Barangay Development Plan
ROSES AND THORNS - Pia Roces Morato (The Philippine Star) - October 30, 2020 - 12:00am

The Department of Budget and Management explains that the need to prepare a barangay development plan or BDP is in agreement with the budgeting principle that “local government budgets shall operationalize the approved local development plans” as mandated under Sec.305 of R.A. No. 7160. Simply put, without the priority programs and projects embodied in the plan, there is no basis for the programming of funds and therefore, no basis for budgeting.

Planning is linked with budgeting as the plan, like in all other “planned” areas of our lives, sets the priority areas of services (in this case the barangays) and specifies the target outputs and accomplishments. Like all budgets being put into place, the purpose is to be able to provide the available resources to carry out the activities required to accomplish the targets. In school we learn that each barangay serves as the primary planning and implementing unit of government policies, plans, programs, projects and activities in the community. With each government unit having a multi-sectoral development plan initiated by its development council, the BDP plays a critical role in the comprehensive development and progress of the barangay.

It is important to note the data which show how many barangays throughout the years relied on their investment programs rather than the BDP, in formulating their annual budget due to the technical process involved in development planning, an area, as explained, that still needs to be refined. The Whole of Nation Approach or Executive Order 70 places focus on development at the barangay level with strategies meant to achieve inclusive and sustainable peace. A DILG circular which was issued to provide guidance precisely to craft the barangay development plans ensures that the process is inclusive as it combines sectoral and thematic concerns in the BDP, promotes participation of barangay residents and other stakeholders, aligns the BDP to the comprehensive plan of the city or municipality and collaborates as well as coordinates between and among barangays.

A Barangay Development Plan is a 3-year comprehensive multi-sectoral development plan that is put together through an inclusive and participatory approach headed by its development council and approved by its sanggunian. It is an official document  of the baranagay that specifies policy options, programs, projects and activities that are intended to contribute to the over-all achievement of the barangay’s development goals and objectives. Every barangay has a profile that shows us its current situation as well as its history. A barangay profile shows prevailing issues and concerns in the locality that serve as data in the formulation of a BDP. A plan with a budget therefore is the very way we bring down services to the grassroots level in order for their constituents to know that their government is working for them.

President Duterte himself and through the BDP, chairs the Task Force or NTF-ELCAC where peace and development is the primary agenda. While I remain to be no expert in local governance, more so in budget management, I do know for a fact that a development plan that begins at the basic political unit is certainly the way to dispense the rightful services that government can provide on the ground, most especially to the most vulnerable. Davao City has shown us by their example on PEACE 911 how being able to provide basic services to their people, most especially those that have been deprived of such, that inclusivity indeed cultivates an enriched environment. It is all in the planning after. I fully support this administration’s initiative on peace and development and empowering our barangay, as National Security Adviser Jun Esperon says, is like equipping your most valuable soldiers on the ground.

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