Zamboanga del Norte Province, Philippines News

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Province of Zamboanga del Norte - Archived News

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Seal of Zamboanga del Norte
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Provincial Capitol of Zamboanga del Norte
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Saint James Cathedral in Dapitan City
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City Hall of Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte
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Situbo Falls, Zamboanga del Norte
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Statue of Christ, Pangalalan, Sindangan
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Our lady of the most Holy Rosary, Estaka
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Manukan Mini Museum Landmark


Task force activated to address ex-Italian priest abduction in Zambo Norte


DIPOLOG CITY, Zamboanga del Norte, Oct. 8 (PNA) – Authorities have activated Task Force Rolando and a Crisis Management Committee (CMC) to address the abduction case of a former Italian priest seized by seven gunmen late Wednesday in this city.

The task force and the CMC were activated during an emergency meeting called by Gov. Roberto Uy who is also the chairman of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC).

Supt. Redentor Retusto, provincial police director, has been designated as the task force head while Mayor Evelyn Uy as CMC chairperson.

The victim, Rolando Del Torchio, 56, an Italian national and a former priest, was seized by seven gunmen around 6:30 p.m. Wednesday from his Pizza house--UrChoice Bistro Café--in Barangay Miputak.

Del Torchio was dragged to a waiting gray van with plate number TMY-490 that sped to the boulevard.

The gunmen abandoned the van and transferred Del Torchio to a motorboat and sped to the high seas.

Retusto and Supt. Ranie Hachuela, city police chief, are spearheading the pursuit operations to possibly rescue the victim.

Blocking forces, to include the “bantay dagat” forces, were immediately established in the towns of Sibuco, Sirawai, Siocon and Baliguian.

These areas are known as haven of lawless elements to include kidnap-for-ransom-groups (KFRGs) in the province.

The authorities believed the abductors, along with their hostage, are still within the territorial jurisdiction of the province.

Del Torchio, who was ordained priest in 1984, was a missionary of the Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere (PIME).

Del Torchio was born in Angera, a town located in the province of Varese, in the Lombardy region of northern Italy.

He was assigned in 1988 in the nearby town of Sibuco and has stayed in that municipality until 1996. He moved to this city and worked with a non-government organization that provide assistance to farmers.

He left priesthood few years later and settled in this city until he opened UrChoice Bistro Café.

83 exhibitors to display best products, services in ZAMPEX


A total of 83 exhibitors from all over the region will be bringing their finest products and services to the four-day Zamboanga Peninsula Exposition (ZAMPEX) 2015 from October 8-11 at the Garden Orchid Hotel.

Of the 83 exhibitors, 61 are micro, small, and medium entrepreneurs, 18 are members of the Industrial Group of Zamboanga, Inc. (IGZI), and four are institutional partners and sponsors. Forty one (41) of which have non-food products, while 38 are food products. The four institutional partners and sponsors will be showcasing their programs and services for the MSMEs.

For food products, the exhibitors from Zamboanga Sibugay Province are Ipil Market Vendors Multipurpose Cooperative (IMAVEMCO), Jocel Star Food products, MFC Food Products, Nazareth Women’s Association, Phesalabuhan Subanen De Siay, Zamboanga Sibugay High Value Crops Marketing Cooperative, Charles and Charlies, and Daves88 Food Products.

From Zamboanga del Norte, GASO Food Products, Ate Bang’s Delicacies, Alfredo Food Industry, DTI-CARP-Zamboanga del Norte, Dipolog Seaside Women’s Association, Cassava Growers and Processors Association, and the In-glass Sardines of Dipolog Association (ISDA). Food exhibitors from Zamboanga City include Alavar Food Products, Bakers’ Field Enterprise, Kingland Hopia Factory, Lav’s Bakeshop, Eco Bottling Enterprises, Sotto’s Delicacies, LB Supermarket Panda Bihon, NJB Farms, Ric and Remy’s Bakeshop, Euro Mexicana, Sugar and Ice Confections, Chinito’s, Chano’s Dried Fish, and Edna’s Farm Products.

Finally, Zamboanga del Sur food exhibitors are Royal Quality Agro Resources, Nutribooster Foods Philippines, D 4S’s Industries, Petros Paulos Food Products, Deli Foodline, and Golda’s Cakes and Pastries.

Of the 18 exhibitors invited by the Industrial Group of Zamboanga Inc. (IGZI), five are food producers. These are Century Pacific Food, Inc., Permex Producers and Exporter Corporation, Mega Global Corporation (Mega Fishing), Zamboanga Universal Canning Corporation, and Seacoast Top Choice Foods Corporation.

The 41 non-food product exhibitors are Goodyear Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries MPC (GARBEMCO) and Rockwood Sash and Furnishings of Zamboanga Sibugay Province; Lordan Gapnod Craft, Nelia’s Designs and Creations, MENLELALA SEG Bulawan, Ilaya Weavers’ Association, Arcelz Sculpture and Woodcraft, Alfonso’s Arts and Crafts, Millennium Herbal Products, La Kapitana Shell Crafts, and Polyfruits, Inc., from Zamboanga del Norte.

Angie’s Yakan Cloth, EM Buena Vida Foundation, KGD infinite Fashion, Mayette’s Creations, Tugbungan Ayudahan Livelihood Association, Tita’s Handicraft Designs, DSWD-Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center III, Zamboanga Producers MPC, Mothers for Peace reusable Shopping Bags, Basilan Integrated Livelihood Producers Association, and Sheridan Marketing are non-food exhibitors from Zamboanga City and Isabela City; while the Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority, Danlugan Farmers Multipurpose Cooperative, Non-Formal Education Beneficiaries MPC, and Dumingag Handicrafts comprise the Zamboanga del Sur non-food exhibitors.

IGZI-invited non-food exhibitors are AJAT Marketing and Trade Services, Dynamic Power and Marine Industrial Hardware, Inc. and Dynamic Castings, Gensan Shipyard and Machine Works, Sanyoseiki Stainless Steel Corporation, Azumi Corporation, Compress Tech Resources, Inc./CompressAir Center, Inc., Propmech Corporation/PALEENO, Inc., Power Systems, Inc./Scan Marine, Inc., Southern Philippines Deep Sea Fishing Assoc., Inc. (SOPHIL), National Fisheries research and Development Institute, Zamboanga State College of Marine Sciences and Technology, and the Bureau of Aquatic Resources. IGZI will also be one of the exhibitors.

The remaining four are the partners and sponsors who will be exhibiting their services and programs are Zamboanga City Government, Zamboanga City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc., Smart Communications, and Pepsi Cola Bottlers Philippines.

Products to be showcased during the exhibit range from fresh and processed foods; organic and natural products; jewelry and fashion accessories; furniture and furnishings; gift, toys, and housewares; raw materials components; ornamental plants and cut flowers; arts and crafts; and holiday and Christmas decors.

The Department of Trade and Industry-9 is inviting the public to take part in ZAMPEX 2015 and see the finest products Zamboanga Peninsula has to offer. Show hour starts at 9:00 am until 8:00 pm with NO entrance fee.

Zamboanga del Norte tourism gets boost


MANILA, Oct. 6 (PNA) -- Two thriving high-end establishments in Zamboanga del Norte have become the newest additions to the growing list of quality tourist hubs in the country.

This was after Department of Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz awarded Dakak Park Beach Resort in Barangay Taguilon, Dapitan City, and Ariana Hotel in Airport Road, Minaog, Dipolog City, their respective Certificates of Compliance (COC) for passing the general labor and occupational safety and health standards assessment.

“Dakak Park Beach Resort’s earning its certificate of compliance will give further credence to Dapitan City’s distinction as the ‘The Shrine City’, and will complement its claim of being a community with rich culture and history. Meanwhile, Ariana Hotel now strategically stands as a model establishment in a city that is touted as the ‘Gateway to Western Mindanao and Zamboanga Peninsula.’ We are happy to note these developments unfolding in Mindanao. This will reinvigorate the island's tourism industry which is a vital generator of employment,” said Baldoz during the awarding of COCs on Sept. 25.

Eujane Joy Elumba Doque, manager of Ariana Hotel, received the COC award from Secretary Baldoz and DOLE Region 9 Director Sisinio B. Cano, together with Undersecretary Rebecca C. Chato, NCMB Executive Director Shirley M. Pascual, and NWPC Executive Director Criselda P. Sy.

Doque said the establishment of Ariana Hotel supports and complements the advocacy of its owner, former Transportation and Communications Secretary Jesus B. Garcia and Consul Armi Lopez Garcia, “to provide education to the less fortunate and crossover from poverty, and to provide employment to the underprivileged.”

Doque also assured the DOLE officials that "they will not short-change their employees."

"Since the hotel opened in December 2012, my management system has always been a family-oriented and team style approach. Rest assured that our employees are in good hands. Thank you for acknowledging us with these certificates of compliance. We will continue to live by the standards given by DOLE,” Doque said after receiving the citation on behalf of the hotel's management and staff.

Baldoz commended the hotel management for their assurance to sustain their labor laws compliance standards. “I support your commitment and work philosophy. Sumusuporta ako sa sinabi ninyo na hindi pwedeng i-shortchange ang mga empleyado,” the Secretary said, adding that the human resource is the most valuable asset of a company.

Baldoz also cited the hotel’s performance assessment of its staff as vital to the compliance to Tier II wage system, or the performance or productivity-based incentive program.

“The two-tiered wage system is a reform that maintains the mandatory minimum wage, under R.A. 6727 or the Wage Rationalization Act, as the Tier I; complemented by a voluntary productivity-based pay scheme as the Tier II,” explained Baldoz.

In Tier 1, the minimum wage rates are determined by factors such as poverty threshold, prevailing wage rates as determined by the Labor Force Survey, and socioeconomic indicators (i.e. inflation, employment figures, Gross Regional Domestic Product, among others), which ensures better workers protection.

In Tier 2, the over and above minimum wage is the voluntary productivity-based pay, which encourages workers and enterprises to become more competitive and productive by rewarding employees supplementary pay based on the quality of their performance.

For Dakak Park Beach Resort, Rossini Montecalvo, resort manager, received the Labor Laws Compliant Resort award from Secretary Baldoz and Regional Director Cano.

The two establishments underwent Joint Assessments spearheaded by the DOLE, along with the representatives of the employers and the employees, to ensure full compliance to the labor laws compliance system. Specifically, the DOLE Regional Office No. 9, through its Zamboanga del Norte Field Office, had an almost one year engagement with Dakak Resort to correct deficiencies in general labor and occupational safety and health standards.

Baldoz assured the two establishments’ management and staff that the DOLE will always be ready to provide technical assistance to their compliance needs, emphasizing that the establishment’s request and willingness to undergo compliance evaluation and joint assessment is a good sign of their proactive response to the labor laws compliance system.

“Ito ay ebidensiya na una, maayos po ang inyong pananaw sa Department of Labor and Employment na matutulungan kayo para masigurado na kayo ay tumutupad sa batas paggawa. At iyon nga, hindi kayo natatakot, kasi joint assessment ang proseso. Kaya sana po, yung prosesong ginawa ninyo, ariin po ninyo iyon, and for you to appreciate na hindi naman pala mahirap mag-comply sa mga batas paggawa kasi nandiyan ang Department of Labor na handa po kayong tulungan,” said Baldoz.

The Secretary also underscored during her talk with the management and staff of the hotel and the resort the need to activate and promote the Labor Management Cooperation Council, (LMC) Convergence of Programs at the plant level to facilitate compliance with labor laws and sustain sound employee-employer relations.

“Under the LMC Convergence of Programs, all plant-level DOLE programs and services are delivered through one plant-level structure,” said Baldoz.

The converged programs in the Labor Management Cooperation Council are the productivity, occupational safety and health, family welfare, grievance, and most importantly, the plant-level bipartite compliance committee.

The joint assessment and occupational safety and health investigation under the Labor Laws Compliance System addresses decent work deficits, foster harmonious labor-management relationships and industrial peace, and increase productivity and competitiveness of enterprise.

Cop injured in collision in Zamboanga del Norte

By Bong Garcia

A POLICEMAN was injured when the motorcycle he was driving bumped a farm equipment along the highway in the province of Zamboanga del Norte, the police reported.

Zamboanga Peninsula's police spokesperson Dahlan Samuddin identified the victim as Police Office 3 Genaro Sogurjano, 53, who is assigned in Gutalac, Zamboanga del Norte.

Samuddin said the highway collision occurred at 7:06 p.m. on Friday in the village of Osukan, Labason, Zamboanga del Norte.

Samuddin said Sogurjano was driving a motorcycle on the way to the village of Osukan, Labason coming from Gutalac when he accidentally bumped at the rear portion of the rice thresher pulled by a farm tractor while traveling on the same direction.

He said the tractor operator, Jerry Pasculado, 28, and his five companions were unscathed.

He said Pasculado's companions were the following: Junrey Pasculado, 20; Jomar Taipang, 20; Elvis Villacastil, 20; Junifer Pasculado, 18; and, Jerom Abenalis, 20.

He said Sogurjano was admitted at the Zamboanga del Norte Medical Center.

2 Pushers Caught in L. Postigo, Sta. Maria Drug Bust

By Police Inspector Dahlan T Samuddin with report from PO2 Radzben S. Jul (RPIO9)

Leon Postigo, Zamboanga del Norte - MAIDSOTG members and intelligence operatives of Leon Postigo MPS conducted buy-bust operation in coordination with PDEA9 in Barangay Poblacion, at about 12:30 PM on September 26, 2015. Arrested suspect was identified as Roland Bailloces Lañohan, 39, resident of abovementioned place.

Confiscated from him were two small sachets of suspected shabu, ₱300.00 marked money, and a black wallet containing jewelry, drug paraphernalia, and various ID cards. The suspected drug pusher is temporarily detained at Leon Postigo MPS while confiscated items are placed under their custody for proper disposition.

Zamboanga City - ZCPS7 SAIDSOTG (Sta. Maria) conducted a buy-bust operation at a compound in Gov. Ramos Ave., Brgy. Sta. Maria at about 1:45 AM on September 26, 2015. The operation resulted in the arrest of Anthony Paulo Potenciano Mandin, 35, of Arcillas St., Brgy. Mercedes, for violation of R.A. 9165. Confiscated from him was a small sachet of suspected shabu as buy-bust item, one medium-size sachet of same substance, various shabu paraphernalia, Php 200.00 marked money, a yellow/black Honda XRM 125 motorcycle bearing plate no. 1126 JK. Suspect is now under the custody of said station for filling appropriate charges in court.

FFS graduation, harvest festival held in Dipolog

BY Alfonso T. Ruda (FPG/ATR/PIA9-ZN)

DIPOLOG CITY (PIA) - A total of 28 farmers from the different barangays of this city graduated on Tuesday from a six-month training given by the East-West Seed Company, Inc. dubbed “Farmer’s Field School (FFS)” on high-value vegetable production using natural farming system.

In her message, Mayor Evelyn T. Uy urged the graduates to sustain their efforts, continue using the natural farming technology, and refrain from using chemicals in their farms.

The lady mayor assured the farmers of the market for their produce saying “ the City Agriculture Office (CAO) will buy their products and they will be given a space at the city market.

Uy also reiterated that the city government programs with DAR are now reaping dividends. “The city government gave 50 percent as its counterpart to all the ADB-funded projects implemented by DAR,” she declared.

The 28 graduates were composed of 17 males and 11 female farmers from barangays San Jose, Gulayon, Sangkol, Diwan, Sinaman, Galas, Punta, Olingan, and Cogon.

The six-month training was administered by East-West Seed Co, Inc., headed by Technology Transfer Manager Dr. Roberto Acosta.

For his part, Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer Mohammad Dassan J. Adju of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR)-Zamboanga del Norte expressed his gratitude to the provincial and city governments for providing counterpart funds to the projects implemented by the department in the province.

Ms. Enone Realiza, one of the graduates, challenged the other graduates to be proud of being a farmer and to apply what they have learned during the training. She also appealed to the buyers to buy their produce at a reasonable price.

To ensure the market of their products, City Agriculturist Kerr Porlas said a Memorandum of Marketing Agreement will be inked between the farmers and the city government for the provision of a space at the city market for vegetables and other agricultural products produced through natural farming system technology.

The top 5 graduates are Edgar V. Flores of Sinaman with the rating 92.5%, Edilito J. Murro of Sinaman-89.5%, Espedita J. Cadano of Sangkol-87.5%, Rey S. Abequivel of San Jose-86.5, and Jovito S. Ganta of San Jose 80.75 %.

The agencies joining hands in implementing the project are DAR-ADB ARCP 2; EAST-West Seed Co. Inc., (Phils) headed by its technology transfer manager, Dr. Roberto Acosta and city government.

DOLE extends P1-M livelihood assistance to Sirawai farmers/fisherfolks

By Alfonso T. Ruda (FPG/ATR/PIA9-ZN)

DIPOLOG CITY, Oct. 2 (PIA) -Farmers and fisherfolks from Zambonga del Norte’s third district have benefited from a livelihood assistance of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) recently.

In a simple turnover ceremony held at Dipolog City Boulevard here, DOLE Secretary Rosalinda D. Baldoz handed to Al Hadaya Farmers and Fisherfolks Association President Mr. Benjamin P. Yahiya two fishing boats complete with accessories worth P453 thousand and another fishing boat worth P223,400, also complete with accessories was given to Balubuan Farmers and Fishing Association through its president, Bolleng M. Bontong.

The fishing boat was made of hard wood and powered by a 2-horse engine with 1,800-meter fishing nets.

Apart from the fishing boat, Balubuan FFS also received four goats comprising of 1 billy and 4 nannys for its livelihood from the provincial government of Zamboanga del Norte.

Al Hadaya FFS, which has been in operation for two years has more than 50 members.

Both Al Hadaya FFS and Balubuan FFS thanked the government for the assistance and vowed to repay it by taking care of the fishing boats and to help in the maintenance of peace and order in the community by running after illegal fishing activities. However, no piracy and illegal fishing activities have been monitored in the area lately, Yahiya reported.

Governor Roberto Uy, on the other hand, assured Secretary Baldoz that the recipients would take care of the boats and used these “as an instrument for change.”

The turnover ceremony was attended by Dipolog City Mayor Evelyn Uy, DOLE-9 Regional Director Sisinio B. Cano, DOLE-Zamboanga del Norte Field Office head Lourdes B. Amores, provincial and city officials and employees as well as representatives from the military.

Bantay Dagat/Kalikasan Task Force gets P2.5-M patrol boat

By Franklin P. Gumapon (FPG/PIA9)

LABASON, Zamboanga del Norte, Oct. 1 (PIA) – To ward off attacks by lawless elements operating in the coastal towns of Zamboanga del Norte’s third district, a patrol boat has been turned-over recently to the Bantay Dagat/Kalikasan Task Force led by the 21st Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army (PA) based in the area.

Speaking during the patrol boat launching held at Barangay Osukan here, Col. Jesus Mananquil Jr., commanding officer of the 101st Infantry Brigade, PA, emphasized that the goal of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) “is to promote peace and order in the whole of Mindanao.”

“With this patrol boat, the Bantay Dagat/Kalikasan Task Force which is composed of the army, police, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Agriculture (DA), local government units (LGUs) and other stakeholders, will now be able to run after illegal fishing, piracy, kidnapping, extortion and other forms criminalities perpetrated by the lawless groups in the province’s third district,” Mananquil said.

The P2.5-million patrol boat was acquired through the congressional office of Congressman Isagani S. Amatong, representative of the third district.

On behalf of Congressman Amatong, his chief of staff, Adrian A. Amatong said, “no single agency of the government can solve the problems of illegal fishing, piracy or extortion activities,” as these need collective efforts among government agencies.

For his part, Engr. Joseph Florig, assistant regional director of BFAR-9, expressed his gratitude to all agencies and organizations, which take part in protecting the seas and the marine resources saying “BFAR before acted alone and it was a lonely job.”

“Ang dagat problema kay daghan man ang tag-iya dili sama sa yuta nga kadtong lamang adunay titulo maoy manag-iya (The sea is a problem because a number own it, unlike the lands that only those with land titles owning them),” Florig explained.

The BFAR official also hoped that the involvement of the different agencies in the fight against illegal fishing would continue.

Moreover, Vice Governor Senen O. Angeles also said “the unified movement for Batay Dagat/Kalikasan is a very good move in the protection against piracy, terrorism, kidnapping and illegal fishing that would redound to the protection of our environment.”

Nine of the 13 municipalities of Zamboanga del Norte’s third district have coastal barangays facing the Sulu Sea that stretches up to Zamboanga City.

Sunglao elected chair of Zampen cacao cluster team

By Allen Abastillas

Retired Police Director Angelo H. Sunglao was elected chairman for Private Sector in the Zamboanga Peninsula Cacao Industry Cluster Team during a two-day seminar on strategic planning for the cacao industry in Zampen that was held at Grand Astoria Hotel on September 28 -29,2015.

The seminar-workshop was sponsored by the Department of Trade and Industry-9.

Vice Chairman for Upstream are the Dept. of Agriculture and Philippine Coconut Authority- 9 and Vice Chair for Downstream is the Dept. of Trade and Industry headed by Director Sitti Amina Jain. The Secretariat are the offices of DA-9, DTI and National Economic Development and Authority-9.

Regional Development Council- 9 is the overall chair and ZAMPEN CICT is the overall vice chair.

Policy and Information Advocacy Action Team is chaired by NEDA-9 with DA-9, DTI-9, Dept. of Labor and Employment, Local Government Units, Academe, RAFC, Dept. of Agrarian Reform, Philippine Information Agency and Mindanao Development Authority-9 as members.

Productivity and Quality Improvement Action Team is chaired by the Dept. of Agriculture with the Dept. of Science and Technology, Technical Education and Skills Development Administration, DOLE, Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources, DAR, DTI, Cooperatives and Associations, Academe, LGUs and Service Provider Organizations as members.

Processing and Marketing Action is chaired by DTI-9 and members are DA, DAR, DOST, TESDA, Academe, Traders, Processors/ Exporters, DENR, Service Provider Organizations and LGUs.

Financing and Investment Action Team is chaired by Land Bank of the Philippines and mMembers are DTI, DA, DENR, DOST, Development Bank of the Philippines, LGU, Rural Bank, Zamboanga Economic Zone and Local Government Units.

Sunglao thanked DTI-9 under Regional Jain and the participants for choosing him as chairman for the Private Sector for ZAMPEN Cacao Industry Cluster Team.

“There is a beautiful future for the cacao industry in the country. Let’s help each other and the farmers and love and protect and preserve the land that gives us life,” Sunglao said.

DTI Zamboanga del Norte Provincial Director Noel Bazan expressed optimism that by year 2020, Philippines can produce point 65 million tons of dried cacao beans.

“We can do it because the land of our country most especially in Mindanao is very fertile. Sabi po nila kahit itapon mo lang ang seeds sa lupa pagbalik mo five years ha-harvest ka na ng mga prutas,” Bazan said.

FEATURE: Saving farms thru “SAGIP” program

By Franklin P. Gumapon (FPG/PIA9)

Here in Liloy, Zamboanga del Norte corn farmers don’t leave their farms; they till their lands and make them productive!

In most parts of the country the farmers, who are touted as the “backbone of the nation,” are thinning in numbers. Most of them are leaving their farms to find other means to eke out a living. They find farming to be capital-intensive but the revenue is too small. At times their produce is not enough for their own consumption.

But why are the corn farmers in this town tending their farms again? It all started with the implementation of the municipality’s “SAGIP” program by virtue of Municipal Ordinance No. 234 series of 2014 otherwise known as Sustaining Agriculture through Government Interventions and Participation (SAGIP) ordinance.

Primary purposes

In consonance with the SAGIP program, the local government unit (LGU) of Liloy aims to directly engage in farming by cultivating available farmlands and to plant them with corn and other crops, and to encourage farmers to go back to their farms and continue farming using effective farming techniques.

This program also seeks to increase the food supply in the locality and, at the same time, provide employment opportunities by hiring three farm workers for every one-hectare corn land to ensure continuing assistance to the farmers and their families.

Usufruct agreement

In an interview with Mayor Felixberto Bolando, he said private lands cultivated and planted with corn by the municipal government are sanctioned by a usufruct agreement between the municipal mayor and the landowners as authorized by the Sangguniang Bayan or municipal council.

Under this scheme, the landowner continues to enjoy all the produce of the trees and plants existing at the time of the execution of the said agreement while the municipal government shall only harvest and enjoy all the produce of the corn planted by its job order employees.

In 2014, the municipality was able to cultivate 22 hectares of private lands, employing 66 job order farm workers.

Seeing the benefits the SAGIP program brings to idle private corn lands, more landowners have volunteered their lands to be covered by the said program. This year the LGU has farmed a total of 50 hectares of corn lands under usufruct agreement from last year’s 22 hectares.

Assistance to corn farmers

Mayor Bolando also disclosed that the municipal government through its Municipal Agriculturist’s Office (MAO) had extended assistance to corn farmers by plowing their corn lands using the municipal tractors for free plus a 50-kilo bag of fertilizer for every one–hectare farm. The only obligation of the farmer-beneficiaries is to plant their lands with corn.

With this, the farmers are getting 3 to 4 tons of corn produce per hectare and most of them are now going back to their farms. “Before only 20 percent of the farmers were active with the program, but now we have 40 to 50 percent active farmers,” the mayor pointed out.

Exclusive for the locals

SAGIP program is the municipal leadership’s answer to food supply problem encountered by the farmers themselves. Before the implementation of this program, some corn farmers had abandoned their farms, selling away their carabaos to buy motorcycles to be used as “Habal-habal” - the main transportation used to ferry passengers in remote and far-flung villages with no clear roads. This resulted in the decrease in corn production in the municipality.

As majority of his constituents are corn eating, Mayor Bolando said the corn produced under the SAGIP program would be sold to the “registered and actual residents of Liloy town at a price to be fixed by the Sangguniang Bayan through an ordinance but lower than that prevailing in the market.”

“The farmers here are now encouraged to go back to their farms,” Mayor Bolando declared. He believes that the SAGIP program is now gaining a momentum toward food security in his town.

Cop killed in highway collision in Zambo Norte

By Bong Garcia

A POLICEMAN was killed after his head was smashed with a stone following a highway collision involving two motorcycles in the province of Zamboanga del Norte, the police reported Sunday.

The stone smasher and two of his cohorts were subsequently arrested at the crime scene and in a follow-up operation launched by the police.

Inspector Dahlan Samuddin identified the slain policeman as Police Officer 1 (PO1) Jonathan Galgo, 33, a resident of Lawagan village, Labason, Zamboanga del Norte.

Samuddin said the arrested suspects were identified as Sanny "Boboy" Cagas, 42; Bobong Lemosnero, 40; and Samuel Cagas, 38.

Samuddin said Galgo was driving a motorcycle on the way to report for duty at the Labason public market Community Police Assistance Center when the latter collided with an on-coming motorcycle driven by Lemosnero with four back riders.

The incident took place around 9:30 p.m. Friday in the village of Lopoc, Labason, Zamboanga del Norte.

Lemosnero's back riders included Sanny and Samuel Cagas and Russen Balili, 24, and Charlito Handugan, 36.

Samuddin said that according to Balili and Handugan, Sanny got irked and shouted in vernacular: "Who is this man, we will finish him off!"

Sanny then grabbed a stone and struck it in the head of Galgo, causing the policeman’s death.

Samuddin said that Sanny and Samuel were arrested by the responding police at the crime scene, while Lemosnero was arrested at his residence in a follow-up operation.

Appropriate charges are set to be filed against them, said Samuddin.

NGCP holds POWER 103 in Dipolog

By Alfonso T. Ruda (ALT/ATR/PIA9-ZN)

DIPOLOG CITY (PIA) - To maximize the participation of media in its information and dissemination campaign, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) recently conducted a Seminar on System Operation and Project Presentation dubbed as “Power 103” with the local media at the Hotel and Suites here.

NGCP Regional Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Officer Elizabeth Ladaga said Power 103 aims to raise public awareness and appreciation of issues and concerns surrounding the company’s operation and to showcase its projects in Mindanao through media’s active participation.

She reiterated that the role of NGCP in the power industry is to facilitate the distribution of power generated by the National Power Corporation (NAPOCOR) to the distribution utilities or electric cooperatives.

Mr. Jay Martinez, on the other hand updated the local media of the on-going projects of NGCP in Mindanao, citing among others the sub-station and transmission lines in Polanco, Zamboanga del Norte which experienced delay due to some legal problems, like the refusal of the landowners to sell the area that will be affected by the implementation of the said project.

However, Martinez is optimistic that it will be implemented the soonest possible as the re-bidding was already held last August 8, and is undergoing evaluation and will hopefullybe awarded to the lucky bidder next month for commissioning by early 2016.

Once realized, the new Polanco sub-station and transmission line would ease up the low-voltage problem and would help in addressing the increasing power demand in the province. Aurora-Polanco sub-station and transmission line is one of the 13 projects of NGCP in Mindanao.

To avoid the re-occurrence of the power interruption incident caused by the intrusion of a snake into the transmission lines last September 11, Regional Communications Division Head Nelson Bautista said NGCP has already addressed this by putting a plain sheet around the structure to prevent the snakes from going up.

On the issue of vegetation under transmission lines, he urged the concerned local government units to enact ordinances to regulate the planting of trees in areas where the steel structures will be erected and transmission lines to traverse.

Power 103, the 3rd of the seminars conducted by NGCP to promote public awareness on the company’s operation was participated by the officers and members of the Zamboanga del Norte Media Group(formerly Zamboanga del Norte Press Club), Zamboanga del Norte United Correspondents (ZNUC), I-TV and Philippine Information Agency (PIA).

16 Held for Illegal Fishing in Sindangan

By Police Inspector Dahlan T. Samuddin with report from PO2 Jonas D. Macasa Jr. (RPIO9)

Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte - Intelligence operatives of Sindangan MPS received an information from their BINs about an illegal fishing activity on the Sindangan municipal waters at about 8:00 AM on September 14, 2015, Wherein the local fishermen went fishing during the banned period.

At about 9:00 AM of same date, a team led by Police Inspector Joel Adajar conducted a sea-borne patrol in Barangay Ricardo Macias up to Barangay Motibot. At about 11:20 AM of same date, the team apprehended sixteen suspects namely Basilio Cansico y Angeles, 70, Pablo Cansico y Angeles, 47, Marcito Ferolino y Bagaan, 51, all residents of Barangay Motibot, Rolando Caber y Acaylar, 51, Alfred Catubay y Morado, 24, Rodel Robredillo y Marata, 36, Justin Abarquez y Pasinabo, 21, Francis Rey Balolong y Amay, 18, alias “Pete”, 17, Jade Cabey y Pandalangan, 23, Alvin Pasinabo y Salatan, 19, alias “Ren”, 17, Emmanuel Anghoy y Salig, 20, Jerry Hamid y Catalon, 26, Joel Enderez y Catubay, 44, Ferlan Deposa y Papa, 19, all residents of Barangay Gampis. The suspects were held at Sindangan MPS and subsequently released after paying the penalty of Php 500.00 each at the Municipal Treasurer Office for violation of Municipal Ordinance 2003-045 while the two minors were turned-over to WCPS Section for proper disposition.

Health office gives pregnant women first aid kits

By Bong Garcia

THE Department of Health (DOH) has turned over 200 kits for pregnant women and 30 other first aid kits to boost the delivery of basic health services in the municipality of Salug, Zamboanga del Norte.

Dr. Joshua Brilliantes, DOH local health support division chief, turned over to Salug town Mayor Jeffrey Lim at the sideline of the High Impact 5 (Hi-5) caravan on Wednesday.

Brilliantes said the kits for pregnant mothers consist of things and toiletries for the baby and the mother, while the first aid kits included thermometer, soap, bandage, antiseptic, among others.

Dr. Mery Jean Bendijo, municipal health officer, said the kits will be given to pregnant women, who are beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program.

Bendijo said some of the first aid kits will be given to school nurses and to poor families.

Top drug pusher in Zambo Norte, falls

By Bong Garcia

THE police have arrested in an anti-drug operation a person listed as number one in the drug watch-list personalities in Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte, an official said Wednesday.

Inspector Dahlan Samuddin of the Police Regional Office identified the arrested suspect as Alfie Montero.

Samuddin said Montero was arrested in a drug bust around 8:45 a.m. Tuesday near a school in the village of Siare, Sindangan town.

Samuddin said Monteros is listed as the top notorious drug pusher in the municipality of Sindangan.

He said the arresting team confiscated from the possession of the suspect six small-sized plastic sachets of suspected shabu, P500 “marked money,” mobile phone, an automated teller machine, a sling bag and other prohibited drugs paraphernalia.

Rape Suspect, 2 Other Wanted Persons Netted in ZDN

By Police Inspector Dahlan T. Samuddin with report from PO2 Radzben S. Jul (RPIO9)

Zamboanga Del Norte - A 32-year old man wanted rape was collared by operatives of Leon Postigo MPS in Barangay Fatima, Salug town at about 9:30 AM on September 11, 2015.

Police Senior Inspector Joenel S. Pederio, Chief of Police of Leon Postigo MPS, said that suspect Wilson Lipapac y Mangayao alias “Puloy", was arrested by virtue of warrant for Rape in relation to RA 7610 docketed under Criminal Case Number L-001892 issued by Presiding Judge Oscar D Tomarong of RTC, 9th Judicial Region, Branch 28, Liloy, ZDN dated December 21, 2011, without bail bond recommended. Said accused is temporarily detained at Leon Postigo MPS for proper disposition.

Zamboanga Del Norte - Elements of Piñan MPS held a manhunt operation in Barangay Lapu-lapu, Piñan town at about 2:20 PM on September 11, 2015. This resulted in the arrest of Conchita Alap-ap y Coper, 63, a public school teacher and resident of aforementioned place. Suspect was arrested for Grave Oral Defamation. by virtue of warrant issued by Presiding Judge Deborah P. Garcia-Nazario of MCTC Piñan-La Libertad, 9th Judicial Region, Branch 1, in Piñan, docketed under Criminal Case No. P-3146 with bail bond recommended at ₱6,000.00. At about 5:00 PM of same date, said accused was released from police custody after posting the cash bond.

Zamboanga Del Norte - Operatives of Jose Dalman MPS conducted a manhunt operation in Barangay Dinasan, Jose Dalman at about 3:00 PM on September 11, 2015. This led to the arrest of suspect Felino Talibenio Desing, 68, resident of said place, by virtue of warrant for Murder docketed under Criminal Case No. S-4140 issued by Presiding Judge Reymar L. Lacaya of RTC9, Branch 11, Sindangan, ZDN dated August 10, 2015, without bail bond recommended. The arrested person is currently detained at said MPS.

DA improves agri credit access with new financing scheme


MANILA, Sept. 21 (PNA) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) is set to implement a financing model that will further improve credit access for small farmers participating in the agribusiness value chain through the Agriculture and Fisheries Financing Program-Value Chain Financing Program (AFFP-VCFP).

The implementation of the program was signaled by the turnover of PHP40-million worth of funds by the DA's Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC) to the Philippine Postal Savings Bank, Inc. (Postbank) on September 18, 2015.

Agriculture Secretary and ACPC Chair Proceso Alcala had likewise signed the implementing guidelines of the AFPP.

Postbank was selected to be the program partner for the AFFP-VCFP as it is already implementing a corn value chain project with the ZDMC Grains, Inc. (ZGI) in Zamboanga del Norte.

The production-processing-bulk handling-marketing project, which is aligned with the DA’s corn development roadmap, is implemented in Zamboanga del Norte and Bukidnon.

The AFFP is one of the programs under the Agro-Industry Modernization Credit and Financing Program (AMCFP), the umbrella credit program of the DA for agriculture and fisheries.

The VCFP, on the other hand, is one of the credit facilities under the AFFP.

Alcala said that the ACPC Governing Council’s approval of the AFFP-VCFP underscores the importance of putting in place a viable agricultural value chain financing model that can be adopted by mainstream financing institutions.

"With improved credit access, the program hopes to enhance farmers’ production capacities, productivity and incomes. It also intends to contribute to the national government’s goal of promoting inclusive growth," Alcala said.

The value chain approach capitalizes on existing business linkages between farmer-producers and traders or processors to lessen credit risk and is recognized globally as one of the schemes that have potential in promoting inclusive growth in rural areas.

Under the AFFP-VCFP, the initial funding of PHP40 million from ACPC will be used to support the implementation of a value chain financing facility for individual farmers or farmer groups registered in the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA) and market tie-up with established buyers.

Postbank will also match the loan fund with its own counterpart fund equivalent to at least the amount of loans availed of under the program.

The additional funding support from the ACPC will enable Postbank to sustain its value chain financing activities for small corn farmers in Zamboanga del Norte and Bukidnon.

The program will also be implemented in other DA priority areas, besides Bukidnon and Zamboanga del Norte, subject to criteria to be set by the agency.

Alcala said that other commodities such as cassava, rubber, banana, and cacao would later be considered for inclusion under the program, which will be implemented within a one-year period.

Zamboanga del Norte Archived News

The older news reports are kept here.

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