DILG Central News
Robredo urges local officials to use disaster funds properlyJuly 10, 2012
TUGUEGARAO CITY – Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo urged local officials to follow rules in the proper disposal of funds earmarked for disaster preparedness.
Robredo made this statement during the regional forum on disaster preparedness and climate adaptation held at the Crown Pavilion Hotel in Tuguegarao City recently.
“We have certain rules and guidelines to follow regarding the proper use of these funds so our local officials have no excuse not to comply with it. Kapag hindi nila ito sinunod then, isa lang ang solusyon natin diyan, ‘wag na natin silang ilagay sa pwesto sa susunod”, he said.
Robredo also clarified that there are certain limitations on the use of calamity funds in LGUs. He said that it cannot be utilized to purchase motor vehicles and ambulance even if the same are used for rescue operations during emergencies.
He added that it cannot be utilized to build shelters or core housing units for victims of disasters or as payment for the salary of DRRM personnel.
“The DILG, DBM and DND are now working for the issuance of a new guidelines on the use of the 70% of the 5% calamity fund in LGUs. We proposed that this fund be use to buy search and rescue equipment, early warning systems and other equipment for disaster preparedness”, said Robredo.
Also, in his call to action speech to the participants in the Tapatan, the DILG chief stressed that LGUs must have an organized and functional local disaster risk reduction and management council (LDRRMC); a feasible DRRM plan; conduct regular drills and simulation exercises; and designate evacuation centers and DRRM focal persons, among others.
Robredo also explained that DRRM plans must be mainstreamed in LGU plans and processes such that a local government must have a comprehensive land use plan (CLUP). According to him, there are only 35% of LGUs nationwide with updated CLUPs.
“If an LGU would like to establish an evacuation center then, this should be properly coordinated with the city or municipal planning office to ensure that infrastructures like evacuation centers are built on suitable areas or locations,” he said.
The Tapatan in Region 02, which is aimed at developing a culture of preparedness among local government units and their residents, is the 11th of a series of regional forums on DRRM/CCA with the theme: “Magtapatan Tayo; Handa na ba kayo?".
Among the highlight of the activity is the signing of the covenant on DRRM/CCA of local chief executives to manifest their commitment to prioritize their disaster and climate change plans and initiatives.
It also included the awarding of “Performance Challenge Fund” (PCF) checks to 51 local government units in the region, including presentations and discussions on the following topics: Disasters and Climate Change Impact; Weather Forecasting and Weather Forecast for 2012; and Project NOAH; Enhancing LGU Capacity on Disaster Risk Reduction Management & Climate Change Adaptation (DRRM/CCA); and examples of LGU best practices in disaster readiness.
More than 500 participants attended the Tapatan, among of whom are mayors, governors, Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officers (LDRRMOs) in the region, as well as partners from other National Government Agencies, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), and the media. ###