It has been a month already since I took my oath to be of service to all of you. That was also the day when I shared to you my vision of Catbalogan City as a place where progress emanates from the will of the people.
My interaction with various sectors in the weeks that followed served as a very significant move towards fulfilling this vision. The visits to the different facilities such as the public market, the terminal, the cemetery, slaughterhouse and other barangays gave me a glimpse into the real situation of my constituents and provided me with the needed information on how to address your issues and concerns.
For this reason, I wish to thank you all for your warm reception towards me during these visits and consultations. Thank you for your openness and patience, which enabled all of us to focus on the most important thing – that is finding solutions and improving our city rather than pointing out weaknesses or faults.
Your comments, ideas and suggestions during these times helped me veer my perspective towards the right direction and prepared me for the challenges ahead. This is because the information that I gleaned helped me in identifying which programs and project to implement to better address your needs. Moreover, there was never a time that I felt alone because I have with me all of your hopes and aspirations.
Although this first month has been very challenging, a baptism of fire for me, it was also very rewarding and educational. My experiences during this period taught me to walk at your side, not ahead of you and that the best form of progress is one that resonates with your voice.
Most importantly, it is through these hopes and aspirations that were brought up during the consultations, meetings and visits that inspired me to create a Social Contract, which shall guide us every step of the way in pursuing our vision for Catbalogan.
Our act of signing this contract signals the start of bigger responsibilities as we tackle the different projects and policies contained here. While greater challenges are in store for us, there is also a greater promise for a better future for our youth. Let this Social Contract serve as a symbol of our common goal, our shared vision and most of all, our willingness to work hand-in-hand to make this vision a reality.
This is where we shall draw our strength from in the days to come.
For more than a month now, intensified dengue campaign continues to roll in various barangays in order to inform the community about the strategies in preventing the transmission of this disease.
Other than the search and destroy strategy, the City Health Office is also orienting the barangay officials on the creation of the Barangay Dengue Task Force that will oversee the conduct of these strategies.
The creation of this task force is a way to empower our local officials to move in coordination with the City Health Office so that together this problem will be addressed.
Inclusive, Participative and Empowering approach has been the strategy of the administration of Mayor Step, hence this a way to exemplify these thrusts.
We are also seeking the help of our barangay folks to be one with us in maintaining the cleanliness of the environment and to continue to participate in the Search and Destroy to eliminate the breading sites of mosquitoes.
The City Health Office will continue to spearhead this endeavor to reach a greater number of people that will join this task.
(Article and Photos by City Health Office)
MAYOR STEP SAYS COA FINDINGS NOT ADVERSE, CITY FINANCES OK
Catbalogan City Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan remains confident about her management of the city’s financial affairs despite an article in a national daily that told of adverse findings from the Commision on Audit (COA).
As early as July 1, 2014 during her State of the City Address to mark her first year in office, Mayor Step had already clarified that the COA gave Catbalogan a rating of QUALIFIED OPINION. “An buot ipasabot hini nga maupay an pagdumara han aton mga transaksyones, mayda la mga exemptions to the rule. Pero as a whole, an opinyon han COA amo in FAIR PRESENTATION OF FINANCIAL STATEMENTS,” she had explained to a diverse crowd of representatives from various agencies and organizations.
These statements were in response to a Manila Bulletin article dated June 24, 2014 entitled “COA Uncovers Audit Flaws in Catbalogan”, which was based on COA’s Annual Audit Report for 2013. The lady mayor however is unfazed saying, “Han una ko nga pagbati hini nga storya in waray ako katarantar kay updated ako han resulta han Annual Audit Report han COA”.
“An dire ko maintindihan kun ano rason nga ira pagbabarion an kamatuoran para la mahingada an aton administrasyon ha karautan,” she said. Mayor Step added that the favourable opinion from the said agency has made it possible for the City Government to qualify as a nominee for Seal of Good Local Governance, formally known as Seal of Good Housekeeping. She also credited the city’s financial managers, namely City Accountant Peachy Daguman, City Budget Officer Adelaida Lamadrid and City Treasurer Elizabeth Lim for their handling of the city’s finances.
The statements were made to assure the public that despite the bold moves being made by the City Government, her administration remains responsible and conscientious with the city’s expenditures and all financial transactions are in accordance with COA’s policies.
Responsive and committed Barangay Chairpersons coming from Albalate, San Andres and Guinsorongan catchment areas attended the 2nd Batch of the Bridging Leadership Orientation and Planning Workshop last July 21-22, 2014 with the theme, “Serbisyo Panlawas Urusa naton nga Pakusgon para hin Malipayon ngan Dire Masinakitnon nga mga Catbaloganon”.
This activity is aimed at inculcating to our local chief executives at the Barangay about their significant responsibility in maintaining the health of their constituents.
Utilizing the “Bridging Leadership” strategy, these leaders are expected to involve the various stakeholders of the community in establishing the Barangay Health Board and eventually planning for a more organized step towards health promotion and disease prevention.
Technical assistance was provided by the City Local Operations Officer of the City of Catbalogan Mr. Jose Obrero as the Resource Speaker during the crafting of he resolutions that will serve as the legal basis of the establishment of the Barangay Health Board
All these was made possible through the inclusive, participative and empowered leadership of Mayor Step in connection with the Municipal Leadership and Governance Program of the Department of Health.
Mayor Step will endeavor to be a bridging leader towards addressing the different health inequities in our society.
(Photos and Article by Roldan John P. Larios, City Health Office)
Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan along with City Councilors Tekwa Uy and Max Pescos attended the dialogue with residents of Barangay Silanga regarding the NO BUILD ZONE on DANGER ZONES, which initiative came after Typhoon Glenda struck the region.
28 families were evacuation during the height of the typhoon while two (2) totally damaged and 26 partially damaged houses were recorded under the City Social Welfare and Development Office.
These series of dialogues is part of the commitment of the current administration to protect the life and limbs of Catbaloganons especially during calamities and disasters.
(Photos by Paulus Aragon)
On July 17, 2014, a team led by City Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan visited early morning the Barangay of Iguid to assess the damages brought by Typhoon Glenda.
As part of the recent move of The City Government of Catbalogan to establish a NO BUILD ZONE/DANGER ZONE at several coastline barangays, the city team composed of CDRRMC Action Officer Eliot Lopez and CPDC Engr. Arnaldo Aroza conducted a dialogue among the residents of Barangay Iguid so as to inform them of this policy.
Mayor Step along with City Councilor Tekwa Uy initiated the said dialogue to encourage residents to relocate to safer locations and to offer them several options being undertaken by her administration.
Mayor Step is committed to ensure a safe and secure community to avoid any further damage or loss to lives or property especially during calamities.
(Photos by Paulus Aragon)
With the coastal communities bearing the brunt of Typhoon Glenda, City Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan consulted with the concerned chairmen about temporarily cordoning said areas pending assessment as to whether these are safe for residency.
In a meeting with the chairmen of barangays Mercedes, Maulong, Bunu-Anan, Guinsorongan, 06 Poblacion, 03 Poblacion and Ibol where households situated near the shores were washed out, the mayor had expressed concern about the possibility of evacuees returning to the said areas despite the danger that they have just encountered.
Urging the barangay chairmen to be firm in convincing their constituents to avoid resettling near the sea, she explained that what had transpired during the typhoon is a warning in itself regarding the risk attached to living near the coast. Because of this move, the resettlement of the affected families from these areas was made a top priority.
In agreement with the mayor, City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Eliot Lopez said that allowing the families to return to their previous residence near the shore will make them vulnerable once again to future storms and typhoons.
While assessment is ongoing, the cordoned areas shall be considered as no-build zones. In connection to this, City Economic Enterprise and Public Utilities Officer Vic Pagarao has suggested that for this duration, no electric or water connections shall be allowed to discourage individuals or families from settling there.
Representatives from the Samar Electric Cooperative have expressed their willingness to coordinate with the City Government particularly in obtaining clearance from the latter so that they can avoid putting electric connections in the prohibited areas.
(Article by Ms. Lai Minh Mabulay; Photos by Paulus Aragon, Office of the City Mayor)
“Ha akon pagbinalik-balik han mga barangay tikang han akong paglingkod, akon gud gintatagan duon nga waray pamulitika an karuyag han presente nga admnistrasyon nga umabat ngan mahibaro kamo nga may gobyerno nga aada para ha iyo labi na gud ha mga kalamidad.” Mayor Step addresses residents of Barangay 03 Poblacion last July 16, 2014 on the establishment of a NO BUILD ZONE POLICY along the seawall area, which was greatly affected by Typhoon Glenda.
With the said new policy, the residents are given several housing and livelihood assistance through the many programs of the city government to ensure that they are to live in a safe and secure community along with a sustainable source of income for economic stability.
“Uotro ko, waray dulaw waray pula, waray pinultika. An aton kinahanglan yana an pagintindihay ngan kooperasyon ngan yana pala nagpapasalamat ako han iyo pamati ha amon kay ini diri para ha amon kundi para ha iyo labi na gud han iyo mga anak.” Mayor Step added.
(Photos by Paulus Aragon)
A day after Typhoon Glenda struck the region, Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan called for an Emergency Liga ng mga Barangay Meeting last July 16, 2014 to discuss on the damages brought by the typhoon.
Through the facilitation of City Local Government Operations Officer Jose Obrero and City Planning and Development Coordinator Engr. Arnaldo Aroza, the barangays are set to comply with the submission of damage reports as to houses, agricultural crops, fishery, commercial and others.
These said reports are to be consolidated along with other various data as an endorsement to the The Sangguniang Panlungsod of Catbalogan City for the declaration of Catbalogan City being under the State of Calamity.
Further discussed during the said emergency meeting was the initiative to prohibit the construction of any properties along identified “no build zone” or “danger zones”, mostly along several coastal sections of the city.
Mayor Step is set to conduct dialogues with constituents of various barangays of the said affected areas about the prohibited areas.
(Photos by Paulus Aragon)
The city team led by Mayor Stephany Uy-Tan met with residents and business owners at Barangay 06 along seawall area regarding the move of the city to establish a NO BUILD ZONE at the said area. This move of the local government was borne out of the recent damage brought by Typhoon Glenda last July 15, 2014. Although no casualty was recorded in Catbalogan City, many coastal barangays were greatly affected.
“Aanhi kami yana ngan personal ko gud nga karuyag kamo makaatubang ngan makastorya kay maaram kami nga deri kamo nahingangaturog paghinunahuna ano an iyo maupay buhaton ngan kon ano an mahibubulig han gobyerno.” says Mayor Step.
Mayor Step further assures that her administration will be doing all the necessary assistance with regards to their relocation. One option is the ongoing Housing Resettlement Project at Barangay Lagundi in partnership with the National Housing Authority, another option is to avail of a housing assistance through the City Social Welfare and Development Office coupled with livelihood assistance to ensure that their source of income will not be affected or should they opt for a Balik Probinsya assistance for them to safely return to their home provinces.
The said dialogue was supported by City Councilor Jeffrey Uy, CPDC Engr. Arnaldo Aroza, CEEPUO Vic Pagarao, CDRRMC Action Officer Eliot Lopez, PNP Chief Carlito Abriz and several agency representatives along with the Barangay Officials of the said barangay.
(Photos by Paulus Aragon)