Thursday, February 28, 2008




WHEN: FRIDAY, 29 February 2008

WHAT TIME: 5:00pm

WHERE: Assembly in front of the Four Pillars, 4:30pm

We will march as a group to the ADNU convergence site in
front of Ramaida Centrum/Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas
(convergence area for Ateneo group)

• Please wear white or black shirt with your ID for easy identification
• Bring your own candle
• Bring any noise-making equipment (e.g. bottles of mineral water with small
stones inside).
• You may also bring your food, water, a towel and extra clothing.


For other details, pls. coordinate with Institute of Politics, Office of Student Affairs, Center for Community Development, or the Office of Administrative Services

Saturday, February 23, 2008

A statement from economists of the Ateneo de Manila University

To a fellow economist and former colleague, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

A statement from economists of the Ateneo de Manila University

We are outraged by the revelations made by Engr. Rodolfo Noel Lozada
Jr. at the Philippine Senate Blue Ribbon hearings last 8 February
2008 about the overpriced Zhong Xing Telecommunication Equipment
Company-National Broadband Network (ZTE-NBN) project. The project
has no clear public rationale in the first place. We are dismayed by
the revelations of Mr. Lozada that former Commission on Election
Chairman Benjamin Abalos Sr., with the alleged involvement of First
Gentleman Jose Miguel Arroyo, ordered the inclusion in the proposed
project a large amount of kickbacks, amounting to as much as 130
million US dollars (or more than 5.2 billion pesos), enough money to
remove the yearly public school classroom backlog, or purchase 5.8
million sacks of NFA rice, or alternatively secure the basic needs
of about 29,000 poor families for a year. Simply put, a lot is being
sacrificed for the greed of the few.

We are angered by the continuing attempt to cover up the anomalous
circumstances surrounding the project, including the supposed
kidnapping of Mr. Lozada to keep him from testifying in the Senate.
We demand that government remove the cloak of Executive Order 464
and the invocation of executive privilege to allow public officials
that have knowledge on the transaction to publicly testify on the
circumstances of the deal. We demand the National Economic and
Development Authority (NEDA) to release records of the meetings that
allowed the contract to be processed. Because of the nature of the
work of the NEDA in national economic planning to promote national
development and public welfare (and not for private or individual
interests), these minutes are public records. We want Secretary
Romulo Neri, an Ateneo high school alumnus and supposed staunch
advocate of reforms to eradicate transactional politics and
oligarchic dominance in the country, to reveal all that he knows
about the matter. Efficiency and equity demand no less.

We abhor the habit of this administration of forging secret deals
and engaging in non-transparent processes in developing and
contracting large infrastructure projects, especially foreign donor-
funded programs, contrary to the tenets of good governance. We call
on friends and colleagues in the government, especially the alumni
of our university, and other sectors to help ferret out the truth
about other alleged irregular deals entered into by corrupt public
officials, including the fertilizer scam, the Technical Education
and Skills Development Authority book scam and the North Rail

We urge our fellow economist, alumna, and former Ateneo colleague,
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, to fully explain and account for all the
anomalies under her administration to prevent our country from
plunging into another political and economic crisis. Indeed, we are
dismayed that Mrs. Arroyo has not exercised the vast powers and
resources available to the Presidency to ensure that large-scale
corruption in the government is not only blocked but also punished,
and that these irregularities have only increased political
instability and uncertainty in the country. We are also offended
that the Presidency has instead utilized these vast powers and
resources to turn its back from servicing the public and contribute
to the advancement of private greed, including the Machiavellian
buying of congressmen, governors, and everybody else that get its
way. And sadly, these abuses have eroded the meaning and legitimacy
of the Presidency. If she fails to fully account and explain the
anomalies and corrupt practices in her administration, the most
honorable thing she can do is to resign from the Presidency.

Finally, we publicly pledge to heed the Catholic Bishops' call to
communal action by supporting the activities that would promote
transparency, accountability, and good governance, and we call on
our fellow social scientists and academics to support this advocacy.
We pledge to make our voices heard by committing to various ways of
peaceful and non-violent political mobilization.

– Signatures –

Fernando T. Aldaba

Cristina M. Bautista

Germelino M. Bautista

Edsel L. Beja, Jr.

Diana U. del Rosario

Luis F. Dumlao

Cielito F. Habito

Leonardo A. Lanzona

Joseph Anthony Y. Lim

Romelia I. Neri

Ellen H. Palanca

Malou A. Perez

Joselito T. Sescon

Tara Sia-Go

Patrick Gerard C. Simon-King

Rosalina P. Tan

Philip Arnold P. Tuaño

Friday, February 22, 2008

CEAP Statement

May I share with you an inspiring statement from the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP):

Speaking Truth, Seeking Justice
Setting Things Right
CEAP on the Events of our Time
February 14, 2008

“No lie can live forever,” said Carlyle. “Truth, crushed to earth, will rise again,” added William Cullen Bryant. And forty years ago, Martin Luther King cried:

On some positions,
Cowardice asks the question, “Is it safe?”
Expediency asks the question, “Is it politic?”
Vanity asks the question, “Is it popular?”
But Conscience asks the question, “Is it right?”

There comes a time when one must take a position
that is neither safe nor politic nor popular;
but one must take it
because Conscience says, “It is right.”

Following his conscience, Rodolfo Lozada Jr. these days has revealed possible corruption in the handling of government contracts. His confession has stirred memories of other allegations by other people of graft and greed in government, and is shaking the souls of many to speak and act in response.

What of us, the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP), an association of 1,252 schools, colleges, and universities with at least 2 million students and around 120,000 school personnel and faculty?

We too must speak, we too must act. For, as the same Martin Luther King continued, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent on things that matter.”

Silent then we must not be or must no longer be, if once we were. May not our lives end but rather begin in a special way this Valentine’s Day. Beyond the love we are expected to declare for the persons of our hearts, is the love for the people of our country that we are invited to express in this time of crisis in our land. Mere bystanders we cannot just be but active participants in the continuous task of shaping our nation’s life. In the words of Vaclav Havel, “By perceiving ourselves as part of the river, we take responsibility for the river as a whole.”

For those of us who know the truth, we pray for the courage to speak it. For those who seek justice, we pray for humility in the pursuit, personal integrity in the quest, respect for others involved in the search. For those of us who must judge and act on what we see and hear, we pray for fairness and the will to make the good triumph over evil in a way that removes the bad, without the act leading to what is even worse.

In tandem with the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) we invite our member schools and their constituents, our alumni and friends individually and communally to pray for guidance on what to do in these times of tension and difficulty. We ask our administrators, faculty, and students to bring to the fore the issues of the day, discuss in humility and decide in fortitude and love what we must do together as a people in the different parts of the country where we are.

We must seek to discover the educative moment and the lesson for life in the investigation sessions and in the rallies and other mass actions we may join. To our country and the world we must show and say that we will not allow dishonesty, corruption, indifference or neglect to rule our lives. We must look into ourselves and ensure that what we decry in others we do not do ourselves.
We should pledge to continue to teach and live truth, honesty and integrity in our own schools so that when our graduates leave us they bring with them not just skills and knowledge but wisdom and love to inspire and change the world.

To this end, we link up with other groups sincerely searching for truth and justice. We encourage the establishment of truth centers in our schools so that our students, teachers, and staff are led to continuing awareness, reflection, and formation toward social-political engagement. We invite our members to support the sanctuary fund set up by the Association of Major Religious Superiors of the Philippines (AMRSP). We support the signature campaign demanding the implementation of the Supreme Court's decision junking Executive Order 464 so that the search for truth is not hindered or compromised.

Jesus, the Way, the Truth, and the Life we shall continue to ask to lead us, accompany and comfort us in all we need to do. It is He, after all, who will truly set us free. The Holy Spirit we ask to enlighten us so that our external actions flow from inner harmony of heart. We remember the words of Will Durant: “A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within.” So we ask our Heavenly Father for the grace that we never neglect but ever firm up the moral fiber of our souls.

Our anger at the wrong and sinful things in and around us may we not allow to make of ourselves men and women of violence. We take to heart the thought of Martin Luther King: “The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence, you may murder the liar, but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth. Through violence you may murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate. So it goes. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

May our light dispel our darkness, may our love melt whatever hatred may lurk within. But in this Kairos moment, this time of grace, we, the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines, with all men and women of good will, in our nation and in the world, in the name of the Lord, by the grace of His Spirit, in concert and in communion call on ourselves and one another to -- speak the truth, seek justice and work to set things right.

Mobillization moved to February 29

Due to heavy rains, more than 100 barangays in the Province of Camarines Sur are flooded today. Classes in the publc schools, including elementary and HS classes in some private schools, were suspended in Naga City. In this context, the planned mobilization(human chain, candle lighting, and noise barrage) 5:00 pm today has been moved to 29 February 2008.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Collective Action!

Concerned students/faculty/personnel of schools and universities (Ateneo de Naga
University, Unibersidad de Santa Isabel, University of Nueva Caceres, Mariners Polytechnic Colleges Foundation,Naga College Foundation), civil society groups (Naga City Peoples Council,Coalition for Bicol Development, Akbayan, KRUSADA, Bayan-Muna,
Gabriela), business leaders of the Metro Naga Chamber of Commerce and Industry), several religious congregations, and the LGU of Naga City will launch
LOZADA" 5pm Friday, 22 February 2008.

Media outlets that will cover the mobilization:Radio Mindanao Network (RMN-Naga), ABS-CBN Naga City, Bombo Radyo Philippines, and DZGE. The brother of Jun Lozada will be speaking in the short program.This is being undertaken simultaneous with mobilizations in the provinces of Albay/Sorsogon and Camarines Norte.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

BICOLANOS speak out!

BICOLANOS speak out! Regional signature campaign launched!

The text of the position paper being circulated in the region:


Engr. Rodolfo Noel “Jun” Lozada Jr. is a credible witness. His testimony underscores the corruption carried out with impunity by people in the highest office of the land! His testimony also revealed the manipulations of the same people to suppress the truth!

Corruption in the highest offices of the government must stop. A leadership that cannot stop corruption, and even dared to get involved with it, is accountable to the people. These leader/s must step down!

We call for the prosecution of those involved in corruption and other criminal acts, particularly those who are so-called officials of the government but are acting out like “mafia” or syndicates involved in shady operations, even using the military and the national police!

We call on the remaining honorable officials of our democratic institutions to speak out and rage against this scheming and manipulation perpetuated by a few who either wants to sustain themselves in power or avoid accountability for their acts!


Monday, February 18, 2008

I got this statement in my mail. Interesting insights on how many Filipinos feel right now!


We are former government officials who have held high positions in the
current and previous administrations. Having participated in the
highest level of governance up close and personal, we now feel
compelled to speak up for our demoralized public servants and arrest
the decline of our institutions of governance. In the past, many of
us kept quiet, going on about our daily chores, attending to business
as usual.

However, over the last few days, we, together with the rest of the
country, have seen one man – Jun Lozada – finally decide that he can
no longer be part of the massive graft and corruption that permeates
this government. His testimony exposed that the corruption in the
project he dealt with – the NBN ZTE project – is standard in what he
called "dysfunctional government procurement processes."

Clearly, what Jun Lozada knew so terrified the powers-that-be that
they unwittingly exposed what Jun called "the dark side of the state"
– state-sponsored terrorism that had been rearing its ugly head in the
various disappearances and extra-judicial killings in the past six
years – and which almost took him as a victim in a botched kidnapping
that the administration has been trying, with little success, to cover

In a sense, all Jun Lozada did was to confirm what we already know:
Our country is sliding into moral decadence. He also confirmed the
systematic destruction of our democratic institutions and the systemic
nature of our problems. We have seen this in the wanton disregard of
checks-and-balances; abuse of the powers of the President; the
cooptation through patronage and outright bribery of the other
branches of government; politically sponsored corruption, facilitated,
not thwarted, by bureaucratic procedures; the naked use of power and
authority through the PNP, PSG, NAIA, among others, to strangle the
truth; and the deployment of cabinet, sub-cabinet officials, and the
military to obstruct justice and cover up illegal orders and acts.

In the past, for too many times that we were confronted with threats
to our democracy and to our moral values, our response was: "What can
we do about it? What is our choice? Who will lead us?"

These questions persist but, today, we can no longer stay silent. We
can no longer ignore the reality of a government gone wild, wreaking
havoc on our rights and institutions in a climate of impunity. We can
no longer console ourselves in the strength of the peso, narrowing
deficits, and an expanding economy. Even these ephemeral gains have
not translated into a better life for the majority of our people,
especially the poor.

The future of our country is at stake. Our democratic institutions
are under attack. What we stand to lose is the moral fabric of our

We call on all government officials – Cabinet Secretaries,
Undersecretaries, Heads of Agencies – who know about these anomalous
transactions to join the heroic stand of Jun Lozada to come forward
and speak out. We call on all those who know about the extrajudicial
killings and disappearances to go public and tell the truth. We call
on all those who can no longer endure this wrongful governance, with
its structures of evil and unmoderated greed: IT IS TIME TO CUT

Tama na! Sobra na! Panahon na!

Signed by:
1. Florencio Abad (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
2. Tomas Africa, (Former Administrator, National Statistics Office)
3. Rafael Alunan (Former Secretary, Department of Tourism)
4. Tomas Apacible (Former Commissioner, Bureau of Customs)
5. Senen Bacani (Former Secretary, Department of Agriculture)
6. Angelito Banayo (Former Secretary, Political Affairs)
7. Romeo Bernardo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance)
8. Gerardo Bulatao (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
9. Clifford Burkley (Former Undersecretary, Department of Social
Welfare and Development)
10. Ramon Cardenas (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
11. Jose Cuisia (Former Governor, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas)
12. Sostenes Campillo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Tourism)
13. Karina Constantino-David (Former Chair, Civil Service Commission)
14. Elfren Cruz (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
15. Isagani Cruz (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
16. Teresita Quintos Deles (Former Presidential Adviser on the Peace
17. Benjamin Diokno (Former Secretary, Department of Budget and
18. Quintin Doromal Sr. (Former Commissioner, Philippine Commission on
Good Governance)
19. Franklin Drilon (Former Executive Secretary)
20. Narcisa Escaler (Former Ambassador to the United Nations)
21. Jesus Estanislao (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
22. Fulgencio Factoran Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of
Environment and Natural Resources)
23. Victoria Garchitorena (Former Head, Presidential Management Staff)
24. Ernesto Garilao (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
25. Peter Garrucho (Former Executive Secretary)
26. Jose Luis Gascon (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
27. Marietta Goco (Former Chair, Presidential Commission to Fight Poverty)
28. Jose Antonio Gonzalez (Former Minister, Ministry of Tourism)
29. Milwilda Guevarra (Former Undersecretary, Department of Finance)
30. Cielito Habito (Former Secretary-General, National Economic
Development Authority)
31. Edilberto de Jesus Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Education)
32. Philip Ella Juico (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
33. Antonio La Viña (Former Undersecretary, Department of Environment
and Natural Resources)
34. Bienvenido Laguesma (Former Secretary, Department of Labor and
35. Lina Laigo (Former Secretary, Department of Social Welfare and
36. Ernest Leung (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
37. Josefina Lichauco (Former Secretary, Department of Transportation
and Communications)
38. Narzalina Lim (Former Secretary, Department of Tourism)
39. Juan Miguel Luz (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
40. Felipe Medalla (Former Secretary-General, National Economic
Development Authority)
41. Jose Molano Jr. (Former Executive Director, Commission on
Filipinos Overseas)
42. Vitaliano Nañagas (Former Chair, Development Bank of the Philippines)
43. Imelda Nicolas (Former Lead Convenor, National Anti-Poverty
44. Roberto de Ocampo (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
45. Oscar Orbos (Former Executive Secretary)
46. Ernesto Ordoñez (Former Secretary, Presidential Flagship Programs
and Projects)
47. Victor Ordoñez (Former Undersecretary, Department of Education)
48. Cayetano Paderanga (Former Secretary-General, National Economic
Development Authority)
49. Jose Pardo (Former Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry)
50. Vicente Paterno (Former Minister, Ministry of Trade and Industry)
51. Felicito Payumo (Former Chairman, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority)
52. Pete Prado (Former Secretary, Department of Transportation and
53. Cesar Purisima (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
54. Victor Ramos (Former Secretary, Department of Environment and
Natural Resources)
55. Amina Rasul (Former Chair, National Youth Commission)
56. Alberto Romualdez Jr. (Former Secretary, Department of Health)
57. Albert del Rosario (Former Ambassador to the United States of America)
58. Francisco del Rosario (Former Chair, Development Bank of the
59. Ramon del Rosario (Former Secretary, Department of Finance)
60. Melito Salazar (Former Member of the Monetary Board, Bangko
Sentral ng Pilipinas)
61. Leticia Ramos-Shahani (Former Undersecretary, Department of
Foreign Affairs)
62. Cesar Sarino (Former Secretary, Department of Interior and Local
63. Juan Santos (Former Secretary, Department of Trade and Industry)
64. Corazon Juliano-Soliman (Former Secretary, Department of Social
Welfare and Development)
65. Hector Soliman (Former Undersecretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
66. Mario Taguiwalo (Former Undersecretary, Department of Health)
67. Jaime Galvez Tan (Former Secretary, Department of Health)
68. Wigberto Tañada (Former Commissioner, Bureau of Customs)
69. Rene Villa (Former Secretary, Department of Agrarian Reform)
70. Veronica Villavicencio (Former Lead Convenor, National
Anti-Poverty Commission)
71. Deogracias Vistan (Former President, Land Bank of the Philippines)

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Let's act now!

We just had our forum yesterday: "Revisiting Anticorruption Initiatives
and the Philippine National Situation" at the Fernando Hall of Ateneo
de Naga University. It was attended by people from the academe, civil
society, business, LGU, and media coming from the provinces of Albay
and Camarines Sur. Among the agreements: (1)a statement of support
for Lozada and a call for action against the "mafia" in government
will be released on Monday and a region-wide signature campaign to be
launched; (2)simultaneous fora in ADNU and the Universidad de Santa
Isabel 9am on Wednesday; (3)candlelight rally and noise barrage 5pm
on Friday; (4)consolidation of anticorruption groups in the region for
strategic engagements.

Think! Reflect! Pray! Decide! Act Now!

Thursday, February 14, 2008


The INSTITUTE OF POLITICS and KDC-WB invite you to the multisectoral
NATIONAL SITUATION", 3PM, Friday, 15 February 2008, Fernando Hall,
Ateneo de Naga University.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

People's Empowerment and Anti-corruption Initiatives!

Corruption in the Philippines, both as a political and cultural phenomenon, emerges again in the Arroyo government. The predicament and testimony of Jun Lozada, a Bicolano, showed again the depth and extent of corruption in the national government. It also gave us a chilling insight into the personalities and groups involved in corruption! The $329.5M NBN Project is turning out to be another showcase of how corruption touches both the personal/cultural ties and the governmental structures!

For an ordinary citizen, this situation gives a sense of dread: the kind of struggle that one will get into and the kind of enemies that one will face in the battle against corruption is formidable! It is no wonder then that the dominant public attitude nowadays towards the situation is apathy, indifference, and cynicism. The message for those who intend to be warriors against corruption: BACK OFF! DONT MESS WITH US!

Unfortunately, these scandals and allegations of corruptions (including the way the government is handling it) is eroding our democratic institutions. Some cabinet officials and the PNP, it seems, is being implicated in a scheme to suppress the truth, including the alleged act of kidnapping. Other government officials such as former COMELEC Chairperson Abalos and even the "Big Boy" First Gentleman is being named as alleged parties in the transaction. The Senate hearing is being peddled as political grandstanding instead of being a legitimate investigation. The HOR is busy with its leadership transition, but let us not forget that the son of the former speaker is at the center of the NBN deal controversy. In the middle of all these, the LPP submits a "resolution of support" to PGMA and her allies in various LGUs resurrects the push for charter change.

It is not surprising then that the public is growing to be more wary, cynical, and negative towards government and politics. Such attitude will have serious implications to the future of our country. Eroding the legitimacy of governmental institutions encourage adventurism. Curtailing critical opinions diminishes freedom and it undermines empowerment. Most adversely, this attitude will give those who are in power the impression that they can do whatever they want with impunity, and get away with it!

The government must realize at this point that there is a need to put more substance into its propaganda lines. The gap between its public statements and its actual moves must be lessened, specially that on corruption!

Most important, let the ordinary citizens heed the call to action! It may begin with educating ourselves on what is actually happening in the country. From such knowledge must proceed action. But for such action to be effective, it must always have a collective expression! An empowered people is beyond intimidation, a collective outrage leads to social transformation!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

US Ambassador visits Ateneo de Naga University

The United States Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Hon. Curtis Chin visited Ateneo de Naga University last 2-4 February 2008. He arrived with Fr. Joel Tabora's US-based sister Ms. Cristina Tabora.

Among his activities are the following: dialogue with and visits to the Ateneo partner communities, inspection of some ADB-funded projects, and some time for recreational visit to Albay and Sorsogon.

The diplomat had a dialogue with ADNU partner communities last February 2, wherein the LGU officials pointed out their respective urgent development concerns, followed by a luncheon with the University Social Involvement Council members.



Visit to the USIC areas in the municipalities of Cabusao, Calabanga, Buhi, and Sagnay was undertaken February 2-3. The group then went to Albay (Mayon Volcano) and Sorsogon (Whale sharks in Donsol) last February 4.



The Ambassador was accompanied by ANDU President Fr. Joel E. Tabora, University Social Involvement Council Chairperson Atty. Miles Raquid-Arroyo, Center for Community Development Director Elmer Sto. Domingo Jr., Renne Gumba, Institute of Politics Director.

The visits were worked out by Ms. Liway Torte, Director of the ADNU Institute for International Exchange.

Consumers and Democratic Governance of Electric Cooperatives

It is amazing how the issues and problems in electric cooperatives of the Bicol Region seem to multiply itself! From the point of view of an ordinary consumer trying to be aware and to get involved in the operation of an industry that so intimately touches our daily lives, the scenario is formidable!

Nonetheless, it is also so inspiring and amazing that people wouldn't just be easily intimidated and bullied into silence. Even when confronted with the fundamental question of what right and personality do consumers have to complain and question the acts of the cooperative officials.

I will not attempt to tackle this point from the legal point of view. We have a multitude of lawyers that can competently argue for or against specific provisions in a multitude of legal instruments.

My take on this issue would be more on the political dimensions of running the cooperative. As I have previously asserted, electric cooperatives in the countryside are actually part of the remaining industries wherein people would still have legitimate claim to ownership. As such, it is supposedly among the remaining institutions wherein democratic principles, including peoples participation, would be protectd and upheld. Rational discourse and critical dialogues in the formulation of policies are supposed to be encouraged!

Unfortunately, that is not the emerging case in the governance of electric cooperatives. Ownership and control seem to have been taken away from the consumers and effectively put into the hands of a very few. Dialogue and discourse seem to have been replaced by private and confidential discussions!

The situation is not necessarily the exclusive fault of those who are tasked with the governance of electric cooperatives. It is also in part because of the pervasive silence and apathy of consumers.

Thus it is with great joy that I support those consumers who are willing to speak out and fight for their rights! Those consumers who are willing to stand up and remind the cooperative officials that their primary responsibility is the welfare of the consumers and not their personal interest nor the political agenda of their sponsors!

To my mind then, the ultimate goal is improvement of the electric cooperatives in terms of their service delivery and consumer protection. After all, the consumers remain to be the rightful owners of these cooperatives.

But the present obstacles to, and strategies for attaining this goal is as varied as the colors of the rainbow. In the end, it will be the question of which strategy will be pursued and which obstacle will persist and endure.

World Bank officials visit Ateneo

The Ateneo de Naga University hosted last 25 January 2008 guests from the World Bank: Peter Stephens, Regional Extension Manager for East Asia and the Pacific; Andrew Parker, Senior External Affairs Officer; Leonora Gonzales, External Relations Officer; and Moira Enerva, Public Information Officer.

The group visited the World Bank-Ateneo de Naga University Knowledge Development Center (KDC), had dialogue with the university officials (specially on social involvement), and a luncheon with the University Social Involvement Council (and representatives of its partner municipalitities).

Mr. Stephens was also the guest speaker in the "Talk on Development Communication" wherein he had a meaningful dialogue with the students and faculty of the university's Department of Media Studies and the Department of Digital Arts and Computer Animation.

Mr. Stephens in a huddle with Fr. Joel

Ms. Gonzales and Mr. Parker sign the KDC guestbook

Fr. Joel and Mr. Stephens at the conference venue

Dialogue with the USIC and its patner communities

Fr. Joel takes World Bank to the University Church

Light moments at the WB KDC-ADNU