Tuesday, December 22, 2015

AgNor SP holds barefoot journalists assembly

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 22 (PIA) – The 16th Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) of the province of Agusan del Norte will hold its 1st Provincial Assembly of the Barefoot Journalists on December 23 in one of the convention centers here.

About 1,000 purok legpersons/individuals or ordinary citizens are expected to attend the assembly with the theme “Empowering and Uniting the Agusanons through Information and Effective Communication.”

The assembly aims to enhance the skills of the legpersons especially on news writing, reporting and to have confidence in facing the public.

According to Atty. Ramon AG Bongabong, the assembly cum seminar-workshop on para-media/citizens journalism was conceptualized because on their evaluation of the performances of the barefoot journalists/purok legpersons.

"There is a need for the legpersons who ordinary citizens or known as the 'yanong tao' in the barangays to be trained because they serve as the mouthpiece and citizens patrol of the province,” Bongabong said.

Also, Bongabong cited that the very purpose of training the legpersons is because they help bring the provincial government’s chamber closer to the people especially in the grassroots level.

The functions of the legpersons include providing information and updates to the people particularly those living in the far flung areas on the recent plans and developments, approved legislative measures, programs, projects and activities implemented in the province. They also collect feedbacks from the ground especially on the issues and concerns of the communities that need actions and interventions of the provincial government, Bongabong added. (NCLM, PIA-Agusan del Norte)


DOST’s science and tech fair highlights industry benefits to Mindanao

By Ma. Lotuslei P. Dimagiba

MANILA, Dec. 22 (PIA) - The Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) Science and Technology (S&T) Fair for the Mindanao Cluster got underway in Zamboanga City from December 3-5, 2015 with focus on S&T’s impacts on the rubber, mining and food industries, including halal.

The fair showcased the many benefits of DOST’s Small Enterprise Upgrading Program or SETUP via project visits to program beneficiaries Philippine Pioneer Rubber Product Corp. (PPRPC) and Monmon Bakeshoppe and Snack Haus in Zamboanga.

Organized in 2000 as a federation of six agrarian reform communities, PPRPC provides milling services to rubber-producing cooperatives, rubber farmers and traders. With SETUP’s assistance, the company has increased production by 25%, provided better quality and faster service to rubber farmers and traders, became compliant to ISO 2000 quality standards, and generated 23 additional employment from 127 to 150 employees.

Monmon Bakeshoppe was also given assistance through upgrading of the bakery facility to meet the growing demand of customers. It increased gross sales by 11.3%, upgraded its product packaging, and now employs eight additional employees aside from the previous five regular workers.

The S&T Fair also saw the launching of various DOST initiatives, such as the rubber testing laboratory inside the DOST Region IX compound at Pettit Barracks in Zamboanga City, as well as the Food Innovation Center in Northern Mindanao located at the Mindanao University of Science and Technology in Cagayan de Oro City which will serve as a hub for innovation of food products.

Also launched was the Halal Laboratory at the DOST Compound in Cotabato City. The facility is projected to increase the integrity of locally made halal products and give credibility to certifying bodies, local halal product manufacturers, producers, and processors for local and international trading.

The Complementary Food Production for the CARAGA Region was also rolled out, featuring food technologies by the DOST’s Food and Nutrition Research Institute. These are the Rice-Mongo Curls, a nutritious snack made from rice flour and mongo flour; and the Rice-Mongo Baby Food Blend, a ready-to-eat baby food. These technologies are part of DOST’s strategies to meet the Philippines’ Millennium Development Goals, namely, to reduce by half the proportion of people who suffer from hunger and to solve the persistent problem of malnutrition among 0-5 year-old children.

Another launching held was that for Better Mine, a DOST and University of the Philippines collaboration for the mining industry. Better Mine eliminates the use of mercury and cyanide, thus promoting a non-hazardous and environment-friendly method to extract gold in the Philippines for small-scale mining applications through integrated gold-copper mineral processing. It can increase gold recovery from 40-50% to 80%, recover other valuable minerals like copper and zinc, has a tailings disposal and treatment system, a flexible operation, as well as low capital and operating expenses for small-scale miners.

 “With DOST, with the help of the science and technology agenda, we Filipinos must chart our own course guided by the principle that what we do ultimately benefits Aling Maria and Mang Juan, that science is being felt by the people,” said Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara, undersecretary for S&T services of DOST during the S&T fair opening ceremony.

A Sci-Tech Campus Journalism Training-Workshop, research forum, and exhibit, were also held, among others. (S&T Media Service, DOST-STII/PIA-Caraga)


DENR sees no relax of duty on anti-illegal log monitoring on Christmas

By Herzon F. Gallego

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 22 (PIA) – Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Caraga regional director Nonito M. Tamayo has instructed personnel involved in the monitoring of log movements in Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur to further tighten the watch on unscrupulous individuals who would attempt to smuggle undocumented logs during the yuletide season.

“There are two hotspots of illegal logging in the region which are being monitored by the DENR field men in coordination with the Philippine National Police,” DENR Caraga assistant regional director Roberto Olivares said.

He said those involved personnel in the anti-illegal logging operation have been told to maintain round-the-clock monitoring this Christmas Season particularly during long vacation periods.  “Personnel on duty who are requesting for vacation leave during this season are advised to inform their respective CENRO officers to ensure those assigned on duty at the monitoring station are always kept posted by somebody relieving them,” Oliveros said.

Meanwhile, the DENR has noted the apprehensions and seizures of illegal lumber and flitches have steadily declined since 2014.

According to records released by the Enforcement Division under the Technical Services Office, the apprehensions and seizures of undocumented lumber have dipped further to 833,944 board feet in the 3rd Quarter of this year as compared to the combined apprehension and seizures made in the 1st and 2nd quarter of this year of 478,448.65 board feet.

In 2014, the DENR made an apprehensions and seizures of illegal lumber to 1,931,303.84 board which is lower that than the previous record of 2,677,184.77 made in 2013. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


DENR 13 eyes 29,000 hectares for NGP in 2016

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 22 (PIA) - About 29, 647 hectares of denuded, open and access timber land in Caraga Region are being considered next year for reforestation and development by the DENR under the National Greening Program over and above with the accomplished projects since 2011.

DENR Regional Director for Region 13 Nonito M. Tamayo said the five Provincial and 10 Community Environment and Natural Resources Officers of Caraga Region including the Protected Area Site Unit of Dapa, Surigao del Norte have reported full accomplishment of NGP target for 2015 in their respective area during the DENR’s 4th Management Conference held in the city on Monday.

This year’s achievement has brought to 65,951 hectares the total NGP area developed  in the region by the DENR in over five years since the program was implemented. The total number of seedlings planted in the different NGP sites in Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur and the Dinagat Province from 2011 to 2015 have reached 38,993,226 according to DENR -13 Technical Services   Assistant Regional Director Roberto Oliveros.

Tamayo said the mechanized-nursery center in Bislig City which has a daily capacity to produce one million seedlings   is expected to augment the requirement in the NGP sites when it is completely operational in January 2016. “We need to produce about 53,237,039 seedlings most of which will be provided by the mechanized nursery center,”  Tamayo said.

At the opening program of the Management Conference, Tamayo has relayed the message of thanks and congratulations of Secretary Ramon JP Paje to the entire senior staff, the PENRO and CENRO and the personnel of the DENR-13 for a well-done job on the NGP.             

“Secretary Paje was very happy about the output of the NGP in Region 13,” Tamayo said. “I commend the entire personnel of the DENR for their full cooperation in achieving 100 percent of the NGP target this year,” he said.


As of November 20, 2015 about 12,119,900 seedlings were planted in 16,649 hectares of timberland which are spread in different NGP sites. PENRO Paterno Olivera of Agusan del Norte together along with his CENR Officers   Norman Asugan of Nasipit and Vince Estopito of Tubay have posted better performance in the NGP. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)