The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said on Wednesday that the government has utilized P26.2-billion fund releases from the DBM for post-disaster projects and activities in areas hit by Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan).
In a statement, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad disclosed that the P26.2 billion were disbursed by different fund sources as of March 10, and are now funding projects in areas struck by the super typhoon.
“The administration continues to work with LGUs [local government units]and key implementing agencies in delivering post-disaster aid to Yolanda-stricken areas. Although it’s been nearly six months since the super typhoon struck, the victims of the disaster are still in the process of rebuilding their communities,” Abad said.
“The funds released so far will definitely allow the agencies to carry out rehabilitation and reconstruction projects in areas affected by Typhoon Yolanda. Along with ensuring the country’s continued growth, mobilizing post-calamity aid is still a priority for the Aquino administration,” he added.
According to the DBM bi-weekly report, the fund disbursed was raised to P26.2 billion as P1.5 billion was added in March to the P24.7-billion releases as of February.
Furthermore, the DBM operations units have received fund requests for Yolanda aid of P15.1 billion.
Sources of the Yolanda allocations include the disaster risk reduction and management funds, the 2013 and 2014 appropriations for the calamity fund or the national disaster risk reduction and management fund, the rehabilitation and reconstruction program, and supplemental appropriations.
“Altogether, the allocations for these fund sources amount to P51.4 billion,” the DBM said.
Abad said about P10.2 billion unobligated allotments and unreleased appropriations for maintenance and other operating expenditures and capital outlay will be transferred as “continuing appropriations” for calamity-related purposes. The P10.2 billion will be sourced under the 2013 General Appropriations Act.
“The DBM will continue to issue monthly and quarterly reports on releases made for Yolanda-related projects. Such reports are not just a matter of compliance, but also of principle: we need to be as transparent as possible on how much in public funds are already available for post-disaster initiatives,” Abad said.