Monday, May 20, 2013

W’shop pins work force skills
training for tourism workers 
Rey Anthony Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol May 20, 2013 (PIA) –How do you stimulate and spread economic growth in tourism industry? 

For members of the Provincial Economic Transformation Team (PETT), looking at the aspect of local human resource knowledge and skills improvement, as well as batting for increased awareness on job placement or self employment is a huge window to dress-up. 

On this direction, PETT, with PADAYON Bohol Marine Triangle Management Council and the Local Government Support Program-Local Economic Development has identified a work force development program for Boholanos so they could be equipped to work in tourism related industries. 

And to lay the details of the development plan, the Bohol Association of Hotels, Restaurants and Resorts (BAHRR) underwent a Workforce Development Planning Workshop last May 10, 2013. 

This is to identify and prioritize training requirements of its member establishments in Bohol. 

The objective of the workshop is to improve local human resource knowledge, skills and increase awareness on job placement and self employment, said DTI, which sits as a member agency of the PETT. 

It also aimed to develop and implement pilot programs for matching the immediate skills requirements of tourism establishments in the PADAYON cluster (Panglao, Dauis, Baclayon) and in other neighboring tourism areas in Bohol, adds Vierna Ligan of the DTI. 

The LGSP and BAHRR partnership developed with the help of DTI-Bohol, which eyed a system of putting together the various upgrading strategies in the different functions across the Tourism Value Chain. 

Under Workforce Development Program, BAHRR is LGSP-LEDs lead institutional partner who will implement the training component with support from DTI, DILG and other PETT member agencies. 

The workshop output crafted a prioritized list of training requirements of BAHRR Member companies. 

Identified are training requirements for Food Safety, Waiter Services, Commercial Cooking and Culinary Arts, Management and Supervisory Skills, Housekeeping and Front Office Services, Massage Therapy, Customer Services, Environmental Management Services, Flower Arrangement, Bartending, Inventory Management and Marketing. 

In the workshop were BAHRR member establishments and representatives from the Bohol Employment Placement Office (BEPO), Bohol Investment Promotions Center (BIPC), Bohol Tourism Office (BTO), Baclayon Environmental Association (BEA), the Provincial Tourism Council, DOLE, DOT, DILG and DTI. 

Workshop facilitator was GIZ-ProGED Technical Consultant Nanda Ritsma, assisted by Maria Teresa Tay, GIZ-EFK for DTI-Bohol. 

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Replacement CF cards arrive 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol May 20, 2013 (PIA)—Poll canvassers’ long wait is over. 

For the past three days, Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) aimlessly spend time gazing at an immobile screen projecting election returns, most of them filled, but eight towns. 

The PBOC is still to get the transmissions from Alicia, Balilihan, Baclayon, Calape, Carmen, Cortes, Sevilla and Tagbilaran City, most of which are still stuck in the Municipal Board of Canvassers. 

The MBOC could not transmit these returns pending the full count, but at least one precinct of these towns have problem with defective main or back up memory Compact Flash (CF) cards. 

Unless these cards can be replaced, the BEI could not start the count so they could not transmit to the PBOC their returns which are incomplete, explains City Comelec Atty. Jonas Biliran. 

Comelec still expects more than 7,000 votes to add up to the tallies; these coming from the following: Progreso, Alicia; Boctol, Balilihan; Guiwanon, Baclayon; Ulbojan, Calape; Guadalupe and La Salvacion, Carmen; Loreto, Cortes, Bayawahan, Sevilla and Dampas District, Tagbilaran City. 

Provincial Comelec supervisor Atty. Leonil Marco Castillano said he has immediately requested Comelec Manila to send a replacement CF card for each of these towns. 

At the pendency of the card’s arrival, canvassers, especially at the provincial level could not sum up all poll returns with nine precincts in the towns of Bohol still ineligible for transmission. 

The CF cards, exactly two in a Precinct Count Optical Scanner (PCOS), form as main memory and back-up memory to record all operations that the computer does, store the digital copies of ballots which the computer scans and match the ballot with the voter’s name from a programmed list of voters written in it. 

“These CF cards are not your normal CF cards, they have been programmed to a certain precinct, no CF card can be used anywhere but in the computer that the program was written,” Commission on Election (Comelec) PCOS technicians said. 

Last Monday, at the opening of the polling places May 13, the chairman of the Board of Election Inspectors (BEI) in all precincts showed to the public the sealed two cards, one for the main memory and another one for the back-up memory. 

These cards were sealed to stress that these have not been tampered from the COMELEC storage, Comelec election aide Juvenal Beniga stressed. 

In the event of a vote, when a voter feeds the PCOS with his cast ballot, the computer scans the ballot barcode and identifies the voter, scans the votes and stores the digital image at the main and the back-up memory card. 

When any one of the two cards fail, voting can still continue but we do not advice that counting would commence without the two cards for obvious reasons, Comelec said. 

In Cortes last Monday, a PCOS in precinct in Poblacion showed a back-up memory failure, but voting continued. 

Moments later, the failed CF card re-functioned and the voting went on, said Nito Tabigue, PCOS technician. 

All over Bohol, three of the nine CF cards arrived ahead, May 15, that automated tabulation and transmission of returns continued for Baclayon, Balilihan and Sevilla. 

By May 16, the remaining six CF cards arrived via 2GO and escorted by police and poll officers. 

These were then sent to the respective towns to allow the BEI to reconvene and resume the vote count and results transmission, which now happens at the MBOC. 

At the MBOCs, we solve the problem of securing the PCOS and the returns while allowing the PCOS to get the signal it would need to allow it to transmit, said Malou Cempron of the local COMELEC. 

“These cards would finally settle the nagging issues as to who would win in the hotly contested seats in last five of the eight precincts,” a supporter for a candidate in Cortes whose lead is less than a hundred said. 

About 978 votes were still expected to cut the lead of widen the margin between the two candidates. 

But for the PBOC, the arrival of the cards would mean sound sleep and end of poll duty, after transmission.

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Bohol picks 21 new mayors
Rey Anthony Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, May 20, 2013 (PIA) –After the smoke of the elections settled, 20 towns have elected new chief executives while another 28 mayors get fresh mandates. 

This constitutes about 43.7%, already a sizable number to force the necessary changes for Bohol, them being newer and fresher minds. 

Six new mayors come from Bohol’s first district, another six from second and nine from the third district. 

First district towns with their brand-new mayors are Tagbilaran City (John Geesnell Yap), Dauis (Miriam Sumaylo), Panglao (Nila Montero), Cortes (Roberto Tabanera), Tubigon (Marlon Amila) and Catigbian (Virgilio Lurot). 

This constitutes 40% of the 15 towns comprising the district. 

For the second district, new mayors include Inabanga (Josephine Socorro Jumamoy), Getafe (Casey Shaun Camacho), Ubay (Galicano Atup), Trinidad (Judith Cajes), Dagohoy (Sofronio Apat) and Danao (Natividad Gonzaga). 

The new mayors here constitute 42% of the 14, which is the total number of mayors within the district. 

In the third district, new mayors include Valencia (Maria Katrina Lim), Garcia-Hernandez (Tita Gallentes), Duero (Conrada Amparo), Candijay (Christopher Tutor), Anda (Metodio Amper), Pilar (Necitas Cubrado), Carmen (Ricardo Francisco Toribio), Loboc (Helen Alaba) and Sevilla (Juliet Dano). 

In the third district, the 9 new mayors form another 47% of the district’s number of mayors. The district has 19 towns under it. 

Among these mayors listed above, three are your not really new, them having been elected as mayors in the past and are now reclaiming their abandoned posts. 

The three include Inabanga mayor Josephine Socorro Jumamoy, Trinidad Mayor Judith Cajes and Dagohoy Mayor Sofronio Apat. 

Of the 21 new mayors elected now in Bohol, 10 of them are women executives: Sumaylo (Dauis), Montero (Panglao), Jumamoy (Inabanga), Cajes (Trinidad), Gonzaga (Danao), Lim (Valencia), Gallentes (Garcia-Hernandez), Amparo (Duero), Alaba (Loboc) and Dano (Sevilla). 

The election also brings a total of 15 lady chief executives now in Bohol. 

Other lady mayors who have been reelected are Tesalonica Boyboy (Carlos P. Garcia), Rosemarie Imboy (Loay), Regina Salazar (Lila), Ma. Fe Piezas (Guindulman), and Esther Tabigue (Mabini).

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Diskwento Caravan drives to Batuan, June 2 
Rey Anthony Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, May 20, 2013 (PIA)—With school opening just around the corner, the government brings in part of its non-wage benefit offers to help people increase their money’s buying power. 

In partnership with private sector groups, the government through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) rolls-out a caravan that brings school supplies and other basic commodities at discounted prices, closer to communities which are far from the malls. 

Dubbed as “Diskwento” Caravan, the activity focuses on the availability of low priced school supplies and basic commodities to the people residing near Batuan, Bohol on June 2, 2013, inside the Batuan Gymnasium, said Vierna Teresa Ligan, DTI information officer. 

“The Diskwento Caravan is a chance for our Boholano consumers who want to maximize their budget for school supplies, school bags, shoes and uniforms of their students, as the activity brings to them these low priced buys,” Ligan explains. 

The activity is also in cooperation with the Army’s 802nd Special Forces Battalion, Local Government Unit of Batuan, and private sector partners. 

Started in 2008, Diskwento Caravan is a flagship project of DTI that aims to provide non-wage benefits for wage earners and employees to ease the consumers’ burden of rising prices of basic necessities and prime commodities. 

This June, the activity is DTI Bohol’s response to the department’s target of 29 Diskwento Caravans – Balik Eskwela Edition, for the opening school year. 

The caravan provides cheaper school supplies, school bags, shoes and uniforms before the start of classes this coming June, according to Ligan. 

“But, being cheap does not mean these products are sub-standard as these are the same products you will see at the supermarkets,” she assured. 

Already committing to join the caravan in Batuan are Leonardo Distributors Inc., Marcela Foods and the Nestle Philippines, Inc., she added. 

Leonardo Distributors, Inc. will be selling low priced school supplies like notebooks, pad papers, ball pens, shoes, bags, school uniforms and other basic necessities and prime commodities. 

On the other hand, Marcela Foods will offer freshly dressed chicken while Nestle Phils., Inc. will sell basic commodities like coffee, milk, cereals and other Nestle products, at distributor’s prices. 

Other than price-cuts, consumers will be treated to prizes like grocery items during the consumer time hourly raffle draws while the discounted sale is on, Ligan said. 

With the event, school children will also have free haircut courtesy of the members of the 802nd Special Forces Battalion.

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Fastest win… 
Alicia candidates win before polls 
Rey Anthony Chiu 

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, May 20, 2013 (PIA) –While everybody awaits in bated breath as to who shall keep on the winning trends in the May 13 elections, everything else was settled in Alicia, well, except the cheers. 

For while most candidates in Bohol creeps through the night enduring sleeplessness to campaign, it’s all but one candidate who will not make it to the town council when Aliciahanons cast their vote. 

In this town, incumbent mayor, Marnilou Ayuban and Vice Mayor Basilo Balahay just cruised to their victory and awaited for the proclamation, being unopposed. 

The feat would qualify them for the easiest wins in the country in the 2013 midterm and local elections. 

In fact in the town which owns 13,664 registered voters, the people could afford a good opposition but insiders said the leaders pushed for a deal which would officially lessen every candidate’s cost of the campaign. 

When the town put up only a single mayor and vice mayor candidate, it also records possibly the country’s fewest candidates for the town council at nine. 

Officially listed in the ballots as contenders for the town council are (1) Elias Bolanio (Liberal Party), (2) Boy Buyo (Independent), (3) Yolanda Corciega (LP), (4) FrasanCorre (LP), (5) Domingo Curit, (6) LambertoDeligero (LP), (7) DesideriaGumala (LP), (8) Tars Luzano (Independent) and (9) Dong Torres (Nationalist People’s Coalition). 

For towns, each is allowed to vote only eight candidates to sit in the town council, while cities are allowed ten slots for the urban legislative post. 

This means that Alicia voters voted only one out. 

In fact, unconfirmed reports from the town bare that local leaders have adeptly hitched a deal to settle the issue as to who shall be allowed to occupy the eight slots. 

The same report said local leaders successfully tolkedto an unnamed candidate, who has gracefully thrown in the towel to spare him from the costs of the campaign. 

The agreement is anchored on the fact that the “winning” candidates would just refund this “losing” candidate of whatever costs incurred in the stretch of the filing of candidacies to the point when the deal was sealed. 

Meanwhile in Bohol, two more mayors are sure winners for this May elections. 

Lila Mayor Regina Salazar and Sikatuna Mayor Jose Ellorimo have unopposed candidacies in their respective towns. 

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