2 NorthCot residents gives honor to province PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 09 July 2014 13:54

There are two stories of honesty exemplified North Cotabato residents that the provincial government and the local communities are proud about.
Nervin Lao, Jr., a Grade 7 student of the Mlang National High School in Mlang town in North Cotabato, and Michael Sigara, who is in mid 20s, in fact, became instant celebrities in their respective communities for their good examples.
Lao returned a bag to its owner, Stella Galicia, which he found at their frontyard on May 12.
The bag contained a laptop computer, original land titles and other important documents, and cash amounting to P5,500.
Lao, who is known in school for being cheerful, honest, and respectful, first reported what he found to village elders in Barangay Bialong, a farming district near the town proper of Mlang.
The bag was eventually turned over by barangay officials and Lao to Galicia, who, in turn wrote North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza, recommending a special citation for the honest child.
Accompanied by teachers, Lao met Mendoza at the provincial capitol in Amas District in Kidapawan City last week. The governor promised to provide him scholarship in recognition of his exemplary honesty.
Teachers have confirmed that Lao, indeed, is an honest student, who had earlier returned mobile phones and other valuables of schoolmates carelessly left in classrooms and at the campus playground.
Mendoza said she was delighted with Lao’s honesty and dedication to be of help always to people around him at all times, despite his tender age.
“This is a very touching tale of honesty, worth emulating,” Mendoza said.
Galicia said her experience of finding her bag again with all its contents intact, courtesy of Lao, was something she would cherish for the rest of her life.
Mendoza said she was also happy to hear about how another constituent, Sigara, a lowly vendor of indigenous wall boards made of strips of dried oil palms, returned, more than a month ago, a bag containing P100,000 cash, and costly high-end mobile phones, which fell from a speeding vehicle and landed before him while standing along a highway in Makilala town. 
Sigara had told reporters it was for his fear of “gaba,” meaning divine wrath in Cebuano, that made him decide to return the bag to its rightful owner, Elvie Torres.
Sigara also asked help from barangay officials in contacting Torres through her address and mobile found on a small booklet inside her bag.
Torres, of Midsayap town in the first district of North Cotabato, said she never thought she can find again her bag, which contained a big amount of cash.
Mendoza said Lao and Sigara both deserve special mention in the September 1 provincial centennial anniversary program at the provincial capitol.
“These are good, true-to-life stories of genuine honesty of Cotabato residents whose examples are indeed worth emulating,” the governor said.
She said the examples Sigara and Lao will help boost the image of the province as a potential investment and eco-tourism hub.