(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Wednesday, 22 May 2024) Easterlies affecting the country. 𝗙𝗒π—₯π—˜π—–π—”π—¦π—§ π—ͺπ—˜π—”π—§π—›π—˜π—₯ π—–π—’π—‘π——π—œπ—§π—œπ—’π—‘: Butuan City, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms due to Easterlies. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. 𝗙𝗒π—₯π—˜π—–π—”π—¦π—§ π—ͺπ—œπ—‘π—— 𝗔𝗑𝗗 π—–π—’π—”π—¦π—§π—”π—Ÿ π—ͺπ—”π—§π—˜π—₯ π—–π—’π—‘π——π—œπ—§π—œπ—’π—‘: Light to moderate winds coming from East to Northeast will prevail with slight to moderate seas (0.6 to 2.1 meters).

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Mindanao IOs congress set on Nov. 12-14 in Zambo City

By Nora L. Molde

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) – Information Officers from all over the island of Mindanao will gather in Zamboanga City on November 12 to 14, 2014 for the 12th Mindanao Communicators Network, Incorporated (MindaComNet) Congress and Workshop.

Philippine Information Agency Caraga regional director and MindaComNet vice director Abner M. Caga said, the congress is a venue where Mindanao information officers will gather and share ideas for the development of the island.

With the theme “Build Back Better Mindanao”, Caga said, the congress aims to present the reconstruction and implementation of rehabilitation programs of Mindanao typhoon-ravaged and conflict devastated regions using the build-back-better principle and the results of peace and security efforts.

“The congress also aims to provide the participants with crash course on social media as information multiplier,” director Caga said.

During the congress, the progress on peace and security process, specifically the Bangsamoro comprehensive Organic Law, will be discussed by Presidential Assistant on Peace Process Secretary Teresita Q. Deles.

Also, the vice chair and executive director from the Climate Change Office Secretary Mary Ann Lucille L. Sering will provide the participants on the Public Advocacy on Climate Change.

The Power Situation in Mindanao will be discussed by the head of the Investment and Promotion of the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) director Romeo M. Montenegro.

Secretary Sonny Coloma of the Presidential Communications Operations Office will give his keynote address on the first day of the Congress while Director General Jose Mari Oquinena will deliver his inspirational message during the closing ceremony with MinDA chair Luwalhati Antonino as guest speaker.

On the second day of the Congress, Davao Oriental Governor Corazon N. Malanyaon, Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar S. Moreno, and Zamboanga City Mayor Ma. Isabelle Climaco will share their experiences on the Typhoon Pablo, Typhoon Sendong, and the Zamboanga Seige.

MindaComNet is an organization of government public information and relations officers of national government agencies, government-owned and controlled corporations, government financial institutions, state universities and colleges and the local government units in Mindanao. (PIA-Caraga)

AgSur crafts ‘2014 provincial agriculture and agri-fisheries code’

By Jasmin J. Reyes

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Nov. 5 (PIA) - Agusan del Sur is at the height of crafting the 2014 Provincial Agriculture and Fisheries Code (PAFC) believed to enhance the delivery of agriculture and fisheries services and facilities in the province by key players and stakeholders in the agriculture sector.

According to Jessica Unson, Officer-in-Charge of the Provincial Agriculture and Veterinary Office (PAVO), Agusan del Sur, having endowed with vast lands and waters and favorable climatic condition that favors production of crops, animals and fresh water fishes, the provincial government sees to it that programs, projects and activities will put premium on the use of good agricultural practices from production to harvesting and processing of farm products.

“This is towards the attainment of Agusan del Sur’s overarching goal of improving productivity, increase income and sustain livelihood of farmers and fisher folks. The crafting of the 2014 Agriculture and Fisheries Code will also highlight pertinent policies to protect farmer-producers and promote entrepreneurship for their utmost advantage,” Unson said.

The crafting of the PAFC has gained the support of the national government agencies like the Department of Agriculture and its bureaus and agencies, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), the Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority (PhilFIDA), Department of Agrarian Reform and the Philippine Cocunut Authority (PCA) as they play important role in the agricultural development of the province. Each also contributed various development agenda in agriculture and fisheries in the five-day workshop conducted on October 27-31, 2014.

A technical working committee with its secretariat was also created to oversee the work progress and facilitate various activities looking into the processes and requisites for its final legislation. In the next few weeks or month, public hearing will be conducted province-wide so that Agusanons will know and input their concerns.

This significant milestone emanates from the provincial agriculture and fisheries framework and was brought into highlight by Sangguniang Panlalawigan member Edwin Demegillo in collaboration with the PAVO chaired by Jessica Unson. (DMS, PIA-Agusan del Sur/IO-Provincial Agriculture Office)

SurSur stays “cocolisap” infestation-free

By Greg Tataro Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) – The Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) in Surigao del Sur has again declared the province free from “cocolisap” or scale insect infestation.

PCA Provincial Manager George Rasonabe said that after conducting thorough verification on claims of possible “cocolisap” attack on coconut plantations in some areas, all results were nil.

The Sangguniang Panlalawigan headed by Vice-Governor Manuel Alameda, Sr. sought their assistance on the matter.

Meanwhile, Rasonabe stressed that the PCA under his watch has continued to cooperate with all other agencies of government and the private sector in sharing their field of expertise in this regard.

Last month, personnel from PCA have responded to the request of the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPAG) led by its chief, Marcos Quico, “to deliver lecture about the Scale Insects and other pests attacking coconuts” on three separate occasions, Rasonabe said.

During the early part of July, this year, the PCA has already conducted an investigation on alleged “cocolisap infestation,” but found none. (NGBT/Radyo ng Bayan-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)

Development forum tackles economic, livelihood opportunities in Bangsamoro

DAVAO CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) - Economic and livelihood opportunities in the Bangsamoro were underscored during the Philippines Development Forum (PDF), which opened here Wednesday at SM Lanang Premier’s SMX Convention Center.

The forum, which focused on the Bangsamoro, featured a break-out session on the livelihood and economy cluster which discussed economic challenges and opportunities in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Secretary Luwalhati Antonino, chair of the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) said the improving prospects of ARMM’s economy indicate better days for the region.

“Like the rest of Mindanao, ARMM’s economy is growing,” she said while adding “ARMM’s economy grew by 3.6 percent in 2013, an impressive leap from the 1.1 percent in 2012, and the 0.3 percent decline in 2011.”

Antonino, who sat as one of the discussants in the economic and livelihood cluster break-out session said “the forum comes at an interesting, if not exciting times in Mindanao, as we lay down the foundations of just and lasting peace.”

Organized by the Department of Finance (DOF), this year PDF serves as the primary mechanism of the Philippine Government for facilitating substantive policy dialogue among stakeholders on the country’s development agenda.

The event is also designed as a process for developing consensus and in generating commitments among different stakeholders toward critical actionable areas within the Philippine Government’s reform agenda.

“I am more than excited to see that ARMM has improved largely because of significant growth posted by the agriculture, hunting, forestry and fishery (AHFF) sector,” said Antonino.

ARMM’s AHFF sector accounts for 61.3 percent of the region’s growth followed by the services sector with 33.6 percent, and the industry sector at 5.1 percent.

She said the services sector posted the highest growth year-on-year, with financial intermediation sharply increasing by 18.5 percent last year.

“This could only mean increased confidence among investors, improved systems, and better institutions in the ARMM, thereby ushering in investments that will increase infrastructure, provide jobs, and jumpstart the economy towards our goal of long-term inclusive growth,” added Antonino.

Huge investments were secured by the ARMM during the first and third quarters of this year. In the first half of 2013, the region already secured about P2.53 billion worth of projects, 72 percent up from entire investments it clinched in 2013. These investments included renewable energy projects, minerals development, oil palm investments, and import and export trading business ventures.

“Although these developments might not look compelling as compared to the larger goal of economic security in the ARMM, but these in fact emerged out of our conscious effort to slowly, but steadily push the ARMM and the rest of Mindanao back on investment map,” she said.

To promote inclusive growth in the Bangsamoro and the entire Mindanao region, Antonino said that MinDA is facilitating investments that create more job opportunities and spur growth in depressed communities.

“We encourage investments that usher inclusive business, such as agribusiness projects that allow low-income groups to become part of production and supply chain, and enable them to benefit from long-term employment and sustained socio-economic development.”

In September this year, MinDA forged a partnership with the Philippine Business for Social Progress and launched the Mindanao Inclusive Agribusiness Program (MIAP), in line with President Aquino’s pivotal thrust of inclusive growth.

MIAP will adopt the Mindanao Development Corridors program to advance inclusive agribusiness models in the island-region in efforts to reduce poverty and accelerate private sector investments that will increase employment and spur livelihood opportunities in the island-region.

“Several companies are expanding in the ARMM and we look forward to the private sector delivering the engine of inclusive economic growth in the region,” said Antonino.

She added that opportunities for investments in the Bangsamoro are slowly increasing, particularly in agriculture, agribusiness and marine-based industries such as cacao, rubber, oil palm, coconut, banana, fisheries and mariculture production and halal food processing.

“While we are seeing inroads to economic growth, we are far from reaching the level where we should be. We need to prioritize and support programs, projects, and policies that promise optimized and broad-based growth,” stressed Antonino.

This year’s PDF gathered national and local government units, donor agencies, international financial institutions, business chambers, as well as sectoral and interest groups to map out and coordinate socioeconomic development efforts and objectives for the Bangsamoro and the entire island-region of Mindanao.  (MinDA/PIA-Caraga)

DBM team wins 8th Caraga StatQuiz

By Naomi T. Mission

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) - The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) – Caraga team composed of Joseph Michael Lague and Elvin Chatto won the 8th Caraga Inter-Agency/LGU StatQuiz held on October 28, 2014 in one of the convention centers, here.

The team garnered 27 points after three rounds – easy, average and difficult.

The second place was won by the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) – Caraga Team composed of Carlo Dacera and  Roxan Jimenez while Gardel Rey Ambos and Mae Niagara Balanay of the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) – Caraga won the third place.

A total of 19 agencies, local government units (LGUs), state universities and colleges (SUCs) in Caraga joined the contest. Each team is composed of two members. The participants were from: Department of Agriculture, Commission on Higher Education, Social Security System, Philippine Coconut Authority, Department of Public Works and Highways, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Public Attorney’s Office, Agusan del Sur State College of Agriculture and Technology, Department of Education, Surigao del Sur State University, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Surigao State College of Technology, Provincial Government of Surigao del Norte, Department of the Interior and Local Government, Environmental Management Bureau, Department of Science and Technology, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of Budget and Management and City Government of Cabadbaran.

OIC-Assistant Regional Director Jazmin Berido of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Caraga chaired the Board of Judges during the StatQuiz while Rosalinda Celeste-Apura, Interim Regional Director of Philippine Statistical Authority (PSA), and Presa Villarina, Statistician I of  PSA served as members.

The activity was conducted in celebration of the 25th National Statistics Month (NSM) and was spearheaded by  the Regional Development Council – Regional Statistical Coordination Committee (RDC-RSCC).

The questions included Caraga statistics – gross regional domestic product (GRDP), population growth rate and others. The PSA hosted the event. (NEDA-13/PIA-Caraga)

Caraga folks prefer NGP than NPA

By Eric Herson Gallego

LORETO, Agusan del Sur, Nov. 5 (PIA) – This remote river town of Agusan del Sur had been dubbed by the Philippine Army as “hotbed of insurgency” over the past years but that stigma is slowly being expunged by the people’s passion to plant and grow trees through the National Greening Program (NGP) introduced by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in 2011.

“Insurgency has since been a major problem in my town,“ Mayor Dario Otaza of the Loreto town in Agusan del Sur said  during the  8th AFP East Mindanao Command Founding Anniversary held at the Naval Station Felix Apolinario in Panacan, Davao City on August 28, 2014 .

“We thought that violent confrontation against the communist guerillas was the ultimate solution to drive the rebels out of my hometown,” he added.  “But it only required the NGP to solve the problem and sealed the doom of the activities and influence of the New Peoples’ Army (NPA) NPA Guerilla Front 34  under Kumander Boyet Tindugan in Loreto” Mayor Otaza said.

Mayor Otaza thanked the DENR Secretary Ramon J.P Paje and Regional Director of the Caraga Nonito M. Tamayo for their tireless efforts in bringing an effective reforestation program in that town. As a result,  the campaign against the rebels  and illegal logging were made easier when people are occupied and tending their  tree farms  instead of  spending  time hearing  lectures  from the  communist guerillas.  The  Commanding  General of the East Mindanao Command Lt. Gen. Raineer Cruz III  handed a  Plaque of Recognition award to Mayor Otaza  during that anniversary for  the  successful campaign against insurgency .

Mayor Otaza believes the introduction of the NGP was crucial in the anti-insurgency campaign when the DENR implemented  the program through  Executive Order No. 26 signed by President Benigno S. Aquino III on February 2011.  

“When I assumed office as their newly elected town Mayor in 2013 elections, I was able to identify poverty, unemployment and insurgencyas the three major problems that driven most of the residents in illegal logging activities,”  Otaza said in an interview .

“The struggle indeed was hard for a budding local chief executive like me fighting a war in three fronts and poverty was the toughest battle” he said.

But the landscape of Loreto began to change when people started to engage themselves on tree farming program offered by DENR through the NGP.

“Suddenly, the people in almost all the 17 barangays of Loreto became interested in the NGP,“ Mayor Otaza said. “it became a byword in every household,” he added.

There was a time, he said, when the people in Barangay Kauswagan, a mass-base supporters of the NPA were rushing to meet a delivery truck filled with rubber tree seedlings from an NGP contractor so they can grab seedlings for their farm. “I have never seen the people so much interested in planting rubber trees on their farm as that one,” Mayor Otaza said.

“It was a great transformation of that village from NPA to NGP,” he said. 

A kilo of rubber sap commands a price of P44 to P 47 a kilo. Transporting these products to the local market from the farms is being made easier by the construction of a road network initiated by Mayor Otaza in coordination with the Department of Public Works and Highways.

He said that the people in Barangay Kauswagan are” hard core “ supporters of the NPA.   “There were several government programs in the past that could hardly reach the area because the communist guerillas were blocking them. They even held hostage a barangay official at the neighboring village of Sabud in September last year after the NPA attacked a military detachment in the area. The rebels were demanding to hand over  the newly- trained CAFGUs but we stood by our ground and denied them. After all, we are the duly-constituted authorities,” Mayor Otaza said.

CENR Officer Precilio O. Penaloga said Loreto has a total land area of 141,552 hectares of which 80 percent are classified as forest lands or 102,448 hectares.

“Loreto has a vast potential area for tree farm considering the production forest area which sums up to 88, 188 hectares. Most of these areas  were developed into tree farms by eight People’s Organization,“ he said.

Agusan del Sur PENRO Roberto Oliveros said there are 5,853.25 hectares of timber lands that have been developed in Loreto under the NGP since 2011.

About 2,254 hectares of these NGP sites are being maintained by the Peoples Organization (PO) through the Social Mobilization program in Loreto and Veruela.

“Today, after a year of struggle, peace has finally reigned in Loreto. More people are coming out to join the tree planting program under NGP. The farmers in Barangay Kauswagan are now looking forward to a bounty harvest from the rubber tree seedlings which they preferred to plant alongside with the falcata trees. Both trees could earn them several millions of pesos at the time of harvest four years from now,“ Tamayo said. (DENR-13/PIA-Caraga)

PNP chief pushes through with Caraga visit

By Noel B. Najarro

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) - Police Director General Alan LM Purisima, the chief of the Philippine National Police finally pushes through with his visit on Tuesday at Camp Rafael C. Rodriguez, the regional headquarters of Police Regional Office 13, here.

PDGen. Purisima and his party arrived Camp Rodriguez at 10:10 a.m. escorted by outgoing PRO 13 Director CSupt. Dominador E. Aquino, Jr.; and waived the usual arrival honors but instead gave his message to the assembled PRO 13 officers, personnel and non-uniformed personnel who expressed unified support to his leadership headed by the incoming Regional Director PCSupt. David Y. Ombao.

In his 20-minute message before the assembled police rank and file and NUPs at the front of the PRO 13 administration building, the PNP chief commended the Caraga police and NUPs for the warm welcome afforded to him and his party. He discussed on the core of his performance governance system (PGS) which is the individual performance scorecard (IPSC). He emphasized that the police must be a human rights advocate and protector and be a community relations officer as well.

He said that his administration will be firm against the members of the force who may undermine the strength of the PNP ranks by their misdemeanors and abuses, calling them “anay sa hanay” (termites of the PNP pillars). “They’re but few from among our ranks. We will sweep all of them,” he said.

He assures the regional police that the controversies which he is facing at present can be managed by him. “I will face all of them before the Ombudsman. Just focus on your duties and don’t be affected by the negative issues thrown against our ranks. Focus on your jobs and serve and protect the public,” Purisima said.

The PNP chief then officiated the turnover of Command from outgoing PRO 13 Regional Director PCSupt. Dominador E. Aquino to incoming Regional Director PCSupt. David Y. Ombao. Aquino will assume as the new chief of the Directorate for Integrated Police Operations – Eastern Mindanao (DIPO-EM), after nine months and six days of serving Caraga PNP.

The turnover rites was a well-attended one by LGU chiefs headed by Agusan del Norte Governor Ma. Angelica Rosedell Amante-Matba; Agusan del Sur Vice Governor Santiago Cane; Butuan City Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante, Jr.; Esperanza, Agusan del Sur Mayor Deo Manpatilan, Jr.; regional, provincial and municipal advisory councils; AFP counterparts headed by Col. Jonathan Ponce; 402nd Brigade Commander; all the police provincial and city directors; and the chiefs of government line agencies. Former PRO 13 Regional Directors and officials Lino Calingasan, Reynaldo Rafal, Samuel Yordan, Ramon Espiritu and PRO 10 PCsupt. Isagani Genabe were also present.

Purisima in his message commended the more than nine months accomplishments of CSupt. Aquino, citing the safe release of the four abducted police personnel by the CPP-NPA last July, the successful campaign against illegal drugs in coordination with the PDEA 13 where more than P30 million worth of illegal drugs was seized, arrest of wanted persons, campaign against illegal logging, gambling and against insurgency.

The PNP chief promised to provide more issued short firearms for the police personnel, communication and other police equipments and to look into the housing needs of the police ranks and file in the region.

The PNP chief also led the PGS conferment of certificates and awarding of silver eagle award to the municipal police stations, awarding of medals to the PNP personnel responsible for the 12 most significant accomplishments in the region, the dedication of the new PRO 13 Training Center and the Regional Public Safety Battalion Annex Building.

The morning activities were capped by a “Solidarity Boodle Fight” lunch led by PNP chief Purisima himself. (PNA/PIA-Caraga)

153 4Ps beneficiaries attend 'Consumer Education Seminar'

By Rodrigo R. Matabaran

SURIGAO CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) - A total of 153 Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries attended the Consumer Education Seminar conducted recently by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Surigao del Norte held at the Surigao City Cultural Center.

The seminar is part of the culminating activity of the month long celebration of Consumer Month this year.

In his opening message, DTI-Surigao del Norte provincial director Celestino L. Negapatan expressed gratitude to city mayor Ernesto T. Matugas for his support especially the free use of the Cultural Center as venue of the activity and to all those who attended the seminar including the officers of Surigao Consumers Association and the Surigao del Norte Consumer Organization headed by Ms. Monina Corro and Ret. Col. Nestor MindaΓ±a, respectively.

He explained that the effort to educate the rural and urban poor on their rights and responsibilities as consumers is given consistent focus for them to be capable of making wise purchasing decision and be able to get the best value of their money.

Director Negapatan further stressed that consumer education advocacy is one of the strategies of DTI to improve capacity of the marginalized sectors.

The participants were made to understand that one of the mandates of DTI along with other government agencies is to enhance and protect consumer welfare.

Among the topics discussed are the Consumers Rights and Responsibilities and Consumer Complaint Resolution Mechanism which were presented by Mr. Rodrigo R. Matabaran, Senior Trade and Industry Development Specialist and Mrs. Josephine D. Gabutin, Trade and Industry Development Specialist.

Ms. Gregoria Tisang of the Bureau of Agriculture Statistics (BAS) presented updates on price situation of agri-fishery products while Surigao del Norte Electric Cooperative (SURNECO) represented by Engr.  Alex Diaz also made presentation on the electricity supply situation as well as tips in reducing electric power consumption.

Members of the ConsumerNet, comprising of government agencies mandated to undertake consumer welfare and protection functions presented their respective programs and mandates.

Engr.  Virgilio B. Arzadon and Ms. Nenita C. Uy of the Department of Energy briefed the participants on some tips on how to save electricity, fuel and liquefied petroleum gas among others.

The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) represented by Ms. Virginia K. Delani discussed and encouraged participants to buy quality and safe food products and medicines while Dr. Leo J. Cauduan of the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) Caraga Region explained their agency function as well as the prescribed meat inspection mechanism and encouraged the group to buy good quality meat for their safety.

The Department of Trade and Industry Caraga Regional Office was represented by Ms. Billy General who encouraged participants to assert their rights as consumers and buy products that passed quality standards further encouraging them to continuously educate themselves.

Participants got the chance to ask ask clarification on some issues and concerns during the open forum which the speakers have answered accordingly.  Among the concerns are the electric power rates and low quality products from China being sold in the local market.

During the closing ceremony, Certificate of Appreciation were given to all resource speakers, consumer groups leaders and the representatives of the Department of Social Welfare and Development headed by Ms. Shalom D. Sumaguila, Provincial Link and Ms. Anhalou T. Ebol, City Link who helped organized and mobilized the participation of 4Ps beneficiaries from Surigao City and the municipalities in the province of Surigao del Norte. (SDR/DTI-Surigao del Norte/PIA-Surigao del Norte)

30IB troops in Surigao Norte intensify defense tactics against guerrillas

By LT. Ferdinand L. Tutanes

SANTA CRUZ, Surigao del Norte, Nov. 5 (PIA) – In a successive encounter with more or less 30 New People’s Army (NPAs) believed to be members of Sandatahang Platun Pampropaganda 16C (SPP16C) Guerilla Front Committee 16 (GFC16) of North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee (NEMRC) at about 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. of November 1, 2014 at Sitio Little Baguio, Brgy Payapag, Bacuag, this province,  30IB Philippine Army (PA) Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Arsenio Sadural, in behalf of his team, honored the soldiers who gallantly perform their duties to guard civilian communities against hostilities brought about by guerrillas.

 "Our greatest salute to our fallen comrades and we express our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of our slain comrades. They were killed while protecting the Filipino people in pursuit for peace and development in the area. They offered their lives for the sake of the people of Surigao lel Norte. They will always be remembered as true heroes and their sacrifices will never be in vain." Sadural said.

A few days before the said encounter, the 30th Infantry (Python) Battalion received an information from a concerned citizen in Brgy. Payapag regarding the presence of NPAs, who were extorting food and money from the barangay folks.

After identifying the area where the armed groups are, the troops of 30IB conducted combat operations and encountered the said NPAs. After the first encounter which lasted for thirty (30) minutes, one of the PA soldiers got killed in action.

On the second encounter, another one got killed in action and two were slightly wounded. There were also casualties on the rebel group as evidenced by heavy bloodstains along their routes of withdrawal.

Sadural said the two soldiers died in fulfilling their duties of defending the sovereignty of our country and protecting the community against NPA's excessive extortion, deceptive recruitment activities and spreading of terror. Every army's heart hopes for peace like all of us wish for and to feel safe anywhere we go and every time we go home to our families frequently like every ordinary family man does. (SDR/CMO-30IB PA, PIA-Surigao del Norte)

Phil Army pushes peace initiatives to end terroristic activities in AgSur

SURIGAO DEL SUR, Nov. 5 (PIA) – "The army will continue to push the peace initiatives in order to cease terroristic activities of the New People’s Army (NPA) and for the development to come in, even if the lives of soldiers are at stakes. We will be able to accomplish the mandate and vision in a proactive way to promote peace and development in the area by doing our best to protect the people,” stated 75IB commanding officer Lt Col Noman Alcovindas following an incident where one Army trooper was slain in an encounter while patrolling as part of their Community Organizing for Peace and Development (COPD) program implementation around 8:20 a.m. of November 2, 2014.

In a press statement released by the 75th infantry battalion based in Bislig City, the troops led by TSg Leonardo Pilare reportedly  had an encounter with NPA allegedly members of the Guerilla Front -14, North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee in the vicinity of Sitio Maghilot, Barangay Consuelo, Bunawan in Agusan del Sur.

Capt. Librado Olunan, 75th IB Civil Military Operations Officer said that the encounter lasted for more than half an hour that resulted to the death of Pilare.

Olunan said that prior to the incident, they received series of reports from the concerned citizens that the alleged NPAs have planned to conduct harassment such as extortion, burning of equipment, and kidnapping to the identified big establishments just like what they did in the provinces of Surigao del Sur and Agusan del Sur.

The COPD team aims to bring the government closer to the people as catalyst in bringing the gaps for the delivery of basic services . (NGBT/CMO-75IB/PIA-Surigao del Sur)

Surigao Norte farmer groups undergo organizational needs, design assessments

By Daryll M. Tumbaga

SURIGAO CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) – Two Agrarian Reform Beneficiary Organizations (ARBOs) underwent recently an Organizational Enterprise Needs Assessment and Design Assessment (OE-NADA).

The two ARBOs were the Rural Improvement Club Producer Cooperative (RIPROCO) of Brgy. Capalayan, Surigao City and the Alipao Multi-Purpose Cooperative (ALMUCO) of Brgy. Alipao, Alegria, all in Surigao del Norte province.

The identified proposed Agrarian Reform Community Connectivity and Economic Support Services (ARCESS) projects that will be managed by the said ARBOs are Mechanized Palay Production and Marketing project to be implemented by RIPROCO and the Enhance Palay Mechanization for ALMUCO.

The evaluation was conducted at Capalayan Brgy Hall for RIPROCO by the Surigao del Sur State University (SDSSU)-Cantilan Campus while ALMUCO was evaluated at Alipao Elementary School by SDSSU-Tandag Campus.

The OE-NADA aimed to assess the opportunities available in the Agrarian Reform areas where the proposed enterprise of the concerned ARBOs will be based.

OE-NADA also intended to evaluate the needs and readiness of the respective ARBOs that will serve as their preparation as they embark on another organizational milestone where they will have to manage projects given to them by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) through its (ARCCESS) program.

The OE-NADA was conducted in collaboration with the personnel of DAR-Surigao Norte’s Technical Advisory Support Services headed by Ms. Merlita D. Aranas, Agrarian Reform Program Officer II. (SDR/DAR-Surigao del Norte/PIA-Surigao del Norte)

Tagalog News: Palasyo nakikiisa sa paggunit ng International Day para wakasan ang impunidad para sa kriminalidad laban sa mga mamamahayag

AGUSAN DEL SUR, Nov. 5 (PIA) - Inanunsiyo ng Palasyo noong Linggo sa hanay ng mga mamamahayag na ito ay nakikiisa sa United Nations sa paggunita ng International Day para Wakasan ang Impunidad para sa Krimen Laban sa mga Mamamahayag.

"Nakikiisa ang pamahalaan sa hanay ng mga mamamahayag at ang lahat na kabilang sa sektor ng pangmadlang komunikasyon (mass communications) sa paggunita ng International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists," sabi ni Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. sa isang panayam sa radio dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.

Inulit ni Coloma ang sinabi ni Pangulong Benigno Aquino III sa kanyang mensahe noong Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines forum na: “Nagbago na ang sitwasyon. Tapos na ang panahon sa ating bansa na kung saan ang pamamahayag ng mga peryodista ay binubusalan o kung saan ginagamit ang kapangyarihan ng pamahalaan upang pigilin ang malayang pamamahayag.”

Naalaala ng Communications Secretary na lumikha si Pangulong Aquino ng Inter-Agency Committee para sa Extralegal Killings, Enforced Disappearances, Torture at iba pang grabeng paglabag ng karapatan sa buhay, kalayaan at Seguridad ng Tao pagkatapos lagdaan ang Administrative Order Blng. 35 noong 2012.

"(Dahil dito) bumuo ng dedikadong pangkat ang pamahalaan upang ibayo pang mapabilis ang pagtugis at paglilitis ng mga sangkot sa pagpaslang o karahasan laban sa mga mamamahayag katuwang ang ating mga kaibigan at kasamahan sa media," sabi ni Coloma.

Dagdag pa niya na ang pamahalaan ay mahigpit na nakipag-ugnayan sa National Press Club para malutas ang extrajudicial na pagpatay sa mga mamamahayag.

"Sa katunayan po ay masinsin ang pakikipag-ugnayan ng National Press Club sa ating tanggapan, ang Presidential Communications Operations Office, sa pagtutok sa mga update hinggil sa mga kaso ng karahasan laban sa mga mamamahayag," sabi ni  Coloma.

Dagdag pa niya na ang pagkakaaresto kay retiradong Heneral Jovito Palparan at ang pag baba ng insidente ng mga pagpatay sa media ay ang direktang resulta ng nasabing kooperasyon.

"Malaking pagbabago sa mga naitala o nabalido (validated) na extralegal killings, mula 168 noong nakaraang administrasyon tungo sa 42 sa nakalipas na apat na taon ng administrasyong Aquino," sabi ni Coloma

"Makakaasa ang sambayanan na hindi titigil ang ating pamahalaan upang itaguyod ang kalayaan sa pamamahayag at patuloy nating kinikilala at hinihirang ang kanilang mahalagang ambag sa pagpapatatag ng demokrasya sa ating bansa," dagdag pa niya. (DMS/PIA-Agusan del Sur)