On change of lead­er­ship

Sun Star Bacolod - - Opinion -

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ow that the re­sults of the lo­cal elec­tions are of­fi­cially out and win­ners have been de­clared, tran­si­tions are also au­to­mat­i­cally in ef­fect. Good if the in­cum­bents won be­cause it will just be an is­sue of con­ti­nu­ity and no ma­jor dis­tur­bance will be ex­pe­ri­enced in any of­fice as work­ers will just have to con­tinue the tasks they were man­dated to do. But for those whose of­fices are to be re­placed with new lead­er­ship and new pri­or­i­ties, we would be ex­pect­ing an over­haul­ing of peo­ple, as­sign­ments and pro­cesses.

You see, I have heard count­less of hor­ror sto­ries on the chaos of tran­si­tions af­ter elec­tions. Al­low me to share to one to clarify my point.

My friend Ch­eryl works in mu­nic­i­pal of­fice in the south as the fo­cal per­son for Per­sons with Dis­abil­i­ties (PWD) since 2006. In her time, in the whole Philip­pines, there were only two mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties that were cho­sen to pi­lot the pro­gram for non-hand­i­cap­ping en­vi­ron­ment spon­sored by Ja­pan In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Agency in part­ner­ship with Na­tional Coun­cil on Dis­abil­ity Af­fairs, her of­fice was one.

Chyrel was trained over the years to or­ches­trate what would be a model for the rest of mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties all over the Philip­pines that lo­cal gov­ern­ments can cham­pion the rights of PWD. She was so good at what she does that her mu­nic­i­pal­ity has re­ceived a num­ber of in­ter­na­tional recog­ni­tions for her work. To wit, her ac­com­plish­ments gar­nered her mu­nic­i­pal­ity the award on In­ter­na­tional Uni­ver­sal De­sign as the only mu­nic­i­pal­ity in the world to have suc­cess­fully or­ga­nized the per­sons with dis­abil­ity prior to cre­at­ing en­abling projects for them. Their mu­nic­i­pal­ity was also awarded with Apoli­nario Mabini Award from the Mala­canang for their suc­cess in im­ple­ment­ing ac­ces­si­bil­ity law BP 344 and RA 7277. Sadly the old mayor lost in the elec­tion and a new

mayor took place. Chyrel shared that there were still a lot to do for per­sons with dis­abil­ity in her mu­nic­i­pal­ity. She was even wait­ing for a grant from Ja­pan to pro­vide PWD with a pro­gram on In­de­pen­dent Liv­ing where a cen­ter will be built for them. Sud­denly, all of what she has toiled over the years and all her fu­ture plans for the pro­gram will have to have an abrupt end sim­ply be­cause she was as­signed by the new ad­min­is­tra­tor as one of the road sweep­ers. This is what usu­ally hap­pens when a cer­tain em­ployee is per­ceived to be very loyal to the old ad­min­is­tra­tion. They get trans­ferred and some are not even given jobs at all as they en­joy a float­ing sta­tus.

Her story was a per­fect ex­am­ple of the bad side of pol­i­tics and a hor­ri­ble face on the chaos of tran­si­tion that is hap­pen­ing right af­ter ev­ery elec­tion. There are so many chyrels in each mu­nic­i­pal­ity right now and I think it is high time that they be men­tioned into open not to tar­nish any­one’s rep­u­ta­tion but to sim­ply re-as­sess the sys­tem that all of us have be­come vic­tims of (in­clud­ing those who were elected in of­fice).

I am there­fore moved to dare all those who are in lo­cal gov­ern­ment of­fices right now to rise above the oc­ca­sion and be the lead­ers that this coun­try needs , i.e., some­one with a gen­uine in­ter­est to im­prove his/her com­mu­nity over and above be­ing sucked by the cy­cle of petty quar­rels in lo­cal pol­i­tics.

Let us put all the Chyrels back to do what they do best, for the good of the com­mu­nity.

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