Sulu Governor Sakur Tan gesture as he briefs Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman, Presidential Peace Adviser Teresita Deles, Mindanao Development Authority head Lualhati Antonino and Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo about a housing project in the province. The Aquino government unveils fresh package of aid and development project worth tens of millions of pesos for Sulu province. (Mindanao Examiner Photo).
SULU, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / July 31, 2011) – The Aquino government unveiled a package of fresh development aid worth tens of millions of pesos to the southern Filipino province of Sulu, which is one of five provinces under the Muslim autonomous region.
Four senior Aquino officials flew to Sulu over the weekend to unveil the projects aimed at helping the provincial government develop key areas and uplift the living standards of poor families there.
Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo who was among those who visited Sulu said the putting up of the regional police headquarters in the province. Sulu Governor Sakur Tan has provided a building to house the police headquarters. He also said that construction of a new police station for the capital town of Jolo.
Also with Robredo were Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman, Presidential Peace Adviser Teresita Deles and Mindanao Development Authority chief Lualhati Antonino.
Soliman brought some 2,200 bags or about 110 tons of rice for distribution to Sulu’s 19 towns. And Deles launched the so-called “Pamana” program or the “Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan,” a new government anti-poverty and peace program.
Deles also announced the funding for a road project in Kalingalang Kaluang town and an integrated market in the town of Maimbung where Tan led the officials in a ground-breaking ceremony witnessed by thousands of people who welcomed them.
“These are just some of the development projects we have for the people of Sulu and these projects all come from President Benigno Aquino. And we are happy that Governor Sakur Tan is pursuing a lot of projects for Sulu,” Deles said.
Tan said more housing projects are also underway in many towns as part of his anti-poverty programs in partnership with the Gawad Kalinga foundation and the Aquino government. Tan funded hundreds of houses for the poor in Sulu the past years and is a strong advocate of peace and development in the South. He also gave a copy of Sulu’s Provincial Development and Framework Plan to the visiting officials.
Antonino, a former lawmaker, praised Tan for his leadership and pledged more projects for Sulu. “I promised you Governor Tan that I will bring to the President and report all these things, these projects that you have undertaken in Sulu,” she said during a program held a public plaza in Maimbung town.
Tan also toured Aquino’s officials in different areas in Sulu and showed them various development and humanitarian projects in Maimbung, Talipao, Jolo and Patikul towns.
Early this year, the Department of Agriculture and the Sulu provincial government have jointly funded the construction of a fish port and cold storage facility in Maimbung town. (Mindanao Examiner)