• 11 Covid-related facilities ‘to be finished by July 31’
    News
    Sunstar

    11 Covid-related facilities ‘to be finished by July 31’

    THE Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) 7 targets to finish the construction of 11 dormitories and coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) isolation facility projects worth P294 million in Cebu

  • ‘Slow contact tracing’ blamed for spread of new coronavirus
    Health
    Sunstar

    ‘Slow contact tracing’ blamed for spread of new coronavirus

    THE slow conduct of contact tracing is to blame for the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in Cebu City, according to Maj. Gen. Melquiades Feliciano, Inter-Agency Task Force deputy chief

  • Decision to not renew ABS-CBN’s franchise ‘to impact all Filipinos,’ says KBP
    Politics
    Sunstar

    Decision to not renew ABS-CBN’s franchise ‘to impact all Filipinos,’ says KBP

    “A BLACK day for all Filipinos.”This was how the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) described last Friday’s events in which 70 House representatives denied media giant ABS-CBN’s franchise

  • City Hall to face 3 violations for cutting trees in Guba
    News
    Sunstar

    City Hall to face 3 violations for cutting trees in Guba

    THE Cebu City government may be facing three violations over the cutting down of trees in one of the city’s mountainth barangays to make way for a cemetery for Covid-19 casualties.Aside from cutting

  • Tabada: Renewals
    Entertainment
    Sunstar

    Tabada: Renewals

    AT 81, my mother is still a stereotype-buster. I was shaken awake at dawn by Mama making a video call via the tablet given by her siblings on her birthday.Despite this being the first time in eight decades

  • Ramirez: Homeschooling is not new at all
    Lifestyle
    Sunstar

    Ramirez: Homeschooling is not new at all

    A FEW months back, the term homeschooling and distance learning connote privilege in so many aspects especially with regard to technology, finances, and how much time parents can personally allocate for

  • Coronavirus: Beijing eases travel limits after five days of no new cases
    News
    South China Morning Post

    Coronavirus: Beijing eases travel limits after five days of no new cases

    Beijing has further eased travel restrictions after five days in a row of no new coronavirus cases in the Chinese capital.Beijing municipal government spokesman Xu Hejian said on Saturday that people could enter and leave the capital freely without being tested for the coronavirus if they were from “low-risk” areas.All of the country’s medium and high-risk areas are in Beijing, so the easing means that people from outside Beijing can freely enter the capital without swab tests.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Just over a week ago, authorities announced that residents from “low-risk” areas in Beijing could leave the city without having to provide results of a coronavirus test. But strict controls remained on people from medium and high-risk areas.There is one high-risk area and 12 medium-risk areas in the country, all of them in Beijing.Wu Zunyou, chief epidemiologist at the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, said some risk and emergency response levels might also be lowered in the next seven to 10 days.“Beijing has not reported new cases for four days, which means it has contained the spread of the virus,” Wu told state broadcaster CCTV on Friday. “Only when the high-risk area is downgraded to medium-risk can we adjust the emergency response level.”The capital raised its four-tier Covid-19 emergency response to level two from level three after the new cluster emerged at the city’s sprawling Xinfadi wholesale food market one month ago.If the response level is lowered to three, travel restrictions will be lifted and communities and indoor venues, like gyms, museums and libraries, will be able to gradually resume operation.While Beijing has not fully reopened provincial borders and indoor attractions, some stalls at Xinfadi are back in business.China CDC researcher Zhang Liubo said on Saturday that the beef and lamb trading hall at Xinfadi was still closed but other areas were open again.More than 5,000 Xinfadi visitors and close contacts finished 21 days of quarantine on Tuesday and over 5,000 stallholders and staff completed 28 days on Saturday.Wu said Beijing was still investigating the origin of the outbreak.“The outbreak occurred after 56 days without a new case in Beijing, which indicates that the virus was brought in from outside [to the Xinfadi market],” he said.Wu said teams were tracing the early infections in Xinfadi and goods transported to the market to try to pin down the source.Purchase the 100+ page China Internet Report 2020 Pro Edition, brought to you by SCMP Research, and enjoy a 30% discount (original price US$400). The report includes deep-dive analysis, trends, and case studies on the 10 most important internet sectors. Now in its 3rd year, this go-to source for understanding China tech also comes with exclusive access to 6 webinars with C-level executives. Offer valid until 31 August 2020. To purchase, please click here.More from South China Morning Post: * Thousands checked as coronavirus testing spreads to Beijing universities * Coronavirus: no evidence new Beijing outbreak came from Europe, EU disease agency says * Did Beijing market coronavirus cluster begin in May? * Coronavirus found on frozen shrimp packaging but risk from food low, China says * Beijing coronavirus outbreak could have link to South or Southeast Asia, study claimsThis article Coronavirus: Beijing eases travel limits after five days of no new cases first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2020.

  • Buyers shrug aside Covid-19 relapse for Wheelock’s Koko Hills flats in Lam Tin, giving legs to Hong Kong’s home bull run
    Business
    South China Morning Post

    Buyers shrug aside Covid-19 relapse for Wheelock’s Koko Hills flats in Lam Tin, giving legs to Hong Kong’s home bull run

    Hong Kong’s property buyers shrugged aside a relapse of coronavirus infections to snap up new homes launched in two locations, giving legs to a tentative recovery in the city’s residential real estate market.Wheelock Properties sold 85 flats at the Koko Hills project in Lam Tin for a total haul of HK$1.02 billion at 6:30pm, or 53 per cent of the 160 units offered, even as the project’s average price of HK$19,995 per square foot was about 15 per cent higher than the most recent new launch in the neighbourhood. Separately, CK Asset Holdings managed to clear 97 of 285 apartments in the third round of sales at its Sea To Sky complex at Lohas Park in Tseung Kwan O, according to sales agents.“The recent home price index is already higher than the beginning of this year, so the [adverse] impact of the [coronavirus] outbreak on home price has been over,” said Wheelock’s Managing Director Ricky Wong. “The economy may rebound from the bottom in the second half of this year. What’s more, the low-interest environment still prevails and the stock market has performed well recently, creating a wealth effect” that stimulates demand, he said.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.CK Asset, one of the city’s bellwether developers, kicked off the current bull run when it launched its project with the highest price in Lohas Park two weekends ago. Encouraged by strong response to CK Asset’s launch, Wheelock priced Koko Hills higher than Sino Land’s Grand Central nearby in Kwun Tong launched in December 2018. It is even 43.8 per cent higher than the average secondary market price of HK$13,905 per sq ft for the nearby lived-in estate Laguna City, according to data from Centaline Property Agency.Still, up to 1,400 people registered to bid for Koko Hills, nearly nine buyers for each available flat, which starts at HK$7.87 million (US$1.02 million) for a unit measuring 366 square feet (34 square metres). Two of every three flats in the first round launched were priced above HK$10 million.Abodes “priced more than HK$10 million have lower loan-to-value ratio,” which require buyers to put down more money upfront, said Louis Chan, Asia-Pacific vice-chairman and chief executive of residential division at Centaline.The Koko Hills project comprises three phases, the first of which has 413 apartments in three tower blocks, one of which stands at 21 storeys. The developer raised the prices of its forthcoming launches to as much as HK$27,420 per sq ft.A buyer in this 30s, who would only give his surname Cheuk, bought a three-bedroom unit at Koko Hills despite its “relatively expensive” price, because he liked its location.Another customer bought a four-bedroom flat of 1,850 sq ft with a terrace for HK$42.5 million (US$5.48 million), or HK$22,974 per sq ft, through tender because he liked the location, layout and the clubhouse facilities, Wheelock said.An elderly man surnamed Cheung living in Lam Tin’s Sceneway Garden bought a three-bedroom flat at Koko Hills measuring 770 sq ft for HK$16.48 million. His family said they noted “a little potential problem” about the market prospects amid the coronavirus outbreak. But since they were buying it for their own use and “already waited for many years”, they would not let that affect their decision.Sammy Po, chief executive of residential division at Midland Realty, echoed the view that the recent uptick in coronavirus infections has made more reluctant to view flats, reducing his estimate of secondary market transactions by over 10 per cent to some 3,500. A small number of buyers also backed off from the sales of Koko Hills and Sea To Sky, Po added.Elsewhere, China Evergrande sold 54 flats at The Vertex in Cheung Sha Wan on Friday after slashing prices by up to HK$218,000, offering discounts and stamp duty rebates of 3 per cent each as well as offering mortgages of high loan-to-value ratio.Purchase the 100+ page China Internet Report 2020 Pro Edition, brought to you by SCMP Research, and enjoy a 30% discount (original price US$400). The report includes deep-dive analysis, trends, and case studies on the 10 most important internet sectors. Now in its 3rd year, this go-to source for understanding China tech also comes with exclusive access to 6 webinars with C-level executives. Offer valid until 31 August 2020. To purchase, please click here.More from South China Morning Post: * Hong Kong actor Nicholas Tse’s former home sells for US$1.8 million loss, casts shadow on city’s luxury housing market * Hong Kong’s deferred vacancy tax carries a US$279 million price tag, adding to the financial woes of a recession-busting budget deficit * Kung Fu Hustle’s Stephen Chow mortgages The Peak house where HSBC’s Taipan House once stoodThis article Buyers shrug aside Covid-19 relapse for Wheelock’s Koko Hills flats in Lam Tin, giving legs to Hong Kong’s home bull run first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2020.

  • No word on Cebu City’s fate after ECQ expires on July 15
    News
    Sunstar

    No word on Cebu City’s fate after ECQ expires on July 15

    THE director of the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 did not ask the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Infectious Diseases to place Cebu City on hard lockdown for three days before downgrading

  • Drive-through system for renewal of vehicle registration pushed
    News
    Sunstar

    Drive-through system for renewal of vehicle registration pushed

    THE Mandaue City Council has approved the resolution requesting the Land Transportation Office (LTO) 7 and the LTO Mandaue to implement a drive-through system during the renewal of vehicle registration.The

  • Mandaue turns over first batch of dump trucks to 9 barangays
    News
    Sunstar

    Mandaue turns over first batch of dump trucks to 9 barangays

    THE Mandaue City Government has purchased 27 multi-purpose dump trucks for all barangays in the city that will be delivered in batches.According to the Facebook (FB) post of the Mandaue City Public Information

  • App allows LGUs, businesses to monitor, trace individuals
    Technology
    Sunstar

    App allows LGUs, businesses to monitor, trace individuals

    WITH the rising cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in Cebu, a team of developers composed of students, faculty members and alumni from the University of San Carlos has introduced BirdsEye,

  • Cabaero: Notice of exposure
    Health
    Sunstar

    Cabaero: Notice of exposure

    AN IMPORTANT element of contact tracing for those who may have been exposed to persons positive for the novel coronavirus is to give notice of their exposure to proper agencies.Cebu City is expected to

  • Malilong: The curse of the tuob invades City Hall
    News
    Sunstar

    Malilong: The curse of the tuob invades City Hall

    THE curse of the tuob continues.I do not mean that to denigrate the home remedy being promoted by the Capitol which a former law school classmate characterized as the revolution of the masses against the

  • Lim: Fuming?
    Lifestyle
    Sunstar

    Lim: Fuming?

    WE’RE called stupid, stubborn or both. And we fume. Should we?It’s not true that Cebuanos were nonchalant in the first few months of the quarantine. In the beginning, we religiously followed the rules.

  • Briones: Comparisons
    News
    Sunstar

    Briones: Comparisons

    LET’S sit down for a minute and conduct a reality check, shall we? After all, it’s a Sunday. What else is there to do? The faithful can’t go to church and the rest can’t go to the malls, so indulge

  • Saved from the floodwaters: Chinese village in path of Yangtze deluge
    News
    South China Morning Post

    Saved from the floodwaters: Chinese village in path of Yangtze deluge

    The riverbank was breached around Wednesday afternoon. Huang Huoxiu stood in her three-storey house, a few hundred metres away, and watched the water heading towards her.At the same time, she spotted one of her neighbours with three small children, heading out of their village in southern China. Huang screamed on the top of her lungs, “Don’t go any further! You’ll drown!”She took them into her house where, within half an hour, the water had risen to the second floor. They took refuge on the third floor but there was no time for Huang to gather her belongings and she lost her cellphone to the flood, she told the South China Morning Post.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.The neighbour broke down crying. “It’s so horrifying!” she kept saying as Huang told her to stay put and not worry about what they would eat or how they would live.Huang’s village of Qiaotou in Shangrao, Jiangxi province, is just one of many which flooded in the area this week, where 20,000 residents are stranded without power or fresh water. She told her story to the South China Morning Post on Saturday, when she was rescued by her son Huang Shuangxi and firefighters after three days of surviving on biscuits and water.Heavy downpours and flooding in central and southern China have been continuing for weeks, so far affecting nearly 34 million people in 27 provinces, according to official figures. The massive floods have been moving east along the Yangtze River, finally arriving in Jiangxi and spreading out among its tributaries.Huang’s village is one of many in the vicinity of Poyang Lake – China’s largest freshwater lake – which is fed by a tributary of the Yangtze and, in turn, sends out another river that runs near Qiaotou. On Saturday, the Changjiang Water Resources Committee issued the highest red alert for flooding in the lake.The authorities have warned that the lake’s water level might exceed its historical record of 22.59 metres in July 1998. That year’s flooding, which lasted from mid-June to the beginning of September, was China’s worst in more than 40 years. More than 4,000 people lost their lives and tens of millions were affected, from Guangdong province in the south to Heilongjiang in the northeast.On Friday evening, the water level at a monitoring checkpoint at the neck of Poyang Lake was close to 22 metres, according to Chen Guiya, deputy director of the Changjiang committee, quoted by online news website Thepaper.cn.“There is a high possibility that the water level at the neck of the lake will exceed the water level in 1998,” Chen said, adding that preparations were under way to mitigate the flood.On Saturday morning in Qiaotou, it was difficult to tell where the roads used to be. The village had become a lake and the houses stood midwater like isolated islands. On one rooftop, a golden retriever paced back and forth, watching the passing boats.Schools and village clinics were halfway under water, as was the entrance to the village, with only the top banner visible above the water – “welcome and come again”, it read. Seven houses had disintegrated or shifted on their foundations. Fortunately, there were no deaths.On board a Shangrao fire brigade’s rescue boat, vice instructor Sun Chao said the conditions made it difficult to navigate, as he led the mission to search and pick up remaining villagers stranded in their homes.“We are afraid that the motor boat’s propeller may get caught in trash, such as rope or floating grass on the water, and the engine will die,” he said. It is also difficult to tell direction, which is why the rescue teams always bring a senior villager on-board, who knows their way around town, so the boat can avoid walls, wires and other dangerous objects under the surface.As the boat drives on, Sun yells, “Look up ahead!” Firefighters at the rear shift the propeller, and the boat steers safely around the canopy of a submerged tree. When the boat passes under telephone poles, he yells “Duck!” and everyone bends over to avoid the wires.When the boat reaches a house, the firefighters stabilise it with ropes to the fences before Sun climbs on to the balcony, sometimes returning carrying villagers on his back, or helping them to clamber into the boat to safety. The rescued only have time to grab a few valuables – perhaps a blanket, a few shirts, or the family’s ducks.One villager, Huang Meifeng, has lost the three-storey home which was newly built last year. She is still unsure just how much she and her family have lost. “My whole family farms. We’ve just fertilised the land, but now we are looking at no harvest at all,” she said.She remembers the flood of 1998, when most of the houses in Qiaotou were inundated for three months. Huang said her family had suffered back then, but had recovered and built a new house only for the water to return once more. “That’s twice in my lifetime,” she said.Additional reporting by Echo XiePurchase the 100+ page China Internet Report 2020 Pro Edition, brought to you by SCMP Research, and enjoy a 30% discount (original price US$400). The report includes deep-dive analysis, trends, and case studies on the 10 most important internet sectors. Now in its 3rd year, this go-to source for understanding China tech also comes with exclusive access to 6 webinars with C-level executives. Offer valid until 31 August 2020. To purchase, please click here.More from South China Morning Post: * China’s massive floods move east, battering communities along Yangtze River * At least 23 dead, thousands displaced after floods, landslides hit Nepal * Covid-19 and now floods: Wuhan, first epicentre of the pandemic, braces againThis article Saved from the floodwaters: Chinese village in path of Yangtze deluge first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2020.

  • Moralde enters The Bubble
    Sports
    Sunstar

    Moralde enters The Bubble

    ANOTHER Filipino pug is seeing action inside The Bubble of the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.Former World Boxing Council (WBC) ABC Continental featherweight champion John Vincent Moralde faces off with Mexican

  • Quijano: Masvidal and UFC 251
    Sports
    Sunstar

    Quijano: Masvidal and UFC 251

    IF YOU believe UFC president Dana White, then UFC 251 is going to be one huge mixed martial arts event.Yesterday, White was saying they have already outsold 2019 UFC merchandise in their stores. And this

  • Mendoza: ‘Olympic’ win for Tokyo governor
    Sports
    Sunstar

    Mendoza: ‘Olympic’ win for Tokyo governor

    WITH Yuriko Koike getting reelected as governor of Tokyo a week ago, she was essentially endorsed by a city of 14 million in her resolve to stage the postponed Tokyo Olympics next year.Not only did Koike

  • Pages: Risk factors
    Sports
    Sunstar

    Pages: Risk factors

    I JUST read, “Will Your Soccer Club Ever Meet Again? A Guide to Outdoor Sports This Summer,” an article penned by Christie Aschwanden (of the website Elemental). It will help me explain the Covid-19

  • Something old, something new: The new norm in wedding culture
    Lifestyle
    Sunstar

    Something old, something new: The new norm in wedding culture

    IN JUNE, the most popular month for weddings, many would have been busy with suit and dress fittings, gift-hunting for the couple, drafting speeches and prepping for an out-of-town trip, in the case of

  • Solon: Revolutionize fitness through these apps
    Technology
    Sunstar

    Solon: Revolutionize fitness through these apps

    WE WANT to make this quarantine period a productive time for all. Through technology, this quarantine period has made our lives somewhat more doable.Mobile apps have been integral to our lives ever since

  • National security law: decisions of new committee in Hong Kong not above judicial review, legal expert says
    News
    South China Morning Post

    National security law: decisions of new committee in Hong Kong not above judicial review, legal expert says

    Hong Kong courts can scrutinise the new national security committee, a constitutional law expert has said, putting him at odds with the chief executive who says the panel’s work lies beyond the scope of judicial review.The committee was established by the national security law top Chinese officials imposed on Hong Kong late last month that targets acts of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces. But the interpretation of the wording of some provisions has sparked debate between officials and experts.Albert Chen Hung-yee, a member of the Basic Law Committee that advises Beijing on matters relating to the city’s mini-constitution, noted the law set out the duties and functions of the committee, which is chaired by Hong Kong’s leader and includes ministers and heads of disciplined forces.Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.Hong Kong national security law official English version:The Committee for Safeguarding National Security is required to “formulate policies”, “advance the development of the legal system and enforcement mechanisms” and “coordinate major work and significant operations”.Chen took aim at the provision that states “decisions made by the committee shall not be amenable to judicial reviews”.“Not amenable to judicial reviews does not mean everything the committee has decided will not be judicially reviewable,” he told a legal forum co-organised by the law faculty at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and the LawyersHK association on Saturday.That view puts him at odds with Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, who on Tuesday said the committee was required under the new law to not reveal its work, thus taking its decisions beyond the scope of judicial review.But Chen, a professor at HKU, disagreed, saying: “The court has the power to determine if the committee has gone beyond those powers.”Another controversial aspect of the law is the powers granted to police laid out in a document released hours after the committee met for the first time on Monday. Officers can bypass judicial approvals when intercepting communications or searching premises under a variety of circumstances.Lam has said the implementation document cannot be challenged.“I am not a professional in the legal sector, but from my understanding, it is not judicially reviewable,” she said. Hong Kong national security law full textAgain, that statement was challenged at the forum. Pro-Beijing heavyweight Maria Tam Wai-chu, the deputy director of the Basic Law Committee, said whether police officers had exceeded their powers was subject to court scrutiny.Chen noted the law gave police the power to ask internet service providers to remove messages deemed to run afoul of the new law. But if the provider believed the request was unwarranted, it could file a court action to challenge the request, he said.Tam also revealed that Luo Huining, the director of Beijing’s liaison office in Hong Kong and who has been appointed an adviser to the committee, would only provide recommendations and would “not take part in any voting”. Australia suspends extradition treaty with Hong Kong, offers pathway to residency for HongkongersBut Lau Siu-kai, vice-president of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong and Macau Studies think tank, said Luo was a high-ranking official and would help deliver Beijing’s messages, as well as coordinate work between the local government and Beijing’s Office for Safeguarding National Security in Hong Kong.Senior political lecturer Ivan Choy Chi-keung, from Chinese University, questioned whether the committee could have its own decision-making powers merely due to Luo’s presence.Barrister Anson Wong Yu-yat earlier told the Post that while launching a judicial review was a way to seek redress, the move could be costly and prompt Beijing to issue an interpretation of the legislation, which was undesirable.Speaking at a separate forum, Lam addressed changes to the curriculum under the national security law. She said schools were facing problems that were political in nature, rather than educational. She labelled two universities “hotbeds for violence” during social unrest that gripped the city last year.She was referring to Chinese University and Polytechnic University, where radical demonstrators took over the campuses last November for days and faced off against police in some of the worst violence of the anti-government movement. Lam also pointed to other occasions when secondary school students formed human chains across the city and chanted what she called pro-independence slogans.Lam accused “anti-government forces” of penetrating schools as early as 2012 when a push to introduce a national education curriculum was met with wide opposition. Negative views ofBeijing and the local authorities had crept into textbooks, classrooms and exam questions, she said.She told the audience that included Tan Tieniu, deputy director of the liaison office, that her administration already had plans to enhance national education in schools, as the new law required.Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung pledged to “strengthen students’ knowledge of national affairs, Chinese culture, and the [Chinese] constitution as well as Basic Law”.In recent months, the Education Bureau has targeted what it views as a dangerous strain of political expression by students. It banned Glory to Hong Kong, the anthem of the protest movement, in schools, saying it had a political undertone. The bureau has also said complaints had been filed against some teachers for bringing political views into the classroom, and it was following up on the cases.In May, it made an unprecedented request to the local exam authority to withdraw a test question that was deemed offensive to China.Rebel City: Hong Kong’s Year of Water and Fire is a new book of essays that chronicles the political confrontation that has gripped the city since June 2019. Edited by the South China Morning Post's Zuraidah Ibrahim and Jeffie Lam, the book draws on work from the Post's newsrooms across Hong Kong, Beijing, Washington and Singapore, with unmatched insights into all sides of the conflict. Buy directly from SCMP today and get a 15% discount (regular price HKD$198). It is available at major bookshops worldwide or online through Amazon, Kobo, Google Books, and eBooks.com.More from South China Morning Post: * National security law: five differences between Hong Kong’s new legislation and 2003’s shelved Article 23 bill * China’s home security chief attends Hong Kong national security office openingThis article National security law: decisions of new committee in Hong Kong not above judicial review, legal expert says first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2020.

  • Palmares-Moises: Homecoming
    Lifestyle
    Sunstar

    Palmares-Moises: Homecoming

    M: Christine is 25, a single parent and works in one of the furniture companies in Cebu. She has a one-year-old child. Her family is in Leyte, and they have no idea she already has a son. Times have been