Pantranco employees elect their officers

BY MAR T SUPNAD

 

               Displaced employees of the defunct government-owned Pantranco North Express Inc (PNEI), elected Saturday their new set of 15 Union officers called Pantranco Retrenched Employees Association (PANREA), paving the way for their smooth release of their long delayed benefits.

After the successful election, the newly- elected 15-member of the Board then chose among themselves, under their constitution and by-laws,  their four key top officers.

Reelected president was Romy Alfonso; Vice president Hermie Navarro; Secretary Pedro Barrientos, and  Treasurer Ms. Ofel  Manabat.

The elected Union officers will serve a three-year term.

Alfonso and Manabat expressed optimism that the fresh mandate given to them by the Union members will pave the way for a smoother release of their long delayed additional monetarial benetis that was blocked by “too-much politicking” by other members of the Pantranco employees.

Under the leadership and initiatives of Alfonso and Manabat, tens of millions of pesos had been released and paid to the employees in the past years. However, some more should be given to the employees as their separation benefits after the Pantranco, then sequestered by the Presidential Commission on good Government, went bankrupt and suddenly closed shop, without the employees being paid.

The National Labor Relations Commission and the Court of Appeals ruled that the remaining assets of Pantranco should be given to the displaced employees as their monetary benefits.

  Alfonso said that tens of millions of pesos are awaiting for distribution to the 500 members of the group after they won from Court of Appeals for the granting of franchise of around 489 units of the bus that will, in turn, be sold to cover the monetarial benefits of the employees.  

               According to the PANREA president, they can now act freely to dispose their franchise and other assets of the company, then,  he said another set of monetary benefits will be distributed to the employees.

               Alfonso lauded the CA ruling granting their petition, saying the long-delayed justice for the displaced employees of Pantranco, can now be achieved.

               Survived from a heart by-pass operation, Alfonso said the said 489 new units can then be sold  and the millions of pesos proceeds of which will be immediately distributed to the more than 500 –strong member of PANREA.

               “Maliban sa magandang balita na naipanalo natin ang prankisa ng ating units ay naipanalo na rin natin ang inilabang pagpapatitulo sa ating lote sa Santiago City matapos aprobahan ng korte ang titulo natin sa lupa na matagal nang ginagamit na kalsada ng Santiago City; Natural babayaran na ng pamahalaan ang ating lote doon at ito ay idi distribute na naman natin sa mga miyembro pagkatapos ng election,” pointed out Alfonso.

               Mar T Supnad

                 

 

 

Rape suspect arrested by CIDG

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT- The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in Bataan arrested Friday a suspected rapist who was wanted by the law for allegedly facing three counts of rape in Bataan.

 

Chief Inspector Ruben S. Tampis, Bataan CIDG provincial officer, reported that Armando Gavino, Jr., of Orani town, Bataan was collared at about 9:35am of March 7, 2014, by the Bataan CIDG Detectives that he personally after they  conducted operation against wanted persons inside Subic Bay Freeport Zone, Olongapo City.

 

The apprehension of Gavino brought to seven the number of top most wanted persons arrested by Major Tampis and his men in two months time.

 

 

According to Major Tampis, the arrest of Gavino was based on  virtue of Warrant of Arrest issued on 22 March,  2012 by Judge Remigio Escalada, Jr of Regional Trial Court branch 3, Balanga City in Connection with Criminal Cases numbers  12693, 12694 and 12695 (3 counts) for Rape with no bail recommended in all cases.

 

 The case stemmed from the complaint of one Vens, who was then a minor for the alleged rape perpetrated against her by Gavino on three different occasions in 2010.

 

 Gavino  is listed Number  2 Most Wanted Person of Orani, Bataan and is now under the custody of Bataan CIDG office, added Tampis.-Mar T Supnad

 

Social justice finally achieved by PNEI employees

CA upholds LTFRBs decision granting new franchise to Pantranco

BY MAR T SUPNAD

 

 

               After long years of legal battle, the Court of Appeals has upheld the decision of the Land Transportation and Regulatory Board approving the renewal of franchises of the defunct government owned Pantranco North Express, Inc. (PNEI), citing social justice to the thousands of employees.

               In its 13-page final and executory decision, copy of which was obtained by this  writer,   the CA’s 7th Division chaired by Associate Justice Noel Tijam, dismissed the petition for certiorari filed by Phil. Rabbit Bus, Genesis Transport Service and Pangasinan Solid North Transit, as it recognizes the decision of the LTFRB in “finding subject franchises (of Pantranco) to be valid and existing, merely gave life to the constitutional provision of social justice.”

               The C.A.’s decision, which was also supported by two members- Associate Justices Romeo Barza and Ramon Cruz- has put to rest all the adverse issues being floated by the opposing transportation companies.

               “This is a victory of our members who have long been denied of justice due to the personal interest of others and we laud the CA for finally giving social justice to us,” said Romy Alfonso and Ofel Manabat, President and Treasurer of the Pantranco  Retrenched Employees  Association (PANREA) who led personally the initiative in fighting for the benefits of more than 2,000 employees.

               With the order , Pantranco Union leaders can now sell their Certificate of Public Convenience, consisting  roughly 777 units to private bus companies, and the proceeds of which will go to the employees as their monetarial benefits.

               Citing policy of social justice, in the land mark case of “Calalang vs Williams, 70 Phil. 726” and reiterated on the case of PAL vs Santos, (218 SCRA 415-1993), “the law bends over backwards to accommodate the interest of the working class on the humane justification that those with less privilege in life should have more privilege in law.”             

Earlier, the   opposing bus companies claimed that the franchises issued by the LTFRB was illegal since it was already a “dead” franchise and no longer existing.

               But the CA believes that “to say that the CPCs expired during the sequestration and rehabilitation of   PNEI would run counter to the very purpose of sequestration and rehabilitation…The LTFRB has the power to ‘issue, amend, revise, suspend or cancel CPCs.”

               The CA said the LTFRB acted lawfully when it approved the sale and transfer of CPCs to the private bus companies.

               Noting the more than 20 long years of legal battle initiated by the Pantranco employees, the CA said “it would remain a hollow paper victory if the subject franchises  are to be found to be invalid…”

               Alfonso said, however, that they will continue the legitimate selling of the franchise right after the general assembly and holding of elections of Union officers come March 8.

Pantranco was earlier sequestered by the Presidential Commission on Good Government.-Mar T Supnad

                

Bataan elec rates to lower next month

BALANGA CITY, Bataan-  Governor Abet S. Garcia expressed optimism yesterday that the power rate in Bataan will be lowered next month once the normal operations of the  turbines of the GN power plant in Mariveles town resume in normal operations.

               Briefing newsmen at the Bulwagan building here, the governor pointed out that the conking out of one of the turbines of GN power has triggered the increase of power rates in Bataan, which usually one of the lowest power rates in the country.

               “Hopefully, bababa na next month ang ating electric bills oras na naiayos na yong isang nasirang turbines sa GN power plant; konting oaras na lang at magagawa na yong nasirang turbine sa GN,” pointed out Garcia.

 Bataenbos were shocked and caught by surprise when they  received their jack up bills the other month, after it was suddenly increased by almost 50 percent.

               GN power runs two 600 megawatts power plant in Mariveles that supplies the Luzon grid.

               Being the host province, then governor now congressman Tet Garcia and then congressman now governor Abet S. Garcia, worked and appealed to GN power for the cheaper power rates for the province. The GN power management agreed.

               Before the GN turbines conked out, Bataan was experiencing the lowest power rates in the region.

               But the young governor pointed out that the malfunction of one of the turbines of GN power plant was just temporary and that the management is now rushing to fix it.

 This was confirmed by Engr. Loreto Marcelino, General Manager of the Peninsula Electric Cooperative (PENELCO), distributor of electricity in Bataan, whose power supply is coming from GN Power plant

 

               A foreign owned company, the  GN power plant was just constructed more than two years ago along the coastal barangay of Alas-asin, Mariveles town.        

               “  Sa mga bagong itinatayong power plant na ganun ay normal pala daw na nasisirang pansamantala dahil parang nasa observation or dry run period pa lamang kasi,” added Garcia.   

               Mar T Supnad

Ausie eyes Super Ferry in Bataan

A ROLL ON, ROLL OFF

BY MAR T SUPNAD

 

 

               PROVINCIAL CAPITOL, Bataan- An Australian Ferry Boat company is eyeing to ply Bataan- Roxas boulevard route via Manila Bay, that will make Bataan, if pushes through, nearer to Manila.

               Briefing newsmen based here, Governor Abet S. Garcia revealed that talks for the resumption of a Ferry boat service in this province is going on, saying the company can easily perhaps utilize its ferry boats here since it has already an existing trips in Visayas region.

               Garcia said the Ferry boat is a super fast sea craft that can travel for around 30 to 40 minutes only from Bataan to Roxas Blvd., Manila.

               “Just imagine, you can reach Manila by less than one hour only and you can bring your cars with you  for 30 to 40 minutes only since this is a Roll on, Roll off (RoRo) boat,” pointed out the young governor.

               The governor expressed optimism that by this time around, the RoRo ferry boat service will be patronized by Bataenos as they can bring their cars and other vehicles to Metro Manila without the hassle of monstrous traffic jams and gasoline expenses.

               “Hindi ka na mata trapik, ginhawa at makakarating ka pa on time sa Manila na dala-dala mo yong kotse o van mo,”  said the bachelor governor.

               Bataan has already an existing new port with terminal and office facilities and sprawling parking space in Orion town. This was initiated by Gov. Garcia when he was still a congressman here.

               In fact, a number of ferry boat companies had been plied along this route before but they quit gradually for unknown reason.

               Newsmen learned, however, that lack of passengers patronizing it was the main reason.

Passengers claimed, on the other hand, that aside from  the expensive fare being charged by the ferry companies  compared to land transportation, it had also uncertain trips schedules, dismaying passengers.

               But with the proposed entry of a new Ferry company, Gov. Garcia expressed optimism that it will be now patronized by the thousands of passengers going to Manila since this is a RoRo ferry.

               With the existing winding and beautiful roads,  going to Manila by land from this capital city takes more or less only two hours, but if the RoRo boat trips push through, travel time will only take 30 to 40 minutes, added Garcia.-Mar T Supnad     

                 

DTI assists Minorities, Business sectors

BALANGA CITY, Bataan- The Department of Trade and Industry has granted P1.5 million to the business sector and another P650,000 to the members of the Minority in Limay town for them to earn an extra income.

 

This was learned from DTI provincial director Nelin Cabahug who said that Gov. Abet S. Garcia had also committed to fund for the office of Bataan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (BACCII)  to further boost the business sector in the province.

 

 BACCII President Amanda Battad lauded the governor and DTI’s Cabahug for their concern to the business sector, saying this will further make their network more productive in business development.

 

Under the Shared Service Facility program of DTI, Cabahug said  BACCII can avail of vacuum sealer, canning machine at printer.

 

 Battad also said the governor funded their office’s construction.

 

“Tuluy-tuloy nang makapaghahanapbuhay ang isang Aeta community sa bayan ng Limay matapos pormal na ipagkaloob ng  DTI-Bataan ang mga food processing equipment na nagkakahalagang P650,000,” said Jose Mari Garcia, chief of the government’s run Philippine Information Agency who personally witnessed the turn over of equipment.

 

In Limay, leading the turn over of the food processing equipment  were Mayor Lilvir Roque and  Director Nelin Cabahug who personally turned over it to “Samahan ng mga Kababaihang Ayta sa Kinaragan” held at Brgy. Duale. 

 

Cabahug said the project was in line with “Shared Service Facility program” of the DTI.

 

The Aeta organization received automatic fine powder packing machine, band sealer, mechanical slicer, chest type freezer, stainless steel deep fat fryer and other equipment to be  used  in processing banana and kamote chips and salabat powder. 

 

Mayor Roque said in his message: “Kapag may kabuhayan, mas masigla ang komunidad,” adding this is a big help to the Aeta community in this town in making banana and camote chips and salabat (ginger) powder.

 

Director Cabahug said the “Shared Service facility program” of the DTI is actually helping to people’s organization to boost their own local businesses.

 

Also joined in the livelihood program was  Battad, head of Bataan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the staff of DTI-Bataan.-Mar T Supnad

 

More benefits for Pantranco employees, seen

As PANREA holds elections of officers

 

              A top Union official of the defunct government-owned Pantranco Retrenched Employees Association (PANREA) said yesterday that tens of millions of pesos are awaiting for distribution to the 500 members of the group after they won from Court of Appeals for the granting of franchise of around 489 units of the bus that will, in turn, be sold to cover the monetarial benefits of the employees.  

               According to PANREA president Romy Alfonso, they will just wait after the holding of a general assembly and  election of Union officers to be held come March 8, for the another set of monetary distribution to the employees.

Alfonso, who is seeking re-election, said that the Court of Appeals had already given the go-signal for the approval of the franchise of the 489 units of Pantranco after a long and legal battle initiated by Alfonso, as the Second highest court directed  the Land Transporation, Franchising and regulatory Board (LTFRB) to grant the petition of PANREA.

               Alfonso lauded the CA ruling granting their petition, saying the long-delayed justice for the displaced employees of Pantranco, can now be achieved.

               Survived from a heart by-pass operation, Alfonso said the said 489 new units can then be sold  and the millions of pesos proceeds of which will be immediately distributed to the more than 500 –strong member of PANREA.

               “Maliban sa magandang balita na naipanalo natin ang prankisa ng ating units ay naipanalo na rin natin ang inilabang pagpapatitulo sa ating lote sa Santiago City matapos aprobahan ng korte ang titulo natin sa lupa na matagal nang ginagamit na kalsada ng Santiago City; Natural babayaran na ng pamahalaan ang ating lote doon at ito ay idi distribute na naman natin sa mga miyembro pagkatapos ng election,” pointed out Alfonso.

               Running for reelection under Alfonso’s party are Hermy Navarro, Vice president; Pedro Barrientos, secretary; Ofel Manabat, Treasurer; and board of directors.

               In the past, the retrenched employees, under Alfonso’s leadership, had already received  tens of millions of pesos as their separation benefits after the Pantranco, a government-owned corporation, had stopped operation due to mismanagement.

               Like a real political battle of the politicians, a number of derogatory issues marred also the election of officers of PANREA.

               But some of the members said that they will go to those who had already performed and gave benefits to the employees, not to those who are still promising. “Ito ay labanan sa pagitan ng akapagbigay na at nangangako pa lamang,” said an aging employee.-Mar T Supnad