IMPLEMENTING PARTNER: Ecolink
YEARS: 2006 – 2007
GRANT AMOUNT: $16,500
THEMES: Procurement; Local Governance
Despite its sluggish economic progress, Oroquieta City is blessed with abundant natural resources like rivers and rain-forests. In fact, it has been coffered nationally as the “Cleanest and Greenest Component City” in the entire Philippines for several years already. The “Layawan” river, the source of potable water to Oroquieta’s 30 thousands households, is also known as the cleanest river in the whole island of Mindanao. It has also recently received a Hall of Fame Award for Peace and Order. Several ODA-funded programs focusing on environmental conservation are presently pouring in to the City as well as the whole province. And the present Local Government Administration has pledged for transparent and accountable public governance.
The main problem that this project intends to address is the wastage of local government funds to corrupt practices and lavish expenditures in the procurement, use and maintenance of government vehicles. This problem can be reflected in the dubious expenditures in vehicles’ maintenance, overpriced procurement figures, and the use of such vehicles by some officials/ personnel for personal purposes. There are even cases when a government vehicle is used for the recreation affair of a public official’s family in a beach resort located outside the province. Worse, public funds are used for the purchase of gasoline. Repairs also utilize government funds even if problems are caused by personal misuse.
Since the project has started, the ECOLINK has already received 21 invitations to sit as observer in biddings. The government offices who requested CSO Representation through ECOLINK includes the Department of Education-Oroquieta Division, Department of Agriculture, 6 Barangay LGU’s, Department of Education- Misamis Occidental Division and the City Government of Oroquieta. ECOLINK has facilitated members of the Oroquieta City Coalition Against Corruption to represent in several B.A.C.’s. This is one of the most important indicators of the maturity of government offices to comply with the provisions of the Government Procurement Reform Act or RA 9184 and open the doors to the civil society to observe in the bidding processes.