BARMM proposes P98.4-B budget for 2024 | Inquirer News

BARMM proposes P98.4-B budget for 2024

Bangsamoro Parliament Speaker Pangalian Balindong (right) raises a copy of the proposed 2024 Bangsamoro Expenditure Program

EXPENDITURE PROGRAM SET Bangsamoro Parliament Speaker Pangalian Balindong (right) raises a copy of the
proposed 2024 Bangsamoro Expenditure Program after receiving it from Chief Minister Ahod “Al Haj Murad” Ebrahim (left) on Tuesday. | PHOTO: Bangsamoro Transition Authority

COTABATO CITY, Maguindanao del Norte, Philippines — The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has proposed a P98-billion budget for next year, with education getting the largest chunk in keeping with the regional government’s promise to make quality education accessible to all.

BARMM Interim Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim officially submitted on Tuesday the proposed budget to the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA), the BARMM’s interim governing body or parliament, where it was officially received by BTA Speaker Pangalian Balindong.


“After centuries of struggle for self-determination, the Bangsamoro is now recognized as an autonomous entity cultivating the seeds of jihad (holy war) that were once planted into our hearts,” Ebrahim told members of the BTA Parliament during ceremonial turnover of the Bangsamoro Expenditure Plan at the region’s government center in this city.


Aside from education, which gets P30.2 billion of the proposed budget, the two other biggest allocations will go to infrastructure, with P17.6 billion, and health, with P6.6 billion.

Ebrahim said the proposed budget for 2024 showed the BARMM government’s commitment to address the region’s needs, increase economic growth, and improve the overall quality of life for the Bangsamoro people.

The 80-member BTA, which was formed in 2019 as a vital part of the peace accord reached between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front-led rebels, will commence deliberations of the proposed budget beginning in November.

The BTA was to govern the Bangsamoro region for three years, or until 2022, but it was extended to 2025, the year when the region’s voters would elect their members of parliament. It is tasked to pass crucial legislation to operationalize the Bangsamoro Organic Law that created the BARMM and exercise legislative and executive powers during the region’s transition period.

Funding sources

Next year’s budget showed a 15.35-percent increase from this year’s P85.3-billion budget and a 23.3-percent jump from the 2022 budget of P79.8 billion. Although education and infrastructure had consistently been the region’s top priority, the budget for health this year surpassed that of the budget for the Office of the Chief Minister, which had been on the top three in the previous year.

Lawyer Ubaida Pacasem, Minister of Finance, Budget and Management, told the region’s lawmakers that next year’s budget would be funded by P70.5 billion from the Annual Block Grant from the national government as provided in the 2024 National Expenditure Program (NEP); P5.08 billion from shares in national taxes collected within the BARMM as provided in the NEP; P5 billion from the Special Development Fund; P471 million from the projected regional taxes; and P17.3 billion from the declared savings from prior years.


Of the P30.2 billion earmarked for education, P754 million will be used for the construction of schools, classrooms, and libraries, as well as the provision of furniture and fixtures for teachers, said Education Minister Mohagher Iqbal.

He said the allocation for education reflected the region’s commitment to enhance the educational landscape in BARMM, hoping that in the long run, it would provide better opportunities for its residents.“[It highlighted the] role played by education as the foundation of inclusive growth, sustainable development and innovation,” Iqbal said.

Aside from salaries and wages and maintenance and other operating expenses, the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education will also fund various education programs, scholarships and the development of schools and learning centers to ensure that quality education is accessible to all, according to Iqbal.

Connectivity, healthcare

According to the Bangsamoro Ministry of Public Works, most of the P17.6 billion allotted to infrastructures would be used to build structures meant to strengthen BARMM’s economy, enhance its connectivity, and provide a better quality of life for the Bangsamoro people.

The P6.6 billion allocated for health would be used to strengthen health-care services, improve medical facilities, and enhance public health programs to ensure the well-being of the citizens.

Minister of Social Services and Development Raissa Jajurie said the proposed P3.7 billion budget for her ministry would be used to reduce poverty promote social cohesion, and to provide financial assistance to those in need.

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The budget for other offices included P3.5 billion for the Office of the Chief Minister; P3.1 billion for the BTA; P2.3 billion for the Ministry of Interior and Local Government; P1.9 billion for the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform; P1.1 billion for the Ministry of Human Settlements and Development; and P834 million for the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Energy.

TAGS: 2024 BARMM budget, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao

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