Even with a fractured hip, Governor Gwendolyn Garcia stood tall in front of the constituents of the 7th and 3rd Districts of Cebu Province on Tuesday, August 25 to award the municipal and district level winners of the SUGBUsog Program held in Dumanjug town and Toledo City, respectively.
This was the governor’s first out-of-town trip ten days after sustaining a hip fracture from an accident inside her home.
Garcia, aided with a walker and wearing flat shoes as advised by her orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Jose Antonio San Juan, was all smiles as she was greeted by residents and public officials of the southern Cebu districts.
She expressed that it is “historic and just” to hold the first awarding ceremony of the SUGBUsog Vegetable Gardening Contest in Dumanjug as the town has produced three governors of Cebu – the late Dionisio Jakosalem, Atty. Pablo “Pabling” Garcia, and herself.
A brainchild of Governor Gwen, SUGBUsog is a program created to provide hope to the Cebuanos and encourage their productivity and creativity amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.
After four months, the free seeds given to each participant all over the Province have now borne fruit bringing fresh and clean vegetables on the Cebuanos’ tables and more income as they were able to sell their extra harvests.
After Dumanjug, the governor then proceeded to Toledo City for the awarding of municipal and district winners in the 3rd District. She was joined by Deputy Speaker Pablo John Garcia, and 3rd District Provincial Board (PB) Members Victoria Corominas-Toribio and Atty. John Ismael Borgonia.
Opportunity in a crisis
In his inspirational message, the Deputy Speaker highlighted how the Governor was able to see an opportunity in the middle of the pandemic and implement a program that extends great help to the Cebuanos.
“Sa krisis kuno nagpaluyo, nagpahipi, ang usa ka kahigayunan. Mao kini ang gisilibrar karon, mao kini atong gipasundayag karon, kining kahigayunan nga nagpahipi luyo sa usa ka krisis nga pag-igo sa Covid-19. Kita nahigmata nga na apiktaran ang atong food supply chain. Atong nakita nga naglisod kita pagpangita og bugas. Kun naa man gani makit-an pirting mahala, mga utanun, mga lagutmon sige’g saka ang presyo tungod sa demand,” he said.
“Kinahanglan sad diay atimanon kining atong food security og kini usa ka testamento sa maayo nga liderato ni Governor Gwen Garcia nga taliwala niadtong krisis, nianing krisis nga atong giatubang nakakita siya og opurtunidad, sa kahigayunan nga ang Sugbo muhaw-as gikan niining krisis nga ma-arang-arang gihapon ang atong kinabuhi og panginabuhi,” the congressman continued.
Governor Gwen said that aside from physical sickness, Covid-19 has also created a “fear pandemic” which the Cebu Provincial Government is also trying to fight against.
Because of the implemented lockdown in the Province, many businesses closed down and many Cebuanos lost their jobs. This led Garcia to create the SUGBUsog Program.
“Ug taliwala niining nahitabo natong tanan nakaingon ko dili mahimo nga mapawong ang paglaum sa atong mga kaigsuonang Sugbuanon. Mangita ta’g paagi nga taliwala sa kalisod nga giatubang, matag adlaw aduna sila’y hinungdan nga mubangon kay aron tan-awon og unsa na kataas ang tudling nga ilang natanum,” she said.
“Pagkanindot kay tan-awon nga adunay musugod pagguho, dahon magkataas, magkataas, magkadako nga maghatag kanato’g hinungdan nga mulaum sa pag-usab. Kay anaa pa gihapon, kun magkugi ta, ang kahigayunan nga ang atong kinabuhi adunay rason nga mulaum, nga diay anaa pa ang Diyos sa kahitas-an nga nagtan-aw sa mga paningkamot sa iyang mga anak dinhi sa yuta og mutabang gihapon,” the governor added.
She told the SUGBUsog participants that even with the Covid-19 pandemic, the vegetables they planted will continue to grow.
“Bisan pag Covid-19 na, pandemya na sa tibuok kalibutan mutubo gihapon ang kamatis, mutubo gihapon ang talong, pagkadagko sa upo, paliya. Padayon pagtuyok ang kalibutan, padayon ang paglaum. Mao kani ang kinauyukan sa atong tinguha nga atong gipasiugdahan ang SUGBUsog, ang Sugbuanong Busog, Luwas og Himsog,” she added.
3rd District winners
In the 3rd District, winners for the household backyard category for the municipal level include Aloguinsan’s Jocelyn Lapingcao of Barangay Rosario (1st), Felix Nengasca of Bonbon (2nd), and Michelle Bonsubre of Tampaan (3rd); Asturia’s Emma Baricuatro (1st) and Ma. Elena Feriol (2nd) of San Isidro, and Jefrey Rabanes of Owak (3rd); Balamban’s Nerisa Jane Gosarin (1st) and Cresencia Heyrosa (2nd) of Cambuhawe, and John Paul Estela of Pondol (3rd); Barili’s Evelyn Montecalbo (1st) and Natalia Mahinay (2nd) of Bagakay, and Minerva Basiga (3rd); Pinamungajan’s Cristino Cambonga of Rizal (1st), Lowelyn Magtagad of Tutay (2nd), and Jelin Podador of Sibago (3rd); Tuburan’s Adoracion Say-a of Fortaliza (1st), Rosedita Pando of Alegria (2nd), and Fredigunda Navarro of Alegria (3rd); and Toledo City’s Raul Tomarong (1st), Lisondra Aquiles (2nd), and Elvie Macapobre (3rd) from Barangay Bato.
For the household containerized category; municipal winners were Romel Condes of Barangay Sta. Lucia (1st), Clavel Serognas of Tubigagmanok (2nd), and Elorde Maambong of Sta. Lucia (3rd) from Asturias; Eliseo Rapana of Poblacion (1st) and Anselmo de Asis of Balao (2nd) from Barili; Juliet Tamarong of Bato (1st), Elwen Cataposan of Awihao (2nd), and Evan Lisondra of Bato (3rd) from Toledo City; Artemio Alden Juriano of Poblacion 2 (1st), Bebelin Buñao of Putat (2nd), and Lorna Novicio of Poblacion 2, Tony Mondejar of Bagasawe, and Susana Talisay of Poblacion 8 all tied in the 3rd place from Tuburan.
Meanwhile, district winners for the household-backyard category were Aloguinsan’s Jocelyn Lapingcao (1st), and Toledo City’s Aquiles Lisondra (2nd) and Raul Tamarong (3rd).
For the household containerized category, winners were Tuburan’s Artemio Alden Juriano (1st), Bebelin Buñao (2nd), Antonio Mondejar (3rd), Lorna Novicio (3rd) and Toledo City’s Evan Lisondra (3rd).
All winners received cash prizes and plaque. The district level winners also received additional cash prize from Deputy Speaker Garcia.
Ma. Elena Feriol, 50, from San Isidro, Asturias town and their town’s 2nd place winners, expressed her gratitude to the Governor Garcia and the Capitol for initiating the SUGBUsog program.
“Usa pud ko ka mag-uuma, ang among abot nakapahimulos gyud mi kay gawas sa nakakaon mi og presko nga utanon, nakapamaligya pami,” she said.
District 3 SUGBUsog evaluators also received a plaque of appreciation from the Capitol. They were PB Members Corominas-Toribio and Borgonia, DA-RFO 7 representative Helen Kyniston, Agricultural Technologist of the Provincial Agriculture Office Ainee Pasaje, and Engineer 1 of the Provincial Agriculture Office Engr. Avejun Abucot. (Mylen Manto)