AFP, ACE members discuss peace & development initiatives for lumads in SurSur
By Jennifer P. Gaitano
BUTUAN CITY, Oct. 8 (PIA) – In a special meeting of the Association of Caraga Executives (ACE) held on Wednesday at Camp Bancasi, this city, its members together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) discussed peace and development initiatives for the lumad community in Surigao del Sur.
ACE president and Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Caraga regional director Achilles Gerard Bravo bared that said meeting is sponsored by the 4ID Phillipine Army thru commander MGen. Oscar Lactao. "We will plan for the improvement of the facilities in Surigao del Sur area thru the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and other government agencies concerned. The ACE members will give its contribution on how to better help the lumads in the area," he said.
"We will merge our programs and services so when the evacuees in Surigao del Sur return to their homes, they will have something to get from the government that will help them regain the trust and confidence that they lost due to the wrong doings of the New People’s Army (NPAs) in their respective areas," added Bravo.
When asked about the status of the senate hearing on the alleged killing incident involving lumads in Surigao del Sur, MGen. Lactao disclosed that they were able to express their side to the senators who investigated the alleged killings of lumads in Surigao del Sur. "Truth will prevail. There are ex-NPAs who are now fighting against the active NPAs and we do not condemn them because they are now supporting the government," expressed Lactao.
The said official also reiterated that the military will continuously do its best with integrity to protect the people. "I assure our people that the Philippine Army are professionals and we are doing our very best to protect the lives of our people. We take the challenges as we will continue to promote peace and security especially in the conflict areas," expressed Lactao.
"The Association of Caraga Executives (ACE) is strongly supporting the military on its peace and development efforts because we are working as one for this government. Let's work hand-in-hand to stop the conflicts between the NPA/CPP/NDF and tribal groups," supported director Bravo.
Bravo further emphasized that the one percent intended for the lumad tribe should not only be given or benefit one chieftain but the whole lumad community. The expenses incurred for the one percent should also be liquidated with corresponding documents. "They should be able to practice transparency within the organization,” he said.
Meanwhile, regional director Abner Caga of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Caraga raised several issues and concerns to the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Caraga regional director Atty. Pinky Grace Pareja-Pabelic. He also clarified the functions of NCIP and its limitations since there are those people blaming the said office when it comes to the lack of supervision and implementation of the programs and services for the IP communities.
NCIP Caraga regional director Atty. Pabelic then stated that they are open in integrating to specific projects the establishment of educational system in the conflict affected areas and incorporate curriculum intended for IPs.
It was also learned that the ACE members will be scheduling a service caravan in Surigao del Sur to help the lumads and assess, monitor their condition in the area.
The members also witnessed the presentation of accomplishments report of PIA-Caraga relative to the communication intervention and support provided to the AFP. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)
DENR leads coastal clean-up in AgNor
By Eric Herson F. Gallego
BUTUAN CITY, Oct. 8 (PIA) - More than 100 people from the different organizations, the national government agencies headed by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Caraga Regional Office, and the municipal government of Carmen and Nasipit in Agusan del Norte have conducted clean-up activities on the coast of Barangay Bolihon in Carmen to usher the celebration of the International Coastal Clean Up Day recently.
CENR Officer for Nasipit Norman Asugan and Agusan del Norte PENRO Paterno Olivera led the coastal clean-up which started at 6 a.m. at the Bolihon Beach as the participants pick up debris that were swept ashore by the tides. Among other trashes found ashore are rubber sandals, slippers, plastic bottles, palm leaves, plastic wrappers, straws, wine bottles among others.
“Coastal clean-up has always been a regular activity of DENR on September of each year and each time, we always find piles of trash on the shores,” PENRO Olivera said. “I wish the residents along the coast would volunteer initiatives that will protect our seas,” he said.
The theme of the celebration of the 2015 International Coastal Clean Up is “Our Place, Our Planet and Our Responsibility.” It highlights that the activity taken by every community and volunteers’ partaking in the clean-up –has a global impact.
Coastal Clean-Up relates to a clean and healthy ocean. The problem of trash continues to pose a challenge when it comes to clean and healthy oceans.
Trash in the water may affect the health of humans, wildlife, and the livelihoods that depend on a healthy ocean. It can also pose to the tourism industry and recreation and the income that a local community can get from foreign visitors.
The DENR is always taking bold actions in working to stop as soon as possible the flow of trash at the source before it has a chance to reach the water to pollute the sea waters and in effect choke and entangle dolphins and giant sea turtles, or ruin our beaches and depress our local economies. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)
DTI releases P2 Million micro-enterprise project to Surigao Norte town
SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, Oct. 8 (PIA) – The provincial office of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) here has released recently a total of P2 million to the municipality of Dapa under the Bottoms Up Budgeting (BUB) Project.
Among the beneficiaries of the said project are the seven sub-projects under the Rural Micro-Enterprise Development (RUMEPP) Program previously assisted by DTI in selected barangays of the said municipality.
These projects are managed by the different organizations like women, youth, farmers, and even senior citizens.
These micro-enterprise and alternative livelihood projects are expected to significantly increase family income and eventually reduce poverty incidence in rural communities.
Dapa Mayor Yulie Yangson Ruaya during the hand-over ceremony was thankful to DTI Surigao del Norte headed by provincial director Celestino L. Negapatan for the support in facilitating the release of the said project fund that will be used to help local micro-entrepreneurs in the municipality.
Mayor Ruaya also committed their full support on the project implementation emphasizing that the target beneficiaries have to be closely supervised to ensure that the fund will be utilized on its intended purpose. (SDR/DTI-Surigao del Norte/PIA-Surigao del Norte)