Bikers clean up Banat-I trails For World Environment Day

When most of the people took more time in their cozy beds on the early hours of June 5, it being a holiday, mountain bikers were already on the trails of Tagbilaran City’s cross country trail training site, spare gloves on the ready, for the World Environment Day Banat-I clean-up.
While the government declared June 5 as the Eid’lFit’r, and as a regular holiday for both Muslims and non-Muslims, the day also afforded many the rest they needed so breakfasts were mostly delayed as there was no hurry for the day.
For young and professionals who take on to their bikes for the daily sweat dose, that day was one they would be ticking two on their bucket list: go get sweating cranking for the climb and do something for the environment for the day.
The challenging climb at Banat-I Park is painful but like all hard efforts, the rewards in the spectacular view from the top easily erases all the pains.
But the garbage that has accumulated in Banat-i, brought by hikers, trail runners or lovers who take the views of the hill, has become an eye-sore for the environment biased bikers and trail runners.
Empty water bottles, soda PET bottles, wine bottles, junk food foil packs, cellophane packaging, styrofoam and food packaging are strewn on the trails, in the camp site and even along the access road, that has marred the beauty of the place.
It is about time we need to do something about it, said biker Engr Rey Tirol, who organized the clean up.
Many trails crisscross Banat-i, that for bikers, the grueling small ring-big cogs grind, or the medium ring medium cogs for power training, has a fit for all types of bikers.
Whether the route follows the road to the top or through the climbing challenge by weaving through the tangle of shrubs, slowly picking the way past the vines and to the tower, a nasty plastic caught in the roots and undergrowth, have concerned the Banat-i users.
Already with three of the best developed bike race routes less than 10 minutes from the heart of the City, Banat-ihas slowly become the favorite playground for the boys and men in their expensive bike rigs.
Banat-I, one of the two more prominent hills rising above Tagbilaran affords those who climb through it one of the most spectacular views, not to mention the health premium one can get for the rigorous climb, even by leisurely hikers.
Also becoming a favorite playground for the already building number of trail runners in Tagbilaran, Banat-I has openly embraced these health conscious athletes as well as lovers on their romantic sojourns.
“The more people are, in the hills, the more the garbage, we need to do something about it,” Tirol added.
Over 20 bikers on 26’rs, 27.5s and 29’rs pedaled up the Banat-I that morning, placed their bikes on top, and with still wearing cleats, bikers followed the trails on foot, bringing with them sacks and tongs to pick up garbage.
After about an hour of clean-up, over 5 sacks of garbage were brought to a stockpile for the city garbage trucks to collect.
The bikers also put up signs on top of the hill, to be responsible by taking nothing pictures, wasting nothing but time and leaving nothing but footprints. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

DepEd Tagbilaran City Division held its first state of the division address earlier today at the Bohol Tropics Resort.

Dr. Neri Ojastro, the OIC schools division superintendent stated the achievements and future plans of the division. He added that DepEd’s goal is to bring students to school, to make them learn, and to provide quality education. He also stated that the real challenge is to keep the students in school.

Dr. Ojastro proudly shared that all schools have been provided with cctv cameras, while all public elementary schools will be provided with air conditioning units. He also said that the division aims to modernize education management and governance, enhance the electronic database like records, recruitment, rewards and recognition process. He added that the division intends to achieve 100% complaint to COA rules and to release teachers benefits on time. Lastly, he said that DepEd continues to improve itself for the better.

Provincial Administrator Alfonso Damalerio and “Tatay” Billy Tongco attended the event on behalf of Gov. Edgar Chatto.

Dr. Ojastro expressed his gratitude to the Provincial Government of Bohol led by Gov. Chatto for the unceasing support to all of DepEd’s projects and undertakings.

Provincial Administrator Damalerio in his message stressed that the provincial government is likewise thankful to DepEd.
Education has been one of the pillars in Governor Chatto’s HEAT IT Development Agenda. His participative approach in governance has seen its progress to different programs which the provincial government and Deped have implemented.
He also reiterated that the incoming administration of Governor Elect Art Yap will continue to extend its full support to DepEd and its teachers.
Yap has stated this in his messages during his campaign sorties.

DepEd, during the program also recognizes outstanding education program supervisors and other division awardees and presented plaques of recognition.ent

DENR names Manaba to RIVERS ‘19 awards

Of the three Bohol rivers which the communities have jointly cleaned up in efforts to improve its water quality, the singular honor to represent Bohol as nominee to the regional and the national awards for the best improved rivers goes to Garcia Hernandez’s Manaba River.

A Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) team picked Manaba River after the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office in Tagbilaran and the local community succeeded in upgrading the river’s water quality; a goal for the awards.

DENR Bohol Environment Management Bureau Provincial Environment Management Unit’s Richard Abella shared this during the recent Kapihan sa PIA, which was timed for the opening of the Month for the Environment in June.

Manaba is among the three rivers which the local DENR picked for community based clean-ups and rehabilitation for them to qualify in the 2019 awards.

Along with Manaba River, is Loboc River where the famous Rivercruises and floating restaurants are plying, and Abatan River where its mouth empties in Cortes, which is also used for the Abatan Community Life River Experiences.

Early this year, President Rodrigo Duterte with the people of Manila, embarked on a rather ambitious cleaning-up and rehabilitation of the Manila Bay, which it successfully started with a massive clean-up.

Challenged by the act, the DENR through Secretary Roy Cimatu also engaged all provinces and its local DENR offices to adopt rivers in their area of responsibility, for the clean-up and rehabilitation works.

According to PENRO Bohol Charlie Fabre, they chose rivers in Bohol based on their water quality: the three have something in common at that time.

All the rivers have water qualities categorized under class C: which is fishery water for the propagation and growth of fish and other aquatic resources, and can healthily support recreational water like boating, surfing and for industrial use after treatment, based on DENR AO 30, series of 1990.

RIVERS. Manaba river in Garcia Hernandez is now Bohol’s nominee to the regional and national RIVERS 2019 Award, says Richard Abella of the local DENR. He shared the good news during the recent Kapihansa PIA. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

While the water from the river can be good for agriculture, irrigation and livestock use, class C waters are not ideal for full contact with humans due to the presence of minimal traces of coliform from human and animal waste.

The DENR classification in fact stirred a lot of Boholanos who know that both Loboc and Abatan Rivers are supporting tourism activities and where paddling activities are done.

The environment authorities on the other hand argued that the more the rivers need to be rehabilitated to improve its water quality.

The intention is to enhance the water quality so that the river can be safer for human recreational activities like swimming and bathing, PENR Fabre shared at a radio forum.

As the DENR launched the simultaneous river clean up activities, it also officially disseminated the information about the community-based rehabilitation of the country’s river by Recognizing Individuals and Institutions towards Vibrant and Enhanced Rivers (RIVERS) for Life in 2019.

Set for six months, a team would assess the RIVERS and pick the best rehabilitated river systems, this would be the official nominee of the province to the regional and national awards.

Six months later, Manaba improved its water quality to be categorized as Class B, which allows for contact recreation such as bathing, swimming, skin diving, particularly those designated for tourism purposes, according to Abella. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

PDEA orients PADAC about Balay Silangan

In Bohol, drug ‘surrenderers’ who were not in the police drug list know they have Center for Drug Education and Counseling (CEDEC) trained people in their towns to come to for community based rehabilitation.

But, what about those who are in the police drug watch list, those who were nabbed for the possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia, those who availed of the Supreme Court’s plea bargaining framework in drug cases, or those who have served prison sentences but still needs rehabilitation and would not qualify into a Department of Health (DOH) controlled medical facility?

The answer is Balay Silangan, explained Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency PDEA) agent Cornelio Espartero Jr., during the joint meeting of the Provincial Anti Drug Abuse Council and the Provincial Peace and Order Council, May 27 at the Conference Hall of the Office of the Governor in the new Capitol building.

During the previous PPOC and PADAC joint meeting, the PDEA floated the idea of Balay Silangan, but members demanded more information about the program, even as Bohol has identified lots for its donation to allow the construction of a drug rehabilitation facility.

This time, PDEA agent Espartero came with a powerpoint presentation of the implementation of the “Balay Silangan:” the national drug reformation program that offers temporary refuge to drug offenders who are on rehabilitation.

He said the facility aims to supply the temporary shelter of persons with substance use disorder (PSUD) with the goal of reforming these drug offenders into self-sufficient and law-abiding members of society.

Still much like the Bohol CEDEC installed community based rehabilitation program (CBRP) mechanism in the town, the Balay Silangan also banks on community involvement in reforming drug offenders into self-sufficient and law-abiding members of society.

Citing Section 11 of Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation No.2 Series of 2018, Espartero enumerated the following personalities who are eligible to enter the Program.

Eligible for it are drug personalities who have surrendered, with no pending criminal case and or warrant of arrest, and is not a high value target by law enforcement agencies.

In it too are drug personalities who voluntarily surrendered and belong to the PDEA and PNP Watch List labeled as Street Level Target (SLT) pusher.

Balay Silangan also includes drug personalities who availed of the plea bargaining agreement and or convicted under Section 15 on the use of dangerous drugs of the Dangerous Dugs Act (DDA) and are required to undergo drug reformation program as alternate intervention.

Finally, he said the temporary facility can also take in drug personalities who served jail terms for violation of the DDA.

According to PDEA, Balay Silangan reformation program also includes general interventions like continuing education and health awareness, psychological/spiritual/physical activities enhancement activities such as counseling, moral recovery, values formation, personal and life skills, among others.

Under the program, Balay Silangan clients are also given livelihood and skills training programs which include basic TESDA skills and competencies like soap making, massage training, basic carpentry, welding, haircutting, to give drug reformers clear options and employment opportunities when they finally complete the rehabilitation.

On a briefing with the PDEA senior and regional officials, PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino was quoted as saying “Balay Silangan is built to rebuild lives.”

“The government can never give up on surrendering drug dependents and pushers. Hope is all they need to overcome their former selves and start over again. We will give our assurance that hope will be realized if they show the sincerity and commitment to change,” the PDEA chief said, adding that drug offenders undergoing the program must remain until completion of his rehabilitation.

REHAB HOUSE BALAY SILANGAN PDEA agent Cornelio Espartero Jr., brief the PADAC about the government’s Balay Silangan, a house for drug personalities who would be reforming their lives and starting to begin a new day, thus silangan. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

Rising TRI dampens cops’ Crime reduction efforts

An unprecedented increase in traffic related incidents (TRI) in the first five months of this year in Bohol compared to the same periods in the last two years dampen the local crime-busters accomplishments, but even then, Bohol still finds a considerable decrease in total crime volume trends in the last three years.

In Bohol in the last three years, from January to May, crime dipped to an average of 5.6%, which, to Camp Dagohoy, is already a positive indication of a proactive police force.

The victory could have been much better if authorities could step on the brakes to lessen TRI.

In a report he delivered before the joint meetings of the Provincial Peace and Order (PPOC) and the Provincial Anti Drug Abuse Council (PADAC), Bohol police Chief Police Colonel Julius Cesar Gornez showed that from 920 TRI in 2017, it zoomed to 1079 in the first five months of 2019.

In the same report, he said the total crime volume from January to May in 2017 peaked at 3,224 or a monthly average of 644.8 for index and non-index crimes.

Delivering his monthly crime statistics before the members of the joint councils, Gornez, who was in his customary PNP Goa uniform, pointed out that the 3224, slid to 3093 by the same period of 2018.

He said four percent average decrease in crimes forms the accomplishment that Camp Dagohoy intended to maintain in the same period for the next year.

But, by 2019, in January to May, crime statisticians at Camp Dagohoy compared their data from the Crime Information Reporting and Analysis System at Camp Crame noted that the crime incidence continued to dip, albeit minimally.

From a total crime volume of 3,093 in 2018, some 51 less crimes happened in 2019 with only 3,042 crimes; a two percent dip noted now.

Much of the crime volume decline however can be dissected with a view on the index and non index crimes.

For January to May 2017, index crimes or the crimes against the Revised Penal Code (RPC) reached 1,088 or a monthly average of 217.6.

The following period in 2018 showed that the index crimes still dipped to 841 (a monthly average of 168 index crimes) which forms some 23% of decline.

This year, in the initial five months, index crimes tallied 751 or a monthly average of 150.2 and another 11 % drop, according to Colonel Gornez.

Camp Dagohoy also admits they are working to tame theft, physical injury and robbery as these three index crimes form the top crimes committed in Bohol.

As to non-index crimes or those crimes punishable by special laws, where drugs, traffic incidents and other crimes off the RPC, from 2,136 in the first five months of 2017, constant police pressure against criminal groups and individuals resulted in an increase of crime tally, which shows 116 more non-index crimes to 2252.

This, Camp Dagohoy chief said, is 5% general increase, but he assured this is nothing to worry about as this shows police proactive roles against crimes.

This year, in the beginning five months, non-index crimes reached 2,291, another 2% increase from the previous period of last year.

For the non-index crimes, traffic related incidents in Bohol have dampened the total crime reduction accomplishments by the local police as the five months of the last 3 years showed a rather disappointing data.

Traffic related incidents, while they were only 920 in 2017, revved to 1,079, a high 14.74% increase, which contributed largely to a low crime decrease rate. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

THEFT, PHYSICAL INJURY AND ROBBERY. This trio of index crimes comprise the biggest chunk of the total crime volume in Bohol. Although these have been managed quite well recently, the sudden increase in traffic related incidents in Bohol in the past five months brought tho local anticrime efforts dwon, points PColonel Julius Cesar Gornez during the recent PPOC. (rahc/PIA-07/Bohol)

New 47th IB commander vows sustained partnership for peace

CAMP LINO CHATTO, Cabulijan, Tubigon, Bohol, May 28 (PIA)—After rendering a stellar performance as commanding officer of the 47th Infantry “Katapatan” Battalion (47IB) for two years and 18 days, Lieutenant Colonel Eufracio Malig Jr., steps off and hands the command flag to Lieutenant Colonel Ramir Redosendo, in a simple but fitting turn-over of command rites officiated by no less than 3rd Infantry Division Presiding General Officer and 37th commander, General Dinoh Dolina at the Camp Lino Chatto in Cabulijan Tubigon, May 28.

In his acceptance message, LTC Redosendo, who handles matters of military operations at the general headquarters, rallies the men and women of the Battalion to help him bring the 47th IB to remain committed in performing its mandate.

“Let us continue our partnership in supporting the people in the pursuit of a lasting peace and development in our community,” the newly installed officer appealed during the rites attended by officers and men of the 3ID, 47IB and the 302nd BDE as well as local officials led by Governor Edgar Chatto, board members, municipal mayors and civil society representatives.

On the other hand, LtCol Malig, who distinguished his two-year meritorious service to Boholanos by fighting a different kind of battle, one that allowed his unit to forge partnerships with the local government and the civil society, is reporting to the Central Command in Camp Jamindan in Capiz for another challenging mission.

While assuring local officials and sector representatives of this intent to continue the partnerships, he still called his men under his new command to do the best they can.

“Let us all remember that we are all pieces of a puzzle, we have roles top play, and only we can see the beauty of the puzzle if we put ourselves to where we should be,” the unassuming military official said.

Malig bowed out from service to the Boholanos but not without bagging a coveted a military medal of merit for his “eminently meritorious and valuable service as Commanding Officer of the 47IB.”

He steered the battalion in various combat and TRIAD operations that resulted to the tactical engagement with the ASG and the communists NPA terrorists in Bohol, scoring high in the military scoreboards.

Malig also nailed his stint with accomplishments in the joint AFP-PNP law enforcement operations resulting apprehension of illegal drugs, assorted firearms and wanted personalities.

While surviving with high waving flags after two major elections: Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan and the Midterm National and Local Elections, Malig’s management style earned the respect of his men when he prioritized series of in-house trainings, seminars and unit sustainment activities that put his unit at the peak of its performance.

While he intensified intelligence operations by developing intelligence networks that provided accurate and timely information, LtCol Malig’s legacy would largely be on its civil military operations.

Malig focused on the internal security and peace operations and forged convergence of different stakeholders, which resulted in more community development projects like the Community Development Program, Purok Power Movement partnership with Bohol.

As to matters of discipline, when the army in the past never slipped through the allegations of human rights violations, the 47 IB under LtCol Malig instilled the highest form of discipline to his men bay attaining zero human rights violations which resulted in his unit earning the 2017 Best battalion Streamer Award of the Central Command, according to General Dinoh Dolina.

Having developed friendships in Bohol, Malig, who signed his relinquishment of command May 28, said there is no such thing as goodbyes.

“Friends, this is not goodbye, because friends never say goodbye, they simply say, see you soon,” Malig capped his speech. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

PASSING ON THE COMMAND. Lt Col Ramir Redosendo accepts the command flag which Lt Col. Eufracio Malig Jr., relinquished to 3ID Presiding General Dinoh Dolina who also handed it to the new Commanding Officer of the 47th IB now assigned in Bohol. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)