Regional stakeholders from different sectors were introduced to the Updated Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2017-2022 and the Updated Regional Development Plan (RDP) 2017-2022 during the Eastern Visayas Virtual Caravan on the Updated PDP 2017-2022 on 7 May 2021 via Zoom.

Organized by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) VIII in coordination with the NEDA-Development Information Staff (DIS), the activity is part of a national caravan designed to provide a virtual platform of discourse and engagement between the government and the community in tackling the content of the Updated PDP.

In his Opening Message, RDC VIII Chairperson and Province of Leyte Governor Leopoldo Dominico L. Petilla hailed the Midterm Update of the Plan as one that really tackles the need of ordinary Filipinos.

“Ang Philippine Development Plan natin has become people-based. Ano ang gusto ng Pilipino, yun yung ginagawan ng paraan ng gobyerno ngayon through the Philippine Development Plan. At kung ma achieve natin ito, we will really see a big improvement sa buhay ng mga Pilipino.” said Governor Petilla.

Resource persons from the NEDA Policy and Planning Group were present to discuss the three pillars of the Updated PDP – Malasakit, Pagbabago, and Patuloy na Pag-Unlad – discussed by Director Thelma Manuel of the NEDA-Governance Staff, Dir. Girlie Grace J. Casimiro-Igtiben of the NEDA-Social Development Staff, and Dir. Bien A. Ganapin of the NEDA-Trade, Services, and Industry Staff, respectively.

The speakers also took time to answer questions from the participants and provided clarifications on some of the more difficult aspects of the Plan.

Over 200 participants from different colleges, universities, and high schools along with representatives from regional line agencies, local government units, civil society organizations, and other private organizations in the region joined the webinar which was also livestreamed on Facebook.

In closing, NEDA VIII Regional Director Bonifacio G. Uy expressed his hope that the activity will create a renewed understanding of the PDP among the participants.

“I hope that all of you will bring back to your institutions, organizations, and social circles a new and deeper understanding of the country’s plan to achieve our lofty vision of a “matatag, maginhawa, and panatag na buhay para sa lahat” in 2040 despite the challenges of the past two years.”

With the Eastern Visayas leg done, the national caravan will now move to Mindanao with Region 11 on May 14.

Article and Photos by:  Knulp Aseo