(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Saturday, 04 April, 2020) Easterlies affecting eastern section of Mindanao. Mindanao will have partly cloudy-cloudy skies w/ isolated rainshowers due to Easterlies on the eastern section of Mindanao & localized thunderstorms on other portions of Mindanao. Light-moderate winds from E-NE w/ slight-moderate seas.PAGASA Mind./cta/ayn

Thursday, January 02, 2020


Caraga VAW desk officers join 1st Regional Quiz Bowl in Butuan


By Jennifer P. Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY, Jan. 2 (PIA) - To equip them and widen their knowledge on gender and development (GAD) campaign against any form of violence and abuses to women, as well as women's rights, the 1st Caraga Regional Quiz Bowl for Violence Against Women (VAW) Desk Officers was recently conducted in this city.

This was spearheaded by the Regional Inter-Agency Committee Against Trafficking and Violence Against Women and Children (RIACAT-VAWC) composed of various government agencies in the region.

The VAW desk officers had performed well and gave their best to win in the competition with the full support of their respective local government units from the different provinces of Caraga.

Joan Bitos, VAW desk officer of Barangay Taglatawan, Bayugan City was one of the participants who prepared for the said event and who wanted to show dedication in her duties and responsibilities and be able to raise public awareness on women's rights, as well as gender mainstreaming.

“It’s a privilege to work in public service and being a public servant is a great opportunity for me to help my constituents particularly the women sector. We should not only be a good public servant but also equipped with knowledge and skills to perform well in our respective functions,” said Bitos.

Lt. Ruth Cullantes, officer-in-charge of the center for women and children protection desk - Agusan del Norte Police Provincial Office, said that this initiative of the government contributes much to the development of the VAW desk officers, as it will also aid them to effectively address the issues and concerns that women and children are facing today in every community.

“This kind of activity is very useful for the VAW desk officers, and we believe that they would be more effective in their function, along with the PNP in handling cases from the barangays,” Cullantes said.

Meanwhile, Catherine Aranas, social welfare officer and focal person for RIACAT-VAWC Caraga emphasized that through the conduct of the quiz bowl, local chief executives would also be able to determine what specific trainings they are to provide for their VAW desk officers to make them more capable of their function. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)

Abandoned NPA cadaver, brought home by Army


By 1Lt. Roel T. Maglalang

BUENAVISTA, Agusan del Norte, Jan. 2 -- "Justice for my son." This was an outcry of a mother whose son was abandoned by his comrades in the mountains of Sierra Madre when he got sick and was unable to carry firearms and cannot anymore fight the government forces. This was what Erlinda Cabachete of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte was begging when she saw and received her son, Bertoldo Cabachete.

He was brought home by the government troops from the hills of Sierra Madre in Luzon to their house in Nasipit, Agusan del Norte. It can be recalled that last November 30, 2019 the cadaver of late Bertoldo Cabatchete alias “LJ”, male, 29 years old, and a regular member of NPA’s Komiteng Larangang Gerilya Sierra Madre, Central Luzon Regional Committee (CLRC) operating in the mountain ranges of Sierra Madre was found at the vicinity of Mt. Olong Amot, Barangay General Luna, Carranglan, Nueva Ecija by the elements 84th Infantry (Victorious) Battalion, 7th Infantry (Kaugnay) Division after receiving an information from a former rebel that one of his comrades was left alone by his fellow NPA members.


Alias LJ died due to severe illness and was just abandoned and buried by the CPP-NPA Terrorists at the hinter area of Barangay General Luna, Carranglan, Nueva Ecija. His family was not informed of his situation. He was not even given medication nor brought to a hospital.

The remains of alias LJ was then exhumed by the soldiers after a former rebel gave the information and location of where his dead body was buried. It was then brought to Villamor Airbase, Pasay City and through a C130, he was flown to Languindingan Airport, Cagayan de Oro City on December 29, 2019 where his mother, Erlinda, was waiting.

With great sorrow, Mrs. Erlinda Cabatchete, mother of alias LJ poured out her grievance against the CPP-NPA Terrorists (CNTs) who recruited her son. “We are very saddened by the death of our son. He left our home way back 2016 and said that he will apply for a job in Manila. But then he didn’t communicate with us anymore. We don’t have any idea that he was recruited by the CNTs and what happened to him now really broke me into pieces. It's hard for me to know that I can no longer see my son alive anymore. The heartless NPAs recruited my son, but they never help him when he was sick. They should have brought him to the doctor because we usually admit him to the doctor when his illness attacks. If only the NPAs did not recruit my son, he is still alive up to now because I can take care of him,” said Mrs. Cabatchete.

Moreover, Mayor Enrico Corvera of Nasipit, Agusan del Norte said that "this is another incident that shows the CPP-NPA Terrorists don't care and value life. That is why, we initiate programs to insulate the youth from being recruited by the CPP-NPA.”

Likewise, Lieutenant Colonel Francisco L. Molina Jr, Commander Officer, 23IB covering the area of Nasipit expressed his condolences to the bereaved family of LJ. "Kung hindi sana siya niloko at nilinlang Ng CPP-NPA, marahil ay buhay pa siya ngayon. Everyone must be vigilant from the deceit of the CPP-NPA," he said.

"They take advantage on the weaknesses of the poor people in staging their nonsense business," Molina added. (CMO Officer, 23IB, Philippine Army/PIA Agusan del Norte)

Army, locals hold indignation rally vs NPAs 

By 1Lt. Krisjuper Andreo Punsalan

BAYUGAN CITY, Agusan del Sur, Jan. 2 - “NPA salot sa lipunan.”
This was the drumbeat of citizens from all walks of life during the recently held indignation rally against the New People’s Army (NPA) terrorists in Bayugan City and Lianga Peoples’ Park in Lianga, Surigao del Sur, simultaneously.

The local government unit (LGU) representatives, Indigenous Peoples (IPs), youth organizations with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the 3rd Special Forces “Arrowhead” Battalion (3SFBn) attended the anti-NPA campaign.

Lianga Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Hawudon Jumar Bucales said the Communist NPA Terrorists (CNTs) are the ones who destroyed their IP culture by disrespecting the IP’s tribal governance system.

“Gusto nilang ipalit na mga lider sa IP ay yung mga kaya nilang kontrolin at gamitin ang tribo para iabante ang political at armadong pakikibaka ng CPP-NPA (They wanted to post leaders for the IPs those that they could easily control and use the IP tribes to pursue the political and armed struggle of the CPP-NPA),” Bucales said.

He also called on the militant groups to stop using the tribe as props to gain sympathy from foreign funding institutions.

“Pauwiin niyo na ang mga katribo naming nasa Maynila, nandyan sa UP Diliman, ginagawa niyo silang kasangkapan para kumuha lang ng simpatya at siraan ang gobyerno at military na tumutugis sa mga teroristang NPA (Release our co-IPs who are now in Manila, particularly in UP Diliman, you are just using them as your instrument to get sympathy from the public and force them to revolt against the government, and prevent the Army from pursuing the terrorist NPA),” Bucales added.

This year, Agusan, Surigao del Sur municipalities and various provinces in Mindanao have declared the CNTs as persona non-grata making them more irrelevant and their cause useless.
Lt. Col. Joey Baybayan, commander of 3SFBn, called on the remaining terrorists to surrender and lay down their arms as the whole nation stands against them.


“With the Task Forces to End Local Communist Armed Conflict, many people became enlightened with their deceitful tactics making them more cautious and concerned because anyone could be a target and a victim of NPA recruitment, extortion and many other atrocities committed by the CNTs,” LTC Baybayan said.

“Filipinos are peace-loving and if you really fight for the people, hear their cry against you. The people want you out. They want you to stop your crimes and atrocities. The people don’t need you (NPAs) because you are a hindrance to attaining lasting peace in the country,” he added.

Meanwhile, Hands off of Our Children, League of the Parents of Philippines, Citizen Crime Watch at Manila NGO Alliance, Bantay Bayan and other concerned citizens rose up against the CNTs, Communist Party of the Philippines and National Democratic Front, who have caused divisiveness, terror and unrest especially in the conflict-affected areas around the country through mass rallies in Metro Manila. (CMO officer, 3SFBn/ PIA-Agusan del Sur)

Pangangalaga sa Agusan Marsh, pinaigting pa ng lokal na pamahalaan

By Jennifer P. Gaitano


LUNGSOD NG BUTUAN, Enero 2 (PIA) - Para mas maprotektahan ang Agusan River na pinakamalaking wetlands sa Caraga region, nagpulong ang iba't-ibang ahensya ng gobyerno sa pangunguna ng Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) at ng pribadong sektor para bumuo ng plano na makakatulong sa pagsalba rito mula sa posibleng pagkasira.

Malaking parte ng Agusan River ang Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary, na idineklarang protected area sa Agusan del Sur ng dating pangulong Fidel V. Ramos.

Nagsisilbi itong drainage basin na malaking tulong sa mga Agusanon tuwing panahon ng tag-ulan at mula sa pagtama ng bagyo.

Ayon kay Agusan del Sur Governor Santiago Cane, Jr., mahigpit na pinapatulad ng gobyerno ang Environmental Code sa Agusan Marsh.

Nanawagan din sya sa lahat ng Caraganon na tumulong sa pagpreserba ng mga natural-grown trees na malapit sa  wetlands dahil  ang mga ito ang  nagbibigay-buhay sa Agusan Marsh.

Para naman kay Eugene Taw-on, isang mag-aaral sa Bayugan National Comprehensive High School, mahalaga ang papel ng mga kabataan sa research ng gobyerno at pribadong institusyon maging ang mga hakbang nito para mapanatiling buhay at kapaki-pakinabang ang wetlands ng rehiyon.

Samantala, binigyang-diin ni DENR-Caraga regional director, Atty. Felix Alicer ang kahalagahan ng Agusan River at ang binibigay na benepisyo nito sa mga Caraganon. Isa ito sa mga kilalang tourist spots sa rehiyon.
Sakop ng Agusan Marsh ang mga bayan ng San Francisco, Rosario, Bunawan, Veruela, Loreto, Talacogon At La Paz sa probinsya ng Agusan del Sur. Idineklara rin itong Ramsar Wetland Site noong 1999. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)

VAW desk officers nakilahok sa 1st Reg'l Quiz Bowl sa Butuan City

By Jennifer P. Gaitano


LUNGSOD NG BUTUAN, Enero 2 (PIA) - Sa layong mahasa at lumawak pa ang kaalaman ukol sa gender and development (GAD) at kampanya laban karahasan sa mga kababaihan, isinagawa sa lungsod ng Butuan ang 1st Regional Quiz Bowl for Violence Against Women (VAW) desk officers ng Caraga region.

Ito ay sa pangunguna ng Regional Inter-Agency Committee Against Trafficking and Violence Against Women and Children (RIACAT-VAWC) na binubuo ng ibat-ibang ahensiya sa rehiyon.

Aktibong nakibahagi ang VAW desk officers mula sa ibat-ibang probinsya ng Caraga.

Isa si Joan Bitos, VAW desk officer ng Barangay Taglatawan, Bayugan City sa mga naghanda para sa nasabing quiz bowl.

Ayon kay Bitos, nais lamang niyang maipakita ang kanyang dedikasyon sa kanyang tungkulin na mapalawak ang kamalayaan ng mga kababayan sa karapatan ng mga kababaihan.

“Isang karangalan ang maglingkod sa bayan at mapagsilbihan ang ating mga kababayan lalo na ng mga kababaihan. Importante talaga na hindi lang magaling magsilbi sa bayan, kundi may alam din at marunong mag-handle ng mga kaso sa sinasakupang komunidad ang kagaya naming VAW desk officers,” sabi ni Bitos.

Para naman kay Lt. Ruth Cullantes, officer-in-charge ng center for women and children protection desk-Agusan del Norte Police Provincial Office, malaking tulong ang inisyatibong ito ng gobyerno upang matugunan din ang mga isyu at concern na kinakaharap ng mga kababaihan at mga bata sa bawat komunidad.

“Malaking tulong para sa ating mga VAW desk officers sa bawat barangay na mas mapalawak pa ang kanilang kaalaman at mahasa pa ang kanilang galing sa pagresolba sa mga isyu lalu na sa mga kababaihan. Patuloy naman ang aming koordinasyon sa kanila,” ani ni Cullantes.

Samantala, binigyang-diin din ni Catherine Aranas, social welfare officer at focal person ng RIACAT-VAWC ang kahalagahan ng pagbibigay ng naaayon at nararapat na skills training at capability building nang mas maging epektibo sila sa paganap ng kanilang tungkulin. (JPG/PIA-Caraga)