CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY — In commemoration of the enactment of the Local Government Code of 1991, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) – 10, through the Local Governance Regional Resource Center (LGRRC), featured the successful implementation of local programs and projects in Northern Mindanao that highlight excellence in local governance during the conduct of the Festival of Local EXcellence (FLEX) Fora.


Served as the localized versions of the Philippine Local Governance Forum (PLGF), two (2) forums namely; “FLEX Intensified: Fostering Local Development Through Knowledge Sharing” and “Take-Talk: The Vitality of Youth in Local Governance” were conducted on October 18 and 20, respectively, delving into virtual information exchange on replicable local practices.


LGU exemplars in NorMin


The first forum, “FLEX Intensified: Fostering Local Development Through Knowledge Sharing” invited resource speakers who excelled in the implementation of their various PPAs that greatly contributed to nation-building. 


DILG 10 Special Assistant to the Regional Edward G. Bhagwani, MNSA, JD, CESO V, explained that the forum represents a significant step in promoting knowledge exchange and fostering innovation which showcased inspiring local projects and initiatives in the region.


Cagayan de Oro Mayor Rolando Uy, represented by City Planning and Development Coordinator Ramir M. Balquin, highlighted that excellence in governance is possible if all projects, programs, and activities are timely, appropriate, and responsive to the needs of the people. Hence, the accuracy of baseline data in the planning and designing of PPAs was highlighted in the presentation.


Meanwhile, El Salvador City Mayor Edgar S. Lignes, shared his leading-edge practices and strategies on Local Leadership for Sustainable Development, which focused on people’s involvement in the decision-making and implementation of the City’s ESALIG platform. He further emphasized that a locality must effectively and efficiently plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate PPAs for a more impactful outcome.


Youth governance in action


The second round of the FLEX intensified forum, themed “Take-Talk: Vitality of Youth in Local Governance”, focused on the vital roles of the youth and their contributions to local governance.


DILG 10 Assistant Regional Director Yvette Tolentino-Sunga urged the participants to take the necessary points that they could get from the activity as it will help the youth sector get additional learnings in translating their plans into action.


“Today’s forum will surely provide us with additional knowledge and information to all young individuals […] this (forum) will be some sort of enlightenment for everyone on the importance of really involving the youth in gearing towards excellence in local governance,” she expressed.


LGU Kapatagan Incumbent Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Federation President Marian Jule C. Cedeño served as the resource speaker on Sustainability through Good Practice in the SK, where she highlighted the various programs and activities that transpired during her term. Cedeño also mentioned that through the conduct of trainings and workshops, youth representation in the government is possible.


On the other hand, Commission on Election (COMELEC) – 11 Regional Election Attorney Fatima Irene T. Adin briefly discussed the SK Reform Act of 2015, highlighting the qualifications, powers and functions, and budget, in time for the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE)


The regional fora are part of the series of activities lined-up this month in celebration of Local Government Month. As the country continues to celebrate the Local Government Month, the FLEX stands as a testament to the dedication and innovation of knowledge sharing, reinforcing the foundation of excellence in governance for today and the coming years. (DILG ORD / M. Bacud)