Press Release
January 22, 2016

Bam Eyes to Strengthen Barangay Governance

In reforming the country, we need to start from the first step - reform our barangays.

With this in mind, Sen. Bam Aquino has filed a measure seeking to strengthen governance in the country's more than 42,000 barangays to help unlock national progress.

"To ensure an effective and inclusive government that promotes the active participation of its citizens, it is imperative that we strengthen barangay governance," Sen. Bam said in his Senate Bill No. 3085.

According to Sen. Bam, the key to unlocking national progress lies in the government's ability to reach out to each individual in every barangay.

"The success of a government initiative is measured by its impact on communities and on the lives of our countrymen, especially the Filipinos who suffer from poverty and those that live in remote areas often forgotten," the senator said.

The measure aims to strengthen barangay governance by providing barangay officials and volunteers transformative capacity building, sufficient financial empowerment, and continuity of service.

"Apart from attending to the basic needs of the community and delivering various government services, barangay officials and volunteers also facilitate citizen empowerment and engagement so that leaders are responsive to the true needs of the citizens they serve," Sen. Bam explained.

In the proposed measure, the payment of honorarium of one barangay health worker and 20 tanods in each barangay in the country will be nationalized, relieving barangays of some financial duties.

The move will free up space in the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) of barangays, giving them more budget to spend for social programs, projects, personnel services.

The measure requires the national government to conduct trainings for barangay officials, barangay health workers, and barangay tanods to make them more effective in serving their constituents.

The measure will also change the term limits of barangay officials from three years with a three consecutive term limit to five years with a two consecutive term limit.

Aquino said proposed reforms under this bill uphold the principle of local autonomy enshrined in the Constitution and advocate decentralization as declared in the Local Government Code of 1991.

A counterpart measure has been filed by Liberal Party (LP) vice presidential candidate and Camarines Sur 3rd District Rep. Leni Robredo in the House of Representatives.

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