Mahintana shares about ODK and LITS at 2nd SCIC Forum

In celebration of “Integrity Week”, the Provincial Government of South Cotabato conducted the 2nd Provincial Integrity Forum with the theme “A Smarter South Cotabato, Bringing Services Closer to the People” on September 18, 2019 at the EMR Convention Center, City of Koronadal, South Cotabato. Being 1 of 9 pilot LGUs in the Philippines implementing Project I4J or Partnerships for Integrity and Jobs, Province of South Cotabato developed and implemented its own integrity program dubbed as iSouthCotabato or South Cotabato for Integrity and Jobs, and created the South Cotabato Integrity Circle (SCIC).

The highlight event of the 2019 Integrity Week Celebration featured discussions among panelists coming from the civil society, private/business sector and government regarding how these institutions help enable people in accessing services. The discussion also touched on how to make government be more open, transparent and responsive to citizen needs. The panelists include: Hon. Reynaldo S. Tamayo, Jr., Governor of the Province of South Cotabato, Ms. Teresita R. Antolin of the Civil Service Commission, Mr. Martiniano L. Magdolot of the Mahintana Foundation, Inc., Mr. Michael Canares of Step-Up Consulting Services, and Mr. Gerry Constantino of the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines.

The forum also featured the unveiling of the different online systems in relation to South Cotabato’s commitment to the Open Government Partnership. These systems include: the Open Monitoring and Evaluation System using the Open Data Kit (ODK), the Open Mining Portal, the Open Contracting Webpage, and the Legislative Information Tracking System (LITS) for Open Legislation. These systems are still in its beta phase and will soon be available for public use and linked to the Integrated Provincial Online Database. RESOURCEGov Project Manager Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker presented the ODK and LITS.

The forum concluded with the awarding of the Dangal ng South Cotabato Enterprise Integrity Award for the Large, Medium and Small Enterprises. The winners are as follows:

▪Large Enterprise – ICTUS Premier Multi-purpose Cooperative
▪Medium Enterprise – Delibites Concepts Corporation
▪Small Enterprise – JV Enterprises

Mahintana and ECCP meet to share OGP Commitment Initiatives

The Mahintana Foundation Inc. represented by the RESOURCEGov 2 Project team met with the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP) partners on July 3, 2019 at Out of Nowhere Restaurant, Koronadal City for the complementation of the systems being shared to the Provincial Government of South Cotabato as part of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) commitments of the said province.

ECCP Team, headed by Ms. Zyra Pajarillo, requested the meeting to know how to link their system-based Open Contracting initiative with the ODK-based Open Monitoring and Evaluation. Ms. Parillo shared that their system where information about project bidders and other relevant data can be accessed online by the public. Meanwhile, Mahintana, represented by its RESOURCEGov 2 Project Manager also shared to them the ODK-based project monitoring and evaluation tool which was also developed with the same provincial government. After discussions about the capabilities of both systems, they came up with an agreement. The links of the project being monitored under ODK system shall be shared to the Open Contracting System of ECCP by putting the link in one of its project data fields. This will allow the citizen or interested parties to check on the project documents as well as view the actual monitoring results of the projects implemented. This collaboration will further improve the OGP initiatives of the said province and forms part of the EU’s call for synergy of actions among EU-funded organizations.

SOLARES Team conducts ODK Profiling on Off-Grid Households of Kiamba

As part of the social preparation, SOLARES (acronym for Strengthening Off-grid Lighting with Appropriate Renewable Energy Solutions) Project Team conducted the ODK-based profiling to off-grid households of Kiamba, Sarangani Province on June 24 to July 3, 2019. The profiling aims to validate and establish the individual socio-economic profile, the willingness to participate in the project, and capacity to pay of the potential household beneficiaries. Using the ODK-based forms, the team can able to map the households and avoid duplication of the potential household beneficiaries, and will also serve as baseline to measure future project impact at the household/community level. A total of 804 households were profiled in the nine sitios and puroks of the municipality.

Polomolok evaluated for the Red Orchid Award

By virtue of Proclamation No. 183 signed on May 30, 1993 by former President Fidel Ramos, June is annually celebrated as the No-Smoking Month in the Philippines. The Municipal Health Office (MHO) together with the Department of Health (DOH) scheduled the anti-smoking evaluation of Polomolok on June 20, 2019. Project Officers Jeric Amparo and Rochelle Juevesano were invited and documented the event.

Over 700 participants from different barangays in Polomolok attended the event to show their participation and support during the evaluation period; barangay captains and kagawads were present as well. Dr. Edwin Dipus from the MHO delivered the opening remarks. Hon. Honey Lumayag-Matti also expressed her support to the anti-smoking program. One portion of the stage was taken up by a table filled with the necessary documents the barangays submitted for the evaluation. To close the brief program, Dr. Earl Edward Dimamay delivered the closing remarks and took the time to thank and appreciate the evaluators and volunteers in the Anti-Smoking Cluster. The evaluators were given time to check the submitted documents and following the program, the participants took home their red orchid barangay tarps, no-smoking flaglets, and took photos. As a result of a municipal-wide effort, Polomolok received its third Red Orchid Award, making it a Hall of Famer for Red Orchid.

RESOURCEGov presents at OGP Canada Global Summit

May 28-June 1, 2019

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) selected Mahintana Foundation to represent the Philippines together with the Provincial Government of South Cotabato in the recently concluded OGP Global Summit in Ottawa, Canada from May 28 to June 1, 2019. The organization, thru Mr. Roel Ian P. Blanker, the RESOURCEGov 2 Project Manager, shared the project initiatives to a global audience at the city hall of Canada’s capital city. His presentation got featured in the Scottish Government Blog (https://blogs.gov.scot/open-government-partnership/2019/06/06/10-things-we-learned-in-canada-global-summit-of-open-government-partnership/) after captivating the audience with the project’s innovative and digital ways of doing project monitoring, legislative information tracking, and ensuring citizen participation in local governance. Meanwhile, the Provincial Government of South Cotabato represented by Ms. Jennifer Bretaña, its Provincial Planning and Development Coordinator also shared the province’s integrity initiatives with partner CSOs in summit sessions.

Brief Rationale of Participation

Mahintana thru the RESOURCEGov 2 Project has capacitated the Provincial Government of South Cotabato on the use Open Data Kit and Qlik systems to a better and efficient monitoring of government projects. Specifically, the provincial government has institutionalized the use of the system thru its Provincial Project Monitoring Committee (PPMC) to monitor and evaluate projects that have implementation issues together with CSOs and community affected by the projects. Moreover, Mahintana also helped the tracking of the legislations of the province’s Sanggunian Panlalawigan by providing a Legislative Information Tracking System (LITS) wherein legislative documents are digitally archived for easy access to public or interested parties, and performance of Sanggunian members and committees are evaluated. The systems provided by the project along with other integrity initiatives of the province promote transparency, accountability, and participation in local governance led to South Cotabato’s active participation in the Open Government Partnership (OGP). OGP is an organization of reformers inside and outside of government, working to transform how government serves its citizens, and Mahintana supports the province in its OGP Open Monitoring & Evaluation and Open Legislation commitments thru technical assistance on the implementation of ODK, Qlik and LITS systems thru the RESOURCEGov 2 Project. Recognizing the achievements of the province and its partners, OGP invited champions of South Cotabato’s OGP commitments to the 2019 OGP Global Summit in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada including Mr. Roel Ian Blanker, Mahintana’s RESOURCEGov 2 Project Manager, Ms. Jennifer Bretana, the Provincial Planning and Development Coordinator, and other key commitment partners in the national level from the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Commission on Audit (COA), Department of Budget Management (DBM), The Philippine Embassy, and OGP Philippines Steering Committee. Active CSOs who have helped implement OGP commitments in the country also joined the summit and they are from Bantay Kita PH, European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, Hivos in the Philippines, LayerTech Software Labs, and Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism, to name a few.

The OGP Global Summit serves as an avenue for OGP participating countries to learn and share about their open governance initiatives, ideas, challenges, and solutions anchored to themes Participation, Impact, and Inclusion. According to the summit organizers, over 2,000 open government champions has attended from across the 79 OGP member countries. This year’s summit also featured digital initiatives thru civic tech salons, hackathons, and breakout summit sessions by thematic areas. Giant tech firms such as Microsoft, Google, Amazon, GitHub and even the world wide web founder himself, Tim Berners Lee, graced the event along with Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and many more influential politicians across the globe. The summit also served as an opportunity for global participants to network, learn from other government and CSOs, and share their interventions to further improve their work on making the government more open and accessible to citizens.

SOLARES ODK Profiling of potential Member-Consumers in Maasim, Sarangani

As part of the EU-funded SOLARES project’s social preparation, a survey/profiling for each of the 5,000 off-grid households in 50 target barangays shall be conducted to validate and establish the individual socio-economic profile, the willingness to participate in the project, and capacity to pay of the potential household beneficiaries. The survey results will serve as baselines to measure future project impact at the household/community level and to help determine/map out the actual location/coordinates of the potential household beneficiaries.

On May 2-14, 2019, the SOLARES project team conducted the ODK profiling in its target benefeciaries in 11 Brgys. in Maasim, Sarangani Province namely: (a) Kablacan; (b) Bales; (c) Lumasal; (d) Amsipit; (e) Kamanga; (f) Daliao; (g) Kanalo; (h) Pananag; (I) Lumatil; (j) Colon; and (k) Nomoh.

Prior the actual profiling, the project team together with nine (9) enumerators conduct Brgy. Courtesy Calls to the Sitio/Purok Leaders to inform them of the purpose of the activity & to allow the team to conduct profiling. Every enumerator received an umbrella and powerbank which they can use as they will be profiling scattered or distant households using android tablets.

The enumerators were residents in Maasim, Sarangani and were all familiar with the local conditions, the people, and cultural sensitivities of the target areas. For 13 consecutive days, they were able to endure the scorching heat and trekked arduous areas, typically on foot & motorcycle and profiled a total of 733 households. Please refer to the table below for the total number of of households profiled per Barangay.

Name of BarangayTotal # of Households Profiled
Kablcan144
Bales 127
Lumasal 119
Amsipit78
Kamanga71
Daliao51
Kanalo26
Pananag23
Lumatil16
Colon1
Nomoh 77
TOTAL733

RESOURCEGov monitors the OGP Commitments of South Cotabato

The RESOURCEGov 2 Project convened with its Provincial LGU counterparts in the Open Government Partnership (OGP) commitments of South Cotabato on April 30, 2019. Held at the Provincial Planning and Development Office – South Cotabato, Mr. Roel Ian Blanker, the RESOURCEGov2 Project Manager facilitated the updating of Open Monitoring & Evaluation commitment. A total of 9 individuals (5 Male, 4 Female) attended the activity.

The team accomplished the following: updating of the ODK-based project monitoring forms of the province, linked the PPMC monitoring results to the RESOURCEGov 2 ODK account, integrated the website recommendations of the South Cotabato Integrity Circle, developed an ODK-based citizen satisfaction and feedback form, patterned the feedback form based on the feedback requirement of the DevLive app, and updated the official provincial government website of South Cotabato together with the Public Information Office (PIO). Aside from meeting the OGP Commitments, this activity is also a preparation to the regular meeting of the Provincial Project Monitoring Committee of South Cotabato on May 2, 2019 where Mahintana, through the project, provides technical assistance. As to date, the LITS has been installed and there is a pending staff orientation about the system due to elections. Aside from the LITS, the team agreed to schedule the setup of the livestream SP sessions as one of the deliverables of the Open Legislation commitment.

R2R participates in the Linis Ilog in Klinan and Sugok Rivers

In celebration with the World Water Day on March 22, 2019, R2R team participated the region-wide Linis Ilog Activity of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) – XII conducted by the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) – Buayan headed by Ms. Ma. Elvira Lumayag. The activity was in partnership with the LGU Polomolok headed by Hon. Mayor Honey Lumayag-Matti, Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office (MENRO) – Polomolok Engr. Agustin P. Valencia, Jr., BLGU Landan Hon. Rebecca J. Diale, Dolefil, and Mahintana Foundation, Inc. at Sugok and Klinan Rivers, Brgy. Landan, Polomolok.

A total of 289 participants coming from both government and private sectors as well as community members joined the activity and planted 500 bamboo hills along Sugok and Klinan Rivers. A total of 358 Kgs of residual wastes were collected after the activity. 10 selected community members from Prk. 1, Brgy. Landan received 10 ceramic toilet bowls during the ceremonial distribution of the said materials which was donated by Mahintana and the Municipal Health Office (MHO) – Polomolok for the sanitation and Information, Education and Communication Campaign on health.

SOLARES Courtesy Calls: MLGUs Kalamansig and Lebak

SOLARES project officers headed to Kalamansig, Sultan Kudarat at 3:00 A.M. on March 19, 2019 to meet and discuss with Kalamansig mayor Hon. Ronan Eugene Garcia at 10:00 A.M. Meeting agenda was the introduction of the SOLARES Project to Hon. Garcia including the project framework and the target beneficiaries, which included three barangays and tentatively 1020 target households within Kalamansig.

Hon. Garcia raised his concerns with the project’s specific recipients. There are GIDAs or Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas in Kalamansig. These communities do not use any lighting at all during nighttime. Furthermore, these communities may not be capable of paying the monthly fee. The team clarified that the payment was for the project’s sustainability and maintenance. There will also be an initial ODK profiling, to identify eligible recipients. It was agreed that the team will return along with a representative from SUKELCO to further discuss the viable target areas.

Brgy. Capt. Albaladeso asked if it would be possible for the barangay halls and schools to be SHS recipients as this would seem atypical for households being energized while barangays are not. Apparently, this shall be clarified with SUKELCO first since the intention of SOLARES is to become a part of the electrification program of  the electric cooperative.

Hon. Ronan Eugene Garcia, Kalamansig Mayor; Ms. Ma. Alma Engcong, MLGOO Kalamansig; Mr. Victor Albaladeso, LIGA President, and SOLARES project officers discuss the SOLARES project.

In the afternoon, the team was scheduled to meet with LGU Lebak. with Lebak Administrative Officer Mr. Rusty Vilo. Mr. Vilo conveyed his support to the project and expressed his gratitude that Lebak was chosen as one of the target municipalities. He also shared about a previous solar-related project which awarded SHS units to certain communities after a one-time payment was uninformed the status of said project.