• Local officials in ‘Yolanda’ areas ask for foreign cash donations


    Seven municipal officials from Yolanda-ravaged areas in Eastern Visayas are asking where did billions of donations from international agencies go.

    Guiuan vice mayor Rogelio Cablaw said they only received P3 million from other national officials and non-government organizations (NGOs) and wonders where donated international funds went.

    “Mayroon kaming natatanggap na kaunting donations from private groups or non-government organizations [NGOs] at mga senador na nagbigay sa amin,” Cablaw said.

    He noted that the municipality of the Guiuan has only received relief goods from the national government through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

    Mercedes, Eastern Samar Mayor Enrique Cabos on the other hand said that “he received nothing” from the billions of international cash donations.

    Cabos noted that they only received a total of 19,537 food packs, of which 13,000 came from the DSWD while more than 6,000 are from NGOs.

    He added that they only have one bunkhouse unit to shelter 24 families or 138 people.

    He clarified that they received cash donations from Oxfam—a worldwide development organization that mobilizes the power of people against poverty—that were directly distributed to the residents.

    He added that the Oxfam provided P3, 000 for every individual; the organization initially committed to provide P10, 000 per household.

    “For assistance I received nothing as of this moment,” he said.

    Meanwhile, Capoocan, Leyte vice Mayor Lourdes Vallar said that they are just “soliciting” amounts from other national officials to support the needs of the thousands of ‘Yolanda’ survivors in his municipality.

    “We work hard to solicit from individual persons and organizations. We had our monitoring system in Capoocan, the people need food and the immediate distribution of food,” he added.

    Also, Santa Fe Mayor Oscar Montesa, Tabon-Tabon vice Mayor Edgar Cinco, Capoocan Councilor Mar Baula, and Palo Barangay Chairman Ian Sevilla, urged the national government to distribute the international donations for the immediate betterment of their municipalities.

    Sen. Ferdinand “Bong Bong” Marcos said it is now the right time to distribute international and private individual donations to the local governments in Yolanda-hit areas to fast track the rehabilitation efforts in Tacloban.

    “Lahat ng pondo na gagamitin idadaan sa national agencies, sayang naman. Halos more than double ang trabaho kung kasama na ang local government unit sa rehabilitation phase,” Marcos said.

    He noted that the rehabilitation phase in Yolanda-hit areas covers more than the housing infrastructure, but also economic development.


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