Saturday, January 21, 2012

Bohol rice production
Up by 16.44% in ‘11  
Rey Anthony H. Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, January 20, 2012 (PIA) – Rice production in Bohol increased by about 16.44% last year compared to the previous year.

In fact, according to a data provided by the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS) here, the feat in 2011 is higher than in 2008, when Bohol’s over-all palay production peaked at 218,701 metric tons.

This year, total palay production in Bohol as gathered from a composite of irrigated, rain-fed and upland rice areas reached 225,246 metric tons.

The development elates Governor Edgar Chatto who has aggressively urged Boholanos to adopt new technologies and high yielding seeds to increase production and solidify Bohol’s claim as Central Visayas’ food basket.

This year, Bohol also put up another P2 million in support to the rice program implemented by the local agriculturists.

On the good news, Engr. Maximino Servillon pointed out that the result is even the partial tabulation as BAS would still needs to process more of the remaining last quarter data collected

Servillon, BAS provincial statistician showed that palay is Bohol’s biggest agricultural produce which comprises 36% of the whole pie in an agricultural crops contribution chart.

In 2008, the BAS data shared to key government offices showed Bohol rice production at 218,701 metric tons, which was the highest tally in previous years. This data went down to 195,445 in 2009.

It may also be recalled that in 2008, the national government put in hybrid rice seed subsidy and the provincial government also joined in to fund other farm input needs.

By the next year, and with the national government subsidy cut-off, rice production further dwindled to 193,491 metric tones while registering the smallest yield per hectare in the last four years at 2.58 metric tons per hectare.

Alarmed by the down trend and stirred by the pronouncements by commercial hybrid rice dealers that Bohol has one of the country’s lowest yields per hectare, agricultural authorities launched massive campaigns for scientific farming, certified seeds use and proper farm inputs intervention.

While this year showed significant increase in rice production, the same victory can also be seen in the average yield per hectare at 2.89 metric tones.

This is also slightly higher than the 2.87 metric ton average posted in 2008, or when Bohol attained its highest rice sufficiency.

According to Larry Pamugas, Bohol Assistant Provincial Agriculturist, the increase is most notable in irrigated rice areas where the increase is .44 metric tons per hectare, the data showed.
Pamugas pointed out that the increase is noted while an increase of nearly hectares of harvested area is added to the 74,958 hectares planted last year. (30)

Crisis crops star
At 12th UbiFest
Rey Anthony H. Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, January 20, (PIA) – They are huge, they are wild, and they are called “crisis crops.”

At the on-going 12th Ubi Festival which gathers the province’s 13 best yam varieties including the famous purple yam, crisis crops and popular rice substitutes: “Bot,” “Kot” and “Limalima” never fail to draw people’s attention.

“It is usually the size that draws people to the display,” admits Benedicto Bulawan, 50 year old ubi farmer from Can-agong Sikatuna, who, along with agricultural technicians, mans their display booth with an array of ubi varieties from fist sized crops to massive crisis crops.

The Sikatuna booth also goes out the extra mile to side-feature a “bot” which weighs 38 kilos, “kot,” that bears more that 40 kilogram tag and a lima-lima that grew to a spreading 50 kilograms.

Crisis crops, they are called because these crops survive long droughts and seldom feed communities when all their crops have died or wilted, explained assistant provincial agriculturist Larry Pamugas.

Bot, a wild apale, grows on abandoned root-crop patches and have grown wild that when they are unearthed after four or five croppings, they would have grown massively, according to Bulawan.  

On the other hand, “kot” is that wild ube that could grow huge after regenerating following cropping seasons, he adds.

“Care must be taken however in preparing lima-lima, suggests a Sikatuna agritechnician.

When cooked, this has to be washed in running water, air-dried, washed again and dried before it can be cooked or food poisoning can occur, he adds. 

Lima-lima, although not usually picked by starving communities for its notorious thorns, can also be eaten as rice substitute too.

These crops have helped communities survive wars simply by digging these wild crops from their forest hide-outs, Pamugas said.  

The Office of the Provincial Agriculture, in cooperation with other cooperating agencies bring out the Ubi Festival in its efforts to present the potential of Bohol’s leading ethno-religious crop.

Its is ethno-religious because apart from its an old world crop, several Boholanos go great lengths to show particular reverence to the crop.

Here, it is usually okay to spank a child if he trips and the ube he carries falls. The ube gets the kiss.

Or, failure to do this could be a disastrous cropping in the offing. (30)

Early registration for SY
2012-13 set this Jan 28
Rey Anthony H. Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, January 20, 2012 (PIA) – Giving soul to making education universal and in line with the government’s “education for all” (EFA), the Department of Education (DepED) opens public elementary and secondary schools on January 28, Saturday for a one-day Early Registration activity.

And for a day’s activity simultaneous all over the country’s public elementary and secondary schools, DepEd authorities appeal to the public and concerned individuals to help get the information across to make sure no one is left behind in the campaign.

“To be registered are kids eligible for kindergarten, grade one, out of school children (OSC) and out of school youth (OSY) including those with disabilities who may have problems accessing basic education,” said Dr. Erlinda Mahinay of the City DepEd division.

“The early registration allows the DepEd and local stakeholders to get a glimpse of how to prepare and assess the resource needs for school year 2012-2013,” Dr. Mahinay explained even as she said this has been an annual activity.

By virtue of DepEd Order No. 4, series of 2012, Dr. Mahinay, the City Assistant Schools Superintendent, bared the activity is an attempt to reach out to all 5 and 6 year olds to ensure their enrolment in kindergarten and grade 1 in the next school year.

On that day too, out of school children (OSC) and out of school youth (OSY) from disadvantaged indigenous peoples groups and street children aged 5-18 are listed to get them their preferred educational delivery system. It also establishes a census of OSC and OSY with disabilities to provide them alternative interventions, according to Rodrigo Almedilla, city Education program Supervisor.

“Working” OSC or OSYs are to choose between formal Alternative Delivery Mode or the Alternative Learning System (ALS) to get them the access to the basic constitutional right, adds Presentacion F. Dagondon, District ALS Coordinator.

“Registration is free, and parents just need to bring the kid’s birth certificate or a barangay captain’s certification of the kid’s residence to get accounted,” Almedilla interjected, during the forum aired over DyTR.

“The country espouses free basic education, and since we would want to determine how much we would be preparing as the school year 2012-2013 opens, we would need the data,” he stressed.

Four registration centers would be set up in all elementary and secondary schools, Dr. Mahinay said.

Center 1 accepts children eligible for pre school, those born October 31 2007 or earlier, Center 2 accepts grade 1 of kids born October 31-2006 to October 30, 2007.

Meanwhile, Center 3 caters to out of school children aged 6-8 while Center 4 caters to OSYs aged 9-11, according to Almedila.

Four registration centers also open up in the high schools where OSY aged 12-13 are listed, center two caters to OSYs aged 14-15, Center 3 for OSY aged 16-17 and Center 4 for OSY aged 18 and above.   

Students currently enrolled in the schools need not register as the DepEd automatically forwards the list of active enrollees to the next school level, Dr. Mahinay said.

“This is for us to facilitate our efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and attain the EFA objectives,” Dr. Mahinay said.

To help carry out the activities, the early registration would be ushered in by Child or Youth Find activities to make sure that these target students who should otherwise be in schools but are not, are herded back, stresses Dr. Mahinay. (30)

LTO issues warning to
racing buses in Bohol
Rey Anthony H. Chiu

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, Jan. 19 (PIA) -- Bent on picking the most fares on their routes and leaving nothing to their competitors, public utility buses find the public’s ire on them for putting the lives of people in undue danger.

Complaints against these “pedal to the metal bus drivers” rammed its way to the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) as a concerned citizen, sensing an accident waiting to happen should this speedsters not be corrected, has asked for immediate intervention.

PPOC member and Land Transportation Officer Joel Maloloy-on, in his succeeding investigations, confirms they have warned passenger bus operators whose units have been tagged for over-speeding.

At the PPOC Meeting last week, the soft-spoken Bohol LTO registrar Maloloy-on admitted that the over-speeding and reckless driving complaints earlier lodged at the PPOC have been verified and are found to be true.
In their investigations, Maloloy-on identified City Transport and Super Five buses with franchise along the routes from Tagbilaran City to Tubigon and vice versa are involved in dangerous chases along the narrow highways to the detriment and peril of passengers and the riding public.

A complaint earlier filed at the PPOC detail how these passenger buses are “accidents waiting to happen” while they chase each other to pick up fares along the route.

On this, he told the PPOC convened for the HEAT Caravan in Antequera that the LTO has already warned operators and threatened them to suspend their franchises if they are found to have violated the speed limits.

He also said that they have issued similar warnings to Clynn and St. Jude Trans operators, with their passenger transporting franchise are in other parts of Bohol.

Although it is the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board which has the direct authority to suspend or cancel land transportation franchises, the LTO has the recommending power which is also compelling for the LTFRB, sources shared.

Independent sources at the LTO also added that they can put red flags on drivers who have been tagged in these dangerous chases and may impose sanctions or more stringent measures in their license renewals to impose road discipline. (30)

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