MANILA - Pasig Mayor Vico Sotto on Monday said the city government has doubled the number of its regularized government workers in a span of 2 years, attributing the feat to reforms introduced in the bureaucracy.
Two years since Sotto rose to power, the number of regular government workers in Pasig climbed to 20 percent, double the city's 9 percent rate during the previous local administration, data from the city's Human Resource Department showed.
"We introduced reforms. Tiningnan natin ano ang puwedeng gawin. Ginawa natin kasi yung iba, ayaw gawin," Sotto told ABS-CBN News.
(We introduced reforms. We looked into what can be done because others won't do it.)
"Marami doon deka-dekadang casual, deka-dekadang job order. Pero nagawan natin ng paraan kasi seryoso tayo dito," he said.
(We have a lot of workers who have been casual, job order employees for decades. But we found a way because we are serious in regularizing them.)
The mayor said his administration has abolished several "casual positions" and created more slots for regular workers to minimize the practice of contractualization within the local government.
"It can be done. That is what we are trying to show here, that it can be done kung gusto nating gawin," Sotto said.
Pasig recently invested in a P47-million IT system that would automate clerical tasks in the city's HR Department.
The system, touted as the "the most complete IT system for government employees", would digitize employee records, daily time records, as well as applications for leaves and promotion.
"Kung gusto natin mapataas ang serbisyo ng ating pamahalaan… Tao bago programa. People before programs," Sotto said.
(If we want to improve government services... People first before programs.)
"Kung yung kapasidad ng tao ay hindi ganun kataas, hindi rin tataas yung serbisyo ng organisasyon."
(If the capacity of the people is not that high, the quality of service of an organization would not improve either.)
Sotto has been named by the US State Department as among the world's anticorruption champions.
He was among a dozen "brave individuals" given the International Anticorruption Champions Award launched by Secretary of State Antony Blinken to "recognize individuals who have demonstrated leadership, courage, and impact in preventing, exposing and combating corruption."
Sotto "is a standard-bearer for a new generation of Philippine politicians who prioritize anticorruption and transparency initiatives in their election campaigns and in office," the agency said early this year.