Bukidnon now 19th from 4th in list of poorest, says Senator Migz Zubiri during anti-poverty summit 2019

Senator Juan Miguel “Migz” Zubiri disclosed that the Province of Bukidnon made quite a jump in the Philippine Statistics Authority Poverty Survey, now ranking 19th in the 2018 survey from 4th in the 2015 survey.

Speaking at the Bukidnon Anti-Poverty Summit 2019 in Valencia City, Bukidnon on November 8, 2019, the Senate Majority Leader said that from a poverty incidence of 53.6% in 2015, Bukidnon posted a 32.1% poverty incidence in 2018. This meant a massive improvement in the lives of the people in the Province of Bukidnon. This also meant that only 32.1% of Bukidnon families earn below Php 7,378 per month compared to Php 6,882 per month in 2015.

Zubiri shared that what proved mainly effective in lowering down the poverty rate was education. “Education is key. This has been proven in the experience of Zamboanga del Sur, Albay and Benguet that maintain low poverty incidence as they invest in the education of their people,” he said.

Zubiri reported that he has been making education more accessible by bringing schools and skills training centers closer to the public. He has partnered with the Bukidnon State University to create 12 satellite campuses and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority to create 17 training centers plus 1 tribal training center. Because of this, Bukidnon is the first province to have LGU-run TESDA training centers, earning the title “first tech-voc province in the Philippines.” The BukSU satellite campuses offer courses such as Bachelor of Science in Public Administration and Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major in Financial Management.

The senator also gave updates on the Northern Mindanao Wellness and Reintegration Center located in Malaybalay City, Bukidnon, the procurement of 7 ultrasound and dialysis machines for the Provincial Medical Center and its branches in Maramag and Manolo Fortich, the upcoming Bukidnon Airport as well as the Bukidnon Grandstand and Sports Complex. He said that these, together with ongoing infrastructure projects, are expected to improve the delivery of basic services, governance as well as promote social and recreational activities.

“Though we have substantially reduced poverty incidence, we cannot rest on our laurels. There’s so much more untapped potential for our beloved Bukidnon to become an economic powerhouse. Bukidnon, being the 3rd largest province in terms of land area and endowed with rich natural resources, has a great potential to become one of the richest provinces in the Philippines,” Senator Migz Zubiri said.

Zubiri, being the lead convener of the Bukidnon Anti-Poverty Summit 2019, said that the event aims to be a venue where leaders, government agencies, local government units, academe and other stakeholders can exchange ideas, set aside politics and instead find commonalities in the pursuit to help Bukidnon, forge partnerships and strengthen linkages and programs.

Among the dignitaries present during the summit were Department of Social Welfare and Development Sec. Rolando Bautista, Mindanao Development Authority Sec. Emmanuel Piñol, Bukidnon Gov. Jose Ma. Zubiri, Jr., Bukidnon Congressmen Ma. Lourdes Acosta-Alba (First District), Jonathan Keith Flores (Second District), Manuel Zubiri (Third District) and Neil Roque (Fourth District), and LGU officials from all over Bukidnon. There were also key representatives from the academe, NGO community, private sector, POs, business and service community as well as the IPs.

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