ZAMBOANGA CITY -– The entire 55 members of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) Parliament approved the proposed P75.6-billion budget of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) government for the fiscal year 2021 on Wednesday, Dec. 23.
A report reaching the Manila Bulletin indicated that the entire 55 members of the BTA voted “yes” which led to the approval of the budget for 2021
Bangsamoro Chief Minister Ahod “Al Haj Murad” Ebrahim immediately signed the bill into law as the Bangsamoro Appropriations Act (BAA) 2021.
Ebrahim said the BAA budget will be utilized for the immediate response to the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, rebuild the Bangsamoro region, and help the Bangsamoro people, as its top priorities.
“Our task for the upcoming year is to create programs and policies that will simultaneously revive the economy, deliver basic services to the constituents, and revisit our public health institutions,” he said.
“The Bangsamoro Organic Law remains to be at the heart of this fiscal design. We propose mechanisms that can effectively address the diverse needs of the Bangsamoro, regardless of their geographic area and or ethnolinguistic identity.,” Ebrahim added.
BAA 2021 covers the proposed budgets of the BARMM’s different ministries, agencies, and offices, which were thoroughly scrutinized by the sub-committees of the BTA’s Committee on Finance, Budget, and Management (CFBM).
The following is the breakdown of the budget, with P11.2 billion allocated for the Special Purpose Fund:
The Office of the Chief Minister (OCM) – P10.2 billion: Ministry of Finance, Budget, and Management (MFBM) – P389.6 million: Ministry of Social, Services, and Development (MSSD) – P3.3 billion: Ministry of Trade, Investments, and Tourism (MTIT) – P323.5 million; Ministry of Labor and Employment (MOLE) – P274.1 million: Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) – P623.2 million; Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) – P23.5 billion; Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs (MIPA) – P105.2 million: Ministry of Health (MOH) – P5.1 billion; Ministry of Public Works (MPW) – P15.7 billion; Ministry of Interior Local Government (MILG) – P1.05 billion: Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources, and Energy (MENRE) – P553.7 million; Ministry of Human Settlements and Development (MHSD) – P811 million; Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) – P197.2 million; Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Agrarian Reforms (MAFAR) – P1.5 billion; Ministry of Public Order and Safety (MPOS) – P108.8 million; Office of the Wali – P33 million; Bangsamoro Planning and Development Authority (BPDA) – P85 million; Bangsamoro Attorney General Office (BAGO) – P41 million; Bangsamoro Human Rights Commission (BHRC) – P97.4 million; Bangsamoro Women Commission (BWC) – P71.6 million; and Bangsamoro Youth Commission (BYC) – P76.7 million
The P75.6-billion budget was appropriated out of the annual block grant from the National Government, share in the National Government taxes, fees, and charges collected in the Bangsamoro territorial jurisdiction, and projected collections on regional taxes, fees and charges for the operation of the Bangsamoro Government from January 1 to December 31, 2021.
Atty. Anna Tarhata Basman, chair of Parliament’s Committee on Account and Audit, said the proposal poses an increase of P1.1-billion from the P2.6-billion budget of BTA Parliament this year because of “the approval of their improved and a more robust organizational structure.
The budget for maintenance and other operating expenses is at P2.335 billion pesos, personnel expenses at P1.284 billion, and capital outlay at P87.781 million pesos.
According to Basman, the budget includes the opening of four new satellite offices in Tawi-Tawi, Sulu, Basilan, and Lanao del Sur.
“These satellite offices will allow our Members of the Parliament to attend our plenary sessions and committee meetings outside our esteemed halls,” Basman said.