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Civil society organizations pledge active participation in 2012 regional budget preparations

By Philippine Information Agency (PIA 8)
January 23, 2011

TACLOBAN CITY  Ė  In line with the Aquino Administrationís thrust for a more transparent governance, the civil society groups in Eastern Visayas actively participated in the 2012 Regional Budget Forum held on January 13-14, 2011, spearheaded by the Department of Budget and Management Region 8.

DBM Region 8 Director Imelda Laceras noted with great satisfaction, the participation of the civil society organizations that expressed their interest and support to the programs and projects of the present government.

Among the issues that cropped up during the forum was the issue as to the number and name of civil society organizations to be consulted for the ongoing programs and projects of six piloted Departments namely, the Department of Agriculture, Department of Agrarian Reform, Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of Education, and Department of Health.

Director Laceras moved to park the issue pending the receipt of the detailed guidelines in the conduct of civil society consultations. She gave the assurance that updates on the same shall be disseminated the soonest time possible.

Director Imelda Laceras informed that this is the first time that the agency will tap the participation of civil society organizations (CSOs) and other stakeholders in the budget preparation process for key government agencies.

ďThis is the first time that the participatory budget approach is being implemented,Ē Director Laceras said adding that this is being done to promote wider ownership for and monitoring of the governmentís key public services.

The forum tackled the recently issued National Budget Memorandum No. 107 dated December 30, 2010 which is the National Budget Call for 2012.

The budget preparation for next year aims to strengthen the linkage between development planning and budgeting and increase the likelihood of accomplishing development goals by considering resource availability in the formulation of the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) and the Medium Term Public Investment Program (MTPIP) for 2011-2016.

The memorandum stated that the 2012 budget will focus on fighting corruption and promoting transparency, accountability and good governance; poverty reduction; ensuring sustained and inclusive economic growth; building a motivated, professional, energized bureaucracy; and encouraging integrated and safe communities and the sustainable use of resources for future generations.