National stakeholders hopeful for the passage of proposed Bangsamoro Local Governance Code
March 4, 2023

MANILA ― Several representatives from the national government agencies, academic institutions, and civil society organizations who participated in the fifth and final leg of public consultations for the Bangsamoro Local Governance Code have expressed full support for the code, today, March 4.

Trisha Baraan of the Department of Budget and Management pledged to fully support the Bangsamoro Parliament’s initiatives and efforts to create an inclusive local governance code.

She added that they will “work closely with the regional government and extend assistance to ensure the effective and efficient management of public funds, particularly those that will be sourced from the national government.”

Georgina Ann Hernandez Yang, executive director of Galing Pook Foundation, lauded and expressed support for the passage of the code. The BLGC, she said, is a vehicle for the general welfare of the Bangsamoro people.

Many of the stakeholders expressed support for the enactment of the proposed code, and others are pushing for stronger provisions on devolution, decentralization, women’s participation, and revenue.

Professor of Local Government Law in the Ateneo de Manila School of Law Atty. Alberto Agra commended the BLGC drafters for creating an ‘innovative’ code.

He further recommended that the proposed code should have a clear provision defining the regional autonomy, the local autonomy of constituent local government units, the fiscal autonomy of BARMM, and regulation.

With all the consultations, the CLG has gathered 42 position papers from various stakeholders in Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Maguindanao del Sur and del Norte, Lanao del Sur, Cotabato City, and the BARMM Special Geographic Area.

CLG Chair Atty. Raissa Jajurie said that the committee will gather all the input and recommendations from the consultations to ensure that it best reflects the ideals of the Bangsamoro people.

The CLG has also extended the submission deadline for position papers until March 31.

She said that the government targets passing the local governance code in the second quarter of the year.

With the timeline of the committee, she said, they will have ample time to review and scrutinize the proposed code, as the BLGC is a crucial measure that will define the relationship between the local government units and the regional government.

BTA Bill No. 30, or the Bangsamoro Local Governance Code, aims to strengthen the supervisory power of the Bangsamoro Government through the MILG.

It applies to all constituent provinces, cities, municipalities, barangays, and other political subdivisions, as well as officials, offices, or agencies of the Bangsamoro government.

The BLGC has four books, which are: general provisions, which contain statements of policies, principles, processes, and mechanisms for effective local governance; local taxation and fiscal matters, which contain the taxing powers, and other revenue-raising powers of the constituent local government units and the corresponding administrative structures and processes necessary in the exercise of such powers; Bangsamoro constituent units, which contain the structure of the constituent government units and the powers and duties of constituent units and elective officials; and lastly, miscellaneous and final provisions, which contain penal provisions, provisions on review and implementation mechanisms, and transitory provisions.

The Bangsamoro Transition Authority, which serves as the interim government of the region, is mandated to enact the local governance code during the transition period along with other codes such as administrative, civil service, education, electoral, revenue, and indigenous peoples’ rights.

The administrative, civil service, and education codes are among the priority legislation enacted into law already. (LTAIS-Public Information, Publication, and Media Relations Division)

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