Palace crafting EO to create task force for typhoon-hit areas
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang has started crafting an executive order (EO) creating a task force dedicated to disaster preparedness and post-calamity rehabilitation and recovery efforts, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Monday.
This is after President Duterte ordered over the weekend the creation of a task force that will fast-track rehabilitation efforts for those affected by Typhoon Ulysses.
Roque said the body, to be known as the “Build Back Better Task Force”, will be headed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea while the Departments of Agriculture, Public Works and Highways, Budget, and Social Welfare and Development, the National Irrigation Administration, National Electrification Administration, and the National Housing Authority will be among the members.
“This body will have a clear chain of command and a direct mandate to address and monitor the multifarious issues and concerns involved in the rehabilitation and recovery phase of typhoon-affected areas,” Roque said in a televised Palace press briefing.
The creation of the task force was met with criticism, especially since the government already has the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).
But Roque appealed to give the plan a chance.
“Ang solusyon talaga diyan ay iyong creation ng Department of Disaster Resilience. Eh hindi pa po lumalabas. So obviously hindi po talaga sapat yung Council (NDRRMC) na gumagana bagamat mayroon tayong Executive Director na si napakagaling na Usec. Jalad,” Roque said.
“I guess the task force really is to stress that someone has to be in charge. And the person in charge is the Executive Secretary with the full assistance of the Cabinet,” he added.
Parts of Luzon are reeling from the onslaught of back-to-back typhoons—Ulysses and Rolly.
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