Bong Go rallies nation to fully support PH delegation to SEA Games

With the 2019 Southeast Asian Games nearing its opening next week, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go rallied his fellow Filipinos to fully support Team Philippines and assured Filipino athletes of full government support during his visit to Mandaue fire victims in Cebu City on Saturday, November 23. 
“Ako naman, ito ang panahon hindi para magturuan at magsisihan. Kailangan ng mga atleta natin ang ating full support. Barely one week na lang, magbubukas na po ang SEA Games. Let’s aim for the gold,” he said, adding that he hopes that the country will place higher in the medal rankings this year after it placed 6th in the last edition of the Games in Malaysia. 
“Number 6 tayo noong nakaraang SEA Games. May home court advantage tayo ngayon. Let’s aim for one of the top three positions. Magtulungan tayo,” Go said.
As for alleged anomalies in the handling of the funds for the Games, Go said that he himself is willing to investigate should the allegations are proven substantial. 
“As Senate Committee Chair of Sports and member of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, handa akong imbestigahan ang mga alegasyon. Kahit piso lang ang mawala sa gobyerno, handa akong imbestigahan ‘yan,” he said. 
“Basta full support tayo sa mga athletes. Lahat ibinibigay natin sa kanila. Kailangan natin ngayon ay magkaisa,” he added. 

PRRD departs for SoKor today

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte departs Manila today to participate in the 2019 ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit in Busan, Republic of Korea from 25 to 26 November 2019. 

The President will join his ASEAN counterparts and the leader of the Republic of Korea in this three-day summit to celebrate thirty years of ASEAN-ROK Dialogue relations. 

The Leaders will review ASEAN-ROK strategic partnership and chart the future direction of cooperation in pursuit of a people-centered community of peace and shared prosperity. 

With the theme, “Partnership for Peace, Prosperity for People,” the Leaders will specifically explore ways toenhance relations in the areas of trade and investment, innovation and smart city development, sustainable development, countering transboundary challenges, biodiversity, and people-to-people exchanges through cultural and academic exchanges and human resource development. 

The Leaders are also expected to discuss regional security issues and reaffirm their commitment to further strengthencooperation in maritime security and domain awareness, marine conservation, environmental protection, food and energy security, disaster management, and cybersecurity.

President Duterte will meet President Moon for the third time to take stock of PH-ROK bilateral relations as the two countries mark this year the 70th anniversary of diplomatic ties.

This visit is the President’s second visit to the Republic of Korea upon the invitation of ROK President Moon Jae-in. END



IBC 2019 kicks off in Mati

The International Biodiversity Conference 2019 kicks off in the City of Mati as several international delegates arrived since Monday for the 3-day event.

IBC 2019 will convene around the theme “Biodiversity for the People: From Ridge to Reefs”.

Attendees are researchers, environmental managers, and other stakeholders who are taking strategic actions in mainstreaming opportunities to capitalize biodiversity from ridge to reef as a toll to safeguard sustainable development for the people.

IBC 2019 will showcase the Mount Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary, one of the newest Unesco World Heritage Site, as well as Pujada Bay Landscape and Seascape of the City of Mati.

Host Davao Oriental State College of Science and Technology said the event will facilitate the exchange of information, lessons learned and catalyze action among the participants to safeguarding global biodiversity that will ultimately benefit the quality of life and economic sustainability of the people.

The venue of IBC 2019 is at Honey’s Hotel where, aside from the conference proper there is also an exhibit.

In a message by City of Mati Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat, duly represented by Vice Mayor Glenda Rabat-Gayta, the city mayor welcomed all the delegates as she expressed hope that the international conference would benefit the city’s ultimate goal of protecting and nurturing the environment so that it can be enjoyed by our future generations.

“Striking a balance between protecting the environment and allowing people to make a living using the natural resources around is somewhat like making a balancing act on a high-wire — dangerous but doable,” Mayor Michelle said.

Among the topics to be discussed in the conference are interconnecting ecosystems, sustainable management of biodiversity, innovations for biodiversity conservation, sustainable management of biodiversity, biodiversity and food security, interconnecting ecosystems, among others.

Among the studies to be presented during parallel sessions are:

1. Characteristics and habitat survival preferences of fauna in the Mati protected landscape and its implications to integrated watershed management to be presented by Ruben Amparado of the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology

2. Breaking the natural steward’s myth: cases of indigenous culture-based conservation of Philippine eagles in the Philippines to be presented by Jimbea Lucino of the Philippine Eagle Foundation

3. Three decades of Philippine primate studies: research gaps and opportunities for Philippine primatology to be presented by Lief Erickson Gamalo of the University of the Philippines Mindanao

4. Birds feeding on Cebu mistletoe Lepeostegeres cebuensis (Loranthacaeae) in Nug-as Forest, Cebu, Central Philippines to be presented by Geraldine Quinones of the Negros Oriental State University

5. Three new species of Metapocyrtus Heller 1912 from Mindanao Island, Philippines to be presented by Analyn Cabras of the University of Mindanao

6. Field documentation of Ground Beetles (Carabidae) and Tiger Beetles (Cicindelidae) in Central Cebu Protected Landscape and Alcoy Forested Area, Cebu, Philippines to be presented by Julie Otadoy of the University of San Carlos Talamban Campus

7. DNA Barcodes of bamboo-inhabiting beetles (BIB) in live and postharvested bamboos using the mitochondrial CO1 gene to be presented by Jewel Anne Salvador of the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology

Lecturers from the other parts of the world would also be speaking before the delegates, among them are Dr. Yoh Yamashita, Dean of the Educational and Research Unit for Studies of CoHHO of Kyoto University in Japan; Dr. Fernando Siringan of the University of the Philippines; and Dr. Maarten Bijleveld Van Lexmond, chairman of Task Force on Systemic Pesticides in Switzerland. (CIO MATI)

President’s landmark visit to Russia ‘fruitful’, says Go

Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said during an interview that President Rodrigo Duterte’s official visit to Russia has been fruitful so far, with the government’s campaign against terrorism earning praises from his Russian counterparts who, according to the senator, are also willing to support.
“Naging maayos naman ang pagbisita ng Pangulo. First day sa pagbisita sa Russia, nagpasalamat ang ating gobyerno. Nais din ng Pangulo na paigtingin pa ang ating relasyon sa bansang Russia, lalo na po (ang) laban sa terorismo. Alam niyo naman tuluy tuloy ang terorismo sa ating bansa. Very much willing na tumulong ang Russia,” said Go.
He added that Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated President Duterte in his fight against terrorism, saying, “Nag-congratulate naman si President Putin kay Pangulong Duterte sa laban natin kontra terorismo sa Pilipinas to lower level of terrorist threat. ‘Yun po ang unang unang nabanggit ni Presidente. Full support ang Russia sa ating bansa.”
With the security relations between the Philippines and Russia strengthened, Go said that he hopes this spills over to the economic sector through  groundbreaking business deals signed between Filipino and Russian companies which can generate economic opportunities for Filipinos.
“Umaasa po kami na maraming business opportunities ang maiuwi ng Pangulo para sa mas maraming trabaho para sa mga Pilipino sa bansa,” the senator said.
In the recent visit, Filipino business executives and their Russian counterparts signed several business agreements worth US$12.6 million. The scope of these deals range from business cooperation, agricultural exports, electric power and importation.
These include five memorandums of understanding that would enforce cooperation on information exchange and collaboration on business development to promote trade and investment between the two countries, and supply local tuna to four companies to serve the Russian market. 
Also included in the deals are two memorandums of intent that would explore the possibilities of cooperation in building nuclear power plants in the Philippines.
On Russia’s part of the deal, both countries signed a distributorship agreement for two Russian companies to sell watches and vehicles in the Philippines. A memorandum of agreement was also signed to promote, distribute and sell Russian technology in the Philippines.
The signings, which was done during the Philippines-Russia business forum in Moscow, were described as the beginning of stronger business ties between Russia and the Philippines.
Meanwhile, Go also said that he and the President will meet with the overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Russia to check on their situation. 
“Gusto rin pong bisitahin ng ating mahal na Pangulo ang ating mga kababayan dito sa Russia. Ako naman nais kong isulong ang Department of OFWs para sa ating mga kababayan para may tumututok sa kanilang mga pangangailangan,” Go said who earlier filed Senate Bill No. 202, or the “Department of Overseas Filipinos Act of 2019” last July to put government agencies dealing with the OFW concerns under one executive department.
Because services and information relative to the OFWs are scattered throughout several government offices, the proposed measure aims to streamline service delivery and promote better coordination among offices concerned with OFW affairs through a unified department solely focused on OFW concerns. 
“Hindi nababayaran yung lungkot. Mahirap mapalayo sa pamilya. Pero kailangan nilang maghanapbuhay at kumita. Nais lang namin na mag-iwan ng ngiti kahit papaano sa kanila,” Go said about OFWs.
“Tutulong po tayo na maibsan nila ang kalungkutang ito sa pamamagitan ng pagbibigay ng dekalidad na serbisyo sa kanila,” he added.