Bangsamoro Region

BARMM spends P1.9-B for Covid-19 fight

COTABATO CITY: The Bangsamoro government has so far released some PHP1.9-billion in its fight against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), an official of the autonomous region said on Tuesday.

Mohd Asnin Pendatun, cabinet secretary of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and concurrent regional spokesperson for the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Covid-19, said funds released through the region’s Ministry of Finance, and Budget and Management were used for socio-economic relief for residents affected by the crisis and efforts to contain the spread of the virus in the region.

“This includes the procurement of relief goods, construction of isolation building, and assistance to hospitals,” Pendatun told reporters during a virtual presser here.

He said the funds are particularly itemized as part of the BARMM’s Quick Response Fund (QRF) and as regular funds from offices, such as the Ministry of Social Services and Development and Ministry of the Interior and Local Government intended for Covid-19.

Part of the funding is the PHP155 million that was used as augmentation support for the local government units’ QRF — PHP1 million for each of the 116 municipalities, PHP2 million for each of the three cities, PHP5 million for each of the five provinces, and PHP8 million for the 63 barangays in North Cotabato.

Another undertaking disclosed as part of the funds’ disbursement is the ongoing massive relief operations in the different areas of the region.

“The funds we used for the relief operations were utilized under Project Tabang (Help) through the Office of the Chief Minister, the BARMM’s Rapid Emergency and Disaster Response Office, and the Ministry of Social Services and Development,” Pendatun said.

He added that a slice of the subsidy worth PHP14 million, as enclosed in a memorandum of agreement, also went to the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center for medical supplies and personal protective equipment of its front-liners, as well as the ongoing construction of the 100-bed capacity Covid-19 patient care center in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao.

Masiding Noor Yahya

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