Local officers and personnel from the member-LGUs of Hadji Muhtamad, Lantawan, Maluso and Sumisip, of the Western Basilan Alliance (WBA) and partner agencies, such as the provincial offices of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform (MAFAR), Ministry of Interior and Local Government (MILG) and the Basilan Provincial Government convened last week to develop their Operations Manual.


The Operations Manual will standardize the WBA's programming, including project design and development, implementation, monitoring and evalualtion, as well as financial and operational processes and procedures, according to Mr Noor Saada, MILAB Project Manager.


Ms Karen Oloroso-Miel, the training consultant, engaged the participants through simulation workshops in discussing and arriving at a consensus on key points of the manual such as organizational structure, personnel complement and financial allocation. She also prepared the participants to present their output before a panel composed of mayors of WBA member municipalities. The mayors as the steering committee of the alliance approved the development and implementation of the operations manual.


Ms January Zanoria, who recently joined the WBA as a technical specialist as supported by the Provincial Government, expressed optimism over the positive engagement of participants in this workshop. She observed their strong sense of commitment and, in a way, reflected also the bullishness of their respective local chief executive. As the newest addition to the WBA team, Ms Zanoria will be working with municipal planning and agriculture officers who will form the technical working group of the alliance and charge with developing projects based on the shared concerns of the member-LGUs.


Western Basilan Alliance is the first interlocal cooperation in Basilan and is being capacitated by the Spanish aid agency AECID-funded MILAB 2 Project, implemented by the Institute for Autonomy and Governance (IAG) in partnership with the provincial and selected municipal governments in the province.