MinDA cites lack of funding setback in project implementation

The Davao River (Bucana) Bridge is already 15 percent completed according to the Department of Public Work and Highways-Davao (DPWH-Davao) report. In its latest inspection on April 26, 2024, DPWH-Davao said the Bucana bridge has had 15.7 physical accomplishments since the project started in November 2023.
The Davao River (Bucana) Bridge is already 15 percent completed according to the Department of Public Work and Highways-Davao (DPWH-Davao) report. In its latest inspection on April 26, 2024, DPWH-Davao said the Bucana bridge has had 15.7 physical accomplishments since the project started in November 2023. DPWH

THE Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) admitted that the lack of funds hindered them from implementing the multiple projects it planned for the island.

In the press conference during Wednesday’s Media Forum held at Habi at Kape, Abreeza Corporate Center on June 19, 2024, MinDA Chairperson and Philippine Signing Master for BIMP-Eaga Leo Magno said that the biggest challenge now is the funding for the office. 

He added that, despite the bigger fund allocation for the agency, there are still projects that cannot be implemented due to the lack of funds.

“We will present our projects with more energy and more emphasis on the need to develop this side of the country,” Magno said. 

He also reiterated the role of the agency in developing Mindanao and making sure there are projects implemented for the good of the island. 

“Kung anong meron ka, yun lang ang kaya mong pang-gobyerno eh kasi ‘yun lang ang naibigay. Humingi pa tayo, mas galingan nating humingi ng pondo para hindi lang isa, dalawa, o sampu lang ang ma-implement natin na proyekto sa Mindanao (What [amount] you have is what you can only use to govern since that is all that’s given. Let’s ask more, let’s be better in asking for more funds so we can implement more than one, two, or ten projects for Mindanao),” Magno said.

He revealed that included in the list of projects with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) are airports in Bukidnon, New Siargao, Zamboanga, Mlang, and General Santos City. 

Although he did not specify what projects the agency is holding, he said that they are related to the airport, seaports, as well as road infrastructures in Mindanao.

He also mentioned a proposal that wished to include MinDA as part of the technical working group of the Mindanao Railway System in order to fast-track the progress. He promised to provide a written update regarding the railway from the Department of Transportation by Friday, June 21.

The Mindanao Railway System is a transportation system that connects Tagum City to Digos through Davao, aiming to lessen the travel time by about one hour. Originally set to begin in 2019, however, it did not push through due to funding setbacks. 

The DOTr planned to overhaul the project this year, opting to use electric-powered trains instead of diesel to adopt a more modern and environment-friendly technology. There were also talks of pushing for a double-track railway system instead of one, allowing trains to move from Tagum to Digos and vice versa at the same time. Allyssa Kaye Casa, AdDU Intern

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