Maslog town mayor
yearns for rubber boats, evacuation center
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE, PIA Borongan
Samar – Maslog town Mayor Septemio Santiago yearns for four rubber
boats and an evacuation center for his flood prone municipality.
After three weeks of
rainy days, he and his people are always on the look out for the
rising water level. The mayor recalled that flooding also happened in
2008 while he was already serving as the mayor then.
“It was not as much as
the flood waters recently,”
“I was just thankful
the floods happened during the day and we saw our way during the
rescue operations, had it happened during the night, many would have
died,” the Mayor was visibly pained with his recollection.
As they did house to
house rescue, the rubber boats they used got damaged, thus, wishing
for a new rubber boat is the mayor’s yearning.
“I also wish to
construct an evacuation center for my people,” the mayor added.
He knew that despite
his plans to permanently relocate his people in higher and safe area,
some, still may opt to remain, where their livelihood is, so that the
town needs an evacuation center where the people can run to in
calamities like the most recent one.
Mayor Santiago is
aware though that some of his constituents are so ingenious to use
indigenous materials in constructing make shift shelter during the
In the pictures he
sent to PIA E Samar, his people used coconut leaves, bamboos and other
materials that abound in the area to construct temporary shelter.
But his people may
need a more durable evacuation center that can withstand the onslaught
of natural elements in the future.
As the days wear
on, the Mayor and his people are fervently wishing that the multitude
of the generous-hearted who provided them relief packs could also help
them by providing the rubber boats he yearns and the evacuation
CSO-Church-LGU-Business sectors initiate formalizing of a Samar
By EMY C. BONIFACIO,
CATBALOGAN, Samar –
“Samar continues to languish in the yoke of underemployment as it is
currently rated the 7th poorest province in the country.
Unemployment/underemployment rates remain high; economic activities
are limited and productivity low; commerce and industry have actually
declined over the years; natural resources (esp. the forest and the
sea) have been degraded; the people, especially in the rural villages
are unserved and governance is largely ineffective and most often
mired in corruption. We all feel that Samar development has been
downhill for decades…” are Mr. Rene Nachura’s exact words to justify
the need to convene the Samar Development Agenda Conference.
like Charo Cabardo, Fr. Cesar Aculan, Rhet Piczon, Nestor Nachura,
Mayor Lu Astorga, Fr. Noel Labendia, Mr. Luisito Uy, DA Raul Repulda,
Erlinda Uy, Evette Nachura, Joson Ocenar, Ojie Acaba and Emy C.
Bonfacio were among those present during a draft-concept presentation
of the project at STI, Tacloban City last January 20, 2011.
undertaken by the various sectors to remedy and jump-start the
strategic and integrated development of Samar, where results have been
observed to be meager and disappointing, were assessed.
administration’s promise to forge a “matuwid na daan” in order to end
poverty is an opportunity that is being offered to Samarnons to give
development another try. However, at this point in time, Samarnons
must take the initiative into their own hands…want it, plan it and
work on it,” Nachura added.
Having considered the
urgency of convening a multi-sector gathering, a Samar Development
Agenda Conference has been set on February 28 to March 1, 2011. The
two-day conference-workshop is intended to mobilize the different
sectors of the Samar people – citizenry, church, government and
business – to start taking charge of their own development and
The Samar Development
Agenda conference will be a gathering of more or less 50 individuals
who will draw up a coherent, concrete and viable development “agenda”
for the next five years (2011-2016). The conference will commit to
promote and implement the agenda and present it to the P-Noy
administration for the support of the National Government.
It was agreed that the
agenda will not be a comprehensive strategic plan. It will be a set of
deliberately chosen priority activities which must be done and
accomplished within a given time-frame. The proposed agenda is also
expected to be do-able and concrete, having wide-reaching and
longer-lasting results and within clear strategic development
framework that will contribute to its eventual realization.
It was made clear that
the object of the agenda is both integral and integrated.
is not simply economic growth. It should be multi-faceted: meaning
economic growth should be integrated with the social, political,
environmental, psycho-cultural, religious and other dimensions of
human and community life” Fr. Cesar Aculan stressed.
The development agenda
is supposed to cover various categories such as the following: SIPPAD/SSPADE
concerns on poverty alleviation, social services to include
infrastructure, environment, governance and peace; NEDA and RDC 8
issues on Job Creation, enhanced social development with direct
poverty alleviating measures, improved infrastructure and logistic
support and good governance; and the DILG Guide for Local Development
Planning which includes sectors on Land Use, Economy and Financing,
Agri-Industrial, Human Development, Infrastructure Development and
consideration of a Cluster approach to Agro-Enterprise Development as
a possible framework for the development agenda will also be presented
in the conference.
Mr. Raul Repulda of
the Department of Agriculture shared his expertise through a briefing
orientation on the cluster approach during the STI forum.
Preparations for the
conference are on-going. After a thorough briefing on the project,
members committed to take responsibility of the respective tasks. A
more updated and factual presentation of Samar’s situation will be
prepared, as basis for the workshop planning.
“We really appreciate
the efforts being made by these sectors. Hopefully, these initiatives
will challenge our provincial administration and come up with a more
comprehensive community based development plans and programs that will
sustainably alleviate the plight of 70% poor families in Samar. We are
lagging behind in all aspects of development. We need to regain our
lost dignity due to too much poverty and corruption. Now is the time
for both the public and private sectors to work together for fruitful
results. Hopefully, this forum will bring out participatory
discussions and solutions to these social concerns. Not unless we help
ourselves, we cannot expect help from outside…” was a businessman’s
appeal to everyone as he emphasized the all-out support of his sector.
On the other hand,
MATA-Samar expressed its support by documenting all related activities
as its secretariat. The anti-corruption group was appreciative of this
move knowing that the provincial government has long been incapable
and remiss in sincerely delivering the basic needs of its
“Samar has been
eaten by dirty politics. Too many resources intended for its
constituents are being abused and mismanaged, thus multi-sector
efforts in Samar are seen to be more credible and gaining support from
the national government and its people,” a MATA Samar official
UEP to host 2011 SCUAA
By TERESITA B. CARDENAS, PIA Catarman
Samar – The University of Eastern Philippines will host the
forthcoming State Colleges and Universities Athletic Association (SCUAA)
meet on January 28-31, 2011. This was learned from Mrs. Romula A.
Obleopas, the media relations officer of the university.
Obleopas said that the
university is now ready to host the event and is taking measures to
ensure safety of the participants and a successful athletic event.
Their athletes undergone rigid training and is now ready for the
competition, she added.
SCUAA region 8 is
composed of the following: the Eastern Samar State University (ESSU
Falcons), Eastern Visayas State University (EVSU Hawks), Leyte Normal
University (LNU Normalities), Naval State University (NSU Pioneers),
Palompon Institute of Technology (PIT Mariners), Samar State College
of Agriculture and Forestry (SSCAF Forestmen), Samar State University
(SSU Webmasters), Southern Leyte State University (SSU Flamingos),
Northwest Samar State University (NWSSU Clippers), University of
Eastern Philippines (UEP Dolphins) and Visayas State Colleges (VSU).
The State Colleges and
Universities Athletic Association (SCUAA) is one of the
inter-collegiate sports association in the Philippines closely related
to UAAP, the union of six major state colleges and universities in
The organization was
established as the State Colleges Athletics Association (SCAA) in 1953
encompassing the Philippine Normal College (now Philippine Normal
University of PNU), Central Luzon Agricultural College (now Central
Luzon State University of (CLSU), and the Philippine College of
Commerce (now Polytechnic University of the Philippines or PUP), and
Rizal technological Colleges (now
University or RTU). SCAA saw itself transformed into SCUAA in the
1970s when PCC and the Philippine College of Arts and Trades (now
of the Philippines or TUP) a member school since 1959, converted into
Despite many years
of challenges in the forefront, SCUAA was able to gain grounds in
various regions in the country through the creation of regional or
satellite SCUAA, hence the establishment of a National SCUAA in the
10th ‘Bike for Hope’ -
By Office of Sen. Pia S. Cayetano
January 23, 2011
MANILA – Pia leads
70-km bike ride in
Palawan to promote health and environmental awareness
Senator Pia S.
Cayetano will lead around 200 bikers from
to the municipality of Aborlan in the province of Palawan on Saturday,
January 29, to promote healthy living, women empowerment and care for
the environment at the 10th staging of ‘Bike for Hope.’
Known for using sports
such as biking, running and triathlons to bring her advocacies to
communities across the country, Cayetano started Bike for Hope in 2004
in memory of her father, the late Senator Companero Rene Cayetano, who
died from complications of a liver ailment in 2003.
The lady senator will
be joined by Palawan Governor Abraham ‘Baham’ Mitra and several
cycling groups in the province. Following a 70-kilometer route that
will take the bikers to known local landmarks such as the Ospital ng
Palawan, Crocodile Farm and Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm, Bike for
Hope will kick off at six in the morning on Saturday at the Shell
gasoline station along Malvar Street in Puerto Princesa, and end at
the Aborlan Public Market around noon.
Interested bikers may
join by registering from January 27-28 at the “Chooks to Go” branches
in San Pedro and Rizal Avenue, Puerto Princesa, from 9am to 9pm.
Bikers can also register on-site beginning at five in the morning on
More than just a
sports event, Cayetano said that Saturday’s bike ride will be preceded
by Pinay In Action (PIA) community seminars to be held on Thursday and
Friday at various venues in Aborlan, Narra and Puerto Princesa. The
seminars to be attended by local community leaders and barangay health
workers will tackle the senator’s advocacies including breastfeeding
and anti-violence against women and children.
Another highlight will
be the two-day ‘Train the Trainers’ sports clinic to be held on Friday
at the DepEd building in Bancao-Bancao, Puerto Princesa, and on
Saturday at the Ramon V. Mitra Sports Complex.
The seminar will train
150 physical education (PE) teachers in the province to be conducted
by brothers Phil and James Younghusband of the famed Philippine
National Football Team, the ‘Azkals.’ The seminar will likewise
include the Pinay In Action running clinic to be led by triathlon
champion and national coach Ani De Leon.
The 10th ‘Bike for
Hope-Palawan’ is a joint effort of Pinay In Action together with the
Palawan Provincial Government,
Coca Cola Foundation, Unilab Active Health, Pfizer, Glaxo Smithkline
and Malampaya Deep Water to Power.
DPWH continues to
repair damaged roads in East and North Samar
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY – The
Department of Public Works and Highways continues to repair roads in
Eastern and Northern Samar that were damaged by the torrential rain
since January 2, 2011.
Per report submitted
to the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council of
Eastern Visayas, DPWH Director Rolando Asis informed that only half
lane is passable at the Camp 5 Boundary, Junction of Taft-Borongan
Road, at Kilometer 892+930, Barangay Polangi, Taft, Eastern Samar. The
maintenance crew of DPWH has installed warning signs.
In order to go to
Catbalogan City in Samar, commuters from Borongan, Eastern Samar have
to go to Guiuan town and to Tacloban City via Marabut Samar Road, to
take a van going to Catbalogan City.
In Northern Samar, the
Mainland Road Network, Catarman-Rawis-San Roque Section, at Kilometer
769+300, was damaged. A detour road was constructed to restore the
normal flow of traffic. The DPWH said that this road is passable only
to vehicles weighing 3 to 5 tons.
As of January 20,
2011, Pangpang-Palapag-Mapanas-Lapinig Road, Malobago-Panhagdanan Section, at Kilometer 812+350, Sitio
Malobago, Nipa, Palapag town in
Northern Samar, is hardly passable to all types of vehicles.
Palapag-Mapanas-Gamay-Lapinig Road, Kilometer 320+000 – Kilometer
821+000, at Ginpandayan area, along Cabatuan-Magtalom Section, as of
January 20, is passable only to motorcycles.
To date, the damages
to infrastructure facilities in Eastern
Samar has been estimated at P68,789,500.
On the other hand, the
damages to infrastructure facilities in
Northern Samar has been estimated to be P143,500,000.
For the entire
Eastern Visayas Region, the total damage to infrastructure facilities
has been estimated at P236,700,000.
organizations pledge active participation in 2012 regional budget
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY – In
line with the Aquino Administration’s thrust for a more transparent
governance, the civil society groups in
Eastern Visayas actively participated in the 2012 Regional Budget
Forum held on
January 13-14, 2011, spearheaded by the Department of Budget and
Management Region 8.
DBM Region 8 Director
Imelda Laceras noted with great satisfaction, the participation of the
civil society organizations that expressed their interest and support
to the programs and projects of the present government.
Among the issues that
cropped up during the forum was the issue as to the number and name of
civil society organizations to be consulted for the ongoing programs
and projects of six piloted Departments namely, the Department of
Agriculture, Department of Agrarian Reform, Department of Public Works
and Highways, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department
of Education, and Department of Health.
Director Laceras moved
to park the issue pending the receipt of the detailed guidelines in
the conduct of civil society consultations. She gave the assurance
that updates on the same shall be disseminated the soonest time
Laceras informed that this is the first time that the agency will tap
the participation of civil society organizations (CSOs) and other
stakeholders in the budget preparation process for key government
“This is the first
time that the participatory budget approach is being implemented,”
Director Laceras said adding that this is being done to promote wider
ownership for and monitoring of the government’s key public services.
The forum tackled the
recently issued National Budget Memorandum No. 107 dated December 30,
2010 which is the National Budget Call for 2012.
The budget preparation
for next year aims to strengthen the linkage between development
planning and budgeting and increase the likelihood of accomplishing
development goals by considering resource availability in the
formulation of the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) and
the Medium Term Public Investment Program (MTPIP) for 2011-2016.
The memorandum stated
that the 2012 budget will focus on fighting corruption and promoting
transparency, accountability and good governance; poverty reduction;
ensuring sustained and inclusive economic growth; building a
motivated, professional, energized bureaucracy; and encouraging
integrated and safe communities and the sustainable use of resources
for future generations.
National Gov’t allots
P15 M for rehabilitation of affected EV rice farmers
By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
TACLOBAN CITY – The
National Government through the Department of Agriculture has allotted
P15 Million for the rice farmers in
Eastern Visayas so that they can recover from the devastating effect
of flooding brought about by torrential rains.
DA Regional Executive
Director Leo Cañeda informed the Philippine Information Agency that DA
will start the implementation of the Rehabilitation Scheme next week.
He said that the
provincial agriculturists were called to a meeting at the DA Regional
Office last week in order to orient them with the program and to
finalize the guidelines in the implementation of the Rehabilitation
Scheme for the affected rice farmers in the region.
In the proposed
rehabilitation plan, DA 8 placed the budgetary requirement for the
province of Leyte at P1,708,200; Southern Leyte at P1,431,720; Samar
at P82,080; Eastern Samar at P4,600,800; and Northern Samar at
scheme which was approved by Secretary Proceso Alcala will entail the
immediate distribution of certified seeds or good seeds to affected
farmers on full subsidy at 40 kilograms per hectare.
RED Cañeda said that
the level of devastation calls for quick implementation of the
rehabilitation program to sustain productivity gains and to restore
the morale of the affected farmers.
The master listing of
beneficiaries will be based on the official calamity or damage reports
validated and submitted by the municipal or provincial agriculture
The full provision of
rice certified seeds or good seeds shall be shouldered by the national
government through the Department of Agriculture.
The seeds must be
procured from any accredited seed grower or seed cooperative.
For ease of
implementation, the distribution of seeds shall be coordinated with
the Local Government Units. In coordination with the seed growers or
seed suppliers, the seeds may be delivered at designated drop-off
points to fast-track distribution.
causes P12M damage to Biliran infra
By FLOR JACKSON, PIA Biliran
NAVAL, Biliran – The
continuous rains experienced by the entire country these past weeks,
did not spare the
from damage to road infrastructures.
In an interview with
Engr. Virginia Sarabusing, District Engineer of the the Biliran
District Engineering Office (BDEO), she informed that although the
rains experienced by the entire province was moderate and yet they
have caused damage to some road infrastructures in the province.
She mentioned in
particular, the road slip in Barangay Pulang Yuta in the municipality
of Caibiran, along the cross country road from Naval to Caibiran.
She said, because of
the situation one lane of the road in said barangay is being utilized
as of now and only light vehicles and motorcycles are allowed to pass
“Repairs to this road
infrastructure have already been started”, she said.
declared that the estimated damage to infrastructures in Biliran
resulting from the continuous rains was estimated at P12 million to
include minor damages.
Meanwhile, Mr. Jaime
Casas, Provincial Agriculturist of the Biliran Provincial Agricultural
Services Office (OPAS) informed PIA-Biliran that after the survey of
the damage to agriculture in the municipality of Caibiran, the
Municipal Agriculturist in said area reported that some 26 hectares of
ricefields with newly transplanted seedlings were washed out by the
continuous rains experienced by the province these past weeks since
January 1 this year.
He added that a total
of 13 hectares of ricefields in the
of Kawayan were damaged due to flooding.
Likewise, in the
municipality of Biliran some 15 hectares of ricefields still in their
seeding stage were damaged.
As of now, the
municipal agriculturists in these three municipalities in Biliran
whose ricefields were damaged are still continuing to determine the
amount of damage.
Mr. Casas said,
damages to vegetables, fruit trees and other agricultural crops in
other municipalities of the province were very negligible.
7 more birthing
centers opened in Leyte
Media Relations Center
January 22, 2011
TACLOBAN CITY –
Seven new birthing centers have just been opened in the province of Leyte over the week, thereby increasing again the number of birthing
centers to more than 20 birthing centers.
This makes Leyte one
of the province in the country with the most number of operational
birthing centers, if not, the highest according to PhilHealth in the
The latest birthing
centers opened which is led by the private entity – the Kakak
Foundation – are found in Brgy. Balagtas in Matag-ob, Brgy. Hibulangan
in Villaba, Brgy. Inangatan in Tabango, Brgy. Talisayan in Albuera,
Brgy. Linao in Inopacan, Brgy. Palale I in Mac Arthur and Brgy.
Union in Mayorga,
all of Leyte province.
Jericho Petilla, who led the inauguration of these latest batch of
birthing centers, envisions Leyte to have the most number of birthing
facilities in the country in line with the Millennium Development Goal
to decrease child mortality rate and improving maternal health.
The establishment of
the birthing centers is in support to the local government’s plan to
provide various areas in the province with safe affordable birthing
centers and thereby reduce maternal and infant mortality.
The governor meanwhile
clarified reports the birthing centers opened are not accredited by
PhilHealth and the health department.
“It is just sad to
know that despite efforts to address problem on maternal and child
deaths in our province, there are still groups who places wrong
information on these projects together with the private sector,” Gov.
He otherwise urged
residents in the barangays where the birthing centers were newly
inaugurated to take no notice of the misinformation being circulated
against the project.
Sis. Eloisa David, an
official of Kakak Foundation, on the other hand, maintained that the
birthing centers are equipped with all the necessary equipments as
well as manned by professional and licensed midwives.
The governor likewise
clarified that the establishment of birthing centers is privately led
and the province’s role is just to provide health insurance to
indigent pregnant women through the PhilHealth LGU sponsored health
Apart from partnering
with private groups, Gov. Petilla and the provincial government is
also among those chosen province for the Japan International
Cooperation Agency (JICA) project that would strengthen maternal and
child health services, together with the DOH.
To recall, the said
JICA would provide the services of its Japanese experts such as
long-term experts, maternal and child health advisor and project and
training coordinators as well as provide such machinery, equipment and
other materials and conduct technical training for midwives and
barangay health workers who would be manning the birthing centers that
would be set up by the province.