By Claudeth Mocon-Ciriaco, November 5 2018; Business Mirror

Image Credit to GMA Network

The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) will prioritize the poor and help them secure jobs and learn new skills via its training programs, its newly installed director general said.

Tesda chief Isidro S. Lapeña said Tesda will “win the hearts of the people” through its skills training programs and services.

“As a public servant, I am challenged and at the same time humbled, to be given this task of helping the country create opportunities to ensure that our human capital remains not only competitive but productive and world class,” Lapeña said.

“We at Tesda should ensure that those who have less in life would have more in opportunities to increase their chances to secure their own livelihood, self-employment or inclusion in the labor market,” he added.

Lapeña made the assurance during his acceptance speech as the newly appointed Tesda chief during the turnover ceremony from Officer in Charge Deputy Director General Rosanna A. Urdaneta held at the Tesda Women’s Center in Taguig City on October 31.

Urdaneta acted as Tesda OIC after former Director General/Secretary Guiling A. Mamondiong resigned from his post to run for governor in Lanao del Sur in the May 2019 national elections.

Lapeña thanked President Duterte for the chance to head the 24-year-old government agency.

When informed for the first time of his appointment, Lapeña asked himself: “What will I do in Tesda?”

However, the President explained to Lapeña the correlation between maintaining the stability of peace and order in the country, and the task of developing skilled human resource, specially among those in the lower strata of society.

According to the President, reducing dissatisfaction among the citizens by providing more than enough opportunities will further guarantee the stability of peace and order in the country.

“Tesda is here to provide better technical vocational education for as many as possible. Accessible education and training mean better jobs, and better jobs mean better lives,” Lapeña added.

Lapeña also said that there will be no room for corruption under his administration, proof for which was his request that he will be joined by officials of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission during his oath of office.

Urdaneta encouraged officials and rank-and-file employees of Tesda, particularly the employees union known as the Association of Concerned Employees, to support Lapeña during his transition period.

Prior to Tesda, Lapeña was the commissioner of the Bureau of Customs. Lapeña said he considers his reassignment to Tesda a promotion.

Lapeña is a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy, Class of 1973. He has been in the police service for more than 30 years before he retired in 2007. Claudeth Mocon-Ciriaco