President Rodrigo Duterte wants to directly listen to the people’s woes by establishing a People’s Complaint Center in Bohol as well as in other provinces nationwide.
“We want a participative governance,” according to Cabinet Secretary LeoncioÂ “Jun” Evasco who is now heading the re-engineering of the office of Pres. Dutrerte towards “greater responsiveness.”
One of the Â top officials of the Duterte administration , the former Maribojoc mayor enumerated the functions tasked under him by the President since the issuance of Executive Order No. 1 which gave Evasco the powers over 12 government agencies, namely the Cooperative Development Authority,Â Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, National Anti-Poverty Commission,Â National Commission on Indigenous Peoples,Â National Commission on Muslim Filipinos,Â National Food Authority,Â National Youth Commission,Â Office of the President-Presidential Action Center,Â Philippine Commission on Women,Â Philippine Coconut Authority,Â Presidential Commission on the Urban Poor andÂ Technical Education and Skills Development Authority.
Evasco was guest during yesterday’sÂ “Meet The Press”Â of the Bohol Tri Media Association held at Gustus Resto and aired live over dyRD-AM.
He said the “Complaint Center” will be launched tomorrow in MalacaÃ±ang while its implementation is expected to commence after consultation with the various vital government agencies. Initially, Pres. Duterte himself announced the hotline 8888 for the public to relay their complaints. However, the mechanics in receiving and addressing these complaints will be the subject of discussion during tomorrow’s launching meeting of the Cabinet secretaries involved.
Evasco said that a component of the “complaint center” program includes a QRT or the Quick Response Team which will handle complaints processed and evaluated as “urgent.”
“This is the first time the Office of the President wants a direct access and monitoring of the activities of the various government agencies in order to cut down bureaucracy,” Evasco said recalling that his first meeting had the government agencies secretaries in attendance in order to render their report on the present set-up of their respective offices.
He told the media that his comments and reactions to the reports of the secretaries was not as a Cabinet secretary but as a former town mayor of Maribojoc (Bohol) so he could relay to them the feedback from the ground on how these government services are being received and felt by the people.
He likewise confirmed that a new Cabinet Secretary’s Office will be established soon under his direct supervision.
The former town executive admitted that he avoids media interview in Manila stressing that he is “paid to work and not to talk.”Â Evasco said that whenever he gets invitation from Manila TV networks, he will politely decline by saying that there areÂ “spokesmen” designated to relay the information to the public. However, he was candid to say that “Bohol media could be an exception” cause he feels like talking with his “kababayans” whenever he comes home for short weekendÂ break.
The workaholic town mayor turned Palace official said he reports to the office at 7:30 a.m. to set a good model to government workers as office hours start at 8:00am.
“I usually don’t hold office at the Guest House inside MalacaÃ±ang as it’s difficult for people to reach due to tight security,” Evasco said.
In line with the marching orders of President Duterte to reach out to the provincial areas, Evasco mentioned the formation of the “Kilusang Pagbabago” which is starting to snowball in few parts of the country. This is a people’s organization set-up where even ordinary citizens can get access to be heard of their conditions even without passing through the politicians.
This is what the Duterte administration calls as the “Citizens Participative Governance,” Sec. Evasco disclosedÂ to the local media during the hour-long press conference yesterday noon.
He mentioned the youth sector as a potent force in providing the nation sufficient manpower to act as “defenders of the republic.” He said the youths can be organized to be the ready manpower during calamities and other emergencies citing that the National Youth Commission (NYC) is under his cluster. He likewise mentioned the reactivation of the Reserved Officers Training (ROTC) in the colleges and universities.
Asked on what the bottom line of this thrust is, the former priest who turned rebel before joining the government, said it is to alleviate the living condition of the less fortunate. He specifically mentioned that this reach-out programs will be targeted to first benefit the top 20 poorest provinces in the country.
Evasco likewise admitted to the local media their thrust of educating the Filipinos on federalism which is the anchor advocacy of Pres. Duterte even before he announced his bid for the presidency.Â The peace process is also something which the Duterte administration wants to be participative .
The Boholano Palace official was candid to admit that this administration is expecting a rough sailing on many issues as Pres. Duterte remains “vocal and straight” in handling issues like the “3-Child Policy.”
“Of course, we expect the Church to react,” Evasco was quick to comment.
Commenting on the new Bohol Airport project, the Palace official said he considers this project as a “go” with its budget already approved.
Evasco said that he will personally monitor Boholanos’ concerns in governance like the unsolved high prices of gasoline in the province. He asked the public to formally relay this problem to the “Complaint Center” once it will be operational here.