Cotabato, Lamitan cities bag coveted SGLG award from DILG

GOVERNANCE/POLITICS • Thu Nov 9, 2017 01:22 PM  •  95   0
By John Unson
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COTABATO CITY --- Two key cities in the south now bouncing back from conflicts and calamities both bagged the national government’s Seal of Good Local Governance.

Cotabato City in central Mindanao and Lamitan City, the capital of Basilan, both won the 2017 SGLG, according to an advisory from the central office of the Department of Interior and Local Government.

Lamitan City first received the SGLG last year while Cotabato City also got a "good housekeeping" citation from the DILG early on.

Basilan is an island province in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, where 19 other towns also got the SGLG for 2017, which is for regional officials a pioneering feat for ARMM.

“We are glad we have towns and a city that are holders now of the SGLG,” ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman said on Thursday.

The ARMM, which has a regional charter, the Republic Act 9054, has five provinces covering a total of 116 towns.

Halima Satol-Ibrahim of the Cotabato City information office said on Thursday that they are certain the city’s having been awarded with the 2017 SGLG will boost the confidence of investors and international aid entities engaged in domestic pro-poor projects.

Lamitan City Mayor Rose Furigay, now in her second term as city chief executive, said she is thankful to her constituent-elected officials and the people in their 45 barangays for helping govern the local communities efficiently, the basis for the SGLG citations.

The DILG national office grants the SGLG to local government units with remarkable accomplishments in governance and with exemplary programs benefiting constituent-communities regardless of tribal identities and religions.

The cities of Cotabato and Lamitan have barely taken off from the adverse effects of armed conflicts and calamities in recent years.

Cotabato City’s economy was badly affected by the hostilities between state security forces and Moro separatists that repeatedly rocked the provinces of Maguindanao and North Cotabato and nearby towns in Lanao del Sur in 2000 until 2009.

Lamitan City, originally a fourth class town that became a chartered city 16 years ago, was devastated by security problems as a consequence of the Moro secessionist uprising since the 1970s and the recurring atrocities perpetrated by the Abu Sayyaf.

Lamitan City is also among top 20 finalists in this year’s Galing Pook Award from the Galing Pook Foundation.

The foundation, a partner of different government agencies and cause-oriented groups, grants the award to LGUs that have innovative programs promoting peace in the local communities and socio-economic empowerment of marginalized sectors.

Cotabato City Mayor Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi said on Thursday that credit for the city’s having been won the 2017 SGLG has to go primarily to the local Muslim, Christian and Lumad sectors.

“Good governance relies so much on cooperation of constituents. Without their support, no LGU can even achieve its governance objectives,” Guiani-Sayadi said.

The DILG central office announced this year’s SGLG awardees via an official communiqué that media outfits in the ARMM and central Mindanao received on Thursday. 
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