TACLOBAN CITY – National Security Adviser Clarita Carlos on Wednesday said she would push for the restoration of Support to Barangay Development Program (SBDP) in the next years to end insurgency in far-flung communities.
After a meeting with the regional task force to end local communist armed conflict (ELCAC) at the police regional office here, Carlos said the initial outcome of SBDP in Eastern Visayas justifies additional funds for the program.
“There’s a big chance that the fund will be restored. I talked to Budget Secretary (Amehan) Pangandaman and she asked to be around during the budget deliberation for national task force ELCAC. I need data to support why we need P20 million for each village,” Carlos told reporters.
The P20 million is the 2021 allocation for each of the villages cleared from the influence of the New People’s Army for the construction of various infrastructure projects, including farm-to-market roads, water, and sanitation systems, agricultural livelihood opportunities, and technical vocational training.
SBDP is the flagship project of NTF-ELCAC, a body created by then President Rodrigo Duterte through Executive Order 70 dated December 4, 2018.
For 2023, SBDP got a nationwide budget of PHP10 billion.
“SBDP remove reasons for people in the communities to support the NPA. We are addressing the needs of the community and that the one that gives us the best output,” Carlos added.
Under the 2021 funding in Eastern Visayas, SBDP covers six remote villages in Northern Samar.
At least 17 projects have been completed, 18 are still ongoing, and five are under procurement. The total allotment is P120 million. (PNA)