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Showing posts with label Philippine News. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Philippine News. Show all posts

5 Filipinos among passengers of Singapore Airlines that hit 'severe turbulence'

Posted on 22 May 2024 No comments


Photo supplied by the carrier shows how the plane looked after the severe turbulence

Five Filipinos were among 229 people aboard a Singapore Air flight from London that was diverted to Bangkok yesterday after experiencing “severe turbulence” while on air, leading to the death of one passenger.

A statement issued by the airline late Tuesday said a total of 18 crew and 211 passengers, including five Filipinos, were aboard the stricken airline. 

Singapore Airlines, in a statement late Tuesday, confirmed one passenger had died and 18 other individuals had been hospitalized, but gave no details about their identities or condition.


"Another 12 were being treated in hospitals. The remaining passengers and crew were being examined and given treatment, where necessary, at Suvarnabhumi International Airport in Bangkok," the airline merely said.

Other reports identified the fatality as 73-year-old British national named Geoffrey Kitchen, who had worked with the Thornbury Musical Theatre Group, and most recently served as its director. 

Mr Kitchen was travelling with his wife when he died on board the Boeing 777-300ER plane, which was forced to make an emergency landing in Bangkok en route to Singapore from London at 3:45 local time on Tuesday.

A spokesman for Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport has been quoted as saying that the British victim suffered a suspected heart attack on the aircraft. 

He added that seven people are fighting for their lives in hospital, and dozens others were injured.

Here's a video from Reuters taken shortly after the stricken plane landed in Bangkok:

"Singapore Airlines offers its deepest condolences to the family of the deceased. We deeply apologise for the traumatic experience that our passengers and crew members suffered on this flight. We are providing all necessary assistance during this difficult time," the airline said.

"We are working with our colleagues and the local authorities in Thailand to provide the necessary assistance. A Singapore Airlines team is on its way to Bangkok to provide any additional assistance needed," it added.

The airline said the flight encountered “sudden extreme turbulence” over Myanmar’s Irrawaddy Basin at 37,000 feet about 10 hours after departure and the pilot declared a medical emergency, with flight tracking data showing the plane plummeted 6,000 feet in about three minutes.

Relatives seeking information may call the Singapore Airlines hotlines at +65 6542 3311 (Singapore), 1800-845-313 (Australia), and 080-0066-8194 (the United Kingdom).


Customs, currency declaration now in e-travel

Posted on 10 May 2024 No comments


The e-travel pass and customs clearance must be secured 72 hours before departure or arrival in Phl

From today, all passengers travelling to the Philippines may fill in the forms for customs and currency declaration using the e-travel application system ( or through the eGovPH app 72 hours before arriving or departing from the Philippines.

The e-Travel customs system will be implemented at the following Philippine international airports:


• Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Metro Manila, all terminals)

• Mactan-Cebu International Airport (Metro Cebu);

• Francisco Bangoy International Airport (Metro Davao);


• Kalibo International Airport (Aklan);

• Caticlan International Airport (Aklan);

• Puerto Princesa International Airport (Palawan);

• Bohol International Airport (Bohol);

• Clark International Airport (Pampanga); and

• Laoag International Aiport (Ilocos Norte).

The paper customs declaration may still be used for now 

After filling out the designated Customs Baggage Declaration Form and the Currency Declaration Form the QR code that is generated is automatically forwarded to Philippine customs officials for clearance.

As of now paper forms of the CBDF and CDF are still available at the named airports for passengers who fail to use the e-Travel system before arrival or departure.


Senate to hold inquiry on illegal recruitment cases

Posted on 28 January 2024 No comments


Tulfo will lead the inquiry into the illegal recruitment cases   (File)

The Senate committee on migrant workers is set to hold a hearing on “massive illegal recruitment schemes,” including those allegedly perpetrated by groups controlled by former Cebu City councilor Prisca Nina Mabatid.

The Senate hearing, set for 10am on Jan. 30, will be presided over by Committee chair Raffy Tulfo, along with member Risa Hontiveros. It will be held at the same time as the bill on OFWs financial literacy enhancement authored by Senator Tulfo.

Among those invited to give testimony is Joanna Concepcion, chairperson of Migrante International, who plans to bring along complainants in Hong Kong and the Philippines  against Mabatid and her company, Opportunities Abroad (OA).


Also expected to take part are victims of the human trafficking syndicates who were enticed to go to Thailand for supposedly high-paying jobs, but ended up working as crypto scammers in Myanmar and other neighboring countries.

About 200 Filipinos, including those working in Hong Kong and other places abroad, as well as regular jobseekers in several towns across the Philippines, have filed complaints against Mabatid’s group with the Department of Migrant Workers and the National Bureau of Investigation starting in June last year.

The new wave of complaints came after about 20 overseas Filipino workers in Hong Kong sought help from the police and the Philippine Consulate in June last year after paying about Php132,000 each to Mabatid who reportedly convinced them to apply for student visas to Canada.

Flyers posted on FB announced the 'orientation'' by Mabatid in HK on 2 days last year

Despite being promised in February 2023 that they could acquire the visa in just three months, the complainants said no one among them managed to get anywhere near being admitted to a school in Canada, despite completing the long list of requirements sent to them as a pre-requisite by OA staff.

A number of them also asked the OA handlers assigned to them via email if they could already avail of the P1million “show money” promised them by Mabatid to kick-start their applications, but they were told they needed to provide the “alibi” or proof showing that the money in the bank was theirs.

Hearing that Mabatid would return to Hong Kong in June to conduct another “orientation seminar” for the promised visa scheme, some of the complainants called the police for help in accosting her at the venue to demand a refund. She promised to give back their money the following Sunday at the Consulate, but she did not show up.

After they filed complaints, about five OFWs in HK received letters from a lawyer representing OA, threatening them with a lawsuit, saying they signed agreements barring them from seeking a refund for whatever reason.


Hearing about their complaints, dozens of Filipinos from across the country also came out to complain against the same group, who also offered help in obtaining student visas to Canada for no less than P100,000 in processing fees, but were also left holding an empty bag.

According to the complainants, a big number of whom were from Cebu and Davao, they were enticed to sign up for the offer because the recruiters were helped by their local government units and the PESO (Public Employment Service Office) in their localities.

DWC OIC Hans J. Cacdac said as early as August last year during a meeting with Migrante and the complainants that he had already endorsed the case to the NBI, but no other developments have been forthcoming.


Separately, Senator Tulfo held a three-hour online meeting in December with the complainants and other individuals and groups helping them, and promised a full Senate inquiry.

He also asked the Department of Justice to look into the possibility of issuing hold departure orders against Mabatid and other alleged illegal recruiters so they could be stopped from recruiting more OFWs.


PHL’s prime property developer woos HK investors

Posted on 11 November 2023 No comments
Ayala's Rex Mendoza (left) says now is the time to buy a prime property in Metro Manila

Close on the heels of Manila being named as the hottest market worldwide for prime residential properties, executives of the Philippines’ biggest property developer, Ayala Land Inc., came to Hong Kong to tell would-be investors why they should head for the country now.

“This is a call for you to make that investment now,” said Rex Mendoza, a director of Ayala Land, during a talk on Thursday night at Novotel in Wan Chai.


Mendoza was speaking to a group of Ayala agents and local residents who had expressed interest in buying property in the Philippines, in the wake of a report by property consultancy Knight Frank which showed that prices of prime properties in Manila gained 21.2 percent in the past year.

This put the Philippine capital on top of the list of major cities abroad in terms of price appreciation for the third quarter of the year, outperforming Dubai, where the average yield was 15.9 percent, and Shanghai, with 10.4 percent.

Pindutin para sa detalye

Hong Kong with its overheated market fell to the 36th slot, from the 35th place in the previous quarter.

Mendoza said that given the Philippines’ strong fundamentals, investors are likely to gain even more if they put their money in the country. As it is, the Philippines is already among the world’s fastest growing economies, and is even forecast by HSBC to become the 16th largest economy by 2050.

Even in the worst of times such as the pandemic, property prices in the Philippines did not plunge, said Mendoza. 

“As long as the Philippines manages to address its problems with infrastructure it should do even better,” he added.


Right now, he said several major infrastructure projects being carried out in the Philippines have already cut down travel times in many places, including the highways linking the regions of Bicol to Ilocos, and another, between Bataan in the north to Cavite in the south.

Why invest in properties, Mendoza asks with this slide

There are other factors that augur well for keeping the economy robust, such as the country’s booming tourism sector, the ever-reliable remittances from overseas Filipino workers that should bring in $37.5 billion this year, and a nearly equal yield of $35 billion from the business product outsourcing (BPO) industry.


In addition, said Mendoza, the Philippines is in a demographic “sweet spot” because of its young population, meaning those aged 15 years old and below comprise 30% of the total number of residents while those aged 65 years old and above make up less than 15%.

In comparison, many other places in Asia have a rapidly ageing population, leading to lower productivity. In Japan and Hong Kong for example, the number of elderly residents comprise about a third of the total population.


To earn the promised return, however, one needs to invest in Philippine properties that cost around HK$5 million, such as two new developments unveiled by Ronald Galura for Alveo, Ayala’s second most expensive brand.

The introductory price for a three-bedroom condominium measuring between 124 and 126 square feet in Astela in Circuit Makati and Lattice in Parklinks, Pasig City could set a person back by $5.5 million and $4.96 million respectively.

But considering that a small one-bedroom flat in a not-so prestigious address in Hong Kong could already cost this much, it is likely there would be quite a number of takers here, especially among those keen to make a profit after the havoc wrought by the pandemic.



DMW warns against fake employees offering jobs abroad

Posted on 31 October 2023 No comments


The DMW warning against a fake employee 

Even the Department of Migrant Workers in the Philippines has fallen prey to scammers.

An advisory posted a few hours ago on DMW’s Anti-Illegal Recruitment and Human Trafficking Program (formerly of the POEA or Philippine Overseas Employment Administration) warned of certain individuals pretending to be their staff so they can recruit workers for fake overseas jobs.

The post was accompanied by a supposed DMW ID card of someone named Vivian S. Puzon.

Pindutin para sa detalye


Two years ago, a similar warning was posted on the POEA Facebook page. 

Three supposed POEA IDs in the names of Brett Franco G. Porras, Epifanio Supapo, Jr. and  Roberto B. Bustillo were posted, along with the warning that they were using the name of the agency for illegal recruitment activities.

Fake POEA IDs used by scammers

“Peke ang mga ito, hindi namin sila empleyado,” said the advisory. (These are fakes, they are not our employees).

The DMW advisory in turn said: “Mag-ingat sa sinumang magpapakilala na sila ay taga-DMW at mag-rerecruit ng trabaho pa-abroad - SCAM po yan." (Beware of anyone who introduce themselves as being from DMW and recruit for jobs abroad. That is SCAM).


Pindutin dito

Those who know the people whose photos are in the fake IDs are encouraged to report them through email: or send a private message to the DMW Facebook page.



3k fine for 1 overstay, arrest warrant for another

Posted on No comments


The two overstaying cases were heard in Shatin Court

A Filipina who overstayed her visa for more than two years got off with a relatively lenient sentence of $3,000 fine, while a recognizance paper holder who had previously overstayed for more than eight years was ordered arrested after failing to show up at the hearing of his case.

Pindutin para sa detalye

In the first case heard in Shatin Magistracy on Monday, Oct. 30, Acting Principal Magistrate Amy Chan convicted Leizel D. Manago, 33 years old, of violating her condition of stay after she pleaded guilty to the charge.


According to the charge sheet, Manago was permitted to remain in Hong Kong as a tourist only until Jan 23, 2021, but overstayed until her arrest in Tuen Mun on July 6, 2023.

Separately, Antonio A. Aranas failed to show up for the hearing of his overstaying case on the same day and court, so his bail was ordered forfeited and a warrant of arrest issued against him.


Aranas, 51, is in Hong Kong on recognizance, or on the promise that he would remain in Hong Kong and not work or commit any crime while his application for non-refoulement or against being sent back home, was being considered.

He is charged with having overstayed his visa for eight years and four months, after being allowed entry into Hong Kong.

Pindutin dito

The charge against him states that he was allowed by Immigration to remain in the city only until July 29, 2007 but stayed until Nov. 26, 2015, when he was arrested.

His application against non-refoulement allows him to stay in Hong Kong until it is decided with finality.



Hindi na kailangan ng patunay na bakunado ang mga pumapasok sa Pilipinas

Posted on 17 August 2023 No comments


Bakunado man o hindi, dapat pa ring mag eTravel pass ang mga papasok o palabas ng Pilipinas

Lahat ng mga papasok sa Pilipinas mula sa ibang bansa ay hindi na kailangang magpakita ng patunay na bakunado sila kontra sa Covid-19, ayon sa pahayag ng Department of Health noong nakaraang linggo.


“Lahat ng mga darating mula sa ibang bansa ay tatanggapin bakunado man sila o hindi,” ayon sa DOH.

Sa pinakahuling patakaran bago ito, ang mga hindi bakunado o hindi nakapagpabakuna ng dalawang beses na edad 15 pataas ay kinakailangang magpakita ng negative na resulta para sa Covid-19 sa antigen test na isinagawa sa laboratoryo.

Pindutin para sa detalye

Sa kabila nito, hindi pa rin tinatanggal ang patakaran na magrehistro sa eTravel ang lahat ng mga papasok at lalabas ng Pilipinas, bagama’t madalas na hindi na ito hinihingi sa mga paliparan ng Pilipinas. Makukuha ang eTravel pass 72 oras bago ang takdang paglipad ng pasahero.


Pero ayon sa tauhan ng Cathay Pacific sa Pilipinas, mas maganda pa din na sumunod na lang sa patakaran dahil may mga pasahero pa rin na hindi pinapalusot ng mga taga Immigration kapag nalaman nilang walang eTravel ang mga ito, lalo ang mga paalis.

“Sa haba ng pila sa Immigration, may naiiwan ng kanilang eroplano dahil pinabalik ng taga Immigration sa dulo ng pila dahil walang eTravel pass,” sabi ng isang taga Cathay na nasa check-in counter.

Pindutin para sa detalye

Ang eTravel pass ay ipinalit sa arrival at departure cards na dati nang pinapakumpleto sa mga pasahero na parating, o paalis, ng Pilipinas.

Ginagamit ito ng Immigration para malaman ang bilang ng mga taong pumapasok at lumalabas ng bansa, at para din maitala ang mga detalye ng bawat pasahero na dumadaan sa kanila.

Paalala ng Konsulado tungkol sa bagong patakaran

Ayon pa din sa DOH, ang mga paalis ng Pilipinas ay dapat na alamin kung ano ang patakaran ng bansang kanilang pupuntahan pagdating sa bakuna kontra sa Covid-19 para hindi sila magkaproblema pagdating doon.

Kabilang dito ang mga paalis na overseas Filipino workers na ang destinasyon ay maaring nangangailangan pa ng patunay na bakuna, hindi lang laban sa Covid-19, kundi pati sa iba pang sakit.


Ang Hong Kong ay matagal nang hindi nanghihingi ng patunay ng bakuna o Covid-19 test, kaya ang mga paalis papunta dito ay wala nang kailangang dalhin na dokumento, bagamat katulad ng nasabi na, dapat pa ring kumuha ng eTravel pass para makasiguro.

Katulad ng Hong Kong, hindi na rin obligado ang mga tao sa Pilipinas na magsuot ng mask sa mga pampublikong lugar. Pero ang mga bata, may edad, may sakit o mahina ang pangontra sa mikrobyo ay pinapayuhan pa ring mag mask kapag nasa labas ng bahay.


Ang pagbabago ng patakaran sa Pilipinas ay isinagawa matapos ideklara ng gobyerno noong July 22 na hindi na public health emergency ang Covid-19.

Bago ito ay ilang buwan na ding idineklara ito ng World Health Organization.

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