Hataman

Hataman calls for addt’l infra funding for Mindanao

September 22, 2022 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 68 views

BASILAN Representative Mujiv Hataman has continued to push for more infrastructure funds for Mindanao in the proposed 2023 national budget in the ongoing plenary discussion on the budget measure, citing the regional poverty incidences in the war-ravaged island.

“Bakit ganun kalaki ang pagtapyas ng pondo ng imprastraktura pagdating sa Mindanao? Ibig sabihin malaking trabaho ang mawawala, at tataas ang poverty incidence rates,” Hataman said.

“Malinaw sa atin na ang infrastructure ay siyang lumilikha ng trabaho at lumilikha ng income sa madaming manggagawa sa construction, so malaking contribution ito sa pag-address ng poverty.

At ang multiplier nyan ay yung peace and security sa mga lugar na tinatamaan ng imprastruktura,” Hataman said.

Hataman then called on his colleagues in the House of Representatives, especially those from Mindanao, to unite and work to restore the infrastructure budget of Mindanao back to its 2022 levels.

Mindanao suffered a huge slash in infrastructure outlay, from P84.69 billion in 2022 to only P30.49 billion in 2023, or a reduction of a whopping P54.2 billion or almost a 64% decrease from last year. The lawmaker is asking if the Development Budget Coordinating Committee (DBCC) considered poverty incidence in formulating the proposed national budget.

According to Hataman, four out of the top 5 poorest regions in the country, as indicated by their poverty incidence, come from Mindanao: BARMM, 45.8%; CARAGA, 38.3%; Region IX, 37.4; Region VIII, 36%; and Region XII, 34.1%.

“Ang tanong ko dito, paano ba ginamit ng DBCC ang datos na ito sa pagbuo ng National Expenditure Program (NEP) para sa 2023? Kasi hindi ko po alam kung paano matutulungan ang mga rehiyon na nabanggit natin,” Hataman asked Marikina City Rep. Stella Quimbo, a sponsor of a part of the proposed national budget.

Quimbo responded by saying that agencies have regional offices that send feedback on regional needs, such as data on the 4Ps (Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program) program and other social welfare programs.

Hataman agreed that the 4Ps program helps address poverty incidence, but infrastructure projects provide jobs and income, especially in impoverished areas in many parts of Mindanao.

“Lahat ng rehiyon, meron GDP (Gross Domestic Product) contribution. Pero yung GDP contribution ay nakadepende rin kung ano ang mga allocation (for infra), para rin magkaroon ng private investments dyan sa rehiyon. Halimbawa kung magulo yung lugar mo or ‘di kaya mahina ang imprastruktura mo, definitely may relation yun sa mga private investments,” the Basilan legislator said.

“Parang ang punto ko lang ay ito: kino-coordinate ito dapat ng DBCC dahil sila ang nakakita ng macro assumptions based dun sa mga sinubmit ng mga ahensiya,” he added.

“Alam naman nating malaki ang hinahabol ng Mindanao in terms of progress and development dahil naging entablado ito ng napakaraming digmaan. At ngayong may kapayapaan na, sana naman ay buhusan ng pondo dahil maraming rehiyon dito ang nakasadlak sa kahirapan,” Hataman said.

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