2016; Zamboanga del Sur's Year of Success and Triumph
In just a span of almost 8 years in service as the chief executive of the provincial government of Zamboanga del Sur Governor Antonio H. Cerilles has done immense development and positive changes that focuses on the pro-poor programs as well as uplifting the lives of his constituency thru good governance, accessible learning, staple livelihood, ample job opportunities,vast infrastructure and Socio economic projects and intense anti-criminality directives under his leadership in this part of the country.
The milestones that the province has achieved in the past years which focuses on the Seven-Point Agenda of the present administration being one of the top performing PLGU in the entire country prove that success will be earned if there is a firm partnership and support between the government, stakeholders as well as the community as a whole.
In line with Fiscal Management, the province of Zamboanga del Sur is consistently avowed among the Top 10 Most Competitive Provinces out of 81 provinces all over the country. The provincial government was also affirmed as Most Valuable Partner by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) for its efficient and updated tax collection which made the province earned the citation of Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) from the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). The province is also the first PLGU in the Philippines to impose province wide Electronic Real Property Taxation via internet connectivity for fast and well-organized collection that enable us to accumulate over Php 50 million worth of tax revenues all over the province for the very first time.
In terms of Health Services, the Zamboanga del Sur Medical Center (ZDSMC) which was declared by the Department of Health (DOH) as the Best LGU-run Hospital in the country, is also the first and only 2nd Level LGU-run Hospital in the country. It is now equipped with new and modern surgical and laboratory equipment’s such as endoscopy system, 2D echo machines, 16 slices CT scan, EEG machine, Neuro laparoscopy machine, modern PT rehab unit, and Mammogram digital x-ray to compliment 48 specialist medical doctors in various fields of expertise. In which Medical Arts Building was also established to house them and served as doctor’s clinics. PHILHEALTH Point of Care program was also continuously afforded to indigent patients.
In line with Education, the establishment of the Josefina Herrera- Cerilles State College (JHCSC) with 26 school campuses all throughout the province has now produced 368 passers of the Licensure Examination for Teachers(LET) in the last 2016 board exam which is the highest number of passers ever achieved by a local tertiary school in the province. The newly licensed teachers of the young yet competitive learning institution compliments Department of Education (DepEd) rationalization program to prioritize the employment of locally produced professionals in all public school in the province as mandated by law.
In addition, the provincial government has established the Zamboanga del Sur Provincial Government College(ZDSPGS) in Aurora town and soon to be extended in Pagadian City which now offer courses such as Agriculture and Fisheries, and soon will offer medical courses like Medtech, Pharmacy, Radtech among others which are not offered by local academic entities.
In order to enhance knowledge and technical capacity of local officials and government heads of offices as in serving the public, the provincial government of Zamboanga del Sur ties up partnership with Ateneo de Zamboanga University(ADZU) for them to undergo Masters in Governance and Development for continuous learning.
In line with Agriculture, the province of Zamboanga del Sur was declared Most Outstanding Province in the National Quality Corn Achievers Award for 2016 by the Department of Agriculture nationwide. Along with this, OIC-Provincial Agriculturist Dr. Joel Sabellano Jr. was awarded most outstanding Provincial Agriculturist likewise Provincial Corn Coordinator Ms. Yolanda Enriquez was awarded most outstanding Corn Coordinator respectively.
Two municipalities namely Mahayag headed by Mayor Lorna Espina and San Miguel headed by Mayor Angelito Martinez Jr. was both declared as Most Outstanding Municipalities in the National Quality Corn Achievers Award for 2016.
Just recently, the Provincial Government represented by Dumalinao Mayor Junaflor “Sweet” Cerilles along with the Provincial Agriculturist Office presented a study on how we integrate organic farming practices in every rural household that has made positive changes in their economic status and promote life longevity at the 5th International Conference on Integrating Science and Technology for Sustainable Development held in Myanmar. Same group of organic agriculture advocates facilitated the said event who conferred Gov. Tony Cerilles the Excellence in Agricultural Leadership Award last 2015 which is the Association of Agricultural Technology in Southeast Asia (AATSEA).
In line with Peace and Order, the province was declared as Peaceful and Ready for Further Development Province by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). The declaration was made thru a joint resolution duly signed by the law enforcement agencies to recognize the firm anti-criminality execution and anti-illegal drugs campaign in the province.
In terms of Infrastructure, the construction of Baganian Coastal Road is near to completion connecting the coastal municipalities of the province’s second district to intensify developmental projects and elevate peace and order execution.
19 kilometers road concreting project was implemented by the Provincial Government in rural Barangays of Molave town and 12 kilometers farm to market road was also implemented in Tukuran town.
The construction of the Medical Arts Building and Sanggunian Panlalawigan Building is near to its completion at the Provincial Government Center. According to the Philippines Sport Commission (PSA) Zamboanga del Sur is the first and only province in Mindanao to have an Olympic size swimming pool with 2 bleachers for spectators and newly rubberized oval to hold regional and national events.
In line with Social services, the province was affirmed as Best Performing Province in Child Friendly Local Governance by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). The province is also consistent national awardee of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines as one of the Top Performing council in the entire country.
In line with Environmental Protection, the Provincial Government initiated the province-wide mangrove reforestation, maintenance, protection, and rehabilitation particularly the devastated mangrove forest in Pisaan, Dinas town. As well as the protection and rehabilitation of Maragang Watershed and the stoppage of all illegal small scale mining all throughout the province.
The provincial government of Zamboanga del Sur with the leadership of Gov. Cerilles is continuously aiming high to improve more what we had started that constantly focuses on the well-being of the people as we indulge into another year 2017 for us to be more fruitful and productive. The province is very positive that the milestones that we had achieved in the past year will be doubled in the next year in serving the people and to give better lives for the next generation.