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                                                                                                           Ms. Ronadale Zapata



18 November 2005

VICE-President Noli ‘Kabayan’ De Castro yesterday called on the country’s economic planners to protect the nation’s equity and development goal from politics.

ECONOMIC PLANNERS WELCOME VP. Vice President and concurrent HUDCC chair Noli ‘Kabayan’ De Castro is welcomed by Joachim Von Amsberg, Country Director of World Bank Philippines, Antonio D. Kalaw, Senior Vice President of DAP, and Jaime Augusto Zobel De Ayala, President of Ayala Corp. upon the VP’s arrival at the Forum on Equity and Development held at the Development Academy of the Philippines in Mandaluyong City. (OVP photo by Egay Montaña )  11/18/05

Speaking before delegates attending the Forum on Equity and Development at the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) in Mandaluyong, De Castro urged economic planners to focus on their objectives and not be affected by political issues.

“Let us remain focused on our goal. Let us not allow political issues to divide the unity of purpose that gatherings like this generate,” De Castro said.

Sponsored by the Ateneo Center for Economic Research and Development (ACERD), DAP, Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) and the World Bank, the forum centered on the importance of equity in achieving sustainable human development for the country.

During the forum, De Castro admitted he has not worked in the government long enough to gain an inside view of the long-term outcome of policies and programs. Nevertheless, his more than two decades in public service has equipped him with the skills to adequately feel the implications of government economic policies on the masses.

“Most of my professional life was spent outside of the government, primarily in public service and public information. But I assure you that I am fully exposed to the effect of all these policies and programs of the common ‘tao’,” he said.

LIGHT MOMENTS AT THE FORUM. Vice President and concurrent HUDCC chair Noli ‘Kabayan’ De Castro shares a light moment with Mr. Joachim Von Amberg, Country Director World Bank Philippines (middle) and Mr. Cielito Habito, Economics Dept.- Ateneo de Manila during the Forum on Equity and Development held at the Development Academy of the Philippines in Mandaluyong City. (OVP photo by Egay Montaña) 11/18/05

De Castro said he witnessed the politics involved in crafting the interventions by the government which make equity and development hard to achieve.

Despite this, the Vice-President expressed optimism saying, “While political forces in this country may differ on positions regarding personalities, there remains a broad consensus on the need for equity and development”.

At the same venue, De Castro, also concurrent chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) promoted the national relocation program as one showcase on how the government is trying to achieve such goals.

De Castro said that more than just an appendage to a major development project, the relocation of informal settlers is actually an opportunity to mobilize massive public and private resources to provide greater opportunities for the urban poor.

Taking that into consideration, De Castro said he approached the program along three dimensions namely the provision of tenurial security, total community development and eco-social upliftment.

He said HUDCC has been successful in developing the Northrail communities despite having its own share of issues and problems. He said such success can only be preserved as long as the real stake holders in the program, especially the beneficiaries, would continue to work with the government. 

Ref. VPMEDIA 05-178                                                                                             HOME | back-to-top

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