Candidates for Bukidnon Governor respond to Dialogue Bukidnon: Piliay 2013’s “Questions from the People”

 

DIALOGUE BUKIDNON: PILIAY 2013

An election coverage and documentation project initiated by Bukidnon News in partnership with the Diocese of Malaybalay -Bishop Jose A. Cabantan; and
the parishes in Malaybalay City, Valencia City, Maramag, and Manolo Fortich

Excerpts of the responses in the Key Informant Interviews (KIIs)

Issues* Bicatulo 02DELFINA BICATULO
Businesswoman
Age: 58
Party: Independent
topLYNARD ALLAN BIGCAS
Businessman
Age: 42
Party: Independent   
Zubiri 02JOSE MA. R. ZUBIRI JR. Incumbent Vice governor
Age: 71
Party: Bukidnon Paglaum Party
ROMEO ZUCE
Bukidnon News was unable to reach Mr. Zuce for the Key informant interviews
Privatization of Pulangi IV No comment Cited the advantages of privatization but said that it would be more expensive“we will study more. We will ask the people of Bukidnon if they wanna go with privatization or stick to this and after that we’ll see what happen.” Against privatization. It will triple the cost of power. The government should maintain services essential to the people like other countries. If no other choice, OK to privatize but ensure affordability of power; private sector should recover capital slowly.  Epira (Electric Power Industry Reform Act) should be amended. Maximize Pulangi IV.
Energy source: renewable or fossil fuels? We needed it. Depends upon the situation as long as it does not harm the health of the people. I will consult the people first. “ I prefer renewable energy; Bukidnon is water shed of Mindanao. God pours more water here. We are so very  sufficient with energy resources.”Mentioned the bad environmental effects of coal and the limited sources of coal. Against coal powered plants; favors biomass using garbage as source of power
Proposed Pulangi V: big dams or smaller run of river dams? We’ll see if it can help in the future of Bukidnon. “I am always in the middle.” “we need to study that further; that’s a major thing.” Against Pulangi V as the IPs are against it, they will not allow it in their area; 18 barangays signed they will not allow – I respect their position.He is for “run of river” power plants as long as it does not divert water from irrigation
Funds for mandatory representatives down to the barangay level Said she will prioritize it and give funds.“Syempre dapat naa sa Barangay and IP”. In favor of the IP representation. Cite the advantages of it. “lumads don’t listen or easily trust those who are not natives that’s why we need them”“it should go through with right proceedings to implement who will be assigned as representative. Right now, they just pick whoever they want just because they have the power.” Supportive. He said only  80 of 464 barangays in the province have no barangay-level mandatory representatives.
How do you view Civil Society Organizations? Deal with them as allowed in the law. Support them for the future of the province of Bukidnon.“I have to extend my open hands to help.” “as long as they abide with the rules and for the good of Bukidnon”“ we are a free country—as long as it is for the province” Open to partnership but views CSOs as coming only when they need funding. He said if they become partners with LGUs they should help in making laws and attend sessions and hearings.
Stand on political dynasty One  man rule.A rich kind of Politics.“If we adopt dynasty it is bad future.”
no comment on “Zubiris as dynasty”
“cut it off”–don’t think that it’s good for the province. Agreed that there should be an anti-dynasty law aside from the constitutional provisions so that guidelines will be provided. Dynasty is not really bad. Admitted that the Zubiris is a political dynasty.
Program for mitigation of climate change Said that climate change is normal.“ Natural lang yan maybe because hindi naman tayo ang panginoon.” “we need reforestation to cope up again”“Cut the illegal logging and mining. Im really against illegal logging.”Mentioned about the effects of Sendong and Pablo in the province. It is a phenomenon that needed global action citing the nuclear testing and missile tests contribute to it. Said LGUs should prepare for climate change and that people should not be allowed to deplete the forests
Livelihood support for IP areas Vowed to give priority for the IPs “by planting rubber trees they can work on that after 5 yeasrs– We will need tappers ; mag maintain sa rubber.”“bahay kabuhayan—deliver goods in the mountains”“we’ll make our own tooth paste,shampoo soaps—there are many companies that will help us.” Initiated ‘dole out’ livelihood project to IPs like goat raising, hog raising, corn seeds, rattan, and abaca with P25,000 fund.
Professional Squatting in Bukidnon “Natural lang yan kasi krisis tayo eh. You cannot blame them. They have the right because we are a democratic country.” Not Asked Said to address lack of land and housing; that’s the reason why they campaign for Atong Paglaum partylist with its projects on livelihood, education, health, and housing.
Do you think the reported power crisis is a manipulation? “Kaya nga nagtataka ako eh bakit may brownout/blackout pano yan maiwasan and who to be blame and bakit hindi yan maresolve ng government.” Not Asked ‘we need to do something about the power crisis
Livelihood support for farmers in the hinterlands Yes, she vowed to support. Give budget for those who cant afford10-25k and pay after 3 years.Give them something to start with.More fertilizer for farmers. There should be projects for the poor people not only for IPs and Lumads
Program for environmental protection Find ways to solve the problem through research. Mentioned about machines that controls plastic.“its all about management, we’ll make money out of it, we’ll buy those machine at the same time make some money, Might increase budget for Mt. Kitanglad and Mt. Kalatungan – will have to study it first; supports collection of environmental fees from businesses tapping resources in the area; but collection should not only go to ancestral domain holders; there should be portion for the maintenance/continuance of the protected area
Program for Values education Maintain.Support for the good of Bukidnon.“e prioritize para sa kaayuhan sa kabataan” Scholarship.Free college like TESDA “Values education for who?” He said he believes in Values. It is responsibility of the churches; Family should also guide their children.
Moratorium on expansion of agricultural plantations (banana, pineapple) Stop expansion of plantation.Reject all (new) projects.“I am after always of the health of the people”
There is no need to drive them away,
There is a need to balance.
Proper implementation–I don’t care if they plant more or use more land of Bukidnon as long as the done it properly. Against the moratorium. He believes that prohibitions should come only if there are violations; the government must respect the right of every Filipino how they will use their land; as long as it does not violate any law. OK to LGUs that passed resolutions banning expansion if they found violations to laws.
LGU-led price mechanism for farm products Build cooperatives.Said we have to adopt. The prices must be controlled. The thing is all about honesty—let’s try to be honest with them,in terms of prices as long as it helps the farmers. Government can only come out with guidelines to influence the price but cannot force it to people; plans to come up with guidelines.
Infrastructure priorities – Will you prioritize farm to market roads? Infrastructure is among her major platforms preferring to build more roads and bridges in the villages or rural areas than in the urban centers, which already have more. She said this provides access for rural folks not only for their products but also for them during emergencies Farm roads—we’ll give that to DPWH.–proposes Bukidnon Mall.-proposes Kaamulan Museum. No provincial government can afford farm to market roads, they only rely on IRA (internal revenue allotment). Plans to increase assessment of real property taxes; provincial government intends to take over operations of sand and gravel extraction.
Lack of medicines in Bukidnon hospitals The government must have exact medicine because that it has big budget. Not Asked Promised that it will never happen again. Many of the medicines purchased were never delivered. The problem is not yet resolved. Discipline committee has not yet finished deliberation on accused. One of those accused admitted there was over pricing. But once finished and proven he will file cases.
Small Scale mining in Bukidnon Do not allow mining.“we have to control and protect our natural resources”
Not to allow mining companies. The people of Bukidnon should find out how best to tap and use the natural resources. A lot of people are interested in natural resources for the money, but what about the environment?
As long as they abide the rules and regulations about mining(mentioned about the so called small mining in impasug-ong and the big equipments present there) OK as long as legal, within 20 hectares. Agreed so that our Lumads can earn from it, even if our minerals (chromite) are of low grade.  What’s worse is Mangima stone mining in Manolo.No to Large scale mining in Bukidnon
Chemical spraying among agricultural plantations Never allow The plantation should be away from the houses Banana and pineapple not allowed; no aerial spraying in Bukidnon; they use the boom properly; but they are no longer spraying the dangerous chemicals
Waste disposal in Bukidnon There must be proper place for waste in the barangay, town, or city away from the residents o f the people It’s all about management“we have all the machines now—all about recycling”Make Bukidnon clean and green and at the same time make some money out of it. OK to use garbage for biomass energy. It solves both disposal and power problems.
Bukidnon as the only province with no sports complex Bukidnon should have a sports complex, we have to find a way. Not Asked Yes, we prioritized health. We have the best now on health services. Then barangay level. Then Municipal. Then last is provincial level infra (Capitol).Sports was not yet priority then. I still have to complete other infra in barangays. Vows to include sports complex among priorities in 2013 to 2016, by his third year in office he will have the plan already. Estimate cost for decent sports complex P400 million.
No proper playground for children There must be playground in every town or city. “It must be done for the youths” Build playgrounds in every Barangay so that children can play and don’t go somewhere else.“everything starts when you are young” Not asked
Police visibility and response time To prevent crimes, we have to have enough number of policemen; we must find a way – ask from the national government. Not Asked Police lack funding to a certain extent; logistics is a problem but police integrity is also a problem. In Bukidnon, ‘top policemen’ were involved in “sabong” “suertres”. Eyes to ask Interior Secretary Mar Roxas to form a composite anti-crime task force from PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency) and PNP; and make Bukidnon a pilot area. TF not operationally under local police. To allot P25 million for the anti-crime campaign.
Peace and order in the province/Insurgency Our peace and order is not perfect; it is a sign of neglect of authorities. We should not put for tomorrow what we can do today. NPA–They have their own rules, they’re intelligent—we have to study further—I can’t say anything—I learned something from them: do things right—clean election.–make them go back to the government. To continue dialogue with the communist movement/the NPA (New People’s Army). Said NPA getting bolder with four fronts in Bukidnon. It is not responsibility of the province per se. To tell NPA that the one’s hurt by both NPA and military operations are not the military and the national government; it is the poor people – especially the Lumads. To include
Certificate of Ancestral Domains Title  for IPs I will see what I can do if I’m already in the position. I will not allow to open to mining the IP areas. Believes that Lumad owned Bukidnon“sad tosay that this kind and gentle people were fooled by somebody like claiming they’re friends—but they were kick out on their own land.—this is the reason why I am running—I want this to stop-this is crazy.” Annual P10 million budget to help in processing of Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title among Lumads.  P10 million every year until everybody got their CADT.
Bukidnon as haven for Organic and sustainable agriculture Ensure seminars are conducted to encourage people to choose organic to produce better products especially for health. Said that Bukidnon is the milk and honey of Mindanao—“we plant and harvest all year long—we are the fruit basket so I won’t allow the province to be called “poor”. For organic and sustainable agriculture. For organic fertilizer, the problem is there is not enough sources for organic fertilizer.
Cannot say “Bukidnon will be organic agri country.” Bukidnon is good agri land but not all of it; needed help of synthetic inputs
Conversion of agricultural lands People have the right to choose what they do about their property. I can’t control them. Not Asked Not asked
Reforestation/increasing forest cover of Bukidnon We have to plant trees. There should be budget for reforestation. “This will be prefect if the gov’t agree. I will plant 5thousand hec/ of rubber trees instead of just plain trees—after 5 years we can have income—can you imagine the money?- big money” Answered in No. 12
Child labor in Bukidnon There should be control in the family not to allow child labor. Government should do its best to implement the law against child labor. She will not push the violators should be imprisoned but guide them. Distance from school to houses discourages students to go to school.Proposes School buses for free.Free elementary and high school. It’s happening rampantly in Libona and Manolo Fortich hired by labor contractors. It’s got to stop. There is a law against child labor. Department of Labor and Employment does not do anything about this. Pakyaw system in sugarcane plantations practices it. He said he does not allow it in his farm. It goes with farming practices. It is not hopeless, labor contractors should be eliminated. They are the ones exploiting labor.
Budget for natural parks in Bukidnon If nay budget, dugangan, pero I will not promise. Not Asked Answered in No. 12
Stand on the extraction of pine tree saps/resin in Bukidnon I need to research on this. I am not familiar with the issue. I am honest whether I know or I do not know. Not Asked They had contract signed by DENR secretary. This allows them to do what they can on the trees until 2016 the year the BFI Industrial Forest Management Agreement (IFMA) expires. By 2016, we have the power to stop them. He said BFI (Bukidnon Forest Inc.) and its Chinese partner Luda chemicals approached the SP. The SP asked them to proceed with one year renewable contract.
Will you be active in watershed councils? I will attend. Not Asked Not asked
Support for Land titling in Bukidnon I don’t know. Agrees on land titling–no more watchlist, im gonna fight.“I have files from the lumad and they said” ikaw ra among paglaum”.” Not asked
Food security in Bukidnon: rice/corn or banana/pineapples? Prefer for rice and corn for food security. Not Asked Prefer food security by securing production of rice and corn.
Sustainability of provincial health station/hospitals We’ll see what should be done. Not Asked It can be sustained. 4Ps affecting the Philhealth Indigency program. Health is a priority. Province subsidized it from IRA budget (about P110 million in the past).
Bukidnon provincial hospitals ran as economic enterprise It should not be run like a business as it will focus on profit; if possible government should provide free hospital services to the poor. Not Asked Not asked
Infant and maternal deaths Lack of check up in the health center. We have to find a way to make it more accessible, to guide them. Free Immunization.Mentioned about America—“I have three kids– in America they won’t allow your child to go to school if they have not undergone the complete immunization—why not? We’ll do the same thing like America. Not asked
Airport in Bukidnon Nice. There should be airport in Bukidnon and it should be located in Don Carlos, because it will help spur progress in the southern part of Bukidnon. Airport will welcome investors—“if we have an airport –this is for the better. Daghan maka trabaho kay daghan investors, makasulod and big industries;foreign companies. Preferred Airport to be located in Don Carlos; Airport in Nasuli is ‘dangerous’. Airport only for domestic, not international flights.
*The issues were generated from a series of 11 focus group discussions in the four areas conducted from February 2, 2013 to March 15, 2013. To back generation for provincial level issues, Bukidnon News consulted key informants in the business, civil society, academe, women sector, farmers, IPs, health, tourism, youth, and other sectors.**Not Asked – Due to some constraints or because sometimes the respondents answer in random, some of the questions were either not asked or not responded to. Interviewer:
Walter I. Balane
Iyren DalipePhotographer
Ronald Christopher NeriDate: April 29, 2013
4:30P.M.
Venue: Bicatulo Residence, Purok 11, Valencia City
Interviewer:
Loreta Sol Dinlayan
Iyren DalipePhotographer:
Ronald Christopher NeriDate: May 1, 2013, 8:30p.m.
Venue: Rooftop, Diocesan Pastoral Center, Malaybalay City
Interviewer:
Walter I. Balane and  April Rose Q. TorionPhotographer: Sealtiel Melendez/Xavier University intern
Date: April 25, 2013 5p.m.Venue: Sangguniang Panlalawigan Executive Office, Malaybalay City

~Responses of candidates for mayor and vice mayor in the district pilot areas – the cities of Malaybalay and Valencia and the towns of Manolo Fortich and Maramag, may be accessed on the official website of Bukidnon News (www.bukidnonnews.net) starting May 10, 2013. The Focus Group Discussion Results and more information about Dialogue Bukidnon: Piliay 2013 are available on the website. Bukidnon News is the news service arm of Bukidnon NEWS (Network of Editors and Writers for Social Change), Inc.

Dialogue Bukidnon: Piliay 2013 Team: Dr. Lourdes G. dela Torre (Consultant/Lead Facilitator), Walter I. Balane (Bukidnon News editor in chief/project coordinator), Loreta Sol Dinlayan (Lead Documenter), Daniel V. Mental (Reporter/Focal Person), April Rose Torion (Reporter), Rhea F. Egargo (Finance In-charge, Kristopher Julius Alcordo (Web master), Hazel Mae Generalao (Invitations), Sealtiel Melendez (Intern). Volunteers: Iyren Dalipe, Ronald Christopher Neri, Gabriel Diwalay, Stephanie Jane F. Efondo

Bukidnon News also received cash and goods donations from Del Monte Philippines Inc. and cash assistance from the Bukidnon Second Electric Cooperative for the conduct of the focus group discussions.