The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) presented the National Broadband Program (NBP) during the Social Development Committee (SDC) 2nd quarter meeting on May 7 through Zoom, to apprise the members about the actions being taken to address the digital and internet connectivity issues in MIMAROPA.
Poor internet connectivity has repeatedly been identified as one of the social development issues and concerns in the region. The matter was also brought to the SDC National-Regional Consultative Meeting for discussion and response from the concerned national agency.
The DICT informed the members that the NBP will accelerate the deployment of fiber optic cables and wireless technology to improve internet speed. It will address the clamor for universal, faster, and affordable internet access which has three major broad strategies, namely, 1) establishment of policy and regulatory reforms; 2) government investment in broadband information structure; and 3) support for the stimulation of broadband demand.
In addition, the DICT named the following programs to improve internet and digital connectivity in the regions: (a) manage internet services in IP areas; (b) establish Digital Transformation Centers; and (c) implement the Common Tower Program.
The following matters were also presented during the meeting for the committee’s review: (a) draft 2020 MIMAROPA Regional Development Report (RDR) specific to social sector concerns; (b) courses to be included in the Commission on Higher Education’s list of priority courses in the region; and (c) Revenue Performance Evaluation Board (RPEB) Resolution No. 01, s. 2021, Enjoining Local Government Units to Strengthen the Localization and Institutionalization of the Philippine Population Management Program by Integrating in the 2021-2022 Annual Investment Program those Strategies Geared
Towards Accelerating and Sustaining the Reduction of Unmet Need for Modern Family Planning in MIMAROPA Region; and (d) RPEB Resolution No. 02, s. 2021,
Enjoining the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Councils to Utilize SK Funds in Support of the Implementation of Programs, Projects, and Activities Geared Towards the Reduction of Teen Pregnancy Cases in MIMAROPA Region.
The Department of Health in MIMAROPA also updated the members on the current status of the COVID-19 and the vaccination rollout in the region.
The meeting concluded with farewell videos from the heads of the SDC member agencies for RDC Vice-Chairperson and outgoing Regional Director Susan A. Sumbeling of the NEDA Regional Office in MIMAROPA. This is in recognition of her valuable contribution and active involvement in social development issues and concerns in the region.