NIA targets to irrigate more than 1.27m hectares of farmland until 2022

UNTV News   •   June 22, 2017   •   4913


After five decades, only 59% or 1.85 million hectares of farmland in the country have had proper irrigation system from the National Irrigation Administration (NIA).

This is half of the total 3.12 million hectares that the agency should have installed with such.

Nevertheless, the agency will finish the irrigation project for the remaining 1.27 million hectares by 2022.

According to Administrator Ricardo Visaya, most of those without irrigation yet are in Caraga and Central Mindanao, and Central Luzon.

“Hopefully if the budget continuous to increase, improvement of modern equipment and additional manpower, we hope we can do it,” said NIA Administrator Ricardo Visaya.

This year, NIA has P35 billion budget while in 2018, the budget was increased by 20% to P45.8 billion.

The increase in budget means more irrigation projects will be accomplished.

Meawhile, NIA has alloted P2-billion for free irrigation and a bill is now being pushed in congress to make the allotment permanent.

“As a private organization, the irrigation association can still collect but for themselves. But only for the association for them to maintain their system,” Visaya said.

The NIA administrator also prioritizes the fight against corruption within the agency.

The official believes he is able to address the issue being a former armed forces chief of staff.

“There are reports that some people are getting kickbacks from contractors, high percentages. There is someone, like the report from Central Luzon, Region 3 office, who solicits various favors using my name,” Visaya added.

Next month, the construction of phase 2 of the Balog-Balog dam costing P13-billion will start. – Rey Pelayo | UNTV News and Rescue

21 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Caraga — DOH

Marje Pelayo   •   June 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) Center for Health Development-Caraga reported 21 cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) variants in the region.

This is based on the latest results of Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) received from the University of the Philippines-Philippine Genome Center.

Of the samples sent, 13 samples tested positive for B.1.351 (first detected in South Africa), seven for B.1.1.7 (first detected in the UK) and one for P.3 (first detected in the Philippines).

The confirmed B.1.351 cases are locals of the following areas:
Bislig City (7)
Lianga, Surigao del Sur (4)
Cortes, Surigao del Sur (1)
Tandag City (1).

Meanwhile, the confirmed B.1.1.7 cases are from the following areas:
Barobo, Surigao del Sur (2)
Butuan City (2)
Esperanza, Agusan del Sur (1)
Lianga, Surigao del Sur (1)
Madrid, Surigao del Sur (1).

The confirmed P.3 variant case is a resident of Tandag City.

Initial investigation showed that among these 21 variant cases, 13 have no travel history outside their area and eight are close contacts of previously confirmed cases.

Currently, out of the 21, eighteen (18 ) are already asymptomatic and back to their normal daily routine, while one is still recovering at home.

Two cases with the B.1.351 variant died while admitted in the hospital – one (1) from Bislig City and another from Cortes, Surigao del Sur.

Concerned local health authorities are currently implementing the mandatory quarantine and control measures including rigorous tracing of the 1st to 3rd generation close contacts and re-swabbing of confirmed cases with COVID-19 variants

“With the increasing cases and continuous emergence of COVID-19 variants of concern in the region, we are appealing to the Caraganons to strictly adhere to the health protocols and minimum public health standards,” said DOH Caraga Regional Director Cesar Cassion.

“We also strongly encourage immediate vaccine uptake once the vaccines are available to your respective priority eligible group. Let us remember that by following these health measures, transmission across population and further mutation of COVID-19 can be prevented. So, let us continue to be vigilant and work together to end this pandemic,” he added.

Duterte visits Caraga areas hit by ‘Auring’

Robie de Guzman   •   February 24, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday visited parts of the Caraga region in Mindanao to personally check on the situation after it was battered by tropical depression Auring.

He conducted an aerial inspection of affected areas in Surigao del Sur with Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go.

After his inspection, he led a briefing where he directed government officials to submit a full assessment report on the impact of Auring, as well as a response plan for affected areas.

“The pressing problem really is itong pagkain. What I have really experienced, all these years being mayor of Davao City for almost 23 years… Hindi tayo, mga dumaan sa local, medyo sanay tayo. Hindi tayo dehado. Basta ganun, pagkain, shelter, and tubig. Yan ang important talaga, ang tubig,” he said.

He also ordered concerned government agencies to speed up rescue operations, relief and rehabilitation efforts in the community damaged by the storm.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reported it has distributed food packs to affected residents. It has also allocated P22.09 million standby funds and stockpiles in Caraga and P459 million response funds in DSWD central office.

Auring, which was the first tropical cyclone to hit the country this year, had flooded many areas in Caraga over the weekend, prompting thousands of residents to flee their homes and seek temporary shelters. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

‘Auring’ affects over 53,000 people in Caraga, Regions 10 & 11 – NDRRMC

Robie de Guzman   •   February 22, 2021

Tropical Depression Auring has affected a total of 13,816 families or 53,236 persons in the regions of Caraga, Davao, and Northern Mindanao, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported Monday.

In its 8 a.m. situation report, the NDRRMC said that 12,825 families or 49,236 persons of the total affected individuals are currently staying in 308 evacuation centers while others sought shelter with their relatives.

A total of 16,059 families or 59,170 persons were pre-emptively evacuated in Regions 7, 8, 10, and Caraga.

A total of 179 houses were damaged in the provinces of Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur due to the impact of the storm, the agency said.

Five roads and one bridge were reported affected in Regions 8, 11 and Caraga. Two of the affected roads were already passable, the NDRRMC said.

Due to the inclement weather, a total of 40 domestic flights of the Philippine Airlines were cancelled from Friday, February 19 to Monday, February 22.

A total of 2,931 passengers, 857 rolling cargoes, and six vessels were also stranded in ports in Regions 7 and 8 after sea trips were suspended due to the storm.

The NDRRMC also noted that the province of Negros Oriental has suspended classes and work in government on Saturday and Sunday.

Tacloban City also announced the suspension of classes and work in government on Monday while the municipality of Calatrava in Romblon canceled work on Monday, the agency said.


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