MANOLO FORTICH, Bukidnon – The construction of the country’s first Government Communication Academy (GCA) will finally begin following the groundbreaking ceremony here on Monday.
The GCA facility will be built on a 10,000 square meter lot donated by Manolo Fortich Mayor Clive D. Quiño situated at the Northern Bukidnon State College.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar said in his message that the facility is one of the products of discussion made during the 2018 National Information Convention in Davao City.
“The conduct of the first-ever National Information Convention in Davao City in 2018 made a lot of headway in revolutionizing the way we report the news about the government and how we respond to concerns such as capacitating our public information officers,” he said in his message delivered by PCOO Assistant Secretary Ryan Vincent Uy.
“Fast forward to today, where we are marking a historic milestone for the collaborative effort and solidarity between government and private media in the service of the Filipino public,” he added.
The academy will not only be the National Communication Training Center of the Philippines for all Information Officers of the government. It also aims to be a financially sustainable institution by engaging into partnerships with the private sector under lease agreements or joint ventures.
The project includes a two-storey main building, a parking lot as well as the general landscaping of the surrounding open area which will be fulfilled in phases.
Through a Memorandum of Agreement, the PCOO transferred to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) the total amount of P79 million under its GAA FY 2021 to fund the construction of the main building. P30 million of which was funded through the Congressional initiative of Senator Juan Miguel F. Zubiri.
The DPWH is now finalizing the detailed architectural and engineering design of the project pursuant to Republic Act No. 9184.
“We are now realizing one of the greatest goals we have envisioned in the past five years of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s administration. Not long after this, we will be able to witness the actual physical manifestation of the administration’s all-encompassing Tapang at Malasakit,” he said.
“Our hope is for this facility to be an avenue for our country’s media, its truth-tellers, its information officers to learn more, to be immersed in their potentials, and to be motivated in serving the people by keeping our democratic values alive and pushing for freedom of speech and the responsibilities that come with it,” he added.