Officials elated with immediate approval of 2018 ARMM budget

BANGSAMORO NEWS UPDATES  • Thu Oct 12, 2017 03:15 PM  •  213   0
By John Unson
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ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman defending the ARMM 2018 budget. Beside him is Exec. Sec. Atty. Laisa Alamia.
ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman defending the ARMM 2018 budget. Beside him is Exec. Sec. Atty. Laisa Alamia.
COTABATO CITY --- Officials construed as vote of confidence for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao the approval in just a minute by the Senate of its P33.5 billion budget for 2018.

Laisa Masuhud Alamia, ARMM’s executive secretary, said on Thursday that the hearing on the region’s 2018 budget on Wednesday lasted only for a minute, approved immediately on motion by Senator Vicente Sotto III.
 
“It was approved without tedious deliberation anymore. The hearing lasted only for about 60 seconds. We are thankful to the Senate for its confidence on ARMM,” Alamia said Thursday.

Mayor Ramon Piang of North Upi town in Maguindanao said Thursday that the immediate approval of the ARMM’s budget was a tacit indication that national lawmakers trust incumbent regional officials.

“That’s good for the Mindanao peace process. That shows that the local Muslim, Christian and Lumad communities are improving well and good in their governance in ARMM,” said Piang, a Teduray tribal chieftain.

The mayor of Lamitan City, Rose Furigay, said she and her constituents are thankful to the House of Representatives and the Senate for approving the ARMM’s P33.5 billion budget for 2018.

“Our 45 barangays are to benefit from that via infrastructure projects and also in terms of social welfare, health and education services by the ARMM government,” Furigay said.

Like Piang, a key member of ARMM’s Lumad community, Furigay also welcomed as indication of confidence on ARMM the grant of legislative imprimatur by the Senate for its requested budget for 2018.

The ARMM budget will be integrated into the General Appropriations Act for 2018 that shall outline fund allocations for next year’s operations and projects of all line agencies and other government outfits.

ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman said Thursday that P14.6 billion, or 43.8% of their 2018 budget, is allocated for salaries of employees of different departments and support offices under his administration.

He said P14 billion is allocated for capital outlay and the remaining P4.7 billion is to be spent for maintenance and other operating expenses of the regional government.

Hataman led the regional officials who attended the Senate hearing on their proposed 2018 budget last Wednesday.

The autonomous region, operating on a constitutional charter, the Republic Act 9054, has an Office of the Regional Governor, which manages the executive branch of ARMM, and a 24-seat Regional Assembly, touted as “Little Congress” of the south. 

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