February 21, 2018, 9:40 pm
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.07045 UAE Dirham
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.01557 Euro
1 Philippine Peso = 0.03825 Fiji Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01371 Falkland Islands Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01377 British Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.08533 Ghanaian Cedi
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1 Philippine Peso = 172.74122 Guinea Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.14073 Guatemala Quetzal
1 Philippine Peso = 3.9296 Guyana Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.15011 Hong Kong Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.45024 Honduras Lempira
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1 Philippine Peso = 1.216 Haiti Gourde
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1 Philippine Peso = 1.24329 Indian Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 22.71245 Iraqi Dinar
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1 Philippine Peso = 2.40936 Jamaican Dollar
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1 Philippine Peso = 1.9413 Kenyan Shilling
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1 Philippine Peso = 17.26453 North Korean Won
1 Philippine Peso = 20.55496 Korean Won
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1 Philippine Peso = 25.47477 Myanmar Kyat
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1 Philippine Peso = 1 Philippine Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 2.11989 Pakistani Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06472 Polish Zloty
1 Philippine Peso = 106.82716 Paraguayan Guarani
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06982 Qatar Rial
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07256 Romanian New Leu
1 Philippine Peso = 1.0862 Russian Rouble
1 Philippine Peso = 16.12737 Rwanda Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07193 Saudi Arabian Riyal
1 Philippine Peso = 0.14866 Solomon Islands Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.2582 Seychelles Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.34501 Sudanese Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.15536 Swedish Krona
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02534 Singapore Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01372 St Helena Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.42597 Slovak Koruna
1 Philippine Peso = 146.36485 Sierra Leone Leone
1 Philippine Peso = 10.78074 Somali Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 381.75523 Sao Tome Dobra
1 Philippine Peso = 0.16785 El Salvador Colon
1 Philippine Peso = 9.87876 Syrian Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.22325 Swaziland Lilageni
1 Philippine Peso = 0.60368 Thai Baht
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04586 Tunisian Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0428 Tongan paʻanga
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07262 Turkish Lira
1 Philippine Peso = 0.12717 Trinidad Tobago Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.55966 Taiwan Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 43.06541 Tanzanian Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 0.51746 Ukraine Hryvnia
1 Philippine Peso = 69.67197 Ugandan Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01918 United States Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.54556 Uruguayan New Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 156.62766 Uzbekistan Sum
1 Philippine Peso = 478.3426 Venezuelan Bolivar
1 Philippine Peso = 435.71839 Vietnam Dong
1 Philippine Peso = 1.98465 Vanuatu Vatu
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04817 Samoa Tala
1 Philippine Peso = 10.20986 CFA Franc (BEAC)
1 Philippine Peso = 0.05179 East Caribbean Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 10.20986 CFA Franc (BCEAO)
1 Philippine Peso = 1.85248 Pacific Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 4.79474 Yemen Riyal
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1 Philippine Peso = 99.5492 Zambian Kwacha
1 Philippine Peso = 6.94226 Zimbabwe dollar

Gina Lopez of the Ananda Marga

NOW comes tokhang, expecting priests to go along to get shot at during police-druggie confrontations? Won’t happen. Most parish priests would ask to be left alone to do their usual.

***

If anyone should dislike the presence of Gina Lopez in this mining upheaval, it should be this writer. My little savings which I mistakenly put into Nickel Asia and Philex are
gone, down the drain. 

But I have no resentment, having read up and understood the good that DENR’s Secretary Lopez is doing is for the exploited poor; her good plans for the least amongst us.

These are the laboring miners who are receive a tiny fraction of the yields for the billionaires’ and foreign-owned mines. These are the mine slaves on a two meals a day existence, and who regularly get buried alive in sloppily-managed mines. 

Along the Amazon River where I lived in the mid-60s were bauxite mines. Brazil red bauxite is the raw material of your kitchen tinfoil. The miners, their families, children, babies living in the area are covered with red dust: their hair, eyelashes, skin were red; and of course red dust in their nostrils, throats. Red bauxite dust too lining their alvioli, giving the lungs almost always a short health existence.

The mine executives, about 200 expat families from the US, some of whom I got to meet, live very far away from the red dust, way out at the other side of the mountain.

I have never bought nor used tinfoil since. I get goose pimples whenever I see tinfoil, remembering those humans laboring at bauxite mines of South America so kitchens can have tinfoil.

DENR’s Gina Lopez tells us about herself in press releases: 

She did her baccalaureate in the US. “Like all institutions, one has a goal, but often what happens is something else… I grew up in a bubble where people were good and loving and true. This results in a naiveté about people and life.” Gina developed an interest in meditation. Looking for something which she could not find in the externals of organized religion, she became a yoga missionary, left home at 18 and became an Ananda Marga missionary, travelling to Portugal, India and Africa; living in a slum area in Kenya for two years to doing all the chores on her own. It was through this experience that she learned not to be wasteful, how to be persistent, how to adapt, and the
“value of being a Filipino....The camaraderie inherent in the race is amazing. Wherever I would go, as long as there was a Filipino, they would help me.”

Gina Lopez forsook family, friends, and a privileged life to embrace a life of poverty in Kenya with the Ananda Marga. In Africa, the basic responsibilities of an Ananda Marga yoga missionary are to teach yoga-run, pre-primary schools and children in homes for the underprivileged. The slogan is ‘Service to humanity is service to God’.

Which brings back to this writer one admirable encounter with the ethics of Ananda Marga. During a killer storm in 1972, living at the top floor of Carmen Dewey, my family watched in horror from our 9th floor, as shanties were drowned by huge waves from behind the Cultural Center. I watched shanties swept back into the ocean, carrying in them people living in those makeshift homes. Some swam back to land; most drowned. We watched volunteers swim out to rescue those who managed back to land. I sent words that we had some food for the victims. Turned out that those volunteers were Ananda Marga.

That team of a dozen Ananda Marga teenagers walked up 10 floors (no electricity, no elevator) to pick up from my kitchen pots of cooked rice, kanin; walked down 10
floors, to deliver this food to the hungry victims along Dewey Boulevard. There was no other food left in my kitchen but bigas. Up the 10 floors; down the 10 floors; these Ananda Marga teens went, nonstop, for 2 days, as fast as we could cook the kanin on our LPG. They lagged the hot pots down to the hungry victims across Roxas
Boulevard. Until we ran out of bigas two days later. I never saw them again for we left shortly after for another country assignment, when martial law was declared. My admiration for the Ananda Marga is forever in my mind and heart. 

Gina Lopez later moved on to be the lead convener of anti-mining group Save Palawan Movement, a multi-sectoral coalition of concerned environmental, legal, religious, and other civic groups that opposes mining activities. “I remember the representatives of Nagkakaisang Tribu ng Palawan (Natripal) regale us with their interaction with her during the annual meeting of the Non-Timber Forest Products-Exchange Programme-Philippines.” a journalist reported.

Gina Lopez returned to Manila, worked with the ABS-CBN Foundation and headed the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission. She organized several philanthropic projects for ABS-CBN Foundation – among them the popular anti-child abuse movement ‘Bantay Bata’; aside from helping the poor, taking care of the environment became her passion.

***

Dahliaspillera@yahoo.com
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