MANDAUE CITY – Visayas will soon have its own government media hub that will cater to tailor fitted news and information, serving as the main government broadcast for Central, Eastern, and Western Visayas, as Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar led the groundbreaking ceremony last February 24.
“The world-class media hub is part of our vision in the wider PCOO family to ensure that we provide tailored news and information, establish direct connectivity with the public, and bring the government closer to the Bisaya people, especially in preparation for, during times of calamities and disasters, and their aftermath,” Andanar explained.
The facility will rise within the 3,000-square meter property of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) in Barangay Subangdaku.
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte in a video message extended his congratulations to the PCOO for its initiative to modernize the operations of government media.
“I welcome the creation of this new facility and state-of -the-art equipment that will push the government’s communications service across the country. I am certain that this hub will be a beacon of excellence as we modernize government media for the improved welfare of our people in the Visayas and the rest of the nation,” he said.
Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, in his video message as a guest speaker, recognized the important role that information plays in a functioning democracy. He called on the Presidential Communications Operations Office and other sate-affiliated media outlets to continue to espouse high ethical standards in their work.
“Today marks another historic milestone in strengthening the fulfillment of our government’s communication operations and services nationwide … This is a vital step to promote increased civic awareness and public participation among Filipinos, especially in the Visayas region,” he added.
“Matagal natin itong pinag-usapan at ipinaglaban sa Senado kaya masaya ako na matutuloy na itong Visayas Media Hub. Makakaasa kayo na palagi akong handang sumuporta at tumulong (sa inyo) sa abot ng aking makakaya,” pledged Go.
“Let us also include well wishes and prayers that this Visayas Media hub, and all other state-sponsored broadcast facilities and private media outlets, will meet the evolving needs and expectations of our kababayans, which are anchored in our collective mandate to provide public service,” he ended.
Last December, Go participated in the first television broadcast of the PTV from the newly inaugurated Mindanao Media Hub. The MMH is the first media hub of the PCOO outside Metro Manila. Costing an estimated PhP700 million, it delivers news and programs of interest to Regions 10 to 13 and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The PCOO proper will take the lead in managing and maintaining the facility. Much like the Mindanao Media Hub, VMH will also house other PCOO attached agencies such as the Philippine Broadcasting Service (PBS), Philippine Information Agency (PIA), Philippine News Agency (PNA), and Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM).
The construction project has an allotment of P300 million, while another P300 million was secured to procure state-of-the-art broadcast equipment and facilities. The project was included in the PCOO’s 2022 budget with the support of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go.
Officials who joined the event included Office of the Presidential Adviser to the Visayas (OPAV) Undersecretary Jonjie Gonzales, PCOO Undersecretary Kris Ablan, PIA Director General Ramon Cualoping III, PBS Director General Giovanni Aportadera, PTV General Manager Kat de Castro, News and Information Bureau Director Virginia Agtay, RTVM Executive Director Assistant Secretary Dennis Wilfred Pabalan and local government officials headed by Mayor Jonas Cortez.
The VMH is anticipated to finish construction and begin operations in late 2022. The government allotted PhP300 million sourced from the General Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2022, with the support and initiative of Senator Go. Another PhP300 million was appropriated for the acquisition of state-of-the-art broadcast equipment and facilities.
The hub will include a four-story building with a broadcast complex, television studios, radio booths, an automated master control system, a transmitter and satellite uplink system, TV broadcast information technology system, news graphics system and digital transmitters.