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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

IPHO-Lanao urges parents to get their children vaccinated against measles

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, July 28 (PIA) --- The Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) here in the province is urging parents to have their children immunized against measles in any government health center.

The call was made by IPHO chief Dr. Alinader Minalang after the province registered 118 measles cases from January to July, this year.

The measles cases are quite alarming but parents have no excuse not to let their children be immunized because we have walk-in barangay health centers in every municipality, Minalang said.

He said vaccination is a regular program wherein parents can go any day at any government health center.

Minalang further gave assurance that they have enough supply of measles vaccines.

“We never had shortage of vaccines,” he said.

Measles is a viral infection. According to Minalang, the infected one cannot sometimes tell whether he is already infected not until the rashes appear.

“Measles is also very contagious four days before the rashes appear and four days after the rashes has gone that is why immunization is the best prevention,” he further said.

Meanwhile, the IPHO is intensifying its information drive to prevent the spread of the disease.

Minalang said they are regularly conducting information dissemination through text brigade and airing of radio plugs.

IPHO also holds measles control and prevention meeting in municipalities and conducts mass immunization of children in the affected barangays.

Minalang said they also conduct prompt investigation of reported cases and provide Vitamin A and supportive medicines to measles cases. (APB with report from Johaniah N. Yusoph/PIA-10)

Feature: Celebrating Ramadhan, Eid’l Fitr

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, July 28 (PIA) --- You wake up daily as early as 1:00 a.m. to pray and eat. You pray Tahajud (early prayer) and eat breakfast until 4:00 a.m. or when the call of prayer (dawn prayer) is heard.

That breakfast serves as your morning, lunch and mid-afternoon meals. It has to sustain you for the next 14 hours because you’ll break your fast once the dusk prayer (6:00 p.m.) is heard.

But fasting isn’t about getting hungry and thirsty. It’s not about burning calories. It’s about burning the bad habits until you are trained to do nothing but all forms of goodness.

Fasting also means fasting of the senses. It’s about “see no evil, hear no evil, and talk no evil.” This practice lasts for a month and hopefully, it won’t just be good for this month but for the rest of our lives.

Eid’l Fitr is a one day celebration of the Muslims after having completed a one whole month of fasting. Muslims get up early and prepare themselves to go to Masjed (Mosque) to perform the Eid’l Fitr prayer.

The Eid’l Fitr prayer is usually performed at 7:30 a.m. Before going to Masjed, each family are busy preparing foods in the kitchen because they have to eat before proceeding to Masjed.

Oh the feeling is unexplainable! You’ve been used on eating so early that the sky is still dark and yet here you are going to eat with the clear blue sky. It’s just not the same.

Some have mixed emotions. Some are sad because Eid’l Fitr is an official reminder that the Holy Month has just ended; while some are happy simply because they feel the high spirits of others.  

On this day, fellow Muslims are also too busy for their “Sadaqatul Fitr.” Sadaqatul Fitr is an obligation of every Muslim who can afford to give. It could be in form of rice (2 kilos will do) or cash to be given to the relatives who deserve it. But most Muslim scholars advise to give rice instead of cash.

Every member of the family has to give “Sadaqatul Fitr.” For the children, it will be the parents who will provide for them and give to the needy ones.  

After performing such, you’ll see fellows rushing to the Masjed to join the “Takbir.” Takbir are statements you utter to praise The Almighty. You keep on repeating it until the Imam, the one who leads the prayer, initiates the Eid’l Fitr prayer.

The Eid’l Fitr Prayer is just short. It won’t take you fifteen minutes. After the prayer, people will then scatter and you start to hear collective voices and laughs.

Fathers, mothers, aunts, cousins, sisters, brothers and friends will go to one another, hugging, greeting, and asking each other’s forgiveness. You get to see contagious smiles painted in each other’s faces and you cannot help but beam at them too.

Each family will then proceed to their homes. Some gathered at one place and they celebrate, eat, share some talks and of course, in our modern time, taking pictures is always included in the day’s activity.

Indeed, Muslims start the Ramadhan right by asking forgiveness from one another and it has to end like that too. No negative feelings, no hatred, just happiness and pure gratitude. (Johaniah N. Yusoph/APB/PIA-10 Lanao del Sur)

Monday, July 28, 2014

Multi-sector groups converge for a Greener Marawi

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, July 28 (PIA) --- The Solid Waste Management Board (SWMB) of the city together with representatives from various organizations here converged on July 23 at the DxSR Sallam Radio conference room to discuss how they can contribute to the ecological solid waste management program of the city government.

“Marumi City, Langaw Del Sur (Dirty City, Fly Del Sur) is the impression being thrown to Marawi,” said SWMB Board Chairperson Mokiin Malna.

She said the problem on garbage is not new in the city. “It has been a problem decades ago because a large part of the population in the city were not accustomed of throwing their trash properly.”

According to her, the SWMB was created to make the city greener through proper solid waste management.

Among the attendees of the meeting were representatives from the Ulama League (religious group), Philippine National Police (PNP), and members of the media.

Representatives from USAID’s Enhancing Governance Accountability & Engagement (ENGAGE) led by its communications specialist Luis Mendoza Jr. also graced the meeting. ENGAGE has been providing technical assistance to the city government in the implementation of its SWM program.

Discussed during the meeting were the efforts of each sector to make the program successful.

The religious sector through the Ulama Council integrates the value of cleanliness in Islamic teachings. They convince people by emphasizing that cleanliness is mandatory in Islam.  They also discuss the health issues on garbage mismanagement in religious fora.

DxSR Sallam Radio, on the other hand, has a program on air dubbed “Matanos a Marawi” which tackles the importance of cleanliness and other topics related to proper solid waste management. It also targets the youth by educating them on how to throw garbage properly.

Philippine Information Agency (PIA) also expressed support to the program as it has just launched its newest advocacy on climate change “Nagbabago na ang Panahon, Panahon na para Magbago.” The advocacy campaign focuses on four priority areas which include solid waste management.

Malna reiterated that the five-year SWM program will be successful through the collective effort of the agencies and stakeholders stressing that a collective effort will really make a big difference. (Johaniah N. Yusoph/APB/PIA-10)

Saturday, July 26, 2014

PAMANA-ARMM MNLF beneficiaries participate in project planning

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, July 25 (PIA) – Around 21 members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) from seven barangays in Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur participated in the formulation of  management plans for the implementation of livelihood programs under the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (PAMANA) program.

The participants also identified and listed down their counterpart activities as preparation for the delivery of their approved project items.

The two-day Orientation-Workshop on the Implementation of PAMANA- ARMM Livelihood Programs for the MNLF Communities held July 15 to 16, 2014 in Cotabato City was facilitated by the Office of the ARMM Regional Governor through the PAMANA Management Office (PMO).

The activity, conducted through a participatory process, was aimed at coming up with a project operation and management plan for each target MNLF community.

MNLF Commander Abukhair A. Amirol, one of the MNLF senior leaders, expressed his satisfaction on the activity. “The orientation-workshop is more than 100 percent successful because we became more aware on the program as we, the beneficiaries, are the one planning for the sustainability of our livelihood project,” he said.

Another objective of the activity was for the beneficiaries to acquire practical understanding on the different production technologies.

Hence, in coordination with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries-(DAF) in the region, the MNLF members learned the practical technologies on corn production, upland and lowland rice production, vegetables, perennial crops, and livestock.

Hadja Jalica D. Mangacop, High- Valued Crop Development (HVCD) Program Coordinator of DAF-ARMM thanked the PMO for involving them in the activity.

“I am very grateful to Engr. Dong K. Anayatin who personally visited my office and asked for resource persons. I am glad that we are involved here because we want to make this project more sustainable,” she said.

The HVCD Program Coordinator also congratulated the PMO staff for the efficiency in conducting the workshop. “This is my first time to see young individuals in ARMM facilitating workshop like this. We need this kind of people”, she added.

DAF- ARMM PAMANA Focal Person Engr. Guiomla Satol also challenged the MNLF Beneficiaries. He emphasized that the entrepreneurial and management skills are essential flavours of successful and farm sustainable farming activity. “Farming is a business, which means it should be continuously cycling to provide income and employment, thus economic development of the community”, he explained.

Meanwhile, Engr. Dong K. Anayatin, Program Manager of the PAMANA Management Office who is also the Assistant Regional Secretary on Special Concerns, expressed his warm appreciations to the MNLF members for coming up with such great workshop outputs.

“I am amazed with what I have witnessed. You have done a very good output which is very essential for the development of your respective livelihood projects,” he said.

He further underscored that the success and failure of the projects are in the participants’ hands.

PAMANA in the ARMM is concentrated on providing development interventions and socio-economic packages to conflict-affected areas in the region. One of its components is PAMANA for MNLF Communities in support to the implementation of the 1996 Final Peace Agreement between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the MNLF ensuring security of the communities. (Naz Buisan/PAMANA-ARMM/APB/PIA-10)

Friday, July 25, 2014

News Feature: Meranaos Unite in Prayer for Gaza

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, July 23 (PIA) --- “How could innocent children die just like that? How could people lose their lives just like that?”

This is the stand of Meranaos who gathered at the Peace Plaza of Mindanao State University (MSU) Main Campus on July 17 for a solidarity prayer rally for the people in Gaza.

The rally was organized by the faculty of the College of Social Sciences and Humanities (CSSH) and Supreme Student Government (SSG) to express their protest on Israel’s massive military actions against Palestine which had killed innocent civilians, including women and children.

Some of the faculty, students, and civilians who joined the solidarity event were waving the flag of Palestine. Others were holding slogans expressing their emotions and opinions and branding the military actions as brutal and barbaric.

“You don’t have to be a Palestinian to stand for Gaza. You just have to be human,” they expressed.

Professor Tirmizy Abdullah, a History Professor, was very emotional in his speech. He said he has witnessed how the Palestinians are being mistreated in their own land. He was crying out loud while narrating his story and told the audience “…Palestinians don’t have the right to renovate their own houses while Israelis are building their own. Do you know that?” He also claimed that before Palestinians used to be the sole dwellers in Palestine, but now they are only five percent of the population.

While he was speaking, participants of the prayer rally who could no longer hold their tears started to cry.

A lady professor also advised the participants to pray for Gaza, and at the same time for the Israelis to be enlightened.

Former Assemblywoman Samira Gutoc also conveyed her sentiment. She reiterated that what is going on in Gaza is totally against humanity. She said they should not be doing the attacks as the Palestinians are already suffering for decades.

As she shouted “kapayaan (peace),” the crowd would respond “hustisya (justice)” and vice-versa.

The rally ended at 6:00pm through a collective prayer.

Indeed, kindness requires no specific religion. What is going on now in Gaza is something that we must be concerned of. We have to save humanity. Much as we want to stop or freeze the rockets being thrown to Gaza, we simply cannot. But we have powerful prayers that may save the people. (Johaniah Yusoph/APB/PIA-10 Lanao del Sur)