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Blessing, dedication rites for Guinsaugon housing units held

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Northern Samar flood waters subsided, evacuees back home, need food – Gov. Daza

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
December 31, 2006

Catarman flood evacuees taking shelter at the Catarman Cathedral photo
Some 2,000 evacuees took temporary shelter inside the Catarman Cathedral when a sudden rise of water occurred in the early morning of Friday (December 29) in some of the barangays in Catarman, Northern Samar. The people have claimed that the occurrence was the worst flood to happen in town where water in some areas reaches roof level. Immediate food and clothing assistance to the evacuees was administered by the church and some private groups and individuals.

CATARMAN, Northern Samar  –  The flood waters in Northern Samar have already subsided, Governor Raul Daza informed in an interview with the Philippine Information Agency.

Governor Daza said that the evacuees have gone back to their respective homes. The problem, he said, is food because all their food have perished or got wet because of the flooding on Friday.

He said that the Provincial Government is taking care of the affected families. He added that the National Disaster Coordinating Council has given rice to help the affected families who do not have food because of the flooding on Friday.

The Governor revealed that the Lope de Vega Road which was closed to traffic Friday because of high floodwaters, is now passable because the floodwaters have subsided. Several motorists were stranded at Lope de Vega on Friday night because of the flooding.

The Lope de Vega Road connects Calbayog City to Catarman Northern Samar saving at least two hours travel time.

Governor Daza also informed that the other roads in Northern Samar which were closed to traffic on Friday are now passable.

Department of Public Works and Highways Regional Office 8 Director Jaime Pacanan, however, informed when interviewed by the Philippine Information Agency, that a landslide occurred five kilometers away from the town proper of Catubig, Northern Samar.

Director Pacanan informed that DPWH personnel are now at the site of the landslide in order to clear the road, which has been made unpassable because of the landslide.

No casualty was reported as a result of the landslide because it occurred in an unpopulated area, Director Pacanan said. He called on the motorists to bear the temporary inconvenience, saying that the Department of Public Works and Highways is doing its best to complete the clearing of the roadblock.

As of press time, Northern Samar is still under blackout.





18 barangays in Northern Samar affected by floods, rescue operations ongoing

By PIA Northern Samar / PIA 8
December 30, 2006

Catarman town in Northern Samar affected by flood photoCATARMAN, Northern Samar  –  At least 18 barangays in three municipalities of Northern Samar have been affected by floods brought about by continuous heavy rains.

Reports coming from the Philippine Information Agency in Northern Samar stated that in Catarman capital town, thirteen barangays have been reported to have already been affected by floods. These are barangays Bankerohan, Yakal, Abad Santos, Narra, Kawayan, Hinatad, Macagtas, Dalakit, Washington, Casuy, Molave, Bagsay and Ipil Ipil.

It was reported  that flood waters in Barangay Ipil Ipil which is located near the Catarman River, have reached up to the shoulders deep.

In the municipality of Mondragon, the barangays affected are Makiwalo, Sitio Bugho at Barangay Banika and the most affected is Sitio Kamanukan at Barangay Talolora where the people had to go up their rooftops to save themselves.

Mayor Ismael Bugna of Mondragon informed that the evacuees are now situated at the church and in the public school in Barangay Talalora.

Unconfirmed reports alleged that there was a landslide at Barangay Nenita in Mondragon town and that there is one casualty.

In the municipality of Pambujan, the three barangays affected are Hiparangan, Kaibiran and Hinulgan. The number of people affected has not yet been determined.

PIA Northern Samar said the local governments which are affected have their own rescue operations. The Provincial Disaster Management Unit have been very active in the rescue operations together with the military, the Red Cross, the DPWH and other agencies.

Currently, there are five vehicles scouring Catarman and other nearby municipalities for rescue operations. Six more military vehicles are on standby in case more vehicles are needed.

The Department of Public Works and Highways have reported that the national road passing the Palapag-Mapanas-Lapinig going to Lao-ang and Catubig are unpassable and there are no alternate routes that will reach these places.

Meanwhile, the Lope de Vega road from Calbayog going to Catarman has been reported to be unpassable.

The motorists and the travelers are advised not to dare take these routes because they will only be stranded.

PAGASA in Catarman reported that the flooding is caused by the continuous heavy rains brought about and magnified by the collision of the easterly winds and cold front.

As of this writing, the rains have ceased but the authorities are still worried about the waters which will come from the mountains.





Turn-over and citations program push through at new Guinsaugon

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

BRGY. MAGBAGACAY, Saint Bernard, Southern Leyte  –  It was a typical case of force majeure.

With non-stop pouring rain and zero visibility clouds, everyone was expecting the worst here Tuesday, December 26:  that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo could not make it for her date.

Among the distinguished guests who patiently waited for the President in spite of the wet surrounding were business tycoon Lucio Tan, the Chairman of the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FFCCCI) and scores of his fellow private businessmen, among others.

Also present were Regional Directors from various national line agencies, municipal mayors from the province’s 18 towns and one city, together with their Vice-Mayors and members of the Sangguniang Bayan/Panlunsod, and the residents of the new Guinsaugon community.

The reception party upon the President’s arrival was composed of Gov. Rosette Lerias, Rep. Roger Mercado, Saint Bernard Mayor Maria Lim, Presidential Assistant Victor Domingo, FFCCCI Chairman Lucio Tan, 8th ID M/Gen. Rodrigo Maclang, and PNP Chief Supt. Eliseo de la Paz.

Shortly before ten in the morning, with the rain going on at a steady pace still without let-up, there was already an inkling that the President may not be able to show up, when the announcer began calling the signatories for the donation papers for the various housing communities.

Then came Gov. Lerias’ official announcement that the President would be unable to come because of the bad weather, followed by a brief message of greetings and a desire to come by the President herself by cellphone magnified though the microphone.

“Tahuron ko unta nga matapos ang ulan apan ingon ang tanan dili mahuman karong buntag, so thank you very much for the invitation.  Kita tanan, magpasalamat kita tanan sa Ginoo tungod sa sayo nga pag-recover sa mga katawhan sa Southern Leyte, sa Guinsaugon ug sa Liloan. Ug unta ang inyong experience mahimong usa ka inspirasyon sa atong mga biktima naman sa landslide sa Bicol.  Sa gihapon daghang salamat and congratulations on your faith of the people of Southern Leyte, daghang salamat kaninyong tanan, Rosette,” President Arroyo said, her talk lasting only one minute, ten seconds. (I would have waited for the rains to stop but many said this will not be through for the whole morning, so thank you very much for the invitation. We all should thank God for the early recovery of the people of Southern Leyte, in Guinsaugon and Liloan. And hoping that your experience will serve as an inspiration for the landslides victims in Bicol. As always thank you so much and congratulations on your faith of the people of Southern Leyte, thank you so much, Rosette.)

“So, mga kaigsoonan, unsaon ta man…Mas importanti ang iyang seguridad ug ang iyang safety.  Apan magpadayon ta sa atong programa paghatag plaque of appreciation ug turn-over sa school buildings”. (So, my brothers and sisters, what can we do…Her security and safety was more important.  But we must go on with the program, giving plaque of appreciation and turn-over of school buildings), Gov. Lerias said right after the President’s call.

The school administrators whose schools excelled in the recent National Achievement Tests (NAT) were then called to receive their individual certificates of recognition.





“Politics of Gold” should not rule, Rep. Petilla says

By Provincial Media Relations Center (PMRC Leyte Province)
December 27, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte  –  Leyte First District Representative Remedios “Matin” Petilla called on political hopefuls not to let the “politics of gold” rule over the people and put a price to their dignity as a voting public.

This as reports that barangay officials, teachers, PNP members are being called to attend meetings and assemblies allegedly on the account that a certain amount of money are being distributed.

“They are degrading the public, taking away their dignity and putting a price to each of them. Baga ba hin ikaw, as an individual, you’re only worth let’s say P3,000. After I gave you that, you would already support me,” Rep. Petilla said.

She added the Leyteños need not be degraded that way as what they need instead is a figure who truly wants to help and not those who puts a price tag on somebody’s head.

The lady solon otherwise called on her reported opponents in the May 2007 polls not to let “politics of gold” rule over the constituency.

“The politics of gold will not make good governance. The people need more than just a small amount from a public official,” Congresswoman Petilla said.

While saying this, the congresswoman instead stressed the need to show the constituents the politics of service and performance.

However, the lady solon believes that the public has matured over the years, unmindful of the “money and gold” that has already got involved in politics and during polls.

“They have already grown wise. Bisan pa may-ada nanhahatag, nagpapahakot-hakot, when voting coming comes, they choose whoever they think could best serve them.





Renowned national artists to stage Cuarenta at the Coliseum

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
December 26, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte  –  Renowned artists Douglas Nierras of Powerdance, Mr. Aldin Lugnasin of Ballet Philippines, the Leyte Dance Theater and the Kaliawan Performing Arts Group, teamed up to present a show as a tribute to Mr. Jesus de Paz who is celebrating his 40th year of dedicated commitment in the field of dance.

The show which is dubbed as “Cuarenta,” and which will serve as a grand reunion and dance concert in honor of Jess de Paz, will be held at 7:30 o’clock in the evening of December 28, 2006.

Cuarenta will be conducted at the new Tacloban City Convention Center (Tacloban Coliseum) and will be participated in also by some alumni members of the Leyte Dance Theater and the Kaliawan Performing Arts Group.

Mr. Jess de Paz is a retired instructor at the Leyte Normal University. He is a prime mover in teaching dance to the young people of region 8 and is the founder of the Leyte Dance Theater and the Kaliawan Performing Arts Group.

Mr. de Paz has inspired many young artists to make good in the field of dance, among whom are Mr. Douglas Nierras and Mr. Aldin Lugnasin who both are now renowned artists of the country.

With the patient tutelage of Mr. de Paz, many of his protégés are now well known choreographers and winners in various competitions.

Mr. de Paz was instrumental in teaching and giving seminars to the choreographers of the Pintados Festival in the festival’s twenty years of existence.

Jess as he fondly called by his friends, brought accolade and honor to the Region by bringing his group to different international festivals of dance and other cultural competitions and bringing home the bacon.

His Leyte Dance Theater and Kaliawan Performing Arts Group has served as the Region’s ambassadors of goodwill of the Region and of the country as they traveled to the different parts of the world.





Tanauan Young Singing Ambassadors is born

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
December 26, 2006

TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte   –  The Tanauan Young Singing Ambassadors, a group of twenty-five young children ages seven to eleven who are musically inclined, was officially presented to the public during the recently-concluded Kaadlawan Festival in Tanauan, Leyte.

The Tanauan Young Singing Ambassadors wowed the audience with their renditions of original Waray compositions, Christmas songs and popular songs. With more trainings, this group will truly bring out their best in music.

The twenty-five young children from the different barangays of the municipality passed the auditions for them to become the first batch of music scholars of Mayor Roque Tiu and the municipality of Tanauan. They are currently training once a week, under the tutelage of Mr. and Mrs. Clark Gravoso who are resident artists of Tanauan, Leyte.

Mayor Roque Tiu was inspired to provide the young talents of Tanauan, a scholarship in music during the Fiesta of Tanauan in August where an eight-year old child bested other older participants from all over Leyte in the Bulilit Singing competition. Right there and then, Mayor Tiu decided to give this little girl the proper training in music under the tutelage of a music instructor Mr. Clark Gravoso. Aside from Honey Molon, Mayor Tiu decided to give the same opportunity to other budding artists.

Mayor Tiu thought that if given proper training, these young children will be given the chance to hone their talents which will enable them to perform better. Besides, he believes that it is the responsibility of the local government unit that these children are given the opportunity to develop their talents to the fullest.

The parents of the scholars expressed gratitude in the opportunity being given to their children. They are very appreciative of the way Mr. and Mrs. Clark Grovoso train the young artists.

Mr. Gravoso said that he has at least three young scholars who are already ready to join singing contest. With that information, Mayor Tiu announced that in support to Governor Carlos Jericho Petilla’s Idol Music Competition, he will allow the three members of the Tanauan Young Singing Ambassadors to join the competition with the full support of the local government unit.



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