Davao, Bukidnon sign pact help to manage Davao River  

MAYOR SARA Duterte has signed a memorandum of cooperation (MOC) with the Davao River Basin Management Alliance (DBMRA) to manage and protect the shared body of water of both Davao City and Bukidnon.

The group is composed of the local government of Bukidnon, Mindanao Development Authority, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Under the memorandum, both LGUs are mandated to include in their annual budgets an earmarked contribution to the DRBMA.

Meanwhile, the MOA also mandates the DENR to allocate through its River Basin Control Office an amount of P500,000 to strengthen the alliance, while MinDA will budget P300,000 for the program.

Funding for the project will be managed under a trust fund, with the memo requiring all transactions to be subjected to the standard government accounting and auditing rules and procedures.

The alliance, meanwhile, is authorized to receive contributions, donations, grants, and aid from individuals and other funding institutions in cash or in kind.  The DRBMA was created to reinforce the shared responsibility of the government agencies and local governments to protect the watershed areas.

In the Davao River basin, the Davao City Watershed Management Council and the Bukidnon Watershed Protection and Development Council are the identified existing watershed management councils.

The DRBMA is mandated to oversee the implementation of plans and programs under the Davao river basin integrated development master plan for the protection, conservation, rehabilitation, and management programs.

Both local governments will be required to consolidate its watershed protection policies, with Davao City in charge of information dissemination from within its jurisdiction.

Duterte was present during the signing of the memorandum, along with Bukidnon Provincial Governor Jose Ma. R. Zubiri, Jr., MinDA Secretary Abul Khayr D. Alonto, DENR X regional director Arleigh Adorable, and DENR XI director Ruth Tawantawan.

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