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183rd Birthday of Balilihan Town, Bohol
« on: October 05, 2011, 07:53:09 AM »
by Bohol Standard

No Boholanos were prouder than the Balilinhons marking on Thursday their town’s 183rd Founding Day with a zeal to grab a third award in a row for the Hall of Fame of the prestigious Seal of Good Housekeeping for LGU.

Balilihan got its second consecutive national Seal award and P1 million prize just on time for the week-long Sumad sa Balilihan celebration that climaxed on September 29.

Gov. Edgar Chatto, the town’s favorite son, led the guests in commemorating the founding of the place, then a part of Baclayon until separated into a new pueblo on September 29, 1828.

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Sec. Jesse Robredo wished Mayor Dominisio Chatto and Vice Mayor Efren Chatto more success in their administration.

In the term of former Mayor Victoria Chatto, whose successor is the incumbent mayor, the town was awarded its first Seal of Good Housekeeping for LGU and P1 million prize.

The governor himself witnessed the mayor receiving the award, a badge of excellence in local government management, from the DILG in Manila last year. Balilihan was one of only 15 towns conferred the honor in the entire country when it got its first Seal. A third award will elevate the LGU to the Hall of Fame. The 183rd Sumad at the same time gave the Balilinhons the fit venue to honor their townmate governor himself for making Bohol the best-governed province in the country today.

The DILG also accorded the honor just in September.

Bohol got 4.9 out of the perfect score of five points, rating higher than the best- governed highly-urbanized and component cities in the country.

Other guests invited to grace the different Sumad activities were Regional Directors Leo Cañeda, Rowena Montecillo and Rodolfo Inson of the Departments of Agriculture, Tourism and Agrarian Reform, respectively, Vice Gov. Concepcion Lim and fellow capitol officials, First District Rep. Rene Relampagos, Provincial Local Government Operations Officer Louella Lucino and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Nestor Canda.

The vice governor marked her 74th birthday in hometown Valencia on the vesper of Balilihan 183rd birth anniversary.

Chatto, Lim and Relampagos reaffirmed their support to the sustainable development of Balilihan as they thanked the Balilinhon’s support to their leadership of the province.

Among the town’s major projects is the ongoing concreting of the vital road to Batuan via Hanopol.

The Sumad marking from September 23 to 29 opened in environmental activities like tree planting and riverbank cleanup, medical-dental mission, jobs fair and livestock clinic.

There was an exhibit at the municipal museum while best farm products were displayed in the agro-fair that enhanced the town’s agro-economic image.

True to its name that suggests greenery, the fertile interior locality is a growing source of vegetables, fruits and spices to major markets, hotels, resorts and restaurants in Tagbilaran City and other Bohol areas.

As verdant as the nature of the place were the fresh beauties who vied for the

Miss Sumad sa Balilihan 2011.

Mobile Philhealth services, blessing of Cabad and Haguilanan Grande water reservoirs, streetdancing, Pista sa Nayon, land title distribution, honoring of outstanding students, and awarding of agro-fair winners and best puroks under the Countryside Action Program (CAP) highlighted the founding day.

The CAP is a nationally-awarded innovation of the town introduced by Chatto himself while he was Balilihan mayor.

It has modified the purok system and made it a more effective tool for mobilizing basic communities and delivery of services down the grassroot.

It provided the blueprint for the province-wide implementation of purok power, which capitol leaders launched on Bohol Day last July. A Balilinhons’ “community way of life,” the CAP earned a gold medal from the GTZ German Foundation and Health and Management Information System (HAMIS) Award from the Department of Health in 1994 and 1997.

In 1995, the program bagged the Galing Pook Award, the Philippine Nobel Prize for best LGU practice, sponsored by the Asian Institute of Management (AIM), Local Government Academy (LGA) and Canadian International Development Assistance (CIDA).

Balilihan was adjudged having the cleanest and greenest town plaza and park during the term of the governor’s father, the late Assemblyman Eladio “Kiking” Chatto, as mayor.

Sumad beats in the very heart of the Balilinhons because it also falls on the death anniversary of the governor’s father, regarded as the “Grand Old Man” of Balilihan.

The town has instituted the HEAT Balilihan as its version of capitol’s HEAT Bohol, a strategy that has institutionalized the province’s unprecedented HEAT caravans.

The HEAT means “Health & sanitation, Education & technology, Agriculture & food sufficiency, Tourism & livelihood.”

Actions and accomplishments do the talking for the leaders of Balilihan, which has also been transformed into an eco-cultural tourism and educational-technical-vocational hub today.

Among its recent essential institutional landmarks are the growing Bohol Island State University (BISU) Campus, Bohol Congressional District Library which is the only of its kind in the province and one of only three in the country, and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Training Center .

Even students from Tagbilaran City, Bohol’s learning capital, and far Mindanao provinces have enrolled at the state university established by a law principally authored by Chatto while he was in Congress.

One worthy attribute of Balilihan is noted in its people’s respect for their leaders who value their constituents’ active participation in governance.

Politically-charged criticisms against their leaders are taken as a motivation to work harder and sustain the development momentum.

For them, there is no better politics than a bunch of good deeds.

The theme of this year’s Sumad is to move forward in unison with more cadence, not make things done lame, “Padayon Balilihan sa Kahiusahan, Kalambuan ug Kaangayan sa Tanan.” (Ven rebo Arigo)


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