• Rebuilding not enough

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     A family uses the tarpaulin/shelter kit from World Vision as temporary roof and walls to the house badly damaged by typhoon Yolanda. PHOTO BY CHRISTOPHER LETE / WORLD VISION PHILIPPINES

    A family uses the tarpaulin/shelter kit from World Vision as temporary roof and walls to the house badly damaged by typhoon Yolanda. PHOTO BY CHRISTOPHER LETE / WORLD VISION PHILIPPINES

    UN report: ‘Yolanda’ survivors still vulnerable 2 years after storm

    The Philippines has not done enough to rebuild after Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), as thousands remain in shanties without power or water for nearly two years, a United Nations representative said Saturday.

    Many storm survivors in Eastern Visayas 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, said Chaloka Beyani, UN special rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons.

    “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.Beyani was in the Philippines in late July to check on the government’s handling of people displaced by Yolanda and by fighting between the military and Muslim rebels in the south.

    Aside from falling short of safety standards, the wood-and-tin “bunkhouses” also leave women and girls vulnerable to sexual abuse and early pregnancy, Beyani said.

     Chaloka Beyani

    Chaloka Beyani

    The box-like shanties also rob the storm survivors of their “privacy and dignity” as they struggle to rebuild their lives, he said.

    Yolanda, the most powerful storm ever recorded to hit land, wiped out entire communities and left 7,350 dead or missing when it struck the impoverished central islands in November 2013.

    Roughly 2,000 families remain in the bunkhouses as well as in palm-thatch temporary homes, said Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman.

    The government aims to move 70 percent of the 2,000 into permanent concrete homes by year-end, she said.

    Constraints
    “We are aware of the need to fast-track the permanent shelters, but there are constraints,” Soliman said.

    Soliman said the lack of power and running water in some areas was due to local governments’ unpaid utility bills.

    An increase in land prices also delayed the construction of permanent homes as land owners cashed in on government demand, she said.

    President Benigno Aquino 3rd has budgeted 160 billion pesos ($3.6 billion) to rebuild after Yolanda, considered as one of the major tests of his six-year term that will end in June next year.

    The Philippines is one of the world’s most disaster-prone countries, at risk from earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and an average 20 typhoons yearly.

    AFP

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    9 Comments

    1. Didn’t Soliman have enough time to round up the people and hide them like they did for the Pope’s visit ?

    2. What kind if comment is that by Solaiman – unpaid utility bills, jacked up land prices, etc. These ” constraints ” you mentioned are nothing cause there were billions donated by the world ! Where is this huge amount of money now? Mawawala na lang si Aquino sa position wala pa siyang nagawang kabutihan. NOTHING. Puro kayo lahat BULOK ! People in positions are very INEPT and cannot handle their jobs, the reason why life is very difficult.

    3. victor m. hernandez on

      Sec. Soliman of DSWD identified two constraints in rebuilding the Yolanda-struck areas, and thus delayed rebuilding, these are: unpaid bills on water and power or electricity incurred by local governments; and increase in land price in the area.
      This situation is an emergency one, a calamity situation. Sec. Soliman should have, if she has not done so, proposed to the Executive and the Legislative, the subsidy to pay the utilities bill; and the prohibition of increase in land prices. Speculators are not supposed to profit from this calamity. The government has the power to move forward with much more speed given that it has the power of imminent domain by virtue of the Philippine constitution. DSWD or the Executive cannot sit back and resigned itself to the unfeeling movement of market mechanism, specially during this calamity situation. The Executive and Legislative branches of government need to take a quick response and negate the untramelled market forces in the area. Profit taking should come later after the the communities are rebuilt and thriving.

    4. Recently , in Mahaplag Leyte ( over 0ne and a half years since Yolanda ) amounts of 5000 pesos was distributed to assist families to rebuild. WHAT CAN YU DO WITH 5000 PESOS ????? Just what has happened to the vast amount of money donated by other countries is an interesting question !!!!!!!

    5. this is pathetic and unacceptable. the Philippine government is an animal they do not act like Christians. that’s why the people are suffering. they vote all these crooks and let them steal scot free.

    6. I Remember... on

      Soliman… just go back to sleep with the Yellow Crooks that took all the cash. Idiotic remarks you have…

      NO EXCUSES. The job is not done! Resign if you have decency.

      • None of Aquino’s cabinet appointee’s has a shred of decency or competence. Witness every agency failing due to corruption and incompetence.

        How’s the MRT ?
        LTO ?
        Prison system ?
        Education system ?
        Electric power shortages ?
        Flooding in Manila ?
        Rebuilding from typhoon Yolanda ?
        Broken Helicopters scandal ?

        Maguindanao massacre trial ?
        Mamasapano massacre ?

        Pork Barrel Fund investigation by De Lima ?

        18 Senators on the Napoles list, 3 opposition senators charged
        What about the other 15 ?

        100 House members on the Napoles list
        How’s that investigation going ?

        Dap fund investigation by Ombudsman Morales ?

        What exactly do these people do ?