Only few LGUs in the region have population office
TACLOBAN CITY- The implementation of population-related programs in the region are suffering snags due to the absence of a local office that could better handle them.
Thus said Elnora Pulma, regional director of the Commission on Population (Popcom), who said that this problem could be address if a bill mandating for the creation of a population development office will be enacted by Congress.
The said bill is still under deliberation by Congress and is principally authored by Laguna Rep. Sol Aragones.
“Our management population program is really affected because of the lack of a point person in the local (lities) who can discuss it,” Pulma said.
She said that the proposed office will mainly be tasked to address the population development issues like increasing teenage and high-intended pregnancies, among others.
The Popcom director said that they are having some difficulties in cascading down their programs due to the absence of a point officer in the local government unit.
The proposed bill mandates all local government units or from provinces down to the cities and municipalities to create the population development office.
At present, creating a population office is not mandated reason why there are several local government units in the region, in particular, that does not have such office or just simply designate somebody to act as a population officer.
At present, the provinces of Leyte, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar and the cities of Ormoc and Tacloban have passed executive orders mandating for the creation of a development population office at their respective areas.
Reyan Arinto, Popcom-8 head of the technical services unit, said that they are hoping that with the proposed bill of Aragones becoming a law, all local government units in the region will have their own development population office.
He said, for one, the high incidence of teenage pregnancy in the region could be address if such office will be created in all local government units.
Eastern Visayas has one of the highest teenage pregnancy cases. Last year, there were about 9,000 teenagers who got pregnant.
(JOEY A. GABIETA/LIZBETH ANN A.ABELLA)