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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.
DPWH-11 allots P50M for construction, improvement of drainage system in Davao City this year
- Friday, March 7, 2014
- (PNA), LAP/ASA/LDP
DAVAO CITY, March 7 (PNA) -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) here in Region 11 has allotted some P50 million this year for the construction and improvement of drainage system to ease flooding in this city.
DPWH-11 public information officer Jose Dennis Y. Flores said the projects will be implemented by the DPWH regional office and the Davao City Second District Engineering Office (DEO).
He also said that these projects, which DPWH considered as small projects, will only take 30 to 60 days to complete.
"As long as there are no problems that will be encountered like clearing the right of way or there are no obstructions from communication and electrical posts or tubes of the DCWD (Davao City Water District), we expect the projects to begin anytime this year," Flores said.
He said DPWH-11 will implement the P10-million improvement and completion of the main drainage system in Barangay 31 and Barangay 37-D and the P20-million improvement and completion of the main drainage system at Barangay 22 and Barangay 23-C in M.L. Quezon Blvd. in the downtown area.
On the other hand, the city’s Second District Engineering Office will realize the P20-million construction of flood control at Barangay Lubugan, Toril.
Flores said the drainage system, aside from preventing and mitigating floods, will also prevent the destruction of roads from floods.
However, Flores said the projects have yet to be implemented and are still in the process of evaluation of design in the central office.
“Once it is approved, it will be bid out,” he added.
More BPO investors expected to locate in Davao City this year
- Thursday, March 6, 2014
- (PNA), LAP/ASA/JUDY G. QUIROS/LDP
DAVAO CITY, March 6 (PNA) –- More Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) investors are seen to come to Davao City this year.
This is after the January 2014 publication assessment of Cushman & Wakefield Philippines, that singled out Davao City as the only city in the country that is "highly recommended as the best alternative location for BPO activities in the Philippines, said Davao City Investment and Promotion Center (DCIPC) chief Ivan Cortez.
He said Cushman & Wakefield Philippines, a branch of the New York-based commercial real estate services firm, based its assessment on the 2012 Business Process Association of the Philippines' Next Wave Cities (NWC) in which Davao City scored high and the geo-hazard maps produced by the Ateneo de Manila University's Mapping Philippine Vulnerability to Environmental Disasters project showing the city’s low geophysical risk.
“With these assessments, foreign property consultants are expected to lay down some of the ground works for BPOs and other related companies to start locating operations in the city,” Cortez said.
To date, there are about six major BPO companies in the city and a number of smaller call centers.
Cortez said in the outsourcing business, the best opportunities are no longer exclusive to the voice market but also in other high-growth areas such as in apps and software development, analytics, big data, and mobile.
Cortez said opportunities in the outsourcing business are not only limited to the voice market but also in other growth areas such as applications and software development, analytics, big data, and mobile.
Meanwhile, Cortez sees a more challenging year for the service sector in light of a number of restrictions like smoking ordinance, time limits and limited hours for serving liquor and operating videoke and similar sing-along facilities, imposed by the city government. These sectors would include malls, hotels, restaurants, bar, clubs and the like.
The challenge is how the service sector captures a huge market amid the said restrictions, Cortez said.
City allots P1.5M for 22 events, 26 competitions in 77th Araw ng Dabaw sports fest
- Wednesday, March 5, 2014
- (PNA), LAP/ASA/LOLITO T. DELOS REYES/LDP
DAVAO CITY, March 5 (PNA) -- The 77th Araw ng Davao Sports Festival has a budget allocation of P1.5 million and features a total of 22 events with 26 competitions which kicked off through a short but meaningful opening ceremony Monday night at the Davao City Recreation Center Almendras Gym.
City Administrator J. Melchor V. Quitain said the events include arnis, athletics, baseball, basketball, billiard, body building, cycling, dama, duathlon, karatedo, kayaking, lawn tennis, motocross, shooting, table tennis and wakeboarding.
"When we talk of sports fest attached to the celebration of Araw ng Davao, we always think of only two sports events--these are basketball and bowling. Sad to state that for the past 76 celebrations, the other sports disciplines were never given much importance," Quitain said.
The city's heads, athletes and coaches from the different national sports associations (NSAs), including those belonging to rival groups, gathered under one roof and in one momentous occasion to show unity and togetherness.
"Seeing you now I never through that we have so many enthusiasts who are interest or who are in other sports disciplines in the city. For one, I never though that we have dama as a sports discipline," Quitain added.
He then lauded Sports Development Division-City Mayor's Office (SDD-CMO) officer-in-charge William "Butch" Ramirez "for gathering all of you to give you the importance that you deserve."
The opening ceremony drew some 500 athletes, coaches, students, guests and city government officials and was highlighted by the lighting of the torch by representatives from rugby football. Ramirez declared the sports festival open.
The activity was also attended by Councilor Leonardo Avila III, Public Safety Command Center (PSCC) chief Francisco Villaroman and Barangay Cultural Community Affairs (BCCAD) officer-in-charge Jose B. Ong.
Heads from the different sports organizations and school athletic directors in Davao City were also on hand. Some of the NSAs also came with their respective team muses.
Sports disciplines with two groups and whose heads and athletes attended the affair were chess, judo, volleyball and bowling.
DOLE-11 hires 70 enumerators, 7 supervisors in profiling vulnerable sectors in Davao Region
- Tuesday, March 4, 2014
- (PNA), SCS/ASA/LDP
DAVAO CITY, March 4 (PNA) -- The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional office here started profiling vulnerable sectors in the Davao Region this week.
DOLE-11 Regional Director Joffrey M. Suyao said a total of 70 enumerators and seven supervisors were hired to cover the areas of Compostela Valley Province, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Davao Oriental and Davao City.
He said the profiling program will be implemented in 16 regions in the country to give due attention to vulnerable workers and to uphold its commitment to the International Labor Organization (ILO).
Suyao said that to come up with sound interventions, appropriate programs and probably policy and legislation to protect vulnerable workers, the profiling will cover the informal economy sector, child laborers and their parents, including those in the sugarcane industry.
He said that the DOLE wants a more informed decision as it crafts intervention and programs for the vulnerable sectors.
“We want to be more realistic and grounded in our planning and budgeting as we create intervention for the vulnerable workers,” he said.
The ILO defines vulnerable workers as those who are less likely to have formal work arrangements and lack elements associated with decent employment such as social security, health benefits and recourse to social dialogue or effective collective bargaining mechanisms.
“Davao City profiling will be focused on those household with child laborers; Davao del Sur will be targeted more on sugarcane workers; and the other regions to focus on informal sectors,” Suyao said.
"In Davao Region, we expect to cover some 16,000 families with child laborers and sugarcane workers and about 12,000 families in the informal sector," he added.
Nearly 2-T people sign-up as organ donors in Davao event
- Monday, March 3, 2014
- (PIA/RG Alama)
DAVAO CITY March 3- Last Friday (February 28) an estimated 1,941 persons signed up as organ donors in the Davao leg of the Guinness World Record for the most number of organ donor registrants.
Davao City’s numbers however was not sufficient to overtake the Indian record which took place in Ahmedabad, India last September 17, 2013. The Indians held then the singe-hour record of 2,755 registrants (for one site) and an eight-hour record of 10,450 registrants.
Davao had 944 registrants (high) for a single hour registration and had 1,941 people signing up for an eight hour registration.
The single hour record was grabbed by Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) which had 3,548 registrants. However the eight hour record is still in Indian hands as the six other sites failed to overtake the current world record.
Other sites in the country participating in the Guinness World Record attempt included Marikina City, La Union, Naga and Tuguegarao.
The Guinness Record was originally slated to be held last November 28 however typhoon Yolanda devastated Tacloban City, one of the original chosen sites for the Guinness attempt.
The country however established a multiple site world record of about 17,856 registrants from multiple sites. The Indian record attempt was only limited to a single site.
The Guinness World Record for organ donor registration was initiated by the Department of Health- Network of Organ Sharing and the Philippine Information Agency with support from different government agencies such as Center for Health Development-XI, Southern Philippine Medical Center, Philippine Army, Philippine National Police, the Commission of Higher Education and the City Government of Davao alongside private sector support.
The Davao world record attempt held at the Davao City Recreation Center (DCRC) is an public awareness campaign to tap the public as “lifeline” being organ donors. According to statistics the country lags in the ratio of organ donors per population with about .03% organ donors per a million population.
Spain is the current standard in organ donors with 35.3 people out of a million population who are registered organ donors. The United States had about 26 organ donors out of a million population.
DPWH confirms P30-M drainage project for Davao City
- Sunday, March 2, 2014
- (PNA), PDS/ASA/Lovely A. Carillo)
DAVAO CITY, March 2 (PNA) --The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is set to undertake two projects that will improve the drainage system of Davao City.
“As per request of the Mayor (Rodrigo Duterte) we are set to undertake a P20-million and a P10-million drainage projects for the city,” DPWH 11 director Mariano Alquiza said.
City Planning and Development Office chief Mario Luis J. Jacinto earlier said the city already got the commitment of DPWH for the inclusion of several drainage projects in the agency’s 2014 funding. He said among the priority areas for the drainage project are Barangay 23, Diversion Road and Boulevard.
Duterte has signed last week Executive Order No. 13 which reactivated the Task Force Drainage, thus renewing its efforts in addressing the city’s flooding problem.
The Task Force is composed of the City Mayor, head of the Drainage Management Unit (DMU) and the heads of the City Administrator's Office City Planning and Development Office and the City Engineer's Office. Among the Task Force Drainage members are representative from the City Environment and Natural Resources Office, General Service Office, Public Safety and Security Command Center, City Demolition Unit, City Legal Office, City Social Services and Development Office, Traffic Management Center, City Information Office, Committee of Public Works and Highways, Central 911, Head of the Office of the Barangay Cultural Communities Affair and Development, Department of Environment and Natural Resources- Davao City, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH)-Davao City, DPWH 11, and ABC president.
Duterte tasked the Task Force to evaluate and assess the city’s drainage system and flooding problem. It is also tasked to inspect the city’s drainage system, monitor infrastructure projects and source out funding for the implementation of drainage plans and project.
Jacinto said the city is bent on improving its drainage systems to mitigate flooding brought by climate change and urbanization.
A recent climate change adaptation study was conducted by CPDO in six pilot areas which were chosen for the study because of its high vulnerability to climate-change induced hazards. These are barangays Bucana (with a population of 20,165), Matina Pangi (7,600), Talomo Proper (19,955), Tigatto (11,955), Maa (13,389) and Matina Crossing (25,728). Most of the city’s informal settlers are found in these areas.
- Saturday, March 1, 2014
- (PNA), ASA/DIGNA D. BANZON/LDP
DAVAO CITY, Mar. 1 (PNA) -- Results of the SWS 2013 Enterprise Survey on Corruption indicated that private sector effort on the problem showed no improvement as to efforts on addressing the issue.
This according to Social Weather Stations president Mahar K. Mangahas in an interview after he presented the result in a Roadshow of "Boosting Regional Competitiveness through Public-Private Partnership" held on Friday at the Pinnacle Hotel in Davao City.
"The result showed a flat line on how private sector is addressing corruption," he said.
He said while there's a clamor for the government to act on corruption, the private sector must also do their share.
Mangahas said there is mark improvement as shown in the survey on how government addresses corruption under the Aquino administration.
He said it is very evident as results showed "flat line" with regards the private sector efforts to fight corruption.
Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) president Antonio T. dela Cruz in a separate interview said they really need to look at this even as he said they need to police their ranks.
Dela Cruz said there are concerns that they need to fix and they have started steps on how to address it.
He said they have a program in partnership with Makati Business Club on integrity initiatives.
This concern he said is also being discussed at the regional competitive council as the body not only is concern in addressing corruption in government but also in the private sector.
Meanwhile, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for Region 11 officer-in-charge Maria Belinda Q. Ambi, said although the result in the Davao Region of addressing corruption is high this could be insignificant.
But she stressed that the private sector must double their efforts to complement the aggressive efforts of the government in addressing corruption.
She said this concern is also being tackled regularly during industry cluster conferences because efforts both private and public sectors must be complementary.
As shown in the summary of findings of the survey it stated that those seeing "a lot" of corruption in the public sector rose 56 percent in 2013 (second-lowest since 2000), from 43 percent in 2012 (record-low).
It also showed that 42 percent say "most/almost all" companies in my sector of business give bribes to win government contracts, practically the same as the record-low 41 percent in 2012. And those with personal knowledge of public sector corruption in their sector of business in the last 3 months rose to 38 percent in 2012.
Those with "extensive knowledge" of the administration's anti-corruption efforts fell slightly to 35 percent in 2013, from 37 percent in 2012.
Respondents also said that the administration's steps to eradicate corruption are "somewhat/very effective" fell slightly to 73 percent in 2013, from 78 percent in 2012. Those saying that government “often/almost always” punishes corrupt goverment officials fell to 20 percent in 2013, from 27 percent in 2012.
Citation of private sector corruption being “a lot” is 9 percent in 2013, more or less flat since 2003. Citations that “most/almost all” companies in their sector of business give bribes to win private sector contracts fell from 27 percent in 2012 to 23 percent in 2013, but still higher than all in 2006-2009.
It also cited that corrupt executives in their sector of business are “often/almost always” punished fell from record-high 60 percent in 2012 to 55 percent in 2013.
Enterprises with clear rules on giving gifts to government officials are 48 percent in both 2013 and 2012.
The survey indicates citations that “almost all” companies in my line of business conduct honest business practices are FLAT.
It also showed that the business climate is GOOD
There is satisfaction that the national government is promoting a good climate reached new record-high 70 percent in 2013, versus 69 percent in 2012.
Satisfaction that the city government is promoting a good climate reached new high record of 67 percent in 2013, versus 64 percent in 2012.
Same survey indicated that business expectations for the next two years are excellent/good and has reached new record-high 76 percent in 2013.
Mangahas said the 2013 Survey of Enterprises on Corruption is the 11th in a series of surveys done by SWS since 2000.
The 2013 Survey was conducted with support from Australian Aid -- The Asia Foundation Partnership in the Philippines, and in partnership with the National Competitiveness Council and the Makati Business Club's Integrity Initiative Pogram.
Davao pushed as top Phl shopping destination
- Friday, February 28, 2014 12:00 am
- By Donnabelle L. Gatdula (The Philippine Star)
MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Tourism (DOT) is promoting Davao City as a prime shopping destination as it plays host to the first four-week-long shopping frenzy in the Philippines.
DOT assistant secretary Arturo Boncato Jr. said in a press conference that the event is expected to boost local tourism in the city by at least 15 percent.
Last year, the city held a similar sale event during the celebration of Araw ng Dabaw, attracting some 170,000 tourists into the city.
Boncato said this year’s sale event would likely surpass the previous tourists arrival level and hit the 190,000 mark.
“It did not take long for all seven malls to join forces and partner with the DOT in positioning Davao City as a shopping destination in the country. When the country’s largest malls started opening up in the city over the last two years, competition became stiff that Dabawenos, closest to two million of them, may not suffice to sustain the malls’ viability. This reality in Davao’s retail industry of late caught the attention of all these mall executives to formally organize the RAD and partner with us in conceptualizing the Big Davao Fun Sale to attract foreign tourist and shoppers outside of Davao,” Boncato said.
He said the city currently has 6,500 room accommodations and 34 flights a day from all over the Philippines. Davao International Airport recently opened flights from Singapore. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
Power supply, he said, is also not a problem as they have their own back-up power station located within the city. “Davao City is one of the few cities in the South which has practically no power supply problem,” he added.
The DOT official also assured the safety and security in the city. “That is foremost on our agenda. That’s a nice thing that we have tied up with the local government of Davao. This event has become an integral part of the Araw ng Dabaw celebration wherein a very stringent public safety program would be deployed,” he said.
The event will start on March 14, just two days before the Araw ng Dabaw, and will last until April 16, a day before Holy Week begins.
Geared towards establishing the city as a unique, fun and preferred shopping and dining destination in the country and improving the image of Davao as a thriving destination for business and investment, the city’s major malls will be offering fantastic deals such as unique activities, freebies, awards and parties.
With discounts up to as high as 80 percent, participating markets include Abreeza Mall, Gaisano Mall of Davao, GMall of Toril, NCCC Mall Robinsons, SM City of Davao and SM Lanang Premier. Aside from the huge discounts, shoppers would also have a chance to win raffle prizes such as iphone 5 units, all-expense paid trips, and cash prizes worth up to P100,000.
Dev't of Davao City’s public market as a tourism hub now under way
- Thursday, February 27, 2014
- By Jenny Grace M. Mendoza [(PNA), ASA/JGMM/LDP]
DAVAO CITY, Feb. 27 (PNA) – Government leaders here have agreed to initiate moves to transform the Sasa Launch Facility into a prime tourism hub.
The facility, which is located at the Barangay Public Market in Km. 11, Barangay Sasa here is deemed to be a tourism center for visitors going to the Island Garden City of Samal (IGCS), Davao del Norte.
Tagged as the Sasa Tourism Gateway (STG) Project, Philippine Ports Authority Port District Office-Southern Mindanao (PDO-SoMin) manager Atty. Christian V. Santillan said it is an offshoot of the National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) to increase tourist arrivals by improving market access and connectivity.
Santillan added that it was conceptualized after a series of meetings among stakeholders “who strongly felt the need to upgrade the existing makeshift wooden boat landing to be able to welcome guests into a secure, safe and stable platform in Davao City”.
“We highly encourage this improvement project as the area is part of the Port Zone Delineation (PZD) of the Davao Port which requires multi-sectoral cooperation,” he said.
PPA revealed that Department of Tourism (DOT) assistant secretary Arturo P. Boncato, Jr. has urged the local government (LGU) of Davao City, being the main proponent of the project, to expedite the submission of the detailed plan to the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), which has already approved the P25 million budget for the upgrading of the pathway and lighting fixtures leading to the existing wooden wharf.
Meanwhile, the Davao City Tourism Office (CTO) and City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) have initially expressed the inclusion of a travelers’ nook in its proposal which will be prepared by the City Engineer’s Office (CEO).
The nook will include a modern passenger terminal, comfort rooms and kiosks for food/beverage to boost tourist services.
On the other hand, Barangay Sasa chieftain Juanito E. Flores, Jr. has expressed enthusiasm over the project, saying it is a very much-awaited “facelift” of the public market where most foreign and local backpacking tourists, adventure seekers and holiday vacationers pass through to catch the launches which ferry them to IGCS, which is just about 10 minutes away.
The project is expected to be implemented within the year, the village chief said.
Davao City's trade industry posts 462-million US dollars in 2013
- Wednesday, February 26, 2014
- By Judy G. Quiros [(PNA), CTB/ASA/JGQ/LDP]
DAVAO CITY, Feb 26 (PNA) -- The trading industry of Davao City is headed to a bright direction registering 462 -million US dollars in both exports and imports in 2013.
Based on the 2013 economic situationer and outlook for Davao in 2014 furnished by the Davao City Investment and Promotion Center (DCIPC), although export figures rose by only 1.3 percent, imports however almost doubled from 613 million US dollars in 2012 to 1.1 billion US dollars in 2013. This resulted to a balance of trade value of 2 million.
Banana remains as the number one export dollar earner for both the city and the region outsmarting other traded commodities like coconut oil, rubber, desiccated coconut and pineapple both fresh and canned. Top import commodities on the other hand, include mineral fuels/mineral oils, fertilizers, cereals, miscellaneous chemical products and plastics.
DCIPC chief Ivan Chin Cortez said figures of the city’s trading industry are sourced from Bureau of Customs.
Japan remains the number one destination of Davao products for two decades registering the highest on export value of 425,476,820 US dollars in 2013. China follows for Davao biggest buyers with export value at 208,761,352 US dollars. Netherland came 3rd and Korea 4th. The United States which used to be the 2nd biggest buyer in the last two decades came in 5th last year, Cortez said.
The other top ten biggest buyers of Davao’s products are: Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Iran, and Switzerland.
World-class medical complex for Japanese elderly to rise in Davao City
- Tuesday, February 25, 2014
- (PNA), FPV/ASA/JUDY G. QUIROS/LDP
DAVAO CITY, Feb. 25 (PNA) -- A Japanese investor will develop a world-class 300 bedroom Hospital Care and Training Center that would cater to Japanese elderly.
Davao City Investment and Promotion Center (DCIPC) chief Ivan Cortez at the Davao Business Forum here, said the Japanese investor will also provide scholarship for a three-month care giving training to about 1,000 Davaoños, who while on training will be paid, Cortez said.
Also, the caregivers will receive about P200,000.00 monthly salary.
The proposed hospital and training center will be built in Catigan, Toril. Ground breaking is set in October this year.
Cortez said the medical complex will be world class at one client per room. It is a high-end facility for the insurers of the Japanese oldies will not allow their clients to stay in low-class medical center, he added.
He said according to the Japanese investor, there are about one million Japanese clients of an insurance company who are in the waiting list for care services.
The Japanese investor is married to a Filipina thus his interest to venture into such business.
The investment comes along with a retirement village for Japanese nationals.
Cortez however said details of the project are not yet available.
500 Mindanao masons converged in Davao City
- Monday, February 24, 2014
- By Cha Monforte
MORE than 500 members of masonic lodges in Mindanao ended their two-day Mindanao communication on Friday at Grand Men Seng Hotel Davao in Davao City.
“It was actually a convention, which we called communication. We had a very successful event,” said Felicisimo Ramos Sr., grand lecturer of Masonic Lodge 149 in Davao City.
Ramos said the national communication of masons is scheduled on the third week of April in Metro Manila.
The Mindanao masonic affair was graced by national mason grand master Juanito Espino and Mindanao mason grand master Floren Lumo.
It was hosted by Masonic District R 11-A, which is composed of seven masonic lodges in Davao City and one in Digos, Davao del Sur. The other masonic lodges in the Davao region include Masonic District R11-B, composed of two masonic lodges in Tagum City, Davao del Norte, and two masonic lodges in Mati, Davao Oriental.
Ramos said 10 Mindanaoans had become masonic national grand masters. Among those coming from Davao City were businessman Desiderio Dalisay, physician Rizal Aportadera and former Public Works Regional Director Juanito Avergas.
Wikipedia describes freemasonry or masonry as referring to “a civic movement promoting fraternity and good works. Freemasonry defines itself as “a regular system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.”
Davao scientist discovers way to fight Panama disease (Feature)
- Sunday, February 23, 2014
- By Aurelio A. Pena [(PNA), CTB/ASA/AURELIO A. PENA/LDP]
DAVAO CITY, Feb 23 (PNA) -- No one believes you these days if you always think “out of the box” because you don’t want to conform to the “traditional” or “conventional” way of doing things.
Take for instance, the problem of licking the problem of Panama wilt disease, which is wreaking havoc not only to the Philippine banana industry but also to banana plantations in Honduras, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Africa, Australia and other countries trying to grow Cavendish bananas for export.
Faced by a widespread Panama attack to almost all Cavendish banana farms all over Mindanao, the Philippine government thru the agriculture department has set aside hundreds of millions of pesos to fight this plant disease that usually crop up during heavy flooding after heavy rains.
Most of this money goes to the pockets of “consultants” with names followed by “Ph.D’s” , who do a lot of deep research work and experiments and make recommendations, using conventional methods according to the all books they read about this dreadful disease.
Since they all do it “by the book”, they’ll recommend the intensive use of chemical pesticides, chemical fertilizers and other chemicals to fight this plant disease -- a market bonanza for big multi-million dollar foreign chemical companies supplying them to banana companies all over the world.
But the findings of a little-known Davao banana scientist here seemed to be working better than other research experiments being done by other groups, most especially the one funded by the Department of Agriculture, using “Cavendish” clones developed by Taiwanese scientists.
This local scientist, known as “Dr. Castillo” who was formerly a research director of an American banana company in Davao found out that the Panama wilt disease is not really a “disease” problem but a “nutritional problem” --- a theory that was rejected by almost all the banana firms in the Davao Region. Behind his back, they were all laughing at him when he kept insisting that this supposed “dreadful disease” is simply a “nutritional problem”.
This is what happens to you when you think “out of the box”, according to Koronado Apuzen, executive director of the Foundation for Agrarian Reform Cooperatives in Mindanao or FARMCOOP, whose farmers’ coop plantation in Panabo volunteered the use of their affected farm areas to test this theory of Dr. Castillo.
Most of the soil underneath Davao banana plantations, according to Dr Castillo, have “lost all its nutrients” after more than 60 years of absorbing all kinds of chemicals--- pesticides, fertilizers, etc. Fact is, this is something he had known all along since he was still with the banana export firm he was working for, but he didn’t want to antagonize his bosses and the chemical suppliers with his theory on the possible cause of Panama wilt disease.
Together with six foreign scientists from the Netherlands, Italy, Africa, USA, Australia and Costa Rica, along with Philippine scientists from UP Mindanao, I saw the farm experiment--- how it’s done and the impressive results on treated banana plants. Dr. Castillo’s theory was clearly working and all the banana scientists were all impressed.
“We’re very, very impressed with what you’ve done so far,” says Dr. Gert Kema, a Dutch scientist from Wageningen University, the Netherlands who saw how the treatments were done on the banana plants.
It was all the more impressive because all the treatments made on affected banana plants were done using only ORGANIC pesticide and fertilizer. The organic pesticide was 100% organic from Japan that Apuzen even drank a few gulps just to prove it’s really organic.
Fertilizer used on the affected plants was also pure organic made from chicken manure, coco peat, banana rejects, burnt palay, etc produced by the Organic Producers and Exporters Corporation, the trading arm of FARMCOOP.
A scientist from UP Mindanao , visibly impressed after watching the demo by a farmers’ coop on fighting Panama wilt disease, told the visiting foreign scientists that “this can be nominated for a Novel Prize” for discovering a natural treatment for the dreaded plant disease.
Question is : Have we finally found the cure to fight Panama disease in all the world’s banana plantations?
Developer to build Davao power plant
- Saturday, February 22, 2014 12:01 am
- By Yas Ocampo
DAVAO CITY, Davao del Sur --- Energy developer San Lorenzo Ruiz Builders proposed to establish a 140 megawatt river hydropower plant along the Davao and Tamugan Rivers, officials said.
Councilor Louie Bonguyan said officials of the company have presented their proposal to the city council, which referred their plan to the energy committee for deliberation.
“They showed their plans to members of the city council,” said Bonguyan, who is the energy committee chairman.
The developers hope to start feasibility study this year and get the necessary permits and endorsement of the local governments and indigenous peoples. They hope to complete engineering design by 2016 and create the access roads and the line routes.
San Lorenzo Ruiz President and Chief Executive Officer Oscar Violago said the company hopes to supply the power needs of Davao City and the whole island of Mindanao.
Firm donates road signs to Davao City
- Friday, February 21, 2014
- By Arianne Caryl N. Casas
AS part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR), the Union Galvasteel Corp. donated a total of 241 pieces of road signs to the City Government of Davao, specifying maximum allowable speeds in the metropolis.
Engineer Erwin L. Tongco, senior marketing manager for Mindanao operations, said 109 out of 241 units were already put up on certain roads in the city.
The turnover of the 109 units was held last Tuesday, he said.
"We are still working on the remaining units. Hopefully, it will be completed before Kadayawan (in August)," he said.
Tongco said the company allocated some P700,000 to P800,000 budget for the project. Each road sign costs P2,800, he said.
He said the signage was based on the design of the City Engineer's Office, which also identified the strategic points on where to put up the signages.
Tongco said the company and the City Government of Davao will sign a memorandum of agreement on the road signs upon the completion of the units.
"We have been the city's partner for traffic signs since 2005," Tongco said.
The Union Galvasteel also donated the waiting shed being put up at the corner of La Verna Hills Subdivision, Tongco said.
Mayor Rodrigo Duterte ordered the implementation of the speed limit in the city, following the national law Republic Act 4136 or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code of the Philippines enacted in June 1964, whose only amendment was through Presidential Decree No. 843, which only tackled vehicle registration fees.
He signed the Executive Order 39 on October 29, 2013. The EO 39 mandates drivers of all vehicles plying in the city must observe a maximum speed of 30 kph from J.P Laurel Ave. Alcantara to Bolton/Generoso Bridge, from Buhangin Crossing-Milan to Bolton/Generoso Bridge, from C.P Garcia Highway-Bacaca Road to Bolton/Generoso Bridge, and from C.P Garcia Highway-Angliongto St. to Bolton/Generoso Bridge.
The EO mandates a 60 kilometer per hour (kph) speed limit from Sirawan to Ulas Crossing, from Lasang to Panacan, from Calinan to Ulas Crossing, and from C.P Gracia Highway-McArthur Highway to Panacan.
Meanwhile, for vehicles that traverse from Ulas to Generoso Bridge/Bolton Bridge, from Panacan Crossing to J.P Laurel Avenue-Alcantara, and from Ma-a Road Diversion to McArthur Highway, a maximum speed of 40 kph is mandated.
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