Few months from now,  50 resettlement housing units with entrance archway and solar-powered water system level 3 will soon be established in Lower and Upper Bato-Bato in the municipality of Akbar in Basilan as the Ministry of Human Settlements and Development, the Housing Arm of the BARMM and the Local Government Unit (LGU) jointly carried out the groundbreaking ceremony today.

Stakeholders from different sectors gathered at the project site in Upper Bato-Bato, that used to be a conflict-affected area, to participate and witness the conduct of the ceremony for the housing development project with budget from the Special Development Fund (SDF) 2022.

Started with the signing of memorandum of agreement in February this year, the project has a total cost is of PHP 43,717,800.00 for the three components.

For the housing component, each unit amounts to PHP764,400.00 and spans at 48 square meters with three bedrooms, an outdoor kitchen, a living room, a dining area, and a bathroom.

Minister Hamid Aminoddin D. Barra said the Ministry builds houses which will then be turned into homes by the beneficiaries.

“Before in this area, not only lives were gone but also houses, which were burned down and destructed by the conflict and we help in rebuilding these houses for strong, developed, and peaceful Bangsamoro,” he furher stated.

Meanwhile, Hon. Mayor Alih A. Sali recounted how the residents of the villages in Akbar were forced to flee as their houses were turned to ashes dueing the conflict.

“We are very thankful to the BARMM government as this has been our dream to have decent houses and with this project, we will gradually enable the residents to come back to their original places here,” Mayor Sali said.

Director General Esmael W. Ebrahim expressed that with the sincerity showcased by the LGU, the project will not be all and there may be more upcoming projects for Akbar.

Director II for Operations and Management Services Salem C. Demuna shared that the construction of resettlement housing units is a flagship program of the BARMM government as it is really a dream of every Bangsamoro to have a decent house.

As his commitment, Provincial Director of MHSD-Basilan Ibrahim M. Haruddain said the project is designed to make the lives of the Bangsamoro better and this is what he would do with the LGU and they will not fail the expectation of the people.

Condluding the program before the groundbreaking proper was Deputy Minister Aldin H. Asiri who called for teamwork and cooperation and said the MHSD will remain a partner in realizing the dreams of the people.