MANILA -- Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar on Friday clarified that only PHP10 million, not PHP90 million, has been allocated to PCOO for the information dissemination campaign on federalism.
You asked me how much is the budget of the communications. The budget allotted for now is PHP10 million out of the PHP90 million, Andanar explained in an interview over radio dzRH.
He said the PHP10 million budget of communications is not enough since they have to travel around the country to bolster the information drive.
We are asking for additional budget so that we can go around the country because the PHP10 million, although is big for ordinary Filipino, but for a federalism campaign, the PHP10 million is not enough, he explained.
In a press briefing in Malaybalay, Bukidnon on Friday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque explained that the PHP10 million given to PCOO is part of PHP40 million allotted to the Department of the Interior and Local Government's dissemination activities.
Roque earlier said PHP50 million has been set aside for the Consultative Committee tasked to draft a Federal Constitution (ConCom).
Meanwhile, Andanar clarified that PCOO Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson is not the spokesperson of the government's information campaign on federalism.
Hindi po. Meron po tayong mga miyembro ng komisyon na pwede pong magpaliwanag nito (No, she is not. We have members of the commission who can explain it), he said referring to legal experts, such as former senator Aquilino "Nene" Pimentel Jr.
Andanar said the role of Uson is to bridge the communication gap between the ConCom and the ordinary Filipino.
I think, if Mocha will study this power to the people Bayanihan Federalism, she can explain it very well. We cannot underestimate the capacity of Mocha Uson, he said.
Andanar said Uson, a blogger, has five million followers on social media.
Asec. Mocha is not afraid. I'm sure that she is responsible to her more than five million followers, he said.
The PCOO top official said there is a need to bolster the information campaign on federalism since only a few percent of more than 100 million Filipinos are aware of the ConCom-approved shift to the federal form of government.
It is very important for us to go around the countryside to explain to the rest of the population on what would be the effect of power to the people Bayanihan Federalism. This is the title of the draft constitution, Andanar said.
He noted that the federal form of government will help push economic development in the provinces.
Because right now, our government is so centralized. Simple explanation, what the President wants is to decentralize the government, he said.
Under federalism, Andanar said, the local government will be given more power to develop and improve the lives of Filipinos in their respective jurisdictions. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency