Readjustment of departments’ 2014 budget to help post-Yolanda response
by FFE PH News Staff
Budget Secretary Florencio Abad has asked other cabinet secretaries to propose recommendations on readjustments of their respective agency’s budgets for 2014 to further hasten the government’s post-Yolanda rehabilitation program.
Secretary Abad’s request came during President Benigno Aquino III’s meeting with selected cabinet members yesterday. In the meeting the President was updated on the progress of each department in helping to rehabilitate areas hit by Yolanda.
The damages of typhoon Yolanda, which battered the Philippines last 8 November, was not considered in the preparation of the 2014 budget as it happened during the last quarter of the year.
During the meeting held at the Malacanang Palace, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje announced that the mapping of areas affected by Yolanda where the government would implement a 40- meter no-build-zone was already completed.
Meanwhile, Presidential Advisor for Rehabilitation and Recovery Secretary Panfilo Lacson said that clearing of debris in Tacloban City should be speeded up to start the rebuilding process of destroyed structures while Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Rogelio Singson said that 832 school sites were already been cleared and are ready for rebuilding.
A P4- billion budget to rebuild destroyed local government facilities including town halls, public markets, and civic centers was already approved last December.
Massive fogging operations were also conducted by the Department of Health (DOH) to prevent the spread of a mosquito-borne disease considered less dangerous than dengue that causes body pains.
Accoring to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)’s report presented by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, 448 bodies were already processed and buried in permanent burial sites while 1,801 have been buried in temporary burial sites.
The government has previously come up with the Reconstruction Assistance on Yolanda (RAY), a detailed and comprehensive plan dealing with the efforts made for the post-Yolanda rehabilitation program.
Yolanda’s onslaught in the Philippines left at least 6,000 dead and over 12 million affected.