One Visayas Issue 17

Page 1

Vol I

Issue 17


Published by: PIA 6, 7 & 8

DSWD to provide core shelter assistance for flood victims in NegOr by Rachelle M. Nessia

DUMAGUETE CITY, Dec. 22 (PIA) --The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is set to give shelter assistance to families whose houses were damaged by the floods brought by Typhoon Sendong that hit Negros Oriental on Dec. 17, 2011. DSWD is set to provide P70,000 for each of the displaced families whose homes were totally damaged by the typhoon. Features of the Jalaur River Families whose homes were partially damaged will Multi-Purpose Project Stage II, the first large scale reservoir dam outside receive an average of P5,000 as emergency shelter Luzon. assistance. This was revealed by DSWD Sec. Dinky Soliman More on Region 6, pages 2-3. during an impromptu press briefing held Dec. 20, 2011 . Also CLICK Here… Soliman said there are a total of 4,218 houses affected by the typhoon, of which 950 are totally damaged and 3,268 are partially damaged. CENTRAL VISAYAS DSWD has already given over P2.2 million worth of relief goods to Negros Oriental as of Dec. 22, 2011, five days after the floods ravaged several parts of the province. The assistance, which came in the form of food and used clothing, benefited a total of 6,322 families in the ten flood-affected local government units (LGUs) in the province..identified as as the towns of Siaton, Bacong, Valencia, Sibulan, San Jose, Amlan, Pamplona, Mabinay, and the cities of Dumaguete and Tanjay. Mourners of the two dead children who were swept away by Typhoon Sendong's floods in Brgy. Apolong, Valencia town, Negros Oriental province, make their way to the town church and lay to rest the bodies of Bengeline Cadalin, 14, and her brother, Rey, 12, on Dec. 21, 2011, four days after Sendong dumped a month's worth of rains in the province. As the Okoy River swelled in the morning of Dec. 17, Bengeline and Rey were left behind in their house as their parents brought four of their younger brothers and sisters to safety. When their father came back for them, the water already washed away their home and the two siblings. Their bodies were found the following day. (Photo by Rachelle Nessia/PIA)

More on Region 7, pages 4-5. Also CLICK Here…


DOLE 8 regional director Forter Puguon gives his Christmas message to the participants, organizers, parent/ guardians and the media during the Christmas Card-Making contest sponsored by the Eastern Visayas Association of Recruitment Agencies (EVARA) held at DOLE Training Center, Tacloban City, December 17. (Vino R. Cuayzon)

More on Region 8, pages 6-7. Also CLICK Here...

December 19 — 25, 2011

During his briefing with the mayors, the President Benigno S. Aquino assured them of “sufficient funds” to cover their concerns for disaster relief operations and other urgent needs resulting from the loss of lives and damage in infrastructure that the typhoon left in its wake. “There is still P1.17 billion in the national calamity fund that will be utilized,” Pres. Aquino told the mayors. Foreign and local funding sources are also available for the affected areas. “Before I left Manila this morning, about seven countries have already offered to give assistance to

us,” he said. (RMN/PIA Negros Oriental)

Philippine Army soldiers assist in the packing of relief goods at the Lamberto Macias Sports Complex in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental for distribution to affected local government units across the province. (RMN/PIA NEGOR)

JRMP II: first large scale reservoir dam outside Luzon ILOILO CITY, Dec. 20 (PIA6) --The approval of the Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project (JRMP) Stage II, considered as the first large scale reservoir dam outside Luzon, is set to engage Ilonggos in a challenge for tremendous growth. President Benigno S. Aquino III has already approved the project. The Korea Eximbank will provide P8.95 billion in soft loan with a 50-year maturity and 10-year grace period at an interest rate of 0.15 percent per annum, while the Philippine government will allocate P2.2 billion. The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) Project Brief, provided by NIA showed that the project includes as its main features three dams, the Jalaur Reservoir, the Afterbay and the Alibunan Catch Dam. The project will have a 6.6 MW, or two units of a 3.3 MW per hour turbine, installed at the Jalaur dam site with. NIA-6 Director Engr. Gerardo Corsiga said when the

project is established, it will provide a year-round irrigation for increased agricultural production to about 22,340 hectares of the five existing irrigation systems and about 9,500 hectares of rainfed areas. During the five-year construction period, it will generate employment for an estimated 17,000 workers, which is equivalent to some P1.3 billion in basic wages per year, at the same time provide livelihood opportunities for fishery and tourism. Other benefits and opportunities that the project will bring, as articulated in its design, include conversion or enhancement of the 2,500 hectares sugarcane area already provided with irrigation facilities at the Jalaur Extension Area, diversified cropping and third cropping in selected areas, and a long-run benefit will be the improved quality of living standard of project-affected-families and project stakeholders. (JCM/ESS./PIA6)

DA earmarks P474-M for enhancement of agriculture in N Samar TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec. 18 (PIA) –- The Department of Agriculture (DA) is allotting some P474 million to ensure the enhancement of agricultural productivity in Northern Samar. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala made the commitment during his recent visit in Las Navas, Northern Samar where he also forged an agreement with the Department of Social Welfare and Development to undertake an initiative called “Agrikulturang Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program,” DA-8 RED Antonio Gerundio informed. Of the P474 million, Secretary Alcala said P209 million is earmarked as an additional fund to complete the irrigation component of the Help for Catubig Agricultural Advancement Project (HCAAP). HCAAP is expected to irrigate 4,550 hectares, and benefit more than 1,600 farm families in the towns of Catubig and Las Navas, Northern Samar. Alcala said the irrigation project will double the province’s irrigated area to more than 9,000 hectares, from the current 4,500 hectares, and subsequently increase its

annual palay production pegged at 98,300 metric tons (MT) in 2010. Secretary Alcala also allotted P230 million for the rehabilitation and construction of other irrigation projects, and P35 million for farm-to-market roads in the second district of Northern Samar. The Agrikulturang Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program, is meant to “uplift” Eastern Visayas farmers, fishers and rural folk from poverty. During the launching at Las Navas, DA and DSWD awarded several farm equipment, tools and inputs to hundreds of family-beneficiaries. From the DA, they also received three units of hand tractors, 100 pieces of hand tools, and 100 bags of certified rice seeds; and from the DSWD, two units of hand tractors, and livelihood project funds. In addition, the DA through the Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) will construct a diversion dam in Barangay Guba, Catarman town, and implement an expanded modified rapid composting project in the province, as part of the DA’s organic agriculture program. (PIA 8)



DepEd 6 gears up for Regional YES Camp by Lilibeth A. French ILOILO CITY, Dec. 20 (PIA6) -- The Department of Education 6 has started its preparations for the Regional Youth for Environment Summer (YES) Camp where some 3,000 participants from public and private secondary schools in Western Visayas are expected to gather.


epEd 6 Resource Mobilization Special Program and Project Division Chief Dr. Eden Deriada said the 2012 Regional YES Camp will be conducted at the Ramon Torres National High School in Bago City, Negros Occidental, on February 10-12. It is jointly conducted by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Special Concerns Office-Youth Desk, Kabataang Sama-Samang Maglilingkod, Inc., Miriam Public Education and Awareness Campaign for the Environment and DepEd. The camp targets to achieve the following objectives: participants to learn about Climate Change Adaptation and

Disaster Preparedness utilizing best practices and models designed and locally-developed in disaster prone areas; inculcate among pupils and students the critical role of environmental protection in preventing and coping with the effects of climate change such as typhoons, floods, earthquakes and droughts; develop pupils and students’ awareness on the state of the environment focusing on significant issues and concerns; and ensure pupils and students’ active participation and determined concrete action in the protection, preservation and rehabilitation of the environment and the conservation of natural resources in their respective

areas. Further, it seeks to instill environmental values in every pupil and student to actually involve in worthwhile programs and projects for environment; and strengthen the implementation of various school-based environmental programs and projects of DepEd and DENR. Deriada said the three-day camp will involve various activities like interactive and fun plenary sessions, break-out sessions, panel discussions, action planning, outdoor activities and contests. (JCM/LAF/PIA-Iloilo)

NFA seeks help of LGUs in rice procurement by Venus G. Villanueva KALIBO, Aklan, December 20 (PIA6) – An official of the National Food Authority (NFA) sought the help of local government units (LGUs) in Aklan so that the agency can improve its services to farmers.

We are requesting LGUs in case of mobile procurement to provide the NFA a place where our mobile procurement team could gather farmers and secure their palay from bad weather,” said Aklan Manager Procopio B. Trabajo II. Trabajo said that with LGU support, farmers would be assured of an alternative market for their produce especially at

harvest time when ex-farm prices are on the downtrend. Trabajo also asked for the presence of policemen and barangay tanods during procurement periods. “In this manner, in case of b r e a k d o w n s o f NFA ’ s t r u c k s , procurement could still proceed. Let this be the equity of LGUs in helping their farmers,” Trabajo said.

According to the NFA, LGUs with trucks with the capacity to load 100 bags or more could assist the food agency by lending these trucks in the delivery of their farmers’ palay to the NFA. Under this arrangement, the NFA, for its part, will provide the fuel and give the driver’s meal allowance. (JCM/VGV PIA 6 Aklan)

Antique’s indigent senior citizens get social pension by Pilar S. Mabaquiao SAN JOSE, Antique Dec 20 (PIA) –– The Department of Social Welfare and Development has released the social pension of indigent senior citizens in the Province of Antique for December.


ccording to Social Welfare Officer Luna Moscoso of DSWD Field Office here, about 2,000 recipients are expected to receive the pension including those qualified for retroactive payment after a thorough verification and were indeed considered indigents. “We have started releasing the money in some towns and we will try our best to release the pension before Christmas," said Moscoso. Most of the beneficiaries received

P3,000, a cumulative pension for the two last quarters of the year at P500 per month. Those considered for retroactive payment get P6,000. During the release, Moscoso said, you can see happy faces of the beneficiaries and most of them expressed their gratitude to the government for the amount they got in time for Christmas. Administrative Order No. 15 series of 2010 provides for the implementation of social pension for indigent senior

citizens. For this year the government has appropriated more than P870 million social pension fund for indigent elderly giving priority to those with aged 70 years and above identified under the National Household Targetting System. Meanwhile indigent senior citizens from Aklan, Capiz, Iloilo, Guimaras and Negros Occidental are also expected to receive theirs before Christmas. (JCM/ PSM/PIA6 Antique)



DOH raises Code White Alert on Dec 24, 25, 31, January 1 by TWVillavert ILOILO CITY, Dec 20 (PIA6)-- The Department of Health, Region 6 said that Code White Alert will be raised on December 24 ,25, 31, 2011 to January 1, 2012 in preparation for the Christmas and New Year celebrations.


r. Sophia Pulmones, chief of the Local Health Support Division of DOH 6 said that the Code White Alert will help the DOH ensure prompt emergency services to injured persons during the Holiday season. During national events, holidays or celebrations, the code white alert is activated, Pulmones said as she emphasized that the DOH monitoring of firecracker related injuries will start December 21. The sentinel sites are the Western

Visayas Medical Center, Iloilo City and the Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital, Bacolod City in Negros Occidental, Pulmones said as she emphasized that all government provincial hospitals and private hospitals were also urged to report to the DOH 6. This year the DOH changed the old campaign title IWAS PAPUTOK to APIR or Aksyon: Paputok Injury Reduction. Meanwhile the DOH National Epidemiology Center (DOH NEC)

Surveillance record from 21 December 2010 to 5 January 2011, showed that there were 1,022 total injuries recorded. Of these total, 972 were fireworks-related, 39 from stray bullet and 11 from fireworks ingestion. Most injuries came from the National Capital Region (581), Ilocos Region (73),Central Luzon and CALABARZON (66 cases each), and Western Visayas (65).(JCM/TWV/ PIA6-Iloilo)

CAGPIO holds year-end conference and awards by Alex A. Lumaque ROXAS CITY, Capiz, Dec. 21 (PIA) -- The year-end conference and awards of the Capiz Association of Government Public Information Officers, Inc. (CAGPIO) was highlighted by the awarding of the Best Performing Information Officers of Capiz.


he Outstanding PIOs at the provincial level, who received a certificate of recognition were Eliseo A. Abucay of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) – Field Office 6 in Roxas City, Alan Vincent B. Altamia of the Department of Education (DepEd) – Capiz Division, Rose B. Andalecio of the National Food Authority (NFA), SPO1 Donna B. Asmod of the Capiz Police Provincial Office (CPPO), Teodoro E. Buenvenida of the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) and Norma M. Chavez of the local government unit (LGU) of Jamindan. Four CAGPIO members, who were

earlier awarded as among the 15 Best Performing Public Information Officers for 2011 in Western Visayas during the Year-End Conference of Information Officers last Dec. 2 in Iloilo City, were also given certificate of achievement during the conference. They were FO2 Marlon B. Garbo of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) – Roxas City, Carlette C. Pretta of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Joeffry M. Espiritu of the Provincial Health Office (PHO) – Capiz and Engr. Julius B. Abela of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) – 1st Capiz

Engineering District. During the day-long affair, a lecture and actual demonstration on table skirting and flower arrangement last Dec. 20 at the Villareal Stadium poolside was given to members of the association. The affair was graced by Capiz Board Member Jaime O. Magbanua, Capiz police director S/Supt. Domingo S. Cabillan, Roxas City Fire Marshal C/Insp. Lester Kenneth Gimotea and Philippine Information Agency (PIA) 6 Operations Officer Jaime S. Cabag, Jr. (JCM/AAL/PIA 6 Capiz)

Kabankalan City is best performing city in WVisayas by: Easter Anne D. Doza

NEGROS OCCIDENTAL, Dec. 19 (PIA6) -- Kabankalan City won the major award as the Best Performing City in Region VI in the 2011 Regional Search for Excellence in Local Governance (EXCEL).


he award was given during the Pagdayaw 2011 program held at the Iloilo Grand Hotel last week with the theme “Showcasing the Best of the Region.” The trophy and cash prize were given by Evelyn Trompeta, regional director, Department of Interior and Local Government and was received by

Kabankalan City Mayor Isidro P. Zayco with Vice Mayor Delia Anacan and the other city officials. Kabankalan also won the special awards for its Excellence in Local Legislation and Excellence in Economic Development. A certificate of recognition was also given to the city as first runner up in

Excellence in Administrative Governance, second runner up in Excellence in Social Services and second runner up in Environmental Management.*(EAD/JCM/-PIA6/ Kabankalan Negros Occidental)



Over 11,000 families in NegOr affected by Typhoon Sendong by Rachelle M. Nessia DUMAGUETE CITY, Dec. 21 (PIA) -- Latest figures as of 6:00 p.m. Dec. 21 released by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) and the Office of Civil Defense (OCD-7) in Central Visayas now peg the number of families affected by typhoon Sendong at 11,012.


DRRMC sets the death toll at 37 while 247 persons are reported injured and three still missing. Damage to agriculture is pegged at P37 million covering livestock, rice, corn, fisheries, and crops, among others. Infrastructure damage amounted to P388.5 million. Torrential rains estimated to be more than a month’s worth of rainfall battered the province dawn of Saturday, Dec. 17, triggering flash floods in said affected areas. PDRRMC has issued a weather bulletin and typhoon warnings as early as Tuesday, Dec. 13, said Allen Cabaron, provincial coordinator of the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) here, in a report submitted to the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council. On Wednesday, Dec. 14, the council, led by Gov. Roel Degamo called for an emergency meeting to bolster the council’s preparations

and emergency response mechanisms, Cabaron said. By then, advisories warning of the impending typhoon have been issued to the Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Councils (LDRRMCs) of LGUs concerned, the report said. A day after Typhoon Sendong cut a swath of devastation across the province, the governor, with assistance of the Philippine Army’s 302nd Infantry Brigade, conducted an aerial survey to determine the extent of the storm’s damage on affected areas. Relief efforts were likewise done by join teams from the provincial and regional offices of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). The Department of Health (DOH), on the other hand, inspected the evacuation centers to address health concerns of the evacuees displaced by the typhoon. The PDRRMC met again on Dec. 19 for the consolidation and finalization of the damage

reports from affected areas and prepare the data needed for the Sangguniang Panlalawigan to declare the typhoon-affected LGUs under a state of calamity. Search and rescue operations were also conducted throughout the affected LGUs by a total of 646 rescue groups, according to a report from provincial police director Edward Carranza submitted to the council. Carranza said the groups are composed of teams from the Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office, Dumaguete City Police Station, Provincial Public Safety Company, 348 Rescue Team, Red Cross, Bureau of Fire Protection, 302nd Brigade of the Philippine Army, rescue volunteers, barangays officials and affected residents. Around 354 police personnel and 20 Philippine National Police vehicles were utilized for the search and rescue operations and evacuation during and after the typhoon, he added. (RMN/PIA Negros Oriental)

PhilHealth 7 brings gifts to hospitalized children by Fayette C. Riñen CEBU CITY, Dec 20 (PIA) –- In the spirit of showing love and gift-giving to those in need, the employees of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) 7 visited the children confined in the pediatric ward of the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC). ighty children received gifts and Santa dwarves to entertain the kids employees make it a point to celebrate milk packs from PhilHealth 7 led spending this Christmas in a hospital. As a each Christmas with those in need and by Christmas Committee chair special treat, the little ones got to have truly live out the essence of corporate and planning officer Maria Cristina Ramos. balloons shaped just the way they want it. social responsibility. The ward’s very young patients also The PhilHealth 7 expressed hopes PhilHealth 7 said it also intends to enjoyed a simple snack of arroz caldo and that in their own little way, it made continue giving more than public service spaghetti with their parents and guardians. Christmas a bit more special for the 80 to the community throughout this year PhilHealth also brought gifts of joy young patients of the CCMC. and on to the next and not just on with balloon makers clad as Santa and Every year, PhilHealth 7 and its Christmas. (PIA-Cebu/PhilHealth 7)


31 Bohol towns are now enrolled under the Pantawid program by Rey Anthony Chiu TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Dec. 18 (PIA) -– Almost 6,000 families from seven additional towns in Bohol expect a good head start in 2012 for their inclusion into the government’s conditional cash grants. The said towns put the number of Bohol town beneficiaries at 31.


epartment of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) provincial link Angelita Genil hesitantly gave the good news not really wanting to jump into the details without first giving the privileged information to the local chief executives first. Pressed for data during the recent DSWD 4Ps forum with the local media at the Philippine Information Agency here Thursday, Genil admitted the regional office only learned of the developments a few days before the forum. According to Genil, residents in the

selected barangays in the towns of Guindulman, Candijay, Clarin, Duero, Lila, San Isidro and Valencia can start verifying the list posted in their respective barangay halls. Of these, Guindulman tops the most number of beneficiaries in a town with 1338, followed by Candijay with 1,281 and the Valencia with 1,035. Other beneficiaries would come from Clarin with 738; Duero, 712; San isidro, 334; and Lia, 329. With the recent developments the DSWD expects an additional 5,807 household beneficiaries from the seven towns.

“It may be recalled that in November 2009 from Danao town the 4Ps spread to set 3 areas in Alicia, Bien Unido, Buenavista, Carmen, Dagohoy, Inabanga, Getafe, Mabini, Pilar, CP Garcia, Trinidad and Ubay. Few months later, 4PS crossed over to Anda, Balilihan, Batuan, Calape, Catigbian, Danao, Loon, Sagbayan, San Miguel and then to Talibon. And now the Pantawid program is in Tagbilaran City and Sierra Bullones said Genil. That puts over 40,000 poor Boholanos availing of the government assistance. [mbcn/rahc/PIA-Bohol)

CENTRAL VISAYAS DILG urges LGUs generating projects

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by Fayette C. Riñen CEBU CITY, December 20 (PIA) -- Local government units (LGUs) are urged to initiate revenue-generating projects and strengthen their tax collections in order to raise funds for basic social services such as road improvement, education and health needs of their constituents. felia Oliva of the Bureau of Local because when the money is spent and no managed by the private sector with no Government and Finance (BLGF) funds can be taken to fund basic social government intervention,” Oliva declared. 7 said most municipalities are 80 services, development is also stalled,” Other economic enterprise activities to 90 percent dependent on their internal Oliva said during the recent year-end mentioned by Oliva where LGUs could revenue allotment (IRA). gathering of the Cebu Association of City save and earn money are in bus terminals, Oliva added that even cities are 50 and Municipal Public Information Officers. crematorium and even telephone services percent dependent on their IRA. The former city treasurer of Cebu especially in far-flung towns. “LGUs should undertake economic City, Oliva cited some local utilities where “Instead of raising real property taxes, enterprise projects and strengthen local LGUs could save and earn money. instead LGUs should intensify their local tax collections to fast track the “Public markets and hospitals should tax collections through tax mapping development of their locality. LGUs not be subsidized by the local government. operation and identification,” Oliva said. should not entirely depend on their IRA Instead these should be operated and (PIA-Cebu)


Siquijor OFWs seek assistance to avail of OWWA loan by Rizalie A. Calibo SIQUIJOR, Dec. 17 (PIA) -- At least three Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) from Siquijor sought technical assistance from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to avail of the loan packages from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA). oger Maglinte, 50; Bernard Development Training (EDT) for initially gave last week. The three Duhaylungod, 54, and Felix would-be OFW entrepreneurs under the scheduled for another sessions with each Pabinguit, 44, all seamen overseas OFW Reintegration Program in Manila assigned personnel to focus on each returnees appeared last week at the local while they were applying for another project. office of the Department of Trade and contract. EDT is an integral component of all Industry (DTI) to request for assistance in Maglinte said that if he will be given livelihood programs initiated by the meeting up the requirements for the loan the chance, he wants to venture into OWWA to prepare the OFW who wish grant. “kandingan” or goat raising while to venture into entrepreneurship or Maglinte, Duhaylungsod and Pabinguit Duhaylungsod and Pabinguit both want to strengthen their already established had been working overseas for 20, 10 and establish cottages and start a business, it was learned. 5 years, respectively but because of age, tourism-related business. The assistance ranges from P300,000 shipping agencies hardly accept them “We are very thankful that the DTI to P2 million depending on the nature and anymore to another contract, they said. readily gave their assistance,” the capital needed of their proposed business/ In an interview with the PIA, they said applicants said, referring to the orientation projects,it was also learned. (PIA-Siquijor/ two of them have attended the Enterprise on Entrepreneurship that the DTI here RACalibo)


Bohol anti-drug drive finds ‘sniffing’ allies by Rey Anthony Chiu TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Dec. 18 (PIA) -– The Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council [PADAC] in Bohol has found two more allies in its fight against drug abuse in the province— two sniffing German Shepherd dogs.


ohol officials showed Wednesday one of the two drug-sniffing German Shepherd dogs and their handlers to add brute muscle and beastly instinct to track and help control country’s porous coastlines. The presentation came after President Benigno S. Aquino III admitted the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has only 16 detection dogs distributed throughout the country’s 16 regions. These dogs only work two hours daily at the maximum and are practically helpless in keeping the country’s coastal boundaries as no drug entry zones. Detection dogs are trained animals that use their highly acute sense of smell to pick up scents of drugs and illegal

substances stashed in baggages, cargoes or packed with other scents that could mask the odor, according to Wikipedia. PDEA-7 regional director Jigger Montallana in his power-point presentation during the latest Regional Peace and Order Council Meeting identified Bohol as one of the destinations of drugs from Mindanao, Cebu and Manila. And with an island province like Bohol, drugs can be easily shipped for distribution here. At the suggestion that K9 units be put up at Bohol ports, PDEA said that at the moment the agency does not have the fiscal capacity to acquire more detection dogs. According to sources a sniffing dog and its handler can easily cost P1.5M and

that discounts the other incidental costs of keeping the dog always at its peak condition. At the recent Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council planning workshop, provincial administrator Alfonso Damalerio easily convinced council members of the detection dogs’ capability. At a random test the leashed dog eagerly leaped to a search mode. It picked on boxes one by one and doubled up sitting right next to where earlier an agent secretly placed a re-sealable cellophane with methampithamine hydrochloride (shabu) taped to the box underside.mbcn/rahc/PIA -Bohol)



Government should fill up 93,000 vacancies Evardone by Alice Nicart Borongan city, Eastern Samar, Dec 20 (PIA) –- Government should otherwise the funds would be reverted to government coffers. ongressman Ben Evardone who sits saving - generation strategy of concerned in the House Appropria- offices which they used to allot for their tion Committee said that the funds additional bonuses and incentives. for these vacant positions is incorpoIn a separate source, Budget rated in the recently approved P1.3 trillion Secretary Butz Abad also said that some national budget for 2012. P23 billion awaits to be spent for these Of the 93,000 positions, it was unfilled positions and should these remain learned that 67,0000 had been left unfilled untouched, it will be retrieved by in years which has earned savings for government for other meaningful some government agencies and expenditures. departments. Among others, 12,000 nurses are Today, however, the budget which needed by the country, 200 doctors, 1,000 President Benigno Aquino has recently midwives, 13,000 teachers, 665 staff for signed into law already disallows such a Congress, 5,000 for the Supreme Court,


fill up the 93,000 vacant position 269 for the Civil Service Commission and still more policemen, auditors, lawyers, soldiers, and judges. More teachers are needed next year, the source added, because of the implementation of the new DepEd Curriculum-K to 12. Today’s hiring rate for teachers is now better off, because it is now pegged at P15,000 a month. Besides, government salary rates are now close to be competitive with the private sectors and corporations, the source added.(PIA-Eastern Samar/Alice Nicart)

2,500 hectares of coconut nurseries to rise in Samar by Ninfa B Quirante Catbalogan City, Samar, Dec 20 (PIA) -- Some 2,500 hectares of coconut nursery is expected to help rejuvenate the coconut industry in Samar province.


his is according to Philippine Coconut Development Manager Emi Acasio of Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) in an interview. Acasio told PIA Samar that they were able to collect some P 800,000 ‘replacement fees’ in 2011 from the National Grid Corporation of the

Philippines (NGCP) as it cleared quite a number of coconut trees in the Buray-Calbayog Area for power lines. “We will establish 250 hectares of coconut nurseries per area. In Samar there are 10, so it amounts to 2,500 hectares in all,” Acasio said. The coconut seedlings will also be

distributed to coconut farmers for free to replace some two million non -bearing trees and senile trees numbering 900,000. Samar has some 58, 248 coconut farmers dependent on the industry. (NBQ/PIA 8-Samar)

Eastern Visayas surpasses 2011 National Greening Program target TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec 22 (PIA) –- Eastern Visayas has more than 100 percent accomplishment for this year’s target under the National Greening Program (NGP) a report from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)reveal.


ENR 8 had a 2011 target of 4,052,500 seedlings for production and 8,105 hectares for planting with indigenous tree species under the NGP. Acting regional executive director Manolito D. Ragub disclosed that the targeted area for planting and the seedlings for production were 100 percent accomplished by the DENR’s field offices using the regular budget allocation. Excess accomplishment resulted from the DENR’s social mobilization strategy wherein different partners from various sectors were made to plant trees under the program. The convergence initiative of the Environment, Agriculture and Agrarian Reform Departments posted an accomplishment of 83 percent by producing 70,000 seedlings out of the target of 84,000 seedlings.

The Convergence has also planted 50 hectares out of its target of 60 hectares posting an 83 percent accomplishment. Under the Congressional Initiative, 1,260 hectares were planted out of the 1,160 hectares target or a 108 percent accomplishment, while 625,000 seedlings were produced out of the 605,000 target or a 103 percent accomplishment. Even without a set target, the German Technical Cooperation (GIZ), other government agencies, people’s organizations, state universities and colleges, and the Energy Development Corporation’s BINHI Program produced a total of 472,971 seedlings and planted a total of 804.31 hectares, Ragub added. DENR Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje has ordered the notarization of all reports submitted by his 16 DENR regional executive directors and other DENR field

officers playing key roles in the implementation of the National Greening Program (NGP) in an apparent move to remove doubts on the veracity of NGP reports submitted to his office. “The intention is also to raise the agency’s competence in providing accurate reports to our people and the President,” explained Paje, adding that the reports will in turn be submitted to the Commission on Audit (COA) for validation. Secretary Paje described the requirement as a “necessary measure” to heighten transparency and accountability, as he stressed that his order applies to all DENR's regional directors, heads of line bureaus, Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officers (PENROs), and Community Environment and Natural Resources Officers (CENROs). (PIA 8)



DOH deploys doctors to ‘doctor-less’ East Visayas LGUs TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec 21 (PIA) –- Ten young medical graduates were recently deployed to 10 doctor-less municipalities in Eastern Visayas under the ‘Doctors to the Barrios’ program, Department of Health Region 8 Director Edgardo Gonzaga said. onzaga said the doctors were Said doctors were trained by the Program was spearheaded by one of the assigned to fifth and sixth class National Telehealth Service Program, a Department of Health’s (DOH) most municipalities namely, Limasawa in collaboration of the Department of Health memorable secretaries, Dr. Juan A. Flavier Southern Leyte; Jipapad in Eastern Samar; (DoH), the Department of Science and in 1993, in response to the findings of a Hinabangan, Tagapul-an, Santo Nino and Technology, and the University of the rapid assessment conducted by the DOH. Matuguinao in the province of Samar; and Philippines Manila, in using telemedicine The assessment showed that 271 Laoang, Silvino Lobos, San Antonio; and applications to support their practice in municipalities in the Philippines had been Gamay in Northern Samar. d o c t o r - l e s s a n d s i n g l e - d o c t o r without doctors for at least five years. The doctors are part of the 73 communities. The thrust of the DTTB Program was doctors who were recently assigned in They were trained to do tele-referrals to provide medical care by deploying various regions of the country namely, to refer difficult to handle medical cases to competent, dedicated doctors twice a Northern Mindanao, 12; Western Visayas, specialists in government-run Philippine year to far-flung areas that needed them seven; Autonomous Region in Muslim General Hospital. most. Mindanao, seven; Ilocos Region, six; Gonzaga said that telemedicine is These areas were typically Cagayan Valley, five; Mimaropa, five; bringing more Filipino doctors to the underdeveloped and economically Cordillera Administrative Region, four; barrios. The government is now using challenged municipalities described as Central Visayas, four; Zamboanga information and communications isolated, depressed, and hard to reach. Peninsula, three; Central Luzon, two; technology to expand the scope of public Doctors are expected to render two Calabarzon, two; Bicol Region, two; healthcare services to geographically years of service in the municipalities Caraga, two; Davao, one; and Socsargen, isolated and disadvantaged areas. where they have been deployed. (PIA 8) one. The Doctors to the Barrio (DTTB)


OFW Family Day in East Visayas successful despite ‘Sendong’ by Neil D. Lopido TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec 21 (PIA) -- Despite heavy rains caused by tropical storm “Sendong,” the celebration of this year’s OFW Family Day in Eastern Visayas last December 17 was successful, the regional Overseas Welfare Workers Administration informed the Philippine Information Agency 8.


WWA-8 information office Florence D. Panao said that some 739 overseas Filipino workers and beneficiaries participated in the annual celebration with some who traveled from as far as Northern Samar and Southern Leyte just to show and experience the joy and value of togetherness despite the distance and bad weather condition. Though it was expected that at least 1,500 OFWs and their beneficiaries will attend the event, still OWWA-8 through director Ma. Evangelina V. Filamor was

confident to say that the activity was successful. One of the highlights of the whole day activity included the awarding of a former OFW from Isabel, Leyte in the name of Victor Villegas who was represented by his son and wife, as a gesture of salutation to the achievements and heroic contributions to the country’s economy. The award received include a cash donation of P5,000 and a check amounting to P5,000 plus a Noche Buena package, Panao said.

The activity was attended also by the provincial government of Leyte represented by Wilson Uy, city government of Tacloban represented by exec. assistant Bernardita Valenzuela, DOLE-8 director Forter G. Puguon, representatives from the National Reintegration Center for OFWs, Model OFW Family of the Year Awardees, OFW Family Circles regionwide, and corporate partners. (PIA-8 with OWWA-8)

All 70 barangays in Maasin City energized -- DOT, BOI by Bong Pedalino MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte, Dec. 20 (PIA) -- The 70 villages comprising this city are already energized by the Southern Leyte Electric Cooperative (SOLECO), according to Royeno Segovia, the City Tourism and Investment Officer.


n a talk with the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), Segovia said the electric connections have even penetrated the farthest sitio level, or sub-village. It was not easy, Segovia admitted, because SOLECO, wanted a return of its investment requiring at least 10 households before installing the

connection. The city government embarked on an intensive acquisition of basic materials like posts and cables, and SOLECO’s role was only to provide the technical manpower to put up these materials, which the utility agreed, Segovia said. More than 10 households availed of SOLECO’s service, lighting their homes at

night, he added. Segovia said that as a positive impact of this development, several electronics stores have opened in the city, in anticipation of electronic supplies and parts as a direct result of the 100 percent electric connectivity. (BP/PIA-Southern Leyte)

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