COTABATO CITY – A consultative meeting between the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources, and Energy (MENRE) and the Ministry of the Interior and Local Government (MILG) – BARMM was organized to further harmonize and strengthen the implementation of the Republic Act 9003 or the ‘Ecological Solid Waste Management Act’ in the Local Government Units (LGUs) in the region.

The MENRE Environment Management Services (EMS), headed by its Director Jalani M. Pamlian, presented to MILG the current status of solid waste management in the Bangsamoro, along with the number of LGUs with approved Solid Waste Management Plan (SWMP) and the reports on Sanitary Landfill (SLF).

Joining Director Pamlian were Chief Environmental Management Specialists Nasser Awal and Amier Ashan Aplal, and Senior Environmental Management Specialist Mahid Gayak.

MILG Director General Khalid Dumagay acknowledged that there is a delay in the RA 9003 implementation in BARMM LGUs, pointing out the complications contributing to the holdup. Due to this, an intervention may be necessary while these LGUs seek to comply with the regulations.

Furthermore, in order to address the issues surrounding the implementation, a Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) should be formulated between MENRE and MILG to set the guidelines on how to assist the LGUs.

Director Pamlian stressed that the LGUs should regularly submit their Self-Compliance Monitoring and Audit Report (SCMAR) in order for their compliance with RA 9003 to be checked. Besides, the SCMAR will be the basis for the technical assistance that will be given to the LGUs.

MILG Management Services Director Fausiah Romancap-Abdula pointed out that most of the LGUs in BARMM are having a difficulty in establishing their SLF due to the Site Suitability issues. This can be addressed if the MILG and MENRE will establish a mapping system of potential areas for SLF.

It was also discussed that the BARMM Regional Solid Waste Management Committee should be created, and the approval of the SWMP of the LGUs will be transferred to BARMM Government from the National Solid Waste Management Commission (NSWMC).

Present during the consultative meeting were MILG Local Government Development Division Chief Tarhata Balading; Cotabato City Director Muhammad Farzieh B. Abutazil; and Faisal Ulama LGOO II MILG Maguindanao. The other provincial directors and MILG Personnel attended the meeting via Zoom namely Provincial Director of LDS Macmillan Lucman, LGOO V, MILG Lanao del Sur Masbud Gadamra, Provincial Director of Basilan Radiyah Akmad, Provincial Director of Tawi-Tawi Cidrimar Maring, and Provincial Director of Sulu Emini Kadiri.
📸: Environment Management Services, BARMM-MENRE