Category : Press Release
Date : July 15, 2021
Agency : Department of Finance
Title : National Gov’t, BARMM hold back-to-back meetings to speed up implementation of Bangsamoro Organic Law
Article : Officials of the national government and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) held back-to-back meetings of the Intergovernmental Relations Body (IGRB) and the Special Intergovernmental Fiscal Policy Board (IFPB) to resolve issues and fast-track the implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL).

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, who co-chairs both the IGRB and the IFPB, said the meetings underscore the deep commitment of both the national and Bangsamoro governments to ensure the successful implementation of a genuine and functional autonomy in the BARMM.

The latest meeting of the IGRB, which is co-chaired by BARMM Minister Mohagher Iqbal of the Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education, was the 8th held since it was first convened in Davao City in December 2019.

Co-chaired by BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim, the IFPB also held its third meeting on the same day, June 14.

“These back-to-back meetings underscore the strong partnership and cooperation between the national government and the Bangsamoro government to resolve issues on the implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law through regular consultation and continuing dialogue,” Dominguez said.

During the 8th IGRB meeting, the co-chairs directed the body’s technical working group (TWG) tasked to facilitate the purchase of the properties of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) outside the BARMM to convene immediately.

The co-chairpersons said the TWG should begin work on transferring these properties outside of the BARMM to the national government.

According to Finance Undersecretary Bayani Agabin, the TWG is tasked to recommend the manner of appraising the properties and resolving issues involving their disposition.

“The TWG is tasked to find ways to speed up the disposition of the properties so that the proceeds of the sale can be used by the Bangsamoro Government for the implementation of development projects in their region,” Agabin said.

During the meeting, the IGRB also noted the progress of the other intergovernmental relations mechanisms provided under the BOL. “The IGRB co-chairpersons urged these bodies to convene at the soonest possible time,” Agabin said.

At the IFPB meeting, the participation of the Bangsamoro government in the Southern Philippines Development Authority (SPDA) was discussed.

Agabin said that “provisionally, it was agreed that the three vacant seats in the SPDA were to be filled by nominees of the Bangsamoro Government.”

He said that based on studies from the Governance Commission for Government-Owned and Controlled Corporations (GCG), there are overlaps in the jurisdiction of SPDA and the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA).

“The Joint IFPB Secretariat will study and recommend the repurposing and reorganizing of the SPDA to resolve the overlaps in functions and purpose of the two agencies,” Agabin said.