Millennium Development Goals Tracker
By 2015, 189 nations would have achieved eight goals that respond to the world’s major development challenges. Among the goals are eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal primary education, improving maternal health, and ensuring environmental sustainability.
Based on the Midterm Progress Report on the MDGs, the Philippines will most likely achieve the targets for poverty, dietary energy requirements, child mortality, gender equality in education, HIV/AIDS and malaria, and access to safe drinking water.
While among those unlikely to be achieved are the targets for nutrition, maternal health, primary education, and access to reproductive health services.
For example, in the CARAGA Region where two of the poorest provinces are located – Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Norte – elementary participation rates and cohort survival rates remain low.
And in Region 9, where the poorest province, Zamboanga de Norte, is, almost all of the targets have a low probability of being achieved. The poverty rates in the region, along with those of CARAGA and the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), are among the lowest in the country, exceeding national figures.
The government admits that in order to achieve the targets, it would have to have more resources. The financing gap for education and water alone, for instance, is estimated to be about US$12.2 billion to US$15.7 billion.
But according to Social Watch Philippines, it takes more than just pouring in the much needed funds.
“Government will have to change the way it governs,” Social Watch said. Presently, the government allots more for paying debts than for reducing poverty, addressing education inequality, and delivering health services.
Social Watch recommends that the government would have to do away with the “public bads” (corruption, pollution, communicable diseases, human trafficking).
It added: “Government must undergo profound renewal in order to be an agent for a kind of governance that can bring about not only inclusive growth but sustainable development,” it added.