House of Native Lechon: A New Go-to Place for CDO Foodies

The Philippines is an archipelago composed of more than 7,000 islands. It is therefore understandable for each region of the country to have its own specialty when it comes to food. There is, however, one dish that is a favorite all over the country and is present in just about every occasion celebrated in Filipino homes and localities. We are talking about the spit-roasted pig we have come to know as Lechon.

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CDO Lechon: Among the Country’s Best

If you love lechon and happen to live in Cagayan de Oro, then you should consider yourself lucky because the lechon in the City of Golden Friendship is deemed by many as one of the best in the country, along with lechon in Iligan and Cebu. When people from other parts of the country come to CDO to visit family, to go on an adventure, or even for business purposes, it is rare for them not to sample some of the city’s lechon on at least one meal for the entire duration of their stay.

In many occasions, those who hail from Metro Manila would even buy a whole lechon, have it wrapped carefully and pay for it to be brought to Metro Manila on the same flight they’re taking. There are also those who order CDO lechon all the way from the northern part of the country to serve in special family occasions. There are even stories of some people who just come to Cagayan de Oro to savor the delicious local dishes, including our popular lechon.

Since CDO lechoneros are known to be among the country’s best, it is comes as no surprise that the city has numerous lechon businesses. No matter what time of the year it is, even during peak seasons like Christmas and the city fiesta, it won’t be too difficult to find someplace where you can order lechon from. There are even a number of places that serve lechon on a daily basis. So when you suddenly find yourself craving lechon, you just have to visit any of these dining places and you can enjoy this sumptuous treat without spending too much.

House of Native Lechon

If you think we have enough lechon houses in Cagayan de Oro, think again. It seems that Kagay-anons can never have enough of their favorite party dish, and the city is certainly big enough to accommodate one more place that offers deliciously roasted pig on a daily basis.

We are about to witness the grand opening of the House of Native Lechon at Buena Oro in the Upper Macasandig area. If you’ve heard of the Kambingan sa Buena Oro, well, the House of Native Lechon is set to open right beside it. That’s how much Kagay-anons love good food; you are bound to find one exciting foodie joint right beside another.

So, what sets this new “lechon restaurant” apart from other lechon places in Cagayan de Oro? Well, for one thing, they don’t just offer lechon, but also a host of other mouthwatering Filipino dishes. And get this: Their food set-up is buffet style! Yes, that means you can eat all the lechon and other Pinoy dishes you want for a very reasonable price.

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Their lechon is crunchy, flavorful, and gratifying. Even if you’re not that fond of this meat dish, you surely won’t be able to resist taking a bite, especially when you’re having it with such fare as chicken adobo, fried chicken, sisig, pork adobo, fresh lumpia, grilled fish, sweet and sour fish, buffalo chicken wings, kinilaw, pancit, kare-kare, and halang-halang, among others. They also serve Pinoy favorite desserts like buko pandan, buko halo, and gulaman.

With their classy, all-Filipino décor and casually elegant ambience, the place is sure to attract not just local patrons, but also domestic and international tourists alike. Their location may not be in the city proper, but it’s just a few minutes and an easy cab ride away. Oh, and one more thing: They will be serving NATIVE lechon, which means that the pigs to be roasted are on an organic diet. Interesting, isn’t it?

So, check your calendars and be prepared for the opening of the House of Native Lechon. They may not have announced a specific opening date yet, but it’s always best to be ready. One thing is for sure, though: This new destination for Kagay-anon foodies, their family and friends, and all visitors to the city is set to open very, very SOON. We’re already excited, are you?

Soon in Mindanao – The Mindanao Railway Project

 

A war-torn area infested with rebels, crimes, and poverty—that’s how most Filipinos see the island of Mindanao. Thanks to the media and their sometimes over-exaggerated news reporting, our homeland is shunned by foreigners and even investors. Comparing it to Luzon and Visayas, progress in Mindanao is really slow and minimal. But all these things are about to change now that the president of the Philippines is a true-blue Mindanaoan.

The moment that President Duterte was inaugurated as the country’s 16th president, it was clear that the progress in Mindanao is one of his priorities. As a matter of fact, during his first SONA (State of the National Address), he has shared one of his projects in Mindanao—the Mindanao Rail Project.

Mindanao Railway Project

Although this might be the first time that the younger generation might have heard of this proposal, the Mindanao Railway System (MRS) Project has actually been pushed by Mindanaoan lawmakers as early as the 1990s.

The Mindanao Railway System Project was first conceptualized during the term of then President Fidel V. Ramos in 1992 (which was already more than two decades ago). The project was supposed to cover approximately 2,000 kilometers of railway that will connect the major cities of Mindanao and would cost around PHP 78 billion.

The Mindanao Railway System was actually the brainchild of then Abante Mindanao party-list Rep. Maximo Rodriguez Jr. and Cagayan de Oro City representative Rufus Rodriguez who later filed House Bill 3055, which proposed the creation of the Mindanao Railways Corporation.

Under the proposed bill of the Rodriguez brothers, the Mindanao Railways Corporation would be the one to own and operate the tramways, railways, and other land transportation, pipelines, and vessels, for the purpose of transporting passengers, goods, properly from any point around the island of Mindanao.

According to Rufus Rodriguez, what urged him and his brother to file the bill was the experience of Canada, Japan, and most of the Europe, wherein the construction of railroad networks have helped improve economic development. Rodriguez has stated that railroads have made it possible in these nations to transport huge volume of products and goods at a much lower cost.

It was also stated under the bill that the Mindanao Railways Corporation will have the power to operate and own hotels, powerhouses, terminals, restaurants, warehouses, coal mines, equipment and other properties that are connected in constructing and operating the railways.

Unfortunately, after several feasibility studies conducted under the administrations of Ramos, Estrada, Arroyo, and Aquino, nothing materialized. During Arroyo’s term, she promised that the project would become a reality during her administration but no progress ever occurred. And during the time of Aquino, all MRS project offices situated in Iligan City and Cagayan de Oro City were closed.

As of July 26, 2016, it has already been reported by Transportation Department spokesperson Cherie Mercado during a news briefing that the Mindanao Rail Project (including the Cebu Transit System, Davao Transit System, Panay Railways Project, and the North and South Luzon Railways (note: all of these are mentioned during President Duterte’s 1st SONA), is already being studied. Mercado added that their office in now open for proposals coming from the private sectors. All these mentioned projects will be funded under the public private partnership or unsolicited proposal.

The railway network in Mindanao is said to be implemented in phases. The Phase 1 of the project includes a 124-km rail line from Cagayan de Oro City and Iligan City and would traverse the coastal municipalities of Opol, El Salvador, Alubijid, Laguindingan, Gitagum, Libertad, Initao, Naawan, Manticao, and Lugait.

With the whole island of Mindanao being one of the country’s major contributors of agricultural crops such as rice and corn, having a railway transport would certainly help Mindanaoan farmers greatly. With trains being considered as the most dependable mode of transport since they are the least affected by bad weather conditions such as rain and fog, farmers will no longer worry that the delivery of their goods will be delayed. This will assure buyers also that the goods they will receive from farmers are fresh and of good quality all the time.

Apart from the proposed Mindanao Railway Project, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade has also said that the administration of Duterte is also planning to create a railway system that would connect Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City and Clark International Airport in Pampanga. The aim of the proposed rail system is to make Clark International Airport as an alternate international gateway since NAIA is already congested and is heavily affecting passengers due to the abysmal traffic conditions plaguing the area.

What do you think about this proposed Mindanao Railway Project? Do you think that it will really improve the economic standing of Mindanao? Share with us your thoughts!

 

El Niño 2016 – Everything You Need to Know about This Phenomenon

Summer days in the Philippines have always been hot and humid, but this year’s summer is different. Because of the El Niño that the whole country has been experiencing since December 2015, the weather in the Philippines for the last five months has been unusually hot and dry. As a matter of fact, several provinces and municipalities in the country have already declared a State of Calamity because of the effects of El Niño. Here’s a list of things you need to know about this global phenomenon:

What Is El Niño?

El Niño is an irregular climatic change that has a complex impact on the world’s weather patterns. This phenomenon occurs due to the interaction between the water and air in the Pacific Ocean, affecting the weather system of countries near the Pacific region and the equatorial line. El Niño is characterized by unusually warm weather that may last for several months.

El Nino in the Philippines

Characteristics of El Niño

-El Niño occurs every 2 to 9 years in the Pacific basin, affecting nearby countries.

-This climate cycle is usually followed or preceded by La Nina.

-Most of the time, it starts between the months of December and February.

– Once it occurs, El Niño typically lasts until the first half of the year. There are times, however, when this phenomenon lasts longer.

El Niño in the Philippines

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) has announced last September 2015 that an impending dry spell will envelope the country from the month of December 2015 up to May 2016. But even before the announcement, the government has already been preparing ways and methods to combat or at least ease the effects of this phenomenon. Having experienced a similar dry spell in the past, the government is well aware of the consequences of this climatic cycle, especially if it gets too severe, including water and food shortage.

According to the Official Gazette of the Philippines, the government has already adopted several measures to mitigate the effects of El Niño in the country since August 2015. Some of these measures include the Quick Turn Around Scheme, rainwater harvesting, implementation of water saving technologies, and water distribution rotation. The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) has also advised farmers, a few months before El Niño started, to plant rice varieties that are drought-tolerant and early-maturing.

According to Secretary Kiko Pangilinan, chairman of the National Irrigation Board and Presidential Assistant for Food Security and Agricultural Modernization, the government has been intent on taking proactive measures that would lessen the impact that the farmers would experience during the expected El Niño season. The government has tapped PAGASA, the Bureau of Soils and Water Management, the National Water Resources Board, the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), the Philippine Air Force, the National Power Corporation, and other agencies to compose the workforce in mitigating the effects of El Niño throughout the country.

During the start of the dry spell, the workforce has also implemented additional measures, including cloud seeding. Since January 2016, cloud seeding operations have been performed in various places around the country. In Northern Mindanao, cloud seeding operations were also conducted to help areas that were heavily affected by the ongoing global phenomenon, especially in Bukidnon. Just this March, lawmakers Rufus Rodriguez and Maximo Rodriguez, urged the Bureau of Soils and Water Management and the Department of Agriculture to do cloud seeding operations in the city of Cagayan de Oro, which is among the heavily affected places by El Niño in Northern Mindanao. Among the areas in CDO that were badly hit by El Niño is Lumbia, Indahag, Canitoan, Dansolihon, and San Simon.

Cloud seeding is a type of weather modification, which is done through manually spreading salt or dry ice into the upper portion of the clouds in order to simulate the precipitation process and create rain.

Apart from the cloud seeding operations, the government, through the leadership of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), has also started providing work-for-cash aid to farmers whose crops and plants were affected by the phenomenon, including the IP community. The DSWD-Region X has been implementing this program for the IP community of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental since February 2016. Also part of the work-for-cash benefit is a family food package, each containing two cans of beef loaf, sardines, and corned beef as well as six kilos of rice. Currently, the DSWD Region X is focused on implementing their two programs, which will really help the lumads and farmers of Northern Mindanao to survive the dry season–Cash for Food Program and Cash for Work Program.

 

City-Wide Curfew for Minors in CDO Now in Full Effect

The local government administrators of Cagayan de Oro have just made it clear to the general public that they are eager supporters of change in the country. Exactly 29 days before President Rodrigo Roa Duterte took his oath as the country’s 16th president, the city, through its local council, has already started implementing a curfew for minors as soon as classes resumed last June. Since teenage curfew is among the list of rules and regulations that the Duterte camp intends to execute nationwide as soon as the new administration begins, the local council of CDO did not hesitate in bringing back the 1994 city codified ordinance, which prohibits children aged 15 and below from roaming around the city from 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM without an adult companion.

Under the headship of the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) of Cagayan de Oro, in partnership with the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (COCPO) and the barangay officials, the local government unit of CDO has ordered a city-wide teenage curfew through the reinstatement of City Ordinance No. 4373-94. According to City Social Welfare Officer Teddy Sabuga-a, the goals of the teenage curfew are as follows: to strengthen parents’ responsibility over their children and to ensure that children are protected from becoming delinquents. The ordinance is also set to help maintain peace and order around Cagayan de Oro City. To make the newly reinstated law effective, the CSWDO has already sought the help of the DILG to disseminate guidelines and to enforce the rule among barangay officials

Revisions in the 22-year Old City Ordinance

As stipulated in Section 485 of City Ordinance No. 4373-94 (Chapter 108: Curfew for Minors), no person aged 15 years old and below is allowed to roam “nightclubs, cocktail lounges, massage clinics, beer houses, discotheque joints or saloons, cabarets or liquor stores or stands, gambling places, plazas, parks, recreation halls, billiard halls, parlors, bowling alleys, theater lobbies, sidewalks, hotels, and all other similar establishments” after 10 PM and before 5 AM the following day. This curfew ordinance is expected to be followed strictly except during special occasions (Charter Day, Christmas Day, New Year, etc.). Teenagers who have just showed up for and are about to go home from social occasions, religious gatherings, civic events, or classes are exempt from the curfew.

Under the penalty clause of this rule, as written in Section 486, all minors who violate the curfew will be fined not less than PHP 500.00 and not more than PHP 1,500.00 or be imprisoned for not less than 1 month and 10 days and not more than 4 months, or both be fined and imprisoned depending on the rulings of the court. But, as what Sabuga-a cited, the penalty section of the old city ordinance is in conflict with the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act (R.A. 9344). Therefore, the city council must change the fines and punishments of the law in order to comply with both R.A. 10630 and R.A. 9344. As suggested by Sabuga-a, it would be better if the punishment will be in the form of community service, since not all parents have the financial capacity to pay the fines.

 

Updated Teenage Curfew Guidelines

In executing the curfew for minors in the city, the following guidelines are mandated to be followed:

-The barangay, through its Barangay Council for the Protection of Children (BCPC) and tanods, is given the right to rescue children during curfew hours.

-All rescued children are required to be recorded in the barangay level blotter or police station blotter.

-All barangays should have a halfway house, which will serve as a temporary shelter or place of rest for rescued children.

-Every rescued child should be interviewed by an authorized staff from the BCPC who has received training from the CSWD regarding the Rights of the Child.

-Rescued children have to be released to their guardian or parents after they have undergone counseling. For those children whose parents can’t be found, they shall be turned over to the CSWD.

Apart from the barangay officials, local police stations in the city are also playing a vital role as the prime protectors of the child. They will be actively participating in rescuing minors during curfew hours.

Sabuga-a is positive that the city-wide curfew for minors will be successful as long as the parents, development workers, schools, and other organizations will cooperate. He said, “we all need to work together to make this a sustainable campaign and we need all the help we can get, after all, this is for the protection of our children.

XU Nursing Garners 100% Passing Rate; Two Grads Top NLE

The results of the June 2016 NLE (Nurse Licensure Examination) have just been released online by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) last June 17, 2016. Out of the 14,184 nursing graduates who took the exam in different testing centers nationwide, only 6,183 passed.

The College of Nursing of Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan soared high once again after the PRC declared that they have garnered a 100% passing rate. Of all the nursing graduates who passed the June 2016 NLE, 39 are proud graduates of XU. According to XU President Fr. Roberto Yap, SJ, this is the 4th consecutive NLE where the XU College of Nursing has achieved a 100% passing rate.

Furthermore, two nursing graduates from Xavier University did not only pass the NLE, but also aced it. Both Rachelle Eve Alolor Bensig and Ma Minvilu Verano Marbella made it to the top 10 of the Nurse Licensure Examination this June, with Bensig landing on the 2nd spot while Marbella garners 5th place.

Rachelle Bensig garnered a score of 86.60%. She shares the 2nd spot with Joszabelle Estrella of Bicol University-Legazpi and Gianna Roman of Bataan Peninsula State University-Balanga. As for Ma Minvilu Marbella, she garnered a score of 86.00%. She shares the 5th spot with Glenn Marie Fantillo of University of Iloilo and Eunice Kay Sanson of Ateneo de Zamboanga.

In her interview with the local press of Cagayan de Oro, Ma Minvilu Verano Marbella revealed that she did not expect to become a topnotcher in the NLE. She said that she only prayed for guidance during the examination and the tenacity to accept whatever the outcome will be. Topping the licensure examination for nurses definitely came as a surprise to her. Marbella then added that being a nurse is not just about the rank and the result ratings; for her, it’s all about the things that she learned. She devotes her triumph to her family, classmates, XU teachers, Lourdes College, and Peak Excellence Review Center.

The announcement of the NLE results for June came just a few days after Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan made it to the list of Asia’s top universities, which was released by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), an education and career consultancy company.

For this NLE, the #1 spot is shared by Bernard John Ezra IV Rafols Icamen of Cebu Normal University (Cebu State College) and Melissa Castor Malong of De La Salle University-Health Sciences Institute. Both achieved a percentile score of 87.20%.

The other nursing graduates who made it to the top 10, are as follows:

Top 3

Paul Lexus Gomez Lorenzo (University of the Assumption) – 86.40%

Top 4

John Michael Morin Canita (West Visayas State University -La Paz) – 86.20%

Jodi Marian Piamonte Dagudag (Silliman University) – 86.20%

Top 6

Camille Osias Cosare (University of the Visayas-Mandaue) – 85.80%

Rigelle Anne Cabal Delos Santos (Far Eastern University-Nicanor Reyes Medical Foundation) -85.80%

Jose Paolo Larrazabal Garcia (Cebu Doctors’ Hospital) -85.80%

Miya Marcelo Gomez (Angeles University Foundation) -85.80%

Angella Mari Recio (San Beda College) -85.80%

Anthony Wines Teves (Velez College) -85.80%

Top 7

Terrence Michael Villamor Cuyos (Cebu Normal University – Cebu State College) – 85.60%

Maeriel Salatan Gadaingan (Ateneo de Zamboanga) – 85.60%

Brittney Kindred Tek-ing Madrigal (Velez College) -85.60%

Top 8

Mae Beann Equila Asuncion (University of Pangasinan) -85.40%

Kathereen Roman Canindo (West Visayas State University-La Paz) – 85.40%

Alyssa Marie Nivera Lobaton (University of Saint La Salle) -85.40%

Jodith Bygie Belacaol Mediana (West Visayas State University-La Paz) -85.40%

Arian Mae Cortez Pabon (Riverside College) -85.40%

Margie Joy Cardel Red (Bicol University-Legazpi) -85.40%

Alyana Marie Gamboa Tapang (Angeles University Foundation) -85.40%

Glanzen Mae Buyser Tijing (Mountain View College) 85.40%

Top 9

Rania Irih Askali (Ateneo de Zamboanga) -85.20%

Maria Rocell Serafines Bustonera (Emillio Aguinaldo College-Dasmariñas) -85.20%

Christine Joyce Mallari Figueroa (Our Lady of Fatima University-Valenzuela) -85.20%

Zsheerahzhade Ali Gaspar (Notre Dame of Jolo College) -85.20%

Monette Jane Borja Guevarra (Bicol University-Legazpi) -85.20%

Florante San Jose Hernandez (De Ocampo Memorial College) -85.20%

Vilma Manjares Jumila (Holy Name University) -85.50%

Jasmine Celina Sia Lazaro (Southville International School and Colleges) -85.20%

Ma. Jarsi Rheyda Tang Tejada (West Visayas State University-La Paz) -85.20%

Top 10

Athena Marie Abella Anog (Cebu Normal University – Cebu State College) 85.00%

Pamela Aya Bojos Bernada (West Visayas State University-La Paz) -85.00%

Bryan Amiel Lapore Brey (University of Saint La Salle) -85.00%

Jana Bautista Cabato (Ateneo de Zamboanga) -85.00%

Diane Barneso Dolina (Far Eastern University-Nicanor Reyes Medical Foundation) -85.00%

Rashida Tulawie Habbi (Notre Dame of Jolo College) -85.00%

Pamela Quiao Ligtas (University of Bohol) -85.00%

Ileana Orejudos Lim (Velez College) -85.00%

Alyssa Claire Andal Malaguit (De La Salle University-Lipa) -85.00%

Genesis Esma Velasco (Far Eastern University-Nicanor Reyes Medical Foundation) -85.00%

 

Congratulations to all the passers!

 

 

Northern Mindanao’s Population Surged by 1.68% – PSA Census Reveals

In the most recent nationwide census conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), it was revealed that Northern Mindanao’s populace is progressively and quickly growing. Composed of 5 provinces, 9 cities, and 84 municipalities, Northern Mindanao (Region X) now has an estimated 4,689,302 inhabitants.

Among all the places in the region, PSA’s latest census has also shown that the city of Cagayan de Oro—Misamis Oriental’s capital city—is Region X’s fastest growing area. In a span of five years (2010-2015), the city had an average population growth rate of 2.23%.  Being considered as Northern Mindanao’s business hub and education center, the boom in CDO’s populace is not that surprising. According to the data released by the PSA, the number of the city’s inhabitants rose from 602,088 in 2010 to 675,950 in 2015. CDO’s current number of residents has already surpassed that of Camiguin Island and Misamis Occidental.

Cagayan de Oro isn’t the only city in the region where a steady growth in the number of residents has been observed. Several components cities in Northern Mindanao have also experienced an increase in populace from 2010 to 2015. In Malaybalay City (Bukidnon’s capital city), the number of residents rose from 153,085 to 174,625 in five years. As for Valencia City (also in Bukidnon), the population also increased from 181,556 to 192,993. From 68,945 last 2010, Oroquieta City’s populace rose to 70,757 while Ozamis City’s number of residents also grew from 131,527 to 141, 828. In Tangub City, the current population count is at 63,011 compared to 2010’s 59,892 populace. All three cities are part of Misamis Occidental. An increase in the population count has also been observed in El Salvador City and Gingoog City in Misamis Oriental. From 44,848, El Salvador’s number of residents is now at 50,204 while in Gingoog City, the current population is at 124,648, up from 117,908 in 2010.

Out of the five provinces in Northern Mindanao, the province of Bukidnon has the highest number of inhabitants, with around 1,415,226 residents. This is followed by Misamis Oriental’s 888,509 (excluding CDO’s population count), Lanao del Norte’s 676,395, Misamis Occidental’s 602,126, and Camiguin Island’s 88,478. Although Bukidnon currently has the biggest population in Northern Mindanao, the province of Lanao del Norte has the fastest population growth rate in the span of five years. According to the data collected by the Philippine Statistics Authority, Lanao del Norte’s growth rate from 2010-2015 is 2.05%. PSA stated that if the province’s population rate continues at this pace, they are expecting that in the next 34 years, Lanao del Norte’s populace will double.

As explained by the PSA, in all 18 regions in the Philippines, Northern Mindanao (Region X) has the 8th biggest population size. Of the 100.98 million population of the country, Region X contributes 4.64%. From 2010 to 2015, the average growth of the region’s population is 1.68%. This means that for every 100 persons, 2 persons are added to the population per year.

Although the number of inhabitants in our region is steadily growing, as revealed by the recent Popcen, the rate is still not that alarming. The current population density of Northern Mindanao is 590/sq mi. Being Mindanao’s largest regional economy, we still have more than enough resources for the whole populace. Besides, experts have revealed that a growing population is nothing to worry about, since it also has plenty of advantages.

With more people being born in or relocating to the region, it could only mean that companies will have a larger workforce to utilize. Another thing about a steadily growing population is that it opens an opportunity for economic development. It can also encourage productivity in an organization, since more people means more ideas are being generated. Many of the remarkable innovations that we’ve had for the last 300 years were actually attributed to the population growth. For example, manufacturers have to change their way of producing goods and finished products just to be able to adapt to the greater needs of an ever increasing demand (thanks to population growth). It has also paved the way for humans to develop advanced agricultural processes that would combat food shortage. Most people may not be aware of it (especially since books only teach us the negative impact of a large population), but having a growing population offers a lot of benefits to society. It can even increase the national savings of our country.

PSA’s population study was based on a nationwide census that was participated in by about 90,000 enumerators.

 

Kagay-anon News – CDO-CSWD and COCPO Implements City-Wide Juvenile Curfew

Last June 1, 2016, the City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD) Office of Cagayan de Oro, together with the COCPO (Cagayan de Oro City Police Office), has reinstated the 1994 city-wide curfew for minors. Under City Ordinance No. 4373-94, kids aged 15 and below are ordered to strictly follow the curfew from 10 o’clock in the evening until 5 o’clock in the morning of the following day.

According to Teodoro Sabuga-a, Jr., the chief of CSWD, they have been enforcing the 10 o’clock evening curfew for adolescents during the opening of classes in the city for years now. But with the ongoing plans of the Duterte administration to effectuate teenage night-time restriction across the country, the CSWD and the COCPO have decided to bring back the 1994 city regulation. Apart from protecting the youth, the said city decree will also help us Kagay-anons prepare for and adjust to the upcoming laws and regulations that President Duterte expects to have executed starting June 30.

Although the night-time restriction for teenagers is now fully implemented across Cagayan de Oro city, just like many Kagay-anons, Sabuga-a believes that the 1994 city code should be revised to make the enactment of the curfew more effective. In an interview, Sabuga-a has stated that under the 1994 curfew ordinance, all adolescents who are caught violating the order will be fined an amount not less than PHP 500.00 and not more than PHP 1,500.00. Lawbreakers may even be imprisoned, depending on the ruling of the court. However, with our present laws, penalizing and jailing minors are strictly against RA no. 9344, also known as the Comprehensive Juvenile Justice and Welfare System. It is clearly stated in RA no. 9344 that children aged 15 years old and below are exempted from criminal liabilities. Because of this, Sabuga-a wants the code to be amended and its penal clause changed. When asked about the sanctions of the revised code, he said that he wants it to be in the form of community service, since not all parents can afford to pay the fines.

During the first week of the curfew implementation, police officers confided that they were amazed at the result of the curfew. According to Police Inspector Leo Huraño, Police Station 3 (near Agora Integrated Bus Terminal) deputy station commander for operations, it was the first time that he and his team have witnessed that the roads are empty of street kids. Afraid of being caught and reprimanded by the police, many Kagay-anon teenagers made sure they were home before the night restriction started. However, there were still plenty of adolescents who were caught roaming around after 10 o’clock, and they were instantly rounded up by the police.

In Barangay Cogon, the deputy station commander of Police Station 2, Police Inspector Johnny Agutaya, shared that during the first night of the enactment of the curfew for minors, they were able to gather 12 children. These minors were all ushered to the police station where they were interviewed by the Women and Children’s Desk Officer. They were asked to provide basic profile data and their family background information. Agutaya also revealed that those teenagers who were caught staying outdoors after the 10 PM curfew will be brought back to their respective barangays, but only if they still have parents. For those teenagers who do not have parents anymore, they will be turned over to the CSWD.

The main goal of the teenage night-time restriction in the city is to protect the children while also decreasing their involvement in crimes such as gang wars, pickpocketing, and drug addiction. The ordinance also hopes to strengthen parents’ responsibility for their kids.

With the implementation of a curfew for minors throughout the city, a lot of Kagay-anons are undeniably happy with the newly revived ordinance. Many believe that it will really help city authorities in curbing crime in the city and promoting peace and order. It would also help decrease the rate of teenage pregnancy and drug addiction among teens. Throughout Cagayan de Oro, only the barangay of Gusa has been strictly implementing a curfew for minors since 1994.

Both the City Social Welfare and Development Office and the Cagayan de Oro Police Office are positive about the outcome of the city-wide curfew. However, the CSWD and the COCPO are also asking for the full cooperation of the parents, the barangay officers, and everyone in the city. Share with us your thoughts about this newly re-enacted decree in the city of Cagayan de Oro.

 

Kanos in the City – The Pros and Cons of the Impending US Military Base in CDO

It has been years now since Lumbia Airport closed its doors and gave way to a bigger and more modern airport facility in Laguindingan, Misamis Oriental.   But even though it is no longer operating as a commercial airport, it is still being utilized by the 10th Tactical Operation Group of the Philippine Air Force. However, just this year, it has been announced that the old airport will be rehabilitated into an army base for American soldiers. This has been confirmed by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin last February 1, 2016, after he attended the 46th founding anniversary of the Philippine Army’s 4th Infantry Division as the guest of honor. According to Gazmin, the facility will be built as part of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) of our country with the USA. The construction of the facility will start later this year, as soon as pertinent documents are finalized.

Although Gazmin has assured the public that the looming military station in Lumbia will not bring harm to Kagay-anons but instead would result in a more efficient delivery of humanitarian aid to Filipinos, it still did not stop several militant groups from protesting against it. Last June 4, 2016, during the 116th anniversary of the historic Battle of Macahambus (which happened during the Philippine-American War), about 3,000 protesters from different socio-civic groups joined forces to stage a rally to express their opposition of EDCA. Groups such as Kalumbay, Bayan, Gabriela, and the League of Filipino Students believe that instead of the promised defense, US military existence in the city will only threaten the country’s sovereignty and integrity.

With this issue being the most talked about in the city, I’ve decided to do some research about the possible pros and cons of having an American military facility in CDO, and here’s what I’ve found out:

The Pros

As what Secretary Gazmin said, the main objective of the proposed US military base in CDO is to enhance the delivery of humanitarian assistance to Filipinos, especially during disasters and threats of war. And with the ongoing saga in the South China Sea, we really are on the verge of declaring war against China. With China’s resources and their state-of-the-art machinery, a third-world country like the Philippines definitely can’t win against them. That’s why we need assistance from foreign countries in order to fight for our territories. But hopefully, a peace talk with China would keep the situation from escalating.

On a lighter note, I really do believe that US military presence in Cagayan de Oro will also improve the economic standing of the city. Once the army station is finished, more investors will certainly flock to the city.

The Cons

One of the major drawbacks of having a US army station in the city is that it will likely be raided or targeted by communist rebels for their supplies and machineries. In an article written by Rappler, the New People’s Army (NPA) has released a statement saying the US facilities and soldiers have always been a rebel’s legitimate targets.  In case leftists attack this military base in Lumbia, CDO will be badly affected.

According to Cesar Renario, the spokesperson of the National Democratic Front – Northern Mindanao chapter, US army presence in the city will not do us any good, but will only turn it into the next conflict area. Renario believes that the US forces are only using the country as a staging area for its Asian conquest. He also added that once the facility is built, even the Philippine government will not have authority to enter.

Another negative impact of having an American military base in the city is that there’s a huge possibility that the city will become the next prostitution den in the Philippines. Remember Subic? After the government allowed the US to build a station there, the sleepy port of Subic became a red-light district. Not only that, the military presence in Subic resulted in 50,000 Amerasian children who were left behind and neglected by their American fathers after the naval base was closed in 1992. Do you want CDO to be the next Subic? That’s definitely a big no!

Now that I’ve shared with you some of the pros and cons of building a US military base in the city, what are your thoughts? Should the government really allow the Americans to build a station in CDO or should we stop it now and protect the sovereignty of the country and the interests of our society?

 

Curfew for Minors in CDO – Weighing Its Good and Bad Sides

Last June 1, 2016, the local council of Cagayan de Oro has reinstated the 1994 curfew order for Kagay-anon minors. Under City Ordinance No. 4373-94, children aged 15 and below are not allowed to roam the city from 10 o’clock in the evening until 5 o’clock in the morning. This ordinance is expected to be carried out around the city, except during special occasions such as the eve of the town fiesta, New Year, Christmas, All Souls’ Day, All Saints’ Day, Good Friday, Resurrection Day, and other holidays that the city observes. Minors who are guilty of violating this decree will have to pay a fine of not less than PHP 500.00 and not more than PHP 1,500.00. Violators can also be imprisoned for not less than 1 month and 10 days and not more than 4 months, depending on the ruling of the court.

The main objective of ordering a curfew for minors is to fortify protection for the youth while also helping parents strengthen their responsibility over their children. In Cagayan de Oro City, the majority of citizens is in favor of the curfew, but just to be fair, let’s examine the positive and negative impact of this newly-revived city ordinance.

The Pros

Imposing a curfew for minors in the city will definitely lessen the alarming rate of juvenile crime around CDO. Nowadays, a lot of adolescents are involved in gang wars, pickpocketing operations, and even drug activities, but with the curfew taking full effect city-wide, the number of crimes will certainly go down, since young people are no longer allowed to wander the streets late in the evening. Apart from decreasing the involvement of juveniles in various crimes, having a curfew will also protect children from such things as kidnapping, child trafficking, and prostitution. Parents won’t have to worry anymore about their children’s whereabouts, since they are assured that their kids will be home before 10 in the evening.

The curfew in CDO will not only fortify the safety of the children, it will also give them enough time to attend to important stuff such as studying for an exam or finishing a project or assignment instead of hanging out with their friends. It is also expected that this ordinance will help decrease the startling rate of teenage pregnancy in the city.

With the implementation of a curfew among Kagay-anons aged 15 and below, it is expected that the city will become even more orderly and peaceful, especially during the wee hours.

The Cons

No matter how we look at it, the implementation of a curfew for minors, without question, is beneficial to our city, most especially the youth. But before you say that there’s nothing wrong with this decree, read first these situations and decide:

Situation #1: Not all of us are born into a well-off family, some of us even have to start working at an early age just to be able to help our respective families earn money to buy food. Around the city, you’ll notice that there are many children working as sidewalk vendors and jeepney conductors. Despite being young, they need to work in order for them to have something to eat, but with the enactment of the city-wide curfew for minors, it means that the number of hours they can work will be reduced.

I am not encouraging child labor in the city, but as you’ve noticed, our current government does not have a concrete solution yet as regards the situation of these children who have to work at a young age just to be able to feed themselves. Although the main point of having a curfew is to keep our children safe, we need to consider that not all of them have the same family. Some are born with everything that they need, while some have to struggle and work hard to be able to get the things they need.

Situation #2: A single-mom got sick and she needs to take medicine right away. Unfortunately, the only person who can buy meds for her is her 15-year old son. All of her relatives are living far from her, and it’s too late to ask friends or co-workers to buy medicine for her. Although the pharmacy is just two blocks away from their house, her son can’t go because there’s a curfew.

A curfew for minors is undeniably for the best interests of the children, but I really do believe that there needs to be a special provision that addresses the situations I have cited. How about you? What can you say about this recently implemented ordinance in the city?

 

Bad Burgers – Is It Really Bad?

So, I just learned that there’s a new burger joint in Cagayan de Oro called Bad Burgers. Yes, I know I’m a bit late to the party, considering that it opened about four months ago. But I don’t really go out that much and I also don’t spend that much time on social networking sites, so it’s really quite normal for me not to be aware of the existence of a new establishment in the city until months after it opened.

Bad Burgers

Photo by kentstark52390

Anyway, I wanted to see if this new burger joint was really as good as my friend said it was. The name is interesting, at least, so I figured maybe the proprietors were as clever and creative with the place itself as they were with the joint’s name. And I wasn’t disappointed.

bad burgers facade

The Place

The place carries a sports theme, something you currently cannot find in any other burger joint in the city. There’s a basketball ring, a bicycle, a few jerseys, and some trophies that serve as interior décor. But what I appreciated about how they designed their space is that, even with a sports theme, the place doesn’t have an overly macho or only-for-jocks kind of ambience. In fact, the overall feel of the place is cozy enough for a family to hang out in.

The Food

They have a good variety of burgers, and contrary to what the name suggests, their burgers are actually good! They have some very interesting options as well—one with wasabi, another with pesto, and one with a black bun. These burgers may seem weird, but they’re all mouthwateringly tasty! And if you love donuts as much as you love burgers, then you’ll be sure to love their donut burger (yes, they slice a donut in half and place burger patty between the slices).

Bad Burgers in Cagayan de Oro

Of course, if you’re going there in a group, not everyone in your party may be in the mood for a burger. Not to worry, because Bad Burgers also has pasta, a couple of meals, and an all-day breakfast menu you can choose from. This may be a burger joint, but its owners sure thought way beyond burgers when they planned this place.

It may have taken months, but I sure am glad to finally have learned of the existence of CDO’s new burger joint. And I may not go out that often, but you can be sure I’ll be back sometime in the near future.