DOT says "Pilipinas Kay Ganda" slogan may be replaced, suggestions welcome

Following a backlash from local tourism representatives, netizens, and senators, the Department of Tourism said the new "Pilipinas Kay Ganda" slogan may be replaced anytime. In an ABS-CBNNews.com report, DOT said the slogan is only a concept.

"We are open to suggestions," DOT Secretary Alberto Lim said. "We are waiting for a better idea that can capture the essence of what makes the Philippines a good and attractive tourist destination." Lim said he expected the slogan to be criticized  after it was presented during its supposed soft launch on November 15. The final slogan is subject to consultations including focus group discussions according to the secretary.

Citing Lim, ABS-CBNNews.com reports that the DOT replaced the former slogan "WOW Philippines" because "it reportedly lost momentum after (not being) used extensively by the Arroyo administration." Alongside the new Aquino administration, Lim said it is "important to create a new buzz."

Artist-activist Carlos Celdran did not take to the slogan using Filipino language, which foreigners would not understand. Lim thinks otherwise: "(Foreigners) will be interested because of the foreign-sounding (phrase), ’what are they trying to tell me?’" However, he admitted that "(Using Filipino language) is risky but I’d rather take the risk if we want to get ahead. We need an edge (because our tourism budget is small) compared to other countries like Thailand and Malaysia."

TV Patrol World report

Meanwhile, a couple of Senators clearly expressed their disapproval of the new slogan, reported TV Patrol World.  Miriam Defensor-Santiago said, "Let’s get some neurons in our brains working. The neurons are not working. ’Pilipinas Kay Ganda’ is just, I think, ignorant, and ignorance is boring." Miguel Zubiri said, "If you ask me, I think somebody was drinking on the job. I don’t think they thought this out very well." Some unnamed congressmen said the local tourism campaign would be more effective with boxing champ Manny Pacquiao as the endorser.

For more on this story, log on to ABS-CBNNews.com.

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