About 133 participants from LGUs, RLAs, and NGOs divided into two batches attended the Training for Regional Autonomy Speakers held in Baguio City at the Pines View Hotel last July 23-24, 2013 and at the Crown Legacy last July 25-26, 2013.

With the training, it is expected that more resource persons on Regional Autonomy shall be deployed for Information Education and Communication (IEC) activities. With 63 percent of the 2013 P15 million budget for Special Preparation for a Cordillera Autonomous Region (SPCAR) allotted to IEC, demands for regional autonomy speakers will increase.

Among the topics were the Historical Context of Regional Autonomy, given by Dr. Maximo Garming of the Kalinga State University; the Legal Bases of Regional Autonomy given by Atty. Delmar Cariño, legal officer of the Benguet Electric Cooperative; the Development context of the RDC’s renewed pursuit for regional autonomy given by Mr. Art Aro of NEDA and the Highlights of the Working Draft on Regional Autonomy (HB 5595 in the 15th Congress) discussed by Atty. Tomas Kiwang of DILG, Ms. Mayna Caymo of DBM, Dr. Peter Dumaguing of DAR, Board Member Leonard Andanan of Abra, and Mr. Gerry Lab-oyan of the Coop Bank of Benguet.

Dr. Ma. Luz Fang-asan of Benguet State University discussed Techniques in Delivering Messages to the Grassroots. Mayor Mauricio Domogan of Baguio City gave the Major Principles of Regional Autonomy, which was the basis in the crafting of HB 5595.

The trainees are expected to gather feedbacks from the grassroots during their IECs. Dr. Fang-asan, in her talk advised the prospect speakers to be sincere in their advocacy and that it is important for them to talk in the local dialect when discussing regional autonomy