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EDITORIAL: Misleading

In a recent post, DILG Region V featured pictures accompanied by the congratulatory message and recognizing Albay as the 1st “Best Performing Province”, Sorsogon as the 2nd “Best Performing Province” and Camarines Norte as the 3rd “Best Performing Province”.

The congratulatory message further said that the DILG Region 5 awarded the “Best Performing City and Municipality Local Government Operations Officers (C/MLGOOs) and Best Performing Provincial Office” during the 2021 New Year’s Call and Planning cum Wellness Session and Awarding of 2020 Outstanding DILG Provincial Office and Personnel on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 at the DILG Regional Office 5 Training Hall through an online teleconference.

They better reveal the yardsticks that have been applied in arriving at such announcement. There is so much need to make things clearer. Frankly, the announcement is misleading, particularly in the pronouncement that Albay, Sorsogon and Camarines Norte are the first, second and third “Best Performing Provinces”, respectively.

In what sense are they best performers? This query needs a categorical explanation. Otherwise it creates an impression that the aforementioned provinces out performed the three remaining ones.

In fact, the first impression created is that Albay Governor Francis Bichara has been credited for his mature leadership. On the other hand, Sorsogon’s Francis Escudero has been recognized for his expertise on local governance. What bothers us is how come that Camarines Norte outranked Camarines Sur considering that the latter is the region’s premiere province in terms of revenue, population and area.

Does it mean that the way LGU Camarines Sur is being governed is mediocre to the first, second and third “Best Performing Provinces”?

This is being asked in the light of the observation that the award recognizing the provinces as “Best Performing” cannot be considered separate and distinct from whatever honors awarded to whoever the Local Government Operations Officers may be, unless DILG personnel wish to assess their performance completely in disregard of the LGUs where they are assigned.

This is so because how could DILG claim success in governance independent of the LGUs.

The way the information posted by DILG Bicol seems to convey a message that they have nothing to do with the LGUs. Conversely it also implies that the LGUs have nothing to do with DILG. This is a shocking revelation that certain government agencies operate without any regard to the consequences on the people they are supposed to serve.

Before the situation becomes more muddled, they better publish the standards observed in granting the awards. Otherwise, it could lead to an impression that some DILG personnel are simply engaged in an internal mutual admiration club, to the exclusion of local government officials.


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