Thursday, April 26, 2012


Banga The Beautiful Is Changing

“Times changes and we change with them”, anonymous.

Do you agree with the above stated quotation? If yes, you can point to the Municipality of Banga to prove that time changes and the people changes with the lapse of time. 

The people of Banga was well aware of the value of education. Even before World War II, there was high school which provided the agricultural and home economics courses for the Northern towns of Capiz. Banganhons value education very much as they say, “education is an everlasting heritage of the parents to their children.

They respected, honor and emulate persons who went to college and came out of it with a college degree completed.
However Banganhons had changed.

In the May 2007 local election, the Banganhons elected a mayor who has not completed a basic education.

Mayor Antonio “Antong” Maming, in that election, was elected Mayor of Banga. He publicly admitted he had not completed Grade VI.

In the May 2010 election, Mayor Maming was re-elected Mayor of Banga.

The Banganhons repudiated Mayor Maming’s opponents who were all professionals. Mayor Maming defeated a re-electionist mayor who was an attorney in the May 2007 election. He also defeated a doctor of medicine. In 2010 election, Maming again defeated a lady doctor of medicine and a retired government official, a professional agriculturist.

During the 2012 Governor’s Cup Tournament, Banga under the watch of Mayor Maming did not participate unlike last year, when Banga participated and played for the championship. That 2012 basketball tournament was one of the highlights of the 56th Aklan Day celebration. This year, Banga’s basketball team members were deprived from playing in a provincial tournament. 

Time has changed, for Banga used to win the championship in basketball. This year, Banga did not only lose, it did not participate.

The word “Red” possesses a number of definitions. Red is any spread of colors, varying in hue from that of blood to pale rose or pink. It also refers to political radical or revolutionary. In economics, red means in debt or losing money because of bad business practice.

Today, red is the prevailing color in Banga. Visitors coming from Kalibo or from Balete will surely notice that Banga is in the red as the rotunda edifice is all in red. Get inside the town plaza and notice the Banga town hall is painted red. The “Baeay It Banganhon” marker by the wall was completely erased.

Until 10 years ago, the Banga Town Plaza was never used as “Peryahan”. Indeed time has changed. The town plaza was exclusively used by Banganhons as a place to relax, as dance floor around the bandstand. Around the town plaza were exhibit booths for agricultural products from the barangays like the biggest fruits and vegetables produced in the farm. The exhibits were held during the town fiesta and lent season.

Visit Banga town plaza today and get amused by several kinds of games of chance. Visit it also in the morning and see laundry being hanged for sun drying. This laundry is of and by the peryahan personnel. It is amusing to observe. Banga has changed. 

In one corner of the town plaza is situated an unfinished dome which has enhanced ugliness of the town plaza. What is this for?


Come to Banga the changing town as to its appearance, practices, and values. /MP

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente

Capiz and Aklan Celebrate 
Their Foundation Days

Last April 15, the Province of Capiz celebrated its 111th Foundation Day.  Capiz  was made a province as mandated by Provincial Government Act of the Philippine Commission approved on April 15, 1901.

The Philippine Commission passed Act No. 115 which extended the provisions of the Provincial Government Act, defined its territory and made Capiz, Capiz the town capital.  It also created various offices to attend to the affairs of the province. 

The foundation day celebration included the 64th death anniversary of the late President Manuel A. Roxas who died on April 15, 1948 of Coronary Thrombosis while delivering a speech at Clark Field, Angeles City, Pampanga. Roxas was the last President of the Commonwealth of the Philippines and the first President of the Republic of the Philippines.

But why celebrate a tragedy? Capiz could have celebrated Pres. Roxas’ birthday rather than his death. The Roxas family with Capiz province may offer holy mass to the late Pres. Roxas for the eternal repose of his soul. 

The Province of Aklan, which today, is composed of 17 muni-cipalities with Kalibo, the capital town was a part of Capiz Province until 1956. It separated, from Capiz province by virtue of Republic Act 1414 authored by the late Cong. Godofredo P. Ramos and signed into law by President Ramon Magsaysay.

On April 25, Aklan also celebrated its glorious moment, the 56th Foundation Day. Some major achievements realized for the last 56 years were portrayed during the celebration.

Demolishing KIA Old Building

If plan is pushed through, the older Kalibo International Airport (KIA) terminal building will be demolished next month, May. This is the older terminal building of the KIA being used now as passengers’ arrival area. 

This building planned for demolition is very well constructed in the late 1990s. Those who know the said building was constructed with durable materials like wood and the engineering work was excellent. Its interior and exterior views appear like newly finished building. 

According to a very reliable source, the destruction of the present building will give way to a new terminal building.

But why destroy the present terminal building? It is still very strong and serving its purpose. Demolishing it is tantamount to wasting it, a very serviceable edifice. 

I was told the present airport terminal buildings in KIA can never qualify with international standard for international airport. These two buildings are too close to the runway and to the tarmac, so dangerous for plane passengers, crew members, and airport personnel. 

I was also informed that the CAAP has available P48 million appropriated for the improvement of the present terminal buildings. I said improvement, not demolition. This will save the present terminal building from destruction, improve the present quality of services in KIA, and create savings for future improvement of the KIA complying with inter-national standard. 

Today, KIA is in “disarray”. This will become worse if the present terminal building is demolished. It is not a guarantee that the supposed new airport terminal building after its completion will provide ample space to move about for plane passengers and airport personnel. 

It is for the best interest of the plane clienteles, for Aklan and the Philippines in general if a Comprehensive Airport Development Plan is drafted, approved, and implemented if budget is available. Let the two present Airport terminal buildings continue serving the people. Use the available money now of CAAP for the improvement of the present terminal buildings. 

Gold Mine

Meanwhile, the KIA is serving more than a gold mine to the officers of the three offices: the Bureau of Customs, Immigration, and Quarantine.

I was told by a most trusted informant that the officers of the three offices assigned in KIA is paid P1,500 each by the Airline Company when its airplane coming from abroad lands at KIA. Another P1,500 each is also paid by airline company which plane takes off at KIA for destination abroad. 
An airline official in Kalibo estimates a monthly honorarium to the immigration, customs and quarantine officers at more or less P450,000 to each of them. 

Moreover, the airline companies using KIA pay their travel expenses from Iloilo City to Kalibo and back to Iloilo City.

Asked why these officers are paid enormous amount of honorarium, the response is: “These personnel are holding positions for Iloilo City and not for Kalibo. 

This airline expenses could as well be saved by the airline companies to enable them to reduce their respective plane fares for the local people.

May our two congressmen with their influence work on this? /MP   

56th Aklan Day Celebration

                     by AMBROSIO R. VILLORENTE

Picture shows the very important persons watching the civic military parade during the Aklan Day Celebration on Wednesday, April 25. Among them are Aklan Gov. Carlito S. Marquez, Cong. Florencio T. Miraflores, Vice Gov. Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo, Ms. Victoria Ramos-Antonino and her sister Ms. Aquino, former Bayan partylist representative Risa Hontiveros-Baracquel, and Capiz Gov. Vic Tanco among others. 

The float of the town of Nabas depicts its fiber crop called “bariw” manufactured into mats, so comfortable to use in sleeping. The float is made more attractive by its pretty muse

Picture above shows the float of the Municipality of Malinao with its pretty muse. The float depicts the agricultural crops cultivated and produced in the Municipality of Malinao such as abaca and nito, made into various handicrafts. The float also exhibits fruits and vegetable grown in Malinao.  

Float of the town of Lezo depicting its agricultural crops grown and various clay products, and the rice cake (ampaw).

Above is the float of Banga depicting its agricultural crops like corn, squash, calamansi, sweet potato, pineapple, macopa, and kinds of flowers.

       Some VIPs during the 56th Aklan Foundation Day. They are Aklan Gov. Carlito S. Marquez, Capiz Gov. Vic Tanco, Sen. Franklin Drilon, AGHAM Party List Representative Palmones, Kasangga Party List Rep. Teodorico T. Haresco, Aklan Vice Gov. Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo, Ms. Victoria Ramos-Antonino, her sister Ms. Aquino, former partylist representative Risa Hontiveros-Baracquel and former Cong. Allen S. Quimpo.

The 56th Aklan Foundation Day celebration held on Wednesday, April 25 consisted of a Thanksgiving Mass solemnized at Saint John The Baptist Cathedral in Kalibo. The holy mass over, the civic military parade followed. It lasted for two hours. It began at Pastrana Park, passed Archbishop Reyes Street, to A. Mabini Street, turned left at D. Maagma Street, turned right to Quezon Avenue and finally ended at G. Ramos Park.

On the theme: “Building Capabilities Towards Greater Challenges To Aklan”, Governor Carlito S. Marquez in his commemorative speech enumerated the advances Aklan and the Aklanons has accomplished. Marquez pointed out what and how the Province of Aklan ranks ahead among other provinces in Westen Visayas and in the Philippines in general. Marquez pointed out Aklan’s success in local governance, tourism industry, agriculture and poverty alleviation among others. 

The commemorative program was held in the ABL sports complex. It was well attended especially by teachers and officials of DepEd Aklan led by its Schools Division Superintendent. Dr. Jesse M. Gomez.

The guest of honor and commemorative speaker, DOTC Sec. Mar A. Roxas was not able to come. He sent his undersecretary to convey to the Aklanons his congratulatory message and read his prepared speech. 

Sen. Franklin Drilon who, in his short speech, extended his sincere congratulations to the Aklanons. He reviewed his past and long association with the leadership in Aklan. He assured his all out support to projects Aklan wishes to implement. 

Kasangga Party List Rep. Teodorico T. Haresco turned over a mobile food store to Gov. Marquez. He also distributed wheel chairs to children with disabilities and some P200,000 in check.

Vice Governor  Billie V. Calizo Quimpo delivered a highly scholarly speech which touched on excellent local governance and relevant local legislation responsive to local needs. 

The floats from Banga, Nabas, Lezo, Ibajay, and Kalibo portrayed their respected agricultural crops and industry.

These floats reflect the contents of the booths of the respective municipalities in the Agri Industrial Fair which opened Wednesday, April 25 and will remain open until April 29.

There is also a nightly tsibugan at the park which features the Aklan delicacies that will satisfy the gastronomic needs of the visitors. /MP

RC Kalibo’s Golden Harvests


The 18 members Rotary Club of Kalibo delegation to the DISCON 2012 held in Sarabia Manor, Iloilo City on April 12 - 14, 2012.

Pres. Bing with the 9 awards garnered.

The Rotary Club (RC) of Kalibo harvested nine (9) awards during the DISCON 2012 of Rotary International District 3850. The RI District 3850 is composed of 54 Rotary Clubs from the provinces of Western Visayas, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-tawi and Zamboanga provinces including Dipolog and Pagadi-an Cities. 

The district convention 2012 was held in Sarabia Manor Hotel, Iloilo City on April 12 to 14. The RC Kalibo delegation comprised of 13 Rotary Club members, three (3) spouses and two (2) Rotakids was headed by its President Bing Santamaria. 

The highlight of the 3-day district convention is the opening program which showed the regional festivals competition. RC Kalibo featured the Aklan Sto. Niño Ati-atihan Festival as a guest performer. It was highly applauded and won the admiration of the delegates. There were several speeches delivered like the messages of Iloilo City Cong. Jerry Treñas, and Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor. A separate program was held for the Rotary spouses. 

District Governor’s Ball was held on Friday evening, April 13 where Rotary International President Representative PDG Jason Chan addressed the delegates, ballroom dancing competition was held and the awards were given to the winners during the club year 2011 – 2012. The incoming district governor Rafael Jocson and his family were introduced and the incumbent district governor Melvin De la Serna delivered his closing address.

The awardees for the Rotary Club of Kalibo was led by PP Vady Marin as RI Club Builder Award. The other awards are: 1. Most Outstanding Club in New Generations; 2. Most Outstanding Rotary Community Corps – Malogo, New Washington; 3. Most Outstanding Interact Club – Infant Jesus Academy; 4. Club Achievement Award; 5. Highest Club Contribution to Polioplus; 6. Best Club for Governor’s Visit; 7. Project Merit Award- Youth Congress; and 8. Club President Achievement Award.

The Madyaas Pen Editorial staff sincerely congratulates the Rotary Club of Kalibo for bringing home the Golden Harvests. /MP

Ibajay Bags Awards For Centuries-Old Mangrove EcoPark

by Dr. Marivel S. Villorente

The float of the town of Ibajay depicting a giant replica of a coconut and its various processed products like fibermatings during Aklan Day celebration cultural parade on April 25, 2012 in Kalibo, Aklan.  

Ibajay LGU headed by its lady mayor, Hon. Ma. Lourdes “Lulu” M. Miraflores and the two People’s Organizations (POs): Naisud  Mangove  and Aquatic Association (NAMAO) and Bugtong-bato Fisherman’s Association (BFA) supporting the Ibajay Mangrove Eco-Park received recognition from the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) during the National Mangrove Conference held at MO2 Westown Hotel, Iloilo City on April 18-20, 2012. 

Prior to the awarding on April 19, 2012, Mayor Lulu gave a 30-minute power point presentation of the Katunggan It Ibajay (Ibajay Mangrove Eco-Park) and the LGU-Ibajay’s commitment to its conservation and rehabilitation to some 140 participants who are personnel or staff members from the DENR, BFAR, LGUs, academe,  PO’s and other stakeholders from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. The Ibajay Mayor’s presentation of Ibajay Mangrove awaken the interest of the participants of the national conference due to the uniqueness of the centuries-old mangroves. Mayor Lulu pleasantly answered some queries.

Mayor Lulu received the Plaque of Appreciation which recognizes the LGU’s support to mangrove conservation and rehabilitation through: a) passage of ordinances that protect mangroves, b) allocation of municipal budget for mangrove conservation and rehabilitation activities including training courses, and, c) designation of part-time and full-time staff to address mangrove concerns.

The POs, Plaque of Appreciation was awarded to NAMAO received by its president, Mr. Carlito Alag. In behalf of BFA, Mr. Jevy Sacapano, BFA member received the plaque.

Dr. Heather Koldewey, Head of Mangrove Conservation Programme, International Marine and Freshwater Programme Manager of the ZSL and Dr. Jurgenne H. Primavera, Project Manager, Community-based Mangrove Rehabilitation Project in the Philippines of the ZSL presented the awards.

The first ever Mangrove National Conference has its theme, “Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Through Mangrove Conservation and Rehabilitation”. True to the theme: Issues on Nursery Establishment and Maintenance; Outplanting, Maintenance and Monitoring; Socio-economic Aspects, Poster Presentation and Stories from the Field on Mangroves, Survey of FLA (Fishpond Lease Agreement)AUU Ponds, Pond FLA Cancellations Initiatives, Pond Mangrove Reversion were discussed.  Moreover, queries were answered through  a well-participated open forum.

Other LGUs awarded are the LGU-Ajuy, LGU Leganes (Iloilo),LGU-Ivisan, Panay (Capiz) and LGU-Nueva Valencia (Guimaras). Other POs awarded together with NAMAO and BFA of Ibajay are BPFA, KAMaMADO, NewBAMA, Buntog Katibyugan.  The academe partners awarded are: NNHS, FCU, NIPSC-Ajuy and STMC. Two private partners are likewise awarded for their donations of land utilized for mangrove rehabilitation in the identified area: the Zerrudo and Jastillano family from Iloilo.

The Community-based Mangrove Rehabilitation Project in the Philippines by the ZSL (ZSL-CMRP),German Development Cooperation-Adaptation to Climate Change in Coastal Areas (GIZ-ACCoast) and the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau of the DENR-PAWB organized the First Mangrove National Conference.

The conference’ final output is a Petition Letter to address and urge the government and or concerned agencies to include among its priority programs and concerns and be implemented the soonest the inclusion of the Mangrove Conservation and Rehabilitation for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation.

Other Ibajay participants to the National Conference are Dr. Marivel S. Villorente, (ASU-Ibajay), Ms.Lyn  Ilinon, and Mr. Aniceto Sonon (LGU-Ibajay),  Mr. Edgar Pelayo  (Naisud Brgy Chairman), Hansel Sacapano, (member,BFA).  /MP

Capiztahan 2012 Features Capiz’s 111th Foundation Day

The 111th Foundation Anniversary of the province of Capiz was among the activity that was included in the Capiztahan 2012 celebration held in Roxas City from April 13 to 15 this year in Roxas City.

Capiztahan 2012 is a socio cultural event that commemorated the 111th foundation anniversary of Capiz and the 64th death anniversary of the late President Manuel Acuna Roxas who died of coronary thrombosis while delivering a speech at Clark Field, Pampanga  on April 15, 1948. Roxas was the last President of the Commonwealth of the Philippines and first president of the Republic of the Philippines.

On February  6, 1901, during the American Regime, the Philippine Commission  (the Legislative Body then) passed Act No. 83, a General Act for the Organization of Provincial Governments in the Philippine Islands. This is also known as “the Provin-cial Government Act.”

Among the provisions of this Act was:”Every provincial government established under this Act shall be a body corporate, with power to sue and be sued, to have and use a corporate seal, to hold real and personal properties, to make contracts for labor and material needed in the construction of duly authorized public works, and to incur such other obligations as expressly authorized by law.” (Section 20).

The Philippine Commission, on April 11, 1901, passed another act. Act 113, “An Act extending the provisions of the Philippine Government Act to the Province of Iloilo,”  defining its territory to include the Commandancia of Concepcion and by making Iloilo the capital town. Among others, it created the following offices with their respective salaries: the Provincial Governor, Secretary, treasurer, Supervisor and Fiscal, as well as scheduled every third Monday of January, April, July, and October for the meetings of the Municipal Presidents.

On April 13,  1901,  the Commission again passed Act 114, “an Act extending the provisions of the Provincial Government Act to the Province of Antique,” defining its territory with San Jose as its capital town. It created also offices identical to that of the province of Iloilo and the meetings of the Municipal Presidents.

On April 15, 190l, the Commission passed Act 115, “an Act extending the provisions of the Provincial Government Act to the Province of Capiz,” defining its territory making Capiz as the capital town of the province. The created offices are still identical with those of the provinces of Iloilo and Antique, and the meetings of the Municipal Presidents.

Lastly, on April 20, 1901,  the Commission passed Act 119, “an Act extending the provisions of the Provincial Government Act  to the Province of  Occidental Negros,  defining its territory with Bacolod as the capital town. Still, the created Provincial Offices are identical with that of the provinces of  Iloilo, Antique and Capiz, and the meetings of the Municipal Presidents.

All the Acts took effect immediately upon its submission, except for Act 119 which took effect on May 1, 1901.

The first governors of the four provinces of Western Visayas were Martin Delgado, Iloilo; Gen. Leandro Fullon, Antique; Jugo Vidal, Capiz, and Melecio Severino for Occidental Negros. (by BIENVENIDO P.  CORTES) 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Management At KIA Do You Think It Is Inept?


Kapihan guests from (l to r)   Mr. Rayline F. Dela Cruz-Paradise Tours, Mr. Noemi F. Panado-Pres. KIATA, Mr. Odon S. Bandiola, Pook Brgy. Capt. Ronald Marte,  and Mr. Cedric Sazon-Southwest operator.

Kapihan guests on March 31, 2012 tackled the transport service problem at Kalibo International Airport (KIA). Discussion at Smokehauz Resto & Bar between members of Kalibo International Airport Association and Airport Manager was frank and open given the need to promote efficiency and security to travelers especially tourists visiting Aklan. 

Present are Ronald L. Marte, Brgy. Captain of Pook, Mr. Cedric Sazon, Operator-Southwest, Mr. Rayline F. de la Cruz, Paradise Tours, Mr. Noemi F. Panado, Pres. KIATA and Engr. Percy Malonesio, manager, KIA.

Mr. Marte also a businessman cited inconsistencies and apparent disregard of security at KIA considered the prime gateway to fabled Boracay Island. In particular are the persistent operation of colorum buses and vans inside KIA premises despite accredited KIATA operators. Pre-departure  area is always crowded with boarding passengers hemmed in by kiosks, spas, money changers, and ATM machines. Result is no elbow room for relaxation and personal interaction among waiting passengers.

The presence of vendors near the old terminal building poses a security threat since they are not subjects to rigorous inspection. Per standard operation protocol requirement they must be located 50 meters away from KIA terminal buildings. The majority of business stalls found in and out of KIA belongs to people from other provinces and even foreigners. This is patent prejudicial said Brgy. Captain Marte.

Mr. Panado said that “due to inconsistencies in airport management policies, he finds it difficult to police their ranks. KIATA has 169 members and yet it seems one is not rewarded by following the rules of engagement. For instance, ‘commissioners’ or contractors can easily get past security guards to negotiate fare per van P3,000 with unsuspecting tourist passengers bound for Caticlan. But the actual amount given to drivers of vans is only P1,000 thereby pocketing a cool P2,000 per van”.

This pernicious practice results to airport disarray since the usual line-up of accredited vans for departure are not strictly followed. Worse, many commissioners operating inside the arrival area are not accredited with KIATA. In addition, South Koreans neither care to affiliate with KIATA nor wear ID’s. One wonders why this is openly tolerated. 

KIA manager Malonesio admitted that transport sector’s grievances and concern on airport management are legitimate. However, he pointed out that it is in the business interest of CAAP to maximize revenues in its operations. (This is greed. CAAP sacrifices the quality of service for a little amount of money.) He cited policy of then Airport Gen. Manager Cusio which rented all available spaces to businessmen. 

Colorum buses and vans operating in KIA premises are sole responsibility of LTO. Lonestar bus operation is basically contracted by tourist travel agencies in Caticlan and there is no way they could be denied entry to KIA” explained Malonesio.

It is unthinkable that management of Aklan’s premiere tourist gateway to and from Boracay leaves much to be desired when the volume of passengers and planes have not reached minimum load capacity. In contrast, despite the 37 planes per day landing at feeder airport in Caticlan, the problems experienced there arising from service transport is practically nil. 

The basic root of the problem at KIA is weak leadership in implementing rules and regulation. Manager Malonesio must do away with kid gloves’ approach to the problem. This means only accredited vans and buses, commissioners, market stallholders and other service providers may be allowed to operate inside KIA premises. Stakeholders must conform to ethical business practices or else their licenses may be revoked. While KIATA is policing its ranks against colorum vehicles, CAAP must actively manage security check at its main gate for illegal entry particularly those unauthorized personnel, vehicles and cargoes. 

As to congestion at pre-departure area, Mr. Malonesio must be aware of the existing conditions where safety and comfort of passengers are never jeopardized. It is reported that someone has put up a kitchen and a fast food outlet which employs intensive cooking . One can order a whole roasted pig be delivered right from market vendors near airport terminal. It is only in the Philippines that this fire hazard scenario takes place.

As a rule, transport and handling costs must be uniform all throughout. This will expedite matters and prevent misunderstanding. Better still, if a transport terminal  is established possibly through a grant facilitated by the Aklan Provincial Tourism Council. Transport vehicle will be called one after the other as passengers are ready to board. Never park too long in the Airport terminal ground.

Big surprise is a disclaimer by Brgy. Capt. Marte that Pook does not get any share of taxes from CAAP over its facility where airlines cause pollution (carbon emission and ear splitting noise) and travel risks at eastern end of runway. Pook it gets loose coins only from business licenses and permits certainly inadequate to beautify the highway, manage traffic, and declog drainage canals near the airport.

However, DOTC which regulates telecommunication companies sees to it that transmitter stations pay corresponding taxes to LGU’s. Utility agencies like Akelco also do the same. Why does CAAP which supervises and regulates airports throughout the country does not pay taxes to LGU’s?

Tourism in Aklan is bound to increase from the present one (1) million to three (3) million in 2015 according to forecast. Majority of tourists influx will be from China Chinese investors are busy preparing to put up their own hotels and restaurants to anticipate big demand. 

Is Aklan prepared to handle this volume of airline passengers? Until now, the outcome of the investigation of 200 tourists stranded at Caticlan Jetty Port bound for Boracay is still on hold. Rational thinking forbids any plan to build costly infra projects when frontline managers are inept and ineffective. Like any business enterprise, forging ahead of competitors demands grit marked by excellence and innovativeness. /MP

Friday, April 20, 2012


Celebrating Aklan’s Rebirth


Happy 56th Foundation Anniversary! Aklan Kapihan guests and attendees on April 14, 2012 echoed jubilation for the 56th Foundation Day celebration at the Smokehauz Resto & Bar. Guests are Atty. Ronquillo C. Tolentino, Dr. Reinalda Magdaluyo, Chairperson, Search Committee, Outstanding Aklanons for 2012, Ms. Deana G. Ruiz and Ms. Rosalind V. Regalado, all Sr. Trade Industry Dev. Specialists, DTI, and Mr. Francis Arnaiz, Office of Provincial Agriculturist.

Atty. Tolentino said that for 216 long years, Aklan was part of Capiz province and although enjoying mutual benefits from greater access to common resources, Aklan’s leaders from the start of the 20th century have opted for separation. Their struggle ended with the passage of RA 1414 approved by Pres. Ramon Magsaysay on April 25, 1956. Godofredo P. Ramos, the father of Aklan became the first Congressman who immediately introduced structural reforms in political, economic, and education systems. 

People’s joy and enthusiasm over the historic event did not dampen even with tragic fire that reduced Kalibo’s public market to ashes. Free at last, a spontaneous feeling of contentment and hope was on everybody’s lips. Through our joint efforts, prudence and prayers presently we have achieved one billion pesos yearly budget, tourism and agriculture on the upswing and many Aklanons excel in various academic fields. Our piña products are known far and wide in other countries, thanks to public and private promotion. Yes, we have deep rooted problems of poverty and unemployment but these are addressed through better governance and accountability, said the former Vice Governor. 

Dr. Magdaluyo announced the names of seven awardees for the prestigious Outstanding Aklanon award who are Dr. Russ Patrick P. Alcedo, Arts (Dance), Lucielo C. Ramirez, Public Service, Anita C. Gomez-Rescate, Business and Industry, Larry P. Nacionales, Agriculture, Engr. Merly M. Cruz, Government Service, Dr. Victorina S. Laroza, Education and Dr. Gaudencio P. Vega, Medicine. Members of the Search Committee based their decision on concrete accomplishments shown by consistent and exemplary performance in their chosen fields of endeavor impacting the lives not only the people of Aklan but at national and international levels. They will receive plaques of recognition in person during award ceremonies on April 25th at the ABL Sports Complex.

Ms. Regalado said that in this year’s Piña and Fiber Festival, our garment manufacturers will showcase new products and designs distinctively known for their quality, wearability, acceptance and affordability. This is the result of previous exhibition fora and endorsement by Patis Tesoro and other leading couturiers from Metro Manila who prefer light organic fabrics.

Not to be outdone are fashion accessories: cologne perfumes using abaca and piña decors, health stimulants like ginger tea blended with cinnamon and coco-based products. Also on display are varieties of wood, bamboo, and nitto products. Skills demo will be on wood carving and piña processing from cutting, scraping the leaves to warping and weaving the fibers.

The latest addition is on engineered bamboo, an imported technology that has strong dollar potential and employment opportunity especially in towns of Madalag, Makato, Libacao, Ibajay, Malinao, and Altavas. CARP beneficiaries in the above places are committed to undergo skills training relative to processing bamboo into floor tiles, window frames and school desks. Evidently, acquisition of twin rip saw machine will expedite the process. 

Ms. Ruiz said that DTI is not only advocating business development but also consumer welfare. Starting this year, piña products must pass stringent quality standards before acquiring stamp of approval of an official logo seal. A pending bill before Congress is on intellectual property rights based on Geographical Indicators. Piña cloth, gowns and barongs in Aklan are well known as indigenous cottage industry products. Yet, when brought to Lucban, Quezon it undergoes physical transformation. Add ons are ornate embroidery and stylish designs. Originality now lost, it is passed on and marketed as Lucban–made. Same is true with abaca products which sometimes find its way to Bicol. This trade practice is patently unfair and counterproductive, declared Ms. Ruiz.

Mr. Arnaiz said that the Agro Industrial fair will showcase agricultural crops, livestock and fisheries enhancing the concept, One Town, One Product (OTOP). The highlight of activities are: Opening of exhibits and display on April 23, Launching of 110 units artificial coral reefs in Mabilo, Kalibo – April 24, judging of floats and booths – April 25, launching of egg machine project in Tina, Makato – April 26, Farmers and fisherfolks day at CSQ Auditorium – April 27.

DA resource persons will provide update on agricultural commodities especially rice, corn, livestock, and fisheries. Six floats from Ibajay, Nabas, Lezo, Malinao, Kalibo and Banga will vie for top prizes. All 17 municipalities will have individual booths at Goding Ramos park. The public is cordially invited to come, enjoy and participate in this years’ info and educational activity. 

Versatility and economic uses of bamboo in the Philippines is not exploited unlike in China and Japan where Research & Development on the crop is far advanced. Engineered bamboo is destined to replace controversial coco lumber as construction building material for good. 

However, the cost of bamboo poles have soared from P50.00 to P100.00 each since typhoon Frank. The bulk of bamboo harvests in Aklan goes to construction of cottages and beach houses in Boracay. Obviously, agri entrepreneurs need to engage in commercial planting of bamboo in suitable areas, open grasslands and along rivers and streams. Overall impact will be greener countryside, minimal soil erosion and carbon footprints.

Definitely the industrial trade fair will stimulate growth of small and medium scale industries and attract local and foreign businessmen. Record sales of DTI show that consumer sales and under negotiation rose from P100,000 in year 2000 to P7.6 million in 2011.

To planners, organizers and participants of the 56th Aklan Foundation Day celebration, here’s our heartfelt congratulation to you and its rebirth. Mabuhay!  /MP    

Entrepreneurial Farmer

Ambrosio R. Villorente

Loving Money With Dishonor

Engr. John Ray E. Depositario, intensely love so much the money which led him to court case, lost his honor and enhanced unfavorable personal image. Depositorio was caught receiving an envelope supposed to contain one hundred thousand pesos (P100,000) he demanded from a construction firm as a pre-condition before he signs the Certificate of Completion (COC) and other documents so that the construction firm can attach it to its Statement of Account and get paid for the projects it constructed in the province of Aklan. 

Kembee Construction and Supply Co. represented by Bea Bern Gilder was contracted by DepEd Aklan to construct one storey one classroom building each in Rizal Elem. School, Ibajay; Maloco National High School, Ibajay; Lezo Integrated School, Lezo; and Prudencio T. Yerro Primary School, Lezo. It also constructed the one storey two classroom bldg. in Agrughangin, Madalag. These above projects cost four million fifteen thousand three hundred nine pesos & 77/100 (P4,015,329.77). 

The same construction firm also constructed one storey one classroom buildings in Napti Integrated School, Batan; Angas Integrated School, Batan; Bay-ang Elem. School, Batan; Cabangila National High School, Batan; and Belen Elem. School, Libacao which cost three million three hundred four thousand five hundred ninety three pesos P3,304,593).
The two groups of projects cost seven million three hundred nineteen thousand nine hundred twenty two pesos & 77/100 (P7,319,922.77).

The projects are classrooms under Calendar Year 2011 Basic Education facilities. The contract for the construction of the project was signed by Dr. Victorina Laroza for DepEd Aklan and Bea Bern Gilder of Kembee Construction and Supply Co.

The project construction was completed in Sept. 2011. A request for inspection was made in Sept. 2011. However, a Punch List report was filed on Nov. 14, 2011. This surprised the Kimbee construction as the said Punch List should have been submitted  after the turn over if there are defects that maybe found in the construction like the one storey building.

Steps were made so that the COC and other documents will be signed by Engr. John Ray E. Depositario. However, he refused unless Kimbee Construction and Supply gives his share of the profit realized out of the project construction. Depositario was paid P10,000 but he demanded P400,000. Later, he settled for P100,000 which Kimbee Construction acceded. 

Yet, before honoring its commitment, Kimbee Construction reported the demand for bribe to the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman enlisted the assistance of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

Entrapment was planned and implemented on Wednesday, April 18. Engr. Depositario was entrapped on midday of Wednesday, April 18, 2012 in the Cafeteria located in Magsaysay Park in front of Kalibo Municipal Hall, Kalibo, Aklan.

Upon his suggestion, Depositar will sign the COC and other pertinent papers needed to claim payment for the projects constructed by Kimbee Construction if he is paid P100,000. 
Engr. Gerlie E. Dela Cena of Kimbee Construction occupied one table inside the Cafeteria. The three NBI officers positioned themselves outside of the canteen where all things happening inside is visible to them. 

Shortly after midday Wednesday, Depositario arrived in the canteen, sat with Engr. Dela Cena who handed to him all the papers he signed. After he finished signing, Engr. Dela Cena got back the signed documents, handed to Depositario a white envelope said to contain inside the P100,000 Depositario demanded. 

Simultaneously, the three NBI officers stood up and arrested Depositario on the strength of the warrant from Ombudsman. 

Depositario was inquest on Thursday afternoon, April 19. Immediately, Depositario also paid a cash bail bond in the amount of P60,000.

Depositario is now facing corruption charges of three counts as: 1. Violation of the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices law, 2. Direct bribery under the Revised Penal Code, and 3. violation of the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for public officials.    

When I visited the DepEd Division office in Kalibo for additional information on the matter, I got nothing. All the personnel in the office I talked to kept their mouth closed. They are unanimous, only Dr. Jesse M. Gomez, the Schools Division Superintendent can answer my “would be” questions.

I was shocked when nobody knows at DepEd who is John Ray Evardone Depositario.
Depositario has been holding office in DepEd building, Kalibo but they don’t know what is his job in DepEd Aklan, what is his position and who pays his salary. 

That is the prize for having so much love of money for being greedy. None likes to identify him. Now Depositario is facing court case and his character is damaged. 

 He must be meted penalty he deserves. What he did might blacken the good image of DepEd Aklan and the Aklanons. If he is not from Aklan, he must be asked to leave Aklan as soon as possible. /MP

High Cost of Computerization


Landowners who failed in the past to avail of the free patent application under the Public Land law regarding the administrative legalization or confirmation of their imperfect titles over alienable and disposable agricultural lands that they possess and occupy for less than 30 years are enjoined to apply with DENR now. This is a privilege and an opportunity under RA 9176 or an Act Extending the Free Patent Law until December 31, 2020. Our Land Management Services have been engaged for the past several years to conduct cadastral surveys, gather pertinent info and process free patent applications of agricultural lands said Mr. Baltazar M. Gerardo, CENRO, Kalibo.

While tax declaration is incontrovertible evidence of land ownership, it is technically flawed and issued only for taxation purposes. Confirmation of property title by the government is best evidence of absolute ownership. It is unfortunate that few Aklanons appreciate this excellent program of elevating quality standard of documentation for legal and business purposes. Apparently, proper information and education have not filtered into their sense of awareness. Hence, their inaction or non-cooperation. Indeed many consider the process only a financial and physical burden. This should never be the case since a land owner has more to gain than lose, argued the CENRO Chief.

Free patent application registered with CENRO Kalibo grew steadily from 546 in 2010 to 755 in 2011. Both Kalibo and Boracay CENROs target 600 agricultural application each for 2012. Another 600 are for residential free patent applications.

Agricultural lands covered under Com-prehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) or RA 6657 are exempted from taxes and fees of land transfers and other charges in accordance with Sections 66 and 67 of the Code. Farmers in particular have enjoyed preferential treatment under the generous provision of the law. Somehow, this will end abruptly with the issuance of Joint DAR-LRA Memo Circular No. 03 series of 2012 issued by Commissioner Eulalio C. Diaz III.

Atty. Victor E. Tesorero, Chief Land Registration Authority (LRA), Aklan announced that beginning April 10, 2012 their office will implement the circular on Land Titling Computerization Project (LTCP). This involves among others, the development of custo-mized application system, the supply of IT products and services, training of end users, conversion of titles and documents from physical to digital format and nationwide network of interconnection. Pursuant to Build, Own, Operate (BOO) agreement dated May 26, 2000 entered into by and between LRA and the Land Registration System Inc. (LARES), IT service fees shall be collected for specific services which include CARP related transactions. 

How much will it cost the average landowner to avail of this free patent law? Well, Mr. Napoleon G. Maravilla Jr., Special Investigator CENRO Kalibo estimates that payment for cadastral fee is less than P100. Processing time is about three weeks if supporting documents are valid and intact. It is unfortunate however that bottleneck occurs with the LRA. Feedback from our applicant clienteles cite unwarranted service fee from P130 to P700.00 per lot.

However with full implementation of computerization program this time, Atty. Tesorero says that IT dues may be between P2,000 and P3,000 per lot depending upon the market value of the property. This means that if a hectare of land is parceled among seven heirs each one will contribute the above amount to LRA for processing of papers. I am aware of the problems faced by small landowners but this is a national policy decision that is bound to cause significant changes. Computer technology is the wave of the future and data base could be sourced through the internet. There is no question about paperless technology usage but only its cost to our clienteles, said the LRA Chief.

Documents needed for registration for free patent with LRA include cadastral map of land applied, current receipt of tax payment, photocopy of tax declaration, approved free patent application and photocopy of endorsement from DENR.

With heightened computerization and exorbitant fees imposed by its service provider, LARES, it is a good bet that free patent application will grind to a halt at LRA, unless responsible officials intercede. Backlash will undoubtedly undermine the integrity of our lawmakers who approved RA 9176. Pity the millions of landowners and CARP beneficiaries who should otherwise be protected from onerous financial obligations. /MP  

Sugilanon Ni Tita Linda

Ni Tita Linda Belayro

Magic Sword

Sa sangka gin hari-an, si Sir Gawain ro pinaka mabuot ag masaligan sa tanan nga mga kabalyero ni Haring Richard. Parabil taw-an it Espada ro isaeang ka kabalyero, maga agi anay imaw sa paghanas. 

Idto sanda naga tener sa eaging kastilyo ag idto naga hanas. Tanan ro mga kabalyero hay puro eon may espada. Ro iba, guin taw-an ag ro iba hay nag paobra. Masubo si Sir Gawain tongod owa pa imaw it espada. 

Samtang naga pamasyar imaw sa may patio it simbahan, maeapit sa sementeryo, may hakita imaw nga espada nga naka tagdok. Guin bugnot nana ag guin limpyuhan. Nag gilak ro espada. Owa man mag buhay, nag abot ro torneo. Nag entra imaw ag nagdaog. Guin dayaw imaw ni Haring Richard bangod sa anang guin pakita.

Umpisa kato, nangin kaibahan eon imaw ni Haring Richard maskin siin ga adto. Guin tamdan ni Haring Richard ro espada nga may marka nga nakasueat. Ogaling indi nanda maintindihan kon ano ro kahueogan ko nakasueat.

Samtang padayon ro pakikipag away ni Haring Richard ag mga kabalyero. Abong naibulig si Sir Gawain kay Haring Richard. Isaea eon ro pagsalbar kana ni Sir Gawain nga bu-ot pana-on ro hari ogaling hakita ni Sir Gawain ag pinaliko ko anang espada. Sambilog pa ro pag eompat kana it leon sa isaeang ka mataas nga bukid samtang naga talikod ro hari. Pagkakita ni Sir Gawain, guin habiyog nana ro anang espada ag hatama-an ro leon.

Abo nga pakikipag-sapalaran ro naagyan ni Sir Gawain. Owa nana nasayuri nga ruyon gali ro kahueogan ko espada. Imaw ro igdaeapat sa pag salbar sa kabuhi ni Haring Richard. /MP

Philippine Technology Transfer Law

by Delano Telan Tefora

The R. A. 10055 otherwise known as “An Act Providing the Framework and Support System for the Ownership, Management, Use and Commercialization of Intellectual Property Generated from Research and Development Funded by Government and for other Purposes” seeks to roll out to the market mature and potentially important technologies generated by government funded researches and must be seriously implemented. 

The Philippine congress finally enacted this law after three (3) years of legislative work known as the Philippine Technology Transfer Act of 2009. This is a full-fledged national statute since March 23, 2010 to serve as the blueprint for a nationally coordinated technology transfer framework of government-funded researches. The principal authors for this law are Senator Edgardo J. Angara in the Senate and Rep. Joseph Emilio Abaya in the House of Representatives.

PCARRD Executive Director Patricio S. Faylon expressed elation at the time when this Act was passed into Law and described this as a feat in the PCARRD’s policy development and advocacy mandate relating to Science and Technology development. PCARRD has led the DOST Technical Working Committee in the Bill’s legislative advocacy and public awareness activities since 2006. This Act will interest the public scientists and researchers who will define and enable us to know what portion of the scientific results be made “FREE”.

This RA 10055 will be the solution to stop or minimize our Agricultural Scientists and Researchers from leaving the country. Of course our government officials and leaders must give priority in their governance’s honest to goodness concerning the appropriation of funds, to provide assistance and protection through legislation, to avoid or minimize migration  among scientific and technology professionals. It will also encourage students to pursue Research and Development studies.

In his message, Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Sec. Montejo during the PCARRD 39th anniversary said, “If we maintain our gains for the next 2 years, we will overcome our present difficulties and sustain continued development. It can be done and we can do it. All we need is the confidence to move forward”. An example for this is the promise of Congressman J.V. Ejercito to sponsor 10 scholarships in the Aklan State University to take up agricultural courses.

The government would like to see innovation coming out of the laboratories and field researches into the market noting that the Council’s Techno Mart Program provides a farmer-public sector market partnership that develops value added products for commercialization.

As a landmark of Science and Technology law, we lauded congress for taking into account S & T policies in their agenda. Recognizing PCARRD as an instrument in the success of the policy advocacy campaign, its management regarded the development as a triumph for the inter-agency policy advocacy collaboration. 

We must give credit also to former DOST Sec. Estrella F. Alabastro being her brainchild having recognized the need for a national framework that would push technology generation and application to its maximum potential through efficient and coordinated transfer capability and intellectual property rights assertions in the countryside made in the Senate Bill 3416 which is enacted into Law, R. A. 10055.

Cited is a remarkable scientific achievement for Vietnam which developed Nutritional Rice Variety with Gene Technology IR. 64, MT 1250 (indica) and Taipei 309 (japonica). This rice variety is rich in vitamin A and E and iron, zinc, and oryzanol which help reduce cholesterol in blood. It is also an insect resistant rice breed, one way to avoid chemical in put application which lessen farm expenses and preserve healthy food to eat.

In the Philippines, japonica is still on japonica line varietal field trials with some lines made to be named as foundation palay seed variety by the PHILRICE in Muñoz, Nueva Ecija. This variety is highly productive and adaptable to Philippine condition which our farmers are waiting for propagation as the answer for the global warming – climate change in response to the increasing population of our country. Everybody must think of what is environment friendly surrounding we live in. /MP  

Reach Within To Embrace Humanity


PP Lyndon, PDG Jason and Megs Lunn

Some 600 Rotarians from Zamboanga, Panay and Guimaras Islands, Negros Occidental participated in this year’s Rotary International District 3850 convention held last April 11-14, 2012 at the Kalantiao Hall, Sarabia Manor Hotel, Iloilo City with the theme – “Reaching Within to Embrace Humanity.”

The three-day conference brought Rotarians together to showcase their festival costumes and dances during the Opening Day and Fellowship Night at Plazuela De Iloilo, like the Dinagyang of Iloilo City, Hermosa Festival of Zambonga City, Masskara Festival of Bacolod City, Lami-Lamihan Festival of Basilan, Udyahan Festival of Kabangkalan, Patuyaw of Antique and Ati-Atihan Festival of Aklan. The second day was filled up with seasoned speakers invited from other districts, Rotary Got Talent, Ballroom competition and awards night. The third day was devoted for business meetings.

Speakers were former Isabela Governor Ma. Grace Cielo Padaca, the founder of Kaya Natin:  A movement for Good Governance and Ethical Leadership; PDG Dave M. Villanueva, currently the District Trainer of District 3850. Arizza Ann S. Nocum, the youngest among the speakers who is 17 years old and is the Administrator of Kristiyano-Islam Peace Library. She is currently taking up BS Engineering at UP Diliman, Q.C.; Mae Paner a.k.a. Juana Change is a political activist, a TV commercial film director and actor for stage, film and television.

Other speakers were Charter President of the Rotary Club of Centennial Quezon City -  Nominee Erlynda R. Mijares; Dr. Gilbert C. Vilela, the chief of Coronary Artery Disease Section of the Phil. Heart Center, Mr. Abner Tayco from RC Olongapo and is a Response Team Member of Shelter Box Disaster Relief Philippines;  MGen. Jose Mabanta, Jr. of the Philippine Air Force; Mr. Jesse Francis N. Rebustilllo, President of the Philippine Society for Training and Development and consultant of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. 

Meanwhile, the Rotarians spouses had also their own plenary session and program held separately on the last day of the conference with speakers like Ms Patricia Ann Chang Caro from Hawaii, a professional dancer, Polynesian teacher, choreographer & designer, and Ms. Esther Lou P. Altea from Illinois, USA who is now a volunteer social worker in the Good Shepherd Center for the Elderly in Binirayan Hills, San Jose, Antique. 

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Mabilog cordially greeted Rotarians and guests where he gave emphasis how the organization Rotary International have helped and is bridging the people to reach within through government partnerships, assisted by other NGO’s, too. Congressman Jerry Treñas, on the other hand, in his message, was amazed how the work of Rotary International brought about positive changes and motivated other businessmen and professionals to practice their professions considering The Four Way Test on truth, fairness to all concerned, building goodwill and better friendship, and benefits to all concerned.

RI President Kaylan Banerjee believes that in order to achieve anything in this world, a person has to use all the resources he can draw on. And the only place to start is with ourselves and within ourselves, thus, the theme “Reaching Within to Embrace Humanity.”

PDG Jason Chan of the Rotary of the Peak, Hongkong. was the representative of The Rotary International president Kaylan Banerjee. “I congratulate your District Governor Melvin Dela Serna for an outstanding year. You have been working extremely hard in particular with the production of one of the most updated and informed newsletters in the Asian Region sharing with you all the remarkable works of District 3850,” Chan said in his special message during the opening of the plenary session. 

A district conference is an annual meeting showcasing club and district activities. It is also a Rotary family event mixed with fellowship, and learning. It allows the participants to become more directly involved with the planning of the district’s future. It is at the district conferences where club can become even more aware of the ways in which Rotary is making the world a better place. /MP