MALACANANG on Sunday vowed to pour more funds to complete the rehabilitation of areas hit by Super Typhoon Yolanda after a United Nations report indicated that victims remain “vulnerable” two years after the calamity.
In an interview over state-run Radyo ng Bayan, Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the proposed 2016 budget will provide additional funds to continue recovery efforts in communities that were affected not only by Yolanda but the crisis in the cities of Zamboanga and Cotabato as well.
“We thank UN Special Rapporteur Chaloka Beyani for his 10-day visit that resulted in his comprehensive report on concrete suggestions on how the government can better respond to calamities,” Coloma added.
“There is no let-up in giving the needed support to internally displaced persons, particularly with regard to the construction of permanent, safe and decent homes [for them],” the Palace official said.
Coloma added that the National Housing Authority, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of Public Works and Highways and other agencies are providing assistance to victims to ensure their return to normal life.
He assured the UN that the government will speed up efforts in fulfilling its promises to victims of calamities.
“We also aim to help them find livelihoods that will ensure their full recovery,” Coloma said.
In his report, Beyani said the Philippines has not done enough to rebuild and that thousands remain in shanties without power or water.
Many survivors in Eastern Visayas, he added, have had to endure relocating to evacuation camps up to three times since Yolanda struck in 2013, and the sub-standard housing leaves them vulnerable to future typhoons.
“While the government is to be commended in terms of its immediate responses, its attention to ensuring sustainable durable solutions for IDPs [internally displaced persons]remains inadequate to date,” Beyani said in a statement posted on the UN website.