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Saturday, August 09, 2008

The Road to the IPCAP SEC Registration

I am blogging here my experience in getting the IPCAP Registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It really took a long time, and I even suspected that there were efforts to keep it from being legitimized as an organization for the Guidance and Counseling profession. Just imagine, we had gone through almost everything: constant meetings and discussions, elections of the interim Board or Officers last June 28, 2007, construction of the IPCAP Constitution, writing the PRBGC regarding certain problems with the interpretation of the Republic Act 9258. Nakaalis na lang ako papuntang America, na-hack ang aking gmail account at naibalik din ito noong Dec. 24, midnight in 2007 doon (remember my email carrying the news that I was in Nigeria?), nakabalik na lang ako, natapos ang school year 2007-2008, nakalipat sa kasalukuyan kong tinitirhan and yet the promised SEC Registration had not materialized yet. Hence, in my conversation with Dr. Llanes, I admitted that if PGCA can make it as APO, not just as current interim APO, so be it. But if it can't, let it please not block IPCAP from doing that it was intended to be: an APO for the Guidance and Counseling Profession in the Philippines. Yes, I have great respect for such an old organization that has done all it could for the professionalization of Guidance and Counseling, but with its current moral, ethical and even criminal problems hounding them, let it thus focus all its energy to first resolve its concerns while leaving the profession to move ahead. And to think that most of those who started other counseling-related organizations as well as even Guidance centers in schools and private practice came from the womb of PGCA, all the more my filial nature wanted to let go of IPCAP. But again, the profession is much wider than an organization, its Board and membership. Hence, when Dr. Villar, current PGCA President called for an IPCAP meeting last June (she wanted a June 18 or 19, 2008 meeting at a place I can canvass), those who responded to my text message raised the question: What about the Vice-President Dr. Julian Montano, where is he? To cut the story short, no meeting took place, and we managed to send the IPCAP Papers to the SEC who sent an indorsement letter to the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).

The following is an account I reported during our July 16, 2008 IPCAP meeting at the RGS:

- “IPCAP Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws are now with the SEC and is for release next week hopefully by July 22, 2008; I paid P1,020.00 yesterday July 15, 2008. Only the person who has the actual Official Receipt is authorized to claim the certificate of registration. SEC Contact Numbers were given to me to follow up before claiming the papers.

- “Two matters stalled registration last July 14: (a) a letter by Sr. Leticia Allado, RGS about her name being erased and replaced by Dr. Lucy Bance (she signed it months earlier before I filed the papers with SEC); (b) a definite date in March was required. Since this is a matter for registration purposes, after consulting with some IPCAP Officers, I wrote March 15 and countersigned in the papers. Satisfaction of these two matters led to the application’s acceptance yesterday July 15, 2008 before lunch.

- “Here’s the road we took for the SEC Application for Registration:
(a) “June 13, 2008, a Friday – IPCAP Secretary Fr. Bernardo R. Collera, SVD, and Treasurer Cesar Cong went to the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) for the latter’s endorsement. At the Window, a certain Ms. Ofelia of Atty. Almelor’s office identified us as coming from PGCA for the accreditation. I clarified it immediately that we are coming for IPCAP. Michelle de Jesus of the PRC Records Section accepted our papers and affixed her signature in the second copy of Dr. Llanes’ letter and SEC Endorsement Letter. We were instructed to follow up the following week.

(b) “June 19, 2008, a Thursday – I called to follow up with PRC, and was told it was PRC week since 6/16.

(c) “Week of June 23, 2008, Monday to Friday – daily calls to PRC for follow up. I constantly informed Atty. Almelor about the status, and he graciously guaranteed to personally follow up the matter. Managed to talk with Ms. Jona of the PRC Secretary’s office who guaranteed to help follow up the papers. She told me on June 27, Friday afternoon before 5PM that the papers have been signed and forwarded to the Records Section. I felt secure.

(d) “June 30, 2008, a Monday – in my phone call to PRC, I was able to talk with a certain Ms. Shirley whom Atty. Almelor tasked to formulate the Endorsement letter to be signed by the PRC Secretary. She told me that a certain Ms. Jane did the task, but Ms. Jane had flown to Japan, and Ms. Shirly didn’t know where the papers were. I volunteered if allowed to help speed up the task. Atty. Almelor did the follow up, and I was made to call the Records Section. I started to inquire with the SEC, and Post Offices including the Mandaluyong branch that brings PRC papers to SEC. I gave them my contact numbers for immediate information if papers were received. Nothing clear by week’s end Friday July 4, 2008.

(e) “July 7, 2008, a Monday – in my follow up call with PRC, I was told that papers were mailed July 1. I daily checked with the Post Offices and SEC, and was told that PRC papers usually take 5 working days to reach SEC. I was required a Registered Mail Number. In my commutext (communication by text) with Ms. Michelle de Jesus last July 10, 2008 she said: “Gdam father,July 1 pho eh naimail n namin. Dpho cya regstrd.priorty pho cya.” I asked for the priority number, and she replied: “Father wla pho.Pero priority pho un.Dnla nung July 3.” Sensing inconsistency, I called up Michelle on July 11, 2008 a Friday. (I told her that I am starting to doubt but since we were on talking terms, I'd still believe her.) After calling the Mandaluyong Post Office and had determined that our papers were not in yet, I called up Atty. Almelor and asked for the PRC Secretary Rosero’s phone number, then informing him of my intention to let Sec. Rosero know about our situation. Atty. Almelor told me to stop my impulsivity, to which I retorted, saying that had I been impulsive, I should have heeded Dr. Llanes’ recommendation two weeks ago then to seek Dr. Nilo Rosas’ intervention. Atty. Almelor apologized, and I gave a deadline – July 15 is the latest date for us to submit the IPCAP papers for SEC registration. Before lunch, I managed to call the SEC and inquired about the chances for SEC to lose or misplace PRC papers. Lei of the SEC Central Receiving Station told me that the chances were nil since PRC papers were not that many, and she suggested two things which I immediately communicated with Atty. Almelor and the Records Section. After lunch, after ensuring that PRC was willing to fax the endorsement letter to SEC as well as furnishing me a xerox copy, I rushed by 2pm to PRC, only to find out that the endorsement letter of June 20, 2005 contained the name PGCA. Upon reading it, I went to the office of Atty. Almelor, who upon knowing this blew his top and had it immediately repaired. Shirly came into the picture, managed to have Secretary Rosero sign the new endorsement letter dated July 11, 2008. By 3:50PM, I called up SEC to inform them about the matter and my inability to come by 4PM, their cut off time in receiving applications. I was told that our papers had just arrived from the Post Office (strange!), and when I asked Lea, the Corporate and Partnership Registration Division (CPRD) Secretary to look into the endorsement letter, she too realized it was PGCA named in there while the papers inside were IPCAP’s. Atty. Almelor apologized with the SEC on this blunder and told Lea that I will hand carry the documents by Monday, July 14, 2008.

“Atty. Almelor was profusely apologetic to me about the discovered mistake. I felt vindicated for my persistence. He even talked with PRBGC Dr. Luz Guzman about the matter, hinting that someone was behind the name change in the June 20, 2008-dated endorsement letter.”

Whoever did try put his/her hand in the process, it was good try. I strongly believe that God's ways are simply marvelous. I still have the June 20, 2008 Indorsement Letter signed by Sec. Rosero, and shall be keeping it as a memento of the perils we faced. Thank God.