The Negros Chronicle is a weekly publication published in Negros Oriental province, Philippines, vigilantly featuring the latest news updates around Dumaguete City and Negros Oriental since 1973.
   SEPTEMBER 21, 2014 EDITION | This site has been visited times.
  HUMAN RIGHTS ADVOCATES display their sentiments about the long-overdue compensation for Marcos Martial Law victims of violence and intimidation. Finally, the team has arrived in Dumaguete to list down possible local beneficiaries-applicants.  
Barrio hall falls in landslide

Imminent danger comes true

Everybody expected it coming. The barangay hall of the richest barrio where geothermal steam is explored and steamed, fell into a landslide and was in total wreck several hundred meters down the slope of the Puhagan mountain range.

It did not actually come as a complete surprise; in fact local authorities have adopted several pre-disaster mitigating measures to keep lives from mortal danger and damage to public and private property to the minimum.

Since tropical storm Sendong battered the barangay on December 17, 2011, the barangay hall of Puhagan, Valencia, the principal host of the geothermal plants of the Energy Development Corporation, has been tagged as being in imminent danger of collapsing due to intermittent landslides and soil erosion especially during heavy downpour.

Any attempt to reinforce the existing structures within the barangay government compound would be costly. Estimates vary from P 30 million to P 50 million. So management decided to just let it go when it goes. And it did last week.

Thus, the Barangay Council led by Captain Leonarda T. Sarita sent two resolutions to EDC on August 15, 2012 requesting for a joint assessment and survey on the stability of the barangay lot and the integrity of the public buildings within the compound and for the company to provide the barangay with a suitable, safe and stable relocation site for the LGU's facilities and buildings following the August 6, 2012 6.9 magnitude earthquake during the traditional Monday flag ceremony with more than a hundred people in attendance who panicked after the huge tremor caused a massive landslide at the back of the barangay hall.




The phone rang at about 5am Saturday, Sept 21, 1972. It was my news partner the late Gerry Olis, who nervously blasted the news that: “Bai, Martial Law ! Marcos proclaimed it last night effective today. All Manila radio TV stations are closed and all newspapers. Dali diri sa station, mag “live” broadcast ta!”

Without any second thoughts, I jumped from my bed, quickly told Marlen about it, and rushed to DYSR-AM where I worked as a news anchor on a nightly show called “Dumaguete Tonight.” That was way back in 1972. Some 42 years ago. But the memories are still fresh.

So what happened in Dumaguete that morning? For lack of enough space, we will just telegraph the events for your information and for the sake of history.


5am – phone rings. Gerry Olis broke the news monitored from Radio Australia because all Manila stations were already closed down by Marcos;

7am – I anchored live interviews on reactions to Martial law. We did not close station DYSR-am. We waited for an official order which did not come.




An educative and perhaps “jurisprudential” in cident has happened in the City Council this week because circumstances surrounding the incident ended up in an apparent but vain attempt to bar a broadcaster from covering the Sanggunian sessions for one reason or another.

This significant rejection of such a resolution via a collegial vote by the city councilors consequently upheld the FREEDOM OF THE PRESS guaranteeing any accredited media person to enter city hall, and any public building in order to cover a public event.

Earlier in the week, a lady councilor's ire on a certain broadcaster ended up in an erroneous issuance of a barangay protection order BP0 which was followed by the councilors' collegial rejection of a resolution barring one broadcaster from covering the City Council session.

Although the lady councilor continues to pursue her cause in seeking legal redress, we leave it to the parties to settle the matter in court with the promise that the media will cover the final outcome of the case whenever such time arrives.

Lessons learned by barangay captains is that Barangay Protection Orders can be issued only to a woman-victim under RA9262 or the Anti violence against women and children act, and only when the victim and the aggressor have intimate relationship now or in the past.



"A child of God is not aware of God’s Will because he IS the Will of God."

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