4 projects in Bicol in revised Build, Build, Build list

MANILA (Bicol Standard)—Four projects in the Bicol region are included in the revised list of flagship infrastructure projects under Build, Build, Build released yesterday by the national government.

Among these is the Bicol International Airport, which costs 4,798.00-billion.

The airport, located in Daraga, Albay, targets completion by 2022, and is currently ongoing implementation.

The Pasacao-Balatan Tourism Coastal Highway in Camarines Sur, a project of the DPWH, costs 13,280.00-billion, according to the same list.

This project aims to be complete by 2021, and is now on the advanced stages of government approval.

Another project of DPWH, the Camarines Sur Expressway, costs 8,663.00-billion.

It completion is targeted in 2022, and is now on the advanced stages of government approval.

Meantime, the long-awaited PNR South Long Haul, estimated to cost 175,300.00-billion, has a target completion year of 2023, and will commence construction in 6-8 months, based on the report released by Malacanang.

It will be recalled that Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon recently lashed at the Duterte administration, calling the Build, Build, Build infrastructure program “a dismal failure.”

He added of the 75 projects earlier bared, only 9 have started construction.

All in all, the government expects to complete 12 projects by next year, 17 in 2021, and 26 others in 2022.

In a related development, Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, said he has filed a bill seeking to grant special powers to Pres. Rodrigo Duterte to adopt a national policy to fast-track the implementation of the Build, Build, Build program, before he steps down in 2022.

In House Bill 5456, filed by Salceda, Duterte is given authority to exercise all powers needed to carry out the national policy to implement the government’s infrastructure program.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo, on the other hand, dismissed Drilon’s claims as “baseless.”

He stressed that among the reasons for the delay of the projects are the road right of way issues.

If the President is granted a special power, the implementation will be fast-tracked, Panelo said.