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Nanay’s intuition


A SHORT sidebar to our Man of The Year feature in this issue tells of how Mayor Cris Garbo found in then-Gov. Lilia “Nanay” Pineda the inspiration for Mabalacat City’s donations, notably ambulances and patrol cars, to less financially fortunate LGUs out of the city’s share from the 5% gross income earned from the Clark Freeport locators. 

“I made a vow to Nanay: Mabalacat will share its blessings from Clark with the other LGUs in Pampanga once I become mayor,” Garbo remembered. 

Of that instance that happened during the “Linking of CFZ Locators and Pampanga PESO” on June 7, 2019 at Royce Hotel, Clark Freeport, Punto! Online duly reported under the headline Gov. Pineda gets Mabalacat pledge for service vehicles, to wit: 

…The “nanay” that she always is, Gov. Lilia Pineda has urged her apparent “eldest son” in Mabalacat City Mayor Cris Garbo to provide a vehicle each to the 21 municipalities of Pampanga. They will be primarily used for rescue operations during emergency situations and disaster operations.

“Alam nyo po ba magkano ang nakukuha ng Mabalacat sa Clark ngayon? Aabot po ng P800 million. Kaya ang pakiusap ko po kay Mayor Garbo ay tumulong siya sa ibang bayan,” Pineda said in her speech.

The “eldest” in terms of budget now, Garbo was asked by the outgoing governor to provide the vehicles from the P800 million windfall Mabalacat City is getting this year in the Gross Income Earned (GIE) shares from Clark locators. Pampanga’s third and newest city now has about P2 billion annual budget.

In an employment forum Friday with Capitol officials, Pampanga mayors, provincial board members, Clark Development Corp. officials and Clark locators at Royce Hotel here, Garbo readily agreed to the request. The forum was called by Pineda to foster cooperation among CDC, LGUs and Clark locators…

“And I have been true to that vow since,” Garbo is wont to say, so proudly. 

On hindsight now, apart from inspiring Garbo to share his city’s blessings with other LGUs – even outside Pampanga, as it turned out, Pampanga’s beloved Nanay initiated two endeavors in that same forum that have come to fruition. 

Of this, Punto! Central Luzon bannered: Gov bats for labor center, workers’ hospital in Clark, to wit:

“That $4.6 billion speaks of the imperative for all of us to do our share to ensure and enhance productivity in this freeport.”

So cited Gov. Lilia G. Pineda of the 2018 export volume of the Clark Freeport during the “Linking of CFZ Locators and Pampanga Public Employment Service Office (PESO)” that gathered the human resources managers of locator firms, local government executives, officials of the association of barangay chairs, and municipal PESO heads at the Royce Hotel here.

“This is the start of close collaboration between Clark, its locators, the Capitol, and the local government units,” Pineda said, giving particular mention to the City of Mabalacat within which territorial jurisdiction lies a greater part of this freeport…

…To further empower the workers, Pineda said she has discussed with Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Clark Development Corp. president-CEO Noel Manankil the establishment of a labor center at the freeport that shall address the immediate needs of both workers and locators.

Pineda likewise extended to Clark workers her so-called “Nanay health advocacy” with her planned establishment of an extension of the Pampanga provincial hospital at the freeport.

“We are well aware of the health needs of our workers, and the high cost of hospitalization,” Pineda said. “Thus, this hospital dedicated to them with its own diagnostic center, pharmacy with tax-free medicines, and zero balance billing.”

According to the governor, the CDC has allotted a 2,000 square meter lot for the hospital.

“I already talked with (Mabalacat City) Mayor Cris Garbo for this project. He can allot budget for this from the P800 million share of the city from the gross income earned from Clark,” she said….

Only last month, CDC and DOLE signed a memorandum of agreement for the renewal of its satellite office in the Clark Freeport aimed to enhance the collaboration and the ability to offer meaningful services to Clark locators and stakeholders, as well as to strengthen the partnership between the two agencies. 

Beaming as witnesses at the signing rites between CDC president-CEO Atty. Agnes VST Devanadera and Labor Secretary Atty. Bienvenido E. Laguesma were Gov. Dennis “Delta” G. Pineda, and Vice Gov. Nanay. 

“This partnership with DOLE, with the local government, especially with the provincial government, CDC, and the private sector – the business sector, can make a difference. We’re moving forward after the pandemic. We’re moving forward because we are here doing the convergence and doing a whole of government approach,” noted Devanadera.

On May 1, 2022, among the last ceremonies he attended as the country’s chief executive, President Duterte led the groundbreaking rites for the Pampanga Provincial Hospital – Clark, the first government hospital inside the Clark Economic Zone.

Recognizing the efforts made by the Pampanga provincial government, notably Nanay, the outgoing president remarked: “You have helped us realize our goal of a healthier and more productive Filipino citizen. Responsible and responsive leaders should know the areas where they can build and establish advantageous institutions even for the successful generations.”

Meanwhile, in deference to Nanay, Garbo has committed the city government to provide counterpart fund in the construction of the Pampanga provincial hospital in Clark.

The potency of Nanay’s intuition is, indeed, legendary. 


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