December 5, 2023

The Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC) recognized Sadanga, Mountain Province Mayor Gabino Ganggangan and Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong as the region’s models in strengthening the resilience and adaptive capacities of communities in this time of the Covid-19 pandemic.  
Ganggangan and Magalong were honored in an awarding ceremony dubbed “Panangpadayaw iti bituen ti amianan “(Recognizing the star of the north) last July 14 at the Department of Public Works and Highways conference hall as part of the observance of National Disaster Resilience Month.
The bituen ti amianan (north star) connotes a beacon of hope and light amidst the crisis and the pandemic that the world is facing.
Ganggangan was awarded for adopting a socio-cultural approach in peace building and security efforts in responding to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Magalong, on the other hand, was honored for his exemplary leadership in DRRM specifically in managing the Covid-19 pandemic in Baguio. Through his leadership, Baguio City became a model community not only in the region but in the country notably on the effective use of information technology and police investigation tools in contact tracing.
The CRDRRMC also recognized DPWH-CAR Director Tiburcio Canlas for his consistent support in DRRM efforts and for his advocacy on proper engineering intervention through disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction projects.  
CRDRRMC Chair and Office of Civil Defense Regional Director Albert Mogol and guest of honor Benguet caretaker Eric Yap presented the plaques of recognition to the awardees.
Mogol expressed the CRDRRMC’s salutations to Ganggangan and Magalong, who, through the best practices and notable accomplishments they have shown, are truly “northern stars” that can light other communities in the Cordillera and other parts of the country towards the path to disaster-resilient and adaptive communities.
Yap, in his keynote speech, congratulated the awardees and the officials of regional line agencies and other local chief executives in the region for their efforts in dealing with the Covid-19.
“The Cordillera is truly a bright shining star here in the north Philippines as far as dealing with the Covid pandemic is concerned,” he said.
Mogol and Yap also spearheaded the launching of the CRDRRMC “Agdan Ti Laing” (Terrace of Excellence) coffee table book that showcases the excellence taken by the Cordillera Regional DRRM Council.
Mogol said every page of the book depicts the CRDRRMC’s milestones, shows every challenge the council have overcome, and indicates the strong solidarity among the council member agencies and DRRM partners/stakeholders in the region.
OCD Administrator and National DRRM Council Executive Director Usec. Ricardo Jalad, in his inspirational message via video teleconferencing, congratulated the awardees and the members of the CRDRRMC for their continuing commitment and dedication in pushing for disaster resilient communities in the region.
Jalad also enjoined continuing partnership in pushing for a whole of government and whole of nation approach in overcoming the adversity brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and other hazards that may threaten local communities. – Carlito C. Dar