Thursday, April 5, 2018

‘Open Capitol’ features junior officials

By Leilanie G. Adriano

Staff reporter

LAOAG CITY—Officials and employees of the Ilocos Norte government welcomed about 6,000 primary school children from the entire province of Ilocos Norte during the “Open Capitol” held February 14, 2018.

With the selection of junior officials representing the incumbent leaders of the province from governor, vice governor, Sangguniang Panlalawigan members and mayors of the 21 towns and two cities of the province, the participants toured the different departments of the Provincial Capitol building where each department came up with their own exhibit presenting what it was like to live in the province over the past 200 years.

A quick tour at the bicentennial edition of the ‘Open Capitol’ presents old photographs, letters, type writers and other old office equipment, traditional farming equipment, old kitchen utensils and many others. Other national government line agencies such as the Philippine Rice Research Institute, Bureau of Fire Protection, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority including private organizations and the academe also set up their own exhibit at the Capitol auditorium and at the back of the provincial Capitol to familiarize visitors of their services.

Ten-year old Airish Abygaelle Guillermo of Catalino Acosta Memorial Elementary School in Batac City said she had wanted to have a photo with the governor whenever she visits Batac but she never had any chance before.

On that day, Ms. Guillermo did not only have a photo with the governor and other local officials of the province, she also had the chance to look and act like the governor when she led junior officials at the Capitol.

“I am very happy to represent the governor. I feel so lucky and blessed for having this rare chance to speak on behalf of my fellow children,” said Ms. Guillermo.

The presentation of the “Little Ilocos Norte Government Officials” was an added excitement to the program wherein several elementary pupils auditioned in Capitol on February 9 to act as the junior counterparts of the provincial officials and mayors here.

For eight years now, the Open Capitol program initiated under the Marcos administration is meant primarily to familiarize Ilocos Norte children about the various offices of the provincial government, the services and programs offered and how it runs as an organization led by the governor, vice governor, provincial board members and the department heads and staff among others.

Other activities during the Open Capitol included a mock session with the Little Sangguniang Panlalawigan members and display of Ilocos products for sale.

Other public and private stakeholders also provided free taste of their products, including free blood pressure and blood sugar monitoring.

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