Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. on Sunday hoped the PHP5-million street lighting project in Mangaldan, Pangasinan would greatly boost the town’s peace and order initiatives.
“Napakaimportante ng pailaw na ito, ng installation ng 115 solar lights. Lagi kong sinasabi, what if ang naglalakad sa gabi ay anak nating babae, o asawa nating babae, yan ang laging barometer ko kung safe ang lugar (This lighting project, the installation of 115 solar lights, is very important. I always say, what if the one walking at night is our daughter, or our wife, that’s always my barometer the place is safe),” Abalos said in his message during the kick off of the project which was funded through the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) incentive.
In a statement Monday, Abalos also commended the town for putting the incentive it has received to good use.
The project involves the installation of 115 solar panels to provide lighting along the Alangacan Road traversing barangays Tebag, Salaan, Palua, and portions of Pogo, and directly benefiting the Angalacan Eco-Tourism Park which is one of the town’s tourist destinations.
The project is already the 5th SGLG-funded initiative in Mangaldan, which has won the award in 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2022.
The SGLG incentive fund was established through Republic Act 11292 or the SGLG Act of 2019 which aims to harmonize local government initiatives with the national development agenda.
“Sa SGLG, pinipili namin ang pinakamagagaling na LGUs. Napakahirap manalo dito, para kang pumasok sa butas ng karayom. At ako ay natutuwa dahil laging lumulusot ang Mangaldan (In SGLG, we choose the best LGUs. It’s so hard to win here, it’s like going through a needle’s eye. And I’m glad because the Mangaldan always comes through),” Abalos said.
He also urged local officials to be proactive in their leadership by engaging in regular dialogue with their constituents and collectively finding and implementing solutions to their locality’s problems.
“Leadership is knowing about your community. Ang pagiging magaling na lider ay ang pag-alam sa iyong lugar, sa kalakasan nito at kahinaan nito. Makukuha mo ang solusyon sa pakikipag dayalogo sa mga tao. Kailangang makasalamuha mo ang tao (Being a good leader is knowing your place, its strengths and weaknesses. You can find the solution in dialogue with people. You have to interact with people),” he said.
“Matapos mo makonsulta ang tao makasama ang tao sa pag-implementa (After you have consulted with the public, start the implementation) and once you implement it, I tell you, you cannot go wrong because that is leadership coming from the heart, coming from the community. It’s a proactive kind of leadership,” he added.
Abalos also urged them to harness agriculture which is the biggest resource of their town and province and continue to work for the welfare of their constituents.
Meanwhile, Mangaldan Mayor Bona Fe De Vera-Parayno thanked DILG for the SGLG incentive and for serving as an inspiration.
The SGLG is an institutionalized award, incentive, honor, and recognition-based program which aims to bring about inclusive and people-oriented reforms that will enable LGUs to foster a culture of good governance.
Earlier, Abalos reminded the LGUs through its DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2023-019 that the SGLG incentive fund can only be used for projects that support the following areas: good fiscal administration; disaster preparedness; social protection and sensitivity program; health; education; peace and order and public safety; and business friendliness and competitiveness. (PNA)