Appointment of economic spokesperson is in order

We have no quarrel with the idea that three-headed media arm of the government must put its act together to communicate more effectively administration programs.

Common sense dictates that the three officials must coordinate with each other at all time
to avoid giving out conflicting statements on the same issue.

Secretary Ricky Carandang was correct in saying that the breaking up of the office of the Press Secretary (OPS) under his office and Herminio Coloma’s Presidential Communications and Operations Office was a factor in failing to get the best results.

There is also Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda whose important role in messaging the mind of the President made the situation even more complicated.

The way we look at it, the problem of messaging is more than structural. It is about the ability of the three media heads to communicate to the people in simple terms and effective manner complicated economic issues that President Aquino had promised the citizenry to address during the last presidential campaign.

It is disheartening to note that none of the present communications secretaries are economists or with broad economic background and training to do the job we just described.

To fill up the communication gap between the people and the government, the appointment of an economist as press undersecretary or deputy spokesperson is in order.


The results of a new Pulse Asia Survey showing 69 percent of Filipinos favoured the population control measure appeared to us as strange and starling, if not doubtful.

The phrase “population management measure” or   “reproductive health bill” is too general and broad in scope to be the subject of a poll survey considering that there are many congressmen and senators who authored their own version of the RH bill..

Even President Aquino has his own version of the bill which he calls “ResponsibleParenthood.”

A question poses itself: Whose version of the Reproductive Health bill was made the subject of the survey?

Casting doubts on the survey results showing that nearly seven in every 10 Filipinos support the RH bill, Fr. Melvin Castro, executive director of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) Episcopal Commission on Family and Life, said it was not clear to the people who said they supported the bill had read its provisions.

He said morality can’t be based on a survey. “If at all the survey results are true, then the more that we have to explain our opposition to the bill to the people.”

In so many words, Castro said there are efforts to condition the mind of the people and influence the legislators in favour of the bill while it is being debated upon on the floors of the House and the Senate.

The proposed law mandates that the state offer modern natural and family planning methods to enable couples to limit the number of their children.

In view of these developments, it is never too late for the Catholic Church to mount an information campaign about Reproductive Health Bill provisions that go against its teachings. As it is, the church appears to be losing its battle against the controversial measure. Cornelio de Guzman

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