Prior to last year’s State of the Nation address, experts from the Movement for Good Governance (MGG) gave President Aquino a grade of 4.69 for his first year in office, a rating based standards or metrics that the President himself set for his administration at the beginning of his term. The rating of 4.69 meant that “there have been accomplishments, but more needs to be done.”
After a year, MGG notes with enthusiasm the improvements in the performance of the Aquino administration. MGG’s second assessment paper shows the increase of scores in almost all areas of governance and gives the administration a total score of 5.59.
We commend the successes of government in employment generation, in controlling inflation, in instituting transparency led by DBM and DILG, the provision of assistance to local governments based on performance, the decline in infant mortality, the greening program, and consultative processes in budgeting and in formulating the mining policy. MGG lauds the significant strides made in increasing the amount of assistance to private schools through the GATSPE, and the preparations for the use of the mother tongue in instruction.
The challenges that government continuously faces are in poverty reduction, provision of infrastructure, increasing global competitiveness, expanding the Philhealth coverage, greater protection to mothers, broader and deeper access of the poor to health care, environmental protection, development of safer sources of energy, and population management via responsible parenthood. The adoption of the K to 12 curriculum has to have a seamless plan and mode of implementation and needs to be backed up resources. Greater attention should be made on the development of technical-vocational education, enhancing the reading skills of children and sharpening their capability and aptitude in science and in mathematics.
The management of public finance should gear towards capturing the increasing labor force as well as those in the shadow economy into the tax base, reducing the number of free riders through a reduction and simplification of tax incentives, installing certainty in the enforcement of tax laws, sanctions against big-time tax evaders, and a service orientation among the revenue enforcement agencies.
To read the assessment paper in full or to download a copy, please click here.
In the news: Good governance NGO gives Aquino grade of 5.59 out of 10 (Philippine Daily Inquirer, 23 July 2012).