COTABATO CITY – Workers under nationally funded programs directly supervised by the BARMM ministries, offices, and agencies will no longer experience delayed payment of wages and other remunerations following the Bangsamoro Parliament’s approval of a bill that would allot a P1-billion revolving fund for the timely payment of their salaries.
Voting 49 affirmatives, no negatives, and no abstentions, members of the Bangsamoro Parliament approved on third and final reading BTA Bill No. 41, or the Bangsamoro Revolving Fund Act of 2023, on Wednesday evening, May 17, three days after they formally opened the second regular session.
The Parliament immediately approved the bill after BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim certified it as urgent.
The Bangsamoro Revolving Fund Act of 2023 is on the Chief Minister’s cabinet legislative agenda.
“We see the enactment of the law providing for a revolving fund for the salaries and wages of pertinent workers as a potential solution to this perennial problem,” said Chief Minister Ebrahim.
He cited a hadith that said to “pay workers their dues before their sweat have dried up.”
The revolving fund will ensure the timely payment of salaries and other remunerations of national-funded employees in case of a delay in the transfer or download of funds by concerned national government agencies.
Bangsamoro Parliament’s Finance, Budget, and Management Committee Chair Eduard Guerra described the delay in the payment of salaries as a ‘perennial problem,’ adding that the Bangsamoro government will hold a dialogue with the national government, through Intergovernmental Relations (IGR), to determine the cause of the delay.
The swift passage of the bill, according to Deputy Speaker Atty. Nabil Tan, is for the workers in the region who work tirelessly to give services to the Bangsamoro people, emphasizing that the Bangsamoro Parliament has finally settled this issue through the said legislation.
The BARMM’s Finance, Budget, and Management Ministry will administer and manage the revolving fund in accordance with its cash management and disbursement system and procedures, subject to all existing government accounting and auditing rules and regulations.
The MFBM has also provided a certificate guaranteeing the availability of funds for the implementation of the proposed measure.
Under the approved bill, the revolving fund will not be automatically dissolved in the event that national-funded programs are no longer implemented in the BARMM.
It will only be dissolved or reverted to the Bangsamoro Treasury when the MFBM authorizes the ministries, agencies, and offices to draw funds from it.
The MFBM will also submit an official quarterly report on the releases, obligations, and disbursements to the Parliament through the Bangsamoro Speaker. (LTAIS-Public Information, Publication, and Media Relations Division)