Piagapo, Lanao Sur: ‘Baguio of Mindanao’ PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 16 October 2015 17:48

Piagapo, Lanao del Sur -- True enough, aside from the roads that are being built, this municipality is probably more beautiful than Tagaytay or Baguio even in its native state. This can be the Tagaytay or Baguio of Mindanao that had long been hidden from many.”

Thus DPWH-ARMM Secretary Don Mustapha A. Loong described Piagapo in LanaodelSur.

Piagapo has a predominantly cool climate. The weather observed in the community is very unpredictable where rainfalls are mostly observed during the month of July, August, September and October. Dry season is observed during the summer the months of March, April and May. The beautiful mountains with big trees in the area serve as natural barriers against typhoon and strong winds and other natural calamities.

Prominent green rolling hills and mountains with scattered plain areas with cool breeze are very suitable for agricultural activities. Fanners there said it once upon a time cultivated strawberries in the area.

The plain portions are either upland or lowland. It is rich in natural resources such as wide vast of forest area with varieties of good trees, rivers, springs and streams that have good potentials for further development

Piagapo Mayor Engr. Ali L. Sumandar said for so many years, the main means of transportation were horses. If vehicles were used, these were the ones with spikes or with tires that have many chains to allow the car to move forward amidst the muddy road.

The road he said would be so deep during rainy season com¬pared to the sidewalk because of the soft soil and mud that gets displaced by the tires and the road can be a meter deep. He said people would even cross the road via the roof of the vehicles.

The Department of Public Works and Highways in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao has been exerting its effort and great investment to address the needs for quality infrastructure and make it available on a vastly wider scale to develop many potentials in the countryside.

Presently, DPWH-ARMM has been implementing road networks of different designs to address the need for quality infrastructure in the remote areas of the region. The municipality of Piagapo, Lanao del Sur is one of among the depressed areas that are confronted with problems on roads, it has been obvious as it is one of the major factors to hampers its development

Lanao del Sur 1, District Engineer Luvisminda Sani said that the accessibility and the availability of farm to1 market roads had been for many years the widely known problem of the people of Piagapo, especially those residents from the far flung and interior areas of the municipality.

Though some barangays can somehow be reached through land transportation via Saguiaran, through the long winding provincial road that transverse the municipality, and through barangay road extending from Barangay Kabingan, MSU, Marawi City to Barangay Bobo, most areas are still inaccessible.

Not all kinds of vehicles can access the area due to bad condition of the roads. Poor road make it more difficult for the farmers to market their products. The agricultural products are usually marketed either to Saguiaran, Baloi, Lanao del Norte, Pantaoaragat and Iligan City.

The decision of the farm¬ers where to market their products is usually dependent on the price offered by the different buyers/middlemen available in market areas. However, more frequently the price offered is un¬reasonable. In addition thereto, the expensive transportation cost of products makes farming a los¬ing, discouraging and undesirable low profile venture to the people.

DPWH-ARMM Sec Don Mustapha Loong in cooperation with the municipal offfce of Piagapo gave careful attention to these issues and provided solution to improve and rehabilitate farm to market roads so that the products of the fanners can be marketed at reasonable fair price, less transportation cost and early arrival in time to be served at the table.

District Engr Sani said that the 5.5 klms Saguiran-Radapan provincial road is almost complete and there are still ongoing projects in the interior with two (2) bridges to be built. For 2016, regular budget (within the ceiling) there are five (5) klms of road still to be concreted.

People of Piagapo are mostly farmers by occupation who generally produce com, rice as major agricultural products. Vegetables, spices and root oops particularly cassava, camote and the like are among the secondary products in the municipality. Due to problem on farm to market road, farmers usually produce mostly for home consumption.