Batanes to Tawi-Tawi
with Julmunir I. Jannaral
The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) is already a microcosm of the national government since it has a complete set up of ministries equivalent to the different Cabinet departments of the Philippine government.
The Batanes To Tawi-Tawi column is calling upon any Member of Parliament (MP) to sponsor a bill that would level up or upgrade the Bangsamoro Information Office (BIO) into a ministry level. Thus elevating it into Ministry of Public Information (MPI). Hence, giving it also with substantial amount of budget to function as a full ministry to be headed by a Minister with a Cabinet Rank.
To make the MPI fully operational as a regular ministry of BARMM there must be provincial offices to be established in the six provinces. Thus there will be one MPI in Sulu, Basilan, Tawi-Tawi, Lanao del Sur, and Maguindanao Norte, and Maguindanao Sur.
The MPI to be a truly information ministry of BARMM should be headed by a Minister who will be appointed from the rank of seasoned or veteran Journalists who have been writing for national mainstream Media, and a broadcaster of national television or radio station.
This BIO originated from the Bureau of Public Information (BPI). It was headed by a mere Director but its rank was elevated into Executive Director during the tenure of Veteran Journalist Ali G. Macabalang, who is presently the President of the newly-created Bangsamoro Press Corps (BPC).
It can be recalled that the BPC Executive Officers and Board of Directors (BOD) were inducted into office at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City recently on July 3,2021 by Undersecretary Joel Sy Egco, the Executive Director of the Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMS) based in Malacanang, Manila. Usec Egco was formerly the President of the National Press Club (NPC); and also the former Chief of Reporters and Assignment Editor of The Manila Times.
It is hoped that the BIO will finally be upgraded into a ministry level making it as a Ministry of Public Information (MPI).
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