Taking the cue from President Duterte’s renewed pitch for federalism, the Department of Interior and Local Government has designated Assistant Secretary Jonathan Malaya as the new administrator for the department’s federalism and constitutional reform program.
DILG Officer-in-Charge Catalino Cuy designated Malaya to the position, replacing Assistant Secretary Epimaco Densing III.
Malaya, formerly the executive director of PDP-Laban Federalism Institute, served as assistant secretary of the Department of Education and of the Office of the President.
Malaya’s experience as head of the federalism institute and his broad network in the academe would help the department in advancing the administration’s campaign for the shift to federalism, Cuy said.
“As directed by President Duterte, the DILG needs to let the local governments and the ordinary people appreciate and understand how federalism will be able to change the course of our country and lead it towards development,” Cuy said.
“With Malaya at the helm of the campaign, I am confident we can make this happen, Cuy said.”
Malaya is currently Assistant Secretary for Communication and Capacity Development of the DILG.
Malaya said the DILG will start coordinating with other national government agencies and with the Presidential Communications Operations Office next year to involve the entire government bureaucracy in the campaign.
“We have to have one voice and one messaging in the federalism campaign, otherwise, we would not be able to bring our message across to our countrymen on how a shift to federalism would impact on our country and our lives,” he said.
Malaya said the DILG will work closely with the Senate and the House of Representatives next year.
Before the House of Representatives went on a holiday break, it has begun tackling in the plenary level the House Concurrent Resolution No. 9 which urges both houses of Congress to convene a constituent assembly “to propose amendments to or revision of the Philippine Constitution.”
Malaya said the DILG will also coordinate with the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas and the mass media to better inform the public of the advantages of a federal form of government.
DILG will start consultations with local government leagues to make the campaign more inclusive and the proposed shift to be more responsive to the needs of local governments.
Malaya said that during his term as executive director of the Federalism Institute, he initiated efforts in the development of the PDP-Laban Model of Philippine Federalism 1.0.
“The work of the Federalism Study Group is a collaborative effort of many minds who studied and researched extensively and got in touch with federalism experts from other countries on a federalism model suited for the Philippines,” Malaya said.
“We can use it as a guide to develop and agree on what track we will take in the course of our federalism journey,” he added.