Make the Right Choice

Tomorrow 31 October 2006 is the last day for Overseas Filipinos to register as Absentee Voter. Comelec estimated that half a million Overseas Filipinos are set to vote in the coming May 2007 election. If we exercise our right to vote sincerely and wisely, then these figures are substantial enough to change the course of the history of Philippine politics.

 

Political issues, old or new may still be just around the corner, it maybe gone forever or not but for now we should focus ourselves into whom among these leaders worthy for our votes.    

 

David L. is right, let’s move on and set aside partisan politics for a moment and concentrate more on identifying whose the best one, after all it is our heart that dictates our right of choice.

 

 

Yes! Filipino people are divided on what we believe in for the good of our country but to sum it all, we have only one thing in common and that is “for the better Philippines”.

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5th Quran Reading Contest

Press Release No. NNP-53-2006 28 October 2006

PHILIPPINE EMBASSY SUCCESSFULLY STAGED THE 5TH QUR’AN READING CONTEST

28 Oct 2006 – The Philippine Embassy announced the successful conduct of the 5th Qur’an Reading Contest, a much anticipated annual event held during the Holy Month of Ramadhan.

Held on 20 Ramadhan 1427 (12 October 2006), the 5th Qur’an Reading Contest was participated in by 11 Filipino Muslim brothers from the Maguindanao, Maranaw and Tausug tribes and the Balik Islam group.

Phil. Embassy Charge de Affaires Nestor Padalhin

Phil. Embassy Charge de Affaires Nestor Padalhin

In his message to the guests and participants of the event, Charge d’Affaires, a. i. Nestor N. Padalhin said that the contest is an important, fitting and meaningful celebration of Ramadhan. He thanked the members of the Filipino Muslim community in the Kingdom for their support and more importantly, he extended his gratitude for the support given by a significant number of Saudi businessmen who generously provided prizes to all the winners and participants.

The Firm

I read interesting news item today in the Philippine Daily Inquirer titled “The Firm“. It is all about how Justice Antonio Carpio voted for a NO in the Charter Change issue.

 

Contrary to the famous novel by John Grisham  “The Firm”  in which the book shows that deception is everywhere, including the legal system, Justice Carpio on the other hand expresses his action that legal system in our country still works.  Being a Presidential appointee and having professional attachment with the Arroyo’s with his previous Law Firm does not hinder his belief in search for justice.  

 

 

Speaking of Law Firms, there are many Law Firms in our country that can produce good Judges and Justices in the future, to name a few like: a) Romulo, Mabanta, Buenaventura, Sayoc & De Los Angeles, b) Tanjuatco, Oreta, Factoran and Berenguer; and Oreta, Suarez and Narvasa c) Chan, Robles   d) Jaromay, Laurente, Pamaos  e) Mamangun & Juco f) Sycip, Salazar, Hernandez, Gatmaitan Law Firm and many more in the provinces.

 

Though abovementioned law firms are prominent and long time practicing lawyers in the Philippines, I added in the list new law offices of young energetic lawyers. 

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Justice Prevails

“The Constitution being the fundamental law of the land deserves the utmost respect and obedience of all the citizens of this nation. No one can trivialize the Constitution by cavalierly amending or revising it in blatant violation of the clearly specified modes of amendment and revision laid down in the Constitution itself”.

 

“If this Court allows today a cavalier change in the Constitution outside the constitutionally prescribed modes, tomorrow the new dominant political group that comes will demand its own set of changes in the same cavalier and unconstitutional fashion. A revolving-door Constitution does not augur well for the rule of law in this country”. – The High Tribunal

500,000 Pinoys abroad expected to vote in next year’s polls

By: Mayen Jaymalin, Philippine Star: 10/16/2006

Half a million Filipinos abroad, including undocumented workers, are set to vote in the 2007 senatorial and party-list elections, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said yesterday.

An estimated 150,000 Filipinos are expected to register for the overseas absentee voting which is ongoing until Oct. 31, Comelec Commissioner Florentino Tuason said.

In an interview, Tuason said, “500,000 is already substantial, it can make the difference on who will sit as the new senators.”

The poll official said a portion of those who registered for the coming elections are undocumented workers. “I don’t know the exact figure but we were able to encourage a number of undocumented Filipino workers to register,” he said.

Tuason noted that by registering for the coming elections, undocumented workers would not only be able to vote, but also legalize their stay abroad.

In the 2004 presidential elections, only 350,000 Filipinos abroad registered and participated in the polls.

Earlier, Tuason reported that about 5,000 Filipino migrants in the United States will be voting by mail in next year’s elections. He said the Comelec has decided to allow voting by mail in the US because it would be faster and cheaper.

Happy Eid L Fitr

Yesterday was the start of EID L FITR, the end of Ramadhan, the holy month of Islamic world. Usually, companies in Saudi Arabia are closed for a week in observance of the feast.

"Eid Mubarak"

"Eid Mubarak"

However, due to the urgency of work and company commitments with our clients, we have only one day, the 23rd of October declared a non-working day. We can’t refuse to come to work because it will be paid, normal working day, plus a day overtime and a day paid bonus – Not so bad at all.

I spent my half day (23 October) in the hospital morgue where my late co-employee laid to rest (died due to stroke) temporarily waiting completion of his documents going back home.

But my one day vacation was not really a good one. I regret visited the city proper just to experience a horrible scene like in the movie, a disturb lady jump into the hood of my friend car pretending like Lito Lapid in his action stunt flick movies. Though the car was idle she was not hurt, I trembled because the law in Saudi Arabia in this kind of situation is in contrast at home. Our friend at the back seat of the car giggled and said “Pare nakarating si Darna sa Saudi ang layo ng lipad“.

Oh What a Day! Anyway, “HAPPY EID L FITR” to everyone!

Rule by Law and Rule of Law

What is the difference between Rule “by” Law and Rule “of” Law?

The difference between “rule by law” and “rule of law” is important. Under the rule “by” law, law is an instrument of the government, and the government is above the law. In contrast, under the rule “of” law, no one is above the law, not even the government. The core of “rule of law” is an autonomous legal order. Under rule of law, the authority of law does not depend so much on law’s instrumental capabilities, but on its degree of autonomy, that is, the degree to which law is distinct and separate from other normative structures such as politics and religion. As an autonomous legal order, rule of law has at least three meanings. First, rule of law is a regulator of government power. Second, rule of law means equality before law. Third, rule of law means procedural and formal justice. By: Bo Li, What is Rule Of Law.

But the rule of law is not strengthened when it is wielded like a weapon against our enemies. It is reinforced by universally and consistently applying it. Indeed, in societies like ours, we add to the law’s majesty by letting its axe fall in the first instance on those to whom we are closest. Nothing erodes the rule of law more than when it is invoked by the very ones who brazenly and routinely manipulate it. By: Randy David

OFW Empowerment Forum

To: Fellow Overseas Filipino Workers/Filipino Migrant Workers,

 

VERY SOON “OFW Empowerment Forum” will be available where we can discuss OFWs issues and concerns and “Empowering Overseas Filipinos through Economic and Political means”. 

 

 

To many migrant NGO activists, “migrant empowerment means consciousness raising”. It means enabling the migrant workers “to appreciate the causes and effects of migration on macro and microlevels; to enable them to understand the problems that migrants face in the work place and at home; and to enable them to respond to those problems by mobilizing personal and collective resources that are available to them”

 

Page 18 of ILO, Empowering Filipino Migrant Workers, Policy Issues and Challenges, The Challenge of Empowering Filipino Migrant Workers.

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

No Objection Certificate

No objection Certificate is a legal binding document to be issued by the Philippine Embassy as a requirement for the shipment of the remains of a deceased OFW.

Likewise a “Letter of Acceptance” from the family of the deceased is also required and this document must come from DFA office. The deceased complete  address must be correctly  written in the document para sa tamang pagdadalhan ng mga labi nito at pagpapatunay na ito ay kanilang natanggap (acceptance of the family).

Remains to be shipped to country of origin

Remains to be shipped to country of origin

Upon issuance of the said LA, it will be forwarded by fax from the provincial DFA office to Manila.  The DFA Manila will forward the mentioned document to Philippine post where the body of the remains came from.

Sa lahat ng mga OFWs na may mga katanungan tungkol sa pagpauwi ng mga labi ng isang OFW, please click link: Mga Tanong at Sagot Tungkol sa Pagpauwi ng Namatay na OFW.

To those who want a copy of the PATNUBAY, a guide for OFWs rights as well as our obligations as workers in the Kingdom, kindly click link: “Patnubay sa mga Manggagawang Pilipino sa Saudi Arabia“.

****

Allow us to thank Attache Jonalyn De Leon of the Philippine Embassy-Riyadh, Repatriation Office, so with Consul Romulo “Jun” Israel, Jr. for their time in the processing and issuance of No Objection Certificate re: Deceased OFW Alex Aurelio. Philippine Embassy is closed from October 16 to 27 but they were there yesterday to serve OFWs needs.

Justice on Wheels

In Saudi Arabia we have “Embassy on Wheels” or “Consular on Wheels” to serve OFWs needs in the Kingdom.

 

I found interesting news similar to the above, if I am not mistaken, the first of its kind in the Philippines, the Supreme Court’s Justice on Wheels (JOW) Projectthe court bus“.

 

 

A brand new custom-built air-conditioned bus was turned over last Friday at the Hall of Justice at the New Capitol Site in Tagbilaran City, Bohol. The same court bus will be delivered to Agusan del Sur next month.

 

According to a news item taken from Bohol Times, the court bus has a courthouse and a mediation room. Trial of lesser cases can be held in the mobile court. Provided the families are willing, minor family or neighbor disputes can be settled amicably in the mediation room. Little crimes especially those involving youth may also be given immediate attention.

 

The bus can bring the judge, the prosecutor, defense lawyer, interpreter, stenographer and others to the rural and even remote areas and near to the litigants. The mobile court is patterned after the Guatemala experience. 

SPMII’s Recruitment of Members

SPMII’s Recruitment of Members in Kingdom Is Illegal, Manila Warns
Arab News

JEDDAH, 16 October 2006 – Filipinos in the Kingdom who are in possession of identification cards or documents bearing the logos or names of Philippine government agencies and issued by the Sangguniang Masang Pilipino International, Inc. (SMPII) should surrender these to the Philippine Embassy urgently, the embassy’s chargé d’ affaires said yesterday.

Consul General Nestor N. Padalhin said he has also ordered SMPII leaders to take back the ID cards it had issued to its members and to turn these over to the embassy.
Padalhin said he was only following instructions from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in Manila to confiscate such IDs or documents from the group because their use is “illegal.”

In a telephone interview with Arab News, Padalhin quoted the DFA directive as saying that while the SMPII as an organization is accredited by the Philippine National Police (PNP), “it is not authorized to recruit members anywhere outside the Philippines.”

“It is not allowed to recruit members abroad, much less conduct military trainings,” he said.

Padalhin said he summoned the group’s leader, who uses the name Maj. Elpidio R. Tanaliga Jr. and the title “commander in chief,” to the embassy to inform him of the DFA directive, but Tanaliga sent a representative instead.

More Than 800 Members
Efforts to get the side of Tanaliga proved futile. His cell phone number provided by the embassy could not be reached.

But in a report published by another paper on Saturday, Tanaliga denied allegations that his group was engaged in a scam.

Tanaliga was quoted as saying the SMPII has more than 800 members from Dammam, Riyadh, Jeddah, Hafer Al-Batin and Hofuf, who believe in what his group is doing for the community. He said the group is “helping and promoting camaraderie among us Filipinos and helping those who are in need of assistance.”

Among the group’s humanitarian activities, he said, were donations of relief goods to victims of the deadly landslides in Quezon province in December of 2004 and in Southern Leyte last February, funding of the surgery that restored young Rosete Catibayan’s hearing, airline tickets for distressed Filipino workers who were repatriated to the Philippines, and goodies for wards of the embassy’s Bahay Kalinga shelter in Riyadh.

Tanaliga was further quoted as saying the group has 20 taxicabs in the Philippines being operated by members under franchise, a 15.3-hectare housing project in Rosario, Batangas, a textbook program for members’ children, and a revolving credit fund for its members.

Clear Directive
Padalhin, nonetheless, said the DFA directive was clear that the SMPII’s recruitment of members in the Kingdom was a violation of its accreditation with the PNP as a non-government organization.

The directive was signed in behalf of DFA Secretary Alberto Romulo by Ambassador Oscar Valenzuela, head of the DFA’s Office of Middle East Affairs, he said. “I will issue an advisory in due time,” Padalhin said when asked for a copy of the directive.

In a press statement earlier, he reminded Filipinos in the Kingdom to be wary of organizations whose activities may also violate laws of Saudi Arabia.
In a meeting with Padalhin last month after news of SMPII’s activities first came out, Tanaliga and his cohorts reportedly denied that they were conducting military or police trainings.

Arab News learned, however, that during the group’s graduation ceremonies last May, it’s members even had a “pass-in-review” in the outskirts of Riyadh.

Padalhin said the SMPII leaders also showed proof that they were not using the PNP’s name or logo. But he noted that the letterhead of SMPII communications to the embassy showed otherwise.

Padalhin said Tanaliga and his cohorts did admit to him that the group do process papers for its members so that they could easily get guns with license when they are in the Philippines.

A police officer in the Philippines who talked with Arab News by phone said it is in this particular offer of SMPII that a gullible member could lose money. “Kung magbabayad ka diyan (sa Saudi Arabia) para sa baril at lisensya tapos tinanggihan ng PNP ang aplikasyon mo, yari ka (If you pay for a gun and license there (in Saudi Arabia) and your application is rejected by the PNP, you may lose your money,” said the officer, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak in behalf of the PNP. The officer said applicants for a gun license are required, among others, to undergo drug and neuro-psychiatric tests.

” Kapag ‘di ka makapasa sa isa dito, wala kang makukuhang lisensya (if you fail any one of these, you won’t be given a gun license),” he said.

Philippine Absentee Voting Registration to Go On During Eid Holidays

Philippine Absentee Voting Registration to Go On During Eid Holidays
Arab News

RIYADH, 11 October 2006 – Filipinos in the Central and Eastern regions of the Kingdom are being invited to take advantage of the Eid holidays to sign up in the overseas absentee voting (OAV) registration campaign.

The registration schedule at the embassy today, on Saturday and on Sunday is from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

The embassy will be closed from Oct. 16 to 27 in observance of the Eid holidays, but a moble team will go to the field to continue the registration activity.

On Oct. 20, registration will be held from 3 to 8 p.m. at the Al Rashed Abetong Company Ltd. in Riyadh’s Second Industrial City.

An embassy statement yesterday said the activity is being organized by Mike Mones of the Al Rashed Abetong Co. in coordination with Manuel Amora of the Kalipunang Kaakabay ng Manggagawang Pilipino sa Saudi Arabia (Kakampi-KSA) and Mario Ben of the Kapatiran sa Gitnang Silangan (KGS).

The OAV team will also be ready to go to places to conduct mobile registration where there are substantial number of Filipinos who wish to sign up.

Requests for a mobile team and inquiries on the Absentee Voter’s Registration may be directed to Attaché Delza Deriada at telephone number (01) 488-0835 extension 2002 or at direct line (01)482-3559.

When the normal office schedule resumes at the embassy and the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah on Oct. 28, registration will also continue until the last day, Oct. 31.

The Commission on Election (Comelec) in Manila has extended the registration deadline to Oct. 31 from Aug. 31 upon the request of various overseas Filipino groups to give those who have yet to register a chance to sign up so that they can vote in the 2007 election.

Overseas absentee voters can vote for candidates for the 12 Senate seats up for grabs next year, plus the party-list seat in the House of Representatives.

The OAV Secretariat in Manila has noted that the response of Filipinos in the Kingdom in the ongoing registration campaign had been dismal.

As of Sept. 30, only about 7,940 have registered since the new list-up opened in Sept. 1, last year, even though the embassy’s OAV team had been traveling to remote places to make it easier for OFWs to register.

In the latest outreach registration conducted by the mobile OAV team together with the Embassy-on-Wheels consular outreach program in Alkhobar on Sept. 21 and at Al-Khafji (approximately 345 km north of Alkhobar and about 100 km to the border of Kuwait), only 149 applications for registration were filed.

The activity at the Al Sahil Hotel in Al-Khafji was organized by the Saudi Arabian Hiligaynon Inc. (SAHI) led by Florante Catanus in cooperation with the Afscom Eastern Region led by Roilo Alojado and the Al-Khafji Filipino Association of Fernando Crisostomo.

Response to the current registration was a far cry from the more than 96,000 Filipinos in the Kingdom registered in 2003, the highest worldwide at that time.

SLL Art. 143, Medical and Social Services

I received an email (e-group) awareness on how to identify signs of stroke and I am so thankful to share this to everyone, especially to OFWs in the Kingdom where our routine life is work, eat and sleep without exercise and in the absence of medical examination, we don’t know how in good physical shape we are.

 

My Co-worker last week stumbled and fall in his flat. But prior to that we didn’t notice any signs that he was suffering from an abnormal high blood pressure or worst even him.

 

Due to the distance of travel from our flat which is 35 kilometers away from the city proper, immediate medical attention were not given to him at the time when he needed it most. He is in coma right now with a tube attached in his throat and according to the doctors he have slim chance to live and only miracle could save his life. He is 45 years old, single and from Bacolod.

 

Medical Report from Dr. Abdul Rahman Al Mishari Hospital dated 14 Oct. 2006 says that the patient is deeply comatose, decerebrating movement in the limbs GSC: 4/15, pupils constricted not reactive to light, no signs of injury on the body with a BP: 170/100 mmHg, RR: 88, Temp: 39 deg.C, the patient did not present any clinical improvement in the cerebral conditions. 

 

Update: At exactly 1:16 PM today 15 Oct. 2006, OFW Alex Aurelio, my co-employee, a friend and an OAV advocate, passed away. May the Lord God Almighthy blessed his soul.

 

Companies in Saudi Arabia that employs considerable numbers of employees are required to have a resident or visiting doctors and a nurse. However, most of the companies here have only designated clinics or hospitals where the employees could visit if they need medical attention at the expense of the employer.

 

Part VIII Protection against occupational hazards, protection against major industrial accidents, job injuries and health and social services, Chapter IV, Medical and Social Services, Article 143 of the New Saudi Labor Law states:

 

The employer shall assign one or more physicians to provide at least once a year a comprehensive medical examination for his workmen who are exposed to any of the occupational diseases listed in the schedules of occupational diseases provided for in the Social Insurance Regulation. The findings of the investigations shall be documented in the employer’s records as well in the workmen’s files.

 

 

“A patient’s blood pressure is checked through the use of a sphygmomanometer. High blood pressure, or hypertension, is one of the primary risk factors for stroke. However, many patients can control their blood pressure through diet or medication and reduce their risk of suffering a stroke.

 

If you’re an OFW in Saudi Arabia, please don’t wait for a year, YOU must see a doctor once a month and have a comprehensive medical check-up. 

 

 

To everyone: a tip to identify STROKE:

 

If everyone can remember something this simple, we could save some folks. Seriously, please read: STROKE IDENTIFICATION:

 

A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the effects of a stroke, totally. He said the trick was getting a stroke recognized, diagnosed, and then getting the patient medically cared for within 3 hours, which is tough. Remember the “3” steps, STR. Read and Learn! 

 

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke.

 

Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions: 

 

S – Ask the individual to SMILE

T – Ask the person to TALK to SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE

R – Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.

NOTE:    Another “sign” of a stroke is this: Ask the person to “stick” out their tong
ue. If the tongue is “crooked”, if it goes to one side or the other that is also an indication of a stroke.

Departing OFWs exempted from $3.50 airport security fee

Departing OFWs exempted from $3.50 airport security fee
By: Jonathan M. Hicap, The Manila Times: 10/8/2006

Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will be exempted from paying the new $3.50 (P175) security fee the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) will be charging departing passengers beginning next month.

Robert Uy, MIAA head executive assistant, said a legal opinion from the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel (OGCC) said the security fee is part of the airport fees under the Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipino Act, a law which exempts OFWs from paying travel tax and other fees.

The exemption of OFWs would cost MIAA P200 million annually, but Uy said the money being sent by migrant workers to the country is more than enough reason to let them go abroad without paying additional fees.

The security fee will be imposed by MIAA to fund the airport’s P1.25-billion security program. MIAA originally proposed a $5 fee, but lowered it to $3.50 after consulting with airlines. The security fee is on top of the P550 terminal fee being paid by outbound international passengers.

Former senator Ernesto Herrera, secretary-general of the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP), earlier said OFWs are exempted from paying the fee. He said the additional fee violates the migrant law.

Herrera said as long as migrant workers could present their overseas employment certificate at the airport, they are exempted.

The MIAA is working to incorporate the new fee to tickets issued by airlines. MIAA General Manager Alfonso Cusi said the security fee is needed to enhance security measures at the airport. This includes the purchase of high-tech scanning equipment and the closed-circuit cameras. He said the cost of security equipment had become prohibitive especially after the September 11, 2001, attacks in the United States.

In the first half of the year, 564,920 OFWs went abroad, according to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration.

3-IN-1

3 in 1, seems like coffee rolled into one, Coffee, Sugar and Creamer. But it is not, it is a meeting organize by our energetic Labor Attache in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Rustico Dela Fuente.

 

Dubbed  as POLO-OWWA 3-IN-1 is an event for the following activities:

 

1)      Assembly of Leaders in Riyadh for the presentation of the outcome of the Filipino Community Leaders Consultation Series.

2)     Launching of the New OFW Reintegration Program. This reintegration preparedness program of OWWA is a special initiative for the benefit of the OFWs in Riyadh.

3)    Forum on Aquaculture Investment Potentials. This will feature the presentation of Dr. Rolando B. Edra of the Dept. of Science and Technology (DOST) Manila.

 

It will be held on October 20, 2006 (Friday) from 1:00 PM to 6:30 PM at the Chancery Lobby, Philippine Embassy, Diplomatic Quarter.

 

A great opportunity indeed to all interested OFWs in Riyadh to attend such activities.

 

Me, I will try if I can make it, we have OAV registration in Industrial Area, Riyadh at 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM. the same day. Conflict of schedule, huh!

 

To: Sir Resty, Thank you for this Coffee, di ko pa natitikman pero am sure “it’s a great taste”  Mabuhay ka Sir!

OAV Registration etc.

Press Release No. NNP-51/2006

09 October 2006

 

 PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS ABSENTEE VOTING

REGISTRATION EXTENDED ANEW TO 31 OCTOBER

 

Philippine Embassy announced today the extension of the Overseas Absentee Voting (OAV) Registration period until 31 October 2006 by virtue of Commission on Elections Resolution Nos. 7694 and 7707.

 

The registration schedule at the Embassy during the Holy Month of Ramadhan is from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. daily from Saturday to Wednesday.  However, the Embassy will be closed from 16-27 October 2006 in observance of the Eid El Fitr holidays.

 

Although the Embassy will be closed for public transactions during the holidays, the Embassy OAV team will be conducting mobile registration on 20 October 2006, Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Al Rashed Abetong Company Ltd., Second Industrial City of Riyadh.  The activity is organized by Mr. Mike Mones of the Al Rashed Abetong Co. in coordination with Mr. Manuel Amora of the Kalipunang Kaakabay ng Manggagawang Pilipino sa Saudi Arabia (KAKAMPI-KSA) and Mr. Mario Ben of the Kapatiran sa Gitnang Silangan (KGS).

 

In earlier field services, the Embassy mobile OAV team together with the Embassy-on-Wheels consular outreach program traveled to the Eastern Region and conducted field registration on 21 September 2006 at the Al Bustan Hotel in Al Khobar.

 

On 22 September, the OAV team traveled to Al-Khafji (approximately 345 kms. north of Al Khobar and about 100 kms. to the border of Kuwait) and conducted registration a the Al Sahil Hotel together with the outreach programme for overseas Filipino workers.  The registration was organized by the Saudi Arabian Hiligaynon Inc. (SAHI) led by Mr. Florante Catanus and in cooperation with the AFSCOM Eastern Region led by Mr. Roilo Alojado and the Al-Khafji Filipino Association led by Mr. Fernando Crisosto.

 

The two-day activity processed 149 applications for registration of Overseas Absentee Voters.

 

Requests to conduct mobile registration and other inquiries regarding Absentee Voter’s Registration may be directed to Attache Delza Deriada at telephone number (01) 4880835 extension 2002 or at direct line (01)4823559.

 

*****

A consular team from the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh is scheduled to visit the Eastern Province on 02-03 November 2006.

 

Filipino residents and workers in the province are advised to proceed to the Al-Bustan Hotel, Al-Khobar on 02-03 November 2006 and in Romansiah Hall, Ras Tanura on 03 November 2006 for any consular services they may require.  The following services are available: 1)Passport renewal  2)Authentication of documents 3) Notarials 4)Report of Birth 5)Report of Marriage 6)Requirements for RA 9048 correction of clerical error in the birth certificate 7)Requirements for RA 9225 (re-acquisition/retention of Philippine citizenship).

 

The team will receive and process/service applications according to the following schedule: AL KHOBAR, Thursday, 02 November 2006, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 nn and 1:00 p.m. to   4:00 p.m.  Also, Friday, 03 November 2006,  9:00 a.m. to  12:00 nn.

 

In RAS TANURA, Friday, 03 November 2006.  8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

IT group in Davao

A group of  IT enthusiasts composed of an ICT professionals like Jason Banico, the guy behind Funchain, an ex-OFW from Saudi Arabia and a friend of mine Mr. Bert Barriga, so with my idol blogger, political activist Davao City Councilor Peter Lavina and others, had just recently formed an umbrella organization focusing  information and communications technology that intends to foster tri-partite collaboration between government, academe and industry.

 

 

This moved will help Davao community-based organizations develop online information in the public interest to facilitate the broad use of information technology to benefit the community.

Launched last October 6, the founding organizations are the Philippine Society of IT Educators (PSITE-Region XI), Council of Deans in I.T. Education (CDITE-Region XI), Association of Computer Businesses in Mindanao (ACBM), DabaWegnu, Association of Solution Integrators in Davao, Inc (ASID), Internet Cafe’ Association of Davao, Inc. (ICAD), Technical Expert for Computer Hardware & Software Support, Inc (TechSupport) and MIS-Corporate.

Congrats to all Davaoenos! Good Luck  Sir Pete, Jason and Bert. Mabuhay Kayo! 

By ofwempowerment Posted in Bloggers

Dream House for OFWs

Magandang Araw Kabayan!

( We have Good Offer for OFWs- HURRY!!)

 

HOUSE & LOT

at

 

Laguna BelAir III/IV, Sta. Rosa, Laguna

Governor’s Hills, Gen. Trias, Cavite

Sunrise Hills, Dasmarinas, Cavite

 

 

 

We are the MEGAWORLD CORPORATION, a leading builder and developer of township villages, residential (house & lot) and condominiums in Philippines.

 

Kami po ang Representative dito sa Riyadh – Central Region ng Saudi Arabia upang maglingkod sa inyo at makatulong sa pagbibigay ng katuparan sa inyong pangarap na magkaroon ng bahay at lupa at kondominyum para sa inyong mga mahal sa buhay.

 

Nakahanda kaming tumugon sa inyong mga nais malaman, and we are ready to assist you in determining the most affordable terms you need.

 

Contact Persons: Manuel “Bong” Amora, Marketing Associate

Contacts: 0509-797-120 / bongamora14@yahoo.com

 

Or  Alex Veloso Bello,  Marketing Manager

Mobile: 0504-490-471  /  0562-122-195

Email:   alex.bello@sa.abb.com  or  alexvelosobello@yahoo.com  

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Rafael E. Seguis Leadership Award

There are many award giving bodies or private organizations overseas that recognizes commendable groups or individuals who have dedicated their work in the service of the Filipino people. Individuals or leaders of community initiatives that promote the common good, advocates for the promotion and protection of the rights of others as well as lending a hand to those in needs in their community and at home.

In Saudi Arabia, there are also many deserving Filipino community groups worthy to be recognized, to name a few like the Boholano Community in Jeddah, Overseas Filipino Workers Cooperative Council-Jeddah, Gawad Kalinga-KSA, and the newly organized Filipinos Worldwide for Progressive Philippines (Filipinos for Better Philippines-FFBP) and many more. 

Just recently the United Surigaonon Association in the Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia (USA-EPSA) launched the Rafael E. Seguis Leadership Award, or RESLA. The recipient of the honor will be given to a Surigaonon whose leadership contribution helped improve the lives of others. The award is named after Rafael E. Seguis, a Surigaonon himself, and a former Ambassador in the Kingdom and now Undersecretary of the Dept. of Foreign Affairs.

RESLA is a good idea promoting regionalized concept in recognizing others for their selfless objective and dedication for the betterment of their respective community.

How about Pres. Carlos P. Garcia Leadership award for Boholanos?, Pres. Diosdado Macapagal for Capampangans?. Pres. Sergio Osmena, Sr. for the Cebuanos?, Etc. etc.  

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

A Novel to Read

A NOVEL TO READ 

By: John Grisham  

                   

                 

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

Dual Citizens and their Right to Vote

In Philippine E-Legal Forum it says:

May dual citizens vote even without the one-year residency requirement provided in the Constitution? Yes,  according to the Supreme Court in the case of Nicolas-Lewis vs. COMELEC (G.R. No. 162759, 4 August 2006).

57775_passport_tmbThe persons who filed the petition are successful applicants for recognition of Philippine citizenship under RA 9225, referring to themselves as “duals” or dual citizens. Long before the 2004 elections, they sought registration and certification as “overseas absentee voter” under R.A. 9189 (the Overseas Absentee Voting Act of 2003). Unfortunately, they were told that they cannot yet vote in the 2004 elections because they lack the one-year residency requirement.  Read the rest of this entry>>>

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Note:  My sincere apology to my readers and concerned personalities for the below comments that was erroneously posted as suggested by Dr. Peter Payoyo instead by Atty. Henry Rojas.

Atty. Henry Rojas is the author of the OAV book: The Philippine experience published last year by CMA and Friedrich Ebert Stftung (FES). He has done extensive studies and researches too on OAV laws and practices of other countries.

Regarding possible amendment of OAV Law R.A. 9189, Atty. Henry Rojas suggested that:

“in the light of the Supreme Court’s recent decision upholding the right of dual citizens to vote sans the residence/domicile requirement, Section 5(d) of R. A. 9189 should likewise be amended to remove the mandatory residence in the Philippines demanded from immigrants/permanent residents within 3 years from registration as an overseas absentee voter. Otherwise, it would appear that dual citizens have greater rights than the Filipino immigrants/permanent residents”.  

On the other hand Dr. Peter Payoyo from PSAP-Netherlands (Philippine Seafarers Assistance Program) for Seafarers commented the following:

“Greece registered the largest population of seafarers in the last elections because of the phenomenon of “land-based seafarers” there – i.e. OFWs with seafarers’ documents and work in the domestic services sector ashore. Rotterdam came next in the stats; this was because of the expensive logistical assistance from PSAP extended to active seafarers for them to register. Voter turn out was poor overall, largely because seafarers who registered abroad were being asked to vote in person at the same place where they have registered”.

3rd AJG Forum in Cebu

Last 29 September 2006, the 3rd Alfred J. Ganapin forum dubbed as “The 2006 ILO Consolidated Labour Convention” Implementing the Magna Carta for Filipino Seafarers was held at Park Lane Hotel, Cebu.

 The said forum was organized by the Philippine Seafarers Assistance Programme (PASAP) based in Rotterdam, Center for Migrant Advocacy, Philippines, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) and Cordaid Misereor Filipino Seafarers Family Caregivers Association, a Cebu-based organization of seafarers and their families.

Ms. Ellene Sanna & My Wife Minda Amora

Ms. Ellene Sanna & My Wife Minda Amora

Below, the background paper provided by CMAP Executive Director Ms. Ellene Sana prior to the said convention:

The Convention is conceived to become the “fourth pillar” of the international maritime regulatory regime, together with the three key IMO Conventions: the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Convention (STCW) and the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL).

In historic move to regulate labour and industrial relations in the maritime sector, the International Labour Conference adopted the Maritime Labour Convention on 23 February 2006, otherwise known as the “Magna Carta for Seafarers”. This is the very first international agreement of its kind, not only consolidating and updating all relevant ILO Conventions and Recommendations, but also addressing the challenges and predicaments brought about by the globalization of the shipping industry. It is a precedent-setting instrument because, according to ILO Director General Juan Somavia, the Convention marks “a new departure in the pursuit of a fair globalization by making the rules of the game fair for everybody. At the same time, the market should have the necessary space to perform its key functions for the economy and for society. In the search for solutions it has become more and more evident that there can be no lasting success with purely national solutions to global problems.”

The Convention sets out minimum requirements and a wide range of rights to decent work for seafarers and contains provisions on conditions of employment, recruitment, hours of work and rest, accommodation, recreational facilities, food and catering, health protection, medical care, welfare and social security protection.

Among the novel features of the Convention are its form and structure, embodying both legally binding standards as well as directives given as guidelines. Its amendment procedures are rapid and, most importantly, it sets out a system for the certification of seafarers’ labour conditions.

The Philippines, as the country supplying the biggest number of international seafarers, will be heavily affected by the new ILO Convention, in terms of policies and priorities impacting on sea-based OFWs. More importantly, Filipino seafarers, which make up the biggest nationality group in the global maritime workforce, hold tremendous stakes in the meaningful realization and implementation of the Convention.

The Cebu Forum will be the very first opportunity in the Philippines (and so far, in the whole world) to publicly deliberate on the Maritime Labour Convention: its coverage and contents, its implications, and its consequences to a full range of national stakeholders-seafarers and their families, government agencies, the private sector (principally shipping companies and crewing agencies), maritime training and education institutions, international bodies, and non-governmental/civil society organizations.

Thus, the Forum will give attention to the responsibilities of, and challenges to, the Philippines government-or the government’s basic policy on the ratification and early implementation of this novel international agreement. Under the Convention, primordial expectations are given to a “labour supply State” – a new actor in international maritime law.

By ofwempowerment Posted in Others

PhilEmb Cautions OFWs

Press Release No. NNP-49/2006

Phil. Embassy in Riyadh Diplomatic Quarter

Phil. Embassy in Riyadh Diplomatic Quarter

PHILIPPINE EMBASSY IN RIYADH

ADVISES FILIPINOS IN SAUDI ARABIA

TO ABIDE BY THE LAWS, RULES AND REGULATIONS

AND TO REFRAIN FROM ENGAGING IN ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES

IN THE KINGDOM

Riyadh, 03 October 2006. – The Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia is advising Filipinos in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) to abide by the laws, rules and regulations and to refrain from engaging in illegal activities in the Kingdom. The Embassy, in a statement, said that, as guests in the Kingdom, Filipinos and other migrant nationalities are not only expected, but are obliged to follow and respect the local laws and regulations being enforced.

This advisory is being issued by the Embassy, after it determined that there are one hundred forty-seven (147) male Filipinos who were in detention for various offenses, in ten (10) different jails under the jurisdiction of the Embassy, as of the beginning of September 2006.

Similarly, the Embassy also determined that there were one hundred nine (109) female Filipino citizens being detained at Al Nisa Women’s Jail at the end of September 2006, also for various offenses, for a total of two hundred fifty six (256) Filipino detainees, down from 337 in August 2006.

Most common offenses committed by the Filipinos are: alcohol-related offenses, immorality, gambling (cockfighting and other forms of gambling), drug-related offenses, embezzlement and forgery. It is considered not only immoral, but also illegal, for men and women, in particular unmarried couples, to be seen together shopping or eating in a restaurant.

Aside from visiting, monitoring and extending assistance to the two hundred fifty six (256) detained Filipinos, there were seventy-one (71) female domestic helpers in the Embassy’s Bahay Kalinga (BK), compared to 175 in June this year, whom the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) of the Embassy is also assisting.

As far as the Filipino workers at Bahay Kalinga is concerned, the Embassy wishes to express sincere appreciation for the assistance extended by some Filipino community organizations (e.g. Tulong at Pag-asa sa OFW or TUPA, ANCOP/GAWAD KALINGA, Born Again Community, etc.) for providing airline tickets, food, basic necessities, etc. to the Filipinos thereat.

In a related development, the Philippine Embassy is also advising the Filipino community to be more cautious in joining organizations, the objectives and activities of which maybe violative of the laws and regulations of the Kingdom. It may be stressed, in this regard, that Embassy registration or recognition of the existence of these organizations does not constitute approval of their activities which may violate the regulations of the host country, especially their activities held outside the Embassy premises. Any Filipino who wishes to complain to the Embassy against any one of these organizations must do so in writing, preferably in an affidavit form, attaching documentary evidence which can be verified in the Kingdom, in the Philippines, etc. as the case may be.

Filipinos in the Kingdom are also reminded to be more vigilant against people who are out to take advantage of their ignorance or weakness and to deprive them of their hard-earned money. The Embassy has been receiving some reports in this regard.

Finally, the Embassy is also advising Filipinos who are driving vehicles in the Kingdom to be very extra careful in driving, noting the big number of road traffic/vehicular accidents involving Filipinos and resulting in deaths. For the month of September 2006 alone, the Embassy received twenty-two (22) Reports of Death, seven (7) of whom were due to road traffic-vehicular accident. END