Cebu City should help both golf clubs
SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Valeriano Avila (The Freeman) - August 10, 2020 - 12:00am

Call it my first Zoom interview with my guest in Cebu City, as I have asked my kidney surgeon, Dr. Alvin Roxas to be my special guest today. After all, in three months it would already be four years since my kidney transplant. But more importantly, Dr. Roxas is a major frontliner. He also went out of his way to get donations from friends for medical equipment or PPE to be used only by frontliners.

I will not forget that more than a month ago, Dr. Roxas initiated a Zoom conference with his kidney transplant patients from all over the world, including future patients who could not get any medical checkups during this lockdown period. He is the only doctor that I know who has done this for his patients at no cost to them.

So watch this interview with Dr. Alvin Roxas on SkyCable’s channel 53 at 8 p.m. with replays on Wednesday and Saturday same time and channel. We also have replays on MyTV’s channel 30 at 9 p.m. Monday and at 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. on Wednesday and Friday.

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Since the pandemic forced Cebu City to be on a lockdown, one of the biggest groups affected by this is the Cebu Country Club and Alta Vista Country Club. These are Cebu City’s major tourism destinations that brought to Cebu City tremendous tourism growth and earn millions of pesos each year.

With Cebu City now under General Community Quarantine both golf clubs are starting to open up. However, last week I learned that both golf clubs have not reduced or stopped collecting their monthly dues and this is due to the reality that the upkeep of the clubs have remained the same and the board of the Country Club pointed out that they didn’t want Cebu City to file charges against them for not paying its realty taxes.

This immediately tells the members that the board of directors of the Country Club never even attempted to negotiate with Cebu City for some kind of reduction in realty taxes, after all, every business in Cebu City has been affected by this pandemic as there are no tourist arrivals while the golf clubs have shut down its operations. Mind you, many businesses have shut down due to the lockdown and, yes, we do not collect rent from our clients for as long as they have no income.

This is why I suggest that the Cebu Country Club Board should sit down with the administration of Mayor Edgardo Labella to get some kind of reduction from realty taxes. I’m sure he will listen to your pleas.

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Yesterday, August 9, was the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki City, which happened just three days after the bombing of Hiroshima. As I mentioned, I’m truly blessed to be able to visit the only cities ever struck by a nuclear bomb and see its devastation in our history books and the huge changes that has transformed these cities from the nuclear attack.

I visited Nagasaki twice, once before my kidney transplant and then after my transplant with my good friend, Bobby Joseph, and we were given a special dinner by the Nagasaki Prefecture Governor Hodo Nakamura. He was also celebrating his birthday, but gave us more importance when hosting our dinner in Nagasaki.

Last Thursday, I watched the two-hour History Channel documentary of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and learned that the bigger issue of being hit by a nuclear bomb was not the explosion itself, but the radiation that follows every nuclear explosion. Nagasaki was bombed with what Americans called the “Fat Man” that exploded two thousand feet over Nagasaki.

I also found out in Wikipedia that when Nagasaki was bombed there were only 150 Japanese soldiers killed while eight allied prisoners of war and a RAF POW named Ronald Shaw were killed. Twenty-four Australian POWs and an American POW named Joe Kieyoomia survived thanks to a wall in his cell. These are truly remarkable stories of the war. More importantly the Americans sent a team of doctors to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, not to treat the wounded Japanese, but to find out what were the effects of the nuclear bomb. Never again should nuclear bombs be used to save mankind!

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