5.10.2016

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

News Feature: Butuan incumbent admin loses by 13-0 over opponent’s landslide victory

By Venus L. Garcia

BUTUAN CITY, May 10 (PIA) – In this year’s conduct of elections in the local level, construction mogul Engr. Ronnie Vicente C. Lagnada’s (RCL) political line-up gains the electoral victory as the group received an overwhelming majority of the votes, in effect, eliminating the incumbents from their position through a rare landslide win of 13 contested electoral seats with nil over its opponents.

In an official result, the team RCL has achieved a genuine success, beginning from the mayoral and vice-mayoral positions, 10 city legislative councilors, to include its congressional representative of the first district. A political fight won by a clean knockout.

Incoming solon Lagnada, a well-known supporter of city mayor Ferdinand M. Amante, Jr., will soon to assume office that will eventually hailed him as a harbinger of future progress of the only chartered city in Caraga region.  This is one of the biggest upsets in political history in the area, Lagnada earning a mark of annihilating the rivals by somehow putting an end to a well-entrenched political clan, which is an extraordinary feat of a neophyte in the local political arena.

After completing the electoral phases and subjecting to the rules of fair play among the candidates, Butuan City proclaimed winners are the following per official and final tally of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC):

Mayor: Lagnada, Ronnie Vicente – 89,811

Vice Mayor: Aquino, Joboy – 88,641

Member, House of Representatives; Agusan del Norte, First Legislative District: Fortun, Lawrence Lemuel – 82,773

Members, Sangguniang Panlungsod; Agusan del Norte-Butuan City Lone District:

Carampatana, Glenn - 94,445

Nalcot, Ferdinand - 87,022

Burdeos, Rema - 84,591

Plaza, Derrick - 82,892

Nortega, Cromwell - 76,042

Andaya, Omar - 75,397

Busa, Cherry May - 75,237

Rosario, Vincent Rizal - 71,919

Sanchez, Ehrnest John - 70,901

Unay, John Gil Sr. - 68,563

The winning political contenders had reached more voters in a smooth electoral process and it is now a challenge for a person who is elected for the favor of the people and who is dependent on the suffrages of his fellow citizens to prove worthy of taking the place for true public service. (VLG, PIA-Caraga)


Caraga’s PRDP approved projects rises to P982 Million

By Fretcher Magatao

BUTUAN CITY, May 10 (PIA) - The Philippine Rural Development Project–National Project Coordination Office (PRDP-NPCO) reports that Caraga’s approved infrastructure and enterprise subprojects have already reached a total of P982,605,907.

Intensified Building-Up of Infrastructure and Logistics for Development (I-BUILD) Component which aims to put in place strategic and climate-resilient rural infrastructure facilities along the value chain got the bulk of this amount with nineteen approved subprojects amounting to a total of P 966,385,906.98. Seven of these are already under implementation and twelve subprojects are still on the procurement process.

Other than the approved 19 subprojects, I-BUILD for Caraga still has five subprojects in the pipeline which has a total amount of P516,563,803.89 and hoped to be approved within the year.

These infrastructure subprojects would translate to improved road networks linking production areas with markets to enhance efficiency of transporting agricultural products; increased productivity from irrigation and water supply systems; and lower postharvest losses.

The 24 I-BUILD subprojects for Caraga would create a total amount of P1,482,949,710.92.

I-BUILD team in the region is doing its best to achieve the target and has formulated a program that would reach the attainment of 41% disburement of implemented subprojects by June. “We have been busy helping the LGUs and contractors comply the needed requirements so we can reach our goal for this year,” Engr. Rene Morales, I-BUILD Component Head said during the provincial coordination meeting.

On the other hand, Investments for Rural Enterprises and Agriculture and Fisheries Productivity (I-REAP) Component, which aims to strengthen and develop viable agri-fishery based enterprises through efficient value chains of key agriculture and fishery products already has one approved subproject amounting to P16,220,000 on procurement process for the Integrated Abaca Enhancement Enterprises in Santiago, Agusan del Norte.

The component has also four other subprojects amounting to a total of P65,584,180.32 in the pineline. One production, processing and marketing subproject for Agusan del Sur and the same subproject for the Province of Dinagat Islands. Two additional enterprise subprojects are also hoped to be implemented in Agusan del Norte within the year.

The realization of I-REAP subprojects would translate to an increased smallholder groups operating viable enterprises; enhanced producer productivity through formalized arrangements for marketing and technical services; and increased smallholder and fisher resilience to climate change and adverse weather conditions.

PRDP is a six-year national government platform for an inclusive, value chain-oriented and climate resilient agriculture and fisheries sector. It is the upscale version of the Mindanao Rural Development Program (MRDP) where innovations are introduced to address current and emerging challenges and make rural development more effective.

It is currently implemented under the Department of Agriculture (DA), PRDP is jointly funded by the World Bank, National Government and the Local Government Units (LGUs).

The project has partnered with LGUs and the private sector in providing key infrastructure, facilities, technology and information that will raise income, productivity and competitiveness among the players in agriculture. (DA-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


Call for Nominations: 2016 Outstanding Undergraduate Thesis in Herbal Medicine Award

By Margarette Faye Urbizondo

BUTUAN CITY, May 10 (PIA) - The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (DOST-PCHRD) in cooperation with the Gruppo Medica, Inc. (GMI) and the Caraga Health Research and Development Consortium (CHRDC) is pleased to announce the call for nominations for the 2016 DOST-PCHRD – Gruppo Medica Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Thesis in Herbal Medicine.

The award is given to provide motivation for students, with technical guidance of their faculty adviser, to view undergraduate thesis as an excellent opportunity to contribute to national interest. The Award recognizes relevant the innovative research works on herbal medicine that can lead to practical and/or commercial applications.

The search is open to all undergraduate students of Colleges of Pharmacy, Chemistry, Nursing and Arts and Sciences who have completed their thesis projects on medicinal plants in the current school year. Nominations must be made by the students’ faculty adviser using the attached prescribed nomination form. Aany alteration on the nomination form is not allowed. All nominees must submit the following requirements together with the nomination form: (1) one soft copy and hard copies of the thesis report, (2) plant authentication certification and (3) Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) certification for researches involving animals and/or Ethical clearance from the Ethics Review Committee for researches involving human participants. Nominations with incomplete requirement will automatically be excluded from the list of official entries. A maximum of three (3) thesis projects are allowed per institution.

The Gruppo Medica Inc. will be giving a cash prize of P60,000.00 for the first prize or (P42,000 for the student, P12,000 for the mentor and P6,000 for the school), P40,000.00 for the second prize winner (P28,000 for the student, P8,000 for the mentor and P4,000 for the school) and P20,000.00 for the third prize winner (P14,000 for the student, P4,000 for the mentor and P2,000 for the school).

Deadline for submission of nomination to the consortium is on May 20, 2016. The nominees will be reviewed and short-listed by the consortium. The short-listed nominees will be submitted to PCHRD not later than May 27, 2016. (DOST-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


Surigao Norte tourism office pushes for water infra projects

SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, May 10 (PIA) – In another partnership program with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the Department of Tourism through the Provincial Tourism and Culture Office (PTCO) of Surigao del Norte will identify water infrastructure projects for priority tourism areas with problems on potable water supply.

According to PTCO Officer-in-Charge Arturo M. Cruje, the province has pushed for the development of its priority tourism areas which has potentials to become tourist destinations. However, most of these areas have no sufficient water supply especially in Siargao Island.

He said that the funds will come from the savings from Water Supply Funds of Fiscal Year General Appropriations Act (GAA) of 2013 and 2015.

"Under the GAA for 2015 and 2016, water supply projects in these priority areas can now be funded. The DPWH Regional Office or District Engineering Office shall be responsible for the full implementation of the identified water infrastructure projects," Cruje said.

The provincial tourism office will identify the projects areas and endorse the list to a unified management body which shall be created soon. (Provincial Culture and Tourism Office-SDN/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


DENR-13 develops 4,452 hectares mangrove plantation under NGP

By Eric Herzon F. Gallego

BUTUAN CITY, May 10 (PIA) – Areas developed and planted to mangroves and beach forest by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) personnel under the National Greening Program (NGP) have reached 4,452 hectares since 2011.

Surigao del Norte reported that 55 percent of the total target area have been planted in 1,989 hectares coastline with bacauan mangrove species and 447.6 hectares of beach forest. Surigao del Sur reported that some 1,544 hectares of beach coast were planted with mangrove propagules.

There were only 5 percent or 220 hectares of mangroves developed and planted in Dinagat and 215 hectares in Agusan del Norte.

“We are focusing our efforts for the meantime on mangrove propagules planting considering the long months of dry-spell that hit the country since October 2015,” said DENR Caraga Regional Director Nonito M. Tamayo.

The personnel of the PENR Office of Agusan del Norte and CENR Office of Nasipit including the DENR Regional offices went to the different planting sites along the beaches to plant mangrove propagules in celebration of the 46th Earth Day with the theme “Let us plant trees.”

CENR officer Norman Asugan of CENRO Nasipit, Agusan del Norte said more than 3,000 mangrove propagules have been planted by the DENR personnel during the Earth Day celebration, spread in different sites of the western coast of the province with a combined area of 10 hectares. (DENR-Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


News Feature: Smoking and excessive alcoholic drinking a deadly tandem

By Jund Rian A. Doringo

It is quite impossible to imagine a party without a generous amount of booze on the table especially on occasions such as birthdays or weddings.

Within the Filipino culture, alcoholic beverage consumption among peers and family, locally referred as inuman or toma, is a social norm almost visible in every corner of the streets in the barangay. It signifies the Filipino custom of pakikisama or being one through social events.

And more often than not, a full blown party is completed with a shot of alcohol in the right hand and a stick of cigarette in the other. Not to mention the sounds of the videoke blasting like there’s no tomorrow, but that’s a totally different story.

The combination of smoking and drinking alcoholic beverage maybe enjoyable but this pleasure comes with a price to pay or a life to risk.

Excessive alcoholic beverage consumption may lead to being overweight or obese, having nutrient deficiencies, hypertension, erratic blood glucose control and in severe cases, liver cirrhosis, cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers.

Remember that alcohol becomes fat once digested and broken down in the body, thus taking too much of alcohol will lead to certain types of lifestyle or non-communicable diseases.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the harmful use of alcohol results in 3.3 million deaths each year. On the average, every person in the world 15 years old or older drinks 6.2 liters of pure alcohol per year.

Smoking or tobacco use, on the other hand, has been associated with different kinds of cancer such as cancer of the mouth, tongue, throat and lungs as well as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, ischemic heart disease, hypertension, and other diseases.

What is more alarming is that even those who do not smoke but are exposed to cigarette smoke can also have the diseases of the smoker due to second-hand smoke.

The WHO revealed that tobacco kills up to half of its users or around 6 million people each year where more than 5 million are the result of direct tobacco use, while more than 600,000 are the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.

In the Philippines, the National Nutrition Survey (NNS) by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2013 found that one in every four Filipinos are current smokers and smokers are as young as 10 years old.

The presence of harmful substances in tobacco or cigarettes alters the normal functions of the body in supplying enough oxygen in the blood to other body organs.

For that reason, it is best not to ever try smoking or if the habit is formed, quit smoking. Here are some helpful tips on how to quit:

    Decide when to quit and stick to it. It is advisable to have a time frame of when to quit.
    If withdrawal symptoms occur, consult a doctor on how to cope with them. Withdrawal symptoms may include nausea, cold perspiration, trembling and restlessness.
    Drink plenty of water.
    Be physically active
    Avoid going to places that would entice smoking. Throw all cigarettes and cigarette paraphernalia.

It is never wrong to go out and bond with friends or unwind sometimes. But then, it also not right to compromise health with these fun activities.

So quit smoking and drink moderately if you can’t avoid it.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/ Fax Nos: 837-2934 or 837-3164; Direct Line:839-1839; DOST Trunk Line: 837-2071-82 local 2296 or 2284; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph.  Like our Facebook page at facebook.com/FNRI.DOST or follow our Twitter account at twitter.com/FNRI_DOST. (FNRI-DOST S&T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)


News Feature: HIV does not have to be a death sentence

By Jund Rian A. Doringo

Starting as a mysterious pneumonia-like infection in the 1980s, acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is the most advanced stage of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection usually manifested by the accumulation of diseases rooting from having very low or no immune system response.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), HIV targets the immune system and weakens people’s defense systems against infections and certain cancers. It destroys and impairs the functions of the immune cells while increases the vulnerability of an infected person a wide range of diseases that a person not infected can normally fight off.

Although a lot of misconceptions about the transmission of HIV have been circulating for years now, HIV can only be transmitted through the exchange of certain body fluids specifically the blood, vaginal secretions, semen, and breast milk.

Consequently, saliva or sweat and any other body fluids can not transfer the virus, not even mosquito bites.

Signs and symptoms of the virus infection may vary from one person to the other, but the most noticeable are swollen lymph nodes, weight loss, fever, diarrhea, and cough that can later develop to severe illnesses such as tuberculosis, cryptococcal meningitis, lymphoma, Kaposi’s sarcoma, to name a few, as confirmed by the WHO.

Nevertheless, the only way to know if a person is HIV positive is through HIV testing.

The WHO revealed that “HIV continues to be a major global public health issue, having claimed more than 34 million lives so far in 2014, where 1.2 million people died from HIV-related causes globally. Moreover, there were approximately 36.9 million people living with HIV at the end of 2014 with 2 million people becoming newly infected with HIV in 2014 globally.”

In the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) revealed that there are over 27,000 cases of reported HIV as of July 2015. Though the prevalence of HIV and AIDS in the country is low, the Philippines has the fastest growing HIV epidemic in the world (WHO).

As of this writing, there is no known cure for HIV. The issue of HIV has imposed a stigma in the society up until today. However, getting tested positive for HIV is not a death sentence anymore.

There is a continuous development for the regression and treatment of the virus through effective anti-retroviral (ARV) drugs to help prevent transmission of the virus and let people living with it enjoy productive lives.

In line with this, the United Nations (UN) in 2000 has committed and signed time-bound and quantifiable targets to address issues of extreme poverty, along with its underlying causes known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which are expected to be met by 2015.

The MDG 6 focuses on combating HIV or AIDS, malaria and other diseases by reversing the spread of HIV or AIDS, malaria and other diseases by 2015.

The battle against HIV or AIDS is achievable by limiting exposure to risk factors and observing HIV preventions like using condom and sterile injecting equipment, and early detection of the virus via HIV testing.

If found positive, don’t lose hope. With continuous ARV treatment, regular check-up and counseling coupled with healthy lifestyle, eating properly, having the right mind and attitude, and regular exercise, people living with the virus can live longer and stronger.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/ Fax Nos: 837-2934 or 837-3164; Direct Line:839-1839; DOST Trunk Line: 837-2071-82 local 2296 or 2284; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph.  Like our Facebook page at facebook.com/FNRI.DOST or follow our Twitter account at twitter.com/FNRI_DOST. (FNRI-DOST S&T Media Service/PIA-Caraga)