ARMM spent P56 million to boost Bongao Peak tourism
Bongao, Tawi-Tawi (July 5, 2017) – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) spent P56 million for the construction of an access road and for the development of Bongao Peak, or Bud Bongao, the first eco-tourism park developed by the regional government.
On Monday, July 3, the inauguration of the access road, which was later followed by an inaugural climb to the peak, was led by regional Governor Mujiv Hataman accompanied by Tawi-Tawi Governor Rashidin Matba, Bongao Mayor Jimuel Que and other ARMM officials.
The project was implemented through a Memorandum of Agreement between the regional government and the municipal government of Bongao. Development of the eco-tourism park, aimed at the preservation and conservation of the area, is one of the priority projects of the Hataman administration.
Aside from the access road, the project also includes the construction of a tourist center where visitors can register and receive orientation before climbing the peak, concreting of about 750 steps, installation of railings for support and protection, and construction of resting sheds.
Bongao Peak is one of the 12 key biodiversity sites in the country protected under the Department of Natural Resources’ New Conservation Areas in the Philippines Project.
Around 1,500 tourists visit the peak every week. A P20 fee to be used for the maintenance of the nature park is collected from each climber. To increase visitor and tourist arrivals in the town, Bongao Mayor Jimuel Que said the local government will sustain and maintain Bud Bongao and will also conduct activities and projects that will further promote tourism in the municipality.
Last year, the region’s Tourism department recorded around one million tourist arrivals in Tawi-Tawi. (Bureau of Public Information)