Wednesday, February 14, 2018

BIR unveils tax campaign logo in SurSur

By Greg Tataro, Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Feb. 14 – The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) District Office 106 in Surigao del Sur has joined the simultaneous nationwide unveiling of the “2018 Salamat Sayo!” tax campaign logo during the simple flag-raising ceremony program on February 12, 2018. 

Roger Cadavas, BIR Revenue District Officer (RDO), said that the activity of their office was President Rodrigo Duterte’s and BIR Commissioner Ceasar Dulay’s way of saying “thank you” to the taxpaying public, citing the agency’s record-high collection growth rate of up to P1.779 trillion for the last five years. 

The BIR chief added that such Salamat Sayo! logo would soon be hung in tarps around the town for the public to see how great it was for both President Duterte and Commissioner Dulay to feel such an impressive tax collection feat made in 2017.

"Of course, the effort of all the men and women of BIR was taken into account," Cadavas pointed out.

Meanwhile, the BIR District chief admitted a three percent shortfall in collection here in 2017. He cited that as assigned they were supposed to collect P986 million but was only able to rake P949 million.  However, Cadavas was glad to say that as compared to 2016 collection, they were able to exceed it with the tax collected in 2017.

In a related development, the local BIR chief bared that for 2018, they were assigned to get as much as P1.193 billion.

He then again made a strong appeal for an improved level of tax compliance.

Besides, Cadavas also reminded taxpayers to always demand for receipts.

The BIR chief shared the same observation, particularly with most drivers or car owners. He stressed that these sectors were not yet used to the habit of demanding for receipts after gassing up.  On the other hand, he said that gas stations just ignored this obligation to issue receipts, hence, no record of transaction could be traced to the detriment of government. Expounding on the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law, he went on saying that the state was supposed to earn as much as P4.00 per liter in excise tax. (Radyo Pilipinas-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)

Two SurSur northern towns declare state of calamity

By Greg Tataro, Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Feb. 14 – “Valentine’s Day” might not be that happy for the province of Surigao del Sur after Tropical Storm Basyang made landfall in Cortes town and wreaked havoc on February 13. 

In fact, according to Abel De Guzman, Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer, state of calamity had already been declared in two municipalities – Carrascal and Lanuza. "Some neighboring towns might follow suit depending on the result of the on-going Rapid Damage and Needs Assessment," he added. 

Among the northern towns mentioned, which were mostly affected due to flooding,  Carrascal, 72 kilometers north of Tandag City, also known to be a mining area, had been hit the worst. This was due to the landslide that occurred in Barangays Babuyan and Gamuton. "As a result, five remains had been being mourned, three of which were a mother and her two children," De Guzman reported.

Besides, the PDRRM chief said that two bodies, believed to be father and son, were still missing in Barangay Sibahay, Lanuza town. 

While awaiting submission of reports from both the Office of the Provincial Agriculture (OPAg) and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), De Guzman admitted that his office had yet to account for all damages incurred especially in agriculture and infrastructure.

As of PDRRM Council’s Situational Report No. 3 released at 9:00 a.m. on February 14, 2018, a total of 4,947 families had been affected, but some 2,237 of which were reported to be still staying in evacuation centers. (Radyo Pilipinas-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)

NPA rebels kill Lumad leader in Surigao del Norte
SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, Feb. 14 (PIA) – A Lumad leader was allegedly killed by the New People's Army (NPA) on February 9, 2018 at Sitio Palo 10, Brgy Camp Edward, Alegria town.

The victim was identified as Dakula Guillermo Tiambong, 58 years old, a farmer and currently held the position as the Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR) of the Mamanwa Tribe in Alegria, Surigao del Norte.

Datu Tiambong was shot to death in front of his family while attending his farm in the mountains of Brgy. Camp Edward, Alegria.

According to the victim's daughter, Girlie, days before the shooting incident, her father received death threats from the NPAs for being an active peace and development advocate.

In behalf of the Philippine Army, 30th Infantry Battalion Commander Lt. Allen Raymund Tomas extended his deepest condolences to the bereaved family.

“Datu Tiambong was the voice of the Mamanwa tribe during the 3-days IP Summit in Davao on January 30 to February 1, 2018, where President Rodrigo Roa Duterte met them,” Tomas said.

On his part, Philippine Army Brigade Commander BGen. Franco Nemesio M. Gacal condemned the terrorist CPP-NPA for such unlawful act of murder.

“This is again a clear violation of the human rights. With their crime committed, full force of the law will be utilized to bring justice to the victim," said Gacal.

Data Tiambong was the second Lumad leader killed by the NPA after the IP Summit 2018. (30IB, Philippine Army/PIA-Surigao del Norte)

Red tide alert still up in SurSur

By Greg Tataro, Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Feb. 14 (PIA) – Only after coming out with three consecutive lab test with negative results can the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) officially and safely declare Lianga Bay in Surigao del Sur clear again of red tide toxin, according to Bernesita Rojas, chief of the Provincial Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Office (PFARO) here.

Although the PFAR Officer is optimistic that good news will soon get its way, gathering of “all types of shellfish and Acetes sp. or Alamang” from the area will have to remain banned as per Shellfish Bulletin Nos. 03, 04, and 05 issued in early 2018.  Hence, “to avoid Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP),” Rojas took again the advice of BFAR to the public “to refrain from harvesting, marketing and consumption” of the said species.

On the other hand, quoting what was stated in the official communication received from BFAR Caraga Regional Director Dr. Juan Alabaladejo dated February 2, 2018, the PFAR chief mentioned that “fish, squids, shrimps and crabs are safe for human consumption provided that they are fresh and washed thoroughly, and internal organs such as gills and intestines were removed before cooking.”

Except that of Lianga Bay, all other bays in the province have been cited free from red tide toxin contamination. (Radyo Pilipinas-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)