CITIZENS AS STAKEHOLDERS: CANA CONVERSATIONS WITH COMMUNITIES RED BATARIO CENTER FOR COMMUNITY JOURNALISM AND DEVELOPMENT

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  • CITIZENS AS STAKEHOLDERS: CANA CONVERSATIONS WITH COMMUNITIES RED BATARIO CENTER FOR COMMUNITY JOURNALISM AND DEVELOPMENT
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  • EMERGING CITIZEN ACTIONS IN BASILAN, SULU, TAWI-TAWI AND SIBAGAT, AGUSAN DEL SUR Why we do what we do
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  • BA-SUL-TA
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  • Civil society organizations monitoring government projects implemented under the P8.5 billion Transition Investment Support Plan (TISP) or Stimulus Fund for the ARMM Part of ARMM road map for reform Citizen participation crucial to successful implementation (citizen monitors) Huge challenges and obstacles (safety and security, political expediencies, clan feuds, cultural norms)
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  • Their story Despite seeming insurmountable challenges, citizens of ARMM still want to be counted in BASILAN -- Basilan Alliance for Peace and Sustainable Development SULU -- Integrated Resource Development for Tri-People TAWI-TAWI -- Tarbilang Foundation, Languyan Health Family Association
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  • We do what we do because we Are emboldened by the Presidents call for reforms through his Daang Matuwid philosophy Want our voices heard so that we can contribute to making our communities better and safer places to live in Are tired of all the bad impressions other people have about the ARMM
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  • We do what we do because we Cannot allow to slip away this opportunity for helping root citizen participation in local governance Want to make sure that the money spent by government (in the TISP project) goes to where it is intended to
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  • We are able to do what we do because We are slowly being recognized by other citizens, sectors, and the LGU as important in the work of governance The media (mainly community radio) are beginning to closely work with us in discussing and airing the process and results of our TISP monitoring
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  • But we continue to grapple with Safety and security issues especially in Sulu and Basilan Strained resources (often unable to cover many areas due to logistical constraints e.g. travel time from one municipality to another sometimes takes days) How to institutionalize our efforts or the local mechanisms that weve developed
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  • SIBAGAT, AGUSAN DEL SUR
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  • Previously listed as a waterless municipality (only 50 percent of population have access to safe water) Third class town with a total population of 30,000 (2007); 50 % are Indigenous Peoples (Manobo) Around 8,300 of the total population are considered poor
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  • Their story We wanted to make sure that the huge water project being implemented in our town will respect and protect our rights Building water integrity through the IWAG (Integrity Watch for Water Anti-Corruption Group) Water issues are related to abusive political culture and control, weak constituencies, and corruption 20% of countrys annual budget is lost to corruption, money that otherwise could have gone to the promotion, protection and fulfillment of citizens right to water World Bank as cited by IWAG
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  • The story of IWAG Organized through the UNDP-DILG initiated Global Programme for Anti-Corruption and Development Effectiveness (PACDE): Building Water Integrity Mitigating Corruption in Local Water Governance through Public Finance Process PACDE strategies: (1) building integrity in local water governance; and, (2) strengthening community participation
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  • The story of IWAG PACDE Outputs: Develop a Citizens Guidebook to Participatory Public Finance in Water Governance Organize Citizen-Monitors for Water Integrity (includes training on how to review and assess public finance processes in water governance) Local constituencies for good water governance built from informed networks of citizens especially women and youth, water service providers, academe, civil society and faith-based organizations
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  • We do what we do because As citizens, we should claim our rights but at the same time recognize our responsibility to ensure better governance ( ito yun LGU transparency and accountability) We want to make sure that we have safe, accessible, affordable, acceptable water (lisud kaayo access sa tubig diri) Women, children, persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples should be directly involved in how water is managed and governed
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  • We do what we do because We believe that governing the municipality should involve all of us (dili lang mga officials)
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  • We are able to do what we do because Of the encouragement we get from fellow citizens (We hope you will expand your membership) A local chief executive who considers IWAG as a partner rather than as a critic and watchdog Support from agencies like DILG, UNDP Sibagat is a very peaceful community
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  • But we continue to grapple with Birthing pangs as we are still a very young organization (registered with the SEC February 2013) How to keep everyones enthusiasm and energy at a sustained level given that our work is generally tedious (monitoring) Enhancing our advocacy even more (we have media partners for IEC)
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  • But we continue to grapple with How to develop our social marketing strategy and skills How to institutionalize the IWAG as a citizen participation mechanism (Mayor Thelma Lamanilao is on her third term)
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  • Some members of the Sibagat IWAG team
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  • YOUVE JUST HEARD OUR STORYWE HOPE YOU WILL BE WITH US IN WRITING THE NEXT CHAPTER From the citizen action groups of Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, and Sibagat, Agusan del Sur