Official Publication of the Philippine Information Agency Bicol Regional Office, in cooperation with the RIAC-REDIRAS - RDC Bicol

Friday, June 29, 2012

Iriga and PNR to sign agreement on pedestrian’s safety

By Ana-Liza S. Macatangay

IRIGA CITY, June 29 (PIA) -- The city government and Philippine National Railways (PNR) has signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) that will help prevent accidents in the rails.

PNR General Manager Jun Ragrario said that they will offer a P1,000 honorarium per month to whoever will man the railroad crossing and ensure that the warning signs are visible for traversing pedestrians and vehicles. The LGU in turn will provide the barricades and the signages.

Mayor Madelaine Alfelor-Gazmen said that a schedule of the train trips will be provided by PNR that will serve as guide for the flagman to ensure that warning signals and barricades are properly in place.

“PNR can not resolve this alone. The community should also take part and of course the LGU. We are also thinking of a tripartite agreement, like involving the businessmen in this endeavor for a more effective implementation of safety standards regarding railroad crossings located in various barangays here in Iriga,” Gazmen added.

A recent train tragedy was when a tricycle was hit by Mayon Ltd., an ordinary train bound to Manito, Albay, when the driver persisted in crossing the railroad tracks despite the blowing of horns and warning by bystanders. On board the tricycle is a young teacher who perished together with a group of high school students who are about to go their respective schools. This incident killed six passengers and wounded eight others.

This also caught the attention of Transportation Secretary Mar Roxas who immediately ordered for the thorough investigation of the said mishap that happened Friday last week at the boundary of Barangay San Isidro and San Agustin this city.

Gazmen said that her primordial concern now is the safety of her constituents, particularly those settlers along the PNR sites. She has also spoken with the group of tricycle drivers with regards to overloading of passengers.

“We have informal settlers where the PNR railroad traverse and we are thinking of how we can reconcile with the legalities and of course the safety of our people,” Gazmen said in an interview.

PNR said that the crossing where the accident happened is unauthorized and is not part of the 256 existing permissible railroad crossings operated by their office. Train drivers know the officially permitted crossings where they are taught to slow down and be watchful of crossing pedestrians. At a speed of 35 kph, a one-kilometer distance is required for the train to come to a full stop. (LSMacatangay/ PIA-Camarines Sur)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

DPWH 5 celebrates 114th Anniversary

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, June 27 (PIA) -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) celebrated its 114th Anniversary last June 23 with the theme, “DPWH: Katiwalian ay Labanan, para sa Bayan.”

Consistent with the policy direction of the present national leadership, DPWH Secretary Rogelio L. Singson ordered this year the change going into developmental activities.

“Our Secretary called for a week-long Nationwide Operation Clean-up and Maintenance on all our national roads and flood control structures for the period June 18-23,” said DPWH 5 regional director Danilo Dequito during a radio interview.

Dequito added that among the activities that were conducted by the regional and district engineering offices included cleaning of the road right-of-way of all illegal structures and informal settlers; cleaning and beautification of roadsides through planting green plants and ornamentals’ and vegetation control; clearing all flood control structures, esteros, rivers, creeks, and open waterways from obstructions; installation of correct directional signs in strategic areas of the national roads; and repainting of all pedestrian lanes, guardrails, centerline and edge line.

The week-long activity in the agency’s regional office here started with the launching of operation clean-up led by DPWH 5 key officials at the office compound and at the nearby "estero."

Painting of guardrails on the approaches of Yawa Bridge, Rawis, Legazpi City was also included.

Last Friday, DPWH 5 officials and employees likewise staged a two-kilometer “Run Against Corruption” from the national road of Lidong, Sto. Domingo, Albay all the way to Mayon Volcano Natural Park.

Tree planting was also held by the group on the designated area by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

“We have encountered many problems on the road going to the desired transformation program of His Excellency, President Benigno S. Aquino III. But in my opinion, we are on the right track. As our Honorable Secretary said in his anniversary message: we are now reaping significant milestones in terms of good governance, transparency and accountability,” Dequito concluded. (MAL/LVC-DPWH 5)

CSC to spearhead choral competition

By Analiza S. Macatangay

PILI, Camarines Sur, June 27 (PIA) -- The Civil Service Commission (CSC), in line with the observance of the 112th Philippine Civil Service Anniversary, enjoins interested participants to take part in the 2012 Government Choral Competition slated to have its final round at the UP Theatre at Osmeña Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City, on September 17, 2012.

CSC Camarines Sur Director II Jocelyn L. Marifosque said that although the event will be spearheaded by CSC RO4, all field offices are directed to participate by inviting interested choral groups from various government agencies in their respective areas of jurisdiction to try their luck and showcase their singing prowess in the said competition.

“We are inviting our government workers, particularly those who have a penchant for singing to register and be counted as a participant. They will be representing Bicol which will be a great honor just in case they fortunately made it through,” Marifosque said in an interview.

Under the theme "Kawani: Ikaw ay isang lingkod Bayani," CSC strives to showcase the musical creativity and talent of government employees and promote the unique heritage and culture of the Filipinos, especially in the field of singing. Competing choral groups will come from Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and NCR. Elimination will cover two phases, the selection of semi finalists to represent the aforementioned clusters and the grand finals of the eight semifinalists.

Interested participants still have until July 31 to register, including the submission of the list of singers, conductor and accompanist, group photo and audio video recording of their group. The organizers strictly prohibit non-government employees to join. Misrepresentation will be a ground for disqualification.

Songs to be rendered must be centered on the theme, may be accompanied or a cappella, one freely chosen a cappella choral work and one original a cappella arrangement of the competition song. Maximum duration of performance must be 12 minutes. Those who fail to meet the time requirement will be subjected to a point penalty that shall be subtracted from the points of the group.

Lucky winners will take home P250,000: P30,000 for the third runner up, P50,000 for the 2nd runner up, P70,000 for the 1st runner up and P100,000 for the grand prize and a plaque for each winning contenders. The four finalists will receive P15,000 each and a framed certificate.

Special awards include Best Arrangement of the competition song, Best Conductor and a certificate of participation to all participating choirs. (MAL/ASM, PIA 5-Camarines Sur)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Feature story: Queen Formosa, sweetest pineapple, promoted in Daet

By Rosalita B. Manlangit

Although the Formosa pineapple is the sweetest variety among home-grown pineapples in Camarines Norte, only local farmers and traders knew of its other potentials.

Mayor Tito Sarion, a town councilor in 1993, has the credit for starting the “Pinyasan Festival” here.

Back in 1990s while attending Philippine Travel Mart Conventions, Sarion conceived of the idea of promoting a local festival in honor of the pineapple.

This year, the Pineapple Festival, popularly known as “Pinyasan,” is on its 20th celebration, and Daet has successfully staged it, in time for its 429th foundation anniversary showcasing the town's bests on culture and heritage, crafts and products, cuisine, and people, among others.

The Pinyasan Festival, which started on June 15, the foundation day of Daet, and ended on June 25, had lined up events highlighting the sweetest queen Formosa pineapples, which the town and the province of Camarines Norte are known for.

The event started with a thanksgiving mass and floral offering at the Rizal Monument grounds, followed with the opening program for the Pinyasan 2012, a parade, the opening of Bahay Anihan Agriculture Fair, and the opening of trade fair.

Activities also conducted were the Pinyasan walk to Bagasbas; beach events like paraw regatta, sand sculpture, and beach volleyball; and the first dog and fashion show.

Aside from these, other activities were the fun run, photo art exhibit, food photography, food fair, master chef competition, horseback racing, Bagasbas events, and SK Acrobatic show, among others.

A series of events were also held: Pinyasan job fair, June 18 and 19; Pinyasan Got Talent, June 20 ; Pinyasan Mayor’s cup regional shoot fest at the Bagasbas Firing Range, June 21; and the Pinyasan Got Talent finals.

To give tribute to the national hero on his 150th birthday on June 19, an essay writing and an extemporaneous speaking contest were conducted, along with the “Doon Po Sa Amin” Pride Campaign Forum and float competition.

On June 22-24, the 4th Mayor’s Cup National Dart Tournament and the Search for Miss Pinyasan, Miss Daet, and Miss Tourism Beauty Pageant were held, while on June 23, the Batang Amorsolo painting competition and the street dancing competition, with special participation of Kaogma Festival of Camarines Sur and Panagbenga Festival of Baguio City and the Miss Quadcentennial Fiesta Queen at the Agro - Sports Center and Fireworks Display at the Eco Athletic Field, were also conducted.

On June 24, a mass was celebrated in honor of the feast of Saint John the Baptist, along with culminating activities of the Quadcentennial celebration, the Kapamilya Caravan Pinyasan Star Express at Eco Athletic Field and Barangay and the awarding night at the Agro-Sports Center.

Mayor Tito Sarion said that this year’s Pinyasan Festival encouraged the Daeteños and tourists to visit the place and enjoy the attractions here, including the first Rizal Monument in the Philippines and in the world, the Bagasbas beach known for surfing, and other scenery in neighboring towns. (MAL/RBM-PIA 5, Camarines Norte)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Sorsogon police plants 500 Mahogany trees

By Benilda A. Recebido

SORSOGON CITY, June 25 (PIA) -- Personnel from various law enforcement agencies here conducted tree planting activity on June 21.

Some 500 saplings of Mahogany trees were planted in Barangay Buhatan, Sorsogon City by personnel of Sorsogon Police Provincial Office, Sorsogon Provincial Public Safety Company, and Sorsogon City Police Station.

The said activity is in line with the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) tree planting program dubbed “Pulis Makakalikasan: 10 Milyong Puno, Pamana sa Kinabukasan.”

The PNP is targeting 10 million trees to be planted by police personnel nationwide starting February 2012 to February 2013.

This is the police agency's response to the national government's National Greening Program (NGP) which aims to plant 1.5 billion trees covering about 1.5 million hectares by 2016.

Each PNP personnel is expected to plant six trees every month until February next year. (BAR/EPP/SPPO/PIA)

Dengue cases in Bicol up by 100%

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, June 25 (PIA) -- Health authorities in the region are on alert following the reported 100 percent increase in dengue cases during first half of this year, according to the Department of Health (DOH) office here.

The Regional Epidemiology Surveillance Unit (RESU) has recorded 812 cases based on reports by various public and private hospitals across the region from January to June 2012. There were only 406 dengue cases during the same period last year, said Jaime Guerrero, DOH 5 public information officer.

Camarines Sur topped the list of provinces in region that recorded some 692 cases, followed by Albay with 71 cases, Sorsogon – 16, Masbate and Camarines Norte with 12 each, and Catanduanes with only 10.

Earlier, Naga City health authorities placed the city under a state of calamity due to a dengue outbreak with 325 cases reported for the past three weeks.

Other provinces saw an increasing trend in dengue cases, except for Albay where cases decreased from 76 cases last year to 71 cases during the first half of 2012.

Dengue is a mosquito borne disease transmitted by an Aedes mosquito infected with any one of the four dengue viruses. Symptoms appear three to 14 days after the infective bite.

Dengue fever is a febrile illness that affects infants, young children and adults. Symptoms range from a mild fever, to incapacitating high fever, with severe headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pain, and rash.

DOH explained that there are no specific antiviral medicines for dengue. It is important to maintain hydration, further, warned that the use of acetylsalicylic acid (e.g. aspirin) and non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (e.g. Ibuprofen) is not recommended.

Dengue haemorrhagic fever (fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, bleeding) is a potentially lethal complication, affecting mainly children. (MAL-PIA 5/Albay)

City ordinance that prohibits corporal punishment for children pushed

By Analiza S. Macatangay

NAGA CITY, June 25 (PIA) -- City Councilor Ray-an Cydrick G. Rentoy recently filed a resolution pushing among others, the prohibition of corporal punishment for children. In the proposed regulation dubbed as an ordinance promoting positive discipline of children, Rentoy reiterated the city's mandate to safeguard the foregoing rights of a child as a legitimate member of society under the general welfare clause of the Local Government Code.

Just recently, Rentoy, together with his co-proponents, Councilors Cecilia De Asis and Dan Paulo Morales, invited members of the local media and the city’s constituents for a public hearing that aims to get the pulse of the public regarding the impact of the said ordinance.

The dialogue was also attended by panelists from Naga City community-based advocacy and monitoring group (CBAMG) for positive discipline comprised of various representatives coming from the Sangguniang Kabataan Federation (SKF0), Ateneo de Naga University, and the Positive Discipline Media Relations and Campaign Coordinator of PLAN International.

Rentoy said that saying no to corporal punishment also means prohibiting other forms of degrading and humiliating punishment for children.

“I firmly support the policy of Naga City to guarantee unto our children an environment where he or she may grow up in an atmosphere of love, respect and understanding and to protect the child against circumstances and conditions that threatens the full development of his or her well-being while with persons entrusted with his or her care and custody, taking into consideration that every child has the right to be equally protected under the law,” Rentoy added.

The proposed ordinance is also pursuant to Republic Act 7610, otherwise known as Special Protection of Children against Abuse, exploitation and Discrimination act which declares that the state shall intervene on behalf of the child. This rule applies even if their perpetrators are their very own parent, guardian, teacher, or anybody who has children under their custody.

Airah Alindogan of Plan International said that the measure is crucial to end the culture of violence and corporal punishment in our society. She added that there is a need to institutionalize the practice of positive and non-violent discipline in every home, schools, and other settings that caters to the needs of every child.

In a study commissioned by the European Union and Plan Germany for the project, “Strengthening Civil Society in Eliminating Violence against children in the Philippines,” it came out that three out of four or 75 percent of parents use corporal punishment to discipline their children. The study also shows that children aged five to 11 who received the said castigation have lowered self-esteem, and fear and confused about their parent’s love for them.

The Naga City Council for the Welfare and Protection of Children (NCCWPC) and the Barangay Council for the Protection of Children (BCPC) shall support this endeavor by taking the lead in the campaign of the realization of the said ordinance. (LSM-PIA 5, Camarines Sur)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Catanduanes college welcomes tertiary students

By Edna A. Bagadiong

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 24 (PIA) -- The Catanduanes State Colleges (CSC) administration officially welcomed the 6,272 tertiary students of the College on June 15 through the General Orientation Program for Freshmen, Transferees, and Continuing Students.

A holy mass preceded the annual orientation program. The students were familiarized with the officials, faculty members and non-teaching personnel of CSC.

Dr. Minerva I. Morales, CSC president, exhorted the students to make their stay at CSC to be “very fruitful.” “I am eager to see you all take your initial steps to greater achievements. I expect that your stay here will be a glorious fulfillment of your parents’ dreams. I hope, too, that your acquisition of knowledge and the enrichment of your values will be your strong armor in fighting life’s many challenges, and ultimately, be your gateway to achieving a more meaningful and productive life,” she said.

In the afternoon, the ‘by college’ orientation about academic rules and regulations, institutional services, and co-curricular information was conducted. The guided campus tour for first years and transferees capped the day-long familiarization.

This year’s CSC main campus enrollment increased by 1.14 percent, compared to last first semester of school year 2011-2012. All colleges registered increase in enrollment.

Comparative enrollment data (First Semester, SY 2011-2012 to First Semester SY 2012-2013) show the following increase in student population of the following colleges: College of Agri-Fisheries – from 111 to 537; College of Arts and Sciences – from 472 to 576; College of Business and Accountancy – from 1,023 to 1,083; College of Education – from 871 to 1,025; College of Health Sciences – from 527 to 417; College of Technology – from 2,295 to 2,634.

Moreover, the CSC Panganiban Campus registered an 80.83 percent in enrollment, which is from 386 enrollees last First Semester of 2011 to 698 registered students this June 2012.

The Graduate School registered this June 2012 a total of 376 enrollees which is slightly higher than the 305 student population last First Semester of 2011. (EAB/ GSR/ PIA/CSC Catanduanes)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

State college wins Dangal ng Kalikasan award

By Edna A. Bagadiong

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 23 (PIA) -- For sustaining the gains of its environmental protection program and initiating more eco-driven policies and projects, the Catanduanes State Colleges (CSC) won the academe category of the Governor Joseph C. Cua Dangal ng Kalikasan Award.

CSC SUC President III Dr. Minerva I. Morales received the recognition during the opening ceremonies of the Linggo ng Kalikasan celebration at the Catanduanes Provincial Capitol compound on June 18.

Governor Cua, together with guest of honor former Supreme Chief Justice Renato Puno handed the trophy and cash award to CSC.

Also joining the awarding is Cong. Cesar V. Sarmiento, Judge Lelu Contreras of Regional Trial Court Branch 42, and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources officer Ed Guerrero.

CSC was recognized for its “significant contribution in the field of ecological solid waste management through its aggressive environmental education programs and strong policy framework that is currently transforming the institution into an eco-ville, where the timeless principles of sustainable development are at work.”

The awarding of Dangal ng Kalikasan was one of the highlights of the opening ceremonies of the Linggo ng Kalikasan, which was kicked off by the parade around downtown Virac.

The CSC community, along with other local and national government agencies, took part in the weeklong celebration.

CSC also spearheaded the mural painting contest, and participated in the tree planting on June 22 in Buenavista, Bato, Catanduanes, along with local and national government agencies. (MAL/EAB/GSR-CSC)

Friday, June 22, 2012

51 gets home under adopt-a-child project

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 22 (PIA) -- Fifty-one children from selected barangays of Virac benefited from the Adopt-a-Child project of the Rotaract Club of Virac.

The activity, held last June 17, aims to provide support to less fortunate kids from selected barangays of the town by giving school supplies, toys, and treating them in a fast food chain.

It is also part of the club's community service being conducted monthly, which also includes gift-giving projects and feeding programs.

Rotaract Club of Virac is a youth organization chartered under the Rotaract Program of the Rotary International (RI).

The organization also aims to promote better relations between people of varying backgrounds within and outside their community through a framework of friendship and service.

Meanwhile, the parents of the children who were recipients of the program expressed gratitude to the club, which according to them, shall inspire and encourage their kids to study harder.(EAB-PIA 5)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Baras town tops revenue collection in Bicol, gets Seal of Good Housekeeping

By Edna A. Bagadiong

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 21 (PIA) -- The municipality of Baras surpassed other fifth-class towns in Bicol Region in revenue collection from fees and charges for 2011.

The administration of Baras generated P1.31 million from the P442,000 target or 296 efficiency collection percentage.

The award is the town’s second consecutive wherein it also ranked first in 2012 in business tax collection reaching P697,000 collection from P358,000 target accounting to a collection efficiency of 195 percent.

The town also received the Seal of Good Housekeeping due to its exemplary performance in internal housekeeping for Collection Year 2011 in the areas of Good Panning, Sound Fiscal Management Transparency and Accountability, and Valuing Performance Management.

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Jesse Robredo awarded the certificate of recognition for the Seal of Good Housekeeping to the municipal government of Baras received by mayor Chito Chi of said town.

According to Mayor Chi, these accomplishments were the product of cooperation between the local government and its constituents.

He likewise expressed gratitude to his colleagues for working hard for the delivery of better service to the people. (MAL/EAB-PIA5, Catanduanes)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Power supply in Naga City back to normal

By Ana-liza S. Macatangay

NAGA CITY, June 20 (PIA) -- Power supply in this city is now back to normal after months of intermittent brown outs, including a 48-hour power outage in extensive parts of Naga Wednesday last week.

Business transactions were suspended while government services were also derailed especially those using computers to process their services when the breaker of the 20-MVA transformer of Camarines Sur Electric Cooperative, Inc. (CASURECO) II broke down last week.

This was an added burden to the consumers who suffered in recent months of power shedding, lasting from 6 to 8 hours or more to give way to the efficient installation of power lines of the said cooperative.

Aside from Naga areas, the municipalities of Milaor and Minalabac were also mostly affected by the power shut off, including its neighboring towns and the coastal towns of Siruma and Tinambac in Camarines Sur.

Director Emmanuel Rojo, CASURECO II Public Information Officer who sought for the consumers' understanding and patience, assured them that there will be no more power shedding starting this Monday after they hired the help of special engineers from GENCO to rewind the 20-MVA power transformer.

“The cooperative's technical team worked 24 hours last week to ensure that power is resumed at the soonest possible time. We troubleshoot some lines and we are hopeful that the newly installed 20-MVA transformer will not give us and our consumers nights of darkness in the upcoming days,” Rojo said in an interview.

Camarines Sur power consumers have been experiencing intermittent power interruption for more than two months now after the 15-year old feeder station broke down and required major repair. The cooperative spent more or less P7.2 million when the said transformer broke down sometime this February.

Immediate repairs were immediately employed; unfortunately, the damage required total overhauling of the equipment. (LSMacatangay-PIA Camarines Sur)

Fixed salary for bus drivers, conductors in Bicol starts this July 1

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, June 20 (PIA) -- Every bus driver and conductor presently employed as permanent, contractual, reliever or those that are paid in a per-trip basis and boundary system will be receiving fixed salaries and wages starting July 1, this year, according to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional office here.

DOLE 5 regional director Nathaniel Lacambra said the agency will start requiring and monitoring bus companies in Bicol to comply with Department Order (DO) No. 118-12 that provides fixed salaries and wages for drivers and conductors.

Lacambra said DO 118-12, which was issued on January 13 provides for the payment of daily salaries and wages including proper time of work for drivers and conductors of public utility buses.

DOLE 5, along with the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board (RTWPB), is now providing free seminars to bus operators, drivers, and conductors who need assistance in computing their would-be salaries and fringe benefits in line with the order.

The seminars, according to Lacambra, are meant to avoid confusion when it is already implemented.

Those previously paid on a per-trip basis and boundary system will now be covered by this rule.

Under the order, these workers are entitled to wages for all actual work during the normal work hours and days not lower than the applicable minimum wage rates. Wages shall be paid at least once every two weeks or twice a month at intervals not exceeding 16 days.

Minimum wage for non-agricultural workers in Bicol to where bus drivers and conductors are employed is set at P252 daily.

They should be paid a holiday pay of 100 percent of the minimum wage even without reporting to work and 200 percent when required to work on a holiday.

They are also entitled to a rest day of 24 consecutive hours for every six consecutive working days. If they are required to work on a rest day, an additional premium pay of 30 percent of minimum basic wage should be paid to them.

Overtime pay equivalent to at least 25 percent of the basic wage on ordinary days and 30 percent on regular holidays, special days and rest days for work beyond eight hours per day would also apply.

An additional 10 percent of the daily basic wage is required for night shifts, if work is between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. of the following day. Incentive leave of five days per year of service should also be observed.

They should be paid 13th month pay pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 851, as amended, which entitles the employee to receive an amount equivalent to 1/12 of the total basic salary earned within the calendar year, not later than December 24 of each year.

Other incentives for a regular employee such as maternity leave for both male and female, parental leave for solo parents and the retirement pay upon reaching the age of 60 or more are also applicable.

The implementation of DO 118-12, Lacambra said is expected to help reduce road accidents involving passenger buses due to reckless driving, over speeding, and road racing while competing for passengers for more earning.

This new wage rule would serve as the key to careful driving as drivers are assured of substantial earnings either by way of fixed daily wage rate or performance-based determined through the total earning of the bus, safety performance and other indicators, he said. (MAL/DOC-PIA 5, Albay)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

CSC creates Multi-sectoral Advisory Council

By Analiza S. Macatangay

PILI, Camarines Sur, June 19 (PIA) -- The Civil Sevice Commission Regional Office No.5 ( CSCRO5) Camarines Sur Field Office invited selected representatives from different institutions that will comprise the Multi-Sector Advisory Council (MSAC).

The council, which is composed of leaders representing the diverse stakeholder groups of the Commission, will assist the Commission in promoting good governance, transparency, and public accountability, among others.

CSC Camarines Sur Director II Jocelyn L. Marifosque said that this initiative is in line with President Benigno Aquino's directive to deepen citizen's participation by organizing a Philippine Open Governance Partnership. This, she said, will serve as an effective tool in pursuing significant reforms that will promote the sustainable economic growth of every community.

"This invitation to our MSAC members is built on the principle that good governance is not the monopoly of one Institution, or in this case, the CSC personnel but a shared responsibility between this organization and CSC. This is because no one person, no one organization, not even one sector can make significant movement without the help and cooperation of everyone that is involved in or affected by the issue," Marifosque added.

The new members include Dr. Dulce Atian, representing the State Colleges and Universities (SUCs); Vice Governor Fortunato Pena; Analiza S. Macatangay of PIA and Elmer Abad, KBP chairman, both representing the media sector; Marilyn Soto as civil society organization representative; and Atty. Romeo Tayo, city prosecutor for the legal sector.

Department of the Interior and Local Government Provincial Director Arnel Renato Madrideo was also invited to join the council where he will represent the local government units; Rev. Msgr. Jeffrey Nelson Tria for the religious sector; Ms. Nenet Berina representing the Human Resource Management Officers; and Minalabac Mayor Leovigildo Basmayor Jr. In behalf of the League of Municipal Mayors.

"The involvement of the external stakeholders is an important component in ensuring that we in the CSC are responsive to their mandate and are faithful to their reason for being. The presence of external stakeholders ensures that strategies are responsive to the needs of the community," Marifosque stated.

The MSAC will help the CSC promote the principles of good governance and ensure that the CSCRO5 satisfies the performance governance system requirements. They will also help evaluate capability development plans and programs, oversee development of resource generation, and support and guide the Commissions’ communication programs among others. (MAL/ASM/PIA 5-Camarines Sur)

DENR V opens bid for Cadastral Survey Project

LEGAZPI CITY, June 19 (PIA) -- The Department of Environment and Natural Resources Bids and Awards Committee (DENR-BAC) in the Bicol region recently held the Pre-Bid Conference for the Cadastral Survey Project in this city.

Engr. Pedro L. Noble of DENR 5, said that aside from the contractors and construction firms, representatives from public and government agencies are likewise invited to take part in the bidding to ensure transparency.

“We want transparency so we have representatives from both public and private agencies to observe and witness in line with the policy of Daang Matuwid of President Aquino,” Noble said.

DENR V Surveys Division Chief Josie Columna said that the Cadastral survey, expected to be finished within two years, will be conducted in various municipalities of Albay, Masbate, and Camarines Sur.

“The project will include survey of entire municipalities to determine the boundary of their area which is a vital factor in determining the internal revenue allotment for local government units (LGUs), establishment of political control, issuance of lot titles, and other needed administrative matters,” Columna further said.

Among the bidders who complied with the eligibility and financial capacity requirements set by the BAC are the joint ventures of JR Fernandez and Tri-Axis Surveying Office for Tiwi Albay, Salazar and LPC Engineering Services for Del Gallego Camarines Sur, Olivete Surveying for Milagros, and A.D Antionio Surveying and Consultancy for Palanas Masbate.

Noble disclosed no bids have been submitted for the cadastral survey of Sto. Domingo in Albay.

Further evaluation of qualified bidders for the said project shall be endorsed to the DENR Land Management Services Technical Working Group. (MAL/SAA-PIA 5, Albay)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Crime incidence in Catanduanes down by 45%

By Edna A. Bagadiong

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 18 (PIA) -- Crime volume here in Catanduanes decreased by 45 percent in the first five months of year 2012, as compared to the crime rate in the same period last year.

This was disclosed by the Catanduanes Provincial Police Office during a meeting of the Provincial Micro Small and Medium Enterprise Development Council held last week, June 7 at the Kemji Resort in Virac.

According to Police Senior Superintendent Lito B. Pitallano, PNP provincial director, only 167 crimes were reported during the given period of 2012, compared to the 305 crime incidents during the previous year.

He likewise revealed that the murder and rape index crimes dropped by 49 percent with 106 last year from only 54 this year (five-month period).

Breakdown of index crime reports as follows: physical injuries (23 cases), rape (15 cases), robbery (6 cases) and theft (5 cases) accounting for a decrease by 43 percent, 28 percent, 11 percent, and 9 percent, respectively.

There were also 42 crimes reported against persons and 12 against property.

The official also added that the local police crime clearance efficiency rallied from 25. 61 percent last year to only 13.9 percent this year of the same period.

PNP here is optimistic that crime index percentage decrease will continue to improve until the end of the year. (MAL/EAB-PIA Catanduanes)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

PWD participation in 2013 elections pushed in Albay

LEGAZPI CITY, June 14 (PIA) -- The provincial government of Albay led the recent launching of the Fully Abled Nation campaign at the Capitol building here to encourage active participation of persons with disabilities (PWDs) in nation building and other democratic processes, in particular this coming 2013 midterm election.

The said campaign conducted nationwide is part of the three-year disability-inclusive elections program initiated by the Asia Foundation with support from the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), and in collaboration with public and private agencies such as the Commision on Elections (COMELEC), Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) and other elections-focused non-government agencies (NGOs) and local government units.

The program seeks to increase voter awareness among PWDs, promote institutional partnerships to enhance support for their participatory needs, and strengthen the capabilities of disability peoples’ organizations and NGOs supporting PWD advocacies.

Among the highlights of the said event are the updates on the status of PWDs in the region, discussed by COMELEC regional director Atty. Romeo Fortes and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) operations officer Ma. Ruthel Gigantoca.

Fortes disclosed the decline in the participation of PWDs in previous polls as shown in the result of the recent survey conducted by the Social Weather Stations, wherein the number of PWDs who voted in the 2012 election declined to 54 percent compared to 60 percent in 2007.

Representing the disabled people’s organizations in expressing their response and message to the said initiative are Alex Nasos of PWD Daraga Association and Arlene Satuito of Albay Federation of Persons with Disability, Inc. (AFPWD). (MAL/SAA - PIA5 Albay)

“Mini-Kasanggayahan” highlights Sorsogon’s celebration of 114th Phl Independence

By Benilda A. Recebido

SORSOGON CITY, June 14 (PIA) -- Sorsoganons have significantly celebrated the 114th year anniversary of Philippine Independence this year by integrating efforts and activities of various stakeholders and showcase them in a “mini-kasanggayahan (life of prosperity)” way.

“For this year, we want to leave a long-term impact to the public on the significance of celebrating Philippine Independence and how this has been revolutionized over the years,” said Col. Felix Castro, commanding officer, 903rd Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army and over-all working committee chair of Philippine Independence Day 2012 celebration in Sorsogon.

“Unlike the past years where we only limit our celebration through our attendance to the traditional flag raising ceremony, Pledge of Allegiance to the Philippine Flag and wreath-laying activity. This year, the local and national government agencies together with its partner agencies converged and decided to come up with a more meaningful celebration by showcasing their programs, projects and activities that would benefit the Sorsoganons,” he added.

Castro also explained that during the province’s celebration of “Kasanggayahan,” agro-industrial produce of Sorsogon are being showcased in various booths and stalls, but during this year’s four-day Philippine Independence celebration last June 9 to 12, services of each participating agencies were exhibited, that is why they called it “mini-kasanggayahan” celebration.

Among the services offered are the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) free haircut and massage; Department of Health (DoH), Provincial Health Office (PHO) and Philippine Red Cross’ (PRC) free blood pressure check-up and first aid services; Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Provincial Employment Services Office (PESO) and Department of Public Works and Highways’ (DPWH) job fair; Technical Education Skills and Development Authority’s (TESDA) assessment, scholarships and demonstrations; Department of Education’s (DepEd) K to 12 and mother tongue-based instruction program; and Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) exhibit of Sorsogon’s best products.

Lectures, demonstrations, audio-visual presentations and other information dissemination activities by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Civil Service Commission (CSC), Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Philippine Information Agency (PIA) and Governor’s Office were also provided for the academe and the general public.

The Provincial Tourism Office showcased Sorsogon’s tourist destinations, conduct flyers and postcard distribution as well as free tour at the museum.

The four consecutive nights were filled with freedom concerts highlighting the city performers, Philippine National Police Band, Kaze production, Community-Based Theater Group (CBTG), Himig Kapitolyo and Royal Band.

Meanwhile, Sorsogon governor Raul R. Lee requested the city government to issue an executive order directing the government agencies, establishments, households and even the public utility vehicles to hang or display Philippine flags in their respective areas of concerns in celebrating the Philippine Independence from May 28 (National Flag Day) until June 12 (Independence Day).

This year’s theme of Philippine Independence Day celebration is “Kalayaan: Pananagutan ng Bayan para sa Tuwid na Daan.” On this year also, marks the 25th anniversary of the 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines. (BAR-PIA5 Sorsogon)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Good Governance - a symbol of true independence says Pili mayor

By Analiza S. Macatangay

PILI, CAMARINES SUR, June 13 (PIA) -- “Good governance and transparency - these are the true essence of the celebration of the Philippine Independence Day. This is how we repay the great deed that our forefathers and fallen heroes have done for us just to give us our much coveted freedom.”

Thus said Pili Mayor Tomas Bongalonta on Tuesday's commemoration of the 114th Philippine Independence Day held at the Plaza de Cimarrones, this town.

After the historic wreath laying ceremony, LGU Pili was joined by the provincial government of Camarines Sur represented by Vice Governor Fortunato Pena and other heads of various national agencies in the flag raising of different Filipino flags as it evolved from the Katipunan flag up to the current flag that we have now.

Heads of various government agencies also led the raising of different flags from Bonifacio’s Katipunan war, the first Philippine flag, Sun of Liberty, Llanera’s Skull flag, and the Magtagumpay War standard, all symbolizing the struggle for freedom waged by our ancestors.

In Naga City, Mayor John Bongat also spearheaded the Independence Day celebration together with the city officials and heads of various government institutions. The celebration started with the blowing of sirens participated in by the Bureau of Fire Protection, Chin Po Tong Volunteer Fire Brigade, and the Naga White Fire Volunteers. The traditional 21-gun salute and pass-in-review followed next.

Bongat, in his message, reiterated the significance of treasuring the sovereignty that we are enjoying now.

“We should always put in mind that our forefathers have fought hard just to ensure that the next generation will savor the sweet taste of independence. Let us not put that in vain, let us work together towards the development of our country, let us stand united in every endeavor and stand as one nation.” (MAL/ASM/PIA 5-Camarines Sur)

Albay gets highest number of Good Housekeeping Awards in Bicol

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, Albay, June 12 (PIA) -- Albay has topped the list of provinces in the Bicol region with the highest number of good housekeeping awards.

Out of 34 local government units (LGUs) in Bicol region, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has conferred the “Seal of Good Housekeeping” to 11 local governments in Albay.

Local governments in Albay that notched the award and will receive P1 million monetary incentives included Legazpi City and the towns of Malinao, Bacacay, Camalig, Jovellar, Manito, Oas, Rau-rapu, Polangui, Malilipot and Sto. Domingo.

The awarding ceremony, led by DILG secretary Jesse Robredo, was held during the DILG Tapatan Roadshow on Disaster Preparedness and Climate Change Adaptation recently conducted at the La Piazza Convention Center here.

Robredo disclosed that the P500 million budget allocated last year for the Performance Challenge Fund, which serve as cash incentives for local governments that will qualify the evaluation for transparency and accountability was increased to P750 million this year.

Other LGUs in the region that qualified for the Seal of Good Housekeeping Award are Basud, Daet and Paracale for Camarines Norte, Baao, Calabanga, Bombon, Del gallego, Libmanan Ragay and Naga City for Camarines Sur.

In Catanduanes, Bagamanoc, Baras, San Andres and Panganiban likewise received the same honor together with Gubat, Juban, Prieto Diaz and Sta. Magdalena in Sorsogon and Monreal and Masbate City in Masbate.

The Seal of Good Housekeeping is part of the performance-based incentive granted by the DILG to LGUs with good performance in internal housekeeping particularly on the areas of Sound Fiscal Management, Transparency and Accountability and Valuing Performance Management. (MAL/SAA-PIA5 Albay)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

ALBAY PROVINCE – Governor Joey Sarte Salceda  together with  Legazpi City Mayor Carmen Geraldine Rosal  and provincial and city officials release balloons during the 114th Philippine Independence Day celebration and  53rd Legazpi City Charter Day held at Albay Freedom Park, Legazpi City (Alex Cal/PIA)

114th Independence Day Celebration

114th  Philippine Independence Day and 53rd Legazpi City Charter Day Celebration – Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda leads the simultaneous flag raising ceremonies at the Albay Freedom Park to Commemorate the 114th Philippine Independence Day and 53rd Legazpi City Charter Day celebration. With a theme:  Kalayaan: Pananagutan ng Bayan Para sa Tuwid na Daan. Assisting the Governor in the ceremony are Legazpi City Mayor Geraldine Rosal, Vice Mayor Vitorrio Roces, Albay Vice-Governor Harold Imperial and Commodore Abraham Celzo, PN. (Alex Cal/PIA)

Albay celebrates 114th Independence Day together with 53rd Legazpi City Charter Day  

Legazpi City, June 12 (PIA) - Together with the commemoration of the 114th year of the Independence Day, the province of Albay celebrates the 53rd Charter Day of the city of Legazpi headed by Legazpi City Mayor Geraldine Rosal and Albay Governor Joey Salceda this June 12 at the Freedom Park in this city.

The celebration commenced with a thanksgiving mass followed by the parade of troops representing the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the ceremonial raising of the Philippine Flag. The event was attended by various government officials, civic groups and sectors in the province.

In her message, Mayor Rosal stressed the importance of the city’s participation in the programs of President Benigno Aquino III to achieve the true meaning and importance of the freedom asserted by our ancestors.

The same message is expressed by Gov. Salceda wherein he said that our freedom can be given utmost importance if we can use it to help our government to lessen the number of poor people who haven’t experienced decent living.

Salceda also mentioned the importance of our territorial land which served as the foundation of our national sovereignity. “In our time wherein globalization gets deeper and virtual world gets wider, we should give more importance on the concept of land and that includes our territorial water as mentioned in our national anthem, sa dagat at bundok.”

With this concern, it is just but right to defend our territory against foreign invaders like the West Philippine Sea which as of now is surrounded by Chinese ships, Salceda added.

One of the most important freedom attained by the province is the freedom from smoking and use of plastic in which Albay is declared as a smoke and plastic-free province. Even the governor disclosed freedom from smoking which according to him is the reason why this year’s celebration is more important and memorable.  

Furthermore, Albay is also one in the advocacy to use freedom in strengthening the fight against illegal logging, mining and fishing.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Labo, Camaligan named Bicol's Best Child Friendly Towns

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, Albay, June 11 (PIA) -- The towns of Labo in Camarines Norte and Camaligan in Camarines Sur were declared regional winners for the Best Child Friendly Municipality 2011.

In the awarding ceremony held at Naga City Science Centrum on June 5, Labo mayor Dindo Pardo and Camaligan mayor Emmanuel Prado each received a cash prize of P50,000 and certificate of recognition.

The awards were conferred by Elino Bordelon of the Regional Council for the Welfare of Children (RCWC) and Nilsa Matamorosa of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Bicol.

Camaligan is the 2011 regional winner for the Best Child Friendly Municipality in the fifth class municipality category while Labo bagged the same award for the first class municipality category.

Mayor Pardo said the award is the second citation that the town of Labo received in the same category.

Prado meanwhile said that it is not the cash prize that counts but the award will serve as a challenge for them to see what more they could do for the benefit of the children especially the disadvantaged one.

DSWD-5 regional director Remia Tapispisan, chairman of the Regional Council for the Welfare of Children, explained that the Presidential Award for the Child Friendly Municipalities and Cities was initiated by the Council for the Welfare of Children pursuant to Executive No.184 series of 1999 entitled “Establishing the Presidential Award for the Child Friendly Municipalities and Cities.”

The award is considered as a self-assessment mechanism of the level of child friendliness of a particular city or municipality and at the same time gives recognition to LGUs that put in place a “child-friendly” environment and upholds the rights of Filipino children to survival, development, protection, and participation. (DSWD5/MAL/EEJ-PIA5)

Independence Day celebration prepped up

MANILA, June 11 -- It was on June 12, 1898 when the freedom of the Filipinos from foreign repression was declared. 114 years after that momentous day, the Filipino peoplestill value their sovereignty to a great extent that celebrating Independence Day has already been part of their culture.

On the day that the Filipinos obtained their independence, their culture has been marked significantly forever. Traditions, beliefs and the arts of the Filipinos have been revolutionized in lieu of the liberty they have attained.

This year, Filipinoshonor the 114th year of Philippine Independence and the 25th Anniversary of the 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines, and as part of itsannual traditional celebration, the Philippine government, led by President Benigno S. Aquino III and the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP), will be holding “Kalayaan 2012”. The entire month of June 2012 will be dedicated for the commemoration of Philippine freedom.Activities for the month will be in line with the theme for this year which is “Kalayaan: Pananagutanng Bayan parasaTuwidnaDaan”.

The activities for “Kalayaan 2012” willbe reflective of the culture of the Filipinos and will feature Philippine liberty through the arts. The entire Independence Week will be packed with various exciting activities organized by the country’s very own government agencies and offices.

It will begin with Paco Park Presents “PanatasaKalayaan”, a musical tribute tothe renowned national artist for literature, Amado V. Hernandez, will be held on June 8, 2012, Friday, 6:00 PM at the Paco Park in San Marcelino, Manila. It is a free-for-all show where special guests will be performing such as soprano Raye Lucero of the Mabuhay Singers, baritone Ronnie Sta. Maria and guitarist Eddie Suarez.

Sinekalayaan, a 3-night film showing event that will feature films about Philippine Independence, will be held during the beginning of the Independence Week, 8:00PM at the Open Auditorium, Rizal Park in Manila. AishiteImasuMahal Kita 1941, starring Dennis Trillo and Judy Ann Santos, will be shown on June 9; Sakay, starring Julio Diaz, will be shown on June 10; and The Forgotten War, starring Kyla Lapus and Baron Geisler, will be shown on June 11.

MusikalayaanConcert, a concert led by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP),National Parks Development Committee (NPDC) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to celebrate the Flag Day and Independence Day, will be held on June 9, 2012, Saturday, 6:00PM at the Central Lagoon in Rizal Park, Manila. Lt. Gen. Jessie D. Dellosa, the Chief of Staff of the AFP, will be the guest of honor for this event. This will also be attended by NHCP Executive Director LudovicoBadoy and NPDC Executive Director Juliet H. Villegas. Various Filipino performing artists will be showing off their musical talents for the commemoration of the independence of the Philippines. 

On June 10, 2012, Sunday, 8:00 AM, a send off ceremony for the “ParadangPag-anyaya” will be led by the Association of Volunteer Fire Chiefs and Fire Fighters of the Philippines, Inc. (AVFCFFPI) in cooperation with the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP), National Parks Development Committee (NPDC), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA). Department of Interior and Local Government(DILG) Sec. Jesse M. Robredo will be the guest of honor for the occasion. Other guests are the Hon. Juliet H. Villegas, Hon. LudovicoBadoy, Mr. Jose Go, and Federation of Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Mr. Tan Ching, who will be giving an inspirational message for that day.

Following that event, there will be a free Concert at the Park “Mahalkong Bayan”, 6pm at the Rizal Park Open Air Auditorium, Manila. Everybody is invited to watch an hour of ballet set in Philippine music featuring Ballet Repertory Philippines, joined by dancers from the Ballet Dance Academy.

A Philippine Independence Day celebration will not be complete without a tribute for the country’s national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. Enjoy the30-minute spectacle of light and sound sculptural tableau for 3 days honoring Dr. Jose Rizal that feature poignant moments of Rizal’s final hours. This is a collective obra of four national artists, Leandro Locsin, LambertoAvellana, Lucio San Pedro and Rolando Tinio, The “Martyrdom of Dr. Jose Rizal: Light and Sound Presentation” will be on June 11-13, 2012 at the Execution Site in Rizal Park Manila. This is free of charge so that everyone can take pleasure in the entertaining exhibition.

On June 11 and 12 at the Rizal Park in Manila, government agencies will also be setting up various exhibits. The Department of Agriculture (DA) will present their “Agri-Aqua Fair and Exhibit”. Exhibitions will also executed by several lead agencies. There will be a static display, silent drill, sky diving and band exhibition by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG); a slow drill exhibition by the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA);and a drum and bugle exhibition by the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

The culminating day on June 12, 2012 of the “Kalayaan 2012” will still include several cultural activities such as a Filipino Indigenous games Exhibition, led by the Philippine Sports Commission,that features Arnis and PencakSikat. There will also be a Special Kalayaan Concert from 1-9PM for the SadiganngKalayaan and LuzViMinda, and Party Kalayaanfrom 9pm-12mn at the Quirino Grandstand. In the evening, a spectacular and breath-taking Special Fireworks Display will be presented to highlight each segment of the concert for that night.

“Kalayaan 2012” will surely be an exciting and educational, month-long event that will bring out the cultural and Filipino pride in everyone. This will make people realize the true value and reveal the luster of freedom that the Filipino ancestors have worked hard for in the years before June 12, 1989. (PIA)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Simultaneous flag raising, wreath laying ceremonies on Araw ng Kalayaan

MANILA, June 10 -- On the 114th Anniversary of the Philippine Independence Day on June 12, 2012 and the 25th Anniversary of the 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines, simultaneous Flag-raising and Wreath-laying Ceremonies will be done in the morning to commence the historical commemoration. According to the National Historical Council of the Philippines (NHCP) Dir. Maria Serena Diokno, there will be nine places where these ceremonies will be done. Five of these- two in Manila and one each in Bulacan, Cavite andPampanga- were part of the eight provinces that are represented by the golden rays of the sun on the flag.

The National Steering Committee, created through Administrative Order No. 23,to observe, monitor, organize and evaluate national observances such as the Independence Day, National Heroes Day and ArawngKagitingan, will be present in different places in the country for the flag-raising and wreath-laying ceremonies. This vital committee is spear-headed by the NHCP head Dir. Maria Serena Diokno. Department of Tourism (DOT) Sec. Ramon R. Jimenez, Department of Education (DepEd) Sec. Armin Luistro, Department of Local and Interior Governance (DILG) Sec. Jesse M. Robredo and Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Sec. Sonny Coloma are members of the National Steering Committee. 

His Excellency President Benigno S. Aquino will lead the flag raising ceremony at the historical Barasoain Church in Malolos City, Bulacan where General Emilio Aguinaldo temporarily settled in and where the First Philippine Congress was held on September 15, 1898. The President will be delivering his speech for this day during the commemorative program that will also be held at the Barasoain Church Historical Landmark in the morning.

Vice President JejomarBinay will be in charge of hoisting the flag at the popular Rizal Monument Shrine at the Rizal Park in Manila. It is in that place where historical execution of the Filipino national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, occurred. The well-guarded memorial shrine of Dr. Jose Rizal is also situated in that place.

Meanwhile in the Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrilewill be present for the raising of the Philippine flag in that area where the very important Declaration of Philippine Independence happened.

In the place where the first battle of the Katipunan against the Spanish colonizers occurred, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte will also be the first in raising the Philippine Flag for that day. This will happen at the Pinaglabanan Memorial Shrine in San Juan City where the vital “Cry of PugadLawin” took place. 
While Speaker Belmonte and the other representatives are raising the flag in their respective places, Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Voltaire Gazmin will also be doing the same in the Mausoleo de los Veteranos de la Revolucion in the Manila North Cemetery. Here lies the brave veterans of the Philippine Revolution who fought well for Philippine Independence that Filipinos are enjoying today.

At the Bonifacio National Monument in Caloocan City, the hero Andres Bonifacio is commemorated, and in that said place will also be where one of the flags will be raised, as led by Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Leila de Lima.

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Ramon Jimenez will be in charge of the flag-raising in the Pamintuan House in Angeles City, Pampanga. This was the place that became the first seat of the Philippine Republic and the residence of the First President. This was also where the first celebration of Independence Day occurred.

Finally, in two of the major cities in the Philippines will be where the other two flags will be heaved. In Cebu City, Gov. Gwen Garcia will be hoisting the flag while City Mayor Sara Duterte will do the same in Davao City. 

These simple acts are very significant in reminding the Filipino people about how their freedom was attained and how Independence can not be achieved alone. Sovereignty is not a one-man job, but a national concern and effort. (PIA)

Friday, June 8, 2012

Legazpi City, now a Hall of Famer in Red Orchid Award
… law enforcement, community support cited in smoke-free campaign success

By Marlon A. Loterte

LEGAZPI CITY, June 8 (PIA) -- The Department of Health (DOH) recently installed the city government here to the Hall of Fame of the Red Orchid Award after it scored outstanding performance for three consecutive years in the implementation of smoke-free programs and policies. 

Mayor Geraldine Rosal attributed the success of the implementation of the smoke-free city program to the strict enforcement of the ordinance and the efforts contributed by different sectors of society such as the church, academe, NGOs, business group and the members of the law enforcement team, among others. 

The city government here received the Red Orchid Award and Hall of Famer at the Philippine Trade and Training Center Roxas Boulevard Pasay City last May 29, just in time for the upcoming observance of World No Tobacco Day on May 31. 

The city government also received P500,000 and a specially designed trophy from DOH Assistant Secretary and chairperson of the Red Orchid Award Paulyn Jean Rosell-Ubial. 
The amount won can be used for tobacco control projects to protect the people in this city from the ill effects on smoking. 

Dr. Fulbert Gillego, city health office chief, said that the award is an offshoot of effective implementation of the Comprehensive Smoke Free Ordinance by putting up signages containing pictures on the dangerous effect of smoking, and the advocacy campaign in private and public schools, government and private offices and the smoking cessation program of the city. 

Gillego also said the constant operations of the enforcement team against the violators have contributed in helping the city’s smoke free program. 

In the quest for “Kalusugan Pangkalahatan” (Universal Health Care), DOH has been pursuing a healthy lifestyle in an environment free from tobacco smoke, which is deemed important. 

This year, according to DOH, more and more provinces, municipalities, cities, workplaces and health facilities are making great strides in enforcing measures to protect people from the hazards of tobacco smoke and exposure to secondhand smoke, eventually leading to 100 percent tobacco-free environments. 

Legazpi City is joined by Davao City in Davao Region, Maasin City in Eastern Visayas, Calauag, Quezon in CALABARZON, Talisayan, Misamis Oriental in Northern Mindanao as Hall of Fame awardees in the country. 

The Red Orchid was used by the World Health Organization in its 2001 World No Tobacco Day advocacy as a symbol of a tobacco-free world and to remind people that the campaign to end the tobacco epidemic is far from over. (MAL-PIA V/Albay) 

NSO price index of income households for April site a decrease

By Edna A. Bagadiong

VIRAC, Catanduanes, June 8 (PIA) -- The provincial inflation rate in Catanduanes registered a decrease of 2.3 percentage points from 4.7 percent in April 2011 to 2.4 percent in April 2012.

By commodity group, inflationary effects were noted in Education (10.31%); Maintenance of the House (7.36%); Rest. & Misc. Goods & Svs. (5.01%); Health (3.21%); Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco (1.86%); Recreation & Culture (1.56%); Food & Non-Alcoholic Beverages (1.44%); Clothing & Footwear (1.38%); Housing Water, Elec .Gas & other Fuels (1.69%); Transport (0.88%) and Communication (-2.10%);

On a month-on-month basis, the Consumer’s Price Index for all income households was registered at 137.3 in April 2012, higher by 0.8 index point over the 136.2 index in March 2012.

Across commodities under the Food, and Non-Alcoholic Beverages and Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco Index, upward trends were noted in the following: Corn (24.56%); Oils & Fats (11.20%; Fish (4.93%); Food (0.86%); Non-Alcoholic Beverages (0.77%); Alcoholic Beverages (0.75%)Food Products N.E.C. (0.34%): Bread & Cereals (0.27%); Rice (0.13%). Negative percentage changes were noted in Meat (-0.71%); Fruits (-6.73%); Sugar, Jam, Honey and Chocolate and Confectionery (-1.49%). Tobacco and Milk, Cheese and Eggs were stationary at zero percent.

With regards to non-food commodity/service group, price increments were recorded in Rest. & Misc Goods Svs (3.52% change from 161.8 to 167.7); Health ( 1.52 % change from 116.7 to 118.5); Furnishings, Hse Equipt Routine Maintenance of House (1.47% change from 127.2 to 129.1); Clothing & Footwear (0.49 % change from 122.9 to 123.5).

Communication (0.09% change from 114.1 to 114.0) and Transport (0.07 percent change from 136.6 to 136.7). Recreation and Culture (-83%) and Housing, Water and Elec, Gas, and other Fuels (-0.15) exhibited price decrement while Education remained stationary at zero percent.

With the price trends reported above, the Purchasing Power of the Peso (PPP) for the province of Catanduanes maintained its value at P0.73. (EAB/NSO 5, Catanduanes)

Good Governance Caravan highlights Kaogma fest

By Analiza S. Macatangay

PILI, Camarines Sur, June 8 (PIA) -- At least 10 localities in Camarines Sur benefited from the Kaogma Good Governance Caravan in celebration of Camarines Sur’s 433rd foundation anniversary May 27.

Camarines Sur Governor LRay Villafuerte said that the festivity dwelt more on community-based and service-oriented approach by directly bringing its programs to its constituents.

The provincial team, composed of its health personnel, department heads, employees and representatives from other government entities like PhilHealth, National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), National Statistics Office (NSO), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and other stakeholders.

Municipality-beneficiaries include Balatan, Pasacao, Pamplona, San Fernando, Buhi, Del Gallego, Garchitorena, Gainza, Milaor, and Minalabac already received various services, particularly free check up and medicines, free tooth extraction, and other dental services.

The caravan served 401 patients in Balatan who availed of the free medical check up and dental services ; 473 in Pasacao; more than a hundred in Pamplona; 300 in San Fernando; 688 in Buhi; more than 400 in Del Gallego; and 900 in Gainza.

More than 500 residents from the said municipalities also enrolled in the PhilHealth programs and were given information regarding their privileges under the Universal Health Care program of the Aquino government. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) also conducted Diskwento Fairs in the said municipalities.

The Caravan also enjoined the community to participate in various endeavors like the blood letting activities in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) in order to have enough blood reserve in the provincial blood bank in case of emergency; mass wedding, mass baptism, and confirmation.

Early childhood care and development programs (ECCD) which includes nutrition counseling for mothers, proper handwashing, alis-kuto and nail cutting, supplemental feeding for children, distribution of school supplies, and Day Care Workers ECCD Orientation were also conducted by the staff of the Provincial Social Services office.

Vegetable, fruit, and forest tree seeds, and fingerlings were also distributed to various municipalities. The agriculture team also conducted anti-rabies vaccination. Residents with physical disabilities were fitted with wheelchairs. An Aquarium summit was also done, including school drills while farmers were enlisted to the coconut rehabilitation program.

Proving to be a one–stop–shop, it also included assessor’s services where tax declarations were processed; there was also the distribution of certificates of land holdings to the residents.

The caravan ends June 8. (LSM-PIA 5, Camarines Sur)