Philippine councilors take first post-election respite in PCL seminar by the sea in Duterte country

More than 300 Philippine councilors, battle-tired after the last May election, practically went unwinding and relaxing themselves in premier hotel by the sea in Davao City while earning educational units as they took part in a seminar under a ladderized curriculum offered by their own national training organization.

Councilors from different parts of the country took part in three-day lecture-discussion of Philippine Councilors League Legislative Academy (PCL-LA) at the posh Waterfront Insular Hotel in Davao City which ended Saturday, July 30, today.

atty owen babba garcia valencia city

Each day, the seminar began at 9 A.M. and ended 4 P.M. so they could have time to unwind in the hotel’s beach, swimming pool and facilities or go outside to shop and enjoy in the city’s malls and R & R facilities.

“We’re are still in the period of first 100 honeymoon days, and during this time new councilors are being oriented on their functions and tasks while old councilors who were reelected have already adjusted in their respective local government systems,” said PCL-LA Chairman Atty. Oliver Owen Garcia of Valencia City, Bukidnon.

The training-seminar was entitled Lecture-Discussion with focus on the power of the local sanggunian, the roles of parliamentary procedure, important decided cases in local governance, and quasi-judicial functions of the local legislative body.

The seminar gives councilors and other public officials like mayors, vice mayors, barangay officials and those in the higher ups corresponding units for baccalaureate, masters and doctorate studies.

Atty. Garcia reported that the PCL-LA for the past six years since its start of operation in 2011 has produced a total of 2,689 graduates, 102 of whom have earned a title of Doctor of Public Administration (DPA), 1,396 as Master of Public Administration (MPA) and college degree of 1,181 Bachelor of Public Administration.

Officials in Makati topped in getting master degrees with 417 graduates, followed by 389 graduates from Davao Region. Moreover, for doctorate studies, 57 graduates came from Manila while 45 graduates from Davao Region who included Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte.

Elected officials especially those who have not graduated in college have now the chance to finally graduate by attending PCL-LA’s unit-earning seminars during their elective term.

Those who want to earn their masters and doctorate degrees have to pass in the final requirements of policy paper and dissertation, respectively.

“The PCL-LA has linked with some academic institutions in customizing a curriculum with infusion of theoretical framework into practical application or actual life experience of public officials,” Garcia told participants.

“Some of our graduates have already presented their policy papers and thesis to local and international conferences. These papers are now the basis for governance reforms. Sometimes, Congress requested their papers for benchmarking during committee hearings,” he added.

Garcia also bared that besides these PCL-LA has recently launched a foreign study program for councilors and other elected officials for which the first batch went to Thailand and the second batch to Singapore.

PCL-LA is a brainchild of Philippine Councilors League and its own charter was approved on June 10, 2010. (Rural Urban News/Cha Monforte)

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