Volume14 / No. 22                                                                                                    December 15, 2014
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Nueva Ecija Journal is published in
Gapan City, Nueva Ecija,Philippines
and updated every 15th and
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P1.5-B business hub to give jobs to 13,000 Ecijanos

Governor Aurelio M. Umali and Malaysian business officials led the groundbreaking ceremony for the P1.5 billion business hub in Palayan City that is expected to provide jobs to 13,000 Novo Ecijanos once operational.

The project will be built by MTD Philippines, a subsidiary of Alloy MTD, a big Malaysian conglomerate that deals with real estate and infrastructure development. It was responsible for the construction of the South Luzon Expressway and the Laguna Government Center in Calamba, Laguna.

The rite was attended by Alloy MTD Executive Officer Dato Azmil Khalil Bin Khalid, Alloy MTD Philippines President Isaac David, Palayan City Mayor Adrieanne Cuevas and other officials.

The Nueva Ecija business hub will be composed of two buildings housing a business process outsourcing company (BPO) with a capacity of 2,500 seats for 24 hours of operation, a 74-room hotel, a multipurpose building for commercial occupancy and a government center.

The main building will be the provincial government building that will be occupied by national offices that will move from Cabanatuan City to Palayan City, consolidating national and local services to provide better service to the people.

The construction of the business hub will start in January 2015 and will be completed in 18 to 24 months. ###

Ecija on P70-B infra construction binge

Nueva Ecija will benefit from ongoing and planned infrastructure projects with a total cost of P70 billion financed by the government and the private sector.

Among these projects are the P50.18-billion  new  National Bilibid Prisons (NBP), the  P18.99-billion  Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEx), the  P1.5- billion Palayan City Business Hub (PCBH), the multi-million peso multi-storey SM City Cabanatuan, and a “bagsakan” center.

The prison facility will be built through public-private partnership in Barangay Nazareth, General Tinio, within the Fort Magsaysay military reservation.

Justice Undersecretary Francisco Baraan, supervising official of the Bureau of Corrections and the National Bilibid Prisons, said the project will take three years to complete and is expected to turn Nueva Ecija "from a sleeping tourism giant into a tourist mecca".

He assured that the new prison facility will posses what he calls the 4Ms -- "maganda, malinis, maayos, maaliwalas".

Meantime, the Central Luzon Link Expressway (CLLEx) will have a total length of 65.4 kilometers. It will be connected to the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx), pass through Cabanatuan City and end in San Jose City.

Also to be built next year in Barangay Singalat is the Palayan City Business Hub to be financed by a Malaysian conglomerate and the provincial government.

On the other hand, SM City Cabanatuan has been expanded from 65,000 square meters to 135,000 square meters after factoring in the more than a million daytime population of the city. The mall is expected to be finished by the last quarter of 2015.

Also being constructed is the a trading hub for agricultural products on a land owned by the provincial government in Barangay Caalibangbangan, Cabanatuan City.  It is funded by the Department of Agriculture. ###

North Ecija farmers appeal for irrigation

More than 2,000 farmers in northern Nueva Ecija have appealed to the National Irrigation Administration-Upper Pampanga River Integrated Irrigation Systems (NIA-UPRIIS) that their 3,574 hectares of rice fields be included in the areas targeted for irrigation this dry season.

The farmers belonging to two irrigators' associations, sought the intervention of NIA Administrator Florencio Padernal to include their areas amid efforts by UPRIIS to rationalize the use of water from Pantabangan Dam and other local sources in the light of the possible effects of the El Nino phenomenon.

Thre farmers from Talugtog-Guimba FIA, Inc. and North Guimba FIA, Inc. told Padernal that they are supposed to be beneficiaries of the super diversion canals 1 and 2 under the Casecnan Multi-Purpose Irrigation and Power Project completed during the dry cropping seasons of 2013 and 2014. They said that during those periods, they failed to be included in the irrigation program allegedly because of the low water level of Pantabangan Dam.

They said they had initiated steps to have their farms included, among them canal maintenance, setting up of farm ditches and trainings in water management, leadership and financial management.

Nakikiusap kami na maisama  sa program areas para sa kabuhayan ng aming pamilya na matagal nang naghihirap,” the farmers said. ###

Security guard shoots ex-councilor dead, commits suicide

A security guard assigned to a subdivision in San Leonardo shot dead a former Sangguniang Bayan member and then shot himself in the head.

The former councilor was identified as Antonio de Sahagun, 60, of Barangay Nieves.

He was shot once in the head with a caliber .38 pistol by Argie Basan, 32, a security guard of Golden Meadows Subdivision in Barangay Castellano.

The guard afterwards shot himself in the head, dying on the spot.

Police are looking into an old grudge as a possible motive for the incident. ###

Cop, man killed in San Isidro shootout

A policeman and a man suspected of keeping unlicensed guns died in a two-hour shootout last December 4 in San Isidro.

PO3 Jacinto Gregorio, Jr. was killed in the firefight. Also killed was Bernardo Magno who allegedly resisted when a police team served a search warrant on a property in Purok 2, Barangay Calaba where he was allegedly hiding.

The gun battle ended when Magno sustained multiple gunshot wounds.

Police recovered from the scene an M-14 rifle, an M-16 Armalite rifle, a shotgun, a .45 caliber pistol, assorted bullets, several shells and some drug paraphernalia. ###

2 robbers killed in shootout

Two notorious hold-uppers linked to a series of robberies were killed when they shot it out with policemen along the Rizal-San Jose City Road in Barangay Villa Joson, San Jose City last December 10.

The two were identified as Mark M. Popera, a native of Cagayan de Oro City; and Jimboy Alay-Ay, a native of Siquijor and both living in Barangay Cabucbucan, Rizal.

Investigation showed that the two, riding a motorcycle in tandem, had stopped a delivery truck and robbed two company personnel on board identified as Danilo Bejica and Melfer Nening, both of Barangay Caridad Norte, Llanera.

The robbery was immediately reported to the police which then set up checkpoints.

The suspects, when flagged down at a checkpoint, refused to stop and instead engaged the policemen in a firefight that led to their  death.

Recovered from the suspects were two guns, bullets and personal belongings. ###

3 suspected rebels arrested in Gapan City

Three suspected communist rebels were arrested and a cache of arms was recovered when policemen raided their hideout in Barangy Pambuan, Gapan City.

Sr. Supt. Crizaldo Nieves, provincial police director, identified the two as Heribert Torres and Hilario Guiuo, both targets of separate warrants of arrrest.

Torres was arrested last December 5 based on a warrant for murder issued by Judge Maximo Ancheta of the Regional Trial Court Branch  90 in Baler, Aurora while Guiuo was the subject of an arrest warrant for three counts of robbery with multiple homicide issued by Judge Jules Mejia of RTC Branch 69 in Iba, Zambales.

Nieves said policemen under Supt. Nelson Aganon, city police chief, were serving the warrants in the premises of a certain Jun Candelaria, a religious pastor, when they caught the suspects in the act of producing suspected subversive documents using a laptop computer.

Policemen also found high and low powered guns in plain view. Among the firearms seized were one M-16 Armalite rifle, one  M-11, one .45 pistol, two hand grenades and several  rounds of bullets.

Aganon said the police will look into the possible filing of a case of harboring criminals against the house owner.

Aside from the original cases the two are facing, they were also charged at the Provincial Prosecutor's Office of violation of Republic Act 9516. ###

4 alleged pushers arrested in Jaen, Santa Rosa

Four suspected big-time illegal drug pushers were arrested in a series of operations in Jaen during the first week of December.

Sr. Supt. Crizaldo Nieves, provincial police director, reported the arrest of Mildred Esquivel, 32, of Barangay Dampulan, and Rommel Faustino, 36, of Barangay Putlod,  in Jaen; and Danilo Verdillo and Anabelle Mulleno of  Santa Rosa.

Nieves said Esquivel is considered as "shabu queen" and listed Number 1 in the Most Wanted list of Jaen.

Esquivel and Faustino were arrested in an entrapment operation in Sitio Putol, Barangay Niyugan art dawn last December 6.

Recovered from them were six sachets of shabu and marked money.

Verdillo is said to be one one of the biggest drug dealers in Santa Rosa.

She and Mulleno were arrested in Sitio Pasong Kalabaw, San Mariano, Santa Rosa.

They yilded 19 sachets of shabu, drug paraphernalia and two shotgun bullets.

Nieves said they expect more drug personalities will be arrested in the coming days. ###

5 injured in three-way collision

Five persons were hurt in a collision involving three vehicles in San Jose City last December 13.

The victims were identified as as trailer-truck driver Charlie Eligado, 24, of Marabulig II, Cauayan, Isabela; his helper Rustan Menor, 27, also of Cauayan, Isabela; van driver Tirso Lamusao, 39, of Lambakin, Marilao, Bulacan; and his two passengers Eric Baccay, 23, of Sterling, Meycauayan, and Arnold Ambal, 23, of Marilao, in Bulacan

Supt. Manuel Hidalgo of the San Jose City police said the five sustained minor injuries.

The accident happened in front of a gasoline station along Maharlika Highway in Barangay Abar 2nd at about 3:30 A.M.

Fernando's truck was first sideswiped by Eligado's truck.

Police said Eligado fell asleep while driving. ###

Gapan school principal killed in accident

A school principal died when the tricycle she was riding collided head-on with a cargo truck along the national highway in Barangay Santo Cristo Sur, Gapan City last November 22.

The victim, Emilia Garcia, 59, a resident of Barangay Bayanihan and  principal of San Nicolas Elementary School, was declared dead on arrival at Good Samaritan Hospital.

The tricycle driver, Ryan Pangqn, 30, of Barangay Malimba, underwent medical treatment.

PO3 Dennish Pengson, case investigator, said the tricycle was going north when the oncoming cargo truck veered to the its lane resulting in the collision.

The truck driver, Cirpriano Apa, 36, of Marilao, Bulacan, told investigators that a vehicle in front of him suddenly made a full stop forcing him to veer to the opposite lane.

Apa faces charges of reckless imprudence resulting in homicide, serious physical injuries and damage to properties. ###

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