Sarangani towns to get P1M each to fight Covid-19

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 2 April) – The provincial government of Sarangani is set to release some P1 million each to its seven municipalities to help them better combat the spread of the 2019 coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Sarangani Gov. Steve Chiongbian Solon said the funds will be utilized to augment the prevention and control initiatives against the deadly disease as well as support the needs of residents amid the ongoing enhanced community quarantine in the area.

He said it was part of the P15.6 million budget approved last Tuesday by the provincial board in line with the declaration of the entire province under a state of calamity last March 23 due to the Covid-19 threat.

“It was set aside in case they (municipalities) need extra funds for the calamity,” Solon said in a statement.

With the calamity declaration, the governor said the seven municipalities were authorized to utilize their quick response funds “to support disaster preparedness and response efforts.”

He said this will be subject to necessary “accounting and auditing rules, regulations and procedures.”

Solon said all local governments were required to render full assistance and “mobilize the necessary resources to undertake critical, urgent and appropriate disaster response aid, and measures to curtail and eliminate the Covid-19 threat.”

He said the municipal health officers should submit “daily numbered situational reports” to the Provincial Health Office’s operations center.

The governor said they already activated the province’s Incident Management Team for Covid-19 to properly manage and coordinate the activities and response mechanisms down to the community level.

Aside from the augmentation fund for the municipalities, he said they allocated some P2.1 million for the emergency relief assistance to families severely affected by the implementation of the enhanced community quarantine, P3.2 million for the logistical support to Sarangani Medical Center and PHP300,000 for the production of alcohol and disinfectant.

Another P3 million was earmarked for the provincial government’s Covid-19 emergency response activities, he said.

As of Thursday, the province has not yet recorded any confirmed case of Covid-19 but it has 16 patients under investigation who were under home quarantine while two were admitted in undisclosed hospitals.

At least 70 persons under monitoring have yet to complete their 14-day mandatory home quarantine. (MindaNews)