DBM grants P93-M to 7 Bicol LGUs for water, sanitation projects

By Connie Calipay

February 24, 2024, 9:32 am

LEGAZPI CITY – At least seven local government units (LGUs) in the Bicol region will receive PHP93 million worth of assistance from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for water supply and sanitation services through the Support and Assistance Fund to Participatory Budgeting (SAFPB) project.

The SAFPB is the DBM's response to the directive of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to ensure that all Filipinos have access to clean water.

In a radio interview on Friday, DBM Assistant Secretary Rolando Toledo said the seven eligible LGUs from the region are part of the 75 municipalities in the country that will have access to the DBM water and sanitation project.

"This project is also unique in that it will use participatory budgeting. This means that not only government officials but also Civil Society Organizations will have a say in the identification, implementation, and monitoring of the projects. This is in line with the DBM's commitment to promoting open government in the country," Toledo said.

He said the eligible LGUs are those municipalities that belong to 4th to 6th income classes with an established LGU-managed water utility and project-ready.

The seven LGUs are Jovellar and Malilipot in Albay province; Bulusan and Juban in Sorosgon province; Baleno, Masbate; Panganiban, Catanduanes and San Fernando, Camarines Sur.

"They are the LGUs with municipal water supply sanitation and hygiene master plan duly endorsed by an accredited Civil Society Organization and adopted by the LGU, and with identified feasible water sources," he said.

In a statement, DBM Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said the agency believes that ensuring sustainable water supply and sanitation services in local government units is "key to Philippine development, human development, public health, and poverty reduction."

“This is also in line with President BBM's call for a New Philippines that aims to ensure clean and safe drinking water and sanitation for the health of every citizen," Pangandaman said. (PNA)