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Duterte orders funding for salary hike of gov’t workers

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Wednesday, March 20th, 2019

President Rodrigo Duterte. | ACE MORANDANTE/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the implementation of the fourth tranche salary hike for civilians, military, and uniformed personnel amid 2019 National Budget impasse.

READ: Sotto won’t sign 2019 budget due to alleged realignments

Based on Executive Order (EO) no. 76, signed on March 15, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) is tasked to identify funding source from the 2018 reenacted budget.

“There is a need to identify an appropriate funding source to cover the requirements for the implementation of the fourth tranche compensation adjustment for civilian government personnel scheduled in 2019 under EO No. 201,” according to the EO

The DBM previously recommended the amendment of EO no. 201 in order to provide the salary hike for government workers.

EO no. 201, signed by former president Benigno Aquino, has scheduled the implementation of the fourth tranche salary hike by January this year. —Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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GSIS names new OIC; revokes resolutions on proposed sale of property

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Friday, July 5th, 2019

The governing board of state pension fund, Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), during its meeting on Thursday (July 4), has named Chairman Rolando L. Macasaet as its officer in charge.

According to GSIS news release, this is upon the recommendation of Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez.

The Department of Finance exercises administrative supervision over government financial institutions pursuant to Executive Order No. 251 (s. 2000).

The said EO further defined the DOF’s supervision and coordination of policies, plans, and programs over certain government financial institutions, including GSIS.

The news release said that during the meeting, “the Board of Trustees also noted the President’s acceptance of the resignation of former President and General Manager Jesus Clint Aranas on Tuesday, July 2.”

“The Board further revoked all resolutions relating to the proposed sale of the GSIS’s port area property until further study and consultation with all stakeholders,” the statement added.

The news release particularly mentioned “Board Resolution No. 38 (dated February 27, 2018) that approved the sale and disposal of the Manila International Port Terminal Inc. (MIPTI) through public bidding, and granted authority for the President and General Manager (PGM) to proceed with the sale and setting of the minimum bid price.”

“Also revoked was Board Resolution No. 89 (dated June 25, 2019) that approved a higher minimum bid price,” the statement said. /mbmf

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Malacañang: EO creating Zero Hunger task force out soon

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Monday, April 29th, 2019

A father and daughter enjoy a free meal at a feeding program

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte is set to sign an executive order (EO) seeking to establish a Zero Hunger Task Force, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said on Monday (April 29).

“An executive order creating the Zero Hunger task force is expected to be signed by President Duterte anytime soon,” Nograles said in a statement.

The creation of an inter-agency task force, which will roll out policies aimed at eradicating hunger by 2030, is part of the government’s commitment to supporting the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (UN), Nograles said.

“We’ve set a lofty aim of reducing hunger by 25 percent every two and a half years and we have identified a little more than 30 provinces to focus on,” he said.

Nograles made the remark after members of the UN Country Team visited Malacañang last April 25.

The body encompasses all the entities of the UN system which carry out operational activities for development, emergency, recovery and transition in host countries.

“We specifically discussed the administration’s ongoing initiatives in the field of food security, ‘green economy’ and peace, highlighting the impending creation of a Zero Hunger Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF), the goal of which is to eradicate hunger in the country by 2030, laying down a sustainable and effective national environmental policy, as well as pushing the peace process in Mindanao forward with the creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM)” the Cabinet official noted.

Nograles added that the meeting focused on exploring “common alignments” between domestic Philippine policy and overall UN objectives.

“The UN has likewise targeted zero hunger as a key goal, stressing ‘better access to food and the widespread promotion of sustainable agriculture’,” he said.

According to the international body, the task “entails improving the productivity and incomes of small-scale farmers by promoting equal access to land, technology and markets, sustainable food production systems and resilient agricultural practices. It also requires increased investments through international cooperation to bolster the productive capacity of agriculture in developing countries.”

For his part, the Cabinet Secretary noted the “commonalities of synergies during the gathering, which is not surprising.”

“We just need more discussions and further explorations on how to best use our resources and make the greatest impact in achieving our shared goals,” Nograles emphasized.

He also noted that the Philippines is ready to collaborate on programs that are essential to improving living conditions and quality of life while working to preserve the environment at the same time. – Robie de Guzman (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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Duterte approves ‘in principle’ EO on water security

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Wednesday, April 10th, 2019

By Mietzekatze on Pixabay

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the draft of an Executive Order (EO) that will hopefully address water supply issues in the country, a Cabinet official said on Monday.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the EO, which will provide a master plan for water security, was approved “in principle” during the last Cabinet meeting.

“The draft has been given to the Office of the Executive Secretary already for vetting. So finalization na lang ‘yun ng draft, pipirmahan na lang ‘yun ng Pangulo,” Nograles said.

The EO mandates the reconstitution of the National Water Resources Board into a body that will manage the integration and coordination of government efforts in planning and implementing programs involving water.

The body is mandated to create a master plan on national water management composed of relevant and existing plans of agencies involved in the integrated water resource management (IWRM).

The EO will also seek a review of government agreements with water concessionaires.

The drafting of the EO came after a water shortage hit thousands of households being serviced by the Manila Water Company in eastern Metro Manila and Rizal province in March.

READ: Malacañang to release executive order to address water shortage

Nograles earlier said that before water interruptions gripped parts of Metro Manila, the government had already been working on the order to resolve water-related issues.

He said the inter-agency efforts were prompted by water management issues that were flagged in the 2017-2022 Philippine Development Plan (PDP).

The issues include limited implementation of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in many of the country’s river basins and watersheds, which results in the resources’ sub-optimal use and wastage; uncoordinated plans and programs and access to safe water supplies due to the uneven distribution of freshwater sources.

Nograles also mentioned the lack of updated and consolidated data on water resource availability, water stress levels, over/underutilization of resources, groundwater pollution, land subsidence and saltwater intrusion.

At least 32 agencies are involved in the water sector, with different offices involved in the various aspects of IWRM. – Robie de Guzman

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