(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Wednesday, 08 July, 2020) Easterlies affecting the eastern sections of Visayas and Mindanao. Caraga Region will experience partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers due to Easterlies/ Localized thunderstorms. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. Light to moderate winds coming from the East to Southeast will prevail and the coastal waters will be slight to moderate with wave height of 0.6 to 2.1 meters.

Thursday, December 12, 2019


AgNor lights up 'Capitol dreamland'

By Nora L. Molde

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 12 (PIA) -- Different walks of life were so excited and waited forthe light-up ceremony of the Agusan del Norte Capitol dreamland.
Mostly children, families and even adults joined the big crowd to celebrate with the provincial government the opening of the month-long celebration of Christmas season at the Capitol dreamland.

Anna Mary Budiongan Yong with her friends went to the provincial capitol to witness the different lights and decorations. She said, this is the time where she can celebrate with friends especially that Christmas vacation is near. “The decorations are so elegant, and it is a very nice place to stay with friends and families,” she said.

Despite the big crowd, Richard Palma Camosa along with his wife and two kids also witnessed the light up and decorations at the provincial capitol. He said, his kids enjoyed so much during the night and he wished to be back again to enjoy more before the year ends.

In his first year being the father of the province, Governor Dale Corvera expressed his gratitude to the different committees that made the Capitol dreamland a place to stay and celebrate.

“I am happy seeing you all here, celebrating with me my first Christmas as the governor. Thank you for trusting and believing in me,” he said.

The ceremony was also witnessed by Second District Representative Ma. Angelica Rosedell Amante-Matba together with other provincial and municipal officials.  

The light-up ceremony of the Capitol dreamland is an annual tradition of the provincial government of Agusan del Norte of extending joy and entertainment to its constituents. It is open to the public from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. for free.

Provincial administrator Gerry Joey Laurito called on the support from the visiting public to fully cooperate in the implementation of its security plan for the safety of everybody. (NCLM/PIA Agusan del Norte)

VSO holds volunteerism forum in Butuan City

By Doreen Marielle N. Rosales

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 12 (PIA) -- People of all ages with a heart for volunteerism gathered at the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Caraga Conference Hall this city on December 11, 2019, to participate in the Forum on Volunteerism for Development by the Volunteer Service Overseas (VSO) Philippines. This served as a kickoff celebration of this year’s observation of the National Volunteerism Month (NVM). 

The forum featured a lecture on the importance of volunteerism in socio-economic development and in achieving the Filipino’s long-term vision of a “Matatag, Maginhawa at Panatag na Buhay Para sa Lahat” or the AmBisyon Natin 2040, the nation’s plan to attain a ‘predominantly middle-class Philippine society’. Participants were then introduced to VSO, the world’s leading international development organization that envisions a fair world for everyone by fighting poverty through the lasting power of volunteerism. 

This year’s celebration puts emphasis on the important role of volunteers as motivators, enablers, and leaders in development activities and the power of volunteerism to touch the lives of individuals and communities to inspire them to actively contribute and participate in volunteerism for development, encapsulated in the theme ‘Be an Inspiration, Volunteer!’.

Michelle P. Dela Calzada, Chief Economic Development Specialist, considers the partnership with the organization highly significant to the attainment of NEDA’s mandate of inclusive development. 

“The partnership with VSO helps us gather champions and actors who will positively complement and contribute to the efforts of the government’s long-term vision of socioeconomic sustainability in the Philippines,” she said. 

Caraganon volunteer Ma. Socorro Alcantara of the Provincial Planning and Development Office (PPDO) of Surigao del Norte served the Tanzanian community for a year through the Enhancing Employment through Vocational Training (EEVT). She took part in coming up with case studies on the local projects, particularly on providing employment to the women of the community through enrolling in courses that teach non-traditional women jobs such as carpentry and plumbing. She encouraged everyone to share their talent and skills through volunteering overseas, as it is an enriching and life-altering experience. 

VSO started its mission in the Philippines in 1964 and has been helping improve Filipino lives since then. The organization is currently focusing on combating poverty in Mindanao, as it is home to eight of the country’s poorest provinces. They provide intervention through peace initiatives, disaster risk reduction projects, and youth and professional volunteerism. With a strong belief on transgenerational volunteerism, application for volunteers is open to anyone who possesses the passion for community and peace building. (DMR/PIA-Caraga)

RDC Caraga chair keynotes ACE general assembly

By Doreen Marielle N. Rosales

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 12 (PIA) -- Regional executives from the various government agencies gathered for the annual general assembly and Christmas party of the Association of Caraga Executives (ACE) recently at the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Conference Hall, NEDA Caraga, this city.

Regional Development Council (RDC) Caraga Chairperson and Agusan del Norte Governor Dale B. Corvera, the event’s keynote speaker, shared a message of gratitude and hope to the members of the association.

Corvera commended the ACE members for their continued support to him as the head of the council by remaining committed to fulfill their duties.

In his election as the new chairperson of the NEDA Board Regional Development Committee – Mindanao Area Committee, Corvera believed that there is a greater purpose behind having been appointed to the said high-ranking position, “for it had always been handed over to officials from the Davao region.”

“That being said, the interest of Caraga will now be placed under the limelight, maneuvering the Caraga Administrative Region on the path to more progress and development," he said.

"This will enable access to additional support from the government and greater advantage in lobbying for the provision of the committee’s needs to better its aims and programs,” Corvera added.

He also reiterated the formulation of a development agenda in the Caraga RDC for the term 2019-2022 in line with the development directions of the updated Caraga Regional Development Plan for the next term which focuses on increasing investments, pursuing big-ticket projects, further comparative advantages, and over-all promote good governance in the region.

“With you working side by side with me in the RDC, and with synergy in our efforts, the volume of concerns our region is facing… will be easy to address,” Corvera affirmed.

He concluded his speech by emphasizing the importance of unity in materializing their visions for the region. (DMR/PIA-Caraga)

Army lauds CHR's probe on NPA's use of child warriors

By Maj. Francisco P. Garello, Jr.

BUTUAN CITY, Dec. 12 --  The 402nd Infantry (Stingers) Brigade, Philippine Army in Caraga lauded the bold step of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) in probing the continuing use of child warriors by the Communist Party of the Philippines - New People's Army Terrorist (CNT).

In an online article published on Sunday, December 8, 2019, the CHR denounced the CNT’s supposed use of a 16-year-old boy as a soldier, saying the use of minors in combat is a war crime. Likewise, CHR Spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia said, “Under the International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, even non-state armed groups must respect the prohibition to recruit and use children in armed conflict and hostilities.”

Brig. Gen. Maurito Licudine, 402nd Brigade Commander, said they welcome the latest pronouncement of CHR condemning the CNT’s use of child warriors and its action to investigate the recruitment of children.  "They can interview all the former rebels and know their story. We are very confident that the truth will come out and the CHR can now listen first-hand about the deceptive tactics and the ploys of the CNTs in luring to fight the government," he said.

It can be recalled that a 16-year-old minor, Litboy Binongcasan, was killed during an encounter between the troops of 23rd Infantry Battalion under the 402nd Brigade and CNTs belonging to Sentro de Gravidad (SDG) Caocao, Guerilla Front 4A of the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC) under alias Weds/Patrick on November 30, 2019 at Sitio Salvacion, Barangay Manila de Bugabos, Butuan City.

The unfortunate demise of the said minor was denounced by the different sectors of the society. The social media netizens also condemned the use of children as child warriors and pushed them as a combatant at their young age to be involved in an armed conflict.

BGen. Licudine said, for this year alone, they have recorded a total of 10 minor CNT members (one killed, nine surrendered). "It showed the CNTs continue to violate the rights of the children guaranteed under the International Humanitarian Law and the fundamental laws of our land," he said.

"Without the indoctrination and agitation of the CTGs, these children could be in school or with their families enjoying the Christmas season and not carrying firearms and experiencing a violent life,” added BGen. Licudine. (CMO Officer, 402IB PA/PIA Caraga)