CHR-10 cites land rights, gender equality as major IPs issues

In the last leg of the National Inquiry on the Situation of Filipino Indigenous Peoples (IPs) on October 27 at Tagoloan town, Misamis Oriental, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR)-10 reported that land rights, gender equality, migration, government service accessibility and employment are among the major issues of the IPs in Mindanao.


CHR Focal Commissioner on IP Rights Gwendolyn Pimentel-Gana said that the inquiry includes three thematic areas which are the protection and promotion of the IPs’ land and cultural rights, effectiveness of the current government process to obtain the Free, Prior and Informed Consent of IPs, and the state of economic and social development of IPs in the Philippines.


“Layunin ng National Inquiry na alamin ang kasalukuyang kalagayan ng ating mga kapatid na katutubo sa buong Pilipinas at ilarawan kung ano ang antas ngayon ng pagkilala at pagtupad sa inyong karapatang pantao,” Gana stressed.


(It is the aim of the National Inquiry to know the current situation of the IPs in the Philippines and describe the level of recognition and fulfillment of your human rights)


IP communities in regions 9, 10, CARAGA and BaSulTa (Basilan, Sulu and Tawi Tawi provinces of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao) participated in the national inquiry.


Community leaders and members from Bangigi, Subano, Manobo, Bajau, Kolibugan, Sama Bangigi, Sama Dilaut, Sama, Tausug, Bukidnon, Manubo Pulangyon, Yakan and Talaandig shared some of their experiences in their area which hindered them to establish their cultural identity and further brace development.


Representatives from BaSulTa said that one of their primary concerns is the treatment of women in their area especially in Jolo noting that most women are not prioritized in accessing education since they will just be confined in homes as housewives.


Aside from gender equality, illegal employment of Badjaos in Malaysia was also reported where the group’s representative stated that they are still seeking for a bilateral agreement of the two governments (the Philippines and Malaysia) to lessen undocumented employment in the neighboring country.


When it comes to health concerns, most of the IPs mentioned that the government still lacks medical service and provision of medicines in their areas. They stressed that the proximity of their areas and the cultural practices of some groups may cause such health service gap.


The Badjaos also cited less to no employment opportunities for their graduates.


These concerns and more were tackled carefully by the CHR as these outputs of the National Inquiry will comprise the Indigenous Peoples’ Right Observatory (IPRO). The CHR also said that such issues will be raised to the national government agency concerned for appropriate actions.



“Ang lahat ng mga kaalaman at datos na lilitaw sa National Inquiry ay gagamiting batayan upang magpadaloy ng kaukulang serbisyo at tulong para sa mga katutubo sa Pilipinas (All of the information and data that will emerge in the National Inquiry will be used as basis to provide appropriate service and aid to the Indigenous People in the Philippines),” Gana said.(RTP/PIA10)


DA honors organic implementers

The exemplary catalysts for the organic agriculture sector have been honored by the Department of Agriculture (DA) through its search for the National Organic Agriculture Achievers’ Awards (NOAAA).


The awarding was led by Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol before a crowd of nearly 2,000 organic farmer-practitioners, agricultural extension workers, exhibitors, enthusiasts and other industry stakeholders across the country during the 14th National Organic Agriculture Congress (NOAC), held in Cagayan de Oro city.


“Let’s work on feeding the Filipino people first…and, you organic farmers kayo ang may malaking papel dito,” underscored Sec. Piñol. He noted that while the agricultural sector is broadening its reach to the international markets, serving the country comes as top priority.


The NOAAA winners were named by category, such as the outstanding provincial and municipal local government units, OA focal persons, agricultural extension worker, small individual farmer, farmer’s group and organic farming family.


They were awarded based on their exemplary contributions to the implementation of Republic Act 10068 known as the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010 and achievement of the envisioned goals of the NOA Program of DA that more Filipinos will engage in Organic Agriculture.


The winners at the provincial category are the Provincial Local Government Unit of Ifugao (PLGU-Ifugao) and focal person Catherine V. Buenaventura.


The Municipal Local Government Unit of Itogon, Benguet (MLGU-Itogon) won in the municipal category. While Dexter Mendoza, city OA focal person of Ligao, Albay and Rowena Gonnay, agricultural extension worker of Pasil, Kalinga are named winners in their respective capacity.


On the other hand, Elmer Salzar of Tigaon, Camarines Sur triumphed as the outstanding small farmer individual. La Top Multi-Purpose Cooperative (MPC) of La Trinidad, Benguet, and the Marsan Family of La Trinidad, Benguet garnered the outstanding farmer’s group and organic farming family awards, respectively.


For earning the individual awards, Buenaventura, Mendoza, Gonnay and Salzar received each a plaque of recognition and P50,000, P40,000, Php30,000 and P20,000 cash prizes, respectively.


The group winners such as the PLGU-Ifugao, MLGU-Itogon and La Top MPC were granted each a plaque of recognition and an OA project (proposal-based) amounting to P3 million, Php1 million and P500,000, respectively.


For the Marsan Family, it received a cash prize of P300,000 and a plaque of recognition.


Moreover, the DA chief looks forward to giving more incentives on top of giving citations and awards to the national organic achievers. He encouraged the Congress delegates to join him in this aspiration.


“Let’s focus our advocacy on organic agriculture, tingnan natin kung ano pang incentives ang ating maibibigay for every farmer who embraces the organic farming system,” he urged.


Despite the different technologies espoused by DA, according to Piñol, it is always the market which dictates the kind of farming systems that we should embrace, and he pointed the bright potential of OA.


“The world is moving towards healthier food, organic food, and you are lucky because early on, andiyan na kayo, kayo ang unang makikinabang as the world goes craving for healthier and safer food for themselves and their families,” said Piñol.


“I assure you all of the full commitment of the DA to OA,” Piñol concluded.


The occasion was also graced by lawyer Rhaegee Tamanya representing Cynthia A. Villar, senate committee chair on agriculture and food; DA Undersecretary for Agribusiness and Marketing and Regional Engagement Bernadette Romulo-Puyat; Engr. Christopher V. Morales, coordinator, NOA Program; heads of DA attached bureaus and agencies; regional directors of various regional field offices; organic focal persons and representatives.


Hosting the 14th NOAC is DA-Regional Field Office 10 headed by OIC-Regional Director Carlene C. Collado, along with assistant regional directors Engr. Roxana H. Hojas,  and Carmelita T. Bajarla, and OA Focal Person Samuel C. Natindim, Jr. in partnership with the City LGU of Cagayan de Oro, Xavier University – College of Agriculture and the PLGU of Misamis Oriental. (DA10)

LTO advises motor vehicle owners against use of “generic” plate numbers

Northern Mindanao Land Transportation Office (LTO) has issued an official instruction to its district and extension offices to stop the practice of assigning ‘generic’ plate numbers to motor vehicles and motorcycles.


According to LTO 10 Regional Director Oscar S. Salcedo the practice is considered irregular and a violation of the existing law since it results to several motor vehicles having the same plate number.

Moreover, a “generic” plate number is not encoded in the LTO IT System database. Director Salcedo said it is, therefore, not a reliable basis to make an on-line or automated verification of the motor vehicle details.

The owners of motor vehicles or motorcycles with a ‘generic’ plate number are advised to promptly report to the LTO so that their vehicles will be issued the correct plate number which is either the regular plate number, if available, or a temporary plate number which is the MV File Number, with a written authorization issed by the registering LTO district or extension office. (LTO10)

DILG 10 chief to LGUs: Manifest principles of good governance

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) 10 Regional Director Arnel M. Agabe encouraged the local government units (LGUs) in the region to manifest principles of good governance during the culmination of the 26th Anniversary of the Local Government Code held at Grand Caprice Convention Center, Cagayan de Oro City.


“It has been 26 years since the enactment of Local Government Code,” director Agabe said. “This have been providing us with a responsive and accountable local government structure that would ensure that LGUs would be able to deliver the services needed by our constituents not only in Region 10, but in the entire country.”


With this, he reiterated that with the enactment of the LG Code, this gave the LGUs more powers, more authorities, and resources. But with these, he said that it entailed that the LGUs should be more responsible, saying that, “LGUs should always remember that with more powers, comes greater responsibilities.”


According to him, the DILG, together with the national agencies, tries to capacitate the LGUs for them to deliver the services that are expected from them. In return, the LGUs have to prove that they could perform and offer efforts in line with the principles of good governance so that more financial grants would be entrusted to them.


In addition, Agabe also reminded the LGUs to vie for the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) as this would encapsulate excellence in the delivery of basic services to their respective communities, to include ensuring that they have the appropriate government structure which is responsive and accountable— manifesting the principles of good local governance.


“We are all part of the local governance,” the regional director said. “What is important is that we should know as to how we could help so that we would be able to ensure that the governance that we are seeking for will happen in our barangays, municipalities, cities, provinces and in own our region.”


ASEAN, Federalism’s awareness and advocacy


Aimed to accentuate the significance of the country’s integration to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Community, the culmination also covered a forum on ASEAN.


“With the ASEAN, small member countries will a chance to be more influential and more stable as this would promote economic growth,” said Agabe. “This would also give us, the Filipinos, an opportunity to work in other ASEAN countries without additional requirements.”


To discuss on the Philippine ASEAN Integration 2017, Information Center Manager Elaine O. Ratunil of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Region 10 served as the speaker.


Moreover, to propagate the information on the Federalism program, DILG 10 Assistant Regional Director Edward G. Bhagwani discussed the overview of the said program; while Roderico Y. Dumaug, Jr., a Political Science faculty from Xavier University- Ateneo de Cagayan, talked about the structures, systems and benefits of having a Federal from of government to the LGUs.


“We would like you to know more about federalism, because through Federalism, more resources is assured to our LGUs and we could have a government structure which will be more responsive and more appropriate to cater to all dilemmas that we have been facing throughout the years,” Agabe said.


He added that Federalism is one way to address the common sentiments, interests and needs through the creation of state governments and through decentralization. (DILG10)

4ID activates new battalion to secure Southern Bukidnon

Philippine Army activated its 88th Infantry (Maringal) Battalion and placed it under the operational control of 4th Infantry Division to address the threat situation in the Southern part of Bukidnon.
In a simple ceremony on October 19 held at the 88IB headquarters in South Poblacion, Maramag town, Bukidnon, MGen Ronald C Villanueva, 4ID commander underlined the specific tasks and mission of the said battalion that are aligned to the current campaign of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) which is the Development Support and Security Plan “Kapayapaan.”
He also emphasized during the program about the ultimate objective of the New People’s Army (NPA) terror group.
“When we talk about terrorism, we don’t only mean Maute or ISIS, we also talk about the New People’s Army that have longed made the lives of our people in Bukidnon miserable. Not only that they burn trucks and plantations but also extort hard-earned money from poor farmers and worst, recruit children to fight against the government,” said Mgen Villanueva.
He further said, “I would like yo emphasize this with the presence of our local leaders in today’s ceremony that the real intent of the NPA is not to topple down the armed forces but to take the governance from you. This is the reason why we remain strong, resilient, and have improved our security stance in order to not just eliminate but to fully address this insurgency situation that have longed been affecting our Country’s development.”
Villanueva said to the soldiers of the battalion that he expect them to bear the professionalism as the they execute their tasks.
Build bridges from among the people, earn their respect and gain friends. There is no room for any Human Rights violations. We have already gained an immeasurable people’s support especially during our efforts in Marawi. Don’t let one mistake destroy what we have sacrificed for our Country. We support the intent of our Commander-in-Chief to protect the state and the people. Again I remind all of you to perform only your duty as a disciplined soldier, MGen Villanueva concluded.
The activation and deployment of 88IB that is composed of 450 soldiers is part of the president’s plan to hasten the resolution of all internal conflicts in the Country. This will help pave way for the smooth implementation of all Government programs and services that would benefit every Filipinos in all parts of the Archipelago. (4ID)

Near normal rainfall likely in PH this October 2017

Weather state bureau bared that generally near normal rainfall conditions are expected over most parts of the country this October 2017.

Forecast temperatures in October are near to slightly warmer than average in most parts of the country, said Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) Mindanao Regional Services Division Officer-in-charge Engr. Anthony Joseph R. Lucero during the 3rd Quarter Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC)-10 Council Meeting held in Cagayan de Oro, Oct. 13.


For Mindanao, temperatures ranges from 17oC to 33oC over the mountainous areas, and 18oC to 37oC over the rest of Mindanao. More rainfall in Mindanao especially in Caraga and Northern Mindanao, said PAGASA-Mindanao chief.

Lucero said Cool ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation)-neutral condition are present. However, a weak La Niña is slightly favored through the remainder of the year 2017.

He also said generally slightly warmer than average surface temperature is expected over the coming months. Cold surges may occur during January to February 2018.

The weather systems that may affect the country during the period October-November-December 2017 are the thunderstorms, intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ), low pressure areas (LPAs), ridge of high pressure area (HPA), easterlies, tail end of cold front, transition from southwest (SW) to northeast (NE) monsoon, NE monsoon and three to five tropical cyclone occurrences.

Tropical cyclones originating from the northwestern Pacific Ocean tend to move in a westerly direction, with average tracks across central and southern Luzon and secondary tracks over Visayas and Northern Mindanao.

Lucero meanwhile said concerned agencies are already advised to take precautionary actions to mitigate the adverse impacts of cool ENSO-neutral conditions.

Later in his presentation, Lucero said that PAGASA has been partnering with local government units (LGUs) for the establishment of Climate Information Center to help farmers and rural communities adapt to extreme weather conditions and other effects of climate change. (EOR/PIA10)

RDC-X enhances communicators skills, strengthens gov’t info efforts

To improve the skills of information officers in communicating the Regional Development Plan (RDP) and enhance their writing and presentation skills as important aids in communication, the Regional Development Council (RDC)-X held the Training on Enhancing Communication Skills of the RDC-X Communication and Advocacy Program- Subcommittee and RDC/National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA)-X Speakers Bureau on October 3, in Cagayan de Oro.

Photo Release 1_Enhancing Communication Skills


The training comprised discussions and workshops on communication techniques for effective advocacies, communicating the AmBisyon Natin 2040 and the RDP, managing press conferences, transforming technical reports, effective powerpointers, and social media engagement.

PhotoRelease 02_Learning Techniques

In his message, Philippine Information Agency (PIA)-10 Regional Director Franklin Gumapon urged government information offices to apply their learning in performing their duties as government communicators.


“We are not here to just inform but also to communicate to get the message across,” Gumapon stressed.


Effective communication techniques 


To effectively advocate government programs and services, Elaine Ratunil of the PIA-10 said that communication techniques must encourage action from the target audience as well as it should be driven by purpose.

Photo Release 3_Know Your Audienc

She also shared the effective communication characteristics that every information officer should consider in communicating their programs, activities, projects and services, and these include the two-way communication process, accessibility, timeliness, accuracy and planning.


To apply the concepts on effective communication techniques in a specific government program, NEDA-X Assistant Regional Director Ester Mae Guiamadel provided a workshop on communicating the AmBisyon Natin 2040 where she stressed the importance of identifying an audience; obtaining their profile, demographics and interests.

Photo Release 4_The 'WHY' in Communication

“Framing emphasizes some aspects of an issue and de-emphasize others. It also helps define issues and influences how stakeholder perceive,” Guiamadel explained as she discussed the importance of rooting for the purpose in doing an advocacy.


Sending the message

Photo Release 6_Effective Powerpointer 

To equip the government information officers on the different ways of sending message to their audience, Ramir Balquin, assistant city planning and development coordinator in Cagayan de Oro City, shared his expertise in transforming technical data and reports into understandable sources of information.


Balquin stressed that such reports should be objective, factual, complete, selective and clear. He also added that information officers must always consider the content, format and process in handling technical reports.


Aside from doing the technical reports, there are also inputs on the effective use social media in information dissemination.

Photo Release 7_Social Media Engagement

PIA Director General Harold Clavite emphasized the use of new technology in strengthening advocacies as it is very helpful in engaging citizens to improve governance.


He urged the communicators to plan their social media posts, and make use of photos, links, message and hash tags that will entice more viewers to engage in the government’s page.

Photo Release 5_Transforming Technical Reports

More than 40 government information officers in the region participated in the training and are expected to come up with their own effective communication strategies that will improve engagements with the public.(RTP/PIA10)