GOV. Hilario Davide III and other Capitol officials turned over two-classroom school buildings in remote barangays in Asturias, Pinamungajan and Aloguinsan towns and a road concreting project in Tuburan last Thursday.
The projects cost the Provincial Government some P30.23 million.
The Provincial Government will also provide each classroom with 40 armchairs. The classrooms alone cost P1.407 million each.
“These are the areas that need classrooms. Children here have to walk kilometers just to attend their classes,” said Davide, who, like his father former chief justice Hilario Davide Jr., had to walk from the mountain barangay of Colawin, Argao to attend his elementary classes.
The turnover ceremony, attended by Davide and Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale, started with the ceremonial opening of the two-kilometer Poblacion-Cogon-Alegria-Marmol road section in Tuburan. The project worth some P26 million was done E.G.I Construction Corp.
After the turnover in Tuburan, Davide and Magpale proceeded to Barangay Ubogon in the mountains of Asturias, some 14 kms. from the highway, and turned over a two-classroom building.
“Nalipay ko kay naa na mi bag-ong classroom, kay hapit na ko mo-graduate next year (I’m happy we have a new classroom, finally, because I will be graduating next year),” said Grade VI pupil Christine Dianne Balogbog, 11, who was beside Davide and Magpale during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Asturias Mayor Anto Pintor, Provincial Board (PB) Members Alex Binghay and Victoria Corominas, Ubogon Barangay Captain Eustaquia Alivio, and the Department of Education district supervisor were also present during the event.
Ubogon Elementary School caters to 153 pupils and has seven teachers. The school used to have only six classrooms.
The Capitol officials also went to Cabiangon Elementary School, a roadside primary school in Barangay Cabiangon in Pinamungajan town. Mayor Glen Baricuatro and Vice Mayor Honeylet Yapha-Lingad attended the turn-over ceremony and thanked the governor and vice governor.
“Usa ni sa atong priority program sa akong administration. Hinaut unta nga inyo ning ampingan kay ugma mamahimo mong mayor, Provincial Board member, gobernador o bise gobernador (This is one of my administration’s priority projects, and I hope you will take care of this school building because someday, you could be the mayor of this town, the PB member or governor),” Davide told the pupils.
The school along the highway has 113 pupils from kinder to Grade V.
The Capitol officials then drove to Aloguinsan town proper before going on a 10-kilometer trek to the upland village of Bogo-Kawasan to reach its elementary school.
Bogo-Kawasan Elementary School has 205 pupils who are handled by eight teachers. It has three old buildings with seven classrooms. Now it has two new classrooms.
Its pupils thanked Capitol officials through song and dance numbers after the turnover ceremony.
Aloguinsan Vice Mayor Ignacio Cesar Moreno, representing Mayor Julius Cesar Moreno, thanked the governor and vice governor, whom he acknowledged as non-partymates.
Kawasan Barangay Captain Carlito Chua thanked Capitol officials, lamenting that his barangay has repeatedly been left out since 2014, when he first learned about the plan to put up school buildings in his community.
Magpale explained that when their administration took over in 2013, the Province’s coffers were almost empty and they still had to settle unpaid bills. But now, she said the Province has enough funds to help the towns.
Davide thanked the barangay captain’s wife Malou Chua, whose family donated the lot where the new school building stands.