Three items here.
1. Ponderosa's Ken (Bones) Seath. I was saddened to hear that he is gravely ill. He has liver cancer and a transplant is required. The situation is quite serious and his wife and two children are coping as well as expected. He is in Australia.
2. As reported the Golden Nile was closed by the City for a Fire Inspection violation, despite the issuance of a compliance certificate from the Fire Department. City employee Jess Aires was quite happy to deliver the notice of closure with the assistance of Station Commander, soon to retire, Major Tan. The order was signed by City Administrator Pamintuan and Attorney Fabros. On a Thursday, after presenting all required paperwork Richard Agnew was told he would be allowed to open on Friday, 3 Aug. This did not happen. As it turned out, coincidentally, Atty. Fabros was not available to sign the opening order and Jess told Richard that he was the only one who could do this. Richard asked if Pamintuan could sign and was told no. Richard was told no, only Fabros was authorized to do so. Richard would have to wait until Monday. What else is new, quick to close but slow as hell when reversal is required. OK, maybe the objective was to keep the Golden Nile closed in order to hurt Richard financially. Meanwhile, in order to keep his dancers and employees working he transferred them to the Cambodia Club since they would only be there three days. This is a common practice when a Corporation owns more than one Club and they do not want to lose their girls and also to keep them on the payroll. This has been an accepted practice for years without any problems. UNTIL NOW!
On Friday night a City Inspection team arrived at the Cambodia night, inspected the girls ID's and sent home all the girls that had ID's listing the Golden Nile as their place of employment. They invoked City Ordinance 106 which I have been told, invokes the rule that if a girl moves from one club to another, before she can work her ID must be changed. So, the City invoked a seldom used technicality to attack Richard with. Not only did they send home the Blue Nile ladies but then also sent the rest of the ladies home as well since they were in the building with the girls that were in violation of the ordinance. This effectively forced Richard to close the Cambodia.
The perception is, rightfully or wrongfully, the City is attempting to force Richard out of business or at the very least, hurt him financially. Is this coming from the very top echelon of the City Administration or are some officials acting on their own, semi-legally? Those are questions being asked by many bar owners and also other government officials. I have heard that the DILG is looking into this as well as a number of lawyers. Question: are these actions legal?
These are actions that I have never seen before. Is this in line with Chief of Staff, Alex C's comments a few months ago that "if up to him, he would close all bars on Fields Ave within one year?" Is this a test case?
I sent a text to the Mayor asking about these actions but have not received any answer from him.
Barangay Captain Tony Mamac is mystified as well and will be looking into the actions taken in closing two popular clubs on Fields Ave.
See folks, as I said before, never a dull moment in Angeles City and all too often, foreign investors are reminded about the difficulties in doing business in a third world country, especially Angeles City. There is money to be made, but man, there sure is money to be lost as well. You have to take the good with the bad, and fortunately, so far the good outweighs the bad, for now!
3. Good work by the Angeles City Australian RSL - On Saturday, 4 Aug, members of the AC RSL organized one of their monthly Medical Missions at the Malabanes Elementary school in which up to 1400 children received check-ups by doctors and nurses and received free medicine which were paid for out of RSL funds. I knew that the RSL did this on a monthly basis but this was the first time I attended and took pictures. I was very impressed. This charitable activity costs about P100,000 each month and the funds come from their raffles held at Phillies and Emotions each week and also from their annual Australian Day Fiesta. More pictures and information will be published in my Sep column. Meanwhile, buy up those raffle tickets, the money collected helps a hell of a lot of kids.