GOOD GOVERNANCE. Mayor Roland Boie Evardone (standing) is shown with the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) national validation team during their visit to Arteche, Eastern Samar last August. The town is one of the 17 areas in Eastern Visayas which are qualified to receive the SGLG seal. (Photo courtesy of the Arteche local government)

TACLOBAN CITY – Receiving the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) from the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is motivating a poverty-stricken and rural town in Eastern Samar to improve its delivery of basic services.

This is the first time the municipality of Arteche earned the recognition after several attempts since 2017, said Mayor Roland Boie Evardone. This year, the town is one of the 17 areas in Eastern Visayas considered as SGLG passers.

"We felt honor for this recognition. Even our town is considered as one of the farthest in the province, we have excelled and gained recognition. This will help us in promoting our town to let other people know that there is a town called Arteche in Eastern Samar," Evardone told reporters on Monday.

"As a town with a poverty incidence of 56 percent and a population of over 16,000, this recognition somehow motivates us to do better," he added.

Evardone credited the residents and local government workers for supporting their policies and programs.

Last month, town officials toured the town of Barugo, Leyte to conduct benchmarking on good practices that they can implement in their town. Barugo has been the consistent SGLG passer in the past five years. This year, the town is the only SGLG awardee in Leyte province.

Aside from Arteche, other SGLG recipients in Eastern Samar are Oras, Can-avid, Sulat, and Salcedo.

In other provinces of the region, awardees are Basey, Calbiga, Gandara and Paranas in Samar; Liloan, Macrohon, Padre Burgos, and Sogod in Southern Leyte; and Gamay, Lavezares, and San Roque in Northern Samar.

In the city level, passers are Tacloban and Baybay in Leyte, and Maasin in Southern Leyte. Samar is the lone province that made it to the list.

The SGLG is a mechanism of the DILG, which aims to gauge into institutionalizing a culture of performance among local governments. It utilizes performance information for interventions and actions. The award provides incentives to recipients through monetary grants.

The criteria for SGLG include financial and administrative management; disaster preparedness; social protection; peace and order; business-friendliness and competitiveness; environmental protection; and tourism, culture, and arts.

The DILG released the list on Oct. 26 and awarding of the seal will be held at the Manila Hotel on November 4 and 5. (PNA)