EVENT WENT VIRAL: 'NEVER FORGET' - ATENEO PRESIDENT APOLOGIZES FOR IMELDA'S PRESENCE AT SCHOLARSHIP EVENT

JULY 6 --Ateneo de Manila University president Jose Ramon T. Villarin, SJ apologized on Sunday amid criticism of the presence of former First Lady Imelda Marcos at an event for the school's scholarship foundation. The widow of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos attended the 40th anniversary celebration of the Ateneo Scholarship Foundation (ASF), where she was invited because the organization "began with a donation from the proceeds of a Van Cliburn piano concert that was organized by her in 1974." Ateneo professor Michael Liberatore expressed disappointment over Marcos' presence in the event. "Had a hard time sleeping after seeing picture of Imelda as the guest of honor at an Ateneo scholarship fund event," wrote Liberatore on Sunday on a Facebook post, which was shared 88 times and garnered 488 likes as of 8:50 p.m., including from Xavier School president Ari Dy, SJ. "Come tomorrow, I am supposed to return to school for the work week and participate in meetings and teach classes in which I strive with others to help our young people manifest values that our institution allegedly upholds in developing the nation? How can one possibly do this if Imelda is the guest of honor at a scholarship event under the rationale she helped start the fund before martial law?"

While noting that ASF was "not an official school arm," Villarin acknowledged that Marcos' presence at the event was a problem. "Please know that in the education of our youth, the Ateneo de Manila will never forget the Martial Law years of oppression and injustice presided over by Mr. Ferdinand Marcos. We would not be catching up on nation building as we are today, had it not been for all that was destroyed during that terrible time," said Villarin. "I apologize for any doubts that may have arisen on the mission of the school and the pain this event may have caused. As I hope for your understanding, I would like to assure you that we in the administration have learned our lesson to be more mindful of those we invite to our celebrations." - JST, GMA News THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.

(ALSO) The Other Ateneo: A discussion beyond Imelda

JULY 6: BY RICARDO G. ABAD --I cannot speak for the Ateneo. Not even at my angriest, or in my capacity as an educator, or for the sake of some ideal that I feel should be embraced by more if not all. But I actually like the idea that I can’t; and that no one else can either. I like that the school is best represented by its faculty, its students and alumni who constantly learn from each other, and remember well the lessons that they teach each other. But I also know that there are many Ateneos. As a matter of fact, I know two Ateneos. There is the Ateneo that I love. The one Rizal glanced at on his way to be shot for a people only beginning to struggle. The same one that speaks proudly of names like De La Costa, Ferriols, Nebres, Bernas; Del Pilar, Colayco, Jopson, Lacaba and many, many others. It is an Ateneo that insists on teaching humanities because it believes in forming people instead of just producing professionals. I know we like to think that we teach our students not just about the important ideas but also how to be critical of them. And that we teach them well to always choose the greater and then why they must choose it. That we fill ourselves to the brim so that we have more to give when we empty ourselves out for others.

And then there is the Ateneo that many people are more familiar with. An Ateneo that is the product of feeble minds, and superficial ideas, and two-dimensional thinking. It is the Ateneo that is more obsessed with its brand than it is with its ideals. The Ateneo that people choose because its name has commercial equity. The Ateneo that thinks of privilege, and elitism, and exclusivity as proud aspects of its tradition. It’s the Ateneo that makes winning more important than competition. The same one that shouts insults at our opponents and jeers during UAAP games. I think it’s the same one that makes it possible to think of burning the names of our “enemies” in a bonfire. The same one that makes an Atenean leave the coliseum before alma mater hymns are sung by both sides. It’s the Ateneo that equates school pride with hating the other side. This is the Ateneo that makes the prideful think that they are better than others. The Ateneo that defines "Atenean" as a person who paid tuition. So when I read all these posts about how shameful it was for the former First Lady Imelda Marcos to have even been allowed in our campus I understand well why there is so much anger over the matter. How do we now teach our students about history, its distortion, and the dangers of aggressive and politically-motivated historical revisionism when we seem to have no qualms about shaking hands and posing for pictures with a woman who is responsible for the suffering of so many? How can we talk of inclusive development, economics, and the specter of impoverishment when the one responsible for so much of our poverty is welcomed like a guest of honor? * READ MORE..

ALSO: Understanding the Imelda issue -Blog commentary

It seems lots of people don't get why the appearance of Imelda Marcos in Ateneo caused a public outcry, forcing the university president to apologize. We've prepared a short Q&A to explain the issues. What's the big deal being angry about Imelda speaking in Ateneo? It was tantamount to mass rape victims inviting their rapist over for socials and tea. Did you say "rapist"? Sorry, we probably meant "monster." Imelda was one of the donors of a scholarship fund. How should the school have reacted? The correct response should have been to picket or boycott, or shout slogans, or shun Imelda like a leper. But she was a guest! Did it occur to anybody that having officials sit next to a klepto-looter and smile for photos, and then letting students take grinning selfies might, you know, send the wrong message? No? Also she was allowed to deliver a speech. What's wrong with that? Have you ever heard a vintage Imelda "cosmic hole in the sky that can stop missiles" speech? It will fry your neurons, pop your eyes and shrivel your intestines all at the same time. Your mind will go on extended leave. Imelda speeches were a torture device during Martial Law. So, what do you want to happen, you want Imelda BANNED from Ateneo and speaking? Isn't that censoring the Marcoses? We're not censoring the Marcoses, we're ostracizing them. "Ostracizing"? What's that? Sounds like "osterizing". You want to BLEND them? * READ MORE...

ALSO: Gloria Arroyo suffering from depression  

The Sandiganbayan has given the prosecution panel in former President Gloria Arroyo's plunder case five days to respond to her motion for bail. Mrs. Arroyo's lawyers said they are appealing to the courts to give her temporary liberty because she is suffering from depression. As a result of her depression, Arroyo is reportedly suffering from more ailments. Arroyo's lawyers also asked the court to allow her to attend Mike Velarde and his wife's golden wedding anniversary on July 18. Mrs. Arroyo has been invited by the celebrators to be one of the principal sponsors at the event. The wedding anniversary celebration will be held at Amvel City in San Dionisio, Paranaque on July 18, 3 p.m. The motion on her attendance in Velarde's party has been submitted for resolution. Mrs. Arroyo is under hospital arrest at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) for a plunder case in connection with the alleged misuse of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) funds.THIS IS THE FULL REPORT

(ALSO) Commentary by Gary Olivar: Gloria Arroyo: Killing her softly

APRIL 5, 2014 --A close look at the plight of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who celebrates her 67th birthday this Saturday, April 5. The other way to describe her is as a “woman of faith.” It goes beyond her convent-school upbringing and the habits she learned there, such as daily Mass (a privilege recently denied her by this administration, around the same time they were bribing legislators to pass the RH bill). She once confided to visitors her belief that her current travails are simply an early entry into purgatory, which then means she’ll have to spend less time in purgatory when the real version comes around. If it’s true that B.S. has been saying that he wishes she would just die and go away, I’m afraid that he’s likely to be disappointed. Dead or alive, she’ll be around to haunt him for as long as he deserves. The history of Mrs Arroyo’s persecution is a depressing litany of institutions being corrupted by a non-entity of a president. These days he’s swinging away at the Sandiganbayan, specifically the 3 out of 5 justices who earlier turned down bail for Mrs Arroyo, and then denied her even a short 4-day birthday furlough. (Editor's Note: The court on Wednesday, April 2, granted the family's request to spend 3 days with her, from April 4-6, to celebrate her 67th birthday.) If a Supreme Court TRO can be openly defied, if congressmen and senators are brazenly bribed with billions of pesos, for the sake of one man’s vindictive agenda – what do you think he will stop at, just to get his way again with the Sandiganbayan justices? Where might they be persuaded to draw the line against his importunings and his bullying? Indeed, the story of how B.S. clawed his way out of well-earned obscurity into the presidential limelight – on the strength of nothing more than misappropriated goodwill, misappropriated achievements, and misappropriated funds – ought to remind us of the damage that can be done to a credulous public by cynical politicians of the yellow variety. For once, we should heed the advice of B.S. who recently asked us – with absolutely no irony intended – not to elect an “ampaw” president in 2016. READ FULL STORY...

ALSO: Phl, Australia launch project on coral reefs, mangroves

The Philippines and Australia have launched a project that aims to determine the value and market potential of local coral reef and mangrove ecosystem services, environment officials announced yesterday. Under the Capturing Coral Reef and Related Ecosystem Services (CCRES) project, the two countries will come up with innovative models for valuing mangrove, sea grass and coral reef ecosystem services. “The move aims to enhance the sustainability of marine-based enterprises and marine spatial planning in select coastal communities in the Philippines,” said Theresa Mundita Lim, director of the Biodiversity Management Bureau, an attached agency of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Lim said the agency is looking forward to implementing the project, which recognizes the value of blue capital and its potential for growth. “The project will help us convince stakeholders that the environment is a good investment as it benefits the communities,” she said. Information generated from this project will be translated into new policies or will update existing ones to replicate the undertaking in other coastal communities. Aside from the Philippines, the CCRES project will also be implemented in Indonesia for a period of five years. As the implementing agency, the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) has committed $4.5 million for the project through the World Bank. “Coastal communities can develop new eco-friendly and sustainable enterprises to increase revenue and improve their resilience to climate change impact,” Lim said.THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.


Read Full Stories here:

'Never forget': Ateneo president apologizes for Imelda's presence at scholarship event


Photos of Imelda Marcos at the ASF event quickly spread online

MANILA, JULY 14, 2014 (GMANEWSNETWORK) Ateneo de Manila University president Jose Ramon T. Villarin, SJ apologized on Sunday amid criticism of the presence of former First Lady Imelda Marcos at an event for the school's scholarship foundation.

The widow of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos attended the 40th anniversary celebration of the Ateneo Scholarship Foundation (ASF), where she was invited because the organization "began with a donation from the proceeds of a Van Cliburn piano concert that was organized by her in 1974."

Ateneo professor Michael Liberatore expressed disappointment over Marcos' presence in the event.

"Had a hard time sleeping after seeing picture of Imelda as the guest of honor at an Ateneo scholarship fund event," wrote Liberatore on Sunday on a Facebook post, which was shared 88 times and garnered 488 likes as of 8:50 p.m., including from Xavier School president Ari Dy, SJ.

"Come tomorrow, I am supposed to return to school for the work week and participate in meetings and teach classes in which I strive with others to help our young people manifest values that our institution allegedly upholds in developing the nation? How can one possibly do this if Imelda is the guest of honor at a scholarship event under the rationale she helped start the fund before martial law?"

While noting that ASF was "not an official school arm," Villarin acknowledged that Marcos' presence at the event was a problem.

"Please know that in the education of our youth, the Ateneo de Manila will never forget the Martial Law years of oppression and injustice presided over by Mr. Ferdinand Marcos. We would not be catching up on nation building as we are today, had it not been for all that was destroyed during that terrible time," said Villarin.

"I apologize for any doubts that may have arisen on the mission of the school and the pain this event may have caused. As I hope for your understanding, I would like to assure you that we in the administration have learned our lesson to be more mindful of those we invite to our celebrations." - JST, GMA News

The Other Ateneo: A discussion beyond Imelda By BRIAN PAUL GIRONJuly 6, 2014 10:50pm


Abad, Ricardo G.
PHOTO COURTESY OF ATENEO DE MANILA, FACULTY WEBSITE

I cannot speak for the Ateneo. Not even at my angriest, or in my capacity as an educator, or for the sake of some ideal that I feel should be embraced by more if not all. But I actually like the idea that I can’t; and that no one else can either.

I like that the school is best represented by its faculty, its students and alumni who constantly learn from each other, and remember well the lessons that they teach each other.

But I also know that there are many Ateneos.

As a matter of fact, I know two Ateneos.

There is the Ateneo that I love. The one Rizal glanced at on his way to be shot for a people only beginning to struggle. The same one that speaks proudly of names like De La Costa, Ferriols, Nebres, Bernas; Del Pilar, Colayco, Jopson, Lacaba and many, many others. It is an Ateneo that insists on teaching humanities because it believes in forming people instead of just producing professionals.

I know we like to think that we teach our students not just about the important ideas but also how to be critical of them. And that we teach them well to always choose the greater and then why they must choose it. That we fill ourselves to the brim so that we have more to give when we empty ourselves out for others.

And then there is the Ateneo that many people are more familiar with.

An Ateneo that is the product of feeble minds, and superficial ideas, and two-dimensional thinking.

It is the Ateneo that is more obsessed with its brand than it is with its ideals. The Ateneo that people choose because its name has commercial equity. The Ateneo that thinks of privilege, and elitism, and exclusivity as proud aspects of its tradition.

It’s the Ateneo that makes winning more important than competition. The same one that shouts insults at our opponents and jeers during UAAP games. I think it’s the same one that makes it possible to think of burning the names of our “enemies” in a bonfire. The same one that makes an Atenean leave the coliseum before alma mater hymns are sung by both sides. It’s the Ateneo that equates school pride with hating the other side.

This is the Ateneo that makes the prideful think that they are better than others. The Ateneo that defines "Atenean" as a person who paid tuition.

So when I read all these posts about how shameful it was for the former First Lady Imelda Marcos to have even been allowed in our campus I understand well why there is so much anger over the matter.

How do we now teach our students about history, its distortion, and the dangers of aggressive and politically-motivated historical revisionism when we seem to have no qualms about shaking hands and posing for pictures with a woman who is responsible for the suffering of so many?

How can we talk of inclusive development, economics, and the specter of impoverishment when the one responsible for so much of our poverty is welcomed like a guest of honor?

* How can we face our countrymen who are still denied justice, who have lost family, and friends, and loved ones while we rationalize our association with the criminals responsible for their grief?

These questions I think with clenched fists, and gritted teeth, with sorrow and anger in my heart.

But then I think that our problems are bigger than Imelda.

Why does it take an Imelda and a bunch of photos to make us realize that in so many places, and in so many venues and fora and means and ways, “Ateneans” are doing terrible and unspeakable things that should shame us.

Ateneans are out there thinking that money is more important than service. Ateneans are out there thinking that their education was the entrance fee of being elite; rather than the privilege of learning how to be a person for others.

Inviting Imelda was a mistake that we need to talk about but it may also be a good place to start talking about the other names out there who claim the name ‘Atenista’ but act contrary to what we’re taught. Now we know that there are those among us who have to be reminded about what it means to be Atenean.

I am angry that Imelda was invited to our school. But my reaction will not be one of disownment.

I am Atenean and I come from the Ateneo that opposes Marcos and all things related to his legacy of injustice, corruption and suffering.

I come from an ideal that is far bigger than Imelda can ever hope to corrupt, or twist, or use for her ends because at the end of the day Imelda can only step on a campus, and sit in a room, and pose for photos.

Tomorrow I will wake up and I will be content in the knowing that the Ateneo I love exists in places where no murderer, no thief, no liar, and no Marcos can ever hope to assail it.

It exists in the provinces where Ateneans have gone to serve their countrymen with the light of their knowledge, their kindness, their commitment, and their humility. It exists in those places where ‘Atenista’ means the smallest, and the kindest, and the least privileged. It exists where faculty, students, and alumni work and study hard for the opportunity to do well for others.

It exists in the lectures we teach in our history classes where propaganda has no place; and where the memory and pain of a nation that suffered for two decades under a despicable tyrant will hopefully be passed on to a generation that has never known martial law so that they, too, can say ‘Never again.’

On Tuesday I will teach my students what I know of that Ateneo. And they will probably teach me a little about what they know of it too.

Brian Paul Giron teaches at the Department of History at Ateneo de Manila University. This piece, originally published on the author's blog on Medium.com, is republished with his permission.

FROM ABS-CBN

Understanding the Imelda issue Hot Manila - by Alan Robles Posted at 07/09/2014 4:46 PM | Updated as of 07/09/2014 4:46 PM


About Alan - A print journalist for 35 years now, I've worked for publications such as Business Day, Manila Times, Manila Chronicle, Link magazine and Asiaweek. What do these papers all have in common? They’re all dead. But I had nothing to do with it, officer, I swear. I’ve written for Time magazine, USA Today, Reader’s Digest and Asian Wall Street Journal, which all seem to have actually survived the experience.  http://www.hotmanila.ph/

It seems lots of people don't get why the appearance of Imelda Marcos in Ateneo caused a public outcry, forcing the university president to apologize. We've prepared a short Q&A to explain the issues.

What's the big deal being angry about Imelda speaking in Ateneo?

It was tantamount to mass rape victims inviting their rapist over for socials and tea.

Did you say "rapist"?

Sorry, we probably meant "monster."

Imelda was one of the donors of a scholarship fund. How should the school have reacted?

The correct response should have been to picket or boycott, or shout slogans, or shun Imelda like a leper.

But she was a guest!

Did it occur to anybody that having officials sit next to a klepto-looter and smile for photos, and then letting students take grinning selfies might, you know, send the wrong message? No? Also she was allowed to deliver a speech.

What's wrong with that?

Have you ever heard a vintage Imelda "cosmic hole in the sky that can stop missiles" speech? It will fry your neurons, pop your eyes and shrivel your intestines all at the same time. Your mind will go on extended leave. Imelda speeches were a torture device during Martial Law.

So, what do you want to happen, you want Imelda BANNED from Ateneo and speaking? Isn't that censoring the Marcoses?

We're not censoring the Marcoses, we're ostracizing them.

"Ostracizing"? What's that? Sounds like "osterizing". You want to BLEND them?

* Heavens, no. Anyway, it's probably impossible to find a blender Imelda's size.

Then explain this "ostracizing"

It means making Imelda and the other Marcoses feel they're not wanted. That we know they killed thousands of Filipinos, imprisoned and tortured thousands more, stole at least 10 billion dollars which they stashed abroad. That they're liars, con artists, thugs, cheats with the morals of mountain bandits, the effluvium of history, a collective foul excrescence, a rancid stench from the darkest recesses of the earth.

Anything else?

Other than those things, they're OK,

Hey wait a minute, I hear other stories. Didn't Martial Law accomplish some things?

Yes, massacre and torture rates were up. The country had a surge in corpses and cadavers. During Martial Law, the daily currency exchange rate was roughly one million pesos for every Marcos.

Weren't there other accomplishments?

Imelda singehandedly -- or double-footedly -- sustained the world's shoe industry. The fake war medals business flourished.

I just read some lifestyle writers praise Imelda for her fashion and style

Yes Imelda showed the world how it's possible to strive for fashion and style using nothing but common sense and plundered billions. Also, sad to say, some lifestyle editors have IQs lower than the dresses they write about.

Why is this all about Imelda, what about her husband Ferdinand?

Oh, he's in the town of Batac in a crypt, doing what he's always done best.

What is that?  Lying.

[Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp. THIS IS SHARED BY NEWS RE-POSTER PHNO].

Gloria Arroyo suffering from depression By Pia Gutierrez, ABS-CBN News Posted at 07/10/2014 10:08 AM | Updated as of 07/10/2014 10:08 AM


AILING REP. GLORIA ARROYO

MANILA - The Sandiganbayan has given the prosecution panel in former President Gloria Arroyo's plunder case five days to respond to her motion for bail.

Mrs. Arroyo's lawyers said they are appealing to the courts to give her temporary liberty because she is suffering from depression.

As a result of her depression, Arroyo is reportedly suffering from more ailments.

Arroyo's lawyers also asked the court to allow her to attend Mike Velarde and his wife's golden wedding anniversary on July 18. Mrs. Arroyo has been invited by the celebrators to be one of the principal sponsors at the event.

The wedding anniversary celebration will be held at Amvel City in San Dionisio, Paranaque on July 18, 3 p.m.

The motion on her attendance in Velarde's party has been submitted for resolution.

Mrs. Arroyo is under hospital arrest at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) for a plunder case in connection with the alleged misuse of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) funds.

FROM RAPPLER.COM

Gloria Arroyo: Killing her softly  Gary Olivar Published 9:11 AM, Apr 05, 2014 Updated 9:14 AM, Apr 05, 2014


Gary Olivar

A close look at the plight of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, who celebrates her 67th birthday this Saturday, April 5

To get to the present involuntary residence of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, a former president of the Republic of the Philippines, you turn right from the main gate of the Veterans medical center in QC and follow a long road that circles to the back of the sprawling compound. It takes you through several well-manicured golf fairways, past the tidy bungalow quarters of the hospital’s senior executives, until you come to a nondescript little road pressed up against the edge of the golf driving range.

Turn left at that corner, past a couple of roadblocks, to a small parking lot, then you walk past a makeshift tent where PNP soldiers may be watching TV, up to a very long hospital wing that always seems to be deserted. Sign in at a reception desk, manned by uniformed armed guards who are friendly but reserved, always on the alert. Your name should already be in the logbook, based on the clearance from Camp Crame you should have requested at least two days earlier. It’s evident that the administration is taking no chances with this dangerous grandmother of 6.

Mrs Arroyo’s quarters comprise a receiving/dining room, her bedroom, a small toilet, kitchen, pantry, and bed space for her staff. It is brightly lit and air-conditioned, and she has made it as homey as possible, with family pictures everywhere and a small altar to the Blessed Virgin in a corner.

And yet – knowing that she’s only allowed one hour a day to take in the sunshine outside – you can feel how confining the space really is.

This is where she’s spent the last 4 years, and most likely the next 2 years as well, in this the golden age of 'daang matuwid', of Benigno S. Aquino III (B.S.).

If you remember Mrs Arroyo from her years at the Palace – bright-eyed, alert, smart as a whip, exuding poise and self-confidence – you may be in for a shock when you see her again.

She’s lost a lot of weight and is now down to less than 80 pounds, in part because the metal plate at the back of her neck can block her eating as well as breathing “tubes”.

She moves her head only with difficulty. I’ve seen her nearly choke on her food at times, and heard her cry out whenever the stress on her spine causes deferred pain elsewhere in her body. Hearing those involuntary cries from such an indomitable lady is a painful experience too.

But the key word is “indomitable”.

For all her present suffering, Mrs Arroyo retains her usually high spirits, her curiosity about what’s going on outside, her endless attention to the smallest details – from how her lawyers are defending her, to how the dining table has been set.

She is hooked on movie DVDs, revels in the latest gossip about local entertainment celebrities, and dotes on her grandchildren – something she never had time for as president.

She is now writing her memoirs, and those involved with her on this project can vouch that she is still no less a slave-driver than when she was running the country.

The other way to describe her is as a “woman of faith.”

It goes beyond her convent-school upbringing and the habits she learned there, such as daily Mass (a privilege recently denied her by this administration, around the same time they were bribing legislators to pass the RH bill). She once confided to visitors her belief that her current travails are simply an early entry into purgatory, which then means she’ll have to spend less time in purgatory when the real version comes around.

If it’s true that B.S. has been saying that he wishes she would just die and go away, I’m afraid that he’s likely to be disappointed. Dead or alive, she’ll be around to haunt him for as long as he deserves.

The history of Mrs Arroyo’s persecution is a depressing litany of institutions being corrupted by a non-entity of a president.

These days he’s swinging away at the Sandiganbayan, specifically the 3 out of 5 justices who earlier turned down bail for Mrs Arroyo, and then denied her even a short 4-day birthday furlough. (Editor's Note: The court on Wednesday, April 2, granted the family's request to spend 3 days with her, from April 4-6, to celebrate her 67th birthday.)

If a Supreme Court TRO can be openly defied, if congressmen and senators are brazenly bribed with billions of pesos, for the sake of one man’s vindictive agenda – what do you think he will stop at, just to get his way again with the Sandiganbayan justices?

Where might they be persuaded to draw the line against his importunings and his bullying?

Indeed, the story of how B.S. clawed his way out of well-earned obscurity into the presidential limelight – on the strength of nothing more than misappropriated goodwill, misappropriated achievements, and misappropriated funds – ought to remind us of the damage that can be done to a credulous public by cynical politicians of the yellow variety. For once, we should heed the advice of B.S. who recently asked us – with absolutely no irony intended – not to elect an “ampaw” president in 2016.

But the elections are still two long years away.

In the meantime, a former president languishes behind bars, in danger of being forgotten by people who still believe the worst things about her despite a mounting mountain of legal evidence to the contrary.* What we do with those beliefs in the face of such evidence will be a litmus test of whether or not we have earned the right to be led by better people –from the executive, to the legislative, to the judiciary – in the future. – Rappler.com


Gary Olivar earned graduate degrees from UP and Harvard and went on to a career in banking and telecoms in the Philippines and abroad. He served as the economic spokesperson of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

FROM PHILSTAR

Phl, Australia launch project on coral reefs, mangroves By Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) | Updated July 11, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines and Australia have launched a project that aims to determine the value and market potential of local coral reef and mangrove ecosystem services, environment officials announced yesterday.

Under the Capturing Coral Reef and Related Ecosystem Services (CCRES) project, the two countries will come up with innovative models for valuing mangrove, sea grass and coral reef ecosystem services.

“The move aims to enhance the sustainability of marine-based enterprises and marine spatial planning in select coastal communities in the Philippines,” said Theresa Mundita Lim, director of the Biodiversity Management Bureau, an attached agency of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Lim said the agency is looking forward to implementing the project, which recognizes the value of blue capital and its potential for growth.

“The project will help us convince stakeholders that the environment is a good investment as it benefits the communities,” she said.

Information generated from this project will be translated into new policies or will update existing ones to replicate the undertaking in other coastal communities.

Aside from the Philippines, the CCRES project will also be implemented in Indonesia for a period of five years.

As the implementing agency, the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) has committed $4.5 million for the project through the World Bank.

“Coastal communities can develop new eco-friendly and sustainable enterprises to increase revenue and improve their resilience to climate change impact,” Lim said.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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