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COA report shows OCD’s funds for Yolanda victims were all from donations

/ 06:10 PM May 30, 2019
COA report shows OCD’s funds for Yolanda victims were all from donations

DESOLATE LANDSCAPE A seaside barangay in Palo, Leyte, is left in ruins by Supertyphoon “Yolanda” in 2013. —INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — The government has not provided a budget for Yolanda victims. All of the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) budget for Yolanda victims were borne out of donations, according to a recent report from the Commission on Audit (COA).

According to COA’s audit report dated May 20, all of the P135,391,701.96 funds allocated to the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) were sourced from grants from local and foreign sectors.

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“OCD did not receive any fund for the victims of Super Typhoon Yolanda from DBM and other National Government Agencies but received donations from both local and foreign sources,” COA explained.

Out of the P135.3 million, P94.41 million has already been utilized. COA, however, flagged OCD for leaving a balance of P40.97 million untouched as of December 31, 2018.

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Super Typhoon Yolanda ravaged through the country in November 2013 during the administration of former President Benigno Aquino III. It was then considered as the strongest storm to make landfall in the world.

COA said that based on NDRRMC data, more than 3.4 million people have been affected, while 4 million have been displaced

“The same report stated that Yolanda’s death toll has reached 6,300 while the number of injured stood at 28,869 and 1,061 were still missing,” COA said.

READ: WHAT WENT BEFORE: Supertyphoon ‘Yolanda’ 

COA earlier also called out OCD and NDRRMC for providing financial assistance to the relatives of only one deceased victim.

In the same report, the commission said that the reason behind the poor disbursement of financial aid may have been due to the numerous documents required before they are considered qualified.

Injured persons were allegedly asked to present medical certificates, police reports, and endorsement for the payment of claims.

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Relatives of dead persons, on the other hand, should provide police reports, death certificates, certification from the barangay captain, proof of relationship with the victim, and other endorsements.

“The production alone of the above documents could be very burdensome for some victims, which could be one of the causes of low utilization of the donated funds,” COA said.

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TAGS: COA, Commission On Audit, Marawi siege, OCD, Office of Civil Defense, Philippine news updates, Super Typhoon Yolanda
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