By By Fernan A. Gianan
The New Testament’s Bicol Virac version
posted 28 days ago  ·  
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One of the frontrunners in the Senate race, Duterte aide Bong Go, has appointed Panganiban Mayor Robert Fernandez as his official point person in the province of Catanduanes.

This augurs well for the expected victory of the chief executive for one of the four seats in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan East District, the other “sure winners” being PBM Bolotoy Templonuevo, PBM Arnel Turado and former PBM Edwin Tanael.

His closeness to the would-be senator would come in handy when he comes soliciting for funds from his network of connections both in politics and the national bureaucracy.

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Circulating on facebook among Virac users is a picture of Virac Water District’s Schedule of Water Rationing.

The schedule was not only undated, but the presentation was also confusing. It would have been better if only the barangays with no water or with low water pressure were indicated along with the specified times.

Two of the district’s water sources are almost dry due to lack of rain over the last three months.

This situation has been worsened by the failure of VIWAD technical staff to fully utilize the increased volume of water flowing into its reservoir from the Cauayan source.

Recently, a plan to tap an extra pipeline to the reservoir to allow water to flow into downtown homes will face delay due to the failure of bidding for the materials. Apparently, no supplier joined the bidding due to the low price estimates in the P3-million contract.

It seems that 7,000 VIWAD consumers are in for a lot of suffering this summer and most possibly until the rainy season kicks in by October.

Already, the Philippine Red Cross Catanduanes Chapter has already deployed a water tanker that is now bringing water to eight or so barangays from its water filtration facility at Hicming.

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Two officials of the Philippine Bible Society came here recently together with a linguist and an official translator to discuss with concerned sectors an interesting proposal: the translation of the New Testament first into Bicol Virac and then Bicol Norte dialects.

The project, set to kick off this May 20-23, 2019 through a translators’ training in Virac, has the blessings of the Diocese of Virac. The group met with Bishop Manolo delos Santos on their very first day here and secured his endorsement.

They likewise visited the DepEd Division of Catanduanes and inquired as to the effectiveness of the Mother Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education being implemented in local schools.

It may be recalled that the chief complaint of MTBMLE teachers was that they had to translate the textbooks into the local dialect as they were written using the Bicol Naga tongue which is significantly different from the ones Catandunganons’ are using,

The PBS group, which coordinated their trip through Pastor Danny Lucero, also met with this writer as well as “Burabod” author Efren Sorra to gauge the need to translate the New Testament into one that could be more understood easily by islanders.

The discussion confirmed the need for islanders to have their own orthography for both Sur and Norte dialects.

An orthography is a set of conventions for writing a language. It includes norms of spelling, hyphenation, capitalization, word breaks, emphasis, and punctuation, as well as variations in spelling.

    For decades now, some groups have been advocating for such an orthography that could pave the way for a Sur and Norte dictionary.

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THE HAWK-EYED CADDY. A golfer is looking for a new caddy one day when his friend says, “I know a great caddy, he’s 90 years old but he has eyes like a hawk.”

“OK, then,” says the man, “tell him, I’m playing again in a week.”

The week passes and they start to play. The golfer hits a perfect drive. He is so pleased with himself that he holds his follow-through position for several moments. Unwinding, he says to the caddy, “Did you see where it went?”

The caddy says, “Sure, I did.”

“Great, where is it?”

The caddy replies, “I don’t remember.”


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