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LGU-Loon first to draft Citizen's Charter
Posted: July 14, 2009 - Posted by: Adam L. Saligumba



LOON CITIZEN’S CHARTER LAUNCHING. DILG Secretary Ronaldo V. Puno (right) and Loon Mayor Lloyd Peter M. Lopez, M.D. hold up a copy of the Loon Citizen’s Charter during the launching held on Friday afternoon, June 19, 2009 at the Loon Sports and Cultural Center. Also in picture are from left: Loon Vice Mayor Edwin R. Ladeza, DILG Provincial Director Rose Mascariñas and DILG Undersecretary Austere A. Panadero (extreme right). The launching of the Loon Citizen’s Charter was the first in the entire province of Bohol. (Photos by A. Saligumba)

          The Local Government Unit of the Municipality of Loon chalks up another first in its long list of achievements when it launched on Friday afternoon, June 19, 2009, its Citizen Charter, with no less than Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Ronaldo V. Puno as guest of honor.

          The Loon Citizen’s Charter, created and established in compliance of Republic Act 9485, otherwise known as Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007, is the first to be launched in the entire province of Bohol.

          Sec. Puno enplaned from Manila Friday morning at the Tagbilaran Airport where he was met by Bohol dignitaries led by Gov. Erico B. Aumentado, Vice Gov. Julius Ceasar F. Herrera and Tagbilaran City Mayor Dan Neri Lim.

          The DILG Secretary proceeded to Bohol Tropics Resort where a conference, launching and MOA signing of the Local Governance Support Program-Local Economic Development (LGSP-LED) was held. Puno’s entourage included DILG Undersecretary for Local Government Austere A. Panadero, DILG Regional Director Pedro A. Noval, Jr., and DILG Provincial Director Rustica N. Mascariñas. Also in attendance were PC/Supt Lani-o R. Nerez, Regional Director, PRO7, P/SSupt Louie M. Oppus, head of the Operations and Planning Division, PRO7, Bohol PNP Provincial Director P/SSupt Edgardo C. Ingking, BJMP J/Supt Felixberto S. Jagurin and BFP F/Supt Nonilo Acero.

          In the afternoon, the national, regional and provincial officials motored to Loon where the launching of the Loon Citizen Charter was held at the Loon Sports and Cultural Center.  

          Loon Mayor Lloyd Peter M. Lopez, Vice Mayor Edwin R. Ladeza, and Loon MLGOO Josie M. Montes led local municipal officials, heads of departments and offices, barangay officials of the 67 barangays in the municipality, people’s organization representatives, business sector representatives, and students in welcoming Puno and his entourage.

          High school students from the Sacred Heart Academy and University of Bohol-Loon, waving flaglets, lined the street leading to the Loon Sports and Cultural Center and gave the Secretary a rousing welcome.

          Bannering the theme: “A Medium for Transparent Governance”, the launching was officially started by the welcome message of Vice Mayor Edwin Ladeza which was followed by a brief presentation of frontline services of the LGU by the concerned department heads. Mayor Lloyd Lopez then his gave his message of commitment after which MLGOO Josie M. Montes presented the Loon Citizen’s Charter.

          Mayor Lopez unveiled the symbolic Citizen’s Charter printed in a huge tarpaulin, assisted by Secretary Puno, Regional Director Noval, Jr., Provincial Director Mascariñas, Vice Mayor Ladeza, SB Members and heads of departments and offices. Copies of the Citizen’s Charter were then given to the DILG secretary, regional director and provincial director.

          DILG-7 Regional Director Pedro A. Noval, Jr. introduced Secretary Puno who delivered his keynote speech. Loon human resource and management officer, Sonette C. Ladeza then recited the Pledge of Commitment which was dramatized by the signing of the Performance Pledge by the municipal officials and department heads. The DILG top brass led by Secretary Puno also signed the Pledge.

          Loon’s 67 barangay captains received their copies of the Citizen’s Charter from Mayor Lopez, Vice Mayor Ladeza and Secretary Puno. A cultural presentation was then given by the Kadugong Loonanon Dance Troupe. The afternoon activity was capped by the closing remarks of SB Kag. Jesephat B. Palma, chairman of the committee on good governance. Executive secretary and tourism action officer, Reigh P. Monreal, served as master of ceremony.

          The Citizen’s Charter, as mandated by Republic Act No. 9485, otherwise known as the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007, was enacted and signed into law by Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on June 2, 2007, in response to the urgent need to establish an effective system that will eliminate bureaucratic red tape, avert graft and corruption practices and improve the efficiency of delivery of government frontline services.

          RA 9485 or Anti-Red Tape Act took effect on September 5, 2008 following the issuance of the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) by the Civil Service Commission under CSC Resolution No. 081471 dated July 24, 2008.

          The DILG, in its Memorandum Circular No. 2008-164 dated Nov. 4, 2008, instructed all provincial governors, city mayors, municipal mayors, punong barangays, regional directors and others concerned for the strict implementation of RA 9485, otherwise known as Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007 and its implementing rules and regulations.

          The Circular states that in conformance to the “policy of the State to promote integrity, accountability, and proper management of public affairs and public property and to establish effective practices aimed at the prevention of graft and corruption in government, all Local Chief Executives are enjoined to strictly implement the provisions of the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007 and its Implementing Rulers and Regulations to eliminate bureaucratic red tape, avert graft and corruption practices and improve the efficiency of delivery of government frontline services.”

           Citing Section 6 of RA 9485; Rule IV, IRR, the DILG Memo asserts that “each local government unit shall have an official document, a service standard, or a pledge, that communicates, in simple terms, information on the services provided by the government to its citizens, known as the Citizen’s Charter. It describes the step-by-step procedure for availing a particular service, and the guaranteed performance level that they may expect from that service.”

          The Citizen’s Charter may come in the form of information billboards which should be posted at the main entrance of offices or at the most conspicuous place, in the form of published materials written either in English, Filipino, or in the local dialect.

          The following information are to be included in the Citizen’s Charter: a) Vision and Mission of the government unit or agency; b) Identification of the frontline service(s) offered, and the clientele; c) Step-by-step procedure to obtain a particular service; d) Officer or employee responsible for each step; e) Maximum time to conclude the process; f) Document(s) to be presented by the client, with a clear indication of the relevancy of said document(s); g) Amount of fees, if necessary; h) Procedure for filing complaints in relation to requests and applications, including the names and contact details of the officials or channels to approach for redress; I) Allowable period of extension due to unusual circumstances, i.e. unforeseen events beyond the control of the concerned government office; and j) Feedback mechanism, contact numbers to call/or persons to approach for recommendations, inquiries, suggestions, as well as complaints.

          The DILG Memo also established the rules on frontline services such as 1)Acceptance and Denial of an Application or Request; 2) Limitation of Signatories; 3)Adoption of Working Schedule; 4) Identification Card; and 5) Automatic Extension of Licenses, Permits and Authorities.

          The formulation of the Loon Citizen’s Charter officially started on March 23, 2009 when Mayor Lopez issued Executive Order No. 04, Series of 2009, mandating the establishment of a Citizen’s Charter in the municipality, and creation of a steering committee and task force that will take the lead in the formulation, writing and packaging of the Charter.

          The Task Force was composed of Executive Secretary Reigh P. Monreal as task force head, Engr. Marina M. Loquinte, deputy task force head; SB Secretary Fidelino Coritico, task force secretary, heads of departments providing frontline services, namely: Maria Vilma Palacio (OIC, MSWDO), Aristona C. Ladeza (HRMO); Engr. Noel S. Castrojo (Municipal Engineer); Atty. Rogelio P. Ganados (MPDC); Teopista P. Marilla (Municipal Treasurer); Jessie G. Sevilla (Assessor); Dr. Tito L. Miranda, (MHO); Dr. Dewey Demandante (In-Charge, RHU II); Mariano L. Cornito (LCR); Trinita N. Suello (MAO); Engr. Nonito E. Gucor (Waterworks Superintendent); Adam L. Saligumba (MPIO) and the Senior Staff/s from each department providing frontline services.

          On March 24-25, 2009, in coordination with MLGOO Montes, the municipal department heads with Task Force Head Monreal attended an orientation workshop on RA 9485 in which they were given one month to prepare the Citizen’s Charter. 

           In the succeeding weeks prior to the launching, the department heads, assisted by their senior staffs, made a review of their frontline services in terms of procedures, requirements, charges and fees, in the setting of new service standards, and conducted consultative meetings with the consumers and beneficiaries of the services provided by their respective departments.

 

           The output of the reviews and consultative meetings were then consolidated and submitted to the task force head who assumed responsibility for the final review, consolidation and finalization of the published form of the Loon Citizen’s Charter.

Updated: July 14, 2009