(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Thursday, 26 November, 2020) SYNOPSIS: Easterlies affecting the eastern sections of Mindanao. Mindanao will be partly cloudy to cloudy with isolated rainshowers due to Localized Thunderstorms/Easterlies. Light to moderate winds from east to northeast with slight to moderate seas.

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Surigao City village SK enjoins youth for gov't initiatives vs pandemic

By Doreen Marielle N. Rosales

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 12 (PIA) --  The Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) of Brgy. Mabua in Surigao City enjoins the youth to take part in government initiatives amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

During the Bisaya Gyud program episode on Saturday, November 7, with Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar, Martin Dela Cruz, chairman of SK – Brgy. Mabua chapter said that despite the pandemic, various initiatives have been launched by and for the youth.

In addition to providing relief goods to the village residents, they also made sure to allocate some for the youth.

They also launched various activities to commemorate the Linggo ng Kabataan held in August.

“Various contests were launched by the group such as a TikTok competition, spoken word poetry, and a singing contest,” the youth leader said.

In support to the implementation of distance learning, they also created the ‘SK-Wela Tabangan Program’ aimed to look for donors to support Mabua Elementary School and Ipil National High School, where most children in the village are enrolled, in their needs to effectively implement the new modes of learning in the present school year. Furthermore, they also launched a free online tutorial service dubbed as ‘Sangguni ng Katalinuhan’ or ‘SK’.

“We stand by the belief that the youth is the hope of this nation and providing education is crucial for empowering them. This is our way of lending additional help for learners in our area, especially since learning is now taking place in their homes and teachers cannot facilitate them in going about with their school work,” Dela Cruz said.

The project is still in its infancy, with only a few volunteers working for its cause. The SK leader said they are still looking for other personalities they can tap to partake in this initiative.

When asked about the some of the challenges they face in the implementation of the said project, stability of the internet connection in their area is a primary concern. Nonetheless, they are doing their best to persevere just to lend assistance to the learners in Brgy. Mabua.

At the end of his guesting, SK chairperson Dela Cruz urged his fellow youth to be more adaptive to the present circumstances and persevere despite the challenges.

“I understand that all of us are experiencing difficulties due to this health crisis, especially since we, the youth, are expected to experience life outside the comfort of our homes at this point in our life. However, we also have to put in mind that everyone’s life is at stake here and our safety is paramount given the circumstances. We must always keep in mind that this health crisis spared no one so must, therefore, do our part to get by with the situation,” he said.

‘Bisaya Gyud’ is a weekly public service and entertainment program hosted by the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar aired on select radio stations across the country and streamed live on its official Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/bisayagyudph, every Saturday.

The program was initially launched to provide assistance to underprivileged Bisaya and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). At the height of the pandemic, the program also devoted its episodes to addressing various issues of the Bisayas concerning the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Its 'Operation Tabang' is launched to extend medical and food assistance to Bisaya all over the country, especially those who suffered greatly due to the health crisis. The program also launched its Bond Paper Gift project, which aims to assist schools in rural areas in effectively implementing distance learning by providing reams of bond papers to be used for the production of learning materials.

The program also explores Bisaya music and artists, and features Bisaya success stories. (DMNR/PIA-Caraga)

SEC calls on public to join fight vs scams in First Investor Protection Week

By Neil Maynard C. Conde

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Nov. 12 -- The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is rallying the public to join the fight against investment scams, as it spearheads the first Investor Protection Week from November 9 to 13.

The Commission will celebrate Investor Protection Week to promote investor education amid the rising number of unauthorized investment-taking activities, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, the SEC has issued advisories against more than 100 groups and individuals soliciting investments without the necessary license, almost double the total number for the whole of 2019. 

The Commission has likewise issued cease and desist orders and revocation orders against entities engaging in fraudulent investment schemes, including Boss Network, Forsage and Fast Track Worldwide, Inc.

The SEC has charged 32 individuals in seven cases for violations of Republic Act No. 8799, or The Securities Regulation Code, and in two cases for violations of Republic Act No. 10175, or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.

Section 8 of the Securities Regulation Code provides that securities shall not be sold or offered for sale or distributed within the Philippines, without a registration statement duly filed with and approved by the SEC.

Ponzi and pyramid schemes are among the most common types of investment fraud in the country, according to the SEC.

In a Ponzi scheme, scammers guarantee ridiculously high returns to attract more investors. They pay the promised profits to earlier investors using the money placed by newer members.

Meanwhile, pyramid schemes require members to recruit people into the group in exchange for fees. As in Ponzi schemes, they rely on new members’ contributions to pay out the promised returns to older investors.

Such schemes often deliver payouts at the start to please investors and encourage them to invite more people to join. To create a semblance of legitimacy, scammers tout products or services, which are either overpriced, worthless or inexistent.

As part of its efforts to educate the investing public and keep them falling prey to investment scams, the Commission advocated for the institution of Investor Protection Week. On November 15, 2019, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte issued Proclamation No. 846, declaring the second week of November of every year as such.

The Investor Protection Week follows the celebration of World Investor Week, a global campaign promoted by the International Organization of Securities Commissions and held in October.

“Our fight against investment scams is anchored on the public’s awareness and empowerment to spot, avoid and expose investment scams,” SEC Chairperson Emilio B. Aquino said.

“While we remain relentless in unmasking and busting investment scams, we also encourage the public to always check with SEC before entertaining any investment opportunity, especially when they are too good to be true.”

To expand the reach of its investor education programs, the Commission gathered organizations from the public and private sectors alike to form the SEC Campaign Network, which will be formally launched on November 9.

The Commission will also launch The SEC Academy, an online learning resource center developed in collaboration with the Commission on Higher Education and the Department of Education.

The SEC Academy will offer courses and learning modules for students and educators, as well as aspiring entrepreneurs and those looking to invest in securities, among others.

On November 11, the SEC a webinar for high school and college students on doing business and investing safely in the Philippines was conducted, live-streamed on Facebook.

The Commission, together with The Philippine Stock Exchange, Inc., a corporate governance forum was also conducted on November 12.

The SEC will close Investor Protection Week by recognizing its partners in promoting ease of doing business, capital market development and investor protection, as it celebrates its 84th Anniversary on November 13.

For more information, visit the official SEC Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PhilippineSEC and website at www.sec.gov.ph. (Information Officer, SEC/PIA-Surigao del Sur)

AgSur LGU hopes to level up with P392-M loan from Landbank

By Noelle B. Manansala

ROSARIO, Agusan del Sur, Nov. 12 – The local government unit (LGU) of Rosario, this province has sought the assistance of Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) to finance priority projects amounting to P392-million under the Bank’s Restoration and Invigoration Package for a Self-sufficient Economy towards Upgrowth for LGUs (RISE UP LGUs) Lending Program.

Part of the projects to be financed by LANDBANK for this 2nd class municipality are the acquisition of heavy equipment, purchase of land for local development, and construction of a public terminal and market.

“We are honored and excited to partner with the Rosario LGU as we see their dedication in assisting our stakeholders, which are the farmers. We hope that, in a way, this will contribute in cushioning the effect of this pandemic to the local economy,” said LANDBANK Caraga South Lending Center Head Arnel M. Caalim.

Additionally, the LGU is looking to purchase one six-wheeler and one 10-wheeler trucks for its logistical requirements, as well as a dump truck and a garbage compactor with auto-loader for better disposal and segregation of waste materials. The heavy equipment are seen to reduce operational expenses and provide additional income to the local coffers as these can be rented-out to neighboring LGUs.

Meanwhile, the development of their public terminal and market will also help Rosario farmers augment their income since more consumers will be able to reach them while cheaper market stall rentals can be offered to them.

“We would like to thank LANDBANK for being a partner of LGU Rosario in pursuing our dreams especially in our quest for developmental projects that will benefit our constituents, provide their basic needs, promote health and public safety and hopefully improve our economic stability,” said Rosario Municipal Mayor Jupiter Abulog.

A LANDBANK depositor since the 1990s, Rosario LGU is hoping to further strengthen its partnership with the bank in terms of providing accessible financial channels to their people.

“We are also looking forward to the installation of a LANDBANK ATM in our office since this will be the first one in the entire municipality. Currently, we still have to travel to our neighboring municipality if we want to withdraw or deposit cash from the machine so this will really be helpful to our people,” Mayor Abulog added.

RISE UP LGUs Lending Program is a new offering of LANDBANK to local governments that aims to facilitate the regional and local development in its area by integrating the different players in the agricultural value-chain, and finance other innovative programs of LGUs which can bring back the confidence of its constituents in the local economy.

Interested borrowers of the LANDBANK RISE UP LGUs Lending Program may contact the nearest open LANDBANK Lending Center or Branch nationwide, or call LANDBANK’s customer service hotline at (02) 8-405-7000 or at PLDT Domestic Toll Free 1-800-10-405-7000. (LandBank/PIA-Agusan del Sur)