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Archive for March, 2012





Maybank Philippines announces new President
Read 1,188 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago

MAYBANK has announced the appointment of Mr. Herminio M. Famatigan Jr., as incoming President and CEO of Maybank Philippines, Inc. (MPI) with effect from March 15, 2012.

The appointment is subject to the confirmation by the Monetary Board of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

Mr. Famatigan graduated from the University of the Philippines’ School of Economics and has more than 30 years of banking and finance experience.
This includes areas of corporate lending, retail banking, branch administration, distribution and consumer lending.

Prior to joining MPI, Mr. Famatigan was President and CEO of Premiere Bank.

Mr. Famatigan succeeds Mr. Amos Ong, who served as President and CEO of MPI since September 2006.

During Mr. Ong’s leadership, MPI has expanded its capabilities across retail banking, wholesale banking, and global markets for our clients in the Philippines.
For the July to December 2011 period, MPI’s net profit rose by 87% from the corresponding period of 2010 to Php273.9 million.

Mr. Ong will be heading Regional Client Coverage for Global Wholesale Banking, Maybank Singapore.

MPI has been in the Philippines since 1997 and recently announced plans to open 3 additional branches in 2012, bringing the total branch network to 55.

Construction of its Corporate Headquarters in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig is going full swing, with completion projected for November 2012.

Synergies continue to gain momentum with Maybank ATR Kim Eng, the leading brokerage house in the Philippines.
Maybank Philippines is a member of the Maybank Group, one of Southeast Asia’s largest and leading financial services providers, with presence in 17 countries worldwide, including key financial centres such as Hong Kong, Shanghai, New York, Bahrain, London and Singapore.
Maybank Group has over US$135 billion in group assets and is currently ranked fourth among South East Asia’s top banks.



PNoy wants status of mothballed Cotabato Rural Airport reviewed
Read 411 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago

MLANG, North Cotabato — President Aquino has directed former North Cotabato Governor Manny Piñol to “touch base” with Transportation and Communications Secretary Mar Roxas to look into the status of the completed yet un-utilized Cotabato Rural Airport here.

The airport situated in Mlang town has been mothballed for two years now.

Pinol first sought the help of the Chief Executive in the opening and utilizing the P300-million rural airport which was completed in December 2009 but has not been opened and operated following his defeat in the 2010 gubernatorial contest.

Acting on Pinol’s “personal request,” the President directed him to “touch base” with Sec. Roxas which the former governor did.

The airport, which was planned to serve as the loading point of passengers and food products from the Central Mindanao area for the big cities in the Visayas and Luzon, has a 1.2 kilometer concrete runway and a terminal building which were inaugurated by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in December 2009.

Considered as the brainchild of then Gov. Piñol, the airport received the support of Sen. Richard Gordon who worked for the allocation of P100 million to complete it during the term of former Governor, now Congressman Jesus Sacdalan.

The provincial government of North Cotabato under Piñol acquired a 62 hectare property in M’lang, North Cotabato and sourced an initial P30 million from its share in the operation of the Mindanao Geothermal Project to start the airport.

The land was turned over to DOTC which undertook the construction of the airport through the Air Transportation Office.

Maguindanao Governor Datu Esmael Mangudadatu has supported the efforts to open the Cotabato Rural Airport, saying it would contribute to the economic growth of Maguindanao province as well.

The airport is only about 20 kilometers away from the plankton-rich Buluan Lake where freshwater milkfish and large tilapia are cultured and produced.

“Why do we have to take a three hour trip to Davao City to take the plane to Cebu or Manila when we have an airport only 30 minutes away,” Mangudadatu asked.
philippine news agency



RTWPB-X strikes compromise agreement in N. Mindanao
Read 406 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago

By APIPA BAGUMBARAN, Contributor

THE regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB)-X facilitated the settlement of P800,000 monetary claims in favor of the 38 workers of Jos’ Manokan in Cagayan de Oro City without having to undergo lengthy conciliation procedures of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in the light of closure of the business. Average claim of individual workers reached P21,000. The agreement was reached on February 29, 2012.

The intervention of two (2) members of the RTWPB-X representing labor and management led to the equitable agreement with workers and management after two (2) conciliation conferences. Among them were Jose B. Ares of Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) and Reverend Prudencio T. Plaza, Jr. of Cagayan de Oro Chamber of Industries (COCI).

The closure of the Jos’ Manokan was an option of the management to cease operations due to the decision of landowner to sell the property where the former business operated carefully considering the welfare and benefits of 38 workers having rendered 18-20 years of service. Thirty one (31) of the workers were members of the local union under the ALU-TUCP. From the two (2) conciliation-conferences, the parties came up with 15-day separation pay per year of service, including other benefits in the absence of any lawyer of both parties. The settlement was immediately consummated and duly reported to the DOLE-Regional Office which brought relief to workers and management.

Based on Point No. 6 of the P-Noy’s 22-Point Labor Agenda, labor arbitration and adjudication systems are streamlined through reforms removing red tape as a mechanism to restore integrity of the judicial processes on conflicts arising from labor and management through voluntary modes of dispute settlement. Responding positively to this call, Labor Secretary Rosalinsa Dimapilis-Baldoz signed Department Order (DO) No. 107-10 mandating the Single Entry Approach (SENA) in the disposition of labor disputes effective October 2010. SENA is an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) through preferential use of voluntary modes of settlement of labor and management disagreements.

SENA mandates speedy, impartial, and accessible settlement services through conciliation-mediation calling for strengthened collaborative efforts of DOLE-Regional Coordinating Councils (DOLE-RCC) in the regions involving administrative and quasi-judicial functions of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC), National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB), Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration).

Further, SENA prevents labor differences to progress into full blown labor disputes which shall be settled within 30 days from the request for assistance (RFA) unless a request for extension is agreed by both parties, which shall not be more than 7 days and that settlement is ensured. A lawyer or attorney-in-fact may appear for either party provided he has authority doing so, and shall act as adviser.

SENA includes issues/cases arising from termination/suspension of workers, closure/cessation of business operations, inter/intra-union conflicts, ULP cases, safety and health standards violations, OFW cases and other monetary claims arising from employer-employee relationships. It however precludes issues relating to interpretation of CBAs or of company policies, notice of strikes/lockouts, CE, and other issues arising from accreditation/permit issuances by DOLE and its attached agencies such as RWAs, AEP, RPPA, agency registration certificates under D.O. 18-02, Working Child permit, POEA License, PRC license, TESDA accreditation, POEA – OEC and other similar permits/licenses/registrations. Operational and functional SENAs in the regions include the establishing of SENA Desks in the offices of NCMB, NLRC-RAB, regional and all provincial offices of DOLE, which may also include DOLE-RCC offices of POEA, ECC, RTWPBs and others depending on the volume of cases and number of designated SEADOs (SENA Desk Officers) which are usually need-based or demand driven.

SENA Settlements/Agreements are final and binding which shall be monitored by the SEADOs. Parties are required to submit report of compliance/non-compliance within two (2) weeks from the date of settlement/agreement in order to guarantee enforcement and compliance. (RTWPB-10)



Convention City Kagay-an:: Life after Sendong
Read 575 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago

By MIKE BAÑOS
Correspondent

BARELY three months after being hit by one of the worst disasters ever to hit the Philippines, Cagayan de Oro is rising like the proverbial phoenix from the fire to reclaim its status as one the country’s premier convention destinations.
The reason for the optimism is the imminent completion of key infrastructure projects which would put the City of Golden Friendship right up there in the company of erstwhile MICE champions Cebu and Davao: the Cagayan de Oro International Trade and Convention Center and Zealep Convention Center, and three premier hotels: Kukun CDO from Cagayan de Oro Gateway Corp., Zealep’s Riviera Hotel and Limketkai Resorts and Hotel Corp.’s Limketkai Business Hotel.

The P758-million Cagayan de Oro International Trade and Convention Center slated for completion this year seats 7,700 people, and together with the 3,000-seat capacity of the P650-million Zealep Convention Center, would give the city a one-two punch made more potent by its ability to accommodate that many guests from outside the city.

Figures from the Department of Tourism Region X (DOT-X) show the city has a present inventory of 572 rooms from accredited hotels, inns, pensions, apartelles and resorts, with an additional 1,089 rooms from 28 non-accredited establishments. Hotel occupancy of accredited hotels improved slightly to 66.56% in 2011 despite a slight drop in the number of events thanks to a 2.3% rise in the total number of MICE events participants to 401,137.

However, it is the expected synergy brought by the completion of the two world-class convention centers with the entry of three premier hotels that is expected to bring back the convention delegates who transferred their events to other venues following the Tropical Storm Sendong disaster.

Expected to be completed first is the Kukun CDO which will rise within the 3.7 hectare P5-billion Centrio mixed use development of the Cagayan de Oro Gateway Corp., a joint venture between Ayala Land and the Anflo Corp. Group.

“Ayala Land has taken the unprecedented step of simultaneously investing the whole amount in the four vital components of this project: the three-level Centrio Mall, eight storey Kukun CDO Hotel, 23-storey Centrio Tower by Avida residential condominium and BPO offices,” said Antonino T. Aquino, ALI President and CEO. “This is an indication not only of our confidence in the project but for Cagayan de Oro as well.”

Designed by Rchitects, Inc. (AR) and C.T. Onglao Architects (ID), Kukun CDO will be undertaken by Northgate Hotel Ventures, Inc. (NHVI), a fully owned subsidiary of AyalaLand Hotels and Resorts Corporation (AHRC).

Kukun CDO will have 150 guest rooms (136 standard rooms and 14 suites). It will house contemporary business facilities such as an e-lounge conducive for both working and lounging, an executive lounge for more exclusive work and socializing, and some meeting/functions rooms. It will also have other amenities such as a swimming pool, fitness gym and restaurant.

Similarly, Zealep Corporation’s P1.05-billion Riviera Hotel will form part of an 18-level mixed-use building which will also house the Paseo Mall and Zealep Convention Center within 12.3 hectare Paseo del Rio de Cagayan, touted as the city’s largest mixed-use development which would also include office, apartment and residential buildings.

To be operated by Genesis Hotels and Resorts, Riviera will have 304 hotel rooms and would also feature a lush rooftop garden, infinity pool and the Helipad Bar. The five-level Zealep Convention Center directly linked to it by walkway would serve as its main events area and also features three interconnecting function rooms capable of seating 100-500 people leading up to a grand plenary hall with a total seating capacity of 3,000. With its world standard state-of-the-art audio/video equipment and acoustics the venue also aims to be a concert hall and cultural center. An entire floor will be dedicated as an exhibit and trade center. Its two lower levels will house the Paseo Mall which will have two levels of commercial spaces for retail and food outlets.

Master planned by Palafox Associates, Paseo del Rio is developed by ZEALEP Hotels, Inc., a subsidiary of ZEALEP Inc., which has interests in education, banking, tourism, and real estate development.

Not the least, Limketkai Resorts and Hotels Corp. is slated to complete construction of its 18-storey Limketkai Business Hotel by the end of the year and start commercial operations by June 2013. The P797.56-million project would have 224 rooms (210 standard rooms and 14 suites) housed in its upper 16 floors, with the two lowest floors devoted to a 648-seat ballroom, three function rooms and other amenities like a business center, fine dining restaurant, grand lobby and lounge, swimming pool and coffee/restobar.

Nestled within the well-developed 30-hectare Limketkai Center, the hotel complex would be directly linked by an elevated walkway to the Limketkai Mall, touted as the 16th largest in the world, and the Rosario Strip which is the business district’s entertainment center with restaurants, coffee shops, bars, boutiques and spas.

Despite the Sendong disaster, tourist arrivals in Region X anchored by Cagayan de Oro still jumped 12.20% in 2011 compared to 2010. With the expected opening of the Laguindingan Airport by the end of the year, it’s only a matter of time before Cagayan de Oro gains back its status as one of the country’s premier tourist and convention destinations.



Sabotage in Mindanao power problem: solon
Read 472 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago

By ALLAN MEDIANTE, Executive Editor

DAVAO City Congressman Karlo Alexei Nograles has decried that the current power shortages in many parts of Mindanao could be a perfect example of economic sabotage – a crime against the people.

“Mindanao could not be lacking in power sources like its hydro power sources and other power alternatives. I hope it is not human greed for the power of money that is causing all our woes,” Nograles surmised.

Nograles strongly called for a Congressional inquiry into the continuing power black out hitting many parts of Mindanao and other areas in the Visayas.
“We have to pinpoint the real culprit. There must be an explanation to all these unnecessary sufferings we are experiencing,” he said.

Nograles also lauded the reported decision of transport authorities in Northern Mindanao to reduce bus fares to help residents recover from the damage caused by the recent tropical storm “Sendong”.

“The order signed by LTFRB chairman Jaime Jacob and the board members was grounded mainly on humanitarian and charitable consideration. We salute this move,” Nograles said.

According to Nograles, the Mindanao power problem could not have been experienced without possible collusion, noting the under-capacity power output of hydro-electric power plants.

“If it is found out that the power problem is but an artificial result of sabotage, this is a crime which deserves the harshest of penalties,” he said, adding that Congress must also look into the loopholes of the law dealing with economic sabotage and related statutes which must be amended.



XU studes pick Primavera as Paragon of Project Management
Read 1,179 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago


JUNIOR Business Administration students majoring in Business Economics from Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan (XU) recently visited the showroom and Office of Italpinas’ Primavera Residences at the Pueblo de Oro Business Park as part of their orientation in their Project Management Class.

“We selected Primavera Residences as an ideal model for a practical application of the theories we learned inside the classroom,” said one of the students who preferred to remain anonymous.

The group of 49 students led by their adviser Dr. Normybelle S. Cruz had a project tour last March 10, 2012.

“We believe the on-going construction of Primavera is a good example of the hands-on application of the theories we learned and would enhance our knowledge regarding Project Management,” he added.

The first eco-friendly condominium project in Northern Mindanao, Primavera Residences, certainly has the pedigree to be recognized as such.

A P250-million 10 storey twin-tower condominium designed by ITA PROJECT, an award-winning Italian architectural design firm based in Rome, Italy and developed by Italpinas Euroasian Design and Eco-Development Corporation, its business plan was cited as one of the most promising clean energy investment opportunities in the Philippines during the 2nd annual Philippines Clean Energy Investor Forum hosted by the Climate Technology Initiative-Private Financing Advisory Network (CTI-PFAN) at the Edsa Shangri-la Hotel in Manila last year.

The forum sought to find a common platform to determine the best investment opportunities in the country’s clean energy sector.

CTI-PFAN noted Primavera Residences business plan had a high degree of social and environmental stewardship, high potential to scale-up, an excellent management team and cutting edge technology.

Primavera Residences design team led by Italpinas President and CEO Romolo V. Nati, also won a “Special Energy Award” in the 2011 Design Against the Elements (DAtE) global architectural design competition which aims to build the first green, livable, affordable, and disaster-resistant village in the Philippines that will serve as the blueprint for other communities threatened by climate change.

“I am happy to know the tenets of sustainable architecture are now being practiced in the provinces as evidenced by the Primavera Residences,” said Illac Angelo Diaz, DAtE organizer.

Mr. Diaz, named one of the Ten Outstanding Persons of the World in 2006 by Jaycees International, organized DAtE as a global architectural competition to design shelters for the poorest of the poor at the “Base of the Pyramid”.

Last November, Primavera Residences was ‘Highest Commended’ as one of the Best Condo Development in the Philippines 2011 in the pioneer edition of the prestigious South East Asia Property Awards held in Singapore.

The South East Asia Property Awards aims to showcase the best that the region’s real estate industry has to offer.

The awards aim to promote the high level of quality of South East Asia’s real estate, construction, architectural and interior design, and industry professional services.

Through a professionally run judging system, the awards aim to put South East Asia’s real estate on the world stage.



Gov’t assures power shortage over by May
Read 810 times | Posted on March 30, 2012 @ 7 years ago


By IRENE DOMINGGO

Reporter

MINDANAO’S power problem maybe over by May this year with the expected completion of maintenance work on hydroelectric plants and the implementation of a circular that compels electric cooperatives to contract available capacity from expensive plants, the Department of Energy said.

“Assuming nothing else goes wrong – walang plantang masisira, walang madidisgrasyang equipment – then sometime in May we will be able to handle already the situation,” Secretary Jose Rene Almendras said.

Parts of Mindanao have been suffering from one- to three-hour daily power outages as a result of insufficient generating capacity.

But while the region’s power supply situation is projected to improve in May, Mindanao consumers would have to brace for longer spells of brownounts as state-owned National Power Corp. will temporarily close the 120-megawatt Pulangi hydro facility from April 9 to May 9 for maintenance work.

To offset the foregone output of the hydro plant, the government will re-commission the 20-megawatt Iligan diesel plant and compel electric cooperatives to secure output from Aboitiz Power Corp.’s 100-megawatt power barge in the region.

“The best time to do the maintenance works is during the summer season because if you do that in the rainy months mas malaki pa ang losses… It won’t make matters worse compared to what it is now,” Almendras said.

Once the Pulangi plant is online, the region’s power supply situation will “temporarily” improve until new generating capacity is put up, he said.

This, however, will take at least two years as power projects with a total capacity of 250 megawatts will only be completed by 2014.

On top of this, over 700 megawatts of capacity from “indicative” plants – or power projects that have yet to close technical, financial and regulatory requisites – are in the pipeline.

The DOE chief said project proponents need the cooperation of local government units (LGU) in Mindanao.

Some LGUs in the region have been hampering the development of power plants in their respective areas, including a 50-megawatt geothermal project that would have been available next year, he said.

“The DOE awarded the service contract for the geothermal project in 2010 [but] last week lang lumabas permit from LGU,” Almendras said. “We are not passing blame on anyone. All we’re saying is we are doing what we can possibly do. It is not LGUs giving the national government a hard time, I believe that this is between LGUs and project proponents.”

Emergency powers

Almendras said that the DOE will support calls for “emergency powers” to allow government to secure the output of private power barges should Congress approve such a measure.

Under the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001, the government cannot put up power plants or contract capacity from independent power producers unless a state of emergency is declared by lawmakers.

“If they are amenable to it, we will do it. Yes we will recommend that for a limited period of time, pag pinatagal po yan lalo hinde matutuloy yung 700 megawatts,” Almendras said.



The Mystery of Listening Skill
Read 494 times | Posted on March 26, 2012 @ 7 years ago

By: DR. DJUWARI
STIE Perbanas (College of Economics and Business)
Surabaya, Indonesia

The previous topic of my article was the miracle of reading skill. Now, I argue that Listening is the most crucial language skill. This is obviously true because when we don’t have listening skill we cannot communicate with others normally.

Imagine when there are two babies born in the world at the same time, on the same day, and in the same year.

When one of the two babies is deaf, and the other is not, we can bet that the latter will live normally like us today, able to speak or communicate with others using a language. When there is a baby born and deaf, this baby will be inevitably totally mute when grown up. This is because the deaf baby will never listen to any sound–language sound.

Based on such an illustration, we can guess that the deaf baby will be mute because during the life, this baby never hears anything. Therefore, listening skill is the key success to grab the second language skill—speaking skill. Listening cannot be neglected by any parents or primary school teachers. Without a good listening skill, the children will also find handicap in acquiring their speaking skill.

Listening skill can even be acquired before a baby is born. While a mother is expecting a baby, she usually puts electronic equipment producing some sound of music on her stomach, for example, from the radio or tape recorder.

Generally, she is asked why to do so is that it is intended to give the baby a stimulus to listen to the sound or music.

By doing so, the baby is expected to get training in listening. Usually, the sound or music is the type of sound which is much nicer when heard by the baby. So, this stimulus can make the baby stimulated to listen to the sound. Listening in this case is very important. This must not be stopped until this stage.

After the baby is born, the baby should also be continuously exposed to any sound, especially language voice. The language voice which is heard very often by the baby is also the most important input of language acquisition. More often, the language voice is the mother tongue. That’s why the first language is called mother tongue. It is the language which is the most frequently spoken by a mother.

The language spoken by a mother is the first input of the baby’s language acquisition. When, a mother is very-very busy and spends very little time with the baby during, for example five years, the baby’s language skill, especially speaking skill will contain vocabularies spoken very often by other close relatives.

When, a baby sitter or a servant is employed in the family, we can predict that the baby’s language in five years will be the “photocopy” of the baby sitter or servant’s language. The more crucial thing is that when less input of vocabularies spoken by the baby sitter or a servant, the less language skill the baby will acquire during five year-period. In the long run, the baby’s language skill can be hindered, especially the second language skill of speaking.

Listening is obviously the most crucial language skill for all human beings in the world. When all babies are born without having maximum acquisition of listening skill, they can be lack of vocabularies. In turn, they find handicap in communication, especially when starting the primary schools.

From understanding the importance of listening skill for human beings, we have to be very careful with our babies or children when their first language is not fully and normally acquired. Therefore, the way how to improve the children language skill can be started from a baby, even when the baby is still in the mother’s womb. Listening is the most important language skill for human beings.

My previous article about reading was ended by the statement “We are what we read”. My article today can be ended by the statement “We are what we have heard very often” This means that the manner of language spoken by anybody expresses what he or she has heard through his or her ears. Even, the language can also provide us information about who someone is, where someone is from, and even how someone has lived in his or her community: the manner. Listening is a good activity for our babies or children.

Dr. Djuwari is the director of language laboratory and has been teaching Listening subject to his students since 1998 at STIE Perbanas Surabaya.



Mindanao Daily News logo
Read 607 times | Posted on March 25, 2012 @ 7 years ago



President Aquino, Ombudsman Morales lead PPI Press Forum speakers
Read 369 times | Posted on March 20, 2012 @ 7 years ago

For the first time in its history and in celebration of its 25th year since reactivation, the Philippine Press Institute (PPI) will have President Benigno S. Aquino III and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales as keynote speakers during its 2-day by-invitation only 16th National Press Forum on April 23-24 at the Traders Hotel Manila.

This also marks the 48th founding year of the Institute since 1964. It was rendered moribund during martial law, re-activated after the People Power Revolution, and incorporated in 1987.

President Aquino will be the first head of state to address the only annual gathering of owners, publishers and editors from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, representing 72 publications. The President is expected to deliver a message on the
“protection and preservation of press freedom and democracy” in the opening ceremonies on April 23. Justice Conchita Carpio-Morales will keynote the Community Press Awards, honoring the best civic journalism reportage of the previous year.

Justice Carpio-Morales administered the oath of office to President Aquino on June 30, 2010, the first female magistrate to do so. The PPI Board was inducted by the President on October 3, 2011 in Malacañan.

The National Press Forum is the only conference of its kind when the collective leadership of the nation’s influential publications convene in Manila to discuss matters concerning the industry and issues affecting the professional and ethical practice of journalism. This year’s conference theme “Media Accountability and Public Engagement” will serve as opportunity for the media to assess itself since the restoration of democracy over 25 years ago. Attendant issues to be discussed will be the Asian Media Barometer: The Philippine Study, media self-regulation and the safety and welfare of journalists.

Since 2009, the annual National Press Forum, one of the most-anticipated print media events, is being consistently supported by The Coca-Cola Export Corporation (TCCEC) under its long-term project on “Building Better Communities Through Civic Journalism” which started in 2002 with training programs.

This year, St. Luke’s Medical Center stands as the exclusive corporate partner for the forum. Platinum sponsors are Chevron Philippines, Inc., First Philippine Holdings Corporation, Liwayway Marketing Corporation, and Metro Pacific Investments Corporation. Other major sponsors are Anflo Management Investment Corporation, United Laboratories, Land Bank of the Philippines, Pilipinas Shell, and Petron Philippines. The United Print Media Group (UPMG) is the print media partner. Tv5 agreed to give full coverage of the event.

The Philippine Press Institute is the national association of newspapers. Its principal mandate is to protect press freedom and continuously professionalize newspapers via seminars, workshop, forums and strategic partnerships with other media organizations. It also collaborates with corporate supporters for the conduct of these activities.

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