10.05.2015

Monday, September 21, 2015

Surigao Norte LGU inks MOA with 4ID, PA for insurgency-free province

By Venus L. Garcia

BUTUAN CITY, Sept. 21 (PIA) - A Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on the declaration of Siargao Islands as ‘insurgency-free’ and Surigao del Norte as ‘conflict manageable and ready for further development’ is signed on Sunday in General Luna, Siargao between the provincial government of Surigao del Norte led by Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) chairperson and governor Sol Matugas and Task Force Diamond, 4th Infantry Division (4ID), Philippine Army (PA) represented by Col. Henry Dar.

According to Gov. Matugas, the signing ceremony in the declaration of the island as insurgency-free is history in the making wherein said areas are given the proof of reality that indeed stable and habitable. " Such feat is never easy to achieve. I would like to attribute this to the disciplined and loving people of Siargao and Surigao del Norte who painstakingly perpetuate and preserved the time learned values of respect, love, pride of place, solidarity, generosity, and most of all religiousity. I also commend and recognize the Army forces for their best efforts in planting the seed of peace in the island of Siargao where east meets west,” underscored Matugas.

In a provision as contained in the MOA, Siargao Island has never been influenced by the CCP/NPA/NDF (CNN) as its politico-military infrastructure does not exist. The insurgent’s armed group has ceased to exist and there has been no record of terroristic and NPA initiated violent incident for the past years. Likewise, lawless criminal activities have come to a very manageable level which the PNP can ably address.

“The leadership of the Philippine Army (PA) through MGen Oscar Lactao and the Philippne National Police (PNP) through PCSupt Vert Chavez and their officers and staff have made a big difference in the province. Today, we stand with pride here in the island as we celebrate the recognition you accorded to this world gem of beauty and adventure – Siargao, an insurgency-free island,” articulated Matugas.

It can be recalled that a Joint Recommendation Report (Declaration of Siargao Island as Insurgency-Free Province) dated September 20, 2015 was passed and approved by the SDN-PPOC. It aims to build confidence among the people and the stakeholders in order to create an environment that is conducive to socio-economic, political and cultural development, free of CNN influence.

“Thank you to the Phil. Army, PNP and Department of Interior and Local Government for the job well done and for working with us in sustaining peace and security in Caraga region," said Gov. Matugas.

Along with the inking of MOA, all other local government officials of said areas also affix their signatures on the board of pledge as a manifesto of their unrelenting support by providing quality service, and ensuring the preservation of peace in homes/communities and environmental possessions abound its province. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)


Caraga tribal chieftains sign manifesto for peace

By Daisy Jane M. Apit

BUTUAN CITY, Sept.21 (PIA)  – Tribal chieftains of Caraga region unanimously sign the manifesto for peace last Friday, September 18 at the 4th Infantry "Diamond" Division's (4ID's) Advance Command Post, Brgy. Bancasi, this city.

The manifesto aims to strengthen the Indigenous Political Structure in accordance with the Indigenous Knowledge, Systems and Practices; and to express commitment of support for the peace and development government programs.

According to Sultan Julius Mabandos, chairperson of Indigenous Peoples Economic Union, the manifesto is just one of the steps of the chieftains to attain sustainable peace and development in the indigenous cultural communities in Caraga and also their commitment to help the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) to fight against violence.

Moreover, 4ID spokesperson Captain Joe Patrick Martinez said the military in coordination with the PNP is also exerting unified effort for law enforcement operations.

“The Army and the police force are here for unity, peacekeeping and protection of our people,” Martinez added. (DJA/PIA-Caraga)


Cop killed, another hurt in SurSur NPA ambush

By Greg Tataro Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Sept. 21 (PIA) – A policeman was killed while another was hurt in an ambush launched by New People’s Army (NPA) rebels at Purok 5, Poblacion, Cortes town, 30 kilometers north, this city, at around 9:00 a.m. on Friday, September 18.

According to P/SSupt. Narciso Verdadero, PNP provincial director, four of his men on board a PNP vehicle were conducting a routine patrol when waylaid by an undetermined number of armed rebels.

Despite the heavy volume of fire, the policemen were still able to trade shots with the enemy forces that lasted for about 15 minutes, killing SPO4 Jesus Labastilla and also wounding PO2 Joy Turaja in the process, it was learned.

Fortunately, SPO2 Venson Sanchez and PO3 Rogelio Bagnol had managed to return to Cortes Municipal Police Station (MPS) unharmed.

Upon learning of the incident, clearing and pursuit operation was immediately launched by both PNP and 36th Infantry Battalion (36IB) of the Philippine Army (PA).

Relative to this, at about 3:30 p.m. of the same day, nine personnel of the Provincial Police Office (PPO) on board a patrol vehicle led by P/Supt. Edwin Noguera, deputy provincial director for operations (DPDO), while passing through the national highway at Sitio Banbanon, Barangay Matho, Cortes town, were land mined, which exploded five to 10 meters away right after the vehicle passed by.

Reportedly, the team was able to return fire with no casualty; however, the vehicle had sustained minor damage.

Earlier, at about 12:10 p.m., a special operations team from the same office led by P/Insp. June Hontanosas, provincial investigation and detection management (PIDM) division deputy, together with P/CInsp. Karen Virtudazo, chief of Provincial Crime Laboratory Office and P/SSupt. Pedro Urbano Obaldo, Jr., deputy regional director for administration (DRDA) conducted a crime scene investigation that was able to find 21 fired cartridge cases; eight fired bullet fragments; one ammunition link; and a stone with blood stains.

Also, upon directive of Verdadero, all stations/units had been ordered “to undertake precautionary measures by conducting strong checkpoint to intercept possible withdrawing enemy and intensify intelligence monitoring in coordination with AFP counterparts in AOR (area of responsibility).” (Radyo ng Bayan-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


Surigao Norte maritime stakeholders celebrate National Maritime Week 2015

SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, Sept. 21 (PIA) – In line with the government's efforts to recognize thousands of Filipino seafarers working here and abroad, the stakeholders of the maritime industry here are celebrating the National Maritime Week from Sept. 20-27, 2015.

The event, which is anchored on the theme: “Edukasyon at Pagsanay sa Maritima: Kabalikat sa Patuloy na Kaunlaran," is spearheaded by the provincial station of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Surigao del Norte, Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA), and Philippine Ports Authority (PPA).

PCG Surigao del Norte Lieutenant Commander Geoffrey T. Gervo said the celebration is aimed to give tribute to all the seafarers and stakeholders who contributed much to the country’s economy and to promote maritime safety for travelers and the entire maritime sector.

One of the highlights of the week-long celebration is the conduct of the Basic Water Search and Rescue (WASAR) on September 24 to be participated by selected rescue volunteers of the province.

Other activities calendared for the event include hanging of streamers, motorcade, coastal clean-up, lecture on responsible disposal of garbage, garbage management plan, garbage book and shipboard and oil pollution emergency plan, regatta parade of motorboats, blood-letting activity, mangrove planting, and SCUBASURERO.

The National Maritime Week is celebrated by virtue of Proclamation No. 1094, consolidating the celebration of the National Seafarers Day (NSD), National Maritime Day (NMD) and the National Maritime Week (NMW), making the celebration more significant and more inspiring. (SDR/PIA-Surigao del Norte)