Bandar Seri Begawan - The Philippine Ambassador to Brunei, Nestor Z Ochoa told a thousand-strong Filipino community gathering yesterday "there is no international appeal by the Philippine government to help the victims of typhoon Bopha, but I am appealing to you to show your concern and sympathy to the flood victims".
"We are thankful to Bishop Cornelius Sim for the initiative of the Catholic church in Brunei to have a second collection in the masses on December 15 and 16. The funds to be collected will be sent to the victims of typhoon Bopha," he said.
"Those who want to donate can coordinate with the Philippine Embassy in Brunei regarding the kind of help and how to send them to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), Department of Social Welfare and Development and Philippine Red Cross.
"The NDRRMC reported last night that 548 have died, 445 injured, 445 missing and 212 homeless in Campostela Valley, Davao Oriental and Surigao del Sur," he added.
"This Christmas season, let us remember not only our loved ones, and our countrymen in need; let us remember that the spirit of Christmas lives in the heart that shares love and care for our fellow countrymen," the ambassador told a Pasko Ng Pinoy get-together organised by the Filipino Association in Brunei with the support of the Philippine Embassy.
Quoting President Benigno Aquino II, Ambassador Ochoa said, "In trying times like these, only the determined bayanihan spirit of Filipinos will make the difference in pushing the country forward in the midst of death and destruction bought by Typhoon Pablo (Bhopa). The spirit of bayanihan will move us out from misery Not them, not us, but all of us should move out and overcome the difficulties we are facing."
"One of the 1,307 registrants in the overseas absentee voting conducted by the Philippine Embassy in Brunei for next year's May national elections between November 2011 and October 2012, Ma Ruzzel Descaya Tribujenia, won a Cebu Pacific return ticket to Manila in a lucky draw yesterday during the Christmas get-together. We are number nine among the 32 Philippine Embassy posts in Asia-Pacific (in the number of registered overseas absentee voters)," said Ambassador Ochoa.
Tribujenia, who registered at the Philippine Embassy Chancery or the private venues where the embassy held mobile registration, can claim her air ticket from Anthony Tours within one month, or on or before January 9, 2013. Otherwise, the prize shall be forfeited and returned to Cebu Pacific, said Philippine Embassy Minister Celeste V Balatbat yesterday.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin