By Danilo E. Doguiles
MAGPET, North Cotabato, Oct. 24 (PIA) — SOCCSKSARGEN Region’s launching of Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP) in Barangay Balite last week also signalled the start of several government projects aimed at addressing the development needs of the community and knocking off insurgency in the area.
The Serbisyo Caravan, which kicks off the RCSP in Balite on October 15, was capped with the launching of a P12.4-million project to rehabilitate the access road from the barangay center going to Sitio Natayucan.
DILG XII Regional Director Josephine Leysa, North Cotabato Acting Governor Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza Magpet Mayor Florenito Gonzaga, and Balite Chairperson Edgar Handoc led the ceremony.
Said project covers 800-meter portion of the 5-kilometer farm-to-market road to the Natayucan. The remaining part of the said road is also being proposed for rehabilitation starting in 2020.
Meanwhile, Engr. Jupiter Rubino, municipal administrator at Board of Director of the Cotabato Electric Cooperative (Cotelco) Magpet District announced that an electrification project has also been set for Sitio Natayucan in 2020.
“Part of the project, besides the installation of power line to the village, 60 households will benefit from free house wiring and labor,” Engr. Rubino said.
Same sitio is also a recipient of a housing project, National Housing Authority XII Regional Manager Zenaida Cabiles told Philippine Information Agency.
“In support to the implementation of EO 70, NHA will provide housing projects in the target areas. The housing project in Sitio Natayucan has been scheduled for 2021, but this can be expedited if the local government units of Magpet and Balite could speed up the processing of documents and other requirements,” Engr. Cabiles said.
Cabiles said the 100 houses will be built in Natayucan and will cost about P20 million in total.
Besides Natayucan, several barangays in Magpet have also been lined up for housing project implementation, namely: Mahongkog, Don Panaca, Amabel, and Manobisa, she added.
Also, the Technical Education Skills and Development Authority (TESDA) XII has initiated skills training for former rebels and interested residents of Balite as well as in Barangay Basak, also in Magpet.
TESDA XII Regional Director Rafael Abrogar II and other TESDA officials will visit both barangays on Thursday, October 24, to orient the beneficiaries regarding their scholarship in Shielded Metal Arc Wielding (SMAW) NC 1.
DILG XII Director Leysa explained that the RCSP is a collaborative effort of national government agencies, local government units, and other partners for a whole-of-nation approach in fighting local communist armed conflict.
“RCSP is a continuing delivery of services not only by the national government but most importantly by the provincial, municipal and barangay government units,” Director Leysa said.
Leysa further explained that pilot barangays in the RCSP should indicate in the Barangay Development Plan the programs and projects they need. Items that the barangay council cannot carry out may be addressed by the municipal government while those that they latter cannot allocated funds for will be endorsed to appropriate national government agencies.
What is crucial, she added, is for the barangay council to specify the projects and programs in their Barangay Development Plan.
Based on initial plans, the Barangay Council of Balite hopes for more FMRs to different subvillages and other barangays, water systems, additional classrooms, multipurpose covered court, livestock dispersal, livelihood assistance, solar dryers, and others projects.
Balite is one of the eight barangays in North Cotabato where the RCSP is piloted starting this year.
Other target barangays are Basak and Don Panaca in Magpet, Kabalantian and Ladayon in Arakan, Malabuan and Luayon in Makilala, and Batang in Tulunan.
The barangays have been classified by the Armed Forces of the Philippines as NPA influenced. (DED/PIA-XII)