Bukidnon citizens’ top expected governance indicators: “Integrity, rule of law, transparency”

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MALAYBALAY CITY (BukidnonNews.Net) The top expected indicators of good governance in Bukidnon are integrity, respect for rule of law, and transparency, based on an analysis of citizens’ responses during focused group discussions held in March to April 2022.

Representatives from 40 organizations from at least 20 sectoral groups in Malaybalay and Valencia cities responded to the question “what for you are the traits/indicators of good governance?” as part of the BukidnonNews.Net-led “Aspirations for Good Governance” component of Piniyalan Reporting Governance Community Project 2022.

Based on the tabulation and analysis done by project volunteers led by Mr. Ryan Chris Handugan, a faculty member of the Government Affairs Department of Bukidnon State University’s College of Administration, the indicator that obtained the highest frequency is “ethics and probity”.  

This means that people from different sectors require a high degree of integrity, honesty, and good ethics in governance.

The team compared the responses to indicators of good governance espoused by the Local Government Code of 1991, the National Economic Development Authority, the United Nations Development Programme (1997), Asian Development Bank (2004), among other sources.

The second highest indicator is respect for rule of law, which means the respondents demand to respect and follow the laws, promote human rights and basic rights of a person. According to the Asian Development Bank in 2005 publication, the rule of law encompasses well-defined rights and duties, as well as mechanisms for enforcing them, and settling disputes in an impartial manner. Based on the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016, adherence to the rule of law is a cornerstone of good governance.

Transparent came in third among the most frequent among the indicators based on FGD participants responses. This means that the participants from different sectors want a free flow of information.

Based on the analysis, this requires processes, institutions and information are directly accessible to those concerned with them, and enough information is provided to understand and monitor them.

Next among indicators came equity and inclusiveness.

Examples of responses under this indicator include “fairness”, “puts common good above all”, “who cares about people”, and “promotes programs and projects for the vulnerable sectors”.

As defined by UNDP that equity and inclusiveness hinges society’s well-being - all its members feel that they have a stake in it and do not feel excluded from the mainstream of society.

The next highest indicators are “participation” and “efficient”. This also means that the people from different sectors want people’s participation, consultative, people oriented, and efficient in implementing policies, programs and projects.  The concept of efficiency in the context of good governance also covers the sustainable use of natural resources and the protection of the environment.

The eighth and ninth highest indicators are “service-oriented and responsive” and “performance oriented”.

The other indicators that fared on top of participants responses were “leadership and stewardship” and “direction”. Examples of specific responses under this indicator were “must be a proper platform of governance”, “leads by example”, “having strong political will”, “promotes progress and development”, and “has foresight”.

Next among the indicators cited by respondents were “effectiveness” and “accountable”.

The respondents from different sectors desired that government must be effective in implementing policies, programs and projects.

“Effectiveness means that processes and institutions produce results that meet the needs of society,” Handugan said, quoting the UNDP.

The Local Government Code of 1991, he added, wanted to ensure that LGUs become effective with their expanded fiscal powers and resources. Based on the analysis, the FGD respondents expected their government to be accountable or be answerable at all times for the consequences of decisions and actions they have made on behalf of the citizens.

The question on indicators of good governance is among those asked during the FGDs and consultations held in the run up to the 2022 national and local elections. Organizers also asked what issues and problems did the citizens want to throw at the candidates for the elections and eventually the new officials and their suggested actions in the local, provincial, and national levels of government.

They also asked about the key election problems (see related story) they thought would confront voters in the 2022 polls. (BukidnonNews.Net)

This story was published with support from Internews Philippines.



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