By: Flor Jackson

NAVAL, Biliran – The province of Biliran through Governor Gerardo “Gerryboy” Espina, Jr. is all set to celebrate the 19th provincehood anniversary on Wednesday, May 11, 2011.

The celebration aims to instill in the minds of every Biliranon the importance of unity and cooperation as driving forces towards the development of this island province of Biliran.

According to Dionisio Oliva, Information Officer of the provincial government of Biliran, the activities for the three-day celebration will start on Monday, May 9.

He said the opening ceremonies on May 9 will be started with a motorcade around poblacion Naval with the candidates for the Mr. and Miss Biliran 2011 and the candidates for the Biliran Got Talent.

The opening program follows after the motorcade at 9:00 o’clock in the morning at the provincial capitol grounds.
Governor Espina will deliver a message to welcome all Biliranons and guests to the celebration.

Congressman Rogelio Espina of the lone district of Biliran will likewise deliver his inspirational address for the occasion.

Both Governor Gerryboy Espina and Congressman Rogelio Espina will lead in the symbolic releasing of doves and balloons to signal the opening of the celebration.

They will be assisted by the mayors of the eight municipalities of Biliran and other guests.

The short program will be followed by the ribbon-cutting ceremony to open the “Tabo sa Biliran and the Agri-Trade Fair which are part of the highlights of the three-day provincehood anniversary celebration.

Mr. Oliva further said that the Jobs Fair will likewise open on day-one of the celebration.

He said the two-day jobs fair will benefit hundreds of Biliranons who are expected to be employed locally and abroad as seven employers from Manila will be joining the jobs fair on Monday, May 9.

The jobs fair will be held at the Governor’s Hall at the 3rd Floor of the capitol building in Barangay Calumpang, Naval.

In the evening of May 9, the Biliran Got Talent, Talentadong Biliranon, Talent Night for the search for Mr. and Miss Biliran 2011 and Zion show will be held at the Naval Gymnasium.

Furthermore, he said, on May 10, day-two of the celebration, various activities are lined-up by the provincial government of Biliran and these include the distribution of Philhealth Cards to target recipients, Quiz Bee competition, passporting, continuation of the jobs fair and search for Mr and Miss Biliran 2011 which will be held at the Naval State University gymnasium at 8:00 o’clock in the evening.

On May 11, which is the anniversary day of the 19th Provincehood of Biliran, the grand ceremony will be started with a thanksgiving mass at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary in Naval with no less than Msgr. Filomeno Bactol, Bishop of Naval as the main celebrant together with the Naval clergy.

The mass will be followed by a grand anniversary parade and float exhibition to be participated in by the eight local government units of Biliran, national government agencies (NGAs) and the officials and employees of the provincial government of Biliran led by Governor Gerryboy Espina. Then follows the anniversary program at 10:30 in the morning.

Part of the morning activities of the grand celebration on May 11 are livestock dispersal to identified recipients, turn-over of multi-cabs also to identified recipients and awarding of land titles.

The Fiesta sa Kapitolyo or Salo-salo will take place at the provincial capitol at 12:00 noon.

The Hudyaka Street Parade and showdown will immediately follow at 1:00 o’clock in the afternoon.

The announcement of winners and awarding of prizes will be done at 4:00 o’clock in the afternoon.

Biliran was once a sub-province of Leyte. It became a separate province on May 11, 1992, some 19 years ago.

The occasion is also an opportunity for the Biliranons to internalize the significance of the milestone in their lives as residents in this island paradise.

This year’s celebration of the 19th Provincehood Anniversary of Biliran is anchored on the theme: “Panaghiusa ug Pagtinabangay: Dalan sa Paglambo sa Atong Hinigugmang Probinsya.” (FEJ/PIA-Biliran)

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