beneficiaries in Eastern Samar receive 10 coco twining machines
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– The productivity of the members of the Carmen Agrarian Reform
Beneficiaries Multipurpose Cooperative in Hernani,
is expected to be enhanced after they received ten coco twining
machines, Jo Fabile of DAR Eastern Samar and DAR 8 Information Officer
John Alsmith Soria informed.
member of the Carmen Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Multi-Purpose
Cooperative with her children working together in producing coco
twines at home. (PIA 8/alsmith)
The Department of
Agrarian Reform officials who witnessed the distribution of the ten
twining machines must have been smiling to themselves, proud of having
empowered these agrarian reform beneficiaries.
Agrarian Reform Officer Susana Monteclaro said that the Department of
Agrarian Reform thru the first phase of the Agrarian Reform Community
Project funded by the Asian Development Bank, gave the said
cooperative P20,000 last year, as financial assistance for its
The members and
officers of the Carmen Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Multi-Purpose
Cooperative used the fund in assembling ten coco twining machines
which were distributed mid January 2008, to ten of their members for
them to produce coco twines.
informed that finished products are being bought by the Hernani
Coconut Processing Plant, at one peso for every meter of coco twine
the members produce. Most of the members are able to earn P300.00 per
day, depending on how industrious they are and how much coco twines
By giving the members
coco twine machines, DAR and the Cooperative are empowering these
agrarian reform beneficiaries, an alternative livelihood, instead of
just farming which is the main occupation.
An additional daily
income of P300.00 is indeed a very good inspiration to these agrarian
reform beneficiaries because all their products will be bought by the
Hernani Coconut Processing Plant which was funded by the national
The coco twines are
used into coco textile which is very much in demand in China and other
countries because these are used to prevent soil erosion among others.
Coco products offer
range of comprehensive and technologically advanced natural erosion
control system to stabilize soil and promote vegetation. Coco
Geotextiles constructed out of coir, biodegradable fiber made from
coconut husks degrade naturally at a rate allowing for the
recolonization of the ground by plants. These products protect the
site from erosion, retain moisture and nutrients and allow roots to
develop naturally. Coco geotextile are both ecologically and
economically beneficial. Ecologically beneficial because the six
million coconut husks that constitute the biggest bulk of the
country's farm waste which harm the environment when burned can be
converted into geotextiles instead that can be used to protect river
banks from soil erosion.
By RODRIGO S. VICTORIA (PIA Biliran)
NAVAL, Biliran –
Barely more than six months in office as Representative of the Lone
District of Biliran, Atty. Glenn A. Chong has already earned the
monicker as Representative ‘Kalsada’ (a local term for road).
The young legislator
never hesitated to admit in a regular Kapihan sa PIA at Radyo Natin-Naval
the newfound name because this is what he is fondly called now by
heads of government offices at the central offices in Manila whenever
he goes to these agencies asking for funds for the completion of the
remaining 53 kilometers of unpaved circumferential road in the
province of Biliran.
The completion of the
province’s unpaved road was his major campaign promise and he cannot
afford to fail the 36,097 Biliranons who gave their trust and
confidence to him during the May 14, 2007 elections. Much more that he
offered himself to be stoned whenever he fails to deliver his major
campaign promise within his three-year term that ends on
June 30, 2010.
That major campaign
promise of the neophyte solon is now most likely the major driving
factor and the adrenalin for him to work with vigor and enthusiasm as
a legislator and for him to show to the Biliranons his sincerity and
truthfulness in bringing the aspirations and dreams of every
Biliranons for a better Biliran under his watch.
Chong, the completion of the remaining unpaved circumferential road of
the district is the key and catalyst to the full and stable
development of the province.
He opined that one of
the big contributing factors in the progress of any place or in
Biliran province in particular is its good road network where farmers
can easily transport their goods to the market without too much hassle
and at a lesser transportation cost.
“Having a good road
network is essential in the
considering that the province’s economy is more dependent on
agriculture,” Rep. Chong said.
One thing for sure, he
said, tourism industry in the province will get a big boost since
local and foreign tourists will no longer find it hard to travel to
the different attractive tourist destinations mostly located in the
eastern part of the province where a big chunk of the unpaved road is
found specifically the road network linking the municipalities of
Biliran, Cabucgayan, Caibiran, Culaba and Kawayan.
“A good road network
is a major compliment to boost the tourism industry in a province
labeled by many as an “island paradise” because of its still untouched
natural beauties like the cascading waterfalls, pristine white beaches
and other beauties of nature only found in Biliran province,” he
The young legislator
foresees tourism industry in the province to be one of the main
sources of livelihood for the Biliranons in the near future once its
circumferential road will be completed.
He added that a good
road network also invites investment opportunities to pour in a place
like Biliran province where so many investment opportunities are just
lurking in the corner waiting to be tapped and developed.
Atty. Chong proudly
said that Biliran province is gifted by God not only with natural
beauties but also with bountiful natural resources where one can
utilize for some business venture like the world’s renowned sweetest
water in the world found in Barangay Tomalistis in Caibiran recorded
in the Guiness Book of World’s Records.
“This is not only an
added tourist attraction but again a avenue for business especially to
those who are engage in the business of producing bottled mineral
water,” he proudly said.
Aside from this
universal gift of nature, Biliran at present is being considered by
the Department of Energy (DOE) as a potential site of geothermal
energy with an estimated 20-40 megawatts production capacity.
With all these
promising industries in Biliran province just waiting in the corner
for a good road network for its development, Rep. Chong candidly said
that he is never ashamed to ask funds for the remaining unpaved
circumferential road of the province that cost him even that famous
monicker Representative ‘Kalsada’ because he believes this is the only
way to keep his promise to the Biliranons.
He disregard being
called that way because according to him, this is one way of
alleviating the lives of the Biliranons from the clutches of poverty
where he greatly lamented with the fact that the district he
represented is the sole province in Eastern Visayas that belongs to
the 10 poorest of the poor provinces in the country at present.
His constant knocking
on the doorsteps in the different possible sources of funds does not
stop only in the concerned government agencies but rather he brings
his cause to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo by appealing and
requesting to her the release of some P700 million which is enough to
complete the pavement of the province’s circumferential road.
Chong has realigned a P50 million worth of road surfacing project
intended for Biliran province to road concreting plus he allocated the
remaining funds of his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF)
commonly called as “pork barrel” for the period July 1 to December 31,
2007 for the concreting of a considerable length of road linking the
Culaba-Kawayan, Caibiran-Culaba, Biliran-Cabucgayan and the Cross
Country road sections.
For the 34 years old
legislator, he firmly believes in a statement coming from an officer
of World Bank, the country’s major foreign creditor for the different
infrastructure projects including road projects in a conference he
attended called for by the world financial institution which goes that
“give a place a good road network and development will surely
With still plenty of
time left at his disposal within his term and who was considered by
many as the budding embodiment of a brand new politics, the
realization of his major dream – the completion of the concreting of
the province circumferential road is always at the forefront in all of
his undertakings geared towards uplifting the lives of his fellow
countenance may have been likened to that of a road by government
officials whom he always asked with an honest plea like “give us
better roads” really shows the sincerity and thoughtfulness deep
inside him in his big dream for Biliran.
No wonder Atty. Glenn
A. Chong is called Representative ‘Kalsada’.
features Sogod Bay as a “New, Unpolished Jewel for Diving”
By BONG PEDALINO (PIA Southern
January 1, 2008
MAASIN CITY, Southern
Leyte – An in-house publication of the Philippine Airlines (PAL), in
its December, 2007 issue, has featured Sogod Bay, this province,
calling the place a “frontier destination in the Philippines” and a
“new, unpolished jewel for diving in the Pacific.”
“A new site in the
Philippines has started to create a buzz in the diving community:
Sogod Bay in the province of Southern Leyte has been continuously
proving itself to be a new, unpolished jewel for diving in the
Pacific,” the three-paragraph article under the heading “Diving in
Sogod Bay” began, spreading the cheer to diving enthusiasts.
“Until a few years
ago, tourism was virtually unheard of here, save for some dive camps
established in the town of Padre Burgos whose clients were having a
great time enjoying the rich waters to themselves,” the story, written
by Carlos M. Libosada, Jr. said.
PIA got a copy of the
glossy magazine through Cong. Roger Mercado, who was obviously elated
the place has attracted the attention and appreciation it rightly
deserves, coming as it did from a reputable magazine.
In his live radio
program last Saturday, Cong. Mercado shared the good news on the
publication of the article, saying that, indeed, foreigners can enjoy
the natural beauties of the province all year round.
Tourism has been one
of Cong. Mercado’s three main programs, the two others being
Environment and Agriculture, or the acronym TEA.
diving potentials in Sogod Bay, has been listed in the latest Mabuhay
Magazine, page 154, along with other established beach resorts in the
country, like Boracay, Bolinao, Pangasinan, Pamalican island, Calicoan,
Eastern Samar, and Anawangin, Zambales, for a special segment on
“Christmas at the Beach.”
shiny-page piece on Sogod Bay carried three underwater photos, the
biggest one of which pictured a contented diver, and the two others a
sample of the rich, under-the-sea marine life.
“A few ‘leaked’
stories and photos to the outside world have finally revealed the real
natural treasures of Sogod Bay. Now, more resorts and even live-aboard
dive boats bring people wanting to explore this relatively frontier
destination in the Philippines. And the rewards are
astounding: migrating whale sharks (localoly known as iho-tiki), Manta
rays, dolphins, wide expanses of hard and soft rocks, pygmy seahorses,
nudibranchs, and other highly interesting and colorful marine life
protected by vigilant communities,” the article said.
It added: “Sogod is
perfect not only for scuba divers but for anybody searching for new
places to swim, snorkel and encounter whale sharks as well. One of the
best ways to explore the area is to get on a rented vehicle, bring a
set of snorkel and fins, and go to the fish sanctuaries and protected
reefs established in most of the municipalities surrounding the bay.”
made a difference this Christmas
MYRA M. TAMBOR
Samar – A Christmas celebration beyond the traditional Christmas
party was celebrated by the community journalists in the province of
Samar on Saturday (December 22) with the sisters of the Franciscan
Missionaries of the Divine Providence.
More than 20 orphaned
children and Franciscan sisters joined the CCATMAN, a media
organization based in Catbalogan City for their Christmas party at
Cocina De Cabral. The kids and sisters were treated to a night of fun
and surprises by the members of media.
“This is indeed new
for us media persons, to be celebrating our Christmas party with our
less fortunate children, this is so meaningful and touching”,
according to Myra Tambor the emcee of the occasion. Tambor is working
as a broadcast journalist for over a decade at the local MBC radio
Highlight of the
affair was the gift-giving and the sing and dance presentation of the
kids. The media organization raised funds for the purchase of the
gifts, meals and other expenses for the Christmas party.
Franciscan sisters expressed gratitude to the President of CCATMAN Ray
Gaspay and the Vice-President Emy Bonifacio as well as all the members
of the media organization for the occasion. Sister Bing in her thank
you message said that there are 12 orphans under their care housed at
the Home for the Aged building in Catbalogan. There are also four
elders under their care. She further said that this is the 1st time
that the children was treated to a party since they started the
orphanage two years ago.
It was learned that
the children under their care ages 7 to 15 and a 31 year old rape
victim were abandoned by their parents, some was turned to their care
by the City Social Welfare Office. It was also learned that the daily
subsistence of the orphanage comes from donations of private
Moreover, the media
organization members hoped that more activities with these children
will be conducted thus this will be included in the media advocacies.
The 100th Anniversary
Celebration of the Nacionalista Party
– Senate President and NP President Manuel B. Villar, Jr. treated
leaders and members of the Nacionalista Party coming from far away
places in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, to a grandiose celebration to
mark the Nacionalista Party 100th anniversary at the PICC reception
hall, CCP Complex, in Pasay City, on November 28, 2007.
President and NP President Manuel B. Villar, Jr. with the author
Nacionalista Party or
Partido Nacionalista, the country’s oldest political party, was
founded on April 29, 1907 under the leadership of Sergio S. Osmeña,
Sr., Manuel L. Quezon, Rafael Palma and other “young turks” when our
country was under the United States colony.
With an honor roll of
producing six Philippine Presidents - Manuel L. Quezon, Jose P.
Laurel, Sergio S. Osmeña, Ramon F. Magsaysay, Carlos P. Garcia, and
Ferdinand E. Marcos, the Nacionalista Party has the distinction of
being the most enduring political party not only in the
but also in Asia.
Donned in filipiniana
or americana old and young Nacionalistas were welcomed by world class
talents of P.U.P. Banda Kawayan and Las Piñas Boys Choir from the
moment they entered the convention center.
Senator Alan Peter S.
Cayetano, NP Secretary General, in his welcome address remarked that
“NP will be the party that will give us the first President for the
next 100 years.”
Senator Manuel Villa
extolled the virtues of the NP leaders, stressing that they should be
emulated by those engaged in public service. He also encouraged
future leaders to follow the lead of the NP leaders, keeping in mind
their responsibility as public servants and practitioners of change.
“As public servants,
we should keep in mind our motto – “Ang Bayan Higit Sa Lahat” (The
Nation Above All Else) as we go along with our responsibility to
provide a better future for our people, “ Villar said.
The highlights of the
NP centennial were the unveiling of the book, “Building the Nation:
First 100 Years, Nacionalista Party 1907-2007,” which explores the
early days of the organization to the present and details how the
Party flourished and struggled through the days of glory and trials of
the Filipino people in building the nation in the last century; the
launching of “Pondo sa Sipag-Puhunan sa Tiyaga,” a nationwide project
spearheaded by Senate President Villar aimed at promoting
entrepreneurship and providing Filipinos livelihood opportunities that
would help them better their lives; and the turnover of ceremonial
check worth P1 Million to the NP Youth Network in its continued
support and belief for the Filipino youth and their potential.
A spectacle during the
affair emceed by former Cavite 2nd District Rep. Gilbert C. Remulla
was the audio-visual presentation in recognition of the past
presidents of NP showing vintage pictures of President Sergio Osmeña,
Commonwealth President Manuel L. Quezon, Hon. Jose Yulo, Senate
President Eulogio “Amang” Rodriguez, Senate President Gil J. Puyat,
Speaker Jose B. Laurel, Jr., and Vice-President Salvador “Doy” H.
The Laurels - family
of singers, led by actor Cocoy Laurel provided musical numbers to the
delight of the power-packed crowd and comedian Nanette Inventor
brought the house down with her antics.
Taking turns rendering
beautiful music during the sit-down dinner reception were the Cercado
Sisters, the Siblings, the Vitan Family, Abegail Dorado, and Dex de
Rosa, while an excellently prepared sumptuous food by Via Mare was
being served consisting of chicken binakol with chicken quenelle on
lemon grass, and roast pacific sea bass with tomato salsa – served
with heart of palm egg roll.
tandem, Senate’s President better half Las Piñas Rep. Cynthia A.
Villar, and only daughter, Cynthia A. Villar, Nacionalista youth
representative, busied themselves hopping from one table to another.
NP stalwarts in
attendance during the centennial were incumbent Taguig 1st District
Rep. Ma. Laarni L. Cayetano, Cavite 3rd District Rep. Jesus Crispin C.
Remulla, Bukidon 2nd District Rep. Teofisto Guingona III, Ambassador
Jose Macario Laurel IV, former Quezon Governor Wilfredo Enverga,
Manila 5th District Rep. Joey D. Hizon, and Samar 1st District Rep.
Rodolfo T. Tuazon.
guests were former Senator Helena C. Benitez, Senator Ernesto Maceda,
Quezon City Mayor Adelina Rodriguez, Ambassador Raul Goco, Solicitor
General Frank Chavez, Ilocos Rep. Gualberto Lumauig, Bacolod Rep.
Wilson Gamboa, Marinduque Rep. Edmundo O. Reyes, III, DENR
Undersecretary Mario S. Roño, DENR Assistant Secretary Democrito
Mendoza, Jr., Calbayog City Vice Mayor Virgilio Rosales, Calbayog City
Councilors Ariel Rosales and Djuvan Tan.
Veritable list of
the country’s who is who in government. present were San Juan Rep.
Ronaldo B. Zamora, Parañaque 1st District Rep. Eduardo C. Zialcita,
Pangasinan 6th District Rep. Conrado M. Estrella, III, Laguna Rep. Dan
S. Fernandez, CIBAC party-list Rep. Joel J. Villanueva, Davao del Sur
Governor Douglas Cagas, Batangas Vice-Governor Jose Antonio S. Leviste,
II, Pasay City Mayor Pablo Trinidad, Valenzuela City Mayor Sherwin T.
Gatchalian, Caloocan City Mayor Enrico Echiverri, and UNO spokesman
Adel Tamano, to name a few.
2nd District Calbayog City Councilor Ariel M. Rosales, Senator and
NP Secretary General Alan Peter S. Cayetano, and former 1st
District Samar Rep. and NP Leader Rodolfo T. Tuazon.
Cabinet Secretary Conrado Estrella, Senate President and NP
President Manuel B. Villar, Jr., House Speaker Jose C. de Venecia,
Jr., former Surigao del Sur Rep. Prospero Pichay, and Quezon City
1st District Rep. and NP Leader Vincent P. Crisologo.
cooperative begins with less than a thousand pesos
By BONG PEDALINO (PIA Southern
December 5, 2007
Leyte – The Saints Peter and Paul Multi-Purpose Cooperative (SPPMC)
in this municipality has come a long, long way.
From a humble initial
pooled capital in 1968 of only P856 – the revenue earned from drying
copra, a collective effort of the 36 original members who contributed
25 pieces of coconuts each member – the Cooperative now boasts of
assorted assets worth, at the last count, P105 Million.
Over the past 40
years, the Coop members from all walks of life have grown dramatically
to more than 2,000 individuals, and the services provided have
expanded by leaps and bounds as well, other than the usual manner of
extending credit or loans.
The Coop now has its
own two-storey hotel business, a rice-milling operation,
quasi-banking, and a physical fitness gym in the second floor of its
main office, among others.
Next year, just in
time for its 40th anniversary celebration in March, plans are now in
the pipeline to open an internet service provider and a food stall,
among other priorities.
Despite all the
crowning success, Honorato Vacal, Chairman of the Board of Directors,
acknowledged the founder of SPPMPC in the person of Rev. Fr. Frederick
Wakeheim, a Scarboro Missionary, who organized the Cooperative along
with his fellow missionaries in mid-1960s.
Fr. Wakeheim was the
driving force behind the dogged contribution of coconuts from the
pioneering 36 members, 15 of them listed as incorporators, until such
time they processed those stuff into copra and sold, the money
received serving as the initial capital as the Cooperative went on the
normal organizational procedures, Vacal narrated.
Chairman Vacal shared
the pieces of information mentioned above during a mock news
conference last week as part of the two-day newswriting
The workshop was
participated by members of the Board of Directors and was intended to
equip them on basic writing skills preparatory for the production of
an in-house SPPMPC Newsletter which will come out quarterly starting
in January next year, an added attraction to the Cooperative’s Ruby
This writer, together
with Philippine Daily Inquirer Correspondent Jani Arnaiz, served as
the facilitators of the two-day activity, November 27 and 28.
In the last forty
years of the Cooperative’s life, Vacal admitted it was not always a
rosy ride; he reminisced about four or five times the Cooperative went
down but was able to recover.
For those down trodden
days, ownership meetings were the common occurrence to thresh out the
problem and try to find solutions, like no honorarium for the
officers, and close-in, house-to-house collections which resulted to a
marked reduction of delinquent loans.
Over time the
Cooperative bounced back to healthy status and this got the attention
of Landbank, wherein the bank conferred its prestigious, coveted award
for outstanding cooperatives nationwide to SPPMC – not only once but
more than a couple of times already in a row.
The latest was held
last August 8, 2007, at Malacanang, the Ginintuang Pilak Award which
carries not just a citation for the honor but also P1 Million.
The award money will
be used to buy a new service vehicle to replace the 8-year old one
they have been using, Vacal said.
Not bad for a
Cooperative that began with a faithful walk of impounding coconuts but
with a great sense of hard work and determination.
8ID winning the war
against communist terrorists
By Cpt. MARIO JOSE M. CHICO (QMS) PA
Catbalogan City – The 8th Infantry (Storm Troopers) Division of the
Philippine Army is winning the war against the CPP-NPA-NDF terrorist
group as shown by the recent accomplishments of its field units during
the 3rd Quarter 2007 ISO Assessment and Command Conference held on
October 9, 2007 at Camp Lukban, Catbalogan City with its theme
“Assessing our Performance as We Move Forward”.
During the period from
January 1 to September 30, 2007, the field units of the 8ID gained
operational superiority against the communist terrorists in the
Eastern Visayas region as manifested by their numerous combat, intelligence,
and CMO accomplishments.
In the 48 combat
engagements recorded for the period, 41 of which was initiated by the
8ID troopers while 7 was initiated by the CPP-NPA-NDF. These combat
successes have paved the way for the recovery of 41 HPFA and 301
low-power firearms (LPFA) from the communist terrorist while the
government troops lost 7 HPFAs. On the fatality ratio, 12 communist
terrorists were killed against 8 in the government side. Worthy to
note on this aspects of Internal Security Operations (ISO) is that for
the 3rd quarter of this year, there were 15 combat engagements
registered all of which was initiated by the government troops gaining
25 high-power firearms (HPFA) from the communist terrorists. Likewise,
6 terrorists were killed in battle while no casualty on the government
These major combat
accomplishments were basically the result of the downpour of public
support to Army operations as manifested by their active participation
by giving vital information on the whereabouts of the communist
terrorists. This positive development can be attributed mainly due to
the numerous community development programs of the Army units that
have made wonders to the lives of our underprivileged communities in
the region. Foremost of which is the “Baktas Kabubwason” project of
62IB and 801st Infantry Brigade in Basey, Samar; wherein they have
initiated a Jatropha ‘Bio-Fuel’ plantation in cooperation with the LGU
Officals and the stakeholders themselves.
Armando L. Cunanan AFP, the Commanding General of the 8th Infantry
Division, Philippine Army commended his field commanders for their
strong commitment and dedication to finally put an end to the
insurgency problem that have been besetting our economic growth. He
exhorted them, “to further improve the working relationship between
the Army and the local government units in the area in order to
improve the delivery of the basic services to the communities”. He
stressed the point that, “in this war against insurgency, he who wins
the heart and minds of the populace, wins the war!”
20th IB trooper saves
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte
– The life of a nine-month old baby boy was saved because of the
timely intervention of Corporal Jose F. Cabujoc, a member of the 20th
Infantry Battalion of the 8th ID based in San Isidro, Northern Samar.
The baby was initially
given up for dead by his parents when they could no longer hear any
heartbeat or any sign of breathing.
predicament of the couple, Corporal Cabujoc immediately came to the
rescue and applied the life-saving skills he learned from his
schooling and effectively used the Combat Life Saver Kit that was
issued by the Philippine Army.
Kit used during the treatment of the baby
The baby’s parents
could only utter “Thanks God” in amazement when they heard the
pronouncement of Corporal Cabujoc that the baby was alive.
incident transpired during a Medical and Dental Civic Action Program (MEDCAP)
that was jointly organized in cooperation with the Local Government of
Calbayog City on September 23, 2007, First Lieutenant Dranreb Canto of
the 20th IB reported.
The lucky baby was
later identified as Baby Boy Cajusay of Barangay Pinamorotan, Calbayog
City, who suffered from acute malnutrition. In fact, losing hope that
the baby will survive, the family already made a coffin for the baby.
family’s woes is the fact that their barangay is located about
50-kilometers away from Calbayog City proper. The availability of
doctors and medical practitioners is so much wanting due to its sheer
distance where no transportation vehicle could ever reach. It can only
be reached by foot for more than a day’s walk.
certainly bespeaks of the motives of the Philippine Army as
exemplified by the 20th Infantry Battalion under the able leadership
of Lieutenant Colonel Lenard T Agustin. Saving a baby’s life is worth
all the sacrifices and hardship in a soldier’s life.