M'lang Festival

KORONADAL CITY (PIA) - The local government of M'lang recently launched the week-long celebration of the first Tulabong Festival to promote the Central Mindanao Airport in Barangay Tawan-tawan, which is nearing completion. The festivities that started February 16, was highlighted with exhibition flights of two ultra-light planes, which wowed residents, most of whom witnessed for the first time the actual flying of aircraft at very close distance. The festival was also spiced up by a sky-diving exhibition. After the air show, residents were also entertained with a motorcycle and tricycle drag race at the stretch of the 1.2-kilometer runway. M'lang Mayor Joselito Pinol said final works on the airport will also follow and will start this month.

PEACE TREATY

The signing of a peace covenant between two groups of farmers could put an end to almost four decades of bloody encounters in over 178 hectares of contested land in Makilala, Cotabato, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary Virgilio delos Reyes said. He noted that the peace agreement signed last January 31 between Muslim and Christian agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) at Sitio Lacobe would enable the DAR to complete the process of land titling, as well as actual distribution of land to warring parties in the area. Local DAR officials said the implementation of the agrarian reform program at Sitio Lacobe had been hampered by bloody encounters. (Ellalyn B. De Vera)

PUBLIC WELFARE

ZAMBOANGA CITY - Local missionaries of the Vatican-based Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) has celebrated their congregation's 187th founding anniversary over the weekend. In a statement, the OMI said that about seven decades of their group's contemporary lifetime were spent serving the various Muslim and Christian communities in Mindanao. The OMI was established by Eugene de Mazenod (August 1, 1782-May 21, 1861), a priest whose clan belonged to the French aristocracy. At a young age, De Mazenod already showed attachment to poor French communities, and in so doing, angered the elite, the statement said. (Nonoy Lacson)

SECURED POLLS

COTABATO CITY - Provincial and regional candidates in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) signed here Tuesday separate covenants binding them to abide by the campaign for "secured and free elections" (SAFE) under the Omnibus Election Code come May 2013 polls. The signing rites, organized by the Commission on Elections, military and police hierarchies, the Consortium on Electoral Reforms (CER), and local poll watch groups, were held at a hotel here, and witnessed by the various religious and traditional leaders alongside representatives of peace advocacy outfits. (Ali Macabalang)

MUSIC EVENT

TAGUM CITY (PIA) - The week-long 12th Musikahan sa Tagum Festival officially at the New Tagum City Hall here Tuesday. According to City Tourism Council Chairperson Alma Uy, they are reinventing this year's Musikahan Festival because it will not only be about music competitions, but it will also be about "sharing what we have to the victims of typhoon 'Pablo."' She said the festival will feature several concerts and other activities that are all geared to raise funds for the rehabilitation of the communities destroyed by typhoon "Pablo" - particularly in Compostela Valley.

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