Leody De Guzman seeks more inclusive Yolanda rehabilitation program

Josiah Antonio, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 06 2021 10:34 PM

Partido Lakas ng Masa Ka Leody De Guzman talks to Yolanda survivors at the St. Francis Relocation Site, Barangay Suhi, Tacloban City, December 6, 2021. Photo from Din Panganiban
Partido Lakas ng Masa Ka Leody De Guzman talks to Yolanda survivors at the St. Francis Relocation Site, Barangay Suhi, Tacloban City, December 6, 2021. Photo from Din Panganiban

MANILA — Partido Lakas ng Masa presidential aspirant Leody De Guzman said Monday he would seek a more inclusive rehabilitation program for areas ravaged by super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in November 2013.

De Guzman earlier courted Yolanda survivors at the St. Francis Relocation Site, Barangay Suhi, Tacloban City for their support some five months before the May 2022 elections.

The labor leader told ABS-CBN News that he would be consulting with Yolanda survivors in reviewing the reconstruction plan crafted during the administration of the late President Benigno Aquino III.

In 2014, Aquino approved a P167.9-billion plan to rebuild areas destroyed by Yolanda. 

“Balikan ang comprehensive recovery and rehabilitation plan na kinumpuni sa panahon ni PNoy, i-review ito at ibukas sa malawak na partisipasyon ng mga komunidad na nasalanta ng Yolanda,” De Guzman said. 

(Review the comprehensive recovery and rehabilitation plan that was crafted during the time of PNoy, and open it to include the wide participation of communities devastated by Yolanda.) 

“Ang mismong plano ay hindi dumaan sa meaningful and robust community participation, dahilan kung bakit riddled ng samu't saring usapin at anomalya ang rehab process,” he said.

(The plan did not go through meaningful and robust community participation which is why the rehab process is riddled with various issues and anomalies.)

The labor leader said that if he is elected as President, he would also probe the anomalies among agencies involved and audit the funds for the said program. 

“Imbestigahan at panagutin ang mga ahensyang sangkot sa mga anomalya kabilang na ang (Department of Interior and Local Government, National Housing Authority, Office of Civil Defense, National Electrification Administration), etc. Panagutin ang mga contractor na pinerahan pa ang housing projects na resulta ay substandard housing units,” De Guzman said. 

(Investigate and hold accountable the agencies involved in the anomalies including the Department of Interior and Local Government, National Housing Authority, Office of Civil Defense, National Electrification Administration, etc. Hold contractors accountable for housing projects that result in substandard housing units.)

“I-audit ang lahat ng perang inutang at dinonate para sa Yolanda rehab,” he added.

(Audit all money borrowed and donated for the Yolanda rehabilitation.)

He said included in his climate crisis action plan are measures to improve disaster risk preparedness amid the prevailing environmental concerns.

“Repasuhin ang mga programa, plano at proyekto na isinasaalang-alang ang ating bulnerabilidad sa krisis sa klima at pinalalakas ang kakayahan ng mga komunidad na umangkop sa epekto nito (adaptive capacity). Halimbawa nito ay pagkakaroon ng programa sa sea level rise, kahandaan sa tinatayng 5 super typhoons na pumapasok sa (Philippine area of responsibility) taon-taon, pagpihit sa Build Build Build policy, extractives at maruruming enerhiya sa mga proyektong sustenable habang tinutulak ang just transition,” he said.

(Review programs, plans, and projects to take into account our vulnerability to the climate crisis, and to strengthen the ability of communities to adapt to its impact (adaptive capacity). For example, having a sea-level rise program, preparedness for approximately 5 super typhoons entering PAR annually, recalibrating the Build, Build, Build policy, and turning extractives and dirty energy into sustainable projects while pushing for just transition.)

“Paniningil ng reparations at danyos sa mayayamang bansa para sa kanilang historical responsibility sa climate crisis.”

(Seek reparations and damages from rich countries for their historical responsibility in the climate crisis.)

—with a report from Jervis Manahan, ABS-CBN News

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