The new song,
“Sundalong Pilipino”, which will be applied for patenting for its
intellectual right was composed by MGen. Mario Fontanilla Chan,
Commanding General of the 8th Infantry Division, Philippine Army based
in Catbalogan Samar.
The music was arranged
by Cpl AP Julaton and Cpl MG Sandigan.
“I composed the song
for just two weeks. I am even asking how to apply for its intellectual
rights”, the army commander beams with pride while he tells on how the
song was inspired by his passion for his profession. According to him,
it was his way of acknowledging the efforts of his men who are at all
times ready to serve the country and its people.
as a song, narrates of a soldier’s coping up with the challenges in
preserving the peace in every Filipino family. “They need to be well
trained physically, mentally and intellectually. Soldiers are molded
to possess a clean/pure heart with human dignity and intense
commitment to be able to serve at all times”, says the composer.
The commander received
congratulatory remarks from the crowd. While requests for copies of
the song poured in, release of its copies are temporarily withheld as
he would like to further improve its arrangement and packaging before
it goes out for public. However, Samarnews was privileged to get a
copy of the lyrics of the song. Chan is hopeful that the song will be
played in all other army divisions in the country.
In a related story,
the 8ID invited multi-sectors in a candle lighting ceremony which was
simultaneously held in other military camps nationwide. “Ilaw Para sa
Kapayapaan” is a peace advocacy initiative by the Office of the
Presidential Assistant for Peace Process (OPAPP). It was well attended
by MATA-Samar, Alert Radio Group, Kabalikat and other Civil Society
organizations in Catbalogan. The same activity was conducted at the
Quezon Memorial headed by P’noy himself who was also celebrating his
birthday on the same date.
“The candle lighting
symbolizes our solidarity and our call for peace across the land. Let
us all pray that through our concerted efforts, we can attain peace
and progress in our country. Attaining peace isn’t just a military
role. Peace is not a defense matter. Each and every member of the
community should play his role.” was Chan’s justification for the
He further stressed
that “development has long been forgotten in
Samar’s being the 3rd largest island endowed with natural
resources and potentials for development,
Samar remains to be
one of the poorest provinces in the country.
Samarnons were advised
to refrain from partisan politics. Instead, he suggests to put in
place all development plans and programs that would alleviate poverty
and improve the lives of Samarnons. Focus has been made on the
development of road projects that would interconnect tri-boundaries in
Matuguinao, Las Navas, Maslog and Jipapad which are considered as
insurgents’ main bases.
Finally, Gen. Chan
is hopeful that peace will soon be attained. “Winning the Peace is our
theme. Peace can be attained by sitting down and talking and agreeing
among ourselves. Development cannot be achieved by continuous
fighting”, says the General as he announced the start of a formal
peace talks on February 9.
PBA partylist sponsors
scholarships for Eastern Samar youth
By NINFA B. QUIRANTE, PIA Eastern
Samar – More than a hundred scholars from the Eastern Samar State
University (ESSU) received scholarships from Pwersa ng Bayaning Atleta
(PBA) partylist recently.
Mark Ahron Sambras personally distributed the certificate coupons to
the poor but deserving students.
Two ESSU campuses;
ESSU main in Borongan and Can-avid campus, both in
got the scholarship slots.
The Puwersa ng
Bayaning Atleta (PBA) has a mission to support nation building through
a world-class sports program, promote an active, drug-free and healthy
lifestyle, engage in competitiveness, sportsmanship and fair play
The partylist is
branching out to education, the representative said in his speech.
The scholarship slots
benefitted those that have enrolled in the second semester of school
Hermie Oraya, a third
year BSEd student thanked the sponsor, instead of paying his tuition
full of P3,330 he will just pay less than a thousand as PBA will pay
P2500 directly to the school. Oraya is a working student as his mother
earns very little as a Barangay Health Worker.
Mary Ann Pombo from
Barangay Bugas, Borongan is also a recipient, like Oraya, she is
thankful for the scholarship and prays for another entitlement come
school year 2011-2012.
Both recipients share
the vision of Eastern Samar Governor Conrado Nicart who stressed in
his speech that education is the basic foundation of life of the
Christopher ‘Sheen‘ Gonzales was said to be instrumental in getting
the attention of PBA to help the poor but deserving ESSU students.
Sambras, in his speech
told the students that PBA does not only care for sports but even for
the poor who believe that education will uplift them to a better
quality of life.
Publish rice import
permits, solon urges NFA
February 12, 2011
QUEZON CITY – To
ensure absolute transparency and accountability, Cebu Rep. Eduardo
Gullas has urged the National Food Authority (NFA) to publish the
complete details of every rice import permit issued to private traders
and large end-users such as fast food chains.
"The NFA should post
on its web site the details of every new rice import license issued,
to include the entity allowed to make the importation, the entity's
controlling owners, and the exact volume of the authorized shipment,
among others," Gullas said.
"This will help
discourage potential abuses moving forward," Gullas pointed out.
Gullas made the
statement not long after Malacañang exposed a scam in which a highly
favored group of traders cornered and profited from the importation of
up to 200,000 metric tons of rice in the previous administration.
Angelito Banayo later revealed that at least 10 fictitious farmers'
cooperatives, backed by a lone financier, irregularly obtained rice
import licenses in the past.
The Department of
Agriculture (DA) said earlier this week that the country would have to
import another one million to 1.3 million tons of rice this year.
"Rice is an extremely
sensitive commodity, both economically and politically. Government
should be watchful in ensuring ample supply of the grain at fair and
stable prices," Gullas said.
Since December, Gullas
noted that rice retail prices have already increased by around five
percent, after the NFA raised its selling price of the grain from P25
to P27 per kilo.
"The wild card in our
rice supply is harsh climate change. Brutal weather conditions, be it
severe flooding or a prolonged dry spell, can easily set back domestic
production," Gullas warned.
The same conditions
could also upset the output of the world's three leading rice
exporters – Thailand, Vietnam and Pakistan, he said.
"Extreme flooding in
China, for instance, can easily tip the global balance of rice supply
and demand, because China is a large importer of the grain," Gullas
imported almost 2.5 million tons of rice in 2010 due to "unprecedented
Banayo later claimed
that the previous administration actually imported an excessive amount
of rice last year.
The country is
projected to produce 17.4 million tons of rice this year from a
lower-than-expected 15.77 million tons in 2010, according to the DA.
EO standardizes pay
and perks of GOCC, GFI executives
February 11, 2011
Philippines – Malacañang has issued an executive order standardizing
the salaries and bonuses of executives in government-owned and
controlled corporations (GOCCs) and government financial institutions
(GFIs) to strengthen control over compensation levels.
Aquino III signed Executive Order No. 24 on Thursday to address deep
concerns on the excessive and unreasonable pay and perks received by
board members and trustees of GOCCs and GFIs that had unnecessarily
depleted government funds and caused demoralization within the
“This EO will serve as
a stop-gap measure to rein in excessive pay for GOCC board of
directors and trustees until a law is passed mandating such,”
Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said on Friday.
According to Ochoa,
one such measure is Senate Bill No. 2640 or the proposed GOCC
Governance Act of 2011 put forward by Senator Franklin Drilon, which
is now pending in Congress.
Secretary said the EO set out the policies on salaries, per diems,
allowances, bonuses, incentives and other benefits of the GOCC and GFI
board of directors and trustees “to a level that is reasonable,
justifiable and appropriate.”
“While we do not
begrudge GOCC execs for rewarding themselves for exemplary
performance, these financial rewards should be within reason. This EO
seeks to set the guidelines that will standardize pay rates to prevent
abuse,” Ochoa said.
He thanked the
Departments of Finance and Budget and Management for “working with us
to exhaustively study and review existing compensation policies. Their
input was invaluable in the drafting of these policy guidelines.”
The EO covers board
members and directors of GOCCs and GFIs regardless of classification
and whose compensation shall be subject to the approval of the
It also includes
representatives of GOCCs in the boards or private corporations wherein
the government or GOCCs have investments.
This means that all
chartered and non-chartered GOCCs – whether covered or exempted by the
Salary Standardization Law – and their subsidiaries are directed to
comply with the policies and guidelines on compensation and
reimbursable expenses set by the EO.
Under the new
guidelines, the peculiar nature of corporations in terms of size,
strategic positioning, nature of operations and financial capability
should be taken into consideration in determining a compensation
system that is consistent with the pay practices in public and private
corporations, as well as the principle of equal pay for work of equal
The maximum amount of
performance-based incentives to be granted to board members or
trustees should depend on the size of the GOCC and GFI, and should not
exceed 50 percent of the board member’s annual compensation received
for outstanding performance.
The EO says
reimbursable expenses cover performance of official functions such as
transportation going to and from the place of meetings, travel during
official trip, communication and meals during business meetings.
These, however, are subject to budgeting, accounting and auditing
rules and regulations.
“Let me emphasize what
the President said on GOCC Governance Day last January: The money
earned by GOCC belongs to our people and should be used for their
benefit, not the benefit of those who run GOCCs. Our people are our
boss, and this EO should help those who manage our GOCCs remember
that,” Ochoa said.
nationwide “Ilaw Para Sa Kapayapaan”
By EMY C. BONIFACIO,
Catbalogan Samar – The Army’s 8th Infantry Division joined the whole
nation in the simple yet meaningful candle lighting activity dubbed as
“Ilaw para sa Kapayapaan”, a nationwide simultaneous lighting of
candle in front of 8ID Admin building around 6:30 pm., February 8.
More than two hundred
(200) participants from the Civil Society Organizations (CSO), Non
Government Organizations (NGO’s), local media, academe, religious and
other social sectors joined the officers, soldiers and civilian
employees of 8ID in the nationwide call for peace.
In his message, Major
General Mario Chan, 8ID’s commander said that the event gives hope to
the people of Samar and the whole Eastern Visayas region.
He further stressed
that the candle’s light symbolizes “Peace” which is long desired by
the people of Samar.
“The suffering of our
Samareno in this insurgency problems is long enough that needs to be
given serious attention. The light gives hope for peace and
progressive place to live in with… War is not the solution to all of
this, we can win this war by convincing them to be part of us and live
a normal life,” General Chan adds.
“We hope that this
light (candle light) will surely give us enough hope to fully achieve
peace here in Eastern Visayas” General Chan concludes.
Meanwhile, Miss Myra
Tambor, the President of Katungod Han Samarena Foundation Inc, who was
the event’s guest of honor and speaker, regarded the activity as a
very meaningful activity especially that it aims peace to reign.
She said that it is
high time for all sectors of our society to join hands for the common
interest and attainment of peace in Region 8.
She also encouraged
the participants particularly those coming from CSOs and NGOs to give
their share and contribution for the ultimate winning of peace.
“May I request
everyone to please do not take the candle lights off yet, for it gives
us a meaningful light for us to have a continued and burning desire
for peace. These lights be our light and hope that someday, peace in
Region 8 will surely be attained,” Tambor said.
The activity has
concluded bringing the participants new hope for the coming days to
come and made them more aware on the present Internal Peace and
Security Plan (IPSP) “Bayanihan” of the government.
The activity is an
advocacy initiated by Civil Society Groups and Non Government
Organizations (NGOs) supported by the Office of the Presidential
Adviser on the Peace Process (OPPAP) and the Armed Forces of the
City Hall jumpstarts
SWM advocacy with clean-up activity
By LAIMINH S. MABULAY, City Mayor's Office
February 11, 2011
CATBALOGAN CITY –
Employees of the City Hall put a twist to the old saying, “charity
begins at home”. In their case, it’s proper waste disposal begins at
home, sending a clear signal that it intends to take the lead in
promoting solid waste management.
This was the message
that City Mayor Coefredo T. Uy and the City Government wanted to
convey as it launched a clean-up drive right in its own premises last
February 4, 2011 starting at one o’clock (1:00) in the afternoon. The
inter-office clean-up activity was meant to be an initial move before
the City Government proceeds to its other activities related to Solid
Waste Management (SWM). To further drive home this point, the City
Government has purchased color coded plastic trash bins so that proper
waste segregation may be applied within the workplace. This was
incorporated in its new program dubbed as "Let's S.T.E.P. up or
Segregate Trash for Environment Protection!"
Starting today, the
waste receptacles will be placed at various areas of the City Hall to
maintain its cleanliness and make it more inviting to clients and
visitors. The trash bins come in a set of three bearing the colors
red, gree and blue. Each color indicates the type of trash that is to
go into a certain bin.
The red trash bins are
for biodegradables wastes such as food wastes, fruit peelings and
plant and animal wastes. The green trash bin is for non-biodegradable
wastes such as papers, plastics, glass and metal items. Lastly, the
blue trash bin is for wastes that cannot be thrown in either the red
and green trash bins. Examples of these are styrofoams, sanitary
napkins, batteries, machine spare parts and other industrial wastes.
The City Hall’s
clean-up activity was meant to serve as a small step towards a bigger
goal, which is to eventually institutionalize solid waste management
program as an important component of environmental protection. Without
any legislative measure still in place, Councilor Stephany Uy-Tan –
who is the Chair of the City Council’s Environment Committee – is
currently targeting the public’s awareness as the first step towards
gaining support for this advocacy.
With the Market
Code, Slaughterhouse Code, Sanitation Code and the Water Code, crucial
legislations that will eventually be incorporated into the Environment
Code still being drafted, Step Tan believes that changing public
behavior towards waste disposal is the best solution for now for this
will make implementation smoother once appropriate legislations are
2,011 seedlings of
native trees planted to launch 2011 as International Year of the
By BONG PEDALINO, PIA Southern
SILAGO, Southern Leyte
– The year 2011 is Year of the Rabbit in Chinese Calendar, but 2011
was also the International Year of the
Forest, as declared by the United Nations, to raise awareness and
strengthen importance of forests.
Last week, either by
design or coincidence, the Chinese New Year, which fell on February 3,
also became the date for the launching of this yearlong observance
here in this pacific town, as initiated by the Visayas State
University (VSU), according to Provincial Environment and Natural
Resources Officer (PENRO) Ricardo Tomol.
The UN launching was
held also on the same date in
(Feb. 2), it was learned.
“Some 2,011 pieces of
local indigenous seedling were planted, like lawaan, tugas, narra as a
way to launch 2011 as international year of the forest,” Tomol told
Philippine Information Agency (PIA) in a phone interview on Wednesday.
These were planted by
high school students, personnel from VSU, the local government unit,
and others, said Tomol, who was present during the event.
Mercado and Governor Damian Mercado each sent representatives who also
joined in the tree-planting, he added.
Venue of the activity
was the watershed area, the upstream portion of Silago’s Mag river.
The VSU-led project
headed by their President Jose Bacusmo called for a close monitoring
in two to three years’ time of some 50 hectares of Silago’s total
forest, while another component was the rehabilitation or
reforestation of some 75 hectares of this town’s denuded mountains and
PENRO Tomol said
DENR’s participation of this endeavor, together with the LGU, was the
identification of specific areas that need to be closely watched and
to be focused attention.
He said Silago
still has over 530 hectares of virgin forest.