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Iloilo City News June 2015

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Iloilo City - Archived News

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Herbal remedies for diabetes.JPG
How to get the best out of the Malunggay
Moringa (Malungay) leaves compared to common foods
Values per 100gm. edible portion
Nutrient Moringa Leaves Other Foods
Vitamin A 6780 mcg Carrots: 1890 mcg
Vitamin C 220 mg Oranges: 30 mg
Calcium 440 mg Cow's milk: 120 mg
Potassium 259 mg Bananas: 88 mg
Protein 6.7 gm Cow's milk: 3.2 gm
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Molo Church, Iloilo City
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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.
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A Barangay Clearance is NEEDED in order to get a Business License.
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Ask your Barangay Captain/Chairman to create a Resolution to make it mandatory to put the barangay name in all Business addresses.

Contents

TESDA holds regional Korean speech contest

(PNA), JBP/AJP/TESDA6-PR/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 30 (PNA) -- The Technical Education Skills and Development Authority (TESDA) Regional Office 6 held a Korean speech Ccntest recently at the West Visayas State University.

Michelle S. Song, a 31-year-old mother of two, won first place and the chance to join in the 4th national contest at the Women’s Center, TESDA Main Headquarters in Taguig, Manila on July 4, 2015. She received a certificate and PHP10,000 cash plus free travel and accommodation in Manila.

Second prize winner was Michael Francis Braga and third prize winner was Bryan Rosete. Both work as English tutors for Koreans. They were each given PHP5,000 and PHP3,000, respectively.

Held in partnership with the Korean Community Association (KCA) in the Philippines and the Korean Cultural Center (KCC), the contest was intended to promote the Korean language to Filipinos who are seeking job opportunities in Korea. This is also in line with the skills enhancement program of TESDA under the leadership of Sec. Joel Villanueva.

This was the first time the contest was held in Iloilo City.

RDC Western Visayas eyes improvements in city roads

By Lydia C. Pendon

The Regional Development Council (RDC) Western Visayas said that it is eyeing for improvements in Iloilo City roads.

The RDC requested the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to conduct regular anti-over speeding operations along the newly completed President Corazon S. Aquino Avenue in Iloilo City.

RDC co-chair Ro-Ann Bacal, concurrent regional director of the National Economic Authority, admitted that many accidents happen along this avenue.

In line with this, Iloilo will soon implement the speed limit for all types of motor vehicles within the territorial boundaries of the city. An allowable speed of 30 to 60 kilometers per hour are designated for passenger automobiles and motorcycles while trucks and buses are limited to 50 kilometers per hour in certain areas.

The council also asked the Department of Public Works and Highways regional office to install road safety devices, signs and structures in the area.

The City government is also planning to ask the national road board for funding of street lights in three road intersections along the Corazon Aquino Avenue to avoid accidents in these intersections.

The road project is a component of the improvement and widening of circumferential road aimed to reduce traffic congestion and provide a smooth access to the new Iloilo International Airport, new business centers and opening up of new areas within the city.

Iloilo City: Moment and memory

By Hazel P. Villa (PN)

LAUNCH OF 1ST ILOILO ART PRIZE

WITH the aim of capturing the essence of past and present Iloilo City through the eyes of visual artists, the Iloilo Convention and Visitors Bureau (ICVB) will launch the 1st Iloilo Art Prize on June 29, 2015 at the Business Room of the Sarabia Manor Hotel and Convention Center.

An entry must be an oil-based or acrylic painting on an 18 x 24 canvas stretched on a box frame and must revolve around the theme, “Iloilo City: Moment and Memory.”

A participant must be a Filipino citizen aged 18 years and above on the dates of submission which are July 1 to 31, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon and 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the La Fiesta Hotel, M.H. del Pilar Street, Iloilo City.

The first prize is P20,000, second prize is P15,000, and third prize is P10,000, with winning artists consenting to the replication of their work as stipulated in the competition rules and regulations.

The 1st Iloilo Art Prize is organized by the ICVB in cooperation with the National Commission on Culture and the Arts, the Department of Tourism and the St. Therese MTC Colleges.

“The price of the replicated work will be determined by the artist and the buyer who will be duly designated by the ICVB wherein the ICVB is entitled to 10 percent of the price agreed upon by the artist and the buyer,” said the competition rules and regulations, adding the proviso that winning entries will be the property of ICVB but with the artist retaining intellectual property rights.

Moreover, the ICVB emphasized that the artwork to be submitted or portions thereof should not have been entered in any other painting or design competition, nor ever commercially printed or published in any form; members of the ICVB Board of Directors including their relatives up to the second degree of consanguinity and affinity are disqualified from joining the competition.

Moreover, participants consent that their works be selected as part of the ICVB Iloilo Art Prize Exhibit, which will be held between August and October 2015 in selected hotels and malls.

Entry forms are available at V & P Digital Worx Co., Sto. Rosario Street, Iloilo City (behind Perla Insurance). Inquiries may be made at the same office via telephone number 300-1387 (please look for Daisy) and email address iloiloartprize@gmail.com.

Iloilo City councilor recommends demolition of 'useless' flyover to reduce traffic jam

(Philippines News Agency)

ILOILO CITY - Iloilo City Council Plaridel Nava has recommended the demolition of a “useless” flyover project built under the Presidential Bridge Program during the Arroyo administration in 2008 as a long-term solution to the severe traffic congestion in the city proper here.

The other long-term solutions he proposed include the road widening and construction of alternative roads so that commuters will have a leeway in using these roads.

Nava, chairman of the city council committee on transportation, pointed to the multi-million peso flyover project along the busy Gen. Luna and Jalandoni streets as seldom used and useless that only adds to traffic congestion and woes of commuters in the city.

He said he was informed the city government never asked for the flyover project nor was consulted by the national government. But people from the national office went ahead and built the flyover, which until today is not appreciated by city residents.

Other proposed solutions

The short- and medium-term solutions include the strict and consistent implementation of traffic rules and regulations; apprehension of on-road and illegal parking, "trisikad" and tricycle operating in the national highway; demolition and removal of illegal structures in the streets; deployment of traffic enforcers in the area of concern; turning off the traffic lights during peak and rush hours; installation of traffic signages; appointment of a permanent chief of the transport management and traffic regulation office (TMTRO); establishing new loading and unloading areas for PUJs; regulation of infrastructure projects; and coordination of TMTRO, LTO and Iloilo City police office in the implementation of traffic ordinances.

In a privilege speech on June 23, Nava admitted having submitted several proposals to city mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog to at least help decongest the traffic situation here. Among the proposals include the possible relocation of the Jalandoni flyover to the intersection of Taft North Mandurriao and El 98 Jaro, and the reduction of the seven islands along Bonifacio Drive fronting the provincial capitol, among others.

On the other hand, Nava said the city council has slated a public hearing and consultation on June 26 at the session hall to discuss the burgeoning problems caused by the city traffic lights installed in nine busy street intersections in the city proper, Molo, Mandurriao, La Paz, and Jaro districts.

The city councilor said he filed a resolution and approved unanimously by the city council calling for an inquiry on the installation of the traffic lights. No less than the General Services Office head Joren Sartorio confirmed that P29 million has already been spent for the traffic lights, Nava said.

He said there has been a no updated feasibility study and survey on the traffic lights installation, no consultation or discussion, no social experimentation, improper timing of signals, and improper distance of traffic lights.

To his surprise, Nava said more traffic lights have been installed which created negative reactions from the transport groups and private motorists due to lack of feasibility and necessity in at least three areas.

Nava said he is inviting stakeholders such as public transport groups, some city government officials, installers and suppliers of the traffic lights to come and participate in the discussion.

Iloilo town to host Light of Peace rite in August

By LYDIA C. PENDON

ILOILO CITY: The town of San Enrique, Iloilo, some 61 kilometers east of Iloilo City, will host the third Light of Peace ceremony slated on August 29, 2015 featuring some 10,000 to 15,000 lighted candles signifying inner peace and brotherhood of mankind. Mayor Ramona Go of San Enrique said a memorandum of agreement was signed between the organizer Middle Way Meditation Institute of Thai monks and the local government unit and provincial government officials on Thursday at the Iloilo capitol to launch the program in the town.

NGAs mark Arbor Day with tree planting

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

ILOILO CITY, June 25 (PIA) --- Various national government agencies here converged to plant tree seedlings in observance of Philippine Arbor Day which is celebrated every June 25.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-6 Regional Director Jim Sampulna said that the Arbor Day is an opportunity for those in government service to plant trees.

“We should be reminded of the importance of trees in our life as we are also enjoined by the President of the country to plant at least ten trees every year for a period of six years as part of the National Greening Program (NGP),” he said.

The NGP is a massive forest rehabilitation program of the government established by virtue of Executive Order No. 26 issued on Feb. 24, 2011 by President Benigno S. Aquino III.

It seeks to grow 1.5 billion trees in 1.5 million hectares nationwide within a period of six years, from 2011 to 2016.

Meanwhile, Arbor Day in the Philippines has been institutionalized to be observed every June 25 throughout the nation by planting trees and ornamental plants and other forms of relevant activities.

The necessity to promote a healthier ecosystem for the people through the rehabilitation and re-greening of the environment was stressed in Proclamation No. 643 that amended Proclamation No. 396, s. 2003.

Proclamation No. 396 enjoined the “active participation of all government agencies, including government-owned and controlled corporations, private sector, schools, civil society groups and the citizenry in tree planting activity”.

On one hand, some 580 “golden shower” tree seedlings were planted along the Corazon Aquino Avenue here for the Arbor Day celebration spearheaded by DENR-6.

Cervical cancer vaccination open to grade 4 kids

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

ILOILO CITY, June 24 (PIA) --- The Department of Health (DOH) in Western Visayas said that Grade 4 female students in all public schools in Iloilo and Negros Occidental can avail themselves of free anti-cervical cancer vaccination starting August.

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination is part of the school-based immunization program of the DOH dubbed “Bakunang Tuloy-Tuloy para sa Malusog na Batang Pinoy”.

Dr. Renilyn Reyes, DOH-6 Family and Nutrition Cluster Head, said that the HPV vaccination will only be implemented in 20 provinces in the country with high poverty magnitude which include Iloilo and Negros Occidental.

“The vaccination will be administered to grade 4 female students aged 9 to 13 years old,” she said.

She emphasized that students need to get consent from their parents to avail of the two doses of the HPV vaccine within 6 months.

Based on the recommendation of the World Health Organization (WHO), early adolescence is the best time to get vaccinated since there is no exposure yet to the virus. It is also at this time that the body mounts the highest immune response to vaccination.

The HPV vaccine is also recommended before young girls become sexually active.

Cervical cancer, which is known to be caused by HPV in over 99 percent of cases, is the second most common cancer in women globally.

It remains a public health concern that continues to threaten the welfare and well-being of women and the population as a whole.

In the Philippines, studies show that cervical cancer is the third leading cause of mortality among females as it claims the lives of 12 women each day.

This makes cervical cancer control as one of the major priorities of DOH thru the National Cancer Prevention and Control Program.

LGUs to focus on nutrition month celebration

By Elsa S. Subong (JCM/ESS/PIA-Iloilo)

ILOILO CITY, June 23(PIA)—The Department of Interior and Local Government has issued a memo circular directing all local government units from the provincial down to the barangay levels to participate in the celebration of nutrition month.

Dr. Marlyn Convocar, Department of Health-6 Director, said this is a relevant call as the local communities are enjoined to be vigilant about health concerns like good nutrition.

Convocar, who is also the chair of the Regional Nutrition Committee (RNC), said the circular should be taken seriously by local officials.

Memo Circular 2015-58, signed by DILG Secretary Mar Roxas, says the 41st Nutrition Month Celebration this July carries the theme “Timbang Iwasto, sa Tamang Nutrisyon at Ehersisyo.”

This theme, according to Nona Tad-y, regional nutrition program coordinator, said in the recent RNC meeting, that the theme aims to increase awareness on the role and importance of proper nutrition in the prevention of overweight and obesity among the people.

Further, she said, the theme seeks to encourage Filipinos to make positive decisions on consumption of healthy foods and practicing healthy lifestyle.

“In this, we expect the local officials, the academe and the private sector to put in place an enabling environment that promotes proper nutrition and physical activity,” Tad-y said.

The DILG circular has suggested some activities and campaigns which the LGUs and those concerned can undertake.

These are promotion of the 10 Kumainments, the simplified messages of the Nutritional Guidelines for Filipinos; conduct of seminars, fora; dissemination of advocacy materials through all forms of media, including social media; and, promotion of Pinggang Pinoy, developed by the NNC, FNRI and DOH.

Further, the circular also suggested the conduct of “Belly Gud for Health” of the DOH, where a contest where personnel are encouraged to reduce their waist by holding a contest. Likewise, the circular encourages that healthy food options in office canteens should be ensured also.

RNC Chair Convocar said all member-agencies of the committee should be in the front line of initiating activities to promote the celebration of Nutrition Month and its theme.

Thai faculty, students at WVSU on exchange program

(PN)

ILOILO City – Three faculty members and five students of the Kamphaeng Phet Rajabhat University (KPRU) of Thailand are currently at the West Visayas State University (WVSU) on a Faculty and Student Exchange Program that started on June 20 and ends on June 24.

WVSU has a memorandum of understanding with KPRU inked last August 2013 that will allow the universities, both having strong teacher education programs, to undertake academic exchange of students following the University Mobility in Asia and the Pacific rules and regulations.

Led by Choowit Chaibao, head of the KPRU Social Study Program; Boonloom Duangwiset, KPRU associate dean; and Phimchanok Neryplub, KPRU English Program instructor, the program consists of a WVSU campus tour and local studies focusing on Ilonggo heritage and natural resources, as well as observation of English classes and a research forum.

The Exchange Program is hosted by the WVSU College of Education (COE) that also hosted the Thai awardees of the 2014 Thai-Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Student Exchange Program Scholarship last July 2, 2014, wherein under specified subjects, the Thai students stayed at WVSU until the end of October 2014 studying mathematics together with sophomore and senior students of COE.

ICPO’s anti-illegal drug operations gain ground

(Iloilo City PIO/PN)

ILOILO City – The Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) achieved a 358-percent increase in drug cases filed in court last year from its 2013 record.

This achievement impressed the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) that it gave the ICPO with a Plaque of Recognition during the agency’s anniversary celebration at Hotel Del Rio here on June 18.

PDEA director general Arturo Cacdac Jr., who awarded the ICPO, also lauded the city police for achieving a 358-percent increase in drug cases filed in court last year.

The ICPO also posted a 200-percent increase in positive operations conducted, 151-percent increase in persons arrested, and 132-percent increase in illegal drugs seized in 2014.

“We are committed in pursuing a drug-free Iloilo City,” stressed Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog.

The city government had given equipment to the ICPO to enhance police mobility in the apprehension of drug pushers and users.

Currently, ICPO is spearheading drug-clearing operations in clustered barangays next in the districts of Mandurriao, Arevalo, Jaro and City Proper, following the successful campaign in La Paz and Molo.

DPWH exec: ICC not yet ready for 1st Apec meeting

By Lydia C. Pendon

THE Iloilo Convention Center (ICC) may not be able to host the first of the four meetings of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec), because the edifice is not yet complete, said Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) regional director Edilberto Tayao.

The convention center is set to be completed on July 31, 2015, but Tayao said the edifice is still on its 85 percent completion as of June 10 and they are still working on the building finishes, plumbing, electrical, mechanical and fire protection features.

The furnitures and furnishings will have to be completed by August and September, the month set for the ICC to host three other Apec meetings until October, Tayao said.

The first Apec meeting is the Senior Officials Meeting on Strengthening the Capital Markets, Infrastructure Development and Financing with some 300 participants and delegates from 21 countries in the Asia and the Pacific. The venue is slated at the Royal Garden Convention Center along Gen. Luna Street.

The three other meetings are the Ministerial Meeting on Small and Medium Enterprises on September 21-25; Senior Officials Meeting on Disaster Risk Preparedness, Reduction and Management on September 22-23; and the Ministerial Meeting on Food Security and the Blue Economy on September 28 to October 6, 2015. More than 2,000 delegates will attend the meetings.

P1-billion infras for Iloilo City this year

(Iloilo City PIO/PN)

ILOILO City – Over a billion pesos worth of infrastructure projects will be implemented here this year.

Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) secretary Rogelio Singson announced this as he lauded the city government’s support for the smooth implementation of his agency’s projects, during an inspection on June 11.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said infrastructure developments provide more economic opportunities to the Ilonggos.

Singson said implementing big projects is daunting but is made easier with the help of the city government.

“The development in Iloilo is definitely much higher than the national average gross domestic product growth. Our estimate here is a double-digit growth because of the construction boom,” Singson said.

The improvements boost the city’s bid to attract more investors and tourists.

The widened 15.6-kilometer Sen. Benigno S. Aquino Jr. Avenue commonly called Diversion Road, an eight-lane with two-lane service road and bike lane provides easy access to the Iloilo Airport in Cabatuan, Iloilo.

The 14.8-kilometer President Corazon C. Aquino Avenue commonly called C-1 or Circumferential Road provides alternative routes to Jaro, Mandurriao and Arevalo districts, and adjacent towns.

The Muelley Loney Bridge set to open in July. It will provide convenience and accessibility to visitors and Ilonggos going to the fastcraft terminal across the Iloilo River in Lapuz district and heritage sites in City Proper.

Construction on the state-of-the-art Iloilo Convention Center (ICC) are expected to be completed in July in time for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings slated in September and October.

A total of P1.15-billion worth 73 programmed projects under the 2015 General Appropriations Act (GAA) is scheduled for implementation in city this year by DPWH.

These include six tourism roads, three road rehabilitation projects; 13 constructions and maintenance of flood control and drainages; six roads widening; seven bridges; and 38 projects under Local Infrastructure Program.

Best 2015 Brigada Eskwela search on

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

ILOILO CITY, June 18 (PIA) --- The Department of Education (DepEd)-6 announced that the regional search for the 2015 Brigada Eskwela best school implementers is on.

DepEd6 Officer-in-Charge Ma. Gemma M. Ledesma said that the search includes three categories for both elementary and secondary levels, namely small school with enrollment of less than 1,000; big school with enrollment of more than 1,000; and exceptional school.

“There will be six entries from every division, two entries from every category, one from elementary, and also one from secondary,” she said.

The DepEd said that the award aims to recognize schools which displayed exemplary performance in mobilizing community participation for the annual preschool opening maintenance activity.

Brigada Eskwela is a school maintenance program that engages education stakeholders both in the government and the private sector to contribute their time, resources, and effort to spruce up public schools before class opening.

It is in line with DepEd’s mission to provide safe and clean learning spaces for Filipino learners.

The week-long school maintenance practice, which took place May 18 to 23, was anchored on the theme “Tayo Para sa Kalinisan, Kaligtasan at Kahandaan ng ating mga Paaralan”.

Elementary and High School Teachers to use Electronic Class Record

By Cindy B. Ferrer [(PNA), CTB/AJP/CBF/VLO]

ILOILO CITY, June 17 (PNA) -– Teachers in public elementary and high schools will use electronic class record template for the records of students.

According to Dr. Leo Dedoroy, chief of Policy, Planning, and Research Division (PPRD) of the Department of Education (DepEd) VI, the electronic class record was made by some teachers in Region VI which they presented to the Central Office and was validated.

Last June 15, DepEd passed the memorandum order number 8, series of 2015, in which DepEd provides an Electronic class record template free for use of public school teachers beginning school year 2015 to 2016.

“Through the use of the electronic class record, teachers could put the records of their students and automatically compute their grades faster than using the manual record book”, Dedoroy said.

Dedoroy also said that the electronic class record will be used from Grades 1 to 10. A memorandum from the central office ordering the teachers to use electronic class record for Grades 11 and 12 will also be available when the students will already be in senior high school next year.

“There will be another electronic class record intended for the records of students in Grades 11 and 12 because they have different grading system”, Dedoroy added.

To ensure sustainability and to minimize technical difficulty, the electronic class record was made by DepEd as part of the policy guidelines on classroom assessment for the K to 12 Basic Education Program.

DepEd is encouraging the division information technology officer or designated information communication technology coordinator to conduct an orientation for school personnel and extend technical assistance to promote the use of the electronic class record.

The electronic class record template is downloadable in the DepEd official website for the utilization of elementary and high school teachers.

International summit set anew in Iloilo City

By Lydia C. Pendon

ILOILO City will host the 2015 Urban Environmental Accord (UEA) Summit September 15-17, five days before the Ministerial Meetings of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec).

The UEA Summit is a follow-up of the city’s highly successful hosting of the 1st International River Summit in 2012 and to be participated by 53 countries with 300 delegates from Asia and the Pacific including some countries in Europe and the western hemisphere.

Delegates from some 200 cities all over the world are expected to participate in the environmental summit that aims to encourage environmental protection and preservation of urban centers.

The last summit was held in Texas, United States of America in 2013.

The city environment and natural resources office (Cenro) is in-charge of preparations for the UEA Summit proposed to be held at the newly constructed Iloilo Convention Center as a dry-run for the APEC hosting.

Iloilo City is a signatory to UEA and Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog was elected member to the UEA Board, as the only Filipino mayor serving such position.

The environmental summit will boost the city's growing potentials as ideal convention destination as well as to attract tourists and prospective investors to an urban center.

The city will share its own environmental protection programs and showcase successful initiatives such as the Iloilo River, wetland and bird sanctuary, and cultural heritage.

More benefits, interventions for organized farmer groups

By Elsa S. Subong

ILOILO CITY, June 15(PIA)—Government has interventions for the agriculture sector and those farmers who are organized make the most out of these.

Manuel Olanday, Regional Technical Director of the Department of Agriculture-6, said that farmers who are members of associations and coops have better deals for their produce.

Olanday said in a radio interview that their lack of organizations make the farmers less bankable.

“Banks see our farmers as not bankable, hence DA designed micro-financing schemes to help them,” Olanday said.

These credit programs include Sikat-Saka Program for Rice, Agricultural Productivity Credit Program and Agriculture and Fishery Financing Program.

Olanday further said that the processing requirements for loans have been simplified such as not to burden the farmers.

He added that it is not enough for farmers to just get organized but also to sustain the associations.

Most often poor management results to the failure of the associations, including the lack of marketing skills which have been neglected as part of farming system.

“The farmers should be able to market their produce and get good deals for it,” Olanday said.

The DA is facilitating trainings on Agri-business and Marketing so that farmers can acquire skills.

Meanwhile, Olanday has advised farmers here to take advantage of the intermittent rains and start tilling their fields so that land preparation period can be shortened when the planting season begins.

With the El Niño extending for months ahead, and even till next year, farmers should, likewise, be cautious whether to plant for the second cropping or not.

“If farmers cannot plant rice, they should settle for some alternative crops,” Olanday added.

City council approves P39.4-M add’l budget

By MERIANNE GRACE ERENETA (PN)

ILOILO City – The Sangguniang Panlungsod has approved the executive department’s proposed Supplemental Budget No. 2 for 2015 amounting to P39,491,721.69.

Councilor Eduardo Peñaredondo, chairperson of the appropriations committee, bared the breakdown:

• development projects (P16,749,028.89) • capital outlay for City Mayor’s Office (P50,000) • Person’s with Disability Affairs Office (P30,000) • Breaking Barriers for Young and Adult with Disabilities Project (P95,000) • peace and order program (P20,480,000) • repair and maintenance of Iloilo Esplanade facilities / equipment / lightning (P500,000) • payment for leave credits of a utility worker (P51,231,000) • City Treasurer’s Office (P1,197,000) • Local Council for the Protection of Children (P150,000) • water expenses for December 2014 (P126,461); and • Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund (P63,000).

Peñaredondo also presented the breakdown of the P20,480,000 allocation for the peace and order program:

• four motorcycles for the Transportation Management and Traffic Regulation Office (P560,000) • one multipurpose utility vehicle for the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (P798,000) • one police service vehicle (P1,240,000) • 22 police motorcycles (P3,080,000) • six police multipurpose utility vehicles (P5,040,000) • 70 patrol motorcycles with side car (P6,860,000) • 38 sets of communication equipment (P1,422,000); and • two rifles / accessories / ammunition for the city police’s Special Weapons and Tactics (P1,480,000).

President Aquino leads traditional 'Vin d’Honneur' commemorating 117th Philippine Independence

(PCOO/PND (co)

ILOILO CITY, Iloilo, June 13 -- President Benigno S. Aquino III on Friday trumpeted the government’s achievements, as he pledged to the international community the country’s commitment towards building a true community of nations.

In his toast during the traditional Vin d'Honneur in celebration of the country’s 117th Independence Day at the Casa Real de Iloilo here, President Aquino heralded the government’s accomplishments, citing the budget increases for social welfare, health, and education since 2010, as well as the administration’s economic achievements, including the record-high US$6 billion in net foreign direct investments the country received last year.

“My country has indeed achieved so much, yet we did not do this all on our own. We reached our goals sooner because of the international community, who recognized our earnest efforts and saw an honest government and a people truly worth helping,” he said.

“This, in turn, breeds in us a debt of gratitude—what we call utang na loob—shown in our determination to do our share to address the world’s problems,” the President told members of the Diplomatic Corps and government officials.

President Aquino thanked the international community for its support that contributed to the country’s transformation.

In his message, the President called on nations to work together to address the world’s problems.

“Fostering even greater cooperation amongst all nations need not even be on the basis of our universal rights or of altruism. Any practical mind would recognize that we must be concerned with our brother by necessity, especially in this shrinking world, where problems are less and less localized, and more and more common,” he said.

The Chief Executive cited the phenomenon of pandemics, the issue of displacement, terrorism and climate change.

“Instability, conflict, and chaos in other parts of the world will eventually make their effects felt on our shores. Doing nothing about the problem will force us one day to confront it when it is far more complex and unmanageable, and can no longer be ignored,” he said.


“That is why we choose to work with partners like your good selves to address the situation at its point of origin, and therefore prevent successive problems,” he added.

President Aquino likewise affirmed the country’s commitment to the task of building a true community of nations.

“Excellencies, as we are determined to join your nations in the struggle to overcome the obstacles you face, so too do we ask you to join us. In this way, we can truly forge a global community in which each nation-state realizes that their growth and stability hinge on their ability to work with others,” he said.

“This is the clearest path towards a world where there is mutual respect, where we are all bound by international law and by a single definition of our entitlements and obligations; where we are all brothers, all of equal footing, working side by side. In your presence, we pledge: the Philippines is committed to the task of building that true community of nations,” he added.

In response, Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto, Apostolic Nuncio and Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, expressed his and the diplomatic corps’ sentiments of deep gratitude at being able to join the Filipinos in celebrating the 117th Year of Philippine Independence.

“This occasion is especially favorable for renewing the friendship of our respective governments and of the international organizations to you, Mr. President, as well as to the Filipino people,” he said.

Monsignor Pinto also lauded the government for “carrying to completion the peace in Mindanao while sustaining dialogue with all the interested entities, political movements, religious and cultural groups”.

He also cited the declaration of 2015 as “Visit the Philippines Year” to promote the country as a venue for conferences, meetings and exhibitions.

“Filipinos are a people of natural hospitality, a quality that springs from their heritage and character. It is what makes the Philippines a nation worthy not only of a short visit, but as we diplomats can attest, a country that amply repays a longer stay,” he said.

NIA creates mgt body for Jalaur watershed

By GERALDINE J. GALENO, NIA JRMP II (PN)

A TECHNICAL working group (TWG) for the management of the Jalaur watershed area was formed by the National Irrigation Administration Regional Office 6 (NIA 6).

This, as environmental protection and watershed preservation continue to be top priorities in the implementation of Western Visayas’ biggest irrigation project, the Jalaur River Multipurpose Project Stage II (JRMP II).

In its latest move, NIA convened with partner national government agencies (NGAs), local government units (LGU) and nongovernment organizations (NGOs) on Tuesday to create the TWG for JRMP II Watershed.

Present were Mayor Alex A. Centena of the municipality of Calinog, also the chairman of the Jalaur River Basin Management Board; Mayor John H. Tarrosa of the municipality of Zarraga; Soledad Sucaldito, Iloilo Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer; Dr. Jessica Salas of Kahublagan sang Panimalay Foundation, Inc.; Susan Calaor, Be Secure Provincial Coordinator; and Dr. Eva Leal-Lam from West Visayas State University – College of Agriculture and Forestry.

With the creation of the TWG for Watershed Management, the meeting also aimed to harmonize the existing plans and programs of upper Jalaur Watershed in relation to the implementation of JRMP II Watershed Management Plan, and identify watershed strategies to protect the water quality and quantity while maintaining the productivity for agricultural, commercial and other uses in its watershed area. Another is exploratory discussions with concerned agencies, LGUs and NGOs in consultation with the cultural community and formulation of localized principles for fresh water protection.

Also present were the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officers (MENRO) of the eight municipalities with watershed areas of the province and representatives from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Regional Office 6, DENR Biodiversity Partnership Project (DENR BPP), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), and Metro Iloilo Water District (MIWD).

Integral to the group is Provincial Environmental and Natural Resources Officer Soledad Sucaldito, who presented the existing TWG of Iloilo Watershed Management Council (IWMC). The roles and functions of the TWG for the IWMC can be adopted into the watershed management plan of JRMP II.

“The TWG will prepare, implement and monitor the JRMP II Watershed Management Plan (WMP), which is a vital component in the sustainability of our project,” said the NIA regional manager and concurrent JRMP II project manager, Engr. Gerardo P. Corsiga. “This TWG will focus on the management of the Jalaur Watershed.”

In an earlier interview, DENR regional executive director Jim Sampulna lauded NIA’s efforts to include Watershed Management in its implementation. “JRMP II is a perfect one because of its reforestation and watershed components … other irrigation projects in the entire country do not have these.”

JRMP II is the first large-scale reservoir dam outside of Luzon. The project is designed to harness the potential of the Jalaur River for multipurpose use while minimizing impacts on the environment and the community it covers.

It will provide year-round irrigation to 31,840 hectares of farmland and increase annual rice production from 140,000 to 300,000 metric tons. Further, it will contribute to the national rice self-sufficiency target of 7.6 percent.

Also, its 6.6-megawatt hydroelectric power and bulk water component will augment the demand for power and potable water in the city and province of Iloilo, generate employment opportunities during construction, and promote eco-cultural tourism in the areas it covers, particularly the hinterlands of Calinog town.

President Aquino leads unveiling of newly restored old Iloilo capitol

By Annabel J. Petinglay [(PNA), LAP/AJPETINGLAY/VLO]

ILOILO CITY, June 11 (PNA) –- President Benigno Aquino III led the unveiling of the newly-restored old Iloilo capitol here at past 2 p.m. Thursday.

Mayors of Iloilo province who were interviewed during the occasion, said that the renovated capitol building is a source of great pride for Ilonggo people, being an important historical edifice for the province.

Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor, Sr. initiated the restoration of the capitol because of its historical significance and to make it once more the premier object of Iloilo’s pride.

The capitol's construction was initiated by then Spanish Governor Jose Maria Carles who served from 1862 to 1867. It was completed in 1873.

Portion of the capitol was burned in 1998 and so a new capitol was constructed adjacent to it. The employees transferred to the new building in 2004.

The old capitol was restored with an allocation of more than P150 million. Groundbreaking for the restoration was in April 2012 and soft opening was held last May 29.

Dumangas Mayor Rolando Distura said that he is very much elated that the provincial government through Gov. Defensor decided to have the old capitol restored as it is an important part of Iloilo’s history.

He also said it is fitting to hold the vin d'honneur at the old capitol to be attended by foreign diplomats after the June 12 Independence Day celebration in Sta. Barbara.

Zarraga Mayor John Tarrosa also said that the unveiling of the renovated old capitol gives the Ilonggos a high sense of history. As such, it will become a landmark for the province of Iloilo.

San Dionisio Mayor Peter Paul Lopez, meanwhile, said that he is proud and thankful to Gov. Defensor for initiating the project.

The restoration work had Guillermo Hisancha as architect.


Hundreds of cyclists, advocates to ride for freedom on June 12

(PNA), FFC/AJP/PR/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 10 (PNA) -- All roads will lead to Iloilo Provincial Capitol Grounds on June 12, as hundreds of cyclists and advocates raise the flag of freedom on Independence Day to stop human trafficking and promote road sharing.

The Independence Day Freedom Ride is a bike ride event organized by advocate group Dakila, in partnership with Centralian Cruisers Cycling Club (C4) which aims to raise awareness on human trafficking and to promote road sharing in Iloilo with the tour of the six district plazas.

The first Independence Day ride in Iloilo was held on June 12, 2013 and participated by more than 500 cyclists.

“We believe that while it is important to celebrate our freedom from colonial rule, it is also important for us to realize that many Filipinos are still enslaved. We want to celebrate our 117th year of independence by continuing the fight for the freedom of others,” said Allyn May Canja, coordinator of Dakila-Iloilo.

“Human trafficking is a serious problem especially in our country because we offer cheap labor. A lot of times we only see women being trafficked for sexual exploitation but in fact, human trafficking can happen to both men and women and for different reasons other than sexual exploitation, such as forced labor. There are even cases of professionals such as doctors who experienced being trafficked,”Canja added.

Freedom Ride is meanwhile part of the "Stop. Look. Listen" campaign of Dakila to popularize the 1343 Anti-Trafficking Hotline. It was launched in Iloilo on April 20, 2013.

Every year around 300,000 to 400,000 Filipinos fall prey to human trafficking in their own country and abroad.

“We are enthusiastic about this event because aside from raising awareness on human trafficking, we also get to promote our cause which is road sharing and to transform Iloilo City into a more bike friendly city. We will be riding our bikes for freedom from human trafficking. In a way, we feel like we are using our own advocacy, to promote another advocacy,” biking advocate Daniella Caro said.

The Freedom Ride is part of the Project Freedom Campaign of Dakila, which aims to raise public awareness on Human Trafficking and empower advocates and citizens to become watchdogs in their own communities by driving them into action through grassroots involvement and amplified action through mainstream and digital media.

The Freedom Ride is free and open to the public. This year’s Independence Day Freedom Ride will start at 3 p.m. from the Iloilo Provincial Capitol Grounds and will pass through the six plazas representing the six districts of Iloilo City.

The ride will end at Iloilo Provincial Capitol for a short program to commemorate the Independence Day.

President Aquino to inspect major infrastructure projects in Iloilo

(PNA), LAP/AJP/PGLENA/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 9 (PNA) -- President Benigno C. Aquino III will inspect multi-million peso projects that are now being constructed in Iloilo City during his visit here Thursday.

President Aquino will have a windshield inspection of the road widening project starting from the town of Sta. Barbara up to Dungon in Jaro district upon his arrival in the morning.

He will also unveil a marker of the road project located at the junction of the Senator Benigno S. Aquino Jr. Avenue and the Corazon C. Aquino Avenue.

He is also expected to inspect the ongoing construction of the Dungon IV and the Muelle Loney Bridges.

The President will also be inspecting the Iloilo Convention Center (ICC) that will be the venue of the ministerial meetings of the 2015 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit.

Mr. Aquino will cap his Thursday visit with the unveiling of the marker of the newly restored provincial capitol building that will serve as venue of the vin d’honneur on Friday.

On Friday the president will lead the flag raising ceremony of the 117th Independence Day celebration in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo.

Thereafter, he will be joined by some 91 ambassadors and their wives and 29 cabinet secretaries for the vin d’honneur at the old provincial capitol.

ICAST levels up advocacy on Anti-smoking

(PNA), CTB/AJP/CBF/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 8 (PNA) –- The Iloilo City Anti-Smoking Task Force (ICAST) has leveled up their advocacy on anti-smoking.

According to Iñigo D. Garingalao, director of ICAST, they wanted to improve the participation of the barangay leaders in advocating the anti-smoking since everyone has a big role in the region.

The ICAST is currently focusing on the supervision of the minors since most violations come from selling of cigarettes to the minors and selling of cigarettes at the front or nearby the schools premises.

“We expect high operation on the surveillance of minors because there are a lot of minors that have been caught smoking”, Garingalao said.

The ICAST, under the supervision of the executive head Iloilo City mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, is obliged to implement the policies pertaining smoking and to be vigilant and aware of the instant happenings regarding smoking.

Garingalao is also reminding the parents that they should look after their children and advice them to avoid smoking.

However, according to the Department of Health Regional Office 6 senior health program officer John Richard Lapascua, out of the 133 Local Government Units (LGUs) in Western Visayas, there are only 36 LGUs that have tobacco control ordinance.

DOH together with the partners continues to advocate the adoption of the comprehensive tobacco control ordinance to the LGUs in order to protect the non-smokers and to reduce the number of people who are smokers.

“Let us make January 1 to December 31 as world no tobacco days“, Lapascua said.

Tribes vow to support Iloilo natives vs megadam project

By Nestor P. Burgos Jr. (Inquirer Visayas)

ILOILO CITY—Indigenous peoples’ (IP) groups and tribes in various regions and provinces in the country have voiced their support for indigenous peoples’ communities opposed to the construction of an P11.2-billion megadam project in Iloilo.

About 83 participants of the Indigenous Peoples Exchange 2015 issued a manifesto against the Jalaur River Multipurpose Project (JRMP) II.

“We oppose large dams because they will destroy the land, life, livelihood and culture of the indigenous peoples … . The construction of the (JRMP II) disregards the rights of the Tumandok (native) to their ancestral domain and self-determination,” according to the manifesto issued by the group after the four-day conference that ended on May 27.

The conference is held every two years and facilitated by the Philippine Task Force for Indigenous Peoples’ Rights. It is aimed at providing an opportunity for indigenous peoples all over the country in sharing their indigenous knowledge, cultures, experiences and struggles for self-determination.

The JRMP II is the second of a two-stage project aimed at the multipurpose use of water of the Jalaur River, one of the major rivers of Panay. It involves the construction of three dams (reservoir, afterbay and catch dams), a 6.6-megawatt hydropower plant and an 81-kilometer high-line canal.

The project is funded by a $203-loan from the South Korean government through its Export-Import Bank’s Economic Cooperation Fund. The counterpart fund from the Philippine government amounted to P2.2 billion.

The JRMP II has split IP communities that will be affected by the project into those against and for the project.

The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) and other proponents of the project have said that this would generate about 17,000 jobs during the construction stage and address Iloilo’s potable water supply and problems.

This would also boost agricultural production, according to NIA.

It has assured IP communities affected by the project of relocation, compensation for their farmlands and other social support.

But the IP groups opposing the project said in their manifesto that the project would only displace “close to 17,000 individual Tumandok (IP group in Panay island) members from their lands, without security of relocation.”

Even their right to free, prior and informed consent was gravely violated by the NIA, National Commission on Indigenous Peoples and the local government of Calinog, Iloilo.

“The Tumandok community members were deceived, bribed, threatened, terrorized and divided to ensure that (their leaders) would enter into an agreement with NIA. This dam is a huge threat to the life, livelihood, culture and indigenous knowledge of the Tumandok people,” they said in their statement.

The NIA has repeatedly assured that the rights of IP have been respected and the process for seeking approval for the project has been followed.

Those opposing the project are less than 10 percent of the affected residents, according to NIA.

Gov’t to feed 198,360 kids in 133 LGUs

(PIA/PN)

ILOILO City – Around 198,360 children in Western Visayas will benefit from the Supplemental Feeding Program (SFP) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region 6.

SFP in Region 6 has been allocated a funding of P309,441,600 to be downloaded to 133 local government units and the National Food Authority (NFA), said SFP focal person Salvacion Gayoma.

DSWD Region 6 wants to ensure that day care children are well-nourished when they attend classes, she said.

SFP provides food, in addition to regular meals, to currently enrolled day care children as part of DSWD’s contribution to the government’s Early Childhood Care and Development program.

SFP is also DSWD’s contribution to the Millennium Development Goal of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger.

The additional hot meal a day is composed of rice and meat/fish/vegetables prepared by the parents organized as Day Care Service Parent Group, with the supervision of day care workers and Municipal Social Welfare and Development Officers.

In preparing the menu, the day care workers consider the inclusion of vegetables mostly preferred by day care children.

The children-beneficiaries will be weighed at the start of the feeding program and three months thereafter.

After the completion of 120 feeding days, the improvement in their nutritional status will be determined.

June 12 celebration to showcase Iloilo’s best

(LCP/Sunnex)

THE best of Iloilo will be presented to the public on June 12, as the city and province hosts the 117th Independence Day celebration for the first time.

President Benigno Aquino III will lead the celebration with flag raising rites scheduled in the morning at the plaza of Sta. Barbara, Iloilo.

The traditional vin d'honneur’ will follow and expected to attend are top Cabinet officials and members of the diplomatic community in the Philippines, aside from Aquino.

Aquino will arrive in Iloilo on June 11 to see the ongoing development projects from the Iloilo airport up to the city, including the road widening project, the Iloilo Convention Center and the new bridge crossing the Iloilo River to Lapuz district.

Senate President Franklin Drilon said about 450 guests, including 100 foreign ambassadors and chiefs of missions, are expected to witness the vin d’honneur to be held at Provincial Capitol.

He said all governors and congressmen of the Visayas will also join the celebration, including the Chief Justice, House Speaker, several taipans and business players in the country.

“Let us make use of that momentous event to show this nation the soaring aspirations of Ilonggos that with our past, present and near future achievements, we are poised to reclaim Iloilo’s rightful place as Queen City of the South,” Drilon urged the Ilonggos.

He said Iloilo's hosting of the Independence Day is an affirmation and acknowledgement of Iloilo’s rise as a progressive and developing center in the Visayas.

Iloilo students to undergo On-the-Job training in senior high school

(PNA), CTB/AJP/CINDY B. FERRER/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 4 (PNA) -– Students in the different schools in Iloilo will undergo On-the-Job (OJT) training in senior high school as part of the K to 12 Basic Education Curriculum (BEC).

According to Education Program Supervisor Abraham Imas, of the Department of Education (DepEd) Division of Iloilo, since the purpose of K to 12 program is for the total and wholistic development of the 21st century learners, they want the graduates to not only learn the lessons but also to apply in action the lessons that they have learned.

“Students enrolled in senior high school will have their on-the-job training to expose them to the real environment of work and to develop their skills through training”, Imas said.

Imas also said that K to 12 program will not only prepare the graduates for work and college education but also for business purposes because there will be entrepreneurship offered in senior high school.

The different colleges and universities are now starting to revise their curriculum in order to avoid the duplication of subjects that have already been taken in the junior and senior high schools.

However, Grade 10 students will still be taking the National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE) to further assess the student’s capability and assist them in choosing their tracks in senior high school.

Further, the division of Iloilo still continues to practice the Government Assistance to Students and Teachers in Private Education (GASTPE) to maintain viability of private education as a key partner in the delivery of quality education.

Student who will undergo K to 12 programs will receive four diplomas that include the diploma in Kinder, Grade Six, Junior High School and Senior High School.

Although there are a lot of complaints received by the division of Iloilo regarding the implementation of the K to 12 program, Imas said that they always find solution for the complaints.

The division of Iloilo continues to prepare the equipment, classrooms, teachers and textbooks needed for the programs in Senior High School.

Iloilo City gets PHP7.5-M fund for CDRRMC office

(PNA), FFC/RCK/AJP/PGL/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 3 (PNA) -- Iloilo City is a recipient of PHP7.5 million fund for the construction of an office for its City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) in Dungon A, Jaro district.

The fund will come from the Bottom Up Budgeting (BuB) coursed through the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

During Tuesday’s regular session, the Sangguniang Panlungod (SP) passed a resolution authorizing Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog to sign an agreement with the DILG for the funds to be downloaded to the city government.

The four-storey building project has an area of 516.64 square meters. Its upper portion will be used as evacuation center that can accommodate some 16 families or 80 heads. The lower portion will be utilized as a parking space.

Meantime, the city government will have to shell out some PHP10.5 million as counterpart fund.

Currently, the CDRRMC holds office at the back of the Iloilo Freedom Grandstand. Once the four-storey building is completed the old headquarters will be used as a satellite office.

DTI allots PHP700T for skills training in Iloilo City

(PNA), FFC/AJP/PGL/VLO

ILOILO CITY, June 2 (PNA) -– The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has allotted PHP700,000 for the implementation of the bottom-up-budgeting project in this city.

The city council Tuesday has given its go signal for Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog to sign an agreement representing the city government with the DTI for the implementation of the skills training project that will have beneficiaries under the “Yaman Pinoy” project.

Specifically, the project will accommodate the women sector, persons with disabilities (PWDs), senior citizens and the Empowerment and Re-affirmation of Paternal Abilities Training (ERPAT).

As counterpart, the city government will have to provide PHP36,000 worth of equipment, said councilor Joshua Alim who pushed for the approval of the authority to sign.

Meanwhile, the city social welfare office will be tasked to identify the recipients of the skills training project.

Council approves CCTVs in city schools

By EDITH B. COLMO (PN)

BACOLOD City – The Sangguniang Panlungsod here recently approved a resolution backing the installation of closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras in public schools in this city.

Among the schools that need CCTV cameras the most are the Bacolod City National High School, Sum-ag National High School, Granada National High School and the Singcang-Airport National High School, said Councilor El Cid Familiaran, author of the measure.

The four schools are the most populated, said Familiaran.

The CCTV cameras will hopefully be installed within this school year, he said.

Familiaran hopes security measures in schools will heighten with the installation of the security cameras.