An assessment of progress and consultation with the relevant stakeholders was undertaken by the Steering Committee of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for the implementation of Road Network Development Project in Conflict-Affected Areas in Mindanao (RNDP-CAAM) to enhance infrastructure project delivery in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
DPWH Senior Undersecretary Emil K. Sadain, Chairperson of the Steering Committee created by Secretary Manuel M. Bonoan to ensure the effective and coordinated implementation of detailed design and construction of RNDP-CAAM, presided the second committee meeting on December 1, 2023 in Cotabato City to review activity milestones and provide guidance and direction for challenges.
Senior Undersecretary Sadain, in-charge of DPWH infrastructure flagship projects under “Build Better More” program of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. administration explained that the assistance of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in the development, construction and improvement of access roads connecting BARMM and other regions in Mindanao is expected to foster economic activity, improve accessibility and ensure smooth movement of goods and services, and will support the development objectives of the conflict-affected areas.
JICA is providing Official Development Assistance thru loan agreement PH-FP1 for the detailed design and construction/improvement of four (4) sub-projects in Bangsamoro under RNDP-CAAM: 36.69-km Parang Balabagan Road (SP-2), 19.6-km Marawi City Ring Road (SP-7), 7.07-km Parang East Diversion Road (SP-8), and 17.42-km Manuangan Parang Road (SP-9).
Keeping in mind the best interest of stakeholders, the meeting presented an opportunity for better coordination and communication with the DPWH working together with counterparts in the Bangsamoro Region to ensure effective and efficient implementation of the project.
“As the government’s engineering and construction arm, DPWH supports peace-building effort through infrastructure development. The improvement of road network for better connectivity here in Bangsamoro will enable people from conflict-affected areas to have links to markets, public facilities, and improve agribusiness potential to help bridge the economic gap and consolidate peace”, said Senior Undersecretary Sadain who is also in-charge for the implementation of national infrastructure projects in BARMM.
The meeting was participated by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Senior Representative Keisuke Fukui together with RNDP-CAAM Program Officer Yoko Katakura; DPWH Unified Project Management Office - Roads Management Cluster 1 (DPWH RMC1 Bilateral-UPMO) Project Director Benjamin A. Bautista; Ministry of Public Works (MPW)-BARMM Director General Danilo A. Ong; Ministry of the Interior and Local Government (MILG) Deputy Minister Dr. Ibrahim P. Ibay; DPWH Regional Project Management Office BARMM (DPWH RPMO BARMM) Director Najib D. Dilangalen; DPWH Stakeholders Relations Service Director Randy R. Del Rosario; and DPWH Project Managers Antonio Erwin R. Aranaz and Reyderick Siozon.
Also included as member of the Steering Committee created under DPWH Special Order 172 dated August 4, 2023 are representatives from BARMM Ministry of Environmental, Natural Resources and Energy (MENRE); Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform (MAFAR); Ministry of Indigenous Peoples' Affairs (MIPA); National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA); Department of National Defense (DND) Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities (CCCH); Bangsamoro Development Planning Authority (BPDA); Tabang Ako Siyap Ka Bangsa Iranun Saya Ko Kalilintad Ago Ka Pamagayon Inc. (TASBIKKA); Ranao Movement Against Corruption (RMAC); Police Regional Office - Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (PRO BAR); Philippine Army’s 1st and 6th Infantry Divisions; Mayors of Marantao, Marawi City, Piagapo, and Saguiaran in the Province of Lanao Del Sur; Mayors of Balabagan, Barira, Buldon, Datu Blah Sinsuat, Kapatagan, Matanog, Parang, Sultan Kudarat and Sultan Mastura in the Province of Maguindanao; and Mayors of Pigkawayan, North Cotabato and Lebak, Sultan Kudarat.
DPWH has tapped the services for detailed engineering design, tender assistance and construction supervision of joint venture CTI Engineering International Co., Ltd. and Oriental Global Co., Ltd. headed by Project Manager Dr. Jovito C. Santos in association with Woodfields Consultants, Inc. under Project Manager Henry M. Medina together with Edifice Planners and Builders, Inc., Angel Lazaro and Associates Int., KRC Environmental Services, DCCD Engineering Corporation and Philkoei International, Inc., Consultant.
To date, four (4) contract packages (CP) of civil works for Marawi Transcentral Road Phase 3 under the JICA-funded RNDP-CAAM with a total length of 18.78-km were completed.
These are 4.87-km CP-3A consisting of Cabingan-MSU Campus-Amai Pakpak Avenue (Road 6), MSU Campus-Matampay-Marantao Road (Road 7), and Rapas-Bayaba Road (Road 20); 4.92-km CP-3B consisting of Emie-Sagonsongan-Linao-Lantian Road (Road 9-1), MSU-Bubo Road (Road 13), and Rantian-Paling Road (Road 14); 4.34-km CP-3C consisting of Linao-Alinan Road (Road 15), Emie-Sagunsungan-Linao-Rantian Road (Road 9-2), Rorogagus-Mipaga Road (Road 25), and Bito-Mipaga-Marawi Road (Road 26); and 4.65-km CP-3D consisting of Bacong-Poona-Marantao-Marawi Road (Road 2-3), Bito-Rorogagus-Guimba Road (Road 11), and Tampilong Road (Road 28).
With the full support and cooperation from the local government units and MPW-BARMM, engineering survey activities are progressing for the four (4) sub-projects in Bangsamoro.
Parang-Balabagan Road is a proposed diversion road that will traverse the municipalities of Parang and Matanog, Maguindanao and Balabagan and Kapatagan, Lanao del Sur. The project road starts from the National Highway (AH26) at northern part of Parang towards the coastal side and finally connected to National Highway (AH26) in Balabagan with access to Malabang which has the airport. The road project will also extend support to agricultural productivity program with farm-to-market road access to productive farm lands.
The Marawi City Ring Road will improve connectivity in Islamic City of Marawi, Lanao del Sur. The proposed road alignment of Marawi City Ring Road will traverse the Municipalities of Marantao, Piagapo, Saguiaran but is faced with road right of way dilemma for those parcels of land recently awarded to Agrarian Reform beneficiaries of Certificate of Land Ownership Award (CLOA).
Meanwhile, the proposed Parang East Diversion Road will provide a trunk road at the eastern portion of the town of Parang passing through its four (4) barangays namely Nituan, Gumagadong Calawag, Making and Manion. The construction of the diversion road will decongest the AH26: Narciso Ramos Highway and the primary Cotabato-Pagadian Road, and bolster the connection between the planned agri-industry in Buldon, Barira, and Matanog which is expected to generate high volume of vehicular traffic; and the primary Polloc Port, by providing a bypass road at the congested section of the national highway.
Lastly, Manuangan-Parang Road is planned as a shortcut road to connect the existing Pigcawayan-Sultan Kudarat-Sultan Mastura-Parang National Highway (AH26). The proposed road will also provide access to the productive agricultural areas of the hinterland barangays of the municipalities of Sultan Kudarat, Sultan Mastura and Parang, all in the province of Maguindanao and inner barangays of Pigcawayan, North Cotabato.
DPWH UPMO-RMC 1 Project Director Bautista also reported that two (2) other sub-projects of RNDP-CAAM with a total length of 79.9-km including 21 bridges have detailed engineering design completed under JICA Grant and awaiting approval of DPWH Bureau of Design.
These are the 13.9-km Matanog-Barira-Alamada-Libungan Road and 66-km Tapian-Lebak Coastal Road whose funding for civil works will be included in the 2025 Philippine National Expenditure Program and subsequently the General Appropriations Act.
Article courtesy of The Department of Public Works and Highways