From the Philippine Information Agency (Oct 9): Philippine Army launches Multi-Sector Advisory Board in Camarines Norte
To recognize and provide their external audience on the opportunity to participate in the journey towards transformation, a Multi-Sector Advisory Board (MSAB) was launched by the 902nd Infantry Brigade of the 9th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army (PA) in this province, recently.
The Philippine Army is presently embarking on a genuine and long term reform program dubbed as the Army Transformation RoadMap (ATR). The ATR, founded on good governance and performance excellence, aims to transform the army into a more capable, responsive, reliable and professional committed to its mandate of serving the Filipino people and defending the country.
Major General Yerson E. Depayso, commander of the 9th Infantry Division congratulate the 902nd infantry brigade under the command of Brigadier General Richard Q. Lagrana for their trail-blazing commitment and support to the ATR after being conferred the initiated status in the four stage army governance pathway which is Philippine Army’s version of the Performance Governance System (PGS).
He also congratulated the brigade for the successful launching of the MSAB, as one of the compliance for the next stage in the army governance pathway.
He said that the MSAB’s capacity as an advisory board to the brigade’s ATR implementation plays a significant role in promoting continuity, sustainability and multi-sector governance coalition.
He said that the sharing of responsibility for the success of ATR related programs and projects are vital and relevant to the journey towards the next level in the army governance pathway or compliant-status.
The commander said that the ATR is a long term program of Philippine Army that also needs commitment and partnership with the other sectors of the society.
He said that MSAB will promote shared responsibility with their external stakeholders by giving them direct opportunity to participate in the implementation of the transformation programs.
He also hope that the MSAB will continue to partner with them until they reach their organization’s vision to be a world class army that is a source of national pride by 2028.
Brigadier General Lagrana on the other hand said that the importance of the 902nd MSAB is very enormous as it will serve as their guide and at the same time will assist them in ensuring continuity and sustainability of the ATR.
He said that MSAB’s collective knowledge, experiences and wisdom will surely be instrumental in helping them attain their transformation objectives.
Among the MSAB who made their pledge of commitment are Rev. Fr. Edilberto G. Mesias, parish priest of St. Cajetan Church as chairman; Efren U.Sale, proprietor of EUS construction as vice chairman and chairman of resource generation committee; vice governor Jonah Pimentel as chairman of governance committee; Rosalita Manlangit, information center manager of PIA as chairman of strategic communication committee; Fiscal Cornelio Roll representing Prosecutor Evilio C. Pormiento as chairman of assessment and review committee while Crestito Morcilla, asst. school division superintendent of DepEd, Fr. Melvin Gamelo, rector of Holy Trinity College and Rachalle Ramores, YLS facilitator as board members.
Clearly, both groups have adopted extreme standpoints on their views and dispositions and are virtually talking out of context of what the Annex on Power-Sharing of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) and the “Agreed Version” of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) crafted by government and the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC)-MILF explicitly said on the generation, transmission, and distribution of power operating exclusively within the Bangsamoro and when the same is connected to the national transmission grid, in which case, there shall be cooperation and coordination between the Central Government and the Bangsamoro Government through the intergovernmental relations mechanisms.
Lake Lanao is part of inland waters of the Bangsamoro, which in the delineation of powers in the Annex on Power-sharing of the FAB falls with the competence of the Bangsamoro. As long as the Bangsamoro Government exercises its powers and authority granted to it by law, in this case, the BBL, it is legally free to do so and shall remain uninfringed, but when it strays out of this way or limitation, then the intergovernmental relations mechanism will apply. The same principle applies to the Central Government in its exercise of reserved powers on the Bangsamoro territory; meaning, it cannot, except in exceptional circumstances like rebellion, overstep the principle of autonomy granted by law to the autonomous entity. In such a case, similarly, the Bangsamoro Government can invoke or resort to the intergovernmental relations mechanism to resolve the issue, or in special situation, the same shall be brought to the President through the chief minister of the Bangsamoro Government for resolution. This is the essence of the observance of the “Principle of Parity of Esteem”, indicated in Article VI, on Intergovernmental Relations, of the proposed BBL now entered as House Bill 4994, to wit: “The Central Government shall respect the exercise of competences and exclusive powers of the Bangsamoro Government. The Bangsamoro Government shall respect the exercise of the competences and reserved powers of the Central Government.
It is on this premise that such claim that the regulation of existing hydropower plants in Lake Lanao will remain primarily under the concerned national government agencies is not accurate, and, therefore, should be corrected at once. One can never find any supporting provision both in the FAB or its annexes and the Agreed Version of the BBL. More prominently, it is not one of the 14 powers to be concurrently exercised by the Central Government and the Bangsamoro Government.
In this proposed bill, in Article XIII on Economy and Patrimony, Section 22, on Inland Waters, it runs thus: “The Bangsamoro shall have exclusive powers over inland waters, including but not limited to lakes, marshes, rivers and tributaries. The Bangsamoro Parliament shall enact laws on the regulation, management and protection of these resources. It may create a Bangsamoro office and authorities for specific inland waters that shall exercise management powers over these bodies of waters. The Bangsamoro Government shall ensure that the utilization of these waters shall primarily be for the benefit of the people of the Bangsamoro and shall ensure that communities in the Bangsamoro in whose territory these waters are found are given an equitable share from the revenues generated from such utilization.”
In the Annex on Power-sharing of the FAB, to restate, the Bangsamoro Government shall have authority to regulate power generation, transmission, and distribution operating exclusively in the Bangsamoro. It shall promote investments, domestic and international, in the power sector in the Bangsamoro. Power plants and distribution networks in the Bangsamoro shall be able to interconnect and sell power over the national transmission grid to electric consumers. The Bangsamoro may assist electric cooperatives in accessing funds and technology to ensure their financial and operational viability. When power generation, transmission, and distribution facilities are connected to the national transmission grid, the Central Government and the Bangsamoro Government shall cooperate and coordinate through the intergovernmental relations mechanisms.
Where, therefore, lays these unfounded fears that the Bangsamoro Government would deprive the rest of Mindanao of power generated from Lake Lanao? Would the cutting off the flow of the lake submerge the lowlands of the Maranaos and put them collectively in harm’s way? Is it good business when only those in the Bangsamoro buy power from this power generation when, as a matter of fact, that under current situation, there are more money and buyers outside of the Bangsamoro than inside it?