Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Philippines Wednesday, February 16, 2011
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Negrenses Coni Ledesma, Luis Jalandoni and Lulu Tison (l-r) at the talks in Oslo, Norway, yesterday: Will they attain peace?*

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Oslo peace talks start
with three Negrenses

“Stilling the guns of war is essential to harnessing all our resources for nation building, especially at a time when the global economic crisis has hit hard countries like the Philippines,” Secretary Teresita Quintos Deles said yesterday at the start of the government peace talks with the National Democratic Front in Oslo, Norway.

Deles, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, also issued a call for both panels, of which three Negrenses are members, to work at reaching a peace treaty that would end decades of war.

The Negrenses at the talks are peace advocate Lulu Tison of Bacolod City on the government side and former priest Luis Jalandoni and Coni Ledesma of  Silay City on the NDF’s side.moremoremore

Prayers for success held,
but guv not too optimistic


Peace advocates in Negros Occidental are storming the heavens with prayers for the successful outcome of the peace talks that began yesterday between the government and National Democratic Front, but Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. was not too optimistic.

Peace advocate Cesar Villanueva of Pax Christi Pilipinas, a national movement advocating peace based on justice, healing and reconciliation, said they are elated that the government and NDF have decided to go back to the negotiating table in Oslo, Norway.

Villanueva, who led  ecumenical prayers and candle lighting in front of the Bacolod San Sebastian Cathedral yesterday, in support of the peace talks, said they are praying for the success of the peace process and sincerely hope that it paves the way to a final peace agreement that can bring about the end of armed hostilities, and create the condition for a just peace, healing and reconciliation.moremoremore

Capitol may
downsize personnel


The reorganization of Negros Occidental provincial government employees this year is likely to include downsizing of personnel, some of whom have already expressed interest in early retirement, Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. said yesterday.

Employees who may be affected  by the downsizing will be properly  compensated, the governor said.

The Negros Occidental provincial government has 2,260 personnel, 1,884 of whom are permanent and 376 casuals.moremoremore

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