ZAMBOANGA CITY – Bangsamoro Chief Minister Ahod “Al Haj Murad” Ebrahim filed on Thursday, November 26, the P75-billion Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) budget for fiscal year 2021.
Ebrahim said despite the massive challenges brought about by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the BARMM government’s mandate remains “true to the cause of our people and to the oath that we took when we began this journey together”.
“None of which, of course, can be possible without approving a financial program that can respond to the unprecedented needs of these trying times enabling our community to bounce back better,” Ebrahim emphasized.
“What makes this financial program distinct from last year are the inclusion of efforts towards the public health crisis and other significant initiatives that were not part of last year’s fiscal design,” he said.
According to Ebrahim, the Bangsamoro Government’s focus remains at the heart of the Bangsamoro Organic Law’s priority programs in health, education, and social services. “We intend to broaden the scope of its existing programs and expand it down to the grassroots,” he said.
In the 2021 BARMM annual budget, the largest chunk will be allotted to the Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) , amounting to P23.4-billion.
The BARMM government anticipates the absorption of the schools and divisions located in the 63 barangays of North Cotabato and Cotabato City in the basic education sector.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) will get a P5.1-billion share in the budget proposal for the building of 173 more barangay health stations (BHS), and 27 rural health units (RHU) to make sure that every Bangsamoro community gets access to health care services.
The MOH will also be allocation P14 million for 25 scholars for medical degree, and 50 others in allied health-related courses.
The Ministry of Social Services and Development (MSSD) will get a P3.3-billion share, with a large chunk being allotted to its emergency assistance program for grassroots interventions
Similar efforts are also laid out in the region’s contribution to the reconstruction of Marawi City with P517 million docketed for next year.
The Office of the Chief Minister (OCM) will be allotting P193.4-million for its “Ayudang Medikal Mula sa Bangsamoro Government (AMBAG)” program which subsidizes medical expenses of indigent Bangsamoro patients admitted with partner hospitals.
The OCM’s Project TABANG (Tulong Alay sa Bangsamorong Nangangailangan) will continue its humanitarian efforts with a P1.4-billion.
In addition, the Ministry of Science and Technology will be allotted P26 million for science, engineering and mathematics tertiary programs.
“Now more than ever, we need to put up moral governance to work in all levels of government,” Ebrahim said.