The RDC XI officials pose for posterity after the end-of-term meeting of the Council on June 26, 2013. (seated left-right) Acting RDC XI Secretary Mae Ester Guiamadel, Vice-Chair RD Maria Lourdes D. Lim, Chair Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio, Co-Chair Vicente T. Lao and Governor Arturo T. Uy of Compostela Valley (standing) PSR Eriberto Barriga, Jr.-RITECC XI Chair, PSR Lyda Canson-SDC XI Co-Chair, PSR Dolores Alegarbes, Alma Monica dela Paz-RCSD XI Chair and EDC XI Co-Chair, Prosecutor Antonio Arellano-DAC XI Chair, RD Mariano R. Alquiza-IDC XI Co-Chair, BSP Director Demetrio E. Casipong-MFC XI Co-Chair, RD Gary Martel-RPMC XI Co-Chair; and ARD Elsie Mae Solidum representing RD Anthony C. Sales-SDC XI Chair.

Outgoing Davao City Mayor and Chairperson of the Regional Development Council (RDC) XI articulated the milestones of the Council for the past three years during the RDC XI End-of-Term meeting on June 26, 2013 at the NEDA-RDC XI Center in Bangkal.

Citing the directions that the region has set in 2010, Chairperson Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio was pleased to report on Davao Region’s expanded absorptive capacity for employment having sustained the 95 percent level in terms of employment rates in 2011 and 2012. “This could only mean that we have succeeded in our efforts to provide more employment opportunities to our people,” she was quoted in her State of the Region Address (SORA) during the meeting.

 Still in her SORA, Chair Duterte-Carpio mentioned that in terms of value, the gross regional domestic product (GRDP) had been increasing and the region rebounded as the top economy among the Mindanao Regions in 2011. Davao Region’s poverty incidence was also still the lowest among Mindanao regions, she added.

On programs and projects, Chair Duterte-Carpio cited the Maramag-Bunawan 230kV Transmission Project, the Sibulan Hydro-Electric Power Plant in Davao del Sur, the reconstruction of the Baganga Bridge, the Mindanao Cancer Center, the upgrading of District Hospitals of Kapalong, Carmen, and Samal in Davao del Norte, and the construction of the Modern Rice Processing Complex in Davao del Sur as among the results of the project development efforts of the Council in the past 3 years.

 The members of the Council for the period 2010-2013 posed as a united Team Davao that collaborates efforts in creating policies and programs that will best serve the Davao Region.
The members of the Council for the period 2010-2013 posed as a united Team Davao that collaborates efforts in creating policies and programs that will best serve the Davao Region.

In terms of strengthening collaboration and interface of public and private sectors, Chair Duterte-Carpio mentioned that the Council has embarked and successfully institutionalized the conduct of LGU consultations for the Annual Investment Program (AIP) which resulted to improved coordination among NGAs, LGUs, as well as the civil society, and better complementation of resources. It has also tightened the link between investment programming and budgeting, ensuring that proposed programs and projects in the RDIP are funded by way of their inclusion in agency Central Offices’ budgets.

The Council has pushed for initiatives and policy recommendations relating to mainstreaming Disaster Risk Reduction/Climate Change Adaptation (DRR/CCA) in sub-national planning, addressing issues in the Diwalwal Mineral Reservation Area, supporting the region’s priority industries, rationalizing public higher education through the establishment of the Davao Regional State University System (DRSUS), mainstreaming gender dimensions, promoting peace and development in local planning, anticipating future energy requirements through profiling of renewable sources of energy, among others.

RDC XI Chair Sara Duterte-Carpio was appointed by His Excellency Benigno S. Aquino III in December 2010 as Chairperson of RDC XI. Mr. Vicente T. Lao, RDC XI private sector representative (PSR) who was then outgoing RDC XI Chair for 2007-2010, was appointed as Co-Chair. Mayor Duterte-Carpio became the first lady RDC XI Chair, as well as the first to be appointed from the government sector since the reorganization of the RDC XI in 1986. Its past Chairpersons, Atty. Jesus V. Ayala (who served for 20 years) and Mr. Vicente T. Lao were from the private sector.

The RDC XI is the highest policy-making body tasked to facilitate regional development through the formulation of development plans and investment programs, conduct judicious review on the appropriation of resources, direction setting and the coordination of the economic and social development efforts of local government units, agency regional offices, state universities and colleges and special development authorities in the region.

Following her appointment as Chairperson of RDC XI, Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio was elected as Chairperson of the NEDA Board Regional Development Committee-Mindanao Area (RDCom-Mindanao) during its reorganizational meeting on 20 January 2011. She was given a significant role in the NEDA Board-RDCom as the voice of Mindanao’s policy concerns specifically those taken up by RDCom-Mindanao. The RDCom is chaired by the Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and NEDA Director General and is comprised of the Secretaries of DBM and DILG, 3 RDC Chairs representing Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, and 4 Regional Development Experts from the private sector and academe as its members, to include RDC XI Co-Chair Vicente T. Lao.

During the recent RDC XI end-of-term meeting, Chair Duterte-Carpio said that she is hopeful that the collaboration and convergent efforts shall be sustained and strengthened so that the Region will make a mark in its quest for improving the quality of life of the people of Davao Region as the nation’s rising global frontier. The updated Davao Region Development Plan (RDP), 2014-2016, revalidated RDP Results Matrices, Regional Development Investment Program (RDIP) 2014-2016 were approved during the meeting for endorsement to the incoming set of RDC XI officials as the legacy of the current Council.

Chair Duterte-Carpio thanked all the members of the Council, especially RDC XI Private Sector Representative Vicente T. Lao and NEDA XI Regional Director Maria Lourdes D. Lim who ably assisted her as the Council’s Co-Chair and Vice-chairperson, respectively.

The RDC XI is set to be reorganized in August 2013 following the election of a new set of local officials for the term 2013-2016 and the selection of a new batch of Private Sector Representatives in July 2013.