NOW that most of the elective officials have been declared winners, so much unsolicited advice are freely flying in all directions from different sources-columnists, broadcasters, interviewees, just about anybody. Many of the elected officials abhor hearing them. "If I need your advice, wait for me to ask it" seems to be the common refrain.

What's with these officials? Haven't they heard of the concept of freedom of speech? Or have their winning gone to their heads that they don't anymore believe that the common tao has good ideas to contribute to their governance knowledge?

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Besides, nobody is forcing anything on them. If the ideas forwarded don't suit them they can always ignore them. No need to be irked or show displeasure. Furthermore, when they were still courting the people's votes, the people had to sacrifice listening to their never-ending speeches that promised heaven and earth.

As taxpayers, all of us have the right to say what we believe will bring good to the people. I don't believe anybody, no matter how brilliant, has a monopoly of good ideas.

Having said the above, let me now proceed with my comments and unsolicited advice to government people on how to improve government services to the masses.

1. The long-term solution to urban over-population and traffic problems is rural development. The more development programs and projects you create in the countryside, the lesser number of people from the rural areas coming to the urban centers to look for jobs and business opportunities. With lesser number of people in the city comes lesser number of cars traveling around; lesser air pollution; lesser garbage; lesser criminality and so on.

2. Repeal the law exempting minors from being imprisoned. It has encouraged adult syndicates to use minors to steal and do other crimes. First offenders with minor crimes may be handled by the DSWD. But repeat offenders should be taught harsher lessons so they don't repeat their crimes. The government should consider putting up prison cells exclusively for minors.

3. Repeal the law exempting the OFWs from paying taxes. Its original purpose--to encourage Filipinos to seek overseas jobs to contribute to the country's economy -- has long been outlived. Considering the much higher pay abroad, people will seek for overseas jobs even if you don't exempt them from paying taxes.

Imagine the irony-the OFWs are paid much higher than the vast majority of the citizens working here. But the lowly-paid here have to pay taxes while the OFWs are merrily building their beautiful houses and buying beautiful cars without contributing directly to the government's revenues. It's not fair.

I'd be very curious to see the legislators who will take this matter up. As usual, they'd be scared to death of losing the OFW votes. What a tragedy that legislators always think of what is good for them personally over and above what is good for the country.


Management tip of the week: When giving instructions, just tell your staff the output you want, not how to do it. You'll be surprised at their innovativeness and resourcefulness. They'll also be more motivated as they will feel ownership of the output.

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