Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Group hits new lake plan

(reposting from Tempo news)
MANILA, Philippines (Tempo) – The Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) and the Save Laguna Lake Movement (SLLM) has assailed the government plan to implement the P300-billion, 10-year Laguna Lake Master Plan (LLMP), which is worse than the scrapped P18.7-billion Laguna Lake Dredging Project (LLRP).
Pamalakaya national chairman Fernando Hicap and SLLM convenor Pedro Gonzalez also twitted MalacaƱang for trying to lure the Belgian government into financing components of the LLMP after banging away at the LLRP, which was proposed by Baggerwerken Decloedt en Zoon (BDC) and approved in February 2010 and thrice upheld as valid, legal, and binding by the Department of Justice (DoJ).
BDC spent P400 million to conduct studies at the Laguna de Bay for four years and worked to secure Official Development Assistance (ODA) from the Belgian government only for President Benigno S. Aquino III to slam the project twice in major policy speeches.

Friday, September 9, 2011

AidWatch-Philippines present main points of CSO consensus for Busan Statement

September 9, 2011- Civil Society Organizations represented by AidWatch- Philippines join 1st consultation of the Technical Working Group on the country statement of the Philippines for the Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Busan, South Korea on November 29-December 1.

The TWG is expected to come up with the statement before the start of the HLF4.

While AidWatch affirms its June statement, it has presented ten points for the statement as a result of a consensus among its network organizations prior to the TWG meeting.

The points are as follows:

1.       We call on the government and its development partners to ensure an open and broader Partnership for Development  Effectiveness or a new development cooperation model that is built strongly on eradicating poverty, realizing human rights, gender equality, social justice and environmental sustainability in the Philippines.

2.       Democratic ownership is the key to any assistance to be developmental.  We call on the government and its development partners to take action in ensuring open, inclusive and meaningful engagement with all development actors and stakeholders.  Particular mechanisms must be in place for greater participation of grassroots-based aid recipients from the program & project conceptualization, implementation, monitoring and evaluation activities.

3.       Civil society organizations in the Philippines, diverse and dynamic as they are must be truly recognized as development actors in their own right.  The government and its development partners must urgently take steps to provide the enabling environment for CSOs to meaningfully participate in the aid processes including greater support for their capacity development.  They must give priority to civil society groups who are people’s organizations and non-governmental organizations with linkages with people’s organizations.

4.       People’s governance mechanisms must be in place to ensure transparency and accountability, inclusive and meaningful participation of people’s organizations in development programs and projects. Accountability mechanisms must also be in place for CSOs to exercise their watchdog role in making government and its development partners accountable in the implementation of official development programs and projects.

5.       Realizing education for all must be a top priority in development.  We call on the government and its development partners to seriously address challenges in achieving education for all targets; ensure social investments in human development as well as immediate human resources for nation-building and national development.

6.       We call on the government’s development partners to review and disseminate studies on the effectiveness of their aid policies vis a vis development results for the country particularly in the communities that they serve. 

7.       We call on the government’s development partners to increase the proportion of their aid money dedicated to establish partnerships with people’s organizations in the poorest regions and localities in the country.

8.       All development projects must be aligned with the government and its development partner country government’s commitments in internationally agreed covenants and conventions

9.       We call on government and its development partners to ensure that the participation of the private sector (big business) does not take primacy over the public interest. 

10.   We call on governments and its development partners must ensure policy coherence in climate change action plans and ensure that development assistance going into climate change adaptation and mitigation programs are given directly benefiting the communities.

Other CSOs with AidWatch in the consultation were representatives from the Center for Environmental Concerns (CEC-Philippines) and the Council for People's Development and Governance. Among the donor agencies present were World Bank, USAid, AusAid, JICA, KOICA, UNDP, GIZ and a representative of China among others. For the government side, the National Economic Development Authority, Department irector of Finance and the Commission on Audit attended. It was facilitated by NEDA Deputy Director General Rolando Tungpalan who also sits in the  Working Party on Aid Effectiveness.

The TWG sets a multi-stakeholders' meeting on Aid Effectiveness on September 28, 2011 as part of the country's preparatory activities towards the Busan HLF4.