Consul General Calonge recalled to Manila
CHICAGO--One of the most productive and popular Consul Generals ever posted in the Midwest is being recalled to the Manila home office only three years after he was assigned in his current post.
Ambassador Generoso Calonge was pulled out as head of the diplomatic corps in Israel in 2014 to replace Ambassador Leo Herrera-Lim, who left Chicago two years short of the customary six year tenure. Ambassador Lim took over the consular office in Los Angeles.
"It is mandatory for foreign affairs officers to go back to our Manila main office after six years of service abroad. With my three years in Israel and my stay here, it is not surprising that I am being recalled," explained ConGen Calonge during his monthly town hall meeting Feb. 16.
ABOVE PHOTO: Consul General Generoso Calonge announced Feb. 16 before the Chicago community that he is being recalled to Manila.
Illinois businessman wanted for murder
By Mariano “Anong” Santos
NORTHBROOK, Illinois—An owner of a home health care firm is on the lam and is now wanted for the first-degree murder of a real estate lawyer.
left pic: John G. Panaligan: Now on the lam
Described by the police as “extremely dangerous,” John G. Panaligan, 50, is charged with the strangulation death of 36-year-old Jigar Patel at his law office in this upscale suburb on the north of Chicago on December 7, 2016.
In a press conference on March 6, Northbrook police chief, Charles Wernick, revealed that Panaligan of Aurora, Illinois, had left the area right after Patel was found dead three months ago. Wernick believes that the suspect is still in the country.
Earlier, the police had released video images of a man in a trench coat, dark glasses and a hat and walking with a cane caught in the surveillance camera in the building where the victim rented an office during the same time the crime occurred.
Police said that the man was Panaligan in disguise and that he is not disabled despite the man shown walking with a cane. Asked why it took three months to charge Panaligan, Wernick said that police made sure they established a motive and that other related police findings were in place to build a strong case against the suspect.
ConGen Calonge meets with Rep. Steven Chabot (R-OH)
Consul General Generoso D.G. Calonge on March 6 called on U.S. Representative Steven Joseph Chabot at his congressional district office in downtown Cincinnati to discuss US-PH bilateral ties in general and the Philippines’ relations with the Midwest.
Rep. Chabot, a member of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs and Chairman of the Committee on Small Business, and Consul General Calonge shared their views and insights on the enduring bond between the U.S. and the Philippines as defense treaty allies and as strong trade and investment partners.
Right pic: Consul general Calonge (L) poses with Congressman Steven Chabot. (Photo courtesy of DCG Romulo Victor Israel Jr.)
They both noted the presence of US companies in the Philippines, such as the Cincinnati-based Convergys, and ongoing defense and security cooperation that point to their countries’ enduring bond.
As Ohio is home to more than 30,000 Filipino Americans who share the values, norms and democratic way of life of their adopted country, Consul General Calonge thanked Congressman Chabot for his continued effective representation and invited him to consider joining the PH-US Friendship Caucus for the 115th U.S. Congress.
“Coming Together 2017” held opening ceremony Feb. 11 for the community spotlighting Chinese culture by showing cultural items such as seal carvings, calligraphy and painting at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie, Illinois. A wide range of programs and activities are offered throughout March at Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles and Skokie. For a schedule of events, please visit the website www.comingtogether.in (Photo by Karyn Malench)
‘Highly qualified’ Fil-Ams in Illinois’ April 4 elections
By Mariano "Anong" Santos
Kenneth Mantel and his Inay Titania at Skokie's Central Park. (PINOY Photo by anong santos)
CHICAGO—Three Filipino Americans are running for various elective positions in the April 4 elections in Illinois. All of them believe they carry the experience and commitment needed to make a difference in their respective communities.
In the upscale City of Oakbrook Terrace located in the near southwest of Chicago, Arnulfo Rufo A. Noble Jr. is hoping to become the second Filipino American mayor in Illinois. The late Joven Fajardo was the first, having been the mayor of Glendale Heights in the 1990s into the early 2000s when a stroke forced him to retire.
Noble was the city’s treasurer from 1987 to 1992 and a planning and zoning board commissioner since 1995, in which he recommended business developments that increased city revenues. He remains as chairman of this powerful board. Oakbrook Terrace has 400,000 sq.ft. of office spaces, one of the biggest in the Chicago suburbs.
His most potent issue against the incumbent, Mayor Tony Ragucci, is to stop entitlements on the part of the incumbents and to check the waste and duplication in the city resources. His fiscal conservatism gets credence because of his experience in the financial management. Noble is an accountant who was formerly connected with the multinational, Kraft.
In the Northwest suburb of Morton Grove, its mayor, Daniel DiMaria openly identifies himself with Ed Ramos, the village’s first and only Filipino American trustee who was the top vote-getter in its elections in 2015. “Ed is the go-to guy not only with the Filipino community but with the Asian population of our diverse community,” conceded the mayor in an interview.
(Read more "‘Highly qualified’ Fil-Ams in Illinois’ April 4 elections...")
Finally, Catholic clergy collectively finds its voice
INQUIRER NEWS SERVICE
Editorial Cartoon by Jym Andalis
It took seven months and over 7,000 Filipinos dead for the Catholic clergy as a collective to find its voice, finally, and denounce the “reign of terror” that has occurred under President Duterte’s war on drugs. The pastoral letter from the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines read in all the Feb. 4-5 Masses represents the first formal Church condemnation of the campaign that the administration and its supporters claim has made the streets safer, but which has also enormously eroded fundamental human rights norms.
The bishops do not mention Mr. Duterte by name, and makes a general call for “elected politicians to serve the common good of the people and not their own interests.” As for the drug problem and the administration’s announced solution for it, “[t]his traffic in illegal drugs needs to be stopped and overcome,” they said. “But the solution does not lie in the killing of suspected drug users and pushers. … To push drugs is a grave sin, as is killing except in self-defense. We cannot correct a wrong by doing another wrong. A good purpose is not a justification for using evil means.”
That’s about as strongly worded as the statement can get. It has none of the thundering judgment-from-heaven tones that the CBCP, then led by Jaime Cardinal Sin, employed in the wake of the 1986 snap election, when Ferdinand Marcos brazenly stole the vote from Corazon Aquino. The bishops denounced that election as “unparalleled in the fraudulence of [its] conduct,” and declared that Marcos had forfeited any legitimate right to rule. Some two weeks later, the dictatorship was gone, ousted through a people’s revolution that Sin helped spark with his call for ordinary citizens to mass by the millions on Edsa to protect soldiers defecting from Marcos.
By Jon Melegrito
Letter from Washington
Filipino Americans in DC Protest Trump’s immigration policies
In response to the Trump administration’s hard line on immigration and deportation, Filipino Americans in the nation’s capital have been actively engaged in demonstrating their opposition to the President’s policies, including a now-suspended controversial ban on immigration.
On February 16, Filipino restaurant owners joined hundreds of other businesses across the country in a “Day Without Immigrants,” a nationwide protest designed to demonstrate the vital role and importance of immigrant labor to the U.S. economy. They wanted their patrons to experience what a world without undocumented and immigrant laborers might look like. So, they skipped work and held rallies in Boston, Chicago, Detroit, New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC.
The demonstration came shortly after news reports that federal officials have stepped up nationwide raids and detained nearly 700 immigrants. Not all of them, however, have criminal records.
According to the Washington Post, about 48 percent of people working in the restaurant industry in the Washington, DC region are foreign-born.
Among the Filipino-owned restaurants participating in the strike is Purple Patch located in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood. Only two years old, Purple Patch has attracted a loyal mainstream clientele. It’s also a regular hang-out for Filipino millennials and young professionals.