As a Cordilleran in flesh and blood, I should know and understand what our leaders are fighting for. We are grateful that our region is recognized as Cordillera Administrative Region through EO 220 under the former President Corazon C. Aquino. What does autonomy really means? Why our leaders are clamoring for it? Our law-makers are desirous to push the bill.
The activity “Understanding Regional Autonomy Forum” helped us to understand the autonomy that was being fighted for 25 years ago. City Mayor Mauricio Domogan, who headed the Third Autonomy Drafting Committee served as our speakers and Ms. Joanna Cariño. From their talks, autonomy was rejected twice since it was proposed to the region. They presented the benefits of being under an autonomous region though they did not impart what was the negative side of it.
The third attempt is now passed as House Bill 5595 and Senate Bill as 3115 or “An Act Establishing the Cordillera Autonomous Region”. As for now, only two representatives were yet to affix their signature. They are Rep. Ronald Cosalan of Benguet and Rep. Joyce Bernos of Abra because accordingly, they will first consult the constituents of their provinces.
This activity was conducted not just for compliance but to communicate the issue to the public for them to know what does autonomy means. On our part, our aim is to enlighten them on the topic autonomy. We hope that it will not just end there. May those people who were present during the forum will be able to impart to others what they learned from the activity.