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Iloilo City News

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The Dinagyang is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City, Philippines held on the fourth Sunday of January, or right after the Sinulog In Cebu and the Ati-Atihan in Aklan.


CAAP, MARINA say all systems go

By Leonard T. Pineda I (JCM/LTP/PIA-Iloilo)

ILOILO CITY, April 16 (PIA) --- The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) in Western Visayas assured that all systems are in place to ensure a safe and convenient observance of the Holy Week.

This is in line with the Oplan Ligtas Biyahe of the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) that has instructed all transport agencies to take necessary measures to ensure security at terminals and stations, quick response capability in cases of emergencies, and enhanced facilities and services to meet the needs of our travelers during this peak season.

CAAP-6 said that they have set up information desks in all airports in the region including the Iloilo International Airport in Cabatuan town here since April 11 and will run until April 22.

The help desks are positioned in the arrival and departure areas with personnel ready to handle passengers’ questions and concerns.

CAAP-6 said that they are also conducting random airport facility inspections.

Meanwhile, MARINA-6 has also been conducting random monitoring of all passenger vessels in all ports in the region since April 2 and will run until April 18.

MARINA-6 has put-up public assistance desks that are ready and prepared to respond to any maritime incident immediately.

CAAP-6 and MARINA-6 are mandated to be on heightened alert during the observance of Holy Week.

For CAAP-6 hotlines, call 329-9500 local 3312 for police assistance and local 3287 for civil service intelligence. For MARINA-6 in case of complaints and queries, call 329-6490.

Iloilo breaks new Guinness world record for largest flaming image


ILOILO CITY, April 15 (PNA) -- Rain could not even hamper placing the Philippines, particularly Iloilo’s name, again in the Guinness Book of World Records for lighting up a total of 56,680 candles on a 20-hectare vacant lot located within the Savannah City in Oton, Iloilo, Monday night.

The lighted candles were formed by thousands of volunteers into its “Light of Peace” logo and its motto, “World Peace Through Inner Peace” with the Philippines map on its side while the other candles were also lit reaching the 100,000 goal.

The Middle Way Meditation Institute (MMI) of Thailand organized the event.

The country broke the record of Pakistan of 35,478 lighted candles four years ago.

Guest and former Senator Manuel Villar Jr. said our country has suffered from conflicts, violence and calamities but peace can be attained.

“We will continue the spirit of community beyond this event to continue cultivating that peace is possible”, he said.

Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Armin Luistro said peace has been the dream of all nations.

“We should not stop dreaming big and very big. Every dream begins within. Let’s just watch miracle as lights merge with 100,000 candles”, he said.

MMI chairperson Anant Asavabokhin said no such happiness could ever explain experiencing the joy brought by meditation within. "Seeking happiness could be found in the center of the body and the everlasting peace that we are longing for has already come true," he said.

One of the volunteers Lilibeth Huergo said they are very lucky to be part of making the new record of largest flaming in world. She said as one of the homeowners, they are blessed to witness the event just outside their residence.

“It is very amazing and something that we are very proud of”, she said.

Since last year, Iloilo has started making its name in the field of world records for releasing simultaneously 15, 185 sky lanterns in just a single event at the University of the Philippines–Visayas Miag-ao campus breaking the record of Romania's 12, 470 lanterns released in 2012.

Iloilo is food-ready for APEC 2015


ILOILO CITY, April 14 (PNA) -– Business establishments catering to the food industry in this southern city are ready to serve some 1,500 guests and delegates to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) 2015 conference with Iloilo City hosting the Ministerial Conference on Food Security slated on October 15-17, 2015.

The Iloilo Business Club and the Department of Tourism regional office here, in collaboration with the Iloilo Hotel, Restaurant and Resort Association (IHRRA) recently finished a training on international cuisine designed primarily for APEC delegates.

The mentoring and certification on food preparation and presentation for APEC 2015 was highlighted by a graduation of chefs and cooks. However, the DOT said the training on international cuisine is ongoing as more business establishments in the food industry is sprouting in the city.

On the other hand, a seminar on the preparation of halal food is being planned for the first quarter of 2015. The DOT regional office, the city government of Iloilo and IHRRA will be on the front line in food presentation for APEC delegates mostly composed of Muslim country representatives.

APEC is composed of 21 member nations and only the Philippines is considered a Christian country while the rest are Muslims and other Asian races. The Ministerial Conference on Food Security is spearheaded by the Department of Agriculture and Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Similarly, DA Regional Director Larry Nacionales said that Western Visayas is a top food producer of the country and there is no fear of acute shortage of food materials for the specific needs and taste of APEC delegates.

Nacionales said the region is ready to supply food materials including halal food not only to the APEC delegates but also for the burgeoning international community and business locators in the city and province of Iloilo.

Digital media, climate change up in IO training


ILOILO CITY, April 13 (PIA) – The Philippine Information Agency in Western Visayas is set to facilitate training on “Maximizing the Use of Digital Media, Social Networks for Climate Change Mitigation and Tourism Promotions.”

This three-day live-in training will be on May 7-9, 2014 at the Sarabia Manor Hotel and Convention Center, Iloilo City.

PIA-6 Director Janet Mesa said the recent calamities in the region have shown the importance of the digital media and social networks in effecting fast response, recovery and rehabilitation of hard-hit areas.

“The front liners here are our disaster risk reduction and management officers, information officers and even tourism officers,” Mesa said.

The training, Mesa said, is intended to equip these front liners with ample knowledge and skills in the effective use of the digital media and relevant applications.

Among the resource persons are Dr. Cedric Daep of Albay Provincial Government, Max Limpag of Innopub, Cebu City and a host of other experts, on topics like Blogging, Cyber Ethics, Infographics, Effective Social Media Tips/Tools and Mindset, Online Journalism.

PIA will partner with Smart Communications which will provide the speakers during the seminar.

“Smart Communications has always been supporting our training initiatives and we hope to make this work well with our partners in government agencies and the grassroots,” Mesa said.

Mesa added that it is also the aim of the training to develop among the front liners the confidence to use the digital media as an indispensable tool in their work, especially in promoting development through climate change mitigation.

For other details, interested participants may inquire from the PIA Information Centers in the provinces, or at the Regional Office through telephone numbers (033-3378719/509-09-93)

Citywide cleanup today

By Lucy Montealto-Sinay (Iloilo City PIO/PN)

ILOILO City — All 180 barangays here and city government officials and employees will take part in a citywide cleanup today from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said the activity is in line with Bayani Challenge 2014, the “largest volunteer action in history.”

Participants are encouraged to tie a yellow ribbon on their wrist, document their activity and post pictures on the official Facebook page created specifically for the event.

All the barangays will upload their pictures on the Doc Jed Mabilog Facebook account.

“Together with a million volunteers in 12 provinces, let us put our faith into action by rendering service to our communities,” Mabilog said in a memorandum on the cleanup.

Mabilog led the launching of Bayani Challenge in Ateneo de Iloilo yesterday.

Eleven towns in Iloilo province will soon hold their respective activities related to Bayani Challenge: Batad, Sta. Barbara, Concepcion, Sara, New Lucena, Dumangas, Carles, Barotac Viejo, Ajuy, Estancia and Pototan.

Organized by Gawad Kalinga, the event seeks to gather one million volunteers to aid in nation-building efforts for disaster-stricken provinces in Visayas and Mindanao.

Activities from April 9 to June 12 will include building of homes, repair of classrooms, mangrove planting, coastal cleanups and health missions.

The summer event has earned support from Malacañang, with no less than a memorandum from Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. encouraging the participation of all heads of departments, agencies and instrumentalities of the national government, including government-owned and -controlled corporations, state universities and colleges, and local government units.

Take the Bayani Challenge: Build and transform lives

By Jaime S. Cabag, Jr. (JCM/JSC-PIA6)

ILOILO CITY, April 11 (PIA6) -- Gawad Kalinga’s 2014 Bayani Challenge through its summer activities is embarking on a journey to build and transform families, homes and communities in Iloilo affected by typhoon “Yolanda” and thus contribute to nation-building.

This is the gist of the message shared by former Ateneo de Manila University president and Gawad Kalinga champion Fr. Bienvenido F. Nebres, S.J. at the launching on Friday, April 11 of the 2014 Bayani Challenge at the Ateneo de Iloilo gym attended by hundreds of GK leaders, organizers and volunteers.

Fr. Nebres, who has actively joined Gawad Kalinga in its community activities since 2003, said this would be the ultimate triumph of the program and where families are bound by better and stronger relations with God, their own members and community and others.

Speaking before Fr. Nebres’ turn, GK Iloilo head Mary Rose Cacho said that together with its volunteers Bayani Challenge will not only build houses of survivors destroyed by the November 2013 super typhoon but will build them better and more beautiful.

And in keeping with the GK mission, Cacho said we will build lives, give back to the least, and empower the weakest through the bayanihan, which is a uniquely Filipino trait.

The grand opening ceremonies ushered in hometown activities that will bring Bayani Challenge to Iloilo City and the municipalities of Batad, Sta. Barbara, Conception, Sara, Dumangas, New Lucena, Carles, Ajuy, Barotac Viejo, and Estancia.

New Lucena was the host of Bayani Challenge 2013. This year, it’s Iloilo City’s turn to host the event. During the launch, Mayor Liezel Mondejar Seville turned over the GK Bayani Challenge host flag to Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog.

Mabilog said the city is giving some 16,000 volunteers to the BC 2014 activities here. The GK San Isidro Villages in Jaro district and GK Uswag-Smart-PLDT Amazing Village in Sooc, Arevalo are the sites of Bayani Challenge in the host city.

The mayors and representative officials of the municipalities involved this year were formally introduced as part of the opening ceremonies.

Bayani Challenge activities will include house-building, Paraisong Pambata, health training, school refurbishing, balangay boat making, relief operations, river and coastal cleanup, psychological first aid, rehabilitation of GK villages, tree and mangrove planting, and building of artificial reef and marine sanctuary.

The event has for its theme “Walang Iwanan”. The nationwide program of GK targets to have 1 million volunteers.

DENR, PIA join forces for intensified IEC on climate change

By Leonard T. Pineda I (LTP/PIA-Iloilo)

ILOILO CITY, April 10 (PIA) --- The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-6 and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA)-6 have joined forces to intensify the information, education, and communication (IEC) campaign on climate change mitigation.

In the joint DENR-PIA workshop on held Tuesday, DENR-6 Regional Executive Director Jim Sampulna said that climate change is upon us so there is a need to strengthen the IEC utilizing the information expertise of the PIA.

“PIA will serve as the voice box in this campaign with DENR providing the necessary technical expertise,” he said.

The DENR and PIA has signed a memorandum of agreement that would pave way for the conduct of a nationwide advocacy and social mobilization campaign on climate change adaptation and mitigation among the various sectors of society.

Under the agreement, PIA will provide technical, administrative and management services in the implementation of Climate Change Advocacy Campaign in the regional level.

Likewise, PIA will develop and maintain social media community and platform and organize networks of program advocates in the region.

PIA will also organize and conduct advocacy events and activities including campus tours and community fora in the region.

The DENR official said that he also want the IEC to include the Oplan SWIM or the Sustainable Work plan for Iloilo River Management.

Oplan SWIM is DENR’s comprehensive work plan for the rehabilitation of the Iloilo River system and its creek tributaries such as the Dungon and Calajunan creeks.

Iloilo City FL lauds outstanding women awardees

By Lilibeth A. French (JCM/LAF/PIA6)

ILOILO CITY, April 9 (PIA6) - - Iloilo City First Lady Maria Victoria Griengo-Mabilog lauded the awardees of The Outstanding Women of Iloilo City (TOWIL) 2014 for being in the forefront of inspiring and effecting beneficial and significant change in the community.

Mabilog who is also the Founding President of the Red Ladies Iloilo, Inc. was the guest speaker during the TOWIL 2014 awarding ceremony at Robinson’s Place-Iloilo, recently.

Among the recipient of this year’s TOWIL award is Elsa Subong, Philippine Information Agency – Iloilo Information Center Manager who was recognized for her contribution in media, public information and journalism.

Other awardees include Dr. Diana Aure (Academe), Mary Pauline Gorriceta-Banusing (Business, Corporation and Entrepreneurship), Fely Batiloy (Culture and Arts), Meldy Castor (Differently-Abled Persons), Ma. Rita Bascos-Sarabia (Judiciary), Febite Ibojos (NGO/Civic Organizations), Cheryl Duenas (Professional Service), J/Insp. Imee Lopera (Protective Services), Sr. Rosamond Marie Abadesco (Religious Sector) Dr. Mary Jane Amar (Science and Technology) and Punong Barangay Cherrie Lebrillo (Volunteerism, Social & Community Service)

In her message, Mabilog said the awardees who were unanimously chosen for their exemplary performance in their respective fields are proof that women regardless of socio-economic status can do anything, can achieve every goal if they set their minds to.

She cited them for their contribution in community building, promoting responsible citizenship, serving as role models of their peers and the future generations and helping the City Mayor turned Iloilo City into a world class, law abiding and disciplined population center that “we all can be proud of”.

“As a fellow Ilonggo, I believe it is in your blood and character not just to advocate but to actively work so that Iloilo City realizes its vision and aspirations. I am confident that you will continue to do so,” said Mabilog.

She also urged these women exemplars to continue to be partners of the City Mayor and everyone working in the government to push Iloilo City forward to the pinnacle of greatness.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, City Councilors Liezl Joy Zulueta Salazar, Nielex Tupas, Joshua Alim, Armand Parcon and past awardees including PIA 6 Director Atty. Janet Mesa attended the awarding ceremony which marked the culmination of the Women Month celebration in the city.

The event carrying the theme of this year’s Women Monthy celebration “Juana, Ang Tatag Mo ay Tatag Natin sa Pagbangon at Pagsulong” was spearheaded by the Iloilo City Council’s Committee on Women and Family Relations Moral Values and Recovery chaired by Zulueta and the Iloilo City Government Gender and Development Team.

Holiday, events to mark Araw ng Kagitingan

By Leonard T. Pineda I (JCM/LAF/PIA6)

ILOILO CITY, April 8 (PIA6) - - The heroism of Filipino veterans during World War II will be commemorated in this city through various events on April 9, Araw ng Kagitingan which is declared a regular holiday nationwide.

Presidential Proclamation No. 466 series of 1989 also declares the period April 5 to 11 of every year as Philippine Veterans Week in the country.

Currently, the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office 6 (PVAO 6) is in coordination with the provincial and city government of Iloilo, Department of Tourism, and the different veterans associations in the preparations for the Sunrise Ceremony to be held at the Balantang Memorial Cemetery National Shrine in Balantang, Jaro starting at 7 AM on Wednesday.

PVAO 6 Director Janet Faderan said the activity will be done simultaneously in the different identified sites across the country on April 9.

A Malacanang report said that President Benigno Aquino III will lead the commemoration in Mt. Samal National Shrine, Pilar, Bataan.

To further raise public awareness on the observance of these two events this year, the 3rd Civil Military Operations Batallion, 3rd Infantry Division of the Philippine Army will host a Photo and Static Display at SM City Mandurriao starting from April 8 to 10.

The event carrying the theme “Dagyaw Para sa Kalinaw” (Convergence of Peace) will feature Photo Exhibit, Historical and Audio Visual Presentations, Static Display of Military Hardware and Disaster Response and Rescue Equipage.

Elementary and high-school students will be given the opportunity to show their creativity and artistic talent in the poster making contest that is set on April 9.

Also, government agencies will get the chance to showcase their uniforms through a Ramp Show on April 8 and 9.

3CMOB Operations Officer Cpt. Russel Anthony Bumanglag said some of the agencies that confirmed their participation in the Ramp Show are the Philippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection, Philippine Air Force, Philippine National Red Cross, Department of Social Welfare and Development, among others.

A blood-letting activity will also be undertaken at the second floor of the mall from 10 AM to 3 PM on April 9.

Awarding of trophies for the winners in the poster making contest, photo gallery and ramp show and live performance from the Philippine Army Band will culminate the three-day event.

Bumanglag said the activities are done in partnership with the local government units and agencies, civil society and non-government organizations, business, and religious groups in Iloilo to also promote the Army’s Bayanihan concept of “Winning the Peace”.

Iloilo launches Beach Forest program

By Leonard T. Pineda I (JCM/LTP/PIA-Iloilo)

ILOILO CITY, April 7 (PIA) --- The Iloilo provincial government established a beach forest in Tigbauan town here to restore mangrove areas in order to fight the adverse effects of climate change.

Dr. Rex Sadaba, professor at the University of the Philippines Visayas, said the Iloilo province is pioneer in the country to launch a beach forest program.

The project covers 10 hectares of shoreline spanning Barangays 9, Poblacion, Atabayan, Barroc and Baguingin. It will cost P197-million for one year of implementation.

Sadaba said that the beach forest is a mixed association of creepers, shrubs, and trees above the high tide level. These species form an impenetrable thicket in pristine forests and referred to as “beach jungle” by early explorers.

He said that the beach forest has a bioshield function which serves as protection against storm surges, prevents coastal erosion, provides medicines and has a great potential for industrial applications.

Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. urged the Ilonggos to support this program to care for the environment and avert the revenge of nature as shown by the huge impact of super typhoon Yolanda particularly in northern Iloilo towns.

The establishment of the beach forest is part of the Action for Regreening and Transformation for Climate Change Adaptation (ART for CCA) program of the provincial government.

The official launching also kicked off the celebration for the 113th founding anniversary of Iloilo province.

Montinola Bridge better, stronger


ILOILO City – The Montinola Bridge in Jaro district is deemed better and stronger than it was before it was retrofitted.

The bridge is now open to traffic after a month of repairs.

The retrofitting had a total budget of P27 million, said District Engineer Rodney Gustilo of the Department of Public Works and Highways.

The 57-year-old Montinola Bridge links the city to the town of Leganes, Iloilo and other central and northern Iloilo municipalities.

An estimated 44,800 vehicles use the bridge daily.

“We finished the retrofitting before our target date because we doubled our effort,” said Gustilo.

The repairs were initially thought to last for some four months.

During the repairs, passenger jeepneys from northern Iloilo and private vehicles took alternate roads to enter and leave the city.

Public utility jeepneys (PUJs) – Leganes-La Paz route, Balabago-Bitoon, Jaro Liko-NFA and Jaro Liko-Tagbak – took the adjacent Washington Bridge.

The rest of the PUJs bound for the city took either the circumferential road in Brgy. Buhang, Jaro district and exit in Brgy. Ungka II, Pavia town, or the coastal road that led to La Granja St. in La Paz district.

They took the same route on return trip.

In a related development, two more bridges will be repaired, this time in La Paz district – the Loboc and Rizal bridges.

Repairs will start sometime this month.

DPWH said the two bridges were already structurally unsafe for vehicles, especially big trucks.

The Loboc Bridge repair has a budget of P14 million while the Rizal Bridge, P18 million.

Megaworld allots P5 B for Iloilo office towers

By Neil Jerome C. Morales with Jennifer Rendon (The Philippine Star)

MANILA, Philippines - Megaworld Corp., the flagship firm of property tycoon Andrew L. Tan, allotted P5 billion to put up numerous office towers in its P35-billion township project in Western Visayas.

In a disclosure, Megaworld said that within a decade, it will build 10 office towers in the 72-hectare Iloilo Business Park, the firm’s single largest project outside Metro Manila.

“Iloilo Business Park is positioned to be Western Visayas’ biggest cyberpark and a major hub for information technology-business process outsourcing (IT-BPO) outside of Metro Manila,” said Megaworld first vice-president Jericho P. Go.

“More and more BPO companies have already expressed strong interest to set up operations in Iloilo Business Park. Most of them are first-time locators,” Go said.

The office towers will provide a total of about 100,000 square meters (sqm.) of office space inventory for the biggest cyberpark in Western Visayas. It will generate around 30,000 jobs in the IT-BPO sector.

Under the first phase at the township’s IT-BPO cluster, three office towers will start operations this year: One Global Center, Two Global Center and the Richmonde Tower. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

Colorado-based StarTek Inc., one of the leading BPOs with call centers located throughout the US, Latin America, Canada, Honduras, and Costa Rica, will be the first company to set up operations in Two Global Center tower in August.

The four-story tower has a total of 9,000 sqm. of office spaces that can accommodate around 2,600 workers.

“With StarTek coming in to jumpstart our cyberpark operations, we see Iloilo City rising fast to become a major BPO hub in the region,” Go said.

To date, Megaworld is the Philippines’ leading office space developer and landlord with around 27 corporate office towers across the country. It will complete 10 more office towers this year located in Uptown Bonifacio, The Mactan Newtown, Iloilo Business Park and McKinley Hill.

Megaworld earlier announced that it is expanding its office space inventory to 712,000 sqm. this year, cementing its leadership in the office space segment.

So far, around 110,000 employees are working in Megaworld’s township projects like Eastwood City in Quezon City and McKinley Hill in Bonifacio Global City.

Iloilo vies as bike-friendly city


ILOILO CITY, April 4 (PNA)– This southern city is vying to become a bike-friendly city by promoting the use of bicycles for daily commuting to work and school or simply for leisure.

A public hearing and consultation with stakeholders was held Friday, April 4 by the SP committee on transportation on the proposed ordinance filed by city councilor Jose Efrain Treñas requiring government and non-government buildings with existing parking spaces to provide a safe bicycle parking zone.

Treñas said the recent highly successful bike festival showed the enthusiastic appreciation of people on the use of bicycle spurred by the construction of a bicycle lane in the expanded diversion road here.

The city councilor said the bike festival launched into consciousness of the Ilonggos the share-a-road movement and the need to promote biking as an alternative healthy and environmentally sound mode of transportation.

Treñas said his proposed measure will urge the city government to require building and establishment owners with existing parking spaces to allot a portion thereof as parking area for bicycles and to install bike racks for their employees, customers, clients, visitors and guests.

Bicycle racks must be provided by the building owners and must be made out of sturdy metal or aluminum securely attached to the pavement. Bike owners must provide their own locks to secure their own bicycle when parked on the bicycle rack.

Building owners not complying with the provisions of the ordinance shall be penalized as follows: first offense with a notice of warning and within one month must comply by providing a bicycle rack.

Second offense will have a fine of Php 3,000 with another inspection within one month. Third offense will have a fine of Php 5,000 and revocation of business or lessor permit.

The proposed ordinance will be taken up next week for first reading by the city council.

All is set for Iloilo’s 113th anniversary this April


ILOILO, April 3 (PNA)-– Ilonggos will join hands in planting 5,000 mangrove propagules on Saturday to mark the start of the weeklong celebration of the province’s 113th founding anniversary.

Governor Arthur Defensor Sr., along with members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, will lead the ceremonial planting at 7:00 AM in Barangay Parara, Tigbauan town.

“We are inviting everybody to be part of this event. Let us all help restore the diversity of our marine resource,” he said.

This year’s Semana sang Iloilo revolves on the theme: “Padayon ang Reporma kag Pagbag-o” (Continue the Reform and Change).

After Saturday’s event, a thanksgiving mass will be held at the Provincial Capitol lobby at 8:30 AM on April 7.

This will be followed by the opening of Garden Show and “One Town One Product” Display at the Provincial Capitol’s parking area.

These exhibits will showcase the province’s native delicacies, agriculture and marine products.

At 2:00 PM on the same day, Executive Director Jerry Bionat of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) will hold a rescue exhibition and earthquake safety drill.

On April 8, an employee’s day and children’s party will be held at the Provincial Capitol lobby by the Provincial Human Resource Management Office from 9:00 AM-12:00 PM.

From 1:30 PM onwards, a stand-up comedy show and games for provincial government employees will be held by the Public Information and Community Affairs Office.

On April 9, a fun run for the benefit of typhoon survivors in Northern Iloilo will be held starting 5:30-7:00 AM at SM City, Diversion Road, Iloilo City.

On April 10, PDRRMC will hold a forum on disaster preparedness and recognition of outstanding volunteers at the Provincial Capitol lobby at 8:30 AM.

The Iloilo Provincial Employees Multi-Purpose Cooperative, on the other hand, will hold a Coop Business Forum at 9:00 AM on the same day at the 5th Floor, Conference Room of the Provincial Capitol.

At 2:00 PM, two events will be held simultaneously – an exhibit by the Iloilo Tourism Officers Association at the Provincial Capitol lobby and 2nd Provincial Youth Congress at Pavia National High School.

On April 11, during the highlight of the anniversary, the HRMO, in partnership with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, will distribute starter kits for massage, electronics, among others.

A testimonial luncheon honoring the province’s scholars, outstanding teachers and national awardees will culminate the activities for Semana sang Iloilo.

Iloilo City ready for Bayani Challenge April 12-15


ILOILO CITY, Apr. 02 (PNA)– This highly urbanized city is ready to participate in the Bayani Challenge spearheaded by Gawad Kalinga with one million volunteers in 12 provinces from the Visayas and Mindanao to rally this summer season.

The GK campaign this 2014 will be held on April 11 to June 12 or two months drive of nation building and walang iwanan policy with highlights on April 17-20 for the Holy Week, May 1-4 for Labor Week, and June 7-12 for the Independence Week.

City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said the GK Bayani Challenge here is slated on April 12-15 as the Do Day for 12,000 volunteers in a citywide clean-up drive and construction of 34 GK housing units at the San Isidro relocation site in Jaro district.

The GK campaign will be conducted in 10 towns of northern Iloilo devastated by supertyphoon Yolanda and 396 persons were trained for social preparation and value formation.

The 12 provinces covered by the Bayani Challenge are those affected by the typhoons and other natural calamities.

These are the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo and Negros Occidental in Western Visayas; Bohol and Cebu in Central Visayas; Eastern Samar, Leyte and Samar in Eastern Visayas; and the provinces of Palawan and Zamboanga.

Activities include building of GK houses, spending time with the kids, conducting health missions, clean-up drive, refurbishing of schools and tree planting.

The campaign also shows off and discovers the beauty of the Filipinos and the Philippines such as the Bantayan Island in Cebu, Talisay Ruins in Negros Occidental, Tubbataha Reef in Palawan, San Juanico Bridge in Samar, La Paz Batchoy in Iloilo City and the Chocolate Hills in Bohol.

City accepts 10-year action plan on river water quality


ILOILO CITY, April 1 (PNA) -– The Sangguniang Panlungsod here has approved a resolution filed by city councilor RLeone Gerochi in accepting the Iloilo-Batiano River Watershed Water Quality Management Area by Iloilo City and the implementation of its 10-year action plan.

Gerochi is the chairman of the SP committee on environment and an environmental advocate for clean air, anti-pollution, clean river and surroundings.

In a regular session on Tuesday, the city council had asked explanations from city environment and natural resources officer Noel Hechanova to define clearly the action plan on water quality of the connecting Iloilo-Batiano rivers.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO), and the Environment Management Bureau (EMB) earlier submitted Oplan: SWIM or the sustainable work plan for the rehabilitation of the Iloilo-Batiano River system and its tributaries, the Dungon and Calajunan creeks.

The work plan aims to improve the water quality of the river and its tributaries in terms of dissolved oxygen, biochemical oxygen demand and coliform concentrations.

The three-year average water quality of the rivers showed the EMB Class "C" standards fit for human and river life with dissolved oxygen at 5 mg/L, biochemical oxygen demand of 10 mg/L, total coliform of 5,000 MPN/100 ml and with no standards on fecal coliform.

The DENR has already accomplished ongoing activities that cover mangrove rehabilitation, organized clean-up activities, adopt-an-estero program, quarterly clean-up activities, crackdown on discharging establishments, cadastral survey of Calajunan and Dungon creeks, and dredging of the creeks and the Iloilo River.

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