Institutionalization of barangay awards for performance pushed

Opinion Sideglance

To further complement efforts by the city government to reward barangays determined to have achieved excellent performance in local governance City Councilor Elaine Sembrano filed a proposed ordinance that would institutionalize, or make it a regular and annual program of the city, the search for the best performing barangays in the City of Baguio.

The proposed measure which shall also be known as the “Barangay Awards Ordinance” will make it a policy of the City of Baguio to give due recognition to the barangays that demonstrate excellence in local governance, upholding the standards of transparency, integrity and prompt service delivery.

In coming up with the said institutionalization Councilor Sembrano pointed out in her proposal that in July of 2017 the Special Services Division of the Office of the City Mayor proposed a Search for the Best Performing Barangays (as mother of all searches on Barangay Based Programs) with an allocation of One Million Three Hundred Eighty Four Thousand Two Hundred Pesos. She likewise explained in her proposed ordinance that the barangay, being the smallest political and administrative division of the Philippine Government, and despite having limited personnel and resources, are the media thru which government policies, programs and projects are downloaded for the general constituency.

This she added is clearly evident in Republic Act 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991 which under Section 384 provides that, “As the basic political unit, the barangay serves as the primary planning and implementing unit of government policies, plans, programs, projects, and activities in the community, and as a forum wherein the collective views of the people may be expressed, crystallized and considered, and where disputes may be amicably settled”. As such the barangay’s mandated role has been clearly spelled out in the law and which necessarily includes the following, Health and social welfare services including maintenance of barangay health center and day-care center; Services and Facilities related to the general hygiene and sanitation, beautification, and solid waste connection, maintenance of katarungang pambarangay, maintenance of barangay roads and bridges and water supply systems, infrastructure facilities such as multi-purpose hall, multipurpose pavement, place, sports center and other similar facilities, information and reading center and satellite or public market where viable. Thus she observed “that with such a monumental task and the restrictive resources and capability it is fundamental for the Barangays to seek out the participation of competent resident to help in the implementation of certain community development programs, projects and activities within the community on volunteer status.

For purposes of the said proposed Ordinance a City Barangay Awards Committee shall be created to assess the performance of the 128 barangays in the city and composed of the City Mayor as Chairperson, the DILG Baguio City Field Officer as Co-Chairperson, the Special Services Division of the Office of the City Mayor as Secretariat and the following members: representatives from the City Planning and Development Office, City Accounting Office, President of the LIGA ng mga Barangay, Baguio City Police Office, DBM-CAR, DepEd-CAR, DOH-CAR, DSWD-CAR, DENR-CAR, DOLE-CAR, DTI-CAR, DOT-CAR, the Baguio-Benguet Chamber of Commerce, the Academe and Non-Government Organization.