The Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services Region X recently piloted the conduct of the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (PAMANA) Municipal Evaluation and Orientation in the municipality of Nunungan, Lanao del Norte last August 27-30, 2013. The team, which was led by the Regional Community-Driven Specialist, Roger Alabado was tasked to evaluate the feasibility and practicability of the conduct of the said program in the area.  This in contrast to the peace and order issues threatening the implementation of the PAMANA Program in the area.

A little over four months (April 26, 2013) had passed since an election-related violence occurred in the municipality, where a mayoralty candidate and her entourage was ambushed right after a campaign sortie leaving 13 dead and 10 hurt, including women and children.  This has led to the deferment of the project implementation which was supposed to have started long before the conduct of the local elections of 2013.  This has prompted the Kalahi-CIDSS RPMO to ensure the peace and order situation and other definitive matters that would put the field staff at risk of any danger before pushing through with the PAMANA implementation.

The Municipal Orientation was conducted on August 27, 2013, which was attended by the municipal mayor, Hon. Abdul Manamparan II, municipal vice-mayor Atty. Abdul Malik Manamparan, members of the Sanguniang Bayan, barangay captains, municipal employees, and community members.  The LGU and the community have showed eagerness to start with the implementation since it has been delayed due to past incidents that have been cause for postponement.

Field assessment was also done with the conduct of barangay assessment/visitation, on August 28-29, 2013, led by the Regional Infrastructure Assistant Engineer (Kalahi-CIDSS), Engr. Ruel Paguia, and Regional Infrastructure Assistant Engineer (PAMANA), Engr. Gary Santa.  Noted during the field assessment were various infrastructures existing in the barangays, current road/trail conditions, terrain of each barangays, and viable resources that might be useful during the sub-project implementation.  This was also conducted to anticipate for possible difficulties the Area Coordinating Team may face in the future implementation of the program.

Things were ironed out during the conduct of the Exit Conference on August 30, 2013.  Present during the said activity were the RPMO staff, municipal mayor, Hon. Abdul Manamparan II, municipal vice-mayor Atty. Abdul Malik Manamparan, and members of the Municipal Inter-Agency Committee.  During the activity, the Memorandum of Agreement between the DSWD and the LGU of Nunungan was revisited to ensure that all conditions be attended to by all parties involved.  It was also during the said activity where clarifications were addressed especially on matters discussed during the Municipal Orientation.

During the discussion on the assurance of safety among the PAMANA staff, the upcoming barangay elections was brought into the discussion, deeming it as a foreseen problem for the implementation of the project. Chief Inspector Dennis Tano, Municipal Chief of Police of Nunungan affirmed this possible problem stating that there are only a few police officers in the municipality and that there might be a problem of ensuring the safety of the field staff since his men would have to attend to election matters as well.  With the emergence of the issue, Mayor Abdul Manamparan II decided that if it was possible for the deferment of the project implementation to after the barangay elections is done, it will be more favorable to all concerned.  Mayor Manamparan decided to address the matter to the Nationaol Project Management Office, through the RPMO for the deferment as soon as possible.

The Municipal Evaluation and Orientation was indeed a right step at empowering the people of Nunungan, after several unfortunate incidents that have led to the deferment of the project.  The Kalahi-CIDSS RPMO is always equipped to address matters to accommodate and ensure the successful implementation of the different Community-Driven Development programs and modalities for the people of Region X.  Along the way, it is also the obligation of the RPMO to ensure that the project staffs are ensured of safety and that their well-being is attended to with utmost consideration.  In no time, the people of Nunungan will implement the PAMANA project in their respective communities.  It will be in no time that they will feel the fruits of the peace-promoting program in their respective barangays.