PIA News Service - Monday, Oct. 11, 2010

Texin turns over filtration system to BCWD

Texin Incorporated turned over the two-stage filtration system installed in August 2009 to Butuan City Water District (BCWD) in a simple ceremony on September 28, 2010.

Texin president Glenn Flores personally handed over the documents to BCWD chairman Juanito Lao, with the presence of other members of the Board of Directors, GM Anselmo Sang Tian, and some department heads. The turn over happened after the Certificate of Final Inspection and Acceptance was signed, following the inspection made by BCWD representatives whose findings showed Texin Inc. had corrected all deficiencies observed during the operation of the filters in accordance with the design plan and specifications.  

Amiad Filtration Systems, a global provider of innovative water filtration technologies and Texin’s principal company, announced in June, this year, the completion of the testing and commissioning phase of the BCWD filtration system. The unique two-stage system is now fully functional and is the first half of a projected 2-phase project to provide clean drinking water to over 300,000 citizens of the city of Butuan. The system addresses the recurring high turbidity challenge faced by the BCWD, the sole provider of potable water to the city’s inhabitants.

The BCWD Filtration System was designed to reduce the high level of turbidity. It now actually produces clean drinking water that is superior to the quality of bottled water, at a much lower cost. 

The main water source for Butuan, the Taguibo River, suffers from very high turbidity levels - small particles in the water that lead to a cloudy quality. High turbidity in drinking water leads to high risk of gastrointestinal diseases, particularly among immune-compromised people. The problem is compounded by the illegal logging, mining, road construction, and other such activities within the Watershed, all of which raise the amount of turbidity in the water. 

Previously, BCWD employed a sand bed model of filtration. However, despite the grade and grain size of the sand used to filter the water, turbidity levels exceeded the limitations of the filter and resulted in unclean drinking water. During periods of heavy rain, water supplies had been cut off for days at a time to stop turbid water flowing through the pipelines, leaving nearly the entire city without drinking water. 

The system installed by Amiad consists of nine self-cleaning filters, including two Amiad Brush Filter strainers which filter raw water down to 300 microns to protect the seven Amiad Micro Fiber Filters (AMF) installed down stream from large debris. The system filters the water down to 2 microns with turbidity of less than 5 NTU – a water quality superior to bottled water, yet at a much lower cost. 

"We are delighted to have partnered with Texin and Amiad on this crucial task," said BCWD general manager Anselmo L. Sang Tian. “Texin and Amiad worked closely with us to analyze the predicament we faced and met all of our needs, helping us to overcome the challenge of turbidity and to contribute in providing cleaner water to our concessionaires.” (BCWD-13/PIA-Caraga)


News Feature: What’s in your cup of tea?

All true teas come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis, ranging from green, oolong, white, black, rooibos tea, red tea and herbal tea infusions.

The main difference is in the way the tea leaves are processed but all tea brews are full of natural goodness and health benefits.

Tea is the main source of flavonoids in the diet, which is also present in apples, grapes, wines and cocoas. Most of the health benefits of tea are attributed to flavonoids.

An average 200 milliliter (mL) cup of green tea contains 120 milligrams (mg) of flavonoids while an average 300 mL cup of black tea contains 130mg. This was revealed by Dr. Jane Rycroft, Category Nutritionist of Unilever, citing from her Seminar on the Science of Tea “Bioactive Components of Tea and their Health Benefits” organized by the Philippine Committee International Life Science Institute Southeast Asia Region last July 16, 2010 at the EDSA Shangri-la Hotel.

Rycroft presented different studies on the relationships of tea and flavonoids to different nutritional and health factors, such as antioxidant properties which are helpful in cardiovascular health, weight management and mental performance.

A dietary antioxidant is a substance in foods that significantly decreases the adverse effects of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species on the normal physiological function in humans. 

In an experiment presented by Dr. Rycroft regarding flavonoids as antioxidants, results showed that bioavailability is low and flavonoids are modified upon absorption without indications of reduced damage in vivo.

Therefore, flavonoids have no proof for protection against free radical damage in the cells.

This study was supported by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) Panel on Diabetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies in 2010, which reported that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the consumption of tea and the protection of body cells and molecules such as DNA, proteins and lipids from oxidative damage.

According to various studies on cardiovascular health, tea, in general, is associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases, specifically lowering the risk of myocardial infarction, stroke and ischemic heart disease.

Consumption of two to three cups of black or green tea per day improves blood vessel function.

Tea consumption can help in weight management program, as in a number of Asian studies that found a reduction of visceral fat after consumption of high catechin green tea for 12 weeks. It was also shown that high catechin green tea increases fat oxidation.

L-theanine, on the other hand, is an amino acid naturally exclusive from tea that is responsible for the production of alpha waves in the brain which has a calming effect on the body and gives the balance of deep relaxation and mental alertness, according to Dr. Edgardo Tolentino of the Makati Medical Center.

A typical 200mL serving of black tea contains 4.5 – 22.5mg of L-theanine.

Research showed that a day long of tea drinking provides the same alertness as coffee drinking, but tea less likely disrupts sleep and improves mental alertness on attention tests.

Moreover, Tolentino explained that coffee compared to tea produces beta waves which put the body in an agitated state, and caffeine which increases attention and vigilance, works against adenosine which inhibits neural activity.

Dr. Demetria Bongga of the University of the Philippines presented studies about the relationship of tea and energy expenditure.

Although there are dissimilar results from the studies, it could be summarized that tea catechin, together with exercise, can reduce the abdominal fat due to the stimulation of the whole body metabolism, making it significant in weight management.

However, caffeine may counteract the health beneficial effects of green tea.

For more practical applications, Rycroft pointed out that the milk in milk-tea mix shouldn’t affect the amount of antioxidants the tea naturally has.

Rycroft also said that by soaking the tea bag in a much longer time than what is suggested in the labels can bring out more antioxidants to the water.

Among the many health benefits of tea include setting a positive mood, giving pleasure and stimulating the senses, reducing the risk of heart diseases and body fat.

However, the antioxidant-nutrient relationship is still in question. True enough, the science of tea is but an inception and needs further research to strengthen and validate its health benefits.

Nevertheless, no harmful reports have been documented about tea, considering a healthy switch to the second most widely consumed beverage in the world which for generations is a healthy form of hydration.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph.
(Jund Rian A. Doringo, FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service)
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News Feature: Breastfeeding linked to nutritional status

Based on the results of the 7th National Nutrition Survey (NNS) of the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) on infant feeding practices, the percentage of exclusive breastfeeding is only 8.6 percent, while the percentage of feeding with other milk or in combination with complementary feeding is high at 55.4 percent.  

The low level of breastfeeding practices among infants and young children is consistent with the high prevalence of malnutrition among the 0-5 year age group where 22.2 percent and 27.9 percent are underweight and stunted, respectively. 

When malnutrition was disaggregated by single year, the prevalence increased sharply between the child’s birth to one year old where underweight more than doubled from 12.4 percent to 30.3 percent, stunting almost tripled from 8.6 percent to 24.4 percent, and wasting more than doubled from 6.7 percent to 14.0 percent form 2003 to 2008.  

Infant and young child feeding is said to be the most critical ultimate care for growth and development. What the infant and young child eat has an impact on nutritional status, growth, development, health and survival that will determine human capacity and productivity during adulthood.

 There is no best way to feed an infant to have the best start in life than what Mother Nature offers in breast milk. 

Breastmilk is said to be the superior and unequalled milk for infants as it provides all the energy and nutrients the baby needs for the first six months of life. Exclusive breastfeeding promotes sensory and cognitive development and protects the infant against infectious and chronic diseases. 

With the important role of breastmilk in the infant’s health and survival, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) recommend that infants receive only breastmilk from birth to six months and provide appropriate complementary foods with continued breastfeeding for up to two years of age and beyond.

Infant feeding practices have a corresponding effect on children’s nutritional status and need urgent attention from the health and nutrition sectors and other stakeholders. 

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Mildred O. Guirindola, FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service)
News Feature: Complementary feeding vital to nutrition of infants, young children

Complementary feeding is the transition from exclusive breastfeeding to giving other foods while continuing breastfeeding. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) recommend that this transition feeding starts when the infant is six months until the child is 24 months old. At six months, infants are very vulnerable to malnutrition because at this stage, breastmilk alone is not sufficient to meet the nutritional needs. 

Perfect timing in giving complementary feeding is very crucial because given too early or too late will not be good for the infant’s health and nutritional well-being.  

Giving it earlier than six months is discouraged because it exposes infants to pathogens that increase the child’s risks to infection and diarrhea and decreases the demand for breastmilk that in turn decreases breastmilk production.  

Given late, it will predispose the child to undernutrion since breastmilk alone is not enough to cover the increasing nutritional requirement of the child after six months. 

Aside from appropriate timing, complementary feeding should be nutritious, prepared in sanitary manner and given in appropriate texture and amount.

According to the infant feeding practices data of the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) taken from the
 7th National Nutrition Survey, water, on the average was given at three months to 9 out of 10 infants, and water with sugar was given at age four months to 2 out of 10 infants. These results fell short of the recommendation that only breastmilk should be given to infants before six months. 

Based on the results, there is a need to strengthen advocacy and training on correct infant and young child feeding practices to all nursing mothers and would-be mothers to improve Filipino infants and young children’s nutritional status.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num: 8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Mildred O. Guirindola, FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service)
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News Feature: Only 8 out of 100 babies exclusively breastfed

The proportion of infants receiving exclusive breastfeeding from birth to six months decreased from 2003 to 2008, according to the 7th National Nutrition Survey (NNS) conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST).

The NNS showed that only 8.6 percent or only about 8 out of 100 of 0-23 month old children received exclusive breastfeeding, while 29.9 percent received breastfeeding and complementary food by current feeding practices. 

Exclusive breastfeeding is not giving an infant any food or drink other than breast milk, nor other fluids including water, tea or sugar. Complementary feeding, meanwhile, is giving other foods to infants until the baby becomes accustomed to family foods. 

Among 0-5 month old infants, exclusive breastfeeding is practiced only by 35.9 percent which means that only about one-third of infants in the country met the World Health Organization (WHO) recommendation of exclusive breastfeeding until 6 months. 

Moreover, the 2008 survey showed that the mean duration of exclusive breastfeeding significantly decreased to 2.3 months from 3.0 months in 2003. The mean duration of breastfeeding in 2008 is 4.9 months compared to 5.6 months in 2003. 
 
Among 6-11 month-old babies, exclusive breastfeeding dropped to 0.5 percent while breastfeeding and complementary feeding was practiced by 39.4 percent. Also, more than half or 59.8 percent was given other milk and foods in this age group. 

Among 12-23 month-old babies, about two-thirds or 65.7 percent was given other milk and foods, and only about one-fifth or 21.6 percent of mothers practiced breastfeeding and giving complementary foods.

The decreasing rate of breastfeeding practice is alarming, considering the various physiological and socio-economic benefits of breastfeeding. 

Breastmilk is the perfect food for infants because it provides all the nutrients that are needed for proper growth and development. It also contains antibodies that help protect babies from common childhood illnesses like diarrhea, pneumonia and malnutrition. Moreover, breastmilk is readily safe, available and affordable, and it strengthens the bond between the mother and baby, and the whole family. 

Message No.2 of the Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos (NGF) recommends breastfeeding infants exclusively from birth to six months, and to give appropriate foods while continuing breastfeeding. 

Promoting breastfeeding focusing on nutrition, health and economic benefits should be intensified among women, especially among would-be mothers, to prepare them to breastfeed immediately after childbirth. 
For more information about the NNS and food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science Technology, Bicutan, Taguig City; Trunkline: 837-2071 local 2296; Telephone/Fax No.: 837-3164; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or mar_v_c@yahoo.com; Website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph (Charina A. Javier, FNRI-DOST S&T Media Service)


Press Statement:

The NPAs threats are nothing!
SUDECOR shall overcome!


There seems to be no let up to the NPAs attacks on SUDECOR. Last October 4, the service bus utilized to transport the lowly workers from the SUDECOR base camp at Barangay Puyat, Carmen, Surigaodel Sur, was burned by an undetermined number of NPAs. During the incident, the NPAs told the workers to arm themselves so that they could fight the NPAs. Two days later, October 6, the NPAs burned a hauling truck on its way back to SitioGacub, in Barangay Hinapuyan, Municipality of Carmen. The two incidents resulted to losses amounting to millions of pesos.  

The NPA has once again shown its complete disrespect to the workers who have to bear the effects of its attacks. Not only are the SUDECOR workers terrorized. The reduction in productivity also results to a reduction in outputs, and a reduction in take home pay; so that every time the NPA attacks the company, it brings misery into the lives of the workers.  
 
Through the years, and despite the innumerable attacks against the equipment, properties, and personnel of SUDECOR, the workers have shown time and again that they are capable of restoring what the NPAs can destroy. The workers have also shown to the NPAs that no amount of terror and violent assaults can force them to give up on a company that has provided them with employment, nurtured the Surigaoforest, and continues to provide the national and local economy with revenues that are also showered back to the people as funds for rural community development. 

Indeed, SUDECOR has endured and overcome all the challenges and threats posed by the New People’s Army. The Maoist fanatics may be passionate in their drive to stop companies who do not toe their line and give in to their demands, but SUDECOR is much more passionate in its mission of managing the forest sustainably while providing the domestic economy with 90% of plywood requirements and 45% of lumber. Despite the attacks, SUDECOR has kept its head up high, ever willing to move forward to continue performing its socially-relevant function. 

Unlike the CPP-NPA who have yet to prove their worth in the actual management of forests and in the provision of real and palpable economic benefits to the people, SUDECOR has lived up to its mission and will continue to do so because it is not merely a company owned by well-meaning industrialists. SUDECOR is a company that is loved and supported by its workers. It is a company that has carved its presence in the hearts of the people of Surigaodel Sur. 

SUDECOR shall overcome! It will prevail! (SUDECOR)
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1 killed, another hurt in Agusan Sur grenade blast

A 12-year old boy was declared dead on arrival at a local district hospital while a 38-year old was admitted for blast injuries, after a suspect threw a hand grenade into a residence at a remote town of a southern province here in Caraga region, Friday evening (Oct. 8).

Reports reaching the regional police headquarters at Camp Rafael C. Rodriguez, Brgy. Libertad, Butuan City, from Agusan del Sur Provincial Police said that the suspect identified as Joseph Lozano, of legal age and a resident of Brgy. Binongan, Veruela town in Agusan del Sur, lobbed a hand grenade, 8:00 P.M. Friday, at the residence of a certain Reynaldo Maestrado Navarro, of legal age and a resident of Purok 5 of the said barangay, which injured the 12-year old Daryl Navarro Mahabuhay and another one a certain Bernard Sanggo Magguinimba, 38; both residents of the said place. The same report added that both victims were rushed to Bunawan District Hosptal.

The 12-year old Daryl Mahabuhay however, was declared dead on arrival by the attending physician, of the said hospital, while Magguinimba was admitted thereat for blast injuries.

Lozano, the said report further said, fled to some unknown direction after the incident and is now a subject for a police manhunt by the personnel of Veruela Municipal Police Station.

Veruela police investigators said that the motive could be a personal grudge of the suspect against the owner of the residence.

Meanwhile, another suspect facing a homicide charge was apprehended by Sibagat police personnel, led by its chief 8:00 A.M. Saturday, at Sibagat town, the same province. Agusan del Sur police reported that the Sibagat PNP led by its chief PInsp. Junmark Cana, nabbed a certain Raul Dalatuya Musico, of legal age, at his residence at Purok 4, Brgy. Sinai, of the said town.

Musico was arrested by the virtue of an arrest warrant issued by Hon. Hector B. Salise, Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 7 of Bayugan, Agusan del Sur, for “Homicide” docketed under Criminal Case No. 2757. There was no bail recommended for his temporary liberty.

The suspect is now under the custody of Sibagat PNP for proper disposition. (Noel B. Najarro, The Butuan Star/PIA-Caraga)
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Police nabs 4 for Comelec gun ban violation

Four persons were arrested for gun ban violations, by police who were manning a Comelec checkpoint at the national highway in Brgy. Bunawan Brook, Bunawan Agusan del Sur 11:00 A.M. Thursday (Oct. 7).
 
Reports from Agusan del Sur provincial police reaching Camp Rafael C. Rodriguez, Brgy. Libertad, Butuan City said that a company of the Agusan del Sur Provincial Public Safety Company, which set up a Comelec check point at the aforementioned location apprehended four persons who were found to have illegal firearms in their possession.
 
The suspects were identified as Betus Buenaventura y Merlin, 30; Janie Buenaventura y Merlin, 20; Bembo Rodriguez y Malspina, 27, all residents of Purok 5, brgy. Tudela, Trento, Agusan del Sur and Asher Paguipo y Cortez, 31; a resident of Mt. Ararat, Bayugan, Agusan del Sur.
 
The apprehending lawmen were able to confiscate from the suspect’s possession a US Pistol Caliber 45 government model, Colt MK IV Series with Serial Number 154551 with a magazine loaded with 7 live ammunitions, a US Caliber 45 Pistol Colt Meg with Serial Number 118529 with a magazine loaded with 7 live ammunitions, a Caliber 45 Pistol Colt government Model with Serial Number 924173 wit a magazine loaded with 7 live ammunitions and a Caliber 45 Pistol with serial Number 084325 with a magazine loaded with 7 live ammunitions.
 
The said suspects, upon verification by the authorities failed to present the necessary documents which may show the legality of possessing such, and authorizing them to bring the said firearms outside their residences.
 
Apprehended suspects were now placed under the custody of the Agusan del Sur Provincial Police Public Safety for proper disposition and pending the filing of the appropriate charges in court against them. (Noel B. Najarro, The Butuan Star/PIA-Caraga)


Army man shots self

A desperate army man reportedly shot himself on the head in front of his 14-year old son at a barangay (village) in the capital town of Surigao del Sur, 6:30 P.M., Saturday (Oct. 9). He died instantly due to a lone bullet wound of a Caliber 45 pistol on his head.
 
Reports from Surigao del Sur Provincial Police Office identified the victim as Master Sergeant Edwin Obatay y Candelas, 47; a member of the 23rd Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army, residing at Purok Kasama, Brgy. Rosario, Tandag, Surigao del Sur.
Police investigators from Tandag police said that Obatay told his wife that day that he wanted to end his life because of his personal problem. He however kept to himself what the said problem was all about.
 
Thus, when Obatay requested his wife to withdraw some amount from their ATM account later on that day, his wife wanted to be sure that nothing untoward may happen to her husband while she was away. She kept the victim’s firearm inside their bathroom and accordingly locked its door well. She then left for the downtown to heed her husband’s request, leaving her 14-year old son, Josh (not his real name) together with the victim.
 
The son testified to the police investigators who had responded to the incident that after his mother left them, his father looked for his firearm. He accordingly kicked the bathroom’s door open and found the firearm kept there by his mother, a Caliber 45 pistol. He told police investigators from Tandag Municipal Police Station and Surigao del Sur Crime Laboratory Office, that he saw his father pointing the barrel of his pistol right at his own head and fired the shot that ended his own life.
 
Responding policemen recovered from the crime scene a Caliber 45 pistol “Shooters” made with Serial No. SO6012282, still held by Obatay’s right hand. A spent shell of a firearm of the same caliber was also found at the said place
 
The recovered items were now placed at the custody of the Provincial Crime laboratory of Surigao del Sur for their proper disposition. (Noel B. Najarro, The Butuan Star/PIA-Caraga)