PRRD wants evacuation centers in calamity-prone areas built by 2022

Published January 15, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Genalyn Kabiling 

President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered authorities to complete the construction of more disaster-resilient evacuation centers before his six-year term ends in 2022.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the inauguration of the Bataan Government Center and Business Hub “The Bunker” in Balanga City, Bataan on September 12, 2019. (TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO/MANILA BULLETIN)

At the Taal Volcano situation briefing in Batangas City Tuesday, the President said the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development should prioritize the establishment of the shelters in calamity-prone areas such as Samar, Leyte and Isabela.

“So unahin ninyo, Ed, ‘yung ano — you build a very strong evacuation center. Huwag naman ‘yung as strong as the titanic and then saying that even God cannot sink this ship because God will really destroy your evacuation center,” Duterte told newly appointed Human Settlements and Urban Development Secretary Eduardo del Rosario during the meeting.

“I hope that you can finish it before my term ends. I do not want anybody dito sa inyo, especially the Cabinet, do not start on projects which you cannot finish beyond my term,” he said.

He said permanent evacuation centers should be built initially in calamity-prone areas in the country. He said the funds for the structure will be sourced from the government’s national budget.

“If there’s enough money in the GAA sa calamity, we will get especially itong provinces that are facing the Pacific Ocean,” he said.

“They are the windows of the Philippines in terms of typhoons and calamities. Whenever there’s a boiling or a hot body of lagoons in the oceans there, they will generate enough heat to create — to absorb so much water in the atmosphere and we have the typhoon,” he said.

In seeking the completion of the evacuation centers, the President said he has reminded Cabinet members not to initiate government projects that cannot be completed before his term ends.

“I want projects that can only — that are doable and can be finished during my term,” he said.

The President visited Batangas City to check government relief and response efforts following the ash explosion of Taal Volcano. He also met with families who evacuated their homes due to the increased volcanic activity.

Duterte has apologized for his late visit to the calamity victims and pledged to ensure sustained government aid until the crisis is over.