BARMM awards P3.7-B infra-projects for Lanao Sur LGUs

BARMM awards P3.7-B infra-projects for Lanao Sur LGUs

COTABATO CITY – The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) government has allocated PHP3.7 billion in infrastructure projects for Lanao de Sur’s 39 municipalities and the city of Marawi, officials said Wednesday.

“The projects will be carried out by the provincial and municipal government units of Lanao del Sur and the Ministry of Public Works and Highways (MPWH),” lawyer Naguib Sinarimbo, BARMM interior minister and spokesperson, told the Philippine News Agency in a phone interview Wednesday.

Sinarimbo said the multi-billion projects are expected to usher in more developments for the province.

BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim, Regional Public Works Minister Eduard Guerra, and Sinarimbo signed the memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the projects with Lanao Sur Governor Mamintal Alonto-Adiong, Jr. and the provincial mayors in Cagayan de Oro City on Tuesday.

Out of PHP3.7 billion, Sinarimbo said at least PHP1.6-billion worth of infrastructure projects were in the MOA with the local government units (LGUs). The rest would be subjected to bidding to private contractors.

“If it is done by contractors only, we may experience delays, but if we combine LGUs and contractors in the implementation, project completion will be faster,” Sinarimbo said, adding that the projects include road concreting, government buildings, and bridges.

In separate statements on Wednesday, Adiong and Butig Mayor Dimnatang Pansar, League of Municipalities Lanao del Sur chapter president, welcomed the infrastructure investments.

Adiong said he will direct the provincial engineering districts to work closely with the office of Minister Guerra to ensure completion and standards compliance.

“This (endeavor) can hasten the socio-economic growth of our province. These projects are essential to the normalization agenda of the Mindanao peace process,” the governor said.

In his speech during the MOA signing ceremony, Ebrahim recalled that his administration has decided to return to the national treasury some PHP3 billion that BARMM had saved from unspent money of the defunct Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao government in 2020.

“We could have used the money but decided to return it to the national coffer for proper audit,” he said.

Meanwhile, BARMM officials assured the leaders of Maguindanao, Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi and the 63 villages in North Cotabato that their areas would also receive infrastructure projects within the year. (PNA)

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