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Zero casualties

EDITORIAL- The Philippine Star

The government is aiming for zero casualties as it maps out measures for disaster preparedness, according to the Department of the Interior and Local Government. It’s an ambitious goal for the DILG, but it’s good to aim for the ideal as the nation marks Disaster Preparedness Week.

Among the initiatives to be launched starting today, apart from regular flood drills, is a three-year program to remove informal dwellers along waterways, relocate them, and make sure they don’t return. The DILG counts 15,773 families squatting along six major waterways in Metro Manila. Apart from the Pasig River, the waterways include the Manggahan Floodway, where informal settlers were among the worst victims of torrential flooding at the height of Typhoon Ondoy in 2009.

According to a study released recently by the World Bank, natural disasters present a serious development challenge for East Asian and Pacific countries, with the poor often the most affected. Over 1.6 billion people have been affected by disasters in the Asia-Pacific since 2000, with the region accounting for 61 percent of global losses from disasters in the past 20 years and 40 percent of suffering from flooding in the past three decades.

The World Bank study pointed out that disaster risk has become a major issue in poverty alleviation, with natural disasters derailing long-term growth and diverting state resources from essential services and development projects. The study also noted that among the most vulnerable to disasters are rapidly growing cities in East Asia.

Economic losses from disasters have been increasing in recent years, with the figures 15 times higher in the 1990s than in the 1950s, according to the World Bank report. In 2011, the costliest on record, economic losses in the Asia-Pacific amounted to $259 billion in the first nine months alone, accounting for 80 percent of the global total. The most affected were Pacific island nations.

The Philippines, which also faces the Pacific, is no stranger to disasters, with scores of lives lost and billions in crops and property destroyed annually from typhoons, floods and earthquakes. The nation cannot afford not to give high priority to disaster preparedness.

Rule XIII, Art. 62, Art. 63, Art. 64, RULES AND REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE OF 1991

RULE XIII

Local Government Relations With People’s Organizations, Non governmental Organizations, and the Private Sector

ARTICLE 62. Role of People’s Organizations, Nongovernmental Organizations and the Private Sector. — LGUs shall promote the establishment and operation of people’s organizations, NGOs, and the private sector, to make them active partners in the pursuit of local autonomy. For this purpose, people’s organizations, NGOs, and the private sector shall be directly involved in the following plans, programs, projects, or activities of LGUs:

(a) Local special bodies;

(b) Delivery of basic services and facilities;

(c) Joint ventures and cooperative programs or undertakings;

(d) Financial and other forms of assistance;

(e) Preferential treatment for organizations and cooperatives of marginal fishermen;

(f) Preferential treatment for cooperatives development; and (g) Financing, construction, maintenance, operation, and management of infrastructure projects.

ARTICLE 63. Local Special Bodies. —

(a) Local Development Councils — The duly designated representatives of accredited people’s organizations, NGOs, and the private sector operating in the provinces, cities, municipalities, or barangays shall sit as members in the provincial, city, municipal, or barangay development councils, as the case may be. The number of NGO representatives in each LDC shall not be less than one-fourth (1/4) of the total membership of the fully organized council. The local chief executive shall undertake the necessary information campaign to ensure participation of all NGOs operating within his territorial jurisdiction.

(b) Local Pre-qualification, Bids and Awards Committees — Two (2)representatives of people’s organizations or NGOs that are represented in the LDC concerned, to be chosen by the organizations themselves, and a practicing certified public accountant from the private sector, to be designated by the local chapter of the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountant, if any, shall sit as members of  the provincial, city, and municipal pre-qualification, bids and awards committees (PBACs).

(c) Local Health Boards — A representative from NGOs or the private sector involved in health services in the province, city, and municipality shall sit as member of the provincial, city or municipal health boards, respectively.

(d) Local School Boards — The representatives of NGOs or the private sector who shall sit as members of the local school boards are as follows:

(1) Provincial school board — the duly elected president of the provincial federation of parents-teachers associations, the duly elected representative of teachers’ organizations in the province, and the duly elected representative of the non-academic personnel of public schools in the province;

(2) City school board — the duly elected president of the city federation of parents-teachers associations, the duly elected representative of teachers’ organizations in the city, and the duly elected representative of the non-academic personnel of public schools in the city;

(3) Municipal school board — the duly elected president of the municipal federation of parents-teachers associations, the duly elected representative of the teachers’ organizations in the municipality, and the duly elected representative of the non-academic personnel of the public schools in the municipality;

(e) Local Peace and Order Councils — The representatives of people’s organizations or NGOs in the local peace and order councils shall be the same as those provided under Presidential EO 309, series of 1988, as amended, and the implementing rules and regulations issued pursuant thereto (Annex B).

(f) People’s Law Enforcement Boards — The representatives of people’s organizations or NGOs who sit as members of the boards shall be the same as those provided under RA 6975, and the rules and regulations issued pursuant thereto.

ARTICLE 64. Procedures and Guidelines for Selection of Representatives of People’s Organizations, Nongovernmental Organizations, or the Private Sector in Local Special Bodies. —

(a) Call for application — Within thirty (30) days from the approval of these Rules and thereafter, within thirty (30) days from the organization of the newly elected sanggunian, each sanggunian concerned shall call all community-based people’s organizations or NGOs, including business and professional groups, and other similar aggrupations to apply with the LGU concerned for accreditation for membership in the local special bodies. The application shall include a duly approved board resolution of the people’s organizations, NGOs or the private sector concerned, certificate of registration, list of officers, accomplishments, and financial data of the organization;

(b) Accreditation — The sanggunian concerned shall accredit the organizations based on the following criteria:

(1) Registration with either the Securities and Exchange Commission, Cooperatives Development Authority, Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Social Welfare and Development, or any recognized NGA that accredits people’s organizations, NGOs, or the private sector. If not formally registered, the said organizations may be recognized by the sanggunian for purposes only of meeting the minimum requirements for membership of such organizations in local special bodies;

(2) Organizational purpose and objectives include community organization and development, institution-building, local enterprise development, livelihood development, capability-building, and similar developmental objectives and considerations;

(3) Community-based with project development and implementation track record of at least one (1) year;

(4) Reliability as evidenced by the preparation of annual reports and conduct of annual meetings duly certified by the board secretary of the organization; and

(5) In the case of PBACs, the organization or any of its members shall have no conflict of interest in the awarding of infrastructure or other projects.

(c) Completion of the accreditation process — The sanggunian shall complete the accreditation process within sixty (60) days from the promulgation of these Rules or within the same period from the organization of the newly elected sanggunian.

(d) Meeting to choose representatives of people’s organizations, NGOs, or the private sector — Within fifteen (15) days after the accreditation process, the DILG field officer assigned in the LGU shall call all accredited people’s organizations, NGOs, or the private sector to a meeting where these organizations shall choose from among themselves which people’s organizations, NGOs or private sector will be represented in the local special bodies. The selected people’s organizations, NGOs or private sector shall then designate their principal and alternate representatives who are residents of the LGU concerned. In no case shall an organization or a representative thereof be a member of more than one local special body within a province, city, or municipality.

(e) Term of office of selected representatives — The term of office of a selected representative shall be coterminous with that of the local chief executive concerned. Should a vacancy arise, the selected people’s organizations, NGOs, or the private sector shall designate a replacement for the unexpired term.

The Principles of Good Governance

Fair Conduct of Elections, Representation and Participation

  • Local elections are conducted freely and fairly, according to international standards and national legislation, and without any fraud.
  • Citizens are at the centre of public activity and they are involved in clearly defined ways in public life at local level.
  • All men and women can have a voice in decision-making, either directly or through legitimate intermediate bodies that represent their interests. Such broad participation is built on the freedoms of expression, assembly and association.
  • All voices, including those of the less privileged and most vulnerable, are heard and taken into account in decision-making, including over the allocation of resources.
  • There is always an honest attempt to mediate between various legitimate interests and to reach a broad consensus on what is in the best interest of the whole community and on how this can be achieved.
  • Decisions are taken according to the will of the many, while the rights and legitimate interests of the few are respected.

Responsiveness

  • Objectives, rules, structures, and procedures are adapted to the legitimate expectations and needs of citizens.
  • Public services are delivered, and requests and complaints are responded to within a reasonable timeframe.

Efficiency and Effectiveness

  • Results meet the agreed objectives.
  • Best possible use is made of the resources available.
  • Performance management systems make it possible to evaluate and enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of services.
  • Audits are carried out at regular intervals to assess and improve performance.

 Openness and Transparency

  • Decisions are taken and enforced in accordance with rules and regulations.
  • There is public access to all information which is not classified for well-specified reasons as provided for by law (such as the protection of privacy or ensuring the fairness of procurement procedures).
  • Information on decisions, implementation of policies and results is made available to the public in such a way as to enable it to effectively follow and contribute to the work of the local authority.

 Rule of Law

  • The local authorities abide by the law and judicial decisions.
  • Rules and regulations are adopted in accordance with procedures provided for by law and are enforced impartially.

Ethical Conduct

  • The public good is placed before individual interests.
  • There are effective measures to prevent and combat all forms of corruption.
  • Conflicts of interest are declared in a timely manner and persons involved must abstain from taking part in relevant decisions.

 Competence and Capacity

  • The professional skills of those who deliver governance are continuously maintained and strengthened in order to improve their output and impact.
  • Public officials are motivated to continuously improve their performance.
  • Practical methods and procedures are created and used in order to transform skills into capacity and to produce better results.

 Innovation and Openness to Change

  • New and efficient solutions to problems are sought and advantage is taken of modern methods of service provision.
  • There is readiness to pilot and experiment new programmes and to learn from the experience of others.
  • A climate favourable to change is created in the interest of achieving better results.

 Sustainability and Long-term Orientation

  • The needs of future generations are taken into account in current policies.
  • The sustainability of the community is constantly taken into account. Decisions strive to internalise all costs and not to transfer problems and tensions, be they environmental, structural, financial, economic or social, to future generations.
  • There is a broad and long-term perspective on the future of the local community along with a sense of what is needed for such development.
  • There is an understanding of the historical, cultural and social complexities in which this perspective is grounded.

 Sound Financial Management

  • Charges do not exceed the cost of services provided and do not reduce demand excessively, particularly in the case of important public services.
  • Prudence is observed in financial management, including in the contracting and use of loans, in the estimation of resources, revenues and reserves, and in the use of exceptional revenue.
  • Multi-annual budget plans are prepared, with consultation of the public.
  • Risks are properly estimated and managed, including by the publication of consolidated accounts and, in the case of public-private partnerships, by sharing the risks realistically.
  • The local authority takes part in arrangements for inter-municipal solidarity, fair sharing of burdens and benefits and reduction of risks (equalisation systems, inter-municipal co-operation, mutualisation of risks…)

 Human rights, Cultural Diversity and Social Cohesion

  • Within the local authority’s sphere of influence, human rights are respected, protected and implemented, and discrimination on any grounds is combated.
  • Cultural diversity is treated as an asset, and continuous efforts are made to ensure that all have a stake in the local community, identify with it and do not feel excluded.
  • Social cohesion and the integration of disadvantaged areas are promoted.
  • Access to essential services is preserved, in particular for the most disadvantaged sections of the population.

 Accountability

  • All decision-makers, collective and individual, take responsibility for their decisions.
  • Decisions are reported on, explained and can be sanctioned.
  • There are effective remedies against maladministration and against actions of local authorities which infringe civil rights.

Ang Kinatatakutang abuso sa Cybercrime Law, Naganap na

Ang pangamba ng Netizens’ sa Republic Act No. 10175 or the Anti-Cybercrime Act of 2012 ay naganap na.

Bagama’t ang alegasyong kremin o libelo ay ginawa matagal ng panahon, bago paman isabatas ang nasabing batas ito ay may pang-aabusong gianagamit ng may impluwensya, kapangyarihan at may salapi.

Ito ang ginamit laban kay Esperlita Garcia ng Calayan, Gonzaga, Cagayan para aristohin sa kanyang pagpapahayag gamit ang Facebook.

Ang kanyang pagpapahayag sa Facebook ay ginawa nakaraang taon pa. Subalit, siya ay inaresto ngayon lamang Oktobre 16, 2012 kung kailan ang Cybercrime Law na naging kontrobersyal ay pansamantalang wala bisa batay sa TRO na inilabas ng Supreme Court.

Tama at pinatotohanan ng usaping ito ang malaganap na pangamba ng taongbayan na ang Cybercrime Law ay aabusuhin lamang ng mga taong may sapat na salapi at impluwensya sa hukuman at pamahalaan.

Marapat lamang na ang Batas na ito ay tuluyang IPAWALANG BISA ng Korte suprema. ###

Read more from the Source: Cagayan anti-mining leader arrested over Facebook post

Venezuela’s politics : Yet another method to entrench the president’s power

Commune-ism

WHEN Jorge Urosa, the archbishop of Caracas, said recently that Hugo Chávez was installing a “Marxist-communist” regime in Venezuela, the country’s leftist president called him a “troglodyte” and accused him of “instilling fear in the people.” Yet Mr Chávez, an avowed socialist, is openly seeking to introduce what looks like a novel form of communism. After taking over the courts and provoking an opposition boycott of legislative elections, he is now targeting state and municipal governments, currently the last bulwark against his rule among elected officials. By forcing them to compete for resources with pliable “communes”, he may starve them to death.

In June his legislative allies approved on first reading a draft bill creating the commune, a “socialist local entity…on the basis of which socialist society is to be built,” with legislative, judicial and executive functions. The communes are supposed to be partly self-sufficient, thanks to a “socialist productive model”, outlined in a separate bill, that will replace the existing capitalist economy. But in practice, the state will provide most of their resources, determine which communes can register, and impose “development” laws and decrees.

Darío Vivas, the vice-president of congress, says the bill will “develop popular participation in the most democratic way possible.” But the opposition calls it a scheme to increase Mr Chávez’s power. Each commune will “regulate social and community life [and] guarantee public order, social harmony and the primacy of collective over individual interests.” Their courts will have jurisdiction over all residents, even though the communes are exclusively intended for socialists. Meanwhile, states and municipalities will be forced to transfer part of their revenues to the communes. Since communes can span municipal borders, they could move public funds from opposition-led districts to government-friendly ones.

The project flies in the face both of the constitution and of public opinion. Mr Chávez first tried to establish communes through a constitutional-reform package in 2007, which was narrowly rejected in a referendum. Many key articles in the proposed communes law were taken from the failed reform. Mr Vivas insists that “if we were to ask those questions today”, the reforms would pass. But recent surveys suggest the reverse. According to a June study by Hinterlaces, a polling firm, only 31% of Venezuelans support Mr Chávez’s “21st-century socialism”, whereas 80% prefer private to communal property.

The bill still requires a second reading to become law. But although a more plural congress will be elected in September, new members will not be seated until January, allowing the outgoing assembly to pass unpopular laws without electoral repercussions. Moreover, even while the bill awaits approval, the government says that over 200 communes are already in formation. A local referendum in which as little as 15% of the electorate casts a vote will be enough to bring them into existence. Faced with declining popularity, Mr Chávez is wasting little time in setting up new means to wield his authority.

The Economist

FOI pinaglaruan ng mga Politiko

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Well, what do you know? PNoy DID have ‘FOI’ in his SONA

Who says President Aquino left FOI out of his State of the Nation Address? Freedom of Information advocate Vincent Lazatin took a closer look at PNoy’s speech and found the devil in the details. By: Interaksyon

More than 100 lawmakers sign manifesto pushing for FOI bill

Lawyer Nepomuceno Malaluan (second from right), flanked by lawmakers and members of the National Union of Journalists in the Philippines, expresses disapproval over attempts to “dribble the FOI bill to death”. Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

As a candidate in May 2010, President Aquino had promised to enact an FOI law as a strategic pillar of his ‘daang matuwid’ (straight path) administration. His study group has proposed, which in turn he endorsed, an FOI version that includes amendments to address his concerns,” the group said. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon

Onus for FOI passage on public info committee – Gonzales

The bill, which seeks to provide the people with access to information such as government documents upon formal request, had been killed on the last session day of the House in the 14th Congress for lack of a quorum. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

Running out of time, FOI advocates find ‘no room’ in Congress as well

Instead of having it on the week of October 15, as Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. had earlier announced, the hearing has been reset for November 13, a little over a month before Congress goes on break again. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

FOI in ICU, says Tanada

“Representative Ben Evardone placed the FOI in ICU, in life support, gasping for breath,” Deputy Speaker Lorenzo “Erin” Tanada III said, when asked about the new schedule of the hearing. By: Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon

NUJP, KBP, PPI and news groups observe FOI day

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) stands united today with other journalists and media groups as the Philippine media community reiterates its demand for the long-awaited passage of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.

In a statement released Thursday, the NUJP said, “The government has clearly run out of excuses to delay the passage of the Freedom of Information bill.”

“The only plausible reason why the FOI bill continues to languish in Congress is that the administration does not intend to see it become law,” it added.

NUJP challenged President Benigno Aquino III to show a firm resolve to pass the measure, saying, “But if President Aquino could push the House to end the debates on the Reproductive Health bill although he was certain to court the ire of the Catholic church, we see no reason why he cannot do the same for the FOI bill, which can only earn him the people’s appreciation.

“Mr. Aquino, believe us, there is nothing we desire more than for you to prove us wrong. And we dare you to do so,” NUJP said. Read more from the Source… Interaksyon

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Federated TODA of Marikina City

Maraming suliranin ang mga nabubuhay sa pamamasada ng Tricycle. Maliban sa kinagisnang problema sa TODA ang mismong mga ahensya ng pamahalaan ay siya mismong problima suliranin ng mga nabubuhay sa pamamasada. Sa Marikina ang Comittee sa Transportation ay walang aksyon sa mga suliranin ng Tsuper ng Tricycle. Ang CTMDO mismo ay mukhang halimaw na nagugutom sa laman ng kawawang nagpapawis para pakainin ang kanilang pamilya sa pamamagitan ng malinis at marangal na paraan.