Page 1

Vol 6

Issue 49


PIA Director-General Harold Clavite serenades all PIA employees from all over the country during the #PIA@30 celebration held in UP Bahay Alumni, Diliman, Quezon City. (PIA-6)

Dec. 5 - 11, 2016

Published by: PIA 6, 7 & 8

Over 9,000 has. planted in So. Leyte under NGP Marcelo M. Pedalino MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte, Dec. 8 (PIA) - For six straight years, from 2011 to 2016, the number of hectares planted in this province to a mix of forest and fruit trees, including wood used for cooking, has reached 9,731 hectares. The massive province-wide tree planting activity was spearheaded by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) under the nationwide project, the National Greening Program (NGP). In the same six-year period, the number of seedlings planted totaled 4,621,901 pieces for a total cost of P 111,965,000.00 excluding administrative expenses, Emelito Egnacio, NGP Coordinator, reported during the Media Forum/ Press Conference held at Derf‟s Grill, this city, Thursday December 1. Included among the planting materials were rattan, bamboo, and indigenous forest species for hinterland communities, then beach trees and mangroves for the coastal areas, said Egnacio. The DENR provincial office has two field units, the

community offices based in Maasin and San Juan, the former‟s coverage up to Sogod town, while Libagon, pacific, and Panaon areas belong to the latter. CENRO-Maasin had 3,029 hectares total planted, whereas CENRO-San Juan, 6,702 hectares, the difference in figures attributed to more urban areas for the former. Egnacio said the undertaking will continue for 2017 up to 2028 under the enhanced or expanded NGP but details are still being worked out. NGP has somehow mitigated poverty in the rural settings as the DENR tapped the efforts of People‟s Organizations (POs) in seedling production, establishment, and eventual maintenance of the planted species, Egnacio also said. He added that as of now the survival rate was 85%, and they are continuously monitoring to sustain this rate and the project as a whole, whose prime objective has been to increase the country‟s overall forest cover. (ajc/mmp/PIA8-Southern Leyte)

More on Region 6, pages 2-3. Also CLICK Here…

PIA DG: Highlight gov’t programs on social media By Leonard T. Pineda I


Philippine Information Agency Deputy Director General Angelo Gregorio Villar giving the Opening Remarks for the 2016 Information Center Managers Conference today at PIA auditorium. He talked about communicating change and empowering communities and the important role that managers play in doing both. #AngBagongPIA #PIAat30

ILOILO CITY, Dec. 8 (PIA6) --- The Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Director General said that social media is a platform that can highlight government programs and projects that have immensely benefitted people‟s lives. In the PIA-6 led Western Visayas Information Officers‟ Year-End Conference and Awards held recently, PIA Director General Harold Clavite said that social media can highlight success stories, impact of government projects and feature stories with exemplary effects to the communities. “Social media provides the face of the government which allows day-to-day interaction,” he said. He said that with the advancement of the digital age, the use of social media has become a trend with various studies revealing a higher percentage of Filipinos referring to social media platforms such as Facebook to look for news. “Tayo as a government agency, we don‟t want to be left behind,” he said. Meanwhile PIA digital strategist Armand Panganiban emphasized how information officers can draw interest of online audience through engaging posts. “The post is short and engaging. Use simple, catchy

language, no jargon and be conversational in tone,” he said. He also said the importance of branding and using big beautiful images. He added that information officers can mirror their respective audiences by showcasing real people. (JCM/ LTP/PIA-Iloilo)

PIA Director-General Harold Calvite: „We don‟t want to be left behind‟ digital media‟s advancement. (PIA 6)

Bay town first to give SSS contractuals' coverage More on Region 7, pages 4-5. Also CLICK Here…


#PIA@30: "You are the foundation of PIA," DG Harold Clavite (L) told the PIA employees in his message, to which Deputy DG Gelo Villar offered an an affirming toast. It was the very first time all PIA employees in the country gathered in one roof at UP Bahay Alumni to celebrate PIA‟S 30th anniversary. (mmp)

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

By Rey Anthony H. Chiu TAGBILARAN CITY, Dec. 8 (PIA) -- Of all Bohol towns, Ubay leads in social protection of its contractual and job-order employees getting them Social Security System (SSS) coverage. During the signing of a memorandum of agreement between SSS and Ubay Local Government Unit, November 28, Mayor Constantino Reyes elevated Ubay's name in Bohol history for its pioneering move to heed to the Department of the Interior and Local Government's call for self employed coverage of workers not covered by the government insurance system. Through DILG Memorandum Circular 2014-83 issued July 2014, the government encourages LGUs to persuade contractual and job order personnel cot covered by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) to register as SSS self employed members. Under the SSS expanded self employed program coverage, those who apply for coverage would have protection against disability hazards, sickness, maternity, old age, death and other SSS offered services of contingencies. Unlike the unfounded fears of LGUS, Ubay does not even have the obligation to pay the employer counterpart of the monthly contributions, according to SSS Bohol Area Branch Head Dioscoro Madanguit. One only needs to get a resolution form the town council giving authority for the implementation of the salary

deduction scheme of the personnel's monthly contributions, he added. The MOA however ensures that the LGU is authorized to perform automatic deductions of the monthly SSS contributions and salary loan amortizations from the salaries and wages of the member, Madanguit added. According to Madanguit, of the national government agencies responding to the call for more social protection to the vulnerable sector of the contract and job order workers not getting insurance coverage from GSIS, only the DILG and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) have signed interest. In Ubay, present during the MOA signing which happened at around 11 AM were SSS VP Atty. Alberto Montalbo, OIC Branch Head Benjamin Pombo, OIC Area Branch Head Madanguit, OIC Area Manager Eutiquio Bernales Jr., AV Fidel Magtajas ad JO representative Rolando Ibale, Mayor Reyes' executive assistant. "With Ubay leading, we hope we can get more LGUs implementing the program which would actually help their workers set up a protection system in times of need," Madanguit said. For his part, Mayor Reyes said his administration would continue to find ways to improve its services to Ubayanos, and for those especially working to make a living in the town comfortable and easy. (rmn/rac/PIA-7/Bohol)



Kalibo to implement smoking ban By Sheila Q. Patoza KALIBO, Aklan, Dec. 5 (PIA6) – The days of puffing cigarettes and vaping in all public places in the town of Kalibo are numbered.


n the 20th regular session of the Sangguniang Bayan of Kalibo, the enforcement of smoking ban in Kalibo was tackled with the passage of Ordinance No. 2016-008, entitled, “The Comprehensive Smoke-Free Ordinance of the Municipality of Kalibo,” on its third and final reading. According to Dr. Cynthia Dela Cruz, member of the SB and the chairman of committee on health, the said ordinance which prohibits the use, sale, distribution and advertisement of cigarettes and other tobacco products, and electronic cigarettes, in all public places in Kalibo had already submitted to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan for approval and to ensure its effective implementation. “After 30 days of no problem and glitches, it will become a law; and 90 days after, will be the total enforcement of the law,” Dela Cruz added. Ordinance 2016-008 states that smoking and vaping in public places such as: within or

near the school, public utility vehicles and buses terminals, government offices and health facilities are strictly prohibited. Welfare of children and youths are also covered by the ordinance wherein selling and distributing of tobacco products and/or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) to minors below 21 years old; and purchasing the same from minors is sternly banned. “Even ordering, instructing or compelling a minor to use, light up, buy, sell, distribute, deliver, advertise or promote tobacco products or ENDS are forbidden,”Dela Cruz explained. Moreover, the ordinance states that no selling of tobacco products must take place within the 100 meters vicinity of schools and other facilities frequented by minors; while 10 meters within the government facility. For government officials and employees, facilitation, participation or partnership with the campaigns and projects of any tobacco industry is strictly prohibited.

“The council is set to create a Smoke –Free Task Force that will identify designated smoking areas in the Municipality,” SB Dela Cruz said adding that the DSA shall be located in an open space outside the building not within 10 meters from entrances, exits, or places where people pass or congregate; and shall not be larger than 10 square meters. Those who will be caught smoking in public other than the designated areas set shall be penalized for P500.00 for the first offense plus smoking cessation program; P1,000.00 for second; and P2,500.00 for third and subsequent offense. Meanwhile, those who will sell within the prohibited areas, as well as advertising and promoting tobacco products will be fined P1,000.00, P1,500.00, and P2,500.00 for first, second, and third/subsequent offense, respectively. Other municipalities in the province who have anti-smoking policies are Ibajay and Buruanga. (JSC/SQP/PIA6 Aklan)

Capiz Garden contest starts in 2017 By Alex A. Lumaque ROXAS CITY, Capiz, Dec. 8 (PIA6) - A quarterly household - based vegetable production contest in the municipalities and city will be instituted by the Capiz provincial government next year.


ov. Antonio Del Rosario announced the plan during the Provincial Development Council (PDC) meeting in response to proper waste segregation and livelihood concerns raised by some PDC members. He stressed that the initiative will address food security and organic waste into fertilizers

for the vegetable crops. "A P3.6-million has been set aside for the project," Del Rosario noted, adding that each municipality will have P50,000 every quarter for their respective garden contest winners. It was learned that P20,000.00, P10,000.00 and P5,000.00 contest prizes await

top three backyard gardens during the period. The contest will also award 15 consolation prizes at P1,000 each. Cleanliness of the surrounding and tourism promotion are also among the end goals of the project. (JCM/AAL/PIA6 Capiz)

TESDA adopts new system for TWSP grants By Lilibeth A. French ILOILO CITY, Dec. 5 (PIA6) - - The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) has adopted a new system of granting scholarship slots to technical vocational institutions (TVIs).


irector General Secretary Guiling “Gene” Mamondiong issued TESDA Circular 55 series of 2016 for the adoption of the “Tendering System for Scholarship Grants for Training for Work Scholarship Program” starting November this year, according to Director Gina Sophia Mondejar of TESDA-Iloilo. Mondejar presented the new system and the processes involved to various stakeholders including representatives from

TVIs in the region during the recent Regional Consultation on TESDA Scholarships and Programs held in this city. According to Mondejar, invitation to tender are posted on the website of the different TESDA Provincial Offices in the region to encourage Tech-Voc Institutions to participate and submit their tendering forms on the qualifications or courses they need under the new system. “This is anchored on the skills mapping

that we currently undertake which will serve as basis to identify the training needs of grassroots or barangays,” said Mondejar. Under the new system, the accredited training provider will be paid 30% of the training cost after evaluation of the submitted billing statement and the enrollment report. For 2016, Mondejar said the implementation of TWSP in Western Visayas has a budget allocation of P105,258,000. (JSC/ laf/PIA6 Iloilo)



Unity is key to HIV/AIDS prevention By Leonard T. Pineda I ILOILO CITY, Dec. 8 (PIA6) --- The Department of Health (DOH)-6 said that unity among stakeholders in the community is vital in the control and prevention of HIV and AIDS.


n the recent commemoration of World AIDS Day (WAD) at West Visayas State University here, DOH-6 Local Health Support Division Chief Dr. Sophia Pulmones said that partnership among stakeholders is necessary to address concerns on HIV and AIDS including insufficient funding and budget, the need to strengthen awareness on the infection, and to increase access to treatments. “Cumulative data in Western Visayas showed a total of 1,516 cases from January

1986 up to October 2016,” she said. She said males comprised 93 percent of these cases, wherein 76 percent are transmitted among men having sex with men. This year‟s commemoration of the World AIDS Day recognized the different challenges in HIV and AIDS prevention and control. “One challenge is the promotion and implementation of the 2017-2022 AIDS Medium Term Plan 6 which contained

strategies, programs and projects on HIV prevention and control,” she said. Another challenge is the growing number of cases of HIV and AIDS infection including a three percent increase of cases in Western Visayas. “The third challenge is to continue our part to stop stigma and discrimination among persons living with HIV,” she said The 2016 commemoration of the World AIDS Day is anchored on the theme “Hands Up for HIV Prevention”. (JCM/LTP/PIA-Iloilo)

DICT promotes game dev’t in NIR By Carlson B. Alelis BACOLOD CITY, Dec. 8 (PIA6) – The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) is promoting the game development industry in the countryside, as Negros Island played host during the first Regional Game Fest held at SM Bacolod recently.


ark Matthew Operiano, one of the project leads for the DigitalPh Program of DICT, said the three-day event here included game jams, talks on game development and exhibition of game studios, among others. “There are game jam and code camp, so there‟s a bit of competition, but the focus of the event is about the promotion of the game development in the countryside,” he told PIA in an interview. Around 2,000 people, of whom are mostly students, took part in the event, particularly during the talks regarding game

development. DICT invited the pillars of the game development in the Philippines to talk about the latest trends in the industry. The students who participated are taking up computer science, information technology and games development, according to Operiano. Operiano said that the event was the first in a regional setting since DICT usually holds the event in Manila. “It‟s the first time that we will be having this event, because we saw that the Bacolod Negros Occidental Federation

(BNeFIT) discovered that there are game development studios sprouting in Bacolod, so it‟s a good thing to do it here,” he said. The Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDAP), along with the Negros Occidental Federation of Information and Communications Technology, is DICT‟s main partners during the said event. “It‟s booming and I think it‟s the right time to invest in game development,” he said. DICT also went to Dumaguete City, Neg. Or., on the fourth day of the Regional Games Fest. (CBA/PIA6-Negros Occidental)

P2.6M fire station up in San Jose By Vicente W. Villavert SAN JOSE, Antique, Dec. 3 (PIA6) - - The people in San Jose can now expect a strengthened fire fighting capability of the San Jose Fire Station personnel following the inauguration of their permanent building at the Tradetown in Barangay Dalipe, here.

The fire station was constructed to the tune of P2.6 million and this was made possible through the partnership of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and the local government of San Jose,” said FSSupt. Lindy C. Lauzon of the BFP 6, during the inauguration program, recently. Lauzon said that the construction of fire station in every municipality of the country is part of their modernization program which is anchored in two phases-capability building and service upgrading.

In order to upgrade the BFP‟s capability, a fire station must be established in every municipality, and on the part of service upgrading, all old fire trucks will be replaced with brand new units. The BFP 6 Director said that the San Jose fire station will serve as a central station, and there is a need to establish more sub-stations within the municipality in order improve the response time during emergencies. “We need to expand the fire station in San Jose given its fast growing economy,” the

BFP 6 Director said as he emphasized that there will still be additional release of budget for the completion and improvement of the San Jose fire station. For his part Mayor Elmer Untaran thanked the BFP for their commitment to strengthen the BFP‟s presence in order to ensure public safety and promote economic development in the province‟s capital town-San Jose de Buenavista. (JCM/VWV/PIA6 Antique)



CSC NegOr accepts exam applications By Jennifer C. Tilos DUMAGUETE CITY, Nov. 29 (PIA) -- The Civil Service Commission (CSC) here is now accepting applications for the Career Service Examinations scheduled on March 12, 2017 in the city.


rovincial Director Atty. Gina Crucio of CSC Negros Oriental asked applicants to apply early because acceptance of application is on a first-come, first-served basis. Crucio said the CSC Negros Oriental Field Office at Daro may close earlier than the January 13 deadline if the maximum number of rooms is already filled up.

The applicant-examinee is required to bring four pieces of passport size ID pictures with white background, showing a neutral facial expression and the ears; P500 application fee; and the original and photocopy of any of the following valid/ unexpired IDs with photo, signature and birthdate: Driver‟s License, Passport, PRC, SSS, GSID/UMID, Postal, Barangay, Voter‟s, Philhealth or BIR (with

signature of the issuing head), NBI Clearance, current company/office or school (validated for the current year). Any ID not in the list is not accepted. If the ID has no date of birth, CSC will ask for a copy of the NSO-issued authenticated Birth Certificate but the applicant has to show the original one. (rmn/jct/PIA7-Negros Oriental)

DSWD-NIR strengthens campaign against open defecation By Roi Lomotan NEGROS ISLAND, Dec. 2 (PIA) – The Department of Social Welfare and Development – Negros Island Region (DSWD-NIR) intensified the campaign against open defecation to its Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in the region in the conduct of its Grand Pantawid Pamilya Caravan held here on Nov. 29.


SWD-NIR Regional Director Shalaine Marie Lucero said her office is highlighting the Zero Open Defecation advocacy of World Bank and the Department of Health (DOH) – NIR in the region in their caravan because of the high incidence of families with no access to toilet facilities. Lucero cited that based on the records of UNICEF, there are 31% of families in the region that practice open defecation. On the other hand, based on the Listahanan data of DSWD-NIR, around 181,000 households out of 340, 000 poor families in NIR have no toilet facilities in their homes. Listahanan is an information management system that identifies who and where the impoverished families in the country are. Director Lucero also said they are focusing the campaign on Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries since the World Bank saw that interventions should also be targeted to Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries to improve their condition. “In NIR we have a total of 191, 000 families who are covered with PP in that number we have 43,000 who have no access to toilets,” Lucero noted. The DSWD official emphasized in her message to the participants at the culminating program held in Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental that it is important to raise awareness on this because the issue on open defecation is related to the health and economic aspects of the family.

DOH-NIR Regional Director Emilia Monicimpo in her message during the program also pointed out that the issue is also about sanitation. Monicimpo explained that poor sanitation can lead to sickness and if a person gets sick often, it would affect his performance at work, thus, bringing a negative impact to the family‟s economic condition. In the case of children, poor sanitation can also bring several health problems, she added. “We have heightened our advocacy campaign and with this caravan, we are hoping that many families will have access to toilet facilities,” Lucero said. DSWD municipal links and Local Chief Executives (LCEs) of different towns and cities in Negros Island joined the caravan. In Negros Oriental, the caravan started in Dumaguete City then passing through different towns and cities going to Mabinay. The caravan was joined by DOH-NIR OIC/Chief of Local Health Support Division Dr. Socrates Villamor, Valencia Vice Mayor Romeo Alviola, Bindoy Mayor Valente Yap, Mabinay Mayor Ernie Uy, Manjuyod Mayor Dr. Felix Sy, and Tayasan Mayor Susano Ruperto Jr. A short program was held in Mabinay where Mayor Uy gave his message of support to DSWD and its partner agencies DOH and World Bank in this endeavor. After this, the group went to Kabankalan City

which is the convergence point with other municipal links and other LCEs from Negros Occidental. Some vehicles of different Local Government Units (LGUs) were decorated with tarpaulins carrying the message “Unli Asenso Kapag May Inidoro” stressing the relation of sanitation and ensuring the health, safety and over-all wellbeing of the community. Some had makeshift comfort rooms at the back as a design. Meanwhile, Director Lucero shared some updates on the status of the towns in NIR that were chosen as pilot areas for the ZOD campaign. She cited that the municipality of Bindoy in Negros Oriental has reached 99.9% ZOD status while the other towns in province like La Libertad reached78% ZOD status, Vallehermoso at 42%, and Mabinay at 75%. For the municipality of Calatrava in Negros Occidental, from its 40 barangays there are 10 barangays that have reached 95% ZOD status. Lucero recognized the efforts of the local stakeholders especially the Local Government Units (LGUs) in achieving this accomplishment. However, she continued to challenge local leaders particularly the barangay officials to not only help capacitate their residents and Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries in this campaign but to also ensure cleanliness of the toilet facilities used by the community. (rmn/ral/PIA7-Negros Oriental)

Crimes in Bohol up By Rey Anthony H. Chiu TAGBILARAN CITY, Dec. 8 (PIA) -- During the recent Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) Meeting held at the Governor's Mansion, Camp Dagohoy, through operations officer Police Superintendent Lorenzo Batuan, an increase of 64 crime cases in Bohol in October against September was reported.


n September, there were 666 cases recorded (216 index and 450 non index crimes) while October tallied 730 cases comprising of 227 index and 503 non index crimes, he pointed out. Except for rape which went up three cases with only eight in September, theft went down nine cases from 96 in September. Robbery may have increased, but for one case during September, it has become insignificant. Cattle rusting surged, a phenomena police still could not categorically pinpoint as to the cause. But when the index crimes' increase could not

be solely the culprit, non-index crimes in Bohol surged making the total crime volume increase all the more noticeable. For non-index crimes, cases of traffic related incidents zoomed to 33% over September's 93 cases while damage to property in traffic-related incidents spiked to 54%, Camp Dagohoy said. Other non-index crimes, meaning other than those violations of special laws, also scratched a mark at 18 cases of 17% more than in September, Batuan said. With the absence of roadblocks in the form of

checkpoints, many people expected that criminal elements would be more bold in their criminal activities, especially robbery and theft. Although nobody has explained it yet, the absence of roadblocks and checkpoints may have prodded reckless drivers who would take to the streets without any authority obstructing them. Even then, Camp Dagohoy operations chief said he would order the reinstallation of checkpoints and roadblocks to keep crimes at bay and make Bohol a safe place for business to flourish. (rac/ PIA-7/Bohol)



Siquijor anti-TB coalition envisions TB-free province By Rizalie Anding Calibo SIQUIJOR, Nov. 24 (PIA) – The Siquijor Island Coalition Against Tuberculosis (SICAT), a multi-sectoral alliance among provincial and municipal government, private agencies, and non-government organizations, has envisioned a TB-free Siquijor province.


his after the Department of Health (DOH) national office pushed to make Siquijor a TB-free pilot province in the country. National Tuberculosis Program (NTP) Nurse Regional Coordinator Ponciana Selim said that SICAT has undertaken activities and measures leaning towards attaining the vision. “To date, TB is a major public health problem in Siquijor province making it a big challenge to SICAT and all stakeholders to give their support and cooperation for a unified effort to work for a TB-free Siquijor," Selim said.

She stressed the value and the important roles played by the healthcare providers in the six municipal health offices and one hospital in the province. The provincial government assured its financial and moral support to the TB program in the province. Selim said that one of the measures to be done is the creation of an alliance to oversee and supervise the wide-ranging unified control interventions towards enhanced prevention, detection and management of programs pertaining for minimizing and eradicating TB in the province.

The six rural health units (RHUs) in Siquijor province are TB-Directly Observed Treatment Short (TB-DOTS) Course accredited facilities. These TB DOTS facilities ensure quality TB services, Selim said. SICAT‟s vision is TB-free, healthy Siquijodnon while its mission is committed to eradicate TB in the province through strengthened, unified and sustainable multi-sectoral alliance approach using health policies, innovative programs and accessible quality services to all Siquijodnons. (rmn/rac/PIA7-Siquijor/ with reports from IAAbatayo)

Bago City College is quiz bee champ in NIR By Jennifer C. Tilos NEGROS ORIENTAL, Nov. 29 (PIA) -- Bago City College in Negros Occidental was declared recently as the champion team in the grand finals of the Negros Island Region's first environmental quiz bee of Energy Development Corporation (EDC) dubbed "Positive Energy Battle of the Brains" in Dumaguete City.


total of P50,000 cash prize was awarded to Bago City College and student-winner by EDC. The cash prize is divided among the student-winner Elmar Escoro and Cohlen Subere who received 20,000 and a trip to EDC's geothermal site in Valencia, Negros Oriental, while P30,000 goes to the school along with bragging rights for being Negros Island's first Positive Energy Battle of the Brains champions. First runner-up is Negros Oriental State University, represented by Michael Circulado and Alec Ramirez, while second runner-up is Asian College of Science and Technology in Dumaguete City, represented by Socrates Omega and Justin Capoquian. This first NIR quiz bee focused on "climate action through education" participated in by other three grand finalists are Foundation University,

Rommille Lijah Marquez and Ivan Christopher Cordevilla; Technological University of the Philippines Visayas - Jun Rey Tabligan and Samuel Joy Francis Vargas; and Colegio San Agustin-Bacolod - Ryan Torrico and Ronalyn De La Cruz. Knowledge is power and the only way to be able to save and fight for the environment is to learn about these topics, said Norreen Bautista, head of the Community Partnerships, External Relations, and Watershed Management Department of EDC, which spearheaded the activity. “We chose the theme climate action through education because this quiz bee is for all of us. We need to spread awareness on facts related to climate change because it is real, it's happening, and we're all affected so we all need to do something to slow it down." Bautista said there is still much to learn "before we can fully understand the situation of our

environment and what we can do to fix it." She added that Negros continues to be at the forefront of environmental preservation “and we, in EDC, are just glad to be a part of it as the region's only developer of abundant source of geothermal energy for the past 33 years”. The Battle of the Brains is in partnership with the Tourism Educators Council of Negros Oriental and Siquijor and media partners Drink Communications, Hush Events Solutions, Philippine Information Agency-Negros Oriental, and the Negros Press Club. The information imparted during the event was verified by partner experts from the National Geothermal Association of the Philippines, Department of Energy Visayas, The Purpose Business, and Climate Reality PH. (rmn/jct/ PIA7-Negros Oriental)

Biking the extreme foot trails of Dauis By Rey Anthony H. Chiu TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Nov. 29 (PIA) — The hills came alive that Sunday. It was the day mountain bike enthusiasts invaded the trails only firewood gatherers and livestock pasturers knew existed.


auis Hills, now a verifiable trail for mountain bike enthusiasts, became the hive of activity as competitive riders and hobbyists tried its trails for fun and focus after a local group of bikers brought in this season‟s extreme mountain bike challenge here. Now building a close followership of bike enthusiasts in the time staying fit and healthy is trending, mountain biking in Tagbilaran earns a growing population and competitions are making bikers bond, a member of the mother group Bol-anon Biker said. It was a relatively safe and yet challenging trail, counting a 13-year old as among the finishers doing 21 kilometers and a 60 year old grandpa completing 8.4 kilometers of grueling up and down hills, race organizers said. Regil Kent Narisma, wearing bib 209 was the youngers competitor while Rolando Dango, at 60 was the oldest. Boholano extreme challenge mountain bikers geared on November 20 for the Mayokmok Bikers Back to Back XC Challenge: a looped mountain trail

race through the trekking trails of Catarman and Biking in Dauis Bohol. It‟s a 4.2 kilometer trail comprising of everything a mountain biker would drool, said Josue Hinay, a distance biker tour guide who joined the race to stay fit. There are plenty of technical sections, and when the trails are carved from coral stones fit for hikers, expect sections when one bursts out of the vegetation, natural rocky obstacles, treacherous descent and ascents and rolling terrain, he added describing the stretch which his age bracket must complete in the shortest time in three loops. Opened in four categories: 29 and under men, 30-39 men, 40-49 men and 50 and above men, the race started and ended at the Sumaylo Firing Range in Biking. Completing 5 loops of the rugged terrain in record time of 1:05:39 of the 29 under men‟s category was Paseo de Loon‟s Avelino Buligan biker wearing racing bib 208, followed by Jonas Baring (racing bib 201) of Team SikMa, with 1:08:52. Coming in three minutes later was the biker in

bib 214 Jeremiah Aguilo taking the looped course in 1:11:13. In the 30-39 age category, riders need to complete four 4.2 kilometer loop and Mayokmok Riders Gideon Petallar wearing bib 314 broke the tape less than a minute ahead of rider 322 Jover Visto of Team Dimiao. Petallar scooped a 58:18:58 record as against Visto‟s 59:06:56. Cruising in third was Stephen Zamora (bib 323) of Mayokmok Riders clocking in at 59:58:15. In the 40-49 age category, Tri Bohol triathlete Buchie Zamora (bib 415) finished the three 4.2 kilometers loop in 44:43:00 closely followed by Milo Melan (bib 409) of Duro Riders at 44:57:00. Adrian Arcamo of Paseo de Loon (bib 406) came in third with 46:00:01. For the 50 and above category, Paseo de Loon‟s Anotio Beronio (511) finished the 8.2 kilometer trail in 38:01:55 while rider 504 of Beerbogs Dario Bucia finished it in 35:0012 followed by Cecilio Castillon (507) of Calape bikers who broke the line at 36:17:19. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)



Red tide alert still up in 7 bays Consuelo B. Alarcon TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec. 8 (PIA) - Red tide toxins remain in seven coastal areas in Eastern Visayas, prompting the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) to issue a shellfish ban in said areas.


ccording to the latest laboratory results of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources(BFAR), dated December 6, 2016, shellfishes collected at Irong-Irong, Cambatutay Bays in Western Samar; Matarinao bay in Eastern Samar; Leyte, Calubian and Carigara Bays in Leyte and the waters of Naval, Biliran are still positive for paralytic shellfish poison that is beyond the regulatory limit.

Shellfish bulletin no. 37 series of 2016 also disclosed that all types of shellfish and acetes sp. or alamang gathered from said bays are not safe for human consumption. But other sea products like fish, squids, shrimps and crabs can be eaten provided that they are fresh and washed thoroughly and the internal organs such as gills and intestines are removed before cooking. However, there are areas in the region

which are free from red tide organisms such as Maqueda bay, Villareal bay and the coastal waters in Daram, Samar; San Pedro bay and Cancabato bay in Tacloban City, Leyte. “This means that shellfishes and other marine products from said coastal waters are safe for human consumption. Thus, it is free to harvest, sell, buy and eat,” BFAR OIC Fatima Idris said. (ajc/cba/ BFAR/PIA8)

Do not remove road warning signs -- DPWH-SLDEO Marcelo M. Pedalino MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte, Dec. 8 (PIA) - The government’s construction agency in this province appealed to the general public, especially the people in communities where they have ongoing projects, not to destroy, throw, or stole early warning devices meant to keep motorists safe.


his developed as traffic accidents along to the concerned contractors, and he quoted national roads undergoing widening them as saying they had been replacing lost were blamed on lack of prior warning signs even as these will most likely be carted devices. away, again, for whatever motive.Engr. Gideon Pedestrians, the riding public, and Sacro, in-charge of maintenance, cited a specific drivers of wheeled vehicles were duly location in which in the morning they informed of risks while a widening project was placed steel and wooden roadblocks in a in progress through visible structures and section of a highway with cracks, only to be symbols, their installation a must for nowhere in sight but transferred by the side of contractors to do as part of the project, the road when they went back in explained Engr. Allan Eway, OIC-Assistant the afternoon. District Engineer (ADE). Sacro called on residents in a barangay In an interview at the dydm Kapihan sa where roads are widened not to harm warning PIA Friday, Eway said he had raised this matter gadgets, imploring the help of barangay officials

for assistance so safety devices can serve its purpose and not vandalized. Meanwhile, Engr. Leticia Olare, head of construction department, reported that for 2016, 77 out of 84 projects had been finished, for an accomplishment rate of 94.98%, the rest expected to be done in a month or so. As for quality control of materials for use in public works projects, Engr. Leonides Olarte announced that his men in the field underwent a refresher course for two days, December 1 and 2, so as to be abreast of latest developments. (ajc/mmp/PIA8 -Southern Leyte)

Maasin City joins 2016 nat’l Batang Pinoy games Ma. Rebecca G. Cadavos MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte, Nov. 28 (PIA) -- Around 60 sports delegates were sent off Sunday, November 27 to participate in the Batang Pinoy 2016 National Games held in Tagum City, Davao del Norte.


anggunian Panglungsod Member Zaldy Olita who went with the group reported over radio that Maasin City through the leadership of neopyhte mayor Nacional Mercado supported the said activity allocating funds for the said purpose, particularly the sports program of the city government. The Maasin City team is composed of coaches, trainers and athletes from the public shcools throughout Maasin City who previously won in their own fields, Olita told.

He said that more than 10,000 athletes throughout the country are expected to join the week-long national sports event. Olita said that there are two divisions for the Batang Pinoy 2016 national competition, the 15 under with a cut-off age of January 1, 2004 and the 17-under with cut-off age of January 1, 1999. Philippine Sports Commission chair Butch Ramirez graced the opening of the sports competition that started November 27 and ends December 2, 2016.

Olita informed that unlike last year‟s Batang Pinoy competition, a Visayas Leg was conducted to pick-up winning athletes as well as for the Mindanao and Luzon Legs, only those who won in the said local competition were brought to the national championship of Batang Pinoy. This year's competition has no Visayas Leg competition, he said. Maasin City will compete on games such as taekwondo, swimming, boxing, badminton, table and lawn tennis, athletics, to name a few. (ajc/rgc/PIA8-SoLeyte)



PIA family gathers in one historic night Consuelo B. Alarcon TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec. 8 (PIA) - For the first time in history, all officials and employees of the Philippine Information Agency in the country converged Tuesday at UP Bahay Ng Alumni, UP Diliman Quezon City for the 30th anniversary celebration and Christmas Party.


ne of the highlights of the celebration was the 2016 Praise Awards Ceremony. Among the awards given were the PIA Masinop Award, Gantimpala Award, Loyalty Award, PIA Special Recognition Award, ISO Recognition, Meritorious Performance Award, Outstanding Performer Award and the PIA Masinop Hall of Famer. In his message, PIA Director General Harold E. Clavite said he takes pride, being now a part of the agency. “Sa loob ng apat na buwan na nakasama niyo ako bilang director general I can‟t stop saying even to my family, to my wife, to my parents...that I‟m so proud that I‟m now a part of this big family,” Clavite said. DG Clavite admits that at the outset he did not know why he was placed at PIA but after his four months stay he realized the reasons why he should be in this agency.

With the kind of work of the people in PIA, Clavite assured his dedication and commitment to the agency as he urged everyone to continue to be of service to the Filipino people. Aside from the launching of a TV show dubbed as "PIA Like Pinas" and the giving of tribute to the retirees where DG Clavite serenaded them, the presentation of the praise awards was the center of the celebration. In Eastern Visayas, seven employees garnered awards. One got the Masinop award, one for Gantimpala award and six for loyalty awards for serving the agency for 10 years and more. Ms. Delicia M. Servande who served the agency for 40 years was given a special recognition by the agency. Servande was working at the National Media Production Center (NMPC) when the office was abolished in 1986 and merged with the Office of Media Affairs (OMA) which became PIA by virtue of

Executive Order 100 dated December 24, 1986. Gemma T. Tabao who is the agency‟s personnel officer garnered two awards-the loyalty award for serving the agency for 25 years and the Masinop award for promoting the value of conscientious use of office resources, conservation and protection of the environment among PIA-8 employees. Meanwhile, Eastern Samar Information Center Officer-in-charge Samuel Candido got the Gantimpala Award for his exemplary courtesy, promptness, efficiency, dedication to duty and innovation that are cost efficient and has greatly contributed to raising the standards of excellence in the agency. Other loyalty awardees in the region were OIC regional director Alicia E. Nicart, disbursing officer Leonila Villanueva, Carlos Jackson and Mary Lailani P. Tupaz of PIA Biliran province.(ajc/cba/PIA-8)

800 delinquent SoLeyte SSS borrowers avail LRP Marcelo M. Pedalino MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte, Dec. 3 (PIA) -- Some 800 past due borrowers under the service area coverage of Social Security System (SSS) office in this province that includes the town of Inopacan, Leyte, have availed themselves of the Loan Restructuring Program (LRP).


his was learned from Gregorio Baroza, SSS-Maasin branch manager, in an interview at the Action Center Kapihan sa PIA cable TV program Tuesday. Baroza said he anticipated the number to increase further in the coming months, but he cannot speculate on just how many are still out there bidding time for this special opportunity

given to SSS members. “I call on those concerned, those who have unpaid loans since the 1980‟s, provided their area was declared under a state of calamity since typhoon Ondoy in 2009 up to Yolanda in 2013, to avail the LRP,” Baroza appealed. The deadline for the LRP will be on April 27, 2017, exactly a year after it was launched in

April this year, so those who will apply for this one can still have enough time, he added. Details on this availment as per situation of the individual member can be discussed at the SSS office, and he or she can choose on the terms of installment repayment, from one year to five years, Baroza also said. (ajc/mmp/ PIA8-Southern Leyte)

Poverty incidence in EVisayas drops 7% between 2012 and 2015 PSA8/PIA8 TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Dec. 10 (PIA) -- Poverty incidence among families in Eastern Visayas showed a significant reduction of 6.7 percentage points between the year 2012 and 2015 as reported by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) Regional Office 8.


SA disclosed that in 2015 the poverty situation in the region was estimated at 30.7 percent way below than the 37.4 percent poverty incidence recorded in the same period in 2012. This implies that 3 in every 10 families in the region are living in a poor situation. Of the six provinces in Region VIII, improvements in poverty incidence were noted among families in the region between 2012 and 2015 except for the province of Northern

Samar which registered an increase of 4.4 percent. Data showed that from 43.5 percent in 2012, it went up to 47.9 percent in 2015 making the province of Northern Samar having the highest poverty incidence last year. Biliran, the smallest province in the region recorded the lowest poverty incidence at 17.4 percent while the province of Leyte, the biggest province ranked second lowest at 23.6 percent followed by Southern Leyte with 30.2

percent and Eastern Samar and Samar with 37.4 and 39.5 percent, respectively. The biggest reduction of poverty incidence was noted in the province of Eastern Samar with 18.0 percent, from 55.4 percent in 2012 to 37.4 percent in 2015. The latest poverty estimates was based on the income data from the first and second visit of the Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) conducted in July 2015 and January 2016, respectively. (cba/PSA8/PIA8)

One Visayas e-newsletter is published weekly by the Visayas Regional Cluster of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) comprising Region 6, 7 and 8. Its main editorial office is located at PIA Region 6, Iloilo City. One Visayas e-newsletter is part of the online news and information dissemination services of PIA and is powered by For inquiries and suggestions, call Tel. Nos. (033) 3378719/3377301 or e-mail

Ms. Minerva BC Newman Regional Director, PIA 7

Editorial Consultants Atty. Ma. Janet C. Mesa, Ph. D. Regional Director, PIA6

Ms. Alicia E. Nicart Regional Director, PIA8

Managing Editor Jaime S. Cabag, Jr. Contributors All PIA Information Officers of Regions 6, 7 & 8 Production and Layout Edson J. BaĂąares Lynnor C. Regalado Regional Offices: PIA 6, 2/F RC Building, Rizal St., Iloilo City, Iloilo 5000, Tel. Nos. (033) 337-8719/3377301/509-0993, Fax No. (033) 337-8719/509-0993, e-mail: PIA 7, Room 304, 3/F Machay Bldg., Garardo Avenue, Cebu City, Cebu 6000, Telefax No. (032) 232-4062/232-4126, e-mail: PIA 8, Childrenâ€&#x;s Park Compound, Sen. Enage St., Tacloban City, Leyte 6500, Tel. No. (053) 325-5124, Telefax No. (053) 321-2029, e-mail:

Onevisayasenewslettervol6issue49 20161212 r6  

The official e-Newsletter of PIA Visayas

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