2.26.2011

PIA News Service - Friday, Feb. 25, 2011

Butuan LGU commemorates 25th year of Filipino patriotism

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 25 (PIA) – In time with the 25th celebration of EDSA People Power Revolution, the city government here paid tribute to the patriotism of Filipino men and women who, without minding the risk, has fought to restore democracy in the country.

In a simple celebration on Friday morning, employees of the city hall and in nearby national government offices proceeded to the city hall grounds as early as 7:30 bringing with them memories of the 1986 People Power Revolution.

In his speech, Councilor Erwin Dano emphasized that the Filipinos have already restored freedom and democracy 25 years ago. With this, he said today’s generation should preserve it and will serve as a legacy for the next generation.

Meanwhile, sounding of siren, bell ringing and balloon releasing followed which formally closed the simple commemoration.

In a related development, a film showing reminiscing the events of 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution is also scheduled today at the city hall lobby. Also, the city government will launch the city hall press corps today. (PIA-Caraga)

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RHPU confirms “hot cars” already in Caraga Region

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 25 (PIA) –- Following reports of carnapped vehicles that are allegedly sold out here in Caraga Region, PSSupt Jaime Macarilay, Chief of Regional Highway Patrol Unit (RHPU) here said there is no incident of carnapping in Caraga Region but confirmed that the region is already a “dumping ground of carnapped vehicles” like in other cities in Mindanao.

In an interview with PIA, Macarilay stressed that although they have not received reports of carnapping incident, “it is sad to say that our region is considered dumping ground of these carnapped vehicles”.

Macarilay said these carnapped vehicles are coming from Metro Manila, Bulacan, Region 4, part of Cavite, Laguna and Cebu City.

When asked of the reason why these carnapped vehicles were transacted here in Caraga, the official said “madali kase’ng ibenta ng mga carnapping syndicates ang mga sasakyan dito,” (carnapping syndicates can easily sell these vehicles here) he said.

He added, the syndicates can easily make fake documents to appear that the vehicle is legitimate.

Macarilay further said since his assumption to office in August 2010, they were able to apprehend 22 motor vehicles, 10 of which are carnapped and the others are having questionable documents.

The official also revealed that carnapping syndicates operating in Manila are maintaining contacts here in Mindanao to ensure a smooth flow of their transactions.

With these developments, the official calls the public to coordinate with the RHPU office in case they plan to buy vehicles especially those second-hand/surplus vehicles to avoid complications, by calling hotline number (085) 815-5361 or through PSSupt Macarilay at 09292943333. (PIA-Caraga)

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CHR, PNP set to file criminal and rights violation raps against police abductors

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 25 (PIA) -- The abductors of the recently released member of the Philippine National Police may be facing multiple criminal and human rights violations charges as the regional office of the commission on human rights and the PNP said that they are set to pursue the filing of the said cases against them in connection with the attack made against an LGU anti-illegal logging monitoring task force, early this month.

In a press forum last Wednesday, held at the conference room of the regional headquarters of the Caraga PNP, Camp Rafael C. Rodriguez, Brgy. Libertad this city, regional CHR representative Mr. Seldio Pilongo said that the commission is coming up with a separate and independent probe on the said incident. The case according to him is docketed under CHR-XIII-0-2011-0020 for possible violation of RA 9851( An Act Defining and Penalizing Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law, Genocide and Other Crimes Against Humanity).

“The fact that the subject (PNP member) was kept in the hands of his abductors for a number of days, he now becomes a hostage. Hostage-taking is a violation under the International Humanitarian Law (IHL). He should have been released immediately,” Pilongo said.

Further, the official also said that they are now in the process of documentation on the reports regarding the two civilians who were killed during the incident, where one of them was alleged to be a minor. He mentioned that they are also set to file a complaint up to the Comprehensive Agreement On respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) committee which was tasked to monitor possible human rights violations between the GRP and the CPP/NPA/NDF.

PO3 Jorge Sabatin, was presented to the members of the local media during the said forum.

He was released noontime Saturday, Feb. 19 to the members of the provincial crisis management committee of Agusan del Sur headed by Agusan del Sur Vice Gov. Sante Cane and PSWD chief Mrs. Josefina Bajade, local government units, sectoral and religious representatives at Crossing Bagabaga, Sitio Cogonon, Brgy. Salvacion, Trento Agusan del Sur by the NPA rebels believed to be members of the Front Committee 20 (FC 20) of the Southern Mindanao regional Command (SRMC).

The group was said to be responsible of keeping him for 18 days somewhere in the hinterlands bordering the provinces of Agusan del Sur and Compostela Valley Province.

He was then turned over to the regional crisis management committee who brought him from Trento to Butuan City and had him admitted at a local private hospital in the city for medical care.

PO3 Sabatin is a member of the 1403rd Provinvial Public Safety Company based in Agusan del Sur, who was abducted by the NPAs during an attack made by the said armed group against an anti-illegal logging monitoring post of the Task Force Bantay Kalikasan at Purok 3, Brgy. Pulang Lupa, Trento, Agusan del Sur early morning of February 1 at the height of massive floodings and landslides which hit the region brought about by incessant weeklong monsoon rains. The region, including the province of Agusan del Sur at the time was under “Alert Level 3” where 50% of the police and military personnel were said to be detailed to relief and rescue missions.

Two civilians were killed and two PNP members were wounded (including Sabatin) during the attack. PO3 Sabatin was then brought by the raiders as they made their escape to their mountain lairs.

Attending also the said press forum were members of the regional crisis management committee chaired by PCSupt. Reynaldo S. Rafal, Fr. Carlito Clase (CCPD), Deputy Regional State Prosecutor Lemuel Alegado (DOJ), Mr. Seldio Pilongo (CHR), other top regional police officials and members of the local media.

Meanwhile, it was disclosed also during the same forum that the provincial police office of Agusan del Sur has filed “Double Murder,” “Double Frustrated Murder,” and “Robbery” charges against Sabatin’s abductors.

Sabatin is now undergoing medical treatment and stress debriefing before he will be made to report back to police service. (Noel B. Najarro/PIA-Caraga)

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PSWD serves 13,536 families flood victims; relief assistance continues for other flood victims

By: David M. Suyao

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Feb. 25 -- A total of 13,536 families affected by the January 3 and February 1 floods were extended with relief assistance, according to the Provincial Social Welfare and Development (PSWD), while the distribution of the relief goods for the February 17 floods is still on-going.

This was revealed by PSWD chief Josefina Bajade said during the Provincial Peace and Order Council meeting yesterday.

She reported that the relief assistance consisted of 2,198 bags of rice, 1,080 cases of sardines, 1499 cases of noodles, 250 cases coffee and 222 cases of Milo.

“These relief goods were taken out from the five percent provincial calamity fund only, excluding the relief goods extended by our two congresswomen from District I and District II,” Bajade said.

According to Mrs. Bajade, Cong. Maria Valentina Plaza of District I have released P625,000 she sourced out from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR) coursed thru the PSWD to purchase additional relief goods. Cong. Evelyn Plaza-Mellana have also negotiated with the National Food Authority for the release of 120 sacks of rice and shelled out funds for the purchase of 60 cases of sardines and 120 cases of noodles.

“Upon receipt of the relief goods, our office repacked them during the night. Each pack contain three kilos of rice, 3 tins of sardines, three packs of noodles, coffee and sugar, or Milo. During day time, including Saturdays and Sundays, we distributed the relief goods prioritizing the most affected victims of the floods. We did this since January 4 until at present,” Mrs. Bajade said.

Recent records from PSWD revealed that Prosperidad have the biggest number of families affected with 4,843 families or 26,255 persons, followed San Francisco with 4,163 families or 23,729 persons, Esperanza with 1,263 families or 7198 persons, Bunawan with 968 families or 5,519 persons, Rosario with 773 families or 4,406 persons.

On the other hand, San Luis recorded 686 families or 3,910 persons affected, Bayugan with 448 families or 2,554 persons, Loreto 213 families or 1,214 persons and Talacogon 179 families or 1,020 persons.

The distribution continue until this time to the rest of the municipalities not yet served. (PIA-Agusan del Sur)

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We have improved our crime solution efficiency – PNP

By: David M. Suyao

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Feb. 25 -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) Agusan del Sur provincial office proudly said crime solution efficiency province-wide has increased even if crime volume has also increased during the same period last year.

In a report to the Provincial Peace and Order Council, P/Supt. Arnold Pascual of the PNP provincial office said, crime solution rate from December 2010 to February 2011 marked 67 percent compared to the same period from December 2009 to February 2010 with 18.42 percent, with a variance of 48.58 percent.

“In spite of the increase in crime volume this year with 228 cases from December 2010 to February 2011 compared to the same period last year from December 2009 to February 2010, we are proud to inform you that we have almost solved all the index crimes committed against person and property. For the non-index crime or the violation against special laws, we have already filed them in court or turned-over the cases to proper government agencies for disposition,” P/Supt. Pascual said.

According to P/Supt. Pascual, physical injuries ranked first as presented in their crime index province-wide claiming 30 percent, compared to last year with 32 percent. Bayugan City got the highest with 25 incidents, followed by Prosperidad with 20 incidents and San Francisco with 16. The three municipalities have the same number of incidents for robbery.

“The reasons why there is a decrease in the index crime are because we constantly establish surprise strong check points in strategic places where we believe criminality is rampant. We have also intensified police visibility in the business centers of every town while intensifying our campaign against criminality,” P/Supt. Pascual added.

The PNP has declared Agusan del Sur as relatively a peaceful place to live and do business. (PIA-Agusan del Sur)

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GSIS to pensioners: Renew active status for continuous pension

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 25 -- The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) reminds its old-age and survivorship pensioners to renew their active status once a year—in their birth month—to ensure the continuous receipt of their monthly pension.

The System mandates all its pensioners to comply with this requirement, dubbed the annual renewal of active status or ARAS, to avoid suspension of their pension.

To renew their active status, pensioners must bring their eCard to the nearest GSIS servicing office or the nearest government office with a GSIS Wireless Automated Processing System (G-W@PS) kiosk during their birth month.

The procedures for renewal take only a few seconds: place eCard on the card reader of the kiosk; choose the “Annual Reporting” icon using the kiosk’s touch screen; select any pre-registered finger; and lightly scan the finger using the fingerprint scanner of the kiosk to complete the process.

Pensioners living abroad can also renew their active status via video call or through the use of skype, a web-based software that allows users to make telephone calls over the internet free of charge. For more information on status renewal via skype, pensioners abroad can e-mail pensionglobal@gsis.gov.ph.

Furthermore, upon request, the GSIS regularly carries out home visits for pensioners 80 years old and above and those unable to walk because of sickness, to renew their active status.

GSIS President and General Manager Robert G. Vergara said the pension fund continues to find ways to provide greater convenience for its more than 300,000 pensioners.

“The GSIS Board and Management will take advantage of advances in technology so that all our pensioners can renew their active status right in the comfort of their own homes,” he said.

The GSIS disburses an average of P1.7 billion in pension benefits every month. Apart from their monthly pension, eligible old-age pensioners are entitled to cash gifts at the end of the year which they receive electronically, a service unique to pensioners of the GSIS.

The GSIS gives cash gifts before the end of the year, to eligible active old-age, retirement and disability pensioners receiving their regular monthly pensions as of December of each year.

For more information on their benefits and the importance of the annual renewal of active status, pensioners are advised to visit the GSIS website (www.gsis.gov.ph) or inquire in the nearest GSIS office. (GSIS/PIA-Caraga)

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Cebuano News: Programa sa Edukasyon gipanghingusgan sa Surigao del Norte

SURIGAO DEL NORTE, Feb. 25 (PIA) – Malampuson nga gipahigayon ang Provincial Local School Board meeting niadtong Pebrero 23, 2011 didto sa Governor’s Mansion Conference Room, Capitol Compound, Surigao City.

Ang maong panagtigum gipanguluhan ni Gobernador Sol Matugas ug kini gitambungan nila Board member Mamerto Galanida, Provincial treasurer Daisy Hubilla, Provincial budget officer Gay Cotiangco, School Divisions Superintendents ug mga miyembro sa Local School Board.

Unang nahisgutan mao ang Education Road Map, nga diin gusto ni Gobernador Matugas nga magtinabangay ang tanan aron makab-ot ang kalampusan sa Education Road Map sa atong probinsya. Nagpasalamat usab ang Gobernador sa kalampusan sa pagbisita ni Secretary of Education Bro. Armin Luistro dinhi sa atong probinsya.

Ikaduhang nahisgutan mao ang Proposed Budget nga gigahin sa atong probinsya para sa Local School Board nga mokabat sa P11 milyones, lakip na dinhi nga hatagan ug prayoridad ang mga flagship project sa local school board nga mao ang K+12, Project Best ug ang Fit for School.

Ang pagbutang sa Kindergarten Classes mao ang unang lakang sa programang K+12 ug gusto sa Gobernador nga mabutangan ang tanan mga barangay ug kindergarten classes.

Nahigustan usab ang mga pamaagi aron mapasabot sa mga katawhan ang programa nga K+12 ug Project Best pinaagi sa pagpanghatag ug mga fliers kabahin niining maong programa sa mga radio, brgy. Assembly ug pag patawag ug Barangay Education Summit.

Katapusang nahisgutan mao ang umaabot nga pag-abli sa klase karon Hunyo 2011, kinahanglan gayod nga pangitaan ug paagi ang mga problema sama sa school buildings ug ang paghan-ay sa mga klase aron mapahiluna usab ang mga klase sa kindergarten.

Matud pa ni Gobernador Sol Matugas nga ang edukasyon ang atong hinagiban aron mahaw-as sa kagutom ug kalisdanan ang atong mga katawhan ilabina dinhi sa atong probinsya sa Surigao del Norte. (Surigao Norte Provincial Information Center/PIA-Surigao Norte)

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Cebuano News: Lungsod sa Socorro nagpasalamat sa mga proyekto sa gobernador sa Surigao

SURIGAO DEL NORTE, Feb. 25 (PIA) - Atol sa pag tak-op sa ika 50th nga selebrasyon sa Adlaw nan Socorro niadtong Pebrero 22, 2011. Gipasalamatan sa lokal nga pang gobyerno pinaagi na nila Socorro Mayor Elizabeth Galanida ug Bise- Mayor Denia Florano si Gobernador Sol Matugas tungod sa mga proyekto nga iyang nahatag sa ilang munisipyo ilabina ang Panambay sa Barangay nga gihimo didto sa Sitio Atoyay, Barangay Sering ug Cash Assistance nga P2,000 matag barangay ug ang kantidad P100,000 alang sa Tinabangay Festival.

Matud pa ni Mayor Galanida nga sila wala pasagdi sa probinsya sa ilang mga problema nga nasinate ilabina sa pagkadaot sa mga dalan sa ilang lungsod ug problema usab sa ilimnong tubig.

Pinaagi sa tabang ni Gob. Sol Matugas kauban si Cong. Lalo Matugas nahatagan ug kasolbaran ang ilang mga problema, ilabina na gayod ang water system nga gikinahanglan sa mga katawhan sa ilang lungsod pinaagi sa tabang ni LWUA Administrator Butch Pitchay.

Samtang tinguha usab ni Gobernador Sol Matugas nga makabaton ang lungsod sa Socorro ug Provincial Engineering Office nga dunay kaugalingon nga heavy equipments aron pag trabaho sa mga dauton nga dalan nga iya sa probinsya ug tinguha usab na mabalhin kini ngadto sa national secondary road, pagtukod ug Socorro Science High School, paghatag panginabuhian sa barangay pinaagi na sa libreng puhonan alang sa livelihood program ug ang pag-abli ug mga eskwelahan alang sa daycare.

Si Gobernador Matugas Nagpasalamat usab sa mga lideres sa Socorro ilabina na gayod sa ilang pagsuporta sa iyang programa nga HEALS ug ang pagsuporta sa iyang administrasyon pinaagi na sa pag kab-ot sa Bag-ong Surigao. (Surigao Norte Provincial Information Center/PIA-Surigao Norte)