P-Noy wants environmental security for Filipinos, says Paje

For President Aquino, environmental security is the highest form of national security.

This was disclosed today by Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje, saying that the marching order given to the DENR and the other agencies comprising the Cabinet cluster on Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation was to “prioritize the welfare of the poor and future generations”.

“Ang hangarin ng pamahalaan Aquino ay isang malinis na kapaligiran, mayabong na likas na yaman, at isang matatag na lipunan na kayang harapin ang epekto ng climate change,” Paje stressed.  

Paje chairs the Climate Change cluster, whose membership includes 11 government agencies, including the National Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council and the Metro Manila Development Authority, with the Climate Change Commission as the secretariat.  Based on Executive Order (EO) No. 43 issued by President Aquino in May 2010, the cluster shall take the lead in pursuing measures to adapt to, and mitigate the effects of, climate change in the country.  

Paje said that government’s environmental programs are designed with multi-faceted objectives, namely, to combat climate change, to improve the socio-economic condition of communities in the rural and upland areas, and to ensure food and water supply security. 

Towards this end, he explained that the inclusion of fruit-bearing trees in the reforestation efforts under the National Greening Program (NGP) was intended to also provide alternative source of livelihood to farmers and lessen their dependence on standing forest trees.  

Paje explained: “Kapag ang tingin ng ating mga upland farmers sa punong-kahoy ay panggamot kung may sakit ang kanilang kapamilya o pagkain kapag po nagugutom, hindi po matitigil ang illegal logging. Kaya dito sa National Greening Program hindi po lamang ito pagtatanim ng punong kahoy sa mga kagubatan, kami po ay nagtutulungan ng Department of Agriculture at ng Agrarian Reform sa pagtatanim ng mga fruit-bearing trees tulad ng mangga, coffee, cacao, at iba pang pananim, at i-turnover natin ang mga ito sa mga komunidad. Ang plantasyong ito ang magiging source of livelihood nila upang ‘di nila titingnan yong gubat na source ng kanilang pagkain o panggamot.”

The DENR chief also appealed to Filipinos to stop doubting the government in implementing programs for the environment and the poor, but instead urged them to support these to ensure their success. “Kung lahat magtutulong-tulong, walang programang di matutupad,” he stressed.

He illustrated the importance of such partnerships in providing impetus to present programs, particularly those on clean air and water, which were two of the President’s environmental priorities upon taking office in June 2010. “Ang paghinga ng malinis na hangin at pag-inom ng malinis na tubig ay karapatan ng bawat mamamayan, mayaman man o mahirap, dapat patas lang,” said Paje.

He cited the marked improvement in Metro Manila’s air quality since 2010, measured by the level of total suspended particulates (TSP), and which he attributed to programs initiated with civil society and other government agencies especially in the enforcement of clean air laws.

The environment chief admitted, however, the need for additional measures since “administrative reforms can only do so much”. He expressed support to the proposal of Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago to reduce the volume of vehicles on the road to address traffic jams that contribute to air pollution and global warming.

Paje also noted the “high response” of the private sector to the DENR’s “Adopt-an-Estero” program.  According to him, there are now 182 private companies nationwide that have partnered with the DENR to clean up waterways. 

 

 

 

 


 

Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje rallied last week his field officials to ensure the success of the National Greening Program, saying the program has full support of the President.

    “There is no reason to fail considering that President Aquino has amply given all the support this program (NGP) needs to succeed,” Paje told the regional executive directors (REDs),  regional technical directors, and the provincial and community environment and natural resources officers (PENROs, CENROs) attending the 2-day National Convention of Field Officers held May 31-June 1, 2011 at the DENR Social Hall in Quezon City.

    Paje also challenged the field officials “to give their best shot” as their performance in implementing the NGP will be “highly taken into consideration’ in the evaluation of officials for promotions.
 
“Those who will be performing will be rewarded. Wala pong biro yan,” Paje said, stressing that the field officers will be evaluated fairly based on a purely-merit system “without regard for personal ties or past associations” he has made through over 20 years at the DENR where he started his career as a casual forester.

Paje said the NGP-driven performance-based incentive scheme will first zero in on the PENRO and CENRO positions, with an instruction to DENR Assistant Secretary for Management and Finance Corazon Davis to reserve the vacant PENRO and CENRO posts as rewards for NGP’s top performers especially those that are on an acting capacity. 

“If you are a CENRO, you will automatically become a PENRO.  Those who are not yet full-pledged CENRO (with temporary appointment), we will make you full-pledged CENROs. Performance lamang, wala nang iba,”  Paje stressed. 

Of the 168 CENRO plantilla positions, 47 have yet to be filled;  while 25 remain vacant in the 73 PENRO  plantilla posts.

The incentive scheme forms part of Paje’s overall program to strengthen DENR’s performance-based promotion system to beef up the national leadership’s efforts in professionalizing the  Philippine bureaucracy.

But Paje was quick to clarify that the quality of their performance will be determined by the survival of the seedling declared in their performance and not merely on the number of seedling planted.

“Remember, the NGP is a national priority program of President Aquino, and this is not for show but for grow. Gone are the days when tree planting activities were just to set world records or just for photo opportunities,” Paje noted.

At the same time, Paje asked “doubting Thomases” to be forthcoming this early with their hesitation to go all out to meet their targets to allow for management to act appropriately in their particular case.

“We will make sure that everybody performs. Kung sino sa inyo ang tingin ay hindi kayang ipatupad ang programang ito, sabihin na ninyo ngayon,” Paje said.

The performance-based incentive will be based on the field officials’ scorecard in the  yearly targets given them and will be validated with the use of state-of-the art technology such as satellite mapping and internet-based technology through NGP’s website at the www.ngp.denr.gov.ph

Paje orders investigation of employee caught receiving bribe money in Pampanga

Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje today ordered Regional Executive Director for Central Luzon Ricardo Calderon to investigate a field employee reportedly caught receiving some PhP50,000 from a land applicant by agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in a restaurant in San Fernando, Pampanga.

“I have also ordered our legal team from the central office to look deeper into the case to identify all others that maybe involved in the nefarious transaction so that proper administrative and criminal charges can be instituted,” Paje said.

In a report reaching Paje, Ruben R. Ronquillo, 53, was reportedly caught red-handed receiving PhP50,000 from a certain Jun-Jun Librado, said to have a land case pending at the regional office’s legal division.

The entrapment operation was mounted by the NBI on July 20, 2011 at the Fisherman’s Grill restaurant in San Fernando, Pampanga. 

Ronquillo is a utility worker of DENR Region 3 assigned at the Community Environment and Natural Office (CENRO) in Olongapo City.  

Relative to this, Paje reiterated his warning to all DENR officials and employees against contracting applicants in exchange for expeditious processing of their papers or any other favorable services for a fee.

“This concept of ‘assistance for a fee’ is a gross violation of the DENR’s ethical standards and therefore, I consider it as irregular. Any official or employee caught involved in any irregular transaction will be dealt with accordingly,” Paje said.

He also cautioned the public against bribing DENR employees as they shall likewise be held liable for graft and corruption. 

According to Paje, an applicant for a free patent, residential patent and all other land applications is required to pay only a minimal application fee of PhP50.00.  He also stressed that the payment for such fee shall only be made after all the documentary requirements have been submitted.

The DENR, he said, is currently undertaking administrative reforms in its land titling program to fast track the disposition of public alienable and disposable lands.  

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje rallied last week his field officials to ensure the success of the National Greening Program, saying the program has full support of the President.

    “There is no reason to fail considering that President Aquino has amply given all the support this program (NGP) needs to succeed,” Paje told the regional executive directors (REDs),  regional technical directors, and the provincial and community environment and natural resources officers (PENROs, CENROs) attending the 2-day National Convention of Field Officers held May 31-June 1, 2011 at the DENR Social Hall in Quezon City.

    Paje also challenged the field officials “to give their best shot” as their performance in implementing the NGP will be “highly taken into consideration’ in the evaluation of officials for promotions.
 
“Those who will be performing will be rewarded. Wala pong biro yan,” Paje said, stressing that the field officers will be evaluated fairly based on a purely-merit system “without regard for personal ties or past associations” he has made through over 20 years at the DENR where he started his career as a casual forester.

Paje said the NGP-driven performance-based incentive scheme will first zero in on the PENRO and CENRO positions, with an instruction to DENR Assistant Secretary for Management and Finance Corazon Davis to reserve the vacant PENRO and CENRO posts as rewards for NGP’s top performers especially those that are on an acting capacity. 

“If you are a CENRO, you will automatically become a PENRO.  Those who are not yet full-pledged CENRO (with temporary appointment), we will make you full-pledged CENROs. Performance lamang, wala nang iba,”  Paje stressed. 

Of the 168 CENRO plantilla positions, 47 have yet to be filled;  while 25 remain vacant in the 73 PENRO  plantilla posts.

The incentive scheme forms part of Paje’s overall program to strengthen DENR’s performance-based promotion system to beef up the national leadership’s efforts in professionalizing the  Philippine bureaucracy.

But Paje was quick to clarify that the quality of their performance will be determined by the survival of the seedling declared in their performance and not merely on the number of seedling planted.

“Remember, the NGP is a national priority program of President Aquino, and this is not for show but for grow. Gone are the days when tree planting activities were just to set world records or just for photo opportunities,” Paje noted.

At the same time, Paje asked “doubting Thomases” to be forthcoming this early with their hesitation to go all out to meet their targets to allow for management to act appropriately in their particular case.

“We will make sure that everybody performs. Kung sino sa inyo ang tingin ay hindi kayang ipatupad ang programang ito, sabihin na ninyo ngayon,” Paje said.

The performance-based incentive will be based on the field officials’ scorecard in the  yearly targets given them and will be validated with the use of state-of-the art technology such as satellite mapping and internet-based technology through NGP’s website at the www.ngp.denr.gov.ph

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