Good governance: Has it been truly tried in our Society?
By : Alexander Mangorsi Mindanao Today/12:52:33pm 10/05/2021
By Alexander Tomawis Mangorsi
UNQUESTIONABLY, Good governance ensures that political, social and economic priorities are based on broad consensus in society and that the voices of the poorest and the most vulnerable are heard in decision-making over the allocation of development resources.
Undeniably, Good governance involves the formation of an accountable form of government which guarantees transparency and accountability in public service, improved access to quality education, health and other social and economic services that underpin a country’s human resource base is guaranteed.
“O you who believe! When you deal with each other, in transactions involving future obligations in a fixed period of time, reduce them to writing. Let a scribe write-down faithfully as between the parties…” (Quran, Al-Baqarah, Beginning of the Ayat, 2:282).
Indeed, “good governance is an essential precondition for sustainable development. It requires policies to promote broad-based economic growth, a dynamic private sector and social policies that will lead to poverty reduction. Careful management of the national economy is vital in order to maximize economic and social advancement.”
“Poor governance stifles and impedes development. In countries where there is corruption, poor control of public funds, lack of accountability, abuses of human rights and excessive military influence, development inevitably suffers.”
One element of good governance that is needed for sustained development is an economy that operates in an ethical, accountable and appropriately regulated environment, which facilitates an open and competitive marketplace.
Without this, there will be no driver for economic growth and sustainable development will not be possible.
A dynamic private sector, operating in a properly functioning competitive market system, creates jobs and income, generates wealth and helps ensure that resources are used efficiently.
The prime role of good governance is best described by the UN General Assembly 2005 World Summit when it reaffirms,
“That good governance is essential for sustainable development; that sound economic policies, solid democratic institutions responsive to the needs of the people and improved infrastructure are the basis for sustained economic growth, poverty eradication and employment creation; and that freedom, peace and security, domestic stability, respect for human rights, including the right to development, the rule of law, gender equality and market-oriented policies and an overall commitment to just and democratic societies are also essential and mutually reinforcing.”
Particularly important in the context of good governance is the transformation and linkages that it creates between the State, the governing power and the governed.
The definition of good governance as aforementioned encompasses not just the State, but a responsible citizenry.
The two are critical for sustainable nation-building and human development.
The role of the state is viewed as that of creating a stable political and legal environment conducive to sustained development, while concerned citizenry or civil society institutions and community organizations are viewed as a means of facilitating political and social interaction and mobilizing groups to participate in economic, social and political activities.
Truly, this concept of “Good Governance enhances the capacity of the state to effectively formulate and implement sound policies towards sustainable development, while harnessing public awareness campaigns, exploiting its citizens’ potential and resilience to support government policies, as well as mobilizing resources to forge partnerships for implementation.”
In a nutshell, peoples’ contribution to the achievement of the state’s development vision is multi-dimensional.
Responsible citizens through the private sectors and civil society movements can contribute through advocacy, awareness creation, delivery of services, training and social mobilization.
Indeed, it is a truism that any attempt to achieve a certain degree of development by any nation ultimately requires greater and stronger partnerships and consultations between the government and the governed. Whether in the area of, “poverty reduction, generating income and creating jobs, developing human resources, supporting technological development and transfer, creating sustainable physical infrastructure, undertaking social investment and philanthropic activities; and mobilizing core competencies and resources to strengthen local communities by supporting education, training and capacity building, and micro-credit programs, etc.”
Accordingly, conventional political theories posit that participatory democracy is one of the essential pillars of good governance.
In a pure Islamic polity, the principle of “Shura” is an integral foundation in running the affairs of the Muslims.
It is one of the most important constitutional principles in Islamic Law.
Shura in Islam is based on the Rule of Allah swt and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w and all faithful and adherents are obliged to obey this principle.
“O you, who believe, be custodians of justice (and) witness for Allah, even though against yourselves or your parents or your relatives. Whether a man is rich or poor, Allah is the greatest well-wisher than you. So follow nor the behests of lust, lest you swerve from justice.” (Quran, An-Nisa, 4:135)
Even the Prophet, although he was the receiver of direct guidance from the Almighty Allah, was command-ed. Allah says: “Consult them in affairs (of moment). Then, when you have to take a decision put the trust in Allah. For Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him)” (Quran, Al-Imran, 3:159)
(Alexander Tomawis Mangorsi is the admin of the Bangsamoro Policy Caucus Facebook page. The Bangsamoro Policy Caucus is an internet-based policy advocate for issues of indispensable relevance and significance to the common welfare and collective good of the Moro People.)