By Joey Natividad
CITY OF NAGA, Bicol Region, 19Feb2014 (BicolToday.com) – A partylist lawmaker calls for a review of President Aquino’s rehabilitation plan on areas destroyed by Typhoon Yolanda, online news Bicol Today.com learned yesterday.
Sunday, February 16, was the 100th day since Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) made its first landfall over Guiuan, Eastern Samar on November 8, 2013.
In House Resolution No. 815, Kabataan Partylist Rep. Terry Ridon called on the House Committee on Social Services and the House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability – acting either jointly or separately – to conduct an inquiry on “the status of implementation of the Reconstruction Assistance on Yolanda (RAY) rehabilitation plan in consideration of the 100-day lapse since the disaster.
Released last December 16, RAY is a 30-page rehabilitation plan that sets the Aquino administration’s coordinated relief, rehabilitation, and rebuilding efforts for areas affected by Typhoon Yolanda.
Ridon said that while Congress passed a P14.6 billion as supplemental budget for the typhoon survivors and international pledges have reached over P24.9 billion, the government has done little to improve the situation in the typhoon-ravaged provinces of central Philippines.
“Despite the release of billions in public funds and the outpour of international support, rehabilitation and reconstruction in affected areas have remained at a very slow pace. A hundred days since the disaster and almost two months after the release of RAY, no pertinent plan of action has been implemented to address the needs of the areas struck by Typhoon Yolanda, leaving our countrymen helpless and dependent on humanitarian aid,” Ridon said in House Resolution 815 he filed last week
“The victims of Typhoon Yolanda remain restless to the point of indignation due to the slow pace of the implementation of RAY. Testament to this is the 12,000-strong protest march dubbed as “People Surge” participated in by Typhoon Yolanda survivors last January 24 in Tacloban City,” the lawmaker explained in HR 815.
“There have already been reports of preventable bottlenecks and corruption issues that are slowing down the rehabilitation efforts in the provinces hit by Yolanda. It is time for Congress to review RAY and ensure the speedy delivery of aid and reconstruction, and ensure that the billions of pesos pouring in for Yolanda are indeed benefiting the survivors and not a privileged few,” Ridon said. [BicolToday.com]