PCOO designated as lead agency in FOI implementationBy Patricia Lourdes Viray (philstar.com) | Updated January 4, 2017 – 2:29pm

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has designated the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) as the lead agency in the implementation of the freedom of information (FOI) program in the executive branch.

The president signed Executive Order (EO) 2 which implements the FOI in the executive branch three weeks after assuming office in July.

Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea issued Memorandum Order 10 which tasks the PCOO to oversee implementation of all FOI and e-FOI programs for all government agencies in the executive branch.

Medialdea noted that there is a need to continuously monitor the implementation of the FOI program in all government agencies under the executive branch.

“Whereas, the designation of a lead agency shall ensure the successful implementation of the FOI program,” the order read.

As lead agency, the PCOO will also be in charge of developing programs and mechanisms to enhance the capacity of government agencies to comply with EO 2.

The PCOO will also be mandated to conduct and facilitate capacity and institutional building programs for all concerned government agencies.

“All departments, agencies, bureaus, offices or instrumentalities of the government, including government-owned or -controlled corporations, are directed to render full assistance and cooperation to the PCOO as may be required to carry out its functions pursuant to this Order,” Medialdea said.

EO 2 covers all government offices under the executive branch including the national government and all its offices, departments, bureaus, offices and instrumentalities.

The FOI program will also be implemented in state-run firms, universities and colleges.