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Multi-sectoral Alliance for Transparency and Accountability in Samar

MATA-SAMAR

Catbalogan 6700, Philippines


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VISION:

A dynamic and responsive multi-sectoral alliance of civil society organizations in Samar that seeks to promote a corrupt-free, progressive and peaceful community with all its basic social services equally accessed by empowered and informed citizenry through a transparent and participatory good governance.

 

MISSION:

Ensuring participatory good governance in Samar and the prompt delivery of basic services to the impoverished Samarenos by strengthening capacities of journalists, civil society workers and citizenry to identify, monitor, and report transparency and accountability issues on the use of public funds in the province of Samar.

 

Objectives:

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To organize, expand and consolidate the Multi-sectoral Alliance for Transparency and Accountability in Samar (MATA-Samar) as an organization for good governance in Samar province.
 

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To strengthen the capacity of the members to research, monitor and report on the use of public funds by government agencies, the provincial government and other local government units of Samar.
 

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To conduct research, monitoring and reporting on the use public funds by government agencies and the local government units (LGUs).
 

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To increase the awareness of Samarnons in and outside Samar province on the government use of public funds and generate their participation in monitoring these funds, programs and projects.
 

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To take appropriate actions to curb corruption of government funds.
 

 

Background:

Even before the different sectors have organized as MATA-Samar, several advocacy groups were already existent. However, on May 26, 2010, Mr. Allan Davis of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR), through the Philippine Public Transparency Reporting Project began working with the Samar CSOs and media as one of its four (4) local pilot projects nationwide.

The Philippine Public Transparency Reporting Project (PPTRP) held its first Transparency and Anti-Corruption Reporting Training in Catbalogan on June 2010. A total of 20 people took part in the training, comprised of media practitioners, church-based organizations, civil society organizations working on transparency, and provincial government employees seeking for better fiscal transparency of their current local officials. Of the 20 trainees, 11 are from media organizations including the online Samarnews.com, Samar Media Productions, DYOG-Calbayog, DYMS-Catbalogan, and the Leyte-Samar Daily Express. Five are provincial government employees and members of the Alliance of Concerned Employees of Samar (ACES). Four are from CSOs based in Samar, namely the Samar Partnership for Peace and Development (SPPADE), Isog Han Samar, and the Social Action Center of the Diocese of Calbayog.

These groups are concerned over the systemic and continuing failure of the government to comply with the anti-corruption laws.

Following on from an initial meeting with PPTRP in May, a training in June and three development and planning meetings held on October 2010, an existing group of concerned people representing different sectors of the local community and including local government employees of Samar have come together and formalized themselves and their plans to promote and ensure participatory good governance in the province, thus, the birth of MATA-Samar.

MATA-Samarís activities include the development of standards to assess public officialsí compliance with corruption laws; production of Budget Watch composed of data, news and commentary on local procurement issues; produce public report cards on local government accountability and organize media and public events to engage local government officials and generate public feedback. Itís closely coordinating with the PPTRP website Pera Natin 'to! that contains reports, blogs, photos, videos and podcasts of MATA-Samar.  Likewise, a Facebook account for MATA-Samar is being maintained to establish means for the public from Samar and other areas to take part or share views on transparency in Samar and elsewhere.

Recently, MATA-Samar has been tapped by several advocacy groups and has been acknowledged in the national level after a Memorandum of Agreement between the Samar Island Partnership for Peace and Development (SIPPAD) and DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo was facilitated that would strengthen MATA-Samarís transparency efforts.

 


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VISION: A corrupt-free, progressive and peaceful Samar.

MISSION: Strengthening capacities of journalists, civil society workers and citizenry to pursue responsive governance in the province.