PIA News Service - Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2011

FREEDOM gains full support from Surigao Sur Gov thru partnership project

TANDAG, Surigao del Sur, Feb. 23 (PIA) – The Workshop for the Development of Micro Enterprises in Surigao del Sur sponsored by the Provincial Government of this province headed by Gov. Johnny T. Pimentel was successfully conducted today by the Foundation of Rural Enterprise and Ecology Development Of Mindanao (FREEDOM) at the Provincial Capitol here.

The activity highlighted the presentation of the Rural Micro-Enterprise Promotion Program (RuMEPP) by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), tied up with FREEDOM as financing institution for the implementation of the DTI/RuMEPP-Local Government Unit Partnership project.

According to Roland Ignacio, DTI-RuMEPP Project Coordinator, a seven-year poverty alleviation project started on 2005 and about to end on 2012 implemented to 19 provinces nationwide including Surigao del Sur in Caraga this year.

In his welcome address, Gov. Johnny Pimentel stressed “I fully support the program”.

Governor Pimentel also added, “We have to make use and take advantage of this opportunity”. 

Further, the governor encouraged all mayors thru its representatives who are present during the workshop to grab the opportunity since the program will only have a period of two years.

RuMEPP aims to reduce rural poverty through increased economic development, job creation, and better income for poor rural households by promoting profitable and sustainable micro enterprises (MEs). (NGBTranquilan/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


Cabadbaran chief exec expresses gratitude to Sen. Zubiri

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 23 (PIA)
–- Cabadbaran City Mayor Dale Corvera recently expressed gratitude to Sen. Miguel Zubiri for granting the city and the 10 municipalities of Agusan del Norte P500,000 each as part of the senator’s Special Action Release Order (SARO).

Mayor Corvera said since his assumption as Mayor of Cabadbaran four years ago, he cannot remember that a senator was able to give such financial assistance that will be used for the priority projects of the city of Cabadbaran. 

“This is my fourth year as Mayor of Cabadbaran. During this period, I did not remember that there was a senator who has extended financial assistance to us… It is only Senator Zubiri who valued the people in the municipalities in the country… This is indeed a manifestation of a true leader,” Corvera said.

Corvera also said this gesture of Sen. Zubiri proved that the senator’s heart is with the Mindanaoans being the son of the island who has fulfilled his promise in serving the people of Mindanao. (PIA-Caraga)


Ex-solon recalls the founding of Caraga Region

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 23 (PIA)
– Former Agusan del Norte 1st District Congresswoman Charito B. Plaza on Tuesday recalls how she and the co-authors of Republic Act 7901 creating the Caraga Administrative Region successfully defended the bill.

According to Plaza, one of the benefits of the creation of the region is the allocated budget from the national government which is downloaded in every region in the country.

Also, Plaza said many Caraganons were able to land a job since national government agencies already have their respective regional offices. “With this, the unemployment problem of the country has been addressed,” Plaza said.

Today, February 23, 2011, marks the 16th year anniversary of the region. On February 23, 1995, Republic Act 7901, an act creating the Caraga Administrative Region was signed into law by former President Fidel V. Ramos.

Plaza is the author of RA 7901 which touted her as the “Mother of Caraga Region”. (PIA-Caraga)


NPA burns down several mining equipment

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Feb. 23 –- Two dump trucks, two backhoes and a Hilux pick-up owned by Eagles Equipment Incorporated a sub contractor of the PhilPost Mining Company based in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental were burned down at Sitio Opis, Barangay Namnam, San Fernando, Bukidnon last Tuesday morning, February 22, 2011.

More or less 30 unidentified armed men believed to be members of the New People’s Army headed by certain Ka Jigger and Ka Raya flagged the vehicle convoy just 500 meters within the mining area. The armed men poured more than 4 liters of gasoline into the vehicles then torched them down while simultaneously firing there firearms into the air. 

It was learned that the workers of the mining company were released by the said rebels and told them that this would have not happened if the company cooperated, “Gahi ang ulo sa inyong Agalon (your boss is hard headed)”.

The 4th Infantry “Diamond” Division, Philippine Army issued a statement condemning the recent NPA terrorist attack on the private company.

Major General Victor A. Felix, Commander of the 4th ID denounced the terrorist action and issued a direct order to exert all efforts together with the Philippine National Police (PNP) in pursuit of the armed group. 

“Such acts of violence and terrorism will not be tolerated. These coward acts of violence against our communities must have to stop and we must put an end to it otherwise more people will suffer,” Felix said.

According to Maj. Eugenio Julio C. Osias IV, Spokesperson of 4ID and Commanding Officer of 4th Civil-Military Operations (Masaligan) Battalion said that this recent incident is yet another sign of desperation. 

“The NPA is losing essential support from the populace and they are having a hard time securing funds from the revolutionary tax. Reports revealed that the company was asked to pay the so called revolutionary tax, but declined to do so.” Osias said.

However, despite of the recent act of terrorism the 4th Infantry Division remains supportive in the ongoing peace talks between the government and the CPP/NPA/NDF. 

“The violent incident will not hamper the Army’s support for the peace talks in our continuing commitment in building peace and development into our communities,” Maj. Osias said. (4ID/PA/PIA-Caraga)


Reg’l Police disbands ‘Task Force Sabatin’

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 23 --Police Regional Office 13 have already disbanded the task force which was tasked on the oversight of the operations for the safe and early release of a PNP member who was taken hostage by NPA guerillas, a day after his successful release and turn over noontime, Saturday.

“Task Force Sabatin’ was already disbanded” said Police Senior Supt. Isagani Genabe, Jr. the task force chief and the ground commander in charge of the operations, in an interview at his office this morning.

The official said that they had accomplished their mission after the successful release and turn over of PO3 George Sabatin, a member of the Agusan del Sur Public Safety Service Company, detailed at the composite anti-illegal logging monitoring outpost of the local government of the province, located at Brgy. Pulang Lupa, Trento, Agusan del Sur.

He was released by the group of NPA guerillas at the hinterlands of Brgy. Salvacion, Trento, Agusan del Sur; after holding him captive for 18-days. He was seized and taken along by the more or less 50 armed raiders as they made their escape after attacking the outpost manned by Sabatin and company, early morning of February 1. The attack was done at the height of the massive floods and weather disturbance brought about by the heavy and incessant rains which hit the region that time. Another policeman was wounded and two civilians were killed during the raid.

Genabe said that successful negotiations initiated by the provincial crisis management committee headed by the governor, and the local government of Trento was also aided by the various sectors of the community, particularly the church which had resulted to the safe release of Sabatin. The government forces comprising the police and the military of course were there, he said, to secure and contain the area.

Sabatin was released by his abductors to the custody of the provincial crisis management committee represented by Agusan del Sur Vice Gov. Sante Cane and Agusan del Sur PSWD chief Josefina Bajade. The party who received Sabatin turned him over to the representatives of the regional crisis committee led by PRO 13 Deputy Regional Director for Operations (DRDO) SSupt. Genabe, who acted also as the ground commander of the operations for the release of the abducted police officer.

The regional crisis committee then brought Sabatin to Butuan City, after a mini conference held at the Trento Municipal Police Station attended by provincial officials led by Agusan del Sur Gov. Adolph Edward Plaza and some members of national and local media.

Sabatin was then admitted at Butuan Doctor’s Hospital and may be made to stay at the PNP regional headquarters for sometime for stress debriefing, Genabe said. He is scheduled to be presented in a press conference at the conference room of the regional PNP headquarters at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday.

The task force components according to Col. Genabe were returned back to their respective mother units.
(Noel B. Najarro/PIA Caraga)


420 sanitary toilets installed by the Provincial Health Office in 2010

By: David M. Suyao

AGUSAN DEL SUR
--The Provincial Health Office (PHO) has installed 420 sanitary toilets ending December 31, 2010 in all the 14 municipalities of Agusan del Sur to ensure that one of the eight point program of government of Gov. Adolph Edward Plaza be realized.

According to Provincial Health Officer Dr. Joel Esparagoza, the governor has ordered the intensification of the program in order to prevent diseases caused by unsanitary practices especially of people living in remote areas.

According to record of the PHO, 30 sanitary toilets were installed in every municipality as models for the year 2010. For this year, another barangays will be identified depending upon the budget set aside for the program.

“The provincial government has given weight to this program because we want to educate our people living in the remote areas especially those living beside and near the rivers, the ways of sanitary living. Before, people do not have sanitary toilets and instead use the rivers as their toilets. This practice is very unsanitary because as we all know, most of the municipalities in the province are positive with the disease called schistosomiasis. This disease are water-borne, and one of the ways to acquire the disease is the unsanitary way of disposing our wastes,” Nanette Cabanos, Chief of the technical department said.

Cabanos added that while Agusan del Sur is a flood prone province, the acquisition of every household of a sanitary toilet is very important.

“During the floods, we cannot evade from being soaked with flood water specially those living in low-laying areas. If we do not have sanitary toilets, we cannot also evade from acquiring diseases because of our unsanitary ways of living. For these past two months, the D.O. Plaza Hospital is always full of patients especially children suffering from loose bowel movement and vomiting, to fever and flu. This is because of the dirty flood water. Much more if we do not have sanitary toilets,” Cabanos added.

According to Nanette Cabanos, they are prioritizing another water sanitation project which is the spring development in order to ensure the source of safe drinking water. (PIA-Caraga)


NAPOLCOM Caraga chief bares benefits of policemen

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 23 -- Atty. Remeneo Valenzuela, Caraga National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM) Officer In-charge bared before officers and the rank and file of the Police Regional Office 13 , Napolcoms benefits extended to policemen.

He said that the commission will allot pension to the surviving families of the police personnel who died in the line of duty. The pension he said is equivalent to 80% of the policeman’s salary, and will be received by the surviving family per month for five years. The pension, he said, will be given without taking anything from the police personnel’s present salary or benefits. 

There is also the so-called 3-months funeral benefit (which is also equivalent to the 80 % of the salary) of a police personnel who have died in the performance of his duty, according to the official.

Furthermore, Valenzuela also said, that a police personnel who have become invalid may avail of the so-called Permanent Total Disability (PTD), a lifetime pension which also is equivalent to the 80% of the policeman’s present salary. 

A scholarship grant to all the legitimate children of the police personnel who have died in the performance of their duty is also among the benefits. There were efforts being done at present to also include even the illegitimate children the same privilege. However, the issue according to him, is still presently under debate. 

Valenzuela also pointed out that having assumed his present assignment not too long ago, he is recently going around to visit police stations and offices in order to observe if the policies and the issuances of the commission have been enacted and implemented. Among the recent issuances of the commission according to him is for those police personnel who either may opt for a compulsory or an optional retirement may be consigned to 3-months non duty status.

He also shared his vision for the country's police force to be a strong and professional police force at par with the other world-renowned police forces

Valenzuela was invited as the guest of honor and speaker of Region 13 police office during their regular Monday flag-raising at Camp Rafael C. Rodriguez, Brgy. Libertad, this city. (Noel B. Najarro/PIA-Caraga)


PDEA-13 to open satellite office in Surigao City

SURIGAO CITY, Feb. 23 (PIA) – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-13) is set to establish a drug enforcement extension office this city.

According to PDEA-13 Officer-in-charge Regional Director Joel Plaza, it will open on the first week of March, this year. 

The said office will be located at the 2nd level of the Surigao Integrated Bus and Jeepney Terminal, Barangay Luna, this city. “I have talked to City Mayor Ernesto Matugas and he offered to us the vacant space at the terminal building.”

“We hope to fast-track the opening of the office purposely to be able to be of reach immediately in resolving illegal drug problems in the entire province,” Plaza added. (FEAbkilan, PIA-Surigao del Norte)

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Surigao Norte mulls establishment of peace village for rebel returnees

SURIGAO DEL NORTE, Feb. 23 (PIA) – The provincial government here thru the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) is mulling the establishment of a peace village for the former rebels (FR) to help them assimilate and live normally in the mainstream of society.

In the recently held PPOC meeting, Provincial Human Resources Management and Development (HRMD) Head Ramon Gotinga, said the proposal aims to encourage rebels to come down and live harmoniously with the community. “A village where peace and harmony prevails, where people help and respect each other practicing bayanihan in all communal works.”

As suggested, the council chaired by Gov. Sol Matugas will spearhead the program thru the office of the HRMD, Barangay Development Office and Department of the Interior and Local Government as facilitators. 

Gov. Matugas said that she has already identified a suitable land with enough space where houses will be located. 

“It is in barangay Ipil, Surigao City. We have our nine (9) hectares lot there. I am thinking of providing them may be two (2) hectares to resettle our rebel returnees.”

Matugas added that the beneficiaries will be provided with employment and livelihood opportunities for their sustenance. “The program will have an employment and livelihood component. It is actually a self-contained community.”

The children (if there are any) will also be enrolled as scholars in the province. 

Thereafter, they will be facilitated to be employed in any industries within the province. 

According to Gov. Matugas, the proposed program will be a multi-stakeholders undertaking with the national and local governments, business and non-government organizations. (FEAbkilan, PIA-Surigao del Norte)


Feature: BCWD’s Breakwater newsletter remains on top

BUTUAN CITY, Feb. 23 - Breakwater, the official publication of Butuan City Water District (BCWD) remained as one of the Top 3 publications of water districts in the country. 

It was placed second in the 2010 PAWD Best Publication Award during the Awards Night of the 32nd PAWD National Convention held recently at the Grand Men Seng Hotel in Davao City.

For four consecutive years, Breakwater made a mark as one of the best publications produced by the various water districts. It was adjudged 2nd Best Magazine in the 2007 PAWD Best Publication Award; 1st in 2008; 3rd in 2009; and 2nd in 2010.

Breakwater has been in circulation for twelve years now. It has been bringing to the BCWD’s various publics the latest developments in the water sector, updates in the water district operation, watershed and environmental concerns, and information related to water supply services. 

It was learned that since its maiden issue, Breakwater has been adhering to the highest ethical and quality standards of print media production and focusing its editorial policy toward the attainment of BCWD’s goals and objectives. These made itself as an effective information and communication tool to promote the water district concept to various publics.

The PAWD Best Publication Award is an annual national search of the Philippine Association of Water Districts (PAWD) for the best water districts’ publications. This award encourages more water districts to produce their own publication and recognize the effort of those water districts that are already producing their publication. Moreover, this award aims to elevate the publications of the water districts to the highest quality and standard of print media production. 

It has two categories – Magazine and Newsletter. Entries for both categories were judged according to relevance, content, style, form and originality. 

Three credible personalities in the fields of mass communications, journalism and education evaluated the entries. 

Judges were Dr. Ronald M. Henson, who has written five books in various aspects of mass media communication and spent more than 25 years managing information; Dr. Robert F. Soriano, dean of the College of Communication – Polytechnic University of the Philippines, editor of CoC publications and writer of seven books in mass communication; and Ms. Flor T. Parungao, professor of Lyceum of the Philippines University and graphic and multi-media artist. (PIA-Caraga with data from BCWD)


Army holds medical mission in Surigao

SURIGAO CITY, Feb. 23
-- The Army’s 4th Infantry “Diamond” Division, through the efforts of the 402nd Infantry Brigade, under Col Rodrigo T Diapana with the Local Government Unit (LGU) successfully concluded the Medical and Dental Civic Action Program (MEDCAP) and Grand Pulong-Pulong with the theme of “KALUSUGAN MO, AALAGAN KO PARA SA KALUSUGAN MO,” last Tuesday in Surigao City. 

According to Maj Osias the activity is part of the 4th Infantry Division Commander Major General Victor A. Felix’ mandate in reaching out to the people in the community and in working hand in hand with different LGU’s and sectors in the community. 

“We are spearheading this activity to help facilitate in bringing essential health services to the populace. This is just a part of the Army’s commitment in our efforts in reaching out and working hand in hand with the people in order to achieve peace and stability and bring in much needed development to our communities,” Osias said. 

The Diamond troopers together with the Barangay Council of Barangay, Mabua, Surigao City initiated the activity which benefited 283 for consultation, 278 for tooth extraction, 39 for circumcisions and 65 for free haircut. The activity was supported by of the 30th IB under LtCol Erwin Rommel P Lamzon, and 42nd Civil-Military Operations (CMO) (Panaghiusa) Company of the 4th CMO Battalion under Maj Eugenio Julio C Osias IV 4ID Spokesperson, with the Medical and Dental Teams of different local agencies, and sponsors. 

The grand “pulong-pulong” was attended by different local agencies; Dir. Martianiano Yandra of Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatics Resources (BFAR), Cherryl C. Visenio Administrative Officer CARAGA of National Housing Authority (NHA), Mr. Zenro Valbares of Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Dir. Lyndel Nobles of Department of Agrarian (DAR), and other representatives of the Philippine National Police (PNP). (4th Infantry (Diamond) Division, Philippine Army/PIA-Caraga)


Cebuano News: ‘Investment Plan’ gookehan sa SB

BUTUAN CITY, Peb. 23 --Pinaagi sa Proposed Municipal Resolution No. 021-2011, giaprobahan sa Sangguniang Bayan (SB) atol sa sesyon regular dili palang dogay ang Annual Investment Plan (AIP) sa lungsod alang ning tuig 2011. Kini ubos sa pagpangamahan ni konsehal Edgardo R. Gerona.

Ang AIP naglatid sa tanang mga programa sa LGU nga pundohan sa panudlang municipal, probinsiyal, nasyonal ug sa mga pribadong institusyon. Mando ni sa Local Government Code. (Buena Monitor-Agusan del Norte/PIA-Caraga)


Cebuano News: VMLP Caraga miawhag tukuron DENR council

BUTUAN CITY, Peb. 23
--Nagpalabang ang Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines (VLMP), Regional Board og resolusyon nga nag-awhag sa tanang mga bise mayor sa Caraga nga tukuron ang Environment and Natural Resources Council (ENRC) sa ilang tagsa-tagsa ka mga LGU.

Kini napahitabo atol sa VLMP regional officers’ meeting kaniadtong Pebrero 16 didto sa Goat2geder Hotel, Butuan City.


Ang Katukoran sa ENRC sa tanang mga lungsod ug dakbayan sa nasod gimando sa DENR Department Administrative Order (DAO) No. 30, Series of 1992.

Sumala sa maong DAO and bise mayor maoy chairman sa ENRC. Kini motan-aw sa implementasyon sa mga programa sa DENR. (Buena Monitor-Agusan del Norte/PIA-Caraga)