Disaster management chief spending funds on preparedness projects
WHILE the Cebu City government affirmed the Commission on Audit report claiming the disaster management fund was underutilized by the city, the current city disaster management chief is already spending funds for preparedness projects.
“We spend our funds for capability building. That is the thrust of our administration now,” said Nagiel Bañacia, City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) head.
“Under our office now, we require 70% to be spent for preparedness, that is training for barangays, sitios, and Persons with Disabilities (PWD). In fact, next week we have a training with 28 fire volunteer brigades funded by the city government,” said Bañacia.
Bañacia also revealed that he had conducted training activities that were not city-funded and considered this as one of the reasons for being tagged as underspending the funds.
Adhering to the provisions of RA 911 or the Disaster Risk Management Act, Bañacia said that they are coordinating with Non-government Organizations (NGOs) and Civic groups to strengthened disaster preparedness.
Meanwhile, former operations chief of CDRRMO from 2011 to 2012 Alvin Santillana contested COA’s report which covered the years of his tenure until the 2016.
Santillana said that when he vacated his post in 2012, he is certain that he left no project hanging nor underutilized the budget given to his office.
Santillana also explained that the amount allotted for the department is very big that it would not be easy to spend everything considering that they also have to be careful of what they spend it for.
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