October 3, 2023

The Regional Project Monitoring Committee (RPMC) Project Inspectorate Team of the Regional Development Council with the Benguet Provincial Project Monitoring Committee visited the Ciriaco Magno Elementary School and inspected a one-storey two classroom school building project in Daclan, Tublay, Benguet.

The project has a total cost of P4.9 million, which started in December 2022 and was supposed to be completed in April this year but was extended to June.

It has been flagged as among the delayed projects to be monitored by the RPMC for the second quarter of this year.

The cause of the project delay is due to an existing classroom, which needed to be vacated and demolished before the project could push through.

Initial findings during the inspection include the unsafe working area of the school building project which poses danger to the school children.

The inspection team saw children playing at the construction site and even at the scaffoldings.

The project also lacks drainage canal and has no rain water harvesting facility.

The design of the building was not also followed and the building was built in a mountainous terrain, which needs to have a retaining wall to ensure the stability and safety of the structure.

The RPMC Team called on the Department of Public Works and Highways-Benguet Second District Engineering Office and the project contractor to install barricades and fences to ensure the construction area will be off limits to the students for their safety.

The team will be coordinating with the Department of Education-Cordillera and DPWH for the consideration of site improvement and the provision of a retaining wall and slope protection. The RPMC Project Inspectorate Team was led by National Economic and Development Agency-Cordillera Director Susan Sumbeling with PMS Head Jonathan Ligligen, National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA)-Cordillera Director Camilo Balutan, private sector representative Julie Cabato, and other representatives from the regional offices of the Department of the Interior and Local Government, NEDA, NICA, Philippine Information Agency, and representatives from Benguet provincial government and Tublay LGU. – PIA