Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Surigao City health office hastens control of measles cases

By Venus L. Garcia

SURIGAO CITY, May 6 (PIA) – This city’s Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council has formulated on Sunday an Incident Command System (ICS) for measles outbreak in response to the confirmed increasing number of individuals, mostly children, who are infected by highly-contageous measles.

The ICS for measles outbreak has two operation centers (OpCen) stationed at Luneta Kiosk and Nueva Gym. Each OpCen composed of physician, nurses, vaccinators, sanitary inspectors, safety personnel, information and admitting personnel, medtech, nutritionist, and barangay health workers (BHW) has operationalized with open access to free medical consultation and screenings.

The members of ICS for measles outbreak convened on Monday morning for a special briefing on its second day operation. They were ensuring an appropriate support for medical services and for communication by providing handheld radios to keep the members on the loop, relayed city information officer Annette Villaces.

As of May 5, 2014, a total of 133 cases of measles have been recorded at the Incident Command Post.

Meanwhile, in a meeting presided by city health officer and incident commander Dr. Emmanuel Plandano, observations and recommendations were discussed and addressed.

Accordingly, measles vaccines were made available in barangays to protect the community from acquiring this potentially serious viral disease and to eventually prevent its spread.

Surigao City has zero case of measles in previous year. The city government however is currently conducting a massive vaccination to all suspected patients. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)


57 individuals finish incident command system in Surigao City

By Susil D. Ragas

SURIGAO CITY, May 6 (PIA) – Fifty seven individuals have successfully completed the Incident Command System (ICS) Basic Course Training Workshop conducted on April 28 to 30, 2014 at the City Cultural Center, this city.

The said participants who successfully completed the ICS basic course are the members of the City DRRMC, Barangay DRRMC chairpersons and city department heads. They will be constituted as the core member of the soon to be organized Incident Management Team (IMT).

City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council chair and City Mayor Ernesto T. Matugas, in his message delivered by CDRRM Officer Atty. Manuel G. Coro commended the patience and efforts of all the participants for staying and surviving the very tough and rigid seminar, he also commended the effort of the very competitive and knowledgeable resource speakers for sharing their knowledge and skills.

“May I remind all of you who have successfully completed the ICS basic course that you are now the city government’s frontline responders of any incidents, calamities, and other adversities, and please always bear in mind that safety and protection of our constituents will always be our number one priority,” Matugas said.

The three-day ICS training workshop was spearheaded by the city government of Surigao through the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council in cooperation with the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) Caraga Region. (SDR/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


Palarong Pambansa 2014 kicks off in Laguna

By Nida Grace P. Barcena

LAGUNA, May 6, 2014 (PIA) – The 2014 Palarong Pambansa also known as "2014 Palaro" joined by around 11,200 student-athletes from 17 regions throughout the country formally kicked-off Monday held at the Laguna Sports Complex, Barangay Bubukal, Sta Cruz, this province.

This year’s event is anchored on the theme, "Sports is a way of Life." The athlete-students will compete from 17 sports events plus three demonstration sports.

It was learned that Caraga Region has 635 delegates composed of technical officials and student-athletes with Department of Education (DepEd) Caraga regional director Alberto Escobarte leading the region's delegation.

The event was made momentous by the participation of those who were affected by typhoon Yolanda.

“We have survived. Thank you for your help,” said the banners carried by student-athletes, together with their coaches and other school officials during the opening parade.

Now on its 57th year, the Palarong Pambansa is an annual event showcasing and promoting sportsmanship of Filipino athlete-students.

Meanwhile, swimmer and actor Enchong Dee, Olympian figure skater Michael Martinez, and basketball players Jeron and Jeric Teng led the torch relay during the grand opening ceremonies. (NGBT/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


SurSur Health Office keen on promoting healthy lifestyle, 100% smoke-free environment; launches campaign

By Greg Tataro, Jr.

SURIGAO DEL SUR, May 6 (PIA) – The Provincial Health Office (PHO) here formally launched on Monday the “Healthy Lifestyle and 100% Smoke-free Environment” campaign at the Capitol lobby during the flag ceremony program.

PHO chief Dr. Algerico Irizari linked their initiative to the Department of Health (DOH) Red Orchid Awards Program and other international and domestic endeavors that aim to do away with unhealthy manner of living particularly cigarette smoking, citing important issuances, republic acts (RAs), administrative orders (AOs), and Civil Service Commission (CSC) memorandum circulars (MCs) that seek to promote such program.

Beforehand, he raised the 10 leading causes of mortality in Surigao del Sur that are said to be ill-effects of unhealthy lifestyle and smoking by pointing out,  in particular order,  pneumonia, cardiovascular diseases (CVD), cardiovascular accident (CVA), cancer (all types), hypertension, diabetes mellitus, pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), renal failure, and accidents (vehicular).

Quoting a campaign slogan, Dr. Irizari stressed that such maladies are preventable since “a healthy lifestyle is a choice!” (NGBT/Radyo ng Bayan/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


PAT members conduct Search for Best Performing Barangay

By Brian Jay Ceballos

BUTUAN CITY, May 6 (PIA) - The Agusan del Norte Provincial Assessment Team (PAT) which comprises of personnel from the PNP – Agusan del Norte, DepEd, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the provincial government of Agusan del Norte recently started the search for Best Performing Barangay 2014 in the province last May 5.

The regular implementation of the Search for the Best Performing Barangay is an effective program for the realization of the provincial government’s thrust in empowering the barangay units with the end in view of Accelerating to New dimension in Good governance and Excellence in Local leadership.

Currently, the province is composed of ten municipalities and a component city, with a total of 167 barangays all over.

The mayors from all municipalities/city were advised to submit one nominee barangay for Rural Category and one nominee barangay for Urban Category. Each nominee for each category will be the official entry which will compete for the first, second and third place.

The criteria for this years search is - 30% for the Executive/Administration/Legislative Function, 40% for the Environmental Protection/Clean and Green, 15% for the Resourcefulness/Initiative in Programs, Project, Activities (PPA) Implementation and 15% for Community Mobilization.

The adjudged Best Barangay for this year will be awarded with recognition and cash incentives and will be proclaimed come June 2014 in the province’s upcoming founding anniversary. (LGU-Agusan del Norte/PIA-Agusan del Norte)


TESDA launches Specialista Desk

By Gervacio C. Dauz, Jr.

BUTUAN CITY, May 6 (PIA) – The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Caraga Region recently launched the TESDA Specialista Reception Desk on May 1, 2014 at the Lingkod Pinoy Center of the Robinsons Place here in synch with the Labor Day celebration.

The launching cum opening program was witnessed and attended by City Councilor and Committee Chair for Labor and Employees Welfare Ferdinand Nalcot, Regional Consultative Committee members under the banner of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and other guests.

TESDA Agusan del Norte provincial director Rodrigo G. de Villa believed that the extension office will definitely keep TESDA’s services closer to the people and will enhance the image of the office.

On the other hand, TESDA Caraga regional director Florencio F. Sunico, Jr. added that with the opening of the reception desk, “We are therefore scaling up our services in order to serve the public better.” Definitely enthused, he remarked: “What a fitting way to celebrate Labor Day!”

He also announced that they will be conducting free training on Barista NC II exclusively for members of the RCC and some city officials courtesy of TESDA Agusan del Norte.

Further, Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Caraga regional director Atty. Johnson G. Cañete believed that the launching itself is part and parcel of the overall activity for the Labor Day celebration, wherein the major part of the celebration is the Jobs Fair activity being held at the Atrium Activity Center of Robinsons Place here.

Nalcot welcomed the launching activity as it will be a good venue for advocacy and information drive under his committee.  He requested that a bulletin board will be put in place at the TESDA Specialista Reception Desk where job vacancies coming from the Public Employment Service Office of the city government will be posted.  In addition, he made mention that the city council has already proposed an ordinance guaranteeing a free movie entry, but every Monday only, for senior citizens.

Denver Bandiala, Robinsons Place representative, welcomed the development, saying that “our world class mall even opened up in advance at 8:00am” if only to accommodate the influx of job applicants seeking for employment here and abroad.  He likewise shared that “our venue aims to be a one-stop shop mall” and it is for said reason that “we welcome even government offices to be here with us” at the Lingkod Pinoy Center. 

Meanwhile, TESDA had likewise spearheaded the conduct of free massage and beauty care, particularly manicure, pedicure, and facial massage, in collaboration with the Butuan City Manpower Training Center of the city government here and the Agusan del Sur School of Arts and Trades.  Clients who availed of free services for beauty care and massage were 37 and 85 respectively based on the tally.  

As for the Jobs Fair spearheaded by DOLE in collaboration with 22 local and 12 overseas recruitment agencies, it was learned that at least 1,700 prospecting applicants were able to register their intention to look for jobs, with at least 198 applicants hired on the spot, nine of which were accepted for foreign jobs, with the remaining 1,007 applicants still to undergo additional screening for exam and final interview.

Earlier, during the Labor Day opening ceremony at the Atrium Activity Center, Regional Director Cañete, in behalf of the DOLE Caraga Region, released a total of P4,046,196.85 as livelihood assistance for five registered organizations, while the remaining P415,836.85 of the total amount was earmarked for the Nego-Karts as starter kits for identified peddlers in Butuan City.  He likewise awarded Certificates of Compliance and Tripartite Certificate of Compliance to Compliant Companies, including the recognition of DOLE partners.

National Conciliation and Mediation Board (NCMB) Caraga officer-in-charge Atty. Ligaya R. Lumbay, recognized her agency’s partners, likewise with TESDA Caraga Regional Director Sunico who gave a fitting recognition to winners of the recent 2014 Philippine National Skills Competition held in Luzon. (TESDA-Agusan del Norte/PIA-Agusan del Norte)


DOST-ICT to hold series of Rural Impact Sourcing Workshops

MANILA, May 6 (PIA) - The Department of Science and Technology (DOST), through the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICT Office), will be holding a series of Rural Impact Sourcing Workshops beginning this May to November. The first leg of the workshops will kick off on May 30, 2014, in Daet, Camarines Norte.

Carrying the theme “Digital Employment through Rural BPO for Inclusive Growth,” Rural Impact Sourcing is considered as outsourcing which focuses on providing meaningful jobs and other related opportunities in socio-economically disadvantaged areas, mostly rural areas of the country where there is high population but low employment due to lack of investors. Formerly known as “Socially Responsible Outsourcing,” Rural Impact Sourcing looks to generate economic and social impacts in these mentioned areas. Through the use of ICT, the program pushes forth the access to digital markets and Rural BPO’s as tools for job creation.

The Rural Impact Sourcing is part of a thrust by the ICT Office to contribute to the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016’s pursuit of inclusive growth. The program supports Philippine government’s commitment to produce 1.3 million traditional IT-BPM jobs by 2016. According to Accenture’s “Exploring the Value Proposition of Impact Sourcing,” the global Business Process and Technology Outsourcing sector will grow to $674 billion by 2016 and Impact Sourcing is predicted to make up 11% of the BPO market in 2016.

As the Philippines have seen rapid growth and development of the IT-BPM industry in the last few years, it is in correlation that the industry has also become the country’s top career provider. With all the country’s growth and development however, there continues to be a growing disparity in opportunities between the country’s top cities and the untapped rural areas. Taking this in consideration, the Rural Impact Sourcing Program focuses to deliver these opportunities and take advantage of its human resources not just in the country’s known key cities but to its untapped rural areas as well.

The Rural Impact Sourcing takes on the challenge to train and develop its supply of potential Impact Sourcing workforces to ensure constant quality for the service that they can provide. On the other hand, it is also geared up to generate the demand for more outsourcing companies by striving to create an ecosystem within the prospect area that would provide benefits to such companies. DOST - ICT Office’s Executive Director Louis Napoleon Casambre states “The ICT Office continues to build on its efforts broadening the impact that the ICT industry presents. Rural Impact Sourcing presents to investors the benefits of having their operations in these strategic areas.” He adds, “This would generate more opportunities in these areas. Not only would it increase employment, it would also mean that the people from these areas no longer need to relocate to get employed. Instead, Rural Impact Sourcing brings the jobs directly to them.”

The workshops are set to be held in Daet, Koronadal, Kalibo, Surigao, and Calbayog. These workshops aim to boost awareness in these areas and provide the people knowledge on Rural Impact Sourcing. The first part of the Rural Impact Sourcing workshop in Daet will feature career talks from Presidents and CEOs of Impact Sourcing Providers namely Bert Barriga of Digisource Inc., Butch Valenzuela of VisayaKPO, and Jorge Azurin of Freelancer.ph. The second part will be a half-day workshop led by Online Job University’s founder, Genisis Reonico. The workshop will consist of topics such as general tools and applications to get you started with the skill sets to be offered and developed. (DOST/PIA-Caraga)


Philippines: Six months after Typhoon Haiyan, major long-term recovery needs remain

MANILA, May 6 (PIA) – Six months after Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) devastated the Visayas region, millions remain in a precarious situation. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, one of the few organisations to deliver humanitarian assistance across all affected islands, has now launched an ambitious plan geared towards supporting the long-term recovery of survivors.

Around 16 million people were affected by Typhoon Haiyan, with thousands losing family members, homes and incomes. While the greatest intensity of need is in the eastern Visayas, people in other more remote areas also need help. The Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement recovery plan pledges to help 775,000 of the most vulnerable people to recover and improve their resilience to future disasters.

“Affected communities have shown remarkable strength and many are on the road to recovery. However, high levels of pre-existing poverty are holding people back and in some areas basic services have not been re-established”, says Richard Gordon, chairman of the Philippine Red Cross. “Our recovery work will focus on restoring shelter, livelihoods and access to health care, to help affected communities overcome the hardships of the past six months and become self-reliant again.”

Since the disaster struck, the Philippine Red Cross, together with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and over 50 national societies from around the world have between them distributed emergency relief, including food, shelter items and cash, to more than one million people. Thousands more received medical attention from Red Cross emergency facilities.

“We are very proud of the solidarity and good cooperation the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has demonstrated, mobilising quickly and effectively to respond after Haiyan,” says Gwendolyn Pang, secretary general of Philippine Red Cross, adding “Our most unique asset is our volunteer base. Over 8,000 Red Cross volunteers have been at the forefront of the emergency response, alongside the hundreds of international and national staff deployed to the affected area.”

The recovery plan, amounting to 320 million Swiss Francs will run over the next three years. As well as helping survivors to rebuild their lives, it will enhance the Philippine Red Cross’ capacity to respond to future disasters through targeted skills training for volunteers and strengthening expertise in disaster management and disaster risk reduction.

Meanwhile, work to rebuild damaged health care facilities and water networks in affected areas is well under way, as are livelihood support programs delivering cash grants, training and asset replacement.

In the aftermath of the disaster, the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement distributed cash grants to 75,000 households and met 25 percent of the emergency shelter needs of survivors, providing tents, tarpaulins and other materials to almost 140,000 households. Support has already begun to roll out to help families build more durable homes, together with projects involving the construction of shelters.

Typhoon Haiyan Emergency appeals launched by the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement have collectively raised 315 million Swiss Francs (USD 357 million) so far. (PRC/PIA-Caraga)


LGU SurSur bares MOA with Tandag Water District

By Greg Tataro, Jr.

TANDAG CITY, May 6 (PIA) – Due to the growing concern of water supply shortage in the city, the provincial government of Surigao del Sur and Tandag Water District (TWD) have mutually agreed to enter into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) during the latter part of the first quarter of this year, 2014, effective immediately.

Edgar Valentin, Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) confirmed that both parties have come up with specific commitments that will bind them to get their acts together for the conservation, protection, and rehabilitation of the denuded portion of the 786 hectare-Ihawan Spring Watershed located in Barangay Awasian.

Reportedly, the said watershed area, which is made up of 433 hectares of open access public forest as well as 353 hectares of Alienable and Disposable (A & D) lands, is the main water supply source of TWD.

According to the MOA that was signed by Governor Johnny Pimentel and General Manager (GM) Engr. Ruben Elpa as major party-representatives of both camps, the said LGU and water utility shall have the obligation to honor their respective commitments as partners in executing the same to attain their objectives, including matters relevant to reforestation and agro-forestry program. 

Over a month ago, TWD Board of Director (BOD) Annie Ty admitted before a meeting of the Provincial Micro- Small and Medium Enterprise Development (PMSMED) Council which she co-chairs with Gov. Pimentel that said water utility is faced with the problem of dwindling water supply.

Ty also bared the prospect of going into Tago, a neighboring town, just seven kilometers down south, to make a “tie-up” with the LGU, which she described as rich in water resources. (NGBT/Radyo ng Bayan/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


4th Balangay Football Festival set

BUTUAN CITY, May 6 (PIA) - As part of the city’s month-long celebration of the Balangay Festival, the 4th Balangay Football Festival is set to be held on May 24-25, 2014 at the Butuan City Sports Complex in Brgy. Libertad, said Agusan del Norte First District Representative Lawrence “Law” Fortun who is also the President of the host Butuan-Agusan Norte Football Association (BANFA).

Fortun said this year’s football festival promises to be bigger compared to the previous holding as it has gained prestige and popularity in the football community.

“We are expecting at least 100 teams coming from all over Mindanao and hopefully from the Visayas who will participate in the 2-day festival,” added Fortun.

He also revealed that with the number of players that will be coming over for the tournament, this will be a boost to the effort of the city government to promote tourism in the city as they will also get to witness the celebration of the Balangay Festival.

The football festival will feature categories in consonance with the grassroots development thrust of the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) for which the festival is sanctioned, namely: under 6 years old (mix), under 8 years old (mix), under 10 years old (mix), under 12 years old (mix), under 14 years old (boys), under 16 years old (boys and girls), men’s and women’s open, and 35 years old and above. (LAWig/PIA-Agusan del Norte)


Tagalog News: Dating Senador Francis Pangilinan itinalagang bagong gabinete, nakatakdang manumpa sa harap ni Pangulong Aquino bukas

Ni David M. Suyao

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Mayo 6 (PIA) - Itinalaga ni Pangulong Benigno S. Aquino III noong Lunes si dating Senador Francis Pangilinan bilang Presidential Assistant for Food Security and Agricultural Modernization, sabi ng Malakanyang.

Ang posisyon ni Pangilinan ay nasa rango ng gabinite at siya ay nakatakdang manumpa ng kanyang katungkulan sa harap ng Pangulo sa Music Room ng Palasyo sa hapon ng araw na ito.

Ito ay inanunsiyo ni Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. para kompirmahin ang ulat na lumutang noong katapusan ng nakaraang linggo tungkol sa bagay na ito.

Sabi ni Coloma, ang katungkulan ni Pangilinan ay kapareho ng kay dating Senador at ngayon ay Presidential Adviser on Rehabilitation and Recovery Panfilo Lacson, “kaya siya ay hahawak din ng titulong Secretary.”

Mula noong nakaraang taon, bukas si Pangulong Aquino sa kanyang plano na kunin si Pangilinan sa kanyang gabinite kasunod ng kanyang 12 na taong paninilbihan sa Senado ng Pilipinas.

“Si Kiko sa partikular ay may maraming aspeto ng sektor ng Agrikultura na gusto niyang tutukan. Isa siyang kasama sa partido. Naitalakay na niya ang kanyang mga ideya kay Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala at gusto niyang subukan ang kanyang pagkasangkot para sa benepisyo ng sector ng Agrikultura,” sinabi ito ni Pangulong Aquino noong kapanayamin niya ang media noong Marso, 2013. (DMS/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


Tagalog News: Nasa ERB na ang pagpasya na tumingin sa dividend-sharing ayon sa ulat ng Meralco, sabi ng Palasyo

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Mayo 6 (PIA) - Sinabi ng Malakanyang noong Lunes na ipinaubaya na sa Energy Regulatory Board (ERB) ang pagtingin sa ulat na pinamahagi ng Manila Electric Company (Meralco) ang P7.3 bilyon na halaga ng dividends sa kanyang mga kasosyo.

“Parte ng tungkulin ng ERC ay kilalanin ang katiyakan ng paggastos sa ginawang pamamahagi ng may kapangyarihan tanggapan kagaya ng Meralco,” sabi ni Presidential Communication Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr., sa kanyang pakipanayam sa media.

"Inatasan din ang PRC na siyang magpasya kung makatuwiran ang bayarin sa koryente at ang pagsaayos ng singil nito,” dagdag nito.

Alam niya na ang pamahalaan ay determinandong ipagtanggol ang kapakanan ng mga mamamayan at segurohing ang singil ng koryente ay nabalanse ng mabuti para hindi magiging pabigat sa mga tao.

Ang napaulat na dividend-sharing ay dumating sa panahong inanunsiyo ng Meralco ang planong magpatupad ng mataas na singil sa koryente.

Ayon sa ulat, ang Meralco ay naghahanap na itaas angsingil ng koryente sa buwang ito ng masmababa sa P1 hanggang sa P1.72 per kilowatt-hour (kWh). (DMS/PIA-Agusan del Sur)