COTABATO CITY — A package of PAyapa at MAsaganang PamayaNAn (PAMANA) infrastructure projects worth PhP 80.1 million were turned over this week to the municipalities of Aleosan, Cotabato Province and Tantangan, South Cotabato.
“Ang isang target namin sa PAMANA is suporta kami sa peace processes. Pagkaupo ng ating Presidente (Duterte), ang gusto n’yang mangyari, lahat ng peace agreements dapat ma-deliver ‘yan bago matapos ang kanyang termino,” said Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) Director and PAMANA National Program Management (NPMD) head Cesar De Mesa.
De Mesa underscored that these projects are part of the Duterte Administration’s commitment to provide much-needed government services to conflict-vulnerable and conflict-affected areas throughout the country, which is one of the main thrusts of the office under Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito G. Galvez, Jr.
600,000 cubic meters of ‘answered prayers’ in Aleosan
“After almost three years, natapos na ang ating project. Matatawag natin itong ‘dream come true’ para sa atin at ‘answered prayers’ na ngayon ay na-turnover na sa atin [ang proyekto],” said Mayor Aleosan Mayor Vicente Suropia during the official turnover of PAMANA projects in the area.
These projects include a mega Level III potable water system worth PhP 56 million, a grains warehouse worth PhP 1.5 million, and a solar dryer worth PhP 500,000.
“We now have a sense of ownership sa [water system] at tayo na ang may-ari, ang mag-manage, mangangalaga. Ang importante may sustainability ang ating proyekto,” he added.
The PAMANA water system is equipped with a mega water reservoir that can hold up to 600,000 cubic meters of water and can serve up to 12,004 households.
The water will flow from the water source directly to the homes of residents in the isolated highland barangays of Malapang, Tomado, Luanan, and New Leon of this municipality.
The chairpersons of the beneficiary barangays shared the major benefits of the largest water system ever built in their area.
According to them, since the project’s completion, village folk now have access to safe and adequate water for their household needs.
Moreover, Muslim residents have clean water which they can use for ablution or cleansing before doing their obligatory prayer.
“Maraming maraming salamat po dahil matagal na itong inaasam namin dahil naghihirap po talaga kami dito sa bukid. ‘Yung kinukunan namin ng tubig malayo talaga na kinakailangan pang ikarga sa kabayo para makarating sa bahay,” said Luanan Chairperson Abdulsaid Atan, whose barangay is one of the beneficiaries.
“Sa ngayon po maraming maraming salamat po sa OPAPP PAMANA na nabigyan tayo ng tubig na magamit natin hindi lang sa tatlong barangay [ang makikinabang] dahil kahit sino pa ang makakadaan d’yan ay [makakagamit] para sa ating lahat ito…Nagagamit na po namin ang tubig sa paglinis, pagsimba (ablution) dahil nakakarating na ang tubig sa aming mga bahay,” he added.
The chairpersons vowed to remind their constituents to take good care of the water system so that it can benefit the next generations.
Board members Rosali Cabaya and Loreto Cabaya donated a portion of their land where the most ideal water source is located.
This paved the way for the construction of the massive water system which now serves thousands of households in the area.
Also present during the ceremonial turnover were Provincial Administrator Efren Piñol representing Governor Nancy Catamco; Cotabato provincial board members Kelly Antao and Shirlyn Macasarte representing Vice Governor Emmylou “Lala” Taliño-Mendoza; Sangguniang Bayan (SB) member and chair of the Committee on Infrastructure Cornel Calambro; and SB members Cesar Caballero, Doris Clarito, and Efren Cabaya.
Other attendees included PAMANA project engineer and focal Efren Aujero; municipal planning and development officer Rowena Bañaga; OIC municipal engineer Warda Culod; project engineers Abdulbasir Kindatu and Abdulrauf Manalasal; and Malapang chair Arnel Cabaya, New Leon chair Felimon Caluyo, and Tomado chair Ernesto Dela Serna.
The turn-over was also graced by BGen Roberto S. Capulong and Lt Rommel Mundala from the Armed Forces of the Philippines; and Municipal Police Chief PMaj. Maxim Peralta from the Philippine National Police.
No Tantangan village left behind in PAMANA water system
“Yung water system po bawat barangay ay may budget na 1.7 (million pesos). Malaking tulong ‘yung water system para sa aming constituents sa aming barangay. Noon po yung hindi naaabot ng water system, kinakailangan pa po ng pressure tank pero ngayon po dahil may water system na galing sa OPAPP, nakakatipid na po sa gastos dahil sa murang singil ng bawat BAWASA (barangay water system association).”
This was according to Brgy. Captain Johnny Alada, president of the league of barangays Tantangan chapter, whose barangay is among the recipients of the water system project.
“Noon malayo at level 1 o level 2 lang [na water systems], ngayon ay level 3 na kung saan diretso na talaga sa loob ng kanikanilang mga bahay ang tubig na galing sa OPAPP PAMANA kaya sa ngalan ng Liga ng mga Barangay, kami po ay nagpapasalamat sa Pangulong Duterte na s’ya ay tumutugon sa aming pangangailangan,” added Alada.
All 13 barangays of the municipality of Tantangan in South Cotabato are the beneficiaries of a Php 22 million Level II potable water system project built under the PAyapa at MAsaganang PamayaNAn (PAMANA) Program.
OPAPP Director and PAMANA National Program Management Head Cesar De Mesa and Tantangan Mayor Benjamin Figueroa, Jr. led the official turnover of the water facilities on Thursday, May 6.
“Nagpapasalamat po kami especially kay Presidente Rodrigo Roa Duterte [para] sa fund na ibinigay nila [sa amin]. Habang may tubig po mula sa projects natin ay magagamit po ito ng tao, ng mga constituents natin sa 13 barangays,” said Figueroa.
The water systems were built in barangays of Magon, Mangilala, New Cuyapo, Poblacion, Dumadalig, New Iloilo, Cabuling, New Lambunao, Bukay Pait, Maibo, San Felipe, Libas, and Tinongcop.
Meanwhile, De Mesa explained that the PAMANA Program is in line with the six-point peace and development agenda of the Duterte administration, and supports the Philippines’ comprehensive peace process.
“Ito (PAMANA) ang programa ng gobyerno para sa mga conflict sensitive at vulnerable areas at mga lugar na geographically isolated and depressed areas (GIDAs),” De Mesa said.
“‘Pagka maganda po ang kabuhayan ng ating mga mamamayan ay hindi sila basta basta ma-recruit ng kung sino mang rebelde,” he added.
De Mesa and Figueroa also led the project’s exit conference participated in by the beneficiaries and project contractor.
Exit conferences are held to address issues and concerns related to a project’s implementation before it is officially turned over to beneficiaries.
The event was also attended by municipal Engr. Joseph Pudadera; Tantangan barangay chairmen Musa Magon, Noel De Castro, Armando Nono, Eliezer Reyes, Pedro Rufino, Jr., Maibo, Jose Cabayao, Benhur Peñol, Rodelio Palomo, Jimmy Juaneza, Ernesto Layos, Julio Leal, and Nelia Delos Reyes.
Also present were LtCol. Edwin Alburo, commander of the 40th IB and Col. Joel Mamon, commander of the Joint Task Force Talakudong and deputy commander of the 601st Brigade; and PCpt. Brandie Rasos from the Philippine National Police.###