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Mayor Isko Moreno

Mayor Isko to padlock Manila malls selling stolen goods

in News/Tabloid PH News
Mayor Isko to padlock Manila malls selling stolen goods
Image Credit: Manila Public Information Office

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno on Monday (September 16) warned mall owners and operators in the city that he will not hesitate to padlock their establishments if they will be found selling stolen cellular phones and other goods.

Moreno made the pronouncement after operatives of the Special Mayor’s Reaction Team (SMaRT) arrested five suspects who were caught buying and selling stolen cell phones. They also raided the Tutuban Mall in Divisoria and Isetann Mall in Recto and confiscated 148 mobile phones being sold without the necessary proof of ownership. The mayor said this violates Presidential Decree 1612, or the Anti-Fencing Law.

He gave the malls in the city three days to inspect all their stall-tenants that are selling second-hand phones to make sure they are not violating the anti-fencing law, or else they will be shut down by the city. 

“Tigilan nyo na ang pgtitinda ng mga nakaw na bagay at huwag ninyong sabihin sakin na hindi nyo alam (Stop selling stolen items and don’t tell me that you are not aware of it,” Moreno warned mall operators in Manila.

He said Tutuban Mall has already responded to his order and committed to comply with the deadline he gave.

Moreno stressed that cell phone snatching will only persist if the buying and selling of these stolen goods will continue.

“Ayaw kong may iiyak na naman na nanay, iiyak na naman na tatay, dahil nasaksak yung anak nila, namatay yung anak nila dahil inagawan ng cell phone (I don’t want to see another mother or father crying because their children were killed after their cell phones were snatched),” Moreno said.

To also ensure compliance, Moreno ordered the city’s Business Permits and Licensing Office to conduct its own inspection of malls in the city.

#WalangMayor trending as netizens find humor in mayors’ failure to suspend classes

in News/Tabloid PH News
#WalangMayor trending as netizens find humor in mayors’ failure to suspend classes
Image Credit: Ronn Tan

Filipino netizens again found a way to insert humor into their anguish while waiting for announcements of class suspensions from their mayors—they put #WalangMayor (no mayor) in Twitter’s top trending topics on August 27 (Tuesday).

With Tropical Storm Jenny already bringing rains to Metro Manila and other areas as early as Monday evening, some mayors in the National Capital Region started announcing class suspensions in different levels.

However, some local executives failed to make their respective announcements up to Tuesday morning, thus, the birth of the hashtag #WalangMayor.

It was just trailing #WalangPasok in Twitter’s Philippines Trends.

Particularly criticized in thousands of tweets were the mayors of Makati, Manila and San Juan for not minding to issue advisories at all up to the time the students were about to leave for school.

In the process, another hashtag spawned—#WalangPake (I don’t care)—expressing the netizens’ disgust over the apparent indifference displayed by these city mayors.

The weather bulletin from PAGASA issued at 11 a.m. on Tuesday said Jenny was expected to make landfall on Aurora between Tuesday evening to Wednesday morning. The provinces of Isabela, Aurora and Quirino were already placed under Storm Signal No. 2.

Some 26 areas, including Metro Manila, were under Signal No. 1.

Jenny is expected to cut through Central Luzon. It is seen to exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on August 29.

Jenny entered PAR just after Typhoon Ineng wreaked havoc in the northern part of the archipelago, particularly the Ilocos region, leaving 2 people dead and around P600 million in damage to crops and property.

One tweet said Manila literally has no mayor today, as Isko Moreno is currently in Australia for “a work and vacation trip”.

Manila residents get new round of tax reliefs from Mayor Isko

in News/Tabloid PH News
image credit: IskoMoreno / twitter

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno has delivered on his campaign promise of giving tax relief to Manilenos by cutting the tax rates imposed on real property. Moreno announced that the Manila City Council has already approved the ordinance slashing real property tax (RPT) by 40 percent over a three-year period.

He told barangay leaders in a meeting on Wednesday that this year, Manila residents will already see a 20-percent cut in their RPT, locally known as “amelyar”. Further 10-percent reductions in RPT will be implemented in 2020 and 2021.

Moreno said concerned agencies of the city government are now crafting the implementing rules and regulations of the ordinance.

Lowering the RPT and business tax was among his promises to residents of the Philippine capital city in his campaign sorties for the mayoral post.

“We will push for the gradual lowering of the real property tax and business tax by 40 percent which we plan to implement for three years. We will lower the rates by 20 percent for the first year, and then 10% for the second year, and then another 10 percent for the third year,” reports quoted him as promising then.

Moreno’s predecessor, former President Joseph Estrada, raised the RPT during his term as Manila mayor to allow the city to collect enough funds to pay its debts. 

Last July 31, Moreno signed Ordinance No. 8566 granting “general amnesty on all delinquent business taxes, real property taxes, regulatory fees, and other service charges.”

The amnesty, he said then, would hopefully address the lower number of residents and businesses who are paying their tax obligations to the city government.

He said with the tax cuts and amnesty, residents, and businesses would be encouraged to promptly pay their dues to the city, resulting in higher revenues.

Moreno has become a national sensation due to his live social media appearances while personally overseeing operations to clear the city roads of obstructions.

Mayors busy clearing roads of obstructions

in News/Tabloid PH News
Mayors busy clearing roads of obstructions
photo credit: mmda fb

If you’ve been away for quite some time and will be coming home in a few days, don’t be surprised if the appearance of your street and the roads leading to your house has changed.

This is because all the mayors and barangay officials have been given strict instructions by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) to clear the streets of obstructions—be they ambulant or fixed—within 60 days.

And this is what’s keeping local government executives busy these days, and why you’d see mayors, barangay leaders and police officials going live on social media while they dismantle illegal structures on roads.

It was President Duterte himself who ordered the clearing operations in his State of the Nation Address last July 22 as a measure to ease traffic congestion. One week later, DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año issued Memorandum Circular 2019-121 giving mayors 60 days “to exercise their powers essential to reclaim public roads which are being used for private ends, and in the process rid them of illegal structures and constructions.” 

Ano wants mayors to exercise Section 32 of the Local Government Code to make sure all barangay executives will help implement Duterte’s directive. The provision states that: “The city or municipality, through the city or municipal Mayor concerned, shall exercise general supervision over component Barangays to ensure that said Barangays act within the scope of their prescribed powers and functions.”

DILG Undersecretary Jonathan E. Malaya said the cooperation of barangays “is crucial for the success of this program.”

“We have been deluged by complaints from the people about Barangay captains who are failing to act and worse being complicit and actively tolerating road obstructions. The mayors have to make them accountable because that’s their mandate and responsibility,” Malaya said.

But even before Duterte issued his directive, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno was already having viral videos on social media while supervising illegal vendor clearing operations in Divisoria, Lagusnilad Underpass, Plaza Miranda, Quezon Boulevard, Blumentritt and Carriedo, among others. Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto and Pateros Mayor Ike Ponce, meanwhile,  worked together in clearing the roads around their jurisdictions’ borders of illegal structures such as signposts, parked vehicles and illegal vendors.

San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora also went live on social media when he led the demolition of a police community precinct on a sidewalk.

photo credit: @franciszamora30 instagram

Baclaran was also a subject of several rounds of clearing operations by the Metro Manila Development Authority and the local governments of Pasay City and Paranaque City. 

Malaya, in a statement, said road obstructions will not happen without the knowledge of the Barangay Captain. “Sabi nga ni Secretary Año, imposibleng wala silang alam sa pagtatayo ng mga road obstruction na ‘yan. It is just proper that they rectify their actions by cooperating to the clearing operations of the local government unit.” 

Barangay halls erected on sidewalks should be self-demolished by the Barangay officials, Malaya added.

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