MANILA � Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Saturday expressed optimism of the positive developments at the Veterans Federation of the Philippines (VFP).
The ongoing efforts to resolve the existing weaknesses and limitations of the Federation and its rank and file by instituting immediate corrective and preventive measures are already bearing fruit," Lorenzana said in his
speech before leaders and members of various veterans' organizations from all over the country during the opening ceremony of the two-day 77th Supreme Council Meeting of the VFP at the Icon Hotel in Quezon City on Nov. 24.
In detailing the ongoing reforms being undertaken by the new management of the VFP, Lorenzana discussed the additional benefits for Filipino veterans.
He said the generous support of President Rodrigo R. Duterte for veterans healthcare and hospitalization is evidenced the ongoing modernization of the Veterans Memorial Medical Center and its new program for free medicines.
The VFP is a government-owned and controlled corporation (GOCC) attached to the DND and is under the control and supervision of the Secretary of National Defense.
As the DND is responsible in making sure that the VFP performs its mandated mission under Republic Act 2640, its charter, Lorenzana started the implementation of vital reforms in the VFP.
He also expressed gratitude that after more than 20 years of putting up resistance to change, the VFP now has a new president � World War II veteran, retired Justice Manuel R. Pamaran.
He is designated pursuant to Department Order No. 184, which was signed by the DND chief on May 24.
The Department Order also directed the VFP to submit a revised election code and revised rules of governance for his approval.
In accordance with Department Order No. 193 dated May 28 2018, the VFP also appointed new executives and management officials led by retired Lt. Gen. Raul S. Urgello as executive vice president.
Lorenzana said he trusts that the installation of the new VFP leadership is a big step in capacitating the federation and making it a strong organization that truly represents the Filipino veterans community.
A Change Management Team (CMT), chaired by Assistant Secretary Raul Z. Caballes, Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO) deputy administrator, has been tasked to craft a new organizational structure and staffing pattern (OSSP) for the VFP that is responsive to the current and emerging needs of the federation.
Lorenzana said he was informed that the OSSP would be ready for submission to the Governance Commission for GOCCS (GCG), through the DND, before the end of the year.
An increase in the VFP membership base was noted. As of May 2017, 24.29 percent out of the total Filipino veterans are members of the VFP.
Today, its membership has grown from 34,676 to 41,361 or 29.82 percent.
Relatedly, there is now an incentive for VFP affiliate/member organizations to expand their respective memberships because the VFP national office already remits back 100 percent of membership dues deducted by PVAO and remitted directly to the Federation.
Lorenzana commended the VFP and PVAO for the positive results of their joint efforts.
This is an affirmation that improvements or successes can be achieved through cooperation, partnership, mutual help and shared vision, he said.
Lorenzana added that the VFP's programs and projects are supposed to be for all Filipino Veterans because based on the VFP'S charter even the veterans who are non-VFP members must benefit from the federation. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency