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Groups hope for real reforms

(The Freeman) - July 1, 2016 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - With the start of the new administration, various sectors have high hopes for genuine reform and social change.

People's organizations, partylist groups and the religious sector yesterday held a peaceful rally in Cebu City to express support for President Rodrigo Duterte.

Presenting proposals for the new administration to consider, at least 200 people marched to Fuente Osmeña where a short program was held.

Bayan-Central Visayas chairman Jaime Paglinawan said farmers, workers, students, women, drivers, fishermen, and those from religious groups and the urban poor convened earlier to draft what they called the national "people's agenda."

He said the 15-point agenda was submitted to Malacañang yesterday.

The agenda includes sustainable agrarian reform; wage increase; expansion of basic services such as education, health care and housing programs; stoppage of the K to 12 Program; and the preservation and conservation of natural resources.

Father Ray Gelloagan, of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines, said the prayer rally was to show their support for Duterte.

"Naglaum mi nga sa dihang paglingkod ni Duterte maghatag og bag-ong color ug kinabuhi diha sa mamumuo, sa mga kabus ug ingon man sa atong ka-estudyantehan nga ang mga palisiya dili unta kontra-katawhan kon dili mga palisiya nga maghatag og kasiguraduhan ngadto sa mga katawhan," he told reporters.

 Gelloagan said they are looking forward to seeing an end to corruption in government so public resources are delivered fairly to the people.

Even government officials are excited to see the changes that Duterte has promised.

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, regional director of the Department of Health-7, said he is optimistic of better things to come under the new administration.

Dr. Julieta Jeruta, regional director of the Department of Education-7, said the success of the president's program depends on how the public play their role.

 "Let us just see what the progress will be in the first 100 days. For me, access and quality will result if everybody will be conscious that change should start from oneself not that it was ordered by the president," Jeruta said.

Dr. Eddie Llamedo, chief of Regional Public Affairs Office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-7, is also anticipating a thorough and comprehensive review of the existing procedures and requirements to secure permits in line with the directive of the new president.

"We greatly welcome the ascension of Rodrigo Duterte as the 16th president of the Philippines as we usher a new definition of governance when it comes to streamlining government permitting and licensing system," he said.

Llamedo said decentralization in the issuance of permits should be implemented to reduce bureaucratic red tape.

For Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña, winning public trust is not automatic.

"You have to earn it. And that's a process. Nobody trusts the government. Nobody even trusts the police," Osmeña said.

He agreed with Duterte's order to reduce the government red tape.

"That is precisely I wish the president will work on that. It is the Congress that passes all of these laws that's very hard to work with," Osmeña said.

The mayor said the president was right in his policy towards corruption, criminality and drugs.

"He is right. He is absolutely right. You know, Duterte is one of the best mayors of all time. I know that because I've met him 20 years ago as a city mayor. That's why when Rody was running for president; my heart is also with him. But he is right," Osmeña said.  (FREEMAN)

 

 

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