OGPinas! officially launches, strengthens public participation

Transforming the government through the Philippine Open Government Partnership (PH-OGP), the Department of Budget and Management, in collaboration with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), successfully launched OGPinas!, a national advocacy campaign on open government on October 11, 2023.

OGPinas! aims to raise awareness about the PH-OGP, especially at the local level; provide avenues and more channels of communication for government-civil society partnerships; and ultimately, strengthen public participation in policy-making and governance in the country.

More than a hundred participants from the National Capital Region, Region IV-A, Region IV-B, and Region V joined the first leg of the milestone campaign held at SM North Skydome in Quezon City.

Whole-of-government for open government

The national government was in full force supporting the open government cause with DBM Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman, DILG Undersecretary Marlo L. Iringan, PIA Director-General Jose Torres Jr., and Metropolitan Manila Development Authority General Manager Procopio G. Lipana joining the event.

In her keynote speech, Secretary Pangandaman, who is also the PH-OGP Chairperson, said: “Napakarami po nating magagandang inisyatibo at pagsusumikap upang isulong ang bukás na pamamahala sa bansa. Hangad po natin na sa pamamagitan ng OGPinas, mailapit natin ang mga inisyatibong ito upang yakapin at mas lalo pa po nating mapagyaman.”

Since taking oath as budget secretary, she has been continuously pushing and advocating for open government in the bureaucracy, together with digital transformation and budget reforms.

The PH-OGP was finally institutionalized with the signing of Executive Order No. 30 in June 2023.

“Mapalad din po tayo dahil ang ating mahal na Pangulo—ang Pangulong Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos Jr.—ay sumusuporta sa ating adbokasiya ng Open Government,” Secretary Pangandaman added.

Meanwhile, emphasizing that the OGPinas! campaign is the country’s vehicle for transformation, DILG Undersecretary Iringan cited, “Let us bear in mind that open governance is not just a policy, it is the very foundation of a strong democracy; it is not just an advocacy, it is an imperative as we believe that we can do more when we work together.”

Representing Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte, City Administrator Michael Victor Alimurung welcomed the participants and shared the City Government’s various efforts to maintain transparency and accountability such as the accreditation of more than 4,000 civil society organizations, and the creation of a people’s council composed of persons with disabilities, senior citizens, and solo parents. “Our most important assets towards good governance are our people,” the city administrator noted.

Recognizing PH-OGP champions 

Champions of open government across different sectors were also recognized during the program, including the local government of Quezon City for the public sector and the SM Supermalls for the private sector.

Accepting the recognition on behalf of SM Prime Holdings Executive Committee Chairman Hans Sy, Senior Vice President Bien Mateo expressed their commitment to nurture their relationship with the government and catalyze a better quality of life for Filipinos through the whole-of-society approach. A champion of open government in the civil society sector, Unang Hakbang Foundation Inc. President Maria Olivia Lucas highlighted that, despite being a work in progress, the PH-OGP is a very good platform for reopening the conversation between the government and non-government sectors.

The Quezon City leg of OGPinas! was organized by the DBM-National Capital Region, headed by Regional Director Ruby P. Muro, together with DBM Regions IV-A, IV-B, V, and partner agencies. The Visayas leg of OGPinas! will be conducted in Iloilo City on October 18, 2023.


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