(9:30 a.m., 23 May 2017)
The Philippine government and the entire Filipino people stand in solidarity with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in strongly condemning the inexcusable attack, which resulted in the death of twenty-two (22) people and injured at least fifty-nine (59) others in the explosion at the Manchester Arena.
The Philippine government conveys its condolences and sympathies to the families of the victims of this senseless attack and prays for the immediate recovery of the injured.
While the nationalities of the victims and those injured during the attack are not yet available, the Philippine Embassy in London initially reported that no Filipino has been reportedly injured. The Embassy continues to closely monitor the situation. END
Filipino conservationist Indira Lacerna-Widmann receives the prestigious Whitley Award from Princess Anne, The Princess Royal of the UK, at the Royal Geographical Society in London
London, 19 May 2017 – The Philippine Embassy in London reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs that Filipino conservationist Indira Lacerna-Widmann won the prestigious Whitley Award at a ceremony held in the Royal Geographical Society in London last 18 May 2017.
Her Royal Highness Princess Anne, The Princess Royal of the United Kingdom, presented the award to Mrs Lacerna-Widmann in recognition of her work in protecting the critically endangered Philippine cockatoo (Katala in Filipino) in Palawan, Philippines.
Mrs Lacerna-Widmann was lauded for her ‘Jail birds’ project. The Katala Foundation, which she co-founded, has partnered with local prisoners in Iwahig Prison in Palawan to safeguard Philippine cockatoos. They have also developed and implemented strategies that enable children and city-dwellers to learn new skills in protecting Philippine cockatoos since 1998.
L-R: Consul Rommel Romato, Consul General Senen Mangalile, Indira Lacerna-Widmann, Jane Cameron (Notting Hill Preparatory School), and Peter Widmann
The Filipino conservation leader is one of six individuals to have been awarded a share of the prize money worth £210,000 (₱13.5 million) She received the international nature conservation prize with £35,000 (₱2.2 million) in project funding donated by Notting Hill Preparatory School.
Other winners of the 2017 Whitley Awards include conservation heroes from Bolivia India, South Africa, Turkey and Venezuela.
Philippine Ambassador to the UK Antonio Lagdameo, who was represented at the event by Consul General Senen Mangalile and Consul Rommel Romato, congratulated Mrs Lacerna-Widmann on her achievement.
The Whitley Awards have been presented annually since 1994. Considered as the ‘Green Oscars’, it is organized and sponsored by the Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN). This UK-based organization champions outstanding grassroots leaders in nature conservation across the developing world. In addition to the financial benefit of winning the awards, winners also receive professional communications training to help them communicate effectively with the public and effect positive change in their respective communities. END
Department of Tourism Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo yesterday lauded the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) for swiftly ensuring the safety of international and domestic visitors in Palawan, even as she reiterated her call for other countries to “be fair and reasonable” in issuing travel warnings.
Despite several adverse travel advisories against trips to Palawan recently, Teo stressed that the island province is "guaranteed a safe tourist destination" as declared by AFP and the PNP authorities.
“Prior to the issuance of this week’s travel advisories, police and military readily put security measures in place,” Teo pointed out.
Teo has repeatedly enjoined the governments and embassies of other countries to coordinate and take time to find out the actual situation and establish “clear and present danger” in any locality subject to prospective travel warning.
PNP Chief P/Director-General Ronald dela Rosa debunked unconfirmed reports of any terrorists’ presence in Palawan, particularly in the Puerto Princesa Underground River, a World Heritage Site visited by over one million tourists yearly.
Teo expressed confidence that Palawan, which has consistently been voted “World’s Most Beautiful Island” by international travel magazines, will continue to enjoy influx of foreign and domestic guests.
Also known to have a “zero-crime incidence,” Palawan caters largely to domestic tourists which comprised 65 percent, 718,486 of 1,104,830 total visitors in Palawan in 2016.
The top 10 international visitor groups of Palawan last year are: USA, 57,224; Taiwan, 46,796; China, 23,678; France, 21,993; Korea, 18,550; Germany, 15,816; United Kingdom, 14,373; Canada, 14,154; Australia, 13, 216; and Spain, 10,319.
The AFP and PNP have placed their respective security forces on high-alert since mid-April in the wake of military encounter with Abu-Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Bohol, foiling the bandits’ planned kidnap-for-ransom attacks.
Following the Bohol incidents, ground security forces, as well as the Philippine Navy and the Philippine Coast Guard have been deployed in other tourist attractions including Palawan, Cebu and Boracay, according to AFP spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo. END
Ambassador Antonio Lagdameo discusses Philippines’ socio-economic reform agenda at a roundtable discussion with UK financial services sector representatives
On 21 April, Philippine Ambassador to the United Kingdom Antonio Lagdameo delivered a speech at a roundtable discussion hosted by TheCityUK at the KPMG office in Mayfair, London.
TheCityUK invited Ambassador Lagdameo to address its corporate members on current political and economic developments in the Philippines. He also spoke about the Philippines development goals and Philippine-British economic cooperation, among others.
In his remarks, Ambassador Lagdameo noted the bright prospects for the Philippines as an emerging market in Asia. He also talked about the Philippine government’s commitment to social and economic reforms and its efforts to make the country an attractive investment destination.
Mr. Sushil Saluja of TheCityUK ASEAN Market Advisory Group chaired the roundtable discussion. The meeting was attended by senior executives from Accenture, HSBC, KPMG, Lloyd's of London, Prudential, and TheCityUK.
TheCityUK is a membership body that champions UK-based financial and related professional services. It lobbies on the industry’s behalf, producing evidence of its importance to the wider UK economy. END