Follow Up CSO Meeting Towards Peoples’ Council Formation in New Lucena

Written by: Andrea Leonar

On March 19, 2024, the Solution Ecosystems Activator (SEA), Inc. under the program of Integrated Participatory Accountable Transparency towards Sustainable Integrated Area Development (IPAT-SIAD) facilitated a follow-up CSO meeting in coordination with the Local Government Unit of New Lucena through the CSO Desk Officer, Mr. Rodulfo Asesor. In terms of preparation, the LGU took the lead by sending invites to target CSOs operating in the municipality. It’s a good indication that the LGU opened and supported the realization of the Peoples’ Council.

For this meeting, there are a total of 34 participants composed of different CSOs and oriented on the DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2021-054 or the Institutionalization of the People’s Council in the LGU. They likewise clarified on the specific requirements to be submitted to the CSO Desk Officer subject to evaluation in coordination with the Sangguniang Bayan. Ms. Rosanna Pandes-Constantino, SEA, Inc. Municipal Coordinator reiterated that all qualified CSOs upon approval of the evaluation committee would be issued with a Certificate of Authorization as a legitimate organization to nominate any of their members to be a representative of the People’s Council.

Vice Mayor Hon. Isabelo Acollador acknowledged the eagerness of the CSO Desk Officer in facilitating the processes towards the formation of said council. He explained the importance of the Peoples Council and that’s the reason why a series of meetings are conducted. The Municipal Coordinator of SEA, Inc. also stated that, if the People’s Council is successfully created in the town of New Lucena, then it would be considered the only municipality with a Peoples’ Council in the district, in the province of Iloilo, and even in the whole region 6.

Sir Willy Labaro, the very supportive and the chairman of the Collective IPAT-SIAD Team (CIT) is hoping that someday they will successfully create a People’s Council in the Municipality of New Lucena and CSOs will have their representation to the Sangguniang Bayan and bring their voice or concerns about programs, projects, and services that need local legislation. CSOs will also be strengthened through the People’s Council.

Lastly, the group agreed that the CSO Desk Officer and SEA, Inc. would provide a formatted letter of intent to be signed by the respective CSO President or authorized representative. The CSO leaders personally approached the SEA, Inc. staff and the CSO Desk Officer and presented their documents to be submitted. They encouraged and informed other CSOs to apply as well as to become members of the council. The SB Secretary, Ms. Philine Simora is very supportive and looking forward to the next steps to be taken for the implementation of the Memorandum Circular and the essence of people’s participation.

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