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Tribal villages get P280-M development projects

Mayor Dibu Tuan (left) recognizes 80-year-old Aley Ala (right), the oldest among the 300 tribal warriors who received recognition from the local government for their contribution to the peace and development of the locality. The awarding ceremony is one of the highlights of the town’s 40th foundation anniversary. (Text and Photo by Joseph T. Jubelag)

T'BOLI, South Cotabato- The national government has released some P280 million for the implementation of development projects in several impoverished tribal communities here which were once stricken by conflict.

The funds which were channeled through the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (PAMANA) program will be used for the construction of farm to market roads, peace centers and water system and multi-purpose gymnasiums in several villages which were inhabited by T'boli and B'laan tribesmen.

Mayor Dibu Tuan said the projects will be undertaken by the Department of Interior and Local Government and Department of Agriculture while the local government will allocate funds as counterpart which was 10 percent of the total cost of the road projects placed at P103 million.  

The road projects include the Lamsalome-Lambangan and Datal Bob farm to market road; Lambuling-Talufo and Lamhaku farm-to-market road, in which both projects cost P50 million, and the Maan road project.

The Office of the Municipal Agriculturist reported that the road projects have been awarded to qualified contractors which had already undertaken the social preparation, road excavation and grading of the sites.

DILG-12 Regional Director Reynaldo Bungubong turned over to Mayor Tuan the P177 million funds to finance the DILG-led PAMANA projects which include road concreting, construction of multi-purpose gym, construction of peace center and water system.

Bungubong said the funds received by the local government of T'boli will be used for peace development projects in communities which were previously affected by armed conflict between the government and Moro separatist and communist rebels.

Tuan said the construction of road projects will hasten the delivery of basic services to far-flung villages and boost agricultural production.

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