REGIONAL-NEWS

DILG-Antique pushes for establishment of CSO Desks, People’s Council in LGUs

September 30, 2021

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)-Antique has enjoined all local government units (LGUs) in the province to establish a Civil Society Organizations (CSO) Desk and to institutionalize a People's Council (PC), to further engage CSOs in local government processes.

DILG-Antique Provincial Director (PD) Cherryl P. Tacda said that a provincial roll-out on the establishment of CSO Desks and institutionalization of PCs in LGUs last September 22, 2021, via online platform. Antique is the first province in the region to conduct a Provincial Roll-out after the regional orientation.

“The CSOs' participation and involvement in the implementation of various government projects at the local level have been proven to help increase the responsiveness and efficiency of local governments in delivering services,” Tacda said.

The activity oriented local chief executives (LCE), designated CSO Desk Officers and DILG Field Officers on the establishment of CSO Desks and institutionalization of the PC in the LGUs, as stated in DILG Memorandum Circular (MC) 2021-054. It also highlighted the contribution of CSOs, especially in COVID-19-related response and recovery programs of the government, which is required as per DILG MC 2020-135.

Explaining the salient points of DILG MC 2021-054, Local Government Operations Officer (LGOO) V and DILG Regional Focal Person Angelica Quijano shed light on the processes and requirements in the establishment of CSO Desks and the creation of the PCs.

The CSO Desk Officer is designated by the LCE through an executive order, with the responsibility of documenting and addressing CSO-related concerns; assist CSOs in the accreditation process to the local special body and/ or participate in the programs of the LGUs; and, encourage the active participation of CSOs in decision-making and in all local governance processes.

On the other hand, all municipalities are encouraged to create and institutionalize a PC to expand the participation of CSOs in local governance. The PCs will be composed of CSOs that shall be accredited by the local Sanggunian upon submission of documentary requirements, including proof of existence for at least one year, proof of activities, and a list of membership and officers, among others.

In addition, LGOO II and DILG Antique Provincial CSO Focal Person Judy Mae Sajo presented the status of the CSO Mobilization of the Province of Antique in the COVID-19-related response and recovery programs of the government.

The CSOs in the province, in coordination with national government agencies and LGUs, have been conducting activities in the four areas of engagement highlighted in DILG MC 2020-135, which are to increase contact tracing capacity of LGUs; change in people’s behavior by following health protocols; resilient and healthy community; and, opportunity for livelihood and social enterprise.

Sajo noted that 18 out of the 37 accredited CSOs and private organizations in the whole province engaged in the implementation of COVID-19-related response and recovery are likewise active in conducting activities to help curb the effects of COVID-19.

PD Tacda extended her appreciation to all the CSO partners, CSO Desk Officers, DILG Field Officers and LCEs present during the activity, for actively contributing in government programs during the pandemic. She also said that she looks forward to further strengthening the partnership of CSOs and LGUs in the province.