GENERAL SANTOS CITY – The national government has allocated an additional PHP37 million for the construction of additional buildings this year for the newly-established College of Medicine of the Mindanao State University (MSU) here.
South Cotabato 1st District Rep. Shirlyn Bañas-Nograles said Monday the funds would be utilized for the development of the laboratory/infirmary and library of the new college, which is situated within the university’s extension campus in the city proper.
She said some PHP20 million was set aside for the laboratory/infirmary building and PHP17 million for the library.
The funding for the two buildings, which was earlier pushed by Nograles, is included in the 2021 General Appropriations Act or national budget.
“For the delivery of better quality of education, we need to equip the school with the needed facilities,” she said in a statement.
Nograles said the construction of the additional buildings is part of the development plan of the MSU General Santos campus’ College of Medicine and the continuing preparations for its formal opening in August.
The college was supposed to open its doors to the first batch of students in August last year but was deferred due to the coronavirus disease 2019 or Covid-19 pandemic.
“Chancellor (Anshari) Ali and (his) team are doing their best to comply with all the CHED (Commission on Higher Education) requirements so it could start this year,” she said.
The construction of the College of Medicine’s four-level main building, which cost around PHP162 million, is currently ongoing and targeted for completion before August.
The national government, through the efforts of Senator Emmanuel Pacquiao and Nograles, had released an initial PHP117 million for the project while the university contributed around PHP46-million.
The MSU system’s Board of Regents issued early last year Resolution No. 507, series of 2020, approving the establishment of the new college here as an extension of the MSU Marawi College of Medicine.
Nograles and Sarangani Rep. Rogelio Pacquiao filed House Bill No. 7809 on Oct. 1 last year for the conversion of the College of Medicine extension program here into a “full-fledged and autonomous” unit.
The measure was approved and endorsed for plenary deliberation late last year by the House Committee on Higher Education. (PNA)