Sunday, January 31, 2010


Rehired Land-Based OFWs Boost
Worker Deployment In Last 5 Years
MANILA—CONTRACTS for over-seas workers over a five-year period benefited more rehired land-based overseas Filipino workers than rehired workers, government data reveal.
The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) five-year data also showed that last year, the number of re-hired land-based OFWs reached a five-year high of more than half-a-million (597,426) from less than that in 2004 (419,505).

The data further shows that on average, rehired land-based migrant workers make up nearly 46 percent of the Philippine total of deployed land- and sea-based OFWs.

POEA’s 2008 Statistical Compendium, uploaded on its website only last month, said the country deployed last year a record 1.2 million OFWs.

Rehired land-based OFWs are those who returned to the country and were deployed overseas on new contracts. Four years ago, their share in the total 933,566 deployed overseas was was nearly 45 percent (419,505). Meanwhile, newhire land-based OFWs consistently make up 30 percent of annual OFW deployment. Newhire workers deployed means the POEA has provided new jobs for would-be overseas workers, as securing jobs for overseas employment is part of the government’s strategy to generate one million new jobs for Filipinos every year since 2004.

The POEA deployed 284,912 newhire land-based OFWs in 2004. It grew by 32 percent to 376,973 in year 2008. The number of seafarers was decreasing in the last two years, even as the figure reached a high of 274,497 in 2006. On a five-year average, deployed sea-farers make up 24.27 percent of total OFW deployment.

Rehire land-based OFWs also make up the most number of overseas work contracts processed by the POEA in 2006 to 2008, the agency’s publicized data revealed.

Compared to the overseas work contracts processed by the POEA for newhire land-based OFWs and seafarers, rehires got almost all of the processed work contracts. All processed work contracts for rehires were secured nearly a hundred percent (96.09%) or 470,390 of the total 489,528 contracts three years ago. It dipped by three percent in 2007 but swung back up to nearly 98 percent in 2008 (or 597,426 of 610,561 work contracts). The rehires seem to have elbowed out the newhires from the job market in 2006 as only 81.97 percent of the latter got contracts from the 387,533 new overseas work contracts made available for them that year. However, contracts for newhires last year reached a higher processing approval, having nearly 95 percent of the total 394,977 new work contracts secured by newhires.

Many work contracts for seafarers, however, remain vacant. Some 80,832 seafarers’ work contracts were unfilled in 2006, and the figures reached 123,054 the year after and to 197,143 in 2008.

Still, the country supplies the most number of merchant marine fleet in the world with a quarter of the global total. The POEA said it has processed more than 1.2 million work contracts for land- and sea-based jobs in 2006. The number rose by just above a hundred thousand in 2007 but nearly 1.5 million work contracts in 2008. Still, there were contracts that were not supplied with workers: 162,823 in 2006, 228,254 in 2007; and, 228,282 in 2008. Year-on-year growth rates for deployment reached their highest in 2008 for both newhire and rehired land-based OFWs (20.34 and 20.01, respectively), as a negative growth rate for seafarers’ deployment is now on its second straight year.

Prior to POEA’s release of its annual statistical compendium some recruitment agency leaders were reported by the media as displeased at the long time of the compendium’s release: nine months coming into the new year.

In January 2009, when POEA administrator Jennifer Manalili gave an unofficial 2008 deploy-ment total of 1,376,823, recruitment consultant Emmanuel Geslani was quoted as saying that the rise of the total number of deployed OFWs "was unheard of in the history of OFW deployment".

In a meeting last June at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, POEA middle-level officials said the agency revalidated all work contracts processed and workers deployed to come up with the final count of 1,236,013 deployed land- and sea-based OFWs for 2008. (by Jeremiah M. Opiniano /MP

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente
High Risk Airport
At about one o’clock on Saturday, January 9, I was one of the passengers of Cebu Pacific plane bound for Manila. The plane was at the other end, West South West of the runway, Kalibo Airport. The plane was ready to take off. But no, it stopped for about seven to ten minutes.

When it finally took off, the pilot announced over the microphone his apology for the delay for another plane just landed. As I observed, the aircraft flew over over the plane we were riding and landed just in front of it. What a highly dangerous practice being done in the Kalibo Airport!

This process of landing, with another plane on the same runway about to take off is only done in the Kalibo Airport.

Mr. Victor Reyes, branch manager of the Philippine Airlines in Aklan strongly laments this practice in Kalibo Airport. According to him, this way of aircraft landing while there is another aircraft on the same runway is only allowed in Kalibo Airport, never in any airport in the Philippines, never in any airport in the world.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) officials in Aklan are seemingly gambling with the lives of aircraft passengers passing by the Kalibo Airport.

Why does CAAP allow more aircrafts to use Kalibo Airport more than its capacity?

The runway is often heavy traffic, departure area is congested, arrival area is congested and parking area is congested. The environment in Kalibo Airport has been made more deplorable.

It is a negative practice to accept visitors and serve them not only very low quality service but with highly dangerous facilities.

New Terminal

A new passenger terminal is under construction in Kalibo Airport. When a very important person arrived in Kalibo, announcement was made of the project, the cost of the projects and whose project. Is that the money of the people?

That terminal was scheduled for opening in October 2009, then December 2009. This is now January 30, 2010. Thank God, the said terminal is still not operational.
P7.2 Billion Caticlan Airport

In Caticlan, Malay, Aklan, Ms. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo presided in the ground-breaking ceremony of the Caticlan Airport two weeks ago. The airport construction will take about seven years to finish.

It is extremely difficult to imagine why spend P7.2 billion for one airport construction when there is already one in Kalibo. If that is designed for tourists going to Boracay Island resort, then this government gives second priority to Filipinos, foreigners first.

Visitors are now visiting Boracay Island Resort via Kalibo Airport and the Caticlan Airport. Is Kalibo Airport far from Boracay that impedes people from visiting the island? Not really.

Haneda Airport is near Tokyo. Still Japan constructed Narita Airport which is very far from Tokyo and the distance has not adversely affected the inflow of tourists. Instead, the volume of tourists visiting Japan annually is increasing.

Don Muang Airport is very far from Bangkok and still some 8 million of foreign tourists visit Thailand yearly. The airport in Rome is very far too, but can we surpass the volume of visitors visiting Rome annually after constructing that P7.2 billion Caticlan Airport? No way.

Let us take a visit in Antipolo, San Mateo, and Marikina, Rizal. Hills there were bulldozed for the construction of housing projects. The soil was loosened, removed forest cover. These promoted rapid soil erosion to the rivers in Marikina, Pasig, and Laguna lake. These rivers and lake became silted, shallow. The flow of water is impeded. Typhoon Ondoy came and oh! A big disaster in Metro Manila.

Is that what Filipinos, particularly the Aklanons wish to happen? Please, God forbids.

It is a great demons-tration of love and loyalty to country to forget the P7.2 Caticlan Airport construction, improve further the capability of Kalibo Airport, and use the P7.2 billion for the modernization of agriculture and fisheries such as in the construction of more irrigation systems.

Level The Hills

To pursue the modernization of Caticlan Airport is to level the hills both in Nabas, and Malay. This will loosen the soil, enhance rapid erosion and clog the rivers, creeks, and pollute the sea coast.

Moreover, the national government officials must stop now the abuses being rampantly done in Boracay by allowing the local governments of Malay and Aklan implement strictly the Building Code, laws on environment, municipal and provincial ordinances approved to make Boracay Island a real world class tourists destination. /MP

Aklan Is A Billionaire


Gov. Marquez is shown above delivering his SOPA.

Aklan Vice Gov. Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo is listening.
The members of the Aklan Sangguniang Panlalawigan.

"Aklan Is A Billionaire, we are now first class" is the description of Gov. Carlito S. Marquez of the Province of Aklan in his State of the Province Address (SOPA).

The SOPA was held during the 4th Regular Session of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Aklan on Thursday morning, January 28.

According to Marquez, Aklan is first on the following:

1. Province to sign a Memorandum of Understanding for Phihealth coverage;
2.Successfully complete a project, the Caticlan Jetty Port Passenger Terminal through bond floatation,
3. Establish a very successful EED program;
4. To computerize real property tax administration;
5. To operate a PPA port;
6. To engage in joint venture with the ASU in the establishment of a nursing college;
7. To implement universal program for Philhealth; 8. To implement bridge financing with LBP for its Hybrid rice program.

During his delivery, he was highly applauded. The SOPA was covered live by both cable TV and radio stations in Aklan.

Other highlights of the SOPA will be published in the succeeding issues. /MP

Neglect in Agriculture Results Poor MSME Performance


Small and Medium Enterprise Development topic discussed on January 23, 2010 at Kapehan Sa Aklan held at Smokehaus Resto and Bar. Ms. Stella R. Caldera, Trade & Industry Development Specialist, DTI and Ms. Amelia S. Rentillo, President, Hugod Aklan were the invited guest resource persons.

Republic Act (RA) 6977 as Amended, known as Magna Carta for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises is the legal basis. It is the policy of the state to promote, support, strengthen and encourage the growth and development of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME’s) in all productive sectors of the economy particularly rural/agri–based enterprises. The MSME’s have the potential for more employment generation and economic growth and therefore can help provide a self sufficient industrial foundation for the country.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is mandated to promote and support entrepreneurship and encourage the establishment of MSME’s. The success of the program will usher in massive countryside industrialization.
Under this Act, micro industries has an invest-ment of less than P3 million, small from P3 to P5 million and medium P15 to P100 million. There are 18 major industrial divisions among which are: agriculture and forestry; manufacturing; electricity, gas and water supply; construction; wholesale and retail trade; hotel and restaurants, transport, storage and communication, among others.

Dr. Ambrosio R. Villorente mentioned that out of 92 million population there are 35 million Filipinos that constitute the labor force. Yet, 2.8 million are jobless. Ironically, real farmers who constitute the largest sector is viewed as inept or indifferent to entrepreneurial development. Based on contest winners, agri-business personalities are either doctors, lawyers, retired military personnel, politician, OFW"s who are genuinely receptive to modern agricultural practices. They engage in agri-business and apply science and technology in their farms.

Atty. Ronquillo C. Tolentino said that Aklan has a good investment climate for priority areas in power, water, and telecommunication. More investments would certainly generate employment, revenues, and hasten economic recovery.

Ms. Rentillo reported that based on revenue generation, the recent Ati-Atihan trade fair resulted to P1.4 million sales, a 10 percent increase over last year. Hugod Aklanon displayed the latest in design, originality, artistry, durability, comfort, and affordability in their products. Saleable ones were bags, slippers, piña embroidery, food preserves and other souvenir items. Most of the product lines in the showcase bore distinctly Aklan workmanship. Piña garments carry official seal of excellence.

Ms. Caldera said that it’s hard to believe that for the first few days, practically business was sluggish but eventually Saturday and Sunday (January 16 – 17) proved heavy. Confirmed orders are from Scotland (piña cloth), Iloilo (VCO) and Shangrila Hotel Boracay (Bayong). The DTI specialist however, bewailed the fact that many resort establishments in Boracay are not being reached by local manufactured products.

In the last Kapehan forum, Ms. India C. Legaspi revealed there are 35 industries registered with DTI. Majority of which are in the piña cloth industry where they employ some 10,000 people. She said, for the past three decades there was steady expansion and development in product design and quality. Calvin Klein, a leading fashion company in New York, USA is consistent prime buyer of Aklan made piña products.

Prior to RA 6977, there were already numerous laws to fast track and strengthen MSME’s like RA 8425 (Special Reform and Poverty Alleviation Act, RA 9178) (Barangay Micro Business Enterprises Act of 2002), RA 7844 (export Development Act) and RA 7882 (An Act Providing Assistance to Women Engaging in Micro Enterprises and Strengthening Existing Ones).

It is sad to note that after more than a decade of implementation, only 35 industries are registered with DTI, Aklan. Hackneyed rhetoric is shortage of funds and personnel. This is just a lame excuse for inefficiency and complacency. Job accomplished so far is just barely scratching the surface. Definitely more enthusiasm and hard work must be done to cover lost ground. As a member of World Trade Organization we need to be globally competitive i.e. products of excellence and affordable.

Meanwhile, Ms. Gilda E. Pico, President and CEO of Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) graphically portrays our national economy as a pyramid where the base is agriculture, middle are industries and the apex are services. The economics of most if not all advanced countries in the world like the United States, Europe, and Asia were developed bottom up. They first worked at strengthening their agriculture sector.

Eventually, they moved to the industrial sector. Thence, the services. Leading industrial nations are into refinement of its services in banking, insurance, telecom-munications, shipping and transport. The LBP executive said that rational development for the country should necessarily follow the developed nations’ path or model. Any other option could only meet frustrations and failure.

The attempts of previous government to industrialize the Philippines utterly failed to achieve their noble aims. Undoubtedly, the resources are there but the alchemy that makes it realistic simply does not exist. It would be best to assess our priorities from a better perspective acknow-ledging that agriculture needs strengthening, modernizing, and coor-dinating with other sectors. Having accomplished this feat, surely industria-lization will follow.

There is the urgent necessity to infuse more motivation in farming to cajole the young people to engage in agricultural enterprises employing the recommended farming methods. /MP

Hala Bira In the USA

by A. Chris Fernandez

Sheraton Hotel, Jersey City, New Jersey. The "hala bira!" chant that’s commonly heard in Kalibo, Aklan and Iloilo city has echoed here in the United States of America.

 For five years now, the Filipino community has kept their devotions to the Sto Niño by celebrating the feast of the Ati-atihan here.

Headed by its founder, Rev. Father Donato Cabardo, Jr. of the St. Joseph Parish in Demarest, NJ and the Ati-atihan International Festival president, Ms Mary Margaret "Gigi" Casa, the event has gathered about two hundred guests.

 Unlike the Dinagyang and the Ati-atihan, there is but one tribe that performs simple dance steps and choreographs. The guests expressed their desire to see the "real deal" in Iloilo city.

Philippine Consul to the United States, Zaldy Patron and Bergenfield Mayor Robert Rivas graced the occasion.

 The Queens and Princesses’ coronations highlighted the activity that evening and the 2010 muses are: Micah De Castro: Ati-atihan Little Princess, Faith Que Cruz: Dinagyang Little Princess, Ann Ann Tirador: Ati-atihan Princess, Laila Cajuelan Fernando: Dinag-yang Princess, Eleanora Milagros Almadin Velez: Mardi Gras Princess, Helen Amladi Dimaya: Ati-atihan Queen, Christine Que Cruz: Dinagyang Queen, Emelie Panganiban Sabado: Mardi Gras Queen, Aileen Maluping Reyes: Kasadyahan Queen and Gloria Dehappy: Hirinugyaw Queen.

Excitement filled the room when every guest joined the Ballroom dancing.

 Not only that they came to this event to celebrate but to raise funds. Its proceeds go to the Western Visayas Sanitarium in Sta. Barbara and to finance the feeding program and medical missions of the Young Professional Volunteers for Social Reforms in Iloilo city which is headed by Mr. Prince Julienne Hermaine Casa Celo (AIF Prexy’s son).

 Fr Donato Cabardo, Jr. is a native of Sta Barbara, Iloilo and Ms Mary Margaret Casa is from Calinog, Iloilo.  Mrs Corazon Santiago of Jersey City made the Sto Niño’s dress. /MP

Farm Sector Grows Despite Climate Change

The fisheries sub-sector remains as Philippine agriculture’s lead gainer in 2009 with a 2.45 percent growth hike. Poultry and livestock both recovered by posting output increases during the same period, the Department of Agriculture (DA) reported.

DA Secretary Arthur Yap noted that overall, the farm and fisheries sectors managed to grow by only 0.37 percent as the gains posted in the year’s first three quarters were not sustained. The sector incurred heavy losses during the October-December period.

Typhoons "Ondoy" and "Pepeng," 2009’s worst storms battered Metro Manila and the food-producing areas of Northern and Central Luzon in September and October 2009.

"The gains of the first three quarters were cut by huge production losses during the fourth quarter of 2009," claimed Yap. He cited the final annual growth report by the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS).

At current prices, the gross value of agricultural production reached P1.2 trillion in 2009, a 2.18 percent increase over its 2008 record.

The fisheries sector’s expansion of 2.45 percent represented 26.4 percent of the total agricultural output for 2009. Commercial fisheries expanded 2.67 percent, while aquaculture grew 2.89 percent and municipal fisheries, 1.14 percent.

According to BAS Director Romeo Recide, the poultry subsector had a 1.82 percent production increase, which accounted for 14.33 percent of the total agricultural output for 2009. Chicken output was up by 1.53 percent while the production of chicken eggs increased 5.04 percent.

The livestock sub-sector recovered from its negative growth last year with a 1.24 percent expansion owing to the increase in the production of hogs by 1.16 percent. The subsector’s share in the total agricultural output was 12.47 percent.

The production of cattle and dairy registered gains of 2.49 percent and 3.33 percent, respectively, according to Recide. In 2009, the gross value of livestock production increased by 6.5 percent to P1.96 billion at current prices.

Further, the crops subsector which bore the brunt of the devastating effects of climate change,  went down in terms of production by 1.42 percent. Corn production was up by 1.53 percent, but palay output went down by 3.31 percent. Coconut farms recorded a 2.20 percent gain in production but sugarcane farms posted 10.77 percent less output in 2009. The other gainers are banana, cassava, eggplant and tobacco.

"To cope with the effects of climate change, the DA this year is retooling its budget to enable Philippine agriculture to meet the twin challenges of this phenomenon along with increasing global free trade," Yap pointed out.

The DA allocated 86 percent of its P47 billion budget to various support services, such as the provision of flatbed dryers, corn drying centrals, fishports, and storage warehouses for farm produce; market linkages; strengthening of regulatory and disease eradication capabilities; and the establishment of satellite-based remote sensing and geographic information systems.  

  Moreover, the DA is strengthening its statistics and forecasting capabilities; developing and distributing climate-ready crops seeds which are submergence, drought and disease tolerant; engineering climate change adapted infras-tructure for production and processing; more financing for agriculture through innovative weather-based insurance  schemes;  and dissemi-nating more information, knowledge and training in crops science and planting techniques.

  Consistent with the government’s goal to attain rice sufficiency by 2013, the DA is allocating 36 percent of its  total banner program budget to the Rice Program, while fisheries is programmed to absorb 32 percent of the budget for programs  with a hefty P1 billion for aquaculture in 2010.

  The DA is also shifting the imple-mentation of food security program dubbed FIELDS to high gear in 2010 as part of sustained government efforts to prepare Philippine agriculture for the twin challenges of climate change and the demands of global free trade.

 The FIELDS program represents the six areas where government support are focused to attain food security and sufficiency. FIELDS stands for Fertilizers, Irrigation and other rural infrastructure like farm-to-market roads (FMRs), Extension services and education for farmers, Loans, Dryers and other postharvest facilities, and Seeds and other genetic materials.
 The Fertilizer component of the program advocates balanced fertilization, and encourages farmers to practice this sustainable agriculture practice by providing them with organic fertilizers in 2010.

 On the Irrigation and other infrastructure component, 16,358 hectares of new areas will be generated this coming year while 92,255 hectares will be rehabilitated, and 138,529 hectares restored to increase production and meet the demands of a growing population.

 The DA will construct or rehabilitate 3,107 kilometers of farm-to-market roads to link production areas, fishports and fish landings to markets.
 The Extension, R&D and capacity building will focus on reaching out to farmers in rice production areas with yields below the potential 3.8 metric tons per hectare.

 The DA will also give priority to agriculture and fisheries biotechnology to spur increased produc-tivity and incomes and to develop a global niche market through our natural ingredients industry. In terms of exports, it is estimated to be valued at $1 billion by 2010. The Loans com-ponent will continue to provide credit assistance at low interest rates to farmers for the purchase of farm inputs and machineries. For 2010, the DA targets to assist some 305,445 individuals and 99 groups in accessing loans, guarantee, and insurance.

  To reduce losses of agricultural commodities, 157 dryers will be constructed and dis-tributed this year, four (4) sites of postharvest processing plants and trading centers will be established, and 525 trading points or bagsakan centers and barangay bagsakans will be set up.
For the seeds and other genetic materials—the government will ensure access of farmers to quality seeds by 1) empowering them to produce their own seeds, or 2) assisting commercial seed growers through infrastructure support. /MP

Tim Smith Ducks The Pacquiao-Clottey Press Conference

by Ryan Arguelles/PNS

Tim Smith, the sports columnist of The New York Daily News is a no-show at the Pacquiao-Clottey press conference last week in New York at Madison Square Garden, New York City.

Filipino mediamen and press are looking for a chance to get an answer from Tim Smith about his article on Dec.25, 2009 where he wrote that he has a source familiar to the talks that a Pacquiao representative asked what penalties Pacquiao would face if he tested dirty and also if dirty results could be kept secret so that the integrity of the sport wouldn’t be ruined in the public eye.

Reporters are also eager to get some answers from Tim Smith about where did he get his information that Manny Pacquiao is afraid of needles. There is no interview where Manny Pacquiao said that he is afraid of needles except from the press release coming from the Golden Boy Promotion, where they put words in the mouth of Manny Pacquiao.

A number of Filipino press, including myself, were looking around if there was a visibility of the noted columnist of The New York Daily News since the press conference is in his backyard and he writes for one of the biggest newspapers in New York City and the United States. Instead, Tim Smith was nowhere to be found within the surroundings of the WAMU Theatre where the press conference took place.

Tim Smith, until now, has not produced facts even with the request and challenge coming from Manny Pacquiao himself in his own Kumbinasyon column titled, "Innocent Until Proven Guilty" posted at Philippine Together with Teddy Atlas and ESPN, Tim Smith was issued a challenge coming from the number one pound-for-pound champion in the world – to show facts about a certain representative from within the Pacquiao camp to show facts before you write something false.

That Wednesday after-noon last week at the Pacquiao-Clottey press conference was the chance for a respected journalist and columnist like Tim Smith to actually gather his facts and evidence and SHOW IT, because Manny Pacquiao came to visit his home territory in New York City. Manny Pacquiao was ready to face the facts.

Tim Smith backed down. Tim Smith didn’t show up for this kind of conference to obtain facts from Pacquiao himself, instead he relied on a source for his facts. And what I can’t fathom on this is that Smith writes for a major newspaper in New York that has a large readership in the tri-state area. New York readers deserve to be told the story with the truth accompanied by facts.

Does Tim Smith underestimate Manny Pacquiao because he came from Philippines and Pacquiao is not an American, so that’s why he can write things in his article without facts? Does Tim Smith have the superior ego because he is a New York sports columnist and that he can write without basis and facts to a person who is not American like Manny Pacquiao? Are you trying to bully a Filipino like what the Mayweathers and Golden Boy Promotion are trying to do to Manny Pacquiao? These are the words from Bob Arum in his introduction of Manny Pacquiao. Are you a bully Tim Smith?

Manny Pacquiao refused to be bullied as Bob Arum suggested, "Filipinos refused to be bullied by the Japanese Occupation Forces in World War II". We also refused to be bullied by a writer like you Tim Smith, who does not present facts.

He knows writing against an individual is accepted as long as you present your facts, what is not proper conduct of a writer is when he writes against a person without presenting real facts because he happens to write for the Dailly News newpaper in New York.

Tim Smith could have all the excuses by not attending the press conference, such as he is on vacation, or he had a doctor’s appointment. Whatever it is, he should be right there in that press conference, studiously and objectively taking notes from Manny Pacquiao if he still believes in the real value of journalism. FACTS are required in a career of proper journalism – not relying on some source that never existed or some fraudulent sources.

By not coming to the press conference of the Pacquaio-Clottey fight, Tim Smith ducked and avoided to see Manny Pacquaio eye to eye, because he is guilty of fabrication, like what Bob Arum stated. If Tim Smith is not guilty of fabrication, then he could have and should have shown Manny Pacquiao and the fight fans across the globe, his source and the facts that are related to it. Tim Smith has failed to do so. /MP

Sugilanon Ni Tita Linda

Ni Tita Linda Belayro
Guindalian Nga Kamatayon
Indi mahamtang si Jinky ko mga oras ngato samtang naga bunyag imaw it tanum. Owa it mga tawo sa anang palibot ogaling mingko may naga bantay kana. Guin butang nana ro anang tabo ag nag pungko sa semento nga poeongkuan.

Pagtangda nana sa pihak nga baeay, may hakita imaw nga alima nga naga paypay ag bag-o eamang nga naduea nga oeo. Guin tueok nana it mayad basi namalik-mata eamang imaw. Owa man nana makita it uman.
Pagkaaga, samtang naga bakae imaw it mantika sa baraka, nagkita sanda ko soeogo-on it baeay nga kon siin nag paypay kana ro alima. Guin pangutana nana kon sin-o ro babaye sa ikatatlong panaygan ko baeay. Nang eamig si Jinky kat masayran nana nga patay eot-a gli ratong babaye nga ina ko eaeaking tag-ana.

Tongod sa owa rona ro mag-asawa, guin buksan nanda ro kwarto. Hakita nanda ro abong bueak nga naga kalhit. Ro iba hay eab-as pa ag ro iba hay ea-ay eon. Hangawa man ro soeogo-on. Guin palimpyohan kana ro tanan nga parte it sueod ag guin bawaean ro pagsueod sa kwarto.

Ko gabii ngaron, nag-damgo si Jinky. Nagpakita kana ro magueang nga may daeang mga bueak nga guin patanum sa isaeang ka lugar. Pagkaaga, kat owa eon ro mag asawa, nag-adto sanday Jinky sa guin turo nga lugar it magueang agod magtanum it mga bueak. Sa andang pagkut-kot, may hakita sanda nga bote it hilo. Suno sa sueogo-on, pilang adlaw eot-a nga naeobong ro magueang. Mahilig mag-pananum it bueak ro magueang, ogaling hakibot sanda nga patay eot-a ro magueang sa anang kwarto nga naga buea ag sa anang alima ro mga bueak nga anang guin pang kotoe.

Guin daea nanda sa taeatapan it pulisya ro bote. Tongod sa andang sugid, nag imbestigar ro mga kapulisan. Hadiskobrehan nga hilo ro kabangdanan ko kamatayon it magueang suno sa imbestigasyon. May mabahoe nga insurance ro magueang ag guina himakas ko mag asawa nga mabo-oe tongod abo ro andang kautangan. Naka dispalko it mabahoe nga hayga it kwarta ro eaeaki sa anang kompanya ag kinahangean nga maibalik eagi parabil madiskobrehan it tag-ana.

Kabuhi ko ina it eaeaki ro guin sakripisyo agod maeowas sa kautangan ag kasae-anan nga guin himo ko anang onga. Ogaling sa saea nga paagi. Ro isaeang kasae-anan hay indi maeobad it sambilog pa guid nga pagkasaea.
Mangin leksyon ron-dayang suguilanon sa mga naga buyot it kwarta sa pribado o gobyerno man nga taeatapan. Magkabuhi kita suno sa atong guina kita. Ro magarbo ag naga kahikaw nga pag-pangabuhi nga kon ano ro hueag ko atong kaeapit-baeay hay aton man nga topongan o eabawan pa guid. Imaw ra ro naga tueod sa tawo nga mag mitir, magpanakaw ko kwarta nga bukon it anda, matustusan eamang ro kapritso ko andang kaugalingon o ko andang pamilya. /MP

Arum Funny Moments at Lopez-Luevano Presser

by Ryan Arguelles/ PNS

Filipino boxer and WBO Welterweight Champion Manny Pacquiao strikes a fight pose with a much taller and bigger former Welterweight Champion Joshua Clottey of Ghana during the New York City Madison Square Garden presscon for his March 13, 2010 welterweight fight at the Dallas Cowboys Staduim in Dallas, Texas. PINOY GONZALES/ PNS

Bob Arum, the 78 year old boss of Top Rank caused big laughter from press and mediamen present last week at the Madison Square Garden Theatre, New York City for the Lopez-Luevano fight press conference.

 Arum introduced the representative of the New York Boxing Commission as Nevada Boxing Commission many times in his introduction at the podium until one of the media men present shouted" you are in New York Bob", and another reminded Arum, "the fight is in New York".

 It was an honest mistake from the 78 year old icon of boxing. It caused some lighter moments for the boxing press, after that Arum was sharp with all his introduction.

 WBA featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa of Cuba was not present at the press conference. He flew later from Miami, Florida. He was expected to be on the scales for the weigh-in.

 The challenger Rogers Mtagwa of Tanzania promised to give the same determined aggressive fighting on Saturday night to Yuriorkis Gamboa.

 Mtagwa fought aggressively in his last fight against Juan Manuel Lopez last October 2009 but lost that fight though he wobbled Lopez in the 10th round. Mtagwa was on the verge of beating Lopez but couldn’t land one good clean punch in the 11th and 12th to have Lopez escaped with the victory.

 In the main draw, Juan Manuel Lopez of Puerto Rico talked in Spanish with an interpreter said that "he prepared very well for this fight and he expects a tough 12 rounds of boxing".

 Lopez is moving up in weight for the 126 lbs WBO title of Steven Luevano.

Steven Luevano of La Puenta, California said that he trained three (3) months for this fight and is also ready to go the distance and use his longer reach to keep Lopez at bay.

"I’m just taught how to box early as a boxer, I don’t want to slug and I know they are under estimating me in this fight but I’ll keep the title on Saturday night." he said./MP

DA forms Task Force Against El Niño in Western Visayas

ILOILO CITY – In Foreseeing that the country would experience below-average rainfall as a result of El Niño, the Department of Agriculture (DA) Regional Field Unit 6, here has created the El Nino Task Force.

DA Regional Director Larry Nacionales said the task force was created to accomplish the agency’s program to increase crop production and boost farmers’ income during dry spells.

The task force will implement the DA’s El Niño Mitigation Program to ward off the effects of the phenomenon to the crop, livestock and fishery sectors. It will focus on 23 "highly vulnerable" and 24 "moderately vulnerable" areas in the country. The attack is expected to last till early this year.

In Western Visayas, the provinces of Iloilo, Capiz, and Negros Occidental are among the areas considered highly vulnerable to the El Niño phenomenon, while the rest of the provinces are moderately vulnerable.

The DA also identified the rice and corn sectors as two of the most vulnerable crops.

In order to prevent substantial damages to production in the region, mitigation measures are easily carried out. The assistance include instal-lation of shallow tube wells, rain pumps and drip irrigation systems; cons-truction of small water-impounding projects; subsidies for certified or drought resistant seeds for rice and vegetables; and the distribution of animal stocks, biologics and drugs for livestock growers.

These measures will provide alternative economic opportunities for the vulnerable sectors to increase their income.

The DA is closely monitoring affected areas for the remaining months of the dry season. Continuous information campaign is also done through print media and the DA television and radio programs to reach out more affected sectors. /MP

Sulong Kaalaman Program For Brgy. Kagawads

by Bienvenido P. Cortes
Roxas City – The city government through Roxas City Mayor Vicente B. Bermejo conducts workshops to enhance new governance for barangay officials known as Sulong Kaalaman Program.

According to Lauro Lima, program coordinator, this program is a component of New Governance under the Sulong Roxas development framework of Roxas City government which aims to enhance the capabilities of barangay kagawads.

Sulong Kaalaman program aims to inform and train various committee chairmen of existing national and local laws and to review the ordinances passed in their respective barangays.

Lima said, seven committees in the 47 barangays of Roxas City are involved in this program. These committees are the infrastructure, peace and order, health and sanitation, education, agriculture and fisheries, environment and youth and sports committee.

They train on basic principles and the necessary steps in crafting ordinances and resolutions; be oriented of the existing national and local laws relevant to their committee; analyze and understand the elements of effective legislative acts using case study analysis; and prepare a draft of ordinance or resolutions for implementation in their respective barangays.

2009 Excellence Awards In Local Governance

The provincial office of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Roxas City announced recently the winners in the search for Local Governance Excellence at the provincial level as evaluated by the DILG evaluation team as follows:

Category A (1st – 3rd class municipality), Panay – 1st place; Pontevedra – 2nd place; and Maayon – 3rd place.

Category B (4th – 6th class municipality) – Ivisan – 1st place; Sigma – 2nd place; and President Roxas – 3rd place.

Special Awards for Excellence were also evaluated as follows: For Administrative Governance – Panay; Social Services – Panay; Economic Develop-ment – Sigma; Environ-mental Management – Panay; and for Local Legislation – Pontevedra.

Regional Level, Category A – Panay, 1st runner up for Excellence in Environmental Management; Category B – Ivisan, 2nd runner up for Excellence in Social Services and 2nd runner up for Excellence in Envi-ronmental Management.

Ms. Helen J. Mestidio, DILG Provincial Director of Capiz, reported that the evaluation of this program was conducted in August 2009. /MP

Kalibo Mayor Raymar Rebaldo Welcomes New Fire Truck

Kalibo, Aklan – Kalibo Mayor Raymar Rebaldo welcomes the arrival of the Kalibo Fire Station’s new addition to their aging fleet of fire trucks last Jan. 22, 2010. An Isuzu Fire Truck with a 1,000 gallon water capacity will update its fire fighting capability during accidental fires.

Rebaldo is informed of the availability of a new Fire Truck by Fire Senior Supt. Mario Timonera, Chief of Comptroller of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) during the week.
In turn, he sent Fire Inspector Patricio Collado-BFP Kalibo Chief, SFO1 Jerry Deferia and FO1 Sidgie Gerardo to a Fire Truck Warehouse in Caloocan to take charge in the paperwork preparation and bring the vehicle to Kalibo.

The new fire truck is a result of Rebaldo’s several requests to BFP National Headquarters supported with a Resolution by the Sangguniang Bayan of Kalibo.

The new Fire Truck is painted red in accordance with the international color of distress and emergency. It includes high velocity water pump and engine, collapsible ladder, fire hose, nozzle, fireman’s axe and others. /MP

DA6 Director Is Acting Brigade Commander of AFP Reserve Brigade

BANGA, AKLAN, January 15 – Engr. Remelyn Recoter, Regional Technical Director for Operations of the Department of Agriculture (DA) in Region 6, assumes command as the Acting Brigade Commander of the 1802ND Ready Reserve Brigade, last week.

Now, Lieutenant Colonel Remelyn Recoter received her command from Brigadier General Danilo M. Garcia of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) during the Activation of Unit and Assumption of Command.

Lt. Colonel Recoter’s assumption of command was held at the Camp Jizmondo, Libas, Banga, Aklan.

Her command of the 1802ND Ready Reserve Brigade means that she can mobilize the troop at moments notice from the Philippine Army Headquarters.

General Garcia, commander of the Army Reserve Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines is also the guest speaker during the event.
He also led the turn-over of command of the 601ST (AKLAN) CDC, 6RCDG, ARESCOM, and the closing ceremony of the ROTC Volunteers for Emergency Response of the Aklan State University ROTC unit. /MP

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Aussie, Thai Ring Officials Rob Filipino Underdogs

Los Angeles, California – Unless the Philippine sports authority will flex its muscles and reveals its fangs, the abuses and highway robberies victimi-zing struggling Filipino professional fighters abroad will go on unabated.

This was the strong lament made by Anastacio "Mang Tacy" Bartolome Sr., a 84-year-old World War II veteran and former boxing trainer in Capas, Tarlac in the Philippines when he learned that two Filipino boxers have been robbed of sure wins simultaneously in Sydney, Australia and Songkhla, Thailand last year.

Bartolome, who lives in Irvine, California, was referring to the fates of featherweight Reynaldo Belandres and super featherweight Dante Paulino, both underdogs, who were robbed of "clear" wins against their respective foreign opponents despite their dominance and "impressive" performances.

"During the time of Little Campo and Flash Elorde (in the 50’s and 60’s), we have heard of bum decisions victimizing Filipino fighters in Thailand and Japan but they were quickly minimized because of strong protests lodged by the boxing authority in the Philippines which was (and still today) the Games and Amusement Board," sighed Bartolome, who fought Japanese invaders in the Southern Philippines alongside American soldiers under the U.S. Army Forces Far East.
Belandres (12-1-2, 8 KOs) lost to Davey Browne (16-1-1, 4 KOs) in a controversial 10-round tiff for the World Boxing Council (WBC) world youth featherweight title in Sydney but not after he reportedly rearranged the nose of the taller Aussie champion.

The controversy prompted the Grange Old School Boxing Promotion to call for a rematch after the verdict was harshly criticized in media.

Belandres reportedly swarmed over the disheveled Browne from the opening bell until the final round and "clearly" outclassed the hometown favorite with over right hand and crisp jabs that found their marks mostly on Browne’s face. But the judges did not agree with his gallant efforts.

In Songhla, some 400 kilometers away from Bangkok, Paulino, 29, who once lost to former world championship challenger Randy Suico and concurrent world champion Chris John, reportedly mauled former world super bantamweight champion Somsak Sithchatchawal in 11 heats for the interim Pan-Asian Boxing Association (PABA) super featherweight title at the Taksin University Gym but the bout ended in "horrific" split draw.

The draw reportedly came as a total shocker as Paulino (14-8-2, 10 KOs) scored two knockdowns in round two and round five.

Somsak (60-3-3, 44 KOs), who won the World Boxing Association (WBA) super bantamweight jewels with a 10th round disposal of Mahyar Monshipour in Hauts-de-Seine, France on March 18, 2006 and lost it via the third round technical knockout to Celestino Caballero in Wat Ban Rai, Thailand on October 4 of the same year, reportedly was puzzled by Paulino’s style and could not effectively connect against the moving target.
Paulino reportedly refused to be intimidated by Somsak’s signature body punches and launched his own attack without let up. Paulino emerged with more clear shots and superior defense to the delight of the partisan crowd.
When the fight went the distance, two Thai judges submitted different score-cards. Chuchrt Kaokit saw his compatriot winner, 105-104, while Prommase Chakshuraksa played safe at 105-105. Filipino Gil Robiego gave the bout to Paulino, 105-104.

To settle the controversy, the Kokiet Promotion has called for a rematch.

 "But the damage has been done," rued Bartolome, referring to the twin calls of the Australian and Thai promoters for a rematch.

"Something must be done to teach them (cheating ring officials) a lesson. Strong words must be used to condemn these non-stop highway robberies that deny our local fighters the chance to improve their ratings in the world and damage their morale," Bartolome, who stands only five feet and one inch, the same height of the first Asian world champion Pancho Villa, boomed.

"Even if they will hold ten (10) more rematches over the next years, who will compensate or restore the busted morale of these Filipino boxers who only earn a living to feed their families and make their country proud?" Bartolome concluded.

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente
Unemployed Filipinos
There are 38.2 million Filipinos in the labor force in 2009. Of this member, 7.1 percent or 2.72 million of them are unemployed. This unemployment rate is higher than the 6.8 percent or 2.53 million registered in 2008 based on the data of the National Statistics office.

It is very puzzling why the unemployed Filipinos are increasing every year. These unemployed people to my thinking are generally unwilling to work. Are they lazy? There are more works to be done in the countryside for people with muscles willing to work, for Filipinos who wish to live a real life, not dependent upon parents, relatives, and friends.

Some Pilipinos stay idle because of the strong family ties leading to the "extended family life". A couple’s child or children may stay with their parents even after their marriage and have children. This Filipino value, while admirable, is also deplorable and promoting Pilipinos to their level of idleness.

Go Farming
The Philippines is an agricultural country populated with 90 million Pilipinos. There are wide areas of idle land which can be cultivated to produce cereals, fruits, vegetables, and flowers. Soil is fertile and the climate is highly favorable for agricultural production. Grasses grow well and therefore highly conducive for meat and milk production.

The Philippines is floating on the oceans, the Pacific Ocean and China Sea. As such, there are marine products.

These unemployed Pilipinos can engage in rice and corn production to supply the production gap between supply and demand. They can help stop rice importation and save foreign exchange. They can go to farming, enjoy it, produce food and live a good life.

In a few hundred square meters of land, they can produce flowers to supply the needs of our people. Millions of dollars are spent annually for the importation of flowers which could easily be produced locally. They will not only enjoy the beauty of flowers but they will earn as much money base on their diligence and capacity.

The Philippines imports 95 percent of her actual milk and dairy products annual con-sumption. Only 5 percent are produced locally. It is enjoyable taking care of livestock like goats and cattle. Watching them graze, grow, and breed is quite a joy.

Mr. and Ms. Un-employed, please go back to the farms and enjoy the bounty of the earth.

ASU Challenge

In Aklan, making both the adults and the young generation progressive farmers is a strong challenge. Where are the graduates of Aklan State University? (ASU)? ASU started as Capiz Farm School (CFS) in 1917 designed to improve the technical capability of the farmers. CFS was converted into Banga Rural High School (BRHS) in the late 1930s with the same mission and vision of developing progressive farmers and high farms productivity.

Again in the 1960’s BRHS was converted into Aklan Agricultural College (AAC) to produce agri-cultural college graduates who should be leading farmers in their quest to increase agricultural pro-ductivity and net income. From AAC, the college was transformed to Aklan State College of Agriculture and finally into Aklan State University in 2001.
Compared to other provinces, how advance and progressive is the state of agriculture in Aklan? How progressive are Aklanon farmers? Are the farm leaders in Aklan graduates of ASU? What is the level of economic status of Aklanon farmers? Are ASU graduates in the lead in the agricultural businesses in Aklan? These are some of the questions to answer in order to conclude that indeed ASU is a great factor in the agricultural economic development of Aklan and it is doing a good job in pursuant to its vision and mission.

Ompong Plaza

Agusan Del Sur Cong. Ompong Plaza attended the Kalibo Sr. Sto. Niño Ati-atihan 2010. He met the Aklan tri media in a press conference held on Saturday morning, January 16, 3rd Floor of the Kalibo Municipal Hall, Poblacion, Kalibo.

Ompong Plaza is a third termer Congressman and now a candidate for senator in the May 2010 national and local elections. He is with the "Pwersa ng Masa" Party.

One of his advocacy if elected senator to make agriculture more progres-sive and productive. His way to modernize farming are the construction and repair of irrigation systems for the production of palay and orher crops. He will also put up soils laboratory in every province of the country.
Ompong Plaza laments the antiquated way of farming employed by the farmers. He will institute reforms in the farms with the use of agricultural science and technology. He deplored the application of fertilizers to the lands by the farmers without the benefit of soil laboratory analysis resulting to plant overdose, waste of resources and poor production.

He related his scientific and technological practices employed in his rice, fruits, and other crops in his farms in Agusan Del Sur.


The sudden death of Press Sec. Cerge Remonde was a surprise to many specially to the media sector. Sec. Remonde suffered cardiac arrest on Tuesday morning, January 19 and died two hours later. His death is a great loss to the country specially to the tri media practitioners.

Remonde is a good friend of Aklanon journalists. He has visited Aklan for many times as press secretary and as chairman of the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters sa Pilipinas.

I found him so amiable. Even if he was one of the shock absorbers of Malacañang who depended some unpopular matters, he did it well. I last saw him during a luncheon offered to the participants of the PAPI Press Congress in Malacañang Palace. /MP

Kalibo Sto. Niño Ati-atihan Tribes Champion 2010

Some P50,000 of the P364,000 is awarded to Kabog Tribe as first prize in the tribal big group in the tribal contest, one of the highlights of the 2010 Sr. Sto. Niño Ati-atihan Festival in Kalibo, Aklan held on January 11 - 17, 2010. The placard bearer is leading the tribal group as shown in the picture above.

Kalibo 2010 Sr. Sto. Niño Ati-Atihan Festival distributed a total sum of P364,000 for the tribal contest.

There are five contest categories which are Tribal Big Group, Tribal Small Group, Modern, Balik Ati, and Individual categories.

Kabog walked away with P50,000 cash prize in Tribal Big Group. Other winners are Libtong Boys – second with P40,000 prize; Black Beauty Boys third with P30,000; and four consolation prizes at P10,000 each for Tribu Tiis-Tiis, and Pangawasan Tribe, and P5,000 each for Tribu Alibangbang and Lord Eagles.

Tribu Eamang got P30,000 first prize in Tribal Small Group. Tribu Osmanon Mangingigi is second at P25,000; Morongga Tribe is third at P20,000. Tribu Bukid Tigayon, Tribu it Panay, and Tribu Timo-Timo are awarded P7,000 each as consolation prizes.

In Modern category, Scorpio 11-19 bagged P20,000 as first prize; Aeang-Aeang is second at P15,000 prize, and Enchanting is third at P10,000. The three consolation prizes at P3,000 each are awarded to D’Emagine, Parientes, and B-Crusis.

Liloanong Ati nga Mananggiti placed first in Balik Ati category and received the P20,000 prize. Salimuno Falls group is second at P15,000 while Tribu Isalacan received P10,000 as third prize. The three consolation prizes of P3,000 each went to Apo ni Inday, Kinantu-ing, and Tribu Ilayanhon.
There are five individual awards at P2,000 each. They are Authentic Masquerade – Most Original; Pink Lady Gaga – Most Modern, Lady Butterfly – Most Fantastic, and Absurungsong – Most Comical.

The report on the result of the judging is signed by Atty. Jobert M. Martelino, Ms. Risany R. Laurente, and Mr. Edgar T. Isada. /MP

Rescue Ambulance for PRC Aklan

The above picture shows the brand new Rescue Ambulance for PRC Aklan Chapter with some Red Cross 143 volunteers from Numancia, Balete, and New Washington, with Vice Mayor Nilda Tambong, Hon. Madeline Regalado, and Mr. Ernesto Melgarejo.

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Aklan Chapter just received a Rescue Ambulance from the Philippine Red Cross through Sen. Richard Gordon, chairman and chief executive officer of the PRC.

The Rescue Ambulance is a Ford Ranger vehicle equipped with the needed medical equipment designed to save lives especially during the time of disasters.

The vehicle including the medical equipment cost around P1.5 million which came from the CDF of Sen. Gordon.

However, 50 percent of the cost will be shared by the PRC Aklan chapter, according to Ms. Arceli Pelayo, provincial administrator, PRC Aklan Chapter.

The Rescue Ambulance is delivered last Saturday, January 16. Sec. Gordon was scheduled to turn it over to the PRC Aklan Chapter through Atty. Ronquillo C. Tolentino, PRC chair Aklan on Sunday, January 17.

However, Sen. Gordon’s private plane was unable to land at Kalibo Airport due to some technical difficulty. It returned to Manila.

Nevertheles, the turn over of the Rescue Ambulance was continued with Dr. Lydia Lobregat Padernal, consultant, PRC who represented Sen. Gordon. Dr. Ambrosio R. Villorente, vice chair, PRC Aklan received the Rescue Ambulance in a simple turn-over ceremony held on Sunday morning, January 17 in behalf of Atty. Tolentino. /MP

DA Implements F.I.E.L.D.S. To Higher Gear in 2010

The Department of Agriculture (DA) shifts the implementation of the food security program dubbed FIELDS to higher gear this year as part of government efforts to enable Philippine agri-culture and fisheries cope with the twin challenges of climate change and global free trade.

DA Secretary Arthur Yap said, a major item in the DA’s budget for 2010 of P47.29 billion is the FIELDS program, which represents  the six areas where government supports are focused on to attain food security and sufficiency.

FIELDS stand for Fertilizers, Irrigation and other rural infrastructure like farm-to-market roads, extension services and farmer’s education, loans, dryers and other postharvest facilities, and seeds and other genetic materials.

 The fertilizer com-ponent of the program is advocating balanced fertilization, encourage farmers to practice sustainable agriculture practices by providing them the necessary skills and inputs to produce organic fertilizers in 2010.

"Balanced fertilization will address farmers’ concerns on the high cost of inputs, and trigger production increases," Yap said.

  The DA will continue to build-up the capability of the farmer to produce organic fertilizers and other soil ameliorants in 2010. It will provide Minus-One Element Technique (MOET) kits, Leaf Color Charts (LCC) and Soil test kits (STK) to minimize wastage of fertilizer and soil ameliorants.

  As for the irrigation and other infrastructure component, some 16,358 hectares of new areas will be irrigated this coming year, 92,255 hectares will be rehabilitated, and 138,529 hectares restored to increase production and meet the demands of a growing population.

The DA will construct 3,107 kilometers of farm-to-market roads to link production areas, fishports and fish landings to markets.

 For the Extension, Research and Develop-ment (R&D) and capacity building of FIELDs, the DA will focus on reaching out to farmers in palay production areas with yields below 3.8 metric tons per hectare.

The DA will target 26,441 training/seminars for agricultural technicians, farmers and fisherfolk, including the conduct of Farmers’ Field Schools and School on the Air; establish 19,570 techno demos; produce some 1,225 graduates of e-Extension courses; and conduct 1,358 R&D activities to generate production-enhancing and cost-reducing technologies.

  The DA will also give priority to agriculture and fisheries biotechnology to spur increased productivity and income and to develop a global niche market through natural ingredients industry, which in terms of exports is estimated to be valued at  US$1 billion by 2010."

 For the Loans component, the govern-ment will continue to provide credit assistance at low interest rates to farmers for purchasing farm inputs and other farm machineries. For 2010, DA targets some 305,445 individuals and 99 groups to assist in accessing loans, guarantee, and insurance.

  To reduce losses of agricultural commodities, 157 dryers will be con-structed and distributed this year. Four (4) sites of postharvest processing plants and trading centers will be established and 525 trading points or bagsakan centers will be set up as part of the Dryers and other postharvest facilities of FIELDS.

 Yap said, in FIELDS component, the DA will construct 10 fishports; build three (3) ice plants and cold storages (IPCS) for fisheries sector development.

 The DA will also construct 5 slaughter-houses/abattoirs in strategically located areas of the country. Through the Philippine Dairy Develop-ment Plan for 2008-2030 will operate additional 5 dairy zones to increase the country’s supply of ready-to-drink milk.

To make available safe, nutritious, and affordable high value crops, the DA aims to construct 112 packaging houses, and 37 kilometers of tramline systems to transport commodities from the highlands to the market.
For the seeds component and other genetic materials, the government will ensure access of farmers to quality seeds by (1) empowering them to produce their own seeds, and (2) assisting commercial seed growers through infrastructure support.

 "The farmers will be trained on seed selection, proper handling, and processing. Assist seed growers through infra-structure support, like seed laboratories and storage facilities, and improvements in the seed certification procedures," Yap said.

The DA will continue to provide hybrid and certified seeds at subsidized prices for distribution this year.  

 The DA’s seed subsidy program for 2010 includes the distribution of 1.1 million bags of inbred certified rice seeds; 17.57 million of planting materials; 37,947 heads of various farm animals; and 192.14 million fingerlings, and 2.1 million broodstock.

 The swift and stepped-up implementation of FIELDS and other DA programs, Philippine agriculture managed to grow 1.5 percent in the first nine months of 2009, with livestock, poultry and fisheries as the primary growth drivers of the sector. The gross value of agricultural output amounted to P849.3 billion at current prices or 1.62 percent higher than last year’s level during the January-September period.

 Under the Fertilizer component of the FIELDS, the DA has distributed 9,377,997 kilogram of organic fertilizers and other soil ameliorants such as Bio-N, Vital-N and Bio-con to help farmers reduce the cost of inputs and increase their productivity; conducted Salt Fertilization Projects, in which 45,271 hectare were fertilized with almost 4.5 million coconut trees benefiting 45,861 farmers; distributed 2,693 soil test kits and  8,023 leaf color charts and Minus-One-Element-Technique (MOET) to help farmers determine the optimum amounts of fertilizer to be used for specific soil types.

On Irrigation and other infrastructures, the DA generated 9,023 hectares of new irrigation areas, rehabilitated and restored 164,534 hectares and 98,055 hectares unserviceable and deteriorated irrigation facilities respectively; completed some 1,841 kilometers of farm to market roads; established 13 Mariculture Parks (7 for launching) in addition to the 15 that were established in 2008, and set up 106 units of tramlines.

On Extension, R&D and capacity building, the DA conducted training and training-related activities to 327,157 farmers and fisherfolks under the DA-Agricultural Training Institute through its 75 series of Training of Palaycheck Trainers (TPTs), 2,790 Farmers Field Schools (08-09 dry and 09 wet seasons), 148 techno demos; 1,091 Regional Trainings; 3,094 Farm and Business Advisory; 206 Field Day/Mass Graduation; school-on-air, e-learning courses and info caravan.

On Loans, a total of P1.203 billion was released to 31,769 farmers/fisherfolks under the various lending facilities. Through the LandBank, around P8.02 billion was released to 257,198 farmer-beneficiaries for palay production.   

For the Dryers and other postharvest facilities component, the DA distributed 1,288 units of flat bed dryers in various provinces. An additional 685 flatbed dryers will be distributed. 

The DA also established and started operating 11 Corn Post-harvest Processing & Trading Centers; com-pleted the construction of 5 municipal fish ports located in Lingayen, Pangasinan; Quezon, Palawan; Pilar, Capiz; Dimiao, Bohol; and Catarman, Camiguin.

As for Seeds and other genetic materials, the DA, provided certified seeds to 2,959,820 hectares and hybrid seeds to 201,579 hectares in 2009.  /MP

Buruanga Candidates For May 2010 Election

The official candidates in Buruanga, Aklan for the May 10, 2010 elections for Mayor, Vice Mayor, and Sangguniang Bayan members are as follows:
There are two candidates for Mayor who are Quezon Franco Labindao – LK CMD; and Dextero Salido Obrique – NP.

There are three candidates for Vice Mayor who are Rogelio Barrientos Acosta – I; Allan Prado Dagohoy – LK CMD; and Benito Patricio Sualog, Jr. – NP.

There are 22 candidates for the eight positions of SB members. They are Ella May Magliquian Ayeng – LK CMD; Bonifacio Malayas Barrientos – I, Zenaida Sualog Barrientos – NP, Manuel Sualog Coching – NP, Joseph Casuncad Dela Peña – LP, Femy Cadahing Dumaguin – LK CMD, Rizal Franco Labindao – I, Jorven Quiñones Malayas – NP, Enrico Maylas Maquirang, Jr. – LK CMD, Jonathan Reballos Membrano – NP, Robert Melgarejo Obrique – NP, Macario Ostan Panganiban, – LK CMD, Rene Samar Prado – NP, Romeo Salibio Prado, Jr. – LP, Regidor Prado Rojo – I, Rommel Rogan Rojo – PMP, Dionito Labindao Samar – NP, Manuelito Sirios Sualog, Jr. – LK CMD, Robinson Yap Sualog – I, Victor Brian Delos Reyes Sualog – LP, Gorgonio Francisco Tandog – I, and Danilo Sulat Tanieza – I, /MP

Reason and Concern

By Ronquillo C. Tolentino
Revival of the Con-con Bill
For the noise of some congressmen in the halls of Congress often-times amounting to all sound of fury signifying nothing, some congress-men have shown aversion to noise produced by motor vehicles in residential areas either at night and in the early morning hours.

Authored by nine congressmen led by President’s son, Rep. Diosdado Arroyo, the bill intends to penalize motorist who (sic) "unreasonably" accelerate their car engines or blow their horns in non-commercial districts.

The bill’s explanatory note stresses the harmful effect of noise pollution to one’s hearing.  The author also emphasizes that noisy driving can also cause lack of sleep and the stress that it brings, let alone high blood pressure, cardio-vascular problems and nervous disorders.
The explanatory note further states: "Any noise appreciably louder than talking can damage the delicate hair cells in the cochlea, the structure in the inner ear that converts sound waves into auditory nerve signals.  The initial damage to the cochlea maybe temporary, but with repeated exposure, the damage becomes permanent.  Even at levels below those that cause hearing loss, noise pollution produces other problems."

For the problems that noise pollution generates, this bill should be supported by environmentalists and local government units.

Not with I told-you-so did I write that the Con-con bill shall be revived, nay, resurrected.  When nobody was looking and everybody just enjoyed the holidays came the news that House Bill No. 6975 has been given priority by President Arroyo’s allies.  There may be negative views that House Bill No. 6975 shall pass reckoned the working days of Congress from January 18, 2010 to February 5, 2010.  But it cannot be said that it may not be calendared for second reading.

What House Bill intends to achieve is to seek implementation of the concurrent resolution of the Senate and House of Representatives calling for a convention to amend the 1987 Constitution and appropriate funds for the purpose.

Once passed, the bill calls for the election on Oct. 25, 2010 simultaneous with the barangay polls of one delegate in every legislative district.

With congressmen going back to the hustings and the senators either running for re-election or campaigning for their presidential candidates, opposition to the Con-con bill may be milder. Just you watch.

Viva kay Señor Sto. Niño! /MP

Sugilanon Ni Tita Linda

Tita Linda Belayro
Ukay-ukay Ni Rina
Halin sa pagka pobre nga pamilya si Rina. Ogaling kaparehas ko ibang dalagita, nailaan nana ro pag eambong it sadyaan. Bisan guina kueang ro anang guinikanan sa kwarta, naga tingoha guid maski hasta eon lang imaw sa ukay-ukay. Ilo sa ama si Rina. Modesta ro anang ina, busa sadyaan ro mga eambong ni Rina.

Isaeang adlaw, may nagpa togaebo kanda it eambong, isaeang ka babaye. Bu-ot nana nga umanon ro eambong ag iplastar para sa anang matambok nga eawas. Tama man nga may eagnat ko mga oras ngaron ro anang ina, busa imaw ro nagtas-tas ko eambong.

Samtang guina tastas ni Rina ro pading sa abaga, hapan-uhan nana ro matig-a ag naga baeo-eon sa sueod it pading. Sa anang pagtas-tas, hakita nana ro mga binaeo-eon nga dolyar Amerikano. Guin pakita nana sa anang ina ro kwarta. Hakibot guid it duro ro anang ina. Pagka gabi-i ngaron, guin hambaean nanda kon ano ro andang himuon sa kwarta.

Agahon pa nagbalik ro tag ana nga mag hinyo nga indi ibalik ro pading. Tongod nga mabuot ro mag-ina, guin uli nanda ro dolyar sa babaye. Nalipay guid it abu ro babaye tongod owa guid imaw magsaea sa anang pagpili. Ro babaye hay isaeang ka biyuda man ag owa it onga. Imaw raya ro anang guina obra kada dag-on kon mag-abot ro paskwa. Bu-ot nana nga samitan ro mga tawo kon baea sanda hay anang masaligan ag owa naga hupot it kaibug ko bukon it anda. Guin tao nana ro dolyar sa mag-ina ag nagpabilin pa ko anang tarheta kon siin imaw makita ingkaso may bu-ot kinahangeanon si Rina.

Nagbakae ro mag-ina it bag-ong makina nga de-kuryente. Nag-abo man ro andang mga parokyano tongod idto kanda guina turo ko biyuda ro anang mga amiga. Nagpatindog dayon it boutique sanday Rina. Nangin popular ro Rina’s Botique sa andang lugar. Maskin nag asenso eon , owa guid magbalhin ro andang pamatasan.

Sige andang bulig sa mga pobre tongod naga pati sanda nga dapat man hueayan ro mga kubos sa grasya nga guinta-o kanda. /MP


Notice is hereby given that


died on November 22, 2009 at the age of 79 years old at Unit C. Ampil Street, Sta. Mesa, Manila. He was buried on November 30, 2009 at Balabag Cemetery, Brgy. Balabag, Malay, Aklan.
From his loving children


2,236 Square Meters
Located at Dumaguit, New Washington, Aklan
along the Highway, near Dumaguit Port
Apartment For Rent
Corner Sampaguita St. & Provincial Road, Andagao, Kalibo
Those interested, please contact CP No. 09152884297
Tel No. (036) 268-7130, ask for Ms. Brenda Marte

14 KC Couples Renewed Marital Vows

by Bienvenido P. Cortes

Roxas City – Some 14 couples of the Archbishop Antonio Frondosa Assembly, ACN – 1796 of the Knights of Columbus (KC) in the archdiocese of Capiz renewed their marital vows in simple ceremonies held at the Immaculate Conception Metropolitan Cathedral, Roxas City recently with Rt. Rev. Msgr. Vicente F. Hilata, P.A., V.G. as main celebrant and Rt. Rev. Msgr. Guillermo Belvis, P.C., and Rt. Rev. Msgr. Policarpio John Luza, P.C. (Faithful Friar) as co-celebrants.

Faithful Friar Luza said this renewal of marriage vows aims to appreciate better the grace of God in the Sacrament of Marriage, "What God has joined, let no man separates." He said that we come together also to ask more graces from God so that the K of C members with their respective families will always be model to other Christian families who are builders of the church in the home.

Msgr. Hilata likewise calls for strengthening a Christian couple and as a Christian family as well due to the imminent threat of the passage of the Reproductive Health Bill in Congress.

He said that at the end of this vows, the KC couple is expected to renew its mutual love and respect and to be able to serve God for His greater glory through the establishment of a strong Christian family in consonance with His will and plan.

Among those who renewed their marital vows are: SK and Ms. Nicanor C. Alvaro, SK & Ms. Reymundo Alovera, SK & Ms. Manolito Basquez, SK & Ms. Jose Bolano, SK & Ms. Manuel Cambo, SK & Ms. Carmelino A. Clores III, SK & Ms. Miguel Diaz, Jr., SK & Ms. Joeboam F. Dominguez, SK & Ms. Paulino V. Fegarido, SK & Ms. Ireneo B. Miranda, SK & Ms. Alberto Morira, SK & Ms. Venancio A. Retodo, and SK & Ms. Benjamin Yerro.

With more than 1.7 million members, the Knights of Columbus is the world’s largest Catholic lay organization. It provides members and their families with voluntary opportunities in service to the Catholic Church, the community, families, and young people. In 2008, the Knights of Columbus at all levels of the organization raised and distributed millions of dollars to charity and rendered service in millions of hours of voluntary service. /MP

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Feed Children in Calaparan

Iloilo City—A private group which call themselves Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, in cooperation with ABS CBN Iloilo Kapamilya sa barangay, initiated a feeding program at Brgy. Calaparan, Arevalo Iloilo last December 2009.

 More than 300 children ranging from 3 to 5 years old, who are residents of barangay Calaparan, participated in the event. The children were given snacks and food by the members of the private group who were also assisted by the barangay officials.

"This program aims to help nutritionally inadequate children" said Lydia G. Gotico, member of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. "We offer this for the Christmas spirit, for the Christmas season; this is the spirit of sharing", she added.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs consist of retired employees of the Department of Agri-culture Regional Field Unit 6. The group is formed in 2005. As of this year, there are 10 recognized members of the organization, including Gotico.

The feeding program is a regular activity ever since the Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs took its root. Other activities of the group include community assemblies and lectures. (by Grechelle Gay G. Magbanua) /MP

LP Going To Battle With Complete Slate Comelec Affirms Danny Lim’s Candidacy

The Liberal Party will be entering the 2010 elections campaign with a complete senatorial slate, now that the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) en banc has affirmed the candidacy of reformist Brig. Gen. Danilo Lim under the LP.

 "We will go to battle with a complete senatorial slate, now that the valiant Brig. Gen. Danny Lim is with us," said Senator Mar Roxas, LP President and vice-presidential candidate.

 "Danny Lim fought against massive corrup-tion in the Armed Forces the reason why our own bullets kill our own soldiers. Brave and with his heart in the right place, he will be a good senator of our country," Roxas stressed.

 "With Noynoy Aquino as our leader, the LP and the People’s Reform senatorial slate will fight for genuine change in the Philippines," he said.

 Lim was earlier disqualified by the COMELEC for supposedly not having the capability to launch a nationwide campaign. But after the LP intervened and said Lim belongs to its slate, the COMELEC en banc through Resolution 8743 affirmed Lim’s candidacy.
 Aside from Lim, other candidates belonging to the People’s Reform slate are: Former Senate President Frank Drilon; Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon; Bukidnon Rep. TG Guingona; Dr. Nereus "Teacher Neric" Acosta; Akbayan! Party-List Rep. Risa Hontiveros; Former Socioeconomic Planning Sec. Ralph Recto; Former Senator Serge Osmeña; Education advocate Sonia Roco; Atty. Alex "Pinoy" Lacson; Health advocate Dr. Martin Bautista; and Women’s rights advocate Yasmin Busran Lao. /MP

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Adjusting Priority On Agriculture
and Tourism
On September 12, 2009, Gov. Carlito S. Marquez in a presscon at Café Latte made two significant revelations namely: coalition of Tigyog and Kusog into United Leadership Coalition for the May 2010 election, and approval of Provincial Investment Plan for Health (2009-2013). The public viewed these as master strategy to protect cherished political agenda and consolidate party support. The report that incumbent Cong. Joeben T. Miraflores is now running unopposed makes it more revealing and effectual.

However, there are cracks on the way priority programs are handled albeit bungled by the provincial leadership. It should be recalled that in 2005 election, Gov. Marquez rallied on a platform of government that wage war against poverty. His slogan, "Owa’t ginaga-id sa kapobrehan" (Nobody is eternally tied on poverty) gained popular approval and support. He was subsequently elected on his emphasis for agriculture and tourism as twin engines of growth for Aklan.

Despite repeated positive pronouncements this aspect has not yet materialized over the last five years (2005–2010). People felt betrayed and confused that slogan to modernize agriculture, and tourism are overshadowed by another overriding concerns for health development.

Over the five year period from 2005–2009 agriculture, fisheries, and tourism have been pegged at one percent of the total provincial budget. Even health showed low priority at two percent. However, both United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and World Health Organization (WHO) recommend 5-10 percent budget for agriculture and health respectively. Obviously, strong and healthy citizens are developed when nutritious food is always served on the family table. For third world economies like the Philippines, food security is immensely important.

Meanwhile, tourism generates localized jobs and income especially for international destinations like Boracay. Ironically, Provincial Tourism Code was only approved towards the end of 2009.

Agriculture, has for more than a century, remained as economic base of the country. Sixty four percent of exports are agricultural goods. It contributes 21 percent to Gross National Product (GNP). Fifty one percent of labor force is employed in agriculture and fisheries while 71 percent of the people constitute farming population.

Socio-economic status of farmers leaves nothing much to be desired. Majority are poor, underprivileged and unable to feed themselves. Liberal credit has dried up, farm prices dictated by informal money lenders. Basically, only 21.5 percent of 17,120 hectares rice land in Aklan is irrigated, the rest depends on rainfall. Dissatisfaction among farmers runs high over skyrocketing inputs, adverse occurrence of pest and diseases, all leading to marginalization.

Recent Social Weather Station (SWS) survey shows that 41 percent of total population in Aklan are living below poverty line. Feeling the pinch are farmers of Libacao and Madalag who are or will be recipients of government’s Pantawid Pampamilyang Pilipino Program.

Agriculture develop-ment mainly relies on annual capital investments that should reach if not exceed recommendation of UNDP. Plan must necessarily address present and future population projection. While Aklan’s population increases at 2.0 percent per year as data of Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS) show, agricultural production is miserably lagging behind at 1.5 percent.

Tourism infra development in Boracay has already achieved its peak status. Danger signs of coastal erosion, water/air/noise pollution, and destruction of marine life and corral reefs need to be effectively managed on sustainable basis. Relevant questions are: Can our succeeding generation be able to enjoy this nature’s beauty and bounty in their lifetime? Will the goose be able to lay its "golden eggs" in relative comfort and security?

Gov. Marquez under the approved Provincial Investment Plan for Health appropriates a total of P600 million as 50 per cent equity to the loan grant of the European Union. This is equivalent to P120 million per year or budgetary increase from two to 86 percent.

There is under-standably a cogent reason to prioritize health considering that our district hospitals and health centers desperately need physical upgrading of facilities and equipment. However, development must be pragmatic and rationa-lized based on need and available money. This is where countryside development fund (CDF) of Cong. Miraflores may come in as plausible solution. Definitely, it is teamwork and solidarity.

Much has already been invested on health. The Provincial govern-ment contracted a loan of P129 million in 2007 for construction and renovation of DRSTMH. Nursing School building is also a loan of P45 million in 2008. Under the Plan, a total of P425 million is programmed over the five year period to upgrade physical health infra.

Gov. Marquez needs to rectify loopsided priority on agriculture and tourism since it is our only hope of survival in this climate of economic recession. Although health care must be expanded, common sense dictates that this would be limited to 10. percent of total budget. Indeed, health concerns in an unhealthy environment tend to create negative impact and do not auger well for a sound fiscal policy. Plainly, the Governor’s integrity and credibility is at stake on this particular issue.

There is a need to adjust priority with respect to target and budget. /MP