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Fire gutted school buildings in Lanao del Sur

June 7, 2019

ILIGAN CITY ----- A school in Barangay Dilabayan, Bacolod Kalawi town in Lanao del Sur was burned down after a fire broke out, past 8:00 in the morning on Friday (June 7). Police investigation said the fire originated from a nearby house owned by a certain Juhary Manan whose family was able to escape. Captain Timothy Jim Romanillos, chief of Bacolod Kalawi Municipal Police Station, said the fire, that was reported at 8:20AM, gutted three school buildings of Dilabayan Primary School mostly made of light materials. "Kaya ang bilis kumalat ng apoy dahil luma na (ang mga building) at made mostly of light materials," Romanillos said in a phone interview. No casualties were reported. Initial report said faulty wiring caused the fire. The Bureau of Fire Protection in Bacolod Kalawi is still determining the estimated cost of damage according to Romanillos.

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Police seizes 6.8 million pesos of shabu in Lanao Sur

June 7, 2019

ILIGAN CITY ----- Authorities arrested around 12:00 on Friday, June 7, two suspects and seized a kilo of suspected 'shabu' in a joint anti-drug buybust operation in Purok 7 Kapigis, Barangay Eastern, Wao, Lanao del Sur. The joint buybust operation was facilitated by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (PDEA BAR), PDEA 12, 34th Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army, Wao Municipal Police Station and the Provincial Drug Enforcement Unit (PDEU) of Lanao del Sur Provincial Police Office. Police Colonel Madzgani Mukaram, chief of Lanao del Sur Provincial Police Office, identified the suspects as Darangji Ombo Angatong, alias Salaudin and Lendi Asiw Mangondacan. Mangondacan was wounded when he tried to escape and exchanged fire with the arresting officer according to Mukaram. "He was brought to Wao District Hospital for medical treatment," Mukaram said. The seized drugs has an estimated market value of 6.8 million pesos based on the estimate of the PDEA. Operatives have also seized the buybust money, assorted identification cards and other non drug evidence including one unit of KIA Picanto, color blue with plate number ZFN 679. The suspects and the evidences were brought to PDEA BARMM office in Cotabato for proper disposition.

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Marawi, City of Inspiration not City of Tarpulin says Gordon

June 4, 2019

MARAWI CITY ----- Rather than calling Marawi City a Tarpulin Capital of the Philippines, Senator Richard Gordon said it is better to consider the predominant-Muslim city a City of Inspiration. In his visit here on Monday (June 3) as chairman of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), Gordon said it is inspiring to be in Marawi seeing tarpulin hung all over the place congratulating those who passed board examinations or who have graduated from college.  "It is most inspiring when I see 'Congratulations for passing the board exam', 'Congratulations for passing the bar exam', 'congratulations for passing the PMA (Philippine Military Academy)'," Gordon said in his message to almost a hundred of PRC volunteers at the New Capitol Complex Conference Hall in Marawi City. Upon entering Marawi City, tarpulins of several sizes, bearing photos, names and courses or kinds of board exams, were seen hung, some are put up in woods, congratulating a family member. Many of these congratulatory tarps bear the family names of both parents and grand parents. Some of these tarps are paid by relatives who has the same family name of the one being congratulated. "It is a pride and honor of the family that's why we have to put all the family names of the family. If you miss one, they will get hurt," Jamalodin Basman, a Maranao registered nurse and a barangay kagawad in Marawi City said.

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ICRC builts water, sanitation facility in LDS

June 4, 2019

SAGUIARAN, LANAO DEL SUR ----- Around six thousand residents here could have an easy access of their water supply after the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) formally turned over on Monday (June 3) the water and sanitation facility at the Bualan Spring in Barangay Bualan. The facility will help not only to the residents of Saguiaran but also of the internally displaced families who are living in the transitory shelter site in nearby Bahay Ng Pagbabago in Barangay Sagonsongan, Marawi City, some two kilometers away. Residents can use the facility in washing their clothes and in fetching water without dealing anymore the thick muds since it was cemented all over. It also made the lives of the Meranaws easy for Wudhu rite (washing) when they entered the Mosque to perform their prayers since the facility is built just at the entrance of the Mosque. Wudhu is the ritual washing performed by Muslims before prayer. Muslims believed they must be clean and wear good clothes before they present themselves before God.  The area was used to be a creek where residents have to look for their place to wash, either their clothes. "Mga 60 years na kaming nagtiis na sobrang putik ang area, tapos mag aaway away pa ang iba kasi nag-aagawan sa area. Sobrang malaking tulong ito sa amin," said Zenaida Macatanong, 60-year old resident of Bualan, whose husband, a senior citizen who can only move through a wheelchair, prays at the Mosque regularly. Macatanong revealed that the Bualan Spring can sustain evenTh f dry season could last until a year. "More than 60 years old na ako pero never pa namin na-experience na nawalan ng tubig yang spring na yan," she added. Engineer Julficar Pangato, project monitoring engineer of the ICRC, the 4-million peso worth project can serve up to 11,000 people if Marawi City and the neighboring towns of Lanao del Sur would experience power interruption. "Kasi maraming mga residente sa Marawi at ibang area sa Lanao (del) Sur ang dependent sa electric water pump kaya kung wala silang kuryente, dito sila pumupunta para mag-igib," Pangato said in an interview. The turn-over of the facility was led by ICRC President Peter Maurer who came to the Philippines for the second time after the Yolanda tragedy in Tacloban. "President (Peter) Maurer visits Marawi City to have a humanitarian dialogue with the local government officials and the locals, including the internally displaced persons to know the needs, two years after the siege, and bring it to the forefront and invite donors for help," said Lany dela Cruz, Senior Communications Officer of the ICRC. Two years since the siege started, 1,100 evacuees and residents of Lanao del Sur received potable water through water-treatment facilities in two hospitals while 7,500 people from Marawi were aided with continuous running of water system through ICRC support to the Marawi City Water District. In cooperation with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), the ICRC supported 4,500 people in Saguiaran with water, sanitation and hygiene promotion activities. More than 300 PRC volunteers were mobilized to support ICRC activities in Lanao del Sur. PRC Chairman and Senator Richard Gordon said the ICRC and the PRC will continue to help and when he and Maurer will go to Davao today to meet with President Rodrigo Duterte, he will ask the president to fast track the rehabilitation of Marawi. "We went through a very deadly experience here in Marawi and since day 1, we were already working on the streets to give the evacuees blood pressure, water, food and psychosocial support. We will continue to help," Gordon said in his message with the volunteers who met Maurer and his party.

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DOST gears up for Marawi IDPs’ livelihood programs

June 3, 2019

MARAWI CITY, June 3 (PIA ICCC) -- The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has intensified its efforts in providing livelihood programs for the internally displaced persons (IDPs) of this city. Dr. Rowena Cristina Guevara, undersecretary for Research and Development said during the project launching of Livelihood Program for Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Marawi by DOST’s Industrial Technology Development Institute (ITDI) that the agency would provide them support until they can recover. “Hangga't hindi sila nakakabangon, tutulong kami (Until they can recover, we will help them),” Guevara said. Guevara also emphasized that the agency has been providing a series of training and hands-on programs to the IDPs through its different offices. DOST-ITDI has been providing technologies and training on personal care products, charcoal briquetting, herbal processing and essential oil extraction aimed at improving the quality of life of the IDPs by utilizing indigenous resources for their sustainable livelihood. In partnership with the SMILES Foundation, the DOST also supported the IDPs in Butig with a corn mill facility. The Bayabao Poblacion Farmers Cooperative here has already harvested 2,400 kilos from its 40-hectare corn plantation, earning P26,400 per cycle. Other projects implemented by the SMILES-DOST partnership include “Do-It-Yourself (DIY)” bamboo shelter production for Butig, Lanao del Sur and Innovation Support System and Management Strategies to Vegetable Production to Farmers in Pantar, Lanao del Norte. DOST has also partnered with the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology (MSU-IIT) to revive the handloom weaving industry in Marawi through the Maranao Collectible, a group of internally displaced women and men who create heirloom “langkit” weaving. The DOST will provide training and necessary materials and handlooms.  “We are thankful to DOST, because the funding for the loans will provide more opportunities for Maranao weavers,” said Prof. Darwin Manubag of MSU-IIT.  The DOST provides the technology while its partner organizations assist in the implementation of the projects to the grassroots. Being a member-agency of the Task Force Bangon Marawi’s  (TFBm) Subcommittee on Business and Livelihood, DOST commits itself to provide sustainable livelihood to the IDPs. (LEAntonio/PIA)  

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UN-FAO conducts end project performance assessment workshop

June 2, 2019

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur,  - The UN-Food and Agriculture Organization (UN-FAO), in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquatic Resources of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (MAFAR-BARMM) conducted an end project performance assessment (EPPA) on May 28, 2019 for the project “Emergency Assistance to Restore Food Security in Typhoon-Affected Communities in Lanao del Sur - BARMM and Lanao del Norte -Region X.” The EPPA seeks to evaluate the quality of FAO’s response with implementation partners through agreed criteria, document good practices, consolidate the lessons learned as well as issues and challenges from the various phases of project implementation, and formulate practical suggestions for the improvement of future emergency interventions.  Twenty-four (24) Agricultural Extension Workers (AEWs) from the municipalities of Madalum, Ditsaan Ramain, Maguing, Buadipuso Buntong and Lumbabayabao where the project was implemented participated in the workshop. The project aims to restore agri-livelihood and enhance agricultural production in the Typhoon Tembin (Vinta) hard-hit municipalities of the province. The project has two components: provision of agricultural inputs, and capacity-building activities.  One thousand (1,000) rice farmers benefited from the project and received one bag of certified rice seeds and two bags of commercial fertilizer.  For the capacity-building activities, UN-FAO conducted the training on resilient rice-based farming systems to AEWsthat were re-echoed to farmer-beneficiaries, Climate-Smart Farmers Field School (CS-FFS), Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Training Workshop, and Early Warning Early Action (EWEA) and Social Protection Planning Workshop. All these were meant to enhance farmers' resilience to various types of disasters. MAFAR Provincial Agricultural Officer – Pangalian A. Balindong, Jr. expressed gratitude to UN-FAO for being a constant and long term development partner of the MAFAR. He also acknowledged the countless provisions extended to the farmers of the province.  In the same way, Director Esmail Satol from MAFAR–BARMM Regional Office commended the participants and thanked UN-FAO for filling in the gaps in the delivery of agri-interventions to farmers. (MAFAR Lanao del Sur)  

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