Being named as the Best Performing Province of Region 6 or Western Visayas is no small feat, but Negros Occidental makes it seem easy as the province has done it again this year.
On Wednesday at the Diversion 21 Hotel in Iloilo, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) gave the recognition to Negros Occidental during the 2018 Search for Excellence in Local Governance Awards.
Provincial Planning and Development Officer Ma. Lina Sanogal called the award a “nice welcome” for the province after its reintegration with the region late last year.
“We skipped the Excell Awards in the two years we were under the Negros Island Region (NIR). Before that, we have already been elevated to the Hall of Fame as Best Performing Province,” said Sanogal.
Abolition of the NIR
Due to lack of funds, President Rodrigo Duterte effectively abolished the NIR last year with Executive Order No. 38.
With this, Negros Occidental reverted to Western Visayas while Negros Oriental reverted to Central Visayas.
Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., together with Sanogal, received the award from DILG Undersecretary for Operations Epimaco Densing III and Regional Director Anthony Nuyda. The Provincial Planning and Development Officer added that the award honors the Negros Occidental provincial government for its continued excellent governance.
“It is a fitting tribute to Governor Marañon’s various accomplishments as he finishes his term in mid-2019,” she said.
Governor Marañon is in his third and last term as governor and won’t be seeking an elective post in the May 2019 elections.
Negros Occidental was also named the top province in the Excellence in Economic Governance and Excellence in Environmental Governance categories, and the second runner-up in Excellence in Local Legislation.
Capiz was awarded the first runner-up in the Best Performing Province category while Antique was named second runner-up.
Municipalities from Negros Occidental were also recognized during the 2018 Search for Excellence in Local Governance Awards. The Municipality of Binalbagan was second runner-up for the Best Performing Municipality (1st to 3rd Class) category, while Bago City was also second runner-up as Best Performing City.
Additionally, Binalbagan won the special award in Excellence in Social Governance, Bago City in Excellence in Economic Governance and Most Innovative Best Practice, and San Carlos City in Excellence in Environmental Governance and Excellence in Local Legislation.
Along with the Best Performing Province award, Negros Occidental also received a cash prize of PHP20,000 while each of the special awards got PHP10,000.
The “Pagdayaw” or the Excell Awards is an annual tradition that recognizes the excellence in local governance of local government units (LGUs) and DILG personnel. It highlights the achievements in Administrative Governance, Social Governance, Economic Governance, Environmental Governance, and Local Legislation of the LGUs in the region.