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WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 5, 2014 Vol. 3 No. 113

Information to Empower Filipinos

Agriculture Attaché to UAE visits Butuan, discusses business with city dad Jennifer P. Gaitano Caraga Region

7 NATIONAL

9 15 16

Government renews unwavering commitment to combat graft, corruption

CARAGA REGION

Surigao Norte gov forms HEALS Plus Convergence Group

Susil D. Ragas

Surigao Sur town conducts Incident Command System training

Nida Grace P. Barcena

NORTHERN MINDANAO

23 24

Sapad Town in Lanao del Norte inaugurates new municipal hall

Ana Celeste W. Felisilda

Northern Mindanao LGUs to avail P205 million Salintubig projects in 2014

Ana Celeste W. Felisilda

WESTERN MINDANAO

26

Philhealth beefs up Primary Care Benefit Package Alfonso T. Ruda

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11 27

13

Bayog town receives fire truck

Claro A. Lanipa

SOUTHERN MINDANAO

31

Tourism leader urges DavNor to develop destinations

RG Alama

CENTRAL MINDANAO

34 35

DENR 12 awards performing NGP key players and implementers Danilo E. Doguiles

SouthCot town launches comprehensive health program

Shahana Joy E. Duerme

ARMM MINDANAO

39

Marawi City to host 2014 ARMM reg’l sports meet


Agriculture AttachĂŠ to UAE visits Butuan, discusses business with city dad

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By Jennifer P. Gaitano

r. Gil B. Herico, Agriculture AttachĂŠ to United Arab Emirates (UAE) discussed business with City Mayor Ferdinand Amante Jr. and some heads of government agencies.

In his presentation, Herico bared that the Middle East is one of


the world’s fastest growing food and beverage markets, and the Golf Cooperation Council Countries import over US$ 12-billion worth of Agrifood annually. Herico further revealed that the production of Lemon Grass or Tanglad (in local dialect) in UAE is tremendous because almost all of the restaurants there use Lemon Grass in the food they cook. It was also learned that the Philippine Seafood Industry has been growing substantially and Aquaculture remains to be the main engine for export growth in the fisheries sector. “I am inviting Mayor Jun Amante and his wife, together with Department of Agriculture Caraga regional director Edna Mabeza and other local officials here to attend the SEAFEX this year in Dubai, UAE. I am convinced that Butuan can really boost its seafood industry,” Herico

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stressed. SEAFEX is professionally managed and hosted by the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) which provides more than three decades of experience in delivering world-class events in the Middle East, featuring local, regional and international exhibitors with unmatched expertise and in-depth market knowledge. The extensive portfolio of leading trade and consumer brand events include Gulfood, Sweets and Snacks Middle East, The Speciality Food Festival, GITEX Technology Week, Dubai International Boat Show and Dubai International Motor Show. Also, Herico encouraged the city government to indulge into organic business. “If you have business on organic (native chicken, hog/pork), it will surely prosper. It is such a good investment,” emphasized Henrico. The Agriculture Attaché to UAE also promised to visit the city on a quarterly basis this year to further discuss businesses that will suggest more investments for the benefit of Butuanons.


Across

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Nation

President Aquino seeks international help vs China’s claims over West Philippine Sea

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resident Benigno Aquino III this week sought international support in contesting China’s claims over the West Philippine Sea, warning of the consequences of “(saying) yes to something we believe is wrong now.”

The President, in an interview with The demands for the Sudetenland in 1938. New York Times also cited a lesson from “If we say yes to something we history where the West failed to support believe is wrong now, what guarantee is Czechoslovakia against Adolf Hitler’s there that the wrong will not be further FEBRUARY 2014 | PAGE 7


exacerbated down the line?..... At what point do you say, ‘Enough is enough?’ Well, the world has to say it,” he said. “Remember that the Sudetenland was given in an attempt to appease Hitler to prevent World War II,” he added. He maintained in the interview that the Philippines will not give up its territories in the disputed area. The New York Times described President’s Aquino’s remarks as “among the strongest indications yet of alarm among Asian heads of state about China’s military buildup and territorial a m b i t i o n s .” T h e Philippines is among the Asian countries that have territorial disputes with China over the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea). During the interview, the President also said he is optimistic

the Philippines and the United States are very close to an agreement that could enhance the Philippines’ security. “We are very optimistic that will happen,” he said. On the other hand, the President expressed reluctance to increase military spending, if that means sacrificing social concerns. “I’m not sure if I would be willing to sacrifice social concerns to try to improve the military capabilities,” he said. PND

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Government renews unwavering commitment to combat graft, corruption

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he government will continue carrying out reforms in the bureaucracy to sustain recent economic gains for the benefit of all Filipinos, a Palace official said on Tuesday.

“The Aquino administration shall continue to pursue and institutionalize these reforms anchored on principles of good governance and to build stronger public institutions,” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio “Sonny” Coloma Jr. said in response to a report noting

tremendous government losses as a result of rampant corruption in government. In a report, the Global Financial Integrity, a Washington, DC-based research and advocacy organization, said the Philippines has suffered $132.9 billion in illicit financial outflows from crime, corruption, and tax evasion, while $277.6 FEBRUARY 2014 | PAGE 9


billion was illegally transferred into the country over a 52-year period. Coloma noted that while the report only covers the first year of the Aquino administration, the government is committed to continue eliminating corruption in the bureaucracy. The study made by the Global Financial Integrity covered the administrations of seven Presidents from Carlos P. Garcia to Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, he said noting that it is important to address the concerns expressed in the report because it affects the country’s reputation in the global stage. To address these concerns, Coloma said that since 2010, the government has undertaken reforms to curtail smuggling and curb money laundering activities. Last year, the Financial Action Task Force excluded the Philippines in its blacklist citing “significant progress to improve anti-money laundering” measures. He also said several international agencies have cited considerable improvements in the country, especially in the areas of governance, transparency, government and business efficiency and economic performance. For instance, the Philippines’s ranking in

the International Finance Corp.’s “Doing Business 2014” report, jumped 25 places to 108 from 133 in 2013 while its standing in Transparency International last year improved significantly to number 94 from 105 the previous year. Also, in the latest 2013 World Economic Forum, the Philippines’ ranking rose to 59th spot from the previous year’s 65th out of 148 countries, while the 2013 Grant Thornton Global Dynamism Index showed the Philippines ranking rising to 25 places to 21st among 60 countries. The Philippines also achieved consecutive ratings upgrades to investment grade status from prominent credit ratings agencies such as Standard and Poor, Fitch, Moody’s and Japan Credit Agency. These ratings agencies are globally recognized as credible endorsers of countries attaining seal of good financial housekeeping and management. PND

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Mindanao solon seeks for reopening of Lumbia Airport

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usinessmen and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) sought the help of Misamis Oriental Rep. Juliette Uy to make representation with the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) to reopen the Lumbia Airport due to the spate of flight cancellations owing to the lack of navigational aids and lights at the Laguindingan Airport. In her letter to DOTC Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya dated January 29, 2014, she formally requested the reopening of the Lumbia Airport for commercial flights “as the Laguindingan Airport is not yet at par with international FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

standards” due to the absence of air navigational facilities, which are very essential to the airport’s operations. “We believe that since this has not been immediately acted upon by the Civil Aviation Authority PAGE | 11


of the Philippines (CAAP), flight cancellations due to simple rain or cloudiness have become the norm at the Laguindingan facility,” Uy said in her letter to the DOTC Secretary. According to Uy, the Laguindingan Airport, that is derisively being called “Di-Malandingan Airport” by netizens, has become a bane to airline passengers, including OFWs and business groups from Region 10, who missed their connecting flights due to flight cancellations. She said this could have been prevented if the Laguindingan Airport was opened complete with the navigational facilities needed by an airport facility. The Mindanao solon claimed it is of major concern to local businesses that cancelled flights always result to tremendous losses in the local economy. Uy stressed that flight cancellations severely limit the influx of tourists and investors in Misamis Oriental and nearby cities and provinces as well as the revenues of affected airline companies, h o t e l s , FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

restaurants and passengers. “The clamor for the reopening of the Lumbia Airport was heightened by the recent weather conditions brought about by inclement weather and Typhoon ‘Agaton’ has only brought sub-par operations of the Laguindingan airport to the attention -- and consternation -- of the general riding public. This just shows that the facility has no VHF Omni-Directional Range Navigation System, a Meteorological Observing System and a Precision Lighting System,” Uy pointed out. “What the DOTC should do is reopen the Lumbia Airport for commercial flights until such time that the Laguindingan Airport is fully operational. This will address the problems faced by all airline passengers, airlines and local businesses of Misamis Oriental and Region 10,” Uy emphasized.

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‘The best way to communicate to people is to speak from the heart,’ says PIA-13 chief By Jennifer P. Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY -- “The best way to communicate is not by speaking English fluently in front of people but by speaking from the heart in such a way that you are also able to touch their hearts and minds.”

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This was the statement of Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Caraga regional director Abner Caga, who served as the guest speaker during the 14th anniversary celebration of the Butuan Habitat for Humanity Incorporated (BHFHI) on Saturday held at the Lucky Village Covered Court, Barangay Ambago, this city. Caga further said that constant communication among neighborhood is very important because as part of the community, “you have that responsibility to contribute to its development by sharing useful ideas and create a harmonious relationship with them.” “You take good care of your community, don’t let anyone destroy the good foundation you have started with people in your Habitat community. We should continue to share, donate and volunteer as responsible homepartners,” Caga remarked. Caga also recalled the devastation in Tacloban City as he with the team witnessed how people there suffered the physical destruction in the area where residents lost the lives of their loved ones and properties. “It is not that easy to have lost a family and a home. That’s why we should give value to whatever we have today in our lives. We should always be thankful,” stressed Caga. “From my personal experiences, I know what it’s like to be when you desperately need a good shelter. So, I FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

am encouraging you (homepartners) to give value to your houses and give meaning to the existence of your houses,” added Caga. Meanwhile, Butuan City Water District (BCWD) general manager and BHFHI Board of Director Anselmo Sangtian together with BHFHI president Nora Rama and vice president Engr. Heidi Sumalpong expressed their warm thanks to the good director for always supporting the organization’s endeavors despite its hectic schedule. The officers of BHFHI also handed-over the plaque of appreciation to director Caga. “I’m very happy to see you all in your 14th anniversary celebration today and to be part of this organization,” said Caga.

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Surigao Norte gov forms HEALS Plus Convergence Group By Susil D. Ragas SURIGAO CITY- Governor Sol F. Matugas signed recently Executive Order No. 001 series of 2014 creating the HEALS Plus Convergence Group.

The HEALS Plus Convergence Group aims to pursue the continuing development and transformation of depressed barangays by implementing economic, social, protection and other basic services with the assistance and coordination of concerned national line agencies, civil society, LGUs, private individuals/ organizations and foreign funding institutions. The members of the HEALS Plus Convergence Group composed of 21 municipal mayors, representatives from DILG, DTI, DENR, DAR, PNP, Phil. Army, PPA, MGB, PAG-ASA, PhilVocs, Phil. Coconut Authority, Maritime, Phil. Coast Guard, CAAP, Phil. Information Agency, COA, DepEd, DOLE, NFA,NCIP, NAIA, BFAR, TESDA, NSO, Phil. Red Cross, Bureau of Agricultural Statistics, DPWH (1st and 2nd engineering districts), SUNGCOD, SNPIDA, REACH Foundation, Inc., AGTASI, FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

SEDF, FPOP SCCI, ISDA Foundation, and all department heads of the provincial government. Primary function and duty of the members of the said convergence group is to provide support systems to the implementation of HEALS Plus programs, projects and activities as stipulated in the Executive and Legislative Agenda, Provincial Development Investment Plan, and other programs and projects identified by the Provincial and Municipal Local Executives. HEALS Plus Agenda of the provincial gov’t of Surigao del Norte is the supreme framework agenda which stands for Health, Education/Environment, Agriculture/ Aquaculture, Livelihood/Tourism, Social Welfare & Spiritual Renewal re-invented and strengthened it with more projects on infrastructure & equitable economic growth. PAGE | 15


Surigao Sur town conducts Incident Command System training By Nida Grace P. Barcena

SURIGAO DEL SUR -- The members of the local disaster risk reduction management (DRRM) council of the local government unit (LGU) of Cagwait, this province began the year with the 3-day Basic Incident Command System (ICS) training held in Balay Mindanao Foundation Incorporation Center, Cagayan de Oro City. Abel de Guzman of Surigao del Sur Provincial DRRM office said, around 45 participants joined the basic ICS course led by Cagwait DRRM chair Mayor Lilian Lozada with the local legislators, DRRM council members and barangay captains from 11 barangays. According to de Guzman, the activity was aimed to enhance understanding of the incident command system as a vital tool for effective disaster response, provide an ICS background of what are the concepts, principles and features, capabilities, organization facilities and common terminologies FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

used during the operations on disaster response. “The ICS management best practices will help to ensure the safety of responders and efficient use of the resources. It allows personnel from different agencies to meld rapidly into a common management structure and cost effective by avoiding duplication of efforts,� De Guzman added. Facilitated by Office of the Civil defence (OCD)-Caraga, the activity was spearheaded by the LGU Cagwait in partnership with the Balay Mindanao Foundation Incorporation. The activity will culminate on Feb. 5. PAGE | 16


Dominga Mallonga DOST-Caraga Regional Director

for more details visit us DOST National Website: http://www.dost.gov.ph DOST Caraga Website: http://caraga.dost.gov.ph


Interfaith dialogue in Iligan highlights World Interfaith Harmony Week by Lorry V. Gabule

ILIGAN CITY, Lanao del Norte – An interfaith dialogue through ChurchMasjid visitations activity among people of various faiths highlights the observance of the World Interfaith Harmony Week here in Iligan City and Lanao del Norte. mosque serves as a place where Muslims can come together for salat (prayer) as well as a center for information, education, and dispute settlement. The imam leads the congregation in prayer. The week celebration slated every February 1-7 is pursuant to the United Nations Resolution 65/5 adopted last October 2010 declaring the first week of February A mosque or Masjid is a place as the World Interfaith Harmony of worship for followers of Islam. The Week which gives importance and FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

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emphasis on interreligious dialogue and understanding as a way of bridging people. It’s a way of enhancing mutual respect, understanding and unity among people of different beliefs and cultures, said Musa Mohamad Sanguila, director, Pakigdait Incorporated, Iligan City/ Lanao del Norte. Pakigdait, Inc. is spearheading the visitation on February 5, 2014 at Poblacion, Matungao, Lanao Del Norte, in coordination with religious and secular leaders from around the city and in this province. The program starts with an interfaith prayer followed by a welcome remarks of the host town Mayor Aisha Azis and the presentation of the objective and rationale of the activity by Pakigdait Director Sanguila. Sr. Liza Ruedas of Ranaw Muslim Christian Dialogue for Peace is tasked to do the Reading of the Resolution 65/5–World Interfaith Harmony Week. Giving a minute to share their statement of peace and support are Prof. Sukarno Tanggol, Ph.D, chancellor, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology (MSU-IIT); Col. Demy T. Tejares, brigade commander, 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army; P/SSupt. Madid M. Paitao, provincial director, Police Provincial Office-Philippine National Police, Lanao del Norte; Bishop FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

Stephen L. Villaester, chairperson, Interfaith Council; Capt. Mohd Izzudin Ahmad of International Monitoring Team (IMT); and Kamran Shah of Non-Violent Peaceforce. Board Member Grecille I. Matalines of the First District, Lanao del Norte also give her message of peace and support representing the provincial government. Invited as keynote speaker of the day is Dr. Potre Diampuan, Ph.D, the Regional Coordinator of the United Religions Initiative-Southeast Asia and the Pacific (URI-SEAPac). The program ends with a sharing of the Beliefs and Practices by the Host Religion: Islam, and an open forum is handled by the moderator Director Sanguila. Pakigdait ug Pag-Amoma Alang sa Kalinaw or Pakigdait, Inc. is an interfaith grassroot peacebuilding civil society organization based in Iligan City and Lanao del Norte. It has four services which cater to Grassroot Peacebuilding Programs, Conflict Resolution, Management and Transformation Programs, Peace Advocacy, LGU Engagement and Networking Programs, and Community Enterprise and MicroProject for Peace Programs. In his statement, Rev. Fr. Regino R. Quijano, Chairman of the Board Director, Pakigdait Inc. said, “In the community where the conflict is present, peace can be planted and nurtured.”

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Sapad Town in Lanao del Norte inaugurates new municipal hall by Ana Celeste W. Felisilda

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – The municipality of Sapad in Lanao del Norte completed on January 28, this year its two Storey Municipal Hall and Furniture Projects.

The project, amounted to P27,983,025.89, is funded by the Mindanao Development Fund Office (MDFO), Department of Finance, through the Mindanao Basic Urban Sector Services Program (MBUSSP) of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Region 10, said Atty. Rene K. Burdeos, DILG-10 Regional Director. One of the significant activities during the ceremony was the cutting of ribbon by Vice Governor Ma. Christina N. Atay and Mayor Paruk U. Asis followed by blessing of the building by the Sapad Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Sandy Mallorca. FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

Meanwhile, MBUSSP is a sixyear sector development project of DILG which intends to provide institutional capacity-building program and to pursue urban infrastructure investment support to participating Local Government Units (LGUs) in Mindanao. This project also provides technical assistance and advisory in services to participating LGUs for essential urban infrastructure services, Atty. Burdeos said. According to Burdeos, the MDFO created the Municipal Development Fund Project (MDFP) through Resolution No. 05-05-252006. Further, this new financing window is in response to the increasing demand of LGUs for better financing terms for the implementation of their priority development projects. Utilizing the Municipal Development Fund-Second Generation Fund (MDF-SGF), this new lending facility offers comparative interest rates for LGU investment projects, said Burdeos. PAGE | 23


Northern Mindanao LGUs to avail P205 million Salintubig projects in 2014 by Ana Celeste W. Felisilda

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - Fifty-three municipalities and three cities of Northern Mindanao are target beneficiaries of the Sagana at Ligtas na Tubig sa Lahat (SALINTUBIG) project this 2014.

SALINTUBIG is a project of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Health (DOH) and the National AntiPoverty Commission (NAPC), designed to provide water supply systems to waterless municipalities, barangays, health centers, resettlement sites, said Atty. Rene K. Burdeos, Regional Director, DILG, region 10. The project also aims to enhance

FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

the capacity of the local government units (LGUs) and water service providers in the planning, implementation and operation of water supply facilities. Burdeos said 16 of the target beneficiaries come from the province of Bukidnon with a total of fund allocation of P61,680.296.98; 14 from Lanao del Norte, P55,334,219.75; 11 from Misamis Occidental, P51,112,375; 10 from Misamis Oriental, P35,585,925; and two from Camiguin, P1,735,000. Hence, DILG Region 10 is slated to release a total of P205,447,816.73 for Calendar Year 2014 fund allocation to these 56 local government units that will qualify for the project, he said.

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Zambo. Sur solon urges public to study, air comments on draft “Bangsamoro Basic Law” By Gideon C. Corgue

PAGADIAN CITY – Congressman Victor J. Yu of Zamboanga del Sur’s first district has recently encouraged the people to give their suggestions and comments on the provisions of draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

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Yu, who served as the keynote speaker during 10th Chinese New Year celebration here on Thursday at Plaza Luz, discussed briefly some provisions of the BBL before the crowd saying that the law would affect the Moro Gulf coastline of the province. “I take this opportunity to discuss the very important provisions of the BBL not only to the Chinese community but to everybody because some of these provisions would affect our province,” the solon explained. Yu, who brought with him copy of the draft BBL, said the Bangsamoro entities want to have a greater share of our natural resources – referring to the 58 exclusive power of Bangsamoro entities as stipulated in the draft bill. Under the BLL, the municipal waters of Bangsamoro entities were expanded from 15.5 to 22.5 miles. Yu said “the Moro Gulf coastline of the province is a big part of it and

was considered joint cooperation of the Bangsamoro and national government.” He encouraged feedback from the people because once the said bill will be passed in Congress, it will automatically become a law. It can be recalled that President Benigno Aquino III on Thursday urged the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to draw up soonest the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law so it can be ratified and implemented in time for the 2016 elections. Meanwhile Interfaith forum for Solidarity and Peace Muslim Convenor Sultan Abdulmaguid Maruhom in an interview said the members of BTC are all competent and qualified. “I believe their draft BBL will reflect the will of the majority since the framework agreement is their guideline,” Maruhom opined. “No peace agreement is perfect, but the framework agreement on the Bangsamoro is the best we have forged so far,” Maruhom concluded.

Philhealth beefs up Primary Care Benefit Package By Alfonso T. Ruda

DIPOLOG CITY - The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) has recently re-introduced its “Primary Care Benefit Package” under a new name called “TseKap” or Tamang Serbisyong Kalusugang Pampamilya. Philhealth-Zamboanga del Norte health care needs of Philhealth head, Florencio Luyao, said TseKap members especially the poor, and aims to respond to the growing to make the said package more FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

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attractive to member-beneficiaries which include the indigents and sponsored members, members of organized groups, and land-based Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). “Philhealth has also extended this benefit to the Department of Education (DepEd) last year as part of its pilot test,” Luyao said. TseKap consists of essential services aimed at prevention, early detection of diseases and even interventions for healthy living which include consultations, visual inspection with acetic acid, regular blood pressure monitoring, regular breast examination, and health promotion like education on breastfeeding, counseling on lifestyle modification and smoking cessation. Preventive services also cover body measurements and digital rectal examination while diagnostics such as complete blood count, urinalysis, fecalysis, sputum microscopy, fasting blood sugar, Lipid profile and chest x-ray are also available upon

recommendation of the physician. TseKap also provides medicines for asthma, acute gastroenteritis and no or mild dehydration pneumonia and urinary tract infection. According to Luyao, 27 Rural Health Units (RHUs) and two authorized hospitals identified as Primary Care Benefits providers in the two cities and municipalities in the province have been accredited as TseKap providers. Meanwhile, Luyao said, the company has also approved the inclusion of foster child or adopted child under Republic Act 10165, otherwise known as Foster Care Act of 2012 as additional dependents of the beneficiaries of the program. To avail of the benefit, the member has only to submit the Foster Parent License (FPL) and Foster Child Placement Authority (FCPA) and medical certificate for the parents with disability that only depend on the member for his/her daily needs.

Bayog town receives fire truck By Claro A. Lanipa

BAYOG, Zamboanga del Sur – A fire truck owned by Barangay Poblacion has recently been turned-over on Monday to the municipal government here. Barangay Poblacion chairman the said fire truck to Mayor Leonardo Berly E. Jate personally turned-over L. Babasa Jr. after the barangay FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

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council had passed a resolution donating the said vehicle to the municipality. It can be recalled that the said fire truck was acquired by Barangay Poblacion from the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive Integrated Delivery of Social Service (KALAHI-CIDSS) program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in 2007. Jate disclosed that the barangay had decided to turn-over the fire truck to the municipal government since it could no longer afford to FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

sustain the vehicle’s repair and maintenance and the honorarium for the fire volunteer brigade. The fire truck will now be manned by the Bayog Fire Volunteer Brigade under the supervision of Mr. Abraham Capayas, the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer (MDRRMO). Witnessing the turnover ceremony and the signing of the deed of donation were Vice Mayor Celso Matias, Councilor Horace Paul Anlap and Barangay Poblacion officials. PAGE | 28


City Mayor testifies, David Tan and Davidson Bangayan same person

DAVAO CITY- City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte testifying at the Senate inquiry on rice smuggling pointed out that David Tan and Davidson Bangayan are the same person.

The City Mayor during the hearing held today (Feb. 3) showed a photograph of a person provided by the city’s intelligence

FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

community, which he pointed out to be Davidson Bangayan. Duterte said that Bangayan is “no doubt” David Tan. Identified as the central figure in rice smuggling operations in the city. Davidson Bangayan earlier testifying at the Senate Inquiry denied he was David Tan. With Duterte’s testimony, Senator JV Ejercito seconded an earlier motion from Senator Juan Ponce Enrile that Bangayan be cited for contempt. Davao has been identified as one of the points of entry in the illegal rice smuggling. Last December Duterte bared that Bureau of Internal Revenue PAGE | 29


Commissioner Kim Henares called him up seeking help in curbing rice smuggling. The City Mayor then met with the business community

particularly with the rice traders to remind them of his drive against rice smuggling. “Just be sure that your source is not smuggled.� Duterte told the rice traders, as he marshaled the help of government forces (police, NBI) to help clamp down on the illegal activity which is a form of economic sabotage. The City Mayor then volunteered to testify in the hearing held by the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food. (PIA-XI /RG Alama photos by Ben Tesiorna)

facts and figures 50,000

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tons of rice estimated by the Bureau of Customs to be smuggled into the country every week.

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Tourism leader urges DavNor to develop destinations TAGUM CITY-Davao del Norte has to further develop its destinations and believe in its tourism products to champion tourism.

Speaking during the Monday Convocation, Davao Region Tourism Council Chairperson Mary Ann M. Montemayor posed the challenges citing these as main ingredients to champion tourism which last year hit a two billion mark in number of travellers worldwide. She believed that the province exerted efforts to further develop the tourism industry, saying it levelled up to become an ACE destination with its strength on agriculture, culture and eco-tourism. Aside from having known Davao del Norte as the “legendary” source of bananas for export, Montemayor noted that the province took pride of its culture and heritage, its festivals and its world-class talents and music, while its rivers, caves, waterfalls make it a place for outdoor adventures. Montemayor also took note of the Davao del Norte Tourism and Sports Complex with which it can now claim as the sports capital of Davao Region, bringing in visitors during upscale sports events. However, Montemayor urged everyone in Davao del Norte “to be-

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lieve” in the tourism products that the province capitalized on to bring in visitors. She was referring to the passion, the faith and the commitment of everyone from local officials to ordinary citizens to “press on” to achieve the desired goals of bringing Davao del Norte at the top of list of tourist destinations in the country. The natural calamities affecting the Davao Region might have become a challenge for the tourism industry but Montemayor said such phenomena triggered the Dabawenyos to persistently show their best. “The people of Davao Region are determined to rise and to build a better tomorrow,” she said. Citing the same resilient spirit, she said “Davao del Norte has all it takes to bring the tourism industry to greater heights.” On top of such optimism, she hoped its people would take on willingness to establish strong partnership and cohesiveness which she cited as the “ the most crucial ingredient” to get at the frontline of the tourism industry. She said the Filipino hospitality, their kindness and their smiles can make a tourist stay, complete. (PIA 11/ Jeanevive Duron-Abangan)

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Ambulance for Maasim, Kiamba and Glan ALABEL, Sarangani – Gov. Steve Chiongbian Solon gives the keys of ambulances to Kiamba Hospital represented by Dr. Aileen Brion (3rd from right) and Glan Hospital represented by Dr. Eden Rose Malanao (2nd from right) during the flag raising ceremony at Capitol Monday, February 3. Dr. Arvin Alejandro (extreme left), provincial health officer, said the ambulances, including another one for Maasim Hospital, cost P2.89 million and were purchased by the province through the Provincial Health Office. The ambulances were delivered last month after all documents were settled from a series of negotiations and biddings. Also in photo are Board Members Cesar Nallos (2nd from left), Virgilio Clark Tobias (3rd from left), and Federation of Association of Barangay Captains (FABC) president Eduardo Paras Sr. (4th from right). (Jake T. Narte/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

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DA-MRDP hands over rice mills to N. Cotabato villages

By: Shahana Joy E. Duerme CARMEN, North Cotabato—Two rice mill sub-projects were turned over last week to recipients in Barangays Nasapian and and General Luna in Carmen town.

Both projects, implemented under the Department of Agriculture - Mindanao Rural Development Program (DA-MRDP) were funded P500,000 each under a counter-parting scheme under the programs Community Fund for Agricultural Development (CFAD). Graciano Lumen, project officer of DA-MRPD, said 60 percent of the project cost,equivalent to P300,000, was provides by the World Bank whiile P100,000 was funded by the national governmeny and and the other 20 percent by the provincial government of North Cotabato. Beneficiaries of the projects are farmers who are members of the ‘Nagkakaisang Samahan ng mga Magsasaka ng Malmar (NAGKASAMMA) and the Carmen Agricultural Resources Development –Producers Cooperative (CARD-PC) CARD-PC chairperson Mokamad Bituanan emphasized that these projects are of great help to the livelihood of the farmers. “As rice farmers and producers, these projects can help us become FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

more productive,” Bituanan noted. On the other hand, Abdulwahid Yunos, NAGKASAMMA president said that with the rice mill project turned over in their area, farmers will be inspired to work more. In June 2012, the NAGKASAMMA was given the DA GAWAD Saka award due to the operations of the organization in helping raise the livelihood of its members as well as the level of the economy. Currently, both the CARD-PC and the NAGKASAMMA are considered as two of the best suppliers of certified seeds to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO-UN). Meanwhile, Governor Emmylou Mendoza lauded both the farmers’ organizations in their contribution in strengthening and helping their fellow farmers and for bringing honor to the province. Mendoza also vowed to continue its support to the endeavors of the said organizations. (SJDuermePIA12/JSta.Cruz-N. Cotabato Provincial Government)

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DENR 12 awards performing NGP key players and implementers By: Danilo E. Doguiles KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato -- In its attempt to bolster performance of key players and implementers of the National Greening Program in Region 12, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) here honored field officials and focal persons for their dedication to the flagship program. DENR 12 Regional Executive Director Datu Tungko Saikol led the awarding of 12 NGP focal persons in the four provinces of SOCCSKSARGEN Region. Awardees included Jesus Boja of PENRO Sarangani, Efren Hibaler of PENRO South Cotabato, Wilfredo Cacayan of Sultan Kudarat, Semona Bernadas of PENRO Cotabato, Alexander Ursua of CENRO Glan, Jeric Labor of CENRO Kiamba, Leonardo Azumbrado of CENRO General Santos City, Franklin Lebrilla of CENRO Banga, Calil Bantuas of CENRO Tacurong City, Edna Melodias of CENRO Kalamansig, Mamerto Cardenas of CENRO Matalam, and Mary Ann Cadungog of CENRO Midsayap. In his message at the awarding ceremony, Director Saikol thanked the honorees for their continuous support and cooperation to the NGP efforts. “Your initiatives and efforts demonstrated in support to the program are very commendable. You have made important legacy and whatever contributions you have are worthy enough for the continuing FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

success of the program,� Saikol said. Along with the awarding ceremony DENR also conducted the Regional Geographic Information System (GIS) workshop. Forest Resources Development Division (FRDD) chief, Dr. Noel V. Dungca said workshop aims to uplift the capacities of NGP implementers with the help of modern technology, gadgets and new applications applied on cell phones and tablet computers. Earlier, NGP Regional Coordinator Forester Gabriel Baute distributed 52 GPS-capable tablets to be used in geotagging by field implementers. Geotagging is a form of technology which uses space-based satellite navigation system that provides location and time information in allweather conditions. It also serves as efficient and effective monitoring tool to validate and evaluate NGP planting sites. It complements the use of GIS with a new application called OruxMaps which promotes transparency and total public disclosure. (DEDoguilesPIA 12 with KBayam-Benpolok/CG Valdez/MC Locsin-DENR 12).

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SouthCot town launches comprehensive health program By: Shahana Joy E. Duerme

TUPI, South Cotabato—The local government unit (LGU) of Tupi recently launched ‘HIMSOG Tupi’, a comprehensive health program service delivery to cater the less privileged and deprived communities of the municipality.

“The LGU is strengthening services for its constituents and making sure that this health initiative should be continued,” said acting municipal administrator Renette Bergado, on behalf of Mayor Reynaldo Tamayo, Jr. Bergado said this initiative is supported by the provincial government of South Cotabato. ‘HIMSOG’, which means fit and healthy in Cebuano, is an acronym for “Health Initiatives Mitigation Services for Growth of Tupi” which encompasses the delivery of the following health services: safe motherhood, environmental sanitation, health initiatives for dengue and tuberculosis, medical and dental, dispensing of medicine,; and supplemental feeding for malnourished children. Aside from the delivery of health services, ‘HIMSOG Tupi’ also includes the conduct of information, education and communication drive as well as feeding program through the Municipal Social Welfare and

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Development Office. Meanwhile, the Kalusugan Task Force composed of the Dole Philippines and its social arm, the Mahintana Foundation, Inc. in partnership with the Greenleaf Hotel GenSan which also launched its Lakbay Buhay Kalusugan partnered with Tupi’s program of helping the poor meet their needs. “After we identified the needs of the people we then considered creating a multi-stakeholder group that will deal with different problems existing in the community,” Leamor Banaga, DolePhils Inc. communications superintendent stated. On the other hand, during the launching of both health programs, hundreds of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) members availed of various health services given by the Kalusugan Task Force while some village folks were given hygiene kits from the Green Leaf Hotel. (SJDuerme-PIA12/Tupi LGU)

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ARMM joins the World Hijab Day celebration

Government workers in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) including officials gathered Saturday morning, February 1, at the region’s seat to join people from across the globe in celebrating the World Hijab Day. The women, regardless their religious affiliation, wore hijab in show of support to Muslim women who, by choice, don the hijab or any FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

other prescribed dress for them. Now on its second year, the World Hijab Day is observed in more than 50 countries worldwide PAGE | 36


to help end discrimination against Muslim women who wear hijab. It was espoused by Nazma Khan, a Bangladeshi-American woman who thought of encouraging women from all over, especially the nonMuslims, to wear hijab for a day to foster religious understanding and tolerance. The ARMM government organized a fun run and a seminar to highlight the celebration. All women participants were encouraged to wear hijab. Delsa Culango, a non-Muslim employee, said she supports Muslim women who wear the hijab particularly those who do it by choice. “We should respect, and not discriminate, people for what they FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

believe,” she said. Sitti Djalia Hataman, AnakMindanao Partylist representative, is one of the advocates of the World Hijab Day in the country. Hataman, herself a hijabi, said she knows by experience what it’s like to be discriminated for wearing hijab and for being a Muslim. At a seminar on hijab and discrimination arranged by the ARMM’s Department of Tourism, Hataman brought the audience to tears as she narrated some of her personal experience and told them “marami mang diskriminasyon ang dumating, magsusuot ako ng hijab at hindi ko ikakahiyang Muslim ako.” (Bureau of Public InformationARMM) PAGE | 37


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Marawi City to host 2014 ARMM reg’l sports meet Marawi City, the lone Islamic city in the country, will play host to this year’s Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Athletic Association (ARMMAA) meet popularly known as Palarong ARMMAA.

The regional sports meet will run from February 10 to February 15 with the theme “Bridging Gaps: Towards Unity, Through Sports”, said Marawi City School Division Superintendent Mona Macatanong during the airing of Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Ozor ka, Ranao! radio program Monday, February 3. She said they are expecting some 7,000 athletes, coaches and education officials coming from the nine schools division in the autonomous region to gather for the Palarong ARMMAA. FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

ARMM comprises of the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi including the cities of Lamitan and Marawi. Macatanong said the holding of the weeklong sports event here will not only showcase the athletic skills of ARMM students but will also the tourism potential of the city. “It will also boost or create economic opportunities in the city as well as show that Marawi is indeed a peaceful city,” she further said. Meanwhile, a colorful parade of athletes and officials from the nine school divisions will mark the opening of this year’s ARMMAA meet on February 10. PAGE | 39


Key education officials of the region as well as officials from the province of Lanao del Sur and the city of Marawi will join the delegates in the parade, Monday morning, from Banggolo to the Mindanao State University (MSU) Oval, this city, where the opening ceremonies for the regional sports meet will be held. Macatanong said city mayor Fahad Salic, provincial governor Mamintal Adiong Jr, and MSU president Macapado Muslim will welcome the different delegations during the opening ceremonies. Tawi-Tawi Governor Nurbert Sahali and Tawi-Tawi Schools Division Superintendent N u h a i l a h Amirulhadj will also turnover the ARMMAA sports banner to Mayor Salic and Superintendent Macatanong, hosts for this year’s Palarong ARMMAA. The opening ceremonies of the tournament will be highlighted by the hoisting of the ARMMAA sports banner and delegation banners, sounding of agong and kulintang, and symbolic releasing of doves and FEBRUARY 2014 | www.pia.gov.ph

balloons. Macatanong said ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman will also grace the historic event in the city. To make the event memorable, special night programs will also be held from February 9 to February 14 to be sponsored by city market superintendent Samer Salic and Marawi Traders Association president Moh’d Batabor, city mayor Salic, Lanao del Sur Electric Cooperative (LASURECO) general manager Ashary Maongco, Sanggunian Panglunsod, Marawi City Private Schools Association, and Marawi United Barangay Association, respectively. (APB/PIA-10)

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One Mindanao - February 5, 2014