Presidential Comms shifts to second gear – Andanar, 03 March 2017

Cebu City — Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar on Thursday, March 2, announced “revitalizing” changes to be made to his office this week during a meeting with the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) at the Golden Prince Hotel.

The Presidential Communications Chief was in Cebu in time for the ASEAN – PCOO Roadshow.

“We’ve been in office for about eight months now. It’s about time to shift second gear,” Andanar told the new officers and members of the KBP – Cebu Chapter disclosing some courses of action his office is planning to take in the next days.

Secretary Andanar plans to “fix” the International Press Center (IPC), whose building was newly renovated, and to revitalize the Philippine News Agency (PNA) as the premiere news wire agency of the country.

“We have about 40 plus reporters, if we combined them all, in Metro Manila. So if you look at the numbers, sheer number of reporters, then you have a very powerful Philippine News Agency. Those who are operating in Mindanao, in the Visayas, and in the provinces of Luzon can maximize the reports that we write for the Philippine News Agency. And that’s one way to rejuvenate, revitalize Philippine News Agency,” the Andanar said.

Modernization plans for the PNA include a modernized news room, a television, a broadcast, and news cast to be shown on the internet, social media sites, and also a special channel, which will be a sub-channel of PTV when it becomes digital.

“Once a station becomes digital, you have the HD channel, the main channel, then you have sub-channels—3 to 4 sub-channels. One of those sub-channels will be the Philippine News Agency, one will be the Muslim Lumad TV, and there will also be the tele-radyo, which is the Radyo ng Bayan, that will have a video cast and maybe one more, maybe an agricultural channel if the Department of Agriculture would like to sponsor,” Andanar explained.

Secretary Andanar is likewise working on having an integrated news room, which included People’s Television (PTV), Radyo ng Bayan, Philippine Information Agency (PIA), and PNA.

Also within the 2017 PCOO deliverables for the year are the groundbreaking of the Mindanao broadcast hub in Davao, FM1 or the FM station for the youth, PIA kiosks in the domestic and international airport among others, among others.

Meanwhile, Secretary Andanar explained the current reorganization of the PCOO.

“I saw it, me and Ernie (Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella), and Special Assistant to the President Bong Go, we saw the wisdom of doing a little reorganization, to which the Content & Messaging, ang head nun si Queenie (PCOO Assistant Secretary Rachel Queenie Dizon-Rodulfo)… So sabi ko, since si Spokes (Abella) is the one talking and he’s the one managing the press briefing room, napagusapan namin na it’s just rational for him to lead the content & messaging (aspect),” Andanar disclosed.

Aside from the Content and Messaging Group, Spokesperson Abella will also have oversight function to all contents and messaging aspect of all agencies under the PCOO. Likewise, Abella will now be the spokesperson of not only the President, but latter’s alter ego as well, the Cabinet.

Nonetheless, for matters about the agencies under the PCOO that has to do with operations, Andanar assured, he is still the “go-to guy”.

Moreover, Andanar is planning to revert back PCOO to its former name as Office of the Press Secretary. He said an executive order had already been drafted, waiting for President Rodrigo Duterte’s signature.

“And by the way, once we go back to the Office of the Press Secretary, there is a possibility, God willing, that we can also revitalize the press attachés in other important countries we deal with,” the PCOO chief concluded.

Those present during the dinner meeting included Fr. Roberto Ebisa, KBP-Cebu chairman; Jose Maria Lanza, KBP-Cebu executive vice chairman; Atty. Cynthia Barte, KBP-Cebu legal counsel; Atty. Pacheco Seares, executive director of Cebu City Press Council, Atty. Eddie Barrita, bureau chief of PNA; Harold Clavite, PIA Director-General; and Angelo Villar, PIA Deputy Director-General.###PCO-Content