It is heartwarming to know that the family of former Davao City Mayor and Philippine President Rodrigo R. Duterte has revived the Pahalipay sa Pasko Gift-giving. The pro-poor activity of the ruling political family in the city was temporarily shelved after the CoViD 19 pandemic hit the country and restricted people’s movement as well as brought the economy to its knees.

     Now that the country’s economy has started to recover and people are given more freedom of movement and getting back to employment, the Pahalipay is alive again.

     This gift-giving by the Duterte family for this holiday season started yesterday and some 40 thousand qualified city residents are expected to benefit. The Pahalipay… will be done at the old residence of the former mayor and President in Central Park, Bangkal, Davao City.

     To make sure that the gift-giving will be orderly and secured from any person with criminal minds, the police in the city deployed a number of uniformed personnel to secure the place.

     Indeed this act of kindness and the sharing of gifts every Christmas season to the disadvantage is one that has endeared the Duterte family to the common man. And we believe that as long as this trait is not altered by the next generation of Dutertes we are certain that they will remain on top of the political limelight for a long time.                                                          ************************

     Now this one is for the mathematicians at the Department of Education (DepEd) to crack. We mean the report that for next year (which is barely one week from now) Congress has only approved the creation and funding of some 10,000 new items for teachers in the public education system all over the country.

     But as of the latest results of the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) there were 120,000 passers. Meaning they will be applying for teaching positions mostly in public schools where the pay is much better than when one is hired in private educational institutions. Thus, the 120,000 will be elbowing among themselves for the 10,000 items. 

     Moreover, the limited items will have to be allocated to each DepEd region and then again to the different education divisions of schools within the regional jurisdiction. And this is where the congressmen will be showing their power to get more items for the district they represent.

     In Davao City where there are three districts, the congressman with enough influence is likely to get the bigger share that he or she may allocate for the schools within the district he/she represents.

     Simply put, lobbying among teacher applicants will be the name of the game.                                                    **************************

     Will Davao City again register a zero casualty this Christmas and New Year? By zero we mean that no one will suffer any injury or even death as a result of getting exploded by prohibited firecrackers and other similar noise-making paraphernalia?

     We are asking this question because, despite the continuing effectivity of a ban on the use of firecrackers issued by then-mayor Rodrigo Duterte, this season may be a little different. Davaoenos, like all other Filipinos, will be welcoming not just the less-restrictive Holiday season but they’ll also be celebrating a relatively pandemic-free Christmas and New Year.

     If we have to make an analogy people are like a herd of cows that had escaped from the confines of the fenced ranch perimeter. 

                                                         *****************************

     Finally, after a long wait, the project that we have been pushing through this column – the Davao City-owned and operated hospital – is about to come to reality.

     Yes, the first indication of the fruition of many Davaoenos’ dream was the groundbreaking for the construction of the hospital building at the University of the Philippines-reserved lot in Tugbok, Davao City the other day.

     The activity was made more meaningful with the presence of no less than the President of the UP system, lawyer Danilo Concepcion, who flew in from Manila for the same purpose. He was joined in the ceremony by Davao City Vice Mayor Jay Melchor Quitain and UP-Davao Chancellor Lyre Anne Murao 

     UP donated over 3 hectares of its reserved land to the city for such a project even as the school is intending to make the City-operated hospital its training center for medical students of the planned UP College of Medicine in Davao City.

     The city hospital will be the second government-own medical facility in Davao City. It is expected to relieve the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) of a good number of patients who come mostly from other parts of the region.

    Hence, what can be a more welcome development in the city than this? The putting up of this second government hospital in Davao City is funded by the national government with a P1.5 billion budget. Another 250 million pesos is contributed by the city government.

     The ordinance that authorizes its creation was approved by the City Council last May 4, 2021, yet and it took one year and seven months to kick off the project implementation.

     As the common adage say, “Better late than never.”


Source: Mindanao Times ( https://mindanaotimes.com.ph/2022/12/24/rough-cuts-finally-a-city-owned-and-operated-hospital/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rough-cuts-finally-a-city-owned-and-operated-hospital#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rough-cuts-finally-a-city-owned-and-operated-hospital)