Businessmen pledge at least 3 billion pesos to develop Sulu starting 2017
Big Philippine businessmen have vowed to develop southern island province of Sulu, the hotbed of terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group, by pouring in at least P3-billion worth of projects and programs starting next year.
President Rodrigo Duterte hosted the pledging session Tuesday night in Malacanang, which was attended by some 400 local businessmen, including tycoons Lucio Tan and Manuel V. Pangilinan.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol said estimated pledges reached P3 billion.
Among the projects which were promised to be constructed in Sulu were the 50 megawatt coal fired plant and a poultry production project.
Pinol said less than 20 companies have pledged to put up businesses in Sulu.
"This is remarkable. This is the first time actually that businessmen participated in the peace effort of the government," Pinol; said, adding these companies could have included in their "risk assessment" the threat posed by the Abu Sayyaf and other militant groups in the area.
Lucio Tan's Philippine Airlines has promised to resume its flights in the province. Celerina Monte/DMS