CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- A business organization president announced Tuesday his group’s commitment to actively participate in social awareness campaign to promote “better politics and nation-building” in Pampanga.

During the Kapihan Meeting at Max Villa del Sol here, Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PamCham) President Rene Romero clarified that though PamCham is apolitical and has maintained a distanced stand on politicians, it is not barred from informing and encouraging the public to “scrutinize and ensure governance” in 2010.

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“We need to go out of the box. We need to be part of the people and our government officials in pushing the country forward. We cannot just sit back and not get involved in social and political issues that affect directly and indirectly the business conditions in Central Luzon,” he said.

Romero said that aside from the existing corporate social responsibility programs of PamCham, more programs on education and livelihood would be in store this year.

He said PamCham is set to hold leadership forums on local candidates to enable residents of the province to scrutinize would-be leaders. The leadership forums would include question and answer segments, and debate between rival politicians.

“The leadership forums would be held on the second week of April and would include local leaders presenting their respective platforms and plans for governance. The move is basically in partnership with local media and the academic community,” Romero said.

Romero said it would not go to the extent of endorsing political candidates or parties.

Romero, however, admitted that PamCham members would “at least” favor politicians who are “business and investment friendly.”

“We cannot take a backseat approach and not do our parts as citizens. Aside from these, we are also embarking on helping members in their plans to expand. We are aiming at spurring more employment through our member businesses,” he said. (IOF)