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1Bataan. Go PPPs

1Bataan. Go PPPs

Is it true that all barangays in the province of Bataan have adopted their own public-private partnership (PPP) framework? Is it true that the provincial government of Bataan (PGB) has seven PPP projects in the pipeline? Is it true that PPP contributes to the 1Bataan thrust of the PGB?

The answer to all these questions is a resounding yes! This would not be possible without the active participation of all stakeholders in the province, all driven by a common purpose and all accountable to one another. Allow this columnist to congratulate the PGB, under the leadership of its dynamic and innovative leader, Gov. Albert S. Garcia, for setting such a standard of excellence in governance.

And governance is not without a goal. PGB’s mission and vision set the why—“Excellent public service toward a better quality of life for all.” In order to have better, not just good, quality of life for all, not just for some, all must be part of the team. 1Bataan is that team.

1Bataan is more than a battle cry, slogan or logo. It is a way of life of an organized collective. A testament to this is the adoption and implementation of a common developmental strategy from the provincial level, city and municipal levels, even at the barangay level.

Bataan province, Balanga City, 10 of the 11 component municipalities and all the 237 barangays within the province, have embraced public-private partnership (PPP) as a program, so that the whole of Bataan, not just its parts, by 2020, will be the “preferred location for eco-industrial investments leading to the highest Human Development Index in the Philippines.” Provincial Ordinance 02, Series of 2013, titled “Integrated Public-Private Partnership Code of the Provincial Government of Bataan”, enacted during the time of former governor Tet Garcia, is the enabling or “parent” framework that made this happen.

This is surely a first in Philippine history, even in the world, this columnist believes, where PPP is formally advocated down to the basic units of the bureaucracy. Also noteworthy is the fact that this province-led approach is in sync with the thrust of the Department of the Interior and Local Government.

Under Memorandum Circular 120-2016, barangay-level PPPs are encouraged as a means to respond to the needs of the people.

Being responsive is exemplified in the seven PPP projects of the PGB, all of which are joint ventures with the private sector. The two awarded projects are Bataan Government Center and Central Business Hub and Development, Operation and Maintenance of the Bataan Terminal Complex. In various stages of the competitive process are five  projects, namely, establishment of dialysis centers in the district hospitals of Bataan; lease and development of the former Bataan Thermal Power Plant; establishment of engineered Sanitary Landfill; establishment, operation, management and maintenance of the Mariveles Hospital; and the next-generation transport-ferry system.

The challenge has been posed. We hope that all provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays will follow suit. Let PPP be a truly bottom-up initiative. Go 1Bataan. Go 1Philippines.


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