BAGUIO CITY, June 28 (PIA) - - The Cordillera leg of the Regional Consultation on Federalism was successfully held here at the Summer Capital with seven members of the Consultative Committee providing information on their proposed amendments to the 1987 Constitution, multi – sector providing their inputs and affirming their support to federalism alongside the push for regional autonomy.
The Department of Interior and Local Government- led regional roadshow on June 25 and 26 was attended by ConCom members Dr. Virgilio Bautista and lawyer Laurence Wacnang, who are both Cordillerans, Professors Eddie Alih and Ferdinand Tayao, lawyers Susan Ubalde – Ordinario, Jose Martin Loon and Ferdinand Bocobo.
DILG Assistant Secretary and Center for Federalism and Constitutional Reform Administrator Jonathan Malaya said the regional federalism roadshow is primarily for nation building and aims to inform and dialogue with the people on how the proposed constitutional amendment to the 1987 Philippine constitution towards the shift to a federal form of government will ensure a more progressive country and will bring better life to our children and grandchildren.
The ConCom members presented salient features of the proposed Constitution for a federal republic that includes the creation of 18 federated regions including the Cordilleras and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The Cordillera with its six provinces, Baguio City and the component City of Tabuk in Kalinga will keep its identity as one region in a federal form of government, they assured.
Regional Development Council (RDC) Chairperson and Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan led officials in affirming support to the constitutional change process as he called on Cordillerans to support federalism as like the region’s campaign toward regional autonomy, it pushes for decentralization of powers to bring in progress to remote communities and inclusive growth to every Filipino.
The Cordillera RDC in its goal to bring development to all Cordillera communities and in support to the national government’s developmental agenda has adopted the “autonomy towards federalism” framework.
“Let us not be confused. Our push for autonomy towards regional development is the same as the national government campaign towards a shift to federal form of government, as it also aims to bring progress in every community in the country through decentralization and devolving of powers to the regional (for Cordillera autonomy) or federal states,” Domogan said.
“So as we push for attaining a Cordillera Autonomous Region, let us also support the Federalism movement. Autonomy towards Federalism,” he added.
Malaya said Cordillera’s push for regional autonomy will not be affected by the national government’s Federalism campaign. Federalism will give more meat or teeth to Cordillera Autonomy. If we pass Cordillera autonomy and I hope it will, federalism will strengthen and institutionalize it. Federalism will ensure that it will benefit all the people of Cordillera, he stressed.
The 2 – day federalism roadshow included a press conference; a forum with Philippine Military Academy officials and cadets at Fort Del Pilar; a Town Hall meeting with multi - sectoral leaders and a regional consultation with local chief executives, regional line agency representatives and with people’s organization leaders at Crown Legacy Hotel, and regional federalism convention at the University of Baguio. (JDP/CCD-PIA CAR)
|*Photo credits from: Mr. Ryan Dale Mang-usan