RDC seeks support anew for autonomy bill-A A +A
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
WITH regional autonomy still the overarching theme of Cordillera’s regional development plan, the Regional Development Council (RDC) is pushing for a council resolution asking the support of Cordillera congressmen in re-filing House Bill 5595, the region’s proposed Autonomy Bill in Congress.
During the third quarter En Banc meeting here last week, Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan, in putting the resolution in motion, outlined the importance of following a timetable, wherein they hope that the proposed Cordillera autonomy bill will be put in a referendum simultaneous with the 2016 election.
He said if the region misses to put the bill for voting in 2016, it will be more difficult to ask funding from the national government for a special election.
In which, he suggested the council asks the Cordillera congressmen's support in the immediate re-filling of the autonomy bill not later than the end of 2014, as any necessary amendment on the bill can still be submitted in the period of amendments in Congress committee hearings.
Domogan also stressed while the autonomy bill is set in motion, the RDC continues the IEC (Information, education and communication) through various fora all over the region.
Meantime, among the agenda during the said full council RDC meeting was the planned conduct of a Cordillera Regional Autonomy Summit, which generally aims to determine the true sentiment of all the Cordillera stakeholders, to address all autonomy related concerns and to gather their support in a manifesto signing.
Target participants are the Cordillera congressmen, local chief executives from all the provinces and municipalities in the region, as well as representations from civil society organizations, church-based non-government organizations, people's organization and other key stakeholders.
The Cordillera Administrative Region created under EO 220 signed by the late President Corazon Aquino, has the constitutional mandate to become autonomous along with the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao.
The push for regional autonomy remains a dream for Cordillera, as two Organic Acts already failed in the past. In 2012, the third organic act was filed in Congress as House Bill 5595, and for the continuing push for regional development and autonomy, the RDC crafted a road map guided by the council's revised RDC vision, mission, goals and strategy statements. (Carlito C. Dar)
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on September 25, 2013.