Martes, Pebrero 26, 2013

PNoy calls for stronger resolve for change

President Benigno S. Aquino III urged Filipinos to continue to fight for the country’s goal of national progress, “to finally reap the rewards of the sacrifices of our fellow Filipinos who stood against the dictatorial government during the historic EDSA People Power in 1986.” 

In his speech during the celebration of the 27th Anniversary of the EDSA People Power (EPP) held Monday at the People Power Monument along EDSA, PNoy reminded the people that EPP brought out unity and camaraderie among Filipinos in a time of greed and selfishness during the Marcos regime. 

The EDSA People Power was a testament of the collective aim of Filipinos to regain democracy as they stood arm in arm against the Martial Law government. 

The President said that the EDSA Revolution, which serves as model for other countries also clamoring for a bloodless change in their government, should serve as mind opener to the next generations as they continue to safeguard the country’s democracy. 

He added that EDSA Revolution shouldn’t end that fateful February 25 of 1986. Instead, it should be a “continuous fight for change that would lead to national progress.” 

A significant part of the commemoration of People Power was the signing into law by the President of the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013 which will give assistance to the victims of Martial Law through monetary and non-monetary compensation. 

Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Chairperson Loretta Ann Rosales said, “The thousands and thousands of survivors of the injustice during Martial Law made the ‘necessary sacrifice’ to see through the darkness.” This eventually led to the revolt that was EDSA Revolution. 

The said law, according to Rosales, will serve three purposes: to assert the truth that government is the protector of the people; to put an end to a culture of impunity; and to serve as symbol of solidarity. 

Meanwhile, Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Director General Jose Mari Oquiñena said during the EDSA commemoration rites that the Philippines is on its way to be a Tiger economy with the concerted efforts of the government, particularly the Aquino administration, and the Filipinos in achieving inclusive growth for the country. 

He said that the EDSA People Power is a reminder that the country needs action and unity among the people to achieve progress, and for the country to finally be the “Crown Jewel of Asia.” 

The theme of the 27th anniversary celebration of EDSA People Power is, “Pilipinas Natin, Abot-Tanaw Na!” 

Martes, Pebrero 19, 2013

Information officers, called to inspire and involve people in nation-building

Information officers in Metro Manila were urged to involve people in nation building by being their source not only of information but also of inspiration. 

This was what Philippine Information Agency’s (PIA) newly-installed Director-General Jose Mari Oquiñena said during the First Meeting of the Association of Information Officers in Metro Manila (AIMM). 

He said that information officers must be able to encourage the participation of the Filipino people in nation-building by providing them with timely, relevant, and truthful information, as well as engage them in activities that will help improve the lives of our fellow men. 

The director-general also called for the active involvement of the AIMM through AIMM founder and PIA-NCR Regional Director Riza J. Baldoria in building stronger alliance with other information officers in the country. 

One of the proposals of the DG is to hold a nation-wide Information Summit tentatively scheduled in July 2013 which aims to gather all information officers in the country and reaffirm their role as responsible conveyors of information and establish a network with other information officers. 

AIMM members were also encouraged to participate in the upcoming “Bayani Challenge,” an activity under the Pilipinas Natin—the government’s campaign to build a volunteerism movement among Filipinos to effect positive change to the country. 

The Bayani Challenge is a five-day outreach activity where volunteers will build communities for their fellowmen by building and repairing schools, and conducting health missions and climate change mitigation activities, among others. 

To take place from March 23-27, “the Bayani Challenge is an action-oriented activity which hopes to develop ‘involvement’ and ‘physical presence’ among the people—a shift from being a passive audience in the country’s daily activities,” the DG Oquiñena said. 

Bayani Challenge is expected to be the biggest volunteerism event of the country as it targets to serve 35 provinces in the country. 

The Bayani Challenge is among the activities of the government’s Pilipinas Natin launched in 2011 as a response to President Benigno Aquino’s (PNoy) call for the Filipinos to work together in empowering the nation through patriotism and the Filipino concept of “Bayanihan” or working with each other. 

Pilipinas Natin aims to inculcate an “inclusive mindset” in Filipinos, the kind of thinking that includes fellow Filipinos. 

The AIMM is composed of public information officers of the 17 local government units in Metro Manila as well as NCR regional information officers of national government units whose primary tasks are to disseminate information on development programs and projects of the government, and plan and implement communication campaigns in support of development plans of NCR.