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Showing posts from 2010

The Capitol Pork Barrel

When infrastructure projects account for 98 percent of the province’s 20% Economic Development Fund, which is intended to spur economic growth and progress, our leaders should not be surprised to hear descriptions of the 2011 Annual Investment Plan as just another scheme to repay elective officials for the humongous expense they incurred in buying votes last May 2010. But the people should not complain too loudly, for they have chosen the leaders who are now deciding the fate of the province, including how its scarce resources are to be marshaled in trying to develop Catanduanes. Sources say that following tradition, members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan have been allocated at least a million pesos in projects each, with those close to the Capitol kitchen getting so much more than soot on their hands. In the next few months, they will be transformed into contractors, their second personality. As the people will see from the list of projects, most are laudable projects, especially…

Dec. 4 Beer Plaza to Benefit Rotaract Community Programs

The Rotaract Club of Virac, in cooperation with the Rotary Club of Virac, is holding a beer festival this Dec. 4 at the Virac Sports Center for the benefit of the club’s local community programs. Everyone to participate in an evening of entertainment and camaraderie, which not only aims to establish rapport with the people of Virac, but also help raise funds for a few of the non-profit organizations that the club has already been supporting for years now. Among the projects that the Rotaract Club of Virac has successfully implemented in the last few years including feeding programs, "tsinelas" drive, school supplies distribution, blood-letting program, and coastal clean-up drives. A Rotaract club is a Rotary club-sponsored organization of young men and women between the ages of 18 and 30 whose purpose is to provide an opportunity for young men and women to enhance the knowledge and skills that will assist them in personal development, to address the physical and social n…

Virac Earthquake Sensor Gets Phivolcs Upgrade

Scientists from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology (Phivolcs) and a Japanese research institute last week upgraded an existing earthquake sensing facility in the capital town of Virac as part of a five-year project funded by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The seven-man team, led by Senior Science Research Specialist Arnaldo Melosantos of the Phivolcs’ Seismological Observation and Earthquake Prediction Division, arrived Nov. 17 for two days of meticulous work installing a so-called Broadband Sensor and accessory equipment at the facility located on top of a small hill inside Mayor Cito Alberto’s sprawling fighting-cock farm in Palta Small. The other team members included Dr. Hiroshi Inoue, chief seismologist, and Dr. Nelson Pulido, researcher, both of the Japan National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention based in Tsukuba City. The new device, which replaced the previous short-period sensor, will be able to detect earthquakes any…

18 Girls to Vie for Bb. San Andres Nov. 20

Eighteen candidates coming from the different barangays and four national high schools are competing for the crown of Binibining San Andres during the beauty pageant set this Nov. 20 at the San Andres Gymnasium.

The top five finalists and eventual winners will join the civic/military parade on November 29, 2010 as part of their official functions in connection with the celebration of the town fiesta and will participate in any official activity and major activities of the Municipal Government of San Andres.

The beauties were presented to the public last month at Casa Romano in barangay Belmonte. They are

Anna Lee Fernandez (San Andres Vocational School), Manilyn Salvador (Yocti), Maricar Candeluna (Bagong Sirang), Rochelle Oliveros (Codon 1), Joan Gallardo (Codon 2), Angelica Vellen (Codon NHS), Krizza Isip (Sta. Cruz), Roselyn Magno (Sapang Palay), Princes Reyna Palomo (Bislig), Mia Lumabi (SAVS), Nenita Soneja (Batong Paluway), Melissa Borre (San Jose), Marjorie Solano (Carangag), …

New DOT Tourism Logo, Website Withdrawn

The new logo “Pilipinas Kay Ganda” and website of the Department of Tourism were abruptly pulled out shortly after its “preview” on Monday following a rash of criticism.

Cebu tourism stakeholders were also puzzled by the change.

"In the first place, it would have been good if it was nationally accepted, but it's Tagalog... There must have been some consultation, I'm sure, but was the Cebuano community consulted on this?" asked Provincial Board Member Agnes Magpale, head of the PB committee on tourism.

She said industry stakeholders should have been consulted beforehand.

Magpale said she was worried about the new slogan "Pilipinas Kay Ganda" because foreign tourists may not understand it.

"If this is for the international market, maybe we should use English so that everybody will understand. Or maybe we should limit it (slogan) to one word, like the 'wow' in 'Wow Philippines,' which is universally understood," Magpale said.

Cebu re…

Starting Monday, ‘Pilipinas Kay Ganda’ Will Greet Tourists

Starting Monday, the Philippines will adopt “Pilipinas kay Ganda" as its new slogan in what Malacañang described as a bid to "reinvigorate" the country's tourism campaign.

President Benigno Aquino III said the new slogan to be launched Nov. 15 will replace the existing slogan "WOW Philippines".

The slogan aims to "reinvigorate our country’s tourism campaign and double tourist arrivals within the next three years," said a Malacañang statement posted Saturday night on the Presidential Communications Operations Office website.

Aquino, who is now in Japan for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, said the government will also train tourist police and guides to ensure the safety of local and foreign tourists alike.

Earlier this month, the Department of Tourism (DOT) said it would allocate P100 million for new media promotions, including a new website, to reach its goal of doubling tourist arrivals.

Philippine tourism suffered a blow last Aug.…

DBP Branch to Open in Virac Next Year: LGU, Manufacturers Seek P69.5-M in Loans from DBP

A local government unit, three micro-finance institutions and non-government organizations, and 27 micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Catanduanes have expressed interest in securing loans totaling P69.5 million from the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), which would establish a branch in Virac in the 3rd quarter of 2011. According to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) provincial office, which sponsored last week’s financing forum with DBP, the municipal government of San Andres is keen in borrowing P35 million for its proposed fishport and terminal while the micro-finance institutions and NGOs have submitted applications for P4.5 million in loans. The MSMEs, on the other hand, would like to secure a total of P30 million in credit from DBP for their handicraft, trucking, trading, poultry and other small businesses, including financing for the operation of local schools. Seventy-six participants, including local chief executives and municipal officials fr…

Rosal, Cua Ink MOA on ETRACS

Legazpi City (15 October) -- Mayor Carmen Geraldine B. Rosal of this city and Catanduanes Governor Joseph Cua formally signed a Memorandum of Agreement for the adoption of Enhanced Tax Revenue Assessment and Collection System (ETRACS) of the local government of Catanduanes last October 1, 2010 here.

The adoption of ETRACS by the island province was requested by Cua to the city government here during the term of former Mayor Noel E. Rosal to strengthen the service delivery standard to the people of Catanduanes.

Engr. Joseph Esplana, city planning officer here, pointed out that ETRACS is an Australian Agency International Development (AUSAID) program, under the Local Governance Development Project, and designed to modernize and speed-up the revenue operations of a local government.

Esplana added that one of the commitments of the city government here as principal ETRACS implementer under the original Land Management Program (LAMP) 2 is to cascade the learning process of system installat…

CNHS’ Balmadrid Wins Bronze in 4th IESO

A senior student of the Catanduanes National High School, Noel Lee V. Balmadrid, was among the bronze medal winners in the 4th International Earth Science Olympiad/Earth Olympic (IESO 2010) held in Indonesia from Sept. 18-28, 2010. Balmadrid, a son of DPWH engineers Noel and Cristy Balmadrid of Francia, Virac, received his medal during the closing ceremony at the University Club Hall, Gadjah Mada University. Last year during the 3rd IESO in Taiwan, CNHS’ Emmanuel Codillo won the best presentation award in the International Field Team Investigation. Participants from Asian countries – Taiwan, Indonesia, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines - dominated the championship, with seven delegates winning gold medals. The other countries which participated were France, India, Ukraine, Italy, Kuwait, Maldives, Nepal, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, USA, Romania, and Russia. The next IESO will be in Italy. The International Earth Science Olympiad (IESO) is an annual earth science competit…

CSC Kapariz Joins Coastal Clean Up; Leads Tree Planting Drive

The Kabataang Pangarap Ni Rizal (Kapariz), a central student organization of the Catanduanes State Colleges joined the coastal clean up drive in observance of the International Coastal Clean Up Day on September 18, along the shorelines of Concepcion, Salvacion and San Vicente, Virac and in Cabugao and Batalay in Bato.

The organization also spearheaded a tree planting drive along the stretch of national roads in Valencia, Bigaa, Sto. Domingo and Palta Small, Virac on September 11.

CSC NSTP students, the Biological Science Society officers and members, and MAT Biology and Physics students of the CSC Graduate School also took part in the activity.

According to Mr. Rey T. Soneja, adviser of Kapariz, their participation to the activity is in response to the invitation of the DENR Provincial Office. He said this is also in line with their association’s advocacy on environmental conservation and awareness.

Kapariz earlier led a group of more than 350 CSC students taking up Rizal Course in t…

DA, Seed Firm Trains Farmers on Off-Season Veggie Planting

Local farmers from other towns are clamoring for the conduct of another training for them after the Department of Agriculture conducted one on the planting of off-season vegetables for farmers from Virac, San Miguel and Bato last week. Ten farmers from each town, accompanied by their municipal High-Value Commercial Crop (HVCC) coordinators, attended the two-day seminar held at Rakdel Inn last Sept. 13-14. Aloha Gigi Bañaria, chief of the Institutional Development Section at the DA Regional Field Unit 5, headed the team of resource persons composed of technicians from the East-West Seed Co. based in Bulacan. The East-West team pushed for the organic planting of vegetable hybrid seeds. The participants and local agriculture officials, who were treated to a practicum at the provincial nursery at the capitol compound on the second day, wished there was more time to focus on how to treat pests and diseases affecting off-season vegetables. Ms. Nelia Teves, officer-in-charge of the Provi…

Bato Alisto

The people of Bato somehow backed their reputation of having the most professionals, and their motto "Bato Alisto," by winning the 2010 National Literacy Award for 4th to 6th class towns.

Mayor Leo Rodriguez and the members of the Municipal Literacy Coordinating Council, as well as the Sangguniang Bayan, DepEd officials and teachers in Bato, should be commended for working as one in achieving the feat, the first ever won by a municipality in Catanduanes. Most likely, they gained the nod of the team of evaluators by showing the link between literacy, education and incomes, and by having the commitment and seriousness to attain the goals of the program.

The rest of the 11 towns would doubtless find it hard to duplicate Bato's feat but they could if they want to. Now, it would be much better if every one of our leaders could find the courage to educate the people of the evils of vote-buying

Source: Inside Page - Fernan Gianan, Catanduanes Tribune - 19 September 2010

Mushroom Production Technology

The Department of Science and Technology and the Catanduanes State Colleges jointly sponsored the conduct of training on Mushroom Spawn Production at the CSC Extension Services Center last August 18-21, 2010. The was participated by representatives from DAR Catanduanes, LGU San Miguel, Bato, and Professors and Students from the CSC Colleges of Arts and Sciences and Agriculture and Fisheries.

Said activity is just the beginning of a series of trainings aimed at promoting the production of this important foodstuff and along the way develop local expertise in the production of mushroom seed-piece called pure culture, or spawn. Catanduanes is producing enormous volumes of abaca wastes from the close to 38,000 hectares, more or less, of abaca plantation throughout the province. These are important substrates for the production of Volvariella volvaceae, or the kabuteng saging/kabuteng dayami. In the lifetime of an abaca plant or up to the time it is harvested for fiber, it produce an estima…

Needed: A Common Stand on Forest Protection

There are reliable reports that Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer (CENRO) Vivencio Cabanayan, Jr. is on the way out before September is over.

Piqued by the DENR official’s alleged involvement in the smuggling of narra lumber to the mainland, Gov. Joseph C. Cua reportedly lobbied to have Cabanayan transferred to another posting. Now, the hard question is: will his relief stop the veritable flood of illegally-sourced narra that goes out of the island under the DENR’s very eyes?

The provincial chief executive has already made his position clear in various fora: the small-time lumber smugglers will keep their livelihood as long as the lumber is used for domestic purposes or house construction; he will favorably endorse applications for Private Land Timber Permits for the cutting of naturally-grown trees provided the forest products are manufactured by legitimate shops into finished furniture; and, his main concern is to reduce to a bare minimum the considerable volume of …

Expansion of Aquasilvi Project in Virac Okayed

The Sangguniang Bayan has approved the expansion of the aquasilvi culture project that was initially established in barangay Magnesia del Sur six months ago.

This was disclosed during the Aquasilvi Culture Field Day held Aug. 25 during which a test catch showed that some of the 1,015 crablets seeded into the two enclosures at the 48-hectare mangrove park had already grown at as much as 300 grams.

Councilor Ephraim Antonio "Toy" Gianan, chairman of the SB Committee on Agriculture, said that with the passage of the resolution endorsing the project, the memorandum of agreement covering the expansion is ready for signing by Mayor Jose U. Alberto II.

In lauding the municipal agriculture office, Provincial Agricultural Support Office, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and the office of Gov. Joseph Cua for the success of the project, Gianan called on the members of the Samahan ng mga Maliliit na Mangingisda ng Magnesia del Sur to remember that they should earn fr…

Virac’s Jamela Arcilla 9th in Nursing Board

A daughter of Virac placed 9th in the Nurse Licensure Examination given by the Professional Regulation Commission’s Board of Nursing last July 2010, with 82 graduates of the Catanduanes State Colleges also passing the exam. Jamela Montoya Arcilla, a 2010 BS Nursing cum laude graduate of Far Eastern University, garnered a rating of 84.80 percent to land in the top ten list. Only 37,679 out of 91,008 (41.40%) passed the nursing board exam. A daughter of Atty. Felipe Panti Arcilla Jr. of Gogon Sirangan, Virac, and the former Isabelita Lulu Montoya of Sta. Ana, Pampanga, Jamela is a graduate of Virac Central Elementary School (2002) and Catanduanes National High School (2006). She was also the Clinical Excellence Awardee during the pinning ceremonies of the FEU Institute of Nursing Batch 2010. Also hurdling the nursing board on his first try is Eldon Valeza Tabuzo, son of Engr. and Mrs. Elmo Tabuzo of Calatagan, Virac. A product of the Catanduanes State Colleges Elementary Laboratory …

Protection for Bicolano OFWS in Hongkong Sought

Legazpi City (27 August) -- The Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) Family Circles Confederation, Inc. in Bicol has sought the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) here to take the necessary steps to protect OFWs based in Hong Kong from possible harassment and maltreatment as an offshoot of the tragic hostage-taking incident in front of Quirino grandstand last Monday.

Elsie Atienza, president of Bicol OFW Family Circle Confederation, Inc., said that organization and the families of OFWs in Hong Kong have expressed fears because of possible retaliation of some Chinese nationals following the bloody hostage drama.

"Actually some families of our OFWs based in Hong Kong and in mainland China are worried after the incident, that is why we are now coordinating with the OWWA to ensure the safety of our OFWs," Atienza said.

She also urged OWWA regional office in Bicol to put up a free overseas telephone line so that families of OFWs can easily communicate with their families …

CUA Program for Talents Launched

There’s another acronym for CUA: Catanduanes Upliftment of the Arts.

The new program was recently launched by Governor Cua and the board of directors of Catanduanes Institute of Technology Foundation, Inc. (CITFI) in order to provide support to Catandunganons imbued with skill and talent in the art.

As a starter, an art painting competition was held last July 31, participated in by 22 artists from all over Catanduanes.

The art contest was judged by CITFI Board Director and Artist Mar Vidal, fine arts teacher of UP and renowned portrait artist chosen by top personalities such as boxing legend Manny Pacquiao, Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia, former presidents Cory Aquino and Joseph Estrada, and Archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal to undertake their portraits. Vidal was the teacher of Monique Llhuiller, international celebrity and owner of the Llhuiller shops and businesses in the country and abroad.

"I am impressed by the many talented artists in Catanduanes. I promise to visit Catanduane…

Bicol Registers RP's Fastest 2009 Economic Growth Rate at 8.2%

Legazpi City (12 August) -- Bicol Region's economy grew by 8.2 per cent in 2009, twice its pace in 2008 and much faster than the 1.1 per cent growth at the national level, reports the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) in Bicol.

The same report shows that the industry sector remained the strongest performer with an 18.3 per cent expansion. Bicol Region topped all other regions in the country in terms of growth.

The Service sector, which remained the biggest contributor to the region's output at 41.8 per cent, grew at a faster rate of 5.0 per cent from 3.8 per cent the previous year. Except for Transportation, Communication and Storage, all subsectors recorded accelerated growths. Growth of Transportation, Communication and Storage slipped to 4.2 per cent from 4.3 per cent in 2008.

Trade, on the other hand posted a 2.8 per cent growth, a very slight improvement from the 2.7 per cent expansion in 2008. Similarly, Finance registered an uptrend at 8.5 per cent in 2009 a…

CSC Recognized by CHED as Provincial Institute in Agri-Fisheries

The Catanduanes State Colleges (CSC) College of Agriculture and Fisheries was among the 77 colleges in the country recognized by Commission on Higher Education as Provincial Institute of Agriculture and Fisheries (PIAF).

With this recognition, the CSC was initially allocated with P250, 000.00 for the upgrading of its agri-fisheries facilities.

According to Dr. Asuncion V. Asetre, CSC president, the upgrading is one of the priorities of the college in support to the National Agriculture and Fisheries Education System (NAFES), including the strengthening of the program offerings of the College of Agriculture and Fisheries.

NAFES was created through RA 8435 which mandates CHED, in coordination with the Department of Agriculture and appropriate government agencies such as state universities and colleges, to upgrade the quality, ensure sustainability and promote global competitiveness of agriculture and fisheries education.

The college will allocate P50, 000.00 for the purchase of instructi…

Fishing’s Fine Again at the Pier

The fishermen at the Virac pier are back in. PPA Virac port manager Flor Balota has ordered security guards at the port to allow entry at specified periods to the denizens of the pier who regular drop their hooks and lines in the early morning or at sunset, hoping to catch some fish for dinner.
The fishermen, however, are back at their own risk. They would be requested to submit a waiver stating that the PPA or manager Balota would not be responsible if something untoward happens to them inside the port. Those who want to go out on a date at the pier will be denied entry along with kids. The manager’s memory is still fresh of the incident wherein a man on a bike ran into the fallen steel post just after typhoon Reming. The biker died at the hospital after impaling himself on a protruding piece of steel. The PPA’s recent action to bar fishermen from using the port was an offshoot of a directive from Rene Agao of the Port Management Office in Legaspi. In his May 18 memo, he reminded …

Too Much Politics is Anathema to Progress

Inaugural Speech of Congressman Cesar V. Sarmiento
Mga tugang kong Catandunganon!

Enot, gusto kong ipaabot sa sainyo ang sakong dakulang pasasalamat sa itinao nindong suporta kan nakaaging eleksiyon
. I am very grateful for the trust and confidence that you gave me. By this formal ceremony, I swear to exert all efforts within my power to serve the interest of all Catandunganons, as a manner of repaying the support that you bestowed upon this representation.

I also wish to express my deepest gratitude to my loving wife and kids, my mother-in-law and all my relatives, for their unselfish support and untiring efforts that, for the large part, contributed to my success in my last political foray.

Likewise, let me extend my invitation to everyone to attend our thanksgiving party – called Handog Pasasalamat, to be held tonight at the Virac sports center.

I have specifically opted to celebrate and mark the beginning of my term, in the midst of the common Catandunganon, who prayed, hoped and sac…

Filipinos Making Waves Festival & Parade 2010

The festival will showcase unprecedented cultural events, rockin' music and related fun-activities to illustrate the diversity of contemporary traditional Filipino arts and culture. In this two-day event, we are celebrating Filipinos Making Waves here in Canada and the world. Come and bring the whole family and enjoy the rich taste of the Philippines!

Type of Event: Filipino Festival & Parade
When: August 21-22, 2010
Where: Yonge-Dundas Square, Toronto, Canada

The Fish Keep Getting Away

If people at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Catanduanes were fishermen, their bellies would have been full but their families would have nothing for dinner.

The other Sunday, the governor’s Task Force Kalikasan intercepted a wing van with a cargo of finished furniture and narra lumber tucked underneath its load of scrap iron, old newspapers and cartons.

It soon turned out that the shipment was covered by documents issued by the CENRO, although the shipper, Gina Tenerife Furniture Shop based in Tobrehon, San Miguel, could not present the Certificate of Lumber Origin.

What was questionable about the cargo was that the "stair steps" listed in the CENRO permit were not finished furniture, as it was merely passed over once with a planer and the quantity on the permit was erased and replaced with a figure ten times as much. For a government agency tasked with the vital job of protecting the dwindling forest resources of Catanduanes from rapacious ill…

7 Missing Fishermen Found in Catanduanes, Camarines Sur

VIRAC, Catanduanes, Philippines—Seven fishermen, who were missing since Typhoon "Basyang" hit the country on Tuesday, were rescued in Catanduanes and Camarines Sur provinces Friday, an Army official said. Antonio Tayoto, 40; Marlon Tayoto, 35; Alex Azicate, 30; and Jason Arcilla, 18; all of Gigmoto town, Catanduanes, were safely docked by teams from the Army, police and local government units at Barangay Tabugoc, Pandan, Catanduanes, said Maj. Harold Cabunoc, information officer of the 9th Infantry Division based in Camp Elias Angeles in Pili, Camarines Sur. He said the fishermen were turned over to the village chief of Tabugoc by the rescuers and were already with their families Friday morning. In Camarines Sur, three survivors were also picked up by rescue teams on board two Air Force helicopters in Siruma town at around 1:30 p.m. Friday. Officials, however, have yet to provide identities of the three. Two additional helicopters were sent from the 505th Search and R…

Catanduanes Needs P2.5B to Build Concrete Road - BM

VIRAC, Catanduanes—A long-standing joke here is that if the government had indeed used funds to build roads from pre-martial law days, this island province could have sunk below sea level by now.

But the joke is apparently becoming true as the province’s 11 towns are now enjoying concrete roads as funds for the road network continue to pour.

Gov. Joseph Cua said road concreting of the province’s 317-kilometer-long circumferential road is almost 45-percent complete and that the second phase of the program under a soft-loan contract with the Japanese International Cooperating Agency (Jica) may be realized by next year. The province’s nonconcreted highway roads, however, have been regravelled and are passable.

Cua said the province is hoping the concreting of the national highways would be attended by the national government, saying that in times of disasters such as typhoons, supplies of aids in affected areas are done by boat. This, however, can only be done in good weather.


DENR to Get 1.9M for Geohazard Maps in Bicol - BM

THE Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will receive a P1.9-million fund from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for the production of geohazard maps covering the Bicol region. The additional funding from the DSWD is intended for the production and reproduction of geohazard maps with scales of 1:50,000 and 1:10,000 for distribution to local government units in the selected provinces and towns in the region. Enviroment Secretary Horacio Ramos and DSWD Acting Secretary Celia Capadocia-Yangco said the memorandum of agreement recently signed by the DENR and the DSWD for the project is in line with the “Bicol Recovery Project” which is being supported by the United Nations Development Program. The DENR, through its Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB), is also providing some P1.6 million as counterpart fund for the project.  The MGB is the lead agency for the nationwide Geohazard Mapping and Assessment Program, which covers the production of geoha…

Group Seeks Establishment of Catanduanes Natural Park - CT

A non-government organization composed of fervent environmentalists is seeking the establishment of the Catanduanes Natural Park through the expansion of the Catanduanes Watershed Forest Reserve (CWFR) earlier declared under Presidential Proclamation 123 in 1987.

In a petition set to be submitted to President Benigno Simeon Aquino III, the Catanduanes Sustainable Ecosystems Development, Inc. (EcoDev) is advocating the inclusion of large portions of the Catanduanes wilderness area in the proposed park, with the ultimate goal of preserving vast habitats for biodiversity conservation in accordance with the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) Law and maintain the viability of human survival in the province;

The group will likewise call on local officials headed by Governor Joseph C. Cua and Congressman Cesar V. Sarmiento to exhort the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to immediately expedite the establishment of a protected area in the province based on the pr…

Independence and What It Means For Us World War II Veterans

For us and in behalf of those who are no longer alive that risked their lives because we wanted our neighbors and families safe and free from the brutal Japanese occupation, see the transformation of Catanduanes into what she is now compared to conditions before Virac was bombed in the morning of December 12, 1941. We thank GOD and guerillas from Virac, Viga, Baras, Bato and San Miguel who captured the Japanese headquarters in what used to be the Virac municipal building without the participation of American ground forces. We believe we have earned the privilege of sharing our concerns with the living, particularly the high school and college graduates, and the people’s elected leaders.

Catanduanes is our birthplace and we love her as intensely as anyone and want to see her and those who reside and work to provide food and home for their loved ones. It has a small land mass and generally mountainous and, therefore, needs a huge forest cover in order to provide water for the survival …