Press Briefing

Press Briefing of Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque – Albay

Event Press Briefing
Location Albay


SEC. ROQUE: We now go to our regular press briefing. I begin with the regular good news.

First good news is on the Social Weather Station 4th quarter 2017 survey on the net satisfaction rating of President Duterte – We’re elated with the latest Social Weather Station survey showing an excellent net satisfaction rating of the Duterte administration at +70. December 2017 figure is a 12 point rise from September 2017, which was at +58. It is worth mentioning that the current administrations’ 70 net satisfaction rating is considered record high by the SWS. It is also the highest net satisfaction rating received by any administration in the last 28 years.

Our people recognize the efforts of the Duterte administration when they rated the present government very good in fighting terrorism, helping the poor and maintenance of public works correlation to providing jobs. Needless to say this excellent public confidence will continue to motivate the President and his team to continue working hard to lay down the conditions of a peaceful and prosperous nation.

Another good news. There was a 10.79 % increase in Philippine merchandize export in the period of January to November 2017 according to the Philippine Statistics Authority. We attribute this growth to the significant increase for both the electronics and non-electronics exports with 10.84% and 10.73, respectively. The People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, Japan and USA were our top merchandize export destinations.

Another good news. Nabuksan na po ang Karay-Karay Bridge sa Biliran. Kung maalala ninyo po nasira po itong tulay ng Karay-Karay sa Biliran noong bagyong dumaan, iyong bagyong Urduja noong Disyembre. Ang sabi po ng DPWH noong nagkaroon kami ng press briefing sa Biliran eh kinakailangan nila ng isang buwan; wala pa pong isang buwan nabuksan na po ang Karay-Karay Bridge. Iyan po ay ipinangako ni Secretary Villar kay Presidente noong sinabi ni Presidente, napakatagal ng isang buwan para mabuksan iyong bridge na iyan.

Another good news. Ang PhilHealth is now in the process of accrediting registered nurses as accredited professional health care providers for three packages – including maternity care package, newborn care package and normal and spontaneous deliver package in the PhilHealth accredited birthing homes.

Now in addition, the policy accredited nurses can also provide services were family planning benefits is being performed and reimbursed in primary care facilities such as IUDs insertion and subdermal contraceptive implant packages.

Now pupunta naman po tayo doon sa pinakabagong balita di umano ng Rappler.

Let me start by saying that this allegation against Special Adviser to the President Bong Go appears to be defense by way of an offense. Please note that this allegation came out immediately after the decision of the SEC declaring that Rappler Inc. and Rappler Holding violated the ownership rules of the Constitution on mass media companies ‘no. So it appears that the best defenses an offense; but as you know former FOIC of the Navy Mercado has issued a statement stating categorically that SAP Bong Go never intervened in connection with the frigate project. Likewise, we have a clarification already issued by Secretary Lorenzana that the white paper was not handed to him by Secretary Bong Go.

In addition I’d like to reiterate my statement that what was purchased by the Philippine government during the Aquino administration were two frigates not just boats. So that includes the boat; that includes the communication system; that includes the navigation system and the combat system.

Because a later story of Rappler disputed our allegation that—or the fact that this frigate project was already selected and awarded by the previous administration.

So again, I’d like to debunk the claim of Rappler that this combat system was procured separately from the frigates; hindi po. Iyong 15.7 billion na binili po nating frigates includes already this combat system and because this was already awarded to a Hyundai, it was really futile on the part of anyone including Secretary Bong Go to intervene because at that point the winning bidder Hyundai had already specified kung ano po iyong ilalagay na combat system sa barkong naibili na natin. So malinaw po iyan.

Now, questions now from the media present here and from Manila. Before I read the questions from Manila, I’d like to take questions from the media practitioners present here. Yes please. Channel 7, identify yourselves please. Yes, sir?


SEC. ROQUE: Yes, Allan?

ALLAN/GMA DZBB: I would like to direct my question to Usec. Solidum. May sinabi ho kanina si Mayor Rosal na possible mag-decamp sila ngayong hapon. Pababalikin muna. Sa tingin ninyo ho ba advisable ho ba iyon despite na ongoing pa rin iyong pag-alburoto ng Bulkang Mayon?

USEC. SOLIDUM: Ah iyong gagawin ni Mayor Rosal ay consistent lang sa advisory natin at ng provincial government ng Albay na sa Southern flank ay hanggang 7 kilometers ang ating recommended na dapat walang pumapasok o dapat wala. At kung maintindihan ninyo karamihan po ng settlement sa Southern flank ng Mayong Volcano ay nagsisimula sa 8 kilometers.

SEC. ROQUE: Ah may follow up ba si Allan? Yes, Allan?

ALLAN/GMA DZBB: Sa mga nakalipas po na araw ng pag-iikot namin, mayroon pa rin hong pabalik-balik sa danger zone. Ito ho ba pinapayagan natin na mag-stay iyong mga tao doon kahit sinasabi nila na sa araw naman naglalaba sila, nag-aalaga ng kalabaw at baka at pagkatapos sa gabi babalik sila. Ano ho ba ang statement dito ng local government?

AL-FRANCIS BICHARA: Ganito iyon, sa 6 kilometer radius wala ng pumapasok doon. Pero hindi natin maiiwasan na may pumupuslit. Kasi kahit na naglagay tayo ng mga checkpoints doon sa mga chokepoints, eh hindi sila dadaanan doon; dadaan sila sa ibang lugar. So may pupunta doon at we cannot establish iyong—a team na magma-man-to-man sa bawat tao. So hindi maiiwasan iyon pero minimized iyon, so minimized incidents lang iyon.

SEC. ROQUE: Okay, questions? Okay kung walang question si.. Ah okay, go.

ALLAN/PTV4: Okay sir, good morning. Allan po of PTV4. Sir, there are series of questions here from reporters from Malacañang—

SEC. ROQUE: Yes please.

ALLAN/PTV4: Can I just ask you sir? Okay from Tina Mendez from Philippine Star: Any information on the courtesy call of Mr. Katsuyuki Kawai on PRRD yesterday. May message po ba si PM Shinzo Abe for PRRD and what’s the response of the President, sir?

SEC. ROQUE: I am sorry, I was not present yesterday because I had to write a statement ‘no for circulation yesterday. But I will find out today. And I will issue a statement on what transpired.

ALLAN/PTV4: Sir isunod ko lang iyong from Ms. Rose Novenario. Her question is: May grupo or indibiduwal po ba na nasa likod ng pagdawit kay SAP Bong Go sa project? Part po kaya ito ng destabilization against the government?

SEC. ROQUE: Well Rappler lang naman po ang naglabas niyan ‘no. So better ask Rappler, they would know better.

ALLAN/PTV4: Okay sir third from Leila Salaverria. Sorry sir sunod-sunudin ko na ha. What do we hope to gain by allowing China to explore Benham Rise do we not have concerns about its motive?

SEC. ROQUE: Alam ninyo po it’s a scientific research. So science is science. Science knows no nationalities ‘no. And the requirement is that Philippine Scientist must also participate in the scientific exercise and that the result must be shared with Philippine authorities.

So, the quest for truth is all important, it knows nationalities and that’s why all countries that would want to conduct joint research with us in this extended continental shelf are welcome to do so. We have in fact establish guidelines on which of this request can be approve.

Q: Okay, sir another form Ted Tuvera: May mga move po ba na gagawin ang Palace regarding sa siyam na Pilipino na may death sentence sa Malaysia?

SEC. ROQUE: Well, lahat na po ay ginagawa natin para matulungan iyong ating mga kababayan diyan sa Sabah, iyan po ay isang responsibilidad ng estado at tinatanggap po natin iyan. Pero may limitasyon po ang magagawa natin diyan, humihingi po tayo ng kahit papano clemency para hindi matuloy iyong death penalty na napataw sa kanila, pero ang desisyon po ay desisyon pa rin ng mga Malaysian.

Q: Okay, sir last question from Pia Gutierrez of ABS-CBN: Congressman Fredinel Castro told ANC this morning that the proposed constitutional amendment to limit state protection to only the responsible exercise of the freedom of speech came from Malacañang. So, can you confirm this, sir, and how do you reconcile this to the Palace statement that there is no crack down on media?

SEC. ROQUE: I cannot confirm that, because… certainly it did not come from my office. But that is a proposal and that was acted upon by the House of Representatives acting as constituent assembly. So, that’s a proposal from the House.

EMIL/GMA7: Secretary good noon, sir. Para kay Usec. Solidum, Emil Sumangil po sa GMA7. Usec. puwede n’yo ho bang ibahagi sa amin kung ano po iyong mga significant na nakita ninyo sa aerial inspection n’yo, sir, kahapon po.

USEC. SOLIDUM: Kung ano ang nakalagay doon sa ating bulletin iyon na rin iyon. Essentially, kino-confirm lang natin na may bagong dome sa tuktok ng bulkan at iyong mga lava dumaloy pupunta sa South.

Now, just—hindi naman nalalagay bulletin, but if you notice iyong dating bungi ng crater ng Mayon eh naayos na, parang na-facelift na iyong mukha niya sa south because of the continuous lava flow.

Essentially the aerial observation was to confirm what happened inside the crater and which areas were affected by the current deposit. So iyon ‘yung significance ng ating aerial. Which would mean na mukhang lava flow lang talaga ang nangyayari at wala pang explosive deposits na tulad ng pyroclastic flow in other areas. So mainly concentrated sa southern flank, which is consistent with our recommendation for the extended danger zone doon sa south.

SEC. ROQUE: Usec. Solidum, please confirm, will you have another aerial inspection this afternoon?

USEC. SOLIDUM: Hindi pa po, wala pa atang kaming balak. But we have teams all around anyway. Ang importante sa—combination po iyan talaga ng instrument that would monitor what is happening inside the volcano. Ang aerial observation is just to confirm the possible effects and the deposit on the slope.

EMIL/GMA7: Sir, iyong river channels po, kumusta iyong monitoring ninyo?

USEC. SOLIDUM: Ang river channels kasi ay delikado kung dumami ang abong iniimbak sa southern side and that’s another concern. Dapat maintindihan ng publiko na pagdating sa activity ng Mayon, dalawang klase ng danger zone ang ating tinitingnan. Una, danger zone sa volcano activity, nandiyan na iyong 6 kilometers and extended 7 sa South at kapag umulan ng matindi kung sakaling marami nang deposito, kung sakali or supposition ay posibleng magkaroon ng lahar. Pero iyong nabisita mo at mapapansin ay iyong mga ilog doon ay nagkaroon ng pagbabaw dahil sa ulan ay binaba na iyong ibang mga abo. Hindi pa talaga totoong lahar iyon, parang baha lang na bitbit iyong mga buhangin at abo.

JOAN/UNTV: Sir, anyone can answer po this one. Since identified na po iyong 6 kilometer permanent danger zone and from the term permanent danger zone, are we not considering po na tuluyan ng pagbawalan iyong pagtira ng mga tao doon po sa lugar, since delikado nga po dahil po sa bulkan?

GOV. BICHARA: Wala na pong nakatira doon since then cause we have declared that as 6 kilometer danger zone… permanent danger zone. May ordinansa kami diyan. Pero hindi ho maiiwasan ng mga nagtatanim doon iyong mga farmers, naglalagay sila ng make shift na bahay-bahay doon but they don’t live there anymore.

JOAN/UNTV: Sir, pa-expound lang po doon sa ordinance po natin, kasi kumbaga para lang mas mahigpitan sana iyong mga kababayan natin na bumabalik pa rin doon, kasi nga medyo delikado po, hindi po ba?

GOV. BICHARA: Alam mo kailangan mag man-to-man na tayo dito. Kasi sa dami ng tao, kahit saan puwedeng dumaan, very porous itong—wala namang bakuran eh. May mga kalye papunta doon, pero iyong karamihan trails. Pag nilagyan mo ng checkpoint iyong isang trail, hindi dadaan doon, dadaan sa ibang lugar. But these are just a handful of them, but during… iyong kalmado ang Mayon ay talagang nagtatanim sila doon dahil very fertile ang lupa diyan. Pero walang nakatira.

DENNIS/BOMBO RADYO PHILS.: Question lang po kay Director Solidum. Noong pumunta po kami sa Phivolcs ay mano-mano iyong pagpa-plot ng mga data tapos iyong isyu po doon sa mga nawalang facilities na nagpapabagal daw po sa pag-gather ng information. Na address na po ba ito, Director Solidum?

GOV. BICHARA: Ano po iyong tanong, iyong mano-mano? Iyong mano-mano ay normal. Actually ang daming equipments sa Mayon Volcano and this is one of the most instrumented volcano all over the world. So, of course—hindi ko alam kung ano ang ibig sabihin ng mano-mano, but you have to inspect data and locate earthquakes and count it. Hindi naman talaga automated iyan. Kasi iyong instrument does not recognize the types of earthquakes that a volcano would show. Pagdating sa fault earthquakes, iyon kayang-kaya ng automatic iyon.

Sa second question, iyong na-address. Ay hindi namin nababalik iyong operation doon sa lugar na ninakaw ang aming baterya at solar panel. Kasi hindi naman off the shelf iyong bateryang ginagamit namin, it has very long lasting battery and it’s… ini-import iyan.

Now, what is the purpose of having many instruments around the volcano is for redundancy. Kunyari, pag sumabog ang bulkan ng malakas, baka matabunan iyong iba, masira. So, dapat meron kaming buhay na mga instrumento. Meron naman kaming sapat sa labas but ang request lang natin ay was namang galawin, kasi these are also very important lalo na kung talagang nagkakaroon na ng maraming activity, we need to have as many as many data as possible, as it glows nandiyan na iyong magma sa loob—earthquake monitoring po iyon.

Marami pa kaming instrumento that are not in that area which would also give us an indication of what is happening. As of this moment, ang pinakaimportanteng barometro, maliban sa earthquake ay gas. Meron po tayong permanent gas monitoring and also mobile and iyong ground deformation, iyong pamamaga and we have enough and we also have physical monitoring of this kind of parameter.

Q: Solidum, we have two domes, the lava dome of Mayon Volcano and Usec. Solidum. Sir, it’s only to allay fears from our residents that for the past three days, there was more than one hundred plus lava collapse observation, and the fear that they might destroy the beauty or the conical shape of Mayon volcano. What’s the real score for this?


Source: PCOO-NIB (News and Information Bureau)#NIB