GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/28 October) — The Department of Agriculture (DA) in Region 12 has released an initial P68.5 million in financial grants to eight local government units (LGUs) in Region 12 for the implementation of various livelihood and agricultural infrastructure support projects.
Amalia Jayag-Datukan, DA-12 executive director, said Tuesday the grants were part of the region’s allocation this year under the national government’s Grassroots Participatory Budgeting (GPB) and PAyapa at MAsaganang PamayaNAn (PAMANA) programs.
She said the DA central office earlier approved the funding and implementation in the region of an additional P28.795 million worth of projects under the GPB and P131.3 million under the PAMANA or a total of P160.095 million.
The beneficiaries under the GPB comprise five municipalities in the region and three others under the PAMANA, she said.
Also known as Soccsksargen, the region comprises the provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, North Cotabato and the cities of General Santos, Koronadal, Tacurong, Kidapawan and Cotabato.
“The preparatory works for these projects were already completed and they are now ready for implementation,” Datukan said.
Under the GPB, the municipality of Lambayong in Sultan Kudarat received an allocation of P10.49 million for a farm-to-market road and five livelihood projects while Lebak got P3.289 million for two livelihood and two infrastructure support projects.
DA allotted P8 million for a livelihood and two farm-to-market road projects in Polomolok town in South Cotabato; P3.545 million for a farm-to-market road and a livelihood project in Alabel, Sarangani; and, P3.471 million for a farm-to-market road project in Pigcawayan, North Cotabato.
For the PAMANA, the municipality of T’boli in South Cotabato received P125.3 million for 14 livelihood and three farm-to-market road projects while Pikit and Carmen towns in North Cotabato got P3 million each for livelihood projects.
Datukan said they have so far released a total of P16.857 million to beneficiaries under the GPB and P51.645 million under the PAMANA.
She said they have fully released the grants for the livelihood projects and 50 percent for the first tranche of the allotment for the farm-to-market roads and other infrastructure projects.
T’boli town received the bulk of the funds with P45.721 million, followed by Lambayong with P7.363 million, Polomolok with P3 million, Carmen and Pikit with P2.962 million each, Lebak with P2.714 million, Alabel with P2.045 million and Pigcawayan with P1.735 million.
Formerly known as Bottom-up Budgeting, GPB is a participative approach instituted by the Department of Budget and Management.
Under the scheme, the executive department identifies various programs and projects to help address the development needs of poorest cities and municipalities in the country.
PAMANA is a national government program and framework for peace and development implemented in areas affected by conflict and communities covered by existing peace agreements.
The program carries out projects geared toward improving the delivery of basic social services. (MindaNews)