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Southern Leyte province to establish blood bank

Alleged NPA liquidation list sows fear among those included

LCDE brings relief aid to fire victims

Biggest fire to hit Tacloban City razes five urban poor communities

Samar’s No. 1 Most Wanted fell

Army officer says San Jorge mayor is misinformed

802nd IB commander determined to destroy the remnants of NPA in Leyte island

Town dad seeks relief of top army officers in their locality

Taiwanese donor sends another P1.8M for Guinsaugon scholars

Calbayog makes it as one of 15 Dream Cities of RP


Bells of Balangiga Resolution filed in U.S. Congress

United States Special Envoy of the Diocese of Borongan
September 29, 2006

NEW YORK CITY – A historic bi-partisan bill was filed on Tuesday, September 26, 2006 by Congressman Bob Filner (D-CA) and cosponsored by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), and Congressman Ed Case (D-HI). House Concurrent Resolution 481 urge the President of the United States to authorize the return to the people of the Philippines of two church bells that were taken by the United States Army in 1901 from the town of Balangiga on the island of Samar, Philippines, which are currently displayed at F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming.

This action was prompted by the historic acts of the Wyoming Veterans Commission (WVC). An initial meeting took place on December 2004 when R Sonny Sampayan and Erwin “Swede” Huelswede visited the Commissioners in Casper, Wyoming, and requested the church bells be returned. Prior to making a sound judgment decision on March 26, 2005, the Commissioners also heard a presentation of facts compiled by the Balangiga Research Group and presented by Jean Wall, the daughter of Private Gamlin, the first soldier to be struck during the Balangiga incident.

The Vatican, under the leadership of the late Pope John Paul, II, sent a letter signed by then Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, Apostolic Nuncio, to President Bush on November 10, 2003, expressing support. The Apostolic Nuncio wrote, “The return of the Bells would greatly contribute in enhancing and reaffirming the beautiful friendship that exists between the people of the United States of America and of The Philippines.

The bell(s) were reportedly rung, without permission of the parish priest in Balangiga, to signal an attack on the American garrison. As a consequence, the 11th United States Infantry Regiment, known as the “Wyoming Volunteers”, confiscated the Bells of Balangiga and brought them to United States as war trophies.

The town of Balangiga built a memorial monument that includes the names of Filipinos and Americans who lost their lives in 1901 and that the town honors these war dead each year on 28 September. The Bells of Balangiga, when restored to their original settings, could again ring, after 105 years of muteness, as a symbol of the bond that exists between The Philippines and the United States.

On August 15, 2006, ABS-CBN TV Network, The Correspondents, globally premiered a 25-minute documentary entitled, “Mga Kampana ng Balangiga (The Bells of Balangiga), hosted by Mr. Abner Mercado. This documentary provided historical facts surrounding the Balangiga incident and the desires of the Balangiga parishioners to have their church bells returned.





2nd Southern Leyte State University president installed

By ERNA SY GORNE (PIA Southern Leyte)
September 29, 2006

MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte  –  The investiture of the second president of Southern Leyte State University (SLSU) officially paved the way for Dr. Gloria Markines Reyes to assume as the lady president of the 30 months old university on Wednesday.

The official assumption to office of the SLSU presidency takes effect from August 6, 2006 - August 6, 2010.

The SLSU has five campuses with diversified field of specializations are based in the municipalities of Bontoc, Hinunangan, San Juan, Sogod and Tomas Oppus, all of Southern Leyte.  SLSU-Bontoc campus focused on fishery and aquatic research, SLSU-Hinunangan campus has expertise on agriculture and forestry.

While, SLSU-San Juan campus specializes on business administration and entrepreneurship, SLSU-Sogod campus is known for trade, technology and engineering and SLSU-Tomas Oppus campus continues to led as the learning institution for teacher education in the province.

SLSU President Reyes aimed to transform the university as the top learning institution in the region and continues to make higher education at affordable cost and accessible to the people in Southern Leyte.

That she would push for the expansion of school curriculum as designed to each campuses, decentralize decision making to encourage initiative, open the communication lines with the students, among her priority reforms to further develop SLSU under her administration. This also includes the conduct of action research to address the abaca’s disease bunchy top virus that threatened the abaca industry of the province.

The investiture was graced with the presence of Congressman Roger Mercado, who also pledged to fully support the programs of the university in Congress. Together with Provincial Administrator Genis Murallos representing Governor Rosette Lerias, presidents of universities namely Dr. Mike Udtohan, president of the University of Muntinlupa, Dr. Edward Chua, president of the Asian Foundation, representiative of Dr. Noni Ricafort, Commissioner on CHED, the Board of regents, campus administrators and faculties of the five SLSU campuses, among others.

Meanwhile, relative to the movements within the SLSU management, Dr. Jude Duarte, former Campus Administrator of SLSU-Tomas Oppus has become the Vice President for Administration and Dr. Jane Labastida as Vice President for Student Affairs.

The one day investiture activities commenced with motorcade parade in the morning then it was followed with Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service in the afternoon. After which the investiture ceremony was followed with fellowship dinner and cultural dance presentation.





Top public elementary schools in province bared

By BONG PEDALINO, (PIA Southern Leyte)
September 28, 2006

MAASIN CITY, Southern Leyte  –  The elementary public schools in this province also achieved their shining glory just like their high school counterparts, and they are the top ten, in successive order, during the latest nationwide examinations called National Achievement Test (NAT).

A copy of the list obtained by PIA though the office of Governor Lerias showed that of the ten top performing public elementary schools, five came from Tomas Oppus town, two from Macrohon, and one each from the towns of Bontoc, Hinundayan, and Hinunangan.

Last month, the NAT results for first year high school students had Rizal National High School situated in a mountain village of Tomas Oppus town garnering the number one post in the nationwide listing.

The NAT results for grade six pupils were already available last month also, but Schools Division Superintendent Violeta Alocilja begged for enough time then to sort out the locations of the topnotcher schools, since many in the barangays have similar names.

But now it can be told, and here are the top ten public elementary schools with their corresponding percentage ratings, and all these are from Southern Leyte province:  1. Sindangan Elementary School, Macrohon - 93.82; 2. Tinago Elementary School, Tomas Oppus - 93.16; 3. Cambite Elementary School, Tomas Oppus - 91.93; 4. Mahalo Elementary School, Hinundayan - 91.63; 5.  Carnaga Elementary School, Tomas Oppus - 91.61;

6. Tomas Oppus Central School, Tomas Oppus - 91.16; 7. Otama Elementary School, Hinunangan - 91.03; 8. Maslog Elementary School, Tomas Oppus - 90.84; 9. Laray Elementary School, Macrohon - 90.13; and 10. Cawayanan Elementary School, Bontoc - 90.03.

In a related development, it was learned that the top ten schools divisions in NAT results for fourth year high school Southern Leyte maintained its topmost slot with Maasin City Schools Division in third place.

But for the top ten divisions nationwide based on performance gains for the NAT in fourth year for the school year 2005-2006, Maasin City Schools Division emerged number one despite its being new, and it is second to Southern Leyte based on mean percentage score at the Regional level.





Journalists enjoined to participate in the 2nd Annual PopDev Media Awards

September 28, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte – The Philippine Legislators’ Committee on Population and Development Foundation, Inc. (PLCPD), together with the United Nations Population Fund, invites print journalists to participate in the 2nd PopDev Media Awards.

It was learned from Maida Ojeda of PLCPD that the PopDev Media Awards aims to pay tribute to media practitioners nationwide who have produced, written and reported responsible and exemplary news and feature articles on population and development in print during the year. The Awards also aims to encourage the media to actively examine population and development issues as social issues that affect the country’s development and to heighten public awareness and knowledge on population and development issues.

The categories for the Media Awards are: Best investigative/interpretative report; Best reportage, wherein bodies of work or series of spot news coverage will be included; and Best opinion/editorial piece.

Submitted entries must feature either of the following population and development issues:  population and education; population and health services; population, economic growth and poverty; reproductive health and rights; family planning; and population, reproductive health policy and governance.  Other issues may also include migration; population ageing; population, housing and urban development; population and environment; sustainable development; and population and food security.

Unlike the first year of the awards, Ojeda bared, when only three winners were chosen from all over the country, this year’s search now goes regional. Winners for each category will be chosen from Metro Manila, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, thus totaling to 12 winners.  For exemplary stories published online or via wire agencies will be given citations.

All entries, Ojeda added, must have been published within the period October 1, 2005 to September 30, 2006. The deadline for submission of entries will be on October 13, 2006, while the awarding ceremonies will be held in Manila on December. All transportation and accommodation expenses of winners will be shouldered by the PLCPD.

For more information, please visit or one may contact the PLCPD Secretariat at telephone numbers (02)921-1044 loc. 5 / (02)925-1800 loc. 5 or through email at





Typhoon “Milenyo” temporarily paralyzes sea transport industry in the Visayas

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
September 27, 2006

Tracking positions of typhoon Milenyo in black shows hitting northeastern portion of Northern Samar Wednesday afternoon and is moving towards Metro Manila as of press time..

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte  – As the country nears the annual commemoration of the National Maritime Day celebration, Typhoon “Milenyo” paralyzed sea transport in the Visayas since yesterday causing thousands of travelers stranded.

All the trips of Supercat ferry within the Visayas were cancelled since yesterday. Other ports in Allen, Northern Samar and in Liloan, Southern Leyte were also closed to traffic, reports said.

Tropical Storm Milenyo with maximum sustained winds of 100 kilometers per hour near the center and gustiness of 130 kilometers per hour, battered Northern Samar as it landfell east of the province’s capital town of Catarman at 2:00 o’clock this afternoon,  a report from PIA Northern Samar stated.

All three Samar provinces continue to experience stormy weather. The same is true for Bicol Region. The rest of Eastern Visayas and the rest of Southern Luzon, PAGASA reported will have rains with gusty winds and the coastal waters along these areas will continue to be moderate to rough.

When reached, Aboitiz Shipping Lines, the operators of the Supercat fast ferries, said that it is not yet sure when the trips to the different Visayan islands will resume. This will depend on the bulletin issued by the PAGASA, informant said. The Philippine Port Authorities will not issue the order to go on with the travel if the PAGASA weather bulletin does not say so that it is already safe to travel by sea.

The safety of the passengers is the main reason why the scheduled trips were cancelled, the same informant said. The shipping company does not want to put the lives of the thousands of passengers in danger.

Meanwhile, not only did typhoon Milenyo inconvenienced the stranded passengers, the porters at the different sea ports also complained that they have had no income for two days already because of the cancellation of trips.

The fishermen whose source of livelihood is going to the sea, are enjoined to stay ashore in the safety of their homes while typhoon Milenyo continues to batter the Central Philippines.





Over P1 billion needed for Southern Leyte in Super Regions plan projects

By BONG PEDALINO (PIA Southern Leyte)
September 27, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte  – Southern Leyte Gov. Rosette Y. Lerias unveiled the comprehensive Eastern Visayas component of the Central Philippines Medium-Term Public Investment Program for the years-2007 up to 2010 during the special Regional Development Council (RDC) meeting held at the Kanhuraw Convention Center, this city, September 21.

And Southern Leyte province’s share of this massive undertaking reached P1,184,880,000.00, in a rough tally made by PIA.

The total amount did not include the program on bio-diversity conservation for a seaweed ecozone which has a project cost of P172 Million for all the six provinces of Region 8, Leyte and Samar.

PIA also did not include the geothermal project in San Juan town, costing P14.9 billion, which was programmed for ten years, according to Gov. Lerias, the RDC Chair, in her powerpoint presentation.

The special RDC gathering was attended by Cabinet Secretary Ricardo Saludo, who expounded at length on the topic, "Building a New Philippines."

The Central Philippines Medium-Term Public Investment Program (CP-MTPIP) was more commonly known as the super regions plan, an idea first discussed by President Arroyo during her State of the Nation Address (SONA) in July this year.

Eastern Visayas was one of the four regions in the Central Philippines that was included in the super regions concept.

Among the projects intended for Southern Leyte under the Eastern Visayas component, together with their corresponding costs, included the following: Roll-on, Roll-off (RORO) port fof Limasawa - P13.5 million; RORO port for San Ricardo - P420 million.

Major road projects include Agas-Agas bridge construction - P800 million; Saint Bernard - Hinunangan cross country road - P200 million; Panaon circumferential road - P290 million; Limasawa circumferential road - P90 million.

Water Supply projects - P225 million; Das-ay, Hinunangan Irrigation project - P6 million; Lihhu, Maasin Irrigation project - P12 million, Communal Irrigation projects - P269 million; Abaca Development and Rehabilitation program (for Leyte and Southern Leyte) - P20 million.

Panaon Rehabilitation and Disaster Mitigation program - P208 million.



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