A new set of leaders recently took their oaths of office as officials of the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office Apayao as former PENR Officer Atty. Romeo Bravo exits government service.

Pursuant to Special Order No. 2021-455, Rainier Balbuena has been designated as the Officer-in-Charge, PENR Officer Apayao. His post as the Technical Services Division Chief of PENRO Benguet was taken over by For. Teber Dionisio.
Community Environment and Natural Resources Office Conner, formerly led by For. Dionisio is once again led by For. Rodel Cacpal who had a stint in PENRO Apayao. The vacated post by Cacpal was filled in by For. Noralyn Piano who now serves as the Technical Services Division Chief of PENRO Apayao. The Management Services Division, on the other hand, is now led by Crizzane Joy Yturzaeta. In addition, the Office is designated with a new accountant, Christma dela Peña.
Assistant Regional Executive Director for Management Services Atty. Cleo Sabado-Andrada guaranteed the set of leaders newly installed in Apayao underwent meticulous selection, taking into consideration the needs of the Apayaos in terms of environment and natural resources management.
“We wanted to let you know that we did not randomly pick people to take over (these positions) only for the sake of having someone to call PENR Officer and key officials. We picked someone whom we know can lead, and lead as good, or ideally, better than the former PENR Officer did,” she said.
Regional Executive Director Ralph Pablo also assured the people of Apayao that the province’s environment is in good hands under the leadership of Balbuena. He humbly highlighted that the new PENR Officer’s credentials, work experience and values make him fit as a leader who can “empower people, lead change, and inspire people”.
Governor Eleonor Bulut-Begtang, who graced the Turnover Ceremony cum Salamat-Mabuhay Program on June 21, welcomed the change of leadership in Apayao saying the identity of officials is the least of her concerns so long as they can lead PENRO Apayao effectively.
“We need sincere leaders who will lead. Someone with the political will to address the environmental concerns in the province,” Bulut-Begtang started.
She continued emphasizing the need for the newly installed officials to have a strong tie with the local government unit. While she acknowledged that government agencies have different mandates, she underscored her responsibility and authority as the provincial governor to supervise provincial government officers and to make sure their mandates and institutional objectives are aligned with that of the local government unit of Apayao.
In his response, Balbuena committed to the continued partnership between PENRO Apayao and the PLGU of Apayao. He vowed to look into and address concerns in different sectors of the environment, particularly, illegal logging, kaingin, and ecosystems management.
Former PENR Officer Bravo told Balbuena that while it may be challenging to lead PENRO Apayao especially so that the LGU’s eye is on the office, he assured that the local government officials’ support and involvement is the best consolation.