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

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Albay readies manpower, assets; urged preparedness among residents due to heavy rains

LEGAZPI CITY,  Nov. 30 (PIA) – Disaster risk reduction authorities in Albay has alerted all chief executives of cities, towns and barangays to prepare and ready manpower and assets in their respected areas in the wake of heavy rains and some flooding in several areas in the province.

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda initially issued advisory suspending Saturday classes in all levels, including those in the masteral, doctoral and post-tertiary levels, in the entire province due to heavy rains and flooding.

In the same advisory, he further advised the public to suspend extracurricular activities like visiting malls, movie houses, and other entertainment or activity centers and requested residents just to stay home.

Salceda also directed all local DRRMCs of flood-prone areas to be on full alert and prepare their rescue teams for response and evacuation.

The governor said trucks from the Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, Philippine Air Force and other disaster operation teams are now on stand-by status in front of the Albay Provincial Emergency and Safety Management Office.

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) in Albay reported that the province has since Friday afternoon until the entire day of Saturday been pelted with heavy rains that caused flooding in several low-lying villages in this city and neighbouring localities.

The Inter tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) has continue to affect Bicol that triggered knee-deep to waist-deep flood waters in some areas of the city commercial centers.

Meanwhile, Police S/Insp. Arthur Gomez, spokesperson of Albay Police Provincial Office reported that monitoring of as of 4:00 p.m. Saturday, major roads and bridges from Libon town and the rest of the towns in Albay's third district remain passable, including roads from Tiwi to Sto. Domingo towns in the first district.

“While roads along Barangay Oro Site here were not passable to all types of vehicles, while some areas in downtown of this city were passable to medium to heavy vehicles,” he said

Some flights in this city were cancelled due to the rains. (MAL-PIA5/Albay)
- See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/index.php?article=771385963078#sthash.BPuXHvCI.dpuf

Friday, November 29, 2013


Legazpi City Mayor Noel E. Rosal led the oath-taking ceremony of the newly elected barangay officials in all 70 villages in  the city. Rosal urged to help the government  for the  development and betterment of the  constituents held at Ibalong Centrum for Recreation, Legazpi City, last November 28, 2013. (Alex Cal/PIA5)


Bicol University Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Helen M. Llenaresas delivered her welcome remarks during the celebration of the Bicol’s Amazing Abaca Pasko Na, Fiesta Pa! held at Embarcadero de Legazpi Celebration Plaza, Legazpi City, yesterday Nov. 28. (Alex Cal/PIA5)

Thursday, November 28, 2013

PNP CamSur cites outstanding police stations, personnel


NAGA CITY, Nov. 28 (PIA) --- The provincial office of the Philippine National Police in Camarines has cited municipal police stations and personnel for exemplary dedication to service and persistent anti-criminality campaign in the province.

Camarines Sur Police Provincial Office director P/SSupt. Ramiro Bausa said that the recognition initiative is one way of inspiring the police offices and personnel in the province to actively take the lead in fighting criminality and deter the proliferation of illegal trade in their respective area of jurisdictions.

“We want to recognize these men in uniform who have performed their sworn pledge to protect the community by painstakingly bringing the outlaws behind bars, especially the most wanted persons and for resolving petty crimes before it escalates to larger proportions," he said.
"We will be doing this every month in acknowledgment of their commendable performances,” Bausa said .

The Municipal Police Station (MPS) of Pili, under the stewardship of Police Chief Inspector Benjamin España, was adjudged Best Police Station for the month of October while España was also declared as the Best Chief of Police (COP).

SPO2 Abundio Huerno, also of MPS Pili was named as Best Investigator.

Pili Mayor Alexis San Luis also commended the PNP team for the job well done and extended his congratulatory message to the policemen for their laudable performance and strong team work and for making the capital town of Camarines Sur a safe haven to its visitors and members of the community.

Libmanan MPS, under the headship of P/Supt Edgar Datoon, including three (3) of his personnel also received acclamation for the arrest of 10 most wanted persons charged with rape in the said municipality.  

PSInsp. Valentin Angil, Minalabac PNP chief of police, was among the MPS  heads commended for a job well done including his team for putting behind bars Carlos Diaz of Mabolo, Naga City who was arrested for the violation of Article 2 of Republic Act 9165 or an act instituting the Comprehensive Dangerous Drug Act of 2002.

MPS Tinambac, headed by PSI Ariel Blanco, with PO3 Efren Azures was also commended by the Camarines Sur PPO for the arrest of the Number 3 most wanted criminal charged with rape in their municipality.  Baao MPS  also received the same praises.

Bausa vowed to strengthen their commitment to fight criminality and resolve drug-related offenses and other crimes by encouraging MPS Heads to sustain their good performance. This, he said will ensure that crime volume will lessen to allow peace to reign in the province. (MAL/LSM-PIA5/ Camarines Sur)

EMB Bicol acquires new state-of-the-art air quality monitoring instrument

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 28 (PIA) – This city is assured that clean air still prevails in its environs specially within the regional center site in Barangay Rawis here that serves as home for majority of the regional offices of key government agencies.

During a recent media briefing held this month in observance of the National Clean Air Month, Bicol regional director Engr. Roberto D. Sheen of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) said the agency has aquired a new air quality measuring instruments, foremost of which is the Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (DOAS).

“DOAS monitors air emissions and pollutions and the quality of air in a given location. Specifically, it weighs-in concentration or measures how much particulate matter or dust is present in a given area," Sheen told the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Bicol.

This is the first DOAS acquired by the agency for the Bicol region and presently housed inside the EMB Bicol compound at the regional center site.

Another acquisition is the opacimeter that measures the smoke or the total suspended particles being emitted by motor vehicles. The instrument was used during the anti-smoke belching inspection conducted last week in coordination with the Land Transportation Office Bicol Regional Office.

The activity was aimed in lessening air pollution concentration emitted by mobile sources especially in this city.

“We prioritized the government vehicles in the inspection to set the example to the public,” Sheen said.

"Another opacimeter in Bicol is owned by city government Naga and another unit is being requested to augment the present instruments," Sheen added.

During the media briefing, Sheen also discussed the essence and highlights of the different projects, programs, policies in the implementation of Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999.

“Media has a very strong impact to the public and they believe the information it imparts that is why I am seeking for the cooperation of the members of the media for the sake of environmental awareness.”

Sheen recognized the importance of informing the public about environmental laws particularly on the requirements needed before a business or establishment operates and clarified the protocol of Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) Issuance and its limitations.

Based on EMB records, it was revealed that in the past years of smoke belching monitoring and air quality monitoring, Legazpi City has maintained a good status of air quality.

With this good news, we can all take a deep breath and make a sigh of relief, assured that the air is indeed clean, in this city at least. (MAL/JJJP-PIA5/Albay)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

DA steps up disaster risk reduction capacities of farmers, fisherfolks in Bicol

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov 27 (PIA) – The Department of Agriculture (DA) in Bicol, in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, has since been carrying out initiatives to improve resilience of the agriculture and fishery sectors in the Bicol region, especially in areas along the eastern seaboard, to ensure the stakeholders' main livelihood and food security.

DA and FAO recently conducted the project entitled “Strengthening Capacities for Climate Risk Management and Disaster Preparedness in Bicol Region" for authorities and stakeholders in areas highly vulnerable to disaster and climate hazards frequently affecting the livelihood of farmers and fisherfolks.

“The new project boosts replication of protested good practice options and promotes the installment and use of climate services for agriculture and improved risk and loss assessment tools and methods within different government organization involved in mainstreaming of DRR and CCA in the agriculture sector,” said DA Bicol director Abelardo Bragas.

The project primarily aims to enhance livelihoods resilience of small-scale farmers and fisherfolks in disaster prone areas in the region through institutionalization of DRR in agriculture.

Bragas said project sites are selected based on their location to a nearby the agro-met/synoptic station of Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services (Pagasa) to facilitate the provision of farm weather bulletins (FWB) or climate outlooks and advisories.

FWBs based on weather forecasts from PAGASA guides farmers, LGUs and institutions for strategic choices of season specific cropping.

“This information is used in the selection of good practices and improvement of disaster preparedness at the field level,” Bragas said.

Selectes areas are Albay, Sorsogon and Catanduanes provinces.

Benefitting from this project are farmers and fishers from Camalig, Libon and Ligao City in Albay; Casiguran, Irosin and Gubat in Sorsogon; and Bato and San Miguel in Catanduanes.

DA is the leading agency that facilitates a participatory consultation process among stakeholders for the development of a Plan of Action (PoA) for DRR in agriculture in which DA is the lead agency.

“The information gathered through a series of CBDRRM planning workshops and brainstorming sessions held in six provinces are used to identify short and long term actions for DRR enhancement in agriculture and are consolidated into a regional PoA addressing thematic areas of research, knowledge management and capacity development,” he explained.

Also part of the project is the dissemination and replication of good practice options (GPO) for DRRM to reduce the impact of hazards and risks.

Among GPOs replicated are the stress-tolerant/early maturing rice varieties, ratooning, integrated crop and livestock farming.

Web-based application software for assessing the potential and actual impacts of different hazards, specifically on rice and corn sectorand other major crops in the region, has likewise been developed.(MAL/SAA-PIA5/Albay)

DOH calls for applicants of NDP

VIRAC, Catanduanes, Nov. 27, (PIA) - THe Department of Health (DOH) Provincial Health Team here is calling interested applicants for its Nurse Deployment Project (NDP).

According to Dr. Rey J. Millena, DOH Provincial Health Team leader, they are still accepting applications for NDP until November 29, 2013.

He said that application forms may be downloaded from the www.doh.gov.ph website.

Duly accomplished form and letter-application shall be addressed to: Gloria J. Balboa, MD, MPH, MHA, CEO VI, CESO III, Regional Director, DOH CHD Bicol, Legazpi City.

Letter shall then be submitted to the different Provincial Health Team Offices of the DOH-CHD Bicol which in case of Catanduanes will be submitted to Provincial Health Team Leader-Rey J. Millena, MD, MPH, Eastern Bicol Medical Center, Virac Catanduanes.

In the DOH Department Circular No. 2013-0403 dated September 20 signed by Secretary Enrique T.Ona, the NDP is open to all nurses with official and validated license from the PRC.

All applicants shall undergo the recruitment and selection process. Nurses who are graduates of RNHeals project shall be given priority.

It however states that “being a priority does not mean automatic recruitment. They still have to undergo the selection process. RNheals graduates are only being prioritized due to their work experiences with the DOH CHD.”

“Unlike the RNheals, which is more of training for nurses, the NDP is in the nature of an employment. Hence, experience is a plus factor”, DOH CHD Director Gloria J. Balboa explains.

All those who have previously filed their application using the RNheals form, are advised to accomplish the new NDP form, downloadable at www.doh.gov.ph and submit them to the above provincial team leaders. (MAL/EAB-PIA5/ Catanduanes)

Bicol pushes for abaca commercialization


LEGAZPI CITY, November 27 (PIA) – The Bicol Consortium for Agriculture and Resources Research and Development (BCARRD) will spearhead the Abaca Fiesta commencing tomorrow, Nov. 28, at the Embarcadero de Legazpi here to push for the commercialization of science and technology-based products from abaca fiber.

BCARRD director Ninfa Pelea said the Abaca FIESTA (Farmers Industry Encounter through the Science and Technology Agenda) intends to showcase the various abaca products and emerging opportunities with science and technology playing a significant role in the development of products and the whole industry as well.

"The event will also highlight success stories of enterprising persons and communities who have turned opportunities to business and livelihoods from the industry," Pelea added.

With the theme, “Celebrating Bicol’s Amazing Abaca: Fiesta na, Pasko Pa,” the two-day event features techno-business forum, fashion show, photography contest and e-marketing training among others.

Abaca is considered as one of the earliest export products of the Bicol region. During the Spanish era particularly during Galleon Trade, abaca hemp were loaded in Magallanes town in Sorsogon as the galleon from Manila was checked for its sea-worthiness to sail the Pacific ocean. It was tagged as the “manila hemp” due to the fact that merchandize coming from the Philippines were presumed as “Manila” products when it reached Acapulco, Mexico.

In the early 1900s abaca fiber found high value from its use in the manufacture of cordage, in response for the need for a material which retains its strength when wet. The second period of abaca-based development led to the surge of the abaca handicraft industry, especially for the Bicol region, although some historical accounts mention the Filipinos using cloth, footwear and other crafts from abaca before the Spanish period.

According Pelea, one challenge to the abaca industry came with technological developments which led to the production of synthetic substitutes to abaca. This adversely affected the demand for the natural products from the plant. Problems on pests and diseases of abaca like corm weevil, stem rot, dry sheath rot, slug caterpillar, buncy top and mosaic also contributed to the down trend of the abaca industry.

Now, the abaca industry is gaining resurgence. There is a growing preference among Japanese consumers for quality bags made of natural products, adds Pelea.

The present and emerging development of abaca industry capture opportunities from the demand for environmentally responsible or “green” production systems and products, such as interior goods, bags and giftware that are made from natural materials like abaca and other natural materials like silk, cotton, Pelea told the PIA.

The abaca FIESTA aims to present the emerging opportunities, new uses/products,e.g. abaca pulp as raw material for currency notes and other products, fibers for denim production and improved technologies on fiber production, on dying, weaving, which with appropriate product design, could once again place the Philippine abaca in the world map, Pelea said.

The abaca FIESTA is a joint endeavor of BCARRD, PCARRD, the private sector, and several regional offices of line agencies, the organization of SMEs, Orgullo Kan Bicol (OK Bicol), the Fiber Industry Development Authority V, Department of Trade and Industry 5 the Department of Science and Technology Region 5, and the local government units. (MAL/JJJP-PIA5/Albay)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Miss Earth Int’l translates environmental action into recycling activities

The candidates for Miss Earth International arrives in Sorsogon City for the resorts wear competition
on November 27, 2013 at the Sorsogon Provincial Gymnasium. (Photo from Albay Gov Joey Salceda)

SORSOGON CITY, Nov. 26 (PIA) – The staging of Miss Earth International competition demonstrated not only beauty and brain, but also the commitment of young women for the protection and preservation of the mother nature.

Sorsogon province, fortunate enough  to be chosen as one of the destinations of the 30 candidates out of the total ninety competing lads this year, provides the candidates an opportunity to translate their environmental actions and showcase their creativity and strong interest in taking responsibility for their immediate environment through the use of recycling technology.

“Dubbed as ‘Waste No More – A Recycling Competition’, the aspiring international beauties vying for Miss Earth title while in Sorsogon will be in a recycling challenge where they can freely express their thoughts and ideas about their respective masterpiece geared on environmental attributes and considerations,” said Sorsogon Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) and over-all coordinator for recycling contest Engr. Maribeth L. Fruto.

“The output will be one set of recycled paper accessories made of rolled colored and glossy pages from old magazines, junk mails, calendars, brochure or piece of gift wrapping papers, paper glue, wooden toothpicks, clear varnish, and beading cords, among others, to be made by the candidates in a 30-minute period time,” said Fruto.

Three best artworks will be adjudged based on the criteria set for Recycling Paper Accessories Competition – 30% originality; 30% creativity; 20% design; 20% visual impact/color combination.

The recycling competition will be held at the Kasanggayahan Village at the Capitol Compound, Sorsogon City in the afternoon of November 27, 2013.

Meanwhile, consistent of the advocacy on conservation and protection of the environment, the leis to be used and medals to be awarded to the winners are made up of old glossy calendars, beads and pili cubes while the bouquet is made up of plastics and old newspapers wrapped with ‘sinamay’, a type of natural fiber that is made from a plant called musa textilis which is abundant in Sorsogon.  (MAL/BAR-PIA5/Sorsogon)

75 officials get recognition from Legazpi City

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 26 (PIA) – Sixty-three village officials and three city councilors who have served the city government up to Nov. 30 in their respective capacities, received plaques of recognition from the city government.

Legazpi City Mayor Noel E. Rosal, City Liga President Joseph Philip Lee and Director Elmer Pecson of the Department of Interior and Local Government City Office awarded the plaques to City Councilor Vincent Baltazar, Board Member Bobby Cristobal, 13 barangay chairmen and 60 village councilors on Sunday at the Kanzo Restaurant Function Hall here. Baltazar was the Sangguniang Kabataan City Federation president from 2007 until 2010.

At the age of 20, he was elected chairman of Barangay 13 (Ilawod West) then voted by the 70-member city chapter of the Liga ng mga Barangay as its vice-president, making him as an ex-officio member of the Sangguniang Panlunsod.

He is now a regular member of the city council after he was elected topnotcher councilor on the May 10, 2013 mid-term election.

From being a village chief, Cristobal was elected as a regular member of the Albay provincial board during the May 10 election.

During the simple ceremony, Rosal said the activity marked another chapter in the history of the League of Barangays by honoring the village officials who will finish their terms on Nov. 30.

Rosal said the recognition is a testament to the awardees’ honest and dedicated public service that they have given to their constituents.

“If it is very difficult to win in the barangay election, it is also difficult to finish the terms in public service but these people were elected for three consecutive terms. It means that they are respected by the constituents in their respective areas,” he added.

He said these barangay officials have been the city’s partners in the implementation of all the important programs and projects of the city that resulted in its progress and development today.

The city chief executive urged them to always participate in important activities of the city government for the benefit of the people in their respective barangays, even if their terms in public office are about to expire. (MAL/EPSolis-CGLegazpi/PIA5)

“One Night to Care, One Plate to Share” benefit dinner to bring power to villages in Samar and Leyte


LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 26 (PIA) -- Provide power to empower (people of the villages devastated by recent typhoon in the Visayas)

This motivation prompted civic society organizations, led by the local chapters of Junior Chamber International Philippines (JCIP), to pool manpower and resources to raise funds to buy solar power kits to be distributed to several barangays in Samar and Leyte hardest hit by typhoon Yolanda.

Thus the inception of the fund raising dinner dubbed “One Night to Care, One Plate to Share” on Saturday, November 30, 6:00 pm at the Concourse Convention Hall in Legazpi City.

The Voice Philippines finalist Janice Javier of Team Apl de Ap and guest artist Mary May Banawa will add some spice of entertainment to the benefit dinner that will help raise the funds to power up the villages in Samar and Leyte provinces.

Tickets cost P1,000 each and are available in the JCIP local chapters drop off center inside the Pacific Mall in Legazpi City and from members of the cooperating agencies and organizations.

Cooperating groups are the three local chapters of JCIP, including Legazpi, Daraga and Dawani, provincial government of ALbay, city government of Legazpi, Quota International, Rotary Club of Legazpi Central, Bicol Scuba Divers’ Foundation Inc.,  Chinese-Filipino Fire Volunteers, Albay Legazpi Press Association, Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas, LCC malls and Camalig Bank.

JCI Legazpi Inc. chapter president Martin Reynoso said the proceeds of the event will provide the venue for empowering people and rebuilding communities by donating an initial 20 units of solar power kits that will bring renewable source of energy, much needed light and a means of connectivity to the rest of the Philippines.

Reynoso recalled reports that electricity might be fully restored in most areas, much as villages in far-flung barangays, in not less than two months depriving communities of lighting facilities and other equipment run by electric power.

“Without lighting and electric power, residents will not be able to maximize productivity even on day time much as at night time while children will not have good studying condition, among other activities,” he observed.

He also noted that without access to electricity, most of these households need to rely on costly kerosene lamp, candles or other indigenous source for lighting during nigh time that may be inefficient and dangerous.

“Toxic fumes from kerosene cause respiratory illness, while the lamps, alike candles, can tip over and burn someone or ignite the house or surroundings,” he said.

Reynoso explained that the solar power kit is equipped with solar panel, battery, inverter, various types of outlets, adaptors, extension wires and can light up two LED bulbs for up to 30 hours and charge a maximum of five cellular phones at the same time.

He furthered that the user only needs to expose the solar panel under the sun to charge the battery and utilize the kit while charging at day time while switch on the LED bulbs even over night.

He said that the solar power kit is a 40 watt model can support up to five cellular phones charging at the same time making it more of a community kit rather than a household kit.

 “We plan to deploy the solar power kits for use in barangays halls or convergence areas also the like of parishes in order to cover more residents that can make use and benefit from the power service available,” he added.

 JCIP local capters have since been gathering ground data from Samar and Leyte to identify barangays that needed the electric power source most so that deployment will be quick and smooth.

"This is in one way our unique and special response to the needs of typhoon Yolanda victims," Reynoso said.
JCI Daraga chapter president Isabel Reynoso, Bicol regional chairman of the “Oplan Kaagapay”, meanwhile stated that JCIP local chapters continue to accept donations in cash and clothing at the drop off center in Pacific Mall also for distribution to the typhoon victims.  (MAL-PIA5/Albay)

Monday, November 25, 2013


 Ceremonial ribbon cutting for Eco Trade Fair for Recycling for a Cause held during the celebration of Clean Air month 2013 held at Penaranda park, Legazpi City.
 MOA SIGNING : The DENR-EMB V  in a MOA signing with Culinaria Albay, Religious, Business Sector, Local Government Units and Civil Society joined forces for Adopt-an-Estero program held at Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City last November 23, 2013, during the celebration of “Clean Air Month 2013.” (Alex Cal/PIA5)

EMB-V Regional Dir. Engr. Roberto D. Sheen  delivered her message during the DENR-EMB-V celebration of the Clean Air Month 2013 with the theme: “Let’s All Act to Clean the Air,” thru a bicycle fun ride activity entitled: “PIDAL PARA SA MALINIG NA PAROS” held at Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City lat November 23, 2013. (Alex Cal/PIA-5)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sorsogon hosts 2013 Ms. Earth Int’l Resort Wear Competition

SORSOGON CITY, Nov. 24 (PIA) – Sorsogon province is yet again on the international exposure for the upcoming hosting to this year’s Miss Earth Resort Wear competition set on November 27, 2013 at the Sorsogon Provincial Gymnasium here.

Some 32 “beauties for a cause” will arrive tomorrow, November 26, not only for the international competition but also to promote poverty reduction campaign through sustainable eco-tourism. They will fly back to Manila on Thursday, Nov 28.

“The provincial government of Sorsogon has an earlier arrangement with Carousel Productions, the organization that currently owns and runs the Miss Earth and Miss Philippines Earth beauty contests, to host the resort wear contest,” provincial consultant for Economic and Tourism Affairs Milo C. Naval said.

During their two days stay here, activities were lined-up to help promote the disaster mitigating efforts, solid waste management program and the eco-tourism destinations of the province. “We will take them to the finest choice of tourist destinations in Sorsogon like Barcelona, Bulusan, Irosin, and Sorsogon City,” added Naval.

He said that Sorsogon, like any other province, is ready to host a big event such as Miss Earth International pageant because it already has the facilities and potential environs.

“We believe that we can achieve an extensive exposure not only in the national, but in the international television as well, as a result of doing the Miss Earth competition in Sorsogon,” Naval said.

Hosting the Miss Earth International competition is just one of those that the provincial government is doing for the local tourism industry. According to Mr. Naval, the province has several on-going plans and projects related to tourism, and Miss Earth is just one way of promoting Sorsogon’s potentials.

Meanwhile, the provincial government is setting-up two video screens for a live feed of the Miss Earth event in the city, one at the Plaza Bonifacio in Barangay Sirangan and another one at the parking lot of the Capitol Building. “Those who cannot view it inside the gym can watch it from the live telecast of local TV stations,” Naval said.

Miss Earth is one of the three largest beauty pageants in the world in terms of the number of national-level competitions to participate in the world finals and one of the most publicized beauty contests in the world

The current Miss Earth International titleholder, who was crowned last November 24, 2012, Tereza Fajksova of Czech Republic, will turn-over her tiara to this year’s winner during the Miss Earth 2013 Coronation night on December 7 (Saturday), 8:00 pm, at the Versailles Alabang in Las Piñas. (MAL/BAR-PIA5/Sorsogon)

Friday, November 22, 2013

Albay guv recommends cash transfer, rather than in-kind assistance for 'Yolanda' victims

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 22 (PIA) -- Albay Governor Joey S. Salceda, acclaimed UNited Nation's senior global champion for disaster risk reduction, has proposed cash assitance be given to families in Visayas displaced by the calamity in areas hardest hit by the typhoon two weeks ago.

Salceda said cash assistance will now be more effective that providing relief food and non-food items to the survivors of the calamity as markets will do a better job to satisfy the need of the affected communities, households and individual victims.

"Consumers’ choice is intrinsic to maintain dignity of climate change or disaster victims as persons. Even renaming them as beneficiaries does very little to restore dignity, citing these 595,000 families that have since two weeks now been deprived of a roof upon their head," he explained.

He pointed out that the measure is to avoid the dysfunctional but natural practice of bartering since one person probably has too much of sardines or would prefer "Ligo" sardines rather than "555”.

"While the overwhelming flow of relief goods from the government and donors across the nation and the globe will make some of these current type of donations less attractive and may lead to significant wastage," he added.

Salceda has further proposed that donors can auction their enormous donations in kind and donate the proceeds to specific local government unit, civil society organization or non-government organizations to support their operations providing other essential services and interventions.

He suggested that another viable option for those residing in the city or town proper to give a community or a cluster of beneficiaries vouchers with an indicated amount, say P2,000, adding that they can put up a PX commissary, hold an auction or bazaar where the people can use the vouchers to purchase certain goods.

“Say, they can buy sardines up to 10 cans of Ligo priced at cost, NFA rice up to 25 kilos at P30. If they find it costly, then they can buy another brand with lower price and that allows them to exercise their consumer preference reaffirming their repute as productive members of a local economy,” the governor said.

Salceda furthered that akin to the relief efforts to survivors of typhoon Reming in Albay, these 595,000 families who already took the brunt of the devastating typhoon, on the other hand, should not be deprived of the chance to celebrate Christmas.

With more than a month to prepare right now, the governor suggested that cash vouchers or  Noche Buena gift checks for Christmas Day be given to all of the displaced families and another Media Noche gift check for New Year.

"That's the least we can do for our brothers and sisters in this nation of 92-percent Christian and in this most meaningful period in our faith - the period of Hope," the Salceda concluded.  (MAL/MDRama-PGAlbay/PIA5)

AGAPP "Silid Pangarap" blessing and turn-over ceremony

IN PAMUKID ELEMENTARY SCHOOL  : Hon. Pinky Aquino-Abellada, convenor and chairman of Aklat, Gabay, Aruga Tungo sa Pag-angat at Pag-asa (AGAPP) Foundation Inc.,  in a gesture delivered  her inspiring message during the blessing and turn-over ceremony of  twenty-four (24) “Silid Pangarap” pre-school classroom across the Bicol Region donated by Asian Development Bank (ADB) Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction  held at Pamukid Elementary School, San Fernando, Camarines Sur, last November 21, 2013. (Alex Cal/PIA)

PRESS CONFERENCE : Presidential Sister Pinky Aquino-Abellada answer queries from  media during her visit at Brgy. Pamukid, San Fernando, Camarines Sur  for AGAPP  turn-over of 24 new “Silid Pangarap” a pre-school buildings  for  four (4) provinces of Bicol Region.. (Alex Cal/PIA)

Presidential Sister and Chairman- AGAPP Foundation Inc., Hon. Pinky Aquino-Abellada, Mr. Kazushi Sato, ADB Chairperson & Senior Financing Partnership Specialist, ADB-Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction Representative,  Ms. Swetal  Sindhvad, Education Specialist, Asian Development Bank, and other Government officials share the ribbon cutting and  turn-over ceremony of Aklat Gabay Aruga Tungo sa Pag-unlad at Pag-asa (AGAPP) classroom donated by the Asian Development Bank  (ADB) held at  Pamukid Elementary School, San Fernando, Camarines Sur.  (Alex Cal/PIA)

PRESS CONFERENCE : Presidential Sister Pinky Aquino-Abellada answer queries from  media during her visit at Brgy. Pamukid, San Fernando, Camarines Sur  for AGAPP  turn-over of 24 new “Silid Pangarap” a pre-school buildings  for  four (4) provinces of Bicol Region.. (Alex Cal/PIA)

Senior Financing Partnership Specialist, ADB-Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction Representative, Mr. Kazushi Sato, in his message during the  ceremonial and symbolic turn-over and blessing of  Aklat Gabay Aruga Tungo sa Pag-unlad at Pag-asa (AGAPP) classroom donated by the Asian Development Bank  (ADB)