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The Partnership for Democratic Local Governance in Southeast-Asia (DELGOSEA) in cooperation with Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) Philippines and its partner United Cities and Local Governments Asia Pacific (UCLG ASPAC), held its landmark conference entitled, “50 years of ASEAN – Paving the way for Local Dynamics in a Regional Context” from 16-17 February 2017 at The Discovery Primea , Makati City.
More than 90 guests including representatives of the diplomatic corps, the Philippine Government, the press and the academe attended the said conference.
The KAS country representative to the Philippines, Mr. Benedikt Seemann addressed in his welcoming remarks the distinguished guests and expressed his gratitude towards the network members of the DELGOSEA for their continued efforts and engagement.
The first part of the conference was marked by discussions and talks of the Congress, the Philippine Government and members of Local Government Units of Cambodia, Indonesia and the Philippines. In his welcome remarks Congressman and Vice Chairman of the Committee of Local Governance Joey Salceda stressed the importance of good relations between the Government and local government units (LGU's)
In her keynote speech, Undersecretary Emily Padilla outlined the important benefits of LGU’s for economic, social and environmental progress as well as possible difficulties and intricacies they have to face when implementing a stronger “Bottom up” process.
The first round of panel discussion was moderated by Dr. Francisco Magno. The panelists consisted of Hon. Edgardo Pamintuan, Hon. Samuel Gumarin, Mr. Daru Pratomo and H. E. Mum Krasal. They emphasized the need of building partnerships on a regional and local level. Dr. Francisco Magno concluded that local government units should offer opportunities for social and gender equality.
In the afternoon, talks and panel discussions with members of the diplomatic corps as well as the academe followed.
Dr. Termsak Chalermpalanupap started the afternoon session with a concise introduction into the important role of ASEANS’ unity in ensuring regional stability and the role ASEANS principle of non-interference held within this context.
Followed by Dr. Alex Brillantes’ presentation, he demonstrated the link of local governance and education, advocating firm connections between educational institutions and LGU's. Thus, treating local governments as the frontliners for an inclusive and sustainable development they are.
The second panel discussion was moderated by Dr. Bernadia Tjandradewi. The panelists consisted of Ms. Ika Rachmawati, Dr. Wilfrido Villacorta and Amb. Delia Domingo-Albert. All three discussed the Philippines stance on its ASEAN Chairmanship and its theme “Partnering for change, engaging in the world”. The discussion focuesd on the implications of a people-oriented ASEAN and its development in the last 50 years. The participants shared their hands-on experience on a local, national and international level with the guests.
Ending the discussion Ms. Marisa Lerias expressed her gratitude to all the experts for not only sharing information, but giving local government projects a voice and building such a strong community.