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EDITORIAL BOARD Executive Editor …….. EFREN F. ELBANBUENA Cluster Head, Southern, Western and Central Mindanao Regional Director, PIA Region XI Managing Editor …….. ABNER M. CAGA Cluster Head, Northern & Northeastern Mindanao Regional Director - PIA Caraga Region OIC Regional Director - PIA Region X Associate Editors …… NOEMI B. EDAGA Regional Director, PIA Region IX

OLIVIA T. SUDARIA Regional Director, PIA Region XII

ELAINE O. RATUNIL Officer-in-charge, PIA Region X

Regional Desk Editors

Franklin P. Gumapon, PIA Region IX Jorie C. Valcorza, PIA Region X Rudolph Ian G. Alama, PIA Region XI Danny E. Doguiles, PIA Region XII Robert E. Roperos, PIA Caraga Region

Copy Editor ............... Robert E. Roperos, PIA Caraga Region Layout Artists ……… Victoriano B. Villacruz, Jr., PIA Region IX Retchie Tolinero, PIA Region X

Senior Layout Artists : Gerie Mae G. Coco, PIA Caraga Region Richard D. Atillo, PIA Caraga Region Editorial Advisers :

JOSE MARI M. OQUIÑENA Philippine Information Agency Director General

SEC. HERMINIO “Sonny” B. COLOMA Presidential Communications Operations Office

PIA REGIONAL OFFICES Western Mindanao (Zamboanga Peninsula) P. Urro Street, San Francisco District Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur 7016 Telephone no. (062) 215-1480 / 925-0038 Cellphone no. 0908-8843404 E-mail: ro9_pia@yahoo.com mimibern17@yahoo.com Blogspot: www.piazampen.blogspot.com Facebook: PIA WesMin Info Bliz Twitter: https://twitter.com/PIAIX

Northern Mindanao Graces’ Building, Antonio Luna Street Cagayan de Oro City 9000 Telefax No. (08822) 72-66-83 Telephone no. (088) 856-8178 / 729-594 Cellphone no. 0928-5204305 0917-3084969 E-mail: pia10_pd@yahoo.com r10_pia@yahoo.com Blogspot: www.pia-10.blogspot.com

Southern Mindanao (Davao Region) Ground Floor Kanto Motors Bldg., Quimpo Blvd., New Matina Davao City 8000 Telephone no. (082) 297-0991 / 301-8580 Telefax no. (082) 297-0992 / 304-2044 Cellphone no. 0917-7053606 / 0918-9202950 E-mail: efelbanbuena@yahoo.com

Central Mindanao (SOCCSKSARGEN) Provincial Capitol Compound Bautista Bldg., Zulueta St. Koronadal City, South Cotabato 9506 Telephone no. (083) 520-0249 Telefax no. (083) 228-9736 / 228-9739 / 520-0100 Cellphone no. 0921-6873373 / 0928-5204307 E-mail: r12_pia@yahoo.com, pia_xii@yahoo.com

Northeastern Mindanao (Caraga) Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines Bldg., J. Rosales Avenue, Butuan City Telephone no. (085) 341-5285 / 360-1239 Telefax no. (085) 341-2370 Cellphone no. 0917-7188834 Email: piacaraga@gmail.com , pia_caraga@yahoo. com,ph Blogspot: www.piacaraga.blogspot.com Facebook: PIA Caraga Updates, PIA Agusan del Norte, Pia Agusan del Sur, Pia Surigao del Norte, Pia Surigao del Sur Twitter: https://twitter.com/PIACaraga


Today’s issue...

6 9 12 15 20 26 29

7 14 16 18 21 22 26 27 30 31

Friday, January 18, 2013

Aquino appoints new officials in government agencies and judiciary DSWD to provide 10-T sacks of rice to ComVal protesters if they follow SOP Southern Mindanao

Sarangani cites Malungon for effective health advocacy program Catherine T. Apelacio, Central Mindanao

Community e-Center completes 5th batch of computer literacy training for women Aida C. Agad, Central Mindanao

Ecofish project to launch in Surigao Norte Arturo M. Cruje, Caraga Region

RAFI, Carcar hold school governance workshop

Caraga Region

MalacaĂąang declares Jan. 21 special non-working day in Pagadian City Gideon C. Corgue, Western Mindanao

Coastal barangays ready to join the 2013 regatta Gideon C. Corgue, Western Mindanao

PhilHealth invites everyone to join its first simultaneous nationwide run Apipa P. Bagumbaran, Northern Mindanao

DILG upgrades SGH criteria Ana Celeste W. Felisilda, Northern Mindanao

Cover Story

Siargao Island hits The New York Times page 4

Vol. 2 No. 106

Caraga Region


CoVer StoRy Siargao Island hits The New York Times

T

he prestigious global news giant The New York Times through its travel website, recently cited the Dedon Island Resort in Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte, describing it as close to “one of the world’s best surf breaks, Cloud 9 and has an outdoor cinema along with spa and paddle board classes.” It also described the Philippines as “idyllic white sand beaches, secluded little-known surf towns, and pristine reefs are among the natural draws of this country made up of over 7,000 tropical islands.” Dedon Island Resort was the former Pansukian Resort, a well known establishment catering to high-end clients mostly European tourists. Among the prestigious news networks which recently cited Siargao Island as a destination to watch were Travel + Leisure based in Hong Kong, CNNGo of Cable News Network and Conde Nast Traveller based in United Kingdom. 4

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With the good image of Siargao Island being projected in the global news arena, the Department of Tourism XIII regional office is expecting Friday, January 18, 2013

heavy influx of foreign tourists for the upcoming International Game Fishing Tournament in April and International Surfing Competition in September. 5


ACROSS THE NATION Pres. Aquino declares Jan. 23 as ‘Araw ng Republikang Filipino, 1899’

P

resident Benigno S. Aquino III has declared January 23 of every year as “Araw ng Republikang Filipino, 1899” to commemorate the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic, Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. announced on Friday.

Ochoa said Proclamation No. 533, which the President signed on January 9, aims to promote awareness, especially among the youth, on the significance of this chapter in Philippine history that marked the culmination of the Philippine revolution against Spanish rule. “The Malolos Constitution was promulgated on January 21, 1899 and two days later, on January 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic, also known as the Malolos Republic, was inaugurated at Barasoain Church in Malolos,

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Bulacan. This made the Philippines the first independent republic in Asia—a significant milestone we should all take pride in,” Ochoa said. Malacanang had earlier issued a related issuance, Proclamation No. 523, declaring January 23 this year a special non-working holiday in Bulacan. The National Historical Commission of the Philippines endorsed the issuance of this directive on the request of Malolos Mayor Christian Natividad. Friday, January 18, 2013


Aquino appoints new officials in government agencies and judiciary

P

resident Benigno S. Aquino III has appointed new officials in the government agencies and judiciary, a Palace official said.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte announced the appointments during the regular press briefing in Malacanang on Friday. The Chief Executive signed the appointment letter of Jose Z. Grageda as Acting Undersecretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform, replacing Narciso B. Nieto. President Aquino, likewise, appointed Janice F. Santos as Assistant Secretary of the Office of the Cabinet Secretary. The President named Jose Mari M. Oqui単ena as Acting Director-General of Friday, January 18, 2013

the Philippine Information Agency, which is under the Presidential Communications Operations Office, replacing Jose A. Fabia and Allan B. Gepty as Deputy Director General of the Intellectual Property Office of the Department of Trade and Industry. The other presidential appointees are as follows: - Judge Leah de los Reyes Baguyo as presiding judge of the Puerto Princesa, Palawan Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 48, - Judge Ambrosio B. de Luna as

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Jose Mari M. Oqui単ena

Acting Director-General Philippine Information Agency (PIA) presiding judge of the Puerto Princesa, Palawan RTC Branch 51, - Judge Beatrice Alvarez Medina as presiding judge of the San Mateo, Rizal RTC Branch 75, - Judge Luvina Padolina Roque as presiding judge of the San Pablo City, Laguna RTC Branch 29, - Judge Napoleon Matienzo as presiding judge of the Gumaca, Quezon RTC Branch 62,

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- Judge Maria Christine Isabel Z. Falguera-Guerrero as presiding judge of the San Pablo City, Laguna Municipal Trial Court in Cities Branch 2, - Judge Rean G. Arizala-Joaquin as presiding judge of the San Pablo City, Laguna Municipal Trial Court in Cities Branch 3, - Judge Mederlyn P. Mangalindan as presiding judge of the Cavite City Municipal Trial Court in Cities Branch 1, - Judge Melinda B. Mantilla as presiding judge of Claver-Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte, 4th Municipal Circuit Trial Court, - Judge Ronilo A. Beronio as presiding judge of the Roxas-Cagayancillo, Palawan Municipal Circuit Trial Court, - Judge Eric S. Fortaleza as presiding judge of the Sta. Cruz, Laguna Municipal Trial Court, -Judge Crisostomo J. Da単guilan as presiding judge of the Cabuyao, Laguna Municipal Trial Court, - Judge Katherine C. Jambaro-Altubar as presiding judge of the Angono, Rizal Municipal Trial Court, and - Edward M. Togonon as Prosecutor V, Office of the City Prosecutor- Manila, National Prosecution Service under the Department of Justice. PND (js) Friday, January 18, 2013


The Bangsamoro deserves statistics

M

ahar Mangahas | The Framework Agreement between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, announced last Sunday, declares that a new political entity, the Bangsamoro (always preceded by “the”), shall be established to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Like any major political entity or social group, the Bangsamoro deserves to have its own statistics, to regularly ascertain the conditions of its people, and provide scientific guidance for promoting their development. As of now, there are some statistics about the ARMM or about Muslims in the Philippines, Friday, January 18, 2013

which are not exactly the same as the Bangsamoro, but are proxies for describing its situation. I will give a few examples here, from SWS materials. P-Noy is extremely popular among Muslims. How many would guess, for instance, that President Noynoy Aquino’s popularity is even higher among Muslims than 9


among Filipinos in general? The SWS Third Quarter survey for 2012, done last August 24-27, found 89 percent of its Muslim respondents satisfied, and only 6 percent of them dissatisfied, with his performance, giving him a net satisfaction rating of +83, well above the +70 SWS border line for Excellent. Thus P-Noy’s popularity among Muslims far outstrips the 77 percent satisfied and 10 percent dissatisfied with him, for a net +67, among Filipinos nationwide in the Third Quarter, classified as Very Good. I doubt that the new Framework Agreement does any harm to the President’s standing among Muslims. Poverty is much more extensive among Muslims. In the SWS survey of August 2012, self-rated poverty among families with Muslim heads was 61 percent, compared to 47 percent among families in general, nationwide. As first reported in BusinessWorld on September 24, the national percentage of the self-rated poor fell from 51 in May to 47 in August. For Muslim families in particular, special tabulations show that the percentage of the self-rated poor fell from a massive 78 in May to 61 in August. Thus Muslim 10

families, though poorer, shared in the recent decline in poverty. Self-rated food-poverty (families rating their food as poor or mahirap) also declined over the last two quarters. For families in general, the decline was from 39 percent in May to 35 percent in August. For Muslim families in particular, tabulations show that the decline was from 76 percent in May to 55 percent in August. Thus Muslim families also shared in the recent decline in food-poverty. Hunger is also more extensive among Muslims. As first reported last September 28 in BusinessWorld, 21.0 percent of families nationwide experienced involuntary hunger at least once in the past three months, according to the SWS August survey. We know that the hunger is involuntary, since the survey question qualifies it as due to not having anything to eat. This was an increase from the 18.4 percent hunger rate in May. The rise in hunger, despite the fall in poverty, is due to an increase in the proportion hungry among the poor; in short, the poor were fewer, but hungrier, in August compared to May. The SWS surveys being a quarterly series, they reveal the Friday, January 18, 2013


hunger proportion of the poor to be variable, and not constant, in the short-run. The national hunger rate in August consisted of 18.0 percent in moderate hunger (meaning, experiencing it once or else a few times) and 3.0 percent in severe hunger (meaning, experiencing it either often or always). Compared to May, moderate hunger had risen from 13.7 percent, but severe hunger had fallen from 4.8 percent. Among Muslim families in particular, tabulations of the August survey show that those that experienced hunger were 31.6 percent, consisting of 25.3 percent in moderate hunger, and 6.3 percent in severe hunger. Yet hunger fell among Muslims, between May and August. Tabulations of the May survey show that, among Muslim families, those that experienced hunger were 44.3 percent, consisting of 31.0 percent in moderate hunger, and 13.3 percent in severe hunger. This means that severe hunger fell among both Muslims and non-Muslims, between May and August. Moderate hunger, on the other hand, fell among Muslims, but rose among nonMuslims. Thus the sum of Friday, January 18, 2013

moderate and severe hunger fell among Muslims. The survey statistics lead us to realize that there are times when community conditions move oppositely from national conditions. Statistical visibility matters. Groups without data are statistically invisible. Just as there are statistics pertaining specifically to women, so too can there be statistics pertaining specifically to the Bangsamoro. But statistical data do not grow in the wild on trees, awaiting harvest; they need nurturing, in orchards. Statistical agencies, both public and private, must gear up for this challenge. Social Weather Stations will include the Bangsamoro in its survey agenda. The Bangsamoro should have its own independent research institutes. Statistics is a branch of the sciences, and social survey research is one of its applications. They assist in peaceful advocacy for the wellbeing of a social group, by raising public consciousness about it. They are not branches of public relations or of fiction-writing. The more the practitioners of statistics about the Bangsamoro, the clearer will be the truth about its people. 11


LTO XI: Helmet Law covers everyone including law enforcers

DAVAO CITY- The Land Transportation Office XI (LTO-XI) warned traffic cops and traffic enforcers of local government units that they are not exempted from the use of prescribed and standard helmets as provided by law. Macario Gonzaga, assistant regional director of the LTO XI said traffic enforcers are supposed to 12

be the models in the compliance of the Helmet law so that motorists will be conform to the regulation. He said the LTO will also conduct random inspections even helmets of traffic policemen and members of the Traffic Management Center. “The Helmet Law does not exempt anyone from compliance. Road safety is a concern of everyone including those enforcing the law,� Gonzaga pointed out. He disclosed that more than two hundred motorists have been fined for the first time following the full enforcement of the helmet policy since January 13. Gonzaga explained the LTO is only implementing the law Friday, January 18, 2013


after the Department of Trade and Industry XI ended up its information-education campaign, assessment and attaching ICC stickers on helmets which passed the quality standard on December 28 last year. He said on the first week of January, the LTO conducted random checks just to warn motorcycles to conform to the use of standard helmets. “We only launched full implementation of the law only this week extending on the outer districts of the city. Despite the initial apprehension, I observed that many drivers in the city follow the Helmet Law,” Gonzaga said. He stressed that the intent of the law is only to promote the safety of motorcycle riders. Earlier, the city field office of the Department of Trade and Industry will no longer extend the issuance of free Import Commodity Clearance stickers for the helmets of motorists who failed to beat the deadline on December 28, 2012. Roberto Barlis, consumer welfare officer and spokesperson of the DTIDavao City said the public has been given ample time to avail of the ICC stickers since the mandatory certification was passed into law in 2009, and with the implementation of the Helmet Law supposedly on Friday, January 18, 2013

August 1. The Department of Transportation and Communications ordered the Land Transportation Office to hold the enforcement of the Helmet Law until January, 2013 to give the DTI enough time to check if the existing helmets and those imported into the country had ICC stickers issued by the Bureau of Product Standards. He said that with the extension, consequently, motorcycle owners were given ample time to have their helmets inspected and validated by the DTI, to ensure its integrity as a protective gear for its users. “The issue here is the driver’s safety. We want to make sure that the helmet can really protect and prevent head injuries in case of accident,” Barlis pointed out. He disclosed that for Davao City alone, the DTI inspected 20,000 helmets and were issued corresponding ICC stickers. Republic Act No. 10054 which mandate all motorcycle riders to wear standard protective helmets while driving imposes fines for violators at Php1,500 for the first offense; Php3,000 for the second offense, Php5,000 for the thirds offense and Php10,000 plus confiscation of driver’s license for the fourth and succeeding offenses. (PIA XIJoey Sem G. Dalumpines) 13


DSWD to provide 10-T sacks of rice to ComVal protesters if they follow SOP DAVAO CITY –Following the negotiations made between government officials and the group that barricaded Montevista National Highway last Tuesday, January 15, Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman has explained in several media interviews the response of DSWD that the department will release the demand of 10,000 bags of rice once the latter agrees to the DSWD standard procedure on Relief Distribution.

The Secretary was around Tuesday and Wednesday along with the UN Donor Mission for a site visit in Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental. After presenting to the heads and representatives of international humanitarian agencies the Philippine Response to Typhoon Pablo, the Secretary immediately left the provincial capitol with Gov. Arturo T. Uy to dialog with the group that blocked the highway. On Wednesday, the DSWD Response was underscored further by DSWD Director for Region XI Priscilla N. Razon explaining in media interviews, “we are releasing to them [protesters] the 10,000 bags of rice once they comply with the standard procedure that we follow in Disaster Relief Operations. Being accountable for the public goods, DSWD adheres to these procedures in all of its 14

Disaster Relief Operations. Foremost of these are: submission of the Distribution Plan indicating place and time of distribution and how these goods are to be distributed; submission of a distribution list; and distribution must be witnessed by DSWD, PLGU and MLGU representatives.” Adding, “We do not agree to their allegations that there are barangays that have not received any relief assistance because the DSWD has already provided 295,447 family food packs to all affected areas in Compostela Valley. We are shocked of their claim since the department has been operating day and night since Day 1 and have mobilized all our workers to immediately respond to the requests from the affected local governments.” Razon also reported that to date, DSWD has provided some 534,756 family food packs and 175,970 ‘noche buena’ packs to the affected communities in Davao Region. Completed bunkhouses is 22 with 60 under construction, Cash-ForWork is allotted to 10,948 persons, Emergency Shelter Assistance of as much a P10,000.00 per family, Livelihood Assistance of P10,000.00 per family, and Core Shelter Assistance of P125,000.00 per unit in collaboration with NHA, Razon added. (DSWD) Friday, January 18, 2013


Comelec cites over 9% decrease in number of registered voters in South Cotabato By Danilo E. Doguiles

KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato -- The number of registered voters in South Cotabato, including General Santos City, for the May 2013 elections is down by 9.46 percent after the “cleansing” of voters’ list by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

Data provided by Comelec-South Cotabato to PIA 12 indicated that

Friday, January 18, 2013

the province and Gensan have 669,432 registered voters, which is lower by 69,971

voters compared to the number in the May 2010 national and local elections.

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In Gensan alone, 76,605 names were excluded from the list, decreasing the number of registered voters in the tuna capital from 309,542 in 2010 to 232,937 this year. Comelec-South Cotabato’s operational and administrative jurisdiction includes the city Koronadal and the 10 municipalities as well as Gensan. Gensan was reclassified from being a component city to highly urbanized city in 1988 when the Batas Pambansa Bilang 337 (Local Government Code of 1983) was still in force. However, it has remained part of the first congressional district of South Cotabato along with the municipalities of Polomolok, Tampakan and Tupi.

South Cotabato election supervisor Atty. Jay Gerada explained that the decline of the number of voters was mainly because of the “cleansing” of the voters’ list that Comelec has enforced in the last few months and after the voters’ registration ended on October 31 last year. “Those purged from the list were the multiple registrants, deceased persons as well as those who have failed to vote in the previous two elections and did not validate their registrations,” Gerada said. The election supervisor explained further that they were able to delist a significant number of ineligible voters using the automated voters’ information database.

During validation of voters, he explained that they found out that some voters had multiple records and different identities. “But when we compared their pictures in our database, we found out that we’re looking at just one person,” Gerada said. Comelec-South Cotabato also reported reduction of the number of clustered precincts, consequently, of the number of precinct count optical scan (PCOS) machine required in the area. In the May 2013 national and local elections South Cotabato and General Santos City will be comprised of only 873 clustered precincts as compared to the 2,182 groupings in the May 2010 polls. (DEDoguiles/PIA 12)

Sarangani cites Malungon for effective health advocacy program By Catherine T. Apelacio

GENERAL SANTOS CITY-- The provincial government of Sarangani has cited Malungon Municipal Health Office (MHO) for its effective health education 16

Friday, January 18, 2013


campaign that resulted in good sanitation practice among the poor in far-flung areas and zero mortality for its maternal and neonatal health care programs.

The citation was accorded to the MHO during the recently held Sarangani 2nd province-wide Health Summit here saying it bested other MHOs in the province in the areas of sanitation advocacy and health care programs. Sarangani Provincial Health officer Dr. Antonio Yasana said Malungon’s implementation of health programs and public education, in effect, resulted in positive changes in the lives of poor people who are living in hinterland villages. The citation does not only cover MHO’s continuous education on sanitation but also “for having no single mortality in its maternal and neonatal health care undertakings,” said Municipal Health Officer Dr. Rafaida GarayHenandez. She said of the 140 barangays in Sarangani, only six were able to maintain “a 100% ease of use to sanitary toilets” of which four of these hail Friday, January 18, 2013

from the municipality of Malungon. The local government is also consistent in its implementation of weekly “Lingap sa Barangay” program. For many years, the town has been a “holder of the CROWN Award for being a consistent Regional Outstanding Winner in Nutrition in Central Mindanao, making it a close contender for the National Nutrition Council (NNC) Hall of Fame award held in Malacanang. Speaking at the Summit’s opening, Malungon Mayor Reynaldo Constantino underscored the need to prioritize “quality reproductive health services to pregnant women,” which he believes pivotal in preventing the cause of child mortality. He also pointed out the importance of having health insurance or PhilHealth coverage especially for the poor. “I humbly admit that the health program

under my leadership is not perfect. However, I am proud to say that per official records, our numerous and positive contribution in the province as well as our achievements – national and local – outweigh our imperfections.” He described health program as basic saying “if people are nourished, fit and healthy, positive outlook on employment and education may ensue.” In a bid to address poverty, the local government unit of Malungon has established the “PHILHEALTH Program 3-in-1,”which is characterized by three free consultation packages such as PhilHealth enrollees may avail an out-patient consultation charges, a PhilHealth-covered TB DOTS package, and pregnant women may deliver a child “safely” in at least six birthing homes” of the town. It also takes pride of its 12,831 PhilHealth 17


latest addition were senior citizens. Recently, the Sangguniang Bayan also passed an ordinance strengthening the implementation of neonatal, child health and nutrition programs so that the rights of children and women especially pregnant ones shall be protected and preserved. M e a n w h i l e , Dominguez said the summit was designed to assess the latest health condition of every

municipality, adding that the generated data have been used as bases for the action plans for health to be implemented in all barangays in the province. He also likened the event to a congregation-gathering municipal mayors, barangay chieftains and their councilors, planning and health officers, and health workers to an important cause. The governor said the summit was timely and was truly translated in its

theme, “Usapang Lokal para sa Kalusugang Pangkalahatan.” “Through this gathering, we can be able to comprehensively develop our health care services which are very important in achieving the quality of a healthy life,” the governor told some hundreds summit participants. (CT Apelacio/ PIA12 General Santos City/Isagani Palma/ Malungon Information Office)

Community e-Center completes 5th batch of computer literacy training for women

By Aida C. Agad KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato -- The Community e-Center (CeC) managed by the local government of Mlang has completed the 5th batch of computer literacy training program for women residents. The six-month training program enabled 70 trainees from the women sector to earn their certificates of completion in simple graduation rites held last January 8 at the M’lang Municipal Gymnasium. M’lang CeC manager Mary Ann Cortado told the Philippine Information Agency here that the 18

completion of 5th batch training program which started on July 16, last year has brought to a total of 226 poor women in the area now being classified computer literates. Cortado said, this accomplishment of M’lang CeC is attributed to the cooperation and support of stakeholders,

the community and town mayor Joselito Pinol. The CeC, Cortado said also received citations from the Philippine Community eCenters Network (PhilCeCNet) and Intel CorporationsPhilippines for having trained the highest number of women in the aspect of digital literacy for the year 2012. Friday, January 18, 2013


Out of the more than one thousand Community eCenters all over the country, the M’lang CeC topped them all in the said category, Cortado said. The town’s eCenter also conducts ICT information drives in barangays and digital literacy training sessions for the women and students. The CeC is a selfsustaining shared facility providing affordable access to ICT-enabled services and relevant content. Its goal is to bridge the digital divide and provide access to information and communication services as contained

Friday, January 18, 2013

in the Philippine Digital Strategy 2011-2016. With the CeC, the local government envisions the Municipality of Mlang as an IT literate, responsible and progressive community as it aims to uplift the socio-economic and spiritual conditions of the people in the community through Information Technology Cortado said, the establishment of Mlang Community e-Center was made possible through the leadership of Municipal Mayor Joselito F. Piñol, Vice Mayor Hon. Russel Abonado and Sangguniang Bayan members with the

technical assistance and Information Technology facilities from the National Computer Center and the Central Mindanao Computer School as a partner institution in the conduct of the various ICT training program. The program was implemented to help the out of school youth especially the poor and deserving students whose parents can’t afford expensive education in colleges and universities. The implementation also includes the Barangay Officials, Professionals and Women’s who has no background about computers.

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Watershed Consciousness Week declared by Junesther Jean S. Iway

BUTUAN CITY -- In an effort to strengthen the consciousness of the people of Butuan on the importance to protect our watersheds, the Sangguniang Panlungsod recently approved an ordinance that will make every third week of January as Watershed Consciousness Week.

www.piacaraga.blogspot.com

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h t t p : / / w w w. f a c e b o o k . Friday, January 18, 2013


The SP Ordinance No. 4097-2013 principally authored by Vice Mayor Law Fortun, cited in its explanatory note that the purpose for the declaration is in cognizance of the city’s avowed policies concerning the commitment to protect, preserve and rehabilitate the watershed areas within Butuan. The week-long celebration will be dedicated towards the strengthening and reinforcement of watershed awareness projects, programs and activities of the city. According to Fortun who is a staunch advocate for the protection of the environment, it is but fitting that we increase the consciousness of every individual to protect our watersheds because this is our only source of potable water in the city. “The protection of our watersheds

which has been threatened with man-made destruction is not only the sole responsibility of the government but an inherent responsibility of everybody,” Fortun said. Thus, he added, that all the people should be involve in this effort for we are the ultimate beneficiary of this. This year’s Watershed Consciousness Week starts off with the formal launching of the Butuan City Watershed Code on January 24, 2013 at Guingona Park, this city. Other activities lined-up for the week-long celebration are the On the Spot Essay Writing Contest, Poster Making Contest and the 5th Caraga Parliamentary Debate Championship: Law Fortun Cup which will tackle relevant issues on environmental protection.

Ecofish project to launch in Surigao Norte by Arturo M. Cruje

BUTUAN CITY -- The Ecosystems Improved for Sustainable Fisheries (Ecofish) Project of the Philippine Government and the United States Government will be launched in the province this year, said Gov. Sol Matugas recently.

Friday, January 18, 2013

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The lady governor said the project seeks to address the complex problems of ecosystem degradation, fish stock depletion and poverty in the fishing communities. Based on records, fish production in the province is declining due to excessive fishing, destruction of coral reefs and breeding grounds, and variations or changes in ocean conditions. This caused

coastal communities to become marginalized and poor because of their dependence on catch from seas. Ecofish Project aims to conserve biodiversity, enhance ecosystem productivity and restore the profitability of fisheries, which are also the concerns of the provincial government under the present administration.

RAFI, Carcar hold school governance workshop The Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI), in partnership with the Synergeia Foundation Inc., conducted a workshop, dubbed “Equip-CEBU (Educational Quality Improvement through Community Empowerment and Capacity Building) LEAD (Local Education Agenda Development) Workshop for Carcar City,” late last year at Diamond Suites Hotel and Residences, this city. The education planning local government officials, school workshop aimed to build a heads and teachers from private collaborative relationship with the and public schools of Carcar City, Carcar City and develop strategic and representatives from other goals to address the education sectors. needs of Carcar City. Through team-building The activity was participated by activities conducted by RAFI’s Kool the Project Management Team, Adventure Camp (KAC), the 30 22

Friday, January 18, 2013


participants saw the importance of collaboration and planning to address education concerns in the city level and succeed in their efforts to improve the quality of education. Carcar City Division Superintendent Dr. Gregorio Cyrus Elejorde presented on the second day of the workshop the current state of education of the city. Education gaps in Carcar City such as inadequacy in the number of teachers for elementary and secondary schools and supply of school furniture and equipment, deficiency of textbooks, among others, were discussed. “There may be a lot of problems as far as education is concerned but we should not let DepEd solve everything. DepEd cannot do it alone. That is why, as teachers, we also need to do our part,” Elejorde, said, referring to the lack of textbooks among elementary and secondary schools. “If there is a lack of new books for our students, then, we can make use of old books. As teachers, we must be creative enough to find solutions even to simple problems,” Elejorde, Friday, January 18, 2013

added. Carcar City Mayor Nicepuro Apura also graced the activity and expressed his support for the project. “I believe that education is the most powerful weapon in our fight against ignorance and poverty. The greatest gift that this administration can give to its constituents is access to good quality education,” Apura, said. On the third day, initial steps to be done as well as the desired outputs for Carcar City in terms of education were defined. Equip-CEBU is one of the projects under RAFI’s Education focus area, believing that shaping the next generation of talent begins with nurturing the love for learning. Other focus areas of RAFI are Integrated Development, Micro-finance & Entrepreneurship, Culture & Heritage, and Leadership & Citizenship. For more information about Equip-CEBU, please contact 4197234 loc. 209 and look for Tanya Flores, or visit www.rafi.org. ph and www.facebook.com/rafi. or.ph.

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For the list of Philippine holidays in 2013 through Proc. No. 459, just visit the PIA-Caraga Blogspot at www.piacaraga.blogspot.com for the copy of the said Friday, January 18, 2013 24 proclamation...


Giant firms commit 3,000 MW to address power woes in Mindanao By Michael Vincent D. Cajulao ZAMBOANGA CITY – President Benigno S. Aquino III brought some good news on the present power deficiency in Mindanao during his recent visit here to attend the “Top Level Forum” of Mindanao university presidents.

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Friday, January 18, 2013

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In his speech, President Aquino disclosed that four giant business firms committed at least 3,000 Mega Watts of power, more than enough to address the power problems in Mindanao. “Two nights ago, I had a chance to talk with four of the biggest business firms in our economy about energy. They said we will soon have surplus of power. They committed 3,000 MW. Before we part, they said Mindanao may be experiencing power shortage right now, but soon Mindanao will be exporting power because of huge surplus,” Pres. Aquino quoted the business firms. Aquino expressed confidence that this would be fulfilled as he directly talked with the heads of

these companies which the President declined to divulge for the moment. The President said there is only 4 MW surplus here in Mindanao, but is way below the needed backup to power all grids in the region if there is routine maintenance of the power plants which will take away over 300 MW. Presently, Zamboanga City is experiencing 2 hours rotational power interruptions every day. Power situation has improved from last year wherein the city had experienced up to 8 hours of brownouts in a day. Pres. Aquino also stressed that “for this project to be realized, the help and cooperation of the community is very vital.”

Malacañang declares Jan. 21 special nonworking day in Pagadian City By Gideon C. Corgue

PAGADIAN CITY - Malacanang has declared Jan. 21 a special non-working day for this city in line with the celebration of the “Pasalamat Festival.” President Benigno Simeon regatta, and others. Aquino III, through Executive The proclamation emphasized Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa, Jr. the need to declare January 21 as issued on Monday Proclamation a special non-working day so that No. 535, making Jan. 21 a special the people here can celebrate and non-working day as the city holds a participate in the occasion. weeklong “Pasalamat Festival” which It was learned that various culminates this coming Monday. activities were lined up to give The festival is a special event color to the said celebration which that highlights the observance of the will be participated in by the city’s annual parochial fiesta replete barangay officials, academe, nonwith a variety of merrymaking government organizations, and activities such as street dancing, other stakeholders. 26

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Coastal barangays ready to join the 2013 regatta By Gideon C. Corgue

PAGADIAN CITY - At least 12 coastal barangays are ready to participate in the regatta on Friday at wharf area here. These barangays are Bomba, Dumagoc, Kawit, Lumbia, Napolan, Poloyagan, San Pedro, Santiago , Sta. Lucia, Tawagan Sur, Muricay, and White Beach. Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) chief Elyn Gulle, Regatta chairperson said the 2-day activity which will officially start today until tomorrow is one of main highlights of the annual “Pasalamat” festival organized by the city government in honor of patron saint, Sr Sto. Niño. This year’s “Pasalamat” festival carries theme, “Pagsimba kang Senyor Sto. Niño, Pagsangyaw sa Buhing Pagtoo” (devotion to the Holy Child is to spread the living faith). Sea game competitions like pump boat race (9HP and 10HP), Friday, January 18, 2013

swimming relay (200 m), ball collection at sea and “bukag race will be held on the first day. Gulle said a beauty pageant will also be held with 12 young ladies from the coastal barangays vying for Miss Regatta 2013 title. Special awards such as Miss Nature Spring Regatta, Miss Silka Skinspiration, Miss Tanduay Regatta, Miss Juicy Cologne, best in talent, and best in sports attire will also be awarded to winning contestants. Major winners will receive cash prizes and trophies. On the second day, Gullen said, a concelebrated Mass to be officiated by Bishop Emmanuel Cabajar will be held at 5:00 a.m. where thousands of devotees of Sr. Sto. Niño are expected to attend. This will be followed by a solemn fluvial procession with devotees carrying the images of their beloved patron saint aboard colorful fishing boats. 27


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RAGCOM organizes outreach program by Wilmer Carabanes and Irene Joy Dayo

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY -- The Regional Association of Government Communicators (RAGCOM)-X organized an outreach program to one of the rehabilitation centers in the city, Jan. 4. Friday, January 18, 2013

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The activity centered on giftgiving primarily to the children of the rehabilitation center here. “We also want to offer our services as volunteers if you need some,� RAGCOM President Jeanette Marie S. Soldevilla said. They conducted fun-filled activities with the children and offered additional services like counseling. For this year, RAGCOM chose a rehab center sponsored by the German Doctors to be its beneficiary. It houses around 20 young girls who were victims of trafficking, prostitution and who were abused by their most trusted personalities. Most of them are fighting for their rights in respective criminal courts against their perpetrators for the injustices done against them at such a young age. The expenses used in the event were solicited from the RAGCOM

member-agencies. RAGCOM-10 is an organization of information officers from the regional line agencies in Northern Mindanao. This network acts as a venue to strengthen communication lines among agencies, as well as provide a means to improve skills related to their line of work. Further, its program and activities are anchored on its general objective that is bringing the government closer to the people. Meanwhile, RAGCOM is also involved in annual outreach programs such as adopt an orphan for a day, jail visits and gift-giving to street children, prisoners, senior citizens. Holding outreach program forms part of its social responsibility as well as a strategy in strengthening partnerships with stakeholders and communication allies.

PhilHealth invites everyone to join its first simultaneous nationwide run by Apipa P. Bagumbaran

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) is inviting everyone to join its first simultaneous nationwide run this coming February 17. The PhilHealth Run 2013, a national run for mother and child protection and universal health coverage, will be held in more than 18 sites across the country including Cagayan de Oro City. The event will have five race 30

categories, namely kiddie, 3K, 5K, 10K and 18K. Registration fees range from P250 for the Kiddie run and 3K, P300 for the 5K, P500 for the 10K, up to P600 for the 18K. Registration fees are inclusive Friday, January 18, 2013


of the official singlet, race bib, timing chip, finisher’s certificate, and a raffle coupon. Finishers for the 18K will also receive a finisher’s medal. PhilHealth-10 Information Officer Merlyn H. Ybañez said the race venue for the Cagayan de Oro site will be at the Pelaez Sports Complex. Assembly time begins at 4 a.m. Top three runners for each race

category will be given cash prizes ranging from P7,000 to P1,000 depending on the category. Those interested to join can register at the PhilHealth Local Health Insurance Office. They can also register at Dunkin Donuts Divisoria Branch, Bagong Lipunan Velez Branch, Sprint Corrales Branch, Planet Sports, Limketkai Mall, and Centrio Mall.

DILG upgrades SGH criteria by Ana Celeste W. Felisilda

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - The Seal of Good Housekeeping (SGH), one of the major programs of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), recently scales up its criteria to Silver for 2012 and SGH Gold for 2013 recipients. For SGH Bronze category, the local government unit (LGU) is assessed based on the Commission on Audit (COA) Audit Report and full compliance to the full disclosure policy. Meanwhile, under the Silver category, the LGU will not only be assessed on the first two early criteria but also on the compliance of the LGU on Republic Act 9184 or the Anti Red Tape Act of 2007. The Bronze category is open for LGUs which did not qualify for the Seal last year while the Silver category is open for all LGUs which successfully hurdled the Seal last year. Further, the SGH gold will be implemented this year. Friday, January 18, 2013

Requisites for this category are the combination of the Bronze and Silver’s plus the following: an above benchmark on Local Governance Performance Management System (LGPMS), presence of internal audit office, functionality of the local health board, development council, school board and the peace and order council. DILG Regional Director Rene K. Burdeos said there are 62 LGUs in Region X considered for the SGH Silver category for Calendar Year 2012. Said LGUs are presently being evaluated on their continuous and sustained compliance to the Full Disclosure Policy (FDP). 31


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One Mindanao - January 18, 2013