Friday Jun, 05 2020 03:55:09 AM

Local, foreign benefactors beef up BARMM's war on COVID-19 

HEALTH • 10:15 AM Sat May 16, 2020
John M. Unson
The UNICEF delivered Friday to the Bangsamoro regional capitol the hand washing sets. (Contributed photos) 

COTABATO CITY --- The war versus the coronavirus in central Mindanao got an added push with a separate P10 million grant and technical support from local and foreign benefactors.

The United Nations Children’s Fund initially turned over Friday to Bangsamoro Local Government Minister Naguib Sinarimbo 20 hand washing sets to complement the COVID-19 containment efforts of the regional government.

Sinarimbo manages the quick deployment Rapid Emergency Action on Disaster Incidence (READI) contingent of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Andrew Morris, UNICEF’s top field official for Southern Mindanao, said they intend to provide the BARMM government a hundred hand washing sets it can put up either in school campuses, in worship sites, or in public places.

Morris, who delivered the units to the BARMM capitol here Friday morning, said the continuing spike in COVID-19 infections is a serious concern that frontline local and foreign entities need to immediately address together as a universal team.

"It is important to keep the efforts going. We should make decisions based on data,” Morris said, apparently referring to the BARMM government’s COVID-19 containment efforts.

Sinarimbo told reporters Saturday he is thankful to the UNICEF and other outfits of the United Nations that are helping push forward the socio-economic and humanitarian thrusts of the newly-established BARMM government covering Moro, Christian and Lumad communities in the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.

There were UN entities and international non-government organizations that also supported the 22-year peace talks between Malacañang and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front that resulted in the creation of BARMM in 2019. 

“We are proudly thankful, so grateful to these foreign donor entities and international peace advocacy and humanitarian groups,” Sinarimbo said. 

In Lanao del Sur province Thursday, the office of Gov. Mamintal Adiong, Jr. released P10 million to the Amai Pakpak Medical Center, or APMC, in Marawi City, for the procurement of COVID-19 testing equipment.

It was in Lanao del Sur where the first suspected coronavirus cases in BARMM were detected and treated successfully by APMC personnel with the help of the Lanao del Sur Integrated Provincial Health Office under by physician Allen Minalang.

Adiong, chairman of Lanao del Sur’s provincial disaster risk reduction and management council, turned over Thursday the P10 million check to physician Shalimar Sani-Rakiin, chief of APMC, in the presence of other public officials.

Adiong then said they preparing now for their P200 million second relief operations tranche for the communities in all of Lanao del Sur’s 39 towns and in more than 90 barangays in Marawi City that got displaced by the COVID-19 quarantine since March.

In separate statements Saturday, the physicians Sani-Rakiin and Minalang expressed gratitude to Lanao del Sur’s provincial government for providing the AMPC with a P10 million grant for the purchase of direly needed coronavirus testing equipment. 



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