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TESDA offers skills training to OSYs, drug surrenderers in ARMM

Out-of-school youth and drug surrenderers in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) are given priority in training courses offered by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

“The out-of-school youth and the drug surrenderers will surely avail of the program. We will not leave them hanging,” TESDA Director Secretary Guiling Mamondiong said during a press briefing held here on Thursday, October 27.

Secretary Mamondiong said the agency will continue to implement its current programs even as it has integrated the anti-poverty agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte.

To further pursue an active participation of communities in TESDA’s programs, letters to all 42,000 barangays in the country asking local officials to provide a list of recommended scholars and the kind of skills they need training on have been sent, he said.

The agency’s 14-point Reform and Development Agenda for the next six years are Barangay-based Scholarship Program; On-line Scholarship Application; Technical Audit of TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) Schools and Programs; Skills Training for Drug Dependents; Skills Training for Entrepreneurs and Family Enterprises; Skills Training for Inmates and their Families; Inclusive Program for Women; Continuing Program for TESDA’s Alumni; Global Access to/on-line database of TVET Graduates and Certified Workers; Linkages with Agro-Industry; Linkages with State Universities and Colleges and Local Universities and Colleges; Linkages with Foreign Skills Training Institutions; Transparency; and Moral Renewal.

The 14-point agenda serve as the framework on which programs designed specifically for expanded access to TVET by the identified groups would be implemented.

“We are confident that these programs will help empower our people to become more productive members of society. These will give them opportunities through skills training that can either help them start a career or a new business venture,” said the TESDA chief.

The agency’s programs are free of charge to out-of-school youth, persons with disabilities, as well as employed and unemployed residents of the region. 

To avail of the free skills training, applicants may visit the TESDA training office in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao and provincial offices for other areas in the region. (BPI/PIA-10)

Comprehensive Reform and Development Agenda to be launched in ARMM

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, Oct. 28 (PIA) –Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will launch a program dubbed Comprehensive Reform and Development Agenda (CRDA) in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) on Saturday, October 29.

In a press statement from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the program will help uplift the lives of the residents in the region and other conflict-affected areas in Mindanao.

Areas that will benefit from CRDA are the towns of Jolo (Sulu), Bongao (Tawi-Tawi), and Marawi City (Lanao del Sur), as well as the provinces of Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao.

Aside from ARMM areas, other beneficiaries of the initiative are:
Region 9 – Zamboanga City, Ipil (Zamboanga Sibugay), and Pagadian (Zamboanga del Sur);

Region 10 – Tubod (Lanao del Norte) and Lanao del Norte province; and, Region 12 – Isulan (Sultan Kudarat) and the cities Kidapawan (North Cotabato), Koronadal (South Cotabato) and General Santos City.

Among the programs, projects, and services covered by CRDA are scholarships from TESDA and from the Commission on Higher Education; water projects from the Department of the Interior and Local Government; agricultural machinery, equipment and seedling from the Department of Agriculture; banca, fishing gear and gill nets from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources; supplemental feeding from the Department of Social Welfare and Development; opportunities under the Special Programs and Employment of Students beneficiaries of the Department of Labor and Employment; and distribution of PhilHealth cards.

TESDA Director General Guiling Mamondiong said he has been tasked by the President to coordinate with other agencies in resolving poverty and hunger in Mindanao. 

The President earlier urged various government agencies to submit measures on how to ease hunger and poverty in Mindanao.

TESDA is a government agency in charge of making vocational and technical skills training available nationwide. Its objective is to develop a trained workforce thereby providing young Filipinos a better chance at finding employment. TESDA is also one of the 12 government agencies on the forefront of the fight against poverty. (BPI/PIA-10)

Commemorative stamps turnover highlights ARMM Archives Day

The ceremonial turnover of commemorative stamps from the Philippine Postal Corporation to the Office of the Regional Governor highlighted the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao's (ARMM) first Archives Day celebration on October 21, at Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City.

The issuance of the stamps is in recognition of the Office of the Regional Governor’s (ORG) ISO 9001 certification following a successful two-phase external audit conducted by TUV Rheinland Philippines, Inc.

“This is one achievement that this administration is very proud of. This is the very first time that the Office of the Regional Governor attempted and passed the certification for ISO 9001:2008. We are very appreciative that the Philippine Postal Corp.’s Stamp Committee approved the grant of the special stamps,” said ARMM Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman.

“This milestone is our legacy to the Bangsamoro people and the commemorative stamps are our small contribution as collectible pieces of history. Hence we want to share the event with historians, archivists, librarians, and records officers all over ARMM,” Gov. Hataman said.

The Philippine Postal Corp. recognizes historical milestones and achievements of organizations and institutions through the issuance of commemorative and special stamps. When granted, only a limited number of these stamps are printed and distributed to more than 192-member countries of the Universal Postal Union.

“The ISO 9001 certified core processes are two of the main services of ORG and we want to ensure our clients that we don’t only provide quality services but also that these services undergo a quality standard procedure,” said Norkhalila Mae Mambuay-Campong, Regional Cabinet Secretary and the Quality Management Representative.

ORG-ARMM, which has ministerial control over some 40 line agencies and support offices, is now one of the few local government units in the country eligible for the ISO certification. ARMM also recently passed for the very first time the national government’s Good Governance Conditions reflecting a revitalized and reformed autonomous region.

In the Philippines, pursuant to Proclamation 660 Series of 1995, the National Archives Day is observed on October 21. The proclamation is aimed at focusing public attention on the role and importance of archives in national development efforts. (BPI/PIA-10)

ARMM holds conference on resolving clan conflicts

The Regional Reconciliation and Unification Commission of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (RRUC-ARMM) held a conference on ‘rido’ settlement on October 19-21, 2016 to generate insights and recommendations from different actors to resolve rido-related problems in the region.

The participants of the three-day conference are representatives from local government units, line agencies, civil society organizations, government security forces, and revolutionary groups specifically the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Moro National Liberation Front. These groups have different data on rido and have different approaches in settling clan conflicts.

Romeo Sema, chairman of RRUC-ARMM, said there’s a need for a better way to settle family conflicts. “We want to have a consolidated data on the number of rido cases and we aim to have coordinative mechanisms to settle these ridos,” Sema said.

He also noted that the regional government will be able to have a complete look at the rido situation in the ARMM and that RRUC, being an advisory body to the regional governor, will be able to recommend policy-related solutions to this problem.

The book ‘Rido: Clan Feuding and Conflict Management in Mindanao’ written by Wilfredo Magno Torres III defined rido as a conflict characterized by sporadic outburst of retaliatory violence between families and kinship groups as well as between communities.

Abdulbasit Benito, RRUC-ARMM executive director, said rido causes problems not only between conflicting families but in the community as well. “Rido causes much suffering, numerous casualties, destruction of properties, and it cripples the economy and displaces the community,” Benito said.

Data from RRUC-ARMM showed there were 269 cases of rido in the ARMM from 2012 until October 2016. But the ARMM’s Police Regional Office reports there were only 209 cases during the same period in the region.

Benito said the main causes of rido are election-related conflicts, land ownership conflicts, crimes against chastity, personal grudge and theft. He added that even jesting, suspicion, and mere misunderstanding could also cause rido.

“We will continue working with these actors to help settle rido and prevent it from recurring,” RRUC-ARMM chairman Sema said. (BPI/PIA-10)

Marawi exec bares top gains in first 100 days

Some say only magic will change the negative image of Marawi City. But the city mayor believes otherwise.

There is good news in Marawi each day and this is the new normal in the city, Mayor Majul Gandamra told constituents on October 17, as he boasted the great strides of his administration for the first 100 days.

Programs to support the anti-illegal drugs campaign of the national government, ease traffic congestion and address solid waste problems which brought back the trust of the people to the authorities and the government system are among the top accomplishments cited by the mayor.

“The city has been silenced by fear of criminalities and injustices which contributed to the loss of opportunities for economic growth and the involuntary migration of residents. Thus, we have strengthened our collaboration with the authorities and took the lead in the implementation of the program to end the narcotics syndicate in our communities,” Gandamra said.

He further reported that the city government has reconstituted a new Ecological Solid Waste Management Council, launched new strategies coupled with enhanced ordinances to address the solid waste problem, and provided the necessary logistical support such as procurement of trucks and equipment to facilitate timely collection of wastes.

Gandamra said he also ordered the regulation of public utility vehicles and the 8,000 tricycle operators as well as the demolition of illegal structures and terminals along key roads which caused heavy traffic congestion. ‘We are now finalizing our Road and Traffic Management Plan and will soon commence the training of our traffic champions,” he added. 

Other gains cited by the mayor include the revitalization of the disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) council, the conduct of disaster preparedness drills and basic life-saving trainings, and repair of the drainage system. (APB/PIA-10)

ARMM, Gawad Kalinga ink accord on school feeding program

The Department of Education in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DepEd-ARMM) and Gawad Kalinga signed a memorandum of agreement to implement a school-based feeding program covering six towns.

The agreement entails the establishment of central kitchens that will benefit 11,300 students in six towns namely Bongao in Tawi-Tawi, Jolo in Sulu, Lamitan in Basilan, Taraka in Lanao del Sur, and Upi and Parang in Maguindanao.

The program will have the active participation of parents and teachers as well as representatives from local government units, private organizations, and other stakeholders. Daily preparation of nutritious meals for public schoolchildren is the general objective of the program.

In August 2015, the DepEd-ARMM and Gawad Kalinga first entered into an agreement to pilot the same program in Parang, Maguindanao. The success of that initial effort prompted the expansion of the central kitchen approach in other towns in five provinces in the region.

Dr. John A. Magno, DepEd-ARMM Secretary, said the regional government is hoping that the pilot kitchens will eventually become training centers for replication of the program throughout the region.

The school-based feeding initiative will start in the six towns covered by the agreement in the second week of November.

The 2015 data of the Food and Nutrition Research Institute showed that among children aged five to 10, about four of 10 are underweight, while six of 100 are thin and regarded as having health problems.

“The regional government is doing concerted efforts to combat hunger and eliminate malnutrition among children,” Dr. Magno said. He stressed that the program will also help improve the attendance of schoolchildren.

After the signing of the agreement, key officials of DepEd-ARMM and Gawad Kalinga as well as representatives of various stakeholders signed a “wall of commitment” to show full support to the program. (BPI/APB/PIA-10)

BFAR Marawi holds lakeshore clean-up

The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) here conducted a lakeshore clean-up drive on October 18, to intensify awareness on the need to conserve and protect fisheries and aquatic resources.

The lakeshore clean-up held in Barangay Lumbaca Madaya kicked-off the 53rd Fish Conservation Week celebration in Marawi city.

The observance that started on October 17 and will culminate on October 21 is pursuant to Presidential Proclamation No. 176 s. 1963.

City Fishery Officer Saida Tomadung said the theme for this year’s celebration is "Malinis at Masaganang Karagatan Tungo sa Mas Masiglang Pangisdaan" to remind the public on the importance of protecting the fisheries and aquatic resources.

Other activities for the weeklong celebration are the conduct of training on municipal and regulatory services; consultative meetings with local government units, barangay officials, non-government organizations, peoples’ organizations, and fisherfolks; and the holding of livelihood day where fishing paraphernalia will be distributed to targeted fisherfolks. (APB/PIA-10)