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Today’s issue...

Tuesday, March. 13, 2012

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Vol. 1 No. 212

Malacañang hails Sandiganbayan’s issuance of warrants of arrest for former PGMA and three others TESDA launches technopreneurship program in Lanao del Sur Apipa P. Bagumbaran, Northern Mindanao

Contributions of Former Governor Alfonso D. Tan in Tangub City Pat Nano, Northern Mindanao

Electric coops meet members, DOE today Frances Mae Gevera-Macapagat, Southern Mindanao

SM foundation turns over classroom building in Gen San CT Apelacio, Central Mindanao

Konsultasyon sa programang PAMANA isinagawa sa Midsayap, Cotabato Aida Agad, Central Mindanao

Tree planting marks Women’s Day celebration in Surigao del Sur

Greg Tataro, Jr., Caraga Region

Butuan City to offer potential PPP projects

Cover Story

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Siocon: Zamboanga del Norte’s paradise in the south Franklin P. Gumapon Western Mindanao

Eldie N. David, Caraga Region

PNP all over the country to plant 10M trees Jocelyn P. Alvarez, Western Mindanao

Dipolog to renew MOA with AFP on SCAA operations Franklin P. Gumapon, Western Mindanao

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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

EDITORIAL BOARD Executive Editor ……......... EFREN F. ELBANBUENA Cluster Head, Southern, Western and Central Mindanao Regional Director, PIA Region XI Managing Editor …….........

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

ABNER M. CAGA

Cluster Head, Northern and Northeastern Mindanao Regional Director, PIA Caraga Region Officer-in-charge, PIA Region X

Associate Editors ……....... NOEMI B. EDAGA Regional Director, PIA Region IX

Southern Mindanao (Davao Region)

OLIVIA T. SUDARIA Regional Director, PIA Region XII

Regional Desk Editors …...

2/F 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

Jocelyn P. Alvarez, PIA Region IX Elaine O. Ratunil, PIA Region X Rudolph Ian G. Alama, PIA Region XI Danny E. Doguiles, PIA Region XII Robert E. Roperos, PIA Caraga Region

Central Mindanao (SOCCSKSARGEN)

Copy Editors ……………….. Robert E. Roperos, PIA Caraga Region Nora C. Lanuza Molde, PIA Caraga Region Layout Artists ……………... Victoriano B. Villacruz, Jr., PIA Region IX Zener R. Dumaguing, PIA Region X Senior Layout Artists …..... Gerie Mae G. Coco, PIA Caraga Region Richard D. Atillo, PIA Caraga Region Editorial Advisers :

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)

ATTY. JOSE A. FABIA Director-General Philippine Information Agency

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

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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

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Cover Story Siocon: Zamboanga del Norte’s paradise in the south

by Franklin P. Gumapon

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any stories have been told about this municipality, but one needs to visit the place to bear out the truth. Tuesday, March 13, 2012 ONE MINDANAO 4


Some personnel of the Philippine Information Agency - IX (PIA) headed by Regional Director Noemi B. Edaga came here to join the 75th founding anniversary of the municipality with the Women’s Day celebration, variety shows, field demonstrations by elementary and high school students and other activities highlighting the occasion. Staying here for two days has given the group additional bits of information about the place. Siocon, which is about 236 kilometers south of Dipolog City, has earned the moniker as Zamboanga del Norte’s paradise in the south. It prides itself on its wide and verdant rice fields, pristine shores, virgin forest, fertile agricultural lands and abundant marine resources. Mayor Ceasar Soriano also apprised the PIA people that the municipality’s hills and mountains are “swollen with minerals” such as gold, silver, copper and zinc. Matterof-factly, a large-scale mining firm, the TVI Resource Development Philippines, Inc., has been operating since 2004 at Sitio Canatuan, Barangay Ta b a y o

of this town. The company’s gold and silver project ended in 2008 and it is now on its copper and zinc production.

Major livelihoods Agriculture and fishing are the municipality’s main sources of income. It has 3,240 hectares of land planted to coconut, 2,016 hectares for rice, 1,330 hectares for corn, 200 hectares for vegetable and fruits and 2,948 for other crops. Its hilly and mountainous areas are now also plated with highvalue commercial crops such as mango and rubber. The municipality’s big-time fishermen are engaged in deep sea Tuesday, March 13, 2012 ONE MINDANAO 5


belonging to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) stormed the municipality, leaving 22 people dead. The gun battle lasted for nine hours. This prompted former President Gloria M. Arroyo to suspend the peace talks with the MILF. That unfortunate incident would remain carved in the consciousness of the people of Siocon. Mayor Soriano, who was serving his second term as mayor during that raid hung a poster at the entrance of his office which reads: “They aimed but never hit the target… they burned and pillaged and butchered… but never fishing broke the soul. They may have shaken while the marginal ones the foundations where Siocon stands are into sustenance fishing. but truth, faith and love held us in Around 30 fishpond concessions place. We were not conquered; we are also operating in the area, are never vanquished… We will rise covering 240 hectares of wetland. again!” Siocon has now regained MILF siege tranquility where Christians, Muslims and Lumads live together peacefully. On that fateful night of May 4, 2003, An old town some 150 Moro r e b e l s Siocon is one of the oldest Tuesday, March 13, 2012 ONE MINDANAO 6


municipalities before Zamboanga del Norte was carved out of the defunct Zamboanga Province. It became a municipality by virtue of Executive Order No. 77 issued by the Department of Interior on December 23, 1936. However, the creation of Siocon as a municipality was duly acknowledged by the people only on March 10, 1937. Thus, “Araw ng Siocon” is celebrated every 10th of March of each year. Other old towns of Zamboanga del Norte are Katipunan and Sindangan.

beaches w i t h crystal clear waters and cool sea breeze from the Sulu Sea against a backdrop of green meadows at the foot of the mountain teeming with lush trees. With this scenic place in the south, people here can’t help but shout in gratefulness: “To God be the glory!”

The paradise It was during the first term of Mayor Ceasar Soriano in 1998 that Siocon was called Zamboanga del Norte’s paradise in the south. From a sleepy town in the past six decades, Siocon has metamorphosed into a bustling commercial center in the southern part of the province, making it a first class municipality. Because of its vast rice land, the municipality has also become a rice granary of the southern part of the province. The

municipality also offers beautiful Tuesday, March 13, 2012 ONE MINDANAO 7


ACROSS THE NATION

Palace says positive economic reports continue to boost investors’ confidence

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avorable reports on the Philippine economy continue to buoy investor sentiment, Malacanang said as it expects the trend to continue in the long term for the benefit of the country.

Malacañang cited the improvement in the country’s economic freedom based on the recent ranking by the Heritage Foundation and the rise of the local bourse beyond the 5,000-point psychological barrier. The Philippines rose eight notches to 107th from last year’s ranking of 115th and garnered an Economic

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Freedom Score (EFS) of 57.1 this year, according to the 2012 Index of Economic Freedom (IEF) released by the Heritage Foundation. In a statement released on Tuesday, Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte mentioned Moody’s

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Investor Service report, which expressed confidence in continued debt reduction of the Philippines indicating an “increasing degree of fiscal flexibility.” Moody’s report is an affirmation of the Aquino administration’s drive towards fiscal responsibility and active debt management, she said.


Moody’s noted tax revenues rose almost 10 percent despite the absence of new taxes, “while a highly

visible tax enforcement program spurred greater compliance especially for personal and corporate

income taxes,” Valte said. “On top of this, the National Statistical Coordination Board also confirmed that the Philippines’ consolidated foreign direct investments amounted to P256 billion last year—a 15-year high,” Valte said. “The Philippine economy is clearly moving towards inclusive growth, Valte noted, adding that “these positive indicators reinforce the economic momentum it is gaining 21 months into the Aquino administration.” (AS)

Malacañang hails Sandiganbayan’s issuance of warrants of arrest for former PGMA and three others

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alacañang hailed the Sandiganbayan on Tuesday for issuing warrants of arrest for former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and three others for their involvement in the scuttled NBN-ZTE deal during her administration.

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In a press briefing in Malacañang, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte called the Sandiganyan Anti-Graft Court’s action as “a step in the right direction.” The Sandiganbayan issued the arrest warrants for MacapagalArroyo, her husband Jose Miguel, former Commission on Elections chair Benjamin Abalos, Sr., and former Transportation Secretary Leandro

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Mendoza on graft charges. The Sandiganbayan charged the four for allegedly using their positions in government to push through the $329-million national broadband network (NBN) project in 2007 as proposed by China’s Zhong Xing Te l e c o m m u n i c a t i o n s I n c . “We did see the news. It w a s

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confirmed…that the Sandiganbayan had issued warrants of arrest for four personalities and we believe it’s a step in the right direction,” Valte said. “…the warrant is (a) preventive measure in order to assure that the accused persons are here and that they can be present in their day in court and they will be able to defend themselves in the best possible manner,” she added. (RCK)


Provincial employees undergo three-day capacity-building training by Vincent N. Labial and Lovely A. Rosario

TUBOD, Lanao del Norte - To strengthen provincial institutional capacity and governance systems related to the provision, management and maintenance of provincial roads, 51 provincial employees underwent a three-day capacity building workshop at the MCC Hotel, Tubod last February 21 to 23. The workshop was organized by the Provincial Road Management Facility (PRMF) supported by the Australian Agency for International Development and facilitated by the Human Resources Management Office

of Lanao del Norte LGU. The employees came from the offices that are involved in the road planning, management, maintenance and construction of core provincial roads. Tuesday, March 13, 2012

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Among the offices represented were Provincial Engineer’s Office, Provincial Planning and Development Office, Provincial Community Affairs Office , Provincial General Services Office, Provincial Assessor’s Office, Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office, Environment and Natural Resources Office, Provincial Agriculturist’s Office , Provincial Administrator’s Office and Provincial Treasurer’s Office. PRMF is currently operating in

two provinces in the Visayas (Bohol and Guimaras) and five in Mindanao (Agusan del Sur, Bukidnon, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, and Surigao del Norte). Lanao del Norte is the latest province to be included in the expansion of the PRMF program. More workshops are expected for the identified employees in the coming months to further equip and empower the provincial government in the efficient upgrading and maintenance of its core road network. (PIO)

TESDA launches technopreneurship program in Lanao del Sur by Apipa P. Bagumbaran

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he Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) successfully launched its technopreneurship program in the province.

The program, dubbed as the TESDA Specialista Technopreneurship Program (TSTP), aims to assist those who have trained and earned their TESDA certification but have the difficulty of finding a job. As an oversight authority, TESDA is now shifting its role from direct service provider to catalyst and resource provider to its partner institutions and organizations acting as the delivery system, said TESDA Provincial Director Tarhata S. Mapandi. She said the program will provide TESDA-certified graduates the work experience which will help them build their portfolio. 12

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In the province, the TESDA launched on Monday four groups of Specialistas, namely, beauty care, building and house repair, automotive servicing, and computer hardware servicing. Those interested to avail of the services of TESDA Specialistas may contact the TESDA Specialista Operation Center.


Contributions of Former Governor Alfonso D. Tan in Tangub City by Pat Nano

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angub City has honored the contribution of Governor Alfonso D. Tan whose efforts led to the development of the city to what it is now. Philip Tan said. Mayor Philip was amazed at how his uncle, the former governor, was able to convince the people in Tangub to donate their lands to the city government to be converted into city roads, which at present, he has problems on how to cement them because of their width. Another contribution of the former governor was in the field of education which has benefitted the children by putting up elementary schools in all of the city’s 55 barangays. The former governor was also credited for his concern to educate the youth by giving out scholarship programs and putting up of the cityTan was the City Mayor of Tangub owned Gov. Alfonso D. Tan College when he was appointed Governor (GADTC) which celebrated its 28th of Misamis Occidental by the late foundation anniversary, last Feb. President Corazon C. Aquino, who 28. assumed the Presidency after the To celebrate the event, the EDSA Revolution in 1986. city conducted the Alfonso D. Tan “It has always been a puzzle Memorial Lecture attended by the to me how the former governor was city officials, school principals and able to run Tangub after it became students taking up history subjects a city, at a time when there was from the city-owned GADTC and no Internal Revenue Allotment that the state-owned Northwestern the city received from the national Mindanao State College of Science government during his time,” Mayor and Technology. (PIO) Tuesday, March 13, 2012

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OSYs, graduating HS studes seek tech-voc scholarships The youth were eyeing at

the skills training programs offered by Korea-Philippines (Kor-Phil) Vocational Training Center, as their ticket to continue with their studies and eventually land a job. They then applied for a qualifying exam given to be able to enter Kor-Phil, one of the training institutes of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). A graduating 4th year student of La Filipina National High School, Sheila Mae Malitoc, 18 years of age would have wanted to take up Bachelor of Science in n their desire to continue their Education (BSEd) but she had thought studies, out-of-school youths of shifting her scholastic direction towards vocational training, having (OSYs) and graduating public no means of going to college. high school students trooped to “Wala na ko’y papa. Naminyo ug the Bulwagan ng Lalawigan this morning to look for technicalutro ako mama. Naa ra siya sa balay. (I vocational scholarships being have no father. My mother got married offered. again. She’s a plain housewife.)” she

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said in an interview in company with some other graduating high school students. She didn’t want to just stay home doing nothing after graduating high school so she took the qualifying exam hoping to gain access to KorPhil. Sheila Mae wanted to pursue computer programming. Allan Aveles, 22 years of age, had just been laid off from one of the malls in Tagum City. He wanted to gain higher education to hold on to a much secured jobs so he took the qualifying exam to enter KorPhil Vocational Training Center and be trained on automotive mechanic skills. They were just two of about 300 more OSYs and graduating high school students who tried their luck with the qualifying exam administered by KorPhil for those who sought scholarship grants from local government units, and for nonscholars. Mafel Negrido, TESDA technical skills development specialist said Kor-Phil offers 43 tech-voc programs on sectors of information

and communication technology; construction; automotive; land transportation; tourism; electronics and metals and engineering; heat ventilation and conditioning; and agrifishery. Considered as a “center of excellence” on techvoc training, KorPhil training center has become an institute where LGUs poured funds for skills development of their constituents especially those who belong to families with no means to send their children to college. In a tie-up with Kor-Phil, the City Vocational Technical Education Scholarship Program (CIVOTESPro) of Tagum City will be sending this year 100 scholars for techvoc training in Kor-Phil, aside from those who will qualify to take techvoc courses at Tagum Trade School. CIVOTESPro board head secretariat and Community Training and Employment coordinator, Javier Balaba said the city government of Tagum has sent about 400 scholars to Kor-Phil since 2008 and more than 50 percent have landed jobs. (PIA11/Jeanevive Duron-Abangan)

facts and figures 12,000

number of runners who registered and joined in the Bulawan Fun Run held in Compostela Valley Province

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Electric coops meet members, DOE today DAVAO CITY -- Electric cooperatives in Mindanao are meeting today to come up with an immediate workable solution on the problem of power in this side of the country. Today, a representative from the Department of Energy, members of the Association of Mindanao Rural Electric Cooperatives (AMRECO) and Mindanao Development Authority Chairperson Luwalhati Antonino will lay down issues and possible solutions that these sectors can apply with the recurring power outages in Mindanao. Some areas in Mindanao suffer up to 8 hours of blackout everyday and the electric cooperatives have feared this to worsen in summer when the demand for power and high temperature will both shoot up affecting businesses and even households. AMRECO members are asking the government to look into the situation of the two main sources of power in the region which are the Agus and the Pulangi hydroelectric plants. These plants are claimed to be not operating in full capacity. Also, the electric 16

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cooperatives are asking for the government not to limit them from sourcing power from barges as per the agreement with the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP). Meanwhile, the government announced yesterday that the DOE will soon issue an order mandating electric cooperatives to contract and purchase the necessary capacities within their respective areas. In a press release, Malacanang clarified that the government agency is ready to present solutions on this power problem after constant coordination and dialogue with the electric cooperatives and lawmakers in Mindanao . (PIA11/Frances Mae Gevera-Macapagat)


Coco farmers in South Cotabato warned of Brontispa infestation by Dani Doguiles KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato -- An agriculture official here is urging coconut farmers to immediately report to their agricultural technicians signs of Brontispa infestation among their coconut trees. “Immediately report any detection of any appearance of scorching or burning of young leaves of coconut trees to production technicians in your area and seek

their assistance on how to control the pest,” provincial agriculturist Reynaldo Legaste said. He also warned that if the present pest attack is not contained,

this could mean major crop damage that could further result in massive economic losses for coco-growers. Brontispa or coconut leaf beetle eat up young leaves of coconut and palm trees. As the leaf emerges, the leaflets curl and turn brown, then dry. At a distance the leaves appear burned. “If this is not controlled, infested coconut trees could die,” he said, emphasizing further that infestation could escalate with the onset of the dry season. “In the entire province,

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63,707 coconut trees have been affected by Brontispa,” Legaste said, citing a February 17, 2012 report of the Brontispa Control Project of the Philippine Coconut Authority. He said the figure “represents a little more than 2.2 percent of the total coconut tree population in the province.” The same PCA report indicated that 1,417 farmers across have been affected. Most affected is Koronadal City where 30,660 of its 443,400 coconut trees have shown damages; 16 of its 27 barangays are under attack by the pest, affecting at least 671 coconut farmers. Barangays where more than 10 percent

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of both bearing and nonbearing coconut trees have shown Brontispa damage are Rotunda, Mabini, New Pangasinan, Esperanza, Sto. Niño, and Avanceña. Brontispa infestation have also been reported in the municipalities of Tupi, Polomolok, Tantangan, Banga, Surallah, and T’boli. Legaste warned farmers that although the present Brontispa infestation could not be considered alarming this could still result in major economic losses for farm families with the coming of the dry months. “Brontispa is a sucking insect and sucking insects are very active during dry season when moisture is scarce,” he said.

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To prevent spread of Brontispa in the province, Legaste reported that they have coordinated with the Department of Agriculture Region 12, Philippine Coconut Authority, Regional Crop Protection Center and the local government units for the implementation of an action plan against Brontispa. Legaste said, from March until May, South Cotabato’s Brontispa Task Force will be visiting municipalities to conduct technical briefings on the infestation and its control to technicians, barangay council members, and barangay chairman. They have also set year-round massive control operations including spraying and cut-and-burn of affected to control the pest’s population, production and distribution of tetrastichus spp. and continuous monitoring of the pest. Tetrastichus spp, he explained, is a wasp which is a natural enemy and known effective biological control of Brontispa. “At present we


have four LGUs that namely: Polomolok, Tupi, have already put up Koronadal and Surallah,” laboratory for the Legaste said. culture of tetrastichus, Other municipalities

are also planning to train technicians who will mass-produce this biocon, he added.

SM foundation turns over classroom building in Gen San by CT Apelacio GENERAL SANTOS CITY --A private corporation recently donated classroom buildings here in support of the Adopt-A-School Program of the Department of Education (DepEd).

SM Prime Holdings, through SM Foundation has turned over a twoclassroom building to General Santos City Special Education Integrated School or SPED and another fourclassroom building to Banisil National High School in Tambler here. “The school buildings are equipped with complete toilet facilities, armchairs, blackboards, teacher’s desk sets, and ceiling fans,” Justin Mae Acharon, public relations officer, GenSan SM Shopping Center Management Corporation told PIA

General Santos City. She added that a number of textbooks and reading materials were also distributed to each of the school libraries. To date, SM foundation has funded the construction of

“42 school buildings nationwide since 2002,” she said. Acharon said SM Foundation is also making a difference in the lives of Filipinos through its scholarship program, which helps the less privileged and

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less fortunate young individuals all over the country go to school. The program has 900 college scholars enrolled in 73 colleges and universities nationwide. Schools of choice

now include General Santos City being the site of the biggest SM malls in Mindanao. SM GenSan is expected to open in June or July this year. Mayor Darlene Antonino-Custodio

noted the contribution of SM Foundation saying she was happy with the assistance as it helps boost public schools facility in the city. (CTApelacio/ PIA General Santos City)

Konsultasyon sa programang PAMANA isinagawa sa Midsayap, Cotabato ni Aida Agad KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato – Tatlong barangay ng bayan ng Midsayap sa lalawigan ng Cotabato ang bagong idinagdag na maging benepisyaryo ng programa ng pamahalaang PAMANA (Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan). Ang mga proyekto kanyang nasasakupang Mapapabilang sa mga ng PAMANA ay Congressional District. bagong benepisyaryo ipinapatupad ng Office Bago pa man ng PAMANA ang mga of the Presidential magbibigay ng pondo barangay Macasendeg, Adviser on the Peace ang OPAPP para sa mga Tugal at Rangaban ng Process (OPAPP) sa mga proyektong nais ng mga bayan ng Midsayap. komunidad sa Mindanao residente, nagkakaroon Subalit ang pondo para na dating pinangyarihan muna ng konsultasyon sa kanilang proyekto ng karahasan sa sa pagitan ng mga ay hindi pa siguradong pagitan ng mga rebelde residente o benepisyaryo makakalabas ngayong at ng puwersa ng at ng ilang lokal ng mga taong 2012. pamahalaan. opisyal at ng OPAPP. Pinayuhan din ni Pinangunahan ni Ang mga barangay Congressman Sacdalan Cotabato 1st District na mapabilang sa ang mga opisyal Congressman Jesus benepisyaryo ng PAMANA ng mga nasabing Sacdalan ang ginawang ay tatanggap ng pondong barangay sa ginawang konsultasyon para P6 milyon para sa konsultasyon na ayusin sa pagpapatupad ng iba’t-ibang proyektong ang koordinasyon programang PAMANA pang-ekonomiya na upang maiwasan ang sa tatlong barangay makakatulong sa duplication ng mga ng bayan ng Midsayap pamumuhay ng mga proyekto sa barangay. na napabilang sa residente. (ac agad PIA12) 20

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Spanish int’l NGO partners with gov’t agencies to promote women’s political, civil participation by Jennifer P. Gaitano

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n support to the Philippine Millennium Development Goal No. 3 on promoting gender equality and empowering women, the Spanish international non-government organization Paz y Desarrollo (PyD) partnered with government agencies to capacitate and develop the women and encourage their participation in civil and political agenda.

www.piacaraga.blogspot.com

http://www.facebook.com/pages/PIA-Caraga-Updates/165374590187484

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piacaraga@gmail.com pia_caraga@yahoo.com.ph

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During the briefing workshop conducted recently at the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Caraga, PyD Social and Economic Development Department head Arnel Sanchez said the regional program aims to promote gender equality in political participation in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Philippines, East Timor and Vietnam, which started in 2010 and will end in 2014. It also focused at contributing to the realization of women’s political and civil rights by supporting initiatives that promote good governance and democracy-based gender-equitable political participation. “For the past two years, the program has done the Project activities with the partners. This launching is intended to present the 2012 program of actions 22

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to the government regional offices in the regions of ARMM and Caraga. This event, specifically, has the attempt to elicit support and commitments from the government entity-partners,� said Sanchez. Accordingly, the launching was to realize the following purposes: 1) to promote accountability and transparency, and disclose levels of program actions and expected results; 2) to provide government partners wit program directions especially for the period March to December 2012; and 3) to draw out points of partnership with the government agencies. Meanwhile, PyD Project Monitoring and Evaluation specialist Clem Novales bared that the objective of the program is to establish the regional level partnership for the purpose of joint efforts in the broader field of supporting

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mechanisms and activities of promoting gender equality in political participation in the municipalities of Kitcharao, Santiago and Tubay; and city of Butuan. Also, PyD Philippines Country Representative Noelia Monge Vega stressed that PyD shall support civil society organizations in the promotion of gender equality in political participation through networking and capacity development activities in the aforementioned areas. Meanwhile, partners in the government agencies revealed their GADrelated programs and services and expressed their commitment to support the project with the PyD. PYD with other partner agencies will convene again on another schedule for the MOA signing indicating each roles and responsibilities.


Tree planting marks Women’s Day celebration in Surigao del Sur

by Greg Tataro, Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur -- A tree planting activity in support to the National Greening Program (NGP) of the Department of Environment and National Resources (DENR) highlighted the Women’s Day celebration recently in Surigao del Sur.

Done in Barangay Gamut, Tago, seven kilometers south of Tandag City, women, especially from the government sector, joined the event which started at 7:00 a.m. Mila Arreza, Provincial Population Officer and focal person of Gender and Development (GAD) here spearheaded the said affair with

seedlings provided by the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) in Tandag City under Forester Rogelio Montenegro. Meanwhile, many activities are still set for the rest of the Women’s Month celebration. Among these are the “Hataw” (exercise), free blood chemistry

at the Adela Serra-Ty Memorial Medical Center (ASTMMC), mass blood donation courtesy of the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC) in cooperation with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on March 29, and AlayLakad on March 30. The opening day came with a mass, motorcade, and special program.

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Butuan City to offer potential PPP projects by Eldie N. David

BUTUAN CITY -- The Sangguniang Panlungsod recently approved an ordinance authorizing City Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante, Jr. to offer potential Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects to prospective private investors. The ordinance, principally authored by Vice Mayor Lawrence Fortun, is in line with the Executive Order No. 51 issued by Mayor Amante creating the PPP Executive Team to advocate, conceptualize, initiate, organize, coordinate, direct and oversee the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the different PPP programs, projects and activities. In his explanatory note, Fortun emphasized 24

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the following as basis in filing the ordinance: 1) the natural and economic resources of Butuan City present enormous potentials for rapid economic growth and sustainable and equitable development; 2) there is an impetus to develop and implement a comprehensive economic agenda to maximize and convert potentials into concrete and environmental gains; 3) the PPP as advocated by the national government is seen as a

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pivotal and key strategy in the implementation of the economic agenda; and 4) the Local Government Code of 1991 vests upon the LGU the prerogative to enter into contracts involving its properties, subject to limitations imposed by law, and provides LGU with wide ranging authority to undertake major infrastructure improvements and to seek financing for this purpose. Among the list of projects eligible for


PPP offering are: power plants, slaughterhouse, tourism projects, piggery, swine semen processing center, hydropower projects, farm facilities, farm to market roads, agricultural mechanization, public markets, public toilets, public terminal, education and health facilities, mega-infrastructure projects, solid waste management, land reclamation projects, drainage, dredging and other infrastructure and development projects as may otherwise be identified by the PPP Executive Team pursuant to E.O. 51 issued last December 29, 2011. The PPP projects that will be entered by the City of Butuan will observe the following principles under the ordinance: 1) that the

LGU of Butuan shall adopt and implement a policy of full public disclosure of all its transactions involving public interests; 2) that the LGU of Butuan City shall uphold its advocacy of entering into a clear, honest and transparent PPP contracts; 3) risk allocation should be based on the party most capable to manage the risk; 4) PPP partnerships should be feasible and affordable. From the onset, the project should be feasible, demonstrating the need for the project, broad level project costs estimation and indicative commercial viability; 5) PPP partnerships should be bankable. PPP should be bankable as financiers will be reluctant to commit funding when a project entails high participation costs, unreasonable

risk transfer or lengthy and complex contract negotiations; 6) PPP partnership projects should provide value for money. PPPs should provide value for money and good economic value, which is not necessarily the same as least cost, and includes: allocating risks to the party best able to control and manage them; and maximizing the benefits of private sector efficiency, expertise, flexibility and innovation; 7) PPP partnership projects should provide economic and social benefits. PPPs underlying principle stems from the fact that the public authority remains responsible for services provided to the public, without necessarily being responsible for corresponding investment; and 8) PPP projects should have due consideration for empowerment of Filipino citizens. The implementation of PPP projects should have due consideration for the empowerment for the citizens as a strategy for economic growth and sustainability.

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Siocon women avail free pap smear By Alma L. Tingcang on Women’s Day

M

ore than 50 women of Siocon availed of free pap smear on March 8 highlighting the celebration of International Women’s Day with the theme, “Women Weathering Climate Change: Governance and Accountability, Everyone’s Responsibility.”

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Mayor Ceasar C. Soriano, recognizing the crucial role of women in progress and nation-building made this possible with the support of the staff of Ceasar Soriano Sr. Memorial Hospital (CSSrMH). Dr. Jojo Y. Tingkahan, an obstetriciangynecologist earlier lectured on cervical and breast cancer as well as the importance of having regular pap smear. Dr. Tingkahan said, “pap smear is a process wherein cells are collected from the surface of the cervix with the use of a speculum, checked under the microscope and the local government unit sends it to be processed in Zamboanga City or Cebu City because we don’t have the capability here.” This test will determine if you have cancer cells. Cervical cancer is caused by Human papillomavirus (HPV). There are 50 types of HPV but only 2 can

cause cancer. “It is good to know that we now have vaccines for cervical cancer,” the lady doctor explained. Dr. Tingkahan also cited how to lower the risk of getting cervical cancer, : 1) get regular pap smear which should be done every year. “If you have 3 successive negative results, you could skip every 2 or 3 years. 2) limit your number of sexual partner or be faithful; 3) do not smoke; and live a healthy lifestyle, proper diet with plenty of vegetables and fruits. She also enlightened the women on breast cancer and advised them to have self breast examination to check if there are any lumps in the breast. Breast cancer is said to be the 2nd leading cause of cancer deaths in the world, number one being lung cancer. Dr. Tingkahan said, “check if there is any lump in the breast, change in breast size or shape and swelling of the armpit.” Another thing to consider is family history and hormone factor. If your mother, your aunt (your mother’s sister), your sister, or your grandmother who is your mother’s mom, all those from your mother’s side, have a history of breast cancer, you are also at risk of having breast cancer. It is advised that you undergo regular breast examination. The Siocon women were deeply grateful to the local government and medical staff of CSSrMH for the free pap smear, most of them having experienced it for the first time. (ALT-PIA9/Zambo Sur) Tuesday, March 13, 2012

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PNP all over the country to plant 10M trees by Jocelyn P. Alvarez

ZAMBOANGA CITY - Philippine National Police (PNP) all over the Philippines will plant a total of 10 million trees in support of the National Greening Program of the Department Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), revealed Roservirico Tan, Information Division Chief , DENR-9. Tan, in a press statement said, the PNP’s commitment to support the NGP was officially fastened through a memorandum of agreement(MOA) which environment Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje signed recently with PNP Director General Nicanor Bartolome. Tan said, the signing of the MOA gave birth

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to the DENR-PNP joint project dubbed “Pulis Makakalikasan: 10 Milyong Puno, Pamana sa Kinabukasan.” “With the DENR as the lead implementing agency, the NGP, which President Aquino established through Executive Order No. 26 issued on February 24, 2011, has the Departments

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform as co-implementers of the program under the convergence initiative,” Tan said in the press statement. The “Pulis Makakalikasan “ project will run up to February 28, 2013. It will involve all personnel of the PNP, numbering around 140,000


tasked to plant a total of 72 tree seedlings each, or six tree seedlings per month to be planted by each PNP member for a period of 12 months, Tan revealed. According to the information division chief, this aspect of “Pulis Makakalikasan” responds to NGP’s primary concern of producing the desired planting material “quantityand quality-wise. Tan said, no less than Sec. Paje himself lauded this move of the PNP, quoting Sec. Paje as saying “The PNP leadership has responded well to these twin concerns. Assuring the adequacy and survival of these

planted seedlings is just as important as mobilizing volunteers that will plant and grow these planted seedlings,”. Tan further informed, “under the project, the PNP is to put up tree nurseries inside PNP camps throughout the country to produce seedlings, in coordination with DENR specialists who will help in identifying tree species suitable for planting based on the prevailing climatic and soil conditions of the areas. DENR will also assist the PNP in identifying areas for their tree planting.” (JPA/ RPAO/DENR9/ PIA- ZBST)

Dipolog to renew MOA with AFP on SCAA operations By Franklin P. Gumapon DIPOLOG CITY – The city government here is now planning to renew its Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for the continuance of the operations of the Special Citizens Armed Forces Geographical Unit Active Auxiliary (SCAA) in the city. City councilor James Cyril Ruiz has recommended that a MOA on SCAA with the AFP be renewed as “it is of great help in maintaining peace and order in the city.” Ruiz said the SCAA had provided support to the police force to prevent lawless elements from entering or sowing terror in the city. For the past three years, SCAA was tapped in helping the elements of the Philippine National Police (PNP)

and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in a series of drug buy-bust operations resulting in the arrest of several drug pushers. With this, the city council has passed a resolution authorizing the city mayor to renew a MOA with the AFP to retain the services of SCAA in assisting the police and military personnel in the campaign against all forms of criminalities. (JPA/ FPG/PIA-Zamboanga del Norte) Tuesday, March 13, 2012

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One Mindanao - March 13, 2012