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BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya-The mayor of Dupax del Norte was feted as the outstanding local chief executive of the Philippines after winning the 2023 Gawad Parangal in line with the celebration of the 26th National Social Welfare and Development Forum and General Assembly at the SMX Convention Center, Lanang, Davao City on the 15th of August of the current year.

The 2023 Gawad Parangal was awarded by the Association of Local Social Welfare and Development Officers of the Philippines, Inc. (ALSWDOPI) to Mayor Timothy Joseph Cayton of Dupax del Norte, as the best mayor throughout Luzon for 1st to 3rd class municipalities. The recognition came from his programs related to the social welfare and development of his town.

“The innovative programs and services of his administration in uplifting the general well-being of the marginalized and vulnerable sectors in the municipality of Dupax del Norte are highly commendable,” said Maribeth Mateo-Ortis, the national president of ALSWDOPI.

According to Cayton, he did not expect to receive an award because most of his programs have been implemented in their town for a long time since 2016 during his first term as mayor. “This award is for all those who helped and worked quietly to promote social services programs in our constituency. Even though we didn’t expect it, it will serve as a big challenge and a reminder for us to improve our service to every resident of Dupax del Norte,” said Cayton, along with his thanks to the members of the Sanguniang Bayan (SB).  

Some of the programs of the local government are the provision of equal assistance for all residents of Dupax del Norte, regardless of their level of living, during the pandemic caused by COVID-19.

Localization of the national programs of the SB members who supported and passed the ordinances to better focus and provide proper assistance to the small sectors in their jurisdiction.

This includes the provision of regular financial assistance for all patients undergoing dialysis, provision of regular honorarium for members of the Sanguniang Kabataan (SK) including secretaries and treasurers; programs and financial assistance for maids, health sector, farmers, drivers, retirees, senior citizens, students, teachers and other sectors of education, agriculture and health.

Aside from Cayton, the 2023 Award was also given to Governor Hermilando Mandanas of Batangas, along with Daniel Fernando of Bulacan, Edwin Marino Ongchuhan of Samar and Gov. Edwin Jubahid of Davao del Norte including other mayors of Visayas and Mindanao.

Vice President and Education Secretary Sarah Duterte, who served as the chief guest at the two-day gathering, expressed her gratitude. Those who received the award because of their programs to help and uplift the lives of every Filipino in their constituencies.