GRADE 9 STUDENT FROM QUEZON, ISABELA BAGS NATIONAL AWARD: A CELEBRATION OF SUCCESS FOR INVESTING IN FILIPINO YOUTH
Tuguegarao City, Cagayan - Mariel F. Saltat, a Grade 9, Section A student from Barucboc National High School, Quezon, Isabela, a 4th class municipality, made history for being adjudged as the National Champion in the On-the-Spot Skills Exhibition on Population and Development (POPDEV): Essay Writing in the recently-concluded National Festival of Talents (NFOT) held in Dipolog City last 23-26 January 2017.
This success gave enough reason for the town with a literacy rate of 91.58% to celebrate and continue to inspire other talented young boys and girls to hone their God-given talents and pursue their dreams.
POPULATION STAKEHOLDERS IN REGION 2 SUPPORT THE “AMBISYON NATIN 2040” VISION OF THE DUTERTE ADMINISTRATION
Tuguegarao City, Cagayan- Partners from the different government line agencies and civil society organizations (CSOs) through the Regional Population Executive Board (RPEB); and the local government units (LGUs) through the municipal, city and provincial population officers (MCPPOs) in the region expressed their full support to the “Ambisyon Natin 2040” vision of the government during the Regional Population Management Program Strategic Planning Workshop for 2017-2022 held at the Regional Population Training Center, Tuguegarao City last 24 January 2017.
“The Philippine Population Management Agenda is anchored on the national development direction of the Duterte Administration. It is aimed at building and nurturing ‘Matatag, Maginhawa, at Planadong Pamilyang Pilipino’ by enabling every Filipino individual and family to achieve their desired number and spacing of children within the demands of responsible parenthood and principles of informed choice” (The PPMP Program of Action for 2017-2022).
Said workshop focused on laying out action plans and concrete programs, projects and activities (PPAs) to resolve two pressing population issues in Region 2 particularly: (1) high fertility; and (2) high teenage pregnancy for the next six (6) years through the collective efforts of the national government down to the local level.
The joint efforts of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) and Department of Health (DOH) to push further the implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act (RPRH Law) has been realized with the signing of the Executive Order (EO) on “Zero Unmet Need for Family Planning” last January 9, 2017.
This order aims to intensify and accelerate the implementation of critical actions necessary to attain and sustain “zero unmet need for modern family planning” for all poor households by 2018, and all of Filipinos thereafter. It also enjoins three key national government agencies DOH, Commission on Population (POPCOM) and Department of the Interior Local Government (DILG) and all local government units to accelerate mechanisms and strategies to attain the said purpose through the strict implementation of the RPRH Law.
Mandated to support the EO are eight national government agencies namely: DOH, Department of Social Welfare and Development, National Youth Commission, National Economic and Development Authority, DILG, Philippine Commission on Women, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation and POPCOM.
The struggle for the full and unrestrained implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law of 2012 (RA 10354) has reached a crucial level today as the Department of Health contests the recent Supreme Court decision of August 24, 2016 by filing a motion for reconsideration before the highest court. The SC decision, if uncontested, could put to a halt the most effective methods of the Family Planning program which is being implemented by the DOH and the Commission on Population (POPCOM) through local government units and civil society nationwide and lead to increased mortality and morbidity among women and infants.
“If carried out, the SC decision could result in over 900 additional maternal deaths every year arising from almost 1 million unintended pregnancies that could have been addressed by the full implementation of the Family Planning Program,” POPCOM Executive Director Juan Antonio Perez III asserted. “This would mean a 30% rise in maternal deaths in the country,” Dr Perez said.
Although the RH Law was passed in 2012 and its IRR approved in March 2013, there have been restraints through TROs on its implementation for 28 months in the last 3 and a half years.
President Rodrigo Duterte called for the full implementation of the law in his SONA as late as last July. The DOH’s National Implementation Team (NIT) for the RH Law headed by former Secretary Esperanza Cabral had recommended an Executive Order that would accelerate the implementation of the law through community-based, house to house campaigns to reach out to the 4 million women and men who wanted to avail of the program.