Sat. May 28th, 2022

President Rodrigo Duterte has appealed for patience to provinces hit by Typhoon Odette and assured them that help is on its way.

(Photo Courtesy: PNA)

In a speech in Maasin City, Leyte on Saturday, Duterte lamented that bureaucratic red tape was slowing down the distribution of aid in areas ravaged by the typhoon.

“I can promise to the people that help will arrive. Just give us a bit more time because there’s a lot of paperwork in government. For every move you make, there’s a layer of papers that… Government works that way. And if you try to rush things, you may face deeper problems. That’s the problem because we can’t release the budget immediately,” Duterte said, speaking in the local dialect.

He vowed to provide around P2 billion to Leyte and other provinces hit by the typhoon, but acknowledged that the amount may not be enough to cover the devastation.

Although the government had funds for relief and rehabilitation efforts, he said a huge chunk have been used up for the Covid-19 response.

“They have funds for reconstruction. The problem is our people because as I intimated to them last night in our meeting, I didn’t say we don’t have money, that we don’t have enough funds to help the people. We do have money but it’s almost depleted because we’ve spent it on Covid,” he said.

Duterte also said food, potable water, and other resources are also being transported.

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