BONGAO, Tawi-Tawi – The provincial government of Tawi-Tawi is urging the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to fast-track the implementation of the 370-meter Sanga-Sanga, Lapid-Lapid steel bridge in the province in order to propel the economic activities and development in the area.
Tawi-Tawi Governor Sadikul Sahali said the bridge, which has a working budget of R674.2 million, is a partnership project involving the DPWH, the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), the provincial government, and the United States Agency for International Development’s Growth with Equity in Mindanao (USAID-GEM) Program.
Of the amount, Sahali said, the US government has granted, through the USAID-GEM Program, some R92.2 million, while the United Kingdom also extended R245 million, and the Philippine government shared some R337.2 million as its counterpart.
At present, he said, works on the project is now entering its fourth year – sending many of his constituents on a restless mood.
The Tawi-Tawi bridge and road project will directly link Sanga-Sanga Island, where the modern airport is located, and this main island and capital town of the province.
Sahali said the project includes the construction by DPWH and the DPWH-ARMM of three steel bridges, and a 600-meter road linking two of the bridges on the islet of Bakhaw Dakula.
The bridge work profile indicated that the 8.4-kilometer road connecting the three bridges to the Tawi-Tawi island highway network will be upgraded by DPWH-ARMM, while the 9.3-kilometer earthen road connecting the Sanga-Sanga side will be upgraded by the USAID-GEM Program, which is implemented under the oversight of the Mindanao Economic Development Council.