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PAMANA projects continue amid COVID-19 pandemic

ILIGAN CITY, Sep. 17 (PIA) — New projects to help conflict-affected and conflict-vulnerable communities in the two Lanao provinces will be implemented even in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Ang sinabi ng mahal nating Presidente, kahit may COVID tayo, kailangan tuloy-tuloy pa rin ang PAMANA natin (our dear President said, even if we have COVID, our PAMANA should continue),” said Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. during the ceremonial signing of memorandums of agreement, Wednesday, September 16, for the implementation of PAyapa at MAsaganang PamayaNAn (PAMANA) projects.

Under the MOA, the provincial governments of Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur in partnership with the municipal governments of Munai, Tangcal, and Picong will implement projects worth Php 85 million to boost agricultural productivity in their localities. 

These include the provision of farm equipment, concreting of farm-to-market roads, and construction of a barangay road.

“Ang ating Presidente ay mahal na mahal niya ang Bangsamoro at hindi-hinding niya kayo pababayaan. At hanggang nandito ang OPAPP ay lalo naming palalakasin ang pag-agapay at pagmamahal namin sa BARMM (our President loves the Bangsamoro very much and he will never leave you. And as long as OPAPP is here, we will further strengthen our support and love for BARMM),” Galvez added.

In January 2020, the General Appropriations Act for FY 2020 provided for a total of Php 650 million for the PAMANA Program. Under this, 10 projects will be implemented through the concerned respective Provincial Local Government Units and Municipal Local Government Units in Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur.

GPH Peace Implementing Panel Chair and OPAPP Undersecretary David B. Diciano said PAMANA is a government program whose main purpose is to implement projects that will create opportunities to raise the standard of living of the people while enhancing peace in their communities. 

“Simula noong 2011, patuloy ang PAMANA sa pagpapatupad ng mga proyekto sa mga isolated, hard to reach, conflict-affected, at conflict-vulnerable communities sa Mindanao kabilang na ang ilang lugar na nasa ilalim ng pamamahala ng MILF,” he further said.

(Since 2011, PAMANA has continued to implement projects in isolated, hard to reach, conflict-affected, and conflict-vulnerable communities in Mindanao including some areas under the management of the MILF.)

Diciano noted that the farming equipment to be distributed under the MOA is seen to make planting and harvesting better and easier for the MILF since it will increase their yield and income.

“At sa pag-aayos naman ng FMR at pagsasagawa ng barangay road construction projects, inaaasahan natin na mas mapapadali ang paglabas at pagpasok ng mga agrikulturang produkto sa mga komunidad na siyang magpapalakas ng ekonomiya,” he added.

(And with the repair of FMR and implementation of barangay road construction projects, we hope that the exit and entry of agricultural products into the communities will be made easier which will boost the economy.)

According to Diciano, the water system that will also be built under the PAMANA program will provide a clean and adequate source of water for the people as water is important during this pandemic.

Held at the 2nd Mechanized Brigade headquarter, the MOA signing was also attended by PAMANA National Director Cesar De Mesa; Joint Normalization Committee (JNC) Co-Chair Ariel Hernandez; OPAPP Assistant Secretaries Andres S. Aguinaldo, Jr. and Atty. Wilben M. Mayor; Lanao del Sur Board Member Abdulhamid Umpa Amerbito; Lanao del Norte Board Member Achmad Taha, Munai Mayor Rahma Andamama, Tangcal Councilor Abdani Buanding, BARMM Member of the Parliament Abdulla Macapaar, 1st Infantry Division commander Major General Generoso Ponio; 2nd Mechanized Brigade commander Brigadier General Facundo Palafo; and 103rd Infantry Brigade commander Colonel Jose Maria Cuerpo. BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim also witnessed the signing via Google meet.  (APB/PIA-ICIC)

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