How decentralization is institutionalized

The Philippines has a League of Cities, a League of Provinces, a League of Local Government Units, a League of Barangays. If you read their mission statements and objectives, you’d wonder how come decentralization is not working, what the factors are involved in the evolution of the new “Juan Tamad”, that is, people (including elected local leaders) waiting or lazing around for the “blessing” from the President (regardless of who) even on matters that can already be taken up independently and locally (and so by lazing around and waiting for the President to spoon-feed them (the State Of the Nation Address reflects local growth and development to the extent that localities have worked for it themselves) so much as localities lose so much in terms of their future), why poverty (in the economic, social, intellectual sense) continues to be a mark of localities, and why people are not alarmed by the changing local environment.

And then you learn that well yes these Leagues do have their regular meetings but who are in attendance, the process through which local issues are actually brought to the attention of these organizations, and what actually are put in the agenda in these meetings determine the extent to which objectives are successfully attained. But the Leagues as these are currently being run are largely political gathering and networking venues for Local Chief Executives. Otherwise, if discussions and decisions here were guided by what the Leagues wrote they will work toward for, significant outcomes concerning inter-local issues should have been palpable and enjoyed by the locals a long time ago. Then, decentralization should have been institutionalized.


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