Cotabato district engineering office transferred now under BARMM control

Published September 21, 2021, 1:10 PM

by Betheena Unite

A district engineering office in Cotabato City has been transferred to the Ministry of Public Works (MPW) of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

DONE DEAL — Department of Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar and Bangsamoro Ministry of Public Works Minister Eduard U. Guerra signed two memorandum of agreement on Monday, Sept. 20 covering the transfer of Cotabato City District Engineering Office to Bangsamoro. (Photo courtesy of the DPWH)

The transfer was made possible under the two memorandum of agreements signed by Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar and MPW-BARMM Minister Eduard U. Guerra on Monday, Sept. 20.

Under the agreement, the DPWH Cotabato City District Engineering Office land, building, equipment, and assets located in Barrio Kakar, Cotabato City were officially turned over to the jurisdiction of MPW-BARMM pursuant to Republic Act 11054 or An Act Providing for the Organic Law for the BARMM.

One of the twin agreements signed by the officials covered the two-year implementation arrangements/protocols of various infrastructure projects of the national government in Bangsamoro.

Under the interim implementation arrangement, the DPWH is tasked to lead in the identification of various national infrastructure projects in BARMM, in coordination with MPW.

The MPW, on the other hand, may recommend and initiate request of proposed flagship projects directly to the BARMM government parliament for funding and consideration.

According to Villar, DPWH is required to furnish MPW copies of all approved report/studies, plans, annual procurement plan, procurement monitoring report, and list of contracts awarded with name of contractor of all DPWH projects in BARMM.

The MPW shall also be notified and invited as observers in pre-bid conferences, pre-construction conference of DPWH projects in BARMM and be assisted in capability development in matters related to procurement.

Quarterly coordination meeting shall also be conducted between the two parties for the evaluation of the projects under the national government.

With this development, a project management office (PMO) was created to handle the implementation of various national projects within the province of Maguindanao inclusive of Cotabato City.

The PMO will handle the direct implementation of all national infrastructure projects in BARMM funded by the General Appropriations Act (GAA). It shall furnish project progress to MPW and invite the latter on final inspection of projects. The MPW, however, may conduct an independent project monitoring of completed projects.

The maintenance of national roads and bridges shall also be under the national government in close coordination with the BARMM. Minor maintenance works and emergency/disaster response in BARMM can be delegated by the DPWH to the MPW through a separate agreement.

Foreign-assisted projects will still be headed by the DPWH in coordination with MPW.

“The interim agreement is effective for a period of two years upon approval or until such time that the Regional Project Management Office and PMOs for Bangsamoro are created and fully-operationalized,” Villar said.