Improved road now serves farmers, residents in Maitum town
The benefits of a concreted road are now felt in Barangays Pangi and Kiambing in Maitum town in the province of Sarangani.
Travel time has reduced, transportation cost has lowered, number of trading partners have increased, local residents have acquired their own vehicles and a much quicker emergency response-time.
The old road that links the two adjacent barangays to the town center used to be impassable during rainy seasons. Due to its lack of proper drainage system, the road was also full of potholes putting commuters at risk and the travel slower.
But when the road was fully concreted, community and economic activities began to change.
“We can now easily deliver our products like copra and fresh coconut to the town with this concreted road. Often times our buyers already tend to come here to pick their orders, unlike before that they were hesitant to travel to Kiambing,” said coconut farmer Claro Nanyong of Brgy. Kiambing.
To realize this change in the locality, the Local government of Maitum has partnered with the Department of Agriculture – Philippine Rural Development Project to fund the concreting of the 2.66-kilometer Pangi-Kiambing farm-to-market road that connects the interior barangays to the national road junction.
In the recent Rapid Appraisal of Emerging Benefits (RAEB), it was found out that there was 17 percent increase in income of those who directly benefitted the road, from P129,381.67 to P151,759.49 among the average household in two barangays.
RAEB is an evaluation tool devised by PRDP to focus on determining successes of individual subprojects. It combines research and survey tools such as random household survey, focus group discussion and spot interviews.
Almost a year after the project was completed, travel time already decreased by 26 percent or a reduction of about 20 minutes compared to the time when the FMR was not yet concreted. Motorcycle is a commonplace mode of transportation.
Further, there was also a noted rise in the type and number of modes of transportation along the road influence areas from 178 before the project to 449 after close the project completion.
“Residents here have purchased multicabs or additional motorcycle because its now safer and smoother to drive. Plus their incomes have increased,” said Kiambing baragany captain Luisa Doctor. According to the LGU of Maitum, their data showed increase in traffic count after the road was completed.
Moreover, traders or commercial panel trucks frequent the two barangays now that they have become more accessible.
“During emergencies also, ambulance can now respond quickly because of the concreted road,” Doctor added.
Aside from benefiting the fishing community, this FMR supports the local champion commodities like rice, coconut, and banana within the aggregate total of 55 hectares farm lots.
The LGU Maitum is allocating P900,000 for the implementation of the operation of this farm to market road based on Resolution No.2016-156 which include this budget in their FY2016 Annual Investment Plant to ensure that this will continue to serve the residents here and to expect more improvement in the income and lives of the farmers. (Joy M. Montecalvo)