Wednesday, June 17, 2015

DAR Caraga distributes farming facilities, checks to CARP beneficiaries

By Daisy Jane M. Apit

BUTUAN CITY, June 17 (PIA) – The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Caraga distributed on Tuesday common service facilities and checks to the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) beneficiaries during their 2nd celebration of Ani at Biyaya ng CARP held at the Robinsons Place, this city.

The department had given 11 tractors, 17 rice threshers, four power tilt cultivators and two reapers to Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Sur, Surigao del Norte and Dinagat Islands agrarian beneficiaries.

All of the mentioned facilities were part of the Agrarian Reform Community Connectivity and Economic Services (ARCCESS). It is a project implemented by DAR to help improve productivity and income of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) through their organizations. Specifically, the project seeks to strengthen the business units of the ARB organizations, so that they can eventually manage business assets or activities related to farm production, post-harvest, marketing and processing.

In order to address the credit requirements of the agrarian reform beneficiaries' organizations (ARBOs), DAR in a joint partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA) and Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) has distributed checks amounted to P6,975,000 to the ARBOs, that are not eligible to access the banks regular lending window.

Another set of checks worth P1, 291,087 was also handed to the beneficiaries as insurance protection through premium subsidy to Agrarian Credit Production Credit Program (APCP)/ Credit Assistance Program for Program Beneficiaries Development (CAP-PBD) against crop losses arising from natural calamities, plant diseases and pest manifestation.

DAR Caraga regional director Julita Ragandang bared that as of December 2014, the department had already distributed 92 percent of the lands to the agrarian beneficiaries.

"As your newly-appointed DAR Caraga regional director, I am committed to work. Although there are challenges, expect our full commitment - from me and the rest of my team. DAR, with our efforts, will be a more vibrant and productive regional department," said Ragandang.

"I want to emphasize to our employees our goal as provided in our 1987 constitution and our existing agrarian reform laws to protect our farmers' rights through providing them the land titles. We will be facing different challenges and trials, but we will not give up. As implementers, we are determined to really contribute to the betterment of the beneficaries and the attainment of food security, among others," added Ragandang.

Right after the opening ceremony, Ragandang together with assistant regional director Daylinda Narisma, DA Caraga regional director Edna Mabeza and DAR provincial agrarian reform officers (PAROs) led the ribbon-cutting of the photo gallery exhibit and mini-trade fair at the Main Atrium of the Robinsons Place, here. (JPG/DJA/PIA-Caraga)


DENR Caraga declared best delivery unit

By Maria Catherine M. Gonzaga

BUTUAN CITY, June 17 (PIA) – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Caraga was declared Best Delivery Unit nationwide based on the performance assessment done by the Performance Management Group Sub-committees for Peformance-Based Bonus.

The undersecretary for Policy, Planning and Foreign-Assisted Programs Manuel D. Gerochi in his memorandum on June 9, 2015 said the region had performed well in almost all assessed offices.

“The final overall rating of the region was 4.266, which is equivalent to an adjectival rating of 'very satisfactory,'” USEC Gerochi said.

DENR Caraga regional director Nonito M. Tamayo cited some of the accomplishments of the region for 2014 to 2015 during the 28th DENR Anniversary.

“Caraga has been well known for illegal logging for so many years especially during the 70’s but these incidents were managed to be brought down with the imposition of Executive Order 23 on February 2011 declaring a moratorium of timber harvesting in the natural and residual forest over the next 25 years,” Tamayo said.

He added that since 2013 to date, there has been a steady decline in the record of apprehensions of forest products in the Caraga Region. Based on the report of the DENR 13 Technical Services Enforcement Division, the record of confiscated forest products has dropped to 1,931,305.71 board feet in 2014 from 2,585,833.53 board feet in 2011.

In addition to this, out of the 17 hotspots in Caraga, only 11 were left after six areas have been neutralized, namely: Esperanza, Rosario, Talacogon, Barobo, Carmen, and Cagdianao.

“To cushion the effect of this campaign to the people of Caraga especially those who are dependent on this industry, Executive Order 26 or the National Greening Program was implemented on 2011. This year, we have a target of 43,749.37 hectares including the supplemental targets compared to the 18, 736 has. And 16,676 has. In 2013 and 2014, respectively. The accomplishment of this target is expected to create job opportunities and income generation,” Tamayo said.

Another accomplishment of the region was the cadastral survey which was finally done last March 2015. A total of 73 cities and municipalities have already an approved surveys for both contested and uncontested lands wherein five are still under verification due to old records - a century old project which was finally ended this year.

Tamayo attributed the good performance of DENR 13 to the support of the Philippine National Police, Philippine Army, Academe, Church, LGUs, Media, Civil Society Organizations and the people of Caraga.

“We owe this to our people, to all of us. This is the product of our hardwork and endless effort in achieving our targets. Let this serve as a motivation for all of us to continue striving for excellence,” Tamayo said.

“I would like to commend all of you for getting this done and congratulations to all of us,” he added. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


DTI Surigao Norte reminds public on 'No Return, No Exchange' policy

By Rodrigo R. Matabaran

SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, June 17 (PIA) – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Surigao del Norte provincial director Celestino Negapatan reminded business establishments posting of the "No return, no exchange policy" signage is prohibited by law.

"Under Republic Act 7394 otherwise known as the Consumer Act of the Philippines, the 'No Return, No Exchange' policy of some business establishments is not allowed and strictly prohibited," explained Negapatan.

Negapatan said, when an item bought is defective, a customer is entitled for a repair, replacement or refund under the law.

He pointed out that establishments still practicing the 'No Return, No Exchange' trading policy has to be reported to the DTI.

He said however that the repair, replace, refund arrangement will apply only when a product purchased by consumers is defective and having inherent problem resulting not from misuse and abuse of the buyer.

Moreover, products that malfunction because the buyer did not properly follow the instruction of the operation manual that goes with the item will not be entitled for the repair, replacement or refund mechanism as provided for under the Consumer Act.

He advised consumers that before buying products whether groceries, electronic gadgets or any items one has to be sure that what they are buying are products they really need.

This is because they cannot just return or asked for replacement on products they bought for reason that they change their mind and no longer interested to use it.

For those interested to know more about consumer related laws are encouraged to visit the Consumer Welfare Desk of the DTI Provincial Office located at the 2nd Floor, Simtoco Building, Burgos Street, this city or call telephone number 826-6129 or 09195971199. (SDR/DTI-Surigao del Norte/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


DENR inaugurates 3 checkpoints in Davao, Caraga

By Eric Gallego

BUNAWAN, Agusan del Sur, June 17 (PIA) - The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has established three additional forest monitoring checkpoints in Davao and Caraga regions as it strengthened up its campaign to bring down illegal logging and timber poaching incidence to zero level by the end of June 2015.

“It's a tall order from DENR Secretary Ramon JP Paje who gave instruction to all DENR regional directors earlier to bring illegal logging incidence down to the zero level at least by the end of June this year,” Regional Director Nonito Tamayo of DENR 13 said during an interview.

“We expect people’s support and actively participate in this all-out campaign to slow down if not eradicate the illegal logging problem in our areas of concern,” DENR Region 11 Director Joselin Marcus Fragada said.

The two DENR top regional executives led the inauguration of what they call “common checkpoint“ that they have put up at Barangay Rizal in Monkayo, Compostela Valley on Wednesday.

“We thought it practical to put up a common forest monitoring checkpoint near the border of Agusan del Sur and Mokayo, Compostela Valley to control the transport of illegal logs coming from Bislig, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Sur and Davao,“ Tamayo said.

The other two other checkpoints are located in the boundary of Laac, Compostela Valley and Loreto, Agusan del Sur and Linging Surigao del Sur and Boston in Davao Oriental.

“We hope these strategic locations of forest checkpoints would discouraged the timber smugglers and poachers,” Fragada said.

The inauguration ceremony was also attended by local officials, the commanding officers of Philippine National Police based in that area and the Philippine Army namely PSupt. Jay Gacis Dema Ala, chief of PNP Mocayo; PSupt. Albert Ignatius D. Ferro, OIC, PNP Provincial Director, Compostela Valley; Lt.Col. Gilbert S. Ruiz, Batallion Commander of the 66th Infantry Batallion, PA; Lt. Col.. Michelle Amayron, Jr., Batallion Commander of the 26th Infantry Batallion, PA; Mayor Joselito Brillantes of Monkayo; PENR Officer Pablito Ofrecia of Compostela; PENR Officer Rosendo Asunto, Surigao del Sur; OIC, PENR Officer Roberto Oliveros , Agusan del Sur; the CENR Officer of Maco, Rogelio M. Hermo; the CENR Officer of Monkayo Martiniano Ratol; the DENR 11 ARD for Technical Services Felix M. Alicer; and the OIC CENR Officers of Bayugan, Jerome Albia; Luis Gonzaga of Talacogon,; Modesto Lagumbay of Bunawan; Melvin Bustillo; and Precilio Penaloga of Loreto.

Tamayo has emphasized the newly established forest monitoring center shall be also known as ”Monitoring and Public Assistance Center“ which will serve as information center where anyone can come and learn something about environment in particular about the climate change, the national greening program and many other topics on environment.

He said the DENR in the two regions have laid out strategies in intensified anti-illegal logging campaign to stop illegal logging at all cost and by all means in keeping with the commitment they made with Secretary Paje.

He said the PNP and the Philippine Army commanders have likewise vowed to give their full commitment and support to the DENR to accomplish the DENR target goal.

The forest monitoring and public, as agreed upon by the officials of Region 11 and 13 shall be manned by at least 10 personnel coming from the two regions, supplied with uniforms and backed up by other parties from multi-sector groups.

According to Fragada, the DENR is constrained to open a container van. Nevertheless, he said, the closed- container van drivers shall be requested d to produce documents and checked by the operatives at the checkpoints.

“Maybe this strategy may deter log smugglers and have second thoughts in transporting undocumented forest products,’ Fragada added.

Tamayo also said the DENR 13 operatives shall concentrate its operations on 11 hot spots of illegal logging activities in the region. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


DOST holds meat processing training in Siargao town

BUTUAN CITY, June 17 (PIA) - The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Caraga through its Provincial Science and Technology Center (PSTC) in Surigao del Norte (SDN) and the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), conducted the second set of training on Advance Meat Processing held recently in Burgos, Siargao Island, SDN.

A total of 34 members from the Rural Improvement Club (RIC) in Burgos together with six personnel from the Municipal Agriculture Office were in attendance during the said training.

The activity was aimed to provide the stakeholders scientifically based meat processing techniques, it was learned.

“Nagpasalamat gajud ako na wala gihikaw sa DOST (staff) na magpadala ug trainors diri sa lungsod sa Burgos [I am very much thankful that DOST did not repudiate to send trainers here in Burgos],” Rosalinda G. Selisana, RIC Burgos President, said on her opening remarks.

“This activity will help you (RIC members) improve your skills and will give you more ideas on processing variety of meat products,” said PSTC – Surigao del Norte officer-in-charge Godoberto L. Amora.

The two-day training covered the preparation of tocino, tapa, longanisa, chicken ham, and siomai.  Participants were also taught by the resource persons from FNRI on food safety and proper product price computations; considering all the underlying costs of production and conservative rate of margin to use.

RIC Burgos, thru the local government unit, received a Grant-In Aid (GIA) Fund of  P292,116.00 from DOST- Caraga as part of the Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology (CEST) intervention in Burgos, Surigao del Norte for their economic/livelihood development. The said amount was used for the procurement of meat processing equipment such as meat grinder, meat slicer, meat mixer, sausage stuffer, vacuum sealer and chest freezer.

The members had already participated a three-day technology training on meat processing and orientation seminar on Food Safety and GMP conducted last November 26-28, 2014,  and of training on proper machine operation  and maintenance of meat processing equipment on April 6-7 this year.

“Nagapangandoy ako na aduna pay additional training na (amo) panganduyon (I am hoping that there are still other additional trainings that we could hope for),” Selisana said. (GJdarconada, DOST-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: Sharing PhilHealth success story in LGU Lianga

It was not so long ago when the Municipal Accountant’s Office of the local government unit (LGU) of Lianga, Surigao del Sur was almost burning both ends of the candle to address documentary requisites imposed by hospitals to all employees of the LGU who are PhilHealth members.

Both the accounting office and member-employees were heavily burdened by the complex requisites that resulted to a less systematic and tedious practice of public service.

Issues like numerous documents that each member is required to submit so they can avail of the premium benefits and to free them from the financial encumbrances of shelling out hefty amounts of money to pay hospital bills, as well as the snail-paced procedure of accomplishing the multitude of requirements being asked of them to comply with, are just among the many reasons the old system was not acceptable. Worse, when these requirements are not completed, patients may be held longer in the hospital even if they are ready for check out.

With the advent of the Electronic Premium Remittance System (EPRS) in December 2011 and LGU's pilot- testing in January 2012, many things have changed. Speed and convenience became the trademark of the system. Both the accounting office and the members were relieved from the inconvenience of the old school and began to appreciate the ease that this new system advocated.

The procedure is simplified, the number of papers is stripped down to only a few, and the time needed to comply with the requirements is reduced significantly that the hospital need not hold the patient as documents can almost instantly be produced for submission.

Today, PhilHealth members of LGU-Lianga no longer need to spend money to photocopy receipts of payments (M5) and the RF. They need not wait long while the accounting staff member is patiently scanning through their dusty files. The office is also free from the hassle of scourging through the member files. There is no need to argue with impatient members as discrepancies in payment record and errors in member details have been eradicated, thus, allowing the office to improve its customer service. This system in itself is a picture of a total quality service management as everything is now put in order with the use of EPRS. (LGU Lianga, Surigao del Sur/PIA-Caraga)


Duterte to grace 55th Araw ng Surigao del Sur celebration

By Greg Tataro Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, June 17 (PIA) – Mayor Rodrigo Duterte of Davao city is set to grace the occasion of 55th Araw ng Surigao del Sur celebration on June 19, 2015 as guest of honor and speaker.

A week ago, Governor Johnny Pimentel bared that Duterte is going to be the main man during the founding anniversary program of the province to be held at the city gymnasium at 2:00 p.m.

Meanwhile, based on the letter of Governor Pimentel dated June 10, 2015 to all concerned, particularly heads of offices, local and national, a Thanksgiving Mass at 6:00 a.m. at San Nicolas de Tolentino Cathedral is going to mark the opening of the series of continuing activities for the day while in the afternoon, at 1:00 p.m., a grand parade will precede the founding anniversary program.

Everybody is expected to swarm on the occasion, especially employees of national and local government here.

June 19 is a local holiday based on Republic Act 7671 or “An Act Declaring June 19 of Every Year as ‘Araw Ng Surigao del Sur’ and Special Nonworking Holiday in the Entire Province,” which lapsed into law on January 10, 1994 without the President’s (Fidel Ramos) signature, pursuant to Sec. 27(1), Article VI of the Constitution.

This year’s activities for Araw Ng Surigao del Sur have already started on June 15 with sports fest and other highlights.

However, big events are going to begin today, June 17 which include motorcade, Agri-Trade Fair, and more. (NGBT/Radyo ng Bayan-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


Cebuano News: Education caravan nagpadayon sa mga munisipyo sa Surigao Norte

Ni Mary Jul E. Escalante

SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, Hunyo 17 (PIA) – Ang Meet and Greet ug Education Caravan ni Governor Sol F. Matugas gipahigayon niadtong Lunes, Hunyo 15,2015 sa General Luna Central Elementary School ug sa Dapa East ug West Districts Schools.

Kuyog sa gobernador si Kongresista Francisco T. Matugas, ang Team Capitol, Board Member Mamerto Galanida, Leonita Gorgolon mga opisyales sa General Luna ug opisyales sa Dapa pinanguluhan ni Mayor Yulie Ruaya.

Atol sa maong kalihukan gipahibalo ni Kongresista Matugas ang pag aprobar sa House Bill (HB) No. 4307 or "An Act Establishing the Siargao Island Sports Academy and Training Center in the Municipality of Dapa, Province of Surigao del Norte and Appropriating Funds Therefor" niadtong Hunyo 2 ning tuiga, diin usa kini sa lima ka mga HB nga giaprobahan nga mao ang Davao, Misamis Occidental, Cavite, Luzon ug Siargao.

Dugang gipahibalo sa Kongresista ang pagtukod sa 4-storey 20 classrooms building sa Dapa Central Elem. School nga idonar sa Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR).

Sa samang adlaw, sa Kapitolyo Nan Siargao, mga punong barangay sa maong isla nagkatigom uban sa ilang mga mayores alang sa gipahigayon nga HEALS (Health, Education, Aquaculture and Agriculture, Livelihood and Tourism, and Spiritual Enhancement) Plus Victory Forum diin gipresentar sa Team Capitol ang mga proyekto ug programa nga gibubo sa tag-tagsa ka mga barangay ubos sa HEALS Plus agenda sa gobernador.

Atol usab sa maong okasyon, gipang apod-apod ang tseke kantidad P110,000 sa kada barangay ug gipahibalo sa gobernador ang uban pang mga proyekto nga umaabot sama sa paghatag ug multicab sa mga mayores para sa HEALS on wheels nga programa, motorsiklo para sa mga kapitan ug sea ambulance para sa mga halayong lugar.


Pagkahapon, mibisita ang gobernador uban sa Team Capitol didto sa Cancohoy Integrated Farm sa Cancohoy munisipyo sa Del Carmen ug pagkatapos mitambong ang gobernador sa public hearing on the Acquisiton of Land for the Expansion and Improvement of Siargao Aiport nga gipahigayon sa munisipyo sa Del Carmen uban ni Kongresista Matugas, mga representante sa DOTC, DPWH, DENR, COA, CAAP, Board Members, mga opisyales sa Del Carmen ug mga residente sa maong lugar nga maapektuhan sa maong proyekto. (SDR/PIC-Surigao del Norte/PIA-Surigao del Norte)