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Davao City, Philippines

DavNor realigns budget for COVID-19 response

April 08, 2020 - Wednesday 7:04 PM by Ruth Palo

Article Banner Image Governor Edwin Jubahib giving out food packs in Sto. Tomas. One DavNor Network Facebook page

DAVAO CITY — The provincial government of Davao del Norte has realigned P215.76 million of its 2020 annual budget as emergency funds to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, Governor Edwin Jubahib said the budget realignment aims to better respond to the crisis as the top priority of the province is to ensure the health of the constituents.

He said the provincial government is committed to giving urgent priority to addressing the public health emergency as well as to provide a lifeline for the people of Davao del Norte who bear the impact of the disease.

“We need to prepare. We have to be ready if the situation worsens,” the governor said as he noted the continued rise of COVID-19 cases in the province.

As of Wednesday, April 8, the province recorded nine positive COVID-19 cases who are currently admitted at the Davao Regional Medical Center in Tagum City.

There are also 22 reported persons under investigation (PUIs) and 229 persons under monitoring (PUMs).

Jubahib said the realignment of the annual budget was approved by the Sangguniang Panlungsod in its special session on April 3.

The province’s total budget for 2020 is P2.089 billion.

It was learned that the Department of Interior and Local Government Unit (DILG) is allowing all Local Government Units (LGUs) to use their 20 percent development funds for their efforts in containing the spread of the virus.

Jubahin said half of the Quick Response Fund (QRF), which is by far the largest emergency fund in the province’s history, was realigned from the 20 percent development fund, while P89 million comes from the calamity fund of the province. 

He said the QRF is intended for relief assistance, isolation rooms, personal protective equipment, hygiene kits, and provisions for frontliners.

Also included are medicines, medical equipment, decontamination chambers, disinfectants, other supplies, and essential items to be used in fighting COVID-19.

Thirty isolation rooms for PUIs were recently inaugurated in Davao del Norte, which Jubahib said are an important prevention protocol to slow the spread of the deadly virus.

The entire province of Davao del Norte, save for the Island Garden City of Samal, is under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) from April 5 to April 20.