BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Mayor Melecio “Beboy” Yap has expressed his opposition to the attempt of some lawmakers to defund the National Task Force –Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict, where Escalante City is among the local government units previously affected by the insurgency problem.
Yap said that P280 million has been allocated by NTF-ELCAC, through its Barangay Support Development Program, for various infrastructure projects to be implemented in remote barangays which used to be affected by insurgency problems.
He stressed that the NTF-ELCAC funds are intended for the people in those insurgency-affected barangays, to prevent them from joining the New People’s Army.
Yap challenged those legislators, who attempted to defund NTF-ELCAC, to look into if the P280 million funds allocated for Escalante City barangays, has done good to help people living in those villages.
Pinapugasan barangay chairman Edgar Rapana, whose village was among the beneficiaries of P280 million barangay development projects, also thanked the national government, through NTF-ELCAC, for the electrification program, construction of farm to market road and farm tractor given to them.
The Department of Interior and Local Government as well as the League of Provinces of the Philippines earlier issued an appeal for the Senate to restore the 28.1 billion Barangay Development Program for NPA-cleared barangays proposed by the NTF-ELCAC in the 2022 budget.*