Palace transfers NCDA to DSWD

April 9, 2011 2:01 am 

MANILA, April 8 — Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. on Friday announced the transfer of the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) from the Office of the President (OP) to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to better serve people with disabilities (PWDs).

According to Ochoa, Executive Order No. 33, which President Benigno S. Aquino III signed on April 5, highlights the administration’s commitment to promote and protect the rights and welfare of PWDs.

The Philippines is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

“We recognize that majority of the PWDs live in poverty and are faced with many challenges that require concerted efforts of government agencies and civil society, both in the local and national scale, in order to be addressed,” Ochoa noted.

“Given its mandate, the DSWD can provide the institutional support to the NCDA in order for it to carry its purpose more successfully,” he added.

EO 33 designates the secretary of the DSWD as ex-officio chairman of the NCDA.

Presidential Decree No. 1509, as amended by Presidential Decree No. 1761, created the National Commission Concerning Disabled Persons. It was later renamed National Council for the Welfare of Disabled Persons (NCWDP), an agency attached to the DSWD by virtue of EO 123 issued in 1987.

The NCWDP was tasked to formulate policies and coordinate the activities of all agencies, whether public or private, concerning disability issues and concerns as well as monitor the implementation of national laws and international commitments.

EO 232, which was also issued in 1987, provided for the structural and functional reorganization of the council toward a more effective and efficient delivery of services to PWDs.

From DSWD, the NCWDP was placed under the OP in 2007 by virtue of EO 676 in a bid to strengthen the programs of the government for the PWDs.

In 2008, however, EO 709 renamed NCWDP to NCDA and redefined its functions and organizational structure in line with the government’s international commitments and national laws.

Ochoa also said the transfer of NCDA to DSWD was part of the administration’s thrust to streamline the agencies attached to the OP.

“The streamlining of attached agencies is to ensure that each agency has defined set of functions and obligation in accordance with law,” the Executive Secretary explained. (PNA) scs/PCOO/ssc

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