St. Louise de Marillac feast celebrated

Manila Bulletin

MANILA, Philippines - Tuesday is the feast day of St. Louise (Sta. Luisa) de Marillac, the well venerated patron of social workers, and co-founder with St. Vincent de Paul, of the Daughters of Charity. Masses, novenas, and processions will be held in several Catholic churches all over the world, including the Philippines, in honor of the French nun.

The faithful are encouraged to include in their Lenten meditation the guiding principle of St. Louise, "Love the poor and honor them as you would honor Christ Himself." Born in France in 1591, St. Louise was known as a compassionate, pious, and deeply religious woman. A great devotee of the Blessed Mother, she took her religious vows at the age of 43. (Christina I. Hermoso)

Bill to ban plastic bags proposed
Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez and Abante Mindanao Rep. Maximo R. Rodriguez Jr. filed House Bill 2109 that calls on the government to ban the use of plastic bags which they said have harmful effects to the environment.

"It is the policy of the state to protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature," they said.

Under the bill, groceries, supermarkets, restaurants, fast food chains and other establishments are prohibited from using plastic bags. All establishments will provide only recyclable paper bags, and/or compostable plastic bags or reusable bags to its customers, it added. (Charissa M. Luci)

P.C.G.G. wants to nullify M.O.A.

The Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) and the Government Insurance Security System (GSIS) are looking into legal remedies to retrieve a 12.3-hectare prime property in Pasig City valued at P4 billion that was sold for only P1.2 billion in a hasty deal made during the closing days of the previous administration.

GSIS president Robert Vergara visited PCGG chairman Andres Bautista last week to discuss how government can nullify the memorandum of agreement forged by the Consolidated Prime Development Corporation (CPDC), the PCGG under former chairman Camilo Sabio, Philippine Integrated Meat Company (PIMECO), and Peter Sabido for the purchase of the lot belonging to the Meat Packing Corporation of the Philippines (MPCP), which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of GSIS. (Kris Bayos)

I.C.T. to help agri sector
It is now time for all agricultural communicators to use information and communication technology (ICT) to disseminate data needed to advance both agriculture and fisheries.

Dr. Nicomedes P. Eleazar, director of the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR), made this pitch during the recent general assembly of the Philippine Agricultural Information Services Network (PhilAgriNet) held at the National Training Center-Agricultural Training Institute at the Benguet State University (BSU) in La Trinidad, Benguet. During the same assembly, a seminar-workshop on "Upgrading Proficiencies for Information Documentation and Sharing" was also conducted. (Marvyn Benaning)

P.C.S.O. earned P27-B in 2010
The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) through its various lotto games has earned P27-billion revenue in 2010, an increase of P4 billion from the 2009 figures. PCSO General Manager Jose Ferdinand "Joy" M. Rojas II said the P27 billion the state charitable agency generated translates to more assistance for indigent sick Filipinos.

Rojas said in the year 2009 the PCSO earned P23 billion, but this was surpassed by the revenue in 2010. The PCSO is the government's main agency generating "funds for health programs, medical assistance and services, and charities of national character." (Edd K. Usman)