northern mindanao

Andanar: Food security, a pathway to peace

December 15, 2020

Citing a pattern of success when people work together to help farmers boost production, Communications Secretary Martin Andanar on Tuesday led the caravan of government agencies all the way up to barangay Kalabugao in Impasugong, Bukidnon. Composed of the Department of Agriculture (DA), National Irrigation Administration (NIA), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Bureau of Fire Protection, Philippine Information Agency, Impasugong local government unit (LGU), and Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO), the group turned over farm equipment units and postharvest facilities worth P15.86 million to farmers in that remote rural plateau. It is near the border of Gingoog, Agusan del Norte and Bukidnon province. Most of the inhabitants are indigenous folks. PCOO Secretary Martin Andanar, who is the Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) for Northern Mindanao, in speech said “Food security is a pathway to peace and we know how food security contributes to peacebuilding.” The government’s P15.86 million worth of farm inputs and equipment support to Kalabugao farmers were turned over to Impasugong town mayor Anthony A. Uy. These postharvest facilities and crop-raising aid include units of mobile flash dryer and mechanical rice thresher; loads of fertilizer; corn and vegetable seeds; hybrid rice and sorghum seeds; irrigation system; and multi-purpose drying pavement with shed. The livestock agribusiness interventions also include poultry egg incubators, farm animals and other barnyard fowls. Three groups will then manage these government’s agricultural support: One is the 1,000-strong AGHIMICU (Agtolawon-Higaonon-Mintapod-Cumadon) organization; Hagpa Women’s Organization (HWO) and the other is the equally strong Movement and Alliance for Advocacy of Men in Action (MAAMA). Encouraged by the outpouring of support from the government, Impasugong town mayor Anthony Uy said "As the agencies and communities work together, the government’s efforts in ensuring food security—through the Task Force-ELCAC—is paying off.”       “The TF-ELCAC, in coordination with Impasugong LGU and all concerned government agencies, have started pouring assistance in Kalabugao. This would help make our IP lives easier, hence, they will become productive members of their respective communities," the mayor said. Secretary Andanar, on the same occasion, graced the unveiling ceremony of the conceptual framework to start the setting up of the Indigenous Peoples Economic Zone (IPEZ). Connecting roads also form part of the IPEZ. “I am happy to know that the Lumad and settlers here in barangays Kalabugao and Hagpa are in Bayanihan in carrying out the goals of the IP Economic Zone, which will soon be the commercial hub of the IPs,” Andanar said. Department of Agriculture Asec. Christine Evangelista, Brig. General Oliver Vesliño, Brig. General Ferdinand Barandon, and Lt. Col. Edgardo Talaroc Jr, also did their share in inspiring farmers during the turnover ceremony and IPEZ launching at the village’s covered court—along with the regional directors, the media, Kalabugao Punong Barangay Jesus Chavez, Punong Barangay Eber Suday of Hagpa, and barangay folks. The program ended, and as the departing caravan winds a bend, Kagawad Eutropio Jamilo and farmer Alex Dupeno commented, “Secretary Martin Andanar is the only Malacañang official who has visited Kalabugao.” It could be so, because the litany of unfinished roadworks, steep cliffs, and deep precipice along narrow and winding mountainside ways are no walk in the park for anyone. But CORDS Sec. Martin Andanar went up there. (RLRB/PIA Bukidnon)

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Manggagawang Pinoy sa Taiwan, pinarangalan

December 15, 2020

Isa na namang pagpapatunay sa kagalingan ng Pilipino sa merkado ng paggawa nang parangalan ang apat na overseas Filipino worker (OFW) bilang modelong empleyado ng industry association sa Taiwan, pahayag ng labor department nitong Linggo. Sinabi ni Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III na ipinagmamalaki ng Pilipinas ang parangal na iginawad sa mga OFW ng Taiwanese Textile and Weaving Industry. “We share the honor for their achievements. Their fete makes the Filipino nation even more proud,” wika ni Bello. Sa ulat sa Kalihim ng Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) ng Taiwan, napili sina Leonor B. Lubo, Kevin Jay C. Fillon, Raquel F. Dacusin, and Arniel S. Felizarta dahil sa kanilang kasipagan at mahusay na pagtatrabaho. Kasama ng OFW ang mga Taiwanese at iba pang manggagawa mula sa ibang bansa na nakatanggap ng parehong parangal. Isinaalang-alang din sa pagpili ng katangi-tanging manggagawa ang oras ng kanilang pagpasok sa trabaho, pagiging masunurin at kakayahan sa pakikipag-usap, ayon sa POLO Taipei. Binati at iginawad ni Yai-Ming Zhang, Chairman of the Executive Director Board of the Taiwan Silk and Filament Weaving Industrial Association (TSFA) ang parangal sa mga katangi-tanging manggagawa. Pinagkalooban ni POLO-Taipei Labor Attaché Cesar Chavez, Jr ng cash award ang mga pinarangalang Pilipino. Isinasagawa kada taon ng TSFA, isang non-government organization, ang parangal sa mga manggagawa para mahimok ang mga ito na itaas ang kanilang kasanayan at maging inspirasyon para mas paghusayin ang kalidad ng kanilang pagtatrabaho. Sa iba pang pangyayari, 77 OFW na nagtatrabaho sa iba’t ibang kompanya sa Taichung, Taiwan ang nagtapos ng kursong Baking at Photography. Ayon kay Labor Attaché Fidel Macauyag ng POLO-Taichung, ang pagsasanay ay isinagawa ng POLO-OWWA sa pakikipagtulungan ng Darwitz, isang Taiwan Manpower Agency at ng dalawang Filipino volunteer-trainer. Ipinaalam din ni Macauyag sa mga OFW ang kanilang karapatan sa paggawa at pinaalalahanan na patuloy nilang sundin ang health and safety protocol laban sa COVID-19. ### POLO Taiwan/Taichung/gsr    

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DAR provides potable water to Nueva Vizcaya residents

December 15, 2020

The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in the province of Nueva Vizcaya has turned over, December 10, 2020, a Community-Managed Potable Water Supply and Sanitation (CP-WASH) Project worth PhP 80,000 located in Barangay Duruarog, Diadi, to provide its 150 households potable and clean water system. Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II Dindi Tan said that CP-WASH filters bacteria, dirt and other water-borne diseases making it safe for consumption by the residents and farmers in the community. “The DAR is not just concerned with distributing lands to help farmers improve their economic conditions. The DAR also looks after the well-being, safety, and living condition of the people in the rural communities,” Tan said. Tan said this project aims to provide the agrarian reform beneficiary households and the school children access to clean water using a technology which is very affordable, easy to maintain, and taken care of by the community. “I would like to thank Diadi Mayor Sandy Gayaton for her support to this project and I also want to encourage our stakeholders to all take their part in sustaining this project,” Tan said. The turn over ceremony was attended by Mayor Sandy Gayaton, Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer I Engr. Cherry Callejo Magno, Chief Agrarian Reform Program Officer Chit Bungubung, Senior Agrarian Reform Program Officers Edwin Algeria and Engr. Ronald John Celestino.  

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Fifteen modern PUVs to operate in Iligan

December 14, 2020

The Royal Developers Consortium - Transport Service Cooperative (RODECO) launched fifteen modern public utility vehicles set to operate here as part of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board's (LTFRB) Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP). LTFRB Region 10 Director Aminoden Guro awarded RODECO a five-year certificate of public convenience attesting that the said transportation cooperative complied with the needed requirements to operate as modern PUVs deployed on a route from City Proper to Bayanihan Village, Barangay Santa Elena, this city. Guro elaborated that the Isuzu QKR 77 Almazora PUV is an air-conditioned 24-seater truck complete with four CCTV cameras, a flat-screen TV, GPS routing system and a ready cashless fare payment system equipped with Euro IV-compliant diesel engine that delivers better fuel saving feature and eco-friendly emissions. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, Guro explained that the 24-seater capacity was trimmed down to 17 seats to allow social distancing. "Meron na tayong pamasahe sa modernized PUJ. Minimum 'yung first four kilometers of 11 pesos, in every succeeding kilometer meron tayong dagdag na one peso and fifty cents," he disclosed. [We already have the fare rate of this modernized PUJ. You will pay 11 pesos for the first four kilometers of your trip, and in every succeeding kilometer, there will be an addition fare of one peso and fifty cents.] As part of LTFRB's public transportation modernization, drivers will have a fixed income according to the minimum wage standard in the locality plus benefit contributions to SSS, Philhealth and PAG-IBIG. This is the reason why seasoned PUV driver Rhoderick Morales expressed optimism with this shift. He said that it is more helpful for him and his family since he will now have a fixed income and definite contributions to the government's social programs. "Bintaha ang akong kinabuhi karon kay naa ang tanan prebilihiyo na gihatag sa amu-a. Mabuhi gyud ang akong pamilya pinaagi sa ilahang mga tabang sa amu pinaagi atung mga benepisyo. Busa dako kaayo mi'g pasalamat sa LTFRB nga natuman najud ang amung mga gipangandoy nga makabiyahi nami sa amuang gipaabot nga ruta," said Morales. [Now my life is more favorable that all privileges are provided to us. My family will live comfortably through the help of the benefits that we will receive. That's why I want to thank LTFRB for making our proposed route possible, we've waited for this.] According to Eugene Pabualan, the executive director of the Office of Transportation Cooperatives (OCT), the Department of Transportation's (DOT) Department Order 2017-011 requires not only transportation franchisees to create cooperatives, instead "the whole public transportation system will change for the benefit of the majority 'everyday commuters' under the said department order". "This is good news because the residents of Iligan will have a modernized system of transportation. We want to professionalize the business operation. We do this to incapacitate and empower the board of directors, the managers (of transportation cooperatives) so that members who invested capital shares for them will have fair dividends," shared Pabualan. The executive director emphasized this change of the land transportation system is convenient for the commuters, franchisers and the drivers. "This change is not only implemented to jeepney PUVs, it is also applicable to buses, taxis and point-to-point UVs. We will soon have comfortable, affordable, reliable, environment-friendly and safe mode of transportation that provides comfort to all our commuters," Pabualan remarked. On the other hand, LTFRB announced that full abolishment of traditional PUVs will be carried out on December 29, this year. The board encouraged all franchisers to fully embrace the shift as soon as possible through consolidating their old PUV units. (CLV/PIA-ICIC)

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Fulfillment of women’s rights to jobs, livelihood crucial to children’s health, well-being

December 14, 2020

 Save the Children Philippines believes more jobs and livelihood for women in conflict-affected Mindanao provinces will improve the lives of thousands of displaced children and their families who face risks from lingering armed conflict, and the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The child rights organization marks the International Day of Human Rights calling for the strengthening of women’s rights to economic empowerment, and critical participation in the labor force. “The realization of women’s rights to socio-economic development is critical to the fulfillment of children’s rights to health and survival, access to learning and well-being,” said Atty. Alberto Muyot, Chief Executive Officer of Save the Children Philippines. In partnership with the Task Force Bangon Marawi and local government agencies, Save the Children Philippines is implementing emergency assistance for the recovery of Marawi City through the Restoring Livelihoods and Learning Project, funded by the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction through the Asian Development Bank. BARMM recorded the highest unemployment at 21.50% (Philippine Statistics Authority, September 2020) as an adverse impact of the global pandemic and displacement due to armed conflict in the area contributing to the financial crisis of affected families in Marawi.    Edwin Horca, BARMM Team Leader of Save the Children Philippines, said the project aims to provide emergency income and livelihood support to displaced families, with focus on supporting the role of women and youth in Marawi and its neighboring municipalities.   “We aim to expedite the delivery of gender sensitive interventions on emergency employment, livelihoods and education. We want to empower women by promoting their right to participate in their community’s economic progression. Women’s empowered participation in economic activities contribute to a transformative and authentic peacebuilding,” said Horca. The project is now providing skills training, financial and livelihood support for women’s groups in different communities for traditional weaving and other local products which were identified by the Department of Trade and Industry and the Task Force Bangon Marawi. Baicon Cayongcat Nuska of Raheemah Women’s Group said the project will not only help the Maranao women on their financial needs but will significantly contribute to the overall economic advancement of the city promoting their local products. “These women will be our future manpower for the upcoming establishment of the Raheemah Economic Hub and Development Center in Marawi.” “We are thankful for this project for its efficient and effective strategy to ensure that conflict-affected women are given the opportunity to livelihood and that no woman will be left behind,” added Nuska.  (Save the Children/PIA-ICIC)

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DICT offers LGUs e-system to streamline business permit processing

December 14, 2020

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) in Lanao del Norte renewed its call to local government units (LGUs) to implement the Electronic Business Permit and Licensing System (eBPLS) to fast track processing of business permit applications. "The eBPLS is a cloud-based software developed by the DICT that enables LGUs to process applications for new and renewal of business permits electronically," said DICT Provincial Officer Engr Oweida Smith during the Kapehan sa Iligan Chamber Thursday, December 11. He said the system will be a big boost to the ease of doing business as it will help both LGUs and business owners during applications for a business permit. Nideliza Nacilla, eBPLS focal person in Northern Mindanao, added that the software is funded by DICT thus it is available for free to LGUs who want to use it. She said the system will also provide convenience to clients or business owners as it will allow them to submit and monitor online their business permit applications. "For the clients, mahibal-an nila kung asa na ang papel, kung kinsa nay ga process, for assessment na ba siya or for payment, or for  issuance  of permit na ba.  Pwede pud niya ma view iyang tax order payment or assessment sa iyang bayronon," she explained. [For the clients, they will know  the status of their applications, who is processing it, whether it is for assessment, for payment or for issuance of a permit already. He can also view his tax order payment or the assessment of his payable.] She further said that the eBPLS is also easier to connect to other systems used by the government. LGUs who want to avail of the free software just need to send a letter of intent to the DICT and provide computers or laptops and IT personnel exclusively for the implementation of the eBPLS. According to her, DICT will install the software and train the IT personnel on how to use the system. "DICT will provide support during the entire implementation of the system. Dili namo buhian ang LGU unless wala na gyud silay problema sa system (we will not leave the LGU unless they have no more problem with the system)," Nacilla assured. Rosalina Mamacang, officer-in-charge of the Iligan City Mayor Office Permits and Licenses Division, said they are happy to hear about the eBPLS adding that the implementation of the system is timely for the new normal. In the meantime,  the city government of Iligan will implement a one-stop-shop for business permit applications to unclog the City Hall from volume of applicants in observance of the minimum health protocols to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. "Duha ka business one-stop shop ang mahitabo karong January ,ang isa sa City Hall lobby ug ang usa dinhi sa Robinson's Place Iligan. Ang renewal mahitabo dinhi sa Robinsons while ang applications sa new business ug closure kay sa City Hall," she added. [Two business one-stop-shop will take place this January, one at the City Hall lobby and another at the Robinson's Place Iligan.The renewal will take place here at Robinson's while the applications for new business or closure will be at the City Hall.] The Kapehan sa Iligan Chamber is a monthly talk show program of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation of Iligan Inc. and Philippine Information Agency Iligan Information Center to discuss pressing issues concerning the business community and the local economy. (APB/PIA-ICIC)

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