June 2, 2023


The city government of Baguio is on the right track in achieving some of its 16-core agenda despite the pandemic that forced institutions to respond swiftly to the needs of the times. The pandemic has in fact put to a test the capability of the local leadership that has vowed to bring reforms in public service.
For decades, the city has been the model to other local government units for her resiliency, which has become more evident in the face of this pandemic that has changed the course of human history.
While Covid-19 has plunged the city and the rest of the world into the depths of gloom, it has also brought out the best of Baguio and its people, a testament to the strong foundation laid out by our forefathers and past leaders who taught us to keep a united front in the face of adversity – a guide of more than a century that persists to this day.
After setting the 16-core agenda two years ago as a path for the city’s deve-lopment with the hope of eleva-ting good governance to a new level, we laud the current leadership for always being one step ahead of other LGUs in battling the pandemic while sticking to the blueprint of its agenda.
Records show that this city tops most highly-urbanized cities in the country in terms of the number of vaccinated eligible population, surpassing the number of vaccinated individuals in many cities in the greater Metro Manila. This city likewise has made a breakthrough in contact tracing methodology that has become a template for contract tracing nationwide.
The city’s innovations to revitalize its tourism industry using a system of online registration of tourists and formulation of localized border protocols in conformity with the Inter-Agency Task Force guidelines have been replicated by other LGUs, notably by nearby provinces in Northern Luzon.
This breakthrough in tourism management can be further improved in the future that can be adopted as a system that will limit or regulate the number of tourists coming in to the Summer Capital at a given time to address the worsening concerns on traffic, waste generation, and water supply.
The city has been likewise one step ahead in terms of preparing for the worst-case scenario the pandemic might bring. Even with something still worse anticipated to come, such as the Delta variant hitting the city, it has already established community isolation facilities, continues to conduct aggressive community testing, and done an inventory of oxygen tanks.
There is also the Smart City command center that once fully functional, will make Baguio the first city in the country to become a truly Smart City that uses different types of electro-nic methods and sensors to collect data crucial in the management of assets, resources and services. The Smart City will bring on efficient and improved operations and administration of programs across this highland city.
With Smart City comes a situation of better peace and order, as heightened technology such as video analytics that include sensors for license plate recognition, vehicle counting and facial recognition, and a cyber security system, will upgrade the capability of the local police force in responding to various public order and safety incidents.
With less than a year towards the full realization of the 16-core agenda, which has become the centerpiece of legislative and executive actions des-pite the pandemic, it is our hope the local leadership will lead this city and its people towards a better Baguio in the new normal.
Together, we must move forward as one as we likewise celebrate with pride the city’s 112th Charter Day Anniversary on Sept.1, the day more than a century ago when our great ancestors and leaders laid the groundwork for a resilient and vibrant city.