After finding out irregularities in social development projects allotted to several provinces in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), local officials together with its partner NGOs are taking their project monitoring and evaluation a notch further by leveraging quantum GIS.
Quantum GIS is a free and open source desktop GIS application that provides users with data viewing, editing, and analysis capabilities.
According to Darwin Rasul, Assistant Secretary at the ARMM’s Office of Special Concerns (OSC), local officials discovered awarded contracts for the construction of school buildings worth millions of pesos but was recently found out to be non-existent.
“When you look at the project report, you can see the projects that have already been awarded and bid out, the mobilisation funds already released. But when you check on the ground there is nothing,” he said.
By using Quantum GIS, local authorities will be able to improve their project monitoring efforts by geotagging projects to inform decision makers on what projects have been implemented, their exact location and how they are progressing.
Rasul said that 11 OSC coordinators in the provinces of Basilan, Tawi-Tawi, Sulu, Lanao Del Sur and Maguindanao had undergone a five-day intensive training on how to fully maximise the software and to use cameras with GPS to geotag projects.
He explained that with the system place, it will now make it easier to check whether the photos which the coordinators took on the ground matched data in the group’s database.
“Once we discover something anomalous, then we report it to the governor for proper action,” he said.
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