A First 100 Days Agenda
• New government must survive and reform: neutralize forces against change, enable reformers to seize initiative, and hold opportunistic politicians and rent-seeking economic interests at bay.
• Need to generate a cadre of competent, trustworthy, and reform-oriented leaders to take charge during the critical period.
• Middle forces must know how to engage new government and, at the same time, initiate/support self-development programs for and with the marginalized.
• We cannot afford to repeat mistakes and shortcomings of past or miss opportunities for real change.
• Not only a change of leadership and administration but substantial institutional, political, economic, and social reforms.
• Prospects for far-reaching reforms depend on:
• Circumstances (e.g., simple succession vs. people power) under which new government comes to power, and
• Latitude (e.g., time, power) given new government to govern and introduce reforms.
• Need to revisit this exercise once consensus is reached on how new government is to be installed.
• We must not leave government to the bureaucrats and politics to the politicians.
1st – Stabilize the Political Situation
• Neutralize forces against change.
• Secure/sustain support of military and police:
• Restore promotions and reward systems in the AFP and PNP.
• Declare commitment to improve welfare of the rank and file.
• Consolidate broad anti-GMA forces behind new leadership and First 100 Days Agenda.
• Reconstitute peace panels and jumpstart peace negotiations with CPP-NPA-NDF, MILF, RPMP-PRA, and RPMM-RPA.
• Push reform elements to seize initiative in new government and hold opportunistic politicians and rent-seeking economic interests at bay.
2nd - Institute Zero Tolerance for Graft and Corruption and Restore Good and Effective Governance
• Replace GMA subalterns in key revenue, security, and service agencies immediately.
• Constitute a credible search committee and appoint and/or promote competent, honest, and committed individuals in these offices.
• Uphold transparency, accountability, efficiency, responsiveness, citizen participation, and predictability as standards for good governance.
• Institute system of performance contracts in the Cabinet.
• Fast track prosecution of celebrated graft cases (e.g., Gen. Garcia’s case, US$2M Perez bribery case, P723M fertilizer scam).
• Suspend and review questionable contracts (e.g. North Rail Project).
• Ensure delivery of priority services for the poor in health, education, housing, livelihood, social welfare, employment generation, and asset reform.
3rd-Demonstrate Pro-Poor Commitment and Address Needs of the Middle Class
• Implement focused subsidies (e.g., food, medicines and energy) for urban and rural poor to mitigate effects of E-VAT.
• Exempt minimum wage earners from income tax.
• Lower withholding taxes for fixed income earners.
• Implement development programs for marginal farmers, municipal fishers, indigenous people, urban poor, and labor.
4th - Restore Fiscal Health and Keep Economic House in Order
• Appoint an experienced, competent, and credible economic management team.
• Lead by example: Implement genuine austerity measures starting with the OP and Executive Branch.
• Renew tax administration and collection improvement campaign.
• Pursue computerization.
• Implement lateral attrition law.
• Plug leakages in tax collection.
• Prosecute high-profile tax-evaders and smugglers through “Run After Tax Evaders” (RATE) campaign relentlessly.
• Subject all government officials to lifestyle checks.
• Formulate a new debt management policy emphasizing write-off of odious debts through creative negotiations/debt swaps.
5th - Lay the Basis for Sustained Reform
• Appoint competent, trustworthy and reform-oriented personalities and sectoral leaders to key government posts.
• Establish institutional mechanisms (e.g., expanded LEDAC and DBCC) to allow sectoral, business and civil society leaders and groups to participate meaningfully in government decision-making.
• Prepare for orderly, peaceful, and meaningful elections.
• Prosecute Kilosbayan case vs. COMELEC commissioners filed with the Ombudsman immediately.
• Revamp COMELEC and appoint competent, honest, and non-partisan commissioners.
• Clean up voters’ lists.
• Begin automation/modernization of electoral process.
• Investigate wiretapping and 2004 presidential election cheating, including involvement of military.
• Declare commitment to charter change through a Constitutional Convention.