National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenza turned over PHP34 million worth of regional evacuation center to the provincial government here.
Lorenzana, who is also chairman of the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC), said the Kalinga provincial government and the Tabuk city government can use the facility for other purposes that will benefit the people while there are no evacuees using the center.
In his speech during the event, Lorenzana said President Rodrigo Duterte envisions setting up of the same facilities in all towns and provinces nationwide.
“We are happy to have this center in Tabuk- the origin of this centers has been long- it was started during the Marcos time which never materialized until we experienced several typhoons and the government in 2016 after Undersecretary [Ricardo] Jalad presented a project proposal to the President and there we saw the need to start building evacuation centers,” Lorenzana said.
He said President Duterte hopes that their vision of providing a disaster-resilient evacuation center will be pursued even after he steps down from office in 2022.
Lorenzana said the Disaster Risk Risk Reduction Management Law has focused on resiliency at the start of the Duterte administration, building evacuation centers to mitigate the effect of calamities.
“The NDRRMC has been training provinces on how to act, before, during and after disasters. Our primary goal is to save lives, bring them here at the evacuation center,” Lorenzana said, noting that government agencies involved in disaster response and management come to the aid of the affected population.
He said the Congress is about to approve the creation of the disaster-resilient management department but the national defense department will remain to be at the forefront in saving lives.
Kalinga Rep. Allen Jesse Mangaoang, vice chairman of the committee on environment and natural resources, said there have been 82 evacuation centers in 52 provinces which were built by the government.
The buildings are designed to withstand a category 5 typhoon and intensity 8 earthquake, he said.
“This is a convergence of line agencies towards providing comfortable shelter to people in times of calamities,” Mangaoang said.
He said Senator Ralph Recto has filed a bill seeking the establishment of a decent evacuation center in every town.
Mangaoang said the Kalinga evacuation center will benefit the people who do not have to content themselves with the effect of Climate change which is more evident than ever.
“That is why this administration has started a long- term vision embodied in Ambisyon 2040 which aims for a high trust society where families will thrive in vibrant culturally diverse and resilient community, even during calamities,” Mangaoang said.
The center is the fourth regional evacuation center built by the NDRRMC, the first three are in the provinces of Apayao, Abra and in Benguet.
It sits on an eight thousand square meter land area at the government center in Barangay Bulanao in this city.
The facility is complete with functional facilities and amenities that will provide evacuees a comfortable shelter. It can accommodate 33 families or around 120 people.
Tiburcio Canlas, Department of Public Works and Highways in the Cordillera Administrative Region (DPWH-CAR) regional director, said the facility has eight buildings equipped with sleeping, playing, nursing and dining areas. It is designed to be gender-sensitive with friendly activity areas for every family member.
It also has an infirmary, pharmacy and separate comfort rooms for male and female. It is complete with water and electricity supply and backed with a generator in cases of power outages
The facility also has a separate structure for proper waste disposal far from the accommodation building to maintain cleanliness and prevent diseases. (PNA)
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