Press Release
April 22, 2013


Senator Aquilino (Koko) Pimentel III, a leading candidate of the Team P-Noy ticket for the 2013 Senate race, has pledged to make the revitalization of the local governments one of his priorities in the next Congress.

"Just as the family is the basic unit of society, the local government, starting with the barangay, is the basic political unit of the Philippine government and territory," PDP Laban President Pimentel said.

He added: "The autonomy and development of local governments is a basic test of democracy without which regional and national growth will suffer."

The young lawmaker said he will continue the work of his father, former Senate President Aquilino (Nene) Pimentel Jr. who was the leading advocate of local autonomy in Congress and principal author of the Local Government Code of the Philippines, a landmark in Philippine legislation.

"The Constitution is eminently correct in mandating Section 25 of Article II (Declaration of State Policies and Principles) that the State shall ensure the autonomy of local governments," Pimentel added.

Pimentel is one of the young national leaders who are in their 40's pushing for reforms in Congress, the Judiciary and the Executive departments.

He said he will seek bigger Share in the National Taxes (SNT) for cities, towns and provinces to speed up their economic growth, create jobs and deliver comprehensive social services. "LGUs have a right to a just share of the national taxes that should be immediately released to them," Pimentel insisted.

At the same time, LGUs are entitled to an equitable share in the proceeds of the utilization of the national resources within their jurisdiction, he added.

Pimentel, cited as among the 12 frontrunners in the May 13 polls by independent poll surveys, also urged local governments to improve their quality of governance and to provide constituents essential and accessible services.

"Reduce red tape and make your place business-friendly and improve the quality of life of your people," he told mayors and governors.

Pimentel also asked voters to elect candidates who support local autonomy and government decentralization. "For this reason, Filipinos should support the Team P-Noy which supports self-reliance at the grassroots level," Pimentel said.

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