Monthly Archives: August 2018

Iloilo’s Innovation Ecosystem

Three whole days well spent. That’s how I describe my expedition to the City of Love – Iloilo from August 23 to 25. I was invited to join a startup founders event, an ICT council assembly and a regional ICT event. As usual, in chronicling my expedition, I post on FB. And below is a compilation of all my posts with pictures.

August 23, 2018

I really enjoyed the exchanges this afternoon at the Iloilo Startup Founders Circle (ISFC) business consultation forum. Especially the really candid questions coming from the startup founders from corporate contracts to tax and accounting systems to profit-sharing, intellectual property issues, copyrights, patents, inventions, corporate existence and sustainability, marketing, sales and promotion and dealing with government as clients.

ISFC is composed of Tech Startup Companies that are duly registered as a business entity in Iloilo. Its primary goal is to help each company achieved growth through capability development trainings, access to fund, participate in domestic, national or international trade fairs, mentorship and many others.

The Iloilo Federation for Information Technology (IFIT) and the Green Technology Business Incubation invited us as Business Experts for these budding companies in the field of Management, Sales and Marketing, Legal, or Intellectual Property.

Kudos to the City Government of Iloilo, the Global Shapers Community Iloilo, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Information and Communication Technology, the Green Technology Business Incubation and the Iloilo Federation for Information Technology for initiating this great event.

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I learned much from my other co-panelists especially on the aspects of intellectual property such that in the coming months we should also have an IP forum for Bacolod startup companies.

I emphasize my advocacy on really trying to educate and influence local governments in the Philippines to tap into the very rich resources of ideas of startups in their the community and take advantage of these ideas that are grown into businesses to solve pain points and problems of LGUs. I also encouraged the companies to step up and professionalize their ranks so that they can deal with both public and private clients. There is a huge need for solutions today more than ever before because of new laws that impose upon local governments the automation of their systems in order to make them more efficient and citizen friendly. The Ease of Doing Business Law in particular requires local government units to conduct an audit of their existing systems and discard the ones that are already obsolete and only cause delays in dealing with citizens and clients. This is an opportunity for start ups the present their solutions and to also help solve social concerns.

I cited examples of some Asian countries which support startups by encouraging local government units to purchase of their system requirements from startups. I also started the need for LGUs to create ordinances that will ease up requirements for start up companies in order for them to transact business with the government. Needless to say the need for creating a conducive ecosystem for startups in every city is a must if we are to encourage innovation.

The most important thing for me is that these young startup founders are actually creating jobs and opportunities for their fellow young people in their own cities.

August 25, 2018

I hope ICT avocates in the countryside spare a few minutes to read this post. My attention span these days for people who have nothing innovative to say is really short, and I usually avoid long conversations these days. But these guys just made my jaw drop today.

I chanced upon three founders at the Green Technology Business Incubator – WVSU. They have amazing stories which represent the stories of other startup founders in the countryside. I love to listen to them and the values they embody. ARKiTEK is inspiring and impressive, they use IOT, a lot of stuff, barangay system, passenger terminal system, traffic and road load monitoring, air quality monitoring, using IOT technology, sensors, data analytics, a social media “collaborative” platform that’s even way higher than Facebook – and my goodness – they are a father, mother, children tandem. Sherwin the father told me their front-end and back-end developer only Grade 7 and the rest is homeschool. Simply awesome!!!

The second startup is CodeNBrew Inc., founder Ryan Dejando Biñas said his team can develop android and IOS mobile applications but his goal is to make the system affordable, relatively cheap even for MSMEs and his passion is to train as many students of the skills he developed, having worked for years as an IT professional in Singapore. Even as a young startup founder Ryan invests in young programmers to learn new industry skills. Truly inspiring.

The third is Mulave Studios, they are just two months old, a team of creatives, all front-end at the moment. Michael Lamera Labos its founder is so optimistic about stepping up into animation, game design and complex creative services that I really felt inspired to offer to link his team with Holysoft Studios, Audacity Studios and SWAPROSE in Bacolod. I feel so positive about Michael’s humble aura of really wanting to harness the creative potential of his team.

This sharing is like a tenth of what I really learned from these three founders. I needed to reassure them that all over the country, there are startup founders like them, who struggle everyday to scale up. That’s why I really need to lend a voice. God made me a lawyer, so that’s the only way I can help them, but I have accumulated years of insights from big companies down to the smallest barangay, and so in my own little way, I can help them polish their strategies from the lens of law, policy, political, academe and social angles.

Michael, Ryan and Sherwin are part of rhe newly created Iloilo Startup Founders Circle. There are more than ten other founders and I missed them during my vist today, but I am sure their stories are inspiring, too.

The Green TBI is supported by DOST and WVSU, and now by IFIT, the Iloilo LGUs, DTI, DICT and many other stakeholders.

One of Visayas ICT Cluster (VICTOR) major thrusts is to develop technopreneurship. We have a lot of work to do but faith will help us through.

August 24, 2018

Honored to be speaker and inducting officer for IFIT assembly today! Congratulations to the newly elected officers of IFIT 2019-2021. Comebacking president Jessraf Palmares, and the elected board – DOST, UP Visayas, ISAT University, Transcom, Teletech, Startek, IXL, Hinduja Global Solutions, WNS, Iloilo City and Province of Iloilo. Great work ED Joeven Tansi!

August 25, 2018

Sharing some snapshots of my slides on “Empowering Technical Professionals in the Countryside” this morning at WordCamp Iloilo.

VISION: A digital Philippine countryside powered by Filipino talent with Future of Work skills to push the Philippines among the world’s most future-ready nations for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

#WCIloilo2018 #WordCampIloilo2018

Met Isaac from Ghana and Lax from India, both young tech-professionals and founders of their companies at Wordcamp Iloilo and I am inspired by their sincerity to help improve digital skills of Filipino talent. Will certainly be inviting them as mentors for our hackathons.

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Had a great time in Iloilo with my best buddy, Im-Im.  Thanks to IFIT, DICT Visayas Cluster 1, Iloilo Startup Founders Circle, the Green TBI at WVSU and the Iloilo WordPress Community. Until next time.

SONA Review 2018

(My FB Post on July 23, 2018 as a reaction to the State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte)

The President stood there today saying more powerful and hardhitting words than expletives. More than anything else – HE STOOD THERE FOR US AGAINST POWERFUL SECTORS which Business INVOLVE MILLIONS and BILLIONS – Making himself VULNERABLE and a MOVING TARGET for PEOPLE who ONLY CARE ABOUT THEIR OWN INTERESTS –

He stood there for US against ILLEGAL LABOR CONTRACTORS by saying ENDO must stop

He stood there for US against the biggest TRIADS of CHINA (he actually named one) and others who no longer deal with drugs by the MILLION but by the BILLIONS (and has a very organized network of delivery system via “tingi” which he find unbelievable to have reach the provinces (Oh yeah, Mr President, heard about these drugs being inserted in siopao or movie theaters as bagsakans and public officials as distributors?)

He stood up for us against the TELCO Doupoly whose assets are huge, it will be hard to stand against them especially when you have politicians approving the third TELCO process but needing campaign funds

He stood up against rice cartels, hoarders and protectors which is tantamount to as he calls “economic sabotage”. I can just imagine the huge capital of these syndicates.

He stood up against the all powerful mining industry, companies exploiting our aquatic and mineral resources and watershed protected areas and told them to clean up their mess

He stood up against IMPERIAL MANILA for the sake of Mindanao and cities who have not been benefited by the 1987 Consitution which over centralized the sharing of power and taxes in the national government

He stood there for the ones he call as his Muslim Brothers and uphold the Bangsamoro Law, citing there are many criticsms against it but he wants to take the Road to Peace rather than the Road to War, learning he said from the Marawi experience.

He stood up against big multi-national companies who do not wish to see the MSMEs or small businesses have equal chances to compete with them by giving more incentives to MSMEs

He stood for the middle class who can only earn a few thousands every month and say they can keep more savings because they will be exempt from income tax but for those whose luxury extend to so many vices – taxes will be up

He stood up for ordinary coconut farmers and the agriculture industry, for families needing subsidy, improvement of tertiatry education, despite the rigid educational system that has become a business

He stood there for us against unscrupulous medical centers and hospitals who suck the blood out of even poor people by immediately ordering the passage of the universal healthcare law

He stood there for us against fixers, corrupt and incompetent agencies who continously milk ordinary citizens and businesses as a result of inefficient and slow transactions systems by warning them about the implementation of the Ease of Doing Business Law

He stood for everyone who had continously propagated a unitary system of government and never gave fedralism a chance so that cities can forge their own future.

By openly endorsing the ConCom Constitution Draft, he also openly declared war again politicians who favor dynasty and political clans who do not wish to see each region vote for two senators each. These clans are powerful. They can crush the president anytime.

I am sharing this because I am sure the PRESIDENT will have “millions” of ENEMIES starting tonight and BILLIONS worth of possibilities to really end up failing as he said in his conclusion. His mouth is really going to cause him more trouble this time.

He just tripled his number of enemies today. And I am sure these sectors can afford to pay experts to further put him in bad light. I learned early in life (well in a movie) that the most dangerous men in the world are not politicians, but businessmen. Especially businessmen with political interests.

We can all hate this old guy all we want for his lack of refinement, his biases, his inconsistencies, his craziness, his senility – but today, he stood up for us.

Who is going to shield him from these high powered “bullets” of business interests?

Note: The post garnered more than 2,300 likes, more than 100 comments and 1,300 shares. It was also carries by some news sites and was shared several thousands times

Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/jocellebatapasigue/posts/10215308569965977

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The Voice of The Free

(Excerpts from my speech yesterday – August 10, 2018 during the Launch of the Voice of the Free at Astoria Plaza, Ortigas, in the presence of all agency partners and stakeholders)

It is inspiring for leaders to have role models. VF Founder “Nang” Cecil is one of my role models. I have worked with her and Visayan Forum Foundation since it was founded 27 years ago. First, as a reporter covering their news on abused children, I would interview Nang Cecil. Then as a lawyer, I handled cases for them and became a regular resource speaker for human trafficking lectures. Then as a city councilor, VF inspired me to author the creation of the inter-agency against trafficking in Bacolod, the Kasambahay and Anti-Worst Forms of Child Labor Ordinances. VF helped me in the Gender and Development (GAD) Council for 6 years. I was able to rescue 39 children victims of trafficking mostly with the help of VF. I would use their facilities in Manila, Iloilo and Bacolod for safekeeping of the children aside from other support. Until eventually, my husband, Atty. Arnel Sigue also assisted VF as NBI agent and eventually as a lawyer. We founded the Anti-Trafficking Legal Advocates Society (ATLAS) and made our advocacy against trafficking a conjugal mission.

Today, I am called again to work with VF as chairman of the board composed of distinguished men and women as we transition to Voice of The Free.

It is an honor for me to be part of VF’s journey and to meet all of you who have been partners of VF through these years just like me. Through its different programs, VF has helped 30,000 children and women in the last 27 years. Please continue to support us and join us in this journey to give a voice for those who have none.

As Thomas Watson, President of IBM says, “yesterday, we pioneered for today. Today, let us pioneer for the future.” Thank you for all your support.

Note: As inspired by Visayan Forum Foundation – the Voice of the Free (VF) Foundation’s Vision is a society where people are free, protected and empowered to explore opportunities without the risk of exploitation and slavery. Our goals are to prevent human trafficking through community watch and other strategies, to protect victims and potential victims and transform their lives through holistic interventions, promote policy and conduct solutions-based research and partner with the youth and other stakeholders to empower them against trafficking and modern slavery.

For more information, visit www.voiceofthefree.org.ph

Curriculum Vitae: Jocelle Batapa-Sigue

towns picADVANCED LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT EXECUTIVE

Cross-Functional and Cross-Industry and Sectoral Experience: Highly qualified executive leader and manager with over 26 years of experience in leading teams, companies, institutions and organizations with proven ability to achieve targets and deliverables according to the mission and strategies of these entities. Possesses the leadership ability to lead stakeholders in creating shared vision and agenda to reach goals. Adept in legal knowledge and office management as a lawyer and senior law firm partner for 20 years. Possesses excellent team management and communications skills as an academic professor for 21 years, and national organization leader for various organizations for over 16 years. Passionate about the growth of jobs and investments especially in the countryside as multi-awarded champion for ICT and innovation.

PROFESSIONAL AND WORK EXPERIENCE

A combination of practice legal profession in corporate and political setting, exposure and actual immersion in policy – making procedures with a strong foundation in senior management skills, academic expertise and public and media relations

  • Senior Partner, Batapa-Sigue and Sigue Law Offices (2004 to Present)
  • 9 Years as City Councilor of Bacolod from 2004 to 2007, 2007 to 2010, and 2013 to 2016
  • Former In-House Counsel, Legal Department, Victorias Milling Company, Inc. (1999 to 2001)
  • Law Professor for Legal Ethics, Advanced Legal Writing and Legal Research, University of St. La Salle – Bacolod (1998 to Present)
  • Professor, College of Business and Accountancy, University of St. La Salle – Bacolod (1999 – 2007)
  • Professor, College of Education, University of St. La Salle – Bacolod (1999 – 2004)
  • Professor, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Negros Occidental – Recoletos (UNO-R) 2006-2007
  • Former Reporter/News Writer, ABS-CBN TV 4 (1993 – 1997)
  • Former Chief, News Desk, GMA TV 10 (1991-1993)
  • Former Reporter/News Writer, Negros Daily Bulletin, 1993 to 1997
  • Former Anchorwoman, Pulso sa Aksyon Radyo, DYEZ Bacolod, 2004 to 2010

ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND MANAGEMENT

A strong sense of advocacy and commitment towards social issues involving women and children and the advancement of jobs and opportunities especially in the countryside starting from college as university student president and campus journalist. Equipped with advanced written and oral communication and leadership skills.

  • President and Co-Founder, National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP), Inc. 2010-2012
  • Trustee, National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP), Inc. 2012-2017
  • Vice President, National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP), Inc. 2018
  • Former Chair and Founder, and current Executive Director, Bacolod – Negros Occidental Federation for Information and Communications Technology (BNEFIT), Inc. (2008 to Present)
  • Vice President, Anti-Trafficking Legal Advocates Society (ATLAS), Inc. 2012 to Present
  • President, Philippine ICT Innovation Network, Ink. 2013 to Present
  • Board Member, Kalipay Negrense Foundation, Inc. 2013-2016
  • Council Vice President, Bacolod Girl Scout Council 2012-2015
  • Chief Consultant, Negros Occidental ICT Investments Program (2011-2013)
  • Chair, NICP eGOV Awards 2012-2017 (Excellence in Governance through ICT)
  • Division D Governor, Toastmasters International 2002 (Member of TM since 1993 with the current norm of:
  • Advanced Communicator Gold – Toastmasters International
  • Advanced Competent Leader Silver – Toastmasters International
  • Chairman, Board of Trustees, Visayan Forum Foundation, Inc. currently Voices of The Free (VF) Foundation (2017 – Present)
  • Chair, Bacolod City Information Technology (IT) Focus Team 2005-2007
  • President, Supreme Student Council (University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos) SY 1991-1992
  • Opinion Editor, The Tolentine Star of (University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos) SY 1992-1993

AWARDS AND CITATIONS

Has developed a sense of citizenship and responsibility to empower sectors in developing strategies to create jobs and driving investments especially in the countryside to achieve inclusive growth. Has been exposed to international avenues for learning innovation and new ideas for purposes of iteration and replication. Served as an inspiration to many stakeholders in various fields

  • 2016 The Outstanding Women in Nation’s Service (TOWNS) Awardee for Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Philippines
  • 2013 Philippine Individual ICT Contributor of the Year Awarded by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines and IT-Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP)
  • 2012 Finalist, Individual ICT Contributor Awards Awarded by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines and IT-Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP)
  • Top Ten Outstanding Young Leaders for 2009 chosen by the Asia Society Foundation under its Philippines 21 program and represented the Philippines in Malaysia in the Asia-Pacific Global Forum for Young Leaders
  • Recipient of Go Negosyo – Best Government Support for Business in 2007 by the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship as Recipient as Proponent & Chair of the Bacolod Information Technology (IT) Focus Team adjudged as
  • Soroptimist International – Bacolod 2007 “Making A Difference in Women” Awardee
  • Top 20 finalists in the Search for the 2007 Ten Outstanding Councilors of the Philippines (TOCP)
  • 2008 Outstanding Alumna in Public Service Awardee, College of Arts & Sciences, University of Nergos Occidental – Recoletos (UNO-R)
  • 2002 National Champion in Evaluation Speech during the Philippine Toastmasters District Convention
  • 1993 Best Debater during the Inter-Collegiate Debate Series conducted by the Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports Cultural and Education Association (NOPSSCEA)

FELLOWSHIPS AND INTERNATIONAL EXPOSURES

Highly exposed to international environments for growth and learning along with other leaders all over the world. Has been trained extensively for ICT investments promotions both local and national level

  • 2018 AVPN-BMW Foundation Policy Leadership Fellow, Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN), Singapore
  • 2017 Guest of Honor and Resource Speaker, 1st BPO Guatemala Conference, Guatemala City and Key Resources Speaker for Guatemala Cities Workshop
  • 2017 Philippine Representative to the Korean Innopolis Science and Technology Park Management Course, Daejeon, South Korea
  • 2017 MAGIC Cooperator for Corporate Innovation, Cyberjaya, Malayasia
  • 2017 Resource Speaker in the 7th Confluence Conference in Amity University, Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • 2014 Member of the Philippine All-Women Trade Mission to Japan for the Yokohama Women Festival and Exposure to Various ICT companies
  • 2015 Key Resource Speaker, “Making Strides, Advancing Women in Leadership” Global Networks Forum, Miami, Florida, US organized by Eisenhower Fellowship and German Marshall Fund, Kellogg Fellows Leadership Alliance, and Harvard Loeb
  • 2014 Haggai Institute Alumna, Maui, Hawaii, USA
  • 2012 Eisenhower Fellow of the Philippines in the Eisenhower Fellowships Multi-Nation Program (Fellowship focused on ICT, ICT Startups, Animation and Game Development and Health Care Information Management)
  • Aspen Fellow, Aspen Leadership Institute, Aspen, Colorado, USA May 2012
  • 2010 Asia Society Trade Mission to Taipei, Taiwan hosted by MOFA, Taiwan
  • Top 21 Fellows for the UNDP Philippine Leadership Course for Young Leaders (PYLG) in Governance for Visayas – Mindanao Cluster  in 2008 under the Asia Young Leaders in Governance (AYLG) Program

outstanding programS and projects

Possess the ability to work beyond what is compliant to what is exceedingly possible in order to achieve growth targets. Skillful in bringing all stakeholders together for  a shared vision and developing roadmaps with concrete timelines and success indicators

  • Proponent, Excellence in Governance Through Information and Communications Technology (ICT) or eGOV Awards under the NICP (2012 to present)
  • Proponent & Chair of the Bacolod Information Technology (IT) Focus Team adjudged as Go Negosyo – Best Government Support for Business in 2007 by the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship
  • Proponent of the Alternative Skills Program for Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC) – a project given the Award of Excellence for implementation for Region VI under the Philippine Action Programme to Protect Working Children and Combat and Eliminate Child Labour of International Labor Organization – International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labor (ILO-IPEC)
  • Proponent of the Bacolod IT Investment Program adjudged as the Best Public Sector Practice in Region VI – LGU Category in 2006 by NEDA and RDC VI
  • Instrumental in having Bacolod included as one of the Next Wave Cities in the Outsourcing and Off-shoring Industry of the Philippines (5th Place in 2009 and 3rd Place in 2010) and now Center of Excellence for ICT-BPM in the Philippines
  • Instrumental in having Bacolod included as the No. 100 City in the world ranked by Tholons International as among the Top 100 Cities in the World for Outsourcing for 2010 to 2017
  • Proponent, Technology Business Incubation Center (TBIC) as the Negros First CyberCentre

 AFFILIATIONS AND ADVOCACIES

Equipped with skills developed over long years of immersion and practice as a federalist, media person, environmentalist, journalist, resources speaker for various organizations

  • Founding Member, Centro Federal – Bacolod in University of St. La Salle since 2000
  • Resource speakers for Capacity Development Workshops in Creating ICT Councils organized by NICP and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Formerly CICT since 2016
  • Host, JOBS on TV over Sunshine Channel 14 (2007 to 2010)
  • Host, Pulso sa Aksyon Radyo DYEZ Aksyon Radyo (2004 -2010)
  • Columnist, The Legal Perspective, Negros Weekly (2004 to 2010)
  • Host, The SHE Factor aired through Sunshine Channel 14 (2007 – 2009)
  • Head, Women and Children’s Legal Desk, Law Center, USLS College of Law
  • Volunteer Counsel for Bacolod Women’s Center, DAWN Foundation, Inc., Holy Family  Home, Kapisanan Nang Mga Brodkasters Nang Pilipinas (KBP)-Negros Occidental Chapter and Negros Press Club
  • Professional Resource Speaker, RA 7877, RA 9262, RA 7610, RA 8353, RA 8354, RA 9344 and other laws on women and children
  • Convenor, Earth Day (since 2007) – Bacolod and Negros Occidental
  • Advocate, Philippine Climate-Friendly Cities Project (electric jeeps) – GRIPP
  • Chair, Bacolod Sanggunian Committees on Women and Gender, Communications & Energy
  • Chair, Bacolod City Gender and Development (GAD) Council 2004-2007, 2007-2010

POLICY INNOVATION WORK

Immersed and trained in legislative work and dynamics as a policy maker both in the local and national level. She has served as resource speaker and member of House and Senate TWGs on the Creation of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Bill and in the Senate TWG for the Ease of Doing Business Bill of 2018. As a city councilor for 9 years in, she has crafted, authored and led the legislation of major ordinances as follows:

  1. Creation of Bacolod Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking in Persons (IACAT) and TIP Help Desks in Seaports
  2. Annual Gawad Kooperatiba Awards and Support to Cooperatives
  3. Laying the Procedures for SP Endorsement to PEZA of ICT Parks , Buildings, Tourism Development Zones and Economic Zones
  4. Celebration of April 22 as Earth Day in Bacolod City
  5. Protection and Barangay Registration of Household/Domestic Workers
  6. The Gender and Development (GAD) Code of Bacolod City
  7. Protection of Watershed Areas, Establishing Watershed Development and Water Conservation Programs for Bacolod City
  8. Institutionalization of Programs for Informal Sector Workers and Creating the Informal Sector Workers of Bacolod
  9. Observance of June 13 – 19 as Social Work Week and Promotion of Social Work
  10. Establishing the Fr. Mauricio Ferrero, OAR Street Ordinance
  11. Creation of Information & Communications Technology (ICT) Council & Development of ICT Industry (as Co-Author of Councilor Lyndon Cana)
  12. Ordinance Implementing the Law Against Worst Forms of Child Labor and Developing Strategies to Lessen Child Labor in Bacolod such as the Intensive Implementation of the Alternative Learning System (ALS) Program
  13. Observance of December 1 – 7 as Non-Government Organization-People’s Organizations (NGO-PO) Week
  14. Prevention of Sexually-Transmitted Infections (STI), Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV) & Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) & Creation of Bacolod Local STI/HIV/AIDS Council
  15. Reduction of Police Clearance Fees for Purposes of Voter’s Registration
  16. Declaration of Bacolod as Organic City (Anti-GMO Ordinance)
  17. Procedures for the Development of Medical Tourism Parks and Retirement Villages
  18. Creation of the Bacolod Technology and Livelihood Development Center
  19. Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Measures Ordinance and Implementation of Strategies to Mitigate Pollution for Transport, Business and and Other Sectors
  20. Comprehensive Health and Wellness Ordinance and Promotion of Medical Tourism
  21. Promotion and Strengthening of the City of Bacolod as a Choice Destination for National and International Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE)
  22. Establishing the Bacolod City Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Training Scholarships for Contact Centers, Software Development, Game Development, Animation and other IT Courses
  23. Declaring February of Every Year as Bacolod Arts Month (BAM)
  24. Stronger Penalties for Vandalism in Bacolod City and Strategies to Enjoin Schools in the Fight Against Vandalism
  25. Regulation of the Commercial Sale of Spray Paint Cans in Bacolod
  26. Prescribing Mechanics of the Masskara Festival Celebration and setting the Cultural standards of the Festival, and Prescribing Procedures for Accountability of Third Party Organizers
  27. Institutionalizing a Tourism Homestay Program for Bacolod City and Setting Global Standards for Homestay facilities in Bacolod
  28. Ensuring Effective Implementation of Food Safety Standards in Bacolod City and the Implementing Rules and Regulations
  29. Creating the Bacolod Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development (MSMED) Council
  30. Establishing the Bacolod Business Promotions and Investments Week and Setting the Bacolod Trade Expo identifying Key Promotion Areas: Agriculture, Food and related industries, Gifts, Housewares, Decors and Other Craft-Based Industries, Manufacturing and other Industrial Business, Information and Communications Technology and Other Technology-Based Industries Tourism, Hospitality, Health and Wellness and Other Service Industries
  31. Establishing the Bacolod City Ordinance Awareness Week
  32. Establishing Guidelines for the Selection of the  Local Economic and Investment Promotion Officer (LEIPO)

EDUCATION

  • Bachelor of Laws, 1997 (Pioneer Batch) University of St. La Salle (USLS) Bacolod City (June 1993 to March 1997)
  • Passed the 1997 Bar Examinations and was admitted to the Bar on May 7, 1998
  • Bachelor of Arts Major in Political Science, 1993 University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos (UNO-R) Bacolod City (June 1990 to March 1993)

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The Bill of Rights: The Heart of the Nation

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If Section 2 or the Declaration of Principles and State Policies is the Soul of a Nation – I consider Article 3 or the Bill of Rights – the heart of a nation. It is the part of the constitution which protect every citizen from the abuses of external parties including the government. It is the mantle of protection that every citizen of this country is guaranteed by the constitution to enjoy.

By definition, a bill of rights, sometimes called a declaration of rights or a charter of rights, is a list of the most important rights of citizens of a country. The purpose is to protect those rights against infringement by  the state, public officials and by private citizens.

Below are the highlights of the proposed draft of the Consultative Commission tasked to review the 1987 Constitution.

Firstly, everything under the 1987 Constitution have been carried over by the draft. Nothing has been changed except the ConCom added various rights that fortify the existing rights and further protect the citizens.

Section 1 of the draft is not found in the current constitution but it capsulizes a strong warning for abusers of the Filipino people.

SECTION 1. The rights under this article are demandable against the State and non-state actors, and their enforcement shall be consistent with international standards.

Section 3 clearly states the RIGHT OF EVERY PERSON TO PRIVACY unlike the current constitution. It specifies personal and domestic communications, and protects the owner of the data. Open governance is clearly manifested under the provision stating “a person has the right to inquire from any government office or agency the information or data that has been obtained, stored, or processed about himself, and to demand, that such data and information be corrected or deleted, or in case of a private entity or person, that their use be enjoined.” This provision seals the recognition of the freedom of information.

The rules of lawful surveillance is clearly outlined in the draft something which is missing in the current constitution. Section 5 of the draft is very interesting especially for experts in this field. The novelty of this change is the prohibition against surveillance to include the conduct of unlawful unreasonable surveillance through technological, electronic – an relevant protection given the advanced state of technology we not have.

The provision on Habeas Corpus is the same except it clearly states “lawless violence, qualified by “when the public safety requires it”. A signature jurisprudence of former chief justice Reynato Puno, head of the ConCom is evident in the same section, i.e. Even when the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is suspended, the privilege of the writs of amparo and habeas data, and other protective writs may still be resorted to unless prejudicial to public order.  These writs are crucial to the our legal system and enhances the protection of of citizens against unlawful arrests or detentions.

The ConCom draft institutionalizes the mandate for members of the legal profession to render service when called by the government, i.e. Members of the Philippine Bar may be required by the Supreme Court to provide free assistance to indigents before courts and quasi-judicial bodies, and for other legal services. Again this is a favorable provision especially for our poor countrymen.

The right to bail is upheld and added with the right to summary proceedings for hearing for bail. A landmark addition is under (b)  When an indigent person is charged with an offense that would entitle him to probation and the risk of flight is low, he may be released on recognizance. This spares an poor person from producing bail if the circumstances stated in the provision are present – and allows him to be released on recognizance only.

The ConCom draft clearly states the duty of the Federal Government, the Federated Regions, and their local government units to provide for humane and adequate penal facilities. This is a constitutional guarantee of people in prison to their right to decent living conditions regardless of their legal status.

The proposed draft clearly mandates the right of people unjustly accused to compensation, i.e Persons unjustly and wrongfully accused, convicted, and imprisoned but subsequently acquitted shall be provided compensation by the State as provided by law.

The principle against double jeopardy stands the same, this time in all levels, including offenses against federal and regional law – but the same will not attach when where the offended party is deprived of due process or where there is a finding of mistrial, or when the trial court acted with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.  This guarantees the offended party more possibility for justice to be achieved at the end of the day.

One amazing new feature of the draft is the inclusion of two other rights aside from CIVIL AND POLITICAL RIGHTS.

These are SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC RIGHTS such as adequate food, universal and comprehensive healthcare, complete and quality education, adequate and decent housing and livelihood and employment as well ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECOLOGICAL RIGHTS which includes the right to:

(a)  A healthful environment and a balanced ecology, clean air, clean water, clean soil, and clean surroundings;

(b)  Be protected from and seek compensation for damage to environment and ecology that is brought about by illegal and unsustainable exploitation of natural resources; and

(c)  Seek immediate relief from the courts and appropriate governmental bodies through the writ of kalikasan and other protective writs against activities that threaten the environment and ecological balance.

The provision even prescribes the principle in construing laws on environment i.e All doubts shall be resolved in favor of the right of the people to a healthful and balanced ecology. 

It is so inspiring to see that this proposed constitution is truly a CONSTITUTION OF THE PEOPLE – PROTECTING THE PEOPLE in all ASPECTS of life..

You may ask any lawyer on the implication of a BILL OF RIGHTS – these is a summary of all rights that every citizen can claim against the STATE.

Hopefully, I am going to be prouder as a FILIPINO in my lifetime!

Here is the matrix. Feel free to share. I would also appreciate more legal enlightenment from any lawyer. The distinctions between the draft and the the current appears in bold letters. I placed in RED letters and provision in the 1987 Constitution which seem to have two counterpart sections in the ConCom Draft. It gives me the sense that the new draft really want to protect the right to privacy of Filipinos.

COMPARATIVE MATRIX
Draft of the Consultative Commission (ConCom) to Review the 1987 Constitution 1987 Constitution
ARTICLE III ARTICLE III
BILL OF RIGHTS BILL OF RIGHTS
SECTION 1. The rights under this article are demandable against the State and non-state actors, and their enforcement shall be consistent with international standards.
A.         CIVIL AND POLITICAL RIGHTS
SECTION 2. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws. Section 1. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws.
SECTION 3. The right of persons to privacy shall be inviolable. Without lawful court order, all interference in personal and domestic relations, correspondence, and data are proscribed. Section 3. (1) The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law.
SECTION 4. Data obtained about a person shall be used and processed only for purposes authorized by law. (2)  Any evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.
A person has the right to inquire from any government office or agency the information or data that has been obtained, stored, or processed about himself, and to demand, that such data and information be corrected or deleted, or in case of a private entity or person, that their use be enjoined.
SECTION 5. (a) The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable. No search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized. Section 2. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.
(b)  The prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizure shall extend to the conduct of unlawful unreasonable surveillance through technological, electronic, or any other means. In addition to the requirements for the issuance of a search warrant, a surveillance warrant shall particularly describe:
1)  The purpose of the surveillance and the period within which the surveillance may be conducted;
2)  The target individuals or entities and the type of information sought;
3)  The manner by which the surveillance is to be conducted and the means to be used, which as far as practicable shall be limited to achieve the purpose of the surveillance and to acquire the type of information sought; and
4)  The period within which the applicant may store recorded information, which shall be consistent with the purpose of the surveillance.
(c)   No surveillance warrant shall be granted except upon a showing that there are no other reasonable means of obtaining the information or evidence sought in the application.
(d)   The court shall specify the time for the service of the warrant, which may be after the conduct of the surveillance. Only information necessary to achieve the purpose of the warrant shall be admitted in evidence. All other information acquired shall be destroyed and deemed inadmissible for any purpose in any proceedings.
SECTION 6. The privacy of communication in any form shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law. Section 3. (1) The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law.
Any evidence obtained in violation of Sections 4, 5, and 6 shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. (2)  Any evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding.
SECTION 7. No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances. For this purpose, the local government units shall, among other things, establish appropriate freedom parks for the peaceful assembly of the people. Section 4. No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.
SECTION 8. No law shall be enacted that establishes, favors, or suppresses religion or its rejection, or that prohibits the free exercise and public expression of fundamental religious belief. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights. Section 5. No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.
SECTION 9. The liberty of abode and of changing the same within the limits prescribed by law shall not be impaired except upon lawful order of the court. Neither shall the right to travel be impaired except in the interest of national security, public safety, or public health, as may be provided by law. Section 6. The liberty of abode and of changing the same within the limits prescribed by law shall not be impaired except upon lawful order of the court. Neither shall the right to travel be impaired except in the interest of national security, public safety, or public health, as may be provided by law.
SECTION 10. The right of the people to information on matters of public concern shall be recognized. Access to official records, and to documents and papers pertaining to official acts, transactions, or decisions, as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development, shall be afforded the citizen, subject to such limitations as may be provided by law. Section 7. The right of the people to information on matters of public concern shall be recognized. Access to official records, and to documents and papers pertaining to official acts, transactions, or decisions, as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development, shall be afforded the citizen, subject to such limitations as may be provided by law.
SECTION 11. The right of the people, including those employed in the public and private sectors, to form unions, associations, or societies for purposes not contrary to law, shall not be abridged. Section 8. The right of the people, including those employed in the public and private sectors, to form unions, associations, or societies for purposes not contrary to law shall not be abridged.
SECTION 12. Private property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation. Section 9. Private property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation.
SECTION 14. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended except in cases of invasion, rebellion, or lawless violence, when the public safety requires it. Even when the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is suspended, the privilege of the writs of amparo and habeas data, and other protective writs may still be resorted to unless prejudicial to public order. Section 15. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended except in cases of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it.
SECTION 15. Free access to the courts and quasi-judicial bodies, and adequate legal assistance, shall not be denied to any person by reason of poverty. Section 11. Free access to the courts and quasi-judicial bodies and adequate legal assistance shall not be denied to any person by reason of poverty.
Members of the Philippine Bar may be required by the Supreme Court to provide free assistance to indigents before courts and quasi-judicial bodies, and for other legal services.
SECTION 16. (a) Any person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. If the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. These rights cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of a competent and independent counsel. Section 12. (1) Any person under investigation for the commission of an offense shall have the right to be informed of his right to remain silent and to have competent and independent counsel preferably of his own choice. If the person cannot afford the services of counsel, he must be provided with one. These rights cannot be waived except in writing and in the presence of counsel.
(b)  No torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means which vitiate the free will shall be used against him. Secret detention places, solitary, incommunicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited. (2)  No torture, force, violence, threat, intimidation, or any other means which vitiate the free will shall be used against him. Secret detention places, solitary, incommunicado, or other similar forms of detention are prohibited.
(c)  Any confession or admission obtained in violation of this or Section 20 hereof shall be inadmissible in evidence against him. (3)  Any confession or admission obtained in violation of this or Section 17 hereof shall be inadmissible in evidence against him.
(d)   The Congress shall by law provide for penal and civil sanctions for violations of this section as well as compensation to and rehabilitation of victims of torture or similar practices, and their families. (4)  The law shall provide for penal and civil sanctions for violations of this section as well as compensation to the rehabilitation of victims of torture or similar practices, and their families.
SECTION 17. (a) All persons accused of any crime shall be entitled to bail or to be released on recognizance. This right shall not be available in cases where the imposable penalty is reclusion perpetua or higher, and the evidence of guilt is strong as determined in summary proceedings. Section 13. All persons, except those charged with offenses punishable by reclusion perpetua when evidence of guilt is strong, shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, or be released on recognizance as may be provided by law. The right to bail shall not be impaired even when the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is suspended. Excessive bail shall not be required.
(b)  When an indigent person is charged with an offense that would entitle him to probation and the risk of flight is low, he may be released on recognizance.
(c)  The right to bail shall not be impaired even when the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus is suspended.
(d)  Excessive bail shall not be required.
SECTION 18. No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offense without due process of law. Section 14. (1) No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offense without due process of law.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved, and shall enjoy the right to be heard by himself and counsel, to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him, to have a speedy, impartial, and public trial, to meet the witnesses face to face, and to have compulsory process to secure the attendance of witnesses and the production of evidence in his behalf. However, after arraignment, trial may proceed notwithstanding the absence of the accused; Provided, that he has been duly notified and his failure to appear is unjustifiable. (2)  In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall be presumed innocent until the contrary is proved, and shall enjoy the right to be heard by himself and counsel, to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation against him, to have a speedy, impartial, and public trial, to meet the witnesses face to face, and to have compulsory process to secure the attendance of witnesses and the production of evidence in his behalf. However, after arraignment, trial may proceed notwithstanding the absence of the accused: Provided, that he has been duly notified and his failure to appear is unjustifiable.
SECTION 19. All persons shall have the right to a speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative bodies. Section 16. All persons shall have the right to a speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative bodies.
SECTION 20. No person shall be compelled to be a witness against himself. Section 17. No person shall be compelled to be a witness against himself.
SECTION 21. No person shall be detained solely by reason of his political beliefs and aspirations. Section 18. (1) No person shall be detained solely by reason of his political beliefs and aspirations.
No involuntary servitude in any form shall exist except as a punishment for a crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted. (2)  No involuntary servitude in any form shall exist except as a punishment for a crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.
SECTION 22. (a) Excessive fines shall not be imposed, nor cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment inflicted. Neither shall death penalty be imposed unless, for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes, the Congress hereafter provides for it. Any death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua. Section 19. (1) Excessive fines shall not be imposed, nor cruel, degrading or inhuman punishment inflicted. Neither shall death penalty be imposed, unless, for compelling reasons involving heinous crimes, the Congress hereafter provides for it. Any death penalty already imposed shall be reduced to reclusion perpetua.
(b)  The employment of physical, psychological, or degrading punishment against any prisoner or detainee, or the use of substandard or inadequate penal facilities under subhuman conditions, is prohibited. It shall be the duty of the Federal Government, the Federated Regions, and their local government units to provide for humane and adequate penal facilities. (2)  The employment of physical, psychological, or degrading punishment against any prisoner or detainee or the use of substandard or inadequate penal facilities under subhuman conditions shall be dealt with by law.
(c)   Persons unjustly and wrongfully accused, convicted, and imprisoned but subsequently acquitted shall be provided compensation by the State as provided by law.
SECTION 23. No person shall be imprisoned for debt or non-payment of a poll tax. Section 20. No person shall be imprisoned for debt or non-payment of a poll tax.
SECTION 24. No person shall be twice put in jeopardy of punishment for the same offense. If an act is punished by a federal law, regional law, or an ordinance, conviction or acquittal under either shall constitute a bar to another prosecution for the same act. Provided, however, that double jeopardy shall not attach where the offended party is deprived of due process or where there is a finding of mistrial, or when the trial court acted with grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction. Section 21. No person shall be twice put in jeopardy of punishment for the same offense. If an act is punished by a law and an ordinance, conviction or acquittal under either shall constitute a bar to another prosecution for the same act.
SECTION 25. No ex post facto law or bill of attainder shall be enacted. Section 22. No ex post facto law or bill of attainder shall be enacted.
B.        SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC RIGHTS
SECTION 26. Every person has the right to:
(a) Adequate food;
(b)  Universal and comprehensive healthcare;
(c)  Complete, quality education;
(d)  Adequate and decent housing; and
(e)  Livelihood and employment opportunities.
SECTION 27. The Federal Republic shall adopt measures to guarantee the progressive realization of these rights.
C.         ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECOLOGICALRIGHTS SECTION 28. Every person in every generation has the right to:
(a)  A healthful environment and a balanced ecology, clean air, clean water, clean soil, and clean surroundings;
(b)  Be protected from and seek compensation for damage to environment and ecology that is brought about by illegal and unsustainable exploitation of natural resources; and
(c)  Seek immediate relief from the courts and appropriate governmental bodies through the writ of kalikasan and other protective writs against activities that threaten the environment and ecological balance.
All doubts shall be resolved in favor of the right of the people to a healthful and balanced ecology.   

 

 

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