DILG wraps up NCR federalism campaign sorties on high note

MANILA The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Thursday held yet another successful convention rally to wrap up its regional campaign sorties for federalism in the National Capital Region (NCR).

This is the last regional sortie. I think there is one more a summit event. Only two events before Christmas. That's on schedule, Gary Olivar of the Centre for Federalism and Constitutional Reform said in an interview with Philippine News Agency after the federalism convention rally held at the Fil Oil Flying V Arena in San Juan City.

Over 2,000 people representing nine local governments units (LGUs) from the northern part of Metro Manila attended the last federalism convention rally.

Aside from host San Juan, other represented LGUs were Pasig, Caloocan, Navotas, Valenzuela, Malabon, Mandaluyong, Marikina and Quezon City.

We're so happy that even here in Metro Manila, federalism has strong support and they understand that federalism will really help the nation, Olivar said.

He thanked San Juan City Mayor Gia Gomez for hosting the NCR's second two-day regional roadshow also highlighted by a media forum and town hall sectoral meeting.

The first federalism roadshow in the NCR was hosted by ParaAaque City on Nov. 13-15 this year.

We are hoping that what we're doing will have positive effect on survey for federalism. What important is that people appreciate once they learned about federalism. We need to inform more people and we are sure that support will become stronger, Olivar said.

Gomez said the federalism roadshow gave her more information about the advantages and benefits if the country will shift from the current unitary to federal form of government.

My heart longs for different system of government. This time, I have more knowledge and I fully understand federalism. We can have a unique system of federalism. I will certainly push for that kind of system, Gomez said.

Nelly Duka, a representative of Pink Ladies Foundation from San Juan, said she believes that federalism will bring a balanced economy throughout the country.

I think shifting our system of government to federalism will truly change the lives of the Filipinos. All women support federalism, Duka said.

Aida from San Juan, Pasig, said federalism will allow under-developed areas of the country to chart their own economic development.

Edmund Tayao, a member of the Consultative Committee (ConCom) tasked by President Rodrigo Duterte to review the 1987 Constitution and to draft the federal charter, said federalism is not an overnight solution to all problems of the country.

It will take time, but we have to start somewhere so that we get to benefit from the expected changes out of the new form of government, Tayao said.

Though regional roadshow ended on a high note, Olivar said federalism promotion will continue at the provincial, municipal and probably barangay levels next year.

He said the DILG and ConCom have trained local speakers to explain the advantages and benefits of the federal form of government at the provincial level.

These are well motivated people. They understand federalism and they will become effective, Olivar said.

The federalism roadshow was held in different regions of the country to intensify government's information drive and increase public awareness about the proposed shift to federalism.

Under federalism, the 18 federated regions of the country will be given more power and autonomy to develop their respective areas without relying too much on the national government. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency