Legazpi City wins national prize in digital governance

LEGAZPI CITY (Bicol Standard) – Legazpi City bested the City of Manila and around 100 local government units nationwide by winning the Government Internal Process Award in the Digital Governance Award 2020 of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) over the weekend.

The awards are in in partnership with the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines and the Department of Interior and Local Government.

Legazpi is also the only LGU in Bicol to have won any prize in said awards.

The Digital Governance Awards recognized the city’s innovative actions, practices, and contributions in streamlining the issuance of business permits and licenses and minimizing red tape, Mayor Noel Rosal said to the media.

Legazpi City successfully reduced the 15-step business transaction process to just three, starting in 2018.

These steps are online application, online or offline payment, and operation.

“The scheme allows a business to operate while waiting for the hard copy of the permit as long as they already complied with the payment requirements. The permit could be sent even through a text message,” Rosal said.

The local chief executive added that the innovation can be replicated in other LGUs which seek to eliminate the traditionally tedious, inefficient, and kilometric process.

Under Rosal’s administration, Legazpi City has been enjoying a series of recognitions for its good governance, including a four-year streak in receiving the Seal of Good Local Governance from the Department of Interior and Local Government.

Meanwhile, at the Digital Governance Awards, second place in the same category was granted to the City of Manila, followed by LGU Alaminos, Pangasinan.

According to the DICT, the awards aim to harness the potentials of ICT in improving the delivery of public service.

“By drawing attention to the best practices in integrating ICT capabilities and solutions, the different sectors of society and government units are enabled in their roles as catalyst of change. It is hoped that with the strategy, the country will see the proliferation of revolutionary ICT initiatives that will support clearer, wider and faster access to information in our local government,” Jocelle Batapa Sigue, Co-Founder and Past President, and Vice President of the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP) wrote.

“The program has four primary objectives, namely, to highlight and encourage the effective and efficient utilization of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in the delivery of services and performance of the duties and responsibilities by local government units (LGUs); to share and replicate innovative practices, and commend, collate and document LGUs in integrating ICT in their processes to serve as example and benchmarks to other LGUs; to improve the business development, social services and the general ecosystem of the LGUs and motivate the private and business sector to actively participate and/or invest in the growth of the LGUs and to promote citizen’s responsibility and participation as well as accountability, efficiency and transparency in governance responsibility and encourage innovation,” she added.

Below is the full list of winners of the Digital Governance Awards 2020:

Best in Customer Empowerment – Municipality Level – San Fabian, Pangasinan
Best in Customer Empowerment – City Level – San Juan City
Best in Customer Empowerment – Provincial Level – Laguna
Best in Business Empowerment – Municipality level – Mina, Iloilo
Best in Business Empowerment – City level – Valenzuela City
Best in Business Empowerment – Provincial level – Agusan del Sur (Special Citation)
Best in Internal Processes Award – Municipality level –Bayambang, Pangasinan
Best in Internal Processes Award – City level – Legazpi City, Albay
Best in Internal Processes Award – Provincial level – Davao de Oro
Best in LGU Empowerment Award - Municipality level – Guagua, Pampanga
Best in LGU Empowerment Award - City level –Tuguegarao City, Cagayan
Best in LGU Empowerment Award – Provincial Level – Davao de Oro
Best in Covid-19 Pandemic Response – Municipality Level – Baliwag, Bulacan
Best in Covid-19 Pandemic Response – City Level – Valenzuela City
Best in Covid-19 Pandemic Response – Provincial Level – Iloilo