by Malou Mangahas
THE NATIONAL Anti-Poverty Commission or NAPC was created by Republic Act No. 8425 or the “Social Reform and Poverty Alleviation Act” that came into force on June 30, 1998, the day the first supposedly “pro-poor” president, Joseph ‘Erap’ Estrada, came to power.
The law was a legacy of his predecessor, Fidel V. Ramos, who took a fancy for periodic meetings with representatives of the basic sectors and organizations of the poor.
What was conceived to be a “coordinating and advisory” agency for the poor, however, has since then been visited by politics, political appointees, and incessant infighting between and among representatives of the poor, and the NAPC secretariat personnel.