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Samar Province News March 2012

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Samar Province Realty

Philippine News


More than a thousand students in Samar to enjoy summer jobs

by (NIQ/EOT/PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 31 (PIA) -- A total of 1,709 Samarnon students will enjoy summer employment under the Special Program for the Employment of Students (SPES).

This is according to June Obregon, head of the Samar Field Office of the Department of Labor (DOLE) in a phone interview today.

The local government unit (LGU) under Samar Gov. Sharee Ann Tan will lead the summer employers by be hiring some 1,000 students.

Following is Paranas that will employ 100 students, Calbayog with 73, Hinabangan with 50; Pinabacdao with 70, Gandara with 50 and San Jose de Buan with 50.

There will also be some 30 SPES beneficiaries in Marabutin, 26 in Pagsanghan, 50 in Sta. Margarita and 30 in Sta. Rita.

Aside from LGUs, some schools will also employ students. These include Samar State University with 20 students, Samar College with 50,

In Calbayog City, Northwest Samar State University will hire 30, Systems Technology Institute (STI) with 20 and Christ the King College with 60.

Obregon said the rates depend on the locality.

The students will work for 26 days this summer. Their salary will be split with the employers paying for the 60 percent and DOLE with the remaining 40 percent.

“This program helps students enroll in college,” Obregon said.

Last year, one student was given a check of P 5,000 for 26 days at P192 daily rate, added Obregon.

Obregon said that the Calbayog LGU that has fully supported the program since it started, and he recognizes the Public Employment Service Officer (PESO) Felipe Gonzaga in Calbayog City for his determination to persuade Calbayog LGU to help the needy students.

SPES is a special program for students who are on vacation during summer to be employed by national agencies, schools or LGUs so that when enrollment comes, they will have earned some amount to be used in their studies, the following school year.

P10M farm-to-market road benefits more than 2,000 folks

by (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar with N. Gomez)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 30 (PIA) - A total of 2,385 barangay rural folks will benefit from a farm-to-market road (FMR) worth P10 million in Calbayog City.

A press release from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Samar Engineering District 1, said that the rural folks of Barangay Villahermosa, San Jose, Tanval, and Hemalandrog will benefit from the road once completed.

Based on the validation made by the funding agency, 600 farmers working in more than 32,000 square meters of farmlands will be serviced by the road.

Farm produce such as coconut, oil palm, mango, corn, abaca, root crops, and vegetables are harvested from these areas have to reach the market through the road network.

The road will also facilitate trading activities and increase economic activities in the area, this may also encourage landowners to develop their lots estimated at 9,000 hectares.

“The completion of the infrastructure project will give better access and open up new opportunities for higher agricultural productivity in this part of the region,” said Engr. Virgilio Eduarte of DPWH Samar 1.

Representative Mel Senen Sarmiento requested the project from the Department of Agriculture for funding which is estimated to be 15 kilometers long.

DTI taps PBSP for Samar’s SMEs

by Ninfa Iluminda B. Quirante

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 27 (PIA) -- The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) engaged the cooperation of a non government organization (NGO) to boost Samar’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Meanwhile, the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) - Strategic Corporate-Community Partnership (SCOPE) assists in identifying projects mutually beneficial to the company and the community. Through SCOPE, the SME will be able to look for a community that will produce the raw materials that the enterprise needs in its business.

One example given is the Calbayog Tinapa Processors Association that chooses a community that will culture the fish which it uses as raw product. The scheme will not only assure the tinapa makers (the association) of a steady supply of raw materials but will also provide steady income to the fisher folks in the community; the association is headed by Donato Abelda Jr.

"SCOPE has been designed to harness private sector’s competence and expertise in doing business to create employment," said Cebu- based SCOPE consultant Janina Wohlgemuth, in her visit to the SMEs with DTI folks in Calbayog and Catbalogan.

In Catbalogan, an Entre-Pinay , Lolita Cupido of Lolit’s Danguit (dried fish) would also like to have a community that will supply her "danguit" and a dryer. The dryer will be of use during rainy season.

The scheme for funding, DTI said will be 50/50 because even the company owner can benefit from the communities that will supply the raw materials.

But whether company leaders Abelda and Cupido will be granted the SCOPE benefits still remains to be under the consideration of the PBSP executives. Their proposals have yet to be approved, said DTI.

SCOPE projects have been successful with the SMEs in Cebu and in Mindanao. (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar)

SMEs urged to avail of DOST program

by Ninfa Iluminda B. Quirante

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 26 (PIA)—The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Samar is inviting small and medium enterprises to avail of its Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SET UP) in the province.

Applicants should not be discouraged by the requirements of the agency, said DOST offical Roselle Gopo told members of the Provincial Small and Medium Enterprises Development Council (PSMED) on Wednesday.

“When applicants read the requirements, they are discouraged immediately because they feel they will not qualify,” she said.

Any SME can avail of the program provided they have the requirements.

She explained that the requirement on Financial Statement of the company for three years is the most difficult requirement to submit.

The requirements maybe stringent but this is government money to be poured to the SMEs to promote more jobs when they expand, said the DOST chief.

The program said Gopo has been there since 2003.

Emelyn Maglahos from DOST said that there are at least 16 SMEs who have availed of the program in Samar.

One of them is Gina Colinayo of Villareal who owns a bakery that produces curioso, salvarro, decana and other Samar traditional delicacies. Gina said that it was then DOST Secretary Dr Estrella Alabastro herself who visited her place in Villareal town and granted her funding assistance.

“Gina is almost done with her repayments,” Gopo told the council members.

She then urged the council members to help promote the DOST’s programs to be able to help struggling SMEs in the province.

Dominador Cabanganan, Chairman of Samar’s SMED Council said that SMEs provide 93% of the employment in the province. “So it is just right that DOST should provide these programs, because we employ more people,” Cabanganan said.

Gopo said that aside from SETUP, there is also Consultancy for Agricultural Productivity (CAPE) program which is aimed to institutionalize effective farm management strategies to improve agricultural productivity. DOST may provide consultancy teams to undertake productivity studies for qualified agri-based ventures.

Another project is Venture Financing Program which is aimed to push and accelerate the commercialization of new and emerging technologies/interventions by providing the necessary funding support to start-up technology –based expansion projects.

It shall determine and package the type of assistance needed for a particular technology to cover the wide spectrum of technology commercialization activities, according to the provisions of the program.

DOST said it is willing to help Samarnons avail of the program and the SMED Council also pledged to help SMEs prepare the different requirements needed if only to help the industry. (PIA 8-Samar)

Samar's Entre-Pinays Boost Woman Power


CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar (PIA) — Samar Entre-Pinays claim that their affiliation with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has helped them through the best and worst times.

Both DTI-Samar bosses Meilo Macabare and Ruthelma Samonte with two Entre-Pinays confirmed their “love story” in a PIA 8-Samar ‘Huruhimangraw’ radio program over Aksyon Radyo DYMS, in Catbalogan City.

Deny Uy, owner of fashion accessories in Catbalogan talked about how she resigned from being a banker to become a full time Entre-Pinay employing dozens of workers for handcrafted fashion accessories.

Uy now heads the Association of Samar Producers (ASAP) that display their products at Samar’s Pasalubong Center (aka PMSMSED Center) beside the Samar Capitol building.

“I am calling all Samarenas who have creative veins and talent to pursue their dreams, kung ano ang hilig,” Uy beckoned the listeners of the radio program on Thursday.

“We are always guided by DTI every step of the way, our relationship blossomed through years and have seen the worst and best of it,” Uy said exuding trust and confidence in DTI.

PIA 8-Samar featured two Entre-Pinays in its weekly radio program.

Another Entre-Pinay is Lolita Cupido, the woman behind “Lolit’s Danguit” brand of dried fish in Samar.

She recalled that in the 90s, she and fisherman-husband were workers of a neighbor who owned a dried fish business.

It was in the year 2001 when she thought of being on her own and sought the help of DTI. DTI helped her through trainings and egged her to join trade fairs, places a woman of her position would never have dreamed of going to.

It also boosted level of confidence in this shy woman who admitted she is not a college graduate. Cupido now employs some 60 women in her production site in her home in Barangay Guinsurungan, Catbalogan City.

These women, she admitted, were unproductive then. Now, these women are helping their husbands augment their income.

“These Entre-Pinays have mastered the art of business negotiations through participating in the different trade fairs where DTI brought them,” said Macabare of DTI-Samar.

Samonte, from DTI, said that they have helped Entre-Pinays link with funding institutions and in upgrading their products.

“Now Lolit’s danguit’ come in plain, garlic, and other flavors,” said Samonte.

She also sought the help of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) for assistance in packaging and labeling to command a better price.

Mayor cites city scholars with honors

by (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar with A. Hurtado report)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 23 (PIA) -- Mayor Coeferdo ‘Tekwa’ Uy cited city scholars who graduated with honors in simple ceremonies recently.

The Mayor Tekwa Scholarship Program is now reaping its fruits as its first batch of graduates will be marching this month out of high school.

The scholarship program was initiated by the City Social and Welfare Officer Nida Aroza with some 500 scholars; where 249 of them will be graduating this school year, 19 of them with academic honors.

One scholar, Maricar Luna, who studies at Guinsurungan Integrated School acknowledged the mayor’s scholarship program.Luna has no father while her mother is a laundry-woman barely earning for the family.

Jason Magbutay, another scholar from Catbalogan National Comprehensive High School, expressed his thanks to Mayor Uy not only for the scholarship but for bringing changes and progress to Catbalogan.

The scholarship program of Uy is his personal commitment to the young Catbaloganons who are poor but deserving. “I believe that these young people will serve as the foundation of society,” Uy said in Waray. The mayor is known to be a man of few words.

The beneficiaries received P 3,000 to cover allowances and school supplies.

The mayor promised that he will increase the number of scholars to help more families.

Local stand up for peace and security

by (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar with 34th IB)

CATBALOGAN City, Samar, March 22 (PIA) --The rural folks of Lapinig town stood up for peace and security in their hometown through a peace rally with the theme, “Undangon an Kasamok, Respetohon an Katungod ngan Kinabuhi han Tawo” (trans: Stop violence, respect human rights) recently.

More than 2,000 participants from the cross section of Lapinig populace joined the rally which started at 8:00 a.m. from the Lapinig Town Plaza, passed the downtown streets, and returned to the same place at 12 noon.

Right after the parade, a program was conducted wherein Lapinig Central Elementary School Principal, Dr. Liza B. Engo and Rev. Fr. Elmer E. Lopez, Lapinig Parish Priest delivered inspiring speeches regarding the importance of attaining a just and lasting peace not only in Lapinig but in the entire country as well.

Likewise, Lt Col William Peṅafiel of the 34th Infantry Battalion (34th IB) urged the towns people to be always discerning when it comes to false promises peddled by the insurgents’ propaganda fronts.

“Be vigilant to the ideological, political and organizing strategies of the rebels and report to the nearest military units or battalion hotlines any information regarding their plans, activities, and whereabouts,” Penafiel told the people.

The mayor’s representative, Fausto L. Urbano talked about the lifelong dream of his constituents for a violent-free and peaceful society so that development and prosperity shall finally be achieved.

The peace rally culminated with a message from Vice Mayor Vivian Roncales who emphasized that every Filipino, regardless of belief and social status, should join and cooperate in maintaining peace and order in the community to spark development in Lapinig town and prevent NPA atrocities.

According to a report from Capt. Ramil S. Palisoc, CMO Officer of 34th Infantry Battalion, the two-day activity was done to promote a peaceful and safe community to elevate the socio-economic status of the towns of Northern Samar.

Development is impeded by the rebels’ unlawful and violent actions. These activities also show that the community is serious and the people have united to make Northern Samar free from violence and insurgency, something long denied to them by these rebels.

The activity was the second among a series of peace and security awareness campaigns, most of which had already been launched in the different schools and barangays of Lapinig, Mapanas, Palapag, Laoang, Catubig, and Las Navas all of Northern Samar to deter insurgency.

Moreover, these were made to educate the people that peace is not only a choice but a right that everyone must enjoy; they must have the zeal to promote peace for the betterment of their children’s future.

Landslide in Catbalogan wreak three houses

by (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 21 (PIA) -- Three houses were damaged due to a landslide triggered by three straight days of incessant rains, in Purok 1 Hillside, Barangay 8, Catbalogan City at dawn March 20.

In a report filed at the Catbalogan PNP Station, it said that the three houses, damaged beyond repair, were owned by Leopoldo Aguilar Sr, 66, a carpenter; Wilfredo Dela Pena a pedicab driver, and Leonora del Pena a vendor.

Although there was no reported casualty, one victim, Darwin Curiano, 26, sustained minor bruises and was brought to the Samar Provincial Hospital for medical treatment.

The other victims have been evacuated by Catbalogan PNP led by PSInsp Lucino Lopido and PSInsp Rex Cantillep to the Ubanon Barangay Hall. Others opted to stay with relatives in safer grounds, temporarily.

According to Barangay Chairman Oliver Abuyen, 59 families were warned by the Mines and GeoSciences Bureau (MGB) and the city government that the area is prone to landslide.

“The authorities have placed warning signs in the very place of the landslide, but the residents themselves removed these signs,” Abuyen said.

Barangay folks and the police helped rescue the victims.

As luck would have it, the Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (LDRRMC) members were in Tacloban City attending a training on disaster management.

In November 2011, some were hurt and one boy was killed after another landslide occurred in Barangay Bunuanan, Catbalogan City.

City Social Welfare Officer Nida Arosa said then that the city is planning to relocate hundreds of families who have built their homes in landslide prone areas as identified by the MGB and the LGU.

RN HEALS program supplements health workers in RHUs

by (EOPT/NIBQ-PIA 8, Samar with A Ebalde)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 20 (PIA)—The Health Department’s program on Registered Nurses for Health Enhancement And Local Service (RN HEALS) addresses the necessary number of midwives and nurses in the Rural Health Units (RHUs) especially for the families in the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCTs) areas.

This was pronounced in a meeting on March 19, Monday attended by the representatives from the partner agencies of Department of Health (DOH), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Dr. Antonio Tirazona, Provincial Health team leader presided the first meeting this 2012.

The RN HEALS Program has deployed 224 nurses and nine midwives to different municipalities in the province.

“The program up to now is still seeking 34 midwives to be assigned to distant barangays where there is a CCT community,” Tirazona said.

Tirazona said that the provincial government has deployed some 107 nurses with 12 at Basey District Hospital, 59 at the Samar Provincial Hospital, 13 in Gandara District Hospital, five in Tarangnan Community Hospital, and 18 in Calbayog District Hospital.

The other 117 nurses are deployed in RHUs.

The program was implemented in 2011 as RN HEALS Project and has graduated as a regular program to supplement health programs of the LGUs.

“The program has created a pool registered nurses and midwives with enhanced clinical and public health competencies. They have provided quality health care services with focus on maternal and neonatal care in DOH hospitals and far flung areas in the country,” Tirazona added.

Jocelyn Nabong, DOH Catbalogan City representative, said that this program is a convergence of all government agencies.

Public works asked to assess road projects’ viability'


PALO, Leyte – The Eastern Visayas Regional Development Council (RDC) reiterated its request to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to assess the viability of the proposed five road projects connecting the three Samar provinces.

In a follow-up letter sent last week, Leyte Governor and RDC chairman Jericho “Icot” Petilla asked the DPWH main office for updates of a study proposal approved by the region’s highest policy-making body early last year.

“We would like to follow up on the status of our request as contained in RDC Resolution No. 8, which was forwarded to your office last February 2011… The RDC is requesting DPWH to prepare the feasibility study for the road network connecting the three Samar provinces through the interior municipalities,” Petilla said in a letter to DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson.

The proposed road networks are the Las Navas-Silvino-Lobos-Matuguinao-Gandara road, Las Navas-Jipapad-Maslog-Oras road, Paranas-San Jose de Buan-Maslog road, San Jose de Buan-Matuguinao road, and Mondragon-Silvino Lobos road.

The RDC request is in response to the proposal of Northern Samar Governor Paul Daza, chairman of the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC), to provide road networks in conflict-afflicted areas of Samar Island in the bid to address insurgency.

The proposed projects are included in the 2011-2016 Regional Development Plan as among the much needed new road network to support jobs generation, poverty alleviation, among others, in the whole Samar Island.

The feasibility study will determine the cost of the project and other details that will facilitate actual road construction.

During the RDC Infrastructure and Utilities Development Committee (INFRACOM) this week, DPWH Regional Director Rolando Asis said he will follow up with their central office on the status of the proposal.

Daza told reporters earlier that he will lobby for more development projects for the region but the concentration will be in the three Samar provinces where insurgency problem still exists.

The official emphasized the need to get the support of the National Government since many rebels in Samar Island are from Bicol and other parts of Luzon. Insurgents choose Samar Island because of the terrain and poor road access.

Officials of the RDC and RPOC have earlier endorsed for the immediate funding of the P900-million Samar Peace and Prosperity Road.

The road is eyed for completion this year with P500 million of the budget requirement was released last year, the DPWH assured.

The new roads will be all-weather gravel road connecting to the hinterlands particularly the rebel-infested municipalities of Las Navas, Catubig, Silvino Lubos in Northern Samar; San Jose de Buan and Matuguinao, Samar; and Arteche, Maslog and Jipapad, Eastern Samar.

DPWH inks cooperation project with DSWD for 4Ps folks

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 14 (PIA) -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) in Samar’s First Engineering District forged a cooperation project that will guarantee employment for the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries; Monica Insigne, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Officer, signed for the DSWD.

In a press release sent by Information Officer Nenita Gomez, she said that this project is an effort of the government to reduce poverty and provide additional income to poor households so as to improve their health, nutrition and education.

This project is called Pantawid Pamilya Guranteed Employment under the Sustainable Livelihood Program.In venturing into this project, DPWH Engineer Virgilio Eduarte and Insigne agreed to hire unskilled labor force from the Pantawid Pamilya beneficiaries for roadside maintenance.

These workers will be deployed in road sections in their barangays or adjacent ones where they can work. The hired beneficiaries will be assured employment for six months. Insigne will submit a list of these beneficiaries to the Human Resource Management Office (HRMO) for the preparation of the job order contract.

DPWH 1 implements P20-M PDAF projects of Sarmiento

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 13 (PIA) -- It is a beehive of activities in the first district of Samar where a total of 29 infrastructure projects are being implemented by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH)to the tune of P20 million is presently implementing some 29 infrastructure projects funded by Rep Mel Senen Sarmientos’ Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) for some Php 20 M.

The projects include water supply systems in Barangay Villahermosa, Sto Nino; Barangay San Agustin, Gandara; Barangay Quezon, Aurora, Mabuhay, Rosalim, and Sapinit in San Jorge; flood control projects in Barangay Kapangasan and Lungib, Gandara; Barangay Baras, Sto Nino; Barangay Velasco, Almagro and Barangay Beunos Aires in Pagsanghan and Barangay Tawiran, Gandara.

In Calbayog City two barangays will also be given river control projects like Barangay Nijaga and Nabang.

Meanwhile, roads are being constructed in Phases 3 and 7 in Barangay Dagum, Calbayog City and Barangay Nabulo of Sta Margarita.

Rehabilitation of road is done in Barangay Oquendo-Barangay Cabugwayan and from Barangay Cogon to Barangay Ginbaoyan, Sur in Calbayog City. Another road rehab is being done in Barangay Palanas, Gandara.

Then there is a footbridge being constructed from Barangay Bauenavista to Barangay Matalud, San Jorge.

As for construction and support to multi-purpose buildings, some of these are in Barangay Balud, Barangay Begaho and Barangay Carmen all in Calbayog City.

In Sta Margarita town, a multi-purpose building is also being constructed at the Sta Margarita National High School, Sta Margarita, Samar.

Lastly, the Municipal Trial Courts of Tarangnan and Sta Margarita are also being repaired.

Funded from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) of Representative Mel Senen Sarmiento, these projects will greatly improve the access conditions of farmers to growth centers and encourage infrastructure investment and development in the area said the congressman.

“These projects will open up opportunities for higher agricultural productivity in the First District of Samar,” Sarmiento said. (PIA 8-Samar)

Calbayog women pampered on women’s day

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 10 (PIA) -- Calbayog women had the time of their lives, being pampered by the Local Women’s Council on Friday-Women’s Day at the Calbayog City Sports Complex.

Around 800 women of different backgrounds converged to avail medical, dental and personal care services afforded to them, this time of the year.

After the usual ceremonies to mark the day, the women hovered over the different free services.

Some 100 women availed of the tooth extraction from three dentists coming from the city health office led by Dr. Romeo Ortiz.

Some enjoyed the massage service at one corner while some inquired at the livelihood and trade center.

Other services offered were legal, medical particularly opto services, pregnancy tests and other laboratory tests for free.

Malunggay recipes were also featured in a cooking demo by a women’s group.

After enjoying all those perks at least for the Women’s Day, the women stayed to enjoy parlor games, Siday contest, and ballroom dance competition.

AFP Chief of Staff visits 8th ID, assures that AFP being modernized

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 9 (PIA -- Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Jessie Dellosa visited the 8th Infantry Division (8th ID) based in Camp Lukban, Catbalogan City,Tuesday.

The General proudly said that with President Benign Simeon Aquino lll, AFP Modernization has taken off in the manner they expected.

He said they have acquired four helicopters and four more are coming before the year ends.

While the Aquino administration has just been there for less than two years, it has already infused some P 28 billion for the AFP’s modernization program, compared to his predecessors who spent only P33 billion in 15 years, the general told the soldiers.

The army elements of 8th ID were overwhelmed when the AFP official announced a plan to purchase a squadron of fighter planes.

“Upgrading and modernization of the Department of Defense is really here,” said Dellosa.

He said that the focus is now on air force and navy as there are sightings of Chinese vessels in the West Philippine Sea.

Her added that, “there are more procurements to enhance security and maritime domain awareness in the West Philippine Sea.”

He then urged the soldiers to just do their job and ignore some nasty rumors of overthrowing the President.

“AFP is the most solid and organized entity in the government,” he said.

“To you soldiers, I remind you to always follow the chain of command and to focus on your job,” he told the soldiers who afforded him arrival honors with Commanding General Mario Chan in the lead.

“Destabilization plots are lessons we all have learned in the past,” he noted.

Dellosa punctuated his speech by congratulating the 8th ID for winning the war against insurgents in the Visayas.

Gov't forces capture NPA explosives factory in Samar - The Online Zamboanga Times


MANILA — Soldiers of the Philippine Army (PA)'s 8th Infantry Division successfully captured an explosives factory of the New People's Army (NPA) during combat operations in Paranas, Samar last March 5. Reports reaching the Armed Forces' headquarters in Camp Emilio Aguinaldo indicated that the assault took place after residents of Barangays Paranas, Sto. Nino, and Pagsanjan, which border the NPA explosives factory, sought the PA's help for their safety and well-being. NPA rebels manning the camp were caught off-guard by the military offensive and were unable to mount an effective defense, forcing them to flee. During the encounter, Sgt. Freddie C. Gusoso was hit at the thigh but this did not deter his fellow soldiers from overrunning the camp. Seized were 44 pieces improvised landmines; a machine for landmine production; 20 pieces blasting caps with detonating cords; assorted explosive production paraphernalia; one B40 type rocket launcher; one improvised round for B40 type rocket launcher; and one M-16 automatic rifle. Gusoso was safely evacuated to RTR Hospital, Tacloban City for medical treatment. The soldiers are now investigating the recovered pieces of evidence from the site with the help of the Philippine National Police and the community. With the volume and quality of explosives recovered and the geographic location of Samar Island, Major General Mario F. Chan, 8th Infantry Division commander, believes that the captured NPA explosives factory is the supplier of landmines for NPA terrorists operating in the Bicol Region and Northern Mindanao area. (PNA) DCT/PFN

SALN promotes transparency

by (PIA 8-Samar with M Gomez)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, Mar 6 (PIA) -- Filing of one’s Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net worth (SALN) promotes transparency, according to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Samar’s First Engineering District.This was the message DPWH conveyed to its personnel during a re-echo seminar on filing SALN.

Catherine Quilantang, an accountant at DPWH said that it is not enough to comply with the filing of SALN.“What is important is that they should know why, we file this document as government employees,” she said.

The new form introduces some changes that will explain why a SALN is a must.“The SALN promotes transparency, aside from its legal bases (Section 17, Art Xll, 1987 Philippine Constitution and Section 8 of RA 6713 and Section 7 of RA 3019),” said the accountant.

She added that some new components as regards relations even by just affinity aside from relations in consanguinity in the government are included like "inso," "balae," and "bilas."

Inso refers to the appellation for the wife of an elder brother, or a male cousin.

Balae refers to the parents and parents–in-law relationship, a parent of one's son or daughter-in-law while Bilas refers to the brother-in-law’s wife or sister-in-law’s husband.

Inso, Balae, and Bilas are new entrants to the new SALN form.One wonders where bayaw or hipag can be.

DPWH personnel welcomed the new form and enjoyed filling them up and brushing up with the meanings of the terms as these are in Tagalog while translating the same terms in Waray. The SALN workshop gave them a deeper understanding of what to declare and where to put specific information in the SALN forms.

Organic farmer shares experiences to Samarnons

by (PIA-Samar with A Ebalde)

CATBALOGAN CITY, March 5 (PIA) --Organic farmer Rey Pedroso from Iloilo shared to Samarnons how he started organic agriculture five years ago and how it changed his farming style.

Pedroso is a director of the newly-organized National Organic Agricultural Board and was the keynote speaker during the launch of Organic Agriculture in Samar on March 1.

He is also determined to help farmers do the switch from the regular farming style to organic like what he did some five years ago.

He claimed that he applied a small amount of earthworms in a small lot in his farm.

As he saw its benefits, he increased the area until it embraced his whole farm lot.

He urged farmers to start small and later increase the area devoted to organic little by little.

He admitted though that farmers at first are not interested in this as they worry about implements that will be needed for organic farming to thrive.

But Pedroso assured that with the government’s effort to support Organic Farming through Republic Act 10068 (aka Philippine National Standards on Organic Agriculture Act), transfer of technology and funding will follow.

Organic agriculture refers to farming and livestock production using natural sources of nutrients such as compost, crop residues and manure, and natural methods of crop and weed control instead of using synthetic or inorganic agro-chemicals.

Pedroso said that the government support organic farming by setting aside Php 900 M for NOAB in its policy formulation and accreditation, research and development and promotion of organic farming and other programs that would improve the delivery of goods to farmers.

Pedroso admitted that organic farming is still young but with the constant exposure of farmers and their testimonies of its benefits, the acceptance will be better.

Meanwhile, Agriculture Training Institute (ATI) head Dr. Paulino Cabahit offered his services for the farmers willing to be trained the organic way.

He added that farmers may approach Engr. Melecia Gordillo, regional focal person on Organic Agriculture for funding of some project proposals on going organic in the region.

TESDA specialists undergo advance entrepreneurial skills training

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 4 (PIA) -- The TESDA specialists trained on technical-vocational skills will also be taught the rudiments of business as they are now called Tesda Specialista Technopreneurs. “As we anticipate their blossoming into service providers, we will teach them how to maintain logbooks for clients, financial operations and budgeting, personality improvement, records keeping, and how to negotiate with clients,” said Imelda Calagos-TESDA nurturer. On March 9, 2012 in Barangay Capoocan, Calbayog City, TESDA Provincial Director Cleta Omega will gather influentials like Governor Sharee Ann Tan, Representative Mel Sarmiento and Mayor Ronald Aquino for them to see the outcome of the projects they supported. Invited too are partners from the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), DOLE and other financing institutions so the specialistas will know how to access funds. “Witness the biggest gathering of Samar trained specialistas in plumbing, electrical wiring, massage therapy, haircut and waitering services and others,” said Omega. Yesterday, nurturer Calagos met Barangay Captain Raquel P. Oquendo to finalize the New Enterprise Plan Idea (NEPI), Operations Flow Chart and assessment of the training needs of the skilled workers (aka specialistas) to prepare them to become entrepreneurs. “After the six months incubation period, we will give the tools and kits free of charge to the specialistas through TESDA,” Calagos added. “As the nurturer who supervises them, TESDA hopes to see them after six months to have their own self-operated businesses, that is why, they have to learn all the aspects of business operations,” the nurturer said. This event will also converge all TESDA trained graduates as the agency keeps track of them to ensure that they are gainfully employed. Partnering with TESDA in providing the skills training are Christ the King College, ACLC and, SOS, STI in Calbayog City, and the DTI, DOLE and LGUs. (PIA 8-Samar)

Samar rebel turns a new leaf, given assistance by LGU

by (PIA 8-Samar)

CATBALOGAN CITY, Samar, March 2 (PIA) -- Allan Rafalis of Barangay Canlobong, Pinabacdao, Samar was 12 when he joined the NPA because his uncle was allegedly killed by the military. But his more than 20 years stay in the rebel movement did not bring him any future to look forward to. “My kids are growing and I have to do something to educate them,” he shared. After a long period of reflection and consideration, he decided to surrender to the army. Samar Governor Sharee Ann Tan extended a cash assistance of P30,000 before the start of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) Meeting Wednesday at the Samar capitol. Rafalis was accompanied by Lt Col. Hermilo Demafiles, commander of the 5nd Infantry Battalion based in Cantaba, Sta Rita, Samar. Aside from the cash assistance, Tan also promised to give all four children of Rafalis scholarships to secure the children’s future. The cash assistance, scholarship and possible livelihood assistance is part of the Local Social Integration Program of Samar LGU. The program is extended to rebels intending to join mainstream society. In the PPOC meeting, Aileen Jose from the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) urged the local government to embrace rebels wanting to return to the folds of the government. “The goal of the Medium Term Development Plan of the Aquino government is to bring all armed conflict to a permanent and peaceful closure through negotiated political settlement and address the roots of armed conflict which The former rebel now looks at the future in a new light-with his growing children.

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