New DILG officer-charge here to develop “winners” among LGUs

SYMBOLIC TURNOVER. DILG Assistant Regional Director Uldarico Razal Jr. (left) turns over the post he had held
for the past few years to the new OIC-Provincial Director of DILG Catanduanes, Leandro Gigantoca (right), last Jan.
4, 2022.

Already impressed by the performance of the DILG provincial office in Catanduanes, the newly-
designated officer-in-charge, LGOO VII Leandro Sipoy Gigantoca, would like to develop winners among
local government units on the island.
In an interview with the Tribune last week, the OIC-provincial director disclosed that he had told DILG
officers to not only maintain their performance but to always do better.
Admitting that he is very competitive, he said he does not want his office to be underachievers.

One area in which he desires to see improvement is the performance of local special bodies, including
the Anti-Drug Abuse Councils, which are compliant with the requirements but some have low
functionality.
Low-performing barangay ADACs need intervention from the Local Government Operations Officer in
the municipality, he said.
“I want the DILG to assist LGUs here in becoming awardees,” Gigantoca said, noting that the national
government started in 2021 the pilot-testing of the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) for
Barangays.
The SGLGB seeks to encourage and challenge barangays to scale up its performance and practices of
good governance that accord primacy to the principles of accountability, transparency, performance and
effectiveness. Only one barangay per municipality were included in the pilot test.
He conceded that the criteria for the award, based on performance indicators in three core areas and one
of three essential areas, is quite difficult to achieve.
The OIC-PD also said it is high time to establish an awards system in Catanduanes that would recognize
performing barangays, including personnel such as tanods and barangay health workers.
One of his goals here is to enhance the existing sub- the Local Governance Regional Resource Center
(LGRRC) at the DILG provincial office which currently occupies the conference room.
Essentially, the center provides special services in local governance and is a repository of knowledge
products in print, electronic and digital format.
LGRRC Libraries in the regional offices and sub-LGRRCs in cities and provinces are linked to a hub
hosted by the Local Government Academy, which also maintains a main and a satellite physical library.
Together with former PD and now assistant regional director Uldarico Razal Jr. and Cluster Head William
Aldea, PD Gigantoca paid courtesy visits to Governor Joseph Cua and the offices of the Catanduanes
provincial police, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology
(BJMP).
Discussed during the courtesy visits were the reactivation of Provincial Management Coordinating
Committee, inter-agency collaboration under the Whole-of-Nation and Whole-of-Government approach,
the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) and its local counterparts
and other matters.
Gigantoca said he will soon go around the 11 towns for a familiarization visit.
Just 40 years old, “Doods,” as he prefers to be called, served as MLGOOs in the different towns of
Camarines Sur for 14 years before he was pulled out to head the Project Development Management Unit
at the regional office where his wife, also an LGOO VII, is a division chief.
The Sorsogon native was later appointed as Cluster Head in Masbate province in October 2021 before he
was assigned to Catanduanes.
An ultra-marathoner, he participated in the 100-kilometer run in the province several years ago, finishing
the grueling job in 23 hours.
Engaging in deep-sea fishing at times, Doods is also a certified scuba diver, which he earned while he
was working as MLGOO in Camarines Sur.
He sees as a plus for the province the establishment of a search, rescue and recovery team with
emphasis on underwater retrieval.
Gigantoca also said his office would check on the LGUs compliance with regards to the COVID-19
response.
The DILG has yet to renew the contracts of the contact tracers it hired to provide services to LGUs, he
said, admitting that the number assigned to each town had been reduced.
He would likewise create a communications team to handle queries of citizens, local officials and the
media, some of which would have to be consulted with the regional legal office before the response would
be released.

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