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National Commission for Culture and the Arts

The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) was born in 1992 with the Presidential Commission on Culture and Arts as its predecessor-in-interest. It is an independent government body tasked to be the overall coordinating and national policy-making body for all culture and artistic endeavors of the country. It was first created by a presidential directive, Executive Order 118 penned by President Aquino in 1987 which created the Presidential Commission on Culture and Arts and was later institutionalized by a legislative act, Republic Act 7356 in 1992. The Bill was authored jointly by Senators Edgardo Angara, Heherson Alvarez, Leticia Ramos-Shahani and Congressman Carlos Padilla.

The Commission is governed by a Board of Commissioners composed of fifteen members, namely:

  1. Undersecretary of the Department of Education, Culture and Sports
  2. Undersecretary of the Department of Tourism
  3. Chairman of the House Committee on Culture
  4. Chairman of the Senate Committee on Culture
  5. President of the Cultural Center of the Philippines
  6. Director of the National Historical Institute
  7. Director of the National Museum
  8. Director of the National Library
  9. Director of the Commission on the Filipino Language
  10. Director of the Records Management and Archives Office
  11. Executive Director of the Commission
  12. The head of the Subcommission on Cultural Communities and Traditional Arts
  13. The head of the Subcommission on Cultural Heritage
  14. The head of the Subcommission on the Arts
  15. The head of the Subcommission on Cultural Dissemination

The presence of the different government cultural agencies and the non-government cultural and artistic institutions facilitates the coordinating function of the Commission. The Commission acts as a clearinghouse to check on duplications and overlapping of functions, programs and projects of the different cultural agencies concerned.

Inherent to the NCCA organization is people empowerment dictated to it by the law which guarantees the participation of artists and cultural workers in its membership from all sectors. The private sector participation brings in expertise valuable to the Commission.

Twenty-two national communities are grouped under four Subcommissions which act as the lifeblood of the NCCA structure. Believing in participative decision-making, plans, programs and projects emanate from the Commission's members who come from both the public and private sectors. These projects and programs are implemented by the national committees or its constituents after recommendation by the Subcommissions and approval by the Board of Commissioners.

The Heads of the 22 national committees are elected from the grassroots level either on an individual capacity or as organizations. The Heads of the Subcommissions are elected by and from among the national committee heads. At the Board level, the Commission Chairman is elected from among the Board members. A democratic process of electing the leadership in the Commission is strictly observed, sparing the Commission from any political pressure.

Generally, every Subcommission works to advocate and formulate policies essential to their fields, plan and implement projects, represent and address the needs of their respective sectors.

The Subcommissions are also assigned specific functions to realize their goals in their respective art fields.

Philippine Official Gazette | Office of the President | Presidential Communications Operations Office
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