Federalism to bring gov’t closer to the poor

MANILA Underprivileged Filipinos will primarily benefit when the country finally shifts to federal system of government, an official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said on Wednesday.

"Well ang pinakatulong nito ay ang serbisyong matatanggap nila sa gobyerno (The benefits will be the services they would get from the government)," DILG spokesperson Assistant Secretary Jonathan Malaya told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

Malaya said with the current unitary system, local officials in remote provinces could only do so much with the limited fund for certain projects that would benefit their constituents.

In contrast, Malaya said "richer" local government units (LGUs) are very much capable delivering the basic services to their constituents.

He said under the federal system, the LGUs will have the authority to use their own funds and allocate them to services, pertaining to health, that will improve the lives of their respective constituencies.

"Ngayon kasi limitado lang ang pondo nila.Hirap na hirap silang mag-allocate ng pondo sa health kasi ang gastos ng health (With the current system, many LGUs have limited funds to prioritize allocations on health services because these require huge funding)," he added.

With a federal system, Malaya said the LGUs are empowered to allocate budget to build bigger hospitals, put medicines and supplies and proceed with the hiring of human resources like doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals.

"Under federalism, people can then be closer to government services," he said. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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