BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC-CAR) is now undertaking the 2015 tracking survey to ascertain the awareness of Cordillerans on the renewed quest for regional autonomy and if they understood the real purpose of the quest for self-governance.
Jadedea Aquino, assistant regional director of the Cordillera office of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA-CAR), said the agency already commissioned the research team to undertake the survey for this year with the hope that the results will be available before the end of the year in order to serve as one of the basis of autonomy advocates to lobby for the passage of the autonomy bill in Congress.
“The RDC-CAR wants the annual conduct of the tracking survey in order to guide policy-makers and decision-makers in crafting the strategies to ensure that the information regarding the true essence of autonomy and its benefits to the Cordillerans will be cascaded to the grassroots level,” Aquino stressed.
It can be recalled that in the 2007 baseline survey, the results showed that there were only 10 percent of Cordillerans who understood autonomy before it surged to 33.7 percent based on the results of the 2012 tracking survey but dipped to 28 percent pursuant to the results of the 2013 survey.
Aquino explained the regular conduct of the survey on the awareness of Cordillerans on autonomy will be one of the regular activities of the RDC-CAR in order to keep track on the effects of the on-going massive information and education campaign on the region’s renewed quest for autonomy which has become one of the overarching agenda of the region’s policy-aming body.
In 2006, the RDC-CAR adopted autonomy as its overarching agenda in order to effectively and efficiently address the injustices committed by the national government to the region, especially in the allocation of the countrys meagre resources.
It was learned that the survey teams are now in Kalinga conducting the initial wave of the survey before moving to the different provinces and the two cities to ascertain the awareness levels of Cordillerans on the renewed pursuit for self-governance.
She called on Cordilllerans who will be asked by the members of the survey teams to be honest in giving out their answers to the questions to be asked from them so that the results of the survey will be close to accurate and avoid inconsistencies in the future results.
According to her, it is still best for the RDC-CAR to conduct the annual survey in order to be able to ascertain the readiness of the people to embrace autonomy that will now chart the pace of development regionwide.
She disclosed funds for the conduct of the survey are being sourced out from the annual appropriations being provided by the national government to the RDC-CAR through the NEDA-CA for the social preparation of the Cordillera as an autonomous region.
The NEDA-CAR official believes it is high time for the region to be autonomous because the regional government will be in charge of charting its development thrusts suitable to the prevailing situation instead of being subjected to the criteria of the national government on land area and population in the allocation of resources. By Dexter A. See