Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Tagum national awards promote hope

TAGUM CITY, Davao del Norte Oct. 29 (PIA)--- “From hopelessness to hopefulness,” Tagum City Mayor Allan Rellon  Monday  made the conclusion on the overall  benefits derived from the various national awards that the city government of Tagum lately reaped.

Rellon gave emphasis on the impact of the awards especially on improving the lives of Tagumenyos in terms of access to employment, livelihood and income-generating opportunities, education, and business and enterprise development.

“I heard some who lost hope, that they wanted to remain ordinary workers but because of various programs that the city government has managed well for their benefit, they’ve changed their perspective, making them look forward to a more successful life,” he said in an interview after the Monday Flag-raising ceremony which featured the national awards received by the city government.

In September this year, Rellon received on behalf of the city government of Tagum the official marker of Special Award of Excellence in Literacy  from the National Literacy Council during the 2014 National Literacy Conference and Awards held in Baguio City.

This month, Rellon received the “Galing Pook”  Award handed over by Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas and Executive Sec. Paquito Ochoa who represented President Benigno S. Aquino in a ceremony held at Shangri-La Hotel in Mandaluyong on Oct. 21.

In highlighting the city’s Night Market Program to the Galing Pook Award, Rellon emphasized the socio-economic impact of the program especially to the vendors who had drawn substantial income from doing business at the night market.

“Their economic lives have become much better. They have also helped others find jobs as their workers, while turning in income to the city government,” he said.

Meanwhile,  the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) declared Tagum City’s Public Employment Services Office (PESO) as Best PESO in the country for component city category,during the 14th National PESO Congress held in General Santo City.

Through the city’s PESO, job mismatch have been checked and that people, especially the fresh graduates, have been made well aware of the job opportunities  leading to their employment, Rellon said.

The city government has even cascaded information for job-seekers at the barangay level through  setting up  the Barangay Employment Desks backed with a City Ordinance to facilitate skills training and job employment at the grassroots level.

On top of skills training and job opportunities, the city’s PESO and barangay employment desks also serve as windows for Tagumenyos to avail of micro financing assistance from DOLE.

He cited as an example a certain Mrs. Aparesa who availed of seed capital from DOLE worth P5,000.00 which she invested some time ago in  a Sari-Sari store and in a water refilling station.

“She now owns a multicab. She was just one of those whose lives turn from hopeless to hopeful. They have helped push the overall development of the city of Tagum,”  Rellon said.

On the other hand, Tagum City  also earned the recognition as one of the finalists in the Search for the Most Business-Friendly Local Government Unit given by the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry on October 22  during the 40h Philippine Business Conference held at  the Manila Hotel.

Rellon attributed such recognition to the mechanisms set by the city government in facilitating and accommodating investors, particularly the enactment of the City Incentives Code which provides businesses and enterprises  some “fiscal and non-fiscal” incentives including tax holidays for certain number of years.

He also bared that the city government had  cut down  the lengthy bureaucratic steps of business licensing from 15 steps to five steps, and that “we are looking for ways to lowering it to three steps”.  (Jeanevive Duron-Abangan, PIA 11)

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