Koronadal City, South Cotabato, February 22, 2018 – On February 21st, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Regional Office XII, held the inauguration and blessing of its new building located at the Prime Regional Government Center, Brgy. Carpenter Hill, Koronadal City, South Cotabato, 400 meters from the Marbel-Makar National Road.

The event was celebrated in three parts.  The first part covered the ribbon cutting, unveiling of the building marker, and inter-faith blessing by Lumad (indigenous people’s ritual), Imam (Islamic Prayer), and Catholic Priest (Christian Prayer).   Snacks followed and while the refreshments were being enjoyed, Koronadal City Mayor Peter B. Miguel awarded the Certificate of Land Title where the NEDA building now stands to NEDA Undersecretary Jose Miguel R. De La Rosa and NEDA XII Regional Director Arturo G. Valero.

In the second part, the participants from various sectors listened to the inspirational message from the guest of honor, NEDA Undersecretary De La Rosa, who for himself was inspired for what he saw and witnessed during the blessing ceremony and tour in the new building. Words from partners were also delivered by Executive Assistant Dave Arreglado, the representative of RDC XII Chairperson and General Santos City Mayor Ronnel C. Rivera, and South Cotabato Governor Daisy Avance-Fuentes.  Ethnic dances were performed and the NEDA XII staff sang the SOCCSKSARGEN AmBisyon Nation Song.    The final part was the socials where the guests partake of local cuisine and delight in songs and dances with a live band.

The inauguration ceremony was also joined by NEDA-FPMS Director Greg Pineda; NEDA-MIMAROPA Regional Director Raul Anlocotan; NEDA Zamboanga Peninsula Regional Director Teresita Socorro C. Ramos; Four (4) Private Sector Representatives of RDC XII and heads and officials of regional partners, like DOST, MGB, BLGF-DOF, PSA, NHA, PhilHealth, CAAP-Cotabato and General Santos, DA, DOLE, NICA, NAPOLCOM, DBP, MinDA, OCD, 1st Mechanized Brigade-PA, PNP South Cotabato, SKSU and CCSPC.

With a total investment of PhP 70 Million, the new 3-storey building offers 1,824 square meters of office space and is located on a 2,168-square meter lot.  It features multiple areas dedicated to employees’ use, such as the workplace of the Finance and Administrative Division on the first floor, the Office of the Regional Director, workstation of four technical divisions on the second floor, and four function rooms in the third floor.

The construction of the building was divided in two phases.  Phase I worth PhP 40 Million covered the construction of the 3-storey building, while Phase II at PhP 30 Million involves the completion of the third floor, installation of surveillance cameras, construction of perimeter fence, and acquisition of office furniture, fixtures, and necessary office equipment.

The NEDA XII has occupied the building since January 2016 and expressed its appreciation and gratitude for the support given by the NEDA Central Office, the City Government of Koronadal, and the Department of Public Works and Highways for the budget, parcel of land, and technical support in the completion of the building, respectively.  As South Cotabato Governor Daisy Avance Fuentes emphasized in her message, the new NEDA XII office building will provide the pleasant working environment for Region XII planners to work positively for a developed and more competitive SOCCSKSARGEN Region. (Guillermo R. Manrique, Jr/Sandra J. Alido, NEDA XII-DRD)