1,103 residents benefited SALINTUBIG program
By Florian Faith Jr. P. Bayawa
KITCHARAO, Agusan del Norte, Oct. 12 (PIA) - The one thousand and one hundred three (1,103) residents of Barangay Sangay in the Municipality of Kitcharao, Agusan del Norte have now access to sufficient water supply after being granted a potable water system project of the Sagana at Ligtas na Tubig Para sa Lahat, known as the SALINTUBIG program of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Region 13 (CARAGA) through the government’s initiated program – Grassroots Participatory Budgeting process with a budgetary cost of P900,000.00.
The “Improvement of Sangay Potable Water System in Kitcharao, Agusan del Norte” has been the ultimate answer to the endemic problem of water inadequacy in the barangay. Through the Grassroots Participatory Budgeting (GPB) process, formerly known as Bottom-up Budgeting (BuB), the Water Project was identified and prioritized through the active participation of peoples’ representatives and the endorsement of the Civil Society Organization (CSOs) since the residents of Brgy. Sangay has long been deprived of sufficient access to safe and potable water. The Local Government Unit of Kitcharao, Agusan del Norte provided a counterpart worth Php100,000.00, making the total project cost into P1 Million that caters 220 households in the barangay.
“Overflowing with joy and gratitude, we would like to express our deepest thanks to the government for answering the need that we have long been asking for. We thought the government has closed its doors on us, but we are wrong. Through the GPB, we went through the process and now we are heard. It is very satisfying.” (“Dako kayo ang among kalipay ug pagpasalamat sa gobyerno sa pagtubag sa among dugay na nga gipanagayu. Abi namo nga gitalikdan na kami sa gobyerno pero nasayup kami. Mahitungod sa GPB, kami ning sunod sa proseso para mahatagan ug proyekto ug nadunggan gajud kami. Kami nahimutang na.”) These were the words of Punong Barangay Bartolome Abejero, Sr.
Hygiene and sanitation in the barangay has improved since the operation of the water system. In fact, diarrhea and other related water borne diseases which are very rampant in the area mostly affecting school-age children have considerably dropped. The most noted positive change was the immediate relief of the residents in fetching gallons of water from the very distant water source.
Consistent with the Millennium development Goal (MDG) No. 7, which is to reduce by 50% of the world’s population without access to safe and potable water, the Government has committed to provide water to all Filipinos, particularly for the poor and waterless communities. Through the GPB and pipelined through the SALINTUBIG Program of the DILG, many waterless communities have now access to safe and potable water. This is also in response to the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) for 2011-2016 which gives priority to water and sanitation.
The 2013 Sagana at Ligtas na Tubig Para sa Lahat (SALINTUBIG) is designed to grant financing and capacity development programs for the implementation of water supply projects in waterless municipalities, in poorest barangays with high level of waterborne diseases, in resettlement areas and public health centers without access to safe water and in the BUPB priority areas as contained in DBM-NPAC-DILG-DSWD Joint Memorandum Circular No. 1 Series of 2012 signed on November 12, 2012.
The DILG as the lead executing agency responsible for the provision of grant financing for the implementation of water projects, also enhances the capacity of the LGUs and water service providers to plan, implement, manage and operate the water projects. (DILG-13/PIA-Caraga)