Balilihan Bohol Non-working Holiday

The Arroyo government has declared tomorrow a non-working holiday in Balilihan in deference to the observance of the town's 181st foundation day.

Dubbed as Sumad 2009, the day also marks the 8th  death anniversary of the town's illustrious son, the late assemblyman Eladio "Kiking' Chatto, father of the incumbent congressman. 

It will be the first time in the history of the twin celebration that the town observes a non-working holiday

Proud Balilinhons have marked Sumad, an annual week-long observance that climaxes on their town's Foundation Day every September 29, and cited unity with their leaders as their key to development. 

Balilihan is emerging as another interior Bohol center of agri-tourism and education which they said only proves the workings of its officials led by Mayor Victoria Chatto and Vice Mayor Dominisio Chatto with the  support of the town's venerable son, the young congressman. 

New vital infrastructures have taken place and existing ones improved, including better roads that provide veins for faster flow of rural economic lifeblood. 

The 181-year-old municipality has finalized its tourism masterplan that harmonizes with the grand design for the ambitious Abatan River Development Project. 

Integrated agricultural technology has been applied to the predominantly farming locality, enabling farmers to attain food-self sufficiency while supplying vegetables and other products to Tagbilaran City markets, even tourism-related establishments like hotels and resorts. 

Rep. Chatto, together with the guests, municipal and barangay officials, yesterday opened the Sumad 2009 Agro-Industrial Fair, another highlight of the celebration which started last Wednesday. 

The week-long festivities will commence on Tuesday with the inauguration of projects like the Bureau of Fire Protection Building, Municipal Health Office extension building for laboratory and dental clinic, soft launching of the Municipal Museum, and inauguration of the Balilihan Central Elementary School Library Hub and three-classroom building. 

As a testimony to its becoming an educational center, Balilihan will mark tomorrow the 1st Foundation Day of the well-equipped Congressional District Library, one of only five in the country today. 

The library stands within the Balilihan Campus of the Central Visayas State College of Agriculture, Forestry and Technology (CVSCAFT), a technical/vocational/skills institution preparing young Boholanos to be globally competitive.  CVSCAFT's existing main campus is in Bilar. 

There are also Candijay, Calape and Clarin campuses under the CVSCAFT System, which Chatto has worked out to become the first state university in Bohol thru a bill he has principally authored in Congress. 

Balilihan is also home to the new training center of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). 

                                                  SUMAD ACTIVITIES

Another highlight of Sumad 2009 was a mass wedding solemnized inside the Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church. 

Celebration guests will be treated to demo farm field visits today while the selection and coronation of the Mr. and Mrs. Sumad 2009 take center stage tonight. 

Grand parade and streetdancing competition will enliven the celebration tomorrow afternoon, followed by a film showing at the Congressional District Library and socio-cultural Bayle sa Tibuok Kalibutan in the evening. 

The foundation anniversary finale and celebration closing activities/ceremonies on September 29, Tuesday, will include the Pista sa Nayon and launching rites for Republic Act 9706, Municipal Citizen's Charter, ISWM Ten-Year Plan and BCES Library Hub by concerned agencies with Chatto and town officials who will be joined by guests DepEd Usec. Jesus Galvan, DILG Regional Director Pedro Noval, Jr. and Gov. Erico Aumentado, among others. 

Awards will be given to Balilihan's Ten Outstanding Barangay Officials of the Year (TOBOY), best purok per barangay, outstanding exhibit booths and pinaka products of the agro-industrial fair. 

Balilinhon board and bar passers will likewise be honored as part of the181st Foundation Day and Sumad 2009 finale at the Assemblyman Eladio I. Chatto Sports and Cultural Center. 

Meanwhile, Board Member Alfonso "Ae" Damalerio II took exceptions to brickbats heaped on Cong. Chatto that he did nothing tangible in his own hometown. 

The young board member shared the observations of many Balilinhons that there's such a thing as charity begins at home and Damalerio minced no words in heaping extravagant praises to his mentor—Chatto. 

According to Damalerio, Balilihan would not be the center of  eco-tourism and education without the assistance of Cong. Chatto.

The board member was one of the guests of honor during the opening of the week-long celebration of Sumad 2009 last Wednesday. 

The congressman's wife Pureza pinched hit for her husband during the opening rites. 

This year's celebration rotates on the theme "Kahiusahan: Yawe sa Kalambuan sa Balilihan" or "Unity: Key to the Development of Balilihan." (With reports from Ven Rebo Arigo)