Mamasapano’s wooden footbridge to stay for history — ARMM
The wooden footbridge in Barangay Tukanalipao in Mamasapano, Maguindanao – which stood as a silent witness to the January 25 clash that left more than 60 people – 44 of them elite policemen – dead will not be taken down despite the construction of a new footbridge in the village, according to officials of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman said officials have agreed to preserve the old footbridge, which connects the two banks of the Dansalan River, for its historical significance.
He said the new steel bridge aimed at providing efficient farm-to-market link for residents of the village was being constructed beside the old footbridge.
“It was designed for tricycles, as well as farm carts and equipment transporting people and goods,” Hataman said.
ARMM Public Works Secretary Tun Mustapha Loong said he hoped the new bridge would be opened next month to local traffic.
The Bailey bridge being constructed in Tukanalipao, was part of the P77 million worth of infrastructure projects the ARMM government were building for Mamasapano.
James Mlok, head engineer of Maguindanao’s 2nd District Engineering Office, said aside from the 120-meter steel bridge, an 880-meter access road worth P17.5 million; nine school buildings with a combined worth of P44.397 million, water sanitation structures, a farm-to-market road and a mosque, were also being built in the village.
Mlok said the steel bridge has been dubbed the “bridge of peace” and was nearing completion.
The infrastructure projects were started in March this year, after the military ended its month-long all-out offensive against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), which displaced over 100,000 residents across Maguindanao.
Hataman said the participation of the military in the construction of the projects has shown that it was supportive of the Mindanao peace process.
“The government is very optimistic that the projects will bring peace and development in the area and will help bring back normalcy in the lives of the people,” Hataman said. (Nash Maulana, Inquirer Mindanao)
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