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Mangrove forests are critical for the stability of coastal areas and the sustainability of fish and marine resources which provide food and livelihood to people in more than 800 coastal towns in the Philippines. USAID, through the Philippine Environmental Governance Project, assisted the local government (Davao City) in establishing, through a local ordinance, the mangrove area as a marine protected area.
USAID, through the Philippine Environmental Governance Project, assisted the local government (Davao City) in establishing, through a local ordinance, the mangrove area as a marine protected area. A crucial part in effective coastal resources management is law enforcement with Bantay Dagat teams playing a crucial role by safeguarding local waters. In Davao City Philippines, Bantay Dagat members protect mangrove areas from illegal cutting, thus conserving areas for fisheries and marine biodiversity habitats.
Lumads arrive to spend Yuletide season in Davao City
- Tuesday, December 10, 2013
- By Arianne Caryl N. Casas
LUMADS from the hinterland areas of Davao City are starting to arrive in the city's downtown area and are temporarily staying at various barangay gymnasiums where they will spend the Yuletide season.
Liwayway Caligdong, City Social Services and Development Office (CSSDO) assistant head, said they have recorded some 2,600 lumad families who are now occupying eight gyms/shelter areas in the city.
"More are expected to arrive this week," Caligdong said.
She said the lumads started to arrive as early as December 1, but the City Government started to accommodate them in the evening of December 7.
Caligdong enumerated eight gymnasiums which served as shelter areas -- in Bankerohan, Bunawan, Buhangin, Matina Aplaya, Calinan, Tugbok, Mintal and Toril.
She said the shelter area in Calinan recorded the highest number of lumads occupying with 1,145 families.
"Suki-suki naman gud na. Last year, diha pud sila. Murag nitultol na ba," she said.
But the City Government is not only accommodating lumads from hinterland areas of the city, but also those from Digos City and the provinces of Bukidnon and Agusan.
She said they are implementing a 10-p.m. curfew in shelter areas.
The City Planning and Development Office, on the other hand, takes charge in the food distribution for lumads.
Tourism officers holds concert-for-a-cause for typhoon Yolanda relief
- Monday, December 9, 2013
- (PR , 1DTOA)
DAVAO CITY, Dec. 09 – Tourism officers ushered an early start of the yuletide season with a star-studded concert-for-a-cause at the SMX Lanang Premier on December 7, at SMEX Lanang in Davao City.
The concert, dubbed “One Voice, One Christmas, One Davao” was a project of tourism officers in Davao region that sought to raise funds to help the victims of the November 8 Typhoon Yolanda that left a trail of deaths and unimaginable destruction in Central Philippines, particularly in Samar and Leyte.
Noel Daquioag, president of the One Davao Tourism Officers Association (1DTOA), said that national artists with roots in Davao joined local artists for free from Davao Oriental, Compostela Valley, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, and Davao City for the pre-Christmas event. They included Wency Cornejo, Popong Landero, Yano, Maan Cgua, Mebuyan, Rochel Venuti, and Larvae. Each province is allotted a time to present its local performers.
Daquioag, Davao del Norte tourism officer, said the organization partnered with the governors of the four Davao provinces, mayors of regional cities, local and provincial officials, the academe, church, and business entities to make sure the event will have a “deep impact”.
“We want to show to the rest of the regions that Davao region is a one big family that never leaves a sister or a brother behind. This is the same compassion that guides us to help our neighbours,” the 1DTOA executive said.
He said many Davawenyos are descendants of families from Leyte and Samar who migrated to the region in past decades to look for better life.
“One way or another, our blood ties and kinship with the victims is strong. We can not just ignore their plight, we need to act, and act now,” Daquioag said.
The provincial tourism officer said before Yolanda, the organization initially planned to hold the concert-for-a-cause to raise funds for the budding stone- and wood- craft industries of the victims of last year’s Typhoon Pablo in Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental.
“Then Yolanda came,” he said.”We shifted the plan and agreed to do the concert to raise funds and collect relief goods for the victims of Yolanda. This is a more pressing need,” Daquioag added.
Boxes were stationed in visible areas of the concert venue to receive relief items the concert-goers are encouraged to bring.
Disaster and relief officials on Monday estimated the death toll so far from typhoon Yolanda at more than 6,000, hundreds still missing, and about four million people displaced almost two weeks after the world’s strongest typhoon this year slammed into Central Visayas and flattened towns and villages, especially Tacloban City.
Tickets to the concert were made available at all provincial tourism offices of Davao Oriental, Compostela Valley, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, and the tourism investment office of Davao City.
City administrator agrees revival of Friday organic market
- Sunday, December 8, 2013
- By Ivy C. Tejano
DAVAO City Administrator lawyer Melchor Quitain expressed his full support to organic food advocates' call for restoration of the Friday Organic Farmers Market, which will be set up at Rizal Park on San Pedro Street in the city.
Quitain, in his note during the celebration of the Organic Day last week, said he is amenable to the advocates of the Go Organic Davao City (GoDC), Mamamayan Ayaw sa Aerial Spray (Maas), and Interface Development Interventions (Idis), call to restore the market.
Quitain said he would work on the matter and submit a letter to the Office of the City Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte this month, requesting the restoration of the market for the organic food supporters starting January 2014.
The GoDC, a network of organic farming advocates and practitioners with environmental advocates, has been asking the City Government of Davao particularly its Agriculturist’s Office (CAO) to restore the weekly Friday Organic Farmers Market.
Idis Public Information officer Mael Paranial, in an interview, said they believe that the Friday Organic Farmers Market would help the organic farmers and mainstream organic farming in general.
"Hearing the message of lawyer Quitain, our city administrator, gives us more hope. We are happy na pinakinggan sa wakas yung aming matagal na panawagan na ibalik na ang Friday market," Paranial said.
Advocates renewed their call during the celebration of the Organic Day on December 3, which was held at Rizal Park and headed by the CAO, in line with the City Resolution 0517-07.
The City's Resolution 0517-07 states December 3 as an Organic Day to promote and mainstream organic agriculture as an alternative to conventional agriculture. This year's theme is "Tao at Kapaligiran Alagaan, Organikong Pagsasaka ang Paraan."
3rd Davao bike fund campaign set
- Saturday, December 7, 2013 11:42 pm
- By Alexander D. Lopez (Inquirer Mindanao, Philippine Daily Inquirer)
DAVAO CITY—It’s all systems go for the third Gene Boyd R. Lumawag Cycling Fund-raising event (Padyak Para Kay Boyd Para sa Burn Center) on Dec. 15.
The cycling event will start from People’s Park to Sun City Diversion Road and back to People’s Park.
In this year’s event, adult participants will bike through 30 kilometers. Short track races will be held inside Sun City Davao.
Registration fee is P350, with a free souvenir cycling jersey, lunch, certificate and raffle ticket. The event is presented by MindaNews and supported by different cycling groups in the city.
Designated registration areas are 3MJ Cycle Buhangin, Bikerboy, the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Mindanao Times, Bisikleta, Acer Davao Service Center-Ateneo de Davao Building and Norkis Agdao. Last day of registration is on Dec. 13. On-site registration is set at 6 to 7 a.m. The ride will start at exactly 7:30 a.m.
Inquiries may be made at these numbers and e-mail addresses: 0933-4648855, 0933-3998089 and 0907-9745510, and padyak firstname.lastname@example.org or padyakparakay email@example.com.
More economic integration seen with RCEP finality next year
- Friday, December 6, 2013
- (PNA), LOR/ASA/JGQ/LDP
DAVAO CITY, Dec. 6 (PNA) -- Greater economic integration among countries in light of free trade agreements is seen as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) enters its third and final negotiation next year.
Rafaelita Castro, Doing Business in Free Trade Areas (DBFTA) program manager, also chief of the Bureau of Export Trade Promotion of the Department of Industry (DTI), said the third and last negotiations for RCEP signals the reality that “Free Trade Agreements are here to stay.”
The RCEP is a 16-party Free Trade Agreement that was launched by the leaders of the Association of Southeast Asia Nation and their current FTA Partners of Australia, China, India, Japan, Korea and New Zealand.
She said the RCEP aside from leading to greater economic integration it would also support equitable economic development and strengthen economic cooperation among the countries involved.
She said the first and second round of negotiations for RCEP were just finished.
With the third negotiation slated next year, implementation is targeted by 2015.
She said more market accessibility for Philippine products would highlight the third and final RCEP negotiations.
Castro said the Philippines in terms of export products is strong in furniture and agriculture products.
The RCEP initiative was announced by the ASEAN leaders in Nov. 2011 during the 19th ASEAN Summit.
The leaders established the RCEP as an ASEAN-led process through which ASEAN would broaden and deepen its economic engagements with its FTA partners.
Export industry stakeholders to meet in Davao for FTA discussion
- Thursday, December 5, 2013
- (PNA), PDS/ASA/JENNY GRACE M. MENDOZA/LDP
DAVAO CITY. Dec. 5, (PNA)–The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) will conduct an information session here on Thursday to update export industry stakeholders on the benefits of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).
With the country’s low utilization rate of FTAs, the forum is expected to encourage more exporters to tap the markets where the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has an existing economic bilateral agreement with.
DTI 11 director Marizon Loreto said these FTAs must be maximized especially that they offer a number of trade benefits, particularly tariff elimination or reduction.
“This information session is very important because through this, our exporters and other stakeholders will be briefed on how to improve their dealings with the countries where we have existing FTAs so that they can further increase their export sales. This will also be a venue for those who have not yet tapped these markets to really find out how to access them,” she said.
The Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and a number of ASEAN Regional FTAs like the ASEAN-China, ASEAN-Japan, ASEAN-Korea and ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand FTAs have entered into force and are now being implemented.
“With these FTAs waiting to be maximized, DTI is here to help our exporters break into higher grounds. So during the information sessions, some DTI officials and experts will be presenting the agency’s programs, activities and projects to help improve their productivity and competitiveness,” she said.
The presentations will be focused on export opportunities in FTA partners and on increasing competitiveness, given the development in goods and services liberalization especially in ASEAN and preparing for ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) 2015.
Among the expected participants are from the business support organizations, trade associations, chambers of commerce and industry, Local Government Units (LGUs), and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development (MSMED) Councils throughout the region.
Davao region mulls disaster resilient evacuation centers
- Wednesday, December 4, 2013
- (PNA), JBP/ASA/JUDY G. QUIROS/LDP
DAVAO CITY, Dec. 4 (PNA) -- Local government units (LGUs) in Davao Region are now seriously considering putting up disaster resilient evacuation centers, Office of Civil Defense (OCD) regional director Loretto Rirao said.
He confirmed that all LGUs in the region have yet to identify areas fitted to be developed into evacuation centers where people will be safe from the impact of huge disasters similar to that of Yolanda or Hyaian (international name).
The Island Garden City of Samal (IGACOS) has constructed one evacuation center, but it could not still be fully considered as disaster resilient, Rirao said.
Tagum City has also identified an area, however it did not pass the criteria set by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) as the soil is loose.
Rirao said almost all areas of Tagum City have loose soil.
In the case of Davao City, Rirao said the local government has the available funds for evacuation centers, however it also has yet to determine a suitable area.
He said local government of Davao City is currently embarking on the prerequisites among others soil analysis which can stand disasters like tsunami or strong typhoons.
Rirao confirmed that current evacuations centers in Davao Region like school buildings or gymnasium are not designed for disasters.
“But with the recent disasters hitting the country, all LGUs are seriously considering of building disaster-resilient evacuation centers,” Rirao said.
The OCD, LGUs and MGB are closely working together in preparing the communities for any form of disaster. The construction of evacuation centers designed to stand huge disasters is one of significant preparations being done among the LGUs, Rirao said.
Factors like budget, acceptance, and sustainability are among the factors being considered in embarking on disaster preparedness, he said.
Davao’s Futsal league kicks off Dec. 4
- Tuesday, December 3, 2013
- (PNA), LOR/ASA/LOLITO DELOS REYES/LDP
DAVAO CITY, Dec 3 (PNA)-– The first Palos Verdes Futsal Community League kicks off Wednesday night on Dec. 4 at the Palos Verdes Country Club of the Davao Crocodile Park in Maa here.
“The games will be played every Wednesday night from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.,” said organizer Buboy Arrieta.
The league, which is spearheaded by Instatech general manager Walter Villacencio, will turn three years old.
“We’ve been playing friendly futsal games inside the country club’s court every Wednesday night for almost three years now,” Arrieta said.
The futsal community is composed of a mixed of local and international players.
“Aside from the regular players, we also hope to get other football or futsal enthusiasts alike,” he said.
Six teams are already listed to join. They are Solido Football Club, Faith Mix, Instatech FC, N &M United, Intangibles FC and Team UN.
Solido is composed of all Filipinos led by Arrieta while Faith Mix is a mixture of South American players. N & M United is bannered by Nepalese and Malaysian players. Team UN is a mixture of European players.
The other matches will be played on Dec. 11 and 18.
The tournament commissioner is Christian Ea.
NCC: Disaster preparedness is key to competitiveness
- Monday, December 2, 2013
- By Manuel T. Cayon (DTI-11/JenMendoza/CLC)
DAVAO CITY, Dec. 02 – An official of the National Competitiveness Council (NCC), an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has emphasized on the relevance of disaster preparedness for competitiveness.
In an interview during the NCC Roadshow here on November 27, Guillermo M. Luz, NCC Private Sector Co-Chair, said that in order to boost competitiveness, factors that may affect readiness during disasters must be looked into carefully.
With climate change affecting every corner of the world, Luz said that “we must be prepared”.
“Today, you don’t know anymore where the typhoon could hit so we have to plan. We have to study our risk assessment data based on weather forecasts because storms can hit us anytime,” he said.
Luz said Davao City has high risk in terms of climate change impact, thus, it really has to make an analysis of the risk assessment report of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
In a study conducted by WWF among the cities of Baguio, Cebu, Davao, and Iloilo in 2011, it was stated that “it is likely that Davao City will have to deal with climate impacts such as sea level rise, increased sea surface temperatures, ocean acidification, and inter-annual variability of rainfall”.
The study added that “for Davao City, high population growth and in-migration underscores that strategic development decisions must be made now. More than that, a multi-stakeholder formula for continuity must be set in place if this city is to sustain and re-engineer its agricultural strengths, and avoid the disorganized congestion that characterizes many other cities, emerging as a new center for liveability and competitiveness in a climate-defined world”.
Given the said situation, Luz said, planning is crucial.
“Davao should look at these data closely,” he said.
Luz said the experiences during Typhoons Ondoy in 2009, Sendong in 2010, Pablo in 2012, and Yolanda this year must serve as a great lesson for everyone.
He pointed out that if a city or a certain area is not prepared for disasters and doesn’t have any mitigating measures on climate, it will be difficult to entice investors.
“No businessman can afford to be down by two weeks, even just for two days. No electricity, no communication, that’s bad for business,” he said.
Luz said that having no downtime, even during disasters, must be the dream of every city.
Public elementary school in Davao City appeals for households’ waste earthfill
- Sunday, December 1, 2013
- By Manuel T. Cayon
DAVAO CITY—Rather than face demolition as with the other houses in a riverbank here, school and city officials have publicly appealed to homeowners to dump their extra and waste earthfill at the school ground of Josefa Llanes Escoda Elementary School (JLEES).
The school is located far from the highway of Maa and very near the river that easily overflows with at least an hour-long downpour and submerges several riverbank barangays, including the school.
Councilor Mabel Sunga-Acosta, who chairs the local school board, said the JLEES is now 2 meters or about 7 feet below road level. The city requirement is to raise the ground level of structures near the Maa River to at least 2 feet above the level of the road.
Acosta and school Principal Cecilia Cardosa have jointly appealed to homeowners to dump their earthfill in the school ground.
“We would be very glad and grateful if you dump them at our school ground,” Cardosa said.
Both sought the help of news organizations to widen the reach of their appeal, as the city has also told residents of river bank communities that easily get flooded to demolish their houses.
A portion of the school, however, has been elevated with the help of residents but Cardosa said the appeal has not been widely disseminated.
Because of the flooded portion of the school ground, the proposed school building with a budget of P6.2 million has not been constructed yet. A recently budgetted P4.6 million building was built ahead of the first planned building “because the ground was elevated with the earthfill,” Cardosa said.
Acosta said teachers sometimes have to wade waist-deep into the floodwaters while the water would be sometimes be at the neck-level of pupils.
“Please help our 888 schoolchildren,” Cardosa said.
The city government’s move to relocate some low-lying riverbank communities came after a flashflood in 2011 submerged 25 barangays in two hours and killed 30 residents, many of them infants and children.
The older news reports are kept here.