top of page

3 big infra projects to help fuel growth

By Ramil Marianito

LEGAZPI CITY --- House Committee on Appropriations Chair and Ako Bicol Rep. Elizaldy Co confirmed Friday that new impact projects are in progress for the Bicol region.

Co disclosed that a total of P550 million has been earmarked for the construction of the Philippine Coast Guard Academy and the National Bureau of Investigation Academy in Bicol.

These outlays are already due for implementation, as per this year’s General Appropriations Act.

The budget allotted for establishing the PCG Academy in Cagraray Island in Bacacay town (Albay) amounts to P300 million and an additional P250 million for the NBI Academy.

The government’s regional offices for Bicol are mostly located in Albay province.

Co also confirmed that he will donate in Barangay Estanza, Legazpi for the expansion of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s facilities.

He emphasized that the social welfare agency should have an area where expansion facilities such as homes for the aged, orphans, rape victims, and abused women may be built.

The DSWD is expected to implement the projects as soon as they kick off.

“Kausap na natin ang DSWD, sila ang bahala sa plano ng facility. We have provided the property kung saan itatayo ang pasilidad and we are just waiting for the groundbreaking ceremony para masimulan na ang construction nito,” Co said .

The PCG and NBI academies are expected to enhance maritime security and law enforcement in the country.

“This development initiated in March is anticipated to fortify regional and national security,” Co noted.

When asked for their reaction to these developments, regional officials concerned expressed optimism on several aspects.

Commodore Jeffrey R. Collado, Coastguard District deputy commander for Bicol, said the planned PCG Academy will bring forth benefits in economic, social, cultural, and environmental facets.

House of Representatives committee on appropriations chair and Ako Bicol Rep. Elizaldy Co (third from left) looks pleased on the ratification of the P5.268-trillion national budget 2023 by the lower chamber of Congress. The budget includes funding for significant infrastructure projects in the Bicol region, such as establishing academies for the Philippine Coast Guard and the National Bureau of Investigation. (Photo from the Office of Ako Bicol Rep. Elizaldy Co)

Initially, such a project was proposed for Tacloban by Rep. Martin Romualdez and Senator Maria Imelda Josefa Remedios “Imee” R. Marcos. However, the Bicol region is deemed more suitable for the project.

Collado stressed that the academy requires at least an 80-hectare land area.

“It will be a significant development for Bicol to have a PCG Academy. We can take pride in it,” Collado said.

Collado further pointed out that the project will have a positive impact on the economy as many students and their families will come to Cagraray Island and Albay for schooling and other related concerns.

It will also create additional economic opportunities, he added.

In terms of social impact, the PCG Academy is similar to that of the Philippine Military Academy and the Philippine National Police Academy.

Such an initiative will also impact the cultural milieu, promoting Bicol heritage and showcasing the region throughout the country when the PCG academy is already in place, Collado said.

The institution could also help promote, improve, and guard nearby islands and coastal areas, he added.

NBI Regional Director Claro De Castro Jr. expressed his gratitude to Co for supporting their plan to build an NBI Academy in the Bicol region.

This will provide regionalized training for future agents who want to join the law enforcement agency and offer quality investigative services to the public, De Castro said.

Currently, the NBI Academy in Baguio City serves as the primary facility for the agents’ Basic Training Course.

Meanwhile, DSWD Regional Director Norman Laurio welcomed the plan to build a wider space in Estanza for their facilities, saying it will help cater to the needs of their clients better and provide a safer environment for them. (RAM/PIA5)


bottom of page