President Rodrigo Duterte will sign within the week an executive order to formally establish the inter-agency task force for the rehabilitation of areas devastated by recent typhoons, according Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go.
Duterte said on Saturday he created a task force composed of representatives from different government agencies to ensure the immediate rehabilitation of communities devastated by successive typhoons that hit the country.
“Binibigyan ko sila ng timeline para gumawa ‘yang mga hakbang na ‘yan na walang delay at i-cut ‘yung red tape para mabilis ang takbo ng tulong sa tao. Sa madaling sabi, gusto ‘yung task force na magbigay kaagad ng relief assistance sa affected — kayong mga tao (I gave a timeline so they can take steps without delay, and to cut red tape so assistance to the people will reach the people faster. In short, the task force wants to provide relief assistance to those affected — the people),” he said on Saturday.
Go said the creation of a task force is a step towards the right direction and must ensure that everything is synchronized, coordinated and executed well among concerned government agencies.
“I cannot stress this enough: Government must move as one to ensure that the delivery of assistance is timely, effective and responsive,” he said.
While recognizing the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council’s (NDRRMC) crucial role in disaster preparedness and response, Go said the council still needs help in implementing and monitoring post-disaster recovery.
The senator also said there is a need to think over the long term or to make communities more resilient.
“Let us think long-term. Bukod sa rescue and response operations, importante na matutukan ng task force kung paano gawing mas disaster-resilient ang mga komunidad na palaging tinatamaan ng sakuna (Aside from rescue and response operations, it is important for the task force to focus on how to make communities that are prone to disaster more disaster-resilient),” he said. “More than simply rebuilding, we should build back better.” JONATHAN ARACELI FOR SOVEREIGHPH