Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Tausug grieve

Now that Sabah stand-off ended,  some Tausug women grieve. 

Like how Mehol Sadain grieve.

"As a Tausug, I mourn the death of fellow Tausugs in Lahad Datu in Sabah. As a Muslim, I am aghast at Muslims killing their fellow Muslims on land they consider part of their homeland. As a government official, I call on the authorities and the parties involved, in Malaysia and the Philippines, to stretch their patience and exhaust all peaceful and diplomatic means to resolve the crisis without further violence and bloodshed," Sadain lamented in his facebook wall.

He said the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos, which he serves, stand ready to extend all assistance to resolve the stand-off but his message was bit late than the announcement of Malaysian emissary who told the Philippine national government:  "the stand-off was over."

The media reported that there were 10 dead and 4 persons wounded from the Royal Security Forces of the Sultanate of Sulu and North Borneo; two from the Malaysian police forces. But Philippine government needs this figures validated.

What confused me most was why the crisis management was handled that way which resulted to armed confrontation when that could be resolved peacefully.

“This issue should have been resolved jointly by the Philippine and Malaysian government, “ said Carino Antequisa, of Mindanao Peace-building Institute (MPI) and a Philippine accompanier of CAFOD.

 "Conflict could have deescalated if the Malaysian government was able to accommodate the group of Kiram, give them food, and sit together with officials of the government of Philippines to settle the matter diplomatically. This way, the issue could have been dealt more responsibly, jointly, and in a cordial or friendly manner," Antequisa said.

To reckon, 180 members of Sultanate Royal Security Forces from Sulu went to Lahad Datu of Malaysia to assert their historical claim over their ancestral domain

They expressed their dismay about the exclusion of their claims under the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) inked between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to which Ging Deles, head of the Office of Presidential Adviser on Peace Process, replied in an ABS-CBN interview earlier this week, that this issue was not raised during the consultation they conducted with some members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), thus, suggested that the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) should deal the problem.

Kiram's group also wanted Malaysia to "increase the lease's fees" in exchange for continued utilization of their ancestral domain.

In response, the Malaysian security forces instead provided them a deadline to leave the area, Thursday, February 28, rather than discuss the issue amicably.

President Benigno Aquino III considered 'Sabah claim' a dormant issue and asked the group of Kiram, holed up in Sabah, to return “peacefully to avoid possible bloodshed.” A ship was sent to them for humanitarian support, but Kiram's group was not persuaded.

Aquino also asked the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Department of Justice (DoJ) to study the sultanate’s claim.

 "It cannot be denied that the Sulu residents have historical claim over that ancestral domain but the best solution is not through the barrels of guns but through joint state discussion on the problem because presently-- the land claim by Kiram and his group is already within the conflicting jurisdictions of two states," said Antequisa.

 “Nothing will be lost to Philippines and Malaysia if they will jointly deal with the Sultan and his followers from Sulu. I think it would have been better if Malaysia accommodated them temporarily rather than shot them,” he said.

 “The two states should deal the issue that predates them,” Antequisa added.

 "It’s not also remote for Malaysian government to help Muslim Filipinos for their welfare. It’s also possible for Philippines and Malaysian government to declare Sabah as a special zone where Sulu people, living in Lahad Datu, could live harmoniously with them," he said.

 Abel Moya, former manager of Pakigdait Inc. that works on peacebuilding in conflict zones of Lanao, suggested that all of the parties of the present conflict in Sabah must solve the issue through negotiations using the framework of conflict transformation.

“The resolution should be contextualized in history,” he said.

 Moya suggested that the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (OPAPP) may assist the DoJ and the DFA because they have the mediation skills and OPAPP too can reflect on the inclusivity of political settlement to address that concern raised that they are excluded under FAB.

 “The group of Kiram are Muslim Filipinos and their issues remain part of Mindanaoan issues   on their continuing quest for right to self-determination.” Moya pointed.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

You Pirates and online syndicates!

On Jan. 8, 2012, I posted a query in my Facebook account : "is the fine applicable for FB? FB is a US-based institution and not from German state. Though it has global accessibility but it has its rules and policies too for those who wanted to use its apps and features."

This question is in relation to the story, I read, "Zuckerberg faces €20,000 fine over Facebook's anonymous accounts ban"  published in ZDNet written by Jo Best.

On the dawntime of Jan. 9th, 2013 (3:30 am/ Phil. Time), I reviewed my blog and assessed the records of viewers on site, including the statistics of browsers. My interest is drawn to the link

Figure 1.  Tracked.

I tracked that this blog, is being framed and syndicated to . The latter contain the entire content of my original blog.

Figure 2. Photo of my original blog site address.

Figure 3. Photo of my syndicated site done by unscrupulous IT person. See how my blog site was copied at [ .de ] domain.

This is to officially denounce the syndication of my original blog to without my consent. The blog I created under blogspot is  I suspected that an unscrupulous person syndicated my entire blog and copied it all, including my name and links and put my entire site at [.de ] domain. Wikipedia explained that  .de is the country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for the Federal Republic of Germany.

With due respect, I have not authorized anyone to syndicate my blog and publish it under .de site. I made this an open claim to renounce anyone who will copy and have copied my site and used its as link to another site without my free, prior and informed consent. Anyone who did it is liable for such immoral and unconscionable act. I strongly condemn you for being a lousy IT person whose intention is reproachable at a highest degree! 

I demand from blogspot admin to look into cases like this and to secure bloggers from blog pirates and online syndicates.

A quick search using Google to track the link  will reveal this

Figure 4:

This explication constitute an announcement to the whole world that someone pirated my blog to that .de domain. Such was done without my consent and such is obviously a gross violation to the ethical standards required for online bloggers.

Friday, November 16, 2012

"Just Tell Me You Love Me" animation

I love this song from the 80s. I was singing this the whole day and felt that the lyrics seemed odd in this times when most lovers are situated in a context of repression with systematic imposition of policies that can be used against the fundamental right of expression.
I appreciate that the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility (CMFR) posted photos on Facebook about the movement demanding government to approve FOI. Their photos expressed the continuing assertion of media workers for freedom of information.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My animation of Grow Old with You

This is my first animation video with this song originally sang by Adam Sandler.
I am still honing my skills and creativity hoping to provide some sense of what is lofty and beautiful. The song is good background music while working. This video is for lovers. The video is available in Youtube and in my Facebook account too.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Going Stanford University and about coalition

I am in my third week now as a student of Stanford University through

Yes, I am enrolled to a university far from my residence in the Philippines and am scholarly enjoying it, albeit coping with time and other pressures. It felt really inspiring to be in school again.

I enrolled in many subjects but for these months (until December 2012), I focused on Organizational Analysis and another crash course on Creativity.  My other courses will commence its classes by next year, 2013, and will be attended online although in another foreign prominent university. Neuroethics and Philosophy will pre-occupy my thoughts in the first quarter next year.

Our professor in OA course handle the discussion via video lectures and interactive discourse. Through this, distance is no longer a problem and attending the class can be flexibly adapted within my comfort zones. I could listen to lectures with much ease at home, even if I am sprawled on bed. Despite the given resources for readings, I also read other related documents and take notes, too.

Reflection on experiences is much significant above all when theories are applied and we, students, could only relate it with our personal historic accounts specially on matters that touched us the most.

This week, after taking my quizzes, I am seriously considering the question posted by our professor for discussion relating to Coalition. Since it interests me a lot, I thought of sharing it here, too, for keeps. My essay (which I posted in our forum is italized below).

In my country, most social organizations develop into a coalition to fulfill specific goals. These goals are either political, social, economic, interfaith, or cultural in nature but intent on seeking reform, changes, developments, and for improving social cohesion.
Developing a coalition is basically an integral part of social interaction inspired by some ideals people wanted to translate into reality.
By experience, a broad coalition of advocates was organized when like-minded leaders and experts sat in an informal meeting to discuss and evaluate a specific condition that is affecting a large number of populace caught in a war or conflict situation. Their evaluations resulted to identified recommendations, one of which is to form a lose coalition of non-government organizations and individual experts from the academe to create a greater force to demand from the national government to stop military offensives in hinterland areas that caused massive internal displacement. They also wanted to create venue to address the concerns of the displaced community including psychosocial response for traumatized children, women and men. Because of the massive or magnitude impact of violence, response from other communities were generated including supports from local government council, and from civil society from other regions. Members of the organizations begun pro-actively sharing their skills and resources to pull all efforts toward disaster response and conflict deescalation. Those experts in psychosocial response engaged themselves in trauma healing for war survivors. Those who were able to generate resources for relief operations and medical missions joined together in taking care of the health, sanitation and needs of IDPs. From the academe, the historians, sociologists, political scientists and anthropologists also engaged themselves in documenting the conflict situation and sharing all these information to media workers and international institutions that are sympathetic for humanitarian causes. They also called on other local governments to empathize with their cause by showing and explaining to them the ill-effects of war to people, properties, economy, politics, ecology, relation and specially, the children. Hence, although members are diverse in their skills and expertise, they all contributed to their general goal of addressing the needs of war-torn communities.
In a post-conflict reflection, the experience made the leaders of these organizations decide to sustain the coalition as a broad network of peace advocates and peace constituents of the region. They decided to network with humanitarian organizations to delve potential areas of partnership and for resources. By this time, they agreed to create its structure, by-laws, and have decided to strategize the organization's vision, mission and goals. After the war, they advocated for peaceful settlement of conflict between the government military forces and with rebel groups through negotiations and through grassroot-based peace-building efforts. The latter constitute more of culture of peace education, peace policy advocacy, and interfaith dialogues.
These group of leaders and organizations started their efforts in year 2000. They are still existing nowadays and are deeply involved still in peace education, psychosocial intervention, disaster response and the like, although I noted that the bulk of the tasks is already lessened as relative peace in our region is enjoyed and negotiations with dissidents are sustainably addressed by the government nowadays. By these, I am saying that the coalition here lasted longer and in fact, its in its 12th year of advocacy works. Lately, members have also commenced assuming concerns for ecological protection, climate change impact mitigation, and of supporting indigenous peoples rights. Those in the academe have also continued their efforts. Other civil society at the national scale have also adopted the same pattern of work in the last decade and many of the leaders in our region were instrumental for their formations too.
The internal management is not without challenges. All of these leaders of institutions are diverse in character, of systems, and inclinations. Decision-makings for specific organizational directions are sometimes barred by differences but this is eventually resolve through tolerance and recognition of their uniqueness. When its difficult to agree, they'd opt for consensual agreements and see what is doable at a given circumstance and limitation.
Added to the challenges here is the consideration of policies and systems of external support organizations, such as funding agencies, who'd oftentimes internally conflict with the organization's system. So far, this concern have not so much impacted on the programs and operation of the organization. Open communication and flexible arrangements have helped this through.
As the coalition evolved, members have also adapted to changes and developments. Their expertise are continually honed thus, readily providing them answers to emerging problems and capacitating them to bridge gaps. So, I cannot say that they are merely doing some fix-ups or are providing palliative measures to issues or to impasse. However, through this all, the coalition remain cognizant of its limitations.
This experience is unique to peace-builders in our region. Political organizations in a broad coalition has a different story to unravel, too.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Covey and Principle-Centered Leadership

for the best wisdom imparted

laying down in prayer my

deep appreciation to your books.
though i lost all of them to 
Sendong, but the principles
shared will stay.

rest in peace, Steven Covey.

you have served this world
with your very best.

Photo from SME Forum

How to Communicate Peacefully?

"Don’t denigrate; appreciate 
Don’t detract; attract 
Don’t suspect; respect 
Don’t manipulate; cooperate 
Don’t discard; regard 
Don’t offend; commend 
Don’t indoctrinate; illuminate
Don’t impose; propose
Don’t mortify; dignify
Don’t humiliate; humanize
Don’t resist; assist
Don’t attack (verbally); question"

-Matos, Brazil

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Island, Oil and Eco-lifestyle

There is no Huangyan Island in the Philippines. Literally, none.

The island and its name is perhaps, a Chinese invention.

But we have oil. In fact, rich deposit of oil where Chinese vessels or fleets flocked at Panatag shoal (international named as Scarborough shoal) to explore (without their application and permits) under the guise of fishing. National experts bared that our “west Philippine Sea has vast deposits of oil and natural gas estimated at 16.6 trillion cubic feet that could last a century, based on the research done by the Department of Energy (DFA, 2012). These information was bared to group of Filipino-Chinese investors last May 8 in a conference aimed at forging ties “for new economic opportunities.”

I honestly wondered if the same information is shared to other foreign investors who could be interested for economic cooperation and joint production within the island. Some legal procedure should be observed if this government is indeed hell bent for cooperative production and utilization of oil and natural gas deposits. This country cannot agree of an aggressive political semantic demonstrative of greed as such strategy is bereft of business ethics.

But why should China resort to such aggressiveness and aggression?

Fisher (2008) disclosed that China, with 1.3-1.5 billion population, has an estimated oil consumption of about 8-10 million barrels of oil everyday for their 100 millions of automobiles and fleet of trucks,  factories and for heating homes. Fisher (2008) comparatively bared that if “Japan consumes 14 barrels of oil a year per capita, Europe consumes 17 and America consumes 25, China could consume 18 billion barrels annually.”

Since they have escalating need for oil, Chinese government should reduce their over dependency to automobiles and start advocating an eco-friendly lifestyle. For sometime, ASEAN neighbors have looked at them as model for sustainable living but their advancement have observably or inadvertently neglected to balance their capacity as steward of their own resources. Employing aggression and intrusion to other sovereign states to quench their needs do not only violate international norms, laws and protocols but also mirror the inability of their leaders to refine national growth within the framework of genuine sustainable development. Just as the country is prominent of yoga and reflection to balance yin and yang, I’d rather suggest that China, as an advanced/modernized nation, should review their economic system,  recreate balance to optimize their resources, and reduce oil consumption. Such way, they might be able to gain political correctness, too.


DFA (2012). DFA, Filipino-Chinese Business Group Agree to Forge Ties and Explore New Economic Opportunities, Mla, Philippines.

Fisher, R. W. (2008).  A Perspective of China, Remarks to a Working Dinner Sponsored by the Progress and Freedom Foundation, Federal Reserve Ban k of Dallas, Texas, US.

Conflict of interests and investments

Most conflicts are economically-driven. As controversies on Scarborough shoal heightened, we need to understand the diverse dynamism within Phil-Chinese relations. 

In earlier centuries, Philippines welcomed Chinese merchants for barter and trading. Their business was focused on paper-based products, livestock, pharmaceutical and plastic toys. Chinese merchants later started pouring investments for manufacturing industry (Dela Cruz, 2008). The latter include textiles. Many of them are into infrastructure and real estate investments as they have evidently constructed hotels, malls, restaurants, and the like.

Over the years, China ranked as among the top leading traders of our country with an investment of less than US$ 1. 5 B (Del Rosario, 2012). They expanded agricultural interest over 1.2 million hectares of agricultural areas, part of which is aimed at producing rice, sorghum, corn and ethanol (Dela Cruz, 2008). Some of these are done in Palawan areas.

In return, China accommodated an estimated 200,000 overseas Filipino skilled workers. These are either teachers, IT experts (working on US-owned companies operating in mainland China) and in the hospitality industry (working in hotels, restaurants etc.).  They import our bananas and other agri-products. For leisure and enjoyment, they also open its gates as tourist destination for neighboring countries. Del Rosario (2012) accounted that Philippine investment in China is greater (than China's investment in our country) at nearly US $ 3 B. 

As our government open the mineral exploration and production to foreign investments, the Chinese business sector also leaped to engage in mining for chromite, gold, and silver in Mindanao. The mining operations are not without controversies as these are met with local oppositions due to its encroachment in indigenous people's ancestral domain; potential vast ecological destruction; human rights and security-related concerns; and, policy-related violations. 

Recently, China offered Philippine government substantial amount as loan to cover for the improvement of infrastructure facilities e.g. Angat Dam, railway system, airport, roads, & ports (Dela Cruz, 2008). We're never certain what went on with these projects.  Whilst we struggle against the sale of Agus and Pulangi hydropower complexes, China positioned itself to benefit from our power industry by investing on our main transmission assets. 

As this bilateral relations progress, we now confront China's controversial claim over Scarborough shoal---geographically located within our territorial and maritime area. This isn't just about fishes, certainly. However, while the controversy is brought to international court for resolve, stakeholders of this country should continually learn more for us to ascertain China's strategic direction under this bilateral relation. Indeed, the issue isn't only challenging territorial and security concerns. It’s also challenging our executive and legislatures about how foreign policy and regulations are enforced.

Amid these developments, China's political norm needs to be noted too. Bhaskar (2012) pointed that China's officials are divided in their stance pertaining to foreign relations and diplomatic strategies.  Those who belong to the "internationalists" prefer compliance with international norms and of optimizing system for global governance (Bhaskar, 2012). They weigh more significance on social cohesion and interrelation above sovereign power. The other group, "realists", likes the utilization of military power to illustrate their dominance in the international scene. This view dominated in the current claim over areas marked under disputes. This simply affirm that their constituents' worldviews are polarized and ergo, we deal with the two.  Bhaskar (2012) contended that the scaling interest of China to control resources in foreign countries becomes necessary to meet China's internal supply-and-demand.  Or, simply put, their needs. This is true noting China's over reliance on oil and ore imports (Bhaskar, 2012). On the other hand, it’s also likely that they wanted to control resource and maintain profit free from the regulations of other sovereign states. 

Other political analysts argue that the controversy in Scarborough shoal is merely used as a political tactic to cover internal rifts and problems within the mainland. Whether this is true or not, it’s still unwise to preach lies to their constituents to justify and confuse them on issues pertaining territorial claims. On the other hand, Philippines opts for peaceful and diplomatic resolve on internal and external rifts although we maintain vigilance on the security aspect because our envoys are dealing with Chinese military officials who hold much authority on their strategic foreign policy (Bhaskar, 2012).

While we hope for friendly ties, we bend our knees to pray and light candles to keep the peace. We note that our relations with our Chinese communities within the Philippines remain warm and in good grace.


Bhaskar, R. (2012). China's Foreign Policy Debate-Analysis. Eurasia Review (News and Analysis). Accessed: May 19, 2012.

Dela Cruz, A. (2008). Chinese Investments in the Philippines. China Business, Mla., Philippines.

Del Rosario, A. (2012). Remarks of Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert F. Del Rosario on Philippine Foreign Affairs at the Joint Membership Meeting of the Makati Business Club and the Management Association of the Philippines, Makati, Philippines.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Maraming salamat for those who assisted us with emergency relief goods, lending me your facilities and in providing us with supplies.

Carol Arguillas. Kara & Bobby Timonera. Leo & Norma Cabasag family. Brian's Ma, sis & brod. National Union of Journalists in the Philippines (NUJP). Atty. Danny Balucos. Ampy Montemayor. Pris Saladaga. Brian's classmates. Those unknown persons and groups who shared rice, can goods, some noodles, blankets/beddings, kitchenwares, pail, hygiene kits, and used clothes.

Special thanks to Ivy Santos, Penny Sanz, my bosom buddies Belle, Armi, & elementary classmates from SACES of Davao city [for medicines], as well as, Omar and Jade Sema who assisted our neighbor.

Thank you too Kumon Iligan for halving the tuition of my son for two months. It really helps a lot!