On 15 June 2012, Alex Ordona has tendered his resignation, effective immediately, as Public Relations Officer of the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria Inc. (PFVI). In his email to PFVI Chairperson Ross Manuel, Ordona writes, “It was a very difficult decision but after much deliberation, I got to a point where I do not think that I can perform the job as well.” He said the Philippine Fiesta should really be moving forward under the PFVI Executive Committee leadership. Recently, the PFVI is facing requests from old-time members to explain some of its major decision such as selling of the Laverton land. It could not even seriously plan for the 30th anniversary celebration this November.
Weakness in leadership
Ordona told The Philippine Times that he could no longer continue being an officer of Philippine Fiesta. Even if he continues, he admits it would be hard to improve his performance. “I do believe that PFVI is facing a crisis of confidence, trust and credibility due to weakness in leadership and lack of transparency in our governance that presided over seven years. As such, I am no longer comfortable with the current leadership,” he explained.
Ordona said the only resigned as PRO of the Executive Committee but will still continue to serve in the Fiesta Committee as Director responsible for souvenir program, advertising and sponsorships. “It is because, being in the capacity of PRO, I am technically under the directives of the Executive Management to disseminate board decisions and views to the community,” he noted.
Ordona’s issue on transparency about PFVI’s leadership comes at a time when the Concerned Members of Philippine Fiesta of Victoria Inc. (CMPFV) has expressed disappointment when the Fiesta Committee failed to consult the members on the sale of Lot 1 of the Laverton property.
In what seems to be another issue of transparency, Ordona’s resignation was not even mentioned during the Special meeting with the CMPFV last 17 June 2012. His resignation happened two days before the meeting.
Change of leadership
Ordona believes one does not have to be smart to be a leader. “Leadership is all about playing a leading role in addressing all the issues as they occur, listening to advice and admitting mistakes,” he said. But foremost quality of a leader, he noted, is one’s ability to give other Directors a chance to aspire for the top job.
In the last PFVI Management Committee election, Ordona recalls expressing his personal opinion to elect a new leader “to gain the respect of the Filipino community and for the best interest of PFVI as a change in leadership is now well and truly long overdue.” In the end, the same Chairperson was re-elected. Ordona is endorsing the Vice Chairperson Liz Honey to be the next Chairperson of PFVI. “With her unwavering dedication to serve the community, she could have been the perfect person to lead us through this turbulent, problematic and challenging times. She has fresh ideas and approach to leading and managing us effectively,” he added.
Time to step down
Ordona said Manuel should put the interest of the PFVI first above personal interest. He explains, “Due to mounting pressures from divergent groups, the responsible approach is for the current Chairperson to gracefully step down. He has proven himself already and seven years is more than enough. Giving others a fair go will remove the time wasting barriers, neutralize if not solve most of the issues at hand and also harmonize our relationship within the community.” The Community, he noted is the reason why the PFVI is in existence anyway. When one does not stick to his role for so long there is much confidence in looking forward “instead of spending most of our time looking at our rear view mirrors due to accumulation of past issues.”
Supportive membership needed now
His message to the Concerned Group is to maintain cooperative discussion and to negotiate an amicable resolution of all the issues. He adds, “I hate the word ‘loss’ but with this continued negative publicity the credibility of the PFVI within the community will suffer.”
In parting, Ordona said a supportive membership is what the Philippine Fiesta needs at the moment. While giving up his post, Ordona will still support the Philippine Fiesta, “I am still very passionate about contributing to deliver fiesta events at its best,” he said.
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