PIA News Service - Monday, Oct. 4, 2010

4TH CMO battalion marks its first founding anniversary

Camp Evangelista, Cagayan de Oro City – The Army’s 4th Civil-Military Operations (Masaligan) Battalion celebrated its 1st significant day of activation last 01 October 2010 by conducting a two-day civic action medical/dental outreach mission in the two depressed Sitios of San Lazaro in Lapasan, and Sitio Singapore both in Cagayan de Oro City from 29 to 30 September 2010 that ushered to its commemorative commitment to serve the people.
More or less eighty-seven (87) local government officials participated in the initiated activities headed by Hon. Cong. Rufus Rodriguez, and Hon. Cong. Benjo Benaldo of the First and 2nd District of Cagayan de Oro City. 

The activities also participated in with the coordination with the local government units under Hon. Oscar S. Moreno, Provincial Governor of Misamis Oriental and Hon. Vicente Y Emano, City Mayor of Cagayan de Oro, the Philippine Drug Enforcement, Force of Responsible Citizens and Enforcers (FORCE), Rotary Club of CDO, Philippine Dental Association, the 4ID Medical and Dental Team, and other non-government organizations who took cognizance of the long-felt medical needs of the less fortunate urban residents of the City.

The activity was a concerted effort of the government and non-government organizations in bringing the government services closer to the people.

The medical/dental outreach mission has successfully treated a total number of One Thousand Three Hundred Twenty Four (1,324) indigent patients treated from different ailments/sickness which includes: 891 Medical treatments; 265 Dental or tooth extraction; 46 circumcisions; and 122 hair trimming (gupit).

The Humanitarian endeavors dispensed by the 4th Infantry Division is a continuing activity of the army not only to protect the people from physical harm posed by the local terrorists in the area of responsibility but another form of protection against various types of diseases. (4th CMO Bn, 4ID, PA/PIA-Caraga)


DILG-13 participates PhilHealth nat’l registration day

BUTUAN CITY - Pursuant to the President’s priority of attaining universal health coverage, DILG XIII supported the Department of Health and the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation in the conduct of the PhilHealth Registration Day held on October 2, 2010 at the PhilHealth Regional Office XIII. DILG XIII enjoined the local government units to encourage indigent people in their areas of jurisdiction to avail of the free health insurance coverage.
The program started with a motorcade attended by all stakeholders and followed by a wide array of activities like PhilHealth regristration, AH1N1 free vaccination and provision of health care services by the Department of Health.

During the activity, Mayor Ferdinand Amante of Butuan City, ably represented by Councilor Virgilio G. Nery, Jr., Chairman of Committee on Health and Sanitation, assured the people of Butuan especially the indigents that the local government unit of Butuan City is stretching its hand to the people and that looking after their welfare is always a priority. Mayor Amante emphasized that the indigent parties should avail of the free registration because it will also benefit the members of their families.

DOH Undersecretary Mario C. Villaverde, Chairman-Committee on Health and designer of health sector reforms of the present administration, thanked the DOH mulit-sector partners like the Department of the Interior and Local Government and the Department of Social Welfare and Development as well as the Department of Education for their support to the conduct of the activity.

Villaverde emphasized that under the P-Noy administration, “Kalusugan Para sa Lahat” will be achieved in 3 years. He made it clear that millions of Filipinos have not yet availed of the PhilHealth coverage and he further stressed that under the new administration, there is an assurance that every Filipino can avail of the benefits of the health coverage by the increased membership fees of financially able members to subsidize the poor or the less privileged sector of the society. (Mary Christine Anthonette M. Salise, DILG-13/PIA-Caraga)
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POLICE REPORTS
By PO3 Arturo Suganob Campania

Report on shooting incident 

One Ogie Kulangan y Aydao, 19 years old, single and resident of Brgy Bunga, Jabonga, Agusan del Norte was shot by one Reynaldo Pama y Betonio, 45 years old, married and resident of same place using homemade shotgun hitting the victim's leg. 

Initial investigation disclosed that prior to the incident, the victim was engaged in physical confrontation with Elvin Lasutan and Mario Lasutan. Minutes later, suspect appeared and without any provocation, shot the victim hitting his left leg. 

Victim was immediately brought to Jabonga Municipal Hospital for medical treatment while suspect voluntarily surrendered to Brgy Captain Ginoviva M Rosalin of Brgy Bunga and subsequently turned over to Jabonga Municipal Police Station. 

Incident took place at Brgy Bunga, Jabonga, Agusan del Norte on October 2, 2010 at 6:20 pm. A case now prepared by PNP elements of Jabonga Municipal Police Station for filing in court against the suspect. (PNP-13/PIA-Caraga)
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Report on arrested wanted person 

One Ronnie Delijero y Guiritan, 21 years old, single and resident of Sitio Dalit, Brgy San Isidro, Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte was apprehended by PNP elements of Claver Municipal Police Station led by SPO3 Sabino M Pagasian by virtue of WOA for frustrated murder docketed under CC nr 8889 with recommended bailbond amounting to Php 24,000.00 issued on August 16, 2010 by Judge Victor A Canoy of RTC Branch 29, Surigao City. 

Apprehension took place at Public Market of Claver, Surigao del Norte on October 1, 2010 at 7:00 pm. Subject person now detained at Gigaquit Municipal Police Station for proper disposition. (PNP-13/PIA-Caraga)

Report on illegal drugs 

Intel operatives from 13th Regional Public Safety Battalion led by PCINSP REYNANTE N SIBAYTON under the close supervision of Battalion Commander PSUPT FRANCISCO D DUNGO JR conducted operation against illegal drugs at Purok 7, Brgy Bancasi, Butuan City on October 3, 2010 at 6:00 pm which resulted to the arrest of one Allan Mamarinta, legal age, married and resident of Brgy Ong Yiu, Butuan City. 

Recovered from suspect's possession were three (3) large sachets of suspected shabu, two (2) small sachets of suspected shabu, one (1) unit Digital weighing scale and two (2) pcs Php 1,000.00 marked money. The operation was witnessed by Brgy Bancasi Brgy Kagawad Rodrigo Morin and media personnel in Butuan City. 
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Arrested person and confiscated items were brought to 13th RPSB for proper disposition while appropriate case now prepared for filing in court. (PNP-13/PIA-Caraga)

Report on illegal gambling 

Joint PNP elements of Agusan del Sur Provincial Public Safety Battalion led by PSUPT GERRY O RATUNIL, Intel operatives of Agusan del Sur PPO and PNP elements of San Francisco Municipal Police Station led by PSINSP JOEL A BIÑAS conducted operation against illegal gambling at Public Market of San Francisco, Agusan del Sur on October 1, 2010 at 4:30 pm which resulted to the apprehension of one Estrellita Verano y Paquibot, 42 years old, married, usher and resident of Purok 2 Brgy Rizal, Barobo, Surigao del Sur.

Confiscated for her possession were one stub with entry of number combinations and bet money amounting to Php 100.00. Arrested person and confiscated items were brought to San Francisco Municipal Police Station for proper disposition. (PNP-13/PIA-Caraga)
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NGCP's Statement on Mindanao Power Crisis

Against a region-wide backdrop of power supply deficiency, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) has remained steadfast in the discharge of its mandated duty of being the power transmission provider and system operator in all of Mindanao.

Now, NGCP affirms that power interruptions in Mindanao will persist because of the scarcity of power supply and generation.

NGCP and Napocor

1. NGCP, a private corporation, is in charge of transmitting electricity from generators to distribution utilities and bulk power users. And as system operator, NGCP may not own nor operate any power plant, but can implement power curtailment based on supply and demand situation.

2. National Power Corporation (Napocor), a government-owned corporation, and other privately–owned generating companies nominate power plants that may be dispatched into the grid by NGCP. Presently, power plants nominated by Napocor cannot meet the actual demand of customers connected to the Mindanao grid.

At any given time, two to three of Napocor's eight power plants (i.e. Agus 1,2,4,5,6,7, Pulangi, and Power Barge 104) are shut down for various reasons. Thus, lately, there is substantially less energy traffic within the Mindanao grid, and the energy demands of Mindanao cannot be met. It is for this reason that Mindanao has started to experience, again, a spate of brownouts.

Additional Investments in Power Generation

To address generation deficiency resulting from the growing demand for electricity in Mindanao, the entry of additional baseload* power plants into the Mindanao grid is urgently needed.

1. Considering Mindanao's heavy dependence on hydro-electric facilities, a power source easily affected by droughts and other volatile weather phenomena, a balanced generation mix coming from other power sources like coal, diesel, and geothermal is not only ideal, but essential in stemming the Mindanao power crisis.
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2. Napocor does not have the mandate to build and operate new power plants per the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA). As such, new generation capacity will have to come from private sector entities willing to invest on building and operating new power plants for Mindanao.

3. It must further be noted that Mindanao’s generation supply situation is unique. About ninety percent (90%) of the total generation comes from the northern part of Mindanao. Transco designed the Mindanao grid for a “two-way” traffic situation, where the flow of supply is evenly dispersed between north and south. To alleviate the stress placed on the lines, NGCP prioritized the completion of the Maramag-Bunawan lines. However, even with this improvement, it is likewise essential for the generation supply to be balanced between the north and south portions of Mindanao. More baseload plants must be located in the south.
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Market Prices

New baseload power plants run by private entities will definitely reflect or charge the true cost of electricity as dictated by market forces.

Therma Marine Inc. and the Provision of Ancillary Services

1. NGCP’s contractual relationship with Therma Marine Inc. (TMI) is for the provision of ancillary services alone, not for the supply of power for the consumption of end-users. NGCP is not allowed by law or existing regulations to contract with power generators for the supply to end-users.

2. With no new baseload plants entering the Mindanao grid and the continuing power outages inthe region, some interest groups familiar with the Mindanao power problem have called on NGCP to dispatch Therma Marine Inc.'s (TMI) power barges to make up for lack of baseload supply in the grid.

3. But NGCP is bound by the provisions of the Ancillary Services Procurement Agreement (ASPA) with TMI as approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). Unless revoked or cancelled, NGCP will continue to dispatch these power barges as "dispatchable reserve" type of ancillary services** only, and not as baseload supply – as defined in NGCP’s ASPA with TMI, and as mandated by existing laws and regulations.

4. NGCP does not earn profit from the provision of ancillary services. While it is NGCP who bills and collects ancillary services charges from end-users, as provisionally approved by the ERC, it remits the collection for ancillary services directly and entirely to TMI. TMI is the sole party profiting from the arrangement, but it is NGCP who bears the risk of collection. Even if NGCP’s customers do not remit payment for ancillary services, NGCP is, by contract, obligated to pay TMI the full amount of ancillary services billed by TMI.
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5. The ASPA with TMI obligates TMI to make 50 megawatts per power barge available for ancillary services in the form of "dispatchable reserve." Energy that the barges can generate in excess of 50 megawatts per power barge, may be made the subject of bilateral agreements between TMI and distribution utilities for the supply of baseload power to customers. These bilateral agreements, should there be any, is at the sole discretion and option of TMI, and is completely outside of NGCP's purview.

What can be done to secure the baseload power supply from TMI's power
barges?

1. The short-term solution for the supply problem in Mindanao is for TMI to make its available capacity from the power barges available as baseload supply. TMI must directly enter into supply contracts with the distribution utilities in the area so that NGCP may dispatch the same. The high cost charged by TMI for these diesel-run power barges may be a reason why TMI is unable to secure a power supply contract with distribution utilities.

2. Another option would be for PSALM, or any other entity, to take the available capacity of TMI. PSALM, because of the number of its hydro-power plants, may very well blend in the generating costs of the diesel-fueled barges of TMI to lower the charges passed on to distribution utilities and ultimately, the consumers.

NGCP's Commitment

1. As transmission service provider, NGCP continues to consider and study the Leyte-Mindanao Interconnection Project. When completed as approved by ERC, the inter-connection will allow the export of available power from Leyte to Mindanao and vice-versa. Private investors will be encouraged to build the necessary baseload power plants since they will be able to export available energy to islands outside of Mindanao.

2. NGCP ensures that its transmission facilities – transmission towers, lines, and substations – are available to all for the transmission of available power to the grid. There is no constraint in the major transmission lines of NGCP in Mindanao. We must emphasize that the lines of NGCP are sufficient and able to handle the energy load in Mindanao. The lines may be stressed but they are not constrained. These lines are fully operational and ready to deliver available power from the generators.

Two other lines, namely Maramag to Bunawan Lines 1 and 2, are intended to reinforce the current primary lines and increase transfer capacity from the north to south of Mindanao.

These lines are expected to be on-line by the end of October 2010. These lines could have been operational at the end of September 2010, if not for the pilferages that resulted in the loss of 10 reels of cable equivalent to 15 kilometers.
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Apart from NGCP's primary lines, the Agus 2 to Kibawe Line 1, which is a back-up line, was destroyed by bombings. This line is being repaired and is expected to be on-line before the end of October 2010. The line could have likewise been operational as early as the end of September 2010 if not for the inclement weather which stalled repair works.

3. NGCP commits to continue implementing projects to expand and improve the reliability of the Mindanao grid.
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3,861 Surigaonons availed Philhealth services in Surigao City

By Susil Ragas

SURIGAO CITY - Amidst the cloudy skies, some 500 indigent residents from the city’s 54 barangays showed up for the National Philhealth Registration Day dubbed as “Philhealth Sabado” last Saturday, Oct. 2 at the City Luneta Park this city.

In behalf of City Mayor Ernesto Matugas, Vice-Mayor Danilo C. Menor in his short message revealed that the Matugas administration strongly supports the program of Philhealth.  

Vice-Mayor Menor said their administration believed that “there can never be a progressive city if the people are sick and a healthy people will always bring a healthy city.”

Meantime, Philhealth Surigao City evaluated and recorded a total of 3,861 registration forms from the 54 barangays of the city. 150 Philhealth cards were also distributed of which 80 recipients were from the island barangays and 70 were from the mainland.
Culminating the activity was the conduct of an Information Advocacy Campaign regarding the benefits and programs of Philhealth. 

Surigao City Philhealth Division Chief Mr. Sotico Cascara said they never expected a huge number of registrants who participated in the event, “it just shows that people are now more aware of the usefulness of becoming a member of Philhealth.” 

“The support as well, of all LGU’s, national line agencies and NGO’s are overwhelming,” he concluded.
(PIA-Surigao del Norte)