Convergence key to country’s development —President Aquino

A March 2, 2011 press release prepared by the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process

The key to the country’s development strategy is convergence, said President Benigno S. Aquino III in the recently concluded Philippine Development Forum (PDF) held at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza in Pasay City.

With this year’s theme, “Implementing President Aquino’s Social Contract to Achieve Inclusive Growth,” the PDF serves as a venue for forging consensus and generating commitments and support among stakeholders on key actionable items in the government’s reform agenda.

In the first PDF held under his administration, President Aquino said that convergence – the collaboration of efforts and resources of local communities, government agencies, and both public and private sectors – will maximize the country’s resources, creating a bigger impact in “social protection, poverty reduction, health care, education, and development of rural economies.”

For this, the President cited various projects including the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (Peaceful and Prosperous Community) or PAMANA program of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process’ (OPAPP).

PAMANA is the government’s flagship program for peace and development to sustain all on-going governance and community advancement initiatives on the ground. With this program, efforts from national government agencies, local government units, and development partners (aid agencies and the civil society) are converged.

President Aquino also said that PAMANA is designed to make government felt by the people. “We can tell you with confidence that this is a government that works, works together, and is willing to work for you.”

The President spoke to over 300 representatives from national government agencies, local government units, international development partners, private sectors, civil society organizations, and the academe during the forum, which was held a day after the 25th anniversary celebration of the EDSA People Power Revolution.

Finally, he stressed how EDSA should inspire Filipinos to look forward to that day when majority of Filipinos, and not just a few, are enjoying “the benefits of a prosperous society.”

“[We are looking forward to a day] that, with the help of the institutions you represent, our prosperity will allow us to expand our discussions in these Philippine Development Forums. That one day, we will be talking about ways on how to share the success of this country with other developing nations, already having built a more inclusive society through your assistance,” he stated.