Devolution Ready: Realizing Meaningful Autonomy

With just less than a year before the Mandanas ruling is fully implemented, an estimated Php 295B worth of programs, activities, and projects (PAPs) from national government agencies (NGAs) is expected to be devolved in 2022 to comply with the ruling (BusinessWorld, 2021). The added budget and devolution of PAPs will empower local government units (LGUs) more in realizing genuine and meaningful local autonomy, as mandated by the Local Government Code of 1991.

This webinar discusses the steps taken by NGAs and LGUs in preparation for the implementation of the Mandanas ruling in 2022. Specifically, it examines the utilization of the internal revenue allotment (IRA). Many NGAs are banking on the local development fund (LDF), which is 20% of the LGU’s IRA and is allocated for development projects, as a means to fund the devolved services and programs. Despite this mandated allocation, the LDF has been underutilized (Diokno-Sicat, et al, 2020), which raises the question on how LGUs can utilize and optimize the even higher IRA when the Mandanas ruling is implemented.

It has been recognized that development in the country is unevenly concentrated in a few regions. Thus, the webinar also explores how to manage the fiscal and administrative devolution to ensure equitable development so no LGU, especially those with lower income, will be left behind.

Finally, the webinar examines the future of local autonomy from a multi-stakeholder perspective. In doing so, it considers how local governments can cope with not only the additional responsibilities from the devolved public services but the economic impact of the pandemic as well, which could result in a declined IRA in the coming years.

Rewatch the livestream of the webinar through Facebook Live.


Resource Person
Mr. John Aries S. Macaspac 

OIC-Director IV, Local Government and Regional Coordination Bureau

Department of Budget and Management


Dr. Mercedita A. Sombilla

Undersecretary, Regional Development Group

National Economic and Development Authority

Dr. Charlotte Justine Diokno-Sicat

Research Fellow

Philippine Institute of Development Studies

Hon. Dakila Carlo E. Cua

Governor, Quirino Province

National President, Union of Local Authorities in the Philippines

National Chairman, League of Provinces of the Philippines

Dr. Maria Ela Atienza

Professor, Political Science Department

University of the Philippines Diliman