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I Vote Good Advocacy – A First in the Region

I Matter, My vote Matters.

This was the slogan during the I Vote Good advocacy launching ceremony held on September 8, 2015 at the Tacurong Cultural and Sports Center. Almost a thousand participants joined in the launching composed of stakeholders from the Ugnayan ng Barangay at Simbahan (UBAS), Tacurong-LGU, inter-faith churches, public and private schools, local businesses, NGOs, NGAs, and barangay officials.

A first in the region, the I Vote Good advocacy aims to inculcate in the minds of the voters the values during elections by renouncing vote buying and selling, patronage politics, political dynasties, and celebrity politics in order to curb corruption and its variations so as to install candidates with proper qualifications into office.

To educate the voters, the advocacy holds orientations at the local chapels and teaches the LASER test, a grading sheet which aims to encourage voters to observe and reflect on the important characteristics of an electoral candidate. The LASER test stands for Lifestyle, Actions/Accomplishments, Supporters, Election Conduct, and Reputation.

“The I Vote Good Campaign is a different kind of LASER. It cuts through destructions of propaganda, political advertisements, gossip and popularity by focusing on the most critical issues in the candidates’ journey towards integrity”, Rev. Fr. Salvador Robles said.

Together with the participants, the launching started with a holy mass at Nuestra Señora dela Candelaria Parish, which was followed by a parade that headed to the Tacurong Cultural and Sports Center for the program proper.

The advocacy was spearheaded by Rev. Fr. Salvador Robles, DCC, parish priest of Nuestra Señora dela Candelaria and Mr. Alberto Sero, City Local Government Operations Officer. Special guests were Engr. Ester P. Valdez of DILG – Region XII, Dindo L. Epino of COMELEC, Rev. Fr. Clifford Baira and Rev. Fr. Procalla, DCC of Archdiocese of Cotabato. (Yen Robles, LGU Tacurong)

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DILG 12 holds UBAS orientation for Tacurong’s BATs

In a bid to step up the mainstreaming efforts of Ugnayan ng Barangay at Simbahan (UBAS), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) 12 conducted an orientation workshop to the members of the Barangay Action Teams (BATs) of Tacurong City on July 2, 2015.

Held at the Formation Center of Nuestra Señora dela Candelaria Parish, the orientation gathered more than 80 members of BATs from the twenty barangays composed of Barangay chairpersons, chapel leaders and representatives of barangay-based civil society organizations.

The creation of BATs in the city, notably the first in the region, is mandated by Executive Orders issued by the Punong Barangays. It was also an offshoot of the commitment of the Liga ng mga Barangay together with the DILG, Archdiocese of Cotabato and the Inter-Faith Group of Tacurong during the UBAS launching in February.

UBAS is a partnership of barangays, faith-based organization and the DILG which encourages citizens’ active participation in governance, thus institutionalizing transparency and accountability the local government.

Meanwhile, BATs are specifically tasked to monitor the proper implementation of the projects under Bottom Up Budgeting (BUB) and other engagements in the barangay, to achieve the goal of curbing corruption and promoting good governance.

DILG 12 UBAS Focal Person Jermie Erie-Yeager provided the participants with inputs on the BUB process and engagement of UBAS in BUB projects monitoring. BAT members were also taught on how to fill out BUB Monitoring Forms. DILG City Director Alberto Sero, Jr. also talked on the role of the barangays in promoting good governance.

The workshop included the drafting of action plan by each BAT that includes the schedule of ocular inspection of BUB-funded projects in the barangays as well as the conduct of interview to project beneficiaries among others.

Local Government Monitoring and Evaluation Division Chief Ester Valdez, who represented DILG Regional Director Reynaldo Bungubung during the event, commended the attentiveness and dynamism of the participants in the whole-day activity.

“Ang inyong presensya ay pahiwatig sa pagtugon na maging katuwang kayo ng kasalukuyang gobyerno sa pagpapatupad at pagpapatuloy ng tuwid na daan”, Valdez said as she relayed the message of the the DILG Director.

Mayor Lina Montilla also urged the BAT members to be committed in their tasks saying that the effective monitoring is a key ingredient in the proper implementation of government projects.

The whole-day orientation wrapped up with the talk of Father Zaldy Robles on “I Vote for Good Advocacy” which gives the citizens of the community a guide on what to look for a leader who possesses the qualities of an honest and efficient public servant. (ASFreno/LGU Tacurong City Information)

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