National Budget Circular 542
National Budget Circular 542, issued by the Department of Budget and Management on August 29, 2012, reiterates compliance with Section 93 of the General Appropriations Act of FY2012. Section 93 is the Transparency Seal provision, to wit:
Sec. 93. Transparency Seal. To enhance transparency and enforce accountability, all national government agencies shall maintain a transparency seal on their official websites. ….
A pearl buried inside a tightly-shut shell is practically worthless. Government information is a pearl, meant to be shared with the public in order to maximize its inherent value.
The Transparency Seal, depicted by a pearl shining out of an open shell, is a symbol of a policy shift towards openness in access to government information. On the one hand, it hopes to inspire Filipinos in the civil service to be more open to citizen engagement; on the other, to invite the Filipino citizenry to exercise their right to participate in governance.