Amazing sceneries in Davao

SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Valeriano Avila (The Freeman) - October 14, 2019 - 12:00am

For our special presentation on our talkshow Straight from the Sky, we bring you a talk about getting statistics in the country through an agency called The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). They used to be known as the Philippine Statistics Office (PSO) where people who need to get their actual information on their status can get them through this office, especially their official name of birth. In my case, my birth certificate says my name is Baby Avila because my mother probably did not know how to call me so when the report was sent, I was a Baby Avila.

So tonight we have with us the Communications Officer of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) through Mr. Noel Rafols who will also explain that by next year we would be holding another population census, which is supposedly being done every 10 years. From this interview, we gathered that while our population continues to grow, our growth has declined. We used to have parents with five or eight children. Today’s parents can hardly come up with three children. This is why you should watch this show on Philippine statistics on SkyCable’s Channel 53 at 8:00PM with replays on Wednesday and Saturday same time and channel. We also have replays on MyTV’s Channel 30 at 9:00PM Monday and at 7:00AM and 9:00PM on Wednesday and Friday.

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The last time I was in Davao City was in 2017 when Philippine Airlines (PAL) inaugurated the Q-400 which also gave me an opportunity to interview then PAL president Jimmy Bautista. Well, last Thursday, in response to the invitation of Willy Rodolfo III of Aboitiz Power to selected Cebu media, we had The Freeman business columnist Fidel O. Abalos, dyLA manager Jhunnex Napallacan, Atty. Elias Espinoza of SunStar, Divine S. Ngujo of Chatterbox, accompanied by Victor Anthony Silva and Maleen Camo of Aboitiz Power to visit Davao City.

But it turned out to be a fascinating trip because our Thursday was filled with a visit to the Philippinw Eagle Center, a road trip that took nearly two hours in this huge Davao City. Of course, the first thing you’ll notice is the huge trees in that center which are conducive to eagles. It was then that we learned that this facility had some 40 eagles in various cages awaiting the time for them to be freed. This area is definitely a tourist destination. Where in the Philippines can you find this huge number of eagles in one location?

We learned that one of the eagles, named Pangarap, was sponsored by Aboitiz Equities Ventures (AEV), while many others, like Uy Masuy Wine of Cebu or the St. Theresa’s College (STC) also in Cebu sponsored an eagle. So too with Marco Polo Plaza Hotel in Cebu City and Cebu Pacific Airlines. They are just a few of those whose sponsorship kept the eagles alive. Yes, they were originally called the monkey-eating eagles.

After lunch, we motored to downtown Davao City to cross a small point which used to be an island. This eight-hectare facility is owned by Aboitiz Equity Ventures (AEV) and named Cleanenergy Park. Willy Rodolfo then introduced us to Papa Pawikan or Papa Rotchi who took care of sea turtles. Sea turtles just off the coast of downtown Davao City near SM City? As Sherylyn Puno, conversator in Cleanergy Park, explained to us, when sea turtles hatch their eggs, they immediately go into the sea where by some chemical or mythical scene, but 25 years later, they return to this very island to hatch their eggs exactly where they were hatch 25 years ago. Amazing as it is so close to the coast of Davao.

The next day we visited a Bone Museum, a three-storey building that houses bones of marine species like the blue whale, snakes, bears, an elephant; you name it, the bones are on display there. The owner is a foreigner who apparent just wanted his museum to be in Davao City. What makes this interesting is this is the only bone museum in the country.

Finally, we went to Aboitiz Power’s Hydro Deveopment Corp. or Hedcor that runs a river hydropower plant inTudaya 1 in Barangay Sibulan Sta. Cruz town, Davao del Sur. Tudaya 1 produces 6.6MW of clean and renewable energy for Davao Light and Power Co. I have visited this plant before with my late friend, Bobby Aboitiz. Then next we visited the 300-megawatt coal-fired power plant of Therma South Inc. in Barangay Binugao, Toril District. Therma South is the largest baseload coal-fed power plant in Mindanao. It uses the latest circulating fluidized bed (CFB) combustion technology that minimizes emissions to ensure that it meets Philippine Clean Air Act standards. It also features a fully-covered coal dome, the first of its kind in the Philippines, said to be a safe and efficient way to store coal fuel. This was indeed an awesome coal fired power plant!

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