Thank you. [Please be seated.]
Thank you, Chairman Karlo Nograles, the Chairperson of the Civil Service Commission. Our — lagi kong sundo whenever I come through here is our good Mayor, Mayor Imelda Calixto-Rubiano; the Executive Director Maria Marcy Cosare-Ballesteros; the President of the Development Academy of the Philippines Atty. Engelbert Caronan; the Undersecretary Meinrado Pangulayan; Ms. Milalin Javellana, Chairperson of the Organization Development Practitioners Network; Deputy Executive Director Erick Jan Macapagal; fellow workers in government; ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.
I am delighted to be with all of you today as we celebrate the 49th Founding Anniversary of the Career Executive Service Board and launch this year’s Career Executive Service Lifelong Learning for Leadership Congress.
It is very important that we are of the belief and are of — have the practice of looking to continuously learning and retraining, and now… Ang buzzword ngayon is upskilling and reskilling. It is an extremely important aspect to the service that we give because of this very quickly changing world after the pandemic and in light of the Ukraine conflict.
It is my firm belief that the State has the responsibility to mold its citizens into champions of effective leadership and good [governance].
That is why it is very pleasing to see that the Career Executive Service Board has championed this cause of ensuring a professional and reliable Career Executive Service. This contributes greatly to the achievement of the country’s national development goals.
Today’s CESCON is also a testament of the CESB’s commitment to my administration’s 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda.
The agenda aims to unite the nation moving forward, to adopt a whole-of-nation approach. It is essentially the approach that we have applied to all public service and all government work.
This whole-of-nation approach is implemented — is used to implement our development goals, the delivery of social services, and to institute a more people-oriented bureaucracy.
This year’s theme, “RebounCES: Bounce Back Better” is inspiring and it inspires our Career Executive Service Officers and Eligibles to be more efficient, to be more proactive in their mandates and more unwavering in the face of the daunting yet fulfilling challenge of nation-building.
As you hold this year's event, let me put out another challenge and challenge you to learn from each other and to utilize the invaluable learnings and best practices highlighted in this Congress towards effecting the changes we would like to see in our country.
I have just returned from the summits of the ASEAN and the conference of the APEC Leaders. And it has been a very interesting experience in that — for one thing that the leaders seem to agree on what the problems are and the directions that we should take moving forward.
But the consensus, the common consensus amongst all of us is that we have to think very, very hard about what the new economy will look like, what government will look like in response to that new economy. What are the services in government that will become easier? Which will become harder?
And which areas of development are going to go — become less important and which sectors of the economy are going to become more important? And for us in government, we must adjust accordingly.
One of the centerpieces of my economic plan is to encourage the interaction and the partnership between the public sector and the private sector. And to do that properly, we in the bureaucracy must be able to handle the new ways of doing business.
We have to be able — we have to know the different ways that now other countries are doing business, that other governments are doing business.
So that number one, we will be coordinated with them. But secondly, so that we will be well positioned for our people to take advantage of the new economy, the new opportunities, the new possible investments in human capital.
And for me the most important part of all of this that we are talking about in the new economy, the new post-pandemic global economy, is — the most important part is going to be how innovative we are and how agile we are.
And that is going to determine whether or not we will be able to adjust to all of these fast-moving events that have affected us without under — without any control coming from us.
And so the continuous training is going to be an important part of the whole process because we will do things differently from before. Digitalization, as mentioned by the Chairman, is certainly a very, very important first step. It is a necessary first step.
If we do not digitalize properly, we do not digitalize and digitize properly government function, we will never catch up. Maiiwanan tayo ng ating mga karatig-bansa. Kaya’t kailangan matuto na tayo at magaling naman ang Pilipino diyan.
It’s just a question of us, who call ourselves the leaders in government, it is up to us to provide them that training. We have to give them that training. And we have to have the capability for training all our people so that the work that we do is more efficient and is more responsive to the actual situation that is being faced by the bureaucracy and by the citizens.
But let me use this opportunity to congratulate the 96 new CESEs who recently passed the CES Eligibility Examination. [applause] You will now join the country’s prestigious pool of Career Executive Service Officials and candidates who will be integral to the realization of our goal to have an agile and responsive bureaucracy.
All of you have my trust and my confidence. I therefore hope that you will join me in reinventing this bureaucracy. [applause] Let us reinvent ourselves and reinvent the bureaucracy.
Let me also reiterate that, for this administration, the welfare of our people and the improvement of their lives are of utmost importance, and that as it should be.
But as we take the daunting task that is ahead of us, I ask you to actively take part in pursuing this Administration’s 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda — policies that promote social justice, ensure food security, accelerate progress, protect our environment, and address climate change.
Remember that we are here not for our own gain. We are here to bring forth a government that provides for the needs of the people.
Most importantly, let us be vigilant against temptation and corruption and other acts that diminish the public trust.
I am optimistic [that] our CESOs and CESEs, together with their colleagues, will lead by example and inspire our fellow civil servants to be dedicated, able, fearless, and honest in serving our people.
Moving forward, I ask all of you to remain united in strengthening the institutional capacity… I know I’m being repetitive about this but it is really central to our success — the institutional capacity, the development of human capital, the retraining, the upskilling, the reskilling. All of these things need to be done.
We have a brave new world that we have to face, and we have to be brave in facing it.
We improve the institutional capacity of the CESB as we pursue much needed reforms and continue to implement the effective programs that we have begun.
I assure you of this administration’s strong commitment to enhancing all the advantages that we can to our civil servants, such as working conditions, social growth, [and] professional advancement of all our career executive officials.
I am also aware of the issues affecting the CESB, starting with Memorandum Circular No. 3. [applause]
As we walked in, together with the Chairman, and he said, “Oh, here they all are, the CESOs and the CESEs, all the ones who are hoping to stay on.” [laughter and applause] Well, let me…
Let me assure our Career Executive Service Board and the affected CESEs occupying third-level positions in the government that the Office of the President is going to review the said memorandum, [applause] and look into the other hurdles faced by many CESEs in obtaining CES eligibility.
Let’s work together. This is the kind of thing that we need. As leader, as President, I cannot do my work without all of you, and that’s why you must…[applause] You must be the best that you can be. We must give you the best conditions, the best training, the best capabilities, and that is my job.
And that is why I need to hear from you, I need to hear from the leadership of the Civil Service, and that way this partnership that we will bring together will have a synergy that will be felt by every Filipino.
So together let us address the growing needs of our fellow Filipinos. Let’s provide them with the opportunity to lead meaningful and dignified lives.
With your invaluable help and support, I am confident [that] we can bring forth the future we want to see and build a better, brighter, and more prosperous Philippines in the years ahead.
Maraming, maraming salamat po. Mabuhay po kayong lahat! At magandang hapon po sa inyong lahat. [applause]
Location: Reception Hall of the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay, Manila