(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Monday, 05 June 2023) Southwest Monsoon affecting the western section of Central and Southern Luzon. Butuan City, Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms due Southwest Monsoon. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. Light to Moderate winds coming Southwest to West will prevail with Slight to Moderate seas (1.0 to 2.1 meters).

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

TESDA, DOTr launch 'tsuper iskolar' program in Butuan

By Jennifer P. Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY, Sept. 25 (PIA) -- With the implementation of the government’s Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP), the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and Department of Transportation (DOTr) also launched the “Tsuper Iskolar” Program as a way of stepping up their efforts in helping those who are affected by the modernization program.

The “Tsuper Iskolar” aims to provide skills training and additional knowledge to the beneficiaries of the PUVMP, and even those who would want to become entrepreneurs.

During the launching held in Butuan City, different sectors understand better the intention of the concerned government agencies, as well as the opportunities which the “Tsuper Iskolar” program brings to the region.

“The Tsuper Iskolar program is really a big help especially for those who would venture into another field of work apart from the transport industry. With the skills trainings to be provided by TESDA and DOTr, I’m sure many would benefit from this scholarship program and would excel in their field of interest,” said Elizalde Mission, operator of Balangay Transport Service Cooperative (BALTRANSCO).

According to Director Florencio Sunico Jr., spokesperson of TESDA, this is in line with the scholarship program thru Memorandum of Agreement between the DOTR and TESDA signed on December 11, 2018 for the stakeholder support mechanism component of the PUVMP.

He said, under the “Tsuper Iskolar,” beneficiaries will receive food and transportation allowance while undertaking the skills training.

Atty. Martin Delgra III, chairperson of Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said that the agency wanted to enhance the livelihood of the transport sector with their families. Based on their monitoring, Caraganons have positive feedback on the said program.

“We’ve been receiving positive feedback from Caraga region’s stakeholders on this program and we hope to help more. We also thanked the active support of the Caraganons in this endeavor,” said Atty. Delgra.

Meanwhile, TESDA-Caraga regional director Ashary Banto also bared that many have already visited their provincial and regional offices for queries and signified their interest to avail of the scholarship program.

The official further said that TESDA has also been implementing other programs that will address the needs of the different sectors in the region. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)

800 AgNor residents benefit social services 

By Nora L. Molde

RTR, Agusan del Norte, Sept. 25 (PIA) -- More than 800 residents of Barangays Tagbongabong, San Antonio and Balang-blang in the municipality of Remedios T. Romualdez (RTR) in Agusan del Norte benefited from the various social, dental, medical and other services and assistance from the government through the conduct of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) immersion conducted by the provincial government of Agusan del Norte with the assistance from different line agencies and partner stakeholders of the province, held at the covered court of barangay Tagbongabong, here.

RTR Mayor Richard Daquipil expressed his thanks to the provincial government for conducting the PPOC immersion and for bringing the services to their municipality.

During the conduct of the PPOC immersion, Krizia Mae Mangadlao, a six-month pregnant from Barangay Balang-balang, was thankful for receiving a buntis kit containing supplies that will be used during her delivery.

Also, senior citizen Rosalinda Mundia has availed of the free dental, medicines and an eyeglass. She was thankful for conducting the said PPOC immersion in the area.

Accordingly, four barangays in the municipality of RTR, namely: Tagbongabong, Mahaba, San Antonio and Balang-balang were identified as rebel-infested barangays. (NCLM/PIA Agusan del Norte)

'All-out' war vs NPAs yields 11 firearms in AgSur

By Cpt. Aldim T. Viernes

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Sept. 25 -- The 401st Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army based in Agusan del Sur has recovered 11 high-powered firearms, two low-powered firearms, three anti-personnel mines and two NPA cadavers together with various war materials as its campaign intensifies in the whole province a week after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte called for an all-out war against the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) on Sept. 19, 2019.

In compliance with the directive of the Commander-in-Chief, the Armed Forces of the Philippines also announced on Wednesday an “all-out” war against communist rebels to finally end the five-decade-old insurgency problem in the country.

“With the pronouncement of PRRD, I ordered all commanders under my brigade to double their efforts to hit these NPA terrorists at all costs,” said Colonel Allan Hambala, commander of 401st Infantry “Unite N’ Fight” Brigade in Agusan del Sur.
Col. Hambala added that these significant accomplishments of battalions under his brigade are the results of the implementation of Executive Order No. 70 or the whole-of-nation approach to end local communist armed conflict, and the high state of morale of the troops knowing that the president fully supports the Army’s mission on the ground.

Snowballing Number of Surrender

On Sept. 19, alias “Bong,” a 29 year old NPA medic, surrendered to 3rd Special Forces Battalion in Bayugan City, bringing along with him one Cal.50 Sniper rifle and one Cal. 45 pistol through a joint effort with the Philippine National Police (PNP) Regional Mobile Force Battalion after having been traumatized by an encounter with the government troops, where one of his comrades was killed last December 2018.

This was in addition to the earlier surrender of two NPA elements led by alias “Sion” who disclosed an arms cache in the hinter area of Sitio Hugmakan, San Juan, Bayugan City, leading to the recovery of one M16 rifle and three Caliber 30 Garand rifles. They are all members of the Manobo tribe who decided to surrender because of continuous exploitation of the CPP-NPA in their tribal communities.

“We, the Lumads cannot say 'no' to NPAs when tasked to be their couriers because we will surely be killed. We were always threatened and coerced,” said alias Sion.

Another NPA squad leader and two members of Militia ng Bayan (MB) from Bunawan Brook also laid down their arms to the 75th Infantry Battalion on September 18 after experiencing hardship and demoralization inside the communist movement. They brought with them one M14 rifle, one Carbine rifle, two homemade shotguns, two Anti-Personnel Mines (APM), detonating cords and subversive documents.

These former rebels are now being processed by the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office at Government Center, Capitol, Patin-ay for the immediate release of their financial assistance and psycho-social interventions under the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP), in which they are entitled to receive livelihood and housing assistance, educational program and other basic services of the government.

“We at the Provincial Government are delighted of their surrender and hopeful that more will follow. Rest assured that we will provide them the needed services and benefits due to them through ECLIP. We also hope they are committed to do their share and never to return again to rebellion,” said Arlene Sanchez, Provincial Director, DILG, the lead agency on ECLIP and Amnesty Cluster of Agusan del Sur.

Focused Military Operations

Meanwhile, two cadavers of NPAs were left behind after a 30-minute encounter between the 26th Infantry Battalion and an estimated 60 fully-armed NPAs in an uninhabited part of Barangay Mahagsay, San Luis on Tuesday afternoon, resulting to the recovery of two AK 47 rifles, one AR18 rifle attached with M203 Grenade Launcher, magazines with live ammunitions, one APM, medical paraphernalia, foodstuffs, seven back packs and voluminous subversive documents. The government troops also seized the terrorists’ hideout with 50 improvised shelters.

The security operation was conducted after the military received reports from the tribal communities in the area regarding the presence of NPAs roaming around inside their ancestral domains.

Said cadavers were brought to Poblacion, San Luis and received by the local government officials for identification process and proper disposition. (CMO Officer, 401st Brigade, PA/PIA-Agusan del Sur)

Army commander visits Agusan, Surigao troops

By 1Lt. Krisjuper Andreo J. Punsalan

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Sept. 25 -- The Philippine Army Special Forces Regiment (Airborne) commander, Brigadier General Lincoln Francisco T. Tagle, AFP made his first official visit to one of his organic units in Mindanao to include the 3rd Special Forces (Arrowhead) Battalion (3SFBn) based in Barangay Noli, Bayugan City, this province from Sept. 11 to 13, 2019.

His visit boosted the morale of the 3SFBn which covers the areas of Bayugan City and municipality of Prosperidad in Agusan del Sur. The 3SFBn areas of operation in Surigao del Sur covers the municipalities of Lianga, San Agustin, Marihatag, Cagwait, Bayabas, and portions of San Miguel and Tago. 3SFBn is composed of the 7th Special Forces Company (SPARTANS) Company, 8th Special Forces (DRAGOONS) Company, and the 9th Special Forces (HOUNDS) Company.

Lt. Col. Joey Baybayan, commanding officer of 3SFBn, expressed his gratitude, “We are thankful for your visit sir because your mere presence as our leader gives us the impression that you care about the morale and welfare of our troops. This alone inspires this unit to do its best towards the accomplishment of our mission here in our area of operations,” he said.

Upon arrival, BGen. Tagle paid a courtesy call to the 401st Infantry (UNITY) Brigade. Not the casual and usual visit, he made his rounds to all company headquarters and even went up the critical locations of CAA Patrol Bases to include the Mabuhay Patrol Base in Mabuhay, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur and Janipaan Patrol Base in Janipaan, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur to see the actual conditions of his troops.

Further, he participated in the Bayugan City on Wheels in the hinter barangay of Calaitan in Bayugan City to witness the convergence efforts of the local government unit and the 3SFBn in line with the Whole-of-Nation Approach to end local communist armed conflict in their area of operations.

On the other hand, LTC Baybayan presented the former rebels and firearms recovered from the successful combat operations and the influx of surrenders since the start of the year.

BGen. Tagle is proud of the unit’s performance and urged the troops to carry on the good work and continue to improve. “While we accomplish our tasks, let us not forget that this is not the end of the line. We will face far more challenging and more difficult missions that's why we have to be ready at all times. Never stop improving,” he said.

Currently, the Special Forces Regiment (Airborne) battalions of the Philippine Army are strategically based in the critical areas of Mindanao particularly in Bukidnon, Sulu, Basilan, and Cotabato. (3SFBn, PA/PIA-Agusan del Sur)

DOST, tutulungan ang mga kooperatiba sa Bayugan City

By Jennifer P. Gaitano

LUNGSOD NG BUTUAN, Setyembre 25 (PIA) -- Nais ng Department of Science and Technology (DOST) na matulungan ang mga kooperatiba sa lungsod ng Bayugan, dahil madalas ay single proprietorship at maliliit na korporasyon ang kanilang nabibigyan ng tulong teknikal at pinansyal.

Ayon kay DOST Sec. Fortunato Dela Peña, malaki ang potensyal ng mga kooperatiba na umusad at mas mapalawak pa ang kanilang produkto gamit ang makabagong teknolohiya, hindi lamang sa lungsod pati na sa ibang lugar.

“Patuloy ang ating koordinasyon kasama ang lokal na pamahalaan at iba pang ahensiya upang matulungan din natin ang mga kooperatiba ditto sa Bayugan City,” sabi ni Sec. Dela Peña.

Lubos naman ang pasasalamat ng lokal na pamahalan sa patuloy na koordinasyon ng DOST upang masiguro ang pagbigay ng mga magagandang oportunidad sa lahat ng sektor ng lungsod.

Hinimok  rin ni Mayor Kirk Asis  ang lahat ng kabataan na maging aktibo sa paglahok sa mga kompetisyon na may kinalaman sa Science and Technology.

Susuportahan ng lokal na pamahalaan ang mga kabataang lalahok dito at bibigyan ng pinansyal na ayuda. May nakalaang budget umano ang local government unit para dito.

“Suportado naman ng lokal na pamahalaan ang mga aktibidad na tumutugon sa kapakanan ng mga kabataan at mag-aaral dito sa Bayugan City,” pahayag ni Mayor Asis.

Kaugnay nito, binigyang-diin ni Sec. Dela Peña na mahalaga ring matulungan ng lokal na pamahalaan ang mga kabataang nais mag-review para sa DOST examinations tulad ng Philippine Science High School Exam,  maging sa mga mag-aaral na gustong lumahok sa Math, Chemistry at Science quizzes, at mga inbentor sa lungsod na lalahok din sa mga kompetisyon. (JPG/PIA-Agusan del Sur)