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UNYPAD, Relief InternationaI organize “Lakbay-Aral” for BLGUs, CSOs & community members from Maguindanao

By Melia S. Ukom

COTABATO CITY, BARMM (December 29, 2020) — The United Youth for Peace and Development (UNYPAD) and Relief International organized “Lakbay Aral (study tour)” under the Stabilization and Socio-Economic Development in the BARMM (SSD-BARMM) Project for the select Barangay Local Government Units, Civil Society Organizations and community members from Maguindanao on December 22 to 24, 2020.

The horizontal visits was successfully conducted in Barangay Rempes of North Upi (1st place LTIA awardee) and Brgy. Tumbras of Midsayap (3rd place LTIA awardee) and in Elai Resort, Hotel and Recreation Center in Kidapawan City for vertical visit.

Ten selected barangays in the municipalities of Buldon, Datu Piang, Datu Montawal and Pagalungan joined the activity.

There were 100 participants composed of the selected BLGU Officials, community members and active CSOs representatives from Barangays of Calaan, Mataya, Liong, Magaslong, Bulit, Pagagawan, Talitay, Bago-Inged, Kudal and Inug-ug, all in the province of Maguindanao.

SSDBARMM Project is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office (GFFO) and implemented by Relief International (RI) in partnership with UNYPAD.

Rudy Lumapinet, Project Coordinator, said that the objective of the activity is to improve horizontal and vertical linkages between state and CSO structures for mutual learning and increased stabilization.

“This is to increase the ratings of the barangay government unit from not fully functional to fully functional by next year, In shaa Allah,” Lumapinet said.

The participants were inspired by the two outstanding barangays awardee of LTIA and learned different strategies and techniques in implementing good governance.

According to Ariel Layson, president of the Association of Barangay Chairmen (ABC), and chairman of Barangay Rempes, “Our Barangay Based Institutions (BBIs) are all functional. We have monthly meeting for all of the BBI members and we called it One Stop Shop Meeting.”

“Here every one can raise their issues and concerns and we help each other to settle those issues and concerns and even by other institutions,” he explained.

Layson further mentioned that, “Proper utilization of IRA (Internal Revenue Allotmen) and budgeting is the key for good, transparent and effective governance. Our barangay took 9 years in the making before getting this LTIA award.

Relief International supported the activity and sent their Project Officer, Mohajer Abdulaziz to convey a message of support.

He pleaded the group to work hard citing, “Sana wag po tayong mapagod sa pagtulong sa ating goberno (I hope we will not get tired of helping our government) in pursuit to Moral Governance.

The third day of the activity was graced by the Sanggunian Bayan Secretary of Pagalungan, Engr. Abubakar Amino.

In his message, he linked the moral governance into the hierarchy of change which are Evolution, Revolution and Transformation.
He further explained that ‘Evolution’ is the slow progress of change while revolution is the gradual change being taken and transformation is the urgent one.

“Ideal change in order to achieve moral governance is revolution, we cannot change the status of the region overnight but we need to consider every aspect in good governance,” Amino said.

He added, “If you walk faster, you will depart on your destination tomorrow, if you walk slowly you’ll depart at noon.”

The Municipal Local Government Operation Officer of Datu Montawal and Pagalungan, Engr. Rohaina Sapal-Lumangka said, “Let us strengthen the BBIs, like BDRRMC (Barangay Disasters Risks Reduction and Management Council), VAWC (Violence Against Women and their Children), BPOC (Barangay Peace and Order Council), BADAC (Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council) and other barangay-based institutions because our barangay or your barangays are the foundation of good governance.”