Since the start of the
year 2011, with the launching of IPSP “Bayanihan”, the 8th Infantry
Division has embarked on programs to promote human security, good
governance, and development in the Region. The command was able to
realize these programs with the partnership of stakeholders from both
the public and the private sectors.
Having recognized the
gains in the Region, Brigadier General Layug, with his experience in
both local and international peace endeavors as community developer in
the country and peace builder in war ravaged nations aided by the
United Nations, made sure that everyone under his leadership
understand his intention to enable the Region’s stakeholders to steam
ahead with their gains in development.
In his first Command
conference, Brigadier General Layug made his point clear as he issued
these guidance to all units under his Command:
- Internalize the
Internal Peace and Security Plan to support development;
Partnerships to enable all stakeholders to do their share;
- Continuously train
to develop professionalism;
- Adhere to Human
Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law, and the Rule of Law to
promote human security; and
- Build disaster
mitigation capability to help people in disaster-prone areas in their
time of need in disaster prone areas in the Region.
After issuing his
specific guidance, he followed this up with Command visits to line
units to ensure that his message would be understood by all personnel
of the Division.
With BGEN LAYUG AFP,
who is committed to pursue the path to peace and development at the
helm of 8ID providing sterling leadership to the Command, the people
of Eastern Visayas are assured of Team 8ID’s commitment to secure the
region and serve its people onward to “Winning The Peace”.
New alliance unites
QUEZON CITY – A new
alliance of some 40 major trade unions and labor federations have
united to advance trade union and workers’ rights in the Philippines.
Aptly called NAGKAISA
(united), the newly-established network of labor organizations vowed
to fight labor contractualization, advocate for security of tenure and
fight for an across-the-board increase in workers’ pay.
“After a series of
in-depth discussions, we, the leaders and members of major labor and
trade unions and workers' organizations in the country have mutually
decided to be united by embracing our diversity,” said the group in a
statement during a media conference in
Philippine labor has
been generally regarded as fragmented, but NAGKAISA is bent on
changing that impression and ushering in a new era in Philippine
“In the face of the
prevalent anti-worker environment and given our diverse ideologies,
methodologies and approaches, our unions have continued to champion
workers’ right to organize, to collectively bargain, to hold strikes
and to engage government in social dialogue, but with limited success.
We believe that the Filipino workers can be empowered again by, first
and foremost, united action among unions and workers' organizations.”
“We are forming the
coalition called NAGKAISA, which will consistently and passionately
work towards restoring the right to full protection and the chance to
live a decent and dignified life for all Filipino working men and
women – whether formal or informal, private or public, here or
abroad,” the group added.
challenging deregulation and other policies that lead to perpetual
increases of oil prices and cost of food, electricity and other
utilities and basic services such as education, in order to provide
immediate relief to the economic burden of workers.
“Workers’ struggle for
decent work is being defeated by greedy employers’ blatant assault on
their rights. Their chances to it are being deprived by the Philippine
government’s labor, social and economic policies that always function
in favor of local and foreign businesses,” NAGKAISA said.
The group is also
pressing for the ratification of ILO Convention 189 or the Decent Work
for Domestic Workers Convention.
NAGKAISA, as one voice
of labor, will actively engage industry and all branches of government
at all levels in meaningful and progressive social dialogue to improve
the plight of workers.
NAGKAISA will be holding decisive mass actions to bring these issues
closer to and wield support from the people,” the group said. NAGKAISA
will hold a rally on Labor Day in Manila, where it plans to mobilize
some 40,000 workers.
Cayetano: Let’s focus
on fraud-free automated system
PASAY CITY – Senate
minority leader Alan Peter Cayetano said that what is far more
important than forming or joining coalitions at this time is for the
voters and candidates to be assured that the improved automated system
will further deter any attempt by known political operators to tamper
with the results.
He said he is closely
monitoring preparations for the 2013 national elections particularly
the extent of progress in the ensuring that automated elections will
be safe from fraud.
“As long as we have an
automated election that is fair and with no possible intervention by
special operators, whatever coalition one belongs to wouldn’t really
matter,” he said in response to questions about his preferred
“So far, there have
been no indications of this happening and it looks like everything is
proceeding on time,” he added.
The senator also
pointed out that the nature of political campaign in the country has
already drastically changed due to the advent of information
technology and social media – a fact that prospective coalitions and
candidates should seriously consider in their campaigns.
“With so many friends
on Facebook, one can already campaign for himself. President Obama
showed us the way in not only getting support but also in raising
money through the internet. The political parties have to realize that
the campaigns can no longer be run the way it used to be run in the
60s,” he said.
The minority leader
said social media has increased the capacity of politicians to reach
out to their constituents and vice versa.
“Before, the only way
you can participate is through your organized networks and
representatives. But now with Twitter, Facebook, and the online
versions of the major dailies, reaching out has been made so much
easier,” he said.
In this light, he
called on the administration to be mindful of how quickly public
opinion can change even as he expressed the thought that political
leaders should not rush into forming coalitions this early.
Bakwit, HR advocates
gather for nat’l confab on internal refugees
QUEZON CITY – Some
150 human rights advocates, religious, church people and bakwit, or
internal refugees or internally displaced persons (IDP) from Visayas
and Mindanao, will gather at the National Conference on Internally
Displaced Persons or Internal Refugees on April 23-24 at Jansenn Hall,
Christ the King Seminary.
Bakwit is a colloquial
Filipino term from the English word “evacuate,” pertaining to victims
of forced evacuation.
Led by the National
Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP), KARAPATAN (Alliance for
the Advancement of People’s Rights) and the Ecumenical Mission for
Peace and Development (EMPD), the IDP Conference is a response to the
growing number of internally displaced persons in areas where there is
According to Karapatan,
there are a total number of 6,556 victims of forced evacuation under
the Aquino administration’s counter-insurgency program Oplan Bayanihan.
“Violation to the
right to domicile is not the only violation experienced by internally
displaced persons. When they are forced to leave their homes, they
lose their livelihood because they abandon the land they till.
Children’s schools and places of religious worship are also converted
into military camps, thereby violating their right to education and
right to freedom of woship,” said Cristina Palabay, Karapatan
spokesperson and End Impunity Alliance convenor.
documentation revealed that recent cases include the forced evacuation
of 158 families, or at least 800 individuals including children in
Ansili and Maribuhok in Sitio Zapanta and Manhumapay, all in Kitcharao;
as well as in Stio Lusong, Brgy. Puting Bato, Cabadbaran City, both in
Agusan del Norte.
Majority of those
affected come from the Mamanwa tribe, an indigenous people group in
the CARAGA region. Some other 300 individuals, meanwhile, are still
in an evacuation center in Butuan City.
Internal refugees will
share their stories in the conference, including the threats and
harassment they experienced in the hands of the military.
Among the delegates is
Maricel Salem, a volunteer teacher at the Center for Lumad Advocacy
and Services (Clans) located in Upper Suyan, Malapatan, Sarangani
Province, an alternative school which gone on and off in its
operations because of threats, harassment and intimidation to
children, their parents and the Lumad in the community.
Sharon Liguyon, wife
of slain indigenous people leader Jimmy Liguyon will also attend the
conference. Jimmy, who was killed in March 5 2012 inside his residence
in San Fernando, Bukidnon, is an active opponent to the entry of
large-scale mining in the area. Their community has been heavily
preservation of all Philippine films, audio-visuals
President Benigno S. Aquino III has directed all government agencies
to turn over their existing original and copies of films and other
audio-visuals to the National Film Archive of the Philippines (NFAP)
as part of government’s efforts to preserve the country’s artistic and
Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said on Saturday that the President signed
Administrative Order (AO) No. 26 on
April 17, 2012 with the aim of protecting and preserving films and
audio-visuals in the possession of various government agencies because
“these form part of the cultural treasure of the nation.”
According to Ochoa, AO
26 also streamlines the depository of these materials by giving to the
NFAP the task of caring, preserving and reconstructing of films and
audio-visuals instead of maintaining several film archives.
“It is the job of the
State to preserve the country’s artistic and historic wealth because
this forms part of the cultural treasure of our nation. It is also
the job of the State to encourage the advancement of the local film
industry because it is an effective tool to enrich our artistic,
cultural and social values or facilitate the better understanding and
appreciation of our identity as Filipinos,” Ochoa said.
administrative order, Ochoa explained, the Aquino administration will
be able to enhance efficiency in the protection, restoration,
maintenance and custody of Filipino films and other audio-visual
negatives, prints, or digital files whether moving films,
documentaries and animation, etc. produced here in the country or
abroad, and do away with the duplication of functions.
Under AO 26, which
takes effect immediately, all departments, agencies and offices of the
Executive Branch, including government corporations, are required to
turn over their existing original or copies of films and other
audio-visuals to the NFAP.
directive authorizes the Film and Development Council of the
Philippines (FDCP), which established the NFAP, to request similar
materials from the Legislative and Judicial Branches, including their
attached agencies and offices.
If deemed necessary to
complete the inventory, the FDCP has also been authorized to request
private parties like film producers, film makers, directors, legal
owners or possessor of newly-produced films and other audio-visuals to
deposit a copy or duplicate copy of their films and audio-visuals with
the NFAP within one month after its showing anywhere in the country or
The President likewise
tasks the NFAP to keep a record of all the materials it receives and
to publish this record at the end of each year.
Republic Act No. 9167 created FDCP under the Office of the
President. Among FDCP’s powers and functions is the establishment of
the film archive in order to conserve and protect film negatives
and/or prints as part of the nation’s historical, cultural, and
VP Binay: include
informal settlers in decision-making process
By OVP Media
MANILA – Vice
President Jejomar C. Binay Friday urged the housing sector to involve
slum-dwellers in the decision-making process in projects for slum
upgrading and sustainable urban development.
During the National
Informal Settlements Upgrading Strategies (NISUS) Conference at the
Manila Hyatt Hotel, Binay noted that decision-makers and stakeholders
are resistant to upgrade policies because of their negative perception
of informal settlers.
The housing czar said
informal settlers are seen as “too poor to pay for infrastructure and
improvement of services.”
conference) is about shifting paradigms to collectively generate
doable solutions to the urban housing problem,” he said, adding that
such change should involve the empowerment of the beneficiaries of
bigyang dignidad silang mga kapos sa yaman. At dapat na sa pagbibigay
nito, kabahagi sila mula pagplano hanggang pagsasagawa ng mga programa
at proyektong laan para sa kanila, at hanggang pagtalaga ng mga
responsableng taga-monitor ng progreso at pagtatapos ng programa at
proyekto," Binay emphasized.
Binay cited examples
of successful applications of informal settlement upgrading strategies
which, according to him, attest to the possibility of effectively
implementing the NISUS.
Among them are the
Upscaling Urban Poor Community Renewal Scheme (UUPCRS) and the Urban
Partnerships for Sustainable Upliftment, Renewal, Governance, and
Empowerment (UPSURGE), which were initiated by the Partnership of
Philippine Support Service Agencies Inc. (PHILSSA).
UUPCRS highlighted the
effectiveness of community-based and demand driven approach. UPSURGE,
on the other hand, showed the success of LGU-NGO partnership and
incorporation of shelter concerns into the city development plan and
government structure in informal settlement upgrading projects.
"When communities are
fully involved in the identification, design, and implementation of
projects, they prove to be effective partners in informal settlement
upgrading work," the Vice President attested.
The NISUS conference
was part of the preparatory activities leading to the development and
adoption of the informal settlement upgrading strategy in the
Philippines. In May 2011, the Housing and Urban Development
Coordinating Council (HUDCC) chaired by Binay entered into a
partnership with Cities Alliance to implement the NISUS.
The Cities Alliance
granted HUDCC with US $455,000 to develop a strategy that would
provide reference and support the key thrusts of the government in
developing sustainable communities and the formulation of a National
Government Resettlement Policy.
The NISUS project will
also support the implementation of the 2011-2016 Philippine
Development Plan by promoting awareness, involvement, ownership,
accountability, and partnership in informal settlements upgrading
initiatives among the concerned stakeholders.
This will help LGUs
identify policy and program options for local informal settlements
upgrading that should be integrated into the local planning documents
such as the Comprehensive Land Use Plan and Comprehensive Development
The NISUS conference
featured Andre Bald, Senior Infrastructure Specialist from the World
Bank, and Anaclaudia Rossbach, consultant for World Bank on housing
and metropolitan governance, who talked about informal settlements
upgrading in Vietnam and Brazil, respectively.
speakers included Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian of Valenzuela City,
National President Ofelia Bagotlo of the Homeless People's Federation
Philippines, Inc., and Wilfredo Prilles Jr., coordinator for the City
Planning and Development Office of Naga City.
DPWH maintains high
level of transparency – DE Veloso
By MARCELO M. PEDALINO, PIA Southern
April 19, 2012
MAASIN CITY, Southern
Leyte – Having a transparent conduct in practically all aspects of
operation has been a routine practice of the Department of Public
Works and Highways - Southern Leyte Engineering District (DPWH-SLED).
This was emphasized by
District Engr. Carlos Veloso in a press conference with local media
held at Agas-Agas, Sogod, recently.
For one thing, Veloso
cited the monthly interaction of his office with members of the local
media as a way of sharing updates and information that would be
disseminated to the general public in the form of news reports through
print, broadcast, and online media.
As to bidding of
public works projects, Veloso said the procedure now being used has
been e-bidding or electronic bidding, where any qualified and
interested bidder can submit a bid up to the last minute for a truly
competitive bidding process.
“Unlike before, there
will be no advertisement for a certain project without any approved
plan yet,” he added.
He also disclosed
several safeguards were put in place to insure quality control and
this was routinely carried out at the district and regional levels.
For the DPWH-SLED
alone, there was no peso disallowance so far found out by the
Commission on Audit (COA) as all transactions were aboveboard, Veloso
“I urge you to check
our work,” Veloso appealed to local media practitioners, an apparent
invitation to cross monitor progress and quality of development
projects implemented in the province.
Veloso stressed he
has always adhered to the motto of DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson,
which states that projects must be done at the right cost, right
quality, and finished right on time.
Pantawid Pasada Cards
now loaded for 92 ESamar drivers
By ALICE NICART, PIA Eastern
April 19, 2012
BORONGAN CITY, Eastern
Samar – Land Transportation Provincial (LTO) Chief, Nars Tabarnero
reported that the government assistance to Eastern Samar drivers
through the Pantawid Pasada Cards (PPC) are now ready for withdrawal
at the Caltex Gasoline station.
According to her,
there is an amount of P2,150 for each card. The first P1,060 was for
the November 2011 allotment and the second P2,150 is for the March
She advised therefore
the card holders to withdraw the 20-liter gas for each allotment lest
the amount is reverted in six-months that it is stale.
As of this writing
some 19 drivers have already withdrawn the government fuel assistance.
Asked why Caltex Gas
Station would be the sole provider of the PPC which is owned by Mr.
Sonny Uy, the LTO Chief said that it is the only one which had been
newly accredited. Ms. Tabarnero thanked Caltex for the support
extended to the government project on the PPC as one mitigation
approach to ease up the drivers burden on the high cost of fuel.
She also cited that
a second phase of the same program might be provided, however, some
guidelines have to be ironed-out first.
sponsors livelihood training for Samarnons
CATBALOGAN CITY – To
make sure that jobless Samarnons earn income, Samar Governor Sharee
Ann Tan shelled out some P218 thousand for livelihood training for
some 115 Samarnons interested to earn.
According to TESDA
Samar Chief Cleta Omega, on April 19, some folks from Sta. Rita town
will be trained on hair cutting until April 26, 2012.
handpicked by TESDA to ensure that the best trainer teach at least 20
Sta. Rita folks.
On April 24 - May 1,
another batch of Samarnons, this time 25 from Pagsanghan town will be
trained on manicure-pedicure craft.
TESDA said that
massage therapy training will also be done in Basey to benefit some 30
Basaynons determined to have an income.
As for Marabut town,
another 25 mostly women will benefit from a manicure-pedicure training
in the near future.
As for the capital
city of Catbalogan, some 20 folks will be trained on massage therapy
and foot spa.
The governor said in
an earlier interview that it will provide skills training for
Samarnons who wish to start their own livelihood.
supplies and equipments will be provided and starter kits will also be
given for the trained Samarnons to start earning and become productive
citizens of the province.
DA-8 hands over 4-WD
tractor to Eastern Samar farmers
By ALICE NICART, PIA Eastern
April 19, 2012
BORONGAN CITY, Eastern
Samar – A 4-WD Tractor was handed over to Eastern Samar farmers
through Honorable Governor Conrado Nicart, Jr.
The simple ceremony
was done the other day, by Department of Agriculture (DA) Regional
Executive Director Antonio Gerundio.
This is line with the
number one agendum of Nicart’s leadership on agricultural production
in order to achieve rice sufficiency in the province before he bow out
of office. Fully aware of the big agricultural potential of the
province, the governor, who himself farms “Palay” and maintains a wide
array of fruit bearing trees, immediately convened the municipal
agricultural officers shortly after he was sworn in to office.
With this tractor, it
is hoped that better plantation and increased “Palay” production could
be derived by the farmers, so there would be no need to import rice
from other regions.
Reports said that some
P1M fund had been extended by DA Regional Office 08 for the
procurement of the tractor, with the province’s counterpart. It added
that the tractor is aimed to likewise generate income as it would be
availed by government recognized farmers association.
Agriculturist, Regal Opena opined that the province would also venture
into corn production to supplement rice as staple food.