World Bank-Mindanao Trust Fund Program affirms sustainable development in Mindanao its top priority (Published: May 29, 2015)

Cotabato City, May 29, 2015 (PIA) – As a policy of transparency and accountability in project implementation in support to the peace process, members of the local media had the opportunity to personally see and validate ongoing projects and interact with beneficiaries of socio-economic programs of the Bangsamoro Development Agency (BDA) funded through the Mindanao Trust Fund.

The World Bank, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), Bangsamoro Development Agency (BDA) led the media visit, Tuesday, May 26, in the two barangay-beneficiaries in Maguindanao

Established in 2006, MTF is a multi-donor facility that pools development funds from international benefactor – the European Union and the governments of Sweden, Australia, Canada, the United States, New Zealand and the World Bank to support socio-economic recovery in conflict affected communities in Mindanao.

According to MTF Program Manager and Senior Social Development Specialist of the World Bank in the Philippines Matthew Stephens, the MTF has provided P1.3 billion in support for access to basic services such roads, water supply systems, sanitation facilities and in terms of livelihood assistance including post-harvest facilities, farming equipments and inputs and support for community enterprise development to conflict-affected areas in Mindanao.

“The program’s community-based approach has fostered social cohesion among diverse Muslim, Christian and IP communities – we empowered women to take leading roles in planning and development,” Stephens said.

To date, MTF-supported projects through the BDA have benefited nearly 500,000 people in 214 barangays in 75 municipalities across 12 provinces, he added.

“We also provided significant capacity-building support to the BDA, which started as a group of volunteers working in six barangays and is now a leading development agency for the Bangsamoro people with 300 personnel in 7 regional offices,” he points out.

Stephens said, necessary support was also extended to BDA in the formulation of the Bangsamoro Developmet Plan (BDP), a comprehensive economic blueprint for the proposed Bangsamoro territory.

Meanwhile, the project sites of barangays of Romongaob in South Upi and Ganta in Mother Kabuntalan both in Maguindanao province were visited on Tuesday wherein the marginalized residents mostly farmers organized into the Romongaob Tri-People Organization is a recipient of six units corn shellers under Cycle 1, a warehouse and solar dryer for Cycle 2 and additional farm machineries are intended to be distributed in the future under Cycle 3 for improved and stable income thus uplift  their quality of life.

The project has total beneficiaries of 5,593 individuals since 2013 with mixed ethnicity – T’duray (2,838), Maguindanaon (820), Cebuano (550), Ilonggo (866) and Ilocano (519).

Barangay Ganta in Mother Kabuntalan through Dar’Wal Tri Asgar People Organization has 42 members have been provided 10 latrines under Cycle 1 and a trading facility  benefiting residents of seven sitios whose main source of income derive from fishing, small-scale business and farming. (IEroy/PBChangco/PIA Cotabato City)

Date Published: 
Friday, May 29, 2015