- Special Pages
Manila: A social media campaign aimed at encouraging the public to help in reducing the risks posed by disasters was launched yesterday by local and international groups.
The iCOMMIT campaign seeks to raise awareness and encourage action through sharing of views on how people can build safer communities.
It was launched a day before the United Nations (UN) International Day for Disaster Reduction and the ASEAN Day for Disaster Management.
Humanitarian groups Oxfam, Action Against Hunger, CARE Nederland, Plan International, Christian Aid, Handicap International, Coalition of Services of the Elderly and the European Commission Director General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection led the launch.
Gabriela Luz, humanitarian programme officer of Oxfam, said they had opted to conduct an online campaign due to the popularity of social networking sites in the country. There are about 30m Facebook users and 6m Twitter users in the Philippines.
“It (online campaign) is an easy way to create awareness about disasters and to get people to post DRR (disaster risk reduction) commitments,” Luz said.
“Time and again, internet-based social media platforms have proven to be a powerful platform to mobilise collective action on important issues,” she added.
Using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram or Tumblr, users can make a commitment by writing: “I commit to…” and then their short pledge. Social networking sites users should use the hash tag #icommittodrr to join the advocacy. They are also requested to link their commitment to the #icommittodrr Facebook page wall.
Smuggled baby pythons seized at Manila airport
MANILA: The Bureau of Customs (BOC) said yesterday that it apprehended a shipment of toys from Indonesia which contained seven baby ball pythons at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
The BOC said the smuggled baby ball pythons are most likely to be sold to exotic pet collectors.
The agency revealed that each python can be sold for as much as P10,000 ($240.33).
Under Philippine laws, importers of exotic pet species such as baby ball pythons must first secure authorisation from the Environment or Agriculture Secretary before bringing the animals into the country.
The Philippine Star