World Bank lauds PRDP’s implementation processes
World Bank commended Philippine Rural Development Project on its implementation process during the 6th World Bank Implementation Support Mission.
In the Mindanao leg held in Zamboanga del Norte, World Bank’s Global Agriculture Practice Manager for Asia and Pacific Nathan Belete said they were pleased with the overall progress of the PRDP as what they witnessed during the site visits where PRDP had close monitoring of the projects, and close coordination with the Local Government Units and beneficiaries.
“The project is achieving quite well. It had initial startup delays, as quite normal with most projects in the world, but what we have seen over the last year is quite impressive,” said Balete.
The 6th World Bank implementation support mission aims to evaluate the progress of subprojects towards the achievement of the Project Development and Global Environmental objectives. It also evaluates the progress of key performance indicators, assesses the preliminary impacts of the subprojects as well as the status of compliance with legal covenants, review of safeguard activities and performance, and review of the financial management performance including the procurement activity of the Project.
The mission covered the four Project Support Offices (PSOs) from North Luzon cluster , South Luzon , Visayas and Mindanao. The activities include field trips to subproject sites where the mission team got to see more of the project through discussion with provincial, municipal representative, and subproject beneficiaries from each project site.
For Mindanao cluster, two subprojects were visited including the 13.82km rehabilitation of Poblacion-Farmington-Galingon-Balacbaan-Cabong-Tilubog farm-to-market road worth P188 million in Municipality of Tampilisan, and enterprise development project on Cacao Production and Marketing Enterprise worth P31.857 million in Municipality of Piňan.
“One of the things that we are particularly pleased with, is that, the process of PRDP is put into place and the diligence that appears to be at all levels of implementation from the ground all the way to the top seems to be good. We are very pleased and proud to be associated with this project,” Balete added.
Other members of the WB Mission Team included Lead Agriculture Economist and Task Team Leader Frauke Jungbluth; Rural Infrastructure Engineer, Consultant Raoul Azanza and Victor Dato; Infrastructure Manager for East Asia Almud Weitz; Economist Hanane Ahmed; Social Safeguard Specialist Jonas Bautista; and Social Development Specialist Marivi Ladia.
Almud Weitz said that it was a good opportunity for her to see what was happening on the project when she went to Tampilisan and her major concern when it comes to FMR was on the road safety.
“Recently, we are paying a lot of attention to road safety. So once a road is built, there is a tendency of cars and drivers to drive a bit faster than before. We just want to make sure that nobody gets injure d by that,” she said.
“But I think from what I understood, there’s quite a bit of attention paid to the whole package of the road not just cementing, but really looking at how those road can be made sustainable, maintained overtime,” she added.
PRDP’s innovation also caught the attention of the World Bank team where science-based tools like geotagging is being used not only in the Philippines but also other World Bank projects outside the country.
“I think the PRDP has taken it quite far in terms of how much information in the system that you have set up and that’s definitely something to replicate for other projects not only in the Philippines but also outside. I think the level of information that you’re providing goes beyond what I’ve seen so far and I think it’s a model for others to emulate both in the process that you can really see how much progresses made, as things are getting constructed or built but also kind of the end product and the just figuring out where different roads will built,” Weitz said. (Joy M. Montecalvo, PSO)