mONICO Bacolod Mayor Monico Puentevella (center, second row) flanked by City Legal Officer Rayfrando Diaz ll and his son, Councilor Claudio Puentevella (l-r) at his arraignment at the Sandiganbayan yesterday.* (Carl Lopez photo)

Monico refuses to enter plea
at arraignment for graft raps


Bacolod Mayor Monico Puentevella finally appeared yesterday before the Sandiganbayan Fourth Division to face the criminal case involving the questionable purchase of Information Technology Packages worth P26 million filed against him and two others, after two postponed arraignments .

His legal counsel Ralph Sarmiento yesterday said that since Puentevella refused to enter plea, the Sandiganbayan entered a “not guilty” plea on his behalf.

Sarmiento said the Sandiganbayan pushed through with the arraignment despite the fact that they filed Monday a motion for bill of particulars questioning what he called vague and broad allegations in the information against Puentevella.moremoremore

PNoy help sought vs.
sugar smugglerst


The Sugar Alliance of the Philippines called on President Benigno Aquino III yesterday to take action against the resumption of sugar smuggling under the watch of newly appointed Customs Commissioner Alberto Lina.

Manuel Lamata, chairman of the SAP Sugar Anti-Smuggling Office (SASO), said in a letter sent to the president that they condemn, in the strongest terms possible, the smuggling of imported sugar into the Philippines to the detriment of the local sugar industry.

“Prior to the appointment of new BOC Commissioner Alberto Lina, we have been able to monitor strictly and prevent the smuggling of imported sugar in the Philippines,” he said.moremoremore


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NegOr 3rd in CV
for AIDS cases

Negros Oriental ranked third among the four provinces in Region 7 in the number of persons with asymptomatic AIDS, with six cases already manifesting symptoms of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.

Provincial team leader, Dr. Socrates Villamor, of the Department of Health Negros Oriental  said that during the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial held at the Quezon Park in Dumaguete City recently, it was revealed that from 1984 to the present, 46 cases of asymptomatic AIDS were recorded in the province, six of them already fully blown HIV-AIDS cases. In the first quarter of 2015, five new cases of asymptomatic AIDS were recorded and referred to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Hospital in Cebu.moremoremore