Mayor Jesse Robredo in the DILG

After a long wait, former Naga City Mayor Jesse Robredo now sits as the Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). Marurumduman na an puwesto pinag-iinteresan man ni Vice President Jejomar Binay.

According to the DILG website, Robredo’s qualifications include the following:

Sec. Robredo is a multi-awarded local chief executive of Naga City. Under his leadership, Naga has transformed into a premier city in the Bicol Region. He was cited by Asiaweek Magazine in 1999 for transforming Naga City from a lethargic Philippine city into one of the Most Improved Cities in Asia.

He is a mechanical and industrial engineering graduate of De La Salle University and finished his Masters in Business Administration at the University of the Philippines. He is also an Edward Mason Fellow and a graduate of Masters in Public Administration at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at the Harvard University.

Robredo is a 2000 Ramon Magsaysay Awardee (Asia’s Nobel Prize) for Government Service and recipient of the 1996 Outstanding Young Persons of the World award. Now, he is in the short list of the World Mayor Prize.

With Robredo in the DILG, many are expecting that the plights of Bicolano local government officials will also be considered. It should be noted that most local governments in Bicol are dependent on the internal revenue allotments and as such, local chief executives are always walking on the line just to be able to balance their resources. Hence, one of the things that Robredo can do is to look into the possible redistribution of the IRA, and to formulate policies that makes LGUs aggressive in generating and tapping other resources. Kan panahon pa si Robredo, nahiling ta man an saiyang mga inisyatiba sa mga bagay na arog kaini kaya ini-expectar ta na makakatabang nin marhay an saiyang ekeperiensiya sa pagmaniobra kan Ciudad kan Naga.


Is political realignment for real in Bicol?

The Bicolano vote generally is an opposition vote when it comes to the national elections and an administration vote in the local elections. This is what I found out when I did my paper, “Post-Marcos Elections and The Changing Mentality Behind the Bicolano Vote”. But with the sinking of the Palaka or Partido Lakas-KAMPI and the subsequent hopping of major players to Partido Nacionalista and Partido Liberal, is Bicol now on a stage of realignment?

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History malnourished

Among the most visited post in this blog is the article “Past Governors of Bicol“. Some even dropped comments one of which goes:

O wait, but there isn’t any initiative to learn more about Bicol’s past leaders, is there?

According to former UP President Dodong Nemenzo: The problem with our contemporary history is that it still dates back during the Spanish period.

In simple terms, our historians fell asleep and thought they still live in the years immediately preceding the Spanish era. Or they time-travelled and accidentally hit the wrong button and went back to the past instead of going “back to the future”?

Continue reading “History malnourished”