from Canada.  Lamothe said he learned of the allegations through social media and was quite shocked.

He believes false information from his detractors was the cause of the “arbitrary decision” made by the Canadian government.

Five days ago, CBC News reported that:  “Canada has expanded its economic sanctions freezing the Canadian assets of Haitian political elites to include former president Michel Martelly and former prime ministers Laurent Lamothe and Jean-Henry Céant.

Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly accused the trio this weekend of helping gangs undermine Haiti’s current government and called on international partners to follow Canada’s lead.”

Referencing his track record of fighting crime and maintaining law and order in the country, Lamothe said Canada’s accusation was absurd and inconsistent.

Lamothe called on the Canadian government to verify their sources and provide evidence for their accusations.  He added, however, that there is no concrete evidence which could prove his involvement with financing any criminal activity.

“I demand a public apology and reserve the right to go to the Canadian courts for the sake of defending my honour and integrity,” Lamothe said.

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