New provision covers families of Ampatuan Massacre victims
THE National Press Club of the Philippines and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), signed an agreement on July 09, 2020, providing free TESDA training to all qualified members of the press and their immediate families.
The ‘TVET For the Press’ program aims to provide interventions through skills development by providing access to training to journalists and their immediate families for self or wage employment to uplift their economic status.
The agreement is a renewal of an earlier MOA signed by both parties in 2017 and was signed by NPC President Rolando ‘Lakay’ Gonzalo and TESDA secretary general, Isidro Lapeña. Witnessing the ceremony are NPC Vice Pres. Paul M. Gutierrez and TESDA deputy director for operations, retired police general, Lina Sarmiento.
Gonzalo, said what is significant in the new MOA is a provision that included the families of the 57 massacre victims of the infamous ‘Ampatuan Massacre’ in Maguindanao, as among the beneficiaries. The massacre happened on November 23, 2009 with 34 of the victims being members of the press.
“As we have said to the families of the massacre victims, the NPC remains committed in their fight for justice and in assisting them in recovering from that tragic event. Their inclusion in this MOA is an affirmation of that commitment,” Gonzalo said.
The NPC also extended their gratitude to Secretary Lapeña for readily acceding to its request for the inclusion of the families of the massacre victims, majority of whom are non-NPC members.
Under this partnership, the NPC shall be responsible in identifying and endorsing to TESDA, the beneficiaries willing to undergo skills training based on the standards and guidelines of TESDA.
The beneficiaries include any NPC member or any two of his/her immediate family. The Club shall be likewise responsible in ensuring that those undergoing training comply with all the occupational health and safety standards prescribed under applicable labor laws.
For its part, TESDA shall provide skills training to the qualified beneficiaries under its ‘Training For Work Scholarship Program.’
Likewise, TESDA shall also identify the technical-vocational institutions (TVIs) where they would be trained. Those who successfully finished their courses and passed the required skills assessment shall be issued a national certificate or certificate of competency, which is now a primary requirement by employers abroad.
The latest agreement is a product of the close partnership between the NPC and TESDA over the years with the NPC assisting the latter in the public dissemination of its activities and programs.