Friday, September 16, 2011

Laying the Foundation for Good Governance and Development

Congressman Allan Velasco addressing the barangay officials during the mass graduation.

First things first

Twenty years ago, the Local Government Code of the Philippines was passed to serve as a mechanism that laid the groundwork for empowering local governments, especially barangays. It has been used by political leaders to transform their backward LGUs into dynamic and empowered local communities. The Code is said to have radically transformed the very nature of the country’s political system.

Mayor Percival Morales (Sta. Cruz), Cong. Allan Velasco, Vice-Gov. Antonio Uy, Vice-Mayor Ishmael Lim (Sta. Cruz)

However, many local governments including this island-province, the region's poorest, continue to stay behind the line of success and progress, because there is still, largely a lack of understanding on the roles and functions of local leaders particularly in the barangay level, more so with the earlier election of new barangay officials.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) response to this is the holding of an orientation seminar titled, Laying the Foundation for Good Governance and Development.

This meant imparting the basics of barangay governance, foundation on local legislation, development planning, barangay finance and budgeting, and community mobilization that in the end are expected to strengthen barangay partnerships with other local government units, national agencies and civil society orgs for efficient and effective barangay governance system in the countryside.

Mayor Roberto Madla (Boac) with DILG Provincial Director, Ma. Victoria J. Del Rosario at the orientation seminar in Boac

These seminars were first conducted by DILG Mimaropa Regional IVB in Baguio City for Marinduque’s punong barangays and Sangguniang Kabataan leaders participated in by 150 out of Marinduque’s 218 barangays.

The DILG Marinduque office under the guidance of Provincial Director Ma. Victoria J. Del Rosario, then organized similar seminars the past few months for newly elected barangay officials in the six municipalities. They are aimed to facilitate improvements in the ways barangays are run, and the formulation by said barangays of their own development agenda.

Random photos of the Barangay Newly Elected Officials Orientation Seminars in Marinduque's six municipalities of Boac, Buenavista, Gasan, Mogpog, Sta. Cruz and Torrijos

Sen. Aquilino Pimentel is the acknowledged Father of Local Autonomy and principal author of the Code. He was quoted to have said recently with the launching of a book, “The Local Government Code Revisited 2007”, thus:

“In sum, through the integration of local autonomy in our legal and political system, the passage of the Code may be likened to the splitting of the atom - in that it unleashes the forces of development with such tremendous impact that not only the privileged, but the masses as well, may benefit from the fruits of modernization in this lifetime.”