Residents and officials of Marabut, a fifth class town in Samar famed for its picture-perfect views of limestone cliffs, caves, and islands, are moving as one to address issues that have stalled government efforts to end insurgency in the three Samar provinces.
Local officials led by Mayor Percival A. Ortillo Jr. on July 14, 2020 held a joint meeting of the Municipal Peace and Order Council (MPOC) and the Municipal Development Council (MDC) that served as a reorientation on Executive Order 70.
Regional Director Karl Caesar R. Rimando led the DILG Region 8 delegation. He underscored the role of good governance in bringing peace. Joining RD Rimando were Samar Provincial Director Judy L. Batulan and MLGOO (Municipal Local Government Operations Officer) Maria Concepcion R. Afable.
The activity sought to refresh to the municipal and barangay officials of Marabut town about their roles in implementing a whole-of-nation approach to end local communist armed conflict dubbed as ELCAC.
The orientation aimed to provide the ways forward in the upcoming consultations for the two barangays identified as priority areas under the Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP). These are the coastal barangay of Tinabanan and Barangay Tagalag, an upland area.
The programs that had previously been included in the 2021 local development plans of the two barangays will be supplemented with issues that will be identified and prioritized in the consultation to be held in the third quarter of 2020. These issues and concerns will be presented to national agencies for funding.
Mayor Ortillo lauded the activity as an effective step in resolving issues that fuel the insurgency. “The implementation of the RCSP is a good move to bring government services closer to the people of far-flung barangays, to show residents that government is always ready to provide assistance when needed”, the lawyer-chief executive said.
Last year the Sangguniang Bayan of Marabut speaking for the whole municipality, issued a resolution committing to ELCAC implementation.
Likewise, the town’s 24 barangays issued similar resolutions on their part. The municipal government on the other hand assisted the barangays in forming their respective term-based development plans.
Aside from Mayor Ortillo, Sangguniang Bayan members, municipal department heads, and seven punong barangays led by the Liga President attended the activity as members of the MPOC and MDC executive boards.
The RCSP is the mechanism wherein residents take part in a consultative process of identifying deep-rooted issues and concerns to be addressed through the barangay development plan (BDP). For a town with lots of growth potential, the RCSP is a welcome initiative that can help spur development through citizen participation and genuine delivery of services.