10.20.2009

PIA News Service - Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2009

Siargao Island enjoys increase of tourist arrivals, says Gov. Barbers


Gov. Robert Ace Barbers is shown here acknowledging the effort made by the Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Joseph Ace Durano, who was the event’s guest of honor, for bringing in a considerable number of local and foreign visitors not just in Siargao Island but throughout the country as well. (PIA-Surigao del Norte)

Gen. Luna, Siargao Island (21 October) – The 15th Siargao International Surfing Cup dubbed as the Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational 2009 successfully opened today, October 21, 2009 with 48 confirmed international cast of surfers and 12 local wildcards participated.

Speaking before a crowd of local and foreign tourists, Gov. Robert Ace Barbers proudly bared the increase of tourist arrivals in the island. “In this side of the town, of this island of Siargao, in the small town in the island of Mindanao called Gen. Luna we have been enjoying an increase of tourist arrivals, in fact, we have a lot of tourist coming from not just Europe, America, and Australia but likewise coming from Asia as well.”

Gov. Barbers acknowledged the efforts made by the Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Joseph Ace Durano, who was the event’s guest of honor, for bringing in a considerable number of local and foreign visitors not just in the country but also in the island paradise of Siargao.

“With the Secretary of Department of Tourism around who has been every time marketing asking tourists to come, in fact, during his tenure as the Secretary of Tourism it was only during his time that we broke the record of more than 2 Million tourist arrivals in the country and with that it is because of all the efforts exerted by no less than our good secretary.”

“Our efforts to market this place would not have been possible as well if it were not with the full support of Dir. Letty Tan, your hardworking Regional Director for Tourism is the same as hardworking as the secretary,” Gov. Barbers added.

Meanwhile, Gov. Barbers acknowledged the support of Billabong, DOT and the local government unit of Gen. Luna who are behind the success of the event. “I would like take this opportunity to thanked and give credit where it is due. This competition would not have been possible if it were not for the 101% support of these people.”

He then urged everyone to take good care of these people for according to him, “kini sila are the ones responsible in making sure that everything turns out right, everything in the competition turns out successful and in addition to that, these are the same guys that brings tourist in this island in this town.”

Gov. Barbers is optimistic that with this competition, “it will not just give national prominence to this town, to this island of Siargao but likewise give international prominence to this country of the Philippines.” (Fryan E. Abkilan, PIA-Surigao del Norte)



DOT chief cites benefits of RA 9593

Department of Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace H. Durano delivers his keynote speech during the opening ceremony of the 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition dubbed as “Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational 2009” held Wednesday, October 21, 2009 at Gen. Luna, Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte. (PIA-Caraga)

GEN. LUNA, SIARGAO ISLAND, SURIGAO DEL NORTE (21 October) – Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Joseph Ace H. Durano cited benefits of Republic Act 9593, otherwise known as the “National Tourism Policy Act of 2009.”

During the press conference held today, Wednesday (October 21) at Cabuntog Resort here, Sec. Durano emphasized the importance of the newly-created law where he said, is “a big help in promoting the tourism industry of the country”.

According to Sec. Durano, the law addresses DOT’s various strategies in its campaign to make the country a genuine tourists’ destination.

The
National Tourism Policy Act of 2009 was signed into law by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on May 12, 2009 during the culmination of the two-day One Visayas Summit on Climate Change inside the Imperial Palace Waterpark Resort Hotel and Spa in Cebu.

The law declares a national policy for tourism as an engine of investment, employment, growth and national development. The law also gives a boost to the country’s tourism industry, strengthening DOT and its attached agencies to effectively and efficiently implement tourism policies.

It is also expected that the tourism act will gear the DOT with the necessary tools needed to turn the Philippines into a world-class tourist’s destination.

“RA 9593 gears the DOT with powerful “jet engines” that would allow it to ‘fly’ closer to its goals,” Sec. Durano said.

Sec. Durano is the guest of honor and keynote speaker during the Opening Ceremonies of the 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition dubbed as “Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational” held this morning at Brgy. Catangnan, Gen. Luna, Siargao Island, this province.

Highlighting the ceremonies is the ceremonial breaking of surfboard by Sec. Durano, assisted by provincial and municipal officials led by Surigao del Norte Gov. Robert Ace S. Barbers and Gen. Luna Mayor Felipe Espejon.

The 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition will culminate on Tuesday, October 27, 2009 with a fashion show featuring this year’s Miss Earth candidates highlighting the awarding ceremony. A cash prize of US $20,000 is at stake for this year’s champion.


It can be recalled that a local surfer from Gen. Luna, Siargao island won the championship plum last year, followed closely by a surfer/tube rider from Australia, who also won the championship prize in 2007. (Robert E. Roperos, PIA-13)


Sec. Durano to set aside political plans; focus on RP’s tourism development

Tourism Secretary Joseph Ace Durano (center) reveals his stand to prioritize the tourism development in the country over his political plans in the May 2010 national elections during the press conference held Wednesday (October 21) at Cabuntog Resort in Gen. Luna, Siargao Island. Sec. Durano graced the Opening of the 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition which will culminate on Tuesday, October 27. (PIA-Caraga)

GEN. LUNA, SIARGAO ISLAND, SURIGAO DEL NORTE (21 October) – Following the issue of whether of not he will run for a higher position come May 2010 national elections, Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Joseph Ace Durano said that developing the country’s tourism industry is his priority and that, he is setting aside any political plans.

This was revealed by Sec. Durano during the press conference held today, Wednesday (October 21) at Cabuntog Resort here.

According to Durano, with the need of the country to strengthen the tourism industry, it is but necessary for him and the country’s tourism department to fast-track the implementation of its plans and programs.

“There is a need for me and the Department of Tourism to fast-track the implementation of the plans and programs to boost the tourism industry of the country. That’swhy, as of this time, I am setting aside any political plans for next year’s election… I am focusing on how to strengthen the tourism industry of the Philippines for which, I am tasked to do so,” he said.

Durano also said, the tourism department is working closely in order for the newly-created “National Tourism Policy Act of 2009” be implemented next month.

The tourism chief was here in the municipality dubbed as the country’s surfing capital to grace the opening ceremonies of the 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition dubbed as “Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational” held this morning at Brgy. Catangnan, Gen. Luna, Siargao Island.

This year’s competition draw more number of surfers/tube riders from around the globe as the event organizers, headed by Billabong Australia is giving away US $20,000 to the champion. It was learned that 48 local and foreign tube riders are vying for the prize.

The 15th Siargao International Surfing Competition is made possible through the Province of Surigao del Norte, DOT, Municipality of Gen. Luna, SM Mall of Asia – Manila, STOKED Inc., San Miguel Corporation, Green Zinc, Vonzipper, Kustom, and Nixon, among others.

The competition will run until Tuesday, October 27, 2009 where a new champion will be declared during the awarding ceremony. (Robert E. Roperos, PIA-13)


36IB discovers cave encampment

The rebels’ world is getting smaller and smaller as more civilians turn them over to government troops.

This is what exactly happened with the Long Range Patrol Unit of 36IB under the leadership of LtCol Dennis Godfrey F Gammad. The team is led by 2Lt Emeterio Armada where a civilian informant led them into the discovery of a cave encampment believed to be used by NPAs in hiding from the Army troops.

This cave is located at Sitio Pag-awitan Barangay Malixi Tagbina Surigao del Sur. It has a radius of approximately 10ft and around 150m in length. There are evidences that humans have been entering and staying in the cave since there were food wrappers and empty cans of sardines scattered in the area. It can shelter around 60-100 individuals. The cave also acts as passage-way since its exit leads into a forested area of the same barangay.

The entrance and exit cannot be easily identified since there is thick vegetation around it that’s why it was only discovered with a guide from the local populace. This encampment only adds up to the three camps discovered last August where civilian informants were also the guide.

This unit continuously calls out for the peaceful surrender of the rebels in order to take advantage of the government’s programs in return. These are the Social Integration Program and “Balik-Baril” program. 36IB’s hotline number is always open so you can contact us 24/7. Our number is 09086992175.
(36IB, Gabatin/PIA Surigao del Sur)
.

More biotech crops needed to fight climate change
By Jennifer A. Ng

The development of more biotech crops resistant to diseases and the adverse impact of drastic changes in weather conditions have now become more crucial in view of climate change, which is expected to disrupt traditional cropping patterns and threaten the country’s food security.

Dr. Randy Hautea, global coordinator and Southeast Asia Center director of the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, said that as part of the country’s preparations for climate change, the Philippine government can consider stepping up its investments in the biotech sector, particularly in research and development (R&D).

“[The Philippine government] can prepare this early and anticipate the [ill-effects] of climate change on agriculture. The development of crops that can adapt to [changing weather patterns] can be a good first step”, said Hautea in a telephone interview.

Of the genetically engineered crops being commercialized and propagated in the Philippines, he said Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) corn is one crop that can adapt to drought.

Also, the Los Baños-based International Rice Research Institute has released flood-tolerant and drought-tolerant rice varieties.

Hautea, however, said more genetically engineered crops resilient to drastic changes in weather patterns could still be developed.

He said the Philippines could have laid down the groundwork for the development of more drought- or flood-resistant genetically engineered crops had the national government stuck to the provisions of the Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act of 1997 (AFMA), or Republic Act 8435.

In a paper written by Reynaldo de la Cruz of the National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology at the University of the Philippines in Los Baños, the AFMA was supposed to provide a budget of 4 percent of the total R&D budget of the agriculture sector for a period of seven years after the law was enacted. He noted that by law, the annual budget of biotechnology should have been at most around P1 billion.

Hautea noted that in terms of the development of the biotech sector, the Philippines is now lagging behind its counterparts in Southeast Asia such as Thailand and Vietnam. He said Thailand spends more than $20 million annually for its biotech sector.

Also, the resistance of the general public to genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or genetically engineered crops has worked to the disadvantage of the government in moving forward its biotech program.

“Konti na nga pera mo para sa R&D tapos gagamitin mo pa [You already have little funding for R&D and you still use it] to explain [the advantages of biotech crops] to the general public, lalong liliit and napupunta [less money will go] to the biotech sector”, said Hautea.

The resistance to GMOs and genetically engineered crops, he said, has also made the biotech sector less attractive to potential private investors since there is now a perception that there is no market for biotech products in the Philippines.

Earlier, Dr. William Dar, director general of the International Crops Research for the Semi-Arid Topics, urged the Philippine government to start preparing for climate change and to develop short-term, medium-term and long-term plans to enable the country to cope with the adverse impact of global warming.

Dar noted that paddy-rice production will be adversely affected by global warming.
.
.

Avoiding a possible food shortage

by Sen. Edgardo J. Angara

The great floods wrought by typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng left many farms ravaged, and just a mere month before harvest. As of last week, the crop losses caused by the two tropical storms amounted to P10 billion.

This would have yielded 478,000 metric tons of palay, 18,000 metric tons of corn, and 14,546 metric tons of vegetables, mango, banana, and papaya. The fisheries, livestock and poultry sectors were not saved from the flood. Ondoy has damaged 5,905 hectares of fishponds, mostly in Region 3, resulting in losses worth P127.5 million. Damage to livestock and poultry has been pegged at P41 million.

As the floods subsided, it left the country with two pressing issues to address: first, a looming food shortage for the first and second quarters of 2010, and second, a big blow to the livelihood of many farmers.

Because available food stocks are projected to last until 2009, the impact of crop losses on our food supply will be most likely felt early next year. But while urban dwellers have until December to brace themselves for possible food price increases, farmers are now reeling from the loss of a season’s worth of work, haunted with problems of credit payments, and how to tide their families through the next harvest, among other things. In Nueva Ecija alone, some 15,000 farmers have lost their harvest. How much more from Isabela, Ilocos, Pangasinan and other provinces pounded by Pepeng for almost a week?

The immediate response, of course, should be to ensure food supply through all means possible.

First, we’ve got to make the most of the remaining harvest for this year. Distributing post-harvest facilities, such as flatbed dryers, can help save as much as 15 percent of our production losses, of which 5 percent is due to poor drying alone. Post-harvest facilities in the country are so backward that it takes 30 working days to harvest, thresh, and haul palay, a process which takes five days in Thailand.

Second, food importation should be increased if necessary. But this should just be a stopgap measure, while we wait for the next harvest.

Third, we’ve got to help our farmers plant again, and provide them with high-yield seeds and fertilizers. Irrigation systems that have been damaged by the floods should be immediately repaired.

The long-term response, one which has been difficult to sustain through the changes in leadership, is to provide a comprehensive program on modernizing agriculture, and incorporate climate-change mitigation in it. The damage brought by the recent typhoons showed not only the wrath of global warming, but how unprepared we are to face it.

For instance, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has recently developed a flood-tolerant variety of high-yielding rice, which can last two weeks completely submerged in water. Flood-prone India and Bangladesh have already lined up to use this variety. Like them, we can introduce this variety in flood-prone areas during the rainy season, and it will definitely save us from another crop devastation wrought by the recent typhoons.

We live on fertile grounds. Our farmlands have one of the highest potentials in Asia—IRRI calculates that if given enough support and irrigation, our farms could even double their productivity to 6.3 metric tons/hectare. It is now up to us to help them reach this potential.
.
.

DA eyes grant for climate program
by Melody M. Aguiba

The Department of Agriculture (DA) is pursuing a $120 million grant for the acquisition of remote sensing and agricultural crop testing facilities under a climate change program of United States Pres. Barack Obama.

The Philippine Rice Research Institute (Philrice), a DA-attached agency, has been preparing the proposal for this financing program which DA wants to obtain in collaboration with the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI).

The proposal may be presented by DA to the US government as US-DA Sec. Tom Vilsack is tentatively set to visit the Philippines on Oct. 26.

“Our plan is to purchase high-throughout facilities. (DA) Sec. (Arthur) Yap is pursuing this under President Obama’s climate change program. I think the US is providing funds that can be availed of by countries affected by climate change. It could be a grant,” said Lawyer Ronilo A. Beronio, Philrice executive director, in an interview.

These facilities are powerful tools for planning agricultural production. It can be better than a phytotron, a greenhouse used for studying plant growth under certain environmental conditions, according to Beronio. It can give information important to cropping such as drought and flooding.

“It has the capacity to engage in high-throughput research (involving) DNA fingerprinting. It can test thousands of varieties,” he said.

Government is confident that the country can benefit from financing programs for climate change adaptation by international agencies with the country’s vulnerability to climate change’s effects due to its archipelagic nature. One concern in peninsular areas like those in the Philippines is the increasing salinity in rice fields caused by rising salty sea water inundating farms.

The development of saline water suitable rice varieties has been one of the programs of Philrice. Three saline suitable varieties have earlier been approved for release by the National Seed Industry Council (NSIC). These are the Rc 184, Rc 186, and Rc 188 which have yields of between 2.9 to 3.2 metric tons per hectare, a yield that may be acceptable enough considering the saline soil characteristic.

Philrice has initiated the use of remote sensing facilities for agricultural planning as it tied up with a private firm, Develtech, on the development of software that can read satellite images and enable researchers to translate these into useful data. Accuracy of the data is complemented by “ground truthing” or the determination of the actual representation of the data on the ground, whether blue-colored images, for instance, translate to actual irrigation and planting of rice.

With this study, a more accurate rice planting area has been determined for Nueva Ecija as of the wet season of 2008. While the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS) estimated that farmers planted on 200,000 hectares that season, the remote sensing study indicated actual planting was only on 180,000 hectares.

Such discrepancy may be the reason why rice Philippine production data can be bloated at times which may also be causing inaccurate estimation of needed rice import volume.

With the US-funded facilities, Beronio said usefulness of this remote sensing technology can be applied nationwide. Besides, the government has a plan to revive the Strategic Agriculture and Fisheries Development Zone (SAFDZ) which will maximize land use based on suitability of certain crops. The same technology will be useful in optimizing this program’s benefit.
.
.

‘Snorkel’ rice cultivation best response to flooding
by Marvyn N. Benaning

A rice variety that grows best when submerged has emerged as the best option for Luzon farmers whose fields are regularly flooded due to typhoons or heavy rains.

With global heating instigating unpredictably long periods of dry and wet months, the rice strain, dubbed as “snorkel” rice, offers the best defense for flooding, like what tropical storm Ondoy and typhoon Pepeng brought to the entire Luzon area.

Developed by scientists working at the Nagoya University of Japan, the variety grows “snorkels” when submerged and grows up to an incredible 25 cm a day.

Thus, the rice plant does not only tolerate submergence but even grows better when swamped with water.

A recent paper in the journal Nature written by Laurentius Voesenek stressed that scientists were pleasantly surprised to find out that the “snorkels” grown provide the entire plant with the nutrients and minerals that would otherwise be lost.

Voesenek said “snorkel” genes in flood-tolerant rice were discovered by Japanese scientists who then introduced the genes to sensitive high-yielding varieties.

“Snorkels” grow as hollow tubes from parts of the plant known as internodes, which protect them from getting swamped with water. In a sense, internodes provide the armor for the rice strain.

With the country expected to lose more than 500,000 metric tons (MT) of rice due to Ondoy and a fraction more due to Pepeng, the Department of Agriculture (DA) will have little alternative but to experiment on “snorkel” rice.

DA officials confide that research on the same type of rice has been going on at the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), which is also doing work on saline-tolerant, drought-tolerant and submergence-tolerant rice varieties, including several traditional strains.

Filipino scientists may actually use biotechnology processes to introduce the same gene in traditional indigenous rice varieties to achieve the same effect and Nagoya University may provide generous assistance for the same purpose.
.
.

OFW-turned-farmer now biotech hero
by Rudy Fernandez

MANILA, Philippines - Rosalie Ellasus has dabbled in many different fields. From working in medical technology, to becoming an OFW, then a farmer, and finally a leader and speaker giving testimonials on her success, Ellasus has truly crossed many boundaries and hurdled many obstacles to become what she is today.

It was 1987 when Ellasus worked as a nanny to two children of an American widow in Singapore, leaving behind her family and medical technology profession. Two years later, she moved to Canada where she again served as a nursemaid to a Canadian couple’s twins. While in Canada, she immersed herself in other fields that could improve her intellectual capabilities.

In 1992, she returned to Singapore where she landed a better-paying job as a market executive. Unfortunately, her husband died so she decided to return to the Philippines to take care of her sons.

Yet another transformation came when she turned to farming, particularly production of biotechnology corn, a genetically modified crop that has a built-in defense mechanism against destructive corn pests.

From her savings as an OFW, Ellasus bought a 1.3-hectare farm and tried producing corn. But aflatoxin contamination, as well as pests and weeds that reduced her yield, made it impossible to sell her produce.

Unfazed, Ellasus attended a 16-week Integrated Pest Management-Farmers Field School on corn conducted in 2001 by the Department of Agriculture. From the seminar, she changed her farm practices and, after seeing a demonstration farm on biotech corn, she decided to adopt the technology. She sold her bountiful biotech corn produce to feedmills and the corn husks to local craft producers because these were flawless and sturdy.

Subsequently, she expanded her farm to six hectares. “I was truly convinced that a marginal farmer can improve his life only if he will adopt biotechnology,” Ellasus asserts. She has since become one of the country’s successful GM corn producers.

In 2006, she was elected president of the prestigious Philippine Maize Federation (PhilMaize), a national association of corn farmers’ cooperatives. She was also elected municipal councilor of San Jacinto, Pangasinan in the 2007 elections.

Ellasus shot to global prominence when she was chosen in 2007 as the first recipient of the Kleckner Trade and Technology Advancement Award, named for Truth & Technology (TATT) chairman Dean Kleckner, an internationally known farmer-leader.

The award is given for “exemplary leadership, vision and resolve in advancing the rights of farmers to choose the technology and tools that will improve the quality, quantity and availability of agricultural products around the world.”

Ellasus was commended for using biotechnology to solve the production challenges on her farm.

Over the past two years, she has also been invited to speak at the Des Moines Roundtable Discussion on Agricultural Biotechnology in Iowa, USA; Minneapolis Conference of the Western Canada Wheat Association; a conference sponsored by Mexico’s Department of Agriculture; and a farmer’s forum in Medan, Indonesia.

When Peruvian and Vietnamese government officials and scientists visited the Philippines recently, she was tapped to share her experiences in biotechnology farming. She is also often invited as resource person in Philippine forums on biotechnology.

Now 49, she is featured in a book together with 64 other trail-blazers in biotechnology crop production in 14 countries in Asia and Africa.

The book, entitled “Communicating Crop Bio-technology: Stories from Stakeholders,” documents how farmers, media practitioners, policymakers, industry representatives, scientists, academicians, religious leaders, and students have benefited from science communication efforts and how in turn they are now part of the process of realizing a collective voice on crop biotechnology.

The 175-page volume was published by the New York, USA-based International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA).

Edited by Dr. Mariechel Jamias-Navarro, ISAAA Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology manager, the book contains 49 articles from stakeholders (farmers, media practitioners, policymakers, scientists, academics, religious leaders, industry representatives and students) in 14 countries in Asia and Africa.

Aside from Ellasus, the other Filipinos featured in the book are former UP president Dr. Emil Javier, now president of the National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST); multi-awarded journalist Melody Aguiba of Manila Bulletin; Dr. Edita Burgos, wife of the late press freedom fighter and icon Jose Burgos Jr.; Dr. Cynthia Hendreyda, a professor and scientist at UP Diliman; Edwin Paraluman, a successful corn farmer from General Santos City, South Cotabato; and Fr. Emmanuel Alparce, former executive director of the Social Action Center in Sorsogon and now vice rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica in Guam.

Each of those featured in the book is an important figure in his or her field – a field that Ellasus has tended to, both literally and figuratively.

She says, “Here in the Philippines, many farmers are not proud of their job. I want to see them shine. I’m just a small candle, but even the weakest flame can spread fire.”
.
.
7 abducted DENR personnel safe 

The seven DENR personnel who were abducted by a group of armed men at the Task Force Watershed Multi-Sectoral Checkpoint at Sitio Pianing in Barangay Anticala, Butuan City recently are reportedly safe.

The abducted DENR personnel have also requested through the phone that they need medicines and clothes for which the DENR are preparing to be delivered to an undisclosed area.

The DENR was able to establish a communication line with the leader of the kidnapper who was identified as a certain Andot Behing who apparently called up through a senior DENR officer to inform him of the present condition of the abducted victims. 

The leader of the kidnappers has also informed the DENR that a letter containing their demands is expected to be sent soon. He assured the DENR officials that the hostages are safe and will be treated in humane manner as possible. 

The DENR was able to talk with one of the victims through the cell phone that they needed medicines and fresh clothes and jackets to wear to protect them from cold weather in the area.

At this moment, the leader of the kidnapper took the phone and told the DENR officials that he will be sending one of the hostages at an undisclosed meeting area anytime to get the supply of medicines and fresh clothes being requested by the victims. 

The leader of the kidnapper, ANDOT Behing is a rebel returnee and noted as operator of illegal logs in the area. 

At the moment , the DENR is expecting to receive the demands of the kidnappers but we maintained that there will be no ransom amount to be paid by the government in exchange for their freedom. 

The DENR Crisis Committee headed by RED Edilberto Buiser is doing all efforts to secure the release of the abducted DENR personnel. (DENR-13/PIA-Caraga)
.
.

POLICE REPORTS
By PO3 Arturo Suganob Campania

Report on loose firearm

On October 19, 2009 at 7:00 in the morning at Nasipit Municipal Police Station, Agusan del Norte, one Demetrio Suico, Barangay Captain of Barangay Talisay, Nasipit, Agusan del Norte, voluntarily surrendered one unit cal .38 revolver with SN 14838 smith and Wesson.

At about 8:30 of same date, a certain Jerome Marave, a resident of Barangay 4, Nasipit, Agusan del Norte voluntarily surrendered one unit cal .38 revolver with SN 570937. Said firearms are now under the custody of Nasipit Municipal Police Station for proper disposition.

At 1:00 in the afternoon, PNP members of RTR Municipal Police Station retrieved one unit cal .38 revolver smith and Wesson without serial number from the Drop Box for unwanted firearms at Barangay Tagbongabong, RTR, Agusan del Norte. Said firearm is now under the custody of RTR Municipal Police Station for proper disposition.

Also, on October 20, 2009 at 9:00 in the morning, one Retired General Lapu-lapu Buyser, 75 years old, resident of Navarro Corner Espina St., Surigao City had deposited into the Drop Box for unwanted firearms at Surigao del Norte PPO as follows:

Ø Two unit pistol shotgun homemade without serial number

Ø One unit m16 revolver homemade without serial number

Ø One unit cal .22 without serial number

Ø two units cal .38 revolver without serial number

Ø One unit cal .38 revolver with serial number 910537

Ø Five magazines assembly for carbine

Ø One unit hand grenade

Ø 18 cartridge assembly for M203

Said firearms and ammunitions are now under the custody of Surigao del Norte PPO for proper disposition. (PNP-13/ PIA-Caraga)

PNP arrests wanted persons

On October 19, 2009 at 11:40 in the morning at Barangay Cabongbongan, Surigao City, a certain Ronil R Alciso, 21 years old, married, jobless and resident of said place was arrested by PNP elements of Surigao City Police Station by virtue of WOA issued by Hon Judge Dennis B Castilla, MTCC, Branch 1, Butuan City for violation of SP Ordinance Number 894-92, section 31-07 (traffic violation), docketed under CC number 40207 with recommended bailbond amounting to Php 2,000.00. Subject person is now under the custody of Surigao City Police Station for proper disposition.

At 3:00 in the afternoon of the same date, a certain Isacar F Otaza, 42 years old, married and resident of Purok Bayabas, San Isidro, Talacogon, Agusan del Sur was arrested by PNP personnel of Talacogon Municipal Police Station by virtue of WOA issued by Hon Judge Hector B Salise of RTC Branch 7, Bayugan, Agusan del Sur for two counts of rape docketed under CC numbers 3054 and 3055 with no bailbond recommended. Subject person is now under the custody of Talacogon Municipal Police Station for proper documentation. (PNP-13/ PIA-Caraga)

Report on shooting incident

On October 20, 2009 at 5:00 in the morning at Purok 1, Barangay Baliguan, Jabonga, Agusan del Norte, one Rodrigo C Madrozo, 53 years old, married, retired Phil Army and resident of said place was shot to death using cal .45 and .9mm pistol by five unidentified suspects.

PNP elements of Jabonga Municipal Police Station led by SPO4 Danilo Salcedo Cabug-os together with Dr Roberto Blacano, Municipal Health Officer of Jabonga immediately proceeded to the place of incident and conducted crime scene investigation.

Initial investigation disclosed that the victim and his younger brother were riding a tricycle going towards his farm located at National Highway of Barangay Baliguan and while traveling at about 100 meters away from his house, the suspects shot the victim resulting to death.

Suspects immediately withdrew towards mountainous area of said place while victim's brother ran away unharmed. Recovered at the crime scene were spent shells of cal .45 and .9mm pistol. Progress report to follow. (PNP-13/ PIA-Caraga)