DA-PRDP OKs road project in Mountain Province, links two towns

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The Department of Agriculture’s Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP) has switched on the green light to award the contract for the second segment of the improvement of Besao-Nacawang (Segment 1) and Tadian-Mabalite (Segment 2) farm-to-market road in Mountain Province.

The 4.154-kilometer (km) Tadian-Mabalite road section, which costs P91.857 million (M), is connected to the 8.940-km Besao-Nacawang road section which is now nearing completion. The road section will benefit seven barangays of Tadian namely: Mabalite, Batayan, Bantey, Sumadel, Masla, Duagan and Lubon.The Tadian-Mabalite road section was previously approved, however, the DA-PRDP and the Mountain Province local government mutually decided to terminate and repackage the subproject.

“This was one of the first road projects that we had (under PRDP) and during the period of the first bidding, there were variations in the cost estimates,” said Atty. Jennilyn M. Dawayan, DA-CAR Regional Technical Director and Procurement Head of the PRDP Regional Project Coordination Office-CAR (RPCO-CAR). In repackaging the proposal, several changes were made, including shortening of road length from 11.77 km to 4.154 km; widening of road width from four to five meters; revision of cost estimates; and, also the economic and financial analysis (EFA), among others.

Rigi May B. Copatan, Social and Environmental Safeguards (SES) Officer of the RPCO-CARsaid that validation activities and a series of consultation with beneficiaries and project affected persons (PAPs) were conducted as regards the repackaging of the subproject. “It is important for consultations to be conducted for the beneficiaries, the primary users of the road, to be informed of the changes in the design and specifications of the subproject,” she said.

In terms of the bidding process, Atty. Dawayan said concerned personnel from the DA-PRDP and the local government utilized existing digital modalities to be able to cope up with the distance and the travel restrictions in this time of pandemic. With the approval of the second segment, construction works is expected to start soon. After completion of the road section, farmers and residents in the municipalities of Besao and Tadian will then have an easier access to the neighboring towns and markets within andoutside the province.

“It will have a connectivity to better market opportunities available for the farmers and residents within the area, as well as the delivery of agricultural inputs and the marketing of their produce especially coffee and heirloom rice,” said Atty. Dawayan. The FMR subproject will likewise complement the operations of the Mountain Province Arabica Coffee Enterprise which is also implemented under the DA-PRDP.

Elvy Taquio Estacio (DA-PRDP)

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