Empty promises


Gems of history

Solano folk unearth town’s historical treasure

SOLANO, Nueva Vizcaya

“What the Photograph reproduces to infinity has occurred only once: the Photograph mechanically repeats what could never be repeated existentially.” Roland Barthes, “Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography”

Dr. Bonifacio Ramos wishes he could go back in time, or more than 40 years ago, when the old San Luis Beltran church still basked in its full splendor at the town center in Poblacion North here.

“It was quite a nostalgic feeling viewing the photo of the old church. I remember the times in my younger years when we used to go there, such as to hear Mass in Latin,” he said, his eyes welling up.

Ramos, a retired university professor, was looking at reproductions of old photographs of his hometown, including those of the old Catholic church which has since been reconstructed in 1967 to make room for what would be a bigger cathedral.

For the past two weeks, Ramos’ sentimental look-back to his town’s history has similarly afflicted almost everyone from the town’s 60,000 inhabitants who has viewed the ongoing exhibit of old photographs showcasing Solano’s historical wealth.

High school students from the Saint Louis School in Solano view the exhibit which give them priceless lessons in their town’s history. Photo by Melvin Gascon

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Caravan wants mining license revoked, law repealed

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer, October 15, 2012

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya–About 150 tribal members and farmers from upland communities in the province on Sunday slammed what they said was the Aquino government’s alleged indifference to calls for the revocation of mining licenses granted to projects here.

The groups, which is composed of various non-government and people’s organizations opposed to mining, said they were not losing hope that the government would finally heed calls to stop supporting what they described as “development aggression” by foreign mining companies.

“We have left our farms, our houses to join this caravan as our way of telling President Aquino and our (lawmakers) that it is never too late; they can still do something,” said Lorenzo Pulido, vice president of the Didipio Earthsavers Multi-Purpose Association (Desama).

Photo courtesy of SOS-Yamang Bayan Network

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Bets dismay mining foes in N. Vizcaya

From the Philippine daily Inquirer, October 14, 2012

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya—Environment advocates expressed dismay over some politicians’ tack to ride on the antimining sentiment in the province in an apparent ploy to win votes in next year’s elections.

Tolentino Inlab, president of Didipio Earthsavers’ Multipurpose Association (Desama), said antimining advocates were wary of politicians who have been attending antimining activities.

“We are hoping that their presence is a sincere effort to help our cause, and not just for political propaganda. We know for a fact that in the past, they have been indifferent about our campaign against mining,” he said.

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Defections hit once powerful party in Vizcaya

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer, October 11, 2012

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya—The Nacionalista Party (NP) in Nueva Vizcaya is crumbling after the once dominant party in the province was deserted by its top leaders and several members.

The official list of candidates from the Commission on Elections showed that former NP stalwarts had filed their certificates of candidacy (COC) under rival parties, often going head-to-head with NP’s bets.

NP members, who asked not to be named due to the sensitivity of the issue, said there is resentment within the party, and the remaining NP members have expressed dismay over the selection of the party’s official candidates for local positions.

“Many members were disappointed that the NP was not able to select a viable candidate for governor and other lower positions. The proposed alliance with [the Liberal Party (LP)] was also a failure,” said an NP member.

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N. Vizcaya’s political landscape undergoes overhaul

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya–This province’s political landscape has undergone a major shakeup that was triggered by feuds among Nueva Vizcaya’s leaders, and is seen to provide interesting match-ups in the coming local elections.

The recent collapse of two of the province’s major political groups, Abante Vizcaya and Arya Vizcaya, and the realignment of forces at the national level, saw many of their local members bolting their old party and forming new alliances, often with their former bitter rivals.

The recent public spat among the province’s top political leaders has caused the once-dominant Abante Vizcaya to split into two factions, each led by Rep. Carlos Padilla and Gov. Luisa Cuaresma, former staunch allies.
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