Search This Blog

Monday, May 31, 2010

Army helps in “Brigada Eskwela”

    Kalibo, Aklan – Clean-up and repair works in schools to prepare for this year's school opening became faster and lighter with the help of army men from the 12th IB here who joined "Brigada Eskwela" in various schools in Aklan.

    According to Capt. Ricardo Villaruel, Civil Military Officer of 12th IB, a platoon from their camp worked handin-hand with teachers, parents and pupils in the conduct of Brigada Eskwela from May 17-21 in different public elementary schools here.

    Capt. Villaruel said the group frm the 12th IB who joined the "Brigada" was composed of regular army men and CAFGUs.

    The Philippine Army joined in the clean-up drive by painting and repairing chairs in Urquiola Elementary School and Tabayon and Agbanawan Primary schools in Banga, Aklan, Cabugao Elementary School in Altavas, Aklan and Navitas Elementary School in Malinao, Aklan.

    This week, the Philippine Army will also do the Brigada in Aranas Elementary School in Balete, Aklan.

    Capt. Villaruel said school officials, parents, teachers and pupils eagerly welcomed the assistance of the Philppine Army in the clean-up activity.

    "School officials and parents we have talked to told us that clean-up and repair works that were usually accomplished in a week were done in a day with our help," Capt. Villaruel said. (PIA/Venus g. Villanueva)

Provincial Capitol initiates improvement of security measures

    Kalibo, Aklan - Vehicles, including motorcycles entering the Provincial Capitol compound here shall soon be subjected to inspection by provincial security guards.

    This is in order to improve security measures in the compound, according to Governor Carlito S. Marquez, who appealed to everybody to bear with the new measure for the sake of security and order in the area.

    The governor said security guards shall require drivers of vehicles to identify themselves, their passengers, and provide other information required in the logbook to be maintained by the former.

    Government officials and personnel and other persons frequently transacting business with offices located in the compound will be issued car passes.

    Applications for said passes shall be made available at the Office of the Provincial Civil Security Group at the the ABL Sports Complex.

    The Provincial Capitol Grounds had a recent makeover with the installation of concrete walls and gates at both sides of the area, while the main building is also undergoing repair/further improvement.

    Besides hosting provincial department offices, the main Capitol Building also hosts national government offices like the Department of Health (DOH), the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), the Fiber Industry Development Authority (FIDA), the Public Attorney's Office (PAO) and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA). (Venus G. Villanueva/PIA)

NSO warns against “census pretenders”

Kalibo, Aklan – The National Statistics Office (NSO) here is warning Aklanons about people pretending to be part of the team conducting census as they are out to fleece the households of their money, doing their undesirable activities in time for the conduct of the 2010 Census of Population and Housing.

    Blas Solidum, Provincial Statistics Officer of NSO-Aklan said enumerators hired by the office to conduct the census complained that residents in a municipality no longer like to entertain them and answer their survey questions.

    "These residents said people from the NSO have already gone to them, have asked them questions and offered them certain merchandise. They were also asked to give down payments and were promised to return with the goods but they never came back. So residents have lost their trust, to the disadvantage of the bonafide census enumerators, and the smooth conduct of the activity.," said Solidum.

    These persons pretending to be conducting the census allegedly offer gadgets that could help reduce power consumption in the households, according to Solidum.

    Solidum emphasized that the enumerators composed of public school teachers and other professionals hired by the NSO sport proper identification cards, T-shirt/uniforms and umbrellas when they go to their places of assignments.

    As in other parts of the country, the census started May 17, a week after the automated national and local elections, and will be over by June 11.

    "Our enumerators are only out to get data and not to offer any merchandise to household interviewees," Solidum said.

    Complaints of the same kind also plagued the provinces of Capiz and Iloilo, according to NSO-Aklan.

    The outcome of the 2010 Census of Population and Housing which the NSO tags as its flagship project, is widely anticipated in Aklan, as this would determine if the province would finally be divided into two districts.

    A more progressive Aklan is foreseen if the province will have two districts with two Congress representatives working for further development of Aklan and its people. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

DAR groundbreaks P18.8 M projects in Aklan

Malay, Aklan -- The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) here recently spearheaded the groundbreaking of three projects which are part of the P51.9 million infrastructure projects identified for Malaya Agrarian Reform Community in Malay, aklan.

The projects are under the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program (ARISP) III.

The projects involved the construction of Nabaoy-Sitio Embaroto farm-to-market road spanning 0.80 kilometers worth P4.2 M; construction of of the Napaan-Sitio Kipot farm-to-market road with 1.6 kilometer length costing P7.9 M and the Dumlog Communal Irrigation Project servicing 27 hectares of farmlands worth P6.7M.

Launched in Aklan last year, ARISP III has assistied three agrarian reform communities – the Malaya ARC in Malay; BENTCH ARC in Buruanga and Pacto de Sangre in New Washington, Aklan.

According to DAR-Aklan, ARISP III projects in Malay alone covers the improvement of Argao-Napaan Road with bridge worth P24.8 miullion; construction of Dumlog Sitio Aganaga Road worth P6.7 million; Post-harvest facility costing P1.5 million and the Dumlog CIP launched in time for the groundbreaking.

Key regional and provincial DAR officials, together with Malay's local government officials spearheaded the groundbreaking. (DAR/PIA)


Seminar to improve Aklan’s festivals, fiestas slated

    Kalibo, Aklan -- A seminar to assist Aklan's 17 municipalities to improve and preserve their festivities and fiestas, as well as to start ones that conform to their culture and tradition will be held here on May 28 and 29.

    The seminar was conceptualized by the provincial government together with the Aklan Provincial Tourism Council and Aklan Provincial Tourism Office.

    Municipalities will also be aided in conceptualizing other events in their areas depending on the richness of their imaginations, according to Alex Meñez, Committee on Special Events Board Member of the Aklan Provincial Tourism Council.

Roselle Q. Ruiz, Aklan Provincial Tourism Operations Officer, said the first day of the seminar will be held at Café Latte in Andagao, Kalibo while the second day will be held at the Gov. Corazon L. Cabagnot Tourism and Training Center in Old Buswang, Kalibo.

Participants include Sangguniang Bayan members, Tourism Committees and Tourism Officers and designates of the 17 municipalities.

Invited resource speaker of the seminar is Alphonsus Tesoro, a multi-awarded Aklanon currently the Acting Provincial Tourism Officer in Capiz. He will be discussing topics on Performing Arts Management, Festival Management, Theatre Arts, Cultural Planning, Team Building and Capability Building for cultural communities.

Ruiz said the regional office of the Department of Tourism 6 also extended funding support so the seminar could push through. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklanons affected by El Niño to avail of rice subsidy

Kalibo, Aklan -- Aklanon farmers, who had been affected by El Niño will be availing of rice subsidies from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

    The rice subsidies will be distributed to Aklan recipients coming from 4 Aklan towns – Balete, Buruanga, Libacao and Madalag through the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC).

    PNRC Provincial Administrator Arcely Pelayo said a total of 4,187 Aklanons will be benefiting from the rice subsidies of the government.

    Pelayo said the DSWD national office had already identified recipients, who are also beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

    The rice subsidies for Buruanga recipients will be distributed on June 9 while that of Baleten-ons will be on June 11.

    The distribution will be held to coincide with the distribution of the 4Ps cash grants of beneficiaries.

    The PNRC is yet to hold a meeting for beneficiaries of Libacao and Madalag for the final date of rice distribution in the areas, favorably to coincide with the distribution of 4Ps cash grants too.

    A farmer/household is set to receive a sack of rice one time. The rice is also iron-fortified.

    According to the DSWD, Aklan has the biggest number of recipients with 4,187. Iloilo has 1,749; Capiz has 1,039 and Negros Occidental - 919 farmers-households. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)    

DTI initiates “Balik-Eskwela” discount scheme

    Kalibo, Aklan -- New school entrants as well as come-backing pupils and students will find it easier and cheaper to shop for their school supplies this school year opening with the holding of a "Balik-Eskwela Diskwento" project of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

    DTI-Aklan Provincial Director Diosdado Cadena said the "Balik-Eskwela Diskwento" project is a scheme where retailers of school supplies will gather in one place so students will have easy access to affordable and quality school supplies at lower than Suggested Retail Prices (SRP), or discounted prices. It will be held at the Provincial Trade Hall at the Capitol Grounds, with more or less 5 major dealers of school supplies joining.

    Director Cadena said the project generated a positive response from retailers, who expressed their willingness to bring their merchandise to the venue for the project.

    The school supplies discount project will be held from June 9-10. Director Cadena said this practice is also being held by the DTI Central Office, and revealed that Sec. Lesli Lapuz had expressed the hope the practice will be replicated in provinces.

    Director Cadena said the DTI will be conducting this project with the help of the Department of Education through school officials and teachers who will inform pupils and students in their respective areas about this "Balik-Eswkwela" project.

The DTI expects that besides Kalibonhons, other residents – parents and pupils, would also flock to the area to avail of the opportunity. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

PHO to mothers: beat economic crisis, practice exclusive breastfeeding

    Kalibo, Aklan -- The Provincial Health Office (PHO) here is strongly advocating the practice of exclusive breastfeeding to beat the economic crisis.

    Cecilia De Lemos, PHO Breasfeeding Coordinator, also said that besides beating the prevailing economic crisis by shunning high-priced infant formula, exclusive breastfeeding has other remarkable advantages.

    "Breastmilk is free, accessible, clean and nutritious," De Lemos said.

    De Lemos also said the importance of breastfeeding was further emphasized when Typhoon Frank struck Aklan June 2008 and bottle-fed babies faced life-threatening problems.

    "There was no clean water. Some parents had no money. And even if they had money, stores were damaged and closed, so they cannot buy infant formula and distilled water to bottle-feed their babies," De Lemos said.

    Such problem, according to De Lemos, was not felt by breastfeeding mothers at the time. Breastmilk, she also said, undergoes no spoilage or contamination.

    To provide enough milk for the baby, a mother should practice proper breastfeeding position. She must eat nutritious foods to generate milk production. She should also make sure her baby avails of the first milk that comes out of her breast – called colustrom, which serves as the first immunization for the baby.

    De Lemos stressed that exclusive breastfeeding, however means the baby should only be fed with breastmilk for the first six months – no water and no vitamins, because breastmilk is a complete food for the baby.

    In August when the entire country celebrates Breastfeeding Month, De Lemos said that as Coordinator, she will again conduct the search for a breastfeeding champion, one who practices exclusive breastfeeding.

    Just recently, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's policies and programs were cited for increasing the exclusive breastfeeding rate almost four times, ushering a new direction for breastfeeding as an important part of public healthcare and national development.

    Dra. Elvira Henares-Esguerra, founding president of Children for Breastfeeding Inc. (CfB) said the President's compassion and political will saved breastfeeding from the brink of extinction, reversing 20 years of frustration among its advocates.

    The Chief Executive received a copy of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) promoting the importance of breastfeeding between the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) of the DOST and the CfB.

    Esguerra said the MOU further promotes researches in breastfeeding that include the intake of virgin coconut oil for breastfeeding mothers to increase the anti-microbial properties of human breast milk. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklan stores found selling lower than SRP school supplies

    Kalibo, Aklan -- Some groceries, supermarkets and a wet market store here in Aklan were found by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to be selling certain school supplies whose prices are even lower than the Suggested Retail Price (SRP).

     Rene Retiro, Trade and Industry Development Specialist (TIDS) of DTI-Aklan who is in charge of monitoring school supplies in time for the opening of classes June 7 said these supplies include pencils, crayons, notebooks and pad papers.

    Based on the data released by DTI-Aklan, supermarkets in Aklan sell TPencil brand at P4.75 while its Suggested Retail Price is P5.25. On the other hand, a Mongol pencil is sold at a wet market store in Kalibo for P5.00 while the same costs P5.50 at the supermarkets and grocery stores. Its SRP is P5.50.

    A box of 8 colors Crayola brand crayons has an SRP of 17.00 but it is sold for P16:00 in the wetmarket and P15.00 at supermarkets. A box of 16 colors of the same brand has an SRP of P30.75, but both the wet market and the supermarkets and groceries here sell it for P27.00.

    For 24 colors Crayola per box, it is sold at P44.00 in the wet market and P42.00 in the supermarkets. The SRP is P45.75.

    As for composition notebooks, an 80-leaves Advance brand costs P10.00 pesos in supermarkets here, however, its SRP is P12.75. Spiral Advance and CPPI 80 leaves also costs P10.00 each in supermarkets, although the SRP for both brands is P12.75. Another brand, Topline, is sold at P10.00 per piece, but its SRP is P11.75.

    For intermediate pads, Easywrite pads 80 leaves costs P20.00 at supermarkets/groceries although its SRP is P24.00.

    The DTI said that it has gone to 7 supermarkets/groceries and 1 wet market store to monitor school supplies.

    Just recently, the DTI released a guide in buying school supplies.containing brands/designs of supplies, number of leaves in the case of notebooks and pad papers, type of paper and the respective SRP.

    When buying notebooks, the DTI suggests one should know the types of paper used, its number of leaves, its paper size, brand name or trade mark, and address of manufacturer, converter or importer. When buying pad papers, one must count the number of leaves, know types of paper used, brand name or trade mark, address of manufacturer, converter or importer.

    For crayons, its brand name, number of crayons per box, name and address of manufacturer or distributor, the words "non-toxic" declaring that this has passed in the "allowed toxicity level" set by the FDA, and country where product was produced should be scrutinized.

    For pencils, one must look at the brand name or trade mark, hardness symbol (1,2,3) and country where it was produced. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)



Energy conservation is like having a power plant, says Energy Audit chair

    Iloilo City -- Conserving energy is like building a virtual power plant. It also helps the government save dollars by not importing fuel, according to Undersecretary Waldo Flores, Energy Audit Team Chairman from the Office of the President (OP).

    Hon. Flores was in Iloilo City to join the group of the Department of Energy (DOE) that recently conducted a briefing on the Government Energy Management Program (GEMP).

    The GEMP is a government program that aims to reduce the monthly consumption on electricity (in kilowatt hours) and monthly petroleum products (liters) by at least 10% in all government agencies.

    The implementation of the GEMP entails the conduct of Spot Check of government buildings that will determine the rating of grades pertinent to their level of compliance to Administratiive Orders 110, 126 and 183.

    AO 110, which directs the institutionalization of the GEMP, was signed by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in 2004.

    Flores said that by saving energy, the people keep the government from importing fuel.

    "By not importing fuel, the government can use the dollars for other industries," Flores told participants of the briefing held at the Iloilo Grand Hotel composed of representatives from national government agencies in the region.

    Flores said he is glad to promote a program that is already a winner.

    "You are helping the government build a virtual power plant. We reduce consumption while looking into other sources of energy. There are many industries trying to come in but power is scarce. We are trying to reduce consumption so other industries will have power," Flores explained.

    Presently, the DOE said the country is still 43% dependent on oil imports, and is aiming to reduce dependence by 25%.

    Besides the conduct of the briefing on GEMP, the group was also in Iloilo City to hold spot checks on national government agencies.

    According to the DOE, it has already conducted spot checks in Capiz.

    USEC Flores, as Energy Audit Team chair, heads the spot checks. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Make energy conservation a way of life – DOE

    Iloilo City -- The Department of Energy (DOE) is appealing to everyone to make energy conservation a way of life.

    The call was issued by Director Evelyn N. Reyes, Energy Utilization Manager, DOE to participants coming from various government agencies who attended the seminar on Government Energy Management Program (GEMP) held at the Iloilo Grand Hotel on May 19.

    "Everyone should be advocates of energy conservation," Director Reyes said.

    The GEMP is one of the programs of the government that aims to reduce the monthly consumption of electricity (kwh) and monthly petroleum products (liters) by at least ten percent (10%) in all government entities.

    The implementation of GEMP entails the conduct of Spot Check of government buildings that will determine the rating of grades pertinent to their level of compliance to Administrative Orders 110, 126 1ne 183.

    Administrative Order 110 was issued in 2004 by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to institutionalize the GEMP.

    Director Reyes said that since 2005, a yearly average of P350 million had been saved by the government through energy conservation, which was enhanced through vigilance and the commitment to practice energy conservation as a daily routine.

    Since 2005, some 656 government institutions had been audited or spot-checked by the Department of Energy.

    Reyes said the DOE aims to cover more regions to see if the program goal has been attained.

    Government agencies in Capiz had been audited by the Energy Audit Team (EAT) already. The DOE said it will be auditing offices in Iloilo during their stay.

    Baseline of audit is the 2004 average monthly consumption of electricity and petroleum of offices.

    She emphasized that the program will help cushion the impact of the power situation in Iloilo and the whole country.

    Topics discussed in the seminar were on GEMP, discussed by Crizaldo G. Santos, Science Research Specialist II, Energy Efficiency and Conservation Division, DOE; and Alternative Fuels Program, by Mrs. Elma Karunungan, Division Chief, Alternative Fuels.

    The activity was also graced by Hon. Waldo Q. Flores, Chairman, Energy Audit Team from the Office of the President (OP).

    The seminar was conducted in cooperation with the Philippine Information Agency. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Help prevent grass fires, DENR tells Aklanons

    Kalibo, Aklan -- With almost everything around parched and dry, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) here called on all Aklanons to help prevent grass fires.

    DENR-Aklan Information Officer Otella Igcasenza said with the unrelenting onslaught of El Niño drying up cogonal lands, ricefields and forested areas, it is very easy for grassfires to start and spread.

    "A single cigarette butt thrown indiscriminately, a bottle or glass shards could create fires in grasslands and other dry areas," Igcasenza said.

    Glass shards, according to her, could ignite fire, and when other factors like a strong wind and dry areas are present, the fire could spread easily.

    Presently, the DENR is doing all means to prevent fires in its reforestation projects spread all over the province. One of these is the deployment of forest rangers to closely monitor vulnerable areas.

    While grass fires had been occurring in some parts of Aklan, Igcasenza said these were on alienable and disposable lands and not on government-owned properties like reforestation sites.

    DENR is also appealing to people in mountainous areas practicing slash and burn or "kaingin farming", as this is against the law.

    Igcasenza said that although efforts are continuously made by the environment office to stop this practice or apprehend wrong-doers, nobody comes out in the open to serve as witnesses, so nobody gets punished and the illegal practice continues.

    Earlier, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) here also called on Aklanons to help prevent grass fires by being careful with their cigarette butts and ensuring that fires built during picnics and outings are extinguished before leaving the area. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Water District in Aklan bats for water conservation

    Kalibo, Aklan -- The Metro Kalibo Water District (MKWD), major water provider in Kalibo and some adjoining towns in the province, is calling on all concessionaires to conserve water, and has come up with tips to avoid water wastage in order to cut down on water bills.

    "We can do well in reducing our water bills by conserving or wisely using water, thus we could be spared of some pesos which we can use instead for our daily requirements," said the MKWD in a brochure it has circulated to its thousands of concessionaires.

    The MKWD brochure gave water-saving tips when one is washing clothes and dishes, when cooking, when taking showers and flushing the toilet, washing hands, face and hair, brushing teeth and shaving, cleaning and watering plants.

    The MKWD advised that when washing clothes, one must soak heavily-soiled clothes to remove dirt easily and save the rinse water for flushing the toilet or cleaning the yard. When using the washing machine, the individual must utilize the economy cycle instead of the normal cycle as it requires less water. In washing dishes, one should wash lightly greased dishes, glasses, cups, saucers first before the greasy ones like plates, bowls, pots, pans and utensils.

    When one is cooking, he or she must use a basin when washing vegetables, fruits and other food, and not wash them under a running faucet.

    One should not stay under the shower longer than necessary, shutting off the tap while soaping up. Unnecessary flushing should also be avoided, and the toilet bowl should not be used as an ashtray or wastebasket.

    "Every cigarette butt or tissue flushed into the toilet bowl use 5 to 7 gallons of water," the brochure stated.

    One must also turn the faucet off while brushing the teeth and shaving, and should use a glass instead when brushing or rinsing off the razor.

    When cleaning, one must use a broom instead of a hose to clean the driveway or sidewalk. Using a hose wastes 50 gallons of water in five minutes. A bucket and mop should be used instead. When washing a car, using the running hose should be avoided. A pail should be used when rinsing.

    Using a watering can or sprinkler, watering plants in the morning or in the evening are the tips when watering plants. Plants should not be watered at noon because water dries up easily during noontime.

    The MKWD also suggested to Aklanons to save the wash or rinse water for flushing the toilet, watering the plants or cleaning driveways; and turning off a running tap when not in use.

    "Don't allow a tap to run unattended", was its final reminder.

    The MKWD has assured its concessionaires in Kalibo and other adjoining towns that it has enough water to supply them despite the onslaught of the El Niño that has affected water sources in some parts of the province. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)


Water District in Aklan has adequate supply despite El Niño

    Kalibo, Aklan –The Metro Kalibo Water District (MKWD) here is assuring households it covers in four towns that it has adequate water for their daily needs despite the onslaught of El Niño here that has already dried up wells and other water sources; and scorched farmlands in almost all parts of the province.

    According to Gildane Briones, MKWD Information Officer, there is no danger of water supply running out among households here, especially in the towns of Kalibo, New Washington, Banga and Balete, and in three barangays of Batan.

    "The MKWD has even a reserved supply of water stored in the elevated water reservoir at 19 Martyrs Street", Briones said.

    Presently, MKWD concessionaires number 17,500. There are also proposals to annex the town of Numancia just across the Kalibo Bridge and be served by the MKWD.

    The three barangays of Batan – Caiyang, Camaligan and Magubahay are located in between the towns of Banga and Balete, thereby availing of the service from the MKWD, while Lalab, another Batan barangay, is making moves to be served by the water system, being an adjoining barangay of Balete's last barangay along the national highway, Aranas.

    The MKWD sources its water supply through pumping stations in various parts of Kalibo.

    Presently, the MKWD is upgrading its services by changing old pipes with new ones. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

PNP thanks Aklanons for peaceful elections

    Kalibo, Aklan -- The Aklan Police Provincial Office (APPO) here, headed by Provincial Director Sr. Police Superintendent Epifanio Bragais, Jr. thanked the Aklanons for the conduct of a peaceful and orderly elections on May 10, 2010.

    Bragais aired his "thank you" to Aklanons over a radio station here, saying no single untoward incident was reported in the province in the course of the conduct of the May 10 automated elections.

    Days prior to the elections, the PNP deployed personnel to all polling centers in the province with a ratio of 1:1.

    The provincial personnel of the PNP in Aklan, numbering 655, were also augmented by the regional office, which sent 104 personnel.

    Besides guarding polling centers, the PNP also helped the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) in the delivery of Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines before Election Day, and the delivery of official ballots on Election Day itself. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

246,000 Aklanons join history by voting in first auto elections

    Kalibo, Aklan -- 246,002 Aklanons became part of history by participating in the country's first-ever automated elections on May 10, 2010.

    Aklan has a total of 316,040 registered voters for the May 10 elections, distributed in the province' 17 towns.

    From the eastern part of Aklan composed of Altavas, Balete, Banga, Batan, Libacao, Madalag, New Washington and Kalibo, registered voters numbered 171,158. Of this number, 128,983 voters actually voted. On the other hand, the western side of the province is composed of the towns of Numancia, Lezo, Makato, Malinao, Ibajay, Nabas, Tangalan, Malay and Buruanga. This cluster had a total of 144,882 registered voters, with 117,019 who actually voted.

    Aklan's elected officials also go down in history, along with their counterparts in various areas in the country, as the province' first-ever officials who were voted automatedly, like Rep. Florencio T. Miraflores, who got a total of 171,190 votes counted through automation; Governor Carlito Marquez, who got 166,099 votes, and Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo, who got 126,981; the 10 Sangguniang Panlalawigan members; the 17 sets of mayors and vice mayors in Aklan's 17 municicipalities and the 17 sets of Sangguniang Bayan members composed of 8 each. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)


COMELEC proclaims Aklan’s election winners

    Kalibo, Aklan -- Aklan's election winners for various provincial positions were proclaimed here May 13 at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) Session Hall, Provincial Capitol grounds.

    The winners, led by incumbents Rep. for the Lone District of Aklan Florencio T. Miraflores, Governor Carlito Marquez and Vice Governor Gabrielle V. Calizo were proclaimed by the Provincial Board of Canvassers composed of COMELEC Provincial Election Supervisor Atty. Ian Lee Ananoria as Chairman, Rizalde P. Dizon, State Auditor V Supervising Auditor, Vice Chairman, and Dr. Victorina Laroza, Schools Division Superintendent, DepEd-Aklan, as Member.

    Ten Sangguniang Panlalawigan members from the eastern and western part of Aklan were also proclaimed.

    Rep. Miraflores, now on his third term, ran unopposed and garnered a total of 178,190 votes. On the other hand, Marquez, also on his term, got a total of 166,099 votes against opponents Leovigildo T. Mationg, who got 40,895 and Anthony Acevedo, who got 5,140.

    Re-elected Vice Governor Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo got a total of 126,981 votes while her opponent, former Ibajay mayor Roberto Q. Garcia, Jr. got 66,776.

    Elected Sangguniang Panlalawigan members in the western side of Aklan include Jose Enrique Miraflores who garnered 58,355 votes; Selwyn Ibarreta, 55,781; Phoebe Clarice L. Cabagnot, 48,136; Gerick M. Templonuevo, 46,029 and Victor Manuel M. Garcia, 37,897.

    Jose Enrique is the son of Rep. Florencio Miraflores while Phoebe Clarice is the daughter of former Aklan governor Corazon Legaspi Cabagnot. Victor Manuel is also the son of another former Aklan governor, Roberto Q. Garcia.

    Ibarreta and Templonuevo are relectionists.

    For the eastern part, SP winners include Nemesio Neron, who garnered 57,411 votes; Daisy S. Briones, 54,425; Raymar Rebaldo, 52,795; Jean Rodriguez, 49,092 and Rodson Mayor, 47,659.

    Neron, Briones, Rodriguez and Mayor are reelectionists while Rebaldo is the only new member for the eastern group.

    Rebaldo is a three-termer mayor of Kalibo, whose mayoral stint ends June 30 of this year, and then will sit at noontime of the same day as SP member.

    For the May 10, 2010 elections, 246,002 Aklanons became part of history by casting their votes in the first-ever automated elections held in the country.

    Aklan has a total of 316,040 registered voters. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklan holds peaceful elections, yields 12 LAKAS mayors

    Kalibo, Aklan -- Despite the heat, long lines and defective PCOS machines in some towns, the province of Aklan had a peaceful and "historical" election on May 10 owing to its participation in the first-ever automated polls in the country.

    Being automated, people in most towns knew their new local executives and lawmakers before midnight of the same day, which showed 12 LAKAS-CMD candidates from the different towns in Aklan landing in mayoralty positions. Ten of them are incumbents while two are new. On the other hand, there are 8 winning vice mayors belonging to the LAKAS-CMD party.

    The ten re-elected incumbents include Delfina Ramos of Batan, Quezon Labindao of Buruanga, Ma. Lourdes Miraflores of Ibajay; Victor Fernandez of Lezo; Charito Navarosa of Libacao; Rex Gubatina of Madalag; Ramon Legaspi of Makato; Romeo Dalisay of Nabas, Edgar Peralta of New Washington and Gene Fuentes of Tangalan.

    The two newly elected executives include John Yap of Malay and Wilbert Igoy of Malinao.

    Of the newly-elected local officials, 2 are lady mayors, while there are five lady vice mayors.

    One vice mayoralty candidate from the town of Lezo, Philip John Buenaflor, won as Vice Mayor, the only one who won in the race without a party.

    In Kalibo, the capital town, no candidate ran under the LAKAS CMD party. Recently COMELEC-proclaimed mayoralty winner, William Lachica, along with vice mayoralty winner Madeline Regalado, ran under Bigkis-Pinoy Party.

    Other elected mayors and their respective parties are incoming Balete Mayor Teodoro Calizo, Nacionalista Party, Denny Refol of Altavas, Lapiang Manggagawa Workers; Antonio Maming of Banga, Lapiang Manggagawa Workers, and Adolfo Iligan of Numancia, Partido ng Masang Pilipino.

    Calizo and Refol are comebacking mayors of their respective towns after several years of respite. Maming is an incumbent while Adolfo Iligan will be a first-time mayor.

    Meanwhile, incumbent Rep. of the Lone District of Aklan Florencio T. Miraflores was reelected congressman of Aklan, while incumbent Governor Carlito s. Marquez and incumbent Vice Governor Gabrielle V. Calizo-Quimpo were reelected overwhelmingly to their respective positions. As of latest count minus 2 municipalities, Miraflores got 171,805 votes, Marquez, 139,516 and Calizo-Quimpo, 109,704.

    Presently, the Provincial Board of Canvassers is still awaiting transmission of complete results from the towns of Libacao and Madalag, which encountered PCOS machine-related problems.

    Provincial Election Supervisor Ian Lee Ananoria disclosed earlier that ten PCOS machines in Aklan had problems during the May 10 elections. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

PNP-Aklan is ready for May 10 polls

Kalibo, Aklan -- The Aklan Police Provincial Office (APPO) is all set for the conduct of the country's first-ever automated elections on May 10, 2010.

Sr. Police Superintendent Epifanio Bragais, APPO Provincial Director said that the province has now a total of 655 personnel, and 104 augmentation force from the regional office.

The APPO will also deploy police officers in polling centers throughout the province.

"Our police ratio to polling centers is 1:1, so we are deploying 329 police officers to 329 polling centers, even to the farthest barangays," Director Bragais said.

The APPO will also have four (4) maneuver teams dedicated to problematic areas which have potential and intense political rivalry to prevent untoward things from happening, according to Bragais.

For the past days, Aklan's PNP personnel also performed security functions for the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines to be used in the province from the main hub to the sub hub.

"We provided security detail and convoy together with the AFP in the delivery of the PCOS machines until the time they reached the polling centers or the towns where they would be used", Bragais said.

For the May 10 polls, the APPO is setting up its Provincial Election Monitoring Assistance Center to accept reports from municipal action monitoring centers.

This way, updates could be relayed to national headquarters regarding significant incidents happening in different areas in the province.

The PNP will also be aiding COMELEC in the delivery of official ballots on electionday to the different areas in the province by providing security.

Patrol cars and hired vans will be used to transport the ballots, according to PD Bragais. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklan’s share of PCOS machines for May 10 polls: 492

Kalibo, Aklan -- Aklan's share of Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines for the May 10 polls is 492 – equal to to the same number of clustered precincts in the province.

The province will also have 43 spare or contingency back-ups, according to the latest update from Megs Lunn, Smartmatic Provincial Coordinator – Capiz, who is presently in Aklan to oversee deployment of the machines to the 17 municipalities, which started May 7 and will be up to May 8 only.

Aklan has 327 barangays and 2,115 established precincts, clustered into 492.

The province has a total of 316,040 registered voters for the May 10, 2010 first-ever automated polls in the country.

Region 6, composed of 6 provinces – Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo and Negros Occidental – has an estimated 3,936,654 registered voters, according to the COMELEC.

The region has 16 cities and 117 municipalities, 4,051 barangays, 26,002 established precincts and 6,406 clustered precincts.

Of the 6 provinces, Negros Occidental has the highest number of registered voters with 1,550,850, followed by Iloilo with 1,257,661; Capiz, 429,886; Aklan, 316,040; Antique, 288,338 and Guimaras, 93,789.

In Aklan, Kalibo, the capital town, has the biggest number of voters with46,530, followed by Ibajay, with 25,481 and New Washington, with 23,858. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

COMELEC PES, most election officers staying put in Aklan

Kalibo, Aklan -- COMELEC-Aklan's Provincial Election Supervisor, Atty. Ian Lee Ananoria, as well as most of the province's municipal election officers in Aklan are staying put here for the May 10, 2010 automated polls.

Atty. Ananoria said he welcomes this development, as it would be hard for them already to be deployed to other provinces, with the elections just days away.

"Most municipalities here have the same election officers, except for Balete and Malay, which had new officers from the province of Antique, and Tangalan and Malinao, who exchanged assignments, as they have relatives running for elective positions in their respective areas", Atty. Ananoria said.

Starting today, May 7 up to Saturday, Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines will be delivered to various municipalities in Aklan.

Aklan will have 492 PCOS machines, which is equal to the number of precincts in Aklan. Atty. Ananoria assured however, that there will be 30 spare machines for the province.

Board of Election Inspectors (BEIs) composed of public school teachers will be on hand to receive the machines upon delivery, according to the COMELEC, which will be tested and sealed upon receipt of the reconfigured compact flask disk.

Mock elections participated in by 10 voters will also be conducted upon delivery of the machines to test the machines. Ananoria said this is open for everybody in the barangays or polling places to witness.

Ananoria said election results for municipal and provincial officials will be known 48 hours under the automated elections system. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

PNP to Aklanons: Inform brgy officials, PNP on armed group’s presence

Kalibo, Aklan -- Senior Police Superintendent Epifanio Bragais, Jr., Aklan Police Provincial Office (APPO) Provincial Director called on Aklanons to immediately report to their respective barangay captains and to the PNP if there are armed groups in their areas.

Bragais aired this call over a local radio station here over reports on the presence of armed men in a municipality here out to harass registered voters to support their candidates.

"If you experience threats from these armed men, identify these persons with guns, and the kind of guns they are carrying. Inform your barangay captains about this, so the APPO will can also act on this," Bragais said.

Meanwhile, Bragais mentioned that Aklan has three towns in the COMELEC's Election Watchlist of Areas (EWAS). These are the towns of Kalibo, New Washington and Lezo. Kalibo and New Washington had election-related violent incidents in the past elections while Lezo was included in the list after a grenade-throwing incident involving the residence of a councilor for Sangguniang Bayan in the town transpired two months ago.

As to gun ban violators, the APPO has since confiscated 11 firearms, nine deadly weapons and arrested 21 persons since the implementation of COMELEC Resolution No. 8714 prohibiting the carrying of firearms and deadly weapons was implemented in checkpoints in vantage areas in Aklan by the PNP. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklan rice supply to last 102 days, says NFA

Kalibo, Aklan -- Aklan's rice supply, as inventoried by the National Food Authority (NFA) here, will last for 102 days.

Judith Tindog, NFA-Aklan's Sr. Grains Operations Officer, said that as of their latest inventory, the province has 493,594 bags of rice. These bags are with private and government warehouses, commercial rice traders and wholesalers and with households.

The bulk of the supply is with households, with 385,940 bags, estimated to last for 80 days, while the NFA has 84,631 bags, seen to last 13 days.

The rest is with traders, wholesalers and private warehouses.

Rice from the NFA is distributed or sold through the Institutionalized Bigasan Sa Palengke, sold at P25.00 per kilo, Tindahan Natin (TN) outlets, sold at P18.25 per kilo, and at Bigasan Sa Barangay outlets.

There are 52 TN and 22 Bigasan Sa Barangay outlets in Aklan.

Meanwhile, to aid Aklanons affected by the El Niño Phenomenon, the NFA has started deploying two rolling stores in various municipalities in the province.

"Although Aklan is moderately affected by the El Niño, there could be farmers who had poor rice harvest or no harvest at all, so rolling stores are being deployed in their areas, for them to avail affordable rice," Tindog said.

The rolling stores are deployed daily to coastal and other areas which have no ricelands.

With the forthcoming start of the new school year, NFA-Aklan also revealed that it is ready to deliver rice anytime for the "Food-For-School Program" of the government, once instructed.

"Our rice for the program is foritified with iron, so besides availing for free a kilo of rice each day if they are present, the pupils will also get nourished," Tindog said. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Army starts troop deployment for May 10 polls

Kalibo, Aklan - The 12th IB Philippine Army based in Camp Jizmundo, Libas, Banga, Aklan, has started deployment of its troops to various municipalities in Aklan to help maintain peace and order for the May 10, 2010 automated elections here.

The troops, according to Capt. Ricardo Villaruel, Civil Military Officer of the 12th IB, will be deployed in teams to the municipalities of Libacao, Madalag, Ibajay, Nabas and Tangalan.

The deployment is in response to the request of the Philippine National Police here for the augmentation of their forces in the said areas.

The municipality of Libacao, which is a hinterland municipality, will have 3 teams while Madalag will have 2 teams. Ibajay, in the western part of the province, will have 2 teams, Nabas, 2; and Tangalan, 2.

"Each team is composed of 9 personnel," Capt. Villaruel said.

The teams are composed of Army regulars and CAFGU members.

For its part, the Aklan Police Provincial Office will be deploying one police officer each in the areas, according to PO2 Nida Gregas, APPO Public Information Officer.

The army deployment, according to Villaruel, starts 5 days before the May 10 elections and the teams will be back to base 5 days after the electoral activity.

The 12th IB, headed by Lt. Col. Henry G. Dar, INF (GSC) Commanding Officer, will also be providing Election Monitoring Area Commanders in the northern and southern parts of Aklan. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)

Aklan to advance fight against TB

    Kalibo, Aklan -- The Provincial Government, together with the Provincial Health Office (PHO) will be putting advances in the campaign against tuberculosis.

    One of the lined-up activities in advancing this fight is a consultative meeting May 5 at the GCLC Tourism and Training Center for members of the Aklan TB Council and the Provincial Health Office to orient them on the project.

    Aklan Governor Carlito s. Marquez said TB remains to be one of the burdens of society.

    Joining the fight against TB in Aklan is the Philippine Tuberculosis Society, Inc. (PTSI).

    Marquez said this is a non-stock, non-profit, non government organization advocating for the prevention, treatment, and control of tuberculosis in the Philippines.

    "They are one with the government in the provision of efficient and effective delivery of quality services towards achieving a TB-free country," Marquez said.

    To work for the eradication of TB in Aklan, the governor said the PTSI will be working with TB LINC to provide technical assistance for the enhancement of private sector participation in TB Control.

    The objective is to expand and improve the delivery of DOTS services in the private sector, improve the policy, financing and regulatory environment for private sector participation in DOTS, strengthen the policy and institutional governance for private sector involvement; and increase acceptance and practice of DOTS among private sector providers.

    TB is the 6th leading cause of sickness and death in the Philippines. Everyday, 75 Filipinos die of TB, according to the PHO here in its most recent health update. (PIA/Venus G. Villanueva)