Imee Marcos sorry for calling DevCom 'cute, archaic'

Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 16 2020 01:05 PM | Updated as of Oct 16 2020 01:06 PM

Sen. Imee Marcos asks resource persons during a public hearing Monday, March 9, 2020. Albert Calvelo, Senate PRIB/File

MANILA— Sen. Imee Marcos apologized Friday for branding development communication as "cute" and "archaic," after practitioners said their field would be relevant while government corruption remained rampant. 

"Papaumanhin lang ako. Ang init-init ng ulo namin noon. Medyo talagang ayaw namin iyong ibang pangyayari," she said in a Laging Handa public briefing. 

(I apologize. We had hot heads then. We didn't like some things that were happening. )

Marcos had said DevCom has been "largely debunked" when she questioned the Philippine Information Agency's Development Communication Program during a budget hearing on Tuesday. 

"Bakit tayo papasok sa DevCom unless you have a revolutionary idea na bagong-bago na involves all kinds of feedback mechanisms, transparency efforts and interactive play? 'Pag walang ganoon ano iyong DevCom? Makaluma na, tinaggal na sa ating mga pamantasan. Wala na iyon eh," Marcos had said. 

(Why will we go into DevCom unless you have a revolutionary idea that is brand new and involves all kinds of feedback mechanisms transparency efforts and interactive play? Without those, what is DevCom? It's already outdated and has been removed from our universities. It no longer exists.)

When told DevCom remains a vital field of study, the senator responded, “I would really like to understand the nitty gritty of this Development Communication program because it's so old-fashioned. It's sort of cute and archaic.” 

"Ang nangyari d'yan kasi, ang gustong-gusto naming marinig e magkaroon ang PIA, ang PTV-4 kung papaano natin gagamitin ang TV and radio para sa ating mga mag-aaral," she clarified during Friday's briefing. 

(What happened there was we really wanted PIA and PTV-4 to lay out how we will use television and radio for our students.)

The education department "is hard out to produce for television" because "broadcast is not one of their skillsets," said the senator. 

"We were hopeful that the PTV and other groups will be able to come in and help us with these issues," said Marcos. 

WHAT PRACTITIONERS SAID 

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DevCom facilitates meaningful participation, promotes social change, and makes science understandable, said De La Salle University political science professor Antonio Contreras who taught the course.

Meanwhile, the student council of the College of Development Communication at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) said the program remained vital in raising social awareness and consciousness, and was more relevant because of Martial Law, the regime of the senator's late father. 

"[It is a] recognized field of study and practice that shapes agents of change who can help optimize the potentials of communication media, models, and strategies to raise social awareness and consciousness on issues that affect them," the council said in a statement released Tuesday night. 

"It is politicians like Imee Marcos and her family, especially her corrupt parents, who have made DevCom relevant then and now," the group added. 

The Marcoses are accused of embezzling billions in public funds and killing Filipinos critical of the government. Imelda Marcos, widow of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos, was also convicted of 7 counts of graft related to Swiss bank accounts she opened during her husband's regime.