Long live Jesse #salamatJesse #SalamatSecJesse

This is a tribute from Bill Luz

The National Competitiveness Council joins the nation in mourning the tragic passing of DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo. We worked with Jesse and his team at DILG on a project to streamline the process of issuing business permits in Local Government Units across the country. Although the original target was to complete the streamlining process in 120 LGUs, that target was raised to 480 by end-2016. The team at DILG and DTI moved so fast on this project so we pushed the target to complete 480 by end-2012 and all 1,634 LGUs by end-2016. The team is ahead of target.

Jesse believed in measuring the performance of LGUs. We would see each other on occasion at conferences where we were both speakers and meet to discuss how to improve the system of metrics as it applied to LGUs. Because LGUs were seeking a “good seal of housekeeping” which would lead to “challenge grants” that could go to fund projects in their areas, Jesse felt their performance should be measured so LGUs could be awarded on a merit basis. It’s an idea which should be pursued. We are fortunate Jesse assigned this project to good hands in DILG and that their work with DTI always runs smoothly. If anything, Jesse’s passing should provide greater impetus to the project to create more LGU success stories.

Jesse’s tragic loss goes beyond DILG of course. His impact stretches way beyond that. As a successful 6-term mayor of Naga and a Ramon Magsaysay awardee, he is recognized as an effective local executive who led by example and with humility. As a Cabinet member, he was a leader and a strong advocate for good governance. Above all, his simplicity, accessibility, sincerity and dedication to public service was an example to us all. His presence will be missed.

Hopefully his legacy will not. Death leads many of us to look back on a person’s career and achievements. Jesse had many. And in the many tributes that we see pouring into social media circles and in the numerous comments we hear from friends and colleagues, he clearly struck a chord and served as an exemplar and model of public service. It is our hope that many young people learn from Jesse’s legacy and try to emulate him, whether in public office or in the private sector but always in the service of the public good.

Long live Jesse.


Photo via president.gov.ph